Call#: Van Pelt Library DD256.5 .N359 2002
This speech of Joeseph Goebbels, minister of propaganda, is filled with just that—propaganda. Goebbels does acknowledge Germany’s military defeats, though. Specifically, when he mentions the defeat of Stalingrad, he is overly positive and tells the German people that this defeat was actually a good thing because it would unify Germany, ultimately strengthening the country. This specific example shows how Goebbels takes even the most seemingly negative thing such as a military defeat and turns it into a positive for the Nazi cause. He compliments the German people while he rallies them to support Germany. He assures the people that Germany has endured many crises and can endure this one and thrive again. These difficult times will build virtue in the German people. Goebbels informs the people of the bleak military situation, so that they understand the magnitude of the situation and will be moved to help the war effort. He states that the German cause is noble, in that as Germans, it is their duty to protect the world from the failed Bolshevik ideology that surely would have swept through Europe had Germany not stepped in. Germany did initially underestimate the strength of their enemy, the Soviet Union. Goebbels continually reminds the German people that to win Germany needs the full support of its citizens. Goebbels concludes his speech by rallying the people with a series of ten questions. One example is that he asks whether the German people believe in victory. Obviously, the people answer with a resounding, “YES!” He ends his speech with a last appeal to the German citizens for patriotism.
This speech shows the importance of the support of the citizens. Joseph Goebbels was in charge of rallying the people’s support, and this speech is one concrete example of how he did so and its importance. The Nazis needed the support from the people in order to win the war, and Goebbels used this speech in an attempt to do so. Generally, though, Goebbels employed film as his primary tool for propaganda. This speech was a direct appeal to the people. In contrast, film appeals to the people in more subtle ways. Because of its subtlety, film is a very effective propaganda tool. The film Kolberg, for example, also calls on the citizens to help with the war effort. This film does so indirectly through the use of a historic example, the battle of Kolberg. The efforts of the average citizens is pivotal in the battle of Kolberg. The importance of the average citizen in history was meant to inspire people to do the same thing for WWII. Goebbels spent so many resources on this film because he felt that this support from the people was necessary to win; however, Goebbels got carried away with the project, wasting many needed resources. In the end, the film was useless because it was not released until the war was practically already lost.
This is an article from November, 2001 in the Duke Law Journal. The article is by Albert Z. Kovacs, and it questions the morality of the people who share copyrighted material. The author uses a psychological argument to condemn anyone who uses the internet to steal songs, and says something must be done to change people’s mindsets. He explains that in cyberspace, people’s identities are taken away. They are identified only by an IP address, and not by a name. They believe that no one can see their actions, and that no one can find out who they are. He says that this is called “depersonalization.” People want music to be free, and use file-sharing networks to get it, but this doesn’t make it morally right. The author blames people’s attitudes about file-sharing on internet discourse. For example, when someone downloads copyrighted material it is referred to as “sharing,” and not as theft. Because music is available through these networks, people’s views are changed to the point at which they believe stealing is ok. The proposed solution in this article is a display of power by the RIAA. Kovacs explains, “The wild horse must be broken before it can be trusted alone in its stable.” He means that people will stop stealing music once they are extremely scared of the consequences.
This article is very thought provoking and it made me reconsider my stance against the RIAA. I still think their lawsuits are arbitrary and unfair, but their intentions now seem to be legitimized. For example, I don’t feel guilty downloading copyrighted music, but I would never walk into a record store and steal a CD. Part of the reason many people are against the RIAA is because they want free music, but if we know what we are doing is morally wrong, why shouldn’t we be sued? If I were in the recording artists’ shoes, I would want to be fairly compensated for my work. This being said, even though I understand the RIAA’s intentions, I still think their actual lawsuits are not the best way to achieve their goals. They choose random people to sue for unfair amounts, and this seems like nothing more than a strategy to scare people. I think there is a better way to solve the problem, but I understand the RIAA’s frustration.
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