The following excerpt is from a long article by Anne Applebaum in The Atlantic discussing the sharp global rise of populism and authoritarianism, and as such mentions the concept of the Medium-Size Lie (or Lies) - in contrast to the concept of the Big Lie made famous by Hitler and Goebbels. ... From Orwell to Koestler, the European writers of the 20th century were obsessed with the idea of the Big Lie. The vast ideological constructs that were Communism and fascism, the posters demanding fealty to the Party or the Leader, the Brownshirts and Blackshirts marching in formation, the torch-lit parades, the terror police—these Big Lies were so absurd and inhuman, they required prolonged violence to impose and the threat of violence to maintain. They required forced education, total control of all culture, the politicization of journalism, sports, literature, and the arts. By contrast, the polarizing political movements of 21st-century Europe demand much less of their adherents. They don’t require belief in a full-blown ideology, and thus they don’t require violence or terror police. They don’t force people to believe that black is white, war is peace, and state farms have achieved 1,000 percent of their planned production. Most of them don’t deploy propaganda that conflicts with everyday reality. And yet all of them depend, if not on a Big Lie, then on what the historian Timothy Snyder once told me should be called the Medium-Size Lie, or perhaps a clutch of Medium-Size Lies. To put it differently, all of them encourage their followers to engage, at least part of the time, with an alternative reality. Sometimes that alternative reality has developed organically; more often, it’s been carefully formulated, with the help of modern marketing techniques, audience segmentation, and social-media campaigns. Americans are of course familiar with the ways a lie can increase polarization and inflame xenophobia: Donald Trump entered American politics on the back of birtherism, the false premise that President Barack Obama was not born in America—a conspiracy theory whose power was seriously underestimated at the time, and that paved the way for other lies, from “Mexican rapists” to “Pizzagate.” But in Poland, and in Hungary too, we now have examples of what happens when a Medium-Size Lie—a conspiracy theory—is propagated first by a political party as the central plank of its election campaign, and then by a ruling party, with the full force of a modern, centralized state apparatus behind it. ... https://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/2018/10/poland-polarization/568324/ In thinking about how to discuss Applebaum's article it struck me that the Big and Medium Lie(s) imply that there might be a Big Truth as well, and here it seems that I was scooped by such as Ronald Reagan et al. by a 1951 film short of the same name. Unfortunately, The Ronald had some problems with truth, just not as bold and crass as The Donald does. And ironically The Ronald, per the Republican mythos, would likely be kicked out of today's Trumpublican Party. Applebaum discusses various populism related 'conspiracy theories' of which we know the very term was coined to either marginalize real historical phenomenon, and in the "mix of presumption" is thus profitably applied to various contrived false premises created to either help roil the waters for such as propaganda sake or, conversely, to help maintain an existing consensus reality. The creation of such false premises might arise either from spontaneous individual ambition or from deeper group motivations. In any case, surely there must be some objective Big Truth (besides the band of this name), that such as the putative Christ told us which would set us free? And ironically, or sardonically, what if finding that Big Truth involves most everyone acknowledging some dirty laundry swept underneath their respective carpets? The source of the big lie technique is this passage, taken from Chapter 10 of James Murphy's translation of Mein Kampf: But it remained for the Jews, with their unqualified capacity for falsehood, and their fighting comrades, the Marxists, to impute responsibility for the downfall precisely to the man who alone had shown a superhuman will and energy in his effort to prevent the catastrophe which he had foreseen and to save the nation from that hour of complete overthrow and shame. By placing responsibility for the loss of the world war on the shoulders of Ludendorff they took away the weapon of moral right from the only adversary dangerous enough to be likely to succeed in bringing the betrayers of the Fatherland to Justice. All this was inspired by the principle—which is quite true within itself—that in the big lie there is always a certain force of credibility; because the broad masses of a nation are always more easily corrupted in the deeper strata of their emotional nature than consciously or voluntarily; and thus in the primitive simplicity of their minds they more readily fall victims to the big lie than the small lie, since they themselves often tell small lies in little matters but would be ashamed to resort to large-scale falsehoods. It would never come into their heads to fabricate colossal untruths, and they would not believe that others could have the impudence to distort the truth so infamously. Even though the facts which prove this to be so may be brought clearly to their minds, they will still doubt and waver and will continue to think that there may be some other explanation. For the grossly impudent lie always leaves traces behind it, even after it has been nailed down, a fact which is known to all expert liars in this world and to all who conspire together in the art of lying. — Adolf Hitler, Mein Kampf, vol. I, ch. X According to Hitler, the "big lie" was a propaganda technique typically used by Jewish Marxists. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Big_lie In the Mein Kampf excerpt above, Hitler, the Nazi's apocalyptic messiah [sic], reveals to the unwashed German masses the concept of the Big Lie, premised of course, on the notion embedded foundationally in the Christian Gospels and the theology of the Roman Catholic Church from St. Augustine onwards, that the "killers of Christ" are the root of all German, if not all humanity's, problems. But, he forgets, as did the Church, that their Christian religion couldn't exist without that foundational 'conspiracy theory'. (This last hints at that the Postflavian Big Truth thesis is focused on what is actually the real Big Lie, what we've been calling the False Dialectic of Western Civilization. While everyone is variously concerned about Jews versus Gentiles, or whomever, there is a deeper phenomenon behind the veil.) Today, having fought the horrors of the first two world wars, the intense focus on Jews (and Marxists) has diffused somewhat to the Medium Lies, onto lesser generic dialectics such as the evil liberals and elites. In a dig at those evil elites, Donald Trump, under increasing political and legal pressure, has even told us recently how his gut tells him more (lies) than anybody else's brains. This, of course, is more pandering to his base, who have been listening for decades about how the liberals and the elites have been screwing them, either on purpose or because they are arrogantly stupid. This despite the United States of America is, by original definition or context, a 'liberal' enterprise - supposedly 'freed' from such as kings. And this despite that Trump seems to obsess about joining the ranks of these same elites, that supposedly wont let him join their club. So he is left to eat at McDonalds and whine. It's all a Big Mac Lie, from The Donald's and our perspective. But to The Donald's worshipers it is the Big Mac Truth. But his base has been sold the false equivalence that elites and liberalism are their enemies, when neither constructs, or their opposites, have morality attached. Instead, the motivations and actions of individuals claiming such identities must always be examined under a microscope, as opposed to lazily accepting their rhetoric and branding. Having lost their ability to discern from rhetoric political conflations those populist haters of aristocratic king shunning liberals are globally preferring authoritarian dictators, the strong man who alone can solve their problems.