What do Hitler and Obama Have in Common?

Subconscious persuasion is surprisingly very commonly used with some of the world’s biggest leaders.  During Hitler’s reign of terror, millions of people were persuaded into believing something evil and wrong was good and right.  Currently, Obama is persuading millions of people that he will “change” America forever and take us to the next level. Both Hitler and Obama used an array of different persuasive communication tactics to literally move or shift the mindset upon millions of people.

A common question I get is that persuasive communication is unethical because people like Hitler used it as attempts to take over the world.  The thing is persuasive communication, like anything can be used in the wrong way.  Let’s say there are two people that are very knowledgeable about bombs.  One person uses their knowledge to help diffuse bombs for the police force while the other uses their knowledge on bombs to hurt massive amounts of people.  Obviously, from this example, it’s clear that persuasive communication can be used ethically.

Anchoring

An anchor in computer-language is just a place a hyper-link connects to.  This is the same idea applied to communication.  An anchor is a stimulus that invokes a state of mind that already exists and links it to that preexisting state.

Hitler’s brilliant anchor

Hitler was able to use Anchoring in a way so brilliant yet deceitful. He created a subsonic noise undetectable to the untrained ear that was awfully unique. When turned on, a discrete buzzing noise would fill the stadium.  The noise was subconsciously irritating and even caused people to become sick.  This noise would be switched ON while the highly anticipated crowd was waiting for Hitler to come on stage and then turned OFF immediately after he stepped in front of the podium.  As soon as he appeared on stage, most people subconsciously felt immediate relief.  So the crowd was anchored to: feel good, feel relief, and feel comfortable when Hitler is in front of them.  Reasons like this anchoring technique was why Hitler rose to power so quickly and so powerfully.

Obama’s brilliant anchor

Now I would NEVER compare Hitler to anyone in the sense that he was an evil and diabolical man. Using Obama is simply to show you that persuasive communication can be linked as good and evil.  Arguable, Obama’s techniques may be linked as evil also, but for the sake of this post, let’s link him as good.

Obama also used an array of persuasive communication techniques.  For most people, practically every time someone hears the word “change”, Obama was almost instantly the first picture that appeared in their head.  He was literally able to embed this anchor in most of our heads, regardless of who you voted for. “Change” was anchored as Obama. “Change” was also anchored as our country changing and evolving into something different (better). As the economy was sliding lower and lower, ‘change’ was being sought after more and more.

Leaders

Anchoring is just one of the many techniques used in persuasive communication. If your an average schmuck or the leader of the free world, knowing persuasive communication will allow you to make powerful and amazing things happen.

Can you think of any other famous leaders that use anchoring? If so, give an example.

56 thoughts on “What do Hitler and Obama Have in Common?

  1. Stephen - Rat Race Trap

    I’m not sure Obama has done anything brilliant yet. That remains to be seen. He doesn’t do that well in non-scripted environments (like debates). Like Hitler or any other madness of crowds movement, Obama sure has everyone stirred up. Maybe that’s good. Maybe it will make a difference.

    Obama is definitely linked with the word “change”. In that regard you are absolutely right. I laughed at SNL last night because the opening skit had Obama telling everyone that the campaign was like the courtship and now comes the marriage.

    Sorry I didn’t have much relevant to your post to offer. Must be Super Bowl Sunday brain dead syndrome.

    P.S. Hitler, Stalin, Mao all “changed” things. I just hope it changes for the better this time.

    Reply
    1. AJ Kumar Post author

      Obama hasn’t done anything brilliant as far as that “change” he’s promised us, but then again, any change in the economy takes an average of 6 months to notice. Obama HAS done something brilliant as far as getting elected. If you take a look at his speeches, infomercials, etc. he uses a mountain of persuasive communication.

      Reply
          1. Harnish

            I agree. I was expecting a lot more concrete actions since he had 2 months to prepare for his actions. Anyone can get elected by persuasion but to make moves that will really bring about change in real world politics is completely different. An example was the voting on the bailout bill which had no support from republicans. The reaching across lines has just not happened. And again not everything may be to his blame but the ability and propensity to now persuade does not show with the same passion.

          2. AJ Kumar Post author

            over promise, under deliver, something MANY people unfortunately do. However, like I stated above, it takes an average of 6 months to see change, so we can only wait and see what happens.

  2. tom

    This is great AJ.

    I have heard about comparisons between Obama and Hitler but never really took the time to read much into it.

    Thanks for posting this article, this just goes to show you how people can be persuaded to believe whatever they want and follow like a herd of sheep.

    Reply
      1. Harnish

        Leadership inherently involves persuasion and creating followers. Now with that power comes responsibility and ethics. If those do not then evil can emerge.

        Reply
          1. AJ Kumar Post author

            That is a whole other debate Hobo :) I know too many people, religious or not, that believe that the power is within. YOU choose wither or not you want to be a leader or a follower. There is no “natural” to this, you create it and make it happen.

  3. Harnish

    Very good concept of anchored communication explained in detail. The comparison may be diabolical but the concept also needs examples that you validly mention.

    Reply
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  5. Sushil Mayer

    My dad used “anchoring” as a way to communicate to me and my sister when we were younger. When his eye were wide open (deer caught in head lights), that usually meant trouble.
    Eventually we anchored his anchoring by using high voltage spot lights. Without his eyes wide open, his power of anger was diminished…. but, for how long.

    Reply
    1. Carpet cleaner eugene

      Hmm it appears like your blog ate my first comment (it was super long) so I guess I’ll just sum it up what
      I wrote and say, I’m thoroughly enjoying your blog. I
      too am an aspiring blog blogger but I’m still new to
      the whole thing. Do you have any helpful hints for inexperienced blog writers?
      I’d really appreciate it.

      Reply
    1. AJ Kumar Post author

      I understand where your coming from. I chose these two because they are from 2 end of the spectrum. One creating good and one who created evil. Again, I don’t compare them to have any similarities other than their power of persuasion.

      Reply
  6. Vera Shep

    I partially agree with your thought .. the other great example would be Stalin … his persuasive communication was fear tactic… he become a father of russian nation during the poorest and tragic years of war and horror…. using his cruel array against millions of tormented souls…. but hey.. it was that time and era… not every bright mind ended up in Gulag… some of them found the way out of it….

    Obama still a green apple that need to ripe but he will never arrive to the world market as a unique fruit …..

    Reply
    1. AJ Kumar Post author

      Interesting. I’m curious, what do you not agree on? Obama may or may not ever be the “unique fruit” you refer to, but he did present VERY powerful communication which did eventually bring him to lead the free world.

      Reply
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  8. Silvia

    Sorry,let me join your discussion and express my opinion. I think Obama is the unique fruit from different points of view. He represents the other time,the other mentality,nation,level of democracy and etc.Besides the situation in which Obama rules the country is unique as well. So I’d call him the unique fruit being onthe unique market with its unique taste/his powerful communication.

    Reply
  9. STORMIN2009

    FIRST, ALLOW ME TO ASK YOU A QUESTION, DID YOU VOTE FOR OBAMA? CHANCES ARE, YOUR GONNA SAY…HELL NO!! WHICH EXPLANS WHY YOU MENTION THIS BULL-SHIT STATEMENT THAT OBAMA AND HITLER HAS SOMETHING IN COMMON. AND THE REASON WHY YOU DIDNT VOTE FOR HIM, IS SIMPLY BECAUSE HE IS A BLACK MAN. SO…..NOW YOU ARE HATING. DONT HATE THE PLAYER BOSS, HATE THE GAME. HE DID IT, AND YOU HAVE NO OTHER CHOICE BUT TO SUCK IT UP, AND DEAL WITH IT. SO STOP CRYING LIL BABY.

    Reply
    1. AJ Kumar Post author

      I did vote for Obama :)

      In fact, I was monitoring and supporting him since the beginning. What they have in common is what all leaders have in common, persuasive communication.

      Reply
    2. tom

      Thanks for the caps, I think we aren’t 80 going blind.

      So what exactly is your question or concern? I am a bit confused, mind explaining, please?

      Reply
  10. Bryan

    Change?
    Thats your whole example of the anchor?
    I guess, given this is a blog on persuasion, I kinda expected … well… more persuasive argument.
    Basically, by that definition, Any politician in any expensive campaign is gonna have “anchors”
    they're called campaign slogans
    bumper stickers,
    buttons.

    Persuasion goes much deeper than that.
    What about when subliminal and hypnotic imagery and mantra like chanting are used to push the unknowing publics fear buttons.
    this could obviously become a much longer more in dept post.
    I was particularly amazed by how much effort and messaging was found in this official campaign video. just freeze framing showed what the campaign was REALLY up to stirring.
    check it out.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HYlI0fHJrB0

    thanks and take care

    Reply
  11. AJ Kumar

    Hey Bryan,

    I'm glad you caught that, but you have to understand, that most people who read this won't understand all the hypnotic/persuasion mumbo jumbo. My objective with this post was simply to show a list of the best persuasive communicators ;) It did so well that Tony Robbins actually read it and retweeted it to his 700,000 followers

    However you are right, there is a lot more in depth about the NLP Obama uses. There was some 40+ report created all about it. I cover a pretty interesting anchor Hitler used: http://www.persuasive.net/what-do-hitler-and-ob

    Reply
  12. misanthropope

    hitler, obama. i see it. those are certainly the only two people in the history of the human race to have learned basic oratory.

    i guess to a limbaugh twat, the ability to form complete sentences MUST seem like some sort of black magic.

    Reply
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  14. Automatic Pool Cleaners

    If it’s ‘constructive’ and ‘criticism’, it’s an Oxymoron. However, ‘constructive’ is really tag picked up voluntarily and the procedure is purely subjective. If ever someone feels hurt, he ought to leave the field to the others. There is a concept called ‘Swakucha mardanam’ that implies self-gratification (because none else is coming forward to do it, without hurting). A discussion or even a forum for it permits no self-centered human emotions.

    Reply
  15. Semantics

    Interesting notes, but I think it is appropriate to refer to the President of the United States as “President Obama” not “Obama.” It makes you sound like some ignorant radical who’s calling in to the Glenn Beck show.

    Reply
  16. Aaron

    Hey AJ- couldn’t find your e-mail address.

    I’m enjoying your posts so far- I really respect your ability to simplify the material…I tend to just go on and on when I write about this kind of thing.

    Also I’m really impressed and appreciative of how gracefully you reply to people, even when they are giving you some flack. Way to go! I’m curious about how you’re reacting internally to those situations…what are you telling yourself? I guess I’d like to mini-model that, because your responses really resonated with how I’d like to express myself.

    Anyway, my main question: do you have a reference for Hitler’s ‘white noise’ machine? I’d like to read more about that. Thanks, and feel free to e-mail me back.

    Best,
    Aaron

    Reply

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