Stochastic violence

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Stochastic violence is a form of demonization in which false and inflammatory propaganda is spread about a target person or group in such a way that it induces some tiny percentage of gullible people (which is a large demographic, so a tiny percentage is all it takes) to act violently in retribution against the target.

This propaganda is usually seeded by powerful interests – either in overt advertising campaigns or in the interpretive framing chosen in deliberately biased media presentations – but may often appear to be grassroots-driven, as individuals become ensnared by the emotional hooks planted in the propaganda and take up the cause as their own.

Vocabulary: We are now referring to this as stochastic violence rather than stochastic terrorism, as the latter implies an attempt to influence public policy through said violence. Much stochastic violence is probably also stochastic terrorism, but the important distinguishing feature is its stochastic nature: the people with the agenda do not have any direct control over those who commit the violence and merely nurture such violence in their target-audience via a combination of false statements and perceived authority, and it is very difficult to predict who in that audience will act or what they will do.


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