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Use of public relations

Wrecking an International Project: Notes from a saboteurs vade mecum (Part #7)

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  1. Ignore.
  2. Pay great attention go through all the motions, receptions, etc., flatter the person or organization, and do nothing.
  3. Decorate the organization making the proposal -- i.e. praise initiative rather than follow it up.
  4. Use public relations machinery to disguise inaction or minimum action.
  5. Overpraise the project so that other people become suspicious of ulterior motives.
  6. Encourage the proposers to lobby those who are irrelevant to the project, or definitely hostile, and avoid pointing out to them those who are likely to be powerful supporters.
  7. Ensure that there are foul-ups in protocol on the occasion of the presentation with regard to the number of seats available, the allocation of seats to VIPs, who is introduced (or not introduced) to whom, etc., in order to build up hostility to the proposers.
  8. Encourage the proposer's organization to issue a comrnuniqui or other document on the project when it is known that this will be considered a breach of procedure, irresponsible and premature by the body reviewing the project; or alternatively, avoid suggesting such a communiqui when the reviewing body or its members like to receive publicity.
  9. Introduce or describe the proposer as an "eminent authority" on the project topic, when he is riot, thus arousing the antagonism of the real eminent authorities who will vet the project; or, alternatively, fail to mention that the proposer is the most eminent authority, when he is, and thus ensure that less attention is given to his views.
  10. If a meeting is required, ensure that participation is free if this is appropriate or would give the impression that people would not come otherwise; or, alternatively, charge an entrance fee if potential supporters would expect participation to be free.
  11. Imply that the presentation will be at an informal 'shirtsleeves' meeting, and then ensure that all other participants arrive expecting, and dressed for, a formal meeting., or, alternatively, imply that the proposer should make a highly formal presentation when the participants are liable to be turned off by it.
  12. Invite a charismatic celebrity (particularly of the luscious female variety) so that the tone of the occasion is changed and the presenter of the proposal is made to feel that the presentation is an arid exercise by eggheads.