Neo-Obscurantism Unmasked


Satire can be a powerful way to suppress rational debate around a certain subject, for two reasons: first, it triggers an immediate instinctive reaction that shuts down rational thought; second, even after cooldown it prevents people from siding with its target due to the implied threat becoming targets themselves.
Virtually any possible subject, no matter how serious, if it's becoming too threatening for the status quo, it can be easily turned into a laughstock through caricatural misrepresention; this representation can target either the subject itelf (for example: deforming/extremizing certain aspects of it; comparing it to other subjects through false analogies; addressing it by using a language specifically designed to evoke ridicule, or even inventing new terms for that purpose; using memes, etc.)
or its proponents (for example: using stereotypical/caricatural imagery, sometimes even on a mere aesthetical level; representing them saying or doing something crazy or funny, or even just in a deranged way; contrasting them against the alleged common sense of "normal" people, etc.).
Comedians, satyrical writers/actors and other celebrities are often hired for this precise purpose by the mainstream media.