Paul Stevenson Mrs. Pierson AP English III MagnaSoles™: A Satire 12/9/11 In this article from The Onion, the intent was to ridicule the American system of commercial capitalism. The author makes illogical appeals to logos as well as mockingly uses different forms of propaganda in order to satirize this obnoxious tradition. Several imitation appeals to logos are made throughout the article. The reader is bombarded by fabricated information that is riddled with made-up words. Also, some words that are used are real but mock the context they are placed in.
One of the more frequently used terms, literally meaning “fake science”, is “pseudoscience”. This is a working contribution to the humor of the article because of its subtlety. The information is seemingly valid, but, for those who have a basic understanding of Greek roots, the validity is thus shattered. In addition, the operation and benefits are greatly exaggerated. The claim that the MagnaSoles™ can align one’s “biomagnetic field” with Earth’s magnetic field in order to restore one’s “natural bioflow” is a sham at best. Not only do they purportedly do all of this, they also only cost $19. 95.
These notions are so completely nonsensical that they beg to be ridiculed, thereby contributing to the over exaggeration of the pros associated with the product. Other uses of such information right through the article also aid in achieving the goal of satirizing this holy sacrament of shameless American commerce. The sarcastic use of propaganda plays a key role in satirizing the advertising industry. The end of this article is peppered with testimonial evidence that expresses the success and satisfaction that people have had with the product. However, like the claims made before, these testimonials are amusingly implausible.
One women claims that she twisted her ankle and that MagnaSoles™ got her back on her feet in about seven weeks, which she implied was a short recovery period. The normal recovery time for a sprained ankle is about seven weeks. Essentially, this woman is saying that the product does nothing. An “intelligent-looking man in a white lab coat” also endorses the product. There are so many things wrong with this picture that its hard to know where to start. First of all, the whole pretense of endorsement is that the consumer should know of the person endorsing the product.
This is just some nameless, faceless guy in a white lab coat. And the lab coat is included because it suggests that he is qualified. Second, the consumer cannot be sure if he is intelligent or not. They only know that he is “intelligent-looking”. The outrageous part is that many consumers are willing to refuse solid medical treatment and risk their well being for a cheaper alternative. The enormity of this risk exemplifies the author’s statement that American consumers are naive and irrational. This host of satirical elements is employed to criticize the American system of commercial capitalism.
This criticism exposes the hilarity of the entire practice. The point being made is that half of the things that people do everyday are so engrained in their daily schedule that people forget how ludicrous they really are. This satirical essay serves to remind the public what marketing really is: bluffs, opinions, and the possibility for monetary gain. So the next time a commercial like this comes on, see if they are throwing in the Ginsu Knife, because at that point you will realize you really need one, even though you are doing just fine without.