Why does Napoleon blame everything bad on Snowball?

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Humanity (and therefore the animals in this allegory ) has a need for justice. We seek retribution for sins or ills committed against us. Take a look at a typical criminal investigation. The investigation is finished when a suspect is convicted and sentenced... even if the suspect was innocent and...

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Humanity (and therefore the animals in this allegory) has a need for justice. We seek retribution for sins or ills committed against us. Take a look at a typical criminal investigation. The investigation is finished when a suspect is convicted and sentenced... even if the suspect was innocent and inaccurately found guilty.

Napoleon uses the scape-goat, a style of propaganda which points blame elsewhere. Some of the problems on Animal Farm were within Napoleon's power to solve, others were not. No matter what the problem was Napoleon pointed to Snowball so the animals would point their need for justice there. Had there been opportunity for them to place their anger, they would have lashed out on Snowball.

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There are two reasons, in my opinion, that Napoleon blames everything on Snowball.

First of all, it is important that Napoleon himself should not be blamed for anything.  There are problems on the farm, and so it is helpful to blame them on Snowball. If animals started blaming Napoleon for things, he might lose his position of power.  So he has to blame Snowball to make it look like he himself is perfect.

The other thing is that it helps him keep power by making the other animals afraid.  If they think that Snowball is out there trying to ruin their farm, they will rely more strongly on Napoleon to keep Snowball away, to defend them from Snowball.

So both ways, the main idea is to keep Napoleon in power.

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After Napoleon sucessfully drives Snowball from Animal Farm, it becomes important to Napoleon's propaganda aims to demonize Snowball as often as possible. In reality, Snowball was a capable and popular leader, more capable than Napoleon, so it matters to Napoleon to keep denigrating him. He certainly doesn't want the other animals campaigning for Snowball's return or comparing him unfavorably to Snowball.  Second, Snowball is a convenient scapegoat. He isn't around to defend himself, so it is easy for Napoleon to blame his own failures on so-called "plots" by Snowball. When Napoleon wants to get rid of animal enemies, saying they were incited by Snowball is a foolproof way to demonize them and then have them executed. In his tactics, Napoleon mirrors Josef Stalin. Stalin exiled his rival Leon Trotsky, demonized him, and then in show trials in the 1930s, blamed him and his alleged followers for any number of problems suffered by the Soviet regime. 

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