Sunday, May 14, 2006

Conditioning the People

I remember watching a performance by the British magician Darren Browne with the British Actor Simon Pegg. Indeed you can watch it here. Basically the trick was that Darren said tat when ever he was giving presents to people for their birthdays he would make them think what he gave them was exactly what they had wanted whether they had wanted it or not.

More...Darren talked to Simon for a bit about this for a bit and then asked him what he wanted. He said he wanted a red BMX. There was a big box in the room and Darren told him to open it and indeed there was a red BMX in the box. Before he came Darren has asked him to write down what he had wanted. When Simon pulled out the scrap of paper written on it was the words. Leather jacket. This perplexed Simon as he said he had no need for a leather jacket and had no recollection of writing the note even thought it was in his hand own hand writing. How was it done?

Well basically when Darren was talking to Simon he said stuff like. I just like get rid of stuff I have BY reCYCLING" and people like BMw’s and Xbox’s. He incorporated the word’s BMX and bicycle and red into his speech very subtly along with words such as saddle and handle bar without mentioning the words in full but just emphasising the letters. Every time he was saying the letter’s he would tap Simon on the shoulder. Also there was a lot of round objects in the room. This is called a conditional reflex. Basically by tapping him on the shoulder and emphasising the words he could put the thought into his head that were not his. I.e. that he wanted a BMX bike.

This effect is used in politics all over the world. Why deliver what they want when you can deliver what you want. I was chatting about the politics with a friend of mine the other day and he said “This crime thing came out of nowhere”. And he is right. Crime in Ireland is low, imprisonment per crime is high and we have higher police per person ratios then most of Europe.(For more read this previous post) One of the lowest in Europe. From the Sunday Tribune

Last year, there was a 3% increase in crime to 101,712 headline incidents, at a time when the population increase was closer to 5%. A similar scenario prevailed the previous year. In the two preceding years, crime fell. The real measure of crime is incidence per head of population. Last year, it was 24 per 1,000. The figure 10 years ago was 29. Where is all this crime Fine Gael is trumpeting?

So where is the crime. Answer there is none. But with the help of the media Fine Gael are making the country and the people believe that the crime rate is soaring that we are living in a boys in the hood type country. Many commentators are saying that McDowell needs to sort out the crime in this country. Yet he has crime is down the statistics show that. But ask any person and they will believe that crime pre person has gone up. Look at the Fine Gael posters trying to instil people with the fear that crime is rampant. They are conditioning the people to see crime around every corner.

The reason they are doing it is to win the election, make people think that the government is at fault that crime is rampant and people will rally to the self proclaimed Law and Order Party. Their proposals are harsh Tagging offenders, drunk tanks. When people say that these measure will be unconstitutional it works for them. As they can say that that uber-liberal DeValera didn’t know how to really deal with crime. We need to be tough brutalise criminals. They can say we are the only party willing to do what is done.

While it might be all well and good for Fine Gael’s election chance’s making people more afraid then the truth says they should be. Only leads to society becoming more insular and private. With all the talk of the need for community this and that. The one thing that communities need to work is trust. By hyping up the amount of crime Fine Gael are going to make the population more insular robbing them of the sense of community so vital in Ireland.

But it is not just with crime that people are being conditioned to believe falsehood’s. Look at immigration. And the so called race to the bottom. This race to the bottom in terms of wage’s are not supported. A recent prime time programme examined some of the case’s of Irish workers being displaced by foreign workers. But could find little evidence to support the Union’s position. Why then do we hear some much of this.

Now there is countless other examples of this take for instance the treat from a Dirty Bomb. Recently there was a story about smuggling radioactive material into Amerrica to make a dirty bomb. Now Dirty Bomb’s do not work. The Russians and the American’s tried to make one during the cold war and could not. There is a reason for it that I will not go into but it basically is to do with the scatter radius. It has been said that the only way a person could get a lethal dose from a dirty bomb is if they stood beside the bomb for a year and did not move. The American Nuclear regulator commission in the US say The presumed purpose of its use would be therefore not as a Weapon of Mass Destruction but rather as a Weapon of Mass Disruption. The reason it would work is that people would be afraid and panic if it went off. Fleeing the city thinking that they are living in a new Chernobyl. If the government’s were more vocal in the truth about Dirty Bombs then that would be avoided. So why are they not? Is it to make people more accepting of phone tapping? Many will say what have you to worry about if you are innocent but as a wise man once said “Relying on government to protect your privacy is like asking a peeping tom to install your window blinds. “

The trick to get people to do what you want them to do is to make them believe it is what they want to do. This conditioning is used by people in or who want power now and will be for a long time to come

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