Monday, October 10, 2016

A cautionary tale

Whenever people hear the term "mind control", they think of some dark and sinister government facility were people are programmed via drugs or other means.  What the average person doesn't understand our minds are controlled everyday.

Think about a stage magician.  He or she performs trick based on getting your mind to think something is going on that really isn't.  Or the street hustler running a game of Three-Card Monte, he gets you to think you have found the "lady"  All of these are examples of mind control that we see all of the time and none of it occurs inside some type of secret facility.

The media has been manipulating our minds by all of the sensational coverage of the elections.  Quite frankly, our election process may never recover.  Certainly the candidates bear much of the blame, however the media has set in the background and manipulated matters to an even more fevered pitch.  Doubt it?  Quick tell me if any African-Americans are on the ticket this year?  No?  Look up Ajamu Baraka, he is Jill Stein's running mate. (So Hillary isn't only woman running for office?)  Of course the media doesn't cover anyone else but the two party candidates these days.  Oh and for veterans, Baraka is the only veteran (US Army, Vietnam) running this year.

If you haven't already unfriended people on Facebook over the election (or have been unfriended yourself), then you may have had a few choice words for friends or colleagues who don't see things like you do.  Therapists have been reporting an uptick in the number of patients who are being stressed out by the election coverage.  Their advice?  Tune out!

But of course humans are drawn to sights of violence and destruction, just watch how people slow down to look at road accidents.  They will keep watching the election and getting more upset.

If they aren't upset about the election, then they are likely upset about the continued state of race relations in the US.  African Americans still have yet to get the issue of police shootings moved out of the soon-byte arena and into a meaningful forum.  Oh and just so you understand, there are as many whites being shot by police as blacks but the media doesn't cover those so if you are white, you don't feel the outrage that blacks do.

Or perhaps you are pissed off about the state of immigration.  You are convinced everyone of those immigrants illegally entering our country are terrorists or rapists (Keep in mind this is the mentality that led a certain nationalist party to power, one that we keep saying will never happen again).  Why do you or those you know feel that way?  Because the media goes out of their way to put "Muslim" or "Middle Eastern" in the headline of any terrorist attack or sensational rape case (especially if the victim is a white female).  No, I'm not denying the cases but I'm pointing out how we are being manipulated by how these headlines are written.

The NFL is losing viewers all because one quarterback refused to stand for the national anthem.  Some how or other, this became tantamount to high treason or at least flag burning.  Even with the trend now spreading to high school athletes, there has been no dialog about what the gesture is really about and people are in patriotic hysterics about how disrespectful his and the other athletes actions are towards fallen vets.  Really?  I've never heard one of these athletes saying anything disrespectful towards our troops or fallen vets yet the press remains silent and just lets the hatred and vitriol spread like cancer.

Now let's say you have managed not to follow the elections, live in an area where your community and the police get along, and have no interest in pro-sports.  But if you live in the Southeast or have friends or family that do, you are tracking Hurricane Matthew.  This powerhouse storm flattened Haiti (or what was left after the 2011 earthquake and the ensuing cholera epidemic) and is hitting the US.  Even the most kind-hearted, non-news following people will be checking in the storm's progress.

Going back to my original point, all of these headlines are being crafted to keep our minds away from some very frightening that is going on.  Russia has now pulled out of nuclear security pact with the US (and the US followed suit) saying relations with the US has deteriorated into "hostile actions".  Moscow sees a lamb duck president and a contentious election going on with neither candidate appearing to be very pro-Russia.  Many military experts say this along with "no-fly zones" in Syria means World War III (Russia is taking this seriously and has re-instituted civil defense drills).

Last nigh was the second presidential debate and it served to embolden people's opinions of their own candidate over the other, it did nothing to persuade people to look at the other candidate with fresh eyes.  Remember in the not too distant past, debates where an opportunity to learn something about the candidates policies or positions that you may not have known.  Instead, the debates are playing out like an episode of some sleazy reality show.

While we continue to hate each other for our presidential choices, Russia is not taking the time to wait for the election.  Mr. Putin and his advisors see things deteriorating within the US and thus its relationship with Russia.  Mr. Obama is a lamb duck president, he can't offer much to persuade Mr. Putin that the future will be just fine.  So Mr. Putin's latest is to move nuclear weapons next to Poland.  It is an aggressive move, one that shows how little faith Russia has in being able to negotiate with the US via diplomatic means.

Americans in general tend to forget that what happens here in the US concerns other nations as well.  How we treat each other is how we are likely to treat foreign nations in the event of a confrontation.  People running around saying things like "race relations have never been worse" makes other countries think we are on the verge of a race war or civil war. They aren't going to wait around to see what happens, countries like Russia are going to get ready now.  But the media has convinced the public that the far greater danger is from each other.

No comments: