I keep asking myself why so many good citizens in this country are so blind to the perfidious and pompous behavior of the current administration. I keep coming up with the word “brainwashed”. The emperor has no clothes. Long live the emperor.

A few days ago Liz over at Letting Me Be… posted a really thought provoking entry about Social Conformity. She describes the Asch study, a simple but disturbing proof of social conformity. The comments poured in, all with good points. One commenter, Melly from All Kinds of Writing recalled using the same test to demonstrate the nature Nazi behavior, because invariably the most often asked question was, “how come nobody stood up for the truth”.

We are certainly not as much of a lemming society as Germany is, or at least was, but we do need to face the insidious propaganda slime creeping into many of our institutions. Truth and Facts no longer have meaning. I think the tide is beginning to turn, though. I know this is old news, but Paul Hackett’s near win in Cincinnati’s 2nd congressional district proved to some of the brainwashed ones are waking up. Thank God, which ever one you prefer to thank.

12 thoughts on “Lemmings

  1. Thank you, Muse for mentioning the discussion at my blog. I think you’ve added some thoughtful insights to the discussion right here.

    What I’m hearing over and over again is that we are all invested in our own truths and our own realities. I’m not certain I would agree that it’s brainwashing. I see people who find their perceptions to be the reality.

    thank you again


  2. Liz- Maybe it’s too strong a word. But It worries me that the facts don’t matter. It doesn’t matter that we were lied to regarding the Iraq war. It doesn’t matter that the threat of attack on the US was ignored, then 9/11 happened.

    You are generous in your view. And fogiving. I wish I could be. I am usually able to see anyone’s side. I can even see the reasons so many folk are upset with what they think are liberal politics, which is the new name of ‘politics as usual’. I can also forgive, but not when I’m told I’m unpatriotic for not supporting the Pres. in whatever he does.

    I’m nervous and angry that people keep choosing the wrong stick from the Asch test. I am tired of being told black is white. The world’s safety is definately at stake.

  3. Thank you for you kind words about me. I can tell by what you’ve said that you are most generous in your viewpoints and in listening to other points of view.

    But your answer assumes that I was taking your point of view.
    Actually I was talking about both sides. I never feel I have enough information. But I watch both sides see what they want to see. I watch both sides accuse me and both sides welcome me and my words and my thinking doesn’t change. In reality I haven’t a side.

    I care about the country. But from where I sit everyone is seeing what they expect to see.

  4. Hi there Garnet,

    I believe I was here before. Sorry if I didn’t comment.

    You’ll have to forgive me for not knowing the particulars of this issue but it’s too detailed American politics for my Canadian background.

    I do, however, believe that the propaganda machine hasn’t lost its steam. In some cases it even picked up steam. I believe it’s called marketing nowadays 🙂

    It is most intriguing for me to see what is about to happen in the US in the aftermath of Katrina with all the voices calling for an impeachment. These voices are why I still think that there is hope and no better place to see it than in the US where the freedom of speech is alive and kicking.

    Clarification: I don’t think the hope is because they’re calling for impeachment, but I think there’s hope because these voices exist and continue to exist.

    Oh, I almost forgot, thanks for the link 🙂

  5. Melly, thanks for the comment. I think free speech is working, but sometimes it seems a little tentative.

    Liz- I would like to talk to you more about your views. Sorry, I did in fact assume you came from my point of view. Yet, I’m not sure what yours is from your answers. As I said, I really do see both sides. I simply feel the rhetoric is becoming so empty and false, mainly from the right, that I can’t even “see” what they mean.

  6. It’s interesting how even I am cajoling Liz to taking my point of view. Hmm, am I wearing clothes? (Oh, that’s right, I like nudity).

    Liz, after thinking a bit, I think I see what you are saying. Perhaps you don’t take either side’s spin as the correct answer. Though I’m a die hard liberal, I’m beginning to wonder if either political party is what we need.

    I think we should start a new country. The United Renters of Gaia, or United Peoples of Mellowness.

  7. My view is that of an observer I guess. I don’t trust the media to tell me the whole story. I’ve watched complete speeches and then seen them reported as entirely something else.

    I’ve been the victim of spin and I think both sides do it. I believe that both sides want to say there are black and white answers and I’m lost in the gray. I can’t believe that Bush has the evil intentions that are attributed to him. Nor can I believe every word that he says. I like Tony Blair. I admire Mandella. But not a person on Earth is all bad or all good.

    Truth is we need to defend our country and to have some self esteem about it. And I don’t hear any answers only complaints from the left. So we stop Iraq and the terrorists have their soapbox and we ruin what foreign relations we’ve made. Our soldiers get harmed like the Viet Nam vets and another generation of Americans can’t be saved.

    And everyone wants to blame this on one man or two???
    Joseph Campbell was right. We are a country in our adolescence. We need to grow up and find heroes again. We’re focusing on the wrong things.

    If people talked this way about the President during World War II, it would have been considered close to treason–likewise the talk about Clinton. It’s the media that stirs up this frenzy and we let them.

    Guess that probably confuses it more.

    I do not believe in the media. So I cannot believe in the left or the right.

  8. Thank you so much for that very real and heartfelt answer.

    I think Bush is more of a puppet. I worry about corporate power. Have you seen the documentary “The Corporation”? It’s pretty intense how they get their way, and we don’t know what they’re up to. And they influence gov. policy much more than before 1950.

    I don’t really trust the media, but I still think the New York Times is fairly balanced. That’s where I get most of my views.

    It just hurts me and the nation that Clinton got impeached for fooling around, and the Bush administration (not just one or two men) doesn’t even get serious scrutiny about deception and lies which led to a costy war. (Perhaps the media is making it up, but I think it really happened)

    Anyway, thanks for engaging in this discussion. I don’t have many like this, but I’m glad you were the one. I like your truly open and unpresumptuous views.

  9. Well, Muse,
    I don’t think the media is making things up as much as spinning and I feel sorry for what they’ve done to the memory of Ms. Sheehan’s son and Ms. Shaivo.

    Thank you for a respectful discussion of like minded souls who are just trying to figure out the truth.


  10. Great post…

    Greetings from China…

    I see th news from here and often see the spin that is put on ANY world event by both the media and by the administration…

    It is not a country with the same goals and ideals that my father died for and I fought for…

    I am glad there are still folks like you around…


  11. Lonnie, yes, it seems things have gotten twisted in the past few years.

    I’m sure you are mortified by the flimsy reasons for sending all those soldiers to give their lives in Iraq. It cheapens the heroism of your father as well.

    Thank you for commenting. Best wishes,

Comments are closed.