Politics

Affirmations, Part 3 – Jason Burnett

We have established that our brains are easily manipulated by viewing or experiencing material that gets written in our brains with or without our permission or intention. We have shown how positive affirmations can affect you positively, but negative affirmations serve only to increase fear and distrust. And we have explained how fear must be satisfied before we can hope for joy.

Before all of this information and disinformation was not only readily accessible but also being molded into shape and shoved down our throats every day, we had to pick our fights carefully.

We would form local groups of people who would decide in person how to deal with one or two particular issues. Some of us were more inclined to participate in this kind of activity than others.

So when the dam broke and all of the information about all of the injustice, all of the hatred, all of the lies, racism, misogyny, etc. came flooding into our consciousness through the Internet, we dealt with the things that we thought were the most important at the time.

When Cambridge Analytica figured out how we work, they directed the flow of information to key people or key groups of people who showed they were the most likely to become aggressive advocates for one side or the other. They microtargeted these individuals by buying ads that would show up only on the feeds of these people. They would publish articles that would then be promoted only to the feeds of the potential activists and their followers.

This laid a foundation of people who already had integrity for their involvement in other social issues to be the spokesperson for the propaganda that was about to be released. These “influencers” were targeted and manipulated to see the world as one of two extremes. Suddenly, you cannot be a friend that has his own ideas, you are either with us or against us.

We have all had friends that had different opinions than ours, but because of the bombardment of these targeted ads and articles, we no longer are able to see our friends as friends. We see them as supporters of the thing we fear. Somehow we lose track of how much we love them because they support our death or suffering even if that’s not true at all.

Can you imagine a time in your life when you have ever thought that you could discard a friendship because you honestly felt like they were the enemy? And can you imagine thinking that someone you love is the enemy because of who they believe would be the best president? If this doesn’t sound completely fucked up to you, then you just aren’t getting it.

You most certainly didn’t feel that way before this cyber attack on your feed happened. You used to respect your friends’ rights to have their own opinions and you wouldn’t push your agenda on them with a take it or leave it attitude on your own. You had to have support for this kind of action. And that support came from constant affirmation.

I had a friend from High School that I have had lots of conflict with in the past. Usually, it was over something petty and we were most likely really drunk when whatever happened, so we just got over it. So 25 years later, she happens to be in Atlanta and we make arrangements to hook up with her for drinks.

Things seem to be going great for both of us and her life seems pretty cool. She was a teacher in a school district in Texas. It wasn’t a rich district, so she had some underprivileged youth in her class. I had a lot of respect for her, especially considering what I know of her past.

But then she starts telling me things about why she’s a Trump supporter. This is before the election. A teacher in a poor school district that supported Trump. At first, I thought she was joking. I asked her if she understood where he stands on education and she didn’t. She was convinced that Hillary had killed 31 people with her bare hands and that she was going to destroy the United States.

Needless to say, I was blown away at not only her ignorance but also at how tightly she held onto her beliefs. She said she thought Trump would win and I told her there was no way. We were both right, but her more than me. He lost the popular vote but became our illegitimate president regardless.

She was going to spend the night at my place, but instead, I drove her to her hotel near the airport and said goodbye for the last time.

This was a calculated decision on my part. She was beyond help and there was no changing her mind. She supported the man that would eventually cost her her job and force her into taking welfare like “the black women having 25 children to get welfare money for them” (her words).

Never before in my history of friendships have I taken inventory of my life and simply discarded people that I cared about just because they supported someone for president that I hated. I hated Bush but didn’t do this. Why now?

The answer is simple. I was programmed by social media to hate and objectify anyone who supported Trump.

Even just the other day while having drinks with a friend, he said, “I think Trump will go down as the best president we have ever had”. I nearly dropped my drink. Fortunately, I didn’t have a history with this man and I wasn’t giving up anything to quickly leave the situation, but again this is because I have been programmed to hate anyone who supports Trump.

While I am being programmed to hate Trump supporters, others are being programmed to think that I am the enemy. When I asked the guy if he knew about the ICE raids, he did not. I asked if he knew about EPA rollbacks or the National Debt. He knew none of that. He gets his news from the internet and has never heard a word about any of that. So he starts saying, “what does that make me stupid?”

And there we have it. YES, THAT MAKES YOU A FUCKING MORON is what I felt like saying, but it was useless. The conversation was over because he has already been given the talking points to avoid taking responsibility for his actions. He sees me as the enemy and the enemy is going to say you are stupid, so you don’t have to deal with him. He’s the enemy. It doesn’t matter that you are stupid, just that the second he says it or implies it, you can cut him off.

And I see this over and over. To the point that the number one talking point for Republicans is that Democrats are the thought police. Liberals have made it so that you can’t even voice your opinion without losing your job over it. They complain that Liberals band together to oppress the right.

But that’s what we have been saying about the right for forever. Look at “the Squad” as a perfect example.

So how can this be that we are both the aggressors and the victims in all of this? Thank you Cambridge Analytica and the likes. By affirming to both sides that they are the victims and therefore need to come out swinging it ensures that we will fight. Fighting causes destabilization and that’s exactly what their goal is: destabilize the union.

Now, rather than my friend having her own opinions, if she’s not with me, she’s against me. Period. And if she is against me, then I can literally justify just about anything I do. I can justify cutting my friendship with her. Posting hateful things to her on social media. I can justify my bad behavior because I have been programmed to think that that’s how you treat an enemy.

I can gather my friends who have similar programming and they will totally agree with me. So I am right and it is worth losing a friend over being right in this case.

Again this is fear talking. Fear that our friends don’t have our backs. Fear that we are under attack. Fear is our main motivator and we are in a stalemate with our new enemies both driven by a steady stream of fear and misinformation custom-tailored for each of us.

Please read Affirmations, Part 4 — How to focus without losing touch


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