Perception, Inception and the Trojan Horse Money Meme - Part Four of Four

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Perception, Inception and the Trojan Horse Money Meme

Chapter Four of Four


Find Yourself, Then Find The Others


Cognitive Dissonance


The intent of this essay is not to convince the reader of anything other than the need to expand our depth perception of the consensus reality. Consider this essay as an invitation to think free of constraints. In Chapters One (here) and Two (here) we explored perception and how it is intertwined with what we believe is our real reality as well as how our reality is distorted by manipulating our perception. In Chapter Three (here) we examined Inception or the implanting of our basic beliefs and perceptions. In the final chapter we discuss a way forward.



Comfort is Found Within Our Conditioning

While I most certainly hope it is not the case I suspect that I lost many of my classically trained empirically minded readers by the second or third paragraph of Chapter One. I don’t say this in a derogatory manner at all for in many respects I was and still am cut from the same bolt of cloth. And if I were reading this essay fifteen years ago I would probably shut down as well for I was a man of data, facts and science and to me this would all be seen as just nonsensical foolishness. By my late twenties I had discarded all the fantasy and fiction I mentioned in Chapter One as childish toys no longer needed or wanted.

As with so many other men and women I began to shake myself awake as part of what is often called the mid-life crisis, that time when so many begin to reassess all they have done and where they are going. For the vast majority this existential crisis is relatively short lived. And once the self doubt and reflection is washed from the system, the mind hardens and narrows even more than before. Once cleansed of any lingering non conforming thoughts that couldn’t be ignored or dismissed, they finish their career and retire in a blaze of corporate glory comfortably sated in their self induced numbness. After all, who the hell wants to be a rebel at fifty or sixty when retirement is just around the corner? That’s a young man’s game.

There is great emotional and intellectual comfort to be found within the highly trained and conditioned mind. Everything has a place and there’s a place for everything except for the few outliers that can usually be trashed as aberrant thought or even one offs. What I didn’t see at the time and only later began to grasp is that while I knew many scientifically proven facts, in reality I didn’t know much at all. I realized all the really important and interesting questions were still to be answered and that each conclusion was as unique as a person’s fingerprint.

The illusion of scientific, moral and intellectual certainty that had sustained me for several decades was ultimately not liberating at all. Instead it was a wonderfully constructed and quite convincing thought meme erected in honor of the false God of empirical thinking. As I began to pull back layer upon layer of the onion I was emotionally and egoically crushed to learn that the more I thought I knew the less I really understood about anything of real consequence. While I might be able to describe to you how my cell phone functioned I was unable to explain to you who I was and why I was here.

Just as important I came to appreciate that it was the pursuit of these questions that would be the source of my future growth rather than the answers themselves. What I had always believed was true freedom derived from the ability to examine everything through the lens of logic and scientific method was instead a mental straitjacket. What I considered to be a factual view of my world was actually a belief system supported by official supporting documents and authenticated certificates of proof. The more specialized I became the more narrowly I saw the world and the bigger the burden became of defending my belief system. Every outlier I came across was a danger to the whole and as such must quickly be qualified, quantified or derisively dismissed.

The seduction and denial begins in believing that we don’t do precisely what we have done. Having become second nature after decades of training, we are in a constant state of weighting and judgment, always sorting, collating or categorizing most everything even if just on the subconscious level. We are taught from birth that there is always correct and incorrect, true and false, approved and unapproved, black and white. And while we may intellectually claim we understand that the world is full of gray, emotionally we still collect those ‘things’ which confirm our consensus reality belief system and reject those that don’t.

This is a built in bias that works silently in the background and is part of the control system that keeps us safely confined within our perceived reality box. However if confronted as I now do with the reader, many will strenuously assert this isn’t so, that we fairly examine any new piece of information that enters our field of vision. But of course when an outlier comes floating by we use our established and cherished standards and processes to measure and validate what is real and what is not. In so many ways we use circular logic to confirm that which we already believe to be true.

When examining others it seems self evident that the more committed we are to a particular persuasion, belief or dogma the more likely we are to defend that belief as if we were defending our very life. And in so many ways we would be for our perception and belief determines how we view and live life. Yet we are mostly blind to this process within ourselves and we rarely see the belief system of “science” or of the “scientific method” as a similarly rigid or embedded point of view.

We assure all those around us that only the truth prevails in science. But always we apply the same tools already ‘proven’ to be ‘true’ to information that is nonconforming or suspect. Thus the measuring stick designed only to measure that which is already conforming to the accepted standard successfully rejects those that do not.

Any change of view or perception that does enter the control system must clear impossibly high hurdles. And even then the change doesn’t gain widespread acceptance until the old guard is long dead and buried. For a discipline that supposedly accepts proof that meets certain standards, why is it that long held beliefs and customs are jealously defended which just so happen to deny entry to change? Maybe it isn’t science itself that is the problem here, but rather the practitioner of science that is the malfunctioning component? In other words it is the application of the scientific process that is distorted, thus producing distorted results.


The Journey, Not the Destination

When explaining this to others I often employ a thought picture to describe what is happening. As I grew older and my worldview and belief system became ever more complicated and interwoven it began to feel as if I were carrying around an eighty pound bag of ready mix concrete. While I could manage the load I needed to maintain a firm and constant grip which eventually eliminated any flexibility and adaptability I originally started with. This is one of the reasons why real breakthrough ideas spring from young minds not yet conditioned to know what they want to do or what they just did was impossible. Soon enough I became wedded to a white elephant in ways that were never really obvious to me because I was in the middle of what I had come to accept as normal.

My box was not a box, but instead my entire world. This in turn ignited a severe case of normalcy bias well beyond anything I could imagine. So while I didn’t necessarily see it as a burden at the time it most certainly was. In effect I was so busy treading water that I was rarely making headway. And the more belief weight I took on the more burdensome the load became. I was now controlled by my own belief system and not the other way around. And because this is considered a normal and natural part of everyday life and something everyone else deals with, it was just the way things were. This is modern day life we are told, no more or less.

When I realized I was on a treadmill going nowhere fast it quickly became obvious that a change in perspective was desperately needed. Instead of defending my belief system at every port of entry, why couldn’t I simply suspend belief (an entirely different concept than suspending disbelief in order to enjoy a fictional book, TV show or movie) and allow these nonconforming ideas and concepts to simply exist without vetting or qualification?

This meant that everything had a ‘right’ to exist in my reality without affirmation, confirmation or rejection. If it didn’t fit my current belief system there was no longer a need to apply the only two choices I ever really afforded things like this in the past, to reject it or accept it. Instead I could simply see it as interesting or curious and place it on a back shelf in my mind ready at a moment’s notice to be pulled down for further examination and assimilation.

This is more important than might be obvious at first glance. While we may reassure ourselves that anything we reject (or accept) can and will be reexamined if new information is presented (or if we reassess old information) in practice once something is ‘disbelieved’ there is very little incentive to reassess our position. We simply give little to no credence to things that have already been dismissed as impossible or improbable. And the reason we ‘disbelieved’ it in the first place was because it was impossible or improbable. We ‘proved’ that, right?

The flexibility we claim we will apply to new or additional information is a deceptive conceit we afford ourselves in order to maintain the comfort of hard and fast rules of belief, which in turn maintains our narrow perception of reality. This is the circular logic I was talking about earlier. The parts confirm the whole which confirm the parts which confirm the whole. That’s not to say that we don’t nibble away at the outer edges of our belief system because clearly we do.

But the very fact that we do accept minor changes enables us to believe that we could and would do the same with major sections of our belief system, when in practice nothing could be further from the truth. We are encouraged to think outside the box, but not too far. We are taught that in order to build a diverse and healthy social order we must be tolerant of alternative memes and beliefs. This is a fiction we practice only on the surface because in order to protect our belief system we must do exactly the opposite. The proof is the polarized and divisive world we live in. We are conditioned to recognize differences and to draw clear boundaries to affirm our narrow perception of reality, not to seek out similarities and to approach others with empathy and loving care.

And this conditioning is deliberate in order to maintain the status quo of the consensus reality which in turn is controlled by the powerful. We so easily believe that powerful people work towards maintaining their power yet we find it nearly impossible to believe that the thought meme control system would be designed to enable precisely what those in power most desire. And make no mistake about it; controlling thought is the ultimate power. This is why major social change can only occur when a new and energized generation takes the helm and begins to control the prevailing meme. This is also why entire nations and regions of the world can careen off the rails for a generation or two when group think takes control of the collective. It works both ways.


Shock Therapy

If usually takes a shocking slap to the face, often in the form of acute physical illness, loss of loved ones or severe financial hardship, to force us to reassess the basic underpinnings of our beliefs. But even then the bias is towards regaining ‘normalcy’ rather than exploring new concepts or ‘realities’. It takes great courage to break from the herd mentality and blaze new trails when we have been conditioned to believe there are monsters under the bed. It’s even more difficult to go it alone when our world has just been shattered and the conditioned tendency is to seek comfort, not more emotional pain.

However, great freedom and release comes from rejecting the confining parameters of dogmatic groupthink and belief. No longer do I need to haul around huge sacks of concrete mix while defending each meme intrusion as if it might be my last. In the same manner one would hold a butterfly, meaning gently with little to no force applied, if my belief system can’t accommodate an outlier or aberrant concept I can simply release that portion of my belief system that is acting as a roadblock and allow it to drift while I examine the new information. If the butterfly returns that’s all well and good. If it does not, that’s good as well because I’m not dependent upon the new belief just as I’m no longer dependent upon the old.

Actually if we are to practice this on a daily basis, to continue to use the term belief would be a misnomer because little remains that is fixed and immovable. I now make a conscious effort to avoid using terms such as “I believe” or “I know” because those words symbolize rigid thinking.  There’s an old saying when trying to break ingrained habits. Fake it until you change it. By modifying my language usage I am trying to rewire my brain, the first step to exploring alternative realities.

This is not to say that I must outright reject or abandon my old belief system. Only that it no longer controls me by demanding that I use it and only it as the Gold standard by which I determine what is true or not. I can still drive my car, love my spouse and walk the dog. Only now, when something floats into my field of vision, I no longer must make judgments of fact, truth or reality and I can simply accept it for what it appears to be at the moment.

The outlier can no longer threaten me or even help me for that matter. Value or moral judgments are useless in this context because reality is no longer being measured by rigid standards, but rather is simply allowed to exist. It just is as it is at that moment. This small perspective change becomes a giant leap for our mind because now that we are no longer defensive in our approach, creativity and originality can come rushing to the surface. I no longer perceive the world solely through someone else’s definition of reality.

What I have just described is exactly how an infant or young child’s mind interacts with the world around her. There is no right or wrong, no true or false, no real or not real. There is simply what ‘is’ at that moment. Instead of saying “no, this can’t be real” or “yes, I believe this is true” the infant or very young child just sees and experiences. It is no more or less than what it is at that moment.

After exploring the new object (aka a new reality) the very young mind simply files it away as interesting or not and moves on to the next. She doesn’t categorize it (at least not yet) except in the simplest of terms such as tasty, colorful or fun. The child does not apply moral or value judgments in the manner we understand these terms to mean or how we use them to confirm or affirm our consensus reality.

We forget that very young children have very few innate fears and that most of their early fear perceptions are learned from fear memes their parents or guardians are conditioned to believe are real. While I would never argue that (at least in this consensus realty) some fear is not helpful in promoting longevity and health, most of the fear we experience on a daily basis is artificially induced for control purposes only and we willingly and for the most part unquestioningly go along for the ride.

In a very real sense the only thing we have to fear is ourselves because we are the ‘real’ boogie men in our lives. No one ‘makes’ me happy, sad, glad or afraid. The word ‘make’ in relation to any emotion is mostly a thought meme designed to encourage us to abandon responsibility for our own emotional sovereignty and independence. When we outsource responsibility for our emotional wellbeing we give our consent to be controlled. This is an integral component of the abuser and abused bonding, the symbiotic and codependent relationship with our abusers that I constantly discuss.

No limits to the child's mind

Breaking Free

If we are going to (once again) become sovereign entities and autonomous individuals we must begin the process by thinking and perceiving as one who is sovereign. A slave or captured mind does not see the world through his or her own eyes, but rather through those of the master. In every way imaginable the slave’s world revolves around the reality dictated by his (perceived) ultimate authority. The master creates the slave’s reality and thought memes, essentially his perception of reality, through the deep implantation or inception of programming memes which are then reinforced through conditioning and psychological and/or physical abuse.

Consider how ‘free’ and sovereign individuals who are captured and enslaved need to be ‘broken’ before they are considered to be usable or saleable. The external body is brutalized and nearly all sense of his or her former ‘reality’ is forcibly stripped from them physically, mentally and emotionally. Only then can the new thought meme (that of helplessness and dependency upon external control systems) be successfully implanted. The military follows a similar practice with new recruits. Break down the present reality, then program in a new one. The physical and mental shock to the system prepares the newly turned soil for the meme seeding.

This is the underlying premise behind Naomi Klein’s “The Shock Doctrine: The Rise of Disaster Capitalism”, an important read not only if we wish to understand what’s going on globally, but also locally within our mind. Our conceit, our enabling self deception, is that while we all recognize to some extent or another the effectiveness of this type of conditioning upon others, we fail to appreciate (for obvious reasons) how it is used upon us via the drip method of social conditioning and assimilation.

We all wish to point to evil doers manipulating the masses into unspeakable acts. Believing this sooths the ego and massages the mind which in turn allows us to believe that it’s all them and not me, thus absolving us from responsibility for our own (in) actions. While the master might physically control the whip, it is we compliant slaves who are the primary control system and by extension the remote hand on the whip.

We stifle dissent amongst ourselves for fear that by not doing so we will attract the whip, while at the same time by default we consent to being slaves because we do not raise objection nor do we dissent. In a similar manner we teach and train our own children the rules of slave hood before handing them over to the state, all the while following the rules and learning all the new thought meme tricks which we then dutifully teach our children.

Since our captured minds are already immersed within a world not of our own making, but rather one we have adapted to and adopted as our own, how do we break free from a prison when we cannot see the walls and barbed wire? In order for the slave or captured mind to (re)gain his freedom and sovereignty some fundamental understandings must be proactively germinated.

First and foremost we must recognize that our condition is not natural or normal and that we are not free, but can be free if we so wish. We must begin to accept that our world is not constructed as we perceive it to be, that our reality is distorted and manipulated. While the reader can easily see the slave is obviously a slave, can the reader see his or her own slavery? In order to do so we must deliberately and consciously push against every boundary we have been trained to believe is immovable and unchangeable.

This is the most difficult step of the entire process to internalize because we have always been a slave and being a slave is all we have ever know. There is nothing in our world other than that which already exists in our captured mind. This is our box and we have but one yardstick with which we measure our world. Because our mind and by extension our body is trapped within the box the only chance we ever have of seeing outside is to treat that which we formerly believed to be impossible with the same validity we now reserve solely for what has already been proven to us to be real. Question everything and accept nothing at face value, especially things we have always accepted because it has always been that way. It is not about changing the yardstick; it is about expanding it exponentially.

Expanding our Yardstick

There Is No Spoon

We must suspend our confining and self confirming beliefs, even if at first we can only sustain this for a few moments, and train our minds eye to move beyond our self imposed limits by declaring that there are no limits and then acting as if it is so because it is so. In essence we make ‘real’ anything we completely and without reservation believe is ‘real’. By extension we delegitimize, dematerialize or make ‘not real’ anything which we seriously question as not valid or real. In my view this is the message behind that wonderful scene from “The Matrix” with the boy and the spoon. “Do not try and bend the spoon. That's impossible. Instead... only try to realize the truth. There is no spoon. Then you'll see that it is not the spoon that bends, it is only yourself.”

The perceived impossibility of bending the spoon with just our mind is an illustration of our conditioned blindness to anything other than what we ‘know’ to be true. It is we who must bend our minds to perceive alternative realities. It is useless to try to achieve the ‘impossible’ and bend the current perceived reality into a form we wish to see. The consensus reality in its present form will only redirect our energy back against us. There is no winning in this present reality because we are only offered tools that will fail.

Do not fight the overwhelming river current of the present perceived reality, for this is impossible. Instead withdraw your consent to participate within the present consensus reality while at the same time opening your range and sensitivity of perception to alternatives. In essence we must improve and expand our depth perception of reality.

Ultimately it is a failure of our imagination that is the barrier to our freedom because the captured and conditioned mind does not perceive as real that which it believes is impossible or improbable. This is why we must suspend our beliefs for it is our belief system that defines the limits of our reality, not matter or science or our masters. It is the very definition of futile insanity to continuously use the same measuring stick to measure the same box and expect to perceive a different reality. Our masters control our mind and the body dutifully follows, thus for all intents and purposes perception is reality. This cycle must be broken.

Once started down the road to autonomous individuality and the sovereign individual, all concepts, beliefs and truths must be examined and reexamined in this new light. Everything that we believe we know must be washed and filtered with the absolute certainty that at this point we know only what a captured mind knows. As discussed in prior chapters, we cannot see outside of the box if we are unable to perceive the box itself. But this ‘limit’ is just an illusion when we understand that it only applies to the captured mind.

This illusion of limits is foisted upon us by the consensus reality in order to confirm the limited consensus reality. We are conditioned to believe that we must know nearly everything before beginning our journey. But this is only true if the only purpose for being on the road is to arrive at the destination, an outcome we do not wish to achieve nor could we achieve at this point. All we need to know is that everything we believe we know must now be viewed as suspect. We are in essence creating a new reality by questioning every aspect of the old one. We don’t need to know where we are going in order to go forward at this point.

While disorienting at first this will quickly pass so long as we recognize that we don’t need to change everything at once, only those items that must be changed to enable the next step. It’s OK to continue to live within the fundamental premises of the current consensus reality in order to maintain our balance as long as we accept and understand that it is all someone else’s reality and that it all must eventually be reexamined. To thy own self be true is the ultimate goal for if we fully participate in the master’s reality, we are the master’s slave. The danger here is one of denial, of convincing ourselves we are only resting in the present consensus reality when in fact we are still fully immersed with no real intention of ever leaving.

The Sovereign Individual

Ordering of Priorities

Secondly while we must concede that at times we may have limited physical control over our body, particularly if we live within a police or debt state, our captured mind must begin to recognize that our sovereign mind is ours alone to command and control and only when we surrender it do we concede our sovereignty.

When we have (re)established sovereignty of our inner conscious being, of our mind and inner self, only then can we begin to command our body and external being. There is no way around this ordering of priorities, no shortcut to nirvana. I understand that this ordering can be extremely frustrating because we want change now. But in order to navigate our way to sovereignty we must be in control of our mind and our perceived reality.

For example, when sweeping around a corner on a motorcycle, we must look as far ahead around the corner as possible, not directly in front of us. When we look far ahead, when we focus on where we wish to go, not where we are, our body and the motorcycle follow smoothly and under control. By the same token, if we focus our attention on a spot just in front of the motorcycle, this results in unsteady operation, constant over correction and a greater chance of disaster. An experienced motorcyclist knows you should look to where you want to go.

This is also the case when driving a car quickly on a twisting road though it is much more pronounced on a motorcycle because the bike responds to our slightest body movements. Our mind is even more intimately connected to our body, thus if we wish to regain our inner sovereignty we must have a clear understanding of where we are going and be able to see far down the road if we are to successfully navigate our body through the coming insanity. Looking to where we wish to go expands our awareness and perception while gaining perspective and diminishing distractions.

The control system and the insanity are trying to do just the opposite to force us to see only the here and now directly in front of our nose. Returning to the motorcyclist one last time, an inexperienced rider is often plagued by something called target fixation. If a rider sees a pot hole in his path and continues to stare at the hole, despite his sincere desire to avoid the hole he will hit it every time. The body flows to where the eye is looking and the mind is fixed. The control system teaches us to be target fixated, to become so immersed in the consensus reality that we can see nothing else. This is why we must command our mind and soul before we can hope to direct the body.

We have been conditioned to believe that we have no control over our reality, that it already exists in a completed form all around us and that we are just pawns on the chessboard of life. The captured mind and the slave mentality is more than willing to accept that our reality is preformed and that our only job is to cope, not create. We are kept so busy exploring our mental confinement and its physical prison walls, often through school, work, television, entertainment and politics which all combine to make up our perceived reality as proven by the scientific, legal and governmental process, that we fail to understand that this control system process is precisely what defines our reality, not what our reality actually is.

The scientific process, law, governmental regulation and all the other associated instructions and procedures defining our daily life are simply methods and techniques used to describe our consensus reality. It is not reality itself in the same way that a picture of the person is not the person itself, but simply a visual description of the person.

Unlawful Justice summed up this concept nicely in the comment section of Chapter Three when he said We must always remember that symbols and what [they] stand for are not the same thing. The flag is not the country; the uniform is not the person, the crucifix, the Star of David; the actor is not the character portrayed; the medal is not the courage; the college degree is not the skill or knowledge.”

If however we have been taught and conditioned to believe that the flag is the country or the picture is the ‘real’ person, we will then form that unquestioned belief into reality by our actions. We make real what we believe or perceive to be real in both the figurative and physical sense. This is an insidious confusion deliberately propagated to shift awareness from the limitless reality within to the fatally limited false illusion externally imposed.

Rat's Maze for Humans

Our consensus reality is simply a belief system cultivated through all aspects of the slave control system. Like rats in a maze, we spend our waking days in conditioned response mode similar to an athlete’s muscle memory. Get up, eat, go to work, eat, come home, eat, watch the indoctrination box and eat, then go to bed. This is all repeated endlessly with weekends reserved so we can shop and spend money to drown our abject misery. The only way to escape the present consensus reality is to withdraw our consent for and of the present consensus reality, a reality that is only ‘real’ precisely because it commands a consensus among the captured minds.

Sadly our consent often comes in the form of deciding to do nothing and surrendering to the river’s current, a current which in turn is nothing more than the consensus belief or herd mentality. The most important concept regarding consensus belief which we all wish to ignore is that a decision to do nothing is often the most destructive decision to ourselves that we could ever make because by doing so we surrender both our will and consent at the same time. Our apathy and indifference are the chains that bind us to our master. We willingly consent to be slaves, an idea that is viciously refuted by those who wish to avoid all responsibility for their present enslavement.

Finally, in order to avoid taking nothing more than the first step, then becoming hopelessly locked in an endless cycle of one move forward and the next one back, we must make a daily commitment to ourselves first to act on a daily basis, then to accept baby steps as the definition of progress. In this essay I am describing a lifelong pursuit, not a weekend retreat or week long workshop. We must manage both our expectations and our denial if real progress over longer periods of time is to be realized.

This statement alone will be entirely unsatisfactory to the vast majority of readers who clamor for change now, for quantifiable results we can feel good about and revel in. To this I ask a simple question. Have you ever wondered why after thousands of years of resistance, revolution, renaissance and renewal that we stand today at the peak of a consensus reality insanity, that we are repeating yet again the same mistakes all over again? External change is never permanent when the inner self remains abandoned, a fundamental truth that is always lost and forgotten once the belly is full and the mind calmed.

It is the fundamental intent behind our actions that ultimately determines our success or failure, not just the effort involved. If we simply wish to change our status in the pecking order of the present consensus reality or we want our pain to be relived in order to return to the familiar numbness of oblivion, then we are doomed from the start. As well, if we feel compelled to ‘save’ others from the escalating insanity without first focusing on ourselves, even if it is only our family we are trying to save, then we are acting for all the wrong reasons and we will fail miserably. Ask someone who is recovering from a severe addiction and has been stable for many years. Chances are they will tell you it was only when they dropped all pretenses and excuses and concentrated on themselves did they make any progress.  

Our present consensus reality is coming apart, dematerializing before our very eyes because it is being delegitimized by way of an escalating loss of faith and belief by the masses. This in turn will compel the control system and those in power to ramp up their ultimately self destructive fear and control memes and physical oppression in the same manner a drowning man will flail and grasp at anything, including his rescuer.

All illusions and denials, particularly deeply held ones that are widely shared, die a hard and ugly death not because the next chapter is so difficult to accept, but because the old chapter is so painful to let go. It doesn’t need to be this way, at least on an individual level.

This is why we must save ourselves first. Nothing else we do matters if we join the others in the agonizing death throes of our dying false reality. As long as we believe that what’s dying is real and thus worth saving, we will never let go and we will be pulled under with it. The only path forward is inward. Find yourself. Only then will you be able to find the others.

Cognitive Dissonance



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His_Name_Is_Zero's picture

Definitely different, thought-provoking reading Cognitive Dissonance.  I would first say that the "work on yourself" part is probably the most important thing for me to do particularly with regard to money and investments, having passed by quite a few opportunities that I was very accurate on.  That for me justifies your posting here. 

However there are other factors involved with people's minds and thinking.  These range in a very wide array of operations loosely termed mind control.  It seems difficult to make any progress in improving myself and my capabilities in the omnipresent electromagnetic daze of 110/120 50/60 AC power, cell towers, Wernicke's Commands in all media, hypnotism, and quite a few more.  I have even experienced what I could only term "disinformation dreams".  I could only assume that all accessable areas of the conscious mind have been up for grabs while we have no firewalls and a myriad of backdoors.  There are a few tools to counter these; however they are not widespread, plus those people available to use them are not willing to help on the required scale, or are not properly trained and/or they are too programmed to deprogram themselves and/or others, or operate for the negative control system, consciously or unawares. 

This is some of the soft stuff:

Then there is more direct, electronic mind-control programming, for example Wernicke's Commands in movie theaters, Starbuck's, airports and other public or strategic places and media.  Have you seen the anime Code Geass?  Wernicke's Commands essentially function exactly the same as Lelouche vi Brittania's power, except the effectiveness varies from person to person. 

With the constant barrage of mind control, how can it be possible to make any real progress?  It feels as though I've been stuck in this same place in my mind forever, with any seeming improvement almost instantly countered and negated. 




l0nEr's picture

I really enjoyed reading your 4 articles. Looking forward to more.

May I suggest you read the Tao Te Ching, written by the Chinese Lao Tzu 3000 years ago.

Or perhaps the I Ching.


Matto's picture

Cog Dis, thanks for the post. I have in the past copied the text of your writing, stuck it in word, printed it to a PDF and put it on my e-reader to read through later. May I suggest that beyond 'blogspot' a series of downloadable PDFs may also be useful.


Cheers for the thoughts, I get the most from your work as a motivation for introspection rather than any particular thoughts or ideas in themselves, which is as you say what you are striving for.

Cognitive Dissonance's picture

I have converted some of my other series into down loadable PDF's and will do so with this as well.

And my ultimate goal is to inspire, not provide concrete ideas. That's why I ask lots of open ended questions. Everything I produce is ultimately just my opinion. I reserve the right to be wrong 100% of the time and half wrong the other 100% of the time.

Matto's picture

haha of course you know that adds up to 150% which is impossible!?!

Cognitive Dissonance's picture

Thus proving I can be wrong even more than all the time. :>)

mkkby's picture

Sorry CD, A for effort, but I think you drove off the rails with this one.

"If we are going to (once again) become sovereign entities and autonomous individuals we must begin the process by thinking and perceiving as one who is sovereign. A slave or captured mind does not see the world through his or her own eyes, but rather through those of the master."

The whole thing is a lot of circular logic and generalities.  What specific ways are we being decieved, enslaved or conditioned?  Can you come up with concrete examples?  What are the specific boundaries you speak of?  I might guess at a few of them because I'm a regular ZH reader, but I'm just guessing what you might mean.

You really started to speak to me in part 3 about opting out of "systems".  But again, what systems?  Opt out of what, how?  Since you never transition from theory to specifics the readeer never gets further than the perception he started with.  Too bad, because I think you have a lot to offer.  You need a good editor who can help you express yourself more clearly.

mkkby's picture

Perhaps I should explain myself better.  In an essay or persuasive writing class one is taught to start with a conclusion or summary, then explain it with specific facts.  For example, my theme might be "cars are better than horses".  I would support that by saying cars are faster, they don't get tired, and they don't crap all over your garage.  If my facts and examples are persuasive enough, I "win" the debate and convince most of my readers.

Respecfully I suggest you take a writing class or two and your essays will have much more impact.

Cognitive Dissonance's picture

Thank you for your feedback.

I do not present specific conclusions or even a more refined road map because from my point of view there is none. Every person's journey is a unique experience and only they can find their way. I will not impose my view of reality on the reader, but rather just show them what I see. This is the reason I ask many open ended questions and sometimes wander around. I wish to show people the butterfly, then allow them to draw their own conclusions.

The sole purpose of this essay was to prod a few to move a little further along and to show them they are not alone. This essay is not a text book, but instead an invitation to explore. I state this clearly with the first two sentences of the italicized paragraph front and center. 

If you found little or no value in this essay then it was not intended for you. That's fine and I don't say this to be insulting. Not everyone finds value in the same things. But thank you for caring enough to take the time to leave a comment.

mkkby's picture

"Every person's journey is a unique experience and only they can find their way. I will not impose my view of reality on the reader, but rather just show them what I see. "

EXACTLY!!!  Show them your god damned reality.  You haven't done that, Cog.  Don't just call them hypnotized or enslaved.  Explain how.  By whom.  When.  Where.  

That's not imposing.  The reader is still responsible for his or her jouney.  You aren't that powerful.  All you can do is persuade or not.  I'm saying if you're going to spend days/weeks/months writing essays, decide to persuade.

Cognitive Dissonance's picture

You and I have different points of view of our purpose here on the third rock from the sun. Everything is a lie until it has been confirmed within, including anything I may say to persuade. If someone doesn't have the courage to look within I won't be providing it for them.

Either the end product sells itself or it doesn't. The searcher ultimately must decide if there is even value in looking. If I persuade, they I am creating a false or illusionary value. An inner trip such as this started under false pretenses nearly always ends poorly. 

In a consumer and religious environment where everything is sold, the value of inner peace and happiness must be self evident or no amount of persuading will have an effect. For me to declare this, that and the other thing is the cause of their suffering will turn off as many or more as it will enlighten.

Worse I then set myself up with trying to prove the impossible, that those whom I accuse in fact have ulterior and hidden motives. Then I discredit myself and those who have decided to listen to me. This is a fools errand because I fall into the bad and good, black and white games that are used to divide and conquer. As I said in my essay those tools are designed to always fail. If you feel this should be done I strongly urge you to do so. It is not my path.  

chindit13's picture


I have read most of your work, though admittedly not every single word. For the most part I enjoy it. Perhaps because I also have read your opinion on several of the issues or events in the world today, however, I cannot help myself from thinking that one of the intents of your philosophical writing is that anyone who reads it has to reach your same conclusion on those other issues and events. I know you make disclaimers to the contrary, but there still seems to be a relentless and only partially hidden push to have everyone arrive on the ground you occupy.

As you may or may not know from my own comments on this site, I disagree with many of the more widely held opinions on ZH. I arrived at my own conclusions through my own life experience, which includes lots of strange jobs and personal pursuits, and living in a host of countries and cultures, areas where each of the world's major religions are the majority faith (Judaism, Christianity, Buddhism, Shintoism, Hinduism). Personally, I have no faith, other than the Bag o' Bones School of Theology.

Regarding practical matters of society at large, I am a complete non-believer in the Illuminati and the Hidden Hand, no matter what anyone wants to call it. Just as I believe in no omnipotent gods, I don't believe in omnipotent humans, or anything close to it. I think the world is too big, egos are too big, and there are too many variables and too many divergent goals for anyone or any group to control the whole show. That doesn't mean that some will not try, nor does it mean that some will not find a limited degree of success in championing their own cause (e.g., the bank lobby), but on balance, I don't think anyone is fully in charge. I go so far as to say some people use the "Illuminati" as an excuse for personal failure (by failure I mean not achieving what one wanted to achieve, whether that be wealth, position, or recognized expertise).

Sometimes I feel like a Greek ("for every two Greeks there are three opinions"), because I can hear two sides of an argument and disagree with both. This stubbornness might have led me to the view that even those who think they are truly being open minded and not exhibiting confirmation bias, are still doing exactly what they think they have avoided or overcome. Obviously, if I am honest, I might have to say I probably do the same. Maybe it is impossible not to do so. At the same time, there have been numerous instances where I have seen things written on this site that I know, from my own eyes and ears, to be absolutely wrong. There is no point in pointing much or any of it out---though on occasion I slip up and try---because almost nobody wants to listen to something that goes in the face of what he believes. Most people need to think they are more clever, more insightful and less sheeplish than anyone else. No doubt me, too. Of course not everyone can be.

I notice on this site, and even within comments you make in articles, almost a pathology to determine the so-called “real story”. The official explanation of an event, whether it comes from the USG or MSM, is dismissed out of hand, as if neither source is even capable of truth. This propensity seems to fly in the face of the entire body of philosophical and sociological work you have produced, as it demonstrates to me that you might be driven more by your own confirmation and personal biases than by any honest and legitimate search for truth. I’ll tell you, it often makes me wonder what the entire point of all of your thought and writings has been, since it seems you have yet to take even the first step toward eliminating the baggage that causes a man to close his mind. While some of this tendency may stem from the fact that there have been instances where either the USG or MSM lied or obfuscated, a good deal of it also comes from within, in a way mirroring the behavior of a petulant child hurt by a broken trust. One lie caught leads to a belief that everything has been a lie and that everything in the future will be a lie. (I hope you are not a parent, given children’s propensity to lie on occasion!).

This assumption of falsity is part and parcel of what leads to confirmation bias, as dismissal of the (potential) truth means an alternative explanation that fit’s the bias must be found or created. In my opinion, the people I call the Internet Gurus then exploit that behavior by providing the answers that fit the bias. They become Pied Pipers, leading the blind down a fool’s path, all the while filling a need of their own for an audience of sycophants. In the worst instances they create a body of followers that could be exploited for untoward means, in the exact same way these followers might accuse other authority figures of trying to mold and direct behavior. Fortunately, the likes of Alex Jones and Webster Tarpley seem content so far with a fawning readership. Max Keiser, on the other hand, is on the edge. His perpetual anger would not leave him even if he landed in Shangri-la.

Having such a dark view of traditional authority becomes self-reinforcing, and in my view there is a tendency, even a determination to seek misery actively. Being perpetually critical and negative seems to create a comfort zone from which not only do practitioners not try to escape, they actually endeavor to remain there as if the familiarity brings a kind of psychological ease. That others feel the same way, and freely inform each other of this fact, reinforces the loop and makes escape undesirable. One gets both a steady state and a support group if one stays on the dark side. Nowhere is this more readily apparent than when scrolling through the comments section of a Zerohedge article. It even shows up in the comments under your articles.

What is both amusing and infuriating at the same time is to witness the genesis of willful ignorance. Most recently this happened after the reported death of Osama bin Laden. Immediately the official story was tossed out, because, well, it was the official story. This dismissal is justified as cleverness, as in “’they’ can’t fool me anymore because unlike the sheeple, I am awake“. Awake means that one believes without question what someone they don’t know has produced with sketchy or non-existent sourcing, but sourcing that takes on created truth the longer the link line becomes to it. Also, its believability rests partly on the fact that it is in direct opposition to officaldom.

In the initial stages people compete to create the most nefarious explanation possible, applauding each other for illuminating the extent of supposed deception on the part of the authorities and the degree and amplitude of evil malevolently hiding behind the “truth”. Then comes the spurious conclusions and the illogic. These early stages are filler, serving to keep the misinformed and untrusting masses properly hyped up until the Internet Gurus can arrive on the scene and provide what will become the alternative truth, something to which the disciples will link to in any future recounting of the event. From what I can see, a thrice linked lie becomes truth. This was on open display in an article six months or so ago by David Degraw, a piece that makes yellow journalism seem as if it comes from scripture.

Here’s how it happened this most recent time: the announcement came, Osama was killed in a secret raid. Immediately this was laughed at as fabrication, either because he was long since dead, or because he was always a CIA asset and this just closed that no longer useful story. Next comes the search for holes in the official release, which is easy because in such dramatic events there are always holes. Sometimes, in the excitement of the moment, authorities speak too soon, before all the information has been collected. Other times “sources” are quoted by journalists hoping to scoop the story, and in the meantime these journalists forget the standards under which they should operate. People who were not on the inside, but who want to portray themselves as being part of the inner circle to pump their own egos, can provide just what the reporter needs: immediate and exciting narrative. If inconsistencies appear, the authorities receive all the blame, lax reporters and ego-driven sources get off Scot free.

Then we had the first of the “death photos”. Quickly these proved to be fakes, and even though they were created and released by people having nothing whatsoever to do with the USG or the operation, the blame for them fell on the Administration, as the need to disbelieve and dislike is so strong that it makes assumptions that fill the need.

After that came the “Last Will and Testament” of bin Laden. This document came from a Middle eastern source (, and was then translated by an Israeli blogger. It had nothing whatsoever to do with the USG or the operation. People criticized it as fake, and blamed Obama. Some “clever” reader noted that the date on the document was done in the order an American would date: month/day/year. Since this is an American affectation and not how most of the rest of the world denotes dates, this was “proof” that it was a fake manufactured by the USG. People applauded themselves for their supposed cleverness.

Curious, I went to the alanba website. I read the original document, in its original Arabic (which I can read). The date on the document reflected both the Islamic and Gregorian calendars, as in the “(Islamic date) corresponding to this (Gregorian date)”. The manner in which the Gregorian date was displayed in the original was consistent not with the US affectation, but the other style of day/month/year. The English translator had altered the date to reflect his own habit. Also, the alanba site did not attribute the document to the USG. Thus, every supposed “uncovered” lie in fact was either not a lie or had nothing to do with the USG. No matter, the blame stayed on Obama.

After that the various Internet Gurus, not a one of whom was anywhere near Abbottabad and who have probably never even been to Pakistan, started publishing their “truth”, closing the loop and providing the fantastical historical record which will feed conspiratorialists forever. Welcome back Dark Ages.

For a number of years I lived in the heart of the Koran Belt in the Middle East. One of the Arab people's favorite words, or concepts, is "muammarah" or conspiracy. It is almost a game. I would sit in tea shops chatting with folks who could find a way to connect the most unrelated dots, sort of like the Kevin Bacon Game, then end their presentation like a mathematics professor with a dramatic Q.E.D., certain they had proven their point. I never thought I would see anything quite as bizarre or convoluted as some of the tales they produced. Now I see such things regularly on this site and others like it.

Well, there's a long post with little point other than to say even an enormous amount of thought does not guarantee the right answer, nor does it guarantee intellectual and cerebral freedom. Time and excessive thought alone do not grant anyone the privilege of declaring victory over biased thinking. In fact escape from self-imposed restrictions may well be impossible, which is reason enough not to jump on anyone’s bandwagon or take action against someone or something that may be without blame.

tip e. canoe's picture

hey chindit, i concur with cog's invitation for you to write a column about this.   not only b/c i enjoy the way you weave words and your personal anecdotes are fascinating, but b/c i think you are zeroing in on a phenomenon that begs for further collective collaborative investigation.

this whole concept of "muammarah" for instance, which is also prevalent in the african american community (tupac's fame could be chalked up solely to his exploitation of this in his lyrics).   the question i think is interesting is why does this phenomenon exist?   why is "conspiracy" spun amongst the outcasts of society?  what are they searching for?   what purpose does this serve?   is this simply a quest to find a rock of certainty to stand on or is the digging serve a worthy purpose?  why do so many times the search for truth spins wildly out of control into another illusion?   

also, the whole "conspiracy movement" is rather interesting as well.   the anti-authoritarians jumped from one pyramid to the other, even if this one is inverted and named for some guy named Exeter.   and as far as MaxK is concerned, his new HUGO BOSS ad pretty much seals the deal for me.   this is why i like it here, the fierce anonymity of the Tylers provide a subtle but profound buffer, even when the posts may seem sometimes desperate for page clicks.

also one last morsel : sometimes something can be True on one layer of "reality", yet be utterly false on another, whether you want to call it "higher" level or "deeper" level is immaterial.   now we may all agree to disagree on "who's" pulling the strings, yet we should not deny that when a web of deceit is spun, the spider is aware on some level that the silk is not pure.


chindit13's picture

No column for me. I've written the occasional article over the last two plus year, but I'm wrapping up my avatar and moving on, like most of the early readers have done.  In my opinion the vocal readership has gotten a little too bizarre, an unattractive mixture of racists and the Batshit Crazies.  I suppose it is the nature of the internet, and an unmoderated forum to boot, that makes such a decline inevitable, as popular sites act as a magnet for the lunatic fringe. 

When the fringe finds like-minded souls in attendance, they set up camp and pretty soon become the overriding personality of the site.  This has happened here.  The entire site's credibility suffers, and a guilt by association sort of thing happens that lets critics dismiss the entire site by pointing out the element it attracts.  As I've said before, I guess the moonbat demographic is more attractive than I would have thought. 

Cognitive Dissonance's picture

Thank you for your comments.

However, other than as part of several paragraphs where you talk about your poor opinion of me, you have not actually commented on the subject at hand, this essay. You do discuss the Illuminati and the Hidden Hand, the Zero Hedge readership and those who post comments, Internet Gurus, Alex Jones and Webster Tarpley, the reported death of Osama bin Laden, Max Keiser, David Degraw and yellow journalism, the CIA and so on.

But mostly you talk about yourself and how your views are reasonable and clear minded. Though I must admire the one time where you do admit you might just be susceptible to the same afflictions you accuse others of. But you moved quickly past that and bravely finished your dismissive summation of me and the Zero Hedge readers.

You are well written. Maybe you should consider contributing to ZH. I most certainly would read your thoughts if they were posted here. In fact I think ZH needs a different point of view and I don't disagree that at times the comments reflect a herd mentality and a narrow point of view. That's why I try to discuss alternative subjects, even if my effort so clearly disappoints you. Hopefully I'll get it right at some point in the future. 

chindit13's picture

First, please consider this a response not to this piece in particular, but to your entire body of work.

Second, if I had such a poor opinion of you, I would not read your pieces. I would not be here commenting. Please don’t make assumptions there. As I said in the beginning (though since I write in a long winded manner, the beginning may well have been in a previous life), I enjoy your writing. While I enjoy discussing the here and now, and even subjects that are banal, the big questions have been, and will continue to be, something that occupies my thought, albeit in an enjoyable way. Not knowing is part of the excitement life offers. Whether or not it shows, I’m a rather positive person, who takes triumphs and defeats with nearly equal pleasure, as to me that are the grain of life.

I come across a little hard because it pains me to see the conclusions intelligent people come to. Obviously you are not just intelligent, but far above the mean. To some extent I don’t blame anybody for what they believe. One poster above says that I gave a long winded defense of the party line, which I cannot do fairly because no outsider knows the truth. His statement is only partially true, at least in its implication that I am an outsider. Without going into too much detail, one of the shocks I experienced in life---the equivalent of when a young lad realizes his father does not know everything---is that nobody really knows much of anything. Many have pieces of the puzzle, some more than most, but to a large extent everyone is in the dark. That can be scary, but I find it exhilarating. It means people have more options, and more power, than they might otherwise think.

I do believe that many people reach a mindset where they need to believe, and nothing can dissuade them from the belief they have developed. Many need to believe in an order, even if that order is malevolent. Randomness is, for many, too much to take. People would rather have an evil god than no god at all. Hence the grasp of conspiracy. I am not like that. I have come to accept randomness, even welcome it.

I normally do not try to convince people of anything. What I do try to do is put myself in their shoes, and try to imagine what I might think if I didn’t know better. I don’t mean that to sound arrogant; it is merely a statement of fact, at least on some issues. I think people often trip over themselves thinking that things are far more complicated, and sinister, than they really are. Whether this is born of a starved brain anxious for an absolute answer, or if it stems from a diet too rich in B-movies and pulp novels, I don’t know.

In the end I will not change any minds. People need to do that for themselves. I simply wish that people would bring an equal amount of skepticism to the “alternative” answers as they do to the official ones. I do not see that they do. Instead, they grasp the alternative often merely because it is the alternative, and when they find like-minded people do the same, they find comfort in it, virtually guaranteeing that they will do it again. Real answers become less important that answers that fit the atmosphere of the comfort area they have reached, even if that comfort area is a fantasy of someone seeking an audience.

nmewn's picture


First off, Chin and I disagree on some things while we still agree on others. We remain amicable about what we disagree on.

I believe what Chin is saying is, an opinion is just opinion.

Furthermore, without empirical evidence to support it, it remains not only an opinion, but an unsupported opinion. And an unsupported opinion cannot be cited as evidence of anything.

To one of the points of your essay, the use of words to manipulate public perception and actions. I offered up my example back in chapter three commentary. I deem it was a true example because it was not refuted by anyone. The commenter I directed it at certainly didn't rebut or comment on it.

So I have to assume a bias for not engaging in an exchange with me on it. I am left not knowing what that bias truly is. Which is another, perhaps more subtle point Chin is making I think. To propagate one line of a meme without debating the other.

Chin is also correct on the Arab propensity to tell tall tales. Any free thinking society will not remain free thinking for very long without knowing this simple truth about another society.

On reptilian shape shifters...LOL...just because one of the most contemptable classes of people on earth (politicians) teamed up with an equally virulent strain of people (bankers) and created an off the books accounting method to fund government instead living within its means by taxation, does not mean they are from Mars...though I can see why some would say so...ROTFL!!! only means there are self serving pricks in high places and they are everywhere...and I mean everywhere. 

We were warned about this down through time by some very notable people I might add.

He did say he enjoyed it and so did I ;-)

Cognitive Dissonance's picture

I did not say Chin was correct or incorrect in his opinions. I said his views were off topic and they were also an expression of his personal and derogatory opinion about me as well as ZH readership. Why exactly is a derogatory opinion about me acceptable in a comment thread under my article in which I posted no opinions about Chin?

And does it make it alright to do so by weaving those opinions around a larger swipe against the ZH readership by connecting everyone in a condescending manner to personalities that were never discussed in my essay. One could easily say that Chin was engaging in a broad based ad hominem attack carefully disguised as opinion.

If this were a open thread as Tyler occasionally produces, then it is understood that anything goes and any topic is open for discussion. But the overwhelming majority of time the thread is about a specific topic and it is generally agreed upon that the comments should reflect that topic.

While Tyler generally does not resond in the comment section of his articles, several contributors do and I do so extensively. As is my prerogative. It is also my prerogative to choose when, where and why I will or will not respond to comemnts and just because I do not doesn't mean that I have no logical or factual basis for a defense. There are times, particlualry when I have been personally demeaned, when I will not engage because to do so is validating what I personally find offensive. 

My response to Chin was pointing out that he was not on topic, but in fact simply used this thread to promote his own views, most of which had little (I'm not saying no) relation to the topic other than how he wished to spin it. He also used it as an excuse to express broad opinions about me and the comment posters on ZH. In other words Chin had an agenda and was promoting it. This was why I suggested he ask Tyler for permission to contribute.

Since Tyler plucked me from the comment section and asked if I would like to become a contributor, I have always maintained one point. In fact it was presented in my very first two essays. All authors and writers are propagandists. We all have an agenda. We all wish to promote our point of view in the best possible light under the most favorable circumstances. I use the term 'we' because I have clearly and consistently voiced that I also do this to the ZH readership.

Among other things, what Chin is doing is questioning my psychological motives for promoting my views. I feel that when done so in a derogatory manner such as he has I will not respond. It's very similar to trying to answer the question "So when did you stop beating your wife"? The question is loaded and serves no purpose other than to demean and entrap.

If Chin has something to say to the ZH readership he should use the proper forum. To use my comment thread to demean me and the readership is not that forum and I choose not to participate.

Once again nmewn thank you for your thoughtful comments.

i-dog's picture

"one of the intents of your philosophical writing is that anyone who reads it has to reach your same conclusion on those other issues and events."

I disagree. And I also found your long-winded defense of the party line to lack any substance at all. No outsider knows the truth ... neither the conspiracy theorists nor the establishment apologists.

"even an enormous amount of thought does not guarantee the right answer"

True ... but an enormous amount of research combined with a decent amount of thought will get one very close.

chindit13's picture

That "enormous amount of research" thing has me confused.  I see people here putting up fifty internet links, most all of which are cross referenced to each other, and in the end go back to one or two person's speculation, aka imagination.  That is not what I remember the term "research" to mean.  In fact, in a few instances (many noted in one of David DeGraw's pieces), I followed the links back to the original.  The original was a zephyr, and was pure fabrication.  I wrote a line in my post, in point of fact not so tongue in cheek, where I said a thrice told lie becomes a truth.

Then there is the less rigorous "research", such as when Julian Assange of Wikileaks was 'proven' to be a psy-op, either because "he hasn't been deaded (sic)", or because he didn't release any documents related to the "911 cover-up".

I'd like to disassemble the latter and note the odd assumptions it makes.  First is that 911 was false flag.  Second was that someone must have come clean on it and handed incriminating documents to Assange.  Third is that Assange has some sort of protected monopoly on receiving secrets, that is, if one is going to be a whistleblower, he is required by some international law to cc Assange.

Now Assange is known to not be a believer in the 911 conspiracy.  On the other hand, people like Alex Jones and Webster Tarpley---who have easily accesible websites--are believers.  By the "logic" of the Assange critics, both Alex Jones and Webster Tarpley must be co-opted CIA operatives, too, because neither of them has produced official USG documents proving the hand in 911.

I guess we'd have to add Tyler Durden to the list of secret CIA operatives, too, because anyone who might have "proof" would also be likely to know at least the readership of ZH and the willingness of TD to publish not completely vetted data (such as the single hedge fund bailout of Greece and the recent ObL death photo).

i-dog's picture

"That "enormous amount of research" thing has me confused."

I guess that explains why you chose to turn a thread on a philosophy of self-discovery into your personal projection onto CogDis, followed by a rambling rant against Alex Jones and Webster Tarpley!

While doing so, you've constructed more strawmen than a champion scarecrow builder could ever hope to accomplish! I won't even dignify them with a further response.

chindit13's picture

As noted in my response to CD, my post was in response to his entire body of work. I waited until his article had aged and when most who were going to read it had already done so, so as not to be too far out of line but still reaching the author. Of course would that you be consistent and point out on CD’s and other articles that going off topic is bad form, I might take your protestations more seriously, rather than something aimed at me for being in opposition to some of your champions. As for dignity or lack thereof, I’m not one looking for anyone’s approval, and any compliment or criticism I might ever get I would weigh in light of the amount of respect I have for the voice providing it.

i-dog's picture

"aimed at me for being in opposition to some of your champions"

You just can't resist stooping to innuendo, can you? Nowhere in this thread, nor on this blog, have I expressed personal opinion either for or against Jones or Tarpley. Indeed, I have had heated debate with Tarpley here and been subjected to his characteristic invective.

You have, again, totally missed the point.

Hulk's picture

Your persistence has paid off and you have hit big CD. Very glad that the negative comments and junkers of the past didn't shut you down. For this, and this article, I congratulate you Sir, well done indeed!

Cognitive Dissonance's picture

Thank you.

There have been times when I have wavered under the barrage. And it doesn't help that I also suffer from a severe case of self inflicted foot-in-mouth disease. But those such as yourself who not only appreciate the effort involved but also find value in my work ultimately push me over the top.

So thank you again.

No Motto's picture

Your article has struck a chord with me, and obviously has also done so with other denizens of ZH. So thank you. It is miraculous actually to see commentary almost completely devoid of trolls.  Good..!

Re: Bastiat's quote... I think you would find Huxley's "Doors of Perception" an interesting read.  It is very much aligned with what you have written, but stated in slightly different terms.

Hope you keep going with this stuff..!


Bastiat's picture

Read it many years ago, NoMotto. Huxley got the title from that Blake quote.

Cognitive Dissonance's picture

Thank you for your thoughts and the link. I have devoured both.

falak pema's picture

I try and write. When I read this AH text, the doors of perception, I feel puny, insignificant. What richness of expression, what depth of vision, insight! WOW!

Ergo a choice example of this  : "Torn between fact and wish, between cynicism and idealism, Bernini tempers the all but caricatural verisimilitude of his faces with enormous sartorial abstractions, which are the embodiment, in stone or bronze, of the everlasting commonplaces of rhetoric - the heroism, the holiness, the sublimity to which mankind perpetually aspires, for the most part in vain."...

No Motto's picture

Yes certainly the title and possibly even the content was a divine inspiration from Blakes's "Marriage of Heaven and Hell". 

I could not find the text online, but one link to some information about it is here...

The importance of this work is not Huxley's altered-state experience, however it may have been induced, but the notion that emerged from it, i.e. that our perceptions are filtered by biological necessity. 

In other words, on a need to know basis, we often don't.  Much of the information that is available to us is not needed for survival therefore it is simply not perceived.... i.e. it is filtered out so we are not distracted from the pursuit of our own 'prime directive'.

Examples abound among phenomena that we can detect by other means, mechanical or otherwise, even among simple things such as the spectra of sound and light.

We could on the one hand say that reality is only "that which we experience directly through our senses", and that argument is very difficult to defeat. It is after all our only personally available reality.

Huxley's thought is just that "reality" so to speak is not limited to that which we can directly observe. Our sensory perceptions are inherently "filtered" because, biologically we don't need the information for survival. Thus our perceived "reality" is not a total experience of the phenomena that are available.

This is not a negative notion.  It is the opposite.  What I mean is, that which we can and do sense, that is the tip of the iceberg... there is much more..!

Huxley may not have been a pioneer in this thought, but he was instrumental in my own realization of it.  And the above is merely my own take on it.

Bastiat's picture

If the doors of perception were cleansed everything would appear to man as it is, infinite.

Wm Blake

Confuchius's picture

As I have said many times, the journey of 1000 miles begins with but a single step...



Vincent Vega's picture

CD, I'm not a highly educated man and I suspect that's the reason I am always in awe of people who can have such enlightened thought and then put it in to words; as you do.

My kids are now finished/finishing school and I have recently started to examine my beliefs and priorities. I have decided, at minimum, that I do not want to spend the remainder of my days tied to a desk. Your writing has come at a good time for me as I try to regain my autonomy. Thanks.


Cognitive Dissonance's picture

Vincent Vega, our man in Amsterdam. :>)

You are beginning a process that will be both the most difficult thing you will ever do and the most rewarding by 1000 fold. The thrill of discovery and the agony of ego destruction is staggering and it never stops. All I offer is one word of advice.

Baby steps my friend. Baby steps.

A step forward, no matter how small, is so much better than standing in place for the rest of your life. And even when you stumble backwards, and I promise you that you will, you are only temporarily conceding ground you would have never taken in the first place if you had never decided to move forward at all.

Bastiat's picture

The culturally embedded doctrine of original sin is a one of the ultimate control memes: you are born evil and doomed to eternal torment unless you rely on social (religious) institutions (control systems) for salvation.

Cognitive Dissonance's picture

I consciously and very deliberately stayed away from the entire mound of religious though memes because to go there would turn so many minds into mush or stone. I decided to try and approach this from a fresh point of view. So there is only a brief mention of religion in the entire 4 parts.

That said, the Catholic, Jewish and Muslim redeemer complex has turned us all into a mass of people waiting to be redeemed rather than proactively seeking our our own personal redemption that comes from looking within and then doing the hard work of self discovery.

We surrender our sovereignty when we buy into the notion that there is someone coming to save us from ourselves. We become dependent upon an external higher power when in fact that power comes from within.

Bastiat's picture

Had a feeling you were deliberatlye avoiding that.  The truth you are pointing to is beyond doctrines and it's a good thing to try to avoid having it dragged down into that mud. But doctrines are important to consider inasmuch as they are obstacles--and that is an essential and deeply embedded one.  It's wise to address the mis-perception but also good to push the key hot buttons now and then too--because for anyone who really pursues this inquiry, it reaches everywhere. 




Cognitive Dissonance's picture

I fully plan on going 'there' in a future article. But it will be in an article exclusively devoted to that subject. I wanted to use this series to lay the ground work for many coming articles on several subjects.

Bastiat's picture

Well done; and I look forward to reading those. 

windcatcher's picture

A PhD in any given subject only qualifies the recipient to question everything that they have been taught. A PhD is the beginning of discovery not the qualifier of knowing everything about the subject.


Some of the most ignorant people I have met have PhD’s and teach a subject. To them, the PhD was the destination and once they reached the destination, they quit learning; indeed they quit thinking. Never questioning, never challenging their own knowledge, yet regurgitating and preaching what they know as the absolute truth and damning anyone who questions the basic building block foundation on which the subject is constructed.

The great inventions of man were not brought forth by the prestigious universities and the PhD’s at those universities but by critical thinkers who think outside the box and who question the very building blocks of science.

The greatest inventor of this century is Stanley Meyer. Meyer’s invention with proven EMPERICAL SCIENCE outmodes oil, gas, nuclear, solar and wind as a source of energy and would eliminate any man made global warming from the continued use of fossil fuels for energy and would eliminate the need for using dangerous nuclear energy for power. Yes, H2O is water, one part hydrogen, and 2 parts oxygen. Hydrogen is 10 times more flammable than gasoline and 20 times more explosive.


Meyer didn’t have a PhD and never attended a prestigious university. Meyer was a self taught seeker of knowledge and truth who questioned the basic foundations of science.

You probably never heard of Stanley Meyer and his US and foreign patents. He was murdered and his invention of the water/hydrogen fuel cell was taken off the market and replaced by a campaign by the government, Wikipedia, Banksters and Big Oil world corporate empire against Meyer’s honor as a scientist by discrediting his invention with slander and lies.


LawsofPhysics's picture

I have heard of this guy.  In a sentence, please explain to us where the energy comes from to split the water into hydrogen gas and oxygen?  It takes energy to produce hydrogen, hydrogen is NOT an energy source, but rather energy currency (store of energy) that I agree will eventually be a much safer currency than gasoline.  Alas, the question remains;  where is the energy for hydrogen production coming from?  Seems rather silly to utilize energy to make hydrogen so that you can burn it to release energy.  Why not simply use that energy source directly to power things?


While his technique was a substantial improvement in the efficiency of water hydrolysis, you still put in more energy to make the hydrogen than you got out of burning the hydrogen itself.

If you what to make a lot of hydrogen gas cheaply put some potatoes in a big jar with the organism Clostridium pasteurianum spores that have been activated.  Once it gets fermenting, this bioreactor will consume just about any waste material that has any starch content and produce explosive amounts of hydrogen.  But again, you still have to grow the potatoes and feed it plant waste.

windcatcher's picture

If you were truly interested in science you would have done research and looked up and read Meyer’s US Patents, but alas, you didn’t. That simple fact didn’t stop you from criticizing something you know nothing about, now did it? - Talk about posing “silly” questions and “silly” comments.

One sentence, as Meyer proved, it took less than ½ ampere to set off the electrolysis action that produced Hydrogen gas. Explanation, less energy to produce more energy.


windcatcher's picture

If you were truly interested in science you would have done research and looked up and read Meyer’s US Patents, but alas, you didn’t. That simple fact didn’t stop you from criticizing something you know nothing about, now did it? - Talk about posing “silly” questions and “silly” comments.

One sentence, as Meyer proved, it took less than ½ ampere to set off the electrolysis action that produced Hydrogen gas. Explanation, less energy to produce more energy.


tip e. canoe's picture

finally, in the spirit of steak's friday PM mixes (tho on the muchmomello tip)

tru thoughts to accompany the deep thoughts

warning: if u hate hip hop, even when done in the proper style, you're not gonna like this one, sorry

thanks cog.  this series made this joint fun for me again.   and that's all that counts in the end, no?   wonderful weekend to you all.

"Earth laughs in flowers to see her boastful boys
Earth-proud, proud of the earth which is not theirs;
Who steer the plow but cannot steer their feet
Clear of the grave."

~r. waldo emerson

Cognitive Dissonance's picture

I'm delighted you had fun. That's what it's all about, exercising the mind through playtime and fun.

Touch a mind and create a new world.

Eternal Student's picture

I'll add my applause to this great series, CD.

The third article really, really nailed something that I'm looking at currently. Namely, the question of how ancient Rome transitioned into the feudal society of the middle ages. Believe it or not, it's only been in the past 20 years that Historians have really started looking at this question. Previously, it was the old meme of Rome fell in 476, Dark Ages, and Medieval Ages. Which doesn't answer a lot of things, such as what it was like to live back then, or how the first Kings came to, and retained, power and why?

Recently a number of books have been coming out which start to address this transition period. But none of them explain the impact of preserving the existing memes as well as you did in your third series. That is really THE missing link in understanding what went on. Oh, they sort of beat around the bush about it, and get somewhat close. But preservation of existing memes just absolutely nails it.

I gave an example a couple days ago. It took two generations, until about 525 AD, before someone first wrote that the Western Empire had gone, and tried to date the fall to the sack of Rome in 476. Memes can be tough to change.

Anyway, my thanks to you for your effort in writing this. It was much appreciated.

Cognitive Dissonance's picture

Other than starting with an over all theme or idea I never know what I'm going to write before I do so. Not even an outline or summary. Just a theme, in this case perception which led the deception to inception.

It's an interesting process because rather than determine the conclusions first, or at least the process to be followed in order to arrive at the conclusion, I let the subject develop itself. I write, then think, then expand, then think and so on. Often I will put it down for days or weeks, then pick it back up when I feel the urge or 'need' to write some more. In the case of this series I let it sit for 4 months because I couldn't find a connection I needed until one day it came.

My point is that because I let it flow naturally and I won't post until I am happy that it makes some kind of logical sense, what comes out isn't canned or blended with what is already known. Not to say that I come up with original thought because I don't. It's the expression that is original.

So your comment that I made a connection that you had found missing was exactly the connection that I couldn't find for 4 months....until it came. Thank you for recognizing what was the most difficult part of this entire exercise and the one part that made it all make least in my mind.