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Is your brain filled with garbage?


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#1 Outlooker

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Posted 14 April 2017 - 03:43 PM

Came to have a nice chat with an 71-year old psychologist, who also worked as a neurologist (he has two degrees), because we were both kind of bored by the rest of the socializers (65th birthday of some relative).

Among other things he told me that the upper class is deliberately filling the brains of people with garbage to
block them from thinking and keeping them as slaves.
They purposely destroy the attention spans, working memory and knowledge base of people to keep them suppressed.

He said that most people have some quite useful and potentially productive cognitive capabilities, even if they have only normal or even sub-normal IQs. With rigorous training, or even just curiosity about something, they could become good thinkers, experts in at least one field and notice much more of the world, living a richer life.
Instead, this is actively prevented by the upper class - by filling people's heads with garbage - much like they fill people with too much and bad food, making them obese and ill. It works, because they exploit evolutionary desires - people like to observe other people (TV, series, movies) and they like energy-rich food (cakes, fastfood, sugar bombs).
The food destroys their bodies, making them weak and ill;
likewise,
the entertainment destroys their brains. Literally! It can be seen in brain
imaging technologies - the brain's complexity of people who are addicted to
entertainment for hours per day, for years and decades, observably deteriorates!
Their brains literally shrinks.
The great mass of people, not only becomes weaker and sicker physically,
but also cognitively.
This is not what the future should hold for us: We have plenty of food, plenty of free time, plenty of money, plenty of access to every book and information out there ever written - at our fingertips, if we want, even by smartphone on the loo.

Humans should become now stronger, smarter and more successful than ever, all restrictions of the past, all limits of resources being resolved?
Free food, free time, free knowledge for everyone?
The truth is:
People are fatter, sicker, lazier - and more incompetent than ever.
Maybe IQs rose a bit, or not, maybe because of the better nutrition for everybody.
But actual competence - reasoning ability, reading and math and logic ability - are not a bit worse - they have fallen through the floor!
20 year-old cannot anymore remember a 10-digit number. Their working memory capacity is basically on the level of what would have been diagnosed as retards decades ago. They use their phones, but never must memorize phone numbers.
They never must plan things - they all communicate in real time, never need to prepare or deliberately plan things. Everything is "on the fly" - eating, meeting friends, having sex, watching a movie - no thinking, zero memorization, no plannig is ever needed. They cannot even read and use maps anymore. It seems comical, but they all rely and navigation systems and GPS - the circuits in their brain for navigating in the world, knowing where north is, where they are and how they could get anywhere, navigating by a mental, internal plan to get around and reach a destination - GONE! They are on the level of toddlers again in such areas of cognitive ability - because they never used those functions, these brain functions got lost!

Previous generations had in their memory a lot of geographical and scientific and practical data, which they used often to navigate their world and problems of life.
Today's youth never had to deal with any of those problems - not with planning (everything, food, transportation, navigation, meeting with friends, sex, porn, movies, all kinds of entertainment) are there - instantly, always, unlimited with them, 24/7, by a technical device which basically does all their thinking for them.
All they are left to do is just feeling what pleasure they want right now - food, friends, sex, porn, jokes, movies etc. - and they instantly get it, through the technical device.
There is no delay, no need to plan, no need to think.
The very moment they feel a desire, only a few seconds with the smartphone, and they
can satisfy that desire.
They live in an utopia - which machine-guns them with pleasure endlessly, but also
cripples their cognitive abilities because for all their pleasure, they never need to do anything complex to achieve those pleasures.

 

Their brains still have the same capacity as those of previous generations - but their brains are filled with garbage - they have loads of information stored about movies, videogames, entertainment of all sorts, even know dozens of porn stars by name - but cannot reason anymore, or plan anything more complex as buying a videogame.
When one tries to hold a conversation with them - they often cry out "Yea, like X in movie/videogame Y, I've seen that!" - and that's it.
They have seen and memorized information from thousands of movies all their lives,
and from many videogames or other entertainment products, but this is all garbage knowledge, cognitive garbage that enables them to do exactly nothing at all.
It's like their brains have been destructed on purpose, by filling it to the rim with useless garbage, and preventing them from thinking and planning and memorizing useful skills and insights - they have been reduced, neutralized, and they accepted it freely because it felt pleasurable.

Thanks to cheap food and free knowledge for all - this and maybe future generations
will be sicker, live shorter lives and will be much stupider - on average - than previous generations.

This holds true for about 90% of the population - what we may call "Elites", on the other hand,do not let that happen to themselves - they are healthier, live longer and are cognitively more competent than ever, mostly because they avoid overeating, laziness and entertainment religiously:

The social divide in cognitive class is greater, and becoming greater, than ever before.


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#2 Anderson

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Posted 14 April 2017 - 04:00 PM

You may say so. You may also say that some people are conscious of this and purposefully restrain themselves and bring order in life through patterns of discipline and habbit.

That means healthy habbits. I don't think there's anything more true than Aristotle's Ethics.

 

 The job of our governments would be to encourage those habbits. I wouldn't say this is true for most modern democracies. It's just governments failing to adjust to the new times.

​In Russia, yes. Dumbed down humor, culture, aesthetical taste and a creation of a sense of Russian exclusivity and antagonism with the West keeps the common man's mind too busy. It's at action with the church not separated with the state. In the end creating a twisted ideology of Russian Byzantine dynasty to capture Europe and defend everyone from pederastia. The human brain can only really think actively about 2 or 3 things simultaneously. This is the danger. Very toxic environment naturally leads to unhealthy lives that makes society more influenced. Which of course harms the weakest individuals.

 

In developed countries, it is my understanding that, on the contrary - back in the day only the strong survived. Today the weak, the easier to influence have a greater chance of surviving and living. That's why everything is so mixed in postmodernist confusion. But time will pass and we'll look at present days as just a temporary fad. Things change with great haste these days in our world. Things must be simplified in life. Get real goals and do them.

 

But it's all about getting out of the comfort zone. It's not about getting to the supreme level of social hierarchy where you don't remember how shit even looks like. It's about getting being ready at all times when shit hits the fan. Hope for the best, prepare for the worst.
 

Also, most of us probably read Robinson Crusoe.

 I always thought it was so appropriate when it is mentioned that the best condition in life is to be neither poor nor rich but in the middle class with just enough for a decent life. Therefore the 5% or 10% of the world's rich are hardly an example. An ephemeral narcissistic illusion of power in perpetual cycles powered by psychological subconscious Freudian complexes. It's sad actually.

But I don't see how the marketing tricks and the ads in mass media are a huge conspiracy. Just lack of proper regulation for the time being.​ In the same way that maybe MMO's should come with a minimum age of consent limitation or some such thing. Online game compulsion isn't healthy either. Everything must be balanced - from gastronomy to sport, to social behavior. But again, you can't limit human activity. It's about balance. No society is going to be perfect. Someone just wants to blame others, not work and get high. Can't change that. Their way of life reflects what they see, what they do, what their preferences are, what their tastes are and vice versa.

 

By the time of 20 years much of the personality key traits will be pretty much permanent. The more time passes the harder to change, learn, adapt. Everything in cycles for each generation to learn from the previous.

​Updated at 0:20


Edited by Anderson, 14 April 2017 - 04:20 PM.


#3 Anderson

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Posted 14 April 2017 - 04:13 PM

-----


Edited by Anderson, 14 April 2017 - 04:21 PM.


#4 Sotha

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Posted 14 April 2017 - 05:03 PM

Instead, this is actively prevented by the upper class - by filling people's heads with garbage - much like they fill people with too much and bad food, making them obese and ill. It works, because they exploit evolutionary desires - people like to observe other people (TV, series, movies) and they like energy-rich food (cakes, fastfood, sugar bombs).

 

 

So it is the elite that ruins the people, not the people themselves? :blink:

 

I would say that some people choose to do the stuff you say to themselves. They could study, they could learn, they could do something useful... But they watch reality TV because that is their decision. The elite has nothing to do with it. People will consume entertainment what they choose, and entertainment makers make entertainment that has demand.

 

Instant gratification garbage wins. But some people choose higher level stuff and that is good.. for them.


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#5 Spooks

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Posted 14 April 2017 - 05:08 PM

Yeah, I agree with Anderson, I wouldn't call it a conspiracy. Never attribute to malice what you can chalk up to stupidity. Sure, call it exploitation, but it's basic capitalism in another word. You give the people what they want. Hedonism's been around forever and it's always been a hobby of the rich. Everyone looks up to the rich, right? The signal to noise ratio you're seeing is just everyone trying to get a piece of the pie. You can't blame that on the consumer.

 

Elites are such because of socio-economic status which, despite what the American Dream might tell you, you still have to be born in. They live longer, eat better and stay healthier because they can afford it. I don't know about being more cognitively competent. I've seen Trump tweet.


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#6 jaxa

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Posted 14 April 2017 - 05:53 PM

If brains are "filled" with garbage, how come they are shrinking?

 

Your rant could use a few citations.


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#7 Springheel

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Posted 14 April 2017 - 06:53 PM

Previous generations had in their memory a lot of geographical and scientific and practical data, which they used often to navigate their world and problems of life.
Today's youth never had to deal with any of those problems - not with planning (everything, food, transportation, navigation, meeting with friends, sex, porn, movies, all kinds of entertainment) are there - instantly, always, unlimited with them, 24/7, by a technical device which basically does all their thinking for them.
All they are left to do is just feeling what pleasure they want right now - food, friends, sex, porn, jokes, movies etc. - and they instantly get it, through the technical device.
There is no delay, no need to plan, no need to think.
The very moment they feel a desire, only a few seconds with the smartphone, and they
can satisfy that desire.
They live in an utopia

 

 

Spoken like someone who doesn't know many teenagers.  "Today's youth" have lots of advantages, and they have lots of anxieties and pressures.   They have to worry about cyber-bullying; they have to worry about blocking out the near constant distractions in order to get their work done; they have to worry about people recording their most embarrassing moments and posting them online for the world to see.  It is getting more and more difficult to get a job now.  Housing prices continue to rise at a rapid rate.  Most young people do not expect to have a lifestyle that is as good as their parents had.  It's hardly a "utopia".


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#8 Outlooker

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Posted 14 April 2017 - 08:22 PM

A few materials from scientists:

 
 
Kind of related, but it's only talking about silicon valley. Non-elite children are encouraged more and more to use a computer all the time in their lives for the sake of a higher quality Education!, while those working in this industry are putting their children in rich schools where they're only allowed pencil and notebook paper. 
 
 

Well, maybe I am wrong and this is indeed normal.

One could argue that the last generation of Americans, for example, on average watched 8h of TV every day, that means 50% of their non-sleeping life time - if they live for 75 years,

they slept 25 years, worked 25 years, and watched TV 25 years. Staring 12+ hours per day on some kind of screen to amuse oneself may be indeed not that much of a new destructive development,

just an old phenomenon adopted to contemporary technological developments.

 

 

 

So it is the elite that ruins the people, not the people themselves? :blink:

I would say that some people choose to do the stuff you say to themselves

I think you are right that people are first and foremost responsible for themselves and their children.

Yet at the same times I think that the rich are pushing it, especially on the poor deliberately.

Video and internet game addiction are no joke, people even died from this already. It seems to have a completely new quality - I know some "fights" in family over TV use and such - maybe this is normal.

https://en.wikipedia..._game_addiction

https://en.wikipedia...iction_disorder

But did people die from watching too much TV  in the past?

Were training camps necessary to keep kids from TV addiction?

With social media, they now also have hooked girls and women to computers and screens by exploiting their socializing instincts.

 

 

If brains are "filled" with garbage, how come they are shrinking?

Your rant could use a few citations.

I have some citations above.

 

 

 

Spoken like someone who doesn't know many teenagers.  "Today's youth" have lots of advantages, and they have lots of anxieties and pressures.   They have to worry about cyber-bullying; they have to worry about blocking out the near constant distractions in order to get their work done; they have to worry about people recording their most embarrassing moments and posting them online for the world to see.  It is getting more and more difficult to get a job now.  Housing prices continue to rise at a rapid rate.  Most young people do not expect to have a lifestyle that is as good as their parents had.  It's hardly a "utopia".

Maybe there are just too many people who are not needed anymore, because of automation and increases in efficiency and productivity - simple jobs are done by a billion cheap Chinese who effectively are in many fields

competitors to local workers - and further increases in productivity or just keeping competitiveness demand for only the smartest of the smart, leaving the middle and lower strata of people out of work - a few decades ago,

an automobile factory was full of workers, now it's full of robots who are controlled by very few engineers - and the processes can only controlled and improved by engineers and scientists, low- and middle class people in terms

of cognitive ability are economically becoming useless, only being needed as consumers anymore.

 

May those internet and entertainment addictions just be the modern equivalent for neutralizing people, just as booze and TV were for the previous generations?

 

In terms of food and entertainment, there is an utopia. Or maybe a dystopia. Food and entertainment are available in practically limitless amounts, skyrocketing obesity and entertainment addictions are a clear result.


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#9 stumpy

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Posted 14 April 2017 - 08:23 PM

might explain why a lot of wiki's contain information about scientific/exploration discoveries that are based off Hollywood's definition of what happened which is sometimes a bunch of noodles and not the actual truth.


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#10 Outlooker

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Posted 14 April 2017 - 08:57 PM

I had just talked about this with a colleague, and he told me that when his (17 yo) daughter's smartphone broke, she was literally crippled and panicked, because she would not really what to do ... she could not instantly google

for an answer, she had no phone numbers to contact friends and family from a regular phone, she could not "message" friends and family, she could not call a cab, did not know how to use public transport without checking their

website for how tram lines run and when etc. - she felt completely lost and almost tried to get help from a police car that happened to drive by.

To her credit, at that time she was in an unknown-to-her city as a newcomer and knew neither people nor infrastructure there, but still, she WAS basically crippled - out of ideas what to do and how until she bought a new smartphone.

 

Maybe this is just an extreme example. But people have been basically grown to their smartphones, at least that's how most of them seem to use them.

What if that vastly complicated underlying infrastructure - electricity, data networks - for some reason break down for some time?

I have the suspicion that would be a greater shock to a lot of people than one would expect.


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#11 Goldwell

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Posted 14 April 2017 - 11:04 PM

That was a very interesting read and with parts of it I agree, however I fail to see the "elites" avoiding these technologies and advancements.

If you see someone driving the latest Lexus or Porsche chances are they're using incar navigation systems and don't have out a map and compass. In this rapidly advancing technological age it does raise concerns as the time between desires and taking action is getting narrower thanks to devices such as mobile phones. However it also allows us to streamline productivity and education by leaps and bounds.

Now a student working on an essay can have access to the entire uni library through an online portal, an online search engine/dictionary through Google and a word processor that checks spelling and grammar for you. Compare that to not that long ago when you had to physically visit a library, search out the book you require and use pen and paper to write it all down.

I think there will always be a group of people who might value watching TV/playing video games over the pursuit of more productive ventures however I think there is a much larger group of people who genuinely try to balance their productivity with fun (two things that are only improving as technology moves forward). And as more people become technologically literate they too gain the power of having questions answered through a simple search query and so in general people are becoming more informed in their decisions. The downside to this though is people don't like to be told their views are wrong (read: fake news) so I guess like everything it has its pros and cons.

So perhaps it's not that we are using our brain less but rather we are using them differently, how we process information becomes more important when simple things like reminders, note taking and math can be done instantly with an app and so we no longer need to concern ourselves with that. Maybe the brain is just adapting to this change in lifestyle.


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#12 demagogue

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Posted 15 April 2017 - 12:18 AM

Easy solution for individuals though: read more books.

Sad I guess if that doesn't occur to many people, but it's easy enough to have a discipline to do.


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#13 Sotha

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Posted 15 April 2017 - 03:28 AM

I think you are right that people are first and foremost responsible for themselves and their children.

Yet at the same times I think that the rich are pushing it, especially on the poor deliberately.

But why do you think the rich are pushing it? What justification do you have for this claim? Please, think hard, it is really important, I would really like to know why you think so.


One could say that in terms of education, I belong to the elite in my country. At least I have never seen any evidence of the rich forcing the poor to rot their brains with garbage.

It may be due to the fact that socioeconomic status is hereditory. The elites value education and they pass it on to their young. We force our kids to violin/piano courses so that they learn early on that working and training generates ability and comptetence.

I do not know what they do in worker class homes. Perhaps limited amount of funds results in simple, cheaper entertainment instead of expensive educative hobbies? But you cannot put that completely on available funds: it must be attitudes and values, too.

WRT of disappearing jobs
This is not a conspiracy either. Technological progress results in changes. This is completely normal. When cars became common, the professional horse carriage drivers became obsolete. When automatic cars became common, taxi drivers become obsolete.

The problem is, that that not everyone can find a new job, because with robotization you need less humans. The wealth will be more focused for the few. Hopefully goverments realize this in time. Either they implement taxes and socialistic transfers of money to distribute the wealth more fairly or they will face civil unrest when the middle class deteriorates.

In the end, it is more like a dream from the industrial era: "when the machines do the work, humans can focus on politics, culture, art and other higher intellectual matters."

With brutal realism this changes to: "when the machines do the work, humans get unemployed, poor, but have plenty of time to rot their brains with garbage entertainment."

Freedom from technology
I've always been a pro-technology person, but here is a fun story. We had a power outage some time ago. This happens very rarely, like one 1h power outage per 5-10 years. It was wonderful: I lit up candles, because it was really dark, and I just hanged around, without any distractions. The reality felt more real than usual. There was not that usual busy feeling that constantly bugs me these days: on to that next thing. I was sorry when the power was restored... the lights and screens felt unusually bright and painful for the eyes.

This planted the wish of having more of these offline evenings, some times. But not right now, I am too busy... ;) I guess we are all addicted to our technology level. With a click we get what we desire... but when things are so easy, they also lose their value.
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#14 Bikerdude

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Posted 15 April 2017 - 03:58 AM

Among other things he told me that the upper class is deliberately filling the brains of people with garbage and the entertainment destroys their brains. Literally!

1 word and acronym -  ' Reality TV '

 

I proactively chide anyone I know consuming this crap, and that includes overuse of Facebollox and twatter.



#15 Judith

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Posted 15 April 2017 - 04:28 AM

Also, it's not that today's economy is only about giving customers what they want. Otherwise companies wouldn't rely on psychology of addiction and its studies to make consumers "love" brands from the earliest age possible, so any purchase is as emotional as possible. Food industry pours tons of sugar, fats, and salt to everything they make, to get "optimal ratio" of those ingredients for every kind of food, because that makes your brain scream with delight with every bite or sip. The general idea is to make children consumers and decision makers as early as possible, and to make adults as childish and irresponsible in their spendings. This has been going on since 1950s-60s. Our brains are simply not ready for that kind of addictive properties of, well, everything. There are corporate R&D departments and science teams basically making people's lives more difficult or miserable like that, just because their boss needs to see 10-30% YTY growth in his Excel spreadsheet.


Edited by Judith, 15 April 2017 - 04:42 AM.


#16 Anderson

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Posted 15 April 2017 - 04:30 AM

1 word and acronym -  ' Reality TV '

 

I proactively chide anyone I know consuming this crap, and that includes overuse of Facebollox and twatter.

 

Righteous.

 

Social media is only worth it for keeping up with your work group/colleagues and whatnot. But don't let it distract you. Turn off notifications and take it easy.

 

On game and internet "addiction" there's a good 3 video essay on the topic. The Extra Credits are the ones to recommend. I think it's the most educated discourse on these things as, for all the joys and fruitful ways video games enrich our lives - so must we pay heed to not let ourselves be driven head over heels into the other extreme.

 



​To me the conclusion came to be that TV shows and games that use compulsive, manipulative subconscious leveling mechanics to keep you playing are not worth it.

The occasional episode of "The Mentalist" or "X-Files" or some other landmark TV show is always good. But the format is kind of crap. A motion picture should be 2 or 3 or 4 hours but not rely on constant cliff hangers and cheap methods like that. It's ridiculous to keep up.
​Video games shouldn't rely on these mechanics either. It's why MMO's get so much criticism or why MOBA, Dota 2 has such a toxic community/environment and general social perception. If these​ products were all that video games can offer - I don't want to have anything in common with it.

 

We choose what to consume and what we become. My country is only 15 years from having been recently Venezuela but things change and it's all about spreading awareness and education. Reach out to the people isolated, in trouble out there. Not everyone has a family. It's especially hard for orphans, children of divorce. They are at a higher risk of finding solace in anything. Unfortunately some life pattern habits can be really, really harmful.



#17 Springheel

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Posted 15 April 2017 - 07:27 AM

I had just talked about this with a colleague, and he told me that when his (17 yo) daughter's smartphone broke, she was literally crippled and panicked, because she would not really what to do ... she could not instantly google
for an answer, she had no phone numbers to contact friends and family from a regular phone, she could not "message" friends and family, she could not call a cab, did not know how to use public transport without checking their
website for how tram lines run and when etc. - she felt completely lost and almost tried to get help from a police car that happened to drive by.
To her credit, at that time she was in an unknown-to-her city as a newcomer and knew neither people nor infrastructure there, but still, she WAS basically crippled - out of ideas what to do and how until she bought a new smartphone.
 

 
An extreme example, but even if it wasn't, what's your point?  People learn how to use technology and stop learning how to do things the technology does for them. Ten years ago, people could complain that kids don't know how to use the Dewey decimal system anymore because they use search engines.  Twenty years ago they didn't know how to use rotary phones anymore.  Fifty years ago they didn't know how to bake their own bread anymore.  A hundred years ago they didn't know how to hunt their own food or make their own fires anymore.  Times change.
 
 
 
(On another note, the irony of people bashing social media while participating in an electronic discussion with people they've never met in person is a wonderfully amusing way to start the day)
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#18 Sotha

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Posted 15 April 2017 - 08:17 AM

hundred years ago they didn't know how to hunt their own food or make their own fires anymore.  Times change.
 


One more delightful insight is that I do (in theory, practice not tested) know how to hunt and how to make a fire in a survival situation, because....


....I watched survival reality television! (The garbage entertaiment!) :D :D


So it is not all bad, I guess.
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#19 Outlooker

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Posted 15 April 2017 - 02:39 PM

> they're using incar navigation systems and don't have out a map and compaas.

What they're actually doing is a mere reaction to primitive orders "go straight for 200 meters, at the next crossing turn right,..." - that's all they do. I heard parcel delivery men say that they would not longer know where they are at all, they just turn the steering wheel in the direction the machine tells  them to and that is all they do. Some company computer determines their economically optimized route for their parcel's delivery, some computer makes them navigate tactically. All they're left to do is follow primitive commands for hours (go, stop, left, right).

 

>Now a student working on an essay can have access to the entire uni library through an online portal, an online search engine/dictionary through Google and a word processor that checks spelling and grammar for you. Compare that to not that long ago when you had to

>physically visit a library, search out the book you require and use pen and paper to write it all down.

Getting all information  in mere seconds is a good thing.

But there are also downsides:

What is so quickly and easily available always everywhere, kind of loses its significance, its value.

A physical book is SOMETHING, an electronic book is only virtual. Our brains need physical inputs to learn and understand, that's how they work. If we read a physical book and remember it's content, we remember how to get at that knowledge - how to

get to the book, where to look in the book, where to look on the page. The knowledge is "physical" and "real", has a "substance". With that, value and significance are attributed to it by our brains. We tend to remember and ponder about it well.

Virtual texts, say, a website, or an ebook, feel less real. We skim over it quicker, more superficially, and remember and ponder less of it. Our brains seem also unable to "locate physically" such information and is more confused with it, attributing a lower

significance to it, and therefore hinder learning and memorization. We process physical books much better than virtual texts - website content is forgotten quickly.

Another Orwellian aspect: In the past, people could buy and read books without perfect records of their individual knowledge input - nobody knew what you read at the library or which books you paid in cash.

Today,  technology records everything: There are databases that record almost every book a person bought, read or lent. We're close to a situation where those who can combine these databases know by a click of a mouse button EVERYTHING

a specific  person ever read, learned and communicated, allowing a highly precise trait and ability profile of that person. Those who have that information over other people gain  power over them - more power any physical weapon or army could

give, because they know this person and their abilities and feelings and thinking even better than this person knows itself. The possibilities of exploitation of that knowledge are fear-inducing.

 

>I think there will always be a group of people who might value watching TV/playing video games [...] fun

Some say we humans are just organism who try to maximize pleasure and minimize displeasure; people only differ in their ability to do so by cognitive capability and time orientation (immediate vs. delayed gratification).

Famous psych. experiment: The Marshmallow Test

https://en.wikipedia...llow_experiment

Kids who were better at delaying gratification early in life had much more success in life outcomes.

 

>And as more people become technologically literate

Oh no, they are not becoming "technologically literate" - quite the contrary, they become LESS so! They learn how to "touch" screens to deal with "aps" and "google".

This is primitivization, not sophistication. Those "touch" interfaces were specifically developed by Apple and others to make them as easy to use as possible, without any need to understand something about the underlying technology; they even insisted in

trying it out successful  in mentally disabled humans, because even the least mentally able should become users, to maximize their user base. For most people this is not different to magic - they're using magical devices that let them do things easily.

The internal workings, why those apps are free, who benefits and what interests there are they are ignorant of. All they do is pushing colourful buttons.

 

>they too gain the power of having questions answered through a simple search query and so in general people are becoming more informed in their decisions.

If anyone, those who record and control the results of those search queries "are becoming more informed" - about what other people want to know, what they know, and what they get to know.

 

 

>reminders, note taking and math can be done instantly with an app and so we no longer need to concern ourselves with that. Maybe the brain is just adapting to this change in lifestyle.

But that is what thinking is about! That is what being smart, understanding is about! If we "outsource" our remembering, thinking, math, insight capabilities and, effectively, knowledge and competences - what are we left with?

I had teachers in school who thought that using young pupils calculators was wrong. Today I understand what they meant: There is no substitute to understand something and being able and knowing how to do something yourself.

If an engineer understood math and uses an calculator or computer these are just tools for him making him smarter.

If young pupils who not understand the basics of math are led to believe they not need to learn these because they'll just use their calculators or math programs, they become cognitive cripples.

There is a critical difference between understanding and knowledge and mere information - being able to search-query through every book ever written in a fraction if a second is useless in itself, because it gives no knowledge or

ability - those are housed in brains, and brains only: If you do now know anything about the matter, being able to google everything will not help you to do a heart transplant or calculate structural requirements for a bridge . The competence must be in the brain,

otherwise it is just information, which is worthless for any action.

 

 

>Easy solution for individuals though: read more books.

>Sad I guess if that doesn't occur to many people, but it's easy enough to have a discipline to do.

I heard that after years of heavy entertainment use - be it TV or games or the net - people cannot do it anymore. Their attention spans don't allow it. They just can't, they get anxious, cannot concentrate anymore.

 

 

>But why do you think the rich are pushing it? What justification do you have for this claim? Please, think hard, it is really important, I would really like to know why you think so.

I think the rich want to stay rich and powerful, want to stay on top in terms of power and personal security in the social hierarchy.

Do achieve this, they have to compete with other rich for keeping their relative position, and by preventing others from becoming rich, because the more people become rich, the less advantageous it is being rich for the "old rich".

In practical terms, this means keeping the non-rich down, trying to make other rich less rich, and securing one's own wealth or increasing it.

It comes, mostly, down to money and money flows. Things must be arranged so that the money flows from those not rich to the rich. The used tool is exploiting pleasure and displeasure motivation in consumers, offering them

pleasure from products and services they pay for (pull by pleasure), and forcing them to work for them (push by fear or displeasure).

What matters most  to the rich is  the money flow from the nether classes to the upper class.

One could use the model of "people farmers" - the upper class being the farmers, the nether classes the livestock. The farmers have an interest in the well-being of their livestock - but for their personal gain only.

This model is inevitable in meritocracies, as capitalism (which I think is the best economic system we know) - it allows those who make successful decisions, to become ever richer, and with that increased wealth, comes increased

power to distribute more resources: The more competent somebody is, the richer he becomes, the more resources he controls - it's an auto-meritocratic system, auto-self-optimizing, as those who can make good decisions automatically

grow in influence to make more significant decisions. In the past we had a few single kings, today, everybody, if he can make successful decisions, can become one of many smaller kings.

 

>One could say that in terms of education, I belong to the elite in my country.

OK, but I suspect you are not really rich: That would mean you have not to work anymore, because your capital income far outweighs your work income, and you would need to have the knowledge to put this capital to work for you.

That also would make you upper class, and I only mean those people.

You may be upper middle class, but if you still have to work for income, and have no control over sizable capital, effectively making you one of the real rulers, you would be "only" a very well-paid, very skilled worker.

Nobody can become upper class by formal educationalone , because the knowledge of formal education is all publicly available, while the "ruling knowledge" and "ruling skills" of the upper class are not publicly available for obvious reasons.

 

>At least I have never seen any evidence of the rich forcing the poor to rot their brains with garbage.

"Forcing" is a word I think about here. Is putting out delicious cheese in a mouse trap "forcing" the mice to get their neck broken by the trap?

Is trying to exploit the brain functions of the mice, studying their instincts and desires to make them do what the trap-layer wants "force"?

After all, he is just making the mice an offer, which the mice is free to choose or not.

In humans, we have laws protecting, for example, children, from certain kinds of exploitation, because their brains are underdeveloped and they cannot think as well and therefore not judge as well.

No such protections for adults exist. Yet, the difference in cognitive  ability between the smartest and least smart adults is greater than the average such difference between adults and children.

A person with IQ 70 would be hopeless prey in competition with an IQ 100 human. Isn't an IQ 100 human (statistically, half of the population) also hopeless prey to an IQ 130+ person?

The high-IQ humans sure do a lot of research optimizing gambling, food, video games, porn, entertainment, cars etc. to maximize desire of other humans to spend money on those things. 

For example, many of today's video games, especially "freemium" games, bring in billions by exploiting and nurturing addictions and desires in their users based on scientific addiction research - who are, superficially, not "forced" into anything, all they get is an "offer".

Because especially humans of lower cognitive ability cannot resist their impulses and immediate desires as well as humans of higher cognitive ability, the former are, effectively, marionettes of the latter.

 

 

>It may be due to the fact that socioeconomic status is hereditory.

Indeed. Why? Because cognitive ability is heritable. Even the basic psychological determinants of humans "Big Five" are highly heritable.

Those who disciplined, ambitious, healthy, beautiful and intelligent are stronger competitors in the social war for resources and reproduction, this leads to enrichment of those traits in the upper class, while the nether classes fall ever more behind:

Because we live in meritocracies, those who are more successful rise to the top. But most of their success results from their genetic superiority.

That means, our meritocracies are actually more like feudal systems, feudal systems based on genetics, basically, traits that run in families.

Somebody doubting this?

Example - the eye. Many genetic factors have to come together to make a good eye. Those who lack genes for good eyes die out, by natural or reproductive pressures. Therefore, only those who have rather good eyes survive and reproduce, therefore

almost all people today have good eyes. But not everybody, there are those who have eye  defects - in terms of sharpness or colour detection ability. Why? Because of mutations. Even in parents with perfect eyes, (random) mutations are the reason

they sometimes have children with eye defects.

Those parents who both lack genes for perfect eyes __never__ have children with perfect eyes - it would take many more mutations, which are vastly less probable, to give their kids suddenly perfect genes for perfect eyes.

The brain is much more complex than they eye (roughly 80% of our genes encode brain structures), but the same principle applies here too:

Generally, smart parents can have smart and dumb children; dumb parents only can have dumb children.

Some scientists use a clockwork analogy: A highly complex clockwork that has random stuff thrown in (mutations) vastly more probably suffers in function by those random changes than those changes are beneficial for the function of the clockwork.

Therefore, social status as a result of cognitive status, also works this way: The lower status crowd remains down, the children of the upper class fall down socially or stay upper class.

Some will say that in the past there were many cases of people rising socially to the top from way below  - this is true. But why did this happen and when?

It seems it mostly happened during a certain transition period - roughly describable as industrialization - when most of these ascendances happened.  Why? Because being smart was not that beneficial before industrialization - things like

a strong immune system, strong muscles, good health, ability to store fat well and efficiently and so on was much more important for survival, than to have the extra brain power to solve differential equations easily. When insight capability,

IQ, memory etc. begun to translate into higher status with industrialization and later today's "information society", those humans who excelled in that cognitive skills were selected out of the mass of the available humans and then rose

socially. Important aspect: That transition, that ascendance, happens only once  in every people or society - after the smart have been separated from the dumber people with the advent of the "cognitive or information age" cognitive and therefore

social class of most people  or families stays rather constant - only a few people from the lower classes rise up, because most of those who can, based on their genetic/cognitive makeup, already have risen up.

As time progresses, I suspect we should therefore see an increasing differentiation between classes in terms of biology, maybe the creation of a "homo superior" next to the homo sapiens, because of sexual selection - the good genes

for health, IQ, beauty and ambition etc. all "wander" up the social classes, being enriched in the upper class. Lower classes today are uglier and stupider, middle classes have better genes and sometimes combine good traits like IQ

or health or ambition or beauty - but hardly all combined - while the upper classes are on track to combine only the best versions of all genes for health, beauty, IQ and ambition etc. - because successful people with good genes strongly tend

to reproduce with others of the at least same genetic quality. In the past, without contraception and democratic laws, upper class (nobility) men often impregnated lower class females, maids and slaves and servants and such - sharing their

better genes with lower classes. Not so today, contraception, rape criminalization, and other pressures effectively prevent the influx of upper class superior genes into lower classes.

 

 

>The elites value education and they pass it on to their young.

>We force our kids to violin/piano courses so that they learn early on that working and training generates ability and comptetence.

All sensible people try to do this. But the results of education and training are limited by biology.

Not everybody has the cognitive or emotional power (discipline, ambition) to get the same level of results.

An ambitious, self-disciplined child of parents who both have IQ30130+ will always out-compete kids from genetically more "normal" parents, while the kids of normal parents will, on average, easily outcompete

children from parents with addiction problems and low IQs - no amount of education can change this.

Educability is limited by genetics, as, for example, all the best training in the world will make a young pony have a chance at ever beating  young thoroughbred race horse which only gets sub-optimal training.

I think that the reality of genetics, some say race, is both a taboo in leftists and conservatives - leftists hate heritability of cognitive and emotional traits because it makes "equality" impossible, while rich conservatives, mostly the upper

class, also wants to put the topic under the carpet because they know it is the core reason for their superiority, status and power - and that the lower classes, despite appeals for education and fairness etc. - not really ever have  a chance, because

their genetic inferiority prevents them from it.

As I observe, the upper class tries to exploit lower classes with education offers - the promise social advancement through education - a good idea, it seems - for money, offering courses and degrees and private tutoring. Yet, all they get is the money,

and somewhat more skilled workers/slaves. That's well enough, as these now more skilled workers probably get a better or more secure job - but that is not nearly enough for social advancement - if that was true, almost all academics would be

upper class and rich - but only the best of the best are upper class, and some of those even never bothered with much of formal education - as, at it's core, any degree, even an academic degree or doctorate, guarantees nothing - it is merely

a higher form of "begging permit", because even doctors have to apply ("beg") to become employees for the owning, controlling, ruling -  that is, upper class.

 

 

> I do not know what they do in worker class homes.

Easy, just look directly, they are many, they are not hidden, and they are nearby.

You can also do learn it indirectly - because they make up most of consumers, they consume most of what is offered - in terms of products, services, TV programs etc.

Because TV, like other products and services are constantly optimized for highest demand, you see in it what most people want most in practical terms, that is, what they really choose mostly (what they SAY may be different what they

really DO, but products and TV program are an objective insight of what people really choose).

 

>Perhaps limited amount of funds results in simple, cheaper entertainment instead of expensive educative hobbies? But you cannot put that completely on available funds: it must be attitudes and values, too.

Yes: In the past, people said that the poor are poor because they have no chances because they lack money or time because they needed to work so long a time for they earned so little. This turned out to be not true - 

if the poor get more free time and more money, they just consume more pleasure goods, and do not invest in themselves - which kind of makes sense, because of their averagely lower cognitive ability, they would never achieve

competitiveness with higher classes of people, anyway.

 

>The problem is, that that not everyone can find a new job, because with robotization you need less humans.

Yes, but the scale of the problem is becoming possibly unmanageable. Horsemen became truck drivers, human "computers" would become office clerks, and so on. Technology revolutions changed employment, but always found

some use for people in new kinds of jobs. I hope this stays so, but I fear that in the future, only the brightest few have the means to provide meaningful advancement and economic usefulness.

 

>The wealth will be more focused for the few.

That's already the case, and not necessarily bad - the few most cognitive powerful, competent people SHOULD have the most control over resources, that is a good thing, the result of meritocracy.

The question is not about distribution and control of wealth, but about distribution of living standard, which is not the same.

 

>Hopefully goverments realize this in time.

All "elites" are very aware of this, this is a central theme of their thinking - even since prehistoric times, actually.

 

>Either they implement taxes and socialistic transfers of money to distribute the wealth more fairly

This seems an easy solution, but I doubt it very much:

Just giving the poor much money will actually hurt them - evidence shows that most of them will just go on shopping sprees, do more drugs, and become more obese.

One public health researcher calculated that many deaths from alcoholism could be prevented - by reducing social welfare payments, or by increasing alcohol tax, making booze more expensive  - because

many people would just use extra money to drink themselves to death sooner.

Also, giving free money out just like that kills any incentive to work - why work when you get the money anyway? This alone would be destructive for society. People should work for money, not get it for free - 

this also will give them a sense of pride in their work, and at least some honing of some skills.

Just receiving money for free from the mighty hand of the state or the rich - is, to some degree, a humiliating experience.

 

>or they will face civil unrest when the middle class deteriorates.

I suspect that upper class does not fear that much. Even in prehistoric times, the rulers ruled safely, the ruled without much of a chance, rulers being threatened mostly by other rulers.

Swords, bows, then guns, made the power superiority ever greater, and today,  the advantage of the elites due to technology and information advantage and weapon power advantage made the few ever more securely

powerful over the many. If need be, primitively and brutally, there are ABC weapons. But they would hardly need those, because their weapons of the mind, of controlling thinking, feeling and knowledge of the masses,

are even more powerful.

Here in Germany, rulers used intelligence agencies to play leftists against rightists, in effect neutralizing them both. Leftists and rightists both are collectivists, while conservatives/upper class/capitalists are individualists.

I think they are right - at the end it matters not if you end in a Gulag or Concentration Camp - both are equally bad in effect, only differing in ideological pretext.

So, according to political/ruling requirements, the elites support Left or Right a bit by intelligence agencies according to current needs with money, weapons or ideas:

For example, during the cold war, they supported the Rightists, forming, for example, Gladio 

https://en.wikipedia...peration_Gladio

to battle the Leftists (RAF and such groups) which were supported secretly by the UdSSR.

Today, our rulers desire a mass immigration from the 3rd world to further their interests, and as this is rejected ideologically  by the Rightwing and supported by the Leftwing, now the intelligence agencies secretly support leftists and hinder

rightists. In Europe, the upper class has decided they want what Negroes are in the USA for themselves here in Europe, too: Having more underclass people to function as "profit pumps" to force higher money flows from the middle

class to the upper class,.

 

 

>In the end, it is more like a dream from the industrial era: "when the machines do the work, humans can focus on politics, culture, art and other higher intellectual matters."

>With brutal realism this changes to: "when the machines do the work, humans get unemployed, poor, but have plenty of time to rot their brains with garbage entertainment."

Yes, and maybe hypnotizing most people with food and entertainment and drugs and optimizing that ever more by "total surveillance" is the only solution our rulers have to deal with that. 

>Freedom from technology

>I've always been a pro-technology person,

I too - some say that technologies makes the few ever more powerful over the many, but I pointed out that this was always so - since prehistorical time - it makes not much of a difference individually if they kill you with bare hands, a pointy stick,

a gun, an atomic bomb or giving you secretly cancer by action of intelligence agencies. The individual was always hopelessly powerless compared with the rulers - in tribes in caves in our past, or likewise in modern democracies.

 

>but here is a fun story. We had a power outage some time ago.

I fear a bit for our/my personal safety and security from the effects of some more lasting power outage - no communication, no water, no food, no information, no police, no medicines ... if experiences from other parts of the world of only

transitory power outages are an indication, we should fear and possibly prepare somewhat for such a scenario - there is a saying "People are two days and a meal away from barbarism."

 

>This happens very rarely, like one 1h power outage per 5-10 years.

Yes, until now. It's good living in the 1st world.

>It was wonderful: I lit up candles, because it was really dark, and I just hanged around, without any distractions. The reality felt more real 

>Athan usual. There was not that usual busy feeling that constantly bugs me these days: on to that next thing. I was sorry when the power was restored... the lights and screens felt unusually bright and painful for the eyes.

>This planted the wish of having more of these offline evenings, some times. But not right now, I am too busy... ;) I guess we are all addicted to our technology level. With a click we get what we desire... but when things are so easy, they also lose their value.

Maybe we should once in a while get away from using most tech for a week or so to learn how and if  we cope. 

 

 

>1 word and acronym -  ' Reality TV '

>I proactively chide anyone I know consuming this crap, and that includes overuse of Facebollox and twatter.

I salute your intentions, but I learned it is hard or even impossible to prevent people from hurting or even destroying themselves if they desire to - some people seem not to be able to resist the lure of pleasure, be it in the

form of heroin or electronic entertainment.

 

 

>Also, it's not that today's economy is only about giving customers what they want. Otherwise companies wouldn't rely on psychology of addiction and its studies to make consumers "love" brands from the earliest age possible, so any purchase is as emotional as possible.

Yes, it's a mix of serving demand and making up demand by exploiting instinct and desires.

 

>Food industry pours tons of sugar, fats, and salt to everything they make, to get "optimal ratio" of those ingredients for every kind of food, because that makes your brain scream with delight with every bite or sip.

I wonder where to draw the line between giving people what they are hardwired to find pleasurable and therefore want, and exploiting them as marionettes or slaves by giving them what they want - like giving drugs to addicts.

We are genetically programmed to like sweets. Somewhere out there is a line between having tasty, nutritious - pleasurable - food and producing an epidemic of obesity and serious illness by exploiting food as a drug.

 

>Our brains are simply not ready for that kind of addictive properties of, well, everything.

A few people have extraordinary self control, most are in-between, and many people suffer by becoming, effectively, slaves to their desires and pleasures, and therefore, slaves to those who sell these.

 

>There are corporate R&D departments and science teams basically making people's lives more difficult or miserable like that, just because their boss needs to see 10-30% YTY growth in his Excel spreadsheet.

Giving people pleasure and fulfilling their desires seems to be dangerously close to making them into addicted slaves. Currently I can see no solution for this problem.

 

 

>Social media is only worth it for keeping up with your work group/colleagues and whatnot. But don't let it distract you. Turn off notifications and take it easy.

It's not so easy or impossible to many - their pleasure center is so overwhelmingly activated by those things that they cannot stop (ab)using them - drug addicts usually cannot "just stop and turn off".

Some can do it, many cannot and worse: Many don't want to at all.

 

>​To me the conclusion came to be that TV shows and games that use compulsive, manipulative subconscious leveling mechanics to keep you playing are not worth it.

Yes. Many older games were addictive, too, because they were pleasurable, but - they ended.

I have to admit, for example, to replaying Deus Ex twelve times in my youth. Not a wise investment of time, but at least a bit pleasurable. Maybe I even learned a bit English from it. But - it ended. There was a limit.

Today's video games, movies etc - they are practically endless, available everywhere, all the time. There is much more film and game material than one human could consume in one lifetime already - and the amount of it not only grows, the growth is accelerating!

In some way, there is endless virtual material that is more pleasurable (at least short-time) and more accessible than the real life.

As with porn, psychologists see most video games as "achievement porn", targeted at boys and men. Successes in real life are quite hard to achieve, be it in sexual or in other terms, but immediately available through porn and - "achievement porn", that is, most video games. And with technological sophistication, the appeal of porn and virtual games over reality will only grow...

 

>We choose what to consume and what we become.

That needs willpower, a limited resource in all people, and very weakly developed in many. "We can do or not do what we want - but we can not want what we want", as some psychologist put it.

Sooner or late, every human, in some form, must give in to his corporeal desires...

 

>My country is only 15 years from having been recently Venezuela but things change and it's all about spreading awareness and education. Reach out to the people isolated, in trouble out there. Not everyone has a family. It's especially hard for orphans, children of

>divorce. They are at a higher risk of finding solace in anything. Unfortunately some life pattern habits can be really, really harmful.

Helping people in a meaningful way is very difficult, often impossible, because we cannot change people, cannot make them want something they do not want. If they want to ruin themselves with drugs, for example, there is no way to stop them.

I think, by and large, the best for the people is economic growth - because micromanagement of so many people in need and with different  needs is impossible, the most sensible approach would be to have more economic growth - in some way or another,

most people will benefit from it, improving their life, their options they have available.

 

 

>One more delightful insight is that I do (in theory, practice not tested) know how to hunt and how to make a fire in a survival situation, because....

>....I watched survival reality television! (The garbage entertaiment!) :D :D
>So it is not all bad, I guess.

There is a concept called primary/secondary experience.

The latter is prone to give people an illusion of knowing something from viewing it on monitor or reading about it, while the former alone is the true thing.

Have you tried to apply your "survival knowledge" you think you gained under somewhat real conditions?

Maybe you find out it's much more difficult or at least different from what you think it is like from viewing it on screen.


Edited by Outlooker, 15 April 2017 - 03:15 PM.

"Good people do not need laws to tell them to act responsibly while bad people will find a way around the laws." - Plato
"When outmatched... cheat." Batman

#20 Destined

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Posted 16 April 2017 - 04:13 PM

I had just talked about this with a colleague, and he told me that when his (17 yo) daughter's smartphone broke, she was literally crippled and panicked, because she would not really what to do ... she could not instantly google

for an answer, she had no phone numbers to contact friends and family from a regular phone, she could not "message" friends and family, she could not call a cab, did not know how to use public transport without checking their

website for how tram lines run and when etc. - she felt completely lost and almost tried to get help from a police car that happened to drive by.

To her credit, at that time she was in an unknown-to-her city as a newcomer and knew neither people nor infrastructure there, but still, she WAS basically crippled - out of ideas what to do and how until she bought a new smartphone.

 

Maybe this is just an extreme example. But people have been basically grown to their smartphones, at least that's how most of them seem to use them.

What if that vastly complicated underlying infrastructure - electricity, data networks - for some reason break down for some time?

I have the suspicion that would be a greater shock to a lot of people than one would expect.

I also use an app for public transortation as it is much mor comfortable than looking up any lines I need at the bus stop ot railway station. But still, I know how to orient myself without any smartphone. In doubt, I would just ask other people or employees from public transportation (although this would always be my last resort; I prefer to be able to be independent and not rely on/bother other people). If you are completely unable to get along without any technology, I would suppose, you are not able to communicate with other people and this brings along a whole lot of other problems...

In general, I think it is best to not completely rely on technology, although it makes life a whole lot easier. But it is up to parents to teach their children exactly that.



#21 Springheel

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Posted 17 April 2017 - 08:53 AM

For most people this is not different to magic - they're using magical devices that let them do things easily.

The internal workings, why those apps are free, who benefits and what interests there are they are ignorant of. All they do is pushing colourful buttons.

 

 

Once again, this has been the case for generations.  Do you understand exactly HOW flipping a light switch results in light coming out of your lamp?  Or do you just treat it like magic?  Do you understand how the chemical properties of aspirin affects your brain chemistry, or do you just take the magic pill to make your headache go away?

 

Technology may be changing, but people are the same as they ever were.


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#22 Outlooker

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Posted 21 April 2017 - 09:29 PM

 

Once again, this has been the case for generations.  Do you understand exactly HOW flipping a light switch results in light coming out of your lamp?  Or do you just treat it like magic?  Do you understand how the chemical properties of aspirin affects your brain chemistry, or do you just take the magic pill to make your headache go away?

 

Technology may be changing, but people are the same as they ever were.

Even the experts only have a limited understanding of technology and science - the deepest reasons for the way reality works are also unknown to them, as for everybody else.

But they have something over their fellow humans - a much higher degree of control over science and technology, from a higher relative understanding - they may not know why something works the way it does, but they can

quite reliably make it work like they want to their interests. And from that difference in control over science and technology results a difference in power over people, that is a, maybe today THE, basis of ruling power (In German "Herrschaftswissen", quite hard to translate the meaning into English, maybe "knowledge for the sake of action or control").

 

And as you said - yes: "People are the same as they ever where." - that is, human nature did not change. Technology changes. And with technological changes, some aspects of gaining and keeping power over other people.

It mattered not so much if people by this process were ruled by the threat of clubbing them with a tree branch or killing them by machine gun. They still had the capacity to understand what was going on, what and who

influenced them.

Not today anymore, I fear.

In the past, ruling people was achieved by fear of force or by propaganda, that is, exploiting informational and cognitive differences.

Today, the ruling power seems to be on the way into people's selves, their brains, identities, cognition itself.

Many people share all their lives, provide a complete communication, location, opinion, intimacy, shopping, earning etc. history - data bases and algorithms know more and more exact attributes about them than they

are knowing about themselves - beginning to allow rulers to force people into doing their bidding not by external, but internal forces.

And exactly the people who are most threatened by this understand it the least - they feel their lives - nothing less is it that is practically contained and stored and transmitted in and by those little boxes they carry with them - is secured and controlled by themselves because they have some physical control over the device by keeping it always close to themselves; women and kids seem to treat it like a personal diary, of sorts - a sanctum, which actually is an analytical espionage machine.

 

In the past, most people realized when they were subject to external pressures and control.

Even already today, that realization is lost to more and more people. They become slaves of the most hopeless sort - slaves who falsely think they are free and in control over themselves.


Edited by Outlooker, 21 April 2017 - 09:35 PM.

"Good people do not need laws to tell them to act responsibly while bad people will find a way around the laws." - Plato
"When outmatched... cheat." Batman

#23 Destined

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Posted 22 April 2017 - 05:41 AM

I agree that most people don't know (and don't care) how most technology around them works, as long as it does. Still, I believe that the general knowledge is much higher than it was only a couple of centuries ago (mostly thanks to Gutenberg and the book printing technology). The light switch and light bulb are examples that quite a lot of people acutally know (at least in Germany it is taught in Physiks classes in school). Of course, a lot of other day to day things, that are not too complicated (e.g. a TV or a fridge) are not well undestood. But currently we don't need to save this knowledge in our head, because the info is available with just a few hits of a keyboard. The knowledge available is actually so big, that it is simply impossible to memorize it all and people don't even try anymore (by the way this is called the Google-effect, as people can google information so they don't have to remember it themselves). I don't really see that as a problem, as long as the information stays available (be it internet or books) and as long as people are still able to process and apply the information. How often have you thought: "Why should I memorise that, when I can simply look it up any time?"

The problem today is not, that people don't have access to knowledge and information, but rather that they are bombarded with too much information to contain. A lot of this information is garbage (as was the first point of this thread) and it is hard to distinguish between useful and useless info. It is even harder to distinguish between true and false information, which is why people ususally pick a source that they deem reliable and simply believe what they are told that way. The risk herein (like Outlooker said) is, that this source can easily be used to influence people without them noticing it. Big Data makes this even easier, especially with people who gladly share everything they do on the internet.

Thus, it is, in my opinion, crucial to teach people to be critical about information, wherever they come from, and to be careful with whom to share personal information. The problem is, the latter is nigh impossible in modern times. I myself am currently looking for a job and I don't know how many sites now have my name, date of birth and home as well as e-mail adress. These are things you have to give on each and every online platform, be it firm internal or public. Of course, they all claim that the information is handled with the greatest care, but you hear almost every day that one or another firm has been hacked etc. It definitely is good to be careful, but at some point we have to accept that we cannot really control the flow of information (the one we give as well as the one we recieve). So I want to end this rant with one question: is it better to feel free and be enslaved in truth or to be aware of the fact that you are enslaved without any means to changing it? It is hopeless in any case, which makes it no less depressing.



#24 Anderson

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Posted 22 April 2017 - 05:42 AM

 

In the past, most people realized when they were subject to external pressures and control.

Even already today, that realization is lost to more and more people. They become slaves of the most hopeless sort - slaves who falsely think they are free and in control over themselves.

 

Slaves to whom and to what? More detailed from this point please.

As with anything bad habits are a result of repeated actions and a lack of the exertion of one's will. Do you rather return to the cave rather than seek to control what power you have around you, to channel it for your own good?
​Additionally your vague statements fail to stick with me. Do you mean rulers who created the Chinese internet wall? Or the state controlled internet in North Korea? 

 

So I want to end this rant with one question: is it better to feel free and be enslaved in truth or to be aware of the fact that you are enslaved without any means to changing it? It is hopeless in any case, which makes it no less depressing.

 

​For the sake of our sanity and health - avoid nihilist conclusions ASAP.


Edited by Anderson, 22 April 2017 - 05:43 AM.


#25 Springheel

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Posted 22 April 2017 - 10:51 AM

Many people share all their lives, provide a complete communication, location, opinion, intimacy, shopping, earning etc. history - data bases and algorithms know more and more exact attributes about them than they

are knowing about themselves - beginning to allow rulers to force people into doing their bidding not by external, but internal forces.

 

 

This sounds like abstract fear-mongering to me.  Do you have a specific example of "rulers forcing people into doing their bidding by internal forces"?






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