August 1, 2008

Whiney bullies…

All bullies are, or believe themselves to be weak. Believing they could never win in a fair fight, they need to FORCE others to do their will.

There are 2 ways to do this.

The traditional ‘Bully’ uses a false sense of power. “Do what I say or I’ll beat you up, or humiliate you, or those you love”. These have been popular especially in school settings. And outrage mounts as those who are unwilling to confront them want laws passed so somebody else will confront them.

Some are well dressed and highly paid, but still, at heart, they are bullies.

But there is a second type, that hasn’t received as much press, that I’d like to address, or rather confront. It is what I chose to call the Weak Bullies, the Whiners. They lead with supposed weakness. “I’m so weak you MUST help me.”

No, I don’t!
The ultimate, and I’ve experienced it first hand, is the threat of suicide – “Do what I say or I’ll commit suicide”. Implied is that you will feel guilty for the rest of your life if you don’t acquiesce to their demands. Well let me respond clearly and forcefully: “It would be a loss for everyone if you chose to commit suicide, but that is your choice, and I for one will never feel the slightest bit of guilt for your decision”.

The primary defense against bullies is to ignore them when you can. When you can’t and sometimes they can be rather intrusive – confront their message and remove their pseudo-power.

PETA – The animals are so weak you must defend them…
No, let them fend for themselves.
These people don’t so much love animals as they HATE people!

Endangered species!
Species come and go. They have for millions of years. That’s nature. Sure I’m as sentimental as the next person and would hate to lose tigers, especially white tigers, because they’re so beautiful, but not because they’re in danger of becoming extinct.

I find it somewhat fascinating that the endangered species crowd are very selective protecting tigers and many birds. But in all fairness the measles virus is almost extinct. Not only is it naturally going away, but people in large numbers are actively trying to kill it! The same is true for many other species. Perhaps we can get some people together for the following causes:
Save the ebola virus.
Save the black plague.
Save Lou Gerick’s disease…
Save Sickle Cell anemia…
Save smallpox.
And if we remember to – Save Altzheimers…

They aren’t as cute & cudly as a tiger cub,
but fair is fair – or is it?

Filed under: Individuology — Bob Gorman @ 9:15 pm

Stimulus-Response – Ass backwards!

This entry is a continuation of my series on how negative models keep us from thinking clearly about issues. Earlier entries are: “On the Use of Negative Models” & “The Myth of Lift”

Let’s look at the current paradigm or explanation for how people behave, examine why it doesn’t & indeed can’t work, and then explore a new paradigm.

Current Paradigm: People respond to various Stimuli. So if you find, predict or control the stimuli they are exposed to – you can understand, control, and/or predict their behaviors.

We are passive responders, not active participants in life.
These various ‘stimuli’ have certain mysterious powers,
which in fact they do not, and never could have.
Examples: Alcohol, certain foods, pornography, firearms, PTSD memories, etc.

Closer look:
Gun Violence:
I and countless others have been around firearms for many years and have never seen one, by itself, jump off the table, turn & point itself, and then pull it’s own trigger. Knives are the same way.

Alcohol: Imagine a quart of Scotch sitting on your kitchen table. It could sit there for a hundred years and not cause a problem unless 2 specific conditions are met:
1. Someone has to drink it, a behavior. Yet even this is not enough. If you were to drink that quart of scotch over the course of a year, it would not have much effect other than some mild relaxation. So, for it to be harmful, we need a 2nd condition:
2. It must be ‘consumed’ in a very brief period of time. Again, a behavior. So the substance has no magical power, it is the behaviors that cause the problems.

PTSD memories:
Let’s imagine, for those of us fortunate enough not to have experienced this: During one of the many wars, a gun shot killed your best friend who was standing right next to you. Years later, you’re walking down the street of some small town, like New York City, and a car backfires. You dive for cover. Some would claim that the ‘noise’ triggered you. But that same noise did NOT trigger the many other people around you. So it’s not the noise but the painful, and un-processed, memory you brought to it, that creates your behavior.

I could go on and on, about chocolate, drugs, pornography & other ‘things’ that do not have the magical powers we attribute to them, but life is too short to be boring…
Also, some activities, or habits, are labeled and then treated as if they were real things, like workaholism, sex addiction, etc. These are activities, or habits, that are done by people not to people.

Thus the so-called all powerful stimulus is no more than a passive reminder.
Unless we have a personal, un-processed memory, it can’t Stimulate us!
Thus the so-called Stimulus has NO magic power in itself, only a passive reminder of powers which come from within us!

How did this wide-spread notion of Stimulus-Response come to be, and then come to be popular? This could get boring…
As near as I can construct, Ivan Petrovich Pavlov (September 14, 1849 – February 27, 1936) a Russian scientist, performed and directed experiments on digestion in dogs which earned him the 1904 Nobel Prize in Physiology and Medicine.

Pavlov’s term “conditional reflex” was mis-translated from the Russian as “conditioned reflex”, and other scientists reading his work concluded that since such reflexes were conditioned, they must be produced by a process called conditioning. (Another mysterious force conjured up to explain something which was not yet understood, like the entity ‘Random’, but that’s another days topic.)

Personal experiment:
Imagine you’re leaving your home tomorrow morning.
As you step outside, you declare:
Ah, let me go forth and experience some random stimuli!
Duh! That would never happen.

Why? Because you, being a purpose & meaning driven creature always go forth to accomplish some Purpose or Intention. Even if that purpose is simply to relax and enjoy life. Then as you poke & prod the world, you being the Stimulus, the world Responds to your energy. It may yield to you, it may resist you, and most often, it will simply ignore you.

Try it yourself.

Certified RFR – Rat Free Research
All studies have been conducted by humans, on humans, and for humans.
No rats have ever been harmed or even inconvenienced.
Bob Gorman

Filed under: Individuology — Bob Gorman @ 5:38 pm

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