General Question

Jess's avatar

Do you think you're being brainwashed?

Asked by Jess (218 points ) June 19th, 2008

With the TV and internet running the show these days, how far have humans strayed from our intended natural lifestyles?

I think our whole society is focused on money, getting more, accomplishing this or that, getting whiter teeth and going to a great school.

How much of reality is being crafted by corporations and powerful greedy men?

How does your soul feel driving a mercedes and texting on your iPhone?

Why is everyone sick and overweight?

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31 Answers

nikipedia's avatar

Who cares about natural?

Yes, my life is all about accomplishment. Part of that is material/financial. What’s the problem, exactly?

marinelife's avatar

I think we as consumers of information and products have a responsibility to carefully parse everything we are “fed” via the various media. The only difference now is how the message is delivered. Pre-technology there were bazaars, fairs, and wandering salesmen and caveat emptor was he watchword then too.

robmandu's avatar

I done been brainwashed by Fluther.

xxporkxsodaxx's avatar

When I was little, my grandfather had a conspiracy theory that Japan was going to attack the United States again because they were sending over all their little video games to distract and “lazify” the youth, which would put our defenses down and leave us vulnerable to attack. Even though I believed that then, I can see that there’s almost no possible way that can or would happen haha.

Jess's avatar

lol @ xxporkxsodaxx – I thank Japan for me not joining the army!

I personally logged insane amounts of time into Japanese video games as a kid but feel I gained some really insightful things….....I love technology, I’m asking more so about the general “mindset” of the world and what made-up priorities are made to seem important.

kevbo's avatar

Your question actually belongs to an academic field of study called audience theory. What I believe you are intimating is the hypodermic needle paradigm where humans just blindly follow mass media messaging. There are other models that allow for audience subversion or cooption, such as niche groups twisting a corporate message to suit their own agenda.

In short, we probably are a little bit, but mostly by choice.

willbrawn's avatar

I think that we have lost our true purpose. Greed and being a consumer have taken over lives. So many people I know dont have real goals in life. If this even ties in to the question. So many people work for a life and pay bills and buy the next big thing. I think a lot of people would not know what to do if there was nothing to buy or stores to shop at?

If markets did crash and stores were left empty, would you survive? Can you hunt? Farm?

NVOldGuy's avatar

Of course. Now what! The question, is it working on us?

iCeskate's avatar

I love how every thing is changing into that except all the fat people and all tv muffin tops and love handles

iCeskate's avatar

I love how every thing is changing into that except all the fat people and all the muffin tops and love handles

phoenyx's avatar

I do now. (somewhat)

ebenezer's avatar

I surely don’t feel like I have much control over most things in life. Stupid necessities. Other people control land, food, bathrooms, laws. Plus if you want to meet a girl these days it helps quite a bit to shower and not resort to eating out of trashcans. The life I live is not ideal. Too many compromises.

However, I am a stubborn bastard, and a clean one.

breedmitch's avatar

Why are “mushrooms” and “weed” tags for this question?

Trance24's avatar

Success is nice, money is nice, driving a Mercedes would be nice…but not if I have to sacrifice my own human sanity.

MisterBlueSky85's avatar

I think most of our major problems require an overhaul of systems that are far too powerful for us to change, so our society is trying to convince us that shortcuts to solutions are the right idea. I also think our society fosters too much individualism to prevent us from working together to achieve progress towards some of these goals.

Vague…

Jess's avatar

@ Breedmitch -
Mushrooms and weed are in the tags because they can open a window to perception that exposes truth from garbage. They are natural substances outlawed because they don’t promote the consumer mindset, while cigarettes, alcohol, and coffee are really pushed because they basically make you a better zombie.

MisterBlueSky85's avatar

I like you, Jess. :)

Hobbes's avatar

What “natural lifestyle” would that be, exactly? Are you referring to those good old days when almost everyone died by thirty-five? When infant mortality was a constant threat? When you were lucky if you didn’t die of war, predation, disease or starvation within the first ten years of your life? And, tangentially, nature doesn’t “intend” anything – nature is blind and mindless.

I have no love of corporate monopolies or obesity, I agree that our priorities might need to shift towards attaining real happiness, not the “quick fix” provided by buying something new and shiny, and that we often are thoughtless about the consequences of our actions, but you’re straying into the realms of conspiracy theory when you talk about people being made into zombies by evil corporate CEOs wearing big black mustaches.

WakeUp's avatar

“Nature is blind and mindless”

You, my friend, in fact, need some mushrooms and weed.

You are part of nature, right? You have a mind and eyes right? Uh, oh…............

As for “you’re straying into the realms of conspiracy theory when you talk about people being made into zombies by evil corporate CEOs wearing big black mustaches”, just watch MSNBC during Christmas time, and you will hear about “The Nag Factor”.

“It is x amount more likely for a toy to be purchased if a child nags their parents for it, therefore, ads should be created that make the child nag the parent” Do you not think there are other ad campaigns that have been crafted in a similar fashion?

When you disallow people to develop along their own accord, they pass critical windows of developmental opportunity whilst being unprepared or engaged (diverted) in social ritual initiation. This unpreparedness for actual life i.e.obtaining food, clothing, shelter by means other than token exchange, carries itself through the generations, compounding itself, until we find ourselves in a world where the water is poison, sex is death, and the sun is cancer. But its all okay , cuz I have a full tank in my SUV and American Idol is on.

GAMBIT's avatar

No but I wish these elephants would get out of my pajamas.

Well seriously there may be the power of persuasion in the media but since we are adults we should have enough sense to know that we are being taken for a ride. If they say Obama Obama Obama that shouldn’t get us away from where he stands on the issues. If they say Palin this or Palin that we should be smart enough to dig for what is fact and what is fiction.

My beef is I can’t get this song out of my head because the radio plays it over and over and over and over.

sndfreQ's avatar

@GAMBIT-I hope you feel the same way if you replace those names with their contenders…the truth is we need to reflect on all the candidates, their experience and qualifications, and each of their values and vote our conscience based on that research.

That’s the best anyone can hope for-and to not be misled by the pandering, cheerleading and nit-picking that seem to have diminished a once principled and credible mass media.

toomuchcoffee911's avatar

You know humans weren’t designed to be in a sitting position…

elenamillaa's avatar

i believe the proper question wouldn’t be “are you being brainwashed”, but “are we as a whole being brainwashed.” as a whole, i strongly believed we are all being brainwashed. we’ve given up nature and simplicity of small creatures, flowing streams, and picturesque scenes for greed, gluttony, and tall buildings. everyone cares more about success and money than they do about who they may hurt on their way to achieving their means. humans have, without doubt, strayed from our intended lifestyles.

in response to your question about reality being crafted by powerful, greedy man, think about this one: do we really know what is and isn’t true? have you traveled the world and scene total warfare? how many have actually done their research, without the help of the government-controlled media? do we really, really know if everything that’s happening in the world is a reality? not to sound too conspirator-esque, but what if the government is lying to us, about everything?

just something to think about. but as i mentioned earlier, as long as you as a person aren’t letting the government’s brainwashing get to you, it doesn’t matter if we are brainwashed. everyone has a right to their opinion, and if someone chooses to give in to the new standards of living, that’s their problem, and as much as you try, they’re already sucked in too much to listen to you, sadly.

at least you’ve escaped the trap.

kevinhardy's avatar

job orientations are a form of brain washing

WakeUp's avatar

If you think you think outside the box, you’re trapped in one.

jackfright's avatar

With the TV and internet running the show these days, how far have humans strayed from our intended natural lifestyles?

i think it’s been such a gradual shift that to go back to sticks, an open fire and the forest would be the unnatural. what is “natural”? do you consider anything man-made to be unnatural?

I think our whole society is focused on money, getting more, accomplishing this or that, getting whiter teeth and going to a great school.

this has never changed though, has it? why do we lust after money? because it’s simply a flexible form of influence. haven’t our monkey forefathers always fought for dominance as a means to influence? if in the distant future, money no longer exists and we switch to another format of quantifiable influence/‘wealth’, our sons will probably lust after that instead. it’s not money, per se, people want the ability to influence their environment including other people in it. great schools and whiter teeth both are largely symbols with practical benefits. if i had a son, i’d send him to the best school i can afford so he would be able to build a network of more potentially influential friends, this translates to real world (often business related) benefits. whiter teeth probably helps you get laid that little bit- it certainly doesn’t hurt.

How much of reality is being crafted by corporations and powerful greedy men?

very little in a direct sense, i think. powerful greedy men didn’t make the game, they’re just very good at it. i imagine the dominant males in primate groups to be the equivalent = they dominate other monkeys, get to eat first, get the best pieces and the most females.

How does your soul feel driving a mercedes and texting on your iPhone?

as opposed to a badly made car and badly made phone? pretty good i think.
my soul quite likes having the ability to get what it wants.

Nullo's avatar

Well, I see that a lot of news outlets have bias to them, a bias that causes some views to be presented and not others, and that causes them to cover some stories but not others. Then you have the entertainment media ridiculing opposing views while exalting their own. Then you have your deep-seated desire to be with the ‘in’ crowd…
I don’t know if they’re actively trying to brainwash (though I’m sure that somebody somewhere is) and I don’t think that there’s a concerted effort by all parties, but they do seem to be taking a stab at it.

ItsAHabit's avatar

People have always craved more, even when they were hunters and gatherers. That drive has helped create civilization.

Skaggfacemutt's avatar

Only if you buy into it. If I listened to the crap that TV crams down my throat, I would go out and buy a new car, stuff myself with burgers and pizza, have every new electronic gadget on the market, take every pill for every imagined illness, and get every plastic surgery invented. In other words, I would be bankrupt, in debt up to my eyeballs and be very fat and sick.

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