by Pilgrim's Pride | December 17th, 2012
Part I: Cognitive Dissonance as Agitation Propaganda …
Many thoughtful Americans of the conservative, traditionalist or even Libertarian dispositions wonder how so many United States citizens can be “irrational”.
It’s simple. They are emotional.
The lesson to be learned is that reason and fact do not trump emotion. In fact, psychology tells us emotion always comes first, the “rationalization” later. Even in business, where coldly counting profit and loss is the whole point, personal greed and aggrandizement are the motivators of fiascoes from the Ford Edsel to Fannie Mae per se to John Corzine’s MFGlobal “rehypothecation” or unprosecuted grand larceny.
In 1962, Stanford professor Leon Festinger presented his Cognitive Dissonance theory. He outlined three common cases where we are trapped in our own lies, trying to maintain a public relations front at odds with our private selves. His second case, that of lying in public is telling — and as we shall see, perhaps the most insidious means ever devised to manipulate those of weak character. (His theory of Propinquity is equally important to understanding the problems inherent with the multikult.)
(Download Festinger’s original article in the Scientific American edition of October, 1962: Cognitive Dissonance theory.)
Let us turn now to the consequences of lying. There are many circumstances in which, for one reason or another, an individual publicly states something that is at variance with his private belief. Here again one can expect dissonance to arise. There is an inconsistency between knowing that one really believes one thing and knowing that one has publicly stated something quite different. Again, to be sure, the individual knows things that are consonant with his overt, public behavior. All the reasons that induced him to make the public statement are consonant with his having made it and provide him with some justification for his behavior. Nevertheless, some dissonance exists and, according to the theory, there will be attempts to reduce it. The degree to which the dissonance is bothersome for the individual will depend on two things. The more deviant his public statement is from his private belief, the greater will be the dissonance. The greater the amount of justification the person has for having made the public statement, the less bothersome the dissonance will be.
Speaking with forked tongue has a downside. We used to call it “a guilty conscience” in the days before the universal psychotheraputic reinvention of character into consumer choice modelling.
Furthermore, it appears the self-assessment of guilty is indirectly dependent on the cost of the public lie. One might call this “whoring oneself” or “selling out”. It is reminiscent of the old joke about the man who asks his wife and teenaged daughter if they would sleep with some movie star they idolized for a million dollars. “Yes of course!” they tell him in unison — after all, a million dollars is its own excuse. He then asks if they would sleep with him for one single dollar. The women get indignant and demand to know why he thinks they are common prostitutes. The classic reply comes to the nub of it, “You already established that. Now we’re merely trying to set the price.”
In other words, if you decide being accepted by others is more important than personal character, you will soon find yourself taking public positions at odds with your private belief, if only to “avoid making a scene” or to “make a good impression”.
But doing so makes you feel guilty, an intolerable state from which the human mind must flee at all costs, usually the cost of its own integrity.
How can the dissonance be reduced? One method is obvious. The individual can remove the dissonance by retracting his public statement. But let us consider only those instances in which the public statement, once made, cannot be changed or withdrawn; in other words, in which the behavior is irrevocable. Under such circumstances the major avenue for reduction of the dissonance is change of private opinion. That is, if the private opinion were changed so that it agreed with what was publicly stated, obviously the dissonance would be gone. The theory thus leads us to expect that after having made an irrevocable public statement at variance with his private belief, a person will tend to change his private belief to bring it into line with his public statement. Further¬more, the degree to which he changes his private belief will depend on the amount of justification or the amount of pressure for making the public statement initially. The less the original justification or pressure, the greater the dissonance and the more the person’s private belief can be expected to change.
Now you understand the importance of the “Consciousness Raising Sessions” of the 1960s – 1990s. In a typical session, unwitting participants were encouraged, by strategically placed shills, to reveal personal confidences not intended to be given in public, to strangers. Once the trust violation was induced, and guilt set in, the facilitator would offer the conscience-traitors a face saving opportunity in the form of the ideology selected for implantation.
Cognitive Dissonance as Applied Consciousness Raising in a University Setting*
“So tell us about a time when your father mistreated your mother, College Freshman Boy. We all know it happens, it’s natural, but we must share our experience here in the classroom setting where it is safe.”
Okay, well, dad yelled at mom that time she smashed the car on the shopping cart corral.
“That’s terrible. It reflects something we call ‘misogyny’ or the irrational hatred of women’s reproductive organs. It stems from feelings of personal inadequacy despite the established patriarchy. But it doesn’t need to be – we can reject the patriarchy, and the abuse of women it dictates, by empowering ourselves against it. This is true even for minor boys such as yourself. Break the cycle, College Freshman Boy, smash it right here and now. You want to do that, don’t you?!”
(With all eyes on him)
Sure, I don’t want to be a misogyny person. I love my mother! I’ll smash the cycle, of course.
“Wonderful! I knew you would. We are your support circle, your real family”
Yada yada yada.
College Freshman Boy just ratted out his family for the expediency of avoiding a confrontation with his professor and the preplanted shills. But he can never face his parents, especially his father, again. So he becomes a hyper-feminist himself and projects his own self-loathing onto his innocent father, who will be the incarnation of evil his brain needs to justify the treachery and supporting lies.
Make no mistake about it. This is the method used since WWII to manipulate Americans into accepting all manner of evil that obviously redounds against our own self-interests. It is a powerful technique. It is obvious in retrospect.
Next, in Part II, we will examine how to counter this psychological technique by reflecting our own imposed dissonance onto the brainwashed subject, effectively unwinding the original effects.
* Please note: This is a true story, only slightly modified, personally witnessed by your Humble Scribe in the first day session of a Women’s Studies class at a major mid-atlantic research university in the early 1990s. Documentary evidence exists, some of it published at the time, to verify the application of the technique.