Justified Paranoia

Scary stuff.

<—Add’s 2 layers to tin foil hat

Its not paranoia, we are going into fascism!

“Fascism”? Have you been to an American city in the past decade? They’re closer to Nigerian shantytowns and Egyptian bazaars than 1930’s Berlin.

If you hate “fascism”, look to economic powerhouses like China. The West is much closer to Brazil than to Beijing. (Although you might be correct in a round-about way, because Brazil does have notoriously aggressive police forces.)

Looking at the titling of the URL is enough, you post a picture of what’s apparently supposed to be Detroit and conclude that all American cities are like that.

Cities outside of the Rust belt are doing a lot better and many don’t have so much blight and trash strewn about (at least not even close to the point of shantytowns), many also have growing populations in their cores (a reflection of today’s youth starting to eschew the suburbs for a more urban life). Even cities that were hit hard due to the housing bubble burst are starting to recover (though it’s partly the fault of cities allowing people to persue a ton of speculative construction for the purpose of flipping for a profit with no intention to live in them, not to also mention that getting loans were too easy and thus made it easy to buy something you couldn’t afford).

As for promoting paranoia, what else can you do when you live in an era where rumors of threats to life and property are commonplace?

What cities are nicer now than they were forty years ago? What cities can people walk through the park at night? I’m not aware of a single American city known for being peaceful and clean. I suppose Portland and Austin, but those are not “urban” in the way that the USA likes to define cities demographically.

My brother makes good money and lives in downtown Chicago - formerly one of the cleanest and nicest downtowns in the US. Now, the “Magnificent Mile” (basically Chicago’s version of Fifth Avenue) is now becoming dangerous as hell with “flash robs”, violent assaults, and general lawlessness. There was recently a huge scandal revealed that the CPD was not merely covering up the rising theft and robbery rates, but they are even covering up the rise in murder rates (which previously was thought to be too difficult for police departments to achieve).

My brother and his fiance - who are as politically correct and as deferential as anybody can be - are now fleeing to the suburbs. But even the suburbs are becoming dangerous.

This is Chicago. Your profile says you’re in Kansas, and so I’m sure you’re aware of how nice a reputation Chicago always had (relative to other big cities). Philadelphia (where I lived for two years), Cleveland, Milwaukee (a good friend lives there), Minneapolis…all these cities are becoming “no go” areas after dark aside from heavily-police Green Zones where there are sports stadiums and bars.

I once posted an article on my web-site that was inspired by my personal experiences with this type of activity, although I removed it for various reasons. Here are a few suggestions that might be useful should you find yourself dealing with a paid provocateur:

1.) Stay calm.

2.) Give yourself time to clear your mind and rationally think through your replies.

3.) Do your best to be as thorough as possible when stating your point of view. I find that provocateurs like to twist words, do your best to prevent this from happening, but try not to get all bent out of shape when it does.

4.) Try not to get all bent out of shape at all, if you feel you’re becoming particularly agitated refer to suggestion #2.

5.) Be careful about tossing accusations around, regular people do many of the same things that paid government provocateurs do.

6.) Who cares if your conversation becomes derailed or your thread locked. Regardless of whether some government wanted to close down your thread or not, regardless of whether they or you win or lose the sun will come up tomorrow.

7.) Remember the golden rule, treat others as you would have them treat you. Not always the easiest thing to do and lord knows I’m still doing my best to adhere to this myself, but we all make mistakes.

P.S. The originally linked article mentioned something about Google becoming wary about some new FCC powers. I would advise people to be careful not to fall into any Stockholm Syndrome type love with Google, just because they oppose increased government regulations doesn’t mean they’re the good guys, they’re just another organization that doesn’t want a government stifling their bid for global hegemony.

Whether it’s intentional or not the good cop/bad cop routine is generally quite effective. They’re both bad, but because one is not quite as bad and/or makes limited attempts to ward off the ‘bad cop’ people tend to fall in love with the perceived mercy of the ‘good cop,’ but in reality he’s not a good cop, just not quite as bad as the other. This is a well documented phenomenon that has come to be called Stockholm Syndrome.

Seeing your quote about Einstein calling nationalism a “disease”, I wondered, “Wasn’t Albert Einstein about to be the first Prime Minister of Israel, an explicit ethnostate?”


I did not want to get overpolitical, so much as bring up the paid troll phenomenon.

What are you talking about? You started a thread talking about how there’s a massive conspiracy to bring “fascism” (lolol) about but now you don’t want to be political? This is a contradiction.

Then, you get all angry because Albert Einstein was going to be the Prime Minister of Israel? Why do you not like that? I think Israel is a beautiful nation and Einstein was a great man.

EDIT: I’m sorry. I now see it was not you who started talking about a secret fascist conspiracy, but a commenter. My fault

Psychological warfare is something that has been around for a very long time, Edward Snowden’s revelations about various governments employing people to derail threads and engage in targeted debate with average internet users is certainly interesting, but it’s really not much more than trained and organized opposition to alternative views and information.

From Wikipedia:
“Psychological Warfare (PSYWAR), or the basic aspects of modern psychological operations (PSYOP), have been known by many other names or terms, including Psy Ops, Political Warfare, “Hearts and Minds,” and propaganda.[1] Various techniques are used, and are aimed at influencing a target audience’s value system, belief system, emotions, motives, reasoning, or behavior. It is used to induce confessions or reinforce attitudes and behaviors favorable to the originator’s objectives, and are sometimes combined with black operations or false flag tactics. Target audiences can be governments, organizations, groups, and individuals."

I could say that psychological warfare is just the art of convincing others to subscribe to a particular ideology, it’s probably only called psychological warfare when it’s both employed by a government and uses unsavory tactics. Unsavory tactics as in not simply “this is what I think, this is why I think it and this is why I think you should think it too,” but instead employing hidden motives, goals and tactics. Hmm, perhaps it’s best to say that it’s trying to convince people to subscribe to a particular ideology via manipulation and deception as opposed to up front honesty.

I would say that the United States having employed psychological warfare has hurt their goals more than helped them, trust in the US government among US citizens and people worldwide has virtually hit rock bottom. I bet there was a time when someone working for the US government could have replied to someone with an alternative view honestly saying that they were a government employee who was hired to debate points of view that differ from that of the US and then go on to say where and why they disagree with the alternative view.

This would have been the best route in my opinion because rather than give people reason to distrust the US government it would have given them reason to trust the US government. Regardless of whether a person agreed or disagreed with the government’s position they could at least say that they respected the government’s integrity and honesty. As it is the US government has completely destroyed themselves, their word now holds absolutely no sway among US citizens or abroad.

Perhaps the best advice that I could give, about forum-participation in general and with-or-without “agent provocateurs,” is simply that you shouldn’t automatically chase every white-rabbit that is offered to you. If someone merely seems to be “pushing your buttons,” well, they probably are. Remember that you always have the prerogative to simply close your browser and do nothing.

As for me, my reaction to the above article was simply that, “legions of public dollars are once again being mightily wasted.” Obviously, some fat-cat government contractor-troll has figured out a way to get (their national version of …) “Uncle Sugar” to pay them (no doubt, ##CLASSIFIED## dollars per ##CLASSIFIED## …) to … … waste time on the Internet! :yes:

Hmmm… how can I get a piece of that?

I agree with this, but if you happen to enjoy it then by all means go out there and have a little fun. I happen to enjoy it myself, it’s not about winning or losing it’s about having a good time for me and if there are people out there getting paid to do it I think it’s still good advice to make sure that you’re not beating yourself up every time you lose a debate, just shake hands and say “good game.”

As for me I have a range of hobbies, expressing my views is one of them. It’s not just about having fun with it, but I like to make sure that people know who I am and what I stand for so they know for themselves whether I’m someone they’d like to associate with or not, I do my best not to hide who I am and not to hide my shortcomings. I do not like the idea of someone befriending me without knowing what they’re getting themselves into because I myself do not like the idea of being associated with someone that I only think I know.

Sure my views are certainly alternative to a wide variety of others, but I do my best not to force them upon people and even though I favor my views, obviously everyone likes their own brand, I do not reject those with differing views. Largely because I do not like it when they reject me because of mine.

All that aside in regards to my other hobbies I’m currently working on a high resolution model of my bicycle that I plan on gifting to the Blender community upon completion:

So far it’s a good balance of sub-sufaced objects and carefully modeled ones in a bid to balance out view-port performance and rendering RAM consumption, hopefully I’ll have enough RAM to make a good Cycles render, but time will tell. I’m modeling pretty much every visible part of the bike with around 100 different parts fully modeled so far. I have sub-surf turned off for most of the parts in the view-port for this shot.

Here’s the proof.

@Blonder: An interesting study you linked. The article lends to the theory that the “economic elites” have most of the control over government policy, as opposed to the majority of average citizens. On the surface I can see where it might appear to be the case, but, personally, I believe the study fails to take an additional step into the idea of control over government policy.

For the purpose of this writing let us assume that the study is correct and “economic elites” wield the majority of power over American politics, what the article is missing is who wields the majority of power over the “economic elites.”

While there’s quite a number of ways in which the majority of average citizens wield power over the economic elites I will highlight just one. The average citizen in the United States is willing to help and provide to others for a monetary fee. By and large the public collectively holds on to the idea that if you have the money to afford something you will be allowed to survive, if you do not you will be left for dead.

Ergo the economic elite are merely following the orders of the citizens. Naturally the economic elite desire to survive, the citizens tell them that in order to survive they must obtain money. The nature of the beast tells them that they must exact heavy influence over government policy in order to secure their continued ability to maintain and accumulate money.

Kill or be killed. The economic elites are not in control, they are merely fighting to survive. It is the masses who have asked for this inevitability and therefore it is the masses, not the economic elite, who are lurking in the shadows quietly wielding power. So quietly in fact that not even they realize it.

P.S. You want to survive. You must have money to survive. There are no rules other than you must have money to survive. You can lie, cheat and steal in order to obtain money. You can manipulate, bribe, and murder in order to obtain money, just don’t get caught and the more money you have the less likely you are to get caught or more likely you are to buy your way out of getting caught. Just survive.

Really the only rule is survive, it is the public who invented and upholds the idea that one must need money in order to survive. It is the nature of that rule that one must resort to unsavory actions in order to obtain money. It is the public who have created these economic elites and ordered their own bondage.

Animals have been known to chew off their own leg when caught in a bear trap. Most organisms, not the least of which being humans, will do literally whatever it takes to survive. If they need to ‘cook the books’ to survive then they will. If they need to buy a few politicians or pocket a few police officers then they will. If they need to manipulate the public through deceptive advertising or psychological manipulation they will.

P.P.S. You see money is nothing more than an idea, it has no actual power. All the power resides in the hands of the physical beings. The average citizens out number the economic elites by a great deal, the average citizen has all the power, but the economic elite have all the money. The only reason the economic elite have any power at all is because the average citizen believes that their money has any power.

If you stop believing that your hands have the power to lift a hammer they will still have the power to lift a hammer. If you stop believing that money has the power to raise an army then it will cease to have the power to raise an army.

corporations have been using this practice for years. it’s called ‘astroturfing’. a famous example of which is the al gore penguin video, which had essentially an anti climate science message. I think if you google for ‘al gores penguin army’ it should take you to it. anyway, the video, which went viral was produced in a way as to appear amateurish, and was presented as if by some average joe youtube hobbyist. well, when some one followed the money, it turned out to have been produced by a high end advertising agency who worked for exxon. but this kind of stuff as well as it’s forum trolling form has been going on for years.

Personally, I would pay much more attention to the art and science of propaganda. Public persuasion. If you want to disable a lot of people very fast, tell them that they’re doomed. Tell them that they’re faced with an insidious, unstoppable force – “corporations,” say. Or, “the Government.” (Which is a Faceless Thing, never “We, the People.”) Tell everyone that they should just roll over and die, and perhaps they will.

In any case, whether they do so or not (and most of them actually won’t), they will incessantly be surrounded by messages which assure them, over and over and over again, that “everyone else did.”

One curious feature of the human animal is that it is, rather extremely, a herd animal. Put five or more individuals together and they stop being individuals. They become a crowd. And they will now find, or pick, a “leader,” and everyone will follow that leader, feeling extremely uncomfortable until they have either suceeded in doing that, or have broken away from the group and transformed into individuals again. (But, individuals always seek to form or to join groups.)

So, you incessantly pound the drum that says, “the group is doomed.” “The group is under attack by invisible enemies and by people who have enormous amounts of money which you do not.” It works.

Corporations generally don’t care about who has the better product, they care about survival. Politicians generally don’t care who has the better policies, they care about survival.

It is not the goal of the corporation to lead people off of a cliff, but if the people will see the corporation destroyed for not doing so then the corporation will do so. I do not know one way or the other on Global Warming, but I can say that it is not the goal of the oil companies to destroy the planet, it is their goal to survive and oil is their bread and butter.

The people say the company needs to make money in order to survive, the company makes money with oil. The science of Global Warming aims to take their oil away, take their money away and so the people aim to take their life away. The oil company will do whatever it takes to survive, even if that means destroying the planet at some unknown point in the future.

P.S. What is the government covering up, probably a lot of things, but I wouldn’t say what is the government covering up as much as what is the politician covering up. We all make mistakes, but politicians can easily lose their job over a simple mistake, voted out of office. The people want the truth, but often times they will kill the politician who tells it to them.

“Justified paranoia.” Politicians are probably some of the most paranoid people on the planet, everyone is out to get them fired. Their closest friends are their biggest competitors. Everyone wants them dead and their enemies will take the tiniest little insignificant spec of dirt and blow it into Mt. Everest in a bid to get them fired. Of course they lie, their job requires it.

P.P.S. So many people think that being in the top 1% is some grandiose life when, in fact, it is a personal hell. They have no friends, the fiercest competition rages in the top 1%. They’re all trying to kill each other.

“Keep your friends close and your enemies closer.” There is no place where this is more true than in the top 1%, they know who their enemies are, but they have no idea who their friends are. One minute they could be soaring high, but if they say one wrong thing, step over one wrong line their enemies will pounce and their friends will turn on them in a heartbeat.

I do not admire that life at all, it is no way to live. Life in the public eye, the ravenous horde is always looking for blood and they’re going to get it. It’s always someone, someone is always falling from that top 1%, the ravenous horde is always looking for blood and they’re going to get it.

It’s not only those in the public eye that they’re after either. Say you’re a customer service agent, a waiter perhaps and you accidentally drop a bottle of wine on someone’s lap causing this person to raise hell with your manager demanding your termination.

All to often I see this happening, my own brother does it. They don’t even realize what they’re saying, they say they want you fired, but what they really mean is they want you killed. They want to take your livelihood away, they say they want the waiter fired, but they really want him dead.

People see just another day at the restaurant, but I see cold blooded murder. On every street corner, in every restaurant, in all the businesses and all the governments. No one is safe, it’s hell out there.

@atr1337 I would agree that the study appears to be topical however it’s only meant to be taken in a socioeconomic context. In that respect it is accurate.

Your review of it seems socialdarwinistic in that you are getting the context of the natural process half wrong. The modern studies have shown that Evolution is more cooperative than competitive. This brought about our original economic system - Gift Economics. Complex, self modifying systems share the behaviors that Gift Economics promotes.

You have also left out the origin of our current sociopolitical structure. It’s merely a scaling of tribal governance. It’s a centralized system that has been in a state of flux since its implementation in mass states. All of the previous empires have fallen to the Oligarchal influence of that economic structure. It has produced a crisis cycle in all forms of governance that rises to Oligarchy and falls to rebellion. The only governments that haven’t had this fate were taken over by ones that have.

I appreciate that you have made an effort to get below the flesh and into the bones of the issue however I would suggest a systems approach starting with the behavioral sciences and on to history and systems theory.

The behaviour of certain individuals does suggest that science is requested. In Justified paranioa the socioeconomic stuff is indeed serious.


@Blonder: Regardless of whether evolution is or is not based more or less on cooperation I think it’s quite clear that competition takes the lion’s share of human society’s foundation, as it stands today. For instance I recently read an article stating that the United States recently purchased a round of fighter jets, the cost of which was greater than it would have been to purchase each homeless person in the US a $600,000 home. That sounds as though cooperation took quite the back seat to competition.

The notion of a free market economy is probably supposed to mimic a survival of the fittest ideology in which all goods and services compete with one another for market share, those that produce inferior goods or services lose out to those that produce superior goods and services and humanity is left with the better product. Nonetheless this theory seems to fail as quite often it is not the superior product or service that succeeds, but the inferior product. Betamax’s loss to VHS, the 64-bit Atari Jaguar’s loss to the 16-bit Super Nintendo, etcetera.

It seems to me that the free market economy does not see superior goods and services to victory, but superior marketing instead. In other words the free market economy does not produce superior products, it produces superior liars. Which, of course, only keeps the human race lurking in the doldrums of inferiority longer.

P.S. As far as the gifting economy being less complex than today’s standards I would agree, but complexity does not necessarily denote superiority. Science likes to base itself off of the idea that the simplest solution is most often the best, or correct, solution. Nonetheless empires tend to take the opposite approach, the United States tax code alone is, what, several thousand pages long and I wouldn’t be surprised if there isn’t a single person on earth capable of making perfect heads nor tails of it.