Cisco Healthcare Blog
Lies, Sweet Lies: What Stories Do We Believe?-
I would like to start with a stunning example of the World Economic Forum telling the truth. Here is factual quote by them from 2018:
“There is now a compelling body of evidence to support the idea that, with the right research and theoretical grounding, story-based media can shift social norms, values and beliefs more effectively than traditional, fact-based messaging [emphasis mine]. What is even more exciting is how digital technology is bringing compelling stories to millions of people at increasingly lower costs.”
Are they telling the truth? Yes, they are — and the past three years offer immediate proof. The story-based media, sponsored by their masters from BlackRock, Vanguard, and State Street, has shifted the social norms alright! Here is a scary SNL skit that — I think — was supposed to make somebody laugh. I don’t usually watch the SNL, and I didn’t laugh:
Why do the social norms exist? We are social creatures, and our communities have customs. We are wired from birth to look at what others are doing and compare notes. We are also wired to “adjust” our behavior depending on the reactions we get. In the traditional wilderness, most adults can’t survive without being mature and living by natural and spiritual laws. And even here and how, in the urban jungle, our basic survival may depend on how well and how quickly we “read the room.”
As it goes with most things in life though, human qualities that exist in us with the purpose of helping us survive and thrive, can be turned on their heads and abused. It is kind of like what the parasites in nature do when they take advantage of the instincts and various natural biological functions in their target host — and make those features work for themselves, to the detriment of the host.
Our love of being in harmony with our community can be abused, too — and it has been abused throughout centuries and in the past three years — by committing acts of mob-like terror to create the initial shock and lasting collective fear, and thus corrupting the “base line” — and then by enforcing “arrested development” and preventing children from emotionally growing up until they are ready to be consumed by the Machine.
Here is a fine bit of inverted storytelling for the child-like adults that is intended to make them feel “smart.”
See, a mature and soul-oriented adult can “read the room” and then intelligently choose what to, based on what’s spiritually sound to do under a circumstance. On the other hand, an individual who is not particularly mature or soul-oriented tends to react in a mechanical way. Such a person is usually easy to consume by the not-so-benevolent masters at the top.
Thus, the “mechanically reactive” mode of living is typical for those who are yet to find themselves: children and child-like adults. And the effort to induce the condition of “arrested development” on as many “worker ants” as possible is the ambition of the human parasites.
What Is “Normal,” Anyway?
Enter the notion of “normal.” Before we proceed, let us look at the history of the term.
"The word normal entered the English language in the mid-1840s, followed by normality in 1849, and normalcy in 1857 … When normal was first used it had nothing to do with people, or society, or human behavior. Norm and normal were Latin words used by mathematicians. Normal comes from the Latin word norma which refers to a carpenter’s square, or T-square. Building off the Latin, normal first meant “perpendicular” or “at right angles.”
Normal was first used outside a mathematical context in the mid-1800s by a group of men … in the academic disciplines of comparative anatomy and physiology. These two fields, by the 19th century, had professional dominion over the human body … They used the term “normal state” to describe functioning organs and other systems inside the body.
The anatomists and physiologists, however, never did find or define the normal state. Instead they studied and defined its opposite — the pathological state. They defined normal as what is not abnormal ...
The idea of the average as normal goes way back to 1713 to a Swiss mathematician named Jakob Bernoulli, who many consider to be the founder of modern day calculus and statistics …
Bernoulli created an equation known as the calculus of probabilities, which became the foundation of all statistics ... The calculus of probabilities specifically, and statistics generally, made many seemly random events more predictable ..."
Then Adolphe Quetelet took the calculus of probabilities and “applied not to gambling but to human beings ... Quetelet was a true believer that statistics should be applied to all aspects of society ... In 1835, he put forth the concept of the ‘average man.’
His plan was to gather massive amounts of statistical data about any given population and calculate the mean, or most commonly occurring, of various sets of features — height, weight, eye color — and later, qualities such as intelligence and morality, and use this “average man” as a model for society …”
Anyone can smell eugenics in the air at this point? Quetelet “used regular, average, and normal interchangeably. In 1870, in a series of essays on ‘deformities’ in children, he juxtaposed children with disabilities to the normal proportions of other human bodies, which he calculated using averages. The normal and the average had merged.”
The formal “father” of normality (and eugenics), however, was Francis Galton, Charles Darwin’s cousin. Galton was an anthropologist and the founder of eugenics known for his “pioneering” (per Encyclopedia Britannica) studies of human intelligence. He started out as a doctor and then left medicine for the budding field of statistics. He was knighted in 1909.
Pet LitHub, “as Lennard Davis described in his book Enforcing Normalcy, Galton made significant changes in statistical theory that created the concept of the norm, as we know it. Galton was into the idea of improving the human race and believed that statistics could help. He loved Quetelet’s whole ‘average man’ thing but had one minor problem.
In the center of Quetelet’s bell curve were the most commonly occurring traits, not the ideal bodies and minds Galton believed everyone should have.”
"To solve this problem, Galton, through a complicated ... mathematical process ... took the bell curve idea, where the most common traits clustered in the middle and the extremes, and created what he called an ‘ogive’ ... which, as Davis explains ‘is arranged in quartiles with an ascending curve that features the desired trait as “higher” than the undesirable “deviation.”
According to Peter Cryle and Elizabeth Stephens, authors of Normality: a Critical Genealogy, “Galton was not only the first person to develop a properly statistical theory of the normal ... but also the first to suggest that it be applied as a practice of social and biological normalization.”
By the early twentieth century, the concept of a normal man took hold. The emerging field of public health loved it. Schools, with rows of desks and a one-size-fits-all approach to learning, were designed for the mythical middle.
The industrial economy needed standardization, which was brought about by the application of averages, standards, and norms to industrial production. Eugenics, an offshoot of genetics created by Galton, was committed to ridding the world of “defectives” ... and was founded on the concept of the normal distribution curve."
Is “Gene Editing” the New Spelling of “Eugenics”?
Speaking of eugenics — I mean, gene editing — here is a TED talk by Paul Knoepfler, a mainstream researcher at UC Davis School of Medicine, from a few years ago. It is fascinating to watch. I say “fascinating” because I like to observe other people’s train of thought. And in some cases, people’s thinking is a wild mix of possible good intention, actual science, fantasy, and hubris (remember DDT?).
In his case, in 2018, he called for a temporary moratorium on “designer babies,” and then in 2020, at a time when nearly every mainstream scientist was compliant or trusty or both, he published a piece supporting mRNA vaccines. What is his opinion on the mRNA vaccines today? I don’t know. But since he still seemingly has a job, whatever his opinion is, he is probably keeping it to himself.
Even more fascinating is this bit of storytelling. In real life, the scientists — even the well-intended ones — who hope to “improve humanity” by genetic modification are more like a very ambitious elephant in the china shop than anything else. Perhaps they are an elephant who identifies as a very graceful ballerina — but they are an elephant, and no amount of fantasizing about genetic modification can change that.
But it is fascinating to watch propaganda videos. Words are cheap, anything can be said with great conviction, including blatant lies. There is even a flying car briefly making an appearance in this propaganda video! Perhaps, a hint?
When something is based on a lie, it takes a significant effort to maintain that lie. Because of that, for centuries, there have been very powerful lie-maintaining institutions in place. The people employed at the lie-maintaining institutions have been very skilled at the art of deceit, at the art of confusion, at the art of seduction, and at the art of fear.
The middle managers could be just foot soldiers, the apprentices of the Machine. They often have no idea what they are really doing, and they typically prefer not even think about ways to find an accurate mirror because they are not looking to shatter their own worldview.
The ones at the top though know exactly what they are doing, and they put a lot of work in maintaining their lies. They are in perpetual search of new victims and new ways to sell their lies. They are in perpetual search of new abuse markets, so to speak. And so they swap stories and marketing brochures without even blinking, as often as they need, to replenish their victim supply.
Cycle of Abuse and the Story of Superiority
It dawned on me: the way institutional abusers play “divide and conquer” and treat different groups of people differently is as if they were delivering the experiences of different phases of abuse to those groups at the same time.
The “temporarily elevated,” i.e. the demographic targeted to be temporary supporters and loyal soldiers of the dark ones, are shown the “honey moon” phase — while the ones who are targeted for immediate destruction, receive the unmasked boot, the phase of abuse when the gloves of the abuser are off.
Of course, both groups are targeted to be eaten, just at different times — and during Phase One, Group One is supposed to not know that they are enthusiastically digging not just the graves for Group Two, but also their own graves.
That makes perfect sense as far as the art of warfare goes. Seduction, including sugar-covered storytelling and some practical perks, is required to pull the victim in. It’s very important for the abuser to first pull some wool over the victim’s eyes and ears and some cotton candy over the victim’s mouth.
The ones who are targeted to be supporters, are told that they better, smarter, more handsome, and more spiritually righteous than the ones targeted to be food. What’s hidden from the “next phase” victims though is the fact that the abuse is on its way. Inevitably, on its way.
The Not-so-Great Reset
What’s really happening in regards to the not-so-great reset role swapping, a reshuffling in the game of the musical chairs. We in the West have gotten used to the role of “honey moon” people, the ones who are shown the “honey moon” phase. And who could blame us? It is easy to get used to good things. Hey, this Soviet expat is very grateful for those good things and got used to them right away!
And it is also true that for all practical purposes, while Phase One lasts, it is much better to belong to our “western” group. Big houses, big TVs, material abundance, freedom of expression — or at least relative freedom of expression — all those things have been sweet, and having them makes a dramatic difference in our quality of life. As someone who grew up at the tail end of the USSR, I passionately attest to that.
However, it is important to be honest. And for the sake of being honest, it is better to separate the underlying reality from “storytelling.” For example, we decry — rightfully so — the forced closure of places of worship during the COVID lockdowns. But how many people know that, for example, the original people of this land could not legally practice the spiritual traditions of their ancestors until 1978, when American Indian Religious Freedom Act was passed?
This reminds of a Soviet-era joke. A Russian and an American are having a conversation, and the American says: “We in America have freedom. For example, I can go up to the White House and say loudly, ‘Reagan sucks!” The Russian laughs and says, “Big deal. I, too, can go to Red Square and say loudly, ‘Reagan sucks!’”
When the poorer and less socially elevated people are used as pawn in a coup, they are propagandized in a particular way — which is something that I observed in the Soviet Union, and something that I am observing, to my chagrin, in America today.
The dejected ones are handed a fake new “respect” and the satisfaction of “righteously” humiliating the ones who annoy them, in this case, the “privileged” folks. It is that game of musical chairs, the redistribution of the crumbles of respect, again.
From the standpoint of the dark individuals on top, it’s just another reiteration of "divide and conquer," reshuffling of Phase One and Phase Two people and values, a matter of different groups of ants swapping roles. But it feels very serious to the dignified people on the ground for good reasons as we can feel our dignity just slipping away, the sound of propaganda of the day.
They Do It Again and Again
This topic is close to my heart. When the generation of my grandparents in the USSR found themselves on the receiving end of the not-so-great reset of the Bolshevik revolution of 1917, the “foot soldiers of the Machine” were the poor ones, the compliant ones, and the village drunks.
They were told story of new respect, and they were recruited to bring down (with seemingly some help form the colony-seeking Western bankers) the dignified.
This is not how I learned history at school, however. When I was a kid, I was told a story of horrible pre-1917 life and the Bolsheviks riding in on a white horse (like a Robin Hood, although I am not sure if Robin Hood had a white horse). It was later, gradually, that I figured out that it was just a story, and that it was a vicious lie.
Then when the Soviet Union fell apart, I was still a kid, and I remember how exciting and prestigious it was for anyone to be in any way involved with anything “from the West.” Glamorous things were: joint enterprises, foreigners, Western music, Western values, and this song.
What a sweet fairy tale it was. And despite the sweetness of that story, and the tremendously fond memories I have of those times, that, too, was just “storytelling.” In reality, it was a loveless market grab by the key investors in multinational companies. It was a social restructuring that for us, at that time, felt awesome because we, the people of the Soviet Union, were temporarily made to believe that were the benefiting group.
The “Russian Doll” of Lies: Letting Go
I have spent many years pondering this dynamic, and came to the conclusion that until we reject all fake stories — even the ones we imbibed with mother’s milk, even the ones that allow people like us to continue our comfortable slumber — we are not “safe” from being on the receiving end of the not-so-great reset.
That is a very tall order and a very tough spiritual and intellectual challenge even for the best of us, and it’s hard work. But our sweet freedom is worth all the hard work in the world, isn’t it? I think so.
About the Author
To find more of Tessa Lena's work, be sure to check out her bio, Tessa Fights Robots.
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What research tools could you not live without?
I use a program called Devonthink to store all my research. It takes a bit of figuring out but has some powerful features. I'd feel lost without it, along with another program, Scrivener, that I use for the actual writing. While working in the Library I found the Allen Room an oasis of quiet and very convenient for reviewing a high volume of books and academic journals. I loved coming in to find a fresh pile waiting for me. On occasion, I consulted with librarians for help tracking down specialized items, like historical reviews and migration data.
What’s the most unexpected item you encountered in your research?
I found a contemporary review of Jack London's The People of the Abyss (1903) that used some shockingly colonial language to describe the slums of London. It was a great way to ironize the tradition that my book is, however reluctantly, a part of.
Describe a moment when your research took an unexpected turn.
At one point on our trip, I had to sneak across the border from Bulgaria into Turkey. I later learned that the same route was used by people trying to escape across the Iron Curtain during the Cold War, particularly East Germans who came there posing as tourists. Now the walls exist to keep out people crossing in the opposite direction.
How do you maintain your research momentum?
There are so many rabbit holes to go down and I tend to spend too much time reading things of marginal relevance to a work of general non-fiction, especially theory. It's important to wander sometimes but I try to remind myself that I can't read everything that's ever been written.
After a day of working/researching, what do you do to unwind?
I ride my bike a lot and there's nothing like keeping up with the traffic down 2nd Avenue to clear your mind after a long day in the carrels.
Is there anything you'd like to tell someone looking to get started?
Disconnect from social media. Turn off your phone. Yank your router out of the wall.
Who makes the best coffee in the neighborhood?
The Joe Coffee stand in Bryant Park makes a fine espresso.
Have we left anything out that you’d like to tell other researchers?
Whenever I felt stuck writing, I went back to reading. The more stuck I was, the more unrelated the book I'd read. At some point, what you're looking for will come to you.
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