21 September 2011

Humpday Happenings...
Today, I'm going to be tossing out a little-used phrase, and one that needs to be brought "closer to the flame" so that we may take a good hard look at it...but first, it's Wednesday, and that means it's time for the military quote:
Now you've ALL said this in your lives (many times, I'm sure), but who is this quote originally attributed to?
"If you want anything done well...do it yourself."
The answer might surprise you.
(hint: It's not from America)
Now that we have the synapses firing, let's move on...
*** The phrase I mentioned at the top might be something you've never heard of, but most assuredly have had experience with, nonetheless.
(cue the spooky music, 'cause I just heard quite a few light bulbs click on over a lot of heads)
More familiar is the term "Pavlovian Response".
We are ALL products of social conditioning to SOME degree...we can't help it. It's all around us, all the time.
Some people are more entrenched in this than others, and that's not necessarily a good thing for society (as a whole).
It's all dependent upon WHAT is being thrust at us in order to "condition" us.
Some times, it's an innocent billboard that expresses the dangers of drinking while driving.
Other times, it can be graphic depictions of some horrific event.
What you have to note is that every bit of all that outside "stimuli" is meant to illicit some sort of RESPONSE in us, be it joy, sadness, anticipation, anger, or even jealousy (to name but a few).
Whenever we view something (or someone), or hear something, or read something, we are being conditioned to some extent.
That's why I say we can never avoid it.
This isn't to say that none of this is GOOD for you...much of it really IS.
For example, you hear a strange noise outside your house.
Your "response" kicks into protective-mode and you either investigate the sound, call the police, or do both, but you usually do SOMETHING.
You hear your child crying in the other room, and your first instinct is to go check it out...simple stuff, hmm?
Now, let's take this "conditioning" a bit further...
Let's suppose you wanted to take a large number of people down a specific "path"...get them all to follow the leader, as it were.
How would you accomplish that with the least effort and still exact the most results?
Well, you could ALWAYS turn to the media in some form...
Control the press and you can control a LOT of elements in every person's life.
Even the advertising can be used to condition us...and it has (and quite effectively).
You see something that just came out, and they make it seem SO wonderful, that your life simply can no longer function properly WITHOUT IT.
Take most all of our new "social-media" venues...designed to draw you into it.
This blog is proof of that much. It works, right?
If a media source wishes to take you in a certain direction with a targeted ideology, people will follow along, without questioning.
One aspect of social-conditioning that can be considered GOOD is our PATRIOTISM.
We are conditioned to BELIEVE in our nation...and one another. And that's worked out pretty damn well for this country for the last several hundred years. Like I say...a POSITIVE connotation to a form of conditioning.
Don't ever think of ALL this conditioning as being BAD for you, because it's not.
As our parents "conditioned" us with such things as INTEGRITY, MORALS, CIVILITY, so we continue to do likewise with our children...and so on.
And THAT (also) has worked out pretty damn well for this country, insofar as those who have trusted in such beliefs.
The trouble lies when conditioning has no real value, other than to serve the master that provides it in order to promote something other than what is in the best interest of those being conditioned.
A prime example can be found in such venues as MUSIC, CINEMA, TEXTILES (clothing), and most manufactured items.
Now, some items we NEED, and are pretty much standard fare...kitchen utensils, tools, furniture, and the like.
Other things, that we consider "add-ons" to our lives take on a much different tone.
Homes, cars, cell phones, shoes, jeans, food products...all of these and tons more are there to appeal to our baser instincts...they feed our inner beast.
It's perfectly fine to desire such things when you've earned them, but the trap lies when you come to DEPEND on them...and eagerly await the next "fix" whenever the newest item rolls into whatever store you frequent.
Why do you think society is being "herded" slowly, but inexorably into the Internet for everything?
So many facets of our very lives are being "amended" by this "online experience", and we've grown quite dependent upon it for much of our modern lives.
Granted, there are advantages to this (in some ways), but, more often than not, it's depriving us of our ability to interact in a REAL social manner.
We've already seen that schools are doing away with cursive writing (no more letters to Grandma or letters from camp) in lieu of "texting" or use of a keyboard (which was the sole realm of once-valued secretaries with typewriters in days past).
We've also come to have a cell phone all but surgically-attached to our person, because we can no longer WAIT to call someone, or just want even more diversion from all the other diversion we're being conditioned into confronting in our life.
To me, a cell phone is a great EMERGENCY TOOL...nothing more. You're stranded and you can call for a hook to get outta wherever the hell you're at. You need to notify someone about a death in the family...works for me.
I have to come to appreciate many things in life, but I don't really wish to become dependent upon all that much, purely because "someone" says I (you) HAVE to...simple as that.
And I question a lot more than I used to, because I've seen the results of negative social conditioning...
More crime, less civility, slovenly appearances by individuals, lack of respect, rampant apathy, lack of responsibility...ALL of these (and more) are the byproduct of social-conditioning.
When this nation becomes too accepting of the wrong things, people WILL become "conditioned" to them, or as I like to put it...DESENSITIZED to it's "wrongness".
Why do you think that more and more criminals are being more emboldened when it comes with interaction with law-enforcement?
Why do you think we're seeing more officers gunned down these days, when "experts" maintain that crime IS (in fact) going DOWN?
Some people are being conditioned to act in such ways, as to confront, contend, and convince (themselves) they're doing right.
Remember, social conditioning will never always be overt...it's often very subtle, so as not to alarm people, or even make them aware they're being "controlled" to any degree.
I think more folks in America are beginning to see the light, and waking up to this.
They are making better decisions as to what is right and what is wrong.
We're seeing as much in the political ring.
What we need to focus on is all the other things that impact our lives...and decide whether we want to be conditioned by others exclusively, or how we might be better able to condition OURSELVES, based on proven values and principles that can define our nature.
So take a look around you today, and see how MUCH "conditioning" there is out there.
Take note as to how YOU are reacting to it, and how it may be affecting you.
You might just surprise yourself.
Be well, make a difference to someone, and...
Stay safe out there, America.


John D said...

To me, a cell phone is a great EMERGENCY TOOL...nothing more.

I hear that. I have a prepaid cell. I have to add 300 minutes (5 hours) every two months in order to keep my service active. Unused minutes roll over from month to month. I currently have over 60 HOURS of unused talk time. I have no "apps" or fancy computer-like accessories, but I'm only paying $15 a month for cell service. I have better things to do with my money than to give it to Verizon or AT&T for a luxury packaged as a necessity.

Bob G. said...

John D.:
See, I knew I wasn't the ONLY person that felt this way...lol.

Then again, I come from an era of phone booths, 2-way radios and even pagers.
(hated the pager..I detest being on ANY kind of "leash")

Wifey's got the "plan" and upgrades her cell every so many years...
To me, a cell phone is like a road flare...or a spare tire.
Spmething to get you OUT of a situation with a call for help, or to bring help TO YOU.

In that, we are in complete agreement, my friend.

Thanks for rolling on up today and commenting.

You stay safe.

j. littlejohn said...

the world needs more people willing to put in the effort to condition themselves instead of controlled by other things. well said

Bob G. said...

The challenges we face (daily) and how we deal with them should be one of the cornerstones of the manner in which we conduct our lives.

We do that through acts of SELF.
(and that's just the "short list")

The best part about this, is that it doesn't make us SELF-ISH.
...quite the reverse.

Thank you for stopping by and for commenting.

Stay safe out there.

CWMartin said...

Kinda what I meant last night about checking into things on your own before you believe the lie. Well put, Bwana.

Bob G. said...

I've been batting this one around for a week, and with this post, I've only scratched the surface.

What I'm finding out is how much this pervades our daily life...everywhere we look.

Next step is to spend spome time online and look deeper into what the so-called "professionals" have to say on this.

Thanks for taking some time and dropping on by today to copmment.

Stay safe up there
(and keep an eye on those deer)

Mrs. Crankipants said...

I have a pre-paid cell phone too, I call it my Fisher - Price phone. Great for emergencies, but when I go out, I like being completely unavailable. Isn't that the whole point of leaving your house and - for example, going out to dinner?

Sadly, that concept was lost on the couple at a nearby table at the restaurant last night. She spent most of the meal with a phone plastered to her head, while her date had a Bluetooth so he appeared to be talking to himself - LOUDLY. If I had a baseball bat, I would have given my best home run swing and lodged the ear piece into his head. They were on a date and they barely spoke to each other!

You don't always have to be in contact with everyone all of the time!!! Unless you're a transplant surgeon or a hooker, you don't need to have your phone on 24/7.

Bob G. said...

Mrs. C:
Hey, great to see you here!

I agree...when I leave the house, *I* don't really want to be bugged either...LOL.

LMAO...don'cha just LOVE people that think the world revolves around THEM?
I woulda PAID to see you loft one into the "700 section"...!

Cell phones ARE great TOOLS, but some folks must REALLY enjoy driving nails with a pair of pliers!

God, how I (now) miss PAGERS!

Thanks so much for taking time to drop on by and comment.
Much appreciated.

Stop by ANY time!

Stay safe out there
(and keep that Louisville Slugger handy)

Mrs. Crankipants said...

Thanks Bob!

People are yakking at restaurant tables, texting while they are sitting on the john, and doing both while they are driving. Are we really that ignorant? It's becoming acceptable to stop whatever you are doing - and talk or type into your phone, instead of participating in real life.

Sitting on a bus, and hearing an ear piercing ringtone makes me wish I owned a gun. Then the guy answers it and is shrieking about how he has warts on his genitals because it seems like a private conversation to him. But it's not, because unforch, everyone in a twenty foot radius is now privy to the info. Like you said, "It's a great tool" - not something that's soldered to your head so you may yammer about the banal minutia of your every move.

* grabs bat *

Bob G. said...

Mrs C.:
When it comes to reason, I'm SURE we can fit 'ya in as a "designated hitter"...!


Stay safe

indy said...

let me just get out this big piss off to me. people talking on cell phones in the bathroom. then getting mad becouse you have to take a nasty shit. complete bs. if i have to do the nasty poo then too freaking bad. (this just happened to me last saturday at the mall south of indy)

then the fact that everything has this square mark on it too look up on your smart phone for the discount. omg. macys had this on posters next to the elevators for a contest. its everywhere. its soo unfair. just becouse i dont have a smart phone doest mean i dont want to shop with you. it just means i freed up some cash to shop with you. good grief. no wonder i dont want to shop much but the clearance or the really good sales.

Bob G. said...

Seesm you feel a lot like I do...and when are you gonna say what you REALLY feel? (LOL)

I feel it makes people look RUDE and act rude, and encourages bad behavior (used to call that MANNERS).

And I shop onl;y when:
1- I have a reason to
2- funds allow it

Good rules...both of them.

Thank you for dropping by to comment.

Stay safe down there.