The Nature of Broad-Scale Mind Control
“Mind control” is just a terrible term, really. Something about the way it sounds. Bad prosody. Even without conscious attempts by evil to add additional silliness to the connotations of the term, the mere selection of that term is a bit brilliant for their uses.
Even before they lard it up with images of hynoptists forcefully and instantly hynotizing people and directly commanding them to do various dastardly deeds in silly ways it sounds silly. Who can “control” a mind? What, do you grab the exposed control knobs on the outside and start twiddling them or something? All the mental images that leap to mind, even before you are provided with some by movies and late-night TV, are silly.
So I’m going to try to avoid using it for the rest of this post.
The “Conspiracy Theory” Version
Of course, everyone knows that “conspiracy theorists” are really concerned about it too. But, having sampled some of their work, I find it very interesting that what they fairly consistently describe doesn’t look like that at all. What they describe is quite a bit more horrible… the use of an extensive program of trauma to create different fragments of a brain, disconnected from each other.
The idea is that the expert can create situations in real life that cause the person under assault (for it can be called nothing less) will fragment themselves into various pieces to avoid the core personality from having to receive and deal with the brunt of the negative stimulus, and these new personalities can then be molded by the assault in various ways as desired by the attackers.
I find two things particularly interesting about this. One, the aforementioned fact that this isn’t what a “person on the street” would come up with. The other is that while the previous paragraph describes the human-level way something like that may work, and described in terms related to our normal day-to-day conceptions about how people and personalities work, there is a very plausible biological mechanism for how such a thing may work.
We are lightyears away from understanding the brain or the full story of how neurons work. But we are not fully ignorant, either. And it is interesting that if you take our simple neural net models, it is fairly simple to construct them in such a way that in effect, you can “split” the neural net’s behavior based on whether or not certain conditions are in play.
Simple perceptrons can implement logical AND, OR, and XOR gates. With just a few of those gates one can easily implement a neural network that takes three inputs A, B, and C, and if C is true, return A AND B, and if C is false, return A OR B. With just a bit of such simple neural machinery you can implement a complete switch between behaviors.
Humans are not such simple systems, of course. They are much, much more complicated systems that can easily incorporate such things into their real systems. We don’t know what those systems are, but we certainly know they can do something as simple as that. Or, to put it another way, while in our ignorance we’ve had a hard time bounding our capabilities from above, we can certainly do at least a bit of bounding from below. Sure if the simple perceptron can do that, so can our amazing brains.
From there, it isn’t hard to logic out that in order to train such a system, one would need a very strong input to the learning system in order to teach it to partition itself, either persistent over a long term, or very strong in the short term. It is also well known that humans regard loss and trauma much more strongly than gain and happiness, for reasons that are under normal circumstances adaptive and correct. (The linked article is an example of what I mean. I think it’s also obvious that we generally can experience much more pain and trauma than we can experience pleasure on this Earth.)
From there it isn’t hard to guess that if one wanted to produce very strongly-separated neural nets and behaviors within a single brain, that the use of extensive trauma and pain would be the most efficient and effective way to do so in the shortest amount of time. While I’m sure it gives Evil a kick that the production of such fragmented minds is done by the application of extreme Evil, it is also the most effective mechanism from a sheer mechanical point of view.
Obviously, this level of trauma has not been performed on the population at large. But it still seems as if some sort of lesser version of this has been done to the NPCs of the world. They don’t come out with separate personalities, but they do have an incredible ability to compartmentalize their minds.
The aforementioned literature then hypothesizes that the way this has been performed is to subject the population to various traumas, often via media rather than directly, and that this has the same effect as the trauma they describe. This may be a component… and I mean “may be” with a bit of a skeptical tone… but I don’t think it can be the whole answer.
For one thing, media is limited in its exposure to the times you’re consuming media, and I see fractures in people’s minds that seem unrelated to any possible media consumption; when I list some of what seems to be the standard NPC loadout below.
I think for these lesser fractures, they may just be amplified versions of a pre-existing ability of the human mind to have multiple personas. We all have the normal experience of having different emphasis on our various personality traits at work, at home, at church, in our social clubs, etc. It could be that we are trained to treat each of the fragments below as different “social circles”, and the stress of putting them together may be much the same as the stress of trying to introduce your girlfriend to your parents, which is stressful in many ways but not least because of the difficulty for most people of bridging the gap between the social persona you use with your girlfriend and the one for your parents.
(I’m still chewing on this; it seems like this could be turned into something predictived and testable somehow.)
Elements of the Standard NPC Loadout
That was all the setup. This now post now turns into a fun clickbait article in which I list the Top X Fractures in the NPC Brain.
Modern-day NPCs are not just generally split and fractured in the way I describe; they are specifically provided with a set of fragments to install into their brains.
The origin of the Universe, Life, and the leadup to Humanity: The standard atheist view. Not just belief in evolution, but proud belief in evolution as a badge of intelligence vs. “those religious fundies”. Some are very vague on what “evolution” is, some have a decent understanding of the science narrative. In my experience out on the Internet, few have a solid grasp of the mechanics that would be necessary were it to exist, but there’s a few out there.
The question of the origin of the universe itself is usually just dismissed, too.
The emergence of humanity and its development: The standard liberal view. All humans are biologically identical. Of course, even the cloud of lies NPCs live in can’t obscure the obvious fact that we don’t all look the same, so a begrudging admission that there may be some genetic component to appearance will be made, but that’s it.
In particular, evolution in any sense has ceased to apply to humanity. This is directly because any form of evolution requires some sort of variation to evolve with, but that variation does not exist, so evolution can’t exist. Any differences between humans are solely societal. Some of the moderately sophisticated will try to paper this over with a claim that human medical systems are so good that we’ve broken evolution by keeping everyone alive. (As a bonus one may toss in an incredibly misanthropic view that those humans should be allowed to die, or even actively killed off.) Responding with the observation that would require absolutely everyone to have exactly the same number of offspring with a 100% survival rate guaranteed in my experience is just incomprehensible to them; this is not a well-formed logical belief, just a nice bit of wall paper they picked up from somewhere once.
A rigid fragmentation between academia and “real world” knowledge. Academia should pursue knowledge with no regard for utility, to the point that pondering the question of utility is a betrayal. The questions of utility are left for the real world.
There is obviously an element of truth here, but in a properly functioning system the separation should be much less. I do still want to live in a world where someone is getting a degree in 15th Century Flemish Literature… but this should be reserved for someone deeply passionate, not held up as a virtue for normal people to pursue.
Governments and Big Companies are awesome. Government is the answer to every problem, and if that doesn’t work, Big Companies should use their coercive powers to solve the problems. Questioning government is insane; it is self-evident that they are only, solely, and singlely acting in the best interests of their citizens at all times. The idea that governments would cheat elections, pursue their own agendas, use any but the best science and expert advice, or experience any failures related to size is a conspiracy theory.
Governments and Big Companies are awful. Big Oil is not just pushing to sell more oil, but actively trying to destroy the environment. Big Pharma is trying to hook more people on long-term treatments and if possible won’t cure you. Big Auto is actively fighting against electric vehicles. Governments are deeply racist in every way and keep people down. Wal-Mart and Amazon are doing everything they can to not pay people enough and should be punished.
Abortion: Control of one’s own body is paramount and overrides all other considerations, even unto death. One could arguably fit the idea that children belong to the state, not the parents, in here too.
Controlling your body for public health reasons is the right of the state. This one is relatively new.
Sexuality control: All forms of deviant behavior are protected and honorable. Lately this is even shading into claims that some people may have obligations under certain circumstances to date or have sex with trans people, although this rams up pretty hard against the idea that any sort of use of power or control on somebody else for sexual purposes is deeply immoral.
This may be a rare instance of the NPC’s own internal contradictions getting processed because the contradiction is in the same compartment about sex; it can’t be both obligatory to have sex with trans people if the obligation to sex is itself an expression of power. This post is mostly descriptive, but if it’s to be predictive, watch for the NPCs to be handed some method for splitting these two things into separate compartments so the simultaneous obligation of some set of people to have sex with trans people is somehow severed from the issues of power abuse.
Prejudice is bad, which is to say, judging any of their behaviors as wrong is bad. It’s OK to be prejudiced against anyone not toeing the exact line here. Also, anyone who is toeing the line can be forgiven anything as long as their verbally submit to this compartmentalized world view. Racism is also bad, although this is increasingly obviously just a cover for Ye Olde Racism, only pointed at white people, with little to distinguish it from any other era’s “racism”.
Everyday Life is a fragment too, although this one has diminished as the strength of the others have grown. Still, there’s plenty of NPCs who can interact with you as a normal human being as long as you don’t trigger any of their other programs, engage in small talk, perform small economic transactions, and so on. They may even instictively realize they don’t want to activate the other frames of mind.
This was somewhat more common 20-30 years ago. This is steadily being eaten away by the modern environment.
This can conflict with arbitrary other beliefs above; for instance, abortion up until the second of birth is a woman’s right but gee golly babies sure are cute aren’t they?
I doubt this is all of them. But there is a small number of these, I think.
Some of these fragments are self-evidently contradictory, like the simultaneous idolizing and demonization of big government. Others are more subtle.
For instance, in 2021, it’s hard not to start with the fact that midwit NPCs simultaneously believe that questioning anything about the official pandemic response is evil and a conspiracy theory, but at the same time believe Big Pharma is not to be trusted, has been hooking people on Oxycontin for years, is in collusion with insurance companies to drive up price, etc. And, in particular, the well-known fact that Big Pharma is incentivized to treat diseases over long periods of time, but not cure them, and its obvious application to Immunity as a Service with the “vaccines”.
What is the rigid wall that separates these two Big Pharmas? Only the one in the NPC’s heads that prevents them from being able to exist in both of these fragments at the same time. Obviously there is no objective reason to believe in a world where Big Pharma is this evil that suddenly they become angels whenever something related to COVID comes up.
In my experience, brighter midwits will defend themselves by claiming they just have “nuance” in this area. And while it’s true that nuance is indeed necessary when dealing with the question of big governments and companies, no-one citing this excuse to me has ever agreed to withdraw the protection they offer to the “awesome” side of the equation. I’ve never seen one I engaged with agree that we may need to apply “nuance” to the pandemic response, rather than blind agreement. The NPC has no “nuance” here; they have two contradictory fragments with absolutes written in them and a complex understanding of when to apply which absolute to which situation, and no amount of asking them to apply “nuance” in a way that contradicts this understanding will get them to apply nuance within one of their fragments.
I think there’s a common layman’s perception that the phrase “cognitive dissonance” refers to the problems in integrating evidence into a worldview that the evidence doesn’t fit into well. Often used as a slur against “those people” who have cognitive dissonance and just won’t accept the obvious rightness of your beliefs. The Wikipedia definition (as I write this) refers to this.
However, more careful observers, such as psychologists1 will define it in terms of multiple modes of thought contradicting each other. The previous definition is a special case of this, where the “mode of thought” may be a embryonic one accreting around some uncomfortable fact in particular, but it can also be modes of thought held for a long time.
Using the ideas explored so far, cognitive dissonance in a fragmented mind can also be caused by simply activating multiple fragments simultaneously, leaving the mind quite distressed as it either tries to figure out which one is the “correct” one, or even begins to notice the contradictions between the various fragments consciously.
You can create this situation by deliberately invoking the triggers for multiple fragments at once. I can’t say I’ve mapped all of the NPC’s triggers out above, but there’s enough that you can play with.
I can say, from personal experience, that if you use that technique in a space where moderation controls the visibility of your message, such as Reddit, that you can expect a swift and lengthy trip into the negative numbers. At least in my hands, this is far from the rhetorical kill shot you’d hope; if anything, it is quite the opposite! But rhetoric isn’t my thing anyhow. Perhaps someone can take this idea, distill a multiple-trigger message into something too pithy to be dismissed, and do something effective with it. If so, please by all means drop a note in the reply section on SG for this post, I’d love to hear about it.
How Do They Get In There?
That’s the broad-scale mind control that seems to have been fired at our culture, and all the cultures of the world.
I find myself wondering how the NPCs have all been installed with such identical programs.
Some of them are obvious; some of them are directly propagandized. Some of them are indirectly propagandized through the things many have observed, like how white men are all dufuses in Hollywood now, and the collected impact of each example adds up over time. Some of them I’ve discussed in the education tag.
Some of this seems like something humans could do, but some of the complex work strikes me as being beyond human ability. For instance, that precise balance between when government and big business is good and bad, and the superhuman deftness with which it is used to take advantage of distrust of big business and government to give more power to other the “good” big business and government to “control” the bad big business and government is some very subtle work.
I get some of the broad strokes of how this is done, but the detail work put in on some of these borders between the compartments, at the scale of entire countries, boggles my mind.
Whatever your opinion of them may be, let us concede that being a “more careful observer than Wikipedia” is a sufficiently low bar that psychologists can in fact meet it. ↩︎
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