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How did you manage to avoid becoming brainwashable when so few do?

I grew up staring at the tv for hours on end, but I still turned out to be quite the skeptic and critical thinker. I've analyzed my childhood trying to pinpoint events that have caused me to become the person I am, but I'm really not sure. We all grow up basically watching the same movies, eating the same cereal. Is there anything in particular that you guys attribute your independent thinking to?



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John Dewey's Progressive Education System

Explains it all!

I may be a vegetarian, but I'll defend to the death my right to eat meat!

I learned to wash my own brain

This old grandpa (five grandchildren) many years ago simply learned to wash his own brain --at least once a week whether it needed it or not.

Although, I must admit, even now, decades later, I have a few deep, dark corners that remain very difficult to reach with my old-school, short-handled brainbrush.

Got to have a few dark corners around...

The world needs a few virtuous "dirty old men" - lol!

Love or fear? Choose again with every breath.

ehm ...reading

".. The chairman, Mao tse-Tung was converted to Communism at the age of twenty-one while he was student-librarian at the National University in Peking. The Prime Minister, Chou en-Li, son of a wealthy aristorcrat, was studying at a university in Paris, France, when he became a Communist. The commander-in-chief of the Red Army, Chu Teh, son of a wealthy Chinese, was converted to Communismn by Chou en-Li while he was studying at a Prussian military academy in Germany. Liu Shao-chi, brilliant theorist and heir apparent to Mao tse-Tung, embraced Communism as a young student..."

Dr. Fred Schwarz

donvino

Cyril's picture

It's been easy enough in my case

Graduated from high school in the late 80s. By that time, not even in my 20s yet.

Was raised in a family where Saint Exupery's quote (below) would pretty much sum up our main values (my father's, but also, and especially, my mother's) :

1. find what you love to do, then make it your honest living;
2. while doing (1), care about yourself first, and your beloved ones, second: support them as best as you can, speak out when they're wrong, as much as defend them in their rights;
3. only trust the money that comes from your success in hard work and/or from sharing with other people like yourself.

With that in mind, from 1981 to 2002 (at least) crony capitalism and socialist/left-wing governments backed up by greedy biased french MSM gave me absolutely GREAT COUNTER-EXAMPLES of what I could trust. Or, if you prefer, GREAT EXAMPLES of what I COULD NOT TRUST. In people, and people's actions, no matter what they'd claim otherwise (on TV or whatnots).

Hard sciences and engineering background knowledge helped a lot, too, to balance the emotional side of my thinking.

Christian faith, finally, was my secret, best safety belt against deception, as Christ showed us how easily the masses can fall for it (deception) when they forget about the value of their free will combined with love.

Free will without love leads man to ever increasing greed for money/power. Love without free will leads man to fanatism/idoles.

Save both in your soul, and only then, you can be a free man, and won't be brainwashed (among other deceptions).

Worked for me. Your mileage may vary. :)

"Cyril" pronounced "see real". I code stuff.

http://Laissez-Faire.Me/Liberty

"To study and not think is a waste. To think and not study is dangerous." -- Confucius

Politics was one major way of discovery for me!

The MSM is supposed to be presented with honesty and integrity. When I watch the news regarding my local area, I still expect the new report to be factual.
However, Politics is a dirty game because so much of it centers around MONEY! If I were just a casual viewer of the current republican debates, it would be easy to "be willing" to believe what Romney or Gingrich say, due to the way they present it. In most cases in everyday life, we as human beings WANT to give people the benefit of the doubt. In many cases, we don't really know any different unless something sets off our suspicion to tell us otherwise.
When people like us became extremely passionate about Ron Paul, we try to learn as much about him and his policies as we can. The we set out to learn more about his oppononents. Know thy enemy. Once we use the internet to gather our facts and establish our beliefs, we then compare that information against what we are seeing and hearing in the MSM, whether it be written news, radio news, or video news. Because of our deep passion for Ron Paul, we have sought out an enormous amount of knowledge, which NOW enables us to recognize the faults and the blatant lies of the MSM. That's MY view. Attach to that, the fact that when you want to know the answer, follow the money (trail).

Robby Lane

...CURIOSITY...

...

RON2012PAUL...The r3VOLution continues...
"I always win"
http://youtu.be/Xtl2ZuJpG9M
+GOLD and SILVER are money+

Cyril's picture

That, too, works great.

Just plain curiosity. Agreed :)

"Cyril" pronounced "see real". I code stuff.

http://Laissez-Faire.Me/Liberty

"To study and not think is a waste. To think and not study is dangerous." -- Confucius

I never watched anything but the debates

and I always read each candidate's stand in the voter's manual. I paid no attention to any news shows because I could care less about their opinions. I was going to make up my own mind on each one's idea's and pick the one I believed in and not once, since 1980 have I settled for the lesser of two evils.

I voted for Carter in my first election because my folks did and the family always voted democrat. After watching the gas prices double and the speed limit drop 15mph right after I got my license I started waking up to what was happening politically. That's when I started really studying what the different candidates stands were from all of the parties on the ballot.

With that exception of Carter, I have never voted for a D or R for president. I'm 0 for 7 but I take a certain pride in knowing that my vote never contributed to the problem.

Don't jump to collective opinion

While some are of the character you suggest many are not. Some people blindly follow RP. I am Australian and support him in many ways and consider him to be the best option for president of USA but I strongly dissagree with some of his ideas.

Here is a challenge for any US supporters. Tell me after reading my basic information whether or not you think universal healthcare is the way to go. I admit I do not know that much about your system only that it is disfunctional both in the public and private sector. Some of the factors may be lack of medical sector staff, liability insurance, rorting of the system (legally through lobbying or illegally), poor government oversight and auditing, excessive insurance costs and excessive charging, lack of co-ordination between state and federal government. Here is the statistics Total health expenditure both public and private as % of GDP 2009 US 16.2% Australia 8.5%. Expenditure in the public health system as % GDP 2009 US 8% Australia 6%. The outcomes appear to be better in Australia in an holistic sense as we live a few years longer. So the question is which health sytem would you prefer and do you think the outright objection to public health is the best way to go or might a well run universal healthcare system be the way to go?

Us vs them in Health care

I have worked in health insurance for over 30 years. 30 years ago I could sell any plan to someone and they could pick and choose what they wanted in their plan. Every working person found it affordable.

In my state (Califorania) mandates began to be added. This means all plans were next required to contain certain covered items...like maternity is required for plans sold to 60 year old women, as well as young women so "there is no discrimination". There are many other examples, but this is one that comes to mind. There is no deductible for same and so there is no incentive for people to be concerned with costs for this procedure when it is done in a hospital setting so little negotiation to control rates.

Next, the State of California imposed "mental health insurance requirements" on plans. Claims for this are traditionally open-ended and possible VERY HIGH. This raised rates. There are many other examples. To whit:
everyone's plans in California are through the roof with these and other mandates. Other states have imposed their own ridiculous rules; I have to give examples of the state where I live as I'm most familiar.

Enter the Federal Government. Now we have mandated preventive care with NO ANNUAL LIMIT. Do you want to be a health insurance company where you cannot predict your expenses or control them with no past statistical information about these topics and no control because you don't set the rules for your own product? So the companies will be consolidating and leaving. The remaining ones are willing to submit "to the state" rules WHATEVER THOSE ARE...and if they can't pay, the taxpayers WILL.

Add to this the "rules" the government imposes for small employers. In the past I, and others, as brokers, advised small employers about tax deductibility and implementation of health plans and other benefit plans. This has been a valuable service to the small employer as they do not have full-time human resource departments. Today, the rules being implemented are understood by literally no one and I and others are hesitant to do any advising under the circumstances. The small employer has neither the time nor the resources to handle the problem as if he does the wrong thing he could be fined or sued. Consequently the small employer will (no doubt) not offer health insurance in the future.

Just for good measure, I now work in the senior health insurance market where in the neighborhood of $1000 a month is "allocated" by the federal government for the care of any senior=$12000 a year via the Medicare system. There is no limit for preventive care....this is an open checkbook. In an era of cost-cutting we have now opened the checkbook to unlimited preventive care. And you should see the list of "preventive covered care" items. As soon as the senior gets on their plan their doc has them in his office doing every preventive procedure on the list...one lady showed me her bill for the physical (she's a healthy 65 year old) IT WAS $25,000. I saw the bill.

I could write a whole book on it....so no---our plans now have no annual limit for claims. NO ANNUAL LLIMIT. A CLAIM CAN GO TO THE MOON. Nobody is even talking about this. I am probably going to leave the country soon as
I see it coming.

I see people each day who are living on 8-20 prescriptions when they could solve their problems with diet and exercise. People are lazy, and if they "question the doctor" it makes them nervous. That's enough of this, but suffice it to say, systemwise, I could not think of a worse system.....the US is a big country---accountability is lacking...smaller countries might pull it off as there might be a bit more accountability.....stay in Australia....eat delicious apples as they will cure acid reflux and pray for the USA that they wake up.

Sorry to be so long, but this needs to get out to smart people like you'all!

SequoiaTrees4RonPaul

thanks

Karen thanks for your reply I find it interesting and although I would rate Australia No. 2 (cost effective outcomes) in the world at the moment behind Japan we are slowly beginning to muck things up here due to more federal involvement in hospitals which was traditionally completely run by the states. I do not think there is any such thing as a perfect system and with democracies it appears there is a tendancy to continually change even when things are working making them worse. Another way to put it is have you ever heard a politician say how much extra they will spend yet you actually don't know what the policy is to make the outcome more cost effective or better. Burning money can buy votes lol.

I was going to write

I was going to write something similar to "mr kelly liddle". To me it also seems that a lot of dogs are just running after a new rabbit, but in the other direction. Shouting "End the Fed" in an agressive tone as if you were at a sports event. Listening to a lot of Ron Paul and reading some of the liberterian arguments from "earlier sources" I think a lot about what the difference is in practice between leftist and rightist anarchist if we remove the state powers.

Have you listened to David Graeber or read his "Debt, The First 5000 years"?

I am in constant "what if I am wrong" mode.

It is easy to say "I don't like cronyism", but does that mean that all taxes, all state involvement is bad?

Have you also read for example Noam Chomsky (there are also tons of youtube listening). What if some of that stuff is the third rabbit? I know some of you have and dismiss without thinking. Name calling etc! Time to study the rabbits rather than running after them.

I am from Sweden and clearly think that we have a better public health care system than the US (where I have also lived). But it is complex. Neither system can be exchanged for the other. Without any doubt there are problems in "our" system. There are liberterians in Sweden too; who argue that we as a small country get a free ride from innovation in free market medicical industry in USA. Probably true in some aspects, although we also have tax funded research as well as pharma companies. We also suffer the health hazards of modern food industry, fast food, which is also a free ride from US.

I think most Ron Paul arguments are worth thinking through. Even many of those that some dismiss as madness (the criteria for madness is different from which side you are coming of course). But I am not going to call people ugly names for having those opinions.

I think he is wrong on abortion (but his arguments are well formulated and worth studying). If realty of pro-life politics leads to death, injury and fear for mother and fetus/child it is not moral (even if the intent is)

http://www.rhrealitycheck.org/article/2011/10/25/radical-dis...

Neither is gun rights a simple issue:
http://www.cleveland.com/nation/index.ssf/2009/10/does_carry...

I am sure that there are lot of people reading this who agree. Reasoning, researching the facts, rely on science and statistics and then discussing based on different morality and ideology can advance human-kind!

Read liberty defined and

Read liberty defined and revolution. It'll make sense after that.

Reply

Ninja
What will make sense? All I said was there are a lot of group thinkers who are Ron Paul supporters and would add to that some are brainwashed (not by RP) such as the conspiracy theorists (911, Illuminati etc.). Every thinking RP supporter will dissagree with some of his opinions or ideas and there is nothing wrong with this. Some supporters though try to convince people to agree with everything that RP believes and suggests. Trying to convince people of this is not helpful. The only thing that you have to convince most people is that balancing the federal government budget will help improve the economy and there is only one man to do this. The reason I choose that subject is because the largest concern for Americans is the economy. Many supporters don't realise that and think that Americans are concerned about other issues such as the police state which is a low concern as evidenced by election results so far. Some may be concerned with that issue and they probably already know to vote for Ron Paul.

For me, I think it started when..

For me, I think it started when I was a teenager, having to learn as I went without any of the influence of mainstream media or a tight family structure to shape my views. I have always been very analytical of everything and tend to think beyond what is required. Over-thinking, if you will. This lead me to question everything, and to not accept everything at face value.

I had an experience with law enforcement where they literally assaulted me without reason or provocation and searched me, all for nothing. No crime, no charges, just an assault on me and a violation of my rights. This obviously made me consider the entire role of arbitrary power and the injustice of our legal system.

9-11, followed by rampant lies from the media and government, combined with the atrocious Patriot Act, endless wars and fearmongering was enough to get me very bitter towards our government. I still thought there was a difference between the two parties though, and that Bush was just an awful mistake in our history.

I've always followed news of police injustices and government cover-ups of illegal activities, especially surrounding the drug war. Then I stumbled on to an article written by Vox Day while researching the TSA. The article was called 'Totalitarian State of America' (TSA) and when I was reading it I was struck immediately. I thought: "Holy shit! I have never heard so much truth in a single article. People actually think like I do!" Then at the bottom of the article in the bio it said that Vox Day was a Christian Libertarian. I had to learn more about libertarianism at that point.

That lead me to come to understand that I have always been a Christian Libertarian but just didn't know what to call my philosophy. From there I started watching Ron Paul videos on youtube, studying economics, foreign policy, libertarian philosophy, etc. I found and bookmarked real news sites like InfoWars, Lew Rockwell, Mises and many others and that brings me to where I am now. A huge Ron Paul supporter and activist for liberty!

It's always been my nature to

It's always been my nature to question everything. I've never been satisfied with others' versions of "truth" or "reality." My life is a constant process of contemplation and evaluation seeking to arrive at fundamentally consistent, grounded beliefs of truth based upon my own life experiences. I've never been one to willingly conform to the force of influences from external sources, from the so-called "authority." My independent nature is an integrated part of what I am, almost like a mathematical result. I imagine there are many others whom share this in common. I've never been exposed to so many like-minded individuals until taking up the cause for liberty. I'm increasingly optimistic about the future possibilities as I witness so many inspired minds joined in promotion of freedom and in overcoming tyranny.

I think it's because I was a

I think it's because I was a loner growing up and in high school and I could never stand people who amass into groups and do things just because of image or because others did them. I still to this day don't get why people smoke cigarettes.

So, moral of the story is don't make friends; isolate yourself from humanity as much as possible!

But um also maybe because I just went to good private schools that encourage critical thinking. I think most people I know from school at least understand that Ron Paul is different, even if they don't agree they kinda get it.

Raleigh, NC

Why, why, why...

As children are often want to do, I never stopped asking why. In fact, when I became a Christian, I took nothing for granted, (not one sacred doctrine), just because someone told me that is what I was supposed to believe. I Wanted to know what I believed and WHY I believed it. A good dose of presuppostionalism and it's attendant logical inquiry methodology began to bleed into every part of my life. I still do not have all the answers ( nor immune to logical fallacy or untested presuppositions), but I have since then became more thoughtful about what questions to ask and, like Socrates, assume I know nothing and everyone else is more capable than I. This keeps me asking why, testing and recognizing my presuppostional positions and keeps me humble.

Me too!

I ALWAYS ask "Why?" To the point it pisses people off! My best friend in HS actually nick-named me Why!

I also assume I do not know everything, however I DO NOT assume that others are more capable or knowledgeable than I am or anyone else is. Trust NO ONE! Only a logical argument based on reason is worthy of any ounce of trust.

I may be a vegetarian, but I'll defend to the death my right to eat meat!

I hated being wrong.

As a child, I always hated doing poorly in school, so I would go home and study all night. I researched just about every single thing that I could. Reading encyclopedias, etc, before the internet was a prominent tool.

When it came to politics, I had a teacher who said "there is no right or wrong in politics. It's simply your opinion on what is right." I didn't like this answer. I felt that most everything had standards by which they could be evaluated/judged, however.

For science, I had scientific texts/case studies/research to find my answers.
For math, there was always a specific formula for the solution.
For music, there were specific arrangements possible based on a certain amount of notes and variables.
For my religion, there was the Bible, and historical texts.
For spelling/grammar, there was the dictionary.

So, there must've been something for politics as well. I researched and found that the standard of American politics was the U.S. Constitution. Now, some say you can "interpret" the Constitution; but if you read the founders' writings, they truly elaborate on the words written in the Constitution. They make just about everything as detailed as you could want.

Thus, I found Ron Paul, did my research, and he was the candidate who was actually 'right' in politics.

So, essentially, just doing my own research led me to be this way.

9/11

shhh

They tried to bury us, they didn't know we were seeds. -mexican proverb

Iraq lies woke me up in 2003

The Iraq invasion woke me up. I was watching c-span one day in 2002 months before we invaded iraq and there was a group of people talking about going into Iraq. How it would last for six or more years would be a winless battle cause our economy to suffer. I brought these issues to my American history class the day after bush declared mission accomplished, and everyone thought I was crazy for saying that there would be no end in sight. At this point I never watched the news so I had no clue bush declared victory! I was only repeating what I had heard months before on c- span. I tried to argue my point but that day I realized you can not argue with brainwashed media nut jobs. And I have been awake to the main stream lies ever since. There is a true reality and a false reality! People like Ron Paul are talking about the true reality we are the 1% everyone else is living in a false reality the 99%. and it's time that the 1% open reality to the truth for all people to know and understand..

Me too!

I was on-the-fence on the issue at first, but I was actually in Krakow, Poland when we invaded Iraq.

I found out because we were having dinner at a restaurant on the square and as we were leaving a HUGE rally was entering the square, and I headed towards it. Some guy tried to stop me, saying "Be careful," so my mother and brother went back to the hotel, and I went up to see the protest. As I got there they were shouting in Polish, but they had huge banners of "Bush is a Nazi" and stuff, and I was not stupid, I didn't say a word in English, but then some young guy (cute ;) came up to me and said "No war, OK?" And I just nodded!

I went back to the hotel, where my mother was trying to get the news in English, but they only had Polish, German and Dutch, so we were switching between Polish and German, each trying to translate as best we could. The hotel staff was really cool though, trying to calm us down because we were flying back to the States in two days and afraid the plane would be blown up in retaliation.

That night we took a train back to Prague, and when we got on the train there was a huge group of American Jews all cheering on the war. We got in our cabin, my mother looked at me and said "Don't say a word about the war, they're Jews!" And ALL NIGHT LONG they were cheering on the war and saying prayers for Israel and the annihilation of Iraq.

That was enough for my family to be TOTALLY AGAINST THE WAR!!!

I may be a vegetarian, but I'll defend to the death my right to eat meat!

Self awareness

Knowing that you can be brainwashed, influenced, or otherwise fooled by others and occasionally even your own senses is the first step to being able to recognize it.

Ever heard of the Milgram experiment? (If you haven't:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BcvSNg0HZwk

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IzTuz0mNlwU

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CmFCoo-cU3Y

) The cognizance to resist authority and have a locus of control which is sufficient to recognize when you are not thinking about your actions is actually quite rare.

The law...

...of diminishing returns here: the more kool aid they gave me the more I started rejecting it.

I know what it was for me

1) House was raided by the police for a drug search when I was 13.
2) Father turned himself in after the raid.
3) Judge allowed police & DA to play fast and loose with the law.
4) Father was convicted because of that by a Jury.
5) Father served his time and the day of release he was picked up by ICE agents.
6) US Government started deportation proceedings.
7) 30 Years in America (with greencard), married for 20, and three children did not stop them from Deporting him.

After living that it is hard not to view the government as an evil agent in our lives.

Zeitgeist and Loose Change

I think seeing these movies back in the 2007-2008 period completely changed my perception of the world. Zeitgeist got me interested in the FED and Loose Change got me interested in foreign policy. Both movies made me suffer from a great deal of cognitive dissonance, but I swallowed the red pill and haven't looked back!

I was looking for those movie titles in this list!

I knew I was not alone on this. Zeitgeist was actually where I had first heard of Ron Paul (beyond a couple of lawn signs). Ever since then I always listen to media with the knowledge that they are "perpetuating the story".

Richard Nixon and Grandma

Grandma used to sit in her easy recliner watching Nixon on the news. Somedays she would almost take flight yelling at the TV/Nixon rocking back and forth with a fury.

"YOU DIRTY DOG.... YOU DIRTY DOG...!" I can hear and see her still today. I'm sure she's in Heaven yelling at Gingrich.

Oh, during the depression the grandparents, very thankful to have work, but some days their lunch bucket would list a single sparrow sandwich. Yummy NOT. I now sell used auto parts online.

Laugh Hard, Hang Tough, Lend a Hand
Ramblin Randy