Doug's Darkworld

War, Science, and Philosophy in a Fractured World.

“AS FOR SELF-DECEIT, MOST PEOPLE FIND IT AS ESSENTIAL FOR SURVIVAL AS AIR.”

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My computer blew up recently. That’s not really why I haven’t posted though. Long story short, over the past year there’s been a sea change in how I view the world. The title above (from “Forever Odd” by Dean Koontz) sums it up. I think this change of perspective is a good thing, something I already knew on many levels. In some ways it’s something that has perplexed me all my life. For good or for ill, my parents instilled in me a strong aversion to lying from an early age. I mean, the logic seemed impeccable to me, in order to get along with each other shouldn’t the truth be the foundation? So I innocently went through my childhood believing what was told to me. And in retrospect some kids (and grown ups) told me some real whoppers.

And of course it was not unusual for me to be accused of lying when in fact I was telling the truth. Still, I felt these were the exceptions, not the rule. It wasn’t until my late twenties that I really understood that many adults lied routinely. And even then, the scope of the problem eluded me for decades. I knew people lied, I knew self deception was real, but I still routinely expected most people to tell the truth most of the time. I had a reasonably good opinion of humanity.

This is no longer the case. I now think most people’s lives are a snake’s nest of lies, and most people aren’t even really cognizant of them. It all started to fall apart when I moved to Iowa in 2016. I quickly discovered that my old friend of 40 years was a liar, cheater, and thief. As I said to her brother at the time, “she must use a spreadsheet to keep track of all her lies.” And upon review I’ve realized that a lot of people I’ve known for a long time are, shall we say, remarkably dishonest. What does this all mean? It means I need to be ever more careful to be honest with myself, and to pick my friends more carefully. Easier said than done, but I’m trying.

In addition to my personal life, does this have any global lessons? Or global perspectives? I think it does. While engaging in my world view revision, I came across this: In-Group Cognitive Bias – NeuroLogica Blog. In a nutshell, people are very tribal by nature, and very prone to believing nonsense about people who aren’t in the tribe. And since self-deception is so innate in humans, it makes it much easier for “leaders” to get their tribal members to swallow nonsense. So in essence this new world view has made it clearer to me why so many people are easily propagandized by religion or politics. My today’s theory at least. I find this incredibly depressing.

And this is why my blog has limited appeal. I’m consciously trying to avoid any in-group bias, so my appeal is limited to say the least. Almost everyone belongs to an in-group of some sort, and most are quite fervent in their beliefs. Oddly enough, a huge part of these beliefs is believing the other groups are deluded. True enough, that’s the best sort of lie, a lie that’s true … but leaves something big out. The fact that they too are deluded. In different ways and different formds, and some delusions are obviously far more dangerous than others. But the difference is in intensity, not in kind. And even that distinction can be meaningless if the result is horror.

For example: Democrats Love Saying That AR-15s Should Only Be Used On Foreigners. The title pretty much sums it up, Dems love to decry the horrors inflicted on America by assault rifle wielding Americans, but think it’s perfectly reasonable that they be used in other countries. George Takei (whose opinion I formerly respected) sums up this craziness exactly: “Crazy thought, but those 20 million AR-15s now in this country could sure arm a lot of Ukrainians.” Mr Takei, what’s going on in Ukraine is a nightmare, adding more weapons is going to just make it worse. American AR-15 owners need have no worries, the US is sending plenty of other weapons to Ukraine and doing its best to avoid even the possibility of a diplomatic solution.

So what’s to do? I will continue to post articles that I think are interesting or illuminating. This is a favorite recent one, the Chilean Navy UFO. (image above.) This picture was taken by an infrared camera on a Chilean Navy helicopter in 2014. Ten minutes of seemingly inexplicable footage was taken. They turned it over to the Chilean government’s CEFAA Committee (Committee for Study of Anomalous Aerial Phenomena,) yes, Chile too has a government bureau charged with investigating UFO reports. The CEFAA studied the video for two years, and concluded they had no idea what it was. Then they released it to the public with this statement:

“The great majority of committee members agreed to call the subject in question a UAP (Unidentified Aerial Phenomenon) due to the number of highly researched reasons that it was unanimously agreed could not explain it.”

So that settles it, right, a rock solid film of an inexplicable flying object! UFOs are real! Wait, wouldn’t this then be world news? Wouldn’t everyone have heard of it? Not quite. Literally within days of releasing the video it had been positively identified by internet sleuths … as an airliner. In fact exactly what airliner and airline flight it was was determined. Read the whole story here: The Chilean Navy UFO.

Kinda sums up the whole UFO mythology. People that believe in such simply can’t or won’t look for actual solutions and convince themselves there is a mystery where there is none. Governments might as well set up agencies to investigate fairy sightings. UFOs are just a modern version of ghosts or fairies. As I have said before “The Middle Ages never ended, we just have cooler stuff.”

Oh well, more links in the next post. Which will hopefully be in days instead of weeks. Have a great weekend everyone.

Copyright © 2022 Doug Stych. All rights reserved.

(Image: Copyright unknown, probably Credit: CEFAA. Claimed as Fair Use under US copyright law. Arguably an historically important image, and there is no other such image available to illustrate this sighting.)

Written by unitedcats

July 8, 2022 at 7:36 pm

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