In the Social Psychology MOOC i’m taking, we’re taught about how on a hot
summer day, after playing dominoes, Dad strikes up a conversation
about the family getting in the car for a drive to the locally famous
diner 50 miles away in Abaline. The daughter, not really wanting to go, but being kind
to her father, passes the buck to her husband & he in turn throws the
responsibility of choice at his mother in law. Who then defers to her
husbands original idea. Even though Dad was just trying to have a
chat, while not really wanting to go anywhere. But because each of
them THINKS the others all want to go, even though they don’t, they
ALL still pile up into the car, with no air conditioning, & drive 50 miles
to the diner in Abaline!
The question is, why are we on the road to Abaline if no one actually
wants to go?
Later the son get’s a job reviewing losses at a company. He sits with
the president, & hears about how Project X is a failure, but because
the VP & the R&D Manager say it should continue, & he as president
wants to support his team; the Money Pit of Project X, continues. So
the guy goes to the VP & hears “…between you & me, Project X is a
failure, but the president is in my office being supportive & we don’t
want to let him down…..” so Project X continues. Going to the R&D
Manager, the guy hears “Project X is not going to happen, but the
President & the VP want what they want & I don’t want to get fired…..”
…so Project X continues.
Is the issue of Climate Change & Business-As-Usual, not unlike the
Trip to Abaline? Is delaying the change to a sustainable world for more
Business-As-Usual profits, the Project X of our species? Why can’t we
end it? i’ve been feeling the struggle for the last few days. However,
feeling messed up, in a messed up place during a messed up time,
doesn’t mean that one is, messed up. Our societies are at war, we’re
slaves to money & we’re smart enough to see through the bull$#!t! “It is
no measure of health to be well adjusted to a profoundly sick society.”
If your “pain inside” is anything like “the splinter in your mind”
mentioned in the Matrix, then we share that pain. We see how the
world can be so much better, yet we(humanity) waste our potential as
a species on death & trinkets. Don’t we want better for our children?
Our pain is caused by this injustice, poverty, & strife over scarcity, in a
world we know should be able to create abundance. Tesla drove
himself mad over this & he died alone, because it’s not enough to just
know better & do better for ourselves. We want to share that with the
world. Help them see what we see.
Sometimes it helps to know that you’re not alone in the experience you
are having. Bill Hicks once said that all the mass medias are telling us
to believe these lies. It makes us feel crazy inside when our voice of
reason is quelled. That’s why he likes alternative media, it shows honest
emotion. You’ll never get honest emotion form the the MainStream
News So when others echo the MSN, it’s the Solomon Asch Paradigm
at work, line A is clearly the right answer, even if the rest of the room
says it’s C. When there is even just 1 other person, in the room,
agreeing with the truth, normative conformity drops, significantly. This
is also the Moscovici study in action, how the minority, when
consistent, can effect the majority. Looks Blue to me? Wait…. i
thought y’all said it was Green?
“Holy Cognitive Dissonance Batman, what are we goona do?”
“Don’t worry Robin, we’ll get through to them, eventually!”
Well, Serge Moscovici was a psychologist that showed how a consistent
minority influences the response of a majority, breaking the Asch
Conformity paradigm. Learning this in my Social Psych MOOC, came
at an important time for me. i was feeling not like myself, wondering if i
was going the right direction. Is what i’m doing worth all this effort?
i know what it’s like to doubt, in the face of such resistance too.
But this Moscovici study showed me that this quote, is true: ” Never
doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change
the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. “