Althussur (as cited in Boggs, 1989) defined ideology as “Ideas imposed by society and embraced by individuals which determine our lived relation to the real, in order to maintain the status quo” (p. 88). Ideology helps to assure the reproduction of those activities that insure the reproduction of wealth—and maintain a dominant class that controls society as a whole through owning the means of production and distribution.
Thus, in a very real sense, the ideology of commerce determines the working blueprint of ideas, values, and rules that become interwoven into, and ultimately control, society itself. Kavanagh (1990) has noted that the very existence of any society is only possible because its citizens hold a mental image of it and carry that around within themselves.
One of the main results of the pretentious arrogance, and the power that those who wielded it have gathered as a result of controlling the ideology is inculcating a sense of learned helplessness (Seligman, 1972) in the population such that purposeful disinformation is created in the minds of the people. This, of course, feeds the strength and virulence of those using it against individuals―allowing them to grow even more malignant through repeated repetitions until most people have adopted the stance of wounded dogs who could only obey their cruel masters for fear of even more brutal treatment, robbing them of their dignity and inborn rights as human beings and children of the Universe.
“The great games of modern politics, the by-products of democracy that often threaten everything democracy was meant to be, are the games of opinion molding: propaganda, brainwashing, programming and deprogramming, advertising and public relations” (Anderson, 1990, p. 116).
Chomsky (as cited in Wintonick & Achbar, 1994) noted, “What in more honest days used to be called propaganda… [is actually the] manufacture of consent, creation of necessary illusions, marginalizing the general public or reducing them to apathy in some fashion” (p. 43). We are continually and collectively manipulated in order that we retain the illusion of control, while seemingly “choosing” the most appealing people and laws. As Albert et al. (1986) noted
Most people develop acceptable self-images by accommodating their values to the logic of their activities, which are in turn structured by society’s institutional boundary…therefore, powerful pressures push people to seek only what society is prepared to bestow upon them (p. 20).
The “Normal” Stance
- Western science has long relied upon “The Newtonian-Cartesian model of the universe [that it] takes to be an accurate description of reality…That an organism that is structurally and functionally normal should correctly reflect the surrounding material world and function adequately within it” (Grof, 1985, p. 324). Psychology has traditionally always embraced what Kuhn (1962) called “normal science,” utilizing the artifacts of the currently accepted paradigm as a starting point. Thus it is rarely cutting edge work. Grof (1985) noted, “When a paradigm is accepted by the majority of scientific community, it becomes the mandatory way of approaching problems…it also tends to be mistaken for an accurate description of reality, instead of being seen as a useful map” (p. 5).
- Psychology is only considered to be an empirical science if it offers measurable patterns, which is why behaviorism is an empirical science, and psychoanalysis is not. These two are different sets of data gathered through completely different eyes―”both of which are valid, one of which is empirical, the other of which is mental-phenomenological” (Wilber, 2001, p. 16).
The pre-existing relationship between government and scientific agencies (especially those dependent on it for funding) structures the type of science that is allowed to be practiced; and the type, direction, and quality of experiments that are approved, especially for the direct military budget and/or other military research funding. Szasz (1974) noted that psychiatry “is medical in name only.” For the most part, psychiatrists are engaged in attempts to change the behavior and values of individuals, groups, institutions, and sometimes even of nations. “Actually law and psychiatry are similar in that both disciplines are concerned with norms of conduct and methods of social control” (p. 2)… psychiatry is a form of social engineering” (p. vii).
© 2016 – Stefan J. Malecek, Ph.D., MAC