Shot of Reason

Philosophy, Politics, Uncategorized


We all know how I feel about vaccines. Vaccines do not cause autism and there is no reputable study that proves this.

A recent study released shows that campaigns intended to lure anti-vaccination parents back to the dark side of reason have backfired, turning parents who were lukewarm to the idea into total crusaders against the needle.

What bothered me about the story was not the argument of vaccination vs. anti-vaccination. It’s the core issue of people being turned off when they’re confronted with an opposing view. There was another study done in 2006 when people who considered themselves conservative were shown a fake report arguing the case for weapons of mass destruction in Iraq. They were then given a report that factually refuted false report’s claims. Did the test subjects shift their thinking? Nope. Apparently being accosted with facts only strengthened their resolve.

That’s a problem with people that has always bothered me. And this isn’t about conservative vs. progressive, science vs. God, global warming vs. Big Oil. It’s about basic logic and how our biases can so easily overpower our abilities to think straight.

I’ve touched on this before, about thinking. We become quite entrenched in our beliefs and once we reach that state, we can’t be convinced otherwise, facts be damned. We’ll result to all different types of faulty arguments to hang on to our cause, strawman logic, anecdotal evidence, sometimes just outright denial.

But why? Why do we latch on to our personal ideas and refuse to let go? The problem really boils down to one thing: laziness. That’s a dangerous combination. Considering two sides to a debate takes work. Keeping an open mind actually requires intellectual energy that we are either too lazy or too obstinate to maintain.

A closed mind requires no energy. It requires no thought process. It requires no ability to comprehend. It makes life simple because we don’t have to waste time trying to understand a different point of view.

The other danger non-thinking laziness presents is that it propagates pseudo-debates. Thanks to petroleum-funded “research” about global warming, they have managed to create a “debate” about the issue that does not exist. More than 95 percent of climate scientists agree that global warming is real and that it’s our fault. But those who stand to lose billions and possibly trillions to CO2 emissions caps and other regulations have created an image of a two-sided issue. You don’t really need to have a debate, just the appearance of one, to confuse those who haven’t yet made up their mind. Once the undecided people find out which side they’re on politically, they gravitate in that direction and there you go, a contentious issue where there previously was none.

The anti-vaccination folk have now done the same thing and they don’t even have well-funded, contrarian research on their side. The numbers of those without vaccines are going up, as are the number of cases of preventable diseases like whooping cough.

How exactly do you solve this problem? How do you get people to stop blindly going in the direction they’ve always traveled?

It starts with one thing: thinking. But that can’t happen with a closed mind.


Covenient Capitalism


Oil Barrel. Blue Oil Barrel, Metal Lid. Isolated.


It’s all fun and games until the oil runs out.

Every day more people are born and every day we keep sucking out drops of oil that can’t be replaced. Not to worry, capitalists tell us. Keep playing. Keep living your life. Don’t worry about the depleting supply of product that fuels our lifestyle.

As Ruppert said, oil is in everything. It’s in our paints, plastics, tires, building materials. On top of this of course, it powers the transportation methods used to move food, retail and people from one locale to another. Population is going up while the well is running dry. The math doesn’t lie.

For so long capitalism has been king because we’ve done quite well with it.

I think there will come a time when capitalism will no longer be practical for our overall survival. As human numbers continue to grow and our worldly largesse continues to dwindle at a rapid pace, consumption will have to be based on cooperation if we as a species want to remain on this Earth.  We may have to consider what’s best for all and not what’s best for “me and mine.”

We could go down the dark path: where capitalism remains an element of our social dynamic. Then, instead of cooperation, we’ll have all-out wars for food, water, fuel. The sky’s the limit. We’ll eat each other.

Now capitalists will tell you that won’t happen. I’m talking about the hardcore capitalists; the ones who go home every night and jack off to Ayn Rand and Wealth of Nations. Capitalism fuels competition and innovation. Therefore, if capitalism is allowed to remain in place, solutions will be discovered and once again, our selfishness will be our salvation. Nope. Sorry.

What exactly are you going to innovate when you run out of resources to market?

If the cooperation idea sounds like socialism, it is somewhat, but not in a political sense. Native Americans and a world of indigenous peoples have built societies on co-op economies. They didn’t do it for altruistic reasons either. They chose it because of the limited resources around them and the desire to help their own persevere.

Cooperation or greed? Which way are we going to go?

I’m betting on the latter. That “me and mine” mentality is primal. The instinct is so strong that we’ll fight each other to the death for the lives of ours.