At carnivals, in seconds smooth talking agents convince someone that they can win that huge, expensive prize for $1.00 by pulling a string. It is not that the mark is stupid; it is that the agent is a master at brainwashing even if it is only long enough to get the mark’s money. Promises of great advantage or disadvantage are the hallmark of brainwashing.
In the trucking industry, about 35-40 years ago, the systematic destruction of the trucker’s image started. People went in droves to see movies like Smokey and the Bandit (1977) and stayed home to watch B.J. and the Bear (1978-1981). Both the movie and the T.V. show depicted truckers as outlaws who drank, drove crazily and fought the law. This culminated during those years in ABC doing a 20/20 story called Killer Truck Drivers. The reporters went out and interviewed truckers who were laid over for the weekend and partying, needless to say, it was an ugly report.
During the late 1970’s and 80’s continuing to today, study after study has blackened the truck driver’s image. Driving while fatigued, wanting to hurt other drivers of cars, taking drugs, drinking while driving, excessive body mass, being a driver with disabilities, being unhealthy and being serial killers are attributed to truck drivers. Of course, the American truck driver is very unsafe too. Media reports rarely point out that it was a pickup truck that caused an accident, they use the generic ‘truck’ instead, misleading people into thinking it was a semi involved.
The agencies who regulate trucking, and some associations, too are to blame for the destruction of trucker’s images and brainwashing the public. The people at the agency who have little or no actual trucking experience and no understanding of the job, sit in their offices and listen to people who have been taught to be afraid of truckers then make unreasonable rules and regulations. Or in the case of some associations, the association back rules and regulations which favor them to increase their bottom line.
People outside of the industry have eaten up this sensationalistic nonsense and have become brainwashed to the realities. Sadly, many people who have entered the industry in the last 20 years or so too have listened to and read the stories, bought into the sensationalism and have become brainwashed. Both truckers and non-truckers support more and more regulations concerning the trucking industry because they will not be affected, they think, so they back the regulation to get those ‘bad truckers’ off of the road.
The latest shot across the bow of truck drivers was the NTSB’s suggestion that cell phone use in any fashion while driving be banned. While at this time, this is just a suggestion, the second one since 2006, with the current trend to punish all truckers for the actions of a very small minority, and the director of the DOT Ray LaHood supporting the ban of distracted driving for truckers, the FMCSA will most likely act upon it. Even though the study done at the bequest of the DOT by Virginia Tech shows that cell phone use is not the risk it is made out to be, many people including truckers are all for supporting the ban.
The same scenario played out during the flack over body mass index. People have been brainwashed by decades of diet industry propaganda into thinking that heavy people are lazy, unhealthy and should be thin like models shown in newspapers and other media. Playing on this brainwashing, and funding from the diet industry and the medical manufacturing sector, people supported forced dieting, sleep studies and even not allowing truckers to drive without using a machine that may or may not be necessary…and then there are the companies who chose to use BMI as a reason not to hire someone.
The types of brainwashing cited above are not as innocuous as the opening paragraph where a mark is only taken for his/her money at a carnival. The latter examples are insidious and border on bigotry by artificially dividing people for obscure or governmental reasons and causing hate for others only to further restrict another person. These tactics are a form of control and used to dominate a population eventually; Hitler used brainwashing to great effect, as do others such as communist countries.
Are you brainwashed? Everyone is to some extent; one buys a certain soap because of an advertisement or asks a doctor for some specific medicine because of being told it will cure what ails them. Are you brainwashed to the extent of believing exactly what you read or hear and using what you supposedly have learned to take away rights for others who have done nothing illegal? If so, remember Pastor Niemoller and what he had to say after WWII…
“THEY CAME FIRST for the Communists,
and I didn’t speak up because I wasn’t a Communist.
THEN THEY CAME for the Jews,
and I didn’t speak up because I wasn’t a Jew.
THEN THEY CAME for the trade unionists,
and I didn’t speak up because I wasn’t a trade unionist.
THEN THEY CAME for me
and by that time no one was left to speak up.”
At some point, something will come up that WILL affect you directly; you had better hope that someone stands up for you who is not brainwashed against you and who believes in the rights of others.