Every Time You Think…

Gotta love the Three Stooges. In one clip, Curly offers up a typical Stoogesque insight, to which Moe replies, “Every time you think, you weaken the nation.”

The Stooges are pillars of rationality compared to some of the idea floating about our culture now. One of my favorites is the 9/11 “Truthers.” Though there are several theories about what really happened at the WTC, they all seem to center around a conspiracy involving George W. Bush and explosives. Now I do believe that our government is capable of rank stupidity and questionable policies. The Federal Reserve comes to mind, along with dubious wars in faraway places. However, for our own government to blow up two huge buildings in a plot that would have involved hundreds if not thousands of people, including those who were alleged to have died on those planes is beyond incredible. Fools 1, Rationality 0.

Here’s another one. Hurricane Irene was caused by the military. Yep, you heard it here first. HAARP, a facility in Alaska built to study the ionosphere, is used for nefarious purposes. Spoofing such a belief was my intention, but I could not top this section of a site devoted to warning us of HAARP.

The primary purpose of HAARP is neither weather modification nor weaponized earthquake generation, but something even far more sinister and unbelievable, even to people who are closely monitoring HAARP’s activities. When attuned to specific frequencies, the phased array antennas act as a window or portal for nefarious aliens to enter into this dimension. When the security cameras are taken offline, that is when the doorway is most likely being activated. When the ionosphere is artificially stimulated by focused heat, it creates a very unstable wormhole, which can have devastating side effects, like plane crashes and miscellaneous portal spirals. Under certain extreme atmospheric conditions, spontaneous human combustion could occur, as well as random dematerialization.

Well, that explains why I dematerialize randomly, but not whether the refrigerator light stays on when you shut the door. Well, a theory can’t explain everything, huh? Fools 2.

Human being are pattern seekers. Much of what we see (and hear) gets arranged into patterns below conscious awareness. For example, one verse of Led Zeppelin’s Stairway to Heaven played backwards¬†renders:

Oh here’s to my sweet Satan
The one whose little path would make me sad
Whose power is Satan
He’ll give those with him 666
There was a little toolshed where he made us suffer
Sad Satan.

The eerie thing is, once you have listened to this and “heard” those words, you can never not hear them again. Try it.* So does this mean we are helpless victims of our pattern-seeking subconscious? Of course not. It means we can “hear” these words and at the same time reason that they are not really there.** Our reasoning mind is not a slave to appearances. That is, unless we let it become so.

The world is falling apart, undermined by fools. To paraphrase Jesus, fools will always be among us. True, there are all kinds of threats to our comfortable future, just as there have been since life emerged on this planet. There is no need to add to our anxiety by conjuring up unfounded fears. Perhaps folks like the Truthers and the HAARPers are no more plentiful than they always have been, but it sure seems to me that we are becoming a nation of superstitious weenies.

Were the idiots who conjure up this nonsense benign, this would all be just another amusing look at human nature. Unfortunately, they are not. Conspiracy theorists and “God is punishing us” types are gaining ground and recruiting more fools to help spread the word. History teaches us that when people are ruled by superstition instead of reason, bad things happen. Enough fools is all it takes to start a witch hunt, and you never know when you’ll be the witch.

_________________________________________

*Do not worry about any ill effects from listening to this. I have listened to it thousands of times and look at me.

**If you really believe that Satanic messages are embedded in music played backwards, it is time to lay off the pot for a while.

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About Terry Noel

I am an Associate Professor of Management and Quantitative Methods at Illinois State University. My specialty is entrepreneurship.
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