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Learned Apathy – Why people don’t react

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“Recent polls show that 43% or Republicans and 76% of Democrats believe…” 

B***s**t! Headlines like the above are meaningless.

The Apathy of Numbness: Public Opinion is a useless measure.

Watch major media for a week, then conduct a survey about how people feel or what they believe is true about most any issue and all you’ll find is that news works. What they report and how they spin it is what the opinions will reflect. If George Floyd’s conversion from career criminal to honored martyr is the only thing people hear about for a month, then they will believe much of what they hear. When that shifts to the Border Invasion, a similar shift in opinions will occur. Educational Pollution, like Critical Race Theory or the “1619” myth, will dominate next month. Then we will return to Demonizing and Neutering Police, or Climate Scares, or the Debt Crisis/Budget Deficit, or China’s Increasing Dominance. Next comes Election Reform and Voter Suppression.

If all you play is Beatles music then most music opinions will be about Beatles music. Well, yeah!

Likewise, if you make Race observations about everything then people will start to see Race in everything. This is not only not “rocket science”, it doesn’t even require contemplation. Want to know what people think today? Read last week’s news reports. Yet our media persists in measuring the obvious as if it might finally provide some insights. Not likely.

The Apathy of Numbness.

When someone hits you, your reaction is immediate and strong. But when they hit you repeatedly, there will be a point where you simply adjust to the pain and stop reacting. For example; many people almost faint from fear when they get an injection. They say they fear the needle, but that’s not true. What they fear is not knowing how much it will hurt. If you have received many injections in your life then another one is no surprise and therefore not a source of fear. Discomfort, surely, but not fear.

Long ago I took a spill on my bike and the nurse at the hospital had to pick the debris out of my wounded posterior. An embarrassing but necessary experience. The nurse, Larry, said, “Are you sure you don’t need a sedative before I do this?” I replied, “No, I’m not sure at all. But I don’t want anesthesia if I can avoid it. Would you promise to pause if the pain is getting too much for me?” He said, “Yes.” So, I told him to proceed. I wasn’t afraid of the pain. I was afraid of not knowing how long it would last. It is the unknown that scares us most.

The same is true about bad news. The degree of “badness” isn’t the activator, it is whether it was unexpected and how much it affects you personally. That is what determines your response to the news.

When the news says, “Murders are up 800% in Portland” (actual May 2021 report), surely that would alarm anyone! But, no, most of us have become so numb to the reports of abuses, crime, violence, riots and murders that we just shake our heads. This is the apathy of numbness.

Apathy is a stage of Depression. It starts with Boredom. Boredom is evidence of a lack of purpose or sense of connection. If we are not personally involved and don’t feel threatened then it alarms us, but it doesn’t activate us to do anything about it. Boredom becomes Apathy over time. The more we hear awful news or see gory images on TV the less it affects us and so we become detached. We say, “What’s the use in trying? All you get is pain. When I needed sunshine I got rain.” (from Neil Diamond’s song “I’m A Believer.”)

What happens when we lose our sense of Outrage?

If no bad news is bad enough to get us to scream, “I’m not going to take it anymore!” Then we don’t reach out to get others involved. We don’t marshal resources to mount a response. We don’t call our elected officials. We don’t start a petition or a fund raising campaign, or organize a resistance movement. We don’t turn out to vote the bums out of office. That is when government control becomes absolute. That is when Democracy dies.

The next step from Apathy is Depression and that is a clinical state that needs treatment. The symptoms of Depression can be severe and even fatal. Our nation is on the verge of Depression right now. Not just Emotional Depression, but also Financial Depression.

The Democrat Party is truly just that, having a party! They are spending in ways that drunken sailors never aspired to. It’s as if they never learned that money must exist before it can be spent. They acknowledge no limit on the amounts. Their “cause” justifies it.

This is not a zero-sum game. 

Something we don’t hear is this: all these emergencies that require zillions of new dollars are ALREADY being addressed and have some existing funding in place. These are not new causes or needs, they are existing issues that aren’t completed yet. We’ve always been fixing roads and repairing bridges. We’ve always had people who need healthcare but can’t afford it. We’ve always had energy needs, educational needs, border intruders, climate impacts, international missions, and military needs.

But if they call it the “Family care act” or the “fix the bridges near grandma’s house act” then people react as if nothing has ever been done about this and all new funding needs to be found, or borrowed if we can’t afford it. So they print new money (inflation).

The National Debt is so great that it may be impossible to ever pay it off.

Once you are dealing with Trillions of dollars, there will be a point where the interest on the debt is so great that we can’t earn enough to ever pay it off. Our politicians have become the Loan Sharks who are charging us exorbitant amounts for benefits we never really receive. But they benefit from it, in Washington D.C. all is well.

We see the “National Debt Clock” on the news and hear numbers like Thirty Trillion Dollars! But that’s meaningless to most of us. When did you last notice the bill for your part of the national debt? You didn’t because it isn’t isolated like that. It shows up everywhere else: in home prices, at the gas pump, grocery store, restaurants, lumber costs, appliance prices, increases in personal service charges, addenda in your phone and TV and utility bills. Extras on invoices after the taxes and delivery fees. We pay all right, just not in separate billing. Sometimes it’s not a bill at all, it is just a shortage of something we need. Compare 2021 to 2019 economically.

How come the free world has been in lockdown and recession while China has not? Commentator Mark Steyn said recently, “China’s economy… grew 2.3 percent in 2020, and first quarter growth for 2021 in China set a new world record—it was up over 18.3 percent. The COVID pandemic has been hugely profitable for China.” They thrive while we suffer from debt and economic infection, how can we be OK with this? We aren’t, we just don’t feel that we can do anything about it, so we don’t. Again it is Apathy.

We are numb, so we don’t act.

The 10,600 violent riots during the pandemic became so familiar that we adjusted to it through numbness. “People killed? Where? Oh. That’s a shame. What’s on the other channel? Let’s watch a movie.”

When we lose our sense of outrage we are fast-sliding into bondage. Democrat politicians decided that they needed for us to feel outrage against Trump so they started touting January 6th as the worst riots ever and blamed Trump for inciting them. Not true, but don’t ask for public opinion polls to discern the truth. The media has convinced people that the riots at the Capitol were “an assault on Democracy” and “worse than 9-11.” Neither of those claims is true, but people are numb so they just accept it unchallenged.

What’s the remedy for Apathy?

Action. As my drill sergeant often said in Basic Combat Training in the Army, we need to “Get off your ass and on your feet, out of the shade and into the heat!” Yes, we need to act, react, interact, and stop the beating. Don’t let them get away with the lies and distortions. Call their hand on misstatements and half-truths and spin. Challenge them when they encourage you to speak “Woke.” Do not allow the numbing down of America. 

Don’t wait for a leader, Be One! 

 

 

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Jim Cathcart, CSP, CPAE is an Executive MBA Professor, Author of 21 books, Hall of Fame Professional Speaker, Top 1% TEDx video (2.4 million views), US Army veteran, Singer/Songwriter, and Lifelong Motorcyclist. He is known as "Your Virtual VP" for his Advisory/Mentor work with organizations worldwide. Based in Texas...and proud of it!



 
 
 

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Elections

Will Democrats Do What They Must?

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On a warm August evening in 1974, President Richard M. Nixon said from the Oval Office that he was resigning, becoming the first president to do so. He confessed that he no longer had “a strong enough political base in the Congress” to finish his term.

Sen. Barry Goldwater, Ariz., the 1964 GOP presidential nominee, was a respected conservative leader in a Senate whose Republican ranks were less conservative than now. In a May 1973 interview with Time magazine, Goldwater had given an early warning, “If it can be proved that he (Nixon) lied, resignation would have to be considered. It would be quick. Everything would be over, ended. It wouldn’t drag out like impeachment.”

At a regular Senate Republican Conference lunch on august 6 of 1974, Goldwater had fumed: “There are only so many lies you can take, and now there has been one too many. Nixon should get his ass out of the White House today!” When he went to see President Nixon, Goldwater confided, “There’s not more than 15 senators for you.” After that showdown, the curtain on President Nixon’s presidency came down three days later.

In this challenging time in our history when President Biden’s competency is under serious question, will Democrat leaders have the courage to do the same? With this report, more Democrats and Independents will be less inclined to vote for Biden. That may very well impact the future of many Democrat politicians whose own election could be impacted if their voting base stays home. After his Wednesday night address, the evidence that Biden is in trouble is plainly obvious.

President Biden’s poll numbers are now at an all time low. The shocking Department of Justice Special Counsel Robert Hur report suggests that Biden should not be indicted because Biden is “a sympathetic, well-meaning, elderly man with a poor memory” that a jury would be unlikely to convict. The Special Counsel also noted that Biden “willfully retained and disclosed classified materials after his vice presidency when he was a private citizen;” he noted that such actions “present serious risks to national security.” It is clearly a risk for Biden to remain in office.

When President Biden addressed the country after the report was disclosed, he asserted that his memory was fine, and the report confirms that he was not indicted and did nothing wrong. His comments to the press questions were combative and defensive. He took no personal responsibility, blaming his staff for the faulty storage of classified documents. His message was strident and clear-Trump is guilty, and I did nothing wrong.

If he is not competent to stand trial for his actions, how can he be confident enough to remain president? It’s time for a private confrontation by Democrat leadership. If Biden does not listen, it is time to exercise the 25th amendment option to remove him from office.

It is not easy to use that 25th Amendment option. It is even more difficult with only 9 months before a critical national election. Waiting until the Democrat Convention in August leaves little time to right the ship and promote a replacement candidate.

Democrats, do your job to clean out your own house. President Biden is not competent to meet the challenges of our time. Do it now or pay the price in November. As Republicans, we hope you let Biden remain your candidate, but that is selfish. President Biden is our current leader and his decisions impact all of us and a world in turmoil. This isn’t about politics. We can’t afford even eleven more months of a mentally incompetent President.

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News

Claudine Gay, Ex-Harvard President, Will Strike it Rich in 2024

Gay will be a hot ticket at conferences leading up to the 2024 election.

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If she were a straight white male, Claudine Gay’s career in academia would have been completely finished weeks ago. Along with the presidents of MIT and (then) University of Pennsylvania, as a result of Gay’s anti-Semitism and her disastrous testimony before Congress in December, much of the country was in an uproar.

Pretzel Logic

Days later, when it was discovered that Gay had plagiarized or inappropriately paraphrased and lifted passages from other authors, from a variety of academic works, that would have sealed her fate. In this utterly illogical age of unreason, just the opposite of what ought to happen actually did happen. The Harvard bigwigs backed her!

Gay punched all of the intersectionality buttons: Black, gay, female, and what else you want to throw into the mix. So was she not terminated from her widely visible, high-profile position. Luckily for Harvard, she quit as president! She retains her cushy post as professor, however, at $900,000 per year. And more amazing good fortune likely is in store for her. She may well reap an income bonanza unlike most other college presidents in the U.S. or around the world.

You have to understand that Gay is actually a hero to many factions on the Left. Let’s see … she stood up to the man! She let Congress have it with both barrels. She defended her academic turf. She stuck with what she believes in. She didn’t kowtow to the U.S. pro-Israeli faction. She spoke her truth! My goodness, what a leader, what a noble soul, what a speaker we might have at our convention!

Media Darlings

A variety of questionable figures on the Left have become darlings to groups who lap up their every word. If you think this won’t happen with Ms. Gay, think again.

Unbelievably, the parents of Trayvon Martin became media darlings. Martin was a violent teenager who punched a bus driver in the face, stole money and other items at school, and was suspended from school at the time of his death. He met his fate while pounding George Zimmerman’s head into a sidewalk.

Democratic groups have celebrated the Martins ever since then. Their public appearances were considered to be special. In another minute, with a cracked skull, Zimmerman might have bled out and died, making Martin a murderer.

Honored at the DNC Convention

The parents of Michael Brown also made the rounds and were accorded celebrity status. The super-sized 18-year-old from Ferguson, MO had stolen cigars and choked a small Asian convenience store clerk just 10 minutes before he had tried to wrestle a gun away from an officer sitting in his police car.

Had Brown, whose fingerprints were all over the officer’s car, successfully taken the officer’s gun, Brown, too, might have been a murderer. At the Democrat National Convention attendees couldn’t get enough of Brown’s noble mother. Sadly, the city of Ferguson, MO, paid Brown’s family an extorted $1.5 million, largely due to fears of more mob violence.

If parents who’ve raised career criminals are celebrated, what are Claudine Gay’s prospects?

Prospects Aplenty

Presumably, she has no violent incidents in her past. Prior to her resignation as Harvard president she may have already, privately signed on with one of the top speaker’s bureaus from either in Boston, New York, or Washington, D.C. Bureaus value having partisan speakers in their lineup when they can book such individuals at large conferences and conventions. Gay will be a hot ticket leading up to the 2024 election.

She will be featured as the head liner at many conferences.

How much can she glean from such appearances? The floor is 20 to 40 thousand per outing, but 50 to 75 thousand is within reach, of which the bureau takes 25%. At that level of earnings for a speech, she could easily exceed another $900,000 by the end of the year. Will you earn $1,800,000 in the next ten years?

Knowing No Bounds

As one audience after another offers her special treatment, her already outsized, over-privileged ego will know no bounds, and all of her past sins will be long forgotten. The groups to whom she speaks will consider themselves to have done their part in promoting diversity, equity, and inclusion. Gay’s intersectionality seals the deal, so by any measure, it’s a win-win-win (bureau, speaker, and audience) for Leftists.

To those on the Right, such developments are sickening, but we’ve come to accept that this is the world as it is currently. With all the devastation and destruction promulgated by the Biden administration, we have much bigger fish to fry.

– – – – –

 

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