Sunday, November 14, 2010

The Toxic Bridge To Everywhere

The bridge to nowhere received a lot of media cover (not much coverage though), so let's discuss the bridge to everywhere, which is on the highway that toxins of power use to get anywhere and everywhere a seat of power exists.

Regular readers know that Toxins of Power Blog has previously considered the territory that the toxin of power increasingly inhabits, in the sense of idea propagation, or meme propagation, via various group dynamics.

Likewise this blog had a series which discussed how toxins of power can cause ideological change or "memetic morph," once ideas or memes are in memory.

The amygdala nodes are midbrain between the ears
Now, in this post Toxins of Power Blog will try to get to the nitty gritty, try to get to the main entry point where the toxins of power produce the initial trigger which intoxicates / morphs ideas or memes within the memory of the brain.

That place where the toxins of power begin their mysterious work is called the Amygdala (see also "the lizard brain", a.k.a. "the reptilian brain", not the same, but also strange).

This is a vast subject, however, if we stick to the fundamentals initially, there are elements that can be quickly and easily grasped:
The amygdala's response and regulation are thought to be critical to people's social behavior through the monitoring of daily life events such as danger signals.
(Science Daily, "New Clues"). Social behavior is a result, in some degree, of the dynamics of our amygdala:
During studies of the almond-shaped part of the brain called the amygdala – a region associated with processing emotions ... scientists have uncovered a cellular mechanism underlying the formation of emotional memories, which occurs in the presence of a well known stress hormone ... noradrenaline ... by controlling chemical and electrical pathways in the brain responsible for memory formation.

"This is a new way of understanding how neurons form long term memories in the amygdala," Dr Faber said.

"Our strongest and most vivid human memories are usually associated with strong emotional events such as those associated with extreme fear, love and rage."

"For many of us, our deepest memories are mental snapshots taken during times of high emotional impact or involvement," she said.
(Science Daily, Traumatic Memory, see also Hypothesis: The Cultural Amygdala). What this means is that ideas or memes that are already in memory, already part of a circuit, can be overridden in whole or in part by subsequent events, using either a technique or a phenomenon called fear conditioning, working on specific circuits:
There is a large amount of data indicating that the amygdala, a particular structure in the brain, is strongly involved during the learning of "conditioned" fear. However, until now, the underlying neuronal circuits have remained largely unknown.

Now, research ... has been able to identify, for the first time, distinct neuronal circuits within the central nucleus of the amygdala which are specifically involved in acquisition and control of behavioural fear responses.
(Scientific Daily, "New Circuits"). Long term use of such techniques or phenomenon can cause damage to the amygdala:
... a primitive region of the brain responsible for sensorimotor control also has an important role in regulating emotional responses to threatening situations. This region appears to work in concert with another structure called the amygdala to regulate social and emotional behavior ... researchers have recently discovered that activation of ... the deep layers of superior colliculus (DLSC), elicits defensive behaviors such as an exaggerated startle, hypervigilance, cowering, and escape. Researchers say it is possible that a prolonged activation of this defense system may lead to emotional disorders.
(Science Daily, "Emotional Balance"). These papers work hand in glove with previous posts on Toxins of Power blog.

For instance, in a series beginning with "A Structure RE: Corruption of Memes" we looked at how modification of ideas or memes can occur when circuits of memory are disrupted in individuals.

Then, in the post "The Territorial Realm of Toxins of Power" we attempted to graphically show how these mechanisms work on ideas or memes in the social group context we call meme complexes (see also "ruling group mind" below).

In conclusion, the toxins of power use circuits on the bridge of the amygdala to get to existing ideas or memes, cause a morph, then those morphed ideas or memes propagate within a meme complex (social group), and then ultimately they get to areas outside that meme complex.

The article "What Orwell Didn't Know" by Professor George Lakoff is in accord with this post:
Probably 98 percent of your reasoning is unconscious - what your brain is doing behind the scenes. Reason is inherently emotional. You can't even choose a goal, much less form a plan and carry it out, without a sense that it will satisfy you, not dis­gust you. Fear and anxiety will affect your plans and your ac­tions. You act differently, and plan differently, out of hope and joy than out of fear and anxiety.

Thought is physical. Learning requires a physical brain change: Receptors for neurotransmitters change at the synapses, which changes neural circuitry. Since thinking is the activation of such circuitry, somewhat different thinking re­quires a somewhat different brain. Brains change as you use them-even unconsciously. It's as if your car changed as you drove it, say from a stick shift gradually to an automatic.
(What Orwell Didn't Know, pp. 68-9; cf this). The amygdala can become "propaganda central" since it gets a first look at all incoming sensory perception, that is, before the "conscious brain" gets a look at it:
So some of the key interconnections of the amygdala — and these connections actually define what it does in a sense, at least with respect to fear — the amygdala gets sensory information directly from the various sensory systems that process the external world. So the visual system, the auditory system, olfactory, touch, pain, and so forth. All of these kind of come together, or converge, in the amygdala.
(see video below). Regular readers know that this blog hypothesizes that the toxins of power hijack the process of normal pattern formation in the brain circuitry, so as to convert that pattern into a corrupt pattern.

Thereafter, the meme complex (social group) helps propagate the corrupted idea or meme.

A classic example is detailed in a Dredd Blog post, where an individual knew that a memetic or ideological morph was taking place within his brain, but he was unable to get help or otherwise do anything about it.

Moving on to the civilization level, the issue of mass murder in the form of Ecocide engenders a discussion that focuses on subjects such as the meme complex, vaccime, and other group thinking, such as ruling group mind.

Professor LeDoux on the amygdala ...

Saturday, November 6, 2010

Toxic Germ > Toxic Seed > Toxic Monster

Dredd Blog has a series entitled "Corp Germ > Corp seed > Corp Monster" which shows an evolution of corporations from a germ > to seed > to monster.

Since this blog focuses on underlying toxins of power to explain those types of corrupting events, this post will argue that the toxins of power can be traced or identified by watching that type of development within corporations.

The basic argument is that since corporations are a location for a centralization of power, if toxins of power exist, then they should be able to be found in various corporate footprints, corporate records.

Noam Chomsky recently commented on corporate leaders who are caught up in a meme complex infected to the hilt with the toxins of power:
“There is growing recognition that our financial system is running a doomsday cycle,” economists Peter Boone and Simon Johnson wrote in the Financial Times in January. “Whenever it fails, we rely on lax money and fiscal policies to bail it out. This response teaches the financial sector: Take large gambles to get paid handsomely, and don’t worry about the costs—they will be paid by taxpayers” through bailouts and other devices, and the financial system “is thus resurrected to gamble again—and to fail again.”

The doomsday metaphor also applies outside the financial world. The American Petroleum Institute, backed by the Chamber of Commerce and the other business lobbies, has intensified its efforts to persuade the public to dismiss concerns about anthropogenic global warming—with considerable success, as polls indicate. Among Republican congressional candidates in the 2010 election, virtually all reject global warming.

The executives behind the propaganda know that global warming is real, and our prospects grim. But the fate of the species is an externality that the executives must ignore, to the extent that market systems prevail. And the public won’t be able to ride to the rescue when the worst-case scenario unfolds.
(In These Times). What Noam is saying is that social policy and law compel corporate controllers to follow a path which, in the long term, is economically suicidal as well as being environmentally suicidal.

The central dynamic is a cycle of addiction which is criminally insane, because it will obviously lead to the doom of the system it is infecting, and most important for making it criminal, they know it.

This is the essence of toxins of power theory, that the toxins of power are an unseen, under the covers, and invisible government influence operating without any need for any conspiracy (cf. Epigovernment: The New Model - 7).

What Chomsky, Dredd Blog, Ecocosmology Blog, and a host of others are fingering is the mental, emotional, and spiritual state of denial.

That state of denial is essential for the seed, which came from the germ, to evolve into the monster, then do the damage.