Social manipulation is as big a problem as crime, discrimination, poverty, and war.

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It makes me sad when I hear about some of the problems in this world. However, when it comes to the issue of "means versus ends," I think that progressives are making a mistake in "how" they are trying to help others. First of all, I dislike crime, discrimination, poverty, and war. What I would like to point out is that there is another big problem and involves the means that people use to achieve their ends, which includes progressives.

I define manipulation as trying to get someone to do something that they do not want to do, whether that person likes it or not. There are two main paths that define manipulation, coercion and deception. Also, it must explicitly be noted that manipulation concerns a means to an end. Trying to get rid of crime is a good thing, but such a thing would be tarnished if manipulation was used, and it is. The same goes for discrimination, poverty, and war. A person can be very benevolent and still be manipulative! This does include progressives.

I would like some feedback. Thank you.

micahjr34
Joined:
Feb. 7, 2011 3:57 pm

Comments

I would reply but I have no idea what you are talking about. The Left in general has been very poor at "manipulation." The Right has become expert at it. Why do you think that so many working-class Americans cheerfully vote for their own executioners?

Dale1932's picture
Dale1932
Joined:
Dec. 20, 2010 8:25 pm

Dale1932 - Thank you for your feedback! You got me there! If I take the definition of manipulation as making people do things against their will using coercion and/or deception, the modern political right does fit that more than the modern political left. What I take as manipulation in a historical context comes from Machiavelli's "The Prince," and Orwell's "1984" with some smaller things I have read and experienced in my life. Machiavelli is the king of manipulation, and makes Orwell look like a wimp. "1984" is fiction, but "The Prince" is about historical fact. This gives me the opportunity to state these works as my inspiration about manipulation. I should have done so in my first post, but I put it up now so as to give proper intellectual credit. I apologize for that.

The main point that I am trying to communicate is that someone can be nice and sweet, but still use manipulative means to achieve benevolent ends. This does include me, you, and everyone else in the world. I am also trying to communicate that the opposite of manipulation is persuasion, which is about enabling others to do something because they want to and not because they have to. This again is a reference to a means to an end, and not as an end unto itself. I would like some feedback. Thank you.

micahjr34
Joined:
Feb. 7, 2011 3:57 pm

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