Cognitive Dissonance

Anyone who is part of the liberty movement or who has uncovered uncomfortable truths about our government but who have had trouble discussing these topics with others is often running into cognitive dissonance.  In fact, cognitive dissonance is the most challenging obstacle for liberty minded people to overcome.  People are very resistant to ideas that they have not heard before and does not fit into their world view.  This is especially challenging for libertarians because they do not fit into either the two categories of “left” and “right” that the media force feeds down our throat.  People are trained that all political opinions can somehow be distilled into two camps and that everyone must fit into these categories.  When someone is told that this left/right divide is false and that it is a means of control, people immediately become defensive.  Their entire lives have been built around this left/right belief.  They view everyone as on either their own side or the other side.  Never mind that their own politicians constantly break their own supposed moral code (Bush doubling the size of the Federal Government or Obama doubling down on drone strikes and the police state).  People claim that these are breaks from the norm and that “their” politician’s ideology means something.  After all, the other guy is worse!  They always have an excuse to keep voting the same way hoping for change and never getting it.  The alternative idea is too disturbing.  That political change is almost entirely impossible.  That American people are being duped.  That “Powers at Be” will never let any politician close to the Presidency that will actually change the system.   These thoughts go against everything we have learned our entire lives.  Democracy is supposed to give voice to the people.  Democracy supposed to bring power from the elite to the common man.  In truth, democracy has never been about the common man.  Democracy has in actuality been the greatest tool of oppression that the elite have ever wielded.  In the days of Kings, people knew from whence their oppression came.  If a King made a law that people did not like or had his agents patrolling all roads handing out fines and sometimes even imprisonment, the people knew whose laws they were and whose agents they were dealing with.  This is one reason why king’s had to be careful what laws they made.  They might spark a rebellion if they stepped to far. Now, thankfully, in our enlightened age we have democracy!  The people are now subject to such an enumerable amount of laws such that the average person commits three felonies a day!    Instead of the Law protecting people from their government, it has become a tool of the government to selectively target anyone it wants.  We were supposed to be a nation of laws and not of men but this is where things have degenerated to.  Your average citizen has trouble accepting this.

People do not want to lose faith in the system that they grew up believing in.  They respond with cogitative dissonance. I do not blame them.  No one really wants to hear the truth of such things.  The truth is heart wrenching.  I have compared it to losing ones faith in God.  I have heard someone else (I don’t remember who) comparing it to someone waking up one day and finding out that there mother is a whore and that they are bastards. In a way it is true.  Their government is not the protecting father figure that they have been told.  It is often capable of great evil.

It is said that the truth shall set you free.  This is why many people in the liberty movement divide people between those who are still asleep and those that are awake instead of the usual left right paradigm.  Everyday we need to pursue truth no matter where it takes us.  Remember that the biggest hurdle to overcome with others is cognitive dissonance.  Let us be wise enough to understand cognitive dissonance and wake people up in as gentle of a manner as possible.

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