- Politics and Social Issues
Opinions Vs. Facts
Opinions vs. Facts vs. Subtle Mind Control
What is Your Opinion?
This is a question that has been asked so often that it has lost some of its value. The word "opinion" according to Webster is, "a belief based on grounds insufficient to "certainty." It is also defined by Webster as "a personal attitude or appraisal; a formal "expression" of professional judgment or a favorable estimate or esteem. Not that there is nothing of certainty in the word opinion. The word was intended to be used as it is defined:
. a belief
. an attitude or appraisal
. a professional judgment
. favorable "estimate
See any facts in an "opinion?"
Now, let's look at the word "Fact." Webster defines "fact" as:
. Something known to exist or have happened
. Something known or said to be "true."
We've all encountered individuals who steadfastly refuse to accept that theirs are merely "opinions" and not "fact." It's an interesting little conundrum dealing with mindsets that are irrepairably determined to create opinions as facts. It doesn't ever work, of course. But they do keep trying. We call these mindsets: narrow minds. We call them "narrow" for a reason. Their thinking is based on personal opinions, not facts, they insist must be reality or an actuality. See the error in that thinking?
A five year old child believes fictional characters in story books are real. Narrow minds create the fictional characters in opinionated statements that are neither real nor actual. Perhaps, the more difficult part of narrow minds is the inability for them to accept that it is not possible to prove negatives. Nor, is it possible to make fiction into reality when the fiction has no basis in fact.
Certainly, there have been instances of fiction that became reality. For example, the famed fiction author, Jules Verne imagined a vessel that could sail a "Thousand Leagues under the Sea." That kind of fiction had a basis in fact: science that could produce submarines. Conversely, there have been examples of fiction that simply cannot or would not ever be real or actual. We can begin the examples with old woman who lived in a shoe. Can you see yourselves living in a pair of sneakers? Or hiking boots? Or for that matter, a pair of Captain Nemo's flippers?
Fiction writers often base their stories on characters and plots they can "fashion" into diverse tales that capture the imagination. Opinionated people do the same. They fashion their characters and plots into fictional situations that in the light of reality have not or will never happen. Stoically, they march on insisting their opinion is fact.
Facts, Nothing But the Facts
In any legal or judicial environment, facts and "only" facts are the core of allowable presentation. There are penalties for deliberately presenting false statements and evidence that have no basis in fact. The reason is clear. These types of statements and evidence cannot be proven. So facts rely entirely on proof. What is Webster's definition of "proof?"
1. Evidence to establish as thing as true or believable.
2. The establishment of a truth or fact
Evidence (there's that word again) must be established before anything can be proven to be true or believable. But, here is where the narrow minds tend to become fuzzy. They believe they "establish" truth or fact, albeit without solid evidence as proof by simply expressing their personal opinion on any issue.
When a scientist seeks the truth, he first gathers "evidence." Narrow minds feel no need of evidence. Evidence gets in their way. If they have the opinion that the Rock of Gibraltar is really a pebble, they feel they have the right to "establish" that as truth and worse, fact.
In order to make narrow minded opinions work to their advantage, rewriting and reinventing truth and facts is crucial to their recipe. Two milligrams of fact twisted and contorted to suit and voila! The narrow minded opinion becomes truth.
Opinions vs. Facts
The recipe for disaster with opininated individuals who ignore facts and truth strikes at the very heart of why science strives for evidence to prove their theories. Opinions are similar to theories. Webster tells us theories are "a group of general propositions used as principals of explanations for a class of phenomena or an explanation whose status is still conjectural." The relationship between opinion and theory is that neither are proven to be factual or actual.
Tell a narrow mind their opinion is an explanation whose status is "still conjectural" and you set off an international incident in your own backyard.
Opinions are like mercury. It is impossible to hold mercury in your hand without it tumbling onto the floor in tiny silver rivulets. That's where the saying, "You can't hold Mercury in your hand," relates to opinions. it isn't possible to hold an opinion if it can't be proven, has no evidence, facts or truth.
Insisting Opinions are Facts
In many mental institutions, psychiatrists struggle daily with the job of helping the pathologically ill to understand that what they say or believe is fiction. The human mind of these individuals is wired to accept fiction as fact. Distortions as truth and fantasy as reality. Those who maintain their sanity and do not have the advantage of being professionally trained or equipped to communicate with the mentally ill are often bewildered at how easy it is for these individuals to wrap their minds around self-created fantasies. When mental health professionals try to help their patients "see reason," they are often met with hostile insistence that their opinions of their world is fact. This is also the baliwick of many narrow minds.
What Causes Narrow Minds?
The reason for the linear thinking in some individuals is easily explained by their childhood environments. Narrow minds are simply less capable of accepting change that causes them serious discomfort. The problem with narrow minds is linked to a neurotic need to control their world in the extreme that nothing should cause a moment of discomfort. This, of course, includes anyone who must reside in that neurotic realm of antiquity. We all understand that older individuals tend to rely on familiar surroundings and a steady, constant routine they feel they fit into best. We don't understand this with infants, children, teens and the middle aged adults.
Subtle Mind Control
In the book, "One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich," by Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn, you see how easy it is for routine to become mind control. We see this again in the movie, "Manchurian Candidate," by Richard Condon, where men in the military who are deprived of change and are subjected to various tortures lose their human will and ability to reject that which they would ordinarily consider savage behavior.
Today's all too linear minds are bordering on subtle mind control by insisting their opinions are facts and truths. They reject evidence to the contrary in order to support the basis of their opinions. This is how brain washing begins in almost every instance in places where supreme surrender to a willful master is the major objective of existence.
When we are constantly barraged by narrow minds who refuse to accept truth and facts that have solid evidence and proof, this is a mechanism by which our human will is tested and can be weakened.
The intent of opinions that are not facts is subtle mind control. It is also to attract like narrow minds and become the overriding voice for all.
While it is easy to allow narrow minds to create their own microcosm of fantasy and fiction, it is more difficult for sane, rational people to keep them from making decisions that affect all of society. Their opinions are flawed and should not become their path to control. Lest we become as flawed as these linear mentalities.