The 4 Freedoms Library

It takes a nation to protect the nation

Gell-Mann Amnesia

Westworld (1973)

“Briefly stated, the Gell-Mann Amnesia effect is as follows. You open the newspaper to an article on some subject you know well. In Murray’s case, physics. In mine, show business. You read the article and see the journalist has absolutely no understanding of either the facts or the issues. Often, the article is so wrong it actually presents the story backward—reversing cause and effect. I call these the “wet streets cause rain” stories. Paper’s full of them.

In any case, you read with exasperation or amusement the multiple errors in a story, and then turn the page to national or international affairs, and read as if the rest of the newspaper was somehow more accurate about Palestine than the baloney you just read. You turn the page, and forget what you know.” 
– Michael Crichton (1942-2008)

That’s Michael Crichton, the physician turned novelist turned director, talking about his physicist friend Murray Gell-Mann, who discovered (and named) the quark. Crichton pretty much invented the techno-thriller genre of books and film, starting with The Andromeda Strain, which is one of the most influential books in my life, for sure. Crichton is probably best known for his Jurassic Park novels, but take a look at his bibliography sometime … it’s astonishing how much influence he has had on modern American culture, period. That cover photo on this note, from the 1973 version of Westworld, is one of Crichton’s, too.

I’ve written about the Gell-Mann Amnesia effect before, but I wanted to highlight it in a standalone Brief. Why? Because I think it’s the primary driver of the social pathology we have today regarding media in general and social media in particular.

If you or your company has EVER been the primary subject of a newspaper article, you know exactly what Crichton is talking about. The article is simply wrong. Not just wrong in minor detail, but wrong in motivation, cause, implication, fundamental facts … everything. You read it and you think, “how can I get this travesty of an article edited/retracted/rewritten? how is it possible that the writer got this situation so wrong?”

And yet, despite having this searing experience with media articles where we actually have meaningful personal knowledge, we believe without hesitation the next story we read where we don’t! 

We are hard-wired to respond to Missionaries, and when I say hard-wired I truly mean that in a biological sense. It’s what makes Fiat News – the projection of opinion as fact – work. It’s what powers the Trump Train and the Team Elite Club alike. It’s not that facts don’t matter. They do! But the presentation by a Missionary that a statement is a fact is enough to make it a fact within the Common Knowledge Game. That IS the Common Knowledge Game. All it requires is an effective Missionary.

Everyone is in on the secret. Everyone is in on the act. Everyone who can is playing the Common Knowledge Game as a Missionary. And everyone who can’t is being played.

That includes Michael Crichton, too. One of Crichton’s less remembered novels and films is Disclosure, starring Michael Douglas and Demi Moore in the 1994 film. Here’s a still from that movie, taken as the Michael Douglas character realizes he has been set up for a false (?) accusation of sexual harassment.

It’s a must-watch movie for anyone trying to figure out what the hell happened to all of us during the Kavanaugh hearings, and it’s a movie that a critical thinker can’t watch today without squirming in discomfort. Why? Because not only is the central plot twist the construction of news and information, but so is the central plot twist of the movie-as-a-thing.

Let me put it this way, Michael Crichton was married five times and famously would have had some … errr … difficulties in a post-Harvey Weinstein Hollywood.

Disclosure is not just a movie ABOUT the construction of Narrative.

Disclosure IS a movie that constructs Narrative, a very particular Narrative that served the interests of the Hollywood studio system and the men, like Weinstein and Crichton, that it made so wealthy and so powerful.

This is Narrative creation. This is one of the best examples I’ve got of nested metagames. This is why it’s so important to consume EVERYTHING with a critical.... Because we are being played, constantly and by everyone. Even in our entertainment. ESPECIALLY in our entertainment. It sneaks up on us without our conscious awareness, because its purpose is to sneak up on us without our conscious awareness.

And what’s the dominant entertainment in the world today? It’s not Hollywood any longer. It’s not movies. It’s social media.

Clear Eyes, friends. Clear Eyes.

Tags: Amnesia, Gell-Mann, Syndrome

Views: 15

Replies to This Discussion

The Greatest Frame Game in History ;

The entertainment industry these days is just one vast socialistic woke propaganda machine, that constantly offends me.
If you can say something convincingly enough you will be believed, except by a genuine expert on the field. The best liar is the one that believes his own lies.
They say immigration is good for us when it obviously is not. They say we must take refugees into our homes when this does us great harm. The Missionaries control the agenda and decide what truth is. Selflessness is not a virtue, it is madness.
Nothing can be true unless it is actually factually true. There are things that I regard to be true, that are true to me, that are true because they serve my personal need and comfort. I have questioned every "belief" I have because I want them all to be true and factual.
Two people will never agree on everything and some can not agree about anything. People that subscribe to a system of belief or religion or ideology are unlikely to critically question their own beliefs. Their whole world would collapse. Which is fine by me if they did not also feel the need to force their version of the truth on me and other innocents.
Already as a child I decided independently of influence that God did not exist. I seem to remember wondering if I had sentenced myself to an eternity of agony in hell. I guess I was born a skeptic. no one in my family ever attempted to imprint a belief on me. The school system of the time and my tribe taught me patriotism.
Woefully I know too well fanatical socialists, christians and conspiracy theorists, it does clarify my position though. I have learned that dialogue is impossible and painful, so leave well alone. They are driven by hatred disguised as virtue, fanatical and abysmally ignorant are they. I prefer my own little world of science and reason and the few that I can agree with or talk freely with.


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Mission Overview

Most Western societies are based on Secular Democracy, which itself is based on the concept that the open marketplace of ideas leads to the optimum government. Whilst that model has been very successful, it has defects. The 4 Freedoms address 4 of the principal vulnerabilities, and gives corrections to them. 

At the moment, one of the main actors exploiting these defects, is Islam, so this site pays particular attention to that threat.

Islam, operating at the micro and macro levels, is unstoppable by individuals, hence: "It takes a nation to protect the nation". There is not enough time to fight all its attacks, nor to read them nor even to record them. So the members of 4F try to curate a representative subset of these events.

We need to capture this information before it is removed.  The site already contains sufficient information to cover most issues, but our members add further updates when possible.

We hope that free nations will wake up to stop the threat, and force the separation of (Islamic) Church and State. This will also allow moderate Muslims to escape from their totalitarian political system.

The 4 Freedoms

These 4 freedoms are designed to close 4 vulnerabilities in Secular Democracy, by making them SP or Self-Protecting (see Hobbes's first law of nature). But Democracy also requires - in addition to the standard divisions of Executive, Legislature & Judiciary - a fourth body, Protector of the Open Society (POS), to monitor all its vulnerabilities (see also Popper). 
1. SP Freedom of Speech
Any speech is allowed - except that advocating the end of these freedoms
2. SP Freedom of Election
Any party is allowed - except one advocating the end of these freedoms
3. SP Freedom from Voter Importation
Immigration is allowed - except where that changes the political demography (this is electoral fraud)
4. SP Freedom from Debt
The Central Bank is allowed to create debt - except where that debt burden can pass across a generation (25 years).

An additional Freedom from Religion is deducible if the law is applied equally to everyone:

  • Religious and cultural activities are exempt from legal oversight except where they intrude into the public sphere (Res Publica)"

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