Saturday, September 5, 2020

What Is Gaslighting?

The first part of this is copied from a friend’s Facebook page, with some small edits for ease of reading. I then added my own thoughts as it relates to It is a little lengthy, but I believe well worth reading.


"What is Gaslighting?"


The term originates in the systematic psychological manipulation of a victim by her husband in Patrick Hamilton’s 1938 stage play Gas Light, and the film adaptations released in 1940 and 1944. In the story, the husband attempts to convince his wife and others that she is insane by manipulating small elements of their environment and insisting that she is mistaken, remembering things incorrectly, or delusional when she points out these changes. The play's title alludes to how the abusive husband slowly dims the gas lights in their home, while pretending nothing has changed, in an effort to make his wife doubt her own perceptions. The wife repeatedly asks her husband to confirm her perceptions about the dimming lights, but in defiance of reality, he keeps insisting that the lights are the same and instead it is she who is going insane.

 We are living in a perpetual state of gaslighting. What we are being told by the media is reality, is actually at complete odds with what we are seeing with our own two eyes. And when we question the false reality that we are being presented, or we claim that what we see is that actual reality, we are vilified as racist or bigots or just plain crazy.

 You’re not racist. You’re not crazy. You’re being gaslighted.

 New York State has twice as many deaths from Covid-19 than any other state, and New York has accounted for one fifth of all Covid-19 deaths, but we are told that New York Governor Andrew Cuomo has handled thepandemic better than any other governor. [For the record, Cuomo issued an order that elderly care facilities and nursing homes must receive COVID-19 patients, and that order is said to have caused around 10,000 deaths that likely wouldn’thave happened otherwise].

 But if we support policies of Governors whose states had only a fraction of the infections and deaths as New York (like Florida’s Ron DeSantis and South Dakota’s Kristi Noem), we’re called anti-science and told that we want people to die.

 So, we ask ourselves, am I crazy? No, you’re being gaslighted.

 We see mobs of people looting stores, smashing windows, setting cars on fire and burning down buildings, but we are told that thesedemonstrations are peaceful protests. And when we call this destruction of our cities, riots, we are called racists.

 So, we ask ourselves, am I crazy? No, you’re being gaslighted.

 We see the major problem destroying many inner-cities is crime; murder, gang violence, drug dealing, drive-by shootings, armed robbery. But we are told that it is not crime, but the police that are the problem in the inner-cities. We are told we must defund the police and remove lawenforcement from crime-riddled cities to make them safer.

 But if we advocate for more policing in cities overrun by crime, we are accused of being white supremacists and racists.

 So, we ask ourselves, am I crazy? No, you’re being gaslighted.

 The United States of America accepts more immigrants than any other country in the world. The vast majority of the immigrants are “people of color”, and these immigrants are enjoying freedom and economic opportunity not available to them in their country of origin.

 But we are told that the United States is the most racist and oppressive country on the planet, and if we disagree, we are called racist and xenophobic.

 So, we ask ourselves, am I crazy? No, you’re being gaslighted.

 Capitalist countries are the most prosperous countries in the world. The standard of living is the highest in capitalist countries. We see more poor people move up the economic ladder to the middle and even the wealthy class through their effort and ability in capitalist countries, than in any other economic system in the world.

 But we are told capitalism is an oppressive system designed to keep people down.

 So, we ask ourselves, am I crazy? No, you’re being gaslighted.

 Communist countries killed over 100 million people in the 20th century. Communist countries strip their citizens of basic human rights, dictate every aspect of their lives, treat their citizens like slaves, and drive their economies into the ground.

 But we are told that Communism is the fairest, most equitable, freest and most prosperous economic system in the world.

 So, we ask ourselves, am I crazy? No, you’re being gaslighted.

 The most egregious example of gaslighting is the concept of “white fragility”. You spend your life trying to be a good person, trying to treat people fairly and with respect. You disavow racism and bigotry in all its forms. You judge people solely on the content of their character and not by the color of their skin. You don’t discriminate based on race or ethnicity.

 But you are told you are a racist, not because of something you did or said, but solely because of the color of your skin. You know instinctively that charging someone with racism because of their skin color is itself racist. You know that you are not racist, so you defend yourself and your character, but you are told that your defense of yourself is proof of your racism.

 So, we ask ourselves, am I crazy? No, you’re beinggaslighted.

 Gaslighting has become one of the most pervasive and destructive tactics in American politics. It is the exact opposite of what our political system was meant to be. It deals in lies and psychological coercion, and not the truth and intellectual discourse.

 If you ever ask yourself if you’re crazy, you are not. Crazy people aren’t sane enough to ask themselves if they’re crazy.

 So trust yourself, believe what’s in your heart. Trust your eyes over what you are told. Never listen to the people who tell you that you are crazy, because you are not, you’re being gaslighted.

 Sophocles said: "What people believe prevails over the truth." And that's what the media are trying to exploit.


 It’s also worth noting that George Orwell predicted much of what we’re seeing today.

 A perfect and incredibly simple example is the recent and ridiculous flaunting of power by Speaker of The House Nancy Pelosi. Her disregard of local mask mandate and disrespect for a local business by blaming them for her behavior is straight out of Orwell’s “Animal Farm,” which gave us the famous line, “All animals are equal, but some animals are more equal than others.” Many other Establishment individuals have behaved in kind.. Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot got a haircut immediately after shuttering all salons. Arizona Governor Doug Ducey was seen at a large backyard gathering sans mask. New York Mayor Bill DeBlasio gave a speech without a mask on while he was surrounded by people about an hour after city officials urged the public to don face masks. The list goes on, and on, and on...

 In his novel “1984” it was “The Party” that controlled every aspect of the peoples’ lives in Oceania.

 Today we see what is commonly known as “The Establishment,” which is our entrenched bureaucracy that will fight with every ounce of its being to maintain their grip on the power structures of the nation.

 Today’s “mainstream” news media is quite similar to Orwell’s “Ministry of Truth,” in that it works closely with The Establishment to help them maintain their grip on power. They use gaslighting in their effort to do this, much like “MiniTrue” used “Newspeak” and its “doublethink” to make the people of Oceana believe what they knew not to be true.

 This is because as long as The Establishment has power, so does the “mainstream” news media. Their mutually beneficial relationship is becoming more and more evident, especially as we come closer to this election.

 In the next two months we will be subjected to anoverwhelming number of “Trump scandals” based on unsubstantiated claims made by anonymous “sources,” run through the news outlets at The New York Times, CNN, Washington Post, and MSNBC, with the rest of the outlets left obligated to report the same stories or be deemed un-newsworthy by The Establishment.

 We just saw one of these yesterday, as the Editor-in-Chief of ‘The Atlantic’ put forward an article based on the unsubstantiated claims of four unverified sources that in 2018, President Trump had said some very disrespectful things about the fallen Americans at Aisne-Marne American Cemetery near Paris.

 Within hours, a number of people who do not work for CNN and the other aforementioned major mainstream news media outlets had been able to contact individuals who’d been with Trump during that trip, including former National Security Advisor John Bolton (no fan of Trump) and Secretary of StateMike Pompeo, who at the time was serving as CIA Director and traveled with POTUS extensively.

 Bolton, Pompeo, and the others all denied hearing Trump say anything of the sort. In fact Bolton chided that had he heard such, he’d have written an entire chapter in his anti-Trump book that was recently in the news for being so controversial.

 But the damage was done. Joe Biden held a speaking engagement in an empty gymnasium yesterday morning and the press took advantage of the opportunity to extend the narrative. Nearly every question asked of Biden was related to something that Trump had said, including the very firstquestion in which a writer for Jeffrey Goldberg’s ‘The Atlantic’ asked Biden about this article, and what those unsubstantiated words from Trump indicated about the soul of the man charged with leading our nation.

 The story dominated the news cycle yesterday and removed from the headlines Pelosi’s disrespect for the owner of the salon she’d received service from just a couple of days prior. Biden’s many gaffes an unintelligible statements were an afterthought, because Orange Man Bad had “done it again,” even though what they were saying he did was related to an event that had taken place two years prior.

 Beware the gaslighting. Don’t believe the narrative. Continue to seek the truth in the face of all the lies. Believe in yourself to know right from wrong in the midst of a storm of disinformation.

And as an addendum.. this tweet from Lara Logan, which was in response to a tweet by some "blue-check" Stanford professor called Michael McFaul. McFaul's tweet has since been deleted.