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8/21/01

VIEW FROM THE MOUNT

Sober Thought Provoking Essays
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and the TRUTH WILL SET YOU FREE . . .

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What is the appropriate behavior for a man or a woman in the midst of this world, where each person is clinging to his piece of debris? What's the proper salutation between people as they pass each other in this flood?

- Leonard Cohen

Urban Living is NOT Civilization

"Education is what survives when what has been learnt has been forgotten." - B F Skinner

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The name B F Skinner was once known to every student and his work was taught as unassailable fact. His theory is based upon the idea that learning is a function of change in overt behavior. Change in behavior is the result of an individual's response to stimuli that occur in the environment. A response produces a consequence. When a particular Stimulus-Response pattern is reinforced, the individual is conditioned to respond.

Whatever you may think of his research, we should all be able to learn from some of his methods. Much of his best known work was with rats and the 'Skinner Box'. Some will say that humans are quite different from the subject rodents, and that conclusions of such research would not apply to humans. From a strict physiological standpoint our species is quite different, but from a behavioral viewpoint; more similarities exist than what we care to admit.

Metropolitan regions now compose seventy five percent of our population above 250,000 communities. Rural areas are now less than ten percent. The 2000 Census has clearly shown the trend to congregate in confined urban environments has grown with each decade. No other single element has contributed to the National malaise more than the migration into urban localities. Obviously, future population growth will progressively multiply and cause further strain on the interaction within this confined domain.

Cosmopolitan cities have traditionally claimed the mantel of seats of cultural achievement. Theater, opera and the ballet may very well enrich our quest for civilized life, but they are not the test of Civilization. Art has value, but human behavior has meaning. Cordial conduct, respect for fellow citizens and institutions, and kindness to the less fortunate; are true measures of civility. In today's urban surroundings, few examples of these practices are now the norm.

Isolation and alienation have replaced trust and cooperation. Cities are no longer livable for the average resident. The grunts that perform the functions and services that are necessary to keep the water flowing, the electric generating and the food served, are servants for the elite's that reside beyond guarded properties and penthouse apartments. The jobs are located where the people are. The money is were the business is transacted. And the detractions from the reality of life are found were the 'Sport Games' are played to entertain the mob.

This is Democracy at work. People choose to survive in this debased environment, even though many wish to escape to a society were rational behavior is cherished. But few have the nerve to leave and even less the will to admit that their community is the cause of the demise of out country.

Skinner's rats had their behavior molded and modified with repeated S-R influences. The residents of Metropolis now act more like these rats, than the responsible citizen of a Free Republic. Managing behavior was the agenda that B F was researching. It was the perfect disguise that Secular Humanism needed to develop the techniques to seduce the ill informed into accepting and choosing a deadly house for them to reside. We are all told that we must adapt to the urban environment, that is, the social system and socialistic political regime, rather than adapting the environment to his own vision and will. Government would be the solution for the problems that were created to require more bureaucratic control. Skinner was far more successful in his real goal than most give him credit.

America has a terminal disease that can be traced directly to the inhabitants of our major cities. The fleas that transmit this deadly plague reside within the soulless solicitors of the tolerance and non judgmental culture. They are the breeders of social decay and the virus that contaminates our values and traditions. What a legacy for Civilization, these sponsors of the urbane sophisticate promote! The heights of Western Civilization have been destroyed, not only from the barbarian that pillages our borders, but has been sold out by the Fifth Column that has stolen our institutions. In place of a defense of our precious values, we have been led through the maze of decadence and degeneration, all for the reward of a tainted piece of cheese.

And most continue to rush for life in the big city. For those who think that your own community is immune from this pestilence of perversion, think again. Where will your children seek to establish their roots when it comes time for them to leave the roost? Notions of creating careers, have replaced desires to grow families. America was 'Good' when people were sane. The continued manipulation of decades of deception, coincides with the shift to the cites, rise of the suburbs and the urbanization of smaller communities. Rural values are the mores of America. Respect for your neighbor grows when you neighbor is worthy of deference. How many of you urban folks are able to claim you respect your own next door tenant resident? Or do you not even know their name?

When in doubt, just call them WILLARD . . . A rat is always a rat, and all the behavior modification of all the new B F's will not destroy you dignity if you are willing to resist their corruption of our common heritage.

SARTRE - August 21, 2001

Physics does not change the nature of the world it studies, and no science of behavior can change the essential nature of man, even though both sciences yield technologies with a vast power to manipulate the subject matters.

B(urrhus) F(rederic) Skinner

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