Top 3 ways to gaslight your opponent

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We’ve all been in the discussion that gets…serious.  Meaning, you need to know what you’re talking about…or do you?

In debate, there are various techniques which can be applied, whether you are informed or not.  One such maneuver is gaslighting.

Gaslighting is when you make your opponent think their view on the facts is so wrong, that they don’t understand reality.  Gaslighting is one of the best ways to diminish not only the opponent’s argument, but to diminish the person themselves into a mushy pile of self-doubt.

You could go the way of Trump, who is one of the most shameless and obvious gaslighters, by simply answering, “I never said that.” when everyone knows you did.

But, there are more subtle ways…

So, without further ado, here are the top three ways to gaslight:

Sarcasm

Yes, the tried and true, good old sarcasm. Used best during the years of teenage angst, when you knew so much about the world that you could be self-assured to say the opposite and everyone could tell what was obviously true. (You see what I did there? That was sarcasm).

Sarcasm is great in belittling an opponent and make them question themselves: “Wait, am I off on this?” It’s also good because it makes you feel better, reassuring your world view.

It’s important to remember that sarcasm is best served like revenge: Cold.  This dispassionate delivery makes it clear you’re unemotional and clearheaded about what you believe, even if you’re not.

Character assassination

A close cousin to sarcasm, character judgments are a good way of changing the subject without appearing like you’re changing the subject.  You can slightly shift the discussion to make the other person defend their values, which distracts from the issue and makes it personal.  

This is very easy to do, because most people what to defend themselves, and when they do, it becomes a battle of the ego!  And if you’ve got the bigger ego, congratulations: You’ve already won. Because when you demolish an ego, you take a person’s self-confidence.  Gaslighting!

Whataboutism

This one is an oldie but goodie, and is also related to personal attacks, in that it shifts the focus off of the issue. Whataboutism is perhaps more powerful than character assassination because while it also distracts, it distracts to a similar situation.  Thus being related, it seems like you’re still on topic, when you’re just circling it.

Whataboutism is great because it’s limited only by how many related examples you can come up with.  The discussion can be derailed into endless territories, where comparisons are superficial.  And if you have enough stamina, you can exhaust your opponent into a stupor of self doubt: “Uhh, what were we talking about?”

The trifecta of gaslighting:  Sarcasm, Character assassination, and Whataboutism

With these tools in your kit, you can win any argument, with minimal knowledge and research of the issues. And in the process, you can send your opposition into a tailspin of crippling self-doubt.


Photo from the movie, Gaslight, released 1944
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How to make change real.

Obama-Hope-Change-Forward

We voted for change with a young, idealistic black man with our current president. Today, we look to an old, critical white man for the same change.
The most meaningful change to strive for is in our own life and our own community. The rest is…overblown. The work done up there in the halls of government is important, but not as important as the attention we give to our own lives and neighborhoods.
The best hope to have is in yourself and the friendships you forge.

Follow me and I will take you away from the everyday.

Please feel free to pass this along if you think others would enjoy it.

We can do better, if we choose the people who will do better by us.

plato


“States will never be happy until rulers become philosophers or philosophers become rulers.”

Why are we voting for leaders who are career politicians? Why are we voting for leaders who want to rule us, with their rules, instead of guide us, and empower us?

Actually, we’re not voting for leaders. We are voting for managers, accountants, and technicians. Let’s vote for leaders, instead. Leaders who want to inspire us to do better in our life, not give us a life where the best deal becomes the paternal controls of a corporate employer driven by profits, or putting our retirement money in irresponsible investment bank 401k’s.

We can do better, if we choose the people who will do better by us.

It’s always been up to us. Despite all the money in politics, the biggest factor still comes down to your vote.


Follow me and I will take you away from the everyday.

If this is something you care about, then SHARE it. Let’s get out of the stands and into the game. Let’s interact.

Ideas first. Politics second.

Ideas first. Politics second.


Instead of finding government representatives who hold your ideals, find the citizens who do, and get behind them.

Real change is from us, and how we live our lives, not out legislators.
The biggest impact we make is through the ideals we use to live our lives.


Follow me and I will take you away from the everyday.

How you can best influence your government this election

Money in politics is like the issue of banning guns: It’s more theoretical than realistic, unless you can absolutely eliminate both. How to stop money from flowing around all the regulations into a candidate’s account? How to pull over 300 million guns from their current owners in America? It’s impractical, and it’s a distraction. It’s a distraction from the fact that we have the freedom (which we’ve largely refused to exercise) to vote for candidates who don’t receive immense campaign contributions, candidates who are outside of the two party system. If we are willing to give up the right to donate money to whoever we want,  because the regular American is seen as too ignorant and dumb to vote more mindfully and go outside of the two party system…Then this is a deplorable notion and we don’t deserve to have the freedom to vote or to own firearms. This is an issue that does not empower the individual, but in fact disempowers them. Specifically, it takes their power to spend their money how they see fit, and it takes the power of the individual to think for themselves and to vote for the BEST CANDIDATE. Instead, it solidifies an already cemented foundation of the “Two party” Party, holding us hostage through fear of throwing votes away.


Follow me and I will take you away from the everyday.

The Pope only wants to help

VATICAN-POPE-AUDIENCE The Pope gave his blessing to campaign finance reform. But does the Pope know about campaign finance? Campaign finance is an issue created by the two-party system culture, a culture which perpetuates the notion that their system is the one and only institution of electoral government. Any attempts to help us vote for “clean” candidates within this system, although good-intentioned, only serve to disempower and dumb-down an American populace that desperately needs to become more aware of the issues and, more importantly, how much power it truly holds to vote outside of this system. The influence of the two parties plants the fear in people that they should not “throw their vote away” on candidates outside of the ones compromised within the Democratic/Republican oligarchy. The obvious truth is that we do have the freedom to vote for candidates outside the two-party system. Our power needs to be exercised… through what we buy, where we bank, how we help our own communities, and WHO WE VOTE FOR, which is still the biggest factor that determines who gets elected, regardless of how much money comes from special interests.

Following a party means following a bias.

Insanity is voting for the lessor of 2 evils

I’m amazed how many in the US could staunchly defend a political leader, or a party, given how the government and corporate institution are so intertwined and how disconnected from the community these institutions naturally have become as they have grown to their present size.

Maybe because the issues have been simplified into a reactive dualism, such as if the right takes a stance, you step just to its left and play the relativist instead of thinking about the issue, or vice-versa.

Shades of gray that require contextual and independent thinking have become the black and white of following.

Will this offensive cartoon determine how you vote?

Is this an offensive cartoon?

Thinking this way about Democrats is just as wrong as thinking that Republicans are selfish, judgmental moralists.

There are plenty of those people in both Parties.

This is funny because it is a cartoon, but it’s a lot less funny because it’s dividing us based on ideology…an ideology that I don’t see being put into practice by either party. Meanwhile, bigger issues are neglected as both parties are supporting deficit spending, market manipulation (see the last one’s disastrous result in 2008), and protecting us from unseen enemy by waging perpetual war and taking our right to trial (NDAA 2012)

What do you think is important in this year’s election?

Are you voting based on ideology or action?