Tag Archives: undue influence

Open Minds On Air: Undue Influence in Pop-Culture Star Trek

From OpenMindsFoundation.org

In this month’s episode, Pearse is joined by Spike Robinson to launch a new series, “Undue Influence in Pop Culture,” where they plan to examine various popular movies, television series and books through the lens of undue influence and coercive control. This month, they compare and contrast two episodes of classic Star Trek: “Return of the Archons” and “A Taste of Armageddon.”

“Return of the Archons” is a classic example of how Hollywood portrays thought control or “brainwashing”, with a population of blissed-out automatons, only breaking out of tranquility for their purge-like Festival – a society completely under the control of a supercomputer, which was programmed six thousand years ago by the “savior” of their race, Landru. The people are glassy eyed and speaking in a strange, stylized sort of language, with no autonomy or independent thought.

However, it is in “Taste of Armageddon” that the real face of cultural coercion can be seen – for two planets fighting a mechanized, computer-calculated war, their cultures have become so tightly controlled that otherwise sane, rational people – people who talk normally and even persuasively about their “system” are so under the influence of their leaders that they will “willingly” step into vaporization booths, rather than face the indoctrinated phobia of what might happen to their world if they do not comply.

Using these two episodes as a starting point, Spike and Pearse discuss what mind control is, what it isn’t, and how our popular culture informs our opinions on this highly complex subject.

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Open Minds On Air episode 1 What is the Open Minds Foundation?

From Open Minds:

We are delighted to announce the first episode of Open Minds On Air. This is the official podcast of the Open Minds Foundation, hosted by Pearse Redmond, Jon Atack, and Yuval Laor.

In this episode, we introduce ourselves and give a little background on what the Open Minds Foundation is working on. We discuss the ever-present threat of the human predator, and how they infect our lives. Also, Jon and Yuval explain the methods and techniques of human predators. They talk about the tactics that these predators employ to gain control over an individual or group. We end the conversation by talking about ways individuals can combat this behavior.

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Show Notes:

Human Predator

Recruitment Seduction

Healthy Skepticism

Blink. Think. Choice. Voice.

Porkins Policy Radio episode 135 Jon Atack on Opening Minds, power of aversion, and the danger of obedience

Friend of the show and frequent guest Jon Atack joins me once again for a wide ranging discussion. We start off by talking about Scientology’s launch of their television channel. Jon and I watch a little bit of Scientology TV live on the air and comment on it. We talk about the stupidity of launching the a media platform this late in the game, and comment on David Miscavige’s increasingly manikin like face. We then move onto a discussion of Jon’s book Opening Minds: The Secret World of Manipulation, Undue Influence and Brainwashing. Jon starts off by talking about why he decided to write the book and why he choose to cover the topics involved. Jon and I discuss how Opening Minds deals less with cults such as Scientology or the Moonies, and more with how the human actually works, and why we are so susceptible to undue influence. We talk about how our minds are conditioned from a very young age to be obedient to authority, and how this can lead us into very toxic relationships and situations. Jon and I use the Louise Ogborn strip search phone call scam case as an example. Later Jon and I discuss the loaded term hypnosis and how most people experience some form of hypnotic or altered state throughout their daily life. Jon also talks about how salesman use these tactics in order to make you buy whatever product there are hocking.

In the second hour Jon and I explore the cult like realities of terrorist groups such as Al Qaeda and salafi cults like Hizb ut-Tahrir. Later we explore the notion of aversion and how that is one of the strongest factors at play in the formation and devotion to a high control group. We talk about aversion as it pertains to racist cults like the Aryan Brotherhood or even the KKK. Jon and I discuss how we have become a society that unites around our aversion. As a society we would rather unite over what we mutually hate rather than a positive ideal. Jon and I talk about the effect this is having and why this opens us up to manipulation, particularly when it comes to the political and economic elite. Later Jon and I discuss the deteriorating political climate that we are in. We touch on the fact that the bar has been lowered to such a level where we now fully accept that politics is entirely corrupt from top to bottom. Jon and I finish by teasing our new exclusive podcast series for the Open Minds Foundation.

Download PPR episode 135

Show Notes:

Open Minds Foundation

Opening Minds: The Secret World of Manipulation, Undue Influence and Brainwashing

Strip search phone call scam

Institute for Propaganda Analysis

Hizb ut-Tahrir

Porkins Policy Radio episode 127 Jon Atack on Undue Influence, and the Open Minds Foundation

Jon Atack joins me again this week for another in depth discussion about cults, high control groups, and the dangers of undue influence. We begin by discussing the concept of being an “ex-Scientologist” or ex cult member in general. We talk about the stigma that this term carries and why it is unfair to categorize people in this way. Jon talks about the the term ex-Scientologist can become a negative defining characteristic of ones life. Jon also touches on the struggles that people go through after leaving a cult of high control group. Jon then defines the term undue influence and what it means in today’s society. We talk about how undue influence is much more complex and pervasive in our society than we may think. Jon and I then turn our focus to the undue influence of the school system and how it is damaging young people. We talk about how schools essentially create robots, and discourage independent thought. Jon also links this to adults desires to be obedient to an authority figure, even if that means inflicting pain and trauma on others.

In the second hour Jon and I talk about how we are all susceptible to undue influence and con artist’s. Jon talks about being nearly conned by scammers in India who allegedly wanted to fix his computer. We then return to the issue of children and young people and how they are continually the victims of predatory behavior. Jon discusses how predators can mean more than simply pedophiles seeking to abuse kids. Jon talks about the nasty every day predatory behavior of teachers, and the problems with the Western system of education. Later Jon and I discuss his recent work at the Open Minds foundation. Jon talks the foundations work in helping to better educate children about predators and toxic relationships. He discusses their work making short animations that will help to give young people a better understanding of the dangers out there. Jon also talks about how we need to better connect with young people through culture and popular cultural means. We also manage to touch on Stefan Molyneux, South Park, and Rick and Morty.

Download PPR episode 127

Show Notes:

Open Minds Foundation

The Open Minds Foundation – the Story So Far

PPR episode 118 Let’s Sell These People a Piece of Blue Sky with Jon Atack

Let’s sell these people A Piece of Blue Sky

Opening Minds: The Secret World of Manipulation, Undue Influence and Brainwashing

Halycon Daze

Voodoo Child (Slight Return)

Porkins Policy Radio episode 118 Let’s Sell These People a Piece of Blue Sky with Jon Atack

This week I am joined by legendary Scientology critic and writer Jon Atack. We begin our conversation by discussing Jon’s time as a Scientologist from 1974-1983 where he attained OT level 5. Jon discusses his disillusionment with Scientology in the 1980’s and the process by which he left the group. Jon also speaks about the the abuse he faced after leaving and the lengths Scientology went to after he published Let’s Sell These People a Piece of Blue Sky. We then move onto Jon’s book and focus on the monumental achievement that it represents in terms of laying out the true history of both L Ron Hubbard and Scientology. Jon and I explore who Hubbard truly was. I ask Jon why history has whitewashed much of Hubbard’s legacy in recent years. We discuss what motivated Hubbard to create Dianetics and form Scientology. Jon talks about Hubbard’s massive drug use and the role that played in his life throughout running the cult. Jon also touches on the theory that Hubbard suffered from temporal lobe epilepsy. We also talk about Michael Meisner’s infiltration of the IRS and Hubbard’s role in orchestrating this.

In the second hour Jon and I discuss the role of the Commodores Messengers. We talk about their power with in Scientology, and how they rose to essentially control the entire cult. I ask Jon about Janis Grady’s new book talking about her time as a Commodores Messenger alongside her brother and sister aboard The Apollo. We explore Hubbard’s use of children within the cult and also explore the allegations of child abuse by Hubbard. We finish the conversation by talking about Jon’s current work with the Open Minds Foundation. Jon talks about their mission and the work that they are doing in exposing cults, undue influence, manipulation, and brainwashing. Jon talks about how gangs, terrorists, pedophiles, sex traffickers, and many other nefarious groups all employ theses tactics in order to control those around them. We also talk about how we as individuals are under constant attack from those wishing to exert undue influence and ways to combat it.

Download PPR episode 118

Show Notes:

Let’s Sell These People a Piece of Blue Sky

Opening Minds: The Secret World of Manipulation, Undue Influence and Brainwashing

Open Minds Foundation

The Toronto Getting Clear Conference on Scientology Hosted by Jon Atack and Jim Beverley

“Never believe a hypnotist” – an investigation of L. Ron Hubbard’s statements about hypnosis and its relationship to his Dianetics.

The Hubbard Intelligence Agency

Scientology: the Church of Hate – An Anti-Social Religion Emerges in the Space Age

Jon Atack blog posts on Open Mind Foundation

Janis Grady’s new book on life in Scientology: Jon Atack’s take, and an excerpt

Scientology Mythbusting with historian Jon Atack

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