Brain Slugs

14 Jul

Weird title I know. I was watching Comedy Central (the channel I frequent), and the Simpson’s creator’s other show Futurama was on. If you haven’t seen the show before, its about a spaceship crew and their life in the future. Frye ( a human traveled into the future by cryogenic technology) visits a political convention where a plethora of parties exist (the political spectrum is not bipartisan like it is today). Frye talks to the Brain Slug party run by 2 people being controlled by 2 brain slugs. The slugs are attached and visible on the outside of the people’s head. The people look phased out and their mouths are open. This scenario sounds morbid, but it is all for comedy and not for smart satirical purposes. Those slugs make me think about the past and the future and how things control people through conformism and not by an actual slug sucking on and controlling our brains.

As I watched this episode of Futurama, I laughed but was provoked into deep thought about the brain slugs we deal with every day that make us do what everyone else is doing, or the brain slugs that control us into doing things we wouldn’t really do.

These brain slugs being thought of in conformism makes me think of all of the ways that conformism distorts our thoughts. There is even a fallacy of logic about thinking a certain way or deciding to do something just because it is done or thought by someone else, therefore you should to it as well. After seeing this episode of Futurama I decided to do a thought storm in post form about all the ways a ‘brain slug’ makes us conform to certain things or people.

One obvious and daily way that we are pressed and often forced to conform is through peer pressure. The things that our peers decide to do are often more powerful in our mind than we may think of peer pressure at face value. When there is a group of peers, whether of youth or adults, a thing that is widely accepted by the group is powerful in the mind of every member of that peer group. If most of the members of the peer group accept an idea/philosophy or a thing to do/event yet one or a few people in the group do not exactly approve, those few members may most likely accept or do that thing or idea because of that pressing and forceful power that peer pressure has. This powerful force has presence in peer groups extremely small of a few people, to extremely large groups that all happen to say they agree. This peer group can be infinitely large. When these peer groups get infinitely large, conformism has enormous precedent. This is what I thought of when I saw that cartoon brain slug attached to a person’s head on television. This tight  knit peer group unit encompassing a lot of people has what I would like to call a brain slug effect. I just coined that term. It is amazing how much power this form of group has on each individual member. I have personally felt that form of pressing force to agree and conform. This pressure exists, because if a person in a peer group where pressure is in effect does not conform and thinks differently or does differently, they will be looked down upon, and not accepted making themselves look bad. This cast down effect is what people do not want, therefore they conform to the group from this pressure.

Another way that people have immense pressing force to conform is when a tyrannical intolerant dictatorial government controls the land a group of people live in. If a person lives in a country that they cannot leave of devout persistent Catholics, and the dictator is Catholic and states that all citizens must be Catholic, that person has a large amount of pressure among them to be Catholic as well if they want to survive. Many governments have existed where one political party or religion or belief is accepted, and if one does not believe in that thing, they will be killed (like the Muslim countries for example). Going back to my Catholic country scenario, if that person is Presbyterian and actively practices Presbyterianism, that person faces death. No one wants to die. This pressure forces people like this Presbyterian to conform. I am not saying that all of the  people in this situation would conform, but most of them to protect their lives.

Governmental forms do not only force people to conform through dictatorship intolerance with death to anti conformists, but they do so with forms that make each person equal to another. Forms of government like socialism and communism that pay each person the same amount regardless of the level of job and the amount of work. These forms of government do things to the people like the pay structure to make each person the same as the next person. This occurs by dictatorship and tyranny that kills people who do not conform, but by the equal pay structure and treating everyone the same, and therefore making everyone equal in all aspects is done by a brain slug effect by way of making the model appealing to every person. The peer pressure, and the death pressure make people conform by way of threatening them with something, but the socio-communist government form that makes everyone the same can possibly look glamorous and appealing before it is experienced. This form of the brain slug effect gets people to conform by making the situation look good. Treating everyone as equally as possible sounds pretty good right? This model of government looks the worst to me because (as in Rand’s Anthem) everyone is made equal enough that the only difference we have between each other is possibly our job and our citizen number.

Governments can be similar or different from this socio-communist brain slug effective government. I mean to say this by using Adolf Hitler and the Nazi Party. Germany was in debt and in a very low economic period after World War I, and when countries and economies are down and in need, anything that may only help a little, looks ever appealing. Hitler became chancellor because of how appealing the Nazi party’s presence looked in German government. When Hitler coerced the head of the government to step down for him, Hitler took everything over in Germany. He then marched the Nazi soldiers into neighboring countries and spread his soon to be dictatorship. Because of the down times, Hitler looked appealing, but then ruled with a tyrannical and intolerant dictatorship. So, what I mean to say is that governments can be a hybrid between the three brain slug effective models I have previously stated. Hitler and the Nazi’s were a hybrid between the totally dictatorial tyrannical government and the socio-communist government models, and had almost a doubly hard hitting brain slug effect.

The bad thing about these brain slug effects is that they may make everyone happy at first, but then later they piss everyone off. But by that time, it is too late and everything has been done.

If you can think of any other brain slug effective models let me know in the comments below this post.

My point for thinking about how thinks are brain slug effective is that we should not try to be similar to everyone else. The world is awesome for its people and how we are all different from each other. Each person and our differences make the world awesome. These models that are brain slug effective try for some reason to mess up that difference each person has between each other.

My main point that I eventually come to from showing how things are brain slug effective, is:

Whenever possible do what you want do to in every aspect of life regardless if it seems a little bit conformist, because nothing anyone wants to do results in brain slug effects as I have describe them.

Thanks for the support!


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