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> Irrational Fear Of Terrorists?
Todd Simpson
post Jun 6 2016, 09:06 PM
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It seems to me and many other folks that perhaps we, as a country, have become a bit OCD in our fear of "Death by Terrorism". Just to put things in perspective. . According to snopes.com, in 2015, 21 toddlers shot and killed themselves or others. That same year, 19 Americans died at the hands of potential or suspected Islamic terrorists. These numbers take into account the mass shootings in San Bernardino by a Muslim man.

Read more at http://www.snopes.com/toddlers-killed-americans-terrorists/

So in the United States, Toddlers finding guns end up causing more deaths than all the terrorists combined, on our soil anyway. In reality, obesity, alcoholism, and prescription pills (In 2014, more than 14,000 people died from overdoses involving prescription opioids per the CDC) kill far more people every year. Yet we don't seem as freaked out about those. hmm.

Todd

This post has been edited by Todd Simpson: Jun 6 2016, 09:06 PM


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klasaine
post Jun 7 2016, 02:16 AM
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There's actually an academic name for that - the over reaction to an exaggerated existential 'danger' - it's known as "Terror Management Theory".
Fear of death from this existential cause - real, imagined or just exaggerated, in turn, engenders a defense of one’s cultural worldview. Consequently, the theory predicts that if the salience of one’s mortality (i.e., dying) is raised, the world view will be more heavily endorsed to buffer the resulting anxiety. Under conditions of heightened mortality potential, defense and justification of the 'ideal' worldview (whatever that would be?) should be intensified. Thereby decreasing tolerance of opposing views and social, cultural, and political alternatives. When confronted with thoughts of their own mortality, people appear to shun and/or punish outsiders and those who threaten the status of the cherished worldviews.

Politicians from all sides, have throughout history ALWAYS used this tactic.
It's as simple as the classic 'remember when' or 'before we had this' or 'back in the good old days'. It works because people generally have a very rosy, revisionist and distorted view of the past.

This post has been edited by klasaine: Jun 7 2016, 02:17 AM


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Todd Simpson
post Jun 7 2016, 04:31 AM
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This is one of the most well thought out replies I've ever read. Nice!! Of course, you are spot on here. Nailed it outta the gate. The cause/effect of this type of thing is nothing short of propaganda IMHO and it's always worked, just like you say. Sadly, folks can't always tell when they are being manipulated by others, including the media. sad.gif

I left the stats on booze out but what the heck.
https://www.niaaa.nih.gov/alcohol-health/ov...-and-statistics
  • Nearly 88,0009 people (approximately 62,000 men and 26,000 women9) die from alcohol-related causes annually, making it the fourth leading preventable cause of death in the United States.10
88,000 people a year die from booze and we don't get freaked out by that at all. But if you watch any news program, you'll be convinced the baddies are gonna get ya, somehow, someday soon. When in reality you have more chance of being by something mundane like obesity or heart disease. Per the CDC

– You are 35,079 times more likely to die from heart disease than from a terrorist attack

– You are 33,842 times more likely to die from cancer than from a terrorist attack


So we get worked up, as a nation, about something that is a statistically insignificant threat and it makes us more ok with trading freedom for security, more ok with spending billions on the military instead of education/job training, etc. Also, it sells commercial time on TV news. If they just ran stories about how we are killing ourselves off MUCH faster than the baddies, nobody would watch the news at all smile.gif

Todd


QUOTE (klasaine @ Jun 6 2016, 09:16 PM) *
There's actually an academic name for that - the over reaction to an exaggerated existential 'danger' - it's known as "Terror Management Theory".
Fear of death from this existential cause - real, imagined or just exaggerated, in turn, engenders a defense of one’s cultural worldview. Consequently, the theory predicts that if the salience of one’s mortality (i.e., dying) is raised, the world view will be more heavily endorsed to buffer the resulting anxiety. Under conditions of heightened mortality potential, defense and justification of the 'ideal' worldview (whatever that would be?) should be intensified. Thereby decreasing tolerance of opposing views and social, cultural, and political alternatives. When confronted with thoughts of their own mortality, people appear to shun and/or punish outsiders and those who threaten the status of the cherished worldviews.

Politicians from all sides, have throughout history ALWAYS used this tactic.
It's as simple as the classic 'remember when' or 'before we had this' or 'back in the good old days'. It works because people generally have a very rosy, revisionist and distorted view of the past.


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AK Rich
post Jun 7 2016, 06:10 PM
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Even though what happened on 9/11/01 was against the odds, it happened nevertheless.
Now crunch the numbers on a global scale.
All of those stats/comparisons can be changed with one single attack.
The chances of your home burning down aren't that great either but we all have smoke detectors and fire extinguishers.
The odds aren't that great that you will be in an automobile accident, but we are all required to have insurance and wear seat belts.
In fact there are many bad things that have a very low probability of happening but we take precautions anyway don't we?
Maybe we could do without the TSA at airports though. wink.gif
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Todd Simpson
post Jun 7 2016, 08:00 PM
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It's a shame we don't take better precautions against the bad things that happen all the time per the stats I posted in the previous post for sure then. We know we are tens of thousands of times more likely to die from prescription pills, obesity, booze, etc. Yet those numbers keep happening. While the things that are very unlikely to kill us, seem to drive our entire political process and spending. It just seems very backwards on an objective level to me. sad.gif Sadly, our 24 hour for profit news cycle is a beast that must be fed and feeding it scary stuff leads to better ratings and more ad spend form various big biz clients.

I gotta say I think we were better off when news was considered a loss leader by the networks and more of a moral responsibility than a cash machine. The profit motive doesn't serve journalism imho. It tends to water it down and turn it in to "scare tactics" to frighten or anger people in to watching. As a result we get a very distorted view of the world since the producers know a headline like "Isis coming to get you" will sell advert space. sad.gif Where a headline like "you are eating/drinking yourself to death" won't.


QUOTE (AK Rich @ Jun 7 2016, 01:10 PM) *
Even though what happened on 9/11/01 was against the odds, it happened nevertheless.
Now crunch the numbers on a global scale.
All of those stats/comparisons can be changed with one single attack.
The chances of your home burning down aren't that great either but we all have smoke detectors and fire extinguishers.
The odds aren't that great that you will be in an automobile accident, but we are all required to have insurance and wear seat belts.
In fact there are many bad things that have a very low probability of happening but we take precautions anyway don't we?
Maybe we could do without the TSA at airports though. wink.gif


This post has been edited by Todd Simpson: Jun 7 2016, 08:04 PM


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PosterBoy
post Jun 8 2016, 05:17 AM
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We became fairly used to terror threats in the 70s and 80s in Britain, from the IRA. If you ever went to London around Christmas time you almost expected bomb warnings and places to be evacuated. Guys in Belfast were living with the threat and military presence day in day out.


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Spock
post Jun 8 2016, 02:49 PM
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People downplayed the risks involved in Europe too and look at what has happened to Germany, Belgium and the no-go zones in Britain.

If a child accidentally kills someone with a gun they kill 1 person - in contrast one person with the intent of causing casualties en masse is a far greater danger with ever growing potential and a lax view of security in the name compassion and acceptance.

Of course this post is to call out a nationalistic view as xenophobic but when components of the indigenous culture vehemently deny the potential risks of allowing an influx of a culture that is not interested in assimilation it's irresponsable.

All conservatives are wanting is to go back to the days when people entered the country legally, such as through Ellis Island. For the immigrants to accept the values and culture of our country - not use our freedoms in an attempt to stifle our basic constitutional rights.

If people wish to come to our country legally, more power to them. But to embrace illegal immigration in the name of political correctness and call it compassion is on par with the naivety of Neville Chamberlain to Adolph Hitler.

While I enjoyed reading Klasaine's response it in no way means that people that are pro-Trump policies suffer from any sort of paranoid delusion.

Look at the violent protests at Trump rallies. It's ridiculous. You don't see Trump supporters intimidating people at Sanders or Clinton rallies. And it's these "enlightened" social justice warriors that tend to keep their head in the sand when it comes to risk potential.

If the original OP is hinting at gun control - take away guns because someone is more likely to be shot by a toddler than a terrorist (at this current time), then the only people that would be disarmed would be the law abiding people - the criminals will always have guns. You can't punish everyone and take everyone's protection away because of the irresponsibility of a few. If we're going to outlaw firearms we should outlaw automobiles first.

I'm very excited with this new phase of the election. I can't wait for Trump to open the flood gates on the corruption of the Clintons. Corruption that has been known and ignored for decades.

I'm looking forward to a Trump presidency to see if he can actually beat the globalist machine of NAFTA and the TPP and bring jobs back to America - pre 1996.

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klasaine
post Jun 8 2016, 03:42 PM
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I think it's worth noting that Terror Management Theory goes back to 1651. Thomas Hobbes, 'Leviathan'.

In a nutshell, Hobbes argued for rule by an absolute sovereign. That constant civil war was a state of nature. He called it the war of all, against all - and that it could only be avoided by a strong, undivided government.

Nowhere has this shown to be more true than in the Middle East. We depose the strong man and all 'tribal' hell breaks loose.

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Todd Simpson
post Jun 8 2016, 09:29 PM
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Very true indeed. Every country we have gone to and "helped" has disintegrated into a endless quagmire of civil war and breeding ground for groups far worse than the ones originally in power. sad.gif

QUOTE (klasaine @ Jun 8 2016, 10:42 AM) *
I think it's worth noting that Terror Management Theory goes back to 1651. Thomas Hobbes, 'Leviathan'.

In a nutshell, Hobbes argued for rule by an absolute sovereign. That constant civil war was a state of nature. He called it the war of all, against all - and that it could only be avoided by a strong, undivided government.

Nowhere has this shown to be more true than in the Middle East. We depose the strong man and all 'tribal' hell breaks loose.



Not a huge fan of gun control personally, as I"m a proud gun owner smile.gif The post was really just about what I was talking about in terms of real vs not so real threats to our lives per the stats. Not to say terrorism isn't real, it is. It's sadly become the Orwellian "forever war" that mostly serves to eliminate freedom in favor of the appearance of security. sad.gif

QUOTE (Spock @ Jun 8 2016, 09:49 AM) *
People downplayed the risks involved in Europe too and look at what has happened to Germany, Belgium and the no-go zones in Britain.
.

I'm looking forward to a Trump presidency to see if he can actually beat the globalist machine of NAFTA and the TPP and bring jobs back to America - pre 1996.



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fkalich
post Jun 8 2016, 11:13 PM
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You are pointing out an instance where the common public perception is a reflection of how minds in our culture have been turned into Silly Putty by the entertainment industries, most notably what we call "the News". In this case terrorist "shoot um up" stories are entertaining to the general public, and the after effect is that they develop an unrealistic and exaggerated perception of the dangers, fearing things that are highly unlikely ever to touch their personal lives, or the lives of anyone close to them.

Neil Postman wrote a prophetic book on this subject in 1985. It is dated a bit of course due to the technologies of the time, but his thesis still holds, even more so now after cable TV and Internet. Still you can see that under the Amazon category "TV & Video Engineering" it is the #1 best seller.

http://www.amazon.com/Amusing-Ourselves-De...ooks&sr=1-1

I have read some other books on the subject, but all have paled in comparison to Postman, notwithstanding it's being written in the pre Cable TV/Internet age.

You can also find interviews of Neil Postman on youtube.

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jstcrsn
post Jun 8 2016, 11:54 PM
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QUOTE (Todd Simpson @ Jun 6 2016, 09:06 PM) *
It seems to me and many other folks that perhaps we, as a country, have become a bit OCD in our fear of "Death by Terrorism". Just to put things in perspective. . According to snopes.com, in 2015, 21 toddlers shot and killed themselves or others. That same year, 19 Americans died at the hands of potential or suspected Islamic terrorists. These numbers take into account the mass shootings in San Bernardino by a Muslim man.

Read more at http://www.snopes.com/toddlers-killed-americans-terrorists/

So in the United States, Toddlers finding guns end up causing more deaths than all the terrorists combined, on our soil anyway. In reality, obesity, alcoholism, and prescription pills (In 2014, more than 14,000 people died from overdoses involving prescription opioids per the CDC) kill far more people every year. Yet we don't seem as freaked out about those. hmm.

Todd

WHAT , have you completely forgot about 9-11
Google for yourself how many illegal Muslim immigrants enter the the US every year and just ask yourself , Why
it seems so many people want to find long reports to help support their opinions and all along forget about common sense

This post has been edited by jstcrsn: Jun 9 2016, 12:28 AM
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klasaine
post Jun 9 2016, 01:59 AM
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QUOTE (Todd Simpson @ Jun 8 2016, 01:29 PM) *
Not to say terrorism isn't real, it is. It's sadly become the Orwellian "forever war" that mostly serves to eliminate freedom in favor of the appearance of security. sad.gif


And this is the essence of 'Leviathan' and more recently Terror Management Theory. *Which refers to managing us with terror (not managing terror).
The powers that be: big money, all govt. (big or small), politicians, law enforcement, the military (industrial complex, not the actual soldiers) - they want to scare the living shit out of us so that we give up freedoms, part with our money, agree to some of the stupid shit they propose and be suspicious of everything and everybody that doesn't fit into our 'world view'. Of course it only really works when the majority of a population is willing to be that frightened.

In my opinion and it is truly just my opinion and really more my feeling or instinct as a human being, is that a threatening and/or protectionist posture and approach to China, Russia, Mexico, etc., whether it be matters of trade or immigration, displays fear not strength.


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Spock
post Jun 9 2016, 03:03 AM
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Speaking of Orwellian, did anyone catch this story...


Amazon Erases Orwell Books From Kindle
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Todd Simpson
post Jun 9 2016, 05:27 AM
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Crsn: Nope, I have not and will never forget about 9-11. Not sure how you came to that conclusion. But it's just not the case. I don't think anyone can forget it. I was just trying to make a point about perception vs reality.

I'm not sure what you are getting at with your question here sad.gif Please just tell us smile.gif Why are so many people doing what you suggest (e.g. finding long reports and forgetting about common sense)?


QUOTE (jstcrsn @ Jun 8 2016, 06:54 PM) *
WHAT , have you completely forgot about 9-11
Google for yourself how many illegal Muslim immigrants enter the the US every year and just ask yourself , Why
it seems so many people want to find long reports to help support their opinions and all along forget about common sense


klasaine BINGO!! smile.gif I have to agree entirely. Well said smile.gif George Orwell seems to have had it right all along. Even to the the level of "Thought Crime" with our every web search/post being archived and sifted through, saying the wrong thing online, just expressing a thought, can get you in serious trouble and/or declared "a person of interest". Just a sad state of affairs.

Todd


QUOTE (klasaine @ Jun 8 2016, 08:59 PM) *
And this is the essence of 'Leviathan' and more recently Terror Management Theory. *Which refers to managing us with terror (not managing terror).
The powers that be: big money, all govt. (big or small), politicians, law enforcement, the military (industrial complex, not the actual soldiers) - they want to scare the living shit out of us so that we give up freedoms, part with our money, agree to some of the stupid shit they propose and be suspicious of everything and everybody that doesn't fit into our 'world view'. Of course it only really works when the majority of a population is willing to be that frightened.

In my opinion and it is truly just my opinion and really more my feeling or instinct as a human being, is that a threatening and/or protectionist posture and approach to China, Russia, Mexico, etc., whether it be matters of trade or immigration, displays fear not strength.


It's scary on the surface for sure, but they were just responding to copyright infringement, so they say smile.gif You can still get legit versions of 1984 on there.
QUOTE (Spock @ Jun 8 2016, 10:03 PM) *
Speaking of Orwellian, did anyone catch this story...


Amazon Erases Orwell Books From Kindle


Fkalich: Thanks for that! I'll have to check it out. He seems spot on. What he is on about in that book seems to be aligned with one of my previous posts if the amazon preview is accurate. It's largely the media, just trying to stay alive and make a buck, scaring us straight so to speak and making us angry , just to encourage eyeballs on the screen in order to charge more for add space. They have found the soft spot in our cultural cranium and they are poking it with a stick for the sake of increased revenue.


QUOTE (fkalich @ Jun 8 2016, 06:13 PM) *
You are pointing out an instance where the common public perception is a reflection of how minds in our culture have been turned into Silly Putty by the entertainment industries, most notably what we call "the News". In this case terrorist "shoot um up" stories are entertaining to the general public, and the after effect is that they develop an unrealistic and exaggerated perception of the dangers, fearing things that are highly unlikely ever to touch their personal lives, or the lives of anyone close to them.

Neil Postman wrote a prophetic book on this subject in 1985. It is dated a bit of course due to the technologies of the time, but his thesis still holds, even more so now after cable TV and Internet. Still you can see that under the Amazon category "TV & Video Engineering" it is the #1 best seller.

http://www.amazon.com/Amusing-Ourselves-De...ooks&sr=1-1

I have read some other books on the subject, but all have paled in comparison to Postman, notwithstanding it's being written in the pre Cable TV/Internet age.

You can also find interviews of Neil Postman on youtube.


This post has been edited by Todd Simpson: Jun 9 2016, 05:19 AM


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Spock
post Jun 9 2016, 11:31 AM
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I just don't see how the fear of terrorism is an irrational fear. We can look at Europe as a prime example of consequences of unfiltered immigration and we are headed in the same direction. Of course I understand that using this fear is a way to get the public to give up liberties for safety - just like Rahm Emmanuel said "never let a crisis go to waste".

On the other hand, not being vigilant is careless. If by our vote we can side with an idea to secure our borders, should that be deemed irrational? It is being cast as racist though (big surprise huh).

The ease at which our entire economy could come to a stand still is disastrous. 1 EMP blast, 1 computer hack could shut our grid down indefinitely. That's not irrational fear - that's fact.

As well, I don't see anything irrational or protectionists being raised concerning China or Russia or Mexico. It's time we do something about our relations and how we conduct business with those countries. And there's not a blanket solution to be made for all of those mentioned as each relationship is unique. However I do believe we could have much better ties with Russia if our foreign policy wasn't as imperialist as it is. We would have to rewrite the books on how we conduct trade (NAFTA) with China among other countries. This subject would require a topic of its own.

That we are pouring money into globalist initiatives outside our borders, giving aid to illegal immigrants while our citizens and vets are ignored is outrageous. Think of the social and domestic programs we could easily afford if we weren't throwing money into "fighting for our freedoms" overseas.

The list for why we need change is extensive but easily fits under this title as anytime someone brings up an position against the status quo it seems to be labeled fear mongering or racist if it doesn't side with the progressive agenda.

Who would have thought just 5 years ago that we would be seriously debating bathroom policy and how to classify someone's gender.
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Todd Simpson
post Jun 9 2016, 12:00 PM
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Spock: Based on the stats I posted, terrorism is used as a "fear tool" by the media to scare us in to watching the news. That was my main point. Terrorism is often billed as being an immediate threat to us while in fact, our own eating/drinking/smoking/prescription pill habits are TENS OF THOUSANDS of times more likely to kill us. Those things are the actual broad threat, according to the numbers. However, none of that sells ad space on the news.

The events in Europe were terrible to be sure. The good news is, we are much more integrationist toward Muslims in the U.S. than in Europe. In Europe they are herded in to ghettos and get involved with extremist organizations in order to have a voice.

Sadly, no matter what we do in terms of wall building and law making can really stop the things that scare people. Where there is a will there is a way, they say. Not to say we should do nothing, or not be vigilant, we should be. But we should also realize that walls and rules won't stop these people. Never have, never will. Only by integrating them in to our society and economy, just like we have been doing, can we keep all ethnic groups invested in the American Dream IMHO. smile.gif

QUOTE (Spock @ Jun 9 2016, 06:31 AM) *
I just don't see how the fear of terrorism is an irrational fear. We can look at Europe as a prime example of consequences of unfiltered immigration and we are headed in the same direction. Of co


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Spock
post Jun 9 2016, 02:45 PM
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QUOTE (Todd Simpson @ Jun 9 2016, 07:00 AM) *
Only by integrating them in to our society and economy, just like we have been doing, can we keep all ethnic groups invested in the American Dream IMHO. smile.gif


I could not agree less.

You integrate groups of immigrants through legal means. Immigrants that are here by legal means and are wishing to assimilate into our culture and ideals. You don't give illegal criminals with no interest in assimilation blanket amnesty. To do so would not be anything resembling vigilance.
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AK Rich
post Jun 9 2016, 05:14 PM
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QUOTE (Todd Simpson @ Jun 9 2016, 03:00 AM) *
Spock: Based on the stats I posted, terrorism is used as a "fear tool" by the media to scare us in to watching the news. That was my main point. Terrorism is often billed as being an immediate threat to us while in fact, our own eating/drinking/smoking/prescription pill habits are TENS OF THOUSANDS of times more likely to kill us. Those things are the actual broad threat, according to the numbers. However, none of that sells ad space on the news.


None of that sells ad space on the news? It IS the news and all of those things you mention are talked about on the news quite a bit and also come to us in the form of public service announcements. You can see stories on all of those topics quite often in the news (eating, drinking, smoking, pills etc) especially the morning shows such as the Today show , Good Morning America etc.
As an example. Most recently we have lost Prince and as it turns out, abuse of prescription medication is the reason why and as a result there have been numerous stories on the dangers of abusing prescription medications.
If the dangers of bad eating habits etc have not been talked about, how would we know about the benefits of eating healthy or the dangers of abusing prescription meds or smoking and drinking? We just went out and found info on these dangers on our own?

It is interesting that I didn't see any concern from you when the current admin renewed and expanded on the Patriot Act, and where was the outrage when we learned more about the NSA's warrantless wire tapping?

http://articles.latimes.com/2013/aug/19/op...-obama-20130819

Since we are discussing irrational fears. Is there an irrational fear of Conservatism? ohmy.gif

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klasaine
post Jun 9 2016, 05:15 PM
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It's not the fear of terrorism that is irrational, it's the (irrational) amount of emphasis on it.
We should absolutely be vigilant and aware but irrational fear is what breeds totalitarianism.






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AK Rich
post Jun 9 2016, 06:14 PM
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Oops. .....

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