The Berenstein Bears and other Alternative Facts

screen-shot-2017-01-23-at-9-14-34-pmI’m convinced that the term Alternative Facts, that slipped out during a recent Trump press conference, is a real thing. A memory implantation strategy that strives to create a collective false memory or what has become known as the Mandela Effect.

The term “Mandela Effect” was coined by self-described “paranormal consultant” Fiona Broome, who has written on her web site that she first became aware of the phenomenon after discovering that she shared a particular false memory — that South African human rights activist and president Nelson Mandela died in prison during the 1980s (he actually died in 2013) — with many other people. Then she began noticing other examples.

Screen Shot 2017-01-23 at 7.45.45 PM.pngOne well known example of the Mandela Effect is the Berenstain Bears. Many people (currently 77% according to one survey) insist that it is and has always been the Berenstein Bears. The creators, Stan and Jan Berenstain should know. This collective misconception is not unique.

False memory experts explain the Mandela Effect as confabulation, where different memories get mixed together to create something that a person comes to believe is true. With the advent of mass media, this phenomenon can be quite contagious and actually implanted by mass media; where it is quite possible for a majority of our population to believe something to be true when it is not.

We aren’t talking about old fashioned propaganda or Winston rewriting old news clippings in Orwell’s 1984. That’s the antiquated and tedious way to control people.

The Internet has made the proliferation of messaging and implanting of facts and/or “alternate facts,” constant and pervasive. We’ve never been exposed to this level of constant competition for our minds. Every modern political faction and every ally they have in the mass media business wants you to subscribe to their version of reality.

The current polarization we are experiencing in our political dialog is the deliberate and inevitable result of this contrived tug of war. Both sides lie and manipulate equally, there is no good or bad forces in play; just different power structures competing for your loyalty.

Just think about the lack of genuine dialog on subjects like climate change, immigration policy or Republicans vs Democrats. We are trained to see black and white, good guys and bad guys…and we are all deceived.

Advances in communication technologies have now made us sitting ducks for manipulation. Internet memes, for example, are overt symbols of this conflict of ideas; with their constant exposure, and viral replication they can implant false information that can easily become an accepted truth by a majority of people in a very short period of time. A Mandela effect of consensus bullshit. Alternate facts, if you will. The proliferation of “fake news” may provide the most extreme method of implanting these false realities, especially when they are in turn converted to bite-sized memes and flooded into brains perpetually tuned into the Internet.

So, with the lines between what’s real and what’s an “alternative fact” becoming so blurred, it is very possible that a majority of our population firmly believes “alternate facts” that have been implanted. Maybe we are simply pawns goaded into promoting one of two competing false realities.

Wake up your latent intellectual curiosity.

You should re-examine every single belief that you hold dear and determine just how it got into your head in the first place; and then get off your ass and research whether it was ever true at all. Because…everything you know may be wrong.

 

 

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