Posts Tagged ‘behavioral contagion’

Law of Effect Needs Moral Governance

January 18, 2018

Law of Effect Needs Moral Governance

There are many psychological principles that determine human behavior. They work together in complex ways and the behavioral outcomes of these interactions often appear to be both synergistic and exponential.

For example, being sexually abused twice, 1+1, may not equal a magnitude of disturbance in the victim of 2; it might equal a magnitude of disturbance of 5. Other unfortunate experiences frequently evolve from this person’s troubled behavior and is likely to produce a quickly accelerating rate of more troubled emotions and behaviors.

Of course principles of genetics and biology are of great importance. The interactions between these factors and psychological factors are bi-directional. Therefore, principles of psychology influence behavior and behavior is influenced by bio-genetic factors.

For example, a person born with the genetic factors that determine alcohol addiction will be more motivated to consume alcohol to excess , which in turn, can lead to more physical and psychological problems. These problems can include broken families, road fatalities, ruined business early death due to alcohol related illnesses or suicide.

In the previous example of rape, the victim may turn to drugs or alcohol in order to self-medicate for the fears and anxieties that typically are associated with rapes or other traumas. This can lead to more physical and psychological problems, which could end in bad outcomes for the individual and society.

These individuals could be helped by entering therapy. But many refuse treatment, are only partially assisted, or even fail to benefit in any measurable way.

Any society that designs itself in ways that accidentally, or selfishly, increase such problems for their citizens and then spends increasing revenues and energy to fix the problems is maladaptive and self-defeating. Such cultural designs are on a certain path to cultural decline.

This defines one of modern America’s most severe and worsening self-management problems.

The primary focus of the remainder of this blog will be upon psychological principles, processes and behavioral outcomes.

The great and powerful Law of Effect states that the probability of behavior is controlled by its consequences. The higher an animal is placed upon the phylogentic continuum, the greater the Law of Effect influences that animal’s behavior. Therefore, human behavior (good, bad, or indifferent) is most greatly influenced by the Law of Effect. The behavior of animals lower on the phyologentic scale is less influenced by the law of effect and more so by genetics.

Unfortunately, if  the powerful and natural influences of the Law of Effect and other interacting psychological principles are not guided by commonly accepted moral rules, values and consequences transmitted consistently and synchronously; within families, agencies and organizations (at managerial and governmental levels)…increased rates of bad behaviors within populations will certainly occur.

This is my prediction based upon principles of conditioning and learning theory and behavioral/cognitive social learning theory. My prediction is also informed by my 36 years as a professor of psychology and over 40 years as a private cognitive/behavioral therapist.

The population behavior changes I have seen in America during the course of my adult life (now at 75 yrs.) is largely, though not a singularly result, of a decline in our moral rules and consequences that less and less consistently govern our behavior. The interacting biopsychosocial scientific principles and  behavioral outcomes cause by this erosion of moral rules, values and consequences is what I call Behavioral Contagion. More specifically, Bad Behavioral contagion, leading to increased rates of bad behavior.

For our informal purposes, “bad behaviors” will include those  perceptions, emotions, beliefs and actions that damage the healthy physical and psychological development of children, adolescents and adults. These problems are very expensive and decrease the ability of a society to survive long and well.

To be sure, an entire book could be written about what bad behavior is, and is not, and there would be disagreement about what are good or bad behaviors under various circumstances. Regarding the class of “good behaviors”, I view these as human actions that are incompatible with, or compete with, the bad behaviors as defined above.

Most people would agree that, bad behaviors are neglecting, abusing or abandoning children or other loved ones; becoming addicted to activities or substances; lying, cheating, stealing and murdering, etc.. Most people would would agree that behaviors that are incompatible, or compete with, such actions would be examples of good or non-harmful behavior.

My general definitions, for the sake of this blog, will allow most folks to begin to to think about this complex matter of desirable, pro-social (good), or undesirable antisocial (bad) behavior among residents of our society.

It is important that citizens of America learn to think about such moral values and judgments because they determine the consequences for the actions of  themselves and others (rewards, punishments or no consequences) through their social interactions with others. Just as importantly, in America’s Representative Republic, citizens also influence the moral values, rules and consequences for themselves and others by casting votes for those who will be elected to make and enforce, or change the rules that govern all of us.

So, now comes the big question based upon Behavioral Contagion Theory: What can be done to decrease bad behavioral contagion in America and, as a result, also increase our cultural health and viability? 

Without a doubt, the “wisdom of the ages”, on this matter can be found in the moral precepts of the worlds greatest peaceful religions. My research finds that many scientists who study cultural decline, note that when populations loose their faith in their God’s teachings, they also loose the moral precepts and values important for their culture’s health and viability. This phenomenon appears to be happening to many (perhaps all, to some degree), modern technologically advancing societies in the world. 

I judge that skillfully using the psychological (and genetic/biological) principles of behavioral contagion will naturally decrease rates of bad behavior and increase rates of good behavior in America. But, to achieve this will require that we strengthen the influences of the social agencies, families, churches, schools and media influences that can promulgate and model moral rules and values and also reward conformity to these rules and values with acceptance, praise, recognition, influence, political power and material/financial consequences

Though it is unpopular in America’s increasingly immoral society, withholding these rewards for those who do not follow moral rules is essential. In extreme cases, murder, robbery, rape and child abuse, etc. To ever be effective, Swift and certain punishment must be administered by authorities for these and similar behaviors. 

For this chain of events to occur will require that America’s government (at all levels) cease the restrictions and punishments for America’s traditional and contemporary, peaceful and pro-social religious influences. 

I judge that it is essential to vote only for those public servants who support conservative moral rules and values to guide local, state and national governance. This will naturally catalyze increasing rates of good behavioral contagion in America and decrease rates of bad behavioral contagion.

Wake-Up America: Vote For Conservative Moral Values and Principles!

V. Thomas Mawhinney, Ph.D.

Professor Emeritus of Psychology

Health Services Provider in Psychology

 

 

 

Radical Liberal Hedonists: Destroying America!

January 5, 2018

Radical Liberal Hedonists: Destroying America!

America is rotting from within.

Liberal Hedonists are on the rise. How could it be otherwise?

Over three generations have been raised with fragmented families, decreasing supervision in the home, extended families increasingly far away or fragmented, increasingly permissive school and social morals, decreasing religious influences; the rise of more immediate pleasures, more convenient pleasures and greater magnitudes of pleasures; the incremental legalization of pornography, gambling, recreational drugs and soon (I will bet), legalized prostitution.

All of this has led to an increase in the social ills and disabilities that were once socially sanctioned and more often punished by law. Now many of these social ills and disabilities are now socially acceptable and even legalized.

There is much more that has happened to our American society, inevitably leading to increasing rates of radical liberal hedonistic behavior patterns within our population.

One central theme in all of this is a psychological phenomenon that I call Schedules of Reinforcement Maladaption Contagion. Put differently, when good behaviors are extinguished (not rewarded) and bad behaviors are rewarded (in increasingly dense, immediate, and in greater magnitudes), the rate of good behavior decreases and the rate of bad behavior is increases among animals. Yes, humans are animals.

For our human purposes, I will define good behavior as adaptive-prosocial in nature and bad behavior as self-destructivemaladaptive or antisocial/sociopathic in nature.

My techical name for this cultural phenomenon, as far as I know, originates with me. I use this concept to understand my own analyses of America’s cultural evolutions. On the other hand, the mountain of data supporting my theoretical assertions originate with countless tens of thousands of other researchers in the scientific field of Behavior Analysis over decades of hard work.

America, in spite of a heroic recent increase in more conservative initiatives, appears to destroying itself from within. The radical liberal practices driving increasing rates bad behavioral contagion in America have gone on long enough that they may defy correction.

From a politically strategic perspective, radical liberal politicians understand that an addicted population is theirs to have and exploit. The legalization of known addictive activities and substances to increase the profits and the power of state, local and federal governments as well as politicians is pure organized psychopathy. This social phenomenon was once called organized crime.

The radical liberals have no remorse for the resulting damaged children, teens, and adults. There is no concern for the families destroyed by addiction, or the lives broken and splattered on our highways. There is no angst for the suicides and shattered lives that are now are fueling the bad behavioral contagion that has increasingly afflicted America’s population since the 1960’s.

Again, from a radical liberal strategic perspective, increasing rates of bad behavioral contagion is a desirable accomplishment. Once endemic within America’s population, high rates of self-defeating and self-destructive behavior patterns will provide governments and politicians the rational for demanding more taxes to fund themselves and the programs and agencies they design and build to meet growing population problems. All of this is justification for their increasing control of citizen”s lives.

Radical liberals will gain more money and power in the name of “curing” or “therapizing” the increasing rate of citizen’s physical and behavior problems. The problems that they created in the first place!

We appear to be in the process of realizing our Founding Father’s greatest fear: The Death of America by its own government.

If unchecked, increasing forms of bad behavioral contagion will drown America in a tsunami of its own wasted humanity.

It is every American’s duty to learn about how radical liberals, socialists and anarchists are destroying our Constitution-based America!

The following is only one example: Legalized Marijuana just for pleasure.

Radical Liberal Media Marijuana Propaganda

http://www.thegatewaypundit.com/2018/01/video-cnn-reporter-holds-joints-lights-bong-pot-smoker-live-new-years-eve-broadcast/

Marijuana Damages to Colorado

https://www.usatoday.com/story/opinion/2017/08/07/marijuana-devastated-colorado-dont-legalize-nationally-jeff-hunt-column/536010001/

Psychosis and Marijuana.

http://www.bbc.com/news/health-31480234

Now, you must read this  authoritative review of marijuana effects by NIH.

https://www.drugabuse.gov/publications/drugfacts/marijuana

P.S., To learn much more about marijuana and its effects upon individuals and society, please type the word “marijuana” in my search box on the upper right side of my blog page.

V. Thomas Mawhinney, Ph.D.

Professor Emeritus of Psychology

Practicing Health Services Provider in Psychology

 

America’s Devastating Sexual Problems

December 17, 2017

Some Causes of Sexual Harassment

Well, with regard to sexual harassment, I cannot witness what goes on behind closed doors any better that you can.

I’m sure you have observed that women are increasingly complaining about sexual harassment.

https://www.google.com/search?q=40+more+accused+of+sex+misconduct&rlz=1C1CAFB_enUS693US693&oq=40+more+accused+of+sex+misconduct&aqs=chrome..69i57.14366j0j4&sourceid=chrome&ie=UTF-8

You may note that men only infrequently complain about sexual harassment.

What could account for these gender reporting differences?

The explanations would seem to be limited to learning or biological differences between the sexes and motivational interactions between these two factors.

You could argue that women do less sexual harassing than men. Or, you could argue that men simply complain less about female sexual harassment, but it is all the same. Yes, some would like to argue that there are no gender differences in sexual motivation.

While conducting therapy with both married and dating couples in my psychological practice (36 years and counting), I observe that women seldom complain about not getting enough sex in their relationships; in fact they sometimes complain that their mates are too demanding of sex. Men far-more-often complain that their mates are not so interested in sex.

I learned a rather gross saying while in the Navy. It makes a germane point, so please forgive me for this quote. One “old-salt” stated with great confidence: “Men give love to get sex and women give sex to get love”.

I am certain that there is an element of truth to this rather harsh statement.

When it comes to sex, you can be bet that sexual enticement and coercive entanglement is an “art-form” often practiced by both sexes. However, I am convinced that, more often, men are highly motivated by sex and more prone to such shenanigans.

Feminists most often complain about an unfair balance of power between the sexes (more powerful men, less powerful women). To whatever extent this is true, it could serve as an inducement for males to try to sexually dominate females and for females to weaponize their sexuality.

There is more I would like to say on this matter, but I have a larger point to make.

The point is simply this: The “pornification” of America, along with many other cultural evolutions,  have catalyzed a pervasive increase in our sexual behavior problems.

I hope you will take time to read the following article I published in order to be better informed on this important topic. It is technical in nature, but if you will read it in its entirety, you will gain an increased understanding of what will happen to a society when moral codes of sexual conduct are weakened and a population is bathed in soft and hard pornography.

Please note that the graphics in this article are historical and these trends have vacillated over more recent times. However, a contemporary review of these and other measures assures me that America’s sexual behaviors continue to be devastating social problems.

https://selfdefinition.org/psychology/Behavioral-Sexual-Maladaptation-Contagion-in-America.pdf

V. Thomas Mawhinney, Ph.D.

Professor Emeritus of Psychology

Health Services Provider in Psychology

Behavioral Contagion: The Spread Of Bad Behavior Patterns That Damage Society

September 30, 2016

The following blog was written by me 4/9/10. What follows is a slight revision.

Behavioral Contagion: The Spread Of Bad Behavior Patterns That Damage Society

There are many behavior patterns that are very destructive to our families and to our society.

The various “formally” diagnosed psychological disorders do not cover all of the common self-defeating and culturally damaging forms of human behavior that exist.

For example suicide is not a diagnostic category, though many who commit suicide may have some diagnosable condition (schizophrenia, borderline personality disorder, depression or anxiety, etc.), that may or may not have been diagnosed by a professional. Also, a significant number of suicides are committed by individuals who did not meet the full criteria for any psychological disorder.

Many other behavior problems do not get diagnosed, or they may not have fully met the criteria for a formal diagnosis. But these behavior patterns can still be very damaging to the husbands, wives, children and other people (even strangers) involved.  Examples of these behaviorally contagious problems are poorly conceived marriages or divorce (especially when children are involved), abandonment of children, child and spousal abuse, drug and alcohol abuse, refusal to work, excessive risk-taking and self-injurious behavior, aggressive driving, verbal abuse of others, and gang membership and activities.  Also, highly damaging to our socioculture is a wide range of illegal and antisocial practices such as violent crimes including murder, unsafe and unethical sex, rape (whether a stranger, date, or an acquaintance). There are other common behavior problems that set the stage for a cascade of other social and behavioral problems who’s stressful effects spread beyond the individual with the primary problem, such as pregnancy out-of-wedlock, teenage pregnancy, truancy from school, school dropouts, teen runaways, and homelessness, to name  only a few.

All of  these problem behaviors can increase  in rates of occurrence through numerous mechanisms of biopsychosocial behavioral contagion.

Such behavior problems, and more not mentioned, are self-defeating and damaging to those who do them, and often to other individuals who are somehow involved. As an increasing proportion of a population is stressed and damaged by bad behavioral contagion the summated effects are ultimately a damaging influence upon the socioculture at-large. Without a powerful cultural redesigns, this process can easily become a vicious self-feeding cycle that accelerates a culture’s decline.

The damages that increasing patterns of these bad behaviors can do within a population are easily overlooked. At the surface these troubles will seem like they are separate problems with education, law enforcement, the judicial system, health care, welfare programs,  and government, etc., when in fact they are all connected.

As the quality of the behavior of the people who serve in these social and political systems decline they serve as a catalyst for further increasing rates of bad behavioral contagion. This is exactly what we are seeing now in America and elswhere.

The damages produced by increasing rates of bad behavioral contagion within a population can massively contribute to the decline of sociocultures. This process is a very stealthy one as it increases in degrees.  The larger, the more technologically advanced, complex and interconnected a socioculture is, the greater the damage that increasing rates of bad behavioral contagion will do.

America’s chronic failure to more effectively teach good behavior to its children has increased the rate of bad behavioral contagion within our population with each recent generation. Bad, or maladaptive, behavior is now rapidly increasing within our population and it is a self-perpetuating, synergistic process.

All the therapists in the world will not stem the flood of bad behavior within our population that is fueling the decline of our socioculture. The only real solution to our systemic behavioral contagion problems is prevention. This is much easier said than done and it is the reason that once sociocultures enter a steep decline it is unlikely they will correct this course of events.

America is destroying itself from within. Outside hostile forces are now poised to move in and intensify this destruction.

V. Thomas Mawhinney, Ph.D.    4/9/10, revised 9/30/16

Behavioral Pornographic Contagion: Teenagers

February 24, 2015

Behavioral Pornographic Contagion: Teenagers.

There were once laws against the production of pornography and its distribution in America. This activity was labeled a “vice”. Synonyms for the word vice are: immorality, wrongdoing, wickedness, badness, evil, iniquity, villainy, corruption, misconduct, misdeeds, sin, sinfulness, ungodliness, depravity, degeneracy, dissolution, dissipation, debauchery, decadence, lechery, perversion, crime, turpitude.

These laws were overturned during the 1960’s and were, along with the judgmental words presented above,  fading from existance by the end of the 1970’s.

To be honest, my teen buddies and I would have loved to obtain the explicitly florid and often weird categories of pornography that are now available for free…and just a few clicks away for anyone who “knows how to click”. This, of course,  is exactly why is was once outlawed and described in such condemning (now politically incorrect) terms.

Children have become better at media searches than a great many of their elders. The influences of pornography upon their thinking and actions are now plain to see to anyone who cares to pay attention.

America protected its children and all of its citizens in the 1950’s (and before) from the cultural damages that have been inflicted upon all of us by the legalization and wide-spread distribution of pornography. This form of bad behavioral contagion has catalyzed a host of maladaptive sexual outcomes for children, adults, and families.

If you accept this as true, you must also accept that these results have damaged America’s socioculture at large.

Call me an old fogey if you like, but much more than nostalgia, or bias, has influenced by judgement about this issue. Psychology’s laws and principles have predicted these social outcomes of the legalization of pornography and the subsequent pornofication of our culture.

I am forced, by the evidence, to conclude that America’s earlier generations were fortunate to have been protected from the long-term saturation effects of pornography.

This blog is designed to inform you about why I believe objective evidence supports my conclusion.

Unfortunately, even a single cultural change that has damaged American society cannot be explained in a few sentences. I hope you will spend the time necessary to see why too much freedom, in the form of pornography,  has lead to the sexual chaos that is now damaging America.

The first article below is a blog that I posted about my research findings on the effects of pornography on individuals. This information will help you to see the “big picture” regarding a second recent  news story about kids swapping nude images of themselves and others (“sexting”) on their social media.

https://culturalsurvivalskills.me/2010/03/31/pornography-is-bad-for-america/

http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation/2015/02/21/swapping-nude-images-spells-trouble-teens/23824495/

V. Thomas Mawhinney, Ph.D., 2/22/15

 

 

 

February 13, 2013

 

Stopping The Wreck: Professor’s Research Builds A Case That We’re Losing The Battle To Save American Society

By Bob Caylor of the News Sentinel, Fort Wayne In., November 17, 1994

This is the continuation of the newspaper article explaining my research and theories on America’s decline

 

Part Four

CONTAGION

No one is raised in utter isolation, and people–particularly children–are influenced to an extraordinary degree by what happens to them and around them.

Just as people can spread a cold or the flu among themselves, so can behavior spread.

“That thoughts, emotions and actions can spread from on individual to others is a well-established fact…we have all felt the powerful contagious influence of someone’s yawn and also their happiness, sadness, fear or anger,” Mawhinney said.

“For example, individuals who were born and raised in the circumstances of the ghetto may move into a peripheral area to sell drugs. The greater availability of drugs in this new area will then lead to increased rates of addiction within that segment of the population. Increasing rates of addiction will, in turn, lead to the spread of incompetent and damaging behavior patterns such as juvenile delinquncey, robbery, murder, child neglect and abuse, family disorganization, child abandonment, intellectual impairment and underachievement, and more,” he said.

Although there’s debate over whether sex and violence depicted by the media lower sexual standards and encourage violence, the argument’s over in Mawhinney’s mind.

He’s satisfied that what we see, read and hear influences us, whether it’s news or fiction. He’s convinced by research linking acts of violence on television with increased aggression in toddlers. He’s particularly adamant about the influence of sexual depictions, or worse yet, the intermingling of sexual and violent themes. Sometimes he shows parts of “I Spit on Your Grave” to his students to show them–in stomach-turning detail–an agent of contagion.

“You can go to the video-rental store, in the horror section, and you can see simulated anal rape…and assault by a woman getting even for anal rape. You can see her cut the penis off a man in a bathtub with blood going everywhere and him shrieking…this is contagion,” he said.

As The population increases and as a greater share of the population clusters in urban areas, the density with which people pack together makes contagion a greater risk, he argues.

“I’m just suggesting that the more dense the population, the more likely that the alcoholic’s behavior will impact on more people. The child molester, the pedophiliac, will have hundreds of victims…I think population density is catalytic to contagion, period.”

In the next part five, learn how the mechanisms of Sociocultural Entropy weaken the viability of our Nation.

V. Thomas Mawhinney, Ph.D., 2/13/13

Loosing Battle to Save America: Part One

February 11, 2013

Stopping The Wreck: Professor’s Research Builds A Case That We’re Losing The Battle To Save American Society

By Bob Caylor of the News Sentinel, Fort Wayne In., November 17, 1994

Part One.

V. Thomas Mawhinney, chairman of the psychology department at Indiana University-South Bend, believes that American society as we know it is nearly a goner.

For seven years now, he’s been trying to prove it. He’s been grinding through thousands of pages of statistics, books and research studies, looking for patterns and evidence that support what many feel: Things are getting steadily worse.

Now he’s making his case.

Why now? Because he thinks we have little time to stop the decay of American society. At some point, would-be social engineers won’t be able to stop the train wreck; they’ll just be taking notes as the carnage unfolds.

“I need something that’s simple enough for people to grasp. I’m trying to introduce 250 million people standing on a railroad track to the train that’s coming..to see whether they can organize themselves in time to jump out of the way.” For now, he’s not overly optimistic.

“A rate pressing a bar will not change its behavior because of rewards or punishments unless there is a real close connection–ideally, a half second or less–to the action. I’m not so sure that human beings are any better when it comes to making decisions about the future.” The ideas at the center of his bleak theory of social decay are really pretty simple.

He says the corruption in society–murder, rape child neglect, drug addiction, child molestation, beating, robbing, and the thousand other varieties of misery–don’t spawn in a vacuum. They can spread from one person to another, like rot in a piece of fruit or flu in a crowded office.

As more and more people “catch” evil–or, as he might put it, exhibit maladaptive behaviors–the good have a harder and harder time holding their own.

Here is how he thinks it’s happening.

                             Please see Part two, to be blogged soon.

                            V. Thomas Mawhinney, Ph.D., 2/10/13

The “Devil” Is In The Details and Delayed Outcomes

December 6, 2012

The “Devil” Is In The Details and Delayed Outcomes

Yes, our thoughts about happiness, freedom, and the right to do what we want, whenever we want,  are pleasant to contemplate. We find it logical that we should be able to do whatever we want with our own bodies, or that of others, so long as they are in consent with what we do together.

We feel so good and excited, immediately, when we act upon such thoughts and plans. Unprincipled politicians who grovel and prostitute themselves are eternally inclined to feed the wants and pleasures of the masses in return for more  votes and personal power .  We construct Political action groups to represent our fondest desires for pleasure and freedom from traditional cultural restraints on our behavior patterns; formerly labeled immoral, unethical, elicit, or vices.

In so many cases, the social sciences have not been able to prove, beyond a shadow of doubt, that such behavior patterns are greatly damaging to society. Our traditional moral values are all we have had to protect us from various deadly temptations. The moral precepts of our religions have lost much of their strength to govern the thoughts, voting preferences and personal actions of America’s population.

And so….as our Democratic Republic mutates more  into a thing guided by base licentiousness, we will find that the “devil” is in the details and the delayed outcomes of our increasingly self-centered behavior patterns. I cannot tell you about hell in the after-life, and I do not need to tell you about hell on earth, because we are all beginning to feel what it is becoming in America.

Of course there are many causes for the many painful socioeconomic changes that we have increasingly suffered in America–escalating since the 1960’s.  I judge that certain of our elective cultural changes have been a significant stimulant to various damaging complex causal chains and outcomes. Such chains of cause and effect interact with each other and then fold back upon themselves in synergistic causal cycles, with each passing generation.

My experiences as a professor/researcher and practicing psychologist have given me a perspective that those who work exclusively in these  domains are less likely to gain.

My concerns relate to the following and much more.

No-Fault divorce has wreaked havoc upon the stability of our families and the mental health of our children. From what I can tell, when it comes to marriage, easy out also leads to easy in which leads to more easy outs.

The legalization of pornography has contributed to increasing sexual behavior in our children and youth. It has also contributed to sexual aggression in adults as well as sexually transmitted disease, infidelity in relationships, and  sex crimes against our children.

Closely associated with the deregulation of pornography is the deregulation of profanity and explicit,  florid violence in our entertainment media. Science has clearly demonstrated that flooding a population with violent portrayals will increase rates of violent behavior within that population.

The legalization of gambling has led to a new wave of compulsive/addictive gambling problems.  This has contributed to the instability of families, increasing rates of bankruptcy, the development of compulsive gambling in children, and increasing suicide rates among problem gamblers…as well as many more social woes.

The decision to mix women and men in close combat situations, on ships and in submarines has contributed instability in families, increased separation of primary care-takers from children, and a host of social/sexual problems within our military.

The inclusion of flagrantly homosexual individuals in our military has further increased the number of social/sexual problems with which our military must contend.

Our military must out-perform all other militaries in the world. It must be the very best at killing and intimidating our mortal enemies. Increased energies expended to manage internal family/legal/social/sexual problems is a detriment to our military’s primary mission and our long-term survival.

This nation’s growing welfare programs have directly increased the rate of learned helplessness behavior patterns within our population. This population is increasingly irresponsible, hedonistic, lawless, undereducated, unemployed, and (with few exceptions) shows higher procreation rates than the rest of our population. This segment almost exclusively votes for politicians who will further their useless and socioculturally damaging life-styles. This population of takers will soon outnumber the population of makers.

States are increasingly legalizing marriage between homosexuals. I expect this revolutionary change in humankind’s social structure will significantly increase the costs and stresses upon participating sociocultures. This new practice is likely to increase the rate of homosexual experimentation among our youth.  It must also destroy the core meaning and purpose of marriage (sexual fidelity between husband and wife, procreation and familial stability for children). It will certainly increase the burdens on our legal and court systems with new demands for mediating spousal  abuse, divorces, child custody and visitation disputes. The costs of these problems will be passed on to the population-at-large.

Washington State and Colorado  have recently legalized marijuana. These states look forward to the revenues that they will be able to collect as a result of the new and taxable sales of this addicting substance. With respect to the many problems caused  by the new legal drug, consider this.  The legal drug of alcohol = 1. The legal drug of marijuana= 1. The sum of the damaging effects of these two legal drugs will be greater than 1 + 1 = 2.  The combined damaging effects could well be 4 to 8. The whole of the damage to our socioculture will be greater than the sum of its parts. You can expect increases in polysubstance abuse and dependency; damage to families, children and youth; increased employment, health, industrial problems and transportation accidents; increased demands on law enforcement, jurisprudence, and rehabilitation services and  increased tax money expenditures. The costs of all of this will be passed on to tax paying americans (now only 51-54 percent of the population).

I expect to see legalized prostitution soon. This will bring an increase in its own set of social and economic problems.

The damage from all of  these cultural  changes are catalyzed through the numerous psychological mechanisms of Behavioral Contagion, which I have defined and explained in other blogs under that title. You may wish to look-up Behavioral Contagion in my search window above.

You can be sure that devil is in the details and the damaging delayed consequences of our own behavior.  I fear that America is about to relearn some historically obvious lessons in painful and traumatizing  ways.

V. Thomas Mawhinney, Ph.D.

Professor Emeritus of Psychology

Health Services Provider in Psychology

The Psychology of America’s Decline # 7

March 3, 2012

The Psychology of America’s Decline # 7

Cultural Decompensation Model, Behavioral Contagion and  Social Entropy Conceptual Advantages

By approaching the study of changing sociocultures through the analysis of empirical causes and outcomes within a behavioral contagion, social entropy, and cultural decompensation paradigm, we may be able to transform the former cultural mysteries into clearer more accurate principles, explanations, and opportunities for self-management. It is essential that a complex interdisciplinary research strategy integrate all of our relevant and  most robust scientific principles into one analytical and explanatory whole. Regarding our currently retarded state of cultural analysis, we cannot hope that the parts will show the whole until they are correctly assembled. This hope could only be realized through a massive undertaking involving the cooperation of demographic mathematical modelers and scientific researchers from numerous fields of study related to the biopsychosocial variables that change human behavior patterns in individuals and large populations within specific cultural contexts. I believe that the science of human behavior and evolving cultures is nowhere near the limits of its potential abilities.

The diversity of skills necessary to approach these frontiers are far beyond my own, as is the duration of time required to do so. I will therefore pray that someday others will do what I cannot.

Of the potential research problems that I have identified (and those that I could not discern) I expect that others will be capable of neutralizing, diminishing, or in some way circumventing the brunt of them. No analytical enterprise of this complexity is without a plethora of methodological problems. The question is: can it be done well enough to gain new levels of understanding, prediction and control of the important processes and outcomes involved. I can only make suggestions to the future with the faith that it can be done.

I expect that someday an integrated analysis of the population of  sociocultures can generate projected social entropy indices on a year to year basis, and into the future. These new perceptions could lead to a clearer understanding of the conditions that increase and decrease behavioral contagion and social entropy, and where the most dangerous and most ideal limits of these measures are vis-a-vis the healthy functioning or decompensation of one’s culture.

This development may well provide for a higher executive level of metacognitive functioning within cultures. Presumably, armed with this information, sociocultures would have a better chance of managing themselves in ways that increase the health and viability of their culture sustaining population, reduce their social entropy indices and enhance their chances of long-term survival in the world.

I will bet that with the assistance of skilled statistical modeling, powerful computer technology, an integrative scientific approach and human diligence, all of this is possible.

V. Thomas Mawhinney, Ph.D., 3/3/12

 

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