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From the Editor
By: David Deschesne, Editor/Publisher, Fort Fairfield Journal
On the Hypnotic Effects of Television
When I was a kid, we only received 3 television channels on a small, black and white television. Those channels were; WAGM, MPBN and CBC. There really wasn’t much on television, but I didn’t care because I was usually outside doing something else, anyway.
I can remember when our family got cable for the first time and while it was an interesting change, I didn’t see much more on that was really worth watching. Later on, we got a color TV—now that was progress.
Today, you can notice in just about every house in your neighborhood, after dark, the dim blue flicker of a television through their windows. That flicker has intensified over the years and exhibits some pretty interesting psychological effects.
It is no secret that rapidly changing contrasting images on a television screen will affect those suffering from epilepsy, sometimes to the point of inducing a seizure. The way a television works is similar to the old 24 frame-per-second movie cameras. What appears to be full motion video is really a series of still pictures run rapidly together over time in order to create the appearance of motion. As for the old movie cameras, there were 24 pictures taken every second, with a shutter opening and closing to advance to the next picture in the sequence. Televisions and computer monitors use the same principle, only they call it a “refresh rate.” Dr. G.A. Harding conducted a study for the International League against Epilepsy in the mid-1990’s. He concluded that using a television or monitor with a higher refresh rate of around 100 Hz (100 frame changes per second) over the older 50 Hz models significantly reduced the occurrences of epileptic seizures by those viewing. This was likely because the moving picture was more defined and seamless.
Other uses of flickering images are being pioneered by Intelligent Optical Systems (IOS) from Torrence, California. IOS has received a contract from the American State Police (AMSTAPO), to develop a multi-colored LED flashlight that when flashed with a certain sequence of colors will make its victim nauseous, disoriented, or vomit.
Needless to say, humans are very visually-oriented creatures and flickering images have a pretty enormous impact on us,
Advertisers and marketing engineers also understand the importance of flicker rate imagery when it comes to selling their products on television. If one were to sit in a darkened room, facing away from a television and watch the light pattern on the opposite wall, a distinct series of flickering light patterns can be discerned as the television rapidly transitions from one edited scene to another. By varying the intensity of the contrast between lights and darks and the rate of switching (flickering) from one scene to another, an advertiser can lull the TV viewer into a mildly hypnotic state. Once hypnotized by the screen flicker, various forms of Neuro Linguistic Programming cues are introduced in order to steer the viewer’s thoughts, making them either calm and accepting of the product being sold, or openly hostile and uncomfortable with the competitor’s product.
Compare some of the older television commercials from 50 years ago, which were pasty whitish-gray and had very little or no flicker at all to today’s, which sometimes alternate from light to dark multiple times per second.
In addition to flicker rates, television producers use music and subliminal visual cues to invoke a response or implant a perception into their viewers’ minds. Years ago, a television newscast was essentially “radio with pictures.” That is, a newscaster would be sitting in front of a blank, white wall looking at the camera reading the news. Other than the audio, there was no real reason for the newscaster’s picture to even be there. Today, a newscaster is surrounded by multiple, random moving imagery. Turn the sound off and just watch the background of many television newscasts, or news shows. The wavy, wispy images moving back and forth in the background are designed to hypnotize you and keep you transfixed, “glued” to the TV. Other gimmicks are the scrolling “ticker tape” on the bottom of the screen and lots of snapping and flashing lights. The more there is going on in the picture, the more likely you will be hypnotized by the images.
Hypnosis is characterized by highly focused attention, increased responsiveness to suggestions, vivid images and fantasies, and a willingness to accept distortions of logic or reality—which is the exact template being followed by today’s television programmers.
While only 15 percent of people are highly susceptible to hypnosis and 10 percent are difficult or impossible to hypnotize, the vast majority of the population lies in the gray area in between. Children tend to be more susceptible to hypnosis than adults. Deeply hypnotized subjects sometimes experience profound changes in their subjective experience of consciousness (see Psychology, 2nd ed., Hockenbury & Hockenbury, ©2000 Worth Publishers, p. 158-159).
Watching television, like playing video games, causes the viewer’s brain waves to slip into a hypnotic, post-REM type - or “delta” - sleep. Brainwaves of television viewers are similar to those in deep sleep, though their eyes are still open. While in this state, any number of post-hypnotic suggestions can be implanted in the mind of the viewer, from buying that fancy new car, to going deeper into debt by refinancing their home in order to take a vacation.
Under hypnosis, pseudomemories, or false memories, can be implanted into the subject to make them believe they actually experienced an event or know the facts of an event, even if it never actually happened as purported. The mainstream television “news” networks were amazingly successful at convincing a large segment of the population that a 757 hit the Pentagon on 9/11, even though there was no evidence ever produced to support that theory.
Since television is such a powerful tool, and its existence is licensed and regulated by government, there will never be any objective, rational discussion of civil rights, or government scams and cons such as income tax or the Federal Reserve system explained in that broadcast medium.
I stopped watching mainstream network television around 8 years ago. I spend very little time in front of the television. Instead, I spend my time asking questions about the world around me and seeking answers to them. Since most people are walking around with their heads full of television network “programmers’” post-hypnotic cues, they perceive me as some kind of “extremist” or as “radical” because I’m not programmed as they are.
The television is government’s and corporations’ dream tool. A hypnotic device in every home that people willingly submit to on a daily basis to get their dose of prescribed propaganda and “information.” For now, you all still have the choice to cut your brainwashing simply by reaching out and shutting the television off.