Retromemes, fear, and obedience to authority

Towards a memetic model for coercion

Johan Nygren
Nov 13, 2015 · 2 min read

Where does the phenomena of obedience to authority come from ?Milgram’s experiments in the 60s showed that 65% of the test-subjects would go against their own conscience and hurt other people. 65% of all subjects would more or less do stuff against their own will.

Is it possible to find a trigger for why people succumb to do things against their own will ?

Memetics has a concept called retro-memes. Retromemes are memes that hijack existing memes, and commandeer them for their own purpose. They are similar to retro-viruses in how they use existing memetic information to amplify themselves.

Retromemes hijack and commandeer emotions for their own purposes.

Examples would be:

Lies, manipulation, coercion with emphasis on manipulative coercion.

A comparison would be how 5% of the human genome is estimated to be of retro-viral origin. In that sense, 5% of the human memome might be composed of retro-memes, viral mimetic elements that use some form of coercion to spread, and to gain back-door access into trust-networks. They would in that sense be the HIV of culture, and everything we blame on “the system” would be the AIDS of culture.

Historical examples:

Following rules
Following rules
Following rules

etc. common neuroses that proliferate through obedience to authority.

From my perspective, it also seems that all psychosis originates from force applied by neurotic peers. Everything we call mental illness is the result of coercion, mediated through pecking orders, from powerful, through neurotics, to the poor underdogs. It also seems to me that none of what we call mental illness exists in decentralized cultures. Instead, decentralized cultures see those who respond to social alarm as heroes, empaths, healers, rather than freaks. The sort of hysteric outcry of empathy that centralized cultures criminalize and pathologize is instead seen as an act of compassion.

In that sense, it would make sense to create a decentralized culture where memes can spread through mate choice, rather then coercion.

    Johan Nygren

    Written by

    The basic income revolution through p2p-technology, deployed @ a planetary scale.Followed by TED-speakers & SingularityU-CEOs,this is an idea worth spreading !

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