One of the things that has always left me with the need to start shaking people is those who when given the answer to a question or problem refuse to acknowledge the information or advice if it comes up against some other deeply held belief. It’s like being afraid of the dark but refusing to turn on the light.
It’s always amazed me that when looking back through history we see humanity make the same errors again and again, seemingly oblivious to fact that history has proved such steps unwise at best and devastating at worst.
So when I came across this image from The Mind Unleashed it was a light bulb moment. There in very simple terms was a very straight forward summation of just why there are those out there who just cannot bring certain ideas into their understanding of the world.
After the light bulb came the dimmer switch as I realized that it is, most likely, this reason that prevents Abbott from accepting certain things as fact or even as possible. Granted the man is the WORST Prime minister ever and about as deft with words as a bear figure skating BUT regardless of that he isn’t actually lacking in brains [no one get a Rhodes Scholarship easily].
It has been confusing the hell out of me that a politician, particularly one so devoted to his own advancement, would continue to remain apparently oblivious to the deep unrest in this country.
Abbott’s disregard or disbelief over the overwhelming support for environmental protection by the VAST majority of Australian and the deep feelings of betrayal felt by previously loyal LNP supporters is not something that makes sense from the perspective of career politician such as himself.
However Cognitive Dissonance makes perfect sense and once you look at it from that perspective you can see how he truly has no understanding of the gulf that is widening between himself and the voters of this country and indeed between himself and his own party members. He really believes and THAT is a scary thought because true believers are much more dangerous than simply career or popularity driven politicians.
His deeply held views regarding the world are filtered through the lens of an idealized 1950’s iconic snapshot and are more dangerous that just trying to curry favor with the powerful as he truly thinks that it is what most really want and is baffled by the continual protest.
Now a thinking person would begin to question that belief as the numbers protesting rose but all that has increased is his steadfast adherence to an economic policy that will take us down the road of the US [not a thing to wish for] and an ever-increasing bafflement [you can see it on his face] as to why everyone isn’t jumping up and down with joy.
Cognitive Dissonance also explains his inability to change his mind regarding the environment, even in the face of such protest, as to do so would smack up against other deeply held belief structures – that is that economic development comes before all else.
As such he CANNOT believe in Climate Change or that the majority of Australians support Renewable Energy and Environmental Protection. His belief system doesn’t allow for conflicting ideas, doesn’t trust NEW untested [in his mind] ideas and will never be able to understand just how and why the whole country is turning on him. He will truly be like the figure in this image clinging to an idealized view of society that never existed and will destroy us if it is allowed to develop.
He lied to get into power but was able to factor that into his Christian ideology by applying the old Greater Good concept. Once in power he then proceeded to break those promises so as to create the economy and society he believes is for that greater good and simply expected people to understand once they saw how WONDERFUL everything would be. The failure of that part of the plan confuses him and thus is thrust aside and he forces himself to believe that only the dissidents and rabble rousers are protesting and if ignored will go away.
Imagine how surprised he must have been when financial backer after financial backer pulled out of the Abbott Point Coal terminal expansion.
Then magnify that surprise and apply it to the Bentely Locked Gate protest and for just a little icing on the cake take that surprise and add a dash of alarm when the World Heritage Body threw out the first proposal to de-list protected areas in Tasmania and allow logging. He and his government were publicly reamed, by the advisory body for UNESCO, for providing no evidence of the degradation of the forestry area they want de-listed and for trying to mislead the international body by doing so.
Just thinking about the mental gymnastics that Abbott must perform on a daily basis just to keep ignoring what is being thrust in his face day after day is exhausting. This whole country is tired and I think the only people who are happy at this point are Abbott and a couple of close compadres who hold similar views and the large mining groups who will benefit from this budget if it is passed.
So to finish this up and to bring us back into line with some humor for the weekend I give you Tony Abbott – Happy [Music: “Happy” by Pharrell Williams – no association with this video] which I discovered on the site Tony Abbott Village Idiot.