Saturday, May 28, 2016

Facebook Follies and the Asylum Cafeteria

I used to be a psychiatrist in an asylum.  After much thought I’ve concluded that FACEBOOK is as close as one can get to a virtual reality asylum cafe for staff and mentally ill.
The only way you could be really sure who the staff were is the uniforms and keys.  In one study the psychiatrists terrified of the idea of not wearing ‘white lab coats’ showed up carrying ‘stethoscope rabbit ears’ in their jacket suit pockets. In another study some ‘normal’ students who slipped over the wall of the asylum were recognized as ‘normal’ by the patients but not by the staff.
The cafeteria was the most interesting place because pedophiles, murderers (not responsible by reason of insanity), psychotics, drug addicts detoxing, and depressives and staff going through their temporary , supposedly. life disruptions all mixed.
When I went for lunch I’d stop with my tray and look around.  Sometimes I’d sit at an empty table alone or sit at a table already occupied with one or two others.
Sitting at a table alone represents when I post something on my own timeline. My posts and my time line are like my table.  In virtual reality ‘comments’ are like the people who ‘join’ the table.  In comparison when I join another discussion it’s like I’ve joined someone else’s table.
Commonly the patients would join a table for safety where a staff person was sitting alone while a lot of the time the insane would group together mostly by way of common insanity while the staff would sit apart.
What we as staff knew was that by working in the asylum we were daily exposed to the very people that the world had excluded. I’ve known prison guards who have the same realizations.  Those who work in leper colonies are stigmatized as the ones with the disease and indeed ‘pick up’ traits and mannerisms of those they associate with most even if our ‘role’ is different.
So in Facebook I am always interested and truly enjoy those comments of the friends I know personally. I think of them generally as more like the ‘staff’ but they may just be other recovered folk like me or Christians or neurotics but because we are ‘friends’ on Facebook we have a commonality.
Where FACEBOOK gets really funky is when a friend of my friend, a stranger to me sits down at my table or joins me at another of my ‘friends’ tables.  In ‘boundary’ and transactional language these relationships might be referred to as ‘once or twice’ removed.
In the asylum there were always interesting groupings.  Schizophrenics usually preferred to be alone avoided sociopaths but might have a pedophile as a friend.  Not being a child the schizophrenic had nothing to fear from the pedophile and no reason to talk about children. Sociopaths because of their inferiority complexes by contrast are always trying to control or hump others like male dogs or female bitches in heat.  They’re far less predictable than pedophiles or schizophrenics and often get called bipolar because they swing from nice to not nice dependent on their believe that they are getting their way.  Sociopaths are always trying to measure ‘are you with me or agin me’ so tend also to avoid schizophrenics who usually don’t want to be with anyone.  Meanwhile they dominate pedophiles.
Staff in asylums have as a principal role stopping people from hurting each other. So they intervene usually only when people are actually suicidal or homicidal.
In the cafe other patients are as likely to intervene as staff when a patient becomes threatening, bullying or suicidal.  Homicide and suicide are just different sides of an attention seeking coin. One upmanship and one downmanship. Psychological mindedness is the ability to tolerate the tension of opposites.
I was very popular in the cafe at the asylum. In high school I spent a couple of years being ‘political’ and was named ‘Mr. Popularity”.  Popularity is a marketing skill coupled with charisma.  Buddha and Hitler have been equally popular. Certainly Marx and Shakespeare are equally popular.
The asylum cafeteria therefore is an interesting place where people are being essentially ‘political’ or ‘social’ in a relatively ‘free for all’ common ground.  Lots of people are off their meds and lots of other ones there are doing drugs or drinking while typing at their computers. It doesn’t take much training to recognize ‘pot talk’ and ‘drunk talk’.  The ones off their meds are a bit harder to spot.
The reason the staff and patient cafeteria was mixed was to allow staff to observe patients and adjust meds in the supposedly more ‘natural’ setting.  Ironically I mostly wanted to put a couple of my colleagues on meds or wished they weren’t hung over. We also had a nurse stealing opiates and using them so her speech was often suggestive of her problem but she got angry at everyone who questioned anything and was for ever pointing fingers at others and jumping all over the patients to distract attention from her criminal behaviour. I don’t know what my colleague was doing and he’d probably say the same thing about me. He was a real nut bar.
Institutions and hospitals are places were the newest staff and immigrants and those with problems are likely to work.  Staff members with problems rarely can succeed independently and the authorities who may be watching them prefer them in groups where they can be observed until their behaviour is deemed not a threat to the authorities or patients and other staff.
I’ve always had an anti authority streak, knowing history, and watching how frequently great countries have had leaders who fluctuated as differently as Bill Clinton and Ronal Reagan.
So in Facebook when I post something ‘controversial’ (which is always except for the dog and camping pictures) my friends are aware of my variety of interests and positions so are themselves interested and never offended. I have a couple of old lovers (only in years we have known each other) (they remain as gorgeous and sexy as the day I met them) who ‘chide’ me routinely on my ‘taste’.  I’ve friends from elementary school on Facebook and they even raise an eyebrow or challenge me.  All of these people have ‘earned’ the right by years of association and time. A couple of women from decades back befriended me when we were both very different people.  We have watched each other move back and forth across ideologies and have seen each other through life threatening disease. I was there for their cancer and they were there for my cancer. Thier’s was worse. My friends have had radiation, chemotherapy, lost husbands, and wives, had children die.  I’ve been hospitalized. Basal Cell Carcinoma got me too but was quickly caught in the making while I’ve taken a whole lot of injuries that have lead to chronic pain and sometimes tears.  Divorces have taken their toll and we’ve stood by each other.
If any of these people and some are family , sit at a table with me and says anything , it doesn’t really matter because we’re soul brothers and soul sisters.  One of my dearest longest most loved friends is one who we physically fought together intent on murdering each other as kids and had we weapons more than our fists we might well have.  Today I love him as no other.
But I don’t like a lot of my friends friends.  I’m sitting at the table in Facebook kibitzing with an old friend or lover and this unknown stranger sits down and pulls one of those triangulation stunts.
Often people are in recovery.
It’s a good rule to remember that it takes a bout a year off drugs and alcohol before you can be honest with yourself and actually truthfully recall and report what you said yourself hours or days earlier. It takes two years (PAWS) to be able to actually truthfully report what you said and what the other person said in a conversation especially where there were opposing views. It’s usually only in the third year of recovery that people can actually divide the discussion in which three people conversed and remember and report accurately what each person said. It’s a Piagetian thing developmentally as well.
Further when two people are together their relationship can be any of the following
Mother-daughter; Father-son; Mother-son; Father-dauther;brother-brother;sister-sister; brother-sister; etc out to aunts and nephews etc.  Our secular relationships with strangers are based on the original template of relationships.
When two friends are conversing the conversation is ranging through all the relationships with an incredible oiled smoothness. My friend and I are both doctors in different fields. She is a phd and I’m an md.  Having years of university experience with a multitude of ‘experts’ and ‘egos’ we defer easily to each other in our areas of respective strengths. We have nothing to prove to each other and enjoy learning and working together.
When a stranger joins they really are like a kid coming into our now “mommy and daddy’ circle.
How they ‘enter’ the conversation is most telling.  This is called ‘process’ in psychiatry. It’s not ‘what people say’ but rather how they say it in ‘process’.  Marshall McLuhan said, as well, the medium is the message.  So in the asylum cafe or in Facebook the medium is also the message.  “Linked in” by contrast to Facebook doesn’t have the ‘bar room” or ‘asylum cafe flavour’ that Facebook has. I’d say that’s because Facebook is a ‘social media’ whereas “Linked In” is more a ‘business media”.
What’s even more telling is the way “Friends of Friends of Friends’ enter discussions on Facebook.  I and another person may have a relationship with the original poster but a third person sitting down at the table may have no relationship with anyone but has in fact chosen to sit down at what is now ‘our’ table when in fact they can sit at their table.
To get a flavour of these different ‘intrusions’ one can of course look at ‘who’ and what are their ‘relationships’ on their own timeline.
Socialization refers to how well people ‘succeed’ in broader society.  A lot of people in the world today simply ‘lack socialization’.
In countries with conscription this is not true. In more technologically primitive countries people also had to be better mannered. In ancient times “manners’ were means whereby ‘men’ avoided ‘hostility’.  Shaking hands, the sword hand, was a declaration of peace.
Today our society is immensely isolated and many people have not socialized with strangers since high school  In their workplace they are often separated and ritualized in their relationship with a task or tool and then socialize only with people who share their biases.  Team sports are a means whereby people have traditionally been socialized and as women increasingly involve themselves in team sports they become increasingly adept in a way so many lacked skills in previously. Families are a natural socialization mechanism and where parents stay together the family socialization mechanism was one of the best.  Overall usually parents are better socialized than single men and women. Those who have never had long term relationships are usually the most under socialized and commonly are designated as having a personality disorder in the social science literature.
Because many Liberals are limited to their minority of relationships they often are angry and offended by the Conservatives who are similarly limited to their minority of relationships.  Increasingly people are not socialized by being members of churches or communities or political parties but don’t realize that without this ‘socialization’ their ‘emotional intelligence’ is sadly lacking. This is most difficult for those who are ‘idiot savants’ in the sense that they have done well in a particular area of society, such as ‘money making’, job status, or surviving a life threatening disease, or making a transition to a new country.  Emotional intelligence comes with depth and breadth of relationships and experience and not book learning or luck at the lottery.
CBC shut down it’s ‘comments’ pages because it found that it’s own minority ‘liberal’ elite position was at variance with a swath of the comments page which was admittedly ‘under socialized’.  Yet CBC, a publicly funded broadcasting corporation, has an obligation to all who contribute to it’s forum so interestingly made a ‘mommy’ decision and shut out the ‘bullies’.  Comments pages and FACEBOOK are falling to a fallacy which is called  the ‘ends against the middle’.  The idea of a ‘silent majority’ got a bad rep because of political abuse of this idea by both the right and the left.  Tyrants of either ilk always claim to represent the middle when to be a leader they must be de facto “other’. Leaders are always ‘the minority’ position.
So FACEBOOK has attempted to introduce some ‘reality’ to it’s ‘virtual reality’ game, by ‘Blocking” , “Reporting”, and “Unfollowing”. and “Unfriending’.  I can’t help but think adolescents are having a whole lot of learning and fun with these ‘features’.  Reporting is like calling 9-11 at a family dinner. The Communist regimes the world over have made winning off the various ‘anonymous tip’ lines and rewarding people who prefer the ‘outside state’ authority to the ‘inside family or community authority’  . I’ve been a ‘whistleblower’ and must always remember that by ‘reporting’ I become what is the lowest phenomena in the ‘prison population’ which is by another name called ‘a snitch’.  Loose lips sink ships so the ‘elite’ don’t welcome transparency and maintain their privilege by ‘secrecy’ the same way the black market works. Often the two worlds mirror each other.  But G7 doesn’t have reporters in their meetings and don’t even record discussions any more than the Hell’s Angels, Yukuso, or Mafia do.
In Facebook and other ‘comments’ sections of todays media an ‘individual’ can ‘be heard’.  There was a time when all media was controlled by the country leadership and in most of the world today that is the case.  In western demcracticed capitalist societies the leadership allow a tightly controlled and propagandized ‘freedom of speech’.  The greatest ‘freedom of speech’ in the world today remains in the USA.  European and Canadian countries and Australia and perhaps even Britain actually believe they have ‘freedom of speech’ but in fact that freedom is very restricted by ‘political correctness’ , ‘hate legislation’ etc etc.  Muslim countries  have no freedom of speech by comparison nor do communist countries.  Certainly, for most of the world the ‘secret police’ control overtly or covertly what people dare to say.
FACEBOOK ‘reporting’ will respond. I’ve been ‘silenced’ repeatedly because it is now a ‘tactic’ of ‘opposition’ to ‘report as ‘spam’ anyone who disagrees with a political position of their opposition.  So as a Christian I have been ‘silenced’ by the opposition ‘reporting’ me to the authorities. I speak with the authorities and they apologize. Zuckerberg has repeatedly apologized for the Left doing this to the right and middle. As a “Centrist’ I’ve been repeatedly reported by the Left.  The Left sadly today is the enemy of the middle and the right of society and increasingly represent a minority elite that falsely maintains their claim to represent the ‘middle’ or ‘lower’.  Both leadership of right and left are serving the elite’.  Politics is really about choosing the least bad alternatives.  No man is a God and Power corrupts and absolute power corrupts absolutely.  I truly believe Donald, Hillary, Bernie, Stephen, Justin, and Tom were all really nice kids. Their deviance probably showed first in high school. Now they’re leaders.  Even Adolph and Joseph and Winston were likely delightful children before they deviated.
‘Crying wolf’ is todays new ‘bully tactic’.  Society is struggling with false accusations and the courts are playing catch up.  Facebook apologises more often than Canadians.
In the actual face book feeds I ‘block’ and ‘unfriend’ people almost daily. These are people who ‘enter a comment feed’ aggressively. They’re usually vulgar.  Most often they have not read the feed but believe that being ‘opinionated’ is a virtue.  They ‘attack’ me and frankly I never backed down from a ‘bar fight’ or a ‘debate’ or a ‘Facebook fisticuffs.”  With friends and usually friends of friends we have rather useful discussions. But I don’t like bullies of any gender or disposition and have a life time record of defending persecuted people and indeed myself when I have been attacked.
In a discussion the ’subject’ of the discussion is separate from those who are the ones discussing.  In debate , I used to do this at universities’ back when I actually fenced and competed in things as well, the minute a person ‘attacks the messenger’ they ‘forfeit’ the debate. It’s like playing golf with someone and they pull out a gun and shoot you.  Obviously they’ve lost the golf game but they, being psychopaths, sociopaths, or just under socialized or emotionally unintelligent might well tell their friends they won the golf game against Tiger Woods but fail to mention that they used a 9 mm Glock in the game.
The unfriend button is like everyone ‘avoiding’ the ‘dangerously insane’ man or ‘hysterically psychotic woman’ in the cafe asylum.  They’re just angry and looking for someone to unleash their anger on.  They never contribute to discussion and there’s no learning and no fun. They don’t want to ’talk’ but would rather ‘fight’.
I don’t like to fight. I hospitalized a number of people in my youth and even when I won and the other guy was being taken away by ambulance I found my jaw or my hand hurt for days.  Once I learned ’surgery’ and began playing guitar and lived by my ability to have hands to write and type and touch I have avoided ‘fights’ because that’s all ’thugs’ do. I actually prefer countries where I can have a gun so I don’t have to get into a ‘bludgeoning’ exercise with a young guy who never made anything with his hands and only used his hands to hurt people.
So Facebook has an ‘unfriend’ and an ‘unfollow’ button. However I lived in an apartment where my dope addicted drug dealing welfare recipient neighbour played heavy metal in the middle of the night and I had been delivering babies so was very tired. I asked him nicely to turn down his music. When he persisted persisted I called the landlord and did all the ‘right’ things to address his ‘vulgarity’ and ‘bullying’.  It was a week or so later he surprised me and put a knife to my throat and held me off a balcony for a half hour spitting in my face.  I called the police and they talked to him but I had to live the next two weeks and not be able to sleep in my apartment for fear that he’d attack me.  He was evicted but I left that apartment too and had only survived by sleeping in the on call hospital rooms.
With the ‘liberalization’ of what the ‘middle and lower classes’ have , the rich live in gated communities, have armed body guards and multi million dollar mansions, the  White House isn’t cheap and Justin and Sophie Trudeau complain that their multi million dollar accommodations are not glamorous enough.  So now a day doesn’t go by that some one isn’t telling me about a ‘violent neighbour’ or a ‘bully’.  I was fascinated to follow a two year process where a social housing complex suffered before they evicted this sex offender who grabbed women in the hall, a psychotic who raged night after night, a bully who had physically assaulted people, and a thief who had broken into other peoples homes in the complex.  Weeks at a time I hear people crying telling me of how no one is protecting them and that these aggressive loud people are barging into their lives.  Just this year my girlfriend had a psychotic drug addict banging on her wall screaming at her to shut down the music.  I was sleeping at her place when this began so ‘confronted’ this truly crazy professional lady’ and she was evicted that week though she was screaming in the hall (thankfully in front of witnesses) that I was ‘raping her’.  She’d come to our door to tell my little lovely girlfriend to ‘shut up’ but being a light sleeper I’d woken and gone to the door.  Fascinating moments in Canada.  Apparently an everyday occurrence in Detroit now and increasingly normal in Surrey.  Communities are developing ‘block protection’ and “Vigilantism’ is on the rise because of the failure the of the existing authorities to ‘protect’ individuals without adequate wealth to be elite.
The other ‘offensive’ attack behaviour so common on ‘FACEBOOK “ is the ‘assumption of superiority’.  All these are ‘personalized ‘ comments.  I make a statement, i.e. Having babies young is associated with reduced cancer in women and another person responds with ‘you’re full of shit’ or that’s ‘conservative bullshit.”  There are actually ‘trolls’ and different groups are paying people much like they did with ‘robocalls’.  I’ve been targeted by these ‘computer’ generated programs on several occasions.  My computer hacker friends have enlightened me to them.
In a ‘discussion’ the question is ‘relevance’ and people will also say ‘get to the point’. Indeed there are mechanisms now in business which address these ‘disruptors’.  In the Navy Seals one technique is to ask the most junior to comment first so that they will not be ‘silenced’ by their superiors.  The fallacy of the ‘appeal to the authority’ is addressed ironically in this case.  The Climate Change Cult are actually silencing opposition by threatening lawsuits against anyone who disagrees with their particular insanity.  Thank God the planet is in a warming phase. We have been since the last ice age.  The question is the degree of contribution of man and the various ways of addressing that contribution. To question these latter highly erroneous propositions gets one faced with a lawsuit or at very least being called a ‘denier’.  This was what the soviet union did when anyone disagreed with their ‘scientific’ position called Marx’s historical presumptions. .  People who disagreed with the now wholly defunct marxian ideology akin to leeching in medicine was put in a psychiatric asylum. I know because I belonged to the “Psychiatrists against Political Abuse of Psychiatry’ an organization dedicated to science and keeping politicians from doing what the Climate Change Cult of the UN is doing now.
In my office I have a native ‘talking stick’.  This is a means whereby everyone in a group gets a chance to speak. If a person wants to be ‘heard’ they can pick up the stick and as long as they are holding onto it they are not interrupted.  When they are finished it gets passed back and forth or passed on.  When I played chess we had a little machine that limited ‘stalling’ and ensured the ‘game’ went on rather than something else occurring.
The 12 step programs around the world have attempted to teach the very brain injured addicts and socially inept early recovery folk with a simple ‘no cross talk’. What this does is encourage people to ‘introduce’ new material rather than seeing their ‘role’ as the ‘critic’.
Today everyone is a ‘critic’.  Especially pot smokers’  They sit on the couch and read the internet and watch tv and never actually do more than ‘criticize’ other peoples ideas and actions.
“Microanalysis” of contributions in corporate board rooms separate the ideas offered on ‘spread sheets’ because commonly another tactic of the ignorant is to rephrase an already stated opinion.
Robert’s Rules of Order was introduced to politics to ensure that ‘discussion’ preceded ‘vote’.  Most people in the ‘comments’ sections see ‘comments’ as their ‘voting’ space rather than just ‘liking’ or ’not’. .  “Fucking Right”.  “Bullshit” etc are not discussion or even ‘comment’ but rather ‘colourful ‘ ‘votes’.
Further I’m an old guy with lots of experience so when some young inexperienced little shit especially an easily offended ‘critic’ takes a swipe at me in the ‘process’ way by ‘presumptive’ superiority or ‘disrespectful’ subtle ill mannered behaviour I, like the old dog, enjoy snapping the upstart down. To the external observer they might not see that this ‘junior’ person is indeed being offensive ‘intentionally’.  The separation of heavy weights and light weights and gender and various forms of ‘weaponry’ is that there is no advantage to the superior in ‘unequal’ contests.  Yet invariably a person will play ‘foul’ in a game and then do the ‘drama queen’ game removing the focus from the ‘discussion’ which they have obviously lost by this ‘antic’ or ‘gambit’ but now ‘personalizing’ the discussion to be about them and their being ‘offended’.
It’s one of the reasons today that you simply can’t have a ‘feminist’ or ‘racist’ or a 'sexist’  screaming ’self proclaimed ‘ referree  or ‘mommy boy’ or ‘daddy girl’ in a conversation because they’re always waiting to be ‘offended’ to gain ‘centre of attention’   Being offended in their only ’skill’ and they ‘derail’ all ’society’ and all ‘conversation’ today by this means.  Watching a soccer game today is painful with all the ‘fouls’ .  There though, the ‘referee’ is the ‘agreed’ ‘foul caller’ whereas there increasingly are these genetic mutants who like idiot savants lack all other skills but this one and bark ignorantly all day,  ‘look at me “i’m offended’.
In the asylum while there were people who wanted to sit alone at their table there were a lot of people who didn’t but were equally unable to ‘attract’ friends so always ‘barged’ in on other tables.  The beauty of ‘theatre’ is that ‘actors’ learn not to ‘upstage’ each other and also how to ‘modulate’ their responses.  I loved improvisational theatre and did this for years with a group of friends. It was a fascinating ‘social game’ much like when I played in a blues band and we all ‘jammed’ together.
Facebook is a relatively ‘unstructured’ setting.  I mostly like it for puppies and inspirational messages.  At the same time I sail and though only a few of my friends are sailors I like to share sailing posts. Not surprisingly my friends who share hockey posts have never been thuggish and arrogant or ignorant about my sailing posts.
It was once a truism of ‘success’ to “Never discuss Religion or Politics”  My friend who lived in a Moslem country but wasn’t muslim said ‘we all learned to whisper’.  He laughs at my openess and believes Canadian experiments in transparency will fail when we have the imminent civil war he predicts.  .
When I became a professional my superior at the university said that I must learn ‘boundaries’. It’s what the College of Physicians and Surgeons teaches more and more these days.  At the time he said you must only have friends who are in your ‘class’ . What he meant by that was that I only associated with other ‘professionals’ and other’s with ‘university degrees’.  An English psychiatrist greatly admired for his apparent liberalism told me, as helpful advise, ‘don’t discuss anything important with women or the enlisted.  The world is like a big army. We are the officers and the upper classes. The poor can never be trusted to understand and the women can never be trusted to keep their mouths shut.”
The principle way people ‘get along’ is by not associating with others who are different from them.
When it comes to religion I do extremely well in my Christian church.  My muslim friend shines at his mosque. My jewish friend is a leader in his synagogue.  My atheist friend is a leading communist teaching dialectics. My Hindu friends and Buddhist friends are equally admired.
On Facebook the usual ‘dangerous person’ is someone who really doesn’t know a person or associate closely with people who have different beliefs or religion or politics.  I’m closely involved with a vast diversity of people and am very thankful to have friends who I admire even in the dastardly Liberal Party with that much maligned goofball Trudeau.  I have this Liberal Leader friend who I enjoy discussions with and we’ve both corrected each other on history and significant points. What I thought Mulroney had done was indeed done by Martin.
My Palestinian Christian friend tells me all the persecution of Palestinians by the Jews and my Jewish friend tells me about being bombed by the Hamas.
But Facebook like conversations in asylum cafes never touch this ‘level’ of communication. I admire mostly my orthodox jewish friend not for their zionist beliefs but because I’ve seen them as a doctor taking incredible risks with their own life to save a Muslim patient’s life with a horrible infectious disease.  I’ve been blessed to be with doctors and nurses who daily overlook differences to see the similarities and constantly are risking their lives and wealth on behalf of others.  I like my policeman friend with his right wing views because I know how much he loves and cares for his children.  I know my family for their years of sacrifice and love and cares of each other.
I love my friends but the strangers I meet on Facebook are such assholes as to threaten me….a fellow just said he looked forward to seeing me dead and another person attacks my family for their association by blood with me.  I’ve even had people complain to my work because I held an opinion different from theirs.  They were liberal and i was conservative and they complained against me saying that with my views I shouldn’t be allowed to practice medicine.  They were 20 and I was 60 and I only had a fleeting thought of suicide when I got called by the authorities about this ‘offended’ young ‘girl’ who feels that people who aren’t ‘feminists’ should be jailed.
I’m pro life.  Given the misinformation in the liberal media no one seems to know how persecuted the ‘pro life’ people are. I recommend anyone stand outside an abortion clinic silently for a day and find out what my 80 year old friend found out when she did just that.  It’s never covered in the Canadian papers because Canada is dominated by death.
Facebook is dying.  Freedom of speech and indeed freedom is no longer understood by the young.  License is not freedom.  Freedom comes with accountability.  I have paid a terrible price from my beliefs.  Defending Israel has had my family threatened. Defending homosexuals has brought me as much hate as defending heterosexuals.  I learned long ago ‘if you stand up you make yourself a target’.
Canadians are polite and apologetic and nice because as my friend from the US said, they’re ‘snow niggers’.  They’ve lost their rights and freedoms and live ‘lives of quiet desperation’.  What’s amazing is that people who disliked their lack of freedom in their countries have moved to this once ‘wild’ country with all it’s opportunities.  My grandparents came as much to escape the restrictions of Europe as for any other reason.
Facebook is like an asylum cafe.  By contrast my blog is a booth along the side of internet metropolis.  Though I really have stated what were very ‘offensive’ opinions to some the ‘comments’ on my blog have never been the level of FACEBOOk.  Indeed the comments on blog pages are generally rather considered by comparison.  I’ve over a half million hits on the blog with redistribution in the millions and despite that I’ve never been so ‘personally attacked’ as I have been on Facebook.  Something inherent in the FACEBOOK formula as with the ‘comments’ section of CBC is inherently flawed.  Something to do with Anonymity is inherent in this insanity.  The Asylum Cafe is like a bar, people go their to be ‘insane’ or to get ‘drunk’.  Facebook is such a place.
It’s at the level of ‘cross talk’ too.  Something in ‘texting’ , the irritating ‘editor’ and the one finger jabbing on the iPhone makes the conversation like a distracted road rage experience in a crowded freeway.  Sound bites about something more complex.  There’s Paul Johnson’s book called the “intellectuals’ which showed that the ‘ideas’ of the great 18 to 20th century only ‘worked’ as communication because no one knew about their personal life.  Today Charles Mason might well put forward a ‘great philosophy’ but quickly we’d ignore it because his life is despicable.  Similarly Robert Picton the pig farm cannibal might have an idea or an opinion and no one cares for it. Yet Pickton and Manson can speak their minds on Facebook. it’s a dark space.  FACE BOOK, before the ‘no smoking’ signs.  The interesting thing is how the worlds spill over and in a positive sense I’ve gone for coffee with a person whose ideas I enjoyed on Facebook. I so love my friend Carol’s humour that I look forward to next time seeing her.
But I don’t like when people attack my friends and family in that adolescent ‘packing’ ‘whose in or whose out’ ‘selective’ misinformation way to ‘win their lost argument’.
"How can you have a friend like that?”  a pedophile said to my friend,  when I said his opinion ‘sounded like a pedophile’. I’d met so many pedophiles and heard their logic that I happened to say this without knowing he was one. Well, boy did that ‘lady protest too much’ .  I found out from my friend their history and how none of the family allow them around children.  We are as ‘sick as our secrets’.   I was very thankful that he blocked me, unfriended me and complained to Facebook about me and wrote a Rate Your Doctor criticism because frankly he doesn’t really celebrate his preference for sex with children.  Kill the messenger and a reminder of his being caught in the past clearly annoyed him.  Yet as I typically tell people, an offence is human but the ‘cover up’ and the ‘reaction’ really do ‘out’ the truth.
But life is, as I get older, more and more like that asylum cafeteria.  Facebook is really just one section, a  very very tiny one in the much much larger cafeteria.
 I have to go. We’re off to White Spot to have lunch with real friends in the real world.

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