How to Control The Mind of Almost Anyone (And Your Own)

The human mind processes the world in terms of language. Even our unconscious thoughts are mediated in terms of language. If you read Neanderthal by John Darnton, the most important part of the story was language. It was language that was the edge that homo Sapiens had over their Neanderthal cousins because it gave them the ability to deceive, or in short, to play power games, while Neanderthals couldn’t think as far ahead. Language mediates thought, builds community, and influences our ability to see ahead.

In short, control language and you control minds, including your own.

Darkseid Anti-Life Equation mind control

This is why a hallmark of any Year Zero regime is the careful control of language (and by extension, other concepts, such as the measurement of time). The Year Zero regime imposes itself in large part through this control, which George Orwell popularized as “Newspeak.”

With this in mind, we can turn to the three types of people in the world as defined by Scott Adams:

Rational People: Use data and reason to arrive at truth. (This group is mostly imaginary.)

Word-Thinkers: Use labels, word definitions, and analogies to create the illusion of rational thinking. This group is 99% of the world.

Persuaders: Use simplicity, repetition, emotion, habit, aspirations, visual communication, and other tools of persuasion to program other people and themselves. This group is about 1% of the population and effectively control the word-thinkers of the world.

Scott Adams further remarks on word-thinking:

Word-thinking is important to persuasion because if you can convince someone to accept a label on an opponent, it turns off their critical thought and turns on their confirmation bias. Nuance is lost. Context is lost. All that matters once the label is accepted is whatever qualities the label already contained.

If you further read Scott Adams’ blog, you recognize the importance of pairing concepts with words, such as Donald Trump with “racism.” This is the key mechanism behind word-think, as it ties into human pattern recognition capabilities (often bad, as Adams says).

This conceptual pairing, and the knowledge of what triggers word-thinking, is one of the biggest keys to persuasion, to controlling the minds of your prospects, as well as your own. You control your own mind because you’re able to detach somewhat from the emotions that word-thinking triggers, as well as prevent the emotions of word-thinkers from infecting you. As Robert Greene remarks:

Power’s crucial foundation is the ability to master your emotions. An emotional response to a situation is the single greatest barrier to power, a mistake that will cost you a lore more than any temporary satisfaction you might gain by expressing your feelings. Emotions cloud reason, and if you cannot see the situation clearly, you cannot prepare for and respond to it with any degree of control.

Take for instance, the recent “scandal” with some handegg player not standing up for the Star Spangled Banner. His word-think was the pairing of “America” (subject) with “Black people” (object) and “oppressing” (verb). This word-think triggered other word-thinkers on both sides, with those supporting him agreeing along the same lines, justifying their support with the same words, while the opposing word-thinkers paired up the concept of “not standing for the Star Spangled Banner” with variations of being “unpatriotic” or a traitor to the American in-group.

Of course, the truth behind this is that none of it is particularly truthful, or at least the word-think in itself doesn’t lead to anything truthful, but that didn’t stop both sides from thinking extremely emotionally and then rationalizing a truth out of it.

As for me? I felt nothing. It bored me, to be honest.

Me being bored allowed me to detach my emotions and care less about it, not wasting my own energy on a boring subject where everyone was saying a variation of one thing or the other.

When you begin to feel emotional in response to certain words, you can shut down these emotions, and the confirmation bias that follows, by using a linguistic spell of your own. Just remind yourself that you’re a “word-thinker” or that you’re doing “word-thinking.” I’ve found that this simple reminder instantly shuts down most or all of the impact that the emotionally loaded language you’re hearing or reading will have on you. This in turn will allow you to prevent yourself from being manipulated, wasting your time on foolishness, and will keep your initiative in whatever situation you’re in. It will allow any emotionally-laden insults to roll off your back and not upset your emotional equilibrium or momentum. Even the most common insults like “stupid” or “moron,” when put in context, are usually indications of word-thinking, and therefore the insulter’s confirmation bias, and thus say nothing about you.

So that’s how your knowledge of the concept of word-thinking can act in a defensive manner. Now we can get to the real fun part, the part where you can implement your knowledge of the phenomenon of word-thinking offensively.

Dispel Bound word-think forcefield
Knowing the phenomenon behind word-think acts as a forcefield for you.

Many conservative pundits have asked, often while lamenting among themselves, why the left has generally been superior in the political and cultural clashes between the two, particularly in the past 50 years. Much of the answer has to do with the fact that the left has mastered the magic of word-think spells:

  1. So and so is “racist.”
  2. So and so is “sexist.”
  3. So and so is “misogynistic.”
  4. So and so is “pro-rape.”
  5. So and so is “homophobic.”
  6. So and so is “Islamophobic.”
  7. So and so is “nativist” and/or “anti-immigrant.”
  8. So and so “hates poor/old/disabled people.”

Continue on ad infinitum.

These words pair the accused with something emotionally bad, relatable, and often visual. Critical thinking shuts down completely. Confirmation bias takes over. The person or side being accused, having a frame imposed on him/them (and an ugly, emotionally-charged one), desperately tries to get out of it by denials. This only makes him look guilty. It also saps himself and his side of initiative, as supporters will try to look for “evidence” to deny the label, which won’t work anyway due to the shut down in analysis and the takeover of confirmation bias. All the space has been dominated.

Remember the whole “War on Women” in 2012? That dogged Mitt Romney from beginning to end, and his fairly innocuous but sort-of-bad-sounding “binders full of women” quip in the latter stages of the campaign hit him extremely hard because the meme magicians on Obama’s campaign (probably including Robert Cialdini – Scott Adams’ “Godzilla” himself) had been programming word-thinkers to think of Mitt Romney as “anti-woman” for months, and that comment was just more confirmation bias. Note that the exact same language they’re applying to Donald Trump now, they were using on Mitt Romney, though the “War on Women” generally ruled the day among the word-think spells in 2012. Despite the fundamentals looking not-great for Barack Obama in 2012 (high unemployment, his signature achievement in the Affordable Care Act being unpopular), he won the election handily, in large part because of the word-think magic spells he and his team concocted against the opposition.

In contrast to this, conservatives have generally conducted themselves along these lines:

  1. “Lower taxes.”
  2. “Less regulations.”
  3.  Something something the Constitution.
  4.  Something something peace through strength.
  5.  Something something Israel.
  6.  Something something Ronald Reagan.
  7.  “Secure the border.”
  8.  Something something God.

A few of these things have some potency. For example, “the Constitution” sounds patriotic and is vague enough to let people fill in the blanks with their own ideas. Same goes for “Secure the border.” However, these things aren’t nearly as potent as the left’s things because…

  1. They aren’t relatable to a lot of, in Nigel Farage’s words, “ordinary people.” Most people don’t think about the Constitution because it’s not something they encounter in their lives. At best, they encounter it in school. It has little to no meaning to them.
  2. These things have little to no ability to program word-thinkers. At best, they can do so a little bit, like maybe saying someone is “against the Constitution,” a nebulous concept too distant to be extremely emotional or motivating. But if you’re a politician, and you tell people that your opponent is racist, they start to imagine all kinds of bad things because of the pairing of language with some feasible “evidence.”

This is why the left has tended to win in the long run. Democrats have won 5 out of 6 of the last presidential elections in terms of the popular vote. Republicans have often dominated state and congressional races, but this is often because turnout is lower and congressional (and state legislative) districts are heavily gerrymandered.

That’s not to suggest Democrats don’t gerrymander as much as their Republican counterparts when given the chance. My work in politics in New York has shown that both sides are equally guilty of the practice (in fact, my first big assignment at one of my jobs a few years ago had to do with the redistricting that was going on in New York just when I arrived). Gerrymandering just tends to benefit Republicans more directly than Democrats.

That’s simply a fact.

If you started to get emotional because I paired “Republican” with “gerrymandering,” which stands for the concept of being a politician that gets to select your own voters, and you started to object in some way, guess what? You were word-thinking, and I just programmed a reaction in you.

Basically, conservatives have gotten lucky a few times by sometimes casting a spell by accident, while leftists have all gone to the Sorcerer’s Guild and learned how to use magic. Their words aren’t random. They know how to say the words in the proper way to cast a spell. Conservatives don’t.

Leftists are trained. Conservatives, for all their professed intellectual, “facts over feelings” prowess, aren’t.

The real revolution Donald Trump is bringing to the Republican Party, far beyond any tone or policy, is an education on how to use magic (the tools to program word-thinkers) to win.

Lina Inverse Dragon Slave spell magic

But how about more practical, everyday things? How can you use the power of word-think magic there too?

If you’re taking part in a seduction, it means you try to engineer potent words designed for your partner’s psychology (The Art of Seduction is very good with explaining the psychology part). If you’re marketing a product, it’s the same basic idea. Words that shut-down logic and let emotion take over are what your aim is as a marketer to start with. Simple, repeatable themes like “winning” are usually good.

Often these words are something that create exclusivity by emphasizing an in-group to an out-group, which creates a good motivation for action. Labeling your out-group opponents with emotional words and then instructing your prospect on how to either defeat them or not be like them is a powerful tactic.

For instance, one of the ways that people like Roosh became big was by setting up a conflict between “alpha male” (which sounds good) and  “beta male” (which sounds bad), then pairing those two things with desirable or undesirable outcomes (“alpha male” = get laid) (“beta male” = go home and jerk off and other bad things). Naturally, more guys want to be “alpha males,” so they go to people that can make that happen like Roosh or Good Looking Loser (even though he’s never used such terminology to my knowledge – he has contrasted himself very forcefully with “seduction gurus”).

Dave Rubin has created the very successful Rubin Report in part by pairing it with “free speech” and taking a stand against the “social justice warriors” and “regressive left” that so many people – on all sides of the political and cultural spectrum hate. Who doesn’t want free speech? That’s a cool thing to defend against SJW losers now.

In my own marketing blueprint for my upcoming book Year Zero, I’m planning on copy that takes advantage of our pairing of “social justice warriors” with “crazy, low-t male, or fat woman loser” to set up a contrast between “normal,” “healthy,” “rational,” “freedom-loving,” and so on. This would allow me to program word-thinkers in my own niche to let their emotions and confirmation bias take over (especially if over time) and motivate them buy the book in order to learn how these menaces work and how to fight back against them (whether immediately or at a future date).

And the thing to realize is that if you satisfy your prospects emotionally before the sale occurs, they’ll likely be satisfied with your product after using it, no matter its quality. Knowledge of how word-thinking works will allow you to more easily do so.

I’m confident in telling you all this because to quote Scott Adams, the mechanisms of persuasion work even when you tell someone you’re using them.

I’m also confident that you should read Stumped, because you definitely want to learn how to be a persuader and not a word-thinker, since you want to be someone who controls minds, too.

  • Year Zero sounds like a poor name for a title. Zero isn’t a power word. Thank you for all your writing.

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    • Yeah, but that’s really the best way to describe the moment. That’s where the subtitle and cover come in.

      You’re welcome.

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    • I see where Libertas is coming from. You’ve got a pinpoint description that calls to those in the know. OTOH, Thane is right that it doesn’t communicate powerfully outside that group. And images can be tricky if you’re hoping that they’ll carry the day.

      There are a number of ways to skin this cat, but maybe start with this question: what aspirational thing do people get after they’ve read the book?

      it sounds like a similar payoff to SJWs Always Lie, so we also need to know what distinguishes it.

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      • A good point. YZ is more of an in-depth deep history than Vox’s book, which is more of a “how-to.” The SJW phenomenon is not new. Most people don’t seem to know this. The lessons from history need to be learned and we need to stop this from getting worse.

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  • I wonder if any of these language lessons will be learned by pro-maker politicians prior to election day. The vast Republican Party support group seems to think that the eight points above have been and will be enough to prevail. I don’t know if any Libertarian campaigns are following this. All in all Libertarians seem to be believers if only we can put enough letters/articles/books in front of people we will persuade them despite decades upon decades of that loosing the battle.

    Movies being stories are another story (pun?). The current era pro-freedom movie that I am aware of exists but is hardly burning with popularity. I am sure there are others but this one is the one I notice the most.

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    • Libertarians are an odd bunch in general. Their own fatal conceit (aside from immigration) is that they assume people are rational.

      Trump is teaching the right these lessons though. Even if he loses, they will hopefully take them to heart.

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  • Raven Black

    Conservatives use a different word-weapon entirely – where liberals somewhat over-readily attach “racist” to anyone disagreeing with them, conservatives attack from the other side; instead of trying to attach new labels to those they disagree with, they try to attach new meaning to the words already assumed. “Liberal” is used as a dismissive epitaph by conservatives in much the same way liberals use “racist”. (Though this power has been weakened a bit by the introduction of “libtard”.)

    Watch for it in internet comment threads though, it’s pretty ubiquitous. The power dynamic is very different, it doesn’t make people defensive because they just *accept* the label, but it works much better as a strong in-group out-group divider, and because the label is accepted by both sides it’s far more readily attached (ie. if you say something that’s marginally racist, calling you racist will split even the liberal half of the audience over “that wasn’t really racist”, but calling someone liberal pretty reliably out-groups them).

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    • That’s a good point when it comes to rallying your own base but “liberal” or “libtard” isn’t nearly as personal or visceral as “racist” though that label’s power has now diminished severely because of overuse. It’s interesting to now see the left trying to find their new spells to use. “Russia” and “Putin” are the ones that have been filling the gap in the time being, but there’s no way that they can be anything other than temporary.

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      • Raven Black

        “Liberal” used to be more visceral too, cold-war era it’s the sort of word that people would gasp at, similar to communist. Which the right also still throws out there occasionally.
        There’s an additional strength to using Liberal as an epithet too now I think about it, that it binds people to a set of beliefs they probably don’t actually have. It’s like “Oh, you don’t hate abortion? Then you inevitably do hate guns!”
        “Russia” is funny because, like “liberal”, it’s a throwback to cold-war era problems.

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        • Lots of people have no problem hating guns though, but almost no one wants to be a “racist” (or at least be seen as one).

          “Snowflake” seems to have taken a new place to describe the contemporary hysterical blue-haired left. What’s telling me that it’s working is that they’re reacting very angrily to it and trying to pin it back on the people using it, but there’s something visual about it that only seems to apply to the left (especially on campuses). Because they stand out so prominently, it invites a visual pairing.

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          • Raven Black

            Yeah, hating guns was just one example though, and it works in every direction too.
            Oh, you don’t like guns? Then you must think abortion is great. And if you do either one of those you must also like literally all government spending, even military and police which are actually more in the conservative spending bailiwick. And abhor all violence in all contexts even though that conflicts with the previous thing. And you must be college educated and look down on people who aren’t. And you want people to get free money for not working. And you think healthcare should be literally free for everyone with no thought for the cost. Except maybe the military because you want the military to be totally mistreated. etc. etc. It’s very hard for someone to defend themself against a broad-spectrum accusation like that, especially if they actually self-identify as the word you used to say it all!

            Snowflake is weird, it’s not even really being used to denote hysterical extreme left, it’s pretty much just being applied to anyone who doesn’t like anything Trump is doing.

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          • Tucker Carlson and others at Fox use it a lot, and the tell is that they’re trying to blow it back on the twitter echo chamber.

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