[Fwd: Re: virus: Is the term "meme" necessary?]

Ken Pantheists (kenpan@axionet.com)
Wed, 15 May 1996 00:52:25 +0000

Reed Konsler wrote:

> Manipulation is common. People do it all the time. You bring up a lot of
> implicitly negative examples but what about "I Love You" or "You've done a
> great job". Now, any manipulation can be negative and it depends on the
> context, but it can't all be negative, can it? Why do we put up with it?
> Is the world really painted in such dark tones? A lot of really great work
> gets done. It isn't (by a long long shot) a perfect world, but hey, it has it
> bright spots. Most of those bright spots are a result of cooperation and
> consensus...which is manipulation, I guess.

I know exactly what you're saying. Think of your statement from a
performer's point of view. Every night you manipulate, maybe three
hundred people a night.

I think it's an important phase to "growing up" that you just accept
you're a manipulator.

If you're a good person, you put a lot of effort into understanding the
world and the human condition and the people around you so that you can
manipulate them without controlling them. Manipulate can also mean
"move". Maybe it's gentler to say that you "move" them.

If you're a bad person you put less effort into understanding others and
you manipulate them for purely self-satisfying ends.

So I think it's safe to say that manipulation (i.e moving others) is
neutral, it doesn't have to be dark.

Ken Pantheists