What is truth? Let’s ask big brother

Have you ever read George Orwell’s "Nineteen Eighty-Four"? It is a fascinating story from 1949 about the future of imaginary world Oceania created in the mind of its author.

"Big Brother is watching you" is a famous line from the novel. Mind control is everything. Do you believe mind control is possible in this confused world?

Orwell, as a writer, despised a totalitarian form of government and believed this was the worst form of citizen control.

Lloyd "Pete" Waters
Lloyd "Pete" Waters

In the the story, the Party aims to control all citizens of Oceania. They have figured out how to take away each person's privacy by watching them through telescreens, brainwashing them to blind loyalty like docile sheep in a field.

Please be reminded that the technology of "Nineteen Eighty-Four" in no way compares to the technological advancements of today. Have you ever really considered the modern-day computer, what you read and what is offered in practically every venue imaginable?

Search for any product on your computer and soon you will be receiving unrequested notices on your media screen to remind you of your search and other information that might influence or encourage your interest in the product so you might purchase it.

Adolf Hitler, when he rose to power in Germany, used propaganda and censorship as his swords of demise to control the German people, much in the same manner as Orwell's antagonists in his novel.

Hitler’s intent was to control those venues that could influence a person’s mind. His arms of power wanted absolute control over the nation’s newspapers, magazines, books, art, theater, movies and radio.

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Once in control of the individual’s mind, Hitler would be able to take his subjects down any road. It is puzzling for the average person to understand just how this is possible, but that "conditioning of the mind" is something readily achievable if you understand how the mind is influenced.

With this in mind, pay attention to how the Chinese handle COVID protests in their country today.

Also look to the recent criticism directed at Elon Musk’s purchase of Twitter to begin to appreciate this aspect of a "controlling influence." Much of the criticism is directed by "liberal" media elements, while Musk himself, I’m thinking, was concerned about that very liberal controlling influence of this huge media conglomerate before his purchase.

While considering that possible control of the human mind, let us consider another social media.

TikTok is a popular social media app based in Singapore and owned by a Chinese company that allows users to create, watch and share short videos shot on mobile devices or webcams. With its personalized feeds of quirky content set to music and sound effects, the app is notable for its addictive quality and high levels of engagement.

It also permits the owner to collect information on its many users. This current big brother example is already collecting data on you.

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Wouldn’t it seem in regard to mind control that access and addiction to any media format might be a future platform for influencing human behavior?

When I look at media today and those influences of apps upon its users, I wonder what the future holds.

While Orwell’s big brother image was one of his individual protests to any form of totalitarian government, perhaps some might see similar controlling behavior by politicians and media moguls.

Whomever controls the big screen, controls the world. Perhaps this might not concern you, unless you happen to find yourself under a big brother brainwashing exercise one day.

Technology, for certain, has taken us to new levels of knowledge and understanding like never before. The fight picked in 1776 was viewed by our Founding Fathers as necessary to fight an evil king.

Free speech today seems under attack, too.

Even more alarming, it appears to me that one entity seeks to control in totality the dialogue and limitations of all speech.

In Orwell’s novel, the thought police are the secret police of Oceania, who discover and punish thoughtcrime, personal and political thoughts unapproved by the regime.

Wait a minute! There’s someone knocking at my door!

I got to run!

Pete Waters is a Sharpsburg resident who writes for the Herald-Mail.

This article originally appeared on The Herald-Mail: George Orwell's novel has strong parallels to what's happening today