Dopamine 101: What My Kitties Taught Me About Me

by Charlize Roselli on July 26, 2011

"Our minds are information vacuums. Either we fill them with thoughts of our choosing or someone else will."  — Ray Davis

My kitties hate the dopamine reducing sound of the vacuum cleaner so much that just the sight of a nozzle can send them both rocketing out of the room. The only thing that makes them run faster (and under a bed where I can‘t reach them) is the dreaded cat carrier reserved for vet visits. 

Applying what I know about Frankie and Johnny’s dopamine-induced aversion to the vacuum cleaner, when it’s time for the vet and they go into hiding, I shut the door and plug in the vacuum. Seconds later, my two discombobulated felines are running in circles and into one another on their way to a dreaded carrier. 

While thinking about how their dopamine bias against the vacuum‘s grating sound helps me trump their dopamine bias against cat carriers, I remembered what a Nazi moron explained at his Nuremberg trial.

According to Hermann Goering, "Naturally, the common people don’t want war, but after all, it is the leaders of a country who determine the policy, and it is always a simple matter to drag the people along, whether it is a democracy, or a fascist dictatorship, or a parliament, or a communist dictatorship. Voice or no voice, the people can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders. This is easy. All you have to do is tell them they are being attacked, and denounce the pacifists for lack of patriotism and exposing the country to danger. It works the same in every country.”

Having figured out how to use my kitties dopamine biases to outsmart them, I started thinking about how many times my dopamine biases have been used by advertisers, the media, politicians, and other manipulators to outsmart me.

What do you think?

How many times in your life has an external force triggered a dopamine reaction that made you do what you didn’t want to do and/or knew you shouldn’t do?

Is it possible that the dopamine driven masses are no smarter than my dopamine driven pussycats? 

Is there any hope for a species locked in the stranglehold of too many late-stage manipulative dopamine addicts and countless, easily manipulated pawns who are slaves to the safety, peer-approval and esteem needs that determine their dopamine flow? 

Will enough safety, peer-approval, and esteem addicts ever start the ball rolling by accepting the possibility that safety, peer-approval, and esteem addictions exist?

Will dopamine-induced esteem addiction keep even the most aware and open-minded esteem addicts forever preferring the dopamine triggering self deception that they have free will over the dopamine depriving facts that prove that their free will has been usurped by dopamine will?
 

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