A few years ago, I coined a phrase when explaining something to my daughters: "Memetic injection". It's a unique phrase that I concocted. Curiously--it is an example of itself. Here's what it means
I have several partially-written draft posts that connect in various ways to a “big-idea”topic that I've been grappling with for some time, trying to sort out.
The concept of “memetic injection” that I want to introduce to you in this post is a good starting point for reaching toward the broader topic, because memetic injection ties into the current Twitter ownership battle.
I’ll explain what this term means and why it matters; with this definition, you’ll be able to start looking for your own examples of it. I made up the phrase myself, as best I can tell; it doesn’t seem to show up elsewhere (yet.) The significance of that ‘invention’ will become clearer in the other posts to follow.
Memetic injection happens to be an example of itself in a weird, self-referential way. More on that later.
I’m going to start with the concept of memetic injection because it ties in nicely with the epic battle that is taking place over at Twitter right now between Elon Musk and the “Twitterati” elite—and the covert operators who are arrayed behind them.
This is the real fulcrum point in the battle. The battle is not about stock prices, or control of a tech company—it is about mind control, and the social engineering that derives from that control. It is about nam-shubs.
(By the way, the word “Nam-Shubs” is an ancient Sumerian word that is covered in detail in Neal Stephenson’s 1992 novel Snow Crash, which is also—and disturbingly so—the inspiration for the new Facebook company name “Meta”. Neal’s later novel Cryptonomicon was also, according to some, the source of inspiration for Bitcoin.)
The overarching theme (of which this post is one part) is one of those big ideas that—as I sense pieces of it starting to coalesce together —gives me goosebumps and chills.
Pieces of the big idea that I’ve been trying to shape into a coherent whole are starting to materialize slowly out of the fog; I’m searching for a golden thread to help me weave together my own sort of Goedel, Escher, and Bach. But before I dive too deep into that, let me start somewhere simpler.
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The basis for memetic injection is the word “meme”. We have a modern usage of that word which is somewhat different than the original definition.
The modern word “meme” is broadly understood to mean a picture or brief video with some humorous words overlaid that makes some narrative-piercing cultural or political point.
A well-constructed meme (the kind that the left doesn’t seem to know how to make) doesn’t need any explanation; it is the explanation, and it cuts right through our cognitive filters to grab us by the brain stem at an almost subconscious level.
We instantly know what it’s claiming is true without needing to interpret it. It’s that property of memes that infuriates the left: there is no need for a narrative, which they rely on.
The word meme originally meant something different. It originally meant “an idea, behavior, or style that spreads by means of imitation [from mind to mind in a viral way] … within a culture, and often carries symbolic meaning…”
(notice my re-casting of the definition in brackets of “mind to mind”, and “in a viral way”, which I think is more apropos.)
Interestingly, the original word “meme” —and the way it spreads from mind to mind by imitation — is connected to this word, “Mimetic” (definition from Merriam Webster)
There’s also a humorous—and I’m sure not entirely coincidental—connection to the word “emetic” (courtesy Merriam Webster)
Anyhow, in mulling over the word “meme” and how memes are used in the modern sense to inject novel ideas into public consciousness, I came up with the new phrase “Memetic Injection” (note my unique spelling: Meme-tic instead of Mim-etic.)
“Memetic Injection” as I originally conceived it means “the first, original introduction into the public consciousness of some unique idea, word, creative item, or notion.”
Because I was the first to coin a phrase with this meaning, I essentially “memetically-injected the phrase memetic injection” into the public consciousness. A beautiful example of a self-referential loop. Douglas Hoftstadter would be proud.
I’ll get into this more deeply in another post, but there is a particular emphasis here on “original”. Once an “idea” first makes its way into the public consciousness, it is then embellished, enhanced, diminished, twisted, neutered, inverted, or —sometimes if we’re lucky — transmitted more or less intact as it moves from mind to mind (remember the “telephone game” we played as kids?)
But the key point is that every idea had a unique origin somewhere and at some time. If you could somehow trace it back, someone was the first person ever to think of it. That same someone, or perhaps someone else later on, may also have been the first to express it: to bring it forth— by naming it, describing it and using words—out of the formless void and into existence in the public consciousness as a “thing”.
But the idea—the “meme”—first originated with one person. Within one mind.
Have you ever had the sort of Deja-Vu feeling when you hear of something new and you say to yourself “Hey, I thought of that first! Dang, I should have said something.” How that might happen is the subject for another future post.
What I also want to dive into deeply in a future post is this: what, exactly, is the inspiration for that very first, original (creative) idea? From where—and how—did the very first instance of an idea or creative act actually spring forth?
Let’s stay on the track of defining memetic injection for now. What is unique about modern social media platforms (if you have read my posts “Why I call it anti-social media” part 1 and part 2, then you’re already familiar with my views on this) is that they provide covert actors a ready-made tool to engage in covert memetic injection with viral propagation potential that is unmatched in all of human history.
In today’s world, the act of narrative creation and narrative steering depends heavily on covert memetic injection. That’s what takes place daily on platforms like Twitter (and Telegram, but in a different way.)
John F. Kennedy, in his famous 1963 "Secret Societies" speech, foreshadowed the coming of this sort of mind-control:
Long before Kennedy gave that speech, Edward Bernays, the nephew of Sigmund Freud, said this in 1928:
“The conscious and intelligent manipulation of the organized habits and opinions of the masses is an important element in democratic society. Those who manipulate this unseen mechanism of society constitute an invisible government which is the true ruling power of our country. “
—Edward Bernays, father of modern advertising, public relations, and propaganda, in a book published in 1928.
So now we get back to the Twitter connection. Twitter, Facebook (Meta), Instagram, YouTube, TikTok… all of these platforms have two interesting properties: (1) they are the vehicles that give hidden agents the means to engage in rapid covert memetic injection — i.e., originating ideas into the public (sub-)consciousness — and (2) the operators of these platforms, using their internal time-stamped databases, have a unique vantage point for determining—for their own ends—WHO and WHEN and WHERE a particular idea or (counter-) narrative was first injected into the public (sub-)consciousness.
That is, these tech companies (or more pointedly, the shadow operators behind them) can use these platforms both offensively and defensively.
By exploiting things like shadow-banning, down-ranking, demonetizing or outright censorship in their algorithms, those who are using these platforms for social engineering can snuff out the early embers of dissent—shut down narrative-busting counter information wherever it starts to gain strength to maintain their chokehold over the narrative.
They can detect and disrupt—even invert!— the amplification networks that would otherwise propagate information or “memes” (in the original sense) that they don’t want going viral. They can bury the counter-narratives in b.s. to dilute their impact.
That ability—the ability to not only inject ideas into the public consciousness, but also trace back to the origin ideas or “memes” that they do not like so that they can disrupt them at their source— is something they will battle fiercely to protect and keep hidden.
The means to detect the original entry points of narratives and ideas when they first made their way into the public consciousness is something that we, the people, should have unrestricted access to.
We should be able to know, with crystal clarity, who is trying to influence our thought patterns, who are the ‘first sources’, and who are the network of ‘echo chambers’ that later amplify and distribute —or invert— the original ‘memetic injectables’.
Do you know who else now has the means to detect the origins of memetic injection for sunlighting covert ops?
If you said Truth Social…give yourself a cookie.
When you lay bare that hidden social control infrastructure for all the world to see, you unmask the actors and the tools who abuse social media as a method of mind-control for social engineering.
You expose the cabal.
Elon knows this.