My next door neighbor's daughter, Christina, who was studying veterinary science at Texas A & M, said, "Now she'll think that every tine she comes home, she's going to get a whipping." My overt response was, "She knows why she got a whipping," but my internal reaction was, "My god! Are they teaching Skinner behaviorism in veterinary school now?"
I've had dogs all my life, and I know that they capable of far more than salivating at the sound of a bell. Dogs are sentient – even prescient – beings. The Chihuahua my wife and I have now makes up her own games, solves problems by herslf, and knows in advance when we are going out and whether or not she's going to get to go with us. To relegate such intelligent, innovative, and incentivated behavior to the realm of a computer algorithm is not only demeaning to the animal, it is revealing of a profound inability to comprehend the very basics of cognition.
Unfortunately, this mechanization of consciousness is not confined to the canine world. It is routinely applied by our government to United States Citizens, and if it is an insult to dogs, it is an abomination to humans. Government initiatives from Common Core to the Censored News Network (CNN) display a Skinnerian delusion that human behavior can be controlled by indoctrination and propaganda.
And for some "humans," tragically, it can be. There will always be dogs – and humans – who are too lazy to think for themselves and who would prefer to simply let someone take care of them. We call such dogs useless and we call such humans Democrats.
But the majority of humans, like the majority of dogs, prefer to experience and enjoy the challenges of life and not be made into kept women with testicles. We instinctively recoil at the suggestion that someone else knows better what is best for us than we ourselves. And we deeply resent being patronized and lied to. This is not a conditioned response for either dogs or humans. Rather it is an exposition of the essence of being a living, learning, evolving organism.
Life is growth, and growth requires freedom – freedom to fail and freedom to try and freedom to succeed. Freedom is not something someone gives you. It cannot be endowed. It must be earned by each individual living organism as the price of existence.
This is the basic truth that social engineers miss: living organisms are not programmable. They are self-programming. The basic mechanism of evolution is self-determination. Without that, there can be no advancing of the species. There can be only stagnation, death, and extinction. And no living organism will allow a government to pronounce that fate upon it without a fight.
If you want to fulfill your destiny and feel the wind under your wings, this may be the most important book you will ever read.