When we're born, we're selfish arseholes.
Waaaaaaaaaaaaaaah (I'm hungry!).
Waaaaaaaaaaaaaaah (I've got wind!)
Waaaaaaaaaaaaaaah (I've wet myself!)
Waaaaaaaaaaaaaaah (I've crapped myself!)
Waaaaaaaaaaaaaaah (I'm too hot!)
Waaaaaaaaaaaaaaah (I'm too cold!)
Waaaaaaaaaaaaaaah (I want attention!)
Waaaaaaaaaaaaaaah (I just felt like going "Waaaaaaaaaaaaaaah" for the hell of it!) and so on.
Then we learn how to walk and talk.
Mummy mummy mummy! I want it!
Mummy mummy mummy! I need it!
Mummy mummy mummy! I really need it!
Mummy mummy mummy! I must have it! and so on.
When we don't get what we want, we throw a tantrum.
Waaaaaaaaaaaaaaah! It's not fair!
Waaaaaaaaaaaaaaah! It's so unfair!
Waaaaaaaaaaaaaaah! I never get anything!
Waaaaaaaaaaaaaaah! I hate you! and so on.
We don't like to share our toys.
It's mine! You can't have it! Biff! and so on.
Then we learn how to cooperate. Life becomes more peaceful, although children who still are selfish arseholes can be a right pain in the arse! With all of this in mind...
I've often mentioned a documentary by Adam Curtis called The Century of the Self, Part 1: Happiness Machines. If you've not watched it, please do so. It shows how easy it is to use propaganda (now re-badged as Public Relations) & emotion-targeted marketing to manipulate populations. The two main groups doing the manipulation are:-
Governments want populations to be docile, compliant and sheep-like, to keep the peace, pay their taxes and not ask awkward questions.
Industries want populations to be selfish arseholes and buy stuff that they don't need, to maximise their profits.
So there you have it. "Free-thinkers" may think that they are free to do whatever they want, and they may deride "sheeple" for being gullible, but they've been manipulated too.