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The PRIMER Blog

Going to the well time and again pays off-why not keep going?

By GS Don Morris, Ph.D.

Take advantage of the situation-never let a good ...fail. Let us examine what has happened-again. Internal Israeli politics have ramped up regarding housing units in Judea and Samaria. The issue has become a nightmare for all of us here in Israel. Our Prime Minister finally made a decision and of course the "winners" are smiling, the "losers" are not only frowning they are truly p..... off. Conveniently Mr. Abbas seizes upon this moment and offers "offers dialogue for prisoners, arming police" and if Israel engages in a full settlement freeze, he will be willing to actually sit down with us and resume talks. In return for certain gestures (code for reward irresponsible behavior) Abbas and his crew will grant us a seat at a table to discuss the future. Let us stop this insanity-you do not alter any behavior situation or act by continuing the same reinforcement process.

Let's ask ourselves what do we know about human behavior. You don't have to be a psychologist or behavior therapist to know some simple, common sense behavior concepts. Let us examine how you treat your own children.

When your child misbehaves or displays inappropriate behavior do you ignore it? Let's say yes, you ignore it up to a point in time-for most of us when the same behavior shows up time after time-my rule is 3-what is your rule before you intervene and take action so the behavior changes?

The actual technique varies from one person to another but the nature of something called reinforcement is basically the same for all of us. You know it as do I. Common sense and your own life experiences taught you the truth. It is just this simple: to change a behavior do not reinforce the inappropriate behavior. When your child acts out do you smile, give him/her a treat-of course not. You know not to reward this behavior. Have you, as your children grew in age and ability to understand required your child to learn about personal responsibility? For example, if your child is asked to clean up his/her room and does not do it, do you hold the child accountable? When you don't, ever notice how the child simply keeps on repeating the same behavior.?

Of course you know this and have done a good job raising self-reliant responsible young adults-they have learned how to act in order to fit within their community and thus be respected as a thoughtful, caring and responsible young person.

Isn't it amazing how this foundational behavior principle is not used with the "Palestinian" leadership? Yes, the preceding principle applies conceptually to the Israeli-Arab arena. Every time we in Israel have been forced to make concessions the outcome has resulted in attacks, injuries, deaths and continued aberrant behavior by our "neighbors". There is NO CHANGE in their behavior.

Once again, Abbas and company visit the "giving well" of appeasement-why? You know the answer; that's it, say it out loud. Just as a spoiled child, one who does not have to learn how to grow up, the international community has failed as a constructive "nation building parent".

This behavior technique has morphed into a cognitive warfare weapon. It is part of their weapon cache and is used time after time. Our enemy understands how important cognitive warfare is in terms of shaping the international narrative against Israel.

The West refuses to stand up for basic human behavior principles-it refuses to defend its behavioral values and allows its enemies to control the cognitive battlefield. The political correctness, another cognitive tool used by our adversaries, has us heading along the path of destruction-our homes have been infiltrated by "ideas" meant to destroy us.

Note how our enemy does not hesitate to offend us in every way, every day. They do not "buy into' PC; they have learned that our Achilles heel in the West is our perceived need to be liked as we actually worry about offending others. Our enemy uses this powerful cognitive weapon-is it not time to stand and defend ourselves? Do we not do this on the battlefield? It is time to stand united against the weapons of mass disintegration of American values and ideals. Stop rewarding actions that do not change behavior in a responsible manner.



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