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Top comments that mention products on r/TrueReddit:

u/xraystyle · 1 pointr/TrueReddit

I have a theory about this that wasn't floated in the article.

Maybe it's the Machiavellian in me, but when I see someone who's being overly generous, especially if I don't know them well, I often wonder if they have an ulterior motive.

There's a great book out there called Influence: The Psychology Of Persuasion. One technique mentioned in the book when trying to make a sale or gain an advantage in a negotiation is to do something nice for the other party before any discussions take place.

This can be as simple as buying a drink, or as is often the case with politicians and lobbyists, sending someone on a lavish vacation.

When someone does something nice for you, you tend to feel somewhat indebted. It's a strong social norm to repay favors done for you.

Hence, whenever someone I don't know well does something nice for me, my first thought is, "What do they want from me?"

Obviously this isn't my first thought with most friends and family, but if there's an unusual level of ass-kissing going on it usually means someone's about to ask for a favor.

I think most people who've been taken advantage of in such a situation would tend to be suspicious of overly generous strangers, especially when the generosity falls far outside the social norm.

u/potatoisafruit · 6 pointsr/TrueReddit

> I think there's not enough writing out there taking a look at the totally understandable emotional reasons why people engage in identity politics.

You're looking for Jonathan Haidt. There's also a TED talk.

Haidt points out that there are six moral "receptors", similar to senses, and that conservatives experience all six, while liberals focus primarily experience only two.

Each of these moral receptors can be exploited. We are hard-wired to respond to these set-points and base our decisions on those gut feelings. We use our intellect (especially on Reddit!) to justify those emotional decisions, not to question them.

Liberals are not going to change their settings. However, they can become better at this game and learn to trigger the four missing receptors to better bring conservatives over to their pet causes.

For example, why don't conservatives respond to the statement: "Trump should release his taxes?" Liberals see this as an issue of fairness and pretty much only fairness - everyone else did it, it's good for the majority to have the information, why is this even a question?

Conservatives bring in a whole host of other moral flavors. They are loyal to Trump. They respect his authority. They believe fairness is about proportionality, so because Trump is rich, he must also be good (those with the most assets have earned a right to lead). All of these cross-currents prevent them from supporting something that is obviously beneficial to society.

Until liberal learn to trigger those switches, they will continue to lose elections. We are ultimately still monkeys.

u/smekas · 3 pointsr/TrueReddit

This is my issue with Gladwell and Lehrer:

>In works of less than 500 pages, Gladwell and Lehrer attempt to enlighten the reader on How the World Works, What People are Really Like, and How Greatness Happens without getting into any of the technical details that would absolutely overwhelm the majority of the readers traipsing through airport book shop before grabbing their flight home.

They set out to achieve something that's nearly impossible and people are willing to suspend disbelief just because they don't want to expend the energy required to become truly informed on a given subject.

Also this:
>More than actionable insights, this kind of popular analysis gives the reader something far more immediately valuable – the feeling that they have a sophisticated view of the world.

I'm still reading the article, but I fell in love with the following sentence:
>America splits its valuable time between blowing an enormously obvious housing bubble, demanding Master’s degrees for entry-level positions, and badly managing the bloodbaths of Iraq and Afghanistan.

This is an excellent article. If I may suggest a couple of anti-dotes to the Gladwell/Lehrer pop-science oversimplification, two books with excellent science and research on how we think, decide and react to stress are Kahneman's Thinking, Fast and Slow and Choke, by Sian Beilock.

u/Ledatru · 7 pointsr/TrueReddit

In Outliers by Malcolm Gladwell, he explains that a high IQ often does not translate into worldly success because greatness is based on a lot of luck.

They did a study where they followed around a bunch of exceptionally intelligent people, people who had IQs high enough to be considered geniuses. They were, in fact, outliers in terms of IQ.

But what did they discover? They found that most of them led average to above-average lives. These geniuses weren't bums by any means, but they weren't great either. They probably led ordinary lives making around $80,000/year or something.

Why? Why were these people with exceptionally high IQs enjoying the same success as people with normal IQs?

It's because of luck. Things didn't luck out for them. There are so many factors you can't control.

u/Seraphis_Set · 5 pointsr/TrueReddit

If you're interested in the Japanese Yakuza, I wholeheartedly recommend the book Tokyo Vice by Jake Adelstein (mentioned in this article).

It is simultaneously a credible assessment of the modern-day Yakuza's place in society (albiet from a westerner's perspective) and a very authentic memoir from a remarkable journalist. Also, I found it to be quite humorous and entertaining without that air of condescension that quite a few books on Japan tend to succumb to.

Probably one of the most enjoyable non-fiction pieces I've read in a while.

u/Allways_Wrong · 1 pointr/TrueReddit

> Macro-economics has a major problem in that it cannot conduct proper experimental studies with a control group.

Are there any computer models that you are aware of that do, or may do in the future, a good approximation of the real world?

Also, everything you have described is, I'm sure you are aware, a kind of bottom-up intelligence. There are patterns in society, across both space and time, that influence us far more it seems than any top-down approach the we believe to be steering this ship.

> Economics is complicated and we shouldn't reduce it to hero worship of some past figure who "proved capitalism wrong". A recent book that focuses on the injustices of economic inequality with a far more sophisticated treatment is Capital in the Twenty-first Century by Thomas Piketty.

I'd like to second this too. I've only just bought it but it sounds an amazing, thoroughly researched book. Can't wait to start reading it this weekend. There's a brief review here that includes a link to a lengthier review in the first sentence.

u/flyingdragon8 · 5 pointsr/TrueReddit

Great article. The article mentioned Poor Economics which is an entire book on developmental economics with the same overall thesis: that big ideas are counterproductive to developmental aid and that only well thought out, small scale projects fine tuned to local conditions through rigorous experimentation can significantly improve outcomes. Highly recommended reading.

u/fathan · 31 pointsr/TrueReddit

The hero worship of Marxist economics is largely misplaced and unproductive. Marx was ignorant of many intellectual breakthroughs in economics that occurred between his writing of The Communist Manifesto and Capital. Take, for example, the marginal revolution compared to Marx's theory of prices. No economist pays any attention to Marx's ideas on price theory, or his other "economic" contributions. Other things that people would like to credit to Marx, eg a focus on income inequality, is better credited to previous economists like David Ricardo.

Marxist economics failed to account for the core role of economics--the allocation of scare resources with alternate uses. Instead Marx simply asserted that a communist economy could achieve the same efficiency with more equitable distribution of gains, but without explaining how this could be done. He similarly ignored the tradeoff between worker's quality of life and efficiency/growth--this isn't to say that we have the right balance now, but that Marx didn't even consider the question. Every time Marx's ideas have been put into practice they have proved a dismal failure and demanded an immediate reversal to more traditional (ie "capitalist") means of organizing production. See Lenin's New Economic Policy and Deng's economic reforms. The tragic irony is that Marxist economies tend to cause the most suffering for the people they are intended to help, as the elite are perfectly capable of protecting themselves regardless of circumstances.

Marx's contributions to history are significant and his political contributions are undeniable, but we shouldn't lionize his economic theories simply by association. His contributions to economics as practiced today are non-existent. Marxist critiques of capitalism were disproven within his own lifetime. Indeed by the publication of Capital, wages of the working class were increasing. A lot of casual Marxists tend to think he predicted that "capitalism was bad" and then cherry pick periods that loosely agree with this understanding. Marxism actually makes much more specific predictions about the way the world will evolve that were false--for example, where and how the first communist revolution would take place. We shouldn't lose sight of that.

Economics is complicated and we shouldn't reduce it to hero worship of some past figure who "proved capitalism wrong". A recent book that focuses on the injustices of economic inequality with a far more sophisticated treatment is Capital in the Twenty-first Century by Thomas Piketty.

u/[deleted] · 1 pointr/TrueReddit

if i may point to probably the most well research topic on this subject, it might have the answer you're looking for:

I have yet to be shown a more substantiated work, but people love to dismiss the data presented in this book using mere articles.

u/spicedmango · 13 pointsr/TrueReddit

Not the original commenter, but you both seem to be going on your intuition about what rhetoric will work best. I recommend reading "How Culture Shapes the Climate Change Debate" ( I would argue that you both misunderstand and oversimplify the beliefs of your climate-change-denying audience. I highly recommend the book I've linked to! Relatively concise, cogent and backed by extensive sociological research.

u/sharpcowboy · 1 pointr/TrueReddit

I also recommend this book for those who are really interested in the subject.

From a review: " Shoup zeroes in on the reason for such problems: we assume that parking should be free. Shoup points out that if we decided that gasoline should be free, the result we would expect would be obvious: people would drive too much, shortages of gasoline would develop, fights would break out over scarce gas, and governments would go broke trying to pay for it all. Shoup shows that parking is no different. Providing free parking leads to overuse, shortages, and conflicts over parking. Cash-strapped local governments and neighborhoods lose out, too. Free parking is like a fertility drug for cars. Many people don't realize how much of the high price of housing is due to requirements by local governments that a certain number of parking spaces must be provided. These costs are paid by everyone, including those who don't own a car."

u/glodime · 2 pointsr/TrueReddit

Your link is ... I'm not sure. But it doesn't link to the amazon page for the book, "How Culture Shapes the Climate Change Debate". I provided a link to the Amazon Smile page for anyone interested.

u/Austin98989 · 7 pointsr/TrueReddit

The high cost of free parking is by now so well-known that it is also the title of an eponymous book. Yet we spend massive amounts of money and cause tremendous externalities by trying to making parking "free." We can live saner and more productive lives by acknowledging these costs and becoming better systems thinkers.

u/wootup · 17 pointsr/TrueReddit

> But if the World Bank (and let's throw in the IMF and WTO as well, if you like) never existed, global poverty would be mostly unchanged. I'm open to being wrong about this, but I haven't even seen anyone lay out the argument that these institutions are primarily responsible for the persistence of global poverty.

Well, from a geostrategic point of view, the structural purpose of the World Bank and IMF - and debatably the entire Bretton Woods economic system - was to facilitate the continuation of traditional international power inequities in the post-World War II world. For American planners at the close of World War II, their country had leapfrogged over the declining European powers to become, by far, the most wealthy and powerful country on Earth. Invariably, they wanted to supplant those traditional European powers in their respective colonies and spheres of influence to become the dominant actor themselves, but - as the American political tradition has largely frowned upon overt imperialism - they needed to do it in a way that meshed with the liberal political culture of their society, as well as with their liberal propaganda about democracy and "free" markets. Herein lies the strategic purpose of the World Bank and IMF, at least in terms of their predatory relationship to the former European colonies (what we might today call "the 3rd world"). You can get pretty specific overviews of World Bank/IMF structural adjustment programs, as well as their strategic purpose, by reading Dilemmas of Domination by Walden Bello, Confessions of an Economic Hitman by John Perkins, and Hegemony or Survival by Noam Chomsky.

I hope I've helped illuminate this issue a bit, but really, nobody here should be surprised to learn about how this works; this is very basic realpolitik.

EDIT: I should note that in recent decades, the process of globalization has ushered in a remarkably different economic and political order from that of the Bretton Woods system, but that's a rather different discussion.

u/jakewins · 14 pointsr/TrueReddit

The authors of this, Abhijit and Esther, are also the authors of the best summary-for-the-layman book I've read on international aid, Poor Economics.

If you care about data-driven conclusions and pragmatism, and if you want to get a birds-eye view of global poverty, why international aid fails, and why it succeeds, I cannot recommend this book enough.

u/Tuxis · -7 pointsr/TrueReddit

Capitalism isn't undermining democracy a few extremely rich people are.

u/YonansUmo · -16 pointsr/TrueReddit

As someone who used to smoke a pack a day for years and then quit, I can say with complete confidence that an addiction to cigarettes is all in your head.

It is a fabricated product of the media. Realizing that from a book I read was how I was able to quit and never look back.

u/hijabiwasabi · 3 pointsr/TrueReddit

This guy eats poultry and fish...the explanation he gives in his book for giving up mammal meal is really striking.

u/fireduck · 7 pointsr/TrueReddit

> The Gift Of Fear

Looks like he has another book, which is about kids:

u/lookininward · 21 pointsr/TrueReddit

He wrote a book "Tokyo Vice: An American Reporter on the Police Beat in Japan". I read it a few weeks ago and was impressed. It shows how the yakuza, not one single entity but multiple groups that rise and fall, have an often symbiotic relationship with the government. It also answers a lot of questions about japanese sex culture and wider culture in general, the open side and the darker one where human sex trafficking can go uninvestigated.

u/tomrhod · 3 pointsr/TrueReddit

I had no idea chalk was so fascinating. I'm definitely gonna check out that book listed at the end: Life Everlasting: The Animal Way of Death.

EDIT: Found it.

u/Manny_Bothans · 2 pointsr/TrueReddit

You should read the article author's book called thinking fast and slow.

u/Pas__ · 1 pointr/TrueReddit

Knock yourself out, The Blank Slate. I don't remember which chapter, but obviously it's around the nurture-vs-nature parts.

u/thirdfounder · 9 pointsr/TrueReddit

> manipulating the process

who isn't manipulating the process? Gitlin certainly would like to, hopes the press will, and believes they can -- this is a pretty clear advocacy piece, is it not? read the final sentence should you have any doubt:

> If they don’t put down their softballs, if they don’t stop letting simple-minded questions substitute for serious exploration, they’ll share responsibility for enabling — and helping elect — President Donald J. Trump.

so let's not pretend objectivity is the goal. it is what Gitlin presumes is a convenient means to his desired end.

but that's where he is wrong. he either does not understand how influence works or is pretending not to.

as others have noted: "Facts don’t necessarily have the power to change our minds. In fact, quite the opposite." that's what the science says, and it's dead right.

it's also something dyed-in-the-wool journalists have known since the dawn of journalism. every piece is an advocacy piece, no matter what it pretends to be. and Trump is certainly keenly aware of that truth, even if Gitlin isn't.

u/Looger · 7 pointsr/TrueReddit

I think it's naive to say the rich conspired in some form as an attack on the poor and middle class. However the fact is that the income gap between rich and poor is widening by nearly every metric. The rich are getting richer.

It's also extremely difficult for poor people to get by in America. Here's a good book describing the broken policies that make the cards stacked against the poor.

Tied into that is institutional racism. Minorities, especially blacks, are unfairly targeted by the war on drugs, incarcerated, then labeled a felon and stripped of their rights. The New Jim Crow describes the policies and reasons that the war on drugs is effectively enforcing racial caste in America.

It's important to gain a deeper understanding of these issues if they are to be solved. All of these issues are visible to us on a surface level, but without a deeper understanding it can seem that the rich are actively trying to bleed out the poor.

These issues are not so much an agenda as they are something that emerges from our collective behavior. For example, studies have shown that many of us who do not identify as racist still exhibit conscious and unconscious biases. Our biases affect our society. Cynicism and pointing fingers gets us nowhere. Change starts with ourselves and we are all responsible.

u/g2petter · 2 pointsr/TrueReddit

>Yes, he's an exception, but there must be a slight 'enabling' element there.

Anyone who wants to look into the 'enabling' effect should read Dave Grossman's books On Killing and On Combat. The author probably overstates the effect violent media has, but it's nonetheless a very good read.

u/kleopatra6tilde9 · 5 pointsr/TrueReddit

Reddit automatically removes amazon links with referer ids. Please change your comment or it will be removed when the spam filter checks it again.

In that case, here is the link

>I had no idea chalk was so fascinating. I'm definitely gonna check out that book listed at the end: Life Everlasting: The Animal Way of Death

u/101011 · 62 pointsr/TrueReddit

>And your stats don't mean anything. They can be interpreted as meaning that blacks are more likely to commit crime in general, which the stats also show.

First, I appreciate that you're taking a different line of reasoning here. It's not easy to stand up against a multitude of people that see things differently than you. However, I think you're cherry picking statistics here.

You're right that statistically speaking, black people are more likely to commit violent crime - but if you don't follow up that statistic without asking yourself "why" then you're missing the crux of the issue.

For instance, did you know that white people are statistically more likely to abuse drugs than black people, but that black males are convicted at a rate 10 times higher than white males?

There's a long and complicated history as to why black people are inordinately prosecuted in our judicial system. But I strongly believe that if you look at the total numbers with an unbiased view you'll agree with me here. If you're interested in learning more on this topic, I strongly recommend The New Jim Crow by Michelle Alexander.

u/thekingofwinter · 36 pointsr/TrueReddit

Some examples that help cultivate (rightfully so IMHO) the idea that the Koch brothers are "evil"-

1-Koch Industries is one of the top 15 polluters in the U.S. [source] (

2-All the while they've given upwards of 100 million dollars to the climate denial effort. [source] (

3-Koch Industries produces over 2 billion pounds of carcinogen formaldehyde and has actively worked to keep it from being classified as a carcinogen. [source] (

4-They've been accused of attempting to steal 31 million dollars worth of crude oil from Native Americans and were the biggest oil and gas industry donors to the congressional committee with oversight of the hazardous Keystone pipeline. I don't think all that cash was to make sure things were kept safe and clean. [source] (

5-Just this month they did their part to smear the benefits of electric cars. [source] (

6-This [video] ( gives a decent idea of how they've gone about promoting the dismantling of public education.

I could go on but I've got shit to do. Keep in mind this is nothing compared to the decades long campaign they've run to siphon away more and more money and influence from the poor. If you really want to see a bigger picture, read [Dark Money, by Jane Mayer] (

u/guy_guyerson · 10 pointsr/TrueReddit

What are crimes? There's a strong case that the average American commits 3 felonies per day, most unknowingly. 'Waiting' becomes 'loitering' based on the desires of any given cop. Police forces in The US make announcements that they're going to begin enforcing previously ignored laws or that particular laws will be demoted to 'low priority' (unenforced). Medical marijuana users in The US are all federal criminals. Basically no one actually knows what their state and local laws are and even people who's vocation demands they do can't agree on what those laws mean.

u/Midnight_in_Seattle · 35 pointsr/TrueReddit

This story has two important points: 1. Texas justice is completely fucked up and 2. Police and prosecutors often act in ways that callously disregard the rights of others, yet they are rarely held accountable for their own criminal acts. The numerous videos of innocent people being shot by cops that've surfaced in the last several years demonstrate the problems in police departments.

Rise of the Warrior Cop: The Militarization of America's Police Forces is good further reading on these topics. So is Three Felonies a Day. Almost no one is safe—not even victims.

u/piranhas_really · 3 pointsr/TrueReddit

De facto slavery of African Americans actually continued after the Civil War through other legalized means:

I recommend reading Michelle Alexander's "The New Jim Crow", which summarizes post-reconstruction-era slavery of blacks quite well in its introductory chapters.

u/voidoid · -1 pointsr/TrueReddit

Somebody compiled it into a neat little book for you. But I'm done with this- you've made several claims with no statistics yourself, and I see no reason to push the thread further. It seems evident to me that crime fluctuates due to many factors, and I was simply trying to add two important points to the OP that were neglected. I'm not saying the entire reason that crime has gone down is because of higher gun ownership.

u/emi_online · 1 pointr/TrueReddit

Some thing:

>Sorry bud but I don't think you are in touch with anything except the upper-middle class or upper class if you think the average person would rather have cheap consumer shit over a higher wage and better benefits (e.g. an actual good welfare net).

1.) Trade policy has nothing to do with welfare. If you have the same welfare system and same tax policy the country with a more open trade regime is richer (higher income, lower price of goods). Criticizing Free Trade by saying "poor people would earn more if we just gave them more money" is invalid as it is a very different part of government policy.

2.) You talk about me being "out of touch" with the poor but claim that poor people don't benefit from "cheap consumer shit"

The thing most really poor people care about is food and shelter (this is only the really poor tho, I recommend you read Poor Economics for further insight). Food is affected by tariffs the same way every other product is. It gets more expensive and you lose choice. If food gets cheaper the poor are better off.

3.) Not every foreign product is cheaper because it is a worse product (cheap consumer shit). Comparative advantage is a thing. Which brings me to the next point:

4.)The economy isn't zero-sum.
>Wow I've fucking saved $2,000 this year, awesome! That's completely fucking worth this current rampant inequality still present in wealth and income!

Higher inequality != higher poverty. Just because some people have more than others doesn't mean the others are worse off. They aren't. Average per person Income increased by 80% since 1976. Median household income increased by 44-62% for most households. This does not show up normally because there has been a large increase in working age single person households drawing the average down (surprise: two people can earn more than one). source

>have cheap consumer shit over a higher wage

Wages increased as well. See the above.

>This also ignores the line of argument that points out most of the very expensive purchases have little (houses) or zero relation to free trade (college expenses).

God forbid trade policy does not do everything.

5.) If you want to lower house prices, you may like neoliberal policies too. Restrictive zoning laws and NIMBYism are what is driving house prices through the roof. Neoliberals advocate for deregulation in those sectors. If you want some examples of what a lax housing policy can do: here.

u/cincilator · 9 pointsr/TrueReddit

I think that what really happened with that gamergate shit (on meta-level) is that it split social constructivists on one side and geneticists/culturalists on the other in culture war. If you believe that any inequality in outcome is always result of oppression you will inevitably find lots and lots of oppression. If you believe inequality is result of cultural or genetic differences you'll find very little. You can also believe in something in between in which case you'll find something in between.

To continue with gaming as an example, if you look at gender disparity in gaming you can conclude one of two things: Either there is pervasive sexism that repels women from gaming. Or, most AAA games are designed to cater to hunting instincts of 16yr old males - thus sexism is the result of lopsided gender ratio, not the cause. (or, again, it is something in between)

Now, the geneticist side was seen as literally Hitler for a long time. And there is no doubt that it was endorsed by some literal Hitlers. But if you read Blank Slate by Steven Pinker (Harvard psychologist, not a neonazi) then it does seem that there is plenty of evidence that genes influence IQ and personality to a large degree. At least on individual level, he says nothing about differences between groups.

The evidence of genetic differences between groups is far more dubious and uncertain. It obviously doesn't help that the whole argument attracts some terrible people who misinterpret evidence to make differences seem much bigger than they probably are. (Although there are some seemingly convincing arguments for increased Ashkenazi Jews intelligence) Culturalist explanations are more convincing, however.

What I think annoys many people -- not all or even most of them Neonazi -- is that social constructivists are completely dominant in academia, and are thus in position to interpret every power differential as result of oppression.

u/austex_mike · 261 pointsr/TrueReddit

A good compliment to this is Jonathon Haidt's The Righteous Mind.

Also, the article said:

> That’s exactly what Americans did after the terror attacks of Sept. 11, 2001. People began flying less and driving more. The result, estimated Gerd Gigerenzer, a German risk specialist, was that 1,595 more Americans died in road accidents during the 12 months after 9/11 than would have otherwise.

I don't think more people are driving merely because they are afraid of terrorism. I hate flying now because of all the stupid security theater we are now subject to. I much prefer to get in my car and drive versus going to the airport two hours early, get felt up, make sure all my bottles are tiny, etc. I have made several long car trips because I simply didn't want the hassle of flying.

u/RamonaLittle · 2 pointsr/TrueReddit

>I'm not talking about assessing risk, I'm talking about knowing something is illegal and still doing it.

But we have to discuss risk assessment, because people do illegal things all the time. "The average professional in this country wakes up in the morning, goes to work, comes home, eats dinner, and then goes to sleep, unaware that he or she has likely committed several federal crimes that day." And beyond US law, it sounds like you're saying people also need to make sure they're not violating laws of all other countries with which their country has an extradition treaty. That's an awful lot to ask, especially of a teenager or someone with a mental disability, don't you think?

I mean, heck, you were in this thread about the king of Thailand. So you know that under Thai law, it's illegal to insult the king of Thailand, and you can get up to 15 years in prison. Did you know that the US has an extradition treaty with Thailand? Did you research how it might apply to reddit posts? Do you refrain from insulting the king of Thailand on reddit for fear of being extradited, or did you assess the risk as low?

Because once we've established that risk assessment has to be considered, then it's entirely appropriate to consider evidence that someone's ability to assess risk is impaired.

>And I don't think folks should not be subject to going to jail because they have a depression.

Even if expert witnesses testified that the person is likely to commit suicide? Then you're advocating for the death penalty even though the judge didn't impose it.

u/the_straylight_run · 2 pointsr/TrueReddit

As I originally stated, you characterised my points in a way that greatly oversimplified them. In effect to make them mean something slightly different than how I meant them.

Here's what I actually said:

> The military trains soldiers to do exactly two things without thinking:
> Obey the orders of a superior
Find the guys who are trying to kill you and kill them first

I intentionally added the part 'without thinking'; it wasn't careless use of language.

'Without thinking' I then described as a kind of 'personlessness', a programmed response to stimuli, based on repetitive training and indoctrination. It is the intentional replacement of critical thinking and self-determination with military equivalents and culture.

To go back to my original statement, it's about re-learning how to open doors, such that the new way of opening doors (by not standing in front of them) becomes habit and replaces the old way. Ditto for aggressive driving, aggression, and us/them thinking. We see this in pretty much all of the behaviours that make returned soldiers a danger in many cases to the general population.

And I was trying to raise the point that this is intentional. The military modus operandi is to entirely replace the culture of a person with their own version. And in terms of combat readiness, to remove any qualms about killing anybody superiors say needs to be killed.

If you look at data from previous wars (WWI, WWII, Vietnam), each one taught the military something important. In this context, the number of soldiers who didn't fire their weapons in combat was seen as a psychological barrier to winning, and it was something that they looked at solving.

And they did. Over the years, the indoctrination of new soldiers got progressively better at de-humanising 'the enemy' and removing what is IMHO a natural impediment to killing. There's an excellent book called 'On Killing: The Psychological Cost of Learning to Kill in War and Society which describes this process.

In the current theaters of operations (Iraq 2.0, Afgh) the combatants killed by soldiers in war were often not what they expected. Farm boys (conscripted), children, local townspeople etc. Not the seasoned, trained, fully equipped bad jihadists we see on videos on tv. And the worst part of that is that you know the family had little choice to but to send their kids to war or face the backlash of the jihadists running the area.

The above in combination with what you call 'moral qualms', and I call 'why am I killing townspeople and children', a number of people develop psychological misgivings about their involvement. These are the people I would guess who are the most resistant to indoctrination. How many? I don't know. I don't have data because I didn't stick around afterwords to ask, and because I"m not sure that anybody is collecting this kind of data.

In other people, it's not a problem. In some cases, it even becomes habitual. The public at large having little to no understanding from the outside to what service involves on the inside these days doesn't help. They think it's the noble warrior defending freedom. It's actually a lot more like the psychopath Bradley Cooper plays in American Sniper (Chris Kyle) inventing reasons to kill people as combatants that nobody else seems to encounter.

When you are a hammer, everything looks like a nail, so to speak.

All of that makes it very difficult to redeploy and to re-engage with a population who thinks in a very different way. In fact, it makes it very difficult to engage with people who are halfway on the inside anyway. Just look up the statistics on divorce, spousal abuse, domestic disturbances, and suicide with military members, and it's pretty clear that something is going seriously wrong.

And all of that, going back to my original thesis, is directly attributable to how we program soldiers to fight and operate by replacing the parts of their mentality that limit their effectiveness.