UFO Conjectures

Monday, December 31, 2012

The Pursuit of Attention….

The Pursuit of Attention is the title of this book by Charles Derber [1979]:


It also is a fixation by the people we deal with, including ourselves (I’m sad to write).

Mr. Derber provides a concise, unpsychologic approach to attention-getting and needs.

Using quotes, such as these, opening Chapter 5 [Page 87], he succinctly shows how individuals, abetted by the vicissitudes of society preys upon attention:

“We know well enough that the isolation of the individual – a narrow minded egotism – is everywhere the fundamental principle of modern society … The disintegration of society into individuals each guided by his private principles and each pursuing his own aims, has been pushed to its furthest limits…” 
 [Frederick Engels from The Condition of the Working-Class in England]

“The compulsive preoccupation with being seen, or simply with being visible, suggests that we must be dealing with underlying fantasies of not being seen, of being invisible.”
  [R.D. Laing, from The Divided Self]

Or this from Chapter 3 [Page 43]:

“Pray, what are you laughing at?” inquired the Rocket…
“I am laughing because I am happy,” replied the Cracker.
“That is a very selfish reason,” said The Rocket. ‘What right have you to be happy? You should be thinking about others. In fact, you should be thinking about me. I am always thinking about myself, and I expect everybody else to do the same.” 
 [Oscar Wilde from The Remarkable Rocket]

One can see the extreme need to be seen, to be heard, via Facebook and Twitter currently.

Several venues we use, to get our own attention, is fraught with persons extolling their prowess, no matter how inane or banal, suffocating readers with their boring onslaught of personal detritus or ideas.

We cite UFO Updates and Kevin Randle’s blog particularly, where ego is manifest, more than unique thinking or presentations.

Our MediaWatch Facebook page is a exemplary example of ego on parade, and idiotic postings which often apply to a personal few but end up being cascaded, because of the Facebook format, to everyone.

Even though fame is elusive for many of us, we keep drilling for that fortuitous oil that may make it otherwise.

But with all the insipid posterings, online, the drilling is futile, and an every increasing need to go louder, to be wilder takes place.

And stupidity becomes the content of the day.

The UFO community is flush with dolts who pummel fellow UFO mavens with effluvia that is accepted as words from on high, when all we are being offered is merde from on low.

Discernment is not the sine qua non of what we’re finding online.



  • You seem to be focusing on UFO activists but this post makes me think of the so-called precipients, especially abductees, and the rhetoric used to defend their experiences as real events.

    Abduction proponents cite the terror and ridicule abductees allegedly face and ask, "Who would want this kind of attention?" These proponents seem totally unaware of -- and certainly never cite -- the numerous academic works about hysteria, moral panics and factitious disorders. It has been well-documented for centuries: many people DO want this kind of attention. The fact you and I don't want it is poor evidence that no one does and entirely irrelevant.

    By Blogger Terry the Censor, at Monday, December 31, 2012  

  • Yes, Terry...

    Those who think ridicule and sniggering by one's peers must be horrible for those afflicted don't understand the underlying psychological mechanisms at work.

    The need for attention brings out the worst ways to get it, by some people.

    Humans are often nutty.


    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Tuesday, January 01, 2013  

  • Having a niece desperate to be the center of attention all the time, I can attest that she really doesn't give a rat's patoot whether the attention she gets is positive or negative. All she cares about is that she's getting it, and she will say just about anything (true or not; most likely not) so she continues to hold center stage.

    She hasn't claimed alien abduction . . . yet, but it wouldn't surprise me if she eventually moves on to that after exhausting more mundane avenues such as a laundry list of imagined allergies and illnesses, appearing and disappearing phobias, and imagined talents. Trust me, she's exhausting to be around most of the time.

    She's not interested in UFOs or anomalies, but I'm going on record to predict she's going to be abducted (snicker). And then she'll post about her "experiences" so she can share them with her 1100+ close, personal friends on Facebook.

    By Blogger purrlgurrl, at Friday, January 04, 2013  

  • PG:

    I hope this has been cathartic for you.

    (We all have some nuttiness in our family circles.)


    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Friday, January 04, 2013  

  • Yes, it was. At Christmas she handed out professionally printed cards listing her current crop of allergies. It was one of our presents. Okay. Done venting.

    By Blogger purrlgurrl, at Friday, January 04, 2013  

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