The Hacking of the American Mind with Dr. Robert Lustig

Feb 16, 2022
33 mins

Lustig starts by delineating the 7 differences between pleasure and happiness:

  • Pleasure is short-lived, Happiness is long-lived
  • Pleasure is visceral, Happiness is ethereal
  • Pleasure is taking, Happiness is giving
  • Pleasure can be achieved with substances, Happiness cannot
  • Pleasure is alone, Happiness is together
  • Extremes of Pleasure lead to addiction, extremes of Happiness are just cool
  • Pleasure is dopamine, happiness is serotonin

According to Lustig, pleasure and happiness have been intentionally conflated by Wall Street, Madison Avenue, and Hollywood to condition the American mind for consumption of hedonic substances.

You can sell dopamine. Much harder to sell serotonin, and people on serotonin are harder to break down. Lustig also says some very sensible things about our food and medical systems.

The video is a fake interview to promote the book, but there's very little selling. Lustig's arguments are familiar and in line with other sources I have seen. His rings give me pause (they are the rings of a hypnotist), but overall, what he says in this video carries my weight of truth.  

I have yet to read the book, but when I do, I shall purchase it here. (affiliate link)