Skip to comments.Cults In Our Midst: Patty Hearst And The Brainwashing Of America
Posted on 04/15/2014 10:50:48 PM PDT by chessplayer
Exactly forty years ago Patricia Hearst stunned the nation when she turned up as a bank robber, a mere two months after she was kidnapped by the violent cult that called itself The Symbionese Liberation Army. Her astonishing transformation was documented by bank cameras on April 15, 1974.
(Excerpt) Read more at thefederalist.com ...
Camilla Hall and Nancy Ling Perry exited out of the back door and cops opened up. Perry was shot twice, one in her right lung and the other severing her spine. Hall was shot through the forehead.
The writer has good insight on what makes a cult work and continue to be effective. She asks are we in this country vulnerable to cult like behavior. I say absolutlely yes. I lot of decision and policy makers are acting without thinking their ideas through to logical conclusions. For example, the Zero Tolerance policies in schools that end up expelling a child who draws a picture or bites a cookie into a gun shape.
There is non thinking when it comes to gay tolerance these days. They are often unable to consider any subtleties or inconclusive areas. There are millions of voters and non voters who belong to the personality cult of President Barack Obama. Yet another reason I’ll rejoice when he leaves office. Then, the drones will be without their Puppetmaster, at least for a short while.
As to the current article, I think it is well worth our considering carefully. I would offer the codicil that it does not consider the positive reinforcement one gains from joining a cult or from submitting to the herd instinct of the left. I think this has to be examined as a researcher would examine every step in the transmission and progression of a virus so that I can ascertain its Achilles heel and destroy it at the point of vulnerability. I think we should do the same with the stratagems employed by the left to gain converts.
A second reservation about this article has to do with solutions the author proffers. I think they are banal and wholly inadequate to the technology currently deployed by the Obama administration especially in the last election. It represents a dark marriage of psychology with modern techniques of social communication like Firefox and Twitter. This sinister application of manipulative psychology to mass communication resulted in the shocking and unanticipated defeat of Romney in critical states like Ohio and undoubtedly marks the advent of a whole new world of electioneering.
If we do not thoroughly analyze both the psychology and the technology we will lose again and again.
Here is the reply from 2009 which thinks about the psychology:
You ask, in effect, why do leftists behave the way they do? You rightly cite the suicidal belligerence of the Palestinians and the mindless hostility of American liberals. We are witnessing a cult or tribal phenomenon.
I have been preoccupied for some time with the power that draw well-intentioned people into liberalism and I've concluded that it is the power of the cult. Consider how very difficult it is to pry a teenager loose from the clutches of a cult. It requires professionals and an intervention of the most intense level. My first experience with this phenomenon came from exposure in the 1970s to people who had gone through EST. They exhibited many of the characteristics which mark the present day liberal. A smugness, an ill disguised feeling of superiority derived from a belief that they alone are possessed of special insights and truth. A belief that the rest of humanity is benighted and unworthy except as candidates for conversion.
These people were so myopic and yet so convinced of the superiority of their Weltanshaaung that they were obnoxious. We called them, "est-holes."
The est experience consisted of "seminar training" in which the individual was stripped clean of his ego which was replaced by a new belief system imposed on the crushed individual by the est facilitator. This is typical of a cult. It is even typical of the Marine Corps but that is in pursuit of a worthy goal.
This phenomenon is so strong in its appeal because of the "power of surrender."
I believe that the principal distinction between conservatives and statists is that the latter are God players and as such they are in unremitting rebellion against God. Conservatives on the other hand tend to be believers. In the Christian faith where we come to our salvation as an individual experience. One would think that a God player would be an individualist but for some reason which I do not understand they tend to be collectivists. In effect, they find their salvation in the group. Think of the Bloods and Crips. The act of surrender of the ego to the group yields a wonderful feeling of integration and well-being. The individual can renew that feeling by re-immersing himself into the group. That which threatens the group also threatens him. Consider the American Indians such as the Iroquois who were quite loving toward their children and considerate of each other and yet were unbelievably brutal and indifferent to the agony of those prisoners they tortured. They were outside the tribe, they were the "other."
I believe this accounts for the scatological language and the sheer nastiness of the posts one finds in the liberal blogs. There is no restraint so long as one stays within the cult. One of the primary taboos of this cult has to do with race. Liberals consider conservatives to be racists and hence beyond the pale. There is no opprobrium so debased that it cannot be applied to these people who, virtually by definition, are racists.
As new converts get drawn to the flame, they sense the release to be obtained from surrendering to such a group.
Last April there was a report that Obama recommended Americans embark on an environmental "mission." I wrote the following post as an illustration of the phenomenon I am trying to articulate:
Obama: Americans Want to Be on an Environmental Mission
April 23, 2009
I think Obama actually believes that the country once summoned will experience a spiritual release through devotion to the environment. This is a little understood phenomenon which motivates liberals in very many of their causes. When the individual surrenders to something other than himself- typically for the liberal that means the "collective," but it can be to virtually anything- he is rewarded with an emotional release, a feeling of integration. This phenomenon has been well-recognized by psychologists.
Recall Hillary Clinton's summons in 1969 for a more "ecstatic" experience. She was trying to articulate the same phenomenon. Think of the calls by liberals in the wake of 9/11 for George Bush to summon the country to a "sacrifice." Instinctively the liberals grope for this emotional experience. It matters not that the summons would have been fatuous. What did they want George Bush to summon them to? To plant victory gardens? To collect old tires? To ration gas? The point, of course, is that the war on terrorism was waged against us to cause us to change our lifestyle. No matter, logic has nothing to do with the emotional satisfaction.
I think we should consider the entire Obama administration to be a mystical call to the nation to join with them in this kind of mystical release that he found as an agitator and group leader for Saul Alinsky.
Yes, we are now being governed as though we were in a giant EST meeting and may God have mercy on all of us.
“The writer has good insight on what makes a cult work and continue to be effective. She asks are we in this country vulnerable to cult like behavior. I say absolutlely yes.”.
No question about it, look at the odumbo followers. Most of them are “no-minds” and can’t think for themselves or, are druggies.
The oddest birds in the SLA aviary were those two notorious “radicals” William and Emily Harris, who somehow managed to avoid the police shoot-out and conflagration in Los Angeles which killed Donald DeFreeze and most of the other SLA cadre in May, 1974. That fire — which took place only a few months after the kidnapping of Patty Hearst — shocked the public, especially when it was revealed that one of the SLA women was shot while trying to escape the blaze. (At the time, right-wingers applauded the cremation of the SLA — yet conservative Americans were later infuriated by the similar Waco and the Randy Weaver incidents. Go figure.)
The Harrises came from Bloomington, Indiana — where, according to local news reports, they functioned as police informants. “Narcs,” to use the argot of the time. (This account lacks footnotes, at least in its published version, but I recall seeing newsclips which prove the point.) William Harris, a former Marine, had shown no interest in radical politics before his sudden move to California in 1972. Once on the West Coast, he immediately set out to ingratiate — or infiltrate? — his way into various left-wing organizations.
Many of the more suspicious lefties of that era tended to view the Harrises as the true leaders of the SLA.
The man generally generally credited with heading the group, Donald DeFreeze (or “Cinque” — always hilariously mispronounced as “Sin-cue”) was really just the front man. He was, to put the matter bluntly, an idiot — a blowhard, a wanna-be badass. A perfect dupe.
Like the Harrises, he had a history as a police snitch throughout the 1967-69 period. He spied on the Panthers and other “black power” groups. The cops used him up and spat him out the moment he started to show pangs of conscience.
Between his “snitch” period and his SLA period, Defreeze spent some time in Vacaville and Soledad prisons, due to an exchange of gunfire with a bank guard. There, he came under the special care of a CIA psychologist named Colston Westbrook. Previously, Westbrook had conducted interrogations in Vietnam — yet he was allowed to teach special classes in communism to black inmates in Vacaville!
Westbrook made sure that DeFreeze was granted special treatment — for example, DeFreeze was permitted to use marital trailers even though he was not married. Eventually, he was allowed to walk out of the joint in March of 1973. His “escape” was attended by no barking dogs, no searchlights, no Tommy Lee Jones, and no news coverage.
The SLA was formed later that year, after he met up with the Harrises. Patty was kidnapped in February of 1974. For months, the story dominated the headlines. The SLA demanded a ransom, and the Hearst family set up a food distribution program in poor neighborhoods to appease the terrorists.