An important read

This paper, which is the results of a research project into the behaviors of the members of a 1950’s “end of days” cult, is a seminal piece of documentation of the mindset of cult followers, and how they react to events and information that shows that their leaders are promulgating bullshit.
The tendency, known as “doubling down”, when authoritarian leaders are informed that they are talking nonsense is a very familiar one in today’s political landscape. Once people become emotionally invested in a worldview that they believe forms part of their core identity, any information that contradicts that worldview is likely to be discarded or rationalized away as unimportant or irrelevant.
The current behavior of many Donald Trump supporters fits this behavior pattern. Many of them regard Trump as a savior, the man who will Sort The Mess Out, turn the political world upside down and restore America to greatness (whether or not America is still great is not up for discussion). When people see self-proclaimed leaders as a savior, whether they realize it or not, they just became cult followers.
Cult followers, like conspiracy theory adherents, are pretty much immune to reason or logical arguments. I decline the opportunity for interaction with them for those reasons. It strains my patience way too much.


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