Wednesday, January 19, 2022

Under Mass Hypnosis?

As I have observed the ways of the world over the last two years I stop from time to time and ask myself,

"How can so few see what is going on?"

The facts and data are right there for all to see. And yet there are so few who question the policy actions that come down from on high which run counter to the facts on the ground.

'What are you talking about? The science is clear!"

It takes a toll. 

It can even lead to self-doubt at times. 

"Perhaps I am the one who is missing something?"

 However, the next piece of data is revealed and it is time to shake my head again.

As an example, I happened to look at the Covid trends in my home state of Ohio yesterday.

There is not a day that goes by that we don't hear that we are in a pandemic of the unvaccinated. Almost everyone in the hospital is unvaccinated, etc, etc, etc.

71% of the population of Ohio age 18+ has had at least one dose of the vaccine. That number is nearly 90% for those age 65+.

Of course, no one was fully vaccinated at this time last year based on the CDC definition (2 weeks post dose).

How do we stand a year later in Ohio?

Daily cases are up 4x what they were a year ago.

New Reported Cases (7-day average) in Ohio
Source: The New York Times

Hospitalizations are 59% higher.

Covid Hospitalizations (7-day average) in Ohio
Source: The New York Times

Deaths are 48% higher.

Covid Deaths (7-day average) in Ohio
Source: The New York Times

When in history has a vaccine been introduced and one year later cases, hospitalizations and deaths were higher than before it was introduced?

How can that vaccine be called "effective"?

How is even possible to look at this data and place the blame for this result on the minority of people that are not vaccinated?

It defies logic and reason.

A couple of months ago I came across the work of Dr. Mattias Desmet who is a Professor of Clinical Psychology at Ghent University in Belgium. Desmet also holds a Master's Degree in Statistics.

Dr. Mattias Desmet
Ghent University, Belgium

I have seen Desmet speak a couple of times on what might be called the psychology of mass psychosis.

The psychological term that Desmet uses for what we are seeing in societies around the world is "mass formation." It is a type of collective hypnosis that is essential for normal people to take leave of their senses.

"Mass Formation" recently received a lot of attention when Dr. Robert Malone referred to the theories of Desmet on Joe Rogan's podcast.

As we look back in history we wonder how it was that the citizens of Germany could have embraced Hitler and the Nazi totalitarian regime?

How could that happen?

How was it that communities in Europe and in New England in the United States became convinced that witches were in their midst and witch hunts, trials and public executions were carried out?

We look back today, shake our heads and think things like this could never happen again.

However, we are there again according to Dr. Desmet.

After noticing some anomalies in the statistical analyses early in the pandemic (Desmet is also a statistician), he became concerned with the consensus narrative and the societal reaction to the virus were totally disproportionate to the actual risks. 

He has concluded that a significant portion of people are in a state of mass psychosis which is as dangerous to our society as totalitarian regimes and witch hunts were in times past.

People have lost leave of their senses and have been willing to submit to authoritarian measures and the surrender of individual freedoms that would be unthinkable if viewed realistically.

Desmet argues it is a textbook case of "mass formation" or "mass hypnosis".

What occurs to bring on this societal condition?

Desmet states that four conditions are usually required for mass formation to develop.

  • A loss of social connection in the society
  • A lot of free-floating anxiety in people that is undefined
  • A feeling in many people in the society that their lives lack purpose or meaning
  • Frustration and discontentedness with the way things are leading to increasingly aggressive behavior

Have you noticed any such conditions in the society around you the last few years?

Mass formation results when these condition are present and a narrative is created which people  identify as the source or cause of the anxiety they feel. At the same time, a strategy for addressing and neutralizing that cause is promoted.

Hitler portrayed the Jews as the reason for the problems of the German people. In the 16th and 17th century the narrative was created that any troubles in a community such as Salem, MA were due to eccentric or non-conformist women who were branded as "witches".

Once people accept and participate in whatever strategy is promoted, people begin to feel equipped to deal with their anxiety. Doing so provides them with the feeling they are in control.

When this happens people also begin to reconnect with others in a common cause in battling a shared nemesis. They feel they are involved in a heroic struggle against what they come to believe is the source of their anxiety. Out of this solidarity also gives their lives new meaning and purpose.

Do you see any similarities here as to what has been going on around you during the pandemic?

Just as in the hypnosis of an individual in which they are placed in a state of intense concentration and focus, such that the power of suggestion becomes very powerful, mass hypnosis through mass formation results in something similar to a larger group of society.

People in this mass formation condition are so focused on what they see as the source of their anxiety, and in their new found connections with others, that they lose all perspective and the ability to think critically.

Desmet describes it this way.

Through the process of mass formation, they switch from the very painful condition of social isolation to the opposite state of maximal connectedness that exists in a crowd or a mass.

That in and of itself leads up to a sort of mental intoxication, which is the real reason people stick to the narrative, why people are willing to go along with the narrative, even, as we said, it is utterly wrong, and even if they lose everything that is important to them, personally.”

“Everyone becomes equally stupid, essentially,. It doesn’t matter how smart or intelligent they were before. They lose all capacity for critical thinking, they lose all individual characteristics.

In a mass formation people also become radically intolerant of dissident voices. Those with opposing or dissenting views pose direct threats to the construct they have created in their minds to alleviate their anxiety and discontent. Therefore, the crowd favors extreme measures in attempts to silence any dissident voices as it threatens the narrative.

At the same time, the masses are radically tolerant of their leaders who promote the mainstream narrative. These people can lie, cheat, or continually contradict themselves and will always be forgiven by the crowd. All the lying, dishonesty and misbehavior is seen by the crowd as doing it for their own safety and the common good.

By chance, have we seen anything like this in the last couple of years?

Desmet states that only about 30% of a society in a mass formation event are truly hypnotized such that they have lost the ability to reason.

However, another 40% of the society go along with the narrative even if they are unconvinced. They simply do not want to rock the boat or stick out in the crowd. That 40%, with the hypnotized 30%, is enough to insure that the narrative controls whether it makes sense or not.

The remaining 30% are not hypnotized and retain their senses according to Desmet. They do not understand how their brethren cannot see what they see and want nothing other than to wake them up to what is happening.

The ultimate danger of mass formation is that you end up with a totalitarian regime when all of those in the 30% have been silenced, marginalized or dealt with more harshly.

It probably should come as no surprise that YouTube and Twitter censored the Joe Rogan interview with Dr. Malone.


After all, if you are major promoters of the narrative why would you want to risk waking people up to the fact that the narrative may be flawed?

Reuters weighed in on a "fact check" and declared there is no evidence of "mass formation psychosis" that any of the experts they talked to could see.


However, what do you see for yourself?

What was that about intolerance of dissident voices I wrote about above?

Speaking of intolerance, consider this editorial from the Salt Lake Tribune this past Saturday in which the editorial board of the newspaper urged the governor to mandate vaccinations and to deploy the National Guard to insure that unvaccinated people could never leave their homes.

"Were Utah a truly civilized place, the governor's next move would be to find a way to mandate the kind of mass vaccination campaign we should have launched a year ago, going as far as to deploy the National Guard to ensure that people without proof of vaccination would not be allowed, well, anywhere," the board wrote.

That would be civilized?

By the way, 73% of Utah's adult population is already fully vaccinated against Covid. 

Compare cases last year vs. this year in Utah.

How can anyone look at this surge and believe that it is being caused by the unvaccinated minority?

New Daily Cases in Utah
Source: The New York Times

"No one ever said the vaccines would stop you from being infected. However, it will prevent you from being hospitalized."

Never mind.

Covid Hospitalizations in Utah
Source: The New York Time

I wonder if the editorial board of the Salt Lake Tribune has taken the time to look at the daily case counts of a couple of countries that were following policies that would be considered more in keeping with their idea of "civilized"?

Australia and Israel.

Both of these countries have exhibited a strong authoritarian mindset to Covid from the beginning.

Both countries also have over a third more daily cases right now than Utah.

You might have also seen a viral video over the holidays about an incident that occurred on a Delta flight in which a woman (who was not wearing a mask) attacked an elderly man for not wearing a mask while he was eating.


What did Desmet say about mass formation and aggressive behavior?

What was also interesting was that when the woman was arrested for assault and appeared in court she was released by the judge to fly home and told to return to Georgia for court appearances "as long as she takes her anxiety medications before flying" according to court records.

Anxiety? Mass formation?

I don't know if Desmet is right about his mass formation theory.

However, it is hard to dismiss the fact that we are seeing many of the conditions he speaks about around us every day.

For me, I will keep following the facts and deciphering the data and follow it where it leads.

For the 40% in the middle, who may be uncomfortable with what they are seeing but are in search of more facts to question the narrative, I hope I can be a trusted source. 

There is a critical need right now for more critical thinkers who are willing to stand up and being counted in these most critical times.

If you would like to learn more about Desmet's thoughts on mass formation here are a few sources that I have used in writing this blog post.

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