Who’s Nuttiest?

November 10, 2020

For 30 years, the fossil fuel industry has been pouring money into sophisticated psychological gas-lighting, denial, and working to destroy trust in bedrock institutions.

The Republican Party has been their chosen vehicle.
Seems like it’s working.


13 Responses to “Who’s Nuttiest?”

  1. sailrick Says:

    The entire Republican party stark raving mad

  2. James Wheaton Says:

    To most rational minded people, yes the entire Republican party now appears stark raving mad. But not all. There is something out there that has generated a mistrust of science based thought. Some think it goes back to the 40’s and ’50’s with atomic weapons and such. I don’t know. We need to figure it out and get more people on board. This doesn’t seem to be as much of a problem in most other civilized nations. It is these same crazies who are denying the Biden victory who are denying climate science.

    • Keith Omelvena Says:

      Science doesn’t necessarily equate to a betterment of the human condition.

      • leslie graham Says:

        No – just 99% of the time.

        These fucking lunatics have been 40 years in the making. It’s no accident.

        • Keith Omelvena Says:

          99% may be a bit of a stretch. A lot of science is more about making commercial interests wealthy, or how to kill, or extract from the Earth more efficiently.

  3. J4Zonian Says:

    “I wonder why they’re doing this?”

    Because of childhood neglect and abuse; they’re suffering from a combination of narcissistic personality disorder and anti-social personality disorder (aka sociopathy or psychopathy). There may be some genetic predisposition and some chemical reinforcement; air pollution, lead, mercury, other heavy metals, heat, and CO2 are all implicated in mental disturbances.

    “Gee, I wonder why they’re doing this?”

    Because of childhood neglect and abuse; they’re suffering from a combination of narcissistic personality disorder and anti-social personality disorder (aka sociopathy or psychopathy).

    “Hmmm. I just can’t figure it out. Why are they doing this?”

    Because of childhood neglect and abuse; they’re suffering from a combination of narcissistic personality disorder and anti-social personality disorder (aka sociopathy or psychopathy). But sometimes people who suffer from the same problem can’t recognize it; it’s the fish knowing water thing, although that’s a bad analogy. There’s some trauma involved, too, and it’s a mutually reinforcing spiral with those who have it and the society they have it in. It keeps finding ways to reproduce the condition in younger generations–war, poverty, destruction of nature, avulsion from land and culture… People who are afflicted by serious collective mental illnesses tend to keep trying people out until they find a leader with the same problem, only more so, to reflect their delusional view of the world and make it seem sane.

    “Wow. I just can’t figure out why they’re doing this.”


    “It’s a puzzle why they’re doing this. If we knew, we might figure out how to stop it.”

    Well, maybe it’s because they were abused and neglected as children and their afflictions were reinforced by a society full of other people who were also abused and neglected. Ever think of that?

    “I’m mystified. Why are they doing this? I suppose no one knows.”


    • jimbills Says:

      You’re trying to make clinical psychology explain a group of people, when it’s really only meant for individual diagnosis. Not every Republican had a rotten childhood, has NPD, or is a psychopath/sociopath.

      Evolutionary psychology, which is meant to explain group behavior, is a much better tool:

      Even it is not perfect.

      • J4Zonian Says:

        Evolutionary psychology has a few things to say but is mostly speculation, metaphor, cherry picking, and hindsight, while psychology, calling on family therapy, linguistics and cognitive understanding, somatic, social, and eco-psychology, other group and individual theories explains pretty much everything about what’s happening in the world today. Different schools offer different insights just like Jung and Perls can offer different but complementary understandings of a dream. Psychology, like physics, is still in a primitive state, but it’s beginning to follow the lead of people who do understand, with ideas like Folie À Plusieurs, wetiko, and those of systems thinkers like Gregory Bateson.

        Responses to challenges are extremely varied, but the tenor of our society is obvious both in the ways we’re challenged and the ways the responses manifest politically, and the last 5 years have made it even more obvious to people here than it’s been for 150+ years. We’ve had more than a century of experience; repeated, predictive, scientific studies; specificity of symbols and repetition; and many other aspects of psychology, to learn what we need. Alice Miller’s For Your Own Good and the work of George Lakoff (Don’t Think of an Elephant, eg) can be helpful getting an idea how things work out.

        The most disturbing part about all this is the lack of curiosity about THE most important thing humanity has to learn, even on the left, where it should be endemic.

        • J4Zonian Says:

          I think in terms of what I call Bateson-Winicott Units

          “Formerly we thought of a hierarchy of taxa–individual, family line, subspecies, species, etc.–as units of survival. We now see a different hierarchy of units–gene-in-organism, organism-in-the-environment, ecosystem, etc. Ecology, in the widest sense, turns out to be the study of the interaction and survival of ideas and programs (i.e., differences, complexes of differences, etc.) in circuits.

          Let us now consider what happens when you make the epistemological error of choosing the wrong unit: you end up with the species versus the other species around it or versus the environment in which it operates. Man [sic] against nature. You end up, in fact, with Kaneohe Bay polluted, Lake Erie a slimy green mess, and “let’s build bigger atom bombs to kill off the next-door neighbors.” There is an ecology of bad ideas, just as there is an ecology of weeds, and it is characteristic of the system that basic error propagates itself. It branches out like a rooted parasite through the tissues of life, and everything gets into a rather peculiar mess. When you narrow down your epistemology and act on the premise “What interests me is me, or my organization, or my species,” you chop off consideration of other loops of the loop structure. You decide that you want to get rid of the by-products of human life and that Lake Erie will be a good place to put them. You forget that the eco-mental system called Lake Erie is a part of your wider eco-mental system–and that if Lake Erie is driven insane, its insanity is incorporated in the larger system of your thought and experience.
          You and I are so deeply acculturated to the idea of “self” and organization and species that it is hard to believe that man [sic] might view his [sic] relations with the environment in any other way than the way which I have rather unfairly blamed upon the nineteenth-century evolutionists.”
          Gregory Bateson, Steps to an Ecology of Mind, p 483-4

          “Ubuntu is not easy to describe because it has no equivalent in any of the Western languages. The solitary individual is in our understanding a contradiction in terms. You are a person through other persons.”
          Desmond Tutu, ubuntuchoirs.net/Ubuntu_spirit.php

          British pediatrician and psychologist D. W. Winnicott said ”There is no such thing as an infant.” That is, an infant does not exist in isolation from his or her caregiver, and the infant and caregiver share functions we think of as belonging only to one or the other.

          Appendectomy = cutting (tom or tomy) out of the vermiform appendix, (the worm-shaped extra thing.) So atoms—A-toms—are things that can’t be cut. We should now come to realize that these Winnicott-Bateson units are the atoms of this kind of life, call it what you will. Complex life, sexually reproducing life, or the terrible judgmental term ”advanced” life…

          “Entanglement is the quantum mechanical behavior of two particles in which neither alone can be described, independent of the description of the other, even when the particles are separated by vast distance. This is the same property that Nobel Prize-winning physicist Erwin Schrödinger employed to explain his famous thought experiment involving a cat, a Geiger counter, and a bit of poison in a sealed box.”  

          The Lamarckian biosphere was still a chain. The unity of epistemology was retained in spite of a shift in emphasis from transcendent Logos to immanent mind.
          The fifty years that followed saw the exponential rise of the Industrial Revolution, the triumph of Engineering over Mind, so that the culturally appropriate epistemology for the Origin of Species (1859) was an attempt to exclude mind as an explanatory principle. Tilting at a windmill.
          Gregory Bateson https://monoskop.org/images/c/c3/Bateson_Gregory_Mind_and_Nature.pdf

  4. Brent Jensen-Schmidt Says:

    If anyone can activate this link, it is an absolute joy to watch.
    It shows Malcolm Turnbull, (last prime minister dumped by the fascist part of his own RW government) ripping a Murdoch journalist to shreds over criminal GW and political lies in USA and OZ.

  5. Brent Jensen-Schmidt Says:

    Dam it worked. We need more of this!!!

  6. Brent Jensen-Schmidt Says:

    Goes for a couple of minutes, need to start it twice.

  7. Gingerbaker Says:

    Pompeo may not have just been whistling Dixie. There are speculations that there is method to the madness…

    The argument goes like this:

    States with Republican Houses can refuse to certify election results because of fraud allegations, and can elect their own Electors who will disregard the popular vote and instead vote for Trump at the Electoral College.

    Notice how Pompeo stressed a 2nd Trump administration would be accomplished legally? He also specifically mentioned the Electoral College.

    I have no idea if any of this is indeed legal or mathematically sound, but David Sirota believes it might be.

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