Narcissistic Personality

Gaslighting and Groupthink: The Cause of the Debacle that is destroying the Nation


Given the current debacle of affairs in the US:

  • #COVID19: 3.4 million infections and 137,000+ deaths. With New York and California ranking fifth and sixth, respectively, if they were countries, Florida and Texas, eleventh and twelfth, respectively. That’s a national debacle caused by dubious national leadership.
  • #RacialAnimus: After the murder of George Floyd, millions protested across the entire country for months, and the Ol’ Pussy Grabber’s reaction is to lift his leg and piss on the sign posts of racism and white supremacy, threaten to use police brutality to violently oppress the protests, and protect the statues of traitors, racists, and white supremacists. That’s a debacle caused by national leadership deliberately fanning the flames of racial strife.
  • #EconomicMeltdown: With an unemployment rate of 14.7%, the CARES Act stimulus spending fixing to run out at the end of July and no apparent interest by the GOP or the Ol’ Pussy Grabber of extending them, and #COVID19 overwhelming hospitals and infecting Americans at the frightening clip of 50,000 to 70,000 people a day, our economic situation is on a Great Depression course. That is a debacle that of a proportion that dwarfs the Ol’ Pussy Grabber’s ego, which our country is being sacrificed so that it can remain bloated.
Small Ball

Trump Plays Small Ball With #COVID19


Reading Time: 3 minutes
#COVID19 runs unchecked changing America, forever ruining lives and devastating the economy.

Aspriateion Grace

The Black Community Holds The Aspiration of America


Reading time: 9 minutes
I KNOW, TL;DR.
The degree that the Black community is free and equal is the degree that America has achieved a more perfect union. Our Black community has borne our systemic racism with grace and humility.

The Coming GOP Dystopia


Reading time: 5 minutes
The GOP are planning to create a dystopia snatching away our democracy, freedoms, and equality.

There are only a few possible explanations that explain how the country’s government has gone this far off the rails:

  1. It is deliberate. This is a truly frightening possibility. Putin could have bought the GOP and the Ol’ Pussy Grabber and have commanded them now to utterly destroy the country and in their avarice and greed the happily carry it out. While we can all believe the Ol’ Pussy Grabber is capable of destroying the whole planet and himself in order to salve his narcissistic wounds, it is hard to believe the old psychopath, #MoscowMitch would go even that far. His goal is to create a functional single-party pseudo-democratic minority-rule regime transferring the nation’s wealth to the 1% as quickly as possible while the rest of us live in Cancer Alley, drinking Flint water, and die quickly and quietly when we start costing the 1% more than we provide. This level of debacle interferes with the diabolical scheming of the diabolical schemer like #MoscowMitch.
  2. It’s really all driven by a human caricature who is too busy patching the punctures to his inflated flaccid facade, which is to say, trying to destroy everything that diminishes him, to be bothered by mere reality, and too busy creating chaos so that no one can adequately respond to the corruption or notice the utter incompetence. All of it floating on the sycophantic enabling by his legion of yes-men and those that would use him to destroy our democratic institutions to create a single-party pseudo-democratic minority-rule government that transfers the nation’s wealth to the 1% as quickly as possible and consigns the rest of us to live in Cancer Alley, drinking Flint water, and dying as quickly and quietly as possible when we start costing the 1% more than we provide them.

I guess in some ways it doesn’t matter because when it walks like a duck and quacks like a duck and shoots everyone in the dick while blaming Obama and Clinton and socialism your too busy crying over your shot-off dick to care. `It also may not matter because we have a unproductive malignant narcissist holding the reins to the administration gaslighting the entire country, but, especially, his administration and the body of GOP elected officials. When you’re up to your ass in groupthink and being gaslit, it’s easy to forget you’re just in it for all the corrupt lucre you can grab with both hands.

Here at Ye Olde Blogge, we’ve written a lot about both gaslighting and groupthink, but this is the first time that we’ve combined them (shout out to loyal reader, bobcabkings, who, through his insightful commenting, helped us arrive at the idea). I crib liberally from a couple of early posts about each and then come to a conclusion about why we’re so fucked, or why we are in this devastating disastrous debacle.

Gaslighting

Gaslighting is a form of emotional abuse in which the abuser denies plainly obvious events, emotions, thoughts, perceptions, and behaviors in an attempt to intimidate, confuse, control, or otherwise manipulate the target of the abuse (Urban Dictionary). Gaslighting correlates highly with narcissistic personality disorder, so much so that it is also called narcissistic personality abuse. It just seems to spring naturally from their warped view of the world and people. I mean, it’s not like they take continuing ed classes in gaslighting, right? Or, do they?

The gaslighter uses a bevy of specific techniques — habits — that are designed to get the victim to doubt their memories, perceptions, emotions, and ability to reason. Because we rely on our ability to predict the world around us: the way things behave, the things people do, you know the stuff in your immediate world and now with mass media the events of the world, when our predictions seem to go off the rails consistently, we begin to doubt ourselves and, literally, feel crazy. If it gets bad enough, the victim will begin to act psychotic seeming to have lost touch with reality to the people outside of the gaslighting system.

The way that the Ol’ Pussy Grabber is gaslighting the nation every time he speaks in public, is the same way he is gaslighting his staff and has gaslit his children. Can you imagine growing up with that every single damn day? Too bad, so sad, y’all adults now with means, get your ass to therapy and stop enabling the bitch.

The constant drumbeat of misinformation and insults, both direct and implied, begins to wear down anyone’s and everyone’s resistance to it. As more people around the gaslighter get corrupted and co-opted, they begin to reinforce the false reality that the gaslighter is pulling out of his ass and smearing all over the people around him. That’s why his kids work so closely with him. They are there to be co-gaslighters. It is shtick they’ve used their whole lives. The reality the Ol’ Pussy Grabber paints becomes the reality that people near him begin to believe. It explains why some seemingly good responsible people can start defending his crazy-pants shit.

Don’t get me wrong, some of them do it knowingly and enthusiastically because they soulless. Ain’t that right Kellyanne Conway and Kayleigh McEnany? Some of them like John Bolton are such narcissists themselves that they think it won’t affect them and when they realize it does, they get out.

Essentially, you’ve got a bunch of people around the Ol’ Pussy Grabber are people who either willingly believe the Ol’ Pussy Grabber’s effluent or have had their resistance to it overcome whether they realize it or not.

Groupthink

Groupthink is a theory about collective decision-making first formulated by Irving Janis in 1971. Dictionary.com tells us that groupthink is (1) the practice of approaching problems or issues as matters that are best dealt with by consensus of a group rather than by individuals acting independently; conformity; or (2) the lack of individual creativity, or of a sense of personal responsibility, that is sometimes characteristic of group interaction.Notice the two key ideas here: consensus and conformity and the lack of personal responsibility. You’ll see these things at work in the White House. When the Ol’ Pussy Grabber and the WH staff wheel around as if starlings in murmuration when someone publicly disagrees with him. Like, say Anthony Fauci.

To build that consensus, organizations in groupthink will employ people that the theory calls, mindguards. Mindguards are those that very publicly and privately thrash anyone who dares dissent from commonly held beliefs. They enforce the publicly held beliefs of the group, or in this case, the wild jactations of the Ol’ Pussy Grabber.

The lack of dissent produces the illusion of unanimity. Individuals may harbor doubts, but no one speaks up. This illusion leads to an illusion of invulnerability: the group consensus cannot be wrong causing insane risks and very stupid decisions to be pursued. If warnings or contrary views penetrate this bulwark of conformity, it is discounted and the beliefs rationalized. Motivated reasoning and confirmation bias play a big role here: look only at the evidence that supports your beliefs and leads to your conclusion. God, look at the mishegas that drips out of the Ol’ Pussy Grabber when #COVID19 comes up. And, then Mother Pence (the highest-breasted queen to ever graced Number One Observatory Circle) runs around the country repeating it like a good liddle’ boy.

This illusion of unanimity produces a false sense of security that quickly blossoms into self righteousness and moral certitude. They know they’re right, dammit, because everyone is saying so! If they’re right and good, then everything they do must be right and good, so the ends justify the means because a right and good end is worth whatever it takes to get there, which, incidentally, explains why conservatives (and Bernie princesses) are so sadistic.

Groupthink leads to amazingly disastrous decisions like coming out of lockdown too soon and behaving too recklessly during the #COVID19 pandemic, insisting that it is safe and right to open up schools and demanding that old people die so the economy can expand again. Notice that all of these decisions are wildly immoral, too. Groupthink leads to deeply immoral decisions like we’re seeing in Florida, Texas, and Arizona and the White House and GOP Senate.

In this case, gaslighting is being used to quell dissent and produce the illusions of unanimity and invulnerability, promote collective rationalization, and belief in their inherent morality. People up to their ass in groupthink and gaslighting behave with certitude. They know they are right, only they are acting crazy like gaslit people do. This is why the White House and the Senate GOP has this aura of Twilight Zone weirdness about it.

This is only going to get worse.

Have i said this yet? We’re so fucked.

Image Attribution

“train car tilt” by boxchain is licensed under CC BY-NC-SA 2.0

6 replies »

  1. Florida is being gaslighted as well at the state level Jack by our Trump hypnotized governor. Keeping us under constant siege to distract seems to be the prevailing method of control.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Howdy James!
      Forgive the late reply, I’ve had technical difficulties: my laptop seems to have died here at the end of our quarantine, so I have been using my Kindle Fire, which is like try to chisel words into stone tablets.

      That said, I’m surprised We Wanted hasn’t figured away to turn away from the worst of their disastrous policies since Abbott (TX), Such (AZ), and Kemp.(GA) have. I’m glad to see there is a recall effort against him, though. Hopefully it will succeed.

      Keep fighting the good fight..

      Huzzah!
      Jack

      Like

  2. Thinking about the quest for unanimity, I remember when I worked at a small non-profit organization where it was believed that the path to workplace democracy lay in consensus decision-making. When a decision was being discussed, someone who disagreed with the majority could block consensus. Then, the question could be shelved, or the processing could continue until the blocker either fell into line or abstained. The social pressure could be intense, especially when the majority was following a “tradition” or “how it always has been”. I came to understand the systemic function of the hold out minority in error correction, the ability to say, “I/we told you so.” when a decision goes wrong. Enforced consensus leads to everyone being committed to a decision despite evidence that it was wrong – groupthink.

    Liked by 1 person

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