The Insidious Impact of Cults on Society

August 9, 2022

The most recent reactions to the FBI raid on Mar-a-Lago from Fox News and among Donald Trump’s followers confirm that Donald J. Trump might be a very dangerous cult leader.

The American Psychological Association (APA) associates Cult Leaders with those who exhibit narcissistic psychopathy in their actions and behaviors.

Cult leaders usually are psychopaths with a desire for power who often take ideas from politics, religion and psychology to fulfill their purpose. Through mind control, they are able to filter their thoughts and behaviors into “fanatical faith and belief” among followers.

According to a number of APA-approved research studies, “a destructive cult is an authoritarian regime, which uses deception when recruiting as well as mind-control techniques to make a person dependent and obedient.”

Some have said that the Church of Scientology resembles a cult, perhaps generally benign rather than overtly destructive.

L. Ron Hubbard founded the Church of Scientology in 1954, and he struggled for many years to gain recognition for it as a legitimate religion. He was often at odds with tax authorities and former members who accused the church of fraud and harassment. Hubbard died in 1986, yet he created an infrastructure which is more powerful and resolute today than any time prior.

Al Qaeda was founded in 1988 by Osama bin Laden using a decentralized organizational structure which has survived his death. Most agree that Al Qaeda generally fulfills the criteria for a destructive cult, and a priority within the war on terrorism should focus on application of what we know about destructive mind-control cults.

Experts advise that the best strategy to stop cults from expanding and taking control of large segments of world population is to develop a deep understanding of the psychological aspects of how people are recruited and indoctrinated so that recruitment can be impeded and ultimately stopped.

History tells us that Adolf Hitler and the Nazis were a destructive political cult, led by a man with an extreme case of malignant narcissism, defined by a ferocious sense of ‘self’.

Malignant narcissists – sometimes described as Narcissistic Psychopaths — exhibit no empathy. They believe they are above the law; they frequently make threats or speak of committing violence. They’re often paranoid; they demand complete loyalty; and they rarely trust anybody.

Adolf Hitler, Vladimir Putin, Jim Jones and Sun Myung Moon are often cited as malignant narcissists, some more a threat to the continuation of the human race than others.

The most recent reactions to the FBI raid on Mar-a-Lago from Fox News and among Donald Trump’s followers confirm that Donald J. Trump must be a cult leader.

“These are dark times for our Nation, as my beautiful home, Mar-a-Lago in Palm Beach, Florida, was raided, and occupied by a large group of FBI agents,” Trump complained in a statement sent out via email by Trump’s Save America PAC. Never bashful in his quest to amass the largest political action fund in world history, his statement concluded with a request for donations: “Please rush in a donation IMMEDIATELY to publicly stand with me against this NEVERENDING WITCH HUNT.”

Almost immediately, Trump’s followers – ignoring the possibilities that Trump was flaunting U.S. laws and regulations – began to circle the wagons, claiming Trump is being unfairly persecuted by the Biden administration and other hard-left liberals. Alina Habba, one of Trump’s lawyers, spent time on August 9 with Jesse Watters on Fox News claiming that the entire FBI operation essentially was ‘illegal, immoral and perfidious’.

We only need to look back to the early morning of September 11, 2001, when 19 terrorists from the religious extremist cult Al Qaeda hijacked four commercial aircraft and crashed two of them into the North and South Towers of the World Trade Center complex in NYC. Then, a third plane crashed into the Pentagon in Arlington, VA. Passengers on the fourth hijacked plane, Flight 93, fought back, and the plane was crashed into an empty field in western Pennsylvania about 20 minutes by air from Washington, D.C.

Nearly 3,000 people died. It was the worst attack on American soil since the Japanese attacked Pearl Harbor in 1941.

The terrorists from 9/11/2001 failed to destroy the foundation of U.S. society by force. Undeterred, it seems that these and other external forces have focused on indoctrination as a means to destroy our nation.

The growth of the Trump Cult – estimated to be as large as 35% of the U.S. population today – is proof that constant and focused messaging can be a powerful tool to alienate people who feel disenfranchised, and a majority of those people look like me.

I’m now retired; an over-65 white male who fought it out for 4+ decades to survive and prosper in an ever-changing workplace environment. It would have been easy for me to give up and blame the changes and challenges on women; people of color; immigrants; or ‘government over-reach’.

In fact, most GOP effort over the past several years has consisted mostly of new state and local election laws that have restricted voting in ways that often place a disproportionate burden on Black and Latino voters.

The Trump Terrorists have been programmed to zero in on racial, ethnic, religious and gender differences on the notion that entitled white men could be deprived from their rightful legacy.

The very origin of the Trump campaign is “Let’s Make America Great Again” referencing back to the 1956-57 era when virtually every white male high school graduate could transition into a family wage job – with GM or Ford; in government; mining; agriculture; transportation; construction; or a myriad of other industries. Those were the days when a typical CEO made 20 times the salary of the average worker.

In 2021, S&P 500 CEOs averaged $18.3 Million in compensation — 324 times the median worker’s pay. 

This inequity is the foundation of the real American dilemma. It has nothing to do with ‘deep state’ or a ‘swamp’ in D.C.  It is really grounded in the Dark Money culture which pervades our elections. Trump has plenty to say, but he has never addressed the real issues which haunt American workers.

Meanwhile, the Cult of Agent Orange is alarming, and it threatens to annihilate our entire nation.

We can do better, folks, and we must do better if we intend to survive as a nation.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: