My post “Mind control and Obama” seems to have achieved a great deal more attention than I expected when it was given prominence by the Nobama Network, which consists of huge numbers of interlocking blogs and groups sharing a disgust at the way the DNC set out to ensure that only Obama could be the nominee.
On reflection I feel I should have raised a previous post, “The Herd Instinct, and crowds,” which was a guest post from Ron Kitching which is very relevant to the content.
Ron is one of the legends of the exploration industry founding Glinderman and Kitching and in so doing stood at the cutting edge of innovation in the industry for many years, and remains a highly respected man in the field.
Ron, for as long as I have known him has been a wealth of information on free enterprise economics, having studied the classical texts on the subject and is the author of one of the best books I have seen in the field, “Understanding Personal and Economic Liberty.”
The following is part of that post, Obama seems to have this stuff down pat: -
The point of this essay is to draw to your attention, a book titled: "The Crowd" by Gustave Le Bon.
Le Bon emphasizes the various areas of modern life where crowd behavior holds sway, particular political upheavals. He focuses on electoral campaigns, parliaments, juries, labour agitation and street demonstrations. His treatment of crowds is far from complimentary.
Although I have not been able to find any hard evidence, there are some who believe that the book was closely studied by both Hitler and Mussolini. Both were great readers and both knew how to manipulate and influence crowds. It is arguable that the fascist theories of leadership that emerged in the 1920s owed much to his theories of crowd psychology. Indeed, Hitler's Mien Kampf largely drew on the propaganda techniques proposed in Le Bon's 1895 book.
Hitler certainly had all of the essential characteristics of a successful crowd leader. "That is an unshakeable belief in himself, and an iron will. More of a man of action than a great thinker, not gifted with great foresight as this quality generally conduces to doubt and inactivity. Morbidly nervous excitable, and half deranged, bordering on madness, but an unshakeable faith in himself and his cause, with convictions so strong that all reasoning was lost on him."
Written in 1895, the above description fitted the German Fuhrer to a T, written when Hitler was only four years old.
The description also fits Napoleon and Mussolini and Chairman Mao. Likewise, General Franco of Spain, and Peron, the Argentinean Dictator. And, likewise, Pol Pot. Other outstanding examples were Lenin, Trotsky and Stalin, especially Lenin.
Not all great leaders have the unique gifts of say, The German Fuhrer. Quoting Le Bon:
“The men of ardent convictions who have stirred to souls of crowds have been the Peter the Hermits, the Luthers, the Savonarolas, the men of the French Revolution, [we can add all of the above, including Gandhi and others], have only exercised their fascination after having themselves been fascinated first of all by a creed. They are able to call up in the souls of their fellows that formidable force known as faith, which renders a man the absolute slave of his dream. To endow a man with faith is to multiply his strength by ten.”
“It is not by the aid of the learned or of philosophers and still less skeptics, that have been built up the great religions which have swayed the world, or the vast empires which have spread from one hemisphere to the other.”
In the cases just cited, we are dealing with great leaders, and they are so few in number that history can easily reckon them up. The book though mainly deals with the crowd.
On page 864 of his “Human Action” Mises says:
“The masses, the hosts of common men, do not conceive any ideas, sound or unsound. They only choose between the ideologies developed by the intellectual leaders of mankind. But their choice is final and determines the course of events. If they prefer bad doctrines nothing can prevent disaster...The [Classical] Liberals gave the world Capitalism, a higher standard of living for a steadily increasing number of people. But the pioneers and supporters of capitalism overlooked one essential point; a social system, however beneficial, cannot work if it is not supported by public opinion...”
H. L. Mencken wrote, “The whole aim of practical politics is to keep the populace alarmed (and hence clamorous to be led to safety) by menacing it with an endless series of hobgoblins, all of them imaginary. Crowds, properly worked up by skilful demagogues, are ready to believe anything, and to do anything.”
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