Tag Archives: Mental Illness

Have you met a psychopath?

The psychology of conspiracy belief

A Professor of psychology from Victoria University sheds some light on the conspiracy theories surrounding illuminati.

By matt stewart via Stuff.co.nz

paranoia 737_201pxYou don’t have to be mad to create conspiracy theories, but it certainly helps, new research suggests.

Just believing in them indicates you are more likely to be paranoid or mentally ill, a Victoria University study shows.

Widely held conspiracy theories range from harmless ones, such as the belief that the Moon landings were faked, to more dangerous delusions such as the one in Nigeria that polio vaccines were a Western plot to sterilise people. That led to vaccination crews being murdered and thousands dying from disease.

Clinical psychologist Darshani Kumareswaran is delving in to the psychology of conspiracy belief, and has found some believers are likely to endorse far-fetched plots in an effort to make sense of chaotic situations beyond their control.

Kumareswaran, who graduated from Victoria with a PhD in psychology this week, wanted to find out what made people more likely to believe in, or come up with, conspiracy theories – and whether the process was linked to mental illness.

Avid conspiracy theorists can put themselves under intense psychological strain with their tendency towards paranoid thinking and delusional beliefs, causing mental strain even when a conspiracy theory turns out to be a verified plot.

paranoid illuminati_250pxShe also looked behind the common public image of the conspiracy theorist as a crackpot.

Despite evidence of verified conspiracies, such as the Watergate scandal, the public viewed conspiracy theorists in as negative a light as they did convicted criminals, she said.

“For the label to be so negatively rated by the public is quite a powerful finding.”

Study participants were asked to recall a situation in which they had no control, describe it in detail, and write it down. They were then put in a “psychological space” in which they felt powerlessness and were given 24 pictures that looked like snowy television screens.

Half featured obscured objects such as a chair or tent, the other half nothing.

Those who scored highly on a form of psychopathology known as schizotypy were more likely to see an object in the images where there was none, indicating they were more likely to make connections between unrelated things.

“I also found that someone who creates conspiracy theories is more likely to have some form of psychopathology, or mental illness such as  .  .  .

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Gang Stalking YouTube Videos: The Most Serious Conspiracy Theory

paranoia 737_167pxBy Andrew Whalen via iDigitalTimes

Gang stalking is a highly coordinated operation, usually by a counterintelligence entity, to intimidate dissenters through a mob of watchers, harassers, prank callers, hackers, and irritants. To be gang stalked is to suspect everyone, to feel eyes fall upon you and not be sure whether it’s just another person in the grocery aisle or an agent paid to induce that exact feeling of uncertainty in your heart. And while gang stalking can be coordinated by anyone, from a personal enemy to the Mafia, the coordination tactics enabled by modern communication technologies and sheer computing power is most available to large corporations and governmental entities.

Gang stalking is also nonsense.

Gang Stalking Youtube Video – Window Into Delusion

Watch this Youtube video and you’ll immediately understand why:

The transparent paranoia in this Youtube video is evident to all but the gang stalking initiate.

Gang stalking, as experienced by most of its victims, is delusional. It’s the most serious conspiracy theory not because it reflects reality, but because gang stalking is the bridge between conspiracy theorizing as a hobby, and conspiracy theorizing as an all-consuming mental illness.

Why People Believe in Conspiracy Theories

paranoid illuminati_250pxPeople who believe that H1N1 Swine Flu was created by the miltary, that 9/11 was a Mossad operation, that world leaders worship owl demons at a summer retreat, or believe any of the endless permutations of conspiracy theory, are likely not mentally ill. My preferred theory is that they’re just incredibly dumb, but the current research into conspiracy theory ideation doesn’t really back that up either. Rather, conspiracy theorists are sane people, of normal intelligence, who have become trapped in a self-reinforcing belief system. It’s a convenient trick: anyone who can offer up evidence against the conspiracy theory is an agent of the conspiracy theory–a shill–sent to deceive you.

There are many motivations for believing in a conspiracy theory.

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5 Things I’ve noticed about … Sandy Hook Hoax Conspiracy Theorists

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The LockeBy The Locke via The Soap Box

Sandy Hook conspiracy theorists.

sandy hook elementary_250pxMany skeptics (including myself) consider these people to be the lowest of the low.

There are actually two different types of these conspiracy theorists: those who think that the massacre at the elementary school was a false flag attack, and those that think that it didn’t even happen at all, more commonly called Sandy Hook Hoaxers.

Today I’m going to focus on the lesser human of the two, the Hoaxers.

Now I have noticed a lot of things about these “people”, but I’ve narrowed it down to five different things.

So here are five things I’ve noticed about Sandy Hook Hoax conspiracy theorists:

5. They’re psychopaths.

Many Sandy Hook hoax conspiracy theorists display behaviors that to some people would be similar to psychopathy.

Most of the believers in this conspiracy theory show no empathy or sadness towards the adults and children that were murdered at Sandy Hook Elementary, nor do they show any empathy towards the people that lost loved ones that day.

conspiracy-theory-alert_200pxSome conspiracy theorists have even been in an active campaign of harassment against survivors and people who lost loved ones in that massacre, much of which has been very volatile and vial. Even those that don’t engage in any harassment do often give support and encouragement to those that do.

Worst yet many of them, especially the ones that engage in harassment, will try to “justify” their behavior by claiming that the massacre didn’t happen, or that they have every right to do what they’re doing (which they don’t).

Even if they do sincerely believe that the massacre at Sandy Hook Elementary didn’t happen it doesn’t justify their behavior, because they should be taking into consideration that that the massacre there did happen and that what they are doing is very hurtful, but they’re not doing so.

Many of them also don’t seem to understand or care that they’re behavior could have some severe consequences for them, such as being arrested and going to jail and even prison. And speaking of being arrested and going to jail and prison…

4. They’re criminals.

conspiracies05Many of these Sandy Hook hoax conspiracy theorists since the massacre happened have been engaging in a unorganized campaign of internet based harassment against the parents of the children who were murdered, as well as anyone else who was involved with the events of that day.

The harassment in itself is a criminal action, but over the months it has de-evolved into more serious crimes, such as stalking, threats, and even vandalism. There is some speculation that it may be a matter of time before one of these conspiracy theorists finally goes off the deep end and tries to kill one of the parents of the murdered children, or someone whom was involved with the events of that day.

Even those that don’t engage in any criminal actions could be considered criminals by-proxy, either by encouraging and giving support to those that do engage in harassment, or to a lesser extent condoning or just not condemning such behavior.

3. They’re mentally ill.

I know that most skeptics tend to call certain conspiracy theorists crazy as a means of insulting them (whether we realize that or not), but in the case of Sandy Hook hoax conspiracy theorists many of them have shown signs of having real and perhaps severe mental health issues.

Many of these conspiracy theorists show definite signs of  .  .  .

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The 10 most bizarre, absurd, and dumb conspiracy theories of 2013

By via The Soap Box

Throughout this year there were a lot of new conspiracy theories going around. Some of them were scary. Some of them were weird. And some of them were just bizarre, absurd, and dumb to the point where one would either have to laugh at them, or pull their hair out in frustration.

The following list are ten of what I feel are the strangest and most bizarre and/or absurd conspiracy theories of 2013:

10. Robert Sarvis was a Democratic plant to help Terry McAuliffe win the Virginia gubernatorial election.

(Author’s note: being that I am from Virginia, I just felt that I had to mention this one)

Sarvis_200pxIn the 2013 Virginia gubernatorial election there were a lot of accusations that went back and forth (some true, some not) but one of the biggest accusation didn’t come during the election, but afterwards. The accusation that I’m talking about is the one that claims that Libertarian candidate Robert Sarvis was actually a shill or plant by the Democrats inorder to steal votes away from Republican candidate Ken Cuccinelli and to help guarantee victory for Terry McAuliffe.

Now as plausible as this may sound, there are just two problems with this: First there is no guarantee that the people who voted for Sarvis would have voted for Cuccinelli, and second most of the polls before the election showed that McAuliffe had an over 50% lead, and thus a spoiler candidate would not have been needed inorder to win. Also, besides those facts and the fact that there is no actual evidence that Sarvis was a Democratic plant, it’s just as likely that Sarvis actually took away votes from McAuliffe as it is from Cuccinelli.

9. Anti-GMO/Monsanto claims.

While conspiracy theories against GMO foods are nothing new, what is new is that the Anti-GMO movement now seems to be focusing their claims on one company: Monsanto.

From what I can tell from their claims Monsanto pretty much controls the FDA, the farming industry, the food industry, Obama, the media, the U.S. Supreme Court, law enforcement, any blog that debunks the anti-GMO movement’s claims, all the science organizations, and that Monsanto is responsible for every atrocity committed in the world since World War Two.

According to many in the anti-GMO movement Monsanto does all of this inorder to sell you a product that (insert the anti-GMO claim of your choice).

8. The Boston Marathon bombing was a false flag attack.

False flag 1015_300pxOn April 15 one of the worst terrorist attacks in the U.S. since the 9/11 attacks occurred at one of the largest sporting events in the U.S., the Boston Marathon. Three people were killed, and 264 people were injured, many of who also lost limbs, or were otherwise permanently maimed in some way. Also, like clock work, conspiracy theories about the bombing started to be posted all over the internet within minutes of the attack.

The most common of the claims were that it was a false flag attack, and then later de-evolved into stranger conspiracy theories in that both the suspects, Dzhokhar and Tamerlan Tsarnaev, were under some kind of government mind control, right on down to the most absurd claim of there being no attack at all and that the whole thing was staged and that no one was actually hurt or killed.

Besides the fact that all of these claims were absurd on face value alone and were quickly debunked, they were also very disrespectful and just plain disgusting.

7. Amanda Bynes became a victim of Illuminati mind control.

Over the summer actress Amanda Bynes began engaging in behavior that ranged from bizarre to down right dangerous. This behavior of her’s eventually lead to her being involuntarily committed into psychiatric care.

Now to most people this looks like a simple enough case of a young woman whom is mentally ill and whom’s mental illness has caused her to act out in bizarre and dangerous ways. To a conspiracy theorist on the other hand it’s a clear case of Illuminati mind control.

The main theory that is going around is that Amanda was being groomed by the Illuminati as part of a youth indoctrination program, and that she had decided to break away from them. When Amanda did allegedly break away from them one of two things happen: Either that the indoctrination was so intense that she could not function on her own and her mind snapped, or she was driven insane via remote mind control.

While this explanation kind of makes sense in a weird way, the one theory behind her behavior that makes even more sense is that she is either schizophrenic or bi-polar. Combined with her age, and her escalating erratic behavior over the past few years, this makes a lot more sense than a couple of conspiracy theories that range from being far fetched to pretty much impossible.

6. The Xbox One can see you naked.

Cheating1When the Xbox One and all of it’s feature were announced there were many concerns (some legit, some not) but one of the biggest concerns that in itself became a conspiracy theory is that the new gaming counsel (through it’s inbuilt motion sensing Kinect system) can see you naked, even with your clothes on. The reason behind this claim is due to a photo of a test subject seen through the view of the Kinect that allegedly shows his ding-dong, despite the fact that he is wearing clothes.

As it turns out that wasn’t the man’s private parts, but was actually a fold in his pants that people mistook for his you-know-what. Although it should be noted that the Xbox One can see you naked… if you’re actually playing a video game infront of it while naked (and if that’s your thing then have fun playing with it… the Xbox One I mean).

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5 Things I’ve noticed about… Conspiracy Theorists on Youtube

by via The Soap Box

Screen Shot 2013-10-25 at 8.46.56 PM_250pxIf you’re someone that makes a hobby of investigating conspiracy theories, you will eventually be lead to one place: Youtube.

Youtube seems to the gathering center conspiracy theorists on the internet due to the huge amount a conspiracy theory videos on that website (and I mean huge).

Now there are a lot of things that I have noticed about conspiracy theorists on Youtube that I could talk about, but I have narrowed it down to five different things.

So here are five things that I’ve noticed about conspiracy theorists on Youtube:

5. They can come up with some pretty bizarre conspiracy theories.

If you want to find a really bizarre conspiracy theory, then there is no better place to look than Youtube, because the conspiracy theorists on that website can come up with some very bizarre conspiracy theories. In fact some of the weirdest conspiracy theories that I have ever heard of are from videos on Youtube.

These conspiracy theories on Youtube can get so strange, and combined with a person’s own behavior either in a video, or in the comments section, that it makes one wonder if that person is either a poe, or a fraud that is looking for attention (or to scam people), or severely mentally ill. In fact some conspiracy theorist on Youtube have been proven to be either mentally ill or frauds.

Screen Shot 2013-10-25 at 8.48.33 PM_200pxSome of these videos are so bizarre that I’ve had to stop watching them at times because I felt that it was driving me crazy (mostly rage) and making me want to destroy my computer in frustration over not only how some one could come up with some thing that crazy and stupid, but also in frustration over why Youtube would allow such a video to stay on the website.

If such videos make me nearly go crazy then I can’t imagine what they do to people who take these videos seriously.

4. Their videos can be extremely long.

Sometimes a conspiracy theorist’s video on Youtube can be short, sometimes they can be half an hour long, and sometimes they can go on for hours and hours.

Screen Shot 2013-10-25 at 8.50.48 PMSome of the longest videos that I have ever seen on Youtube have been from conspiracy theorists, and I’m not talking about an hour or two long. Some of these videos can be three to four to six hours long. In fact I think the longest one I have ever seen (I didn’t actually watch it, I just noted the time) was forty hours long!

The only way someone could watch such videos is if they were unemployed and/or had no life what so ever. They would have to spend all of their time infront of a computer watching these poorly made and researched Youtube videos which would become essentially their only source of information about the world…

Besides just making abnormally long videos, conspiracy theorists on Youtube also tend to do this:

3. They create videos of an event quickly after an event happens.

Thanks mostly due to cheap (many times free), widely available, and easy to use video capturing and editing software, conspiracy theorist can now create videos at astonishingly amazing speeds after some event happens, sometimes even within hours of an event happening.

Usually these videos are . . .

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5 Things I’ve noticed about… Bizarre Conspiracy Theories

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by via The Soap Box

eye all seeing_250pxWhen you dive into the world of conspiracy theories (either as a skeptic, or a conspiracy theorist, or just a curious onlooker) you will ultimately come across some conspiracy theories that sound really, really bizarre…

In fact ever since I started doing serious skepticism and debunking and investigating conspiracy theories I have found conspiracy theories so strange that I could never have possibly have thought of them (which is probably a good thing).

Now while there are a lot of things I have noticed about bizarre conspiracy theories, I have narrowed it down to five different things.

So here are five things I’ve noticed about bizarre conspiracy theories:

5. They’re indicators of mental illness.

schizophrenia 932_250px_250pxFirst I want to say that anyone who believes that the world is controlled by shape-shifting aliens, or that the World Trade Center towers were brought down by lasers, or that the government is using radio signals to attack peoples minds, or believes in crisis actors, or believes that chemtrails are real is not necessarily mentally ill… I’m just saying it’s a pretty strong indicator of mental illness, especially when you consider the fact that others who also believe in such conspiracy theories have engaged in behavior that strongly indicates that they are mentally ill (such as making long and incoherent rants, or harassing people, or making threats), or actually has been found out or proven to be mentally ill.

It’s not just the people who believe in them either. Many of the people whom have created the most bizarre conspiracy theories out there are they themselves believed to be mentally ill. Even the ones who are very intelligent and hold college degrees, but come up with these weird conspiracy theories, are automatically assumed to be mentally ill because it’s really the most logical explanation for many skeptics concerning a person whom is very smart but believes in really weird stuff.

4. There is no deep end to them.

tunnel tumble_200pxHave you ever heard or read about a conspiracy theory that made you think, “there is no way that there can be something stranger than this…” Well, I don’t mean to burst your bubble, but trust me when I say this, there is a conspiracy theory out there that is more bizarre than what you have just heard or read about. And if there isn’t one, one will be invented soon enough.

Now I don’t blame anyone for believing that whenever they hear about a crazy conspiracy theory that they believe that it is the craziest conspiracy theory out there, I use to believe that myself when I came across a really bizarre conspiracy, but then I would be proven wrong again and again whenever I kept coming across one even more bizarre than the next one, it kind of destroyed my ability to believe that there is a bottom to conspiracy theory craziness.

In fact some are so bizarre that…

3. They are confused for satire.

what-hi_200pxIt really should not surprise anyone that there are some conspiracy theories out there that are either so weird, or so bizarre, that some people don’t believe that it is a real conspiracy theory (well, as real as one can be) and that it was made up as a parody of other conspiracy theories, or some type of satire, or, as some conspiracy theorists may claim, dis-information.

This is something that even I have assumed at times whenever I see a bizarre conspiracy theory, either in the hope that no one can seriously be so crazy that they could come up with such a thing, or that it just looks like satire.

In fact some have actually turned out to be satire (or a hoax) but because some conspiracy theorists can’t tell the difference between what is real and what is fake, some of them assume that it is real.

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5 Things I’ve noticed about… 9/11 Conspiracy Theories

by via The Soap Box

911-world-trade-center-conspiracy_350A few months ago I did one of these “5 Things I’ve noticed about…” articles on the people in the 9/11 Truth Movement, and it had me thinking to myself “what about the conspiracy theories that the people in the 9/11 Truth Movements promote?”

So what about those conspiracy theories, and what are some of the biggest things about them that just stand out? Well, I’ve noticed a lot of things about them, and I’ve narrowed them down to five different things.

So here are five things I’ve noticed about 9/11 conspiracy theories:

5. There are a lot of them.

Probably one of the biggest problems with the 9/11 conspiracy theories is that there are more than one of them, instead of just one that the people who believe in and focus on.

For some people these can be confusing not only because they are all very different, but they are mostly not even connected to one another.

Not only can they be confusing, but they are also progressively more bizarre as well.

There is the let it happen theory, the controlled demolition theory, the drone plane theory, the nuke theory, and even the no plane/space lasers (which is so bizarre a person in the 9/11 Truth Movement debunked it).

I guess you say that the 9/11 conspiracy theories are a lot like the JFK assassination conspiracy theories in that not only are there more than one theory to what happened, but also because…

4. There is apparently more than one perpetrator.

Besides there just being more than one 9/11 conspiracy theory, according to these conspiracy theories, there is no solid conclusion on who the “real” perpetrator is.

Some people claim that it was Al-Qaida, it’s just that those in the government allowed them to attack. Some people say that it was a collaboration between the government and Al-Qaida. Some people believe it was just the government, or Israel, or the Illuminati, or someone else entirely.

It just seems like none of these conspiracy theorists who claim that 9/11 was an inside job can agree upon who did it, and how they did it. Of course that isn’t very surprising to me, because…

3. The biggest promoters of the 9/11 conspiracy theories are kooks.

US radio host and conspiracy theorist Alex Jones

US radio host and conspiracy theorist Alex Jones

Now I’m saying that all people who believe in the 9/11 conspiracy theories are kooks, but the biggest promoters of these theories are.

There’s Alex Jones, whom constantly promotes conspiracy theories on his radio program, thinks everything bad that happens is a false flag attack, and just starts yelling and making incoherent rants.

There’s Mike Adams, a promoter of pseudoscience and medical quackery (especially dangerous types of medical quackery), as well as other conspiracy theories.

Finally, there’s Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, the former president of Iran, whom in addition to promoting 9/11 conspiracy theories, is also a holocaust denier, and is antisemitic.

They are of course not the only one’s who promote the 9/11 conspiracy theories, but they are some of the biggest ones, and many of the other promoters of the 9/11 conspiracy theories are just as nutty (or possibly fraudulent) as these guys.

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Fregoli Delusion: A possible reason why some believe in Crisis Actors?

by via The Soap Box

Recently I read this VICE article about a person by the name of Ed Chiarini (whether that is his real name or not is unknown, but it doesn’t really matter) whom is a conspiracy theorist whom believes that everyone you see in the media is actually an actor (even famous actors).

His latest target: Senator John McCain, whom he believes is actually Henry Winkler (and no, I’m not kidding, he really does believe that the Maverick is actually the Fonz).

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And apparently he also believes that Eugene Levy is the acting president of Egypt.

When I first read this article I honestly believed that this person was a poe due to the sheer fact that the conspiracy theories he was creating and promoting were so ridicules that it bordered on satire…

star trek B&W_250pxSadly, it wasn’t satire. He really does believe what he is saying. I figured that out when I saw his posts about the Sandy Hook massacre and that everyone seen in photos and videos being “crisis actors”. Even a well constructed poe would not cross that line.

After seeing that this person clearly believed what he was saying it became very clear that this person most likely has major mental health issues.

Many people who were commenting on the article were saying that he probably has schizophrenia, which is very probable he does have, but I was told by a fellow skeptic that he may have a rare mental disorder called Fregoli delusion.

Fregoli delusion, also known as the “delusion of doubles”, is a mental disorder that is sometimes the result of a brain injury and can leave a person to believe that two or more people are actually one person.

Besides believing that two different people are in fact the same person, other behaviors that can go along with Fregoli delusion includes the following: . . .

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