by C.J. Hopkins
One of the hallmarks of totalitarianism is mass conformity to a
psychotic official narrative.
Not a regular official
narrative, like the "Cold War" or the "War
on Terror" narratives.
A totally delusional
official narrative that has little or no connection to reality
and that is contradicted by a preponderance of facts...
Stalinism are the classic examples, but the phenomenon
is better observed in cults and other sub-cultural societal groups.
Numerous examples will
spring to mind:
the Manson family,
Jim Jones' People's Temple, the Church of Scientology, Heavens
Gate, etc., each with its own psychotic official narrative:
Christian Communism, Xenu and the Galactic Confederacy, and
Looking in from the
dominant culture (or back through time in the case of the Nazis),
the delusional nature of these official narratives is glaringly
obvious to most rational people.
What many people fail to
understand is that to those who fall prey to them (whether
individual cult members or entire totalitarian societies) such
narratives do not register as psychotic.
On the contrary, they
feel entirely "normal"...
Everything in their
social "reality" reifies and reaffirms the narrative, and anything
that challenges or contradicts it is perceived as an existential
These narratives are invariably paranoid, portraying
the cult as threatened or persecuted by an evil enemy or
antagonistic force which only unquestioning conformity to the cult's
ideology can save its members from.
It makes little
difference whether this antagonist is mainstream culture, body
thetans, counter-revolutionaries, Jews, or a virus.
The point is not the
identity of the enemy.
The point is the
atmosphere of paranoia and hysteria the official
narrative generates, which keeps the cult members (or the
In addition to being
paranoid, these narratives are often internally inconsistent,
illogical, and... well, just completely ridiculous...
This does not weaken
them, as one might suspect.
increases their power, as it forces their adherents to attempt
to reconcile their inconsistency and irrationality, and in many
cases utter absurdity, in order to remain in good standing with
Such reconciliation is of
course impossible, and causes the cult members' minds to short
circuit and abandon any semblance of critical thinking, which is
precisely what the cult leader wants.
Moreover, cult leaders will often radically change these narratives
for no apparent reason, forcing their cult members to abruptly
forswear (and often even denounce as "heresy") the beliefs they had
previously been forced to profess, and behave as if they had never
believed them, which causes their minds to further short circuit,
until they eventually give up even trying to think rationally, and
just mindlessly parrot whatever nonsensical gibberish the cult
leader fills their heads with.
Also, the cult leader's nonsensical gibberish is not as nonsensical
as it may seem at first.
Most of us, upon
encountering such gibberish, assume that the cult leader is trying
to communicate, and that something is very wrong with his brain.
The cult leader isn't
trying to communicate.
He is trying to
control the listener's mind.
Listen to Charlie Manson
Not just to what he
says, but how he says it...
Note how he sprinkles
bits of truth into his stream of free-associated nonsense, and his
repetitive use of thought-terminating clichés, described by
Robert J. Lifton as follows:
"The language of the
totalist environment is characterized by the thought-terminating
The most far-reaching
and complex of human problems are compressed into brief, highly
selective, definitive-sounding phrases, easily memorized and
They become the start
and finish of any ideological analysis."
Thought Reform and the Psychology of Totalism - A Study of
"Brainwashing" in China, 1961
If all this sounds
Because the same
techniques that most cult leaders use to control the minds of the
members of their cults are used by totalitarian systems to control
the minds of entire societies:
Loaded Language, Sacred Science, Demand for Purity, and other
standard mind-control techniques.
It can happen to pretty
much any society, just as anyone can fall prey to a cult, given the
right set of circumstances.
It is happening to most of our societies right now.
An official narrative
is being implemented.
A totally psychotic
official narrative, no less delusional than that of the Nazis,
or the Manson family, or any other cult.
Most people cannot see
that it is happening, for the simple reason that it is happening to
They are literally
unable to recognize it...
The human mind is
extremely resilient and inventive when it is pushed past its limits.
Ask anyone who has struggled with psychosis or has taken too much
LSD. We do not recognize when we are going insane.
When reality falls apart
completely, the mind will create a delusional narrative, which
appears just as "real" as our normal reality, because even a
delusion is better than the stark raving terror of utter chaos.
This is what totalitarians and cult leaders count on, and exploit to
implant their narratives in our minds, and why actual initiation
rituals (as opposed to purely symbolic rituals) begin by attacking
the subject's mind with,
physical exhaustion, psychedelic drugs, or some other means of
obliterating the subject's perception of reality...
Once that is achieved,
and the subject's mind starts desperately trying to construct a new
narrative to make sense out of the cognitive chaos and psychological
trauma it is undergoing, it is relatively easy to "guide" that
process and implant whatever narrative you want, assuming you have
done your homework.
And this is why so many people - people who are able to easily
recognize totalitarianism in cults and foreign countries - cannot
perceive the totalitarianism that is taking shape now,
right in front of their faces (or, rather, right inside their
Nor can they perceive the
delusional nature of
the official "Covid-19" narrative,
no more than those in Nazi Germany were able to
perceive how completely delusional their official "master race"
Such people are neither
ignorant nor stupid.
They have been
successfully initiated into a cult, which is essentially
what totalitarianism is, albeit on a societal scale...
Their initiation into the
Covidian Cult began in January (2020), when the medical
authorities and corporate media turned on The Fear with
hundreds of millions of deaths and
fake photos of people dropping dead in the
conditioning has continued for months.
The global masses have
been subjected to a constant stream of propaganda, manufactured
hysteria, wild speculation, conflicting directives, exaggerations,
lies, and tawdry theatrical effects.
hospitals and morgues.
Dead Covid babies.
...and all the rest of
Eight months later, here we are. The Head of the Health Emergencies
the WHO has basically confirmed
an IFR of 0.14%, approximately the
same as the seasonal flu.
And here are
the latest survival rate estimates
from the Center for Disease Control:
Age 70+... 94.6%
The "science" argument is
An increasing number of
doctors and medical experts are breaking ranks and explaining how
the current mass hysteria over "cases" (which now includes perfectly
healthy people) is essentially meaningless propaganda, for example,
this segment on ARD, one of the big
mainstream German TV channels.
And then there is the existence of Sweden, and other countries which
are not playing ball with the official Covid-19 narrative, which
makes a mockery of the ongoing hysteria.
I'm not going to go on
debunking the narrative.
The point is, the facts
are all available. Not from "conspiracy theorist" websites. From
mainstream outlets and medical experts. From the Center for
Fucking Disease Control.
Which does not matter in the least, not to the members of the
Covidian Cult. Facts do not matter to totalitarians and cult
members. What matters is loyalty to the cult or the party.
Which means we have a serious problem, those of us to whom facts
still matter, and who have been trying to use them to convince the
Covidian cultists that they are wrong about the virus... for going
on eight months at this point.
While it is crucial to continue reporting the facts and sharing them
with as many people as possible - which is becoming increasingly
difficult due to the censorship of alternative and social media - it
is important to accept what we are up against.
What we are up against is
not a misunderstanding or a rational argument over scientific facts.
It is a fanatical ideological movement. A global totalitarian
movement... the first of its kind in human history.
It isn't national totalitarianism, because we're living in a global
capitalist empire, which isn't ruled by nation-states, but rather,
by supranational entities and the global capitalist system itself.
And thus, the
cult/culture paradigm has been inverted. Instead of the cult
existing as an island within the dominant culture, the cult has
become the dominant culture, and those of us who have not joined the
cult have become the isolated islands within it.
I wish I could be more optimistic, and maybe offer some sort of plan
of action, but the only historical parallel I can think of is
how Christianity "converted" the
pagan world... which doesn't really bode so well for us.
While you're sitting at
home during the "second wave" lockdowns, you might want to brush up
on that history...
Back in October of 2020, I wrote an essay called The Covidian
Cult (above Part 1), in which I described the so-called "New
Normal" as a global totalitarian ideological movement. Developments
over the last six months have borne out the accuracy of that
A full year after the initial roll-out of the utterly horrifying and
completely fictional photos of people dropping dead in the streets,
the projected 3.4% death rate, and all the rest of the official
propaganda, despite the absence of any actual scientific evidence of
an apocalyptic plague (and the abundance of evidence to the
millions of people
continue to behave like members of an enormous death cult,
walking around in public with medical-looking masks, robotically
repeating vacuous platitudes, torturing children, the elderly,
the disabled, demanding that everyone submit to being injected
dangerous experimental "vaccines,"
and just generally acting delusional and psychotic...
How did we ever get to
this point... to the point where, as I put it in The Covidian
"instead of the cult
existing as an island within the dominant culture, the cult has
become the dominant culture, and those of us who have not joined
the cult have become the isolated islands within it?"
To understand this, one
needs to understand how cults control the minds of their members,
because totalitarian ideological movements operate more or less the
same way, just on a much larger, societal scale.
There is a wealth of
research and knowledge on this subject (I mentioned Robert J.
Lifton in my earlier above essay), but, to keep things simple,
I'll just use Margaret Singer's "Six
Conditions of Mind Control" from her 1995 book,
Cults in Our Midst, as a lens
to view the Covidian Cult through.
of Mind Control
The italics are Singer.
The commentary is mine:
Keep the person unaware of what is going on and how she or
he is being changed a step at a time.
members are led, step by step, through a behavioral-change
program without being aware of the final agenda or full
content of the group.
Looking back, it is easy to see how people were conditioned,
step by step, to accept the "New Normal" ideology.
bombarded with terrifying propaganda, locked down, stripped
of their civil rights, forced to wear medical-looking masks
in public, to act out absurd "social-distancing" rituals,
submit to constant "testing," and all the rest of it.
complying with this behavioral-change program or challenging
the veracity and rationality of the new ideology was
demonized as a "conspiracy theorist," a "Covid denier," an
"anti-vaxxer," in essence, an enemy of the cult, like a "suppressive
person" in the Church of Scientology.
person's social and/or physical environment; especially
control the person's time.
For over a year now, the "New Normal" authorities have
controlled the social/physical environment, and how New
Normals spend their time, with lockdowns, social-distancing
rituals, closure of "non-essential" businesses, omnipresent
propaganda, isolation of the elderly, travel restrictions,
mandatory mask-rules, protest bans, and now
the segregation of the "Unvaccinated."
society has been transformed into something resembling an
infectious disease ward, or an enormous hospital from which
there is no escape.
You've seen the
photos of the happy New Normals dining out at restaurants,
relaxing at the beach, jogging, attending school, and so on,
going about their "normal" lives with their medical-looking
masks and prophylactic face shields.
looking at is the pathologization of society, the
pathologization of everyday life, the physical (social)
manifestation of a morbid obsession with disease and death.
create a sense of powerlessness in the person.
What kind of person could feel more powerless than an
obedient New Normal sitting at home, obsessively logging the
"Covid death" count, sharing photos of his medical-looking
mask and post-"vaccination" bandage on Facebook, as he waits
for permission from the authorities to go outdoors, visit
his family, kiss his lover, or shake hands with a colleague?
The fact that in
the Covidian Cult the traditional charismatic cult leader
has been replaced by a menagerie of medical experts and
government officials does not change the utter dependency
and abject powerlessness of its members, who have been
reduced to a state approaching infancy.
powerlessness is not experienced as a negative; on the
contrary, it is proudly celebrated.
mantra-like repetition of the "New Normal" platitude "Trust
the Science!" by people who, if you try to show them the
science, melt down completely and start jabbering aggressive
nonsense at you to shut you up.
system of rewards, punishments and experiences in such a way
as to inhibit behavior that reflects the person's former
The point here is the transformation of the formerly
basically rational person into an entirely different
cult-approved person, in our case, an obedient "New Normal"
Singer gets into
this in greater detail, but her discussion applies mostly to
subcultural cults, not to large-scale totalitarian
movements. For our purposes, we can fold this into Condition
Manipulate a system of rewards, punishments, and experiences
in order to promote learning the group's ideology or belief
system and group-approved behaviors.
Good behavior, demonstrating an understanding and acceptance
of the group's beliefs, and compliance are rewarded, while
questioning, expressing doubts or criticizing are met with
disapproval, redress and possible rejection.
expresses a question, they are made to feel that there is
something inherently wrong with them to be questioning.
OK, I'm going to tell you a little story. It's a story about
a personal experience, which I'm pretty sure you've also
experienced. It's a story about a certain New Normal who has
been harassing me for several months.
I'll call him
Brian Parks, because, well, that's his name, and I no longer
feel any compunction about sharing it.
Brian is a former friend/colleague from the theater world
who has gone full "New Normal" and is absolutely furious
that I have not.
So outraged is
Brian that I have not joined the cult that he has been going
around on the Internet referring to me as a "conspiracy
theorist" and suggesting that I've had some kind of nervous
breakdown and require immediate psychiatric treatment
because I do not believe the official "New Normal"
Now, this would
not be a very big deal, except that Brian is impugning my
character and attempting to damage my reputation on the
Facebook pages of other theater colleagues, which Brian
feels entitled to do, given that I am a "Covid denier," a
"conspiracy theorist," and an "anti-vaxxer," or whatever,
and given the fact that he has the power of the state, the
media, etc., on his side.
This is how it
works in cults, and in larger totalitarian societies...
It isn't usually
the Gestapo that comes for you. It's usually your friends
What Brian is
doing is working that system of rewards and punishments to
enforce his ideology, because he knows that most of my other
colleagues in the theater world have also gone full "New
Normal," or at least are looking the other way and staying
silent while it is being implemented.
This tactic, obviously, has backfired on Brian, primarily
because I do not give a fuck what any New Normals
think of me, whether they work in the theater world or
anywhere else, but I am in a rather privileged position,
because I have accomplished what I wanted to accomplish in
the theater, and would rather stick my hand in a blender
than submit my novels to corporate publishers for review by
readers," so there isn't much to threaten me
That, and I have
no children to support, or administrations to answer to
(unlike, for example,
Mark Crispin Miller,
who is currently being persecuted by the "New Normal"
administration at NYU).
The point is, this kind of ideological conditioning is
happening everywhere, every day, on the job, among friends,
even among families.
The pressure to
conform is intense, because nothing is more threatening to
devoted cultists, or members of totalitarian ideological
movements, than those who challenge their fundamental
beliefs, confront them with facts, or otherwise demonstrate
that their "reality" isn't reality at all, but, rather, a
delusional, paranoid fiction.
The key difference between how this works in cults and
totalitarian ideological movements is that, usually, a cult
is a subcultural group, and thus non-cult-members have the
power of the ideology of the dominant society to draw on
when resisting the mind-control tactics of the cult, and
attempting to deprogram its members... whereas, in our case,
this balance of power is inverted.
ideological movements have the power of governments, the
media, the police, the culture industry, academia, and the
compliant masses on their side.
And, thus, they
do not need to persuade anyone.
They have the
power to dictate "reality." Only cults operating in total
isolation, like Jim Jones' People's Temple in Guyana, enjoy
this level of control over their members.
This pressure to conform, this ideological conditioning,
must be fiercely resisted, regardless of the consequences,
both publicly and in our private lives, or the "New Normal"
will certainly become our "reality."
Despite the fact
that we "Covid deniers" are currently outnumbered by the
Covidian cultists, we need to behave as if we are not, and
hold to reality, facts, and real science, and treat the
New Normals as exactly what they are, members of a new
totalitarian movement, delusional cultists run amok. If we
do not, we will get to Singer's Condition 6...
Put forth a closed system of logic and an authoritarian
structure that permits no feedback and refuses to be
modified except by leadership approval or executive order.
The group has
a top-down, pyramid structure. The leaders must have verbal
ways of never losing.
We're not there yet, but that is where we're headed...
global pathologized totalitarianism. So, please, speak up.
Call things what they are. Confront the Brians in your life.
Despite the fact
that they tell themselves that they're trying to help you
"come to your senses" or "see the truth," or "trust the
Science," they are not.
cultists, desperately trying to get you to conform to their
paranoid beliefs, pressuring you, manipulating you, bullying
you, threatening you.
Do not engage
them on their terms, or let them goad you into accepting
their premises. (Once they've sucked you into their
narrative, they've won.)
confront them with their tactics and their motives.
You will probably
not change their minds in the least, but your example might
help other New Normals whose faith is slipping to
begin to recognize what has been done to their minds and
break with the cult.