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Mattias Desmet is right THAT it’s a mass formation delusion, but not about WHY
I haven’t wanted to criticize Mattias Desmet and the received theories of mass formation, because I’m just happy that folks are finally beginning to recognize what I’ve been arguing since the start: that the world indeed got swept up into mass hysteria.
But understanding THAT a mass hysteria has occurred is quite a different thing than explaining WHY it occurred and having a general unified theoretical grasp of it.
I don’t believe the received view that Desmet communicates to us is remotely on the right track. It comes across as Freudian-level in sophistication. (That’s bad.)
For example, the four supposed precursor conditions for mass delusion are…
(1) free-floating anxiety
(2) social isolation
(3) crisis of meaning
(4) anger and frustration
No. None of these are necessary, and together they’re not sufficient. Unsure there’s even any correlation.
The scary truth about mass hysteria is that there is no precursor malady among a population needed.
People just being people, along with the properties of social networks, simply lends itself to occasional mass delusions.
Mass delusions come “for free” from the “physics” of social networks.
The illness is at the emergent, or mass, level, not at the individual person level.