Today I Learn… I make a point of learning something new everyday. This is what I learn each day

1, Oct 24, 2009

Glenn Beck, Rise on Fear and Herd Mentality Part 1

Filed under: Reading — admin @ 12:57 am

The Crowd: A Study of the Popular Mind, by Gustave Le Bon, first published in 1894, latest edition 2002. This is an excellent book, the first one of its kind, on crowd mentality and behavior. Le Bon, 1841 –1931, was a French social psychologist, sociologist, and amateur physicist. I read it at graduate school and it comes back to my mind every time I see phenomenon like Glenn Beck. It is especially true in the age of mass media, with TV and internet.

The larger the crowd is, the less people think and the bolder they become, believing themselves indefeatable and capable of doing any crazy things — anything can go and everything is possible. So you can say the capacity of one’s mental power diminishes and is even reduced to zero as the crowd gets large. Once in a crowd, people totally delegate their thinking and reasoning power as human beings to demagoges who articulate, magnify and fire up to a wild prairie fire using whatever discontent lurking in people’s minds.

People who are not in the habit of thinking by themselves have an instinctive need to obey a leader and are easy victims to demagoges like Hitler, Mussolini and now Glenn Beck, the winner of the crowd control. Mussolini once said, “The crowd is like a woman, the crowd likes strong men.” How women hate these words!

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