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Birther evangelist psychoanalyzes his flock

LolliI came across something novel from the birther side this morning, an attempt by a birther to understand other birthers using psychology.

In my July 11 article, Obama conspiracies and the grief cycle, I discussed how normals, when coming to grips with the birther movement, can follow the Kübler-Ross model, commonly known as The Five Stages of Grief. In a new article yesterday prolific commentator William Lolli (pictured above) applies the same model to the birthers, in his article, Confessions of a Birther Evangelist at The American Thinker.

Lolli’s article adopts a pedantic tone describing emotional changes in someone making the journey of “discovery” that Obama is ineligible, but make no mistake, despite the reasonable tone, Lolli believes Obama’s birth certificate is a forgery and that: “both political parties and all branches of government are culpable.”

More from the birther evangelist on how he convinces someone to be a birther would have been interesting, but Lolli leaves that point vague, saying only, “The debates are never linear, but desultory.” [“Desultory” is probably not the word he wanted.]

Lolli gets one thing right:

Many politically active Birthers are stuck in the anger stage.  You can see that by reading their blogs, letters to editors, emails to congressman, and their use of invectives like "long legged Mac Daddy," "Usurper," "Traitor," and the like.  The ad hominem attacks do little to persuade, but they do provide emotional relief to the mass of frustrated Birthers, who find it difficult to understand why the legal and moral clarity of their arguments are systematically ignored.

What Lolli doesn’t understand is that birthers are ignored because their arguments lack a factual basis and legal clarity not in spite of it.  Rather than realizing that only 5% of the population  is convinced1 Barack Obama was born overseas implies that the argument is essentially unpersuasive, Lolli explains it as “herd instinct” among the normals. I think Mr. Lolli is in denial.

I must say that the acceptance stage for a birther, as described by Lolli is a pretty fatalistic and negative one:

…the perception that the entire system of government is corrupt, there is no regard for the law or the Constitution, and any illegal alien or naturalized citizen can argue that he can be president without regard to Article 2, Section 1, Clause 5.

Lolli’s article at the American Thinker is one I recommend that you read. He is probably one of the best writers the birthers have. His article is an insight into how a thoughtful person views the world while still trapped in the birther alternate reality and underscores the fact that smart people still get sucked into conspiracy theories.

More from William Lolli:


1The 5% number is the number who “definitely” believe Obama was born overseas according to a Gallup Poll taken after President Obama released his long-form birth certificate.

34 Responses to Birther evangelist psychoanalyzes his flock

  1. avatar
    GeorgetownJD July 31, 2011 at 9:32 am #

    Lolli is a Microsoft Certified Systems Engineer. I don’t believe that requires — or that he possesses — a Ph.D. in Psychology.

    Another armchair psychoanalyst, just like the armchair lawyers and other armchair “professionals” that inhabit the ranks of the birthers.

  2. avatar
    gorefan July 31, 2011 at 10:04 am #

    This article was my intro to Mr. Lolli. In the comments section he is either listed as guest or wlolli.

    http://local.sandiego.com/news/opinion-feature-the-obama-birth-certificate-debate

    The actual debate between Lolli and Ellis was not really a debate. Each was given a set of questions and then their answers were published next to each other. By his responses it was clear Mr. Ellis didn’t take the subject very seriously.

  3. avatar
    JD Reed July 31, 2011 at 10:50 am #

    From the responses to Mr. Lolli in the American thinker, with birthers it seems there is a sixth stage added to the standard five stages of grief: delusion. Well, I suppose that’s almost the same as denial, so it seems a great number of birthers are stuck in the first stage. So what future event will move them past that? Mr. Obama’s defeat in the 2012 election? Or his re-election? His completion of a second term in 2017?
    Or will it never end?

  4. avatar
    Obsolete July 31, 2011 at 11:56 am #

    It won’t end. After 2017, birthers will be screaming to arrest Obama and they will become “experts” on statute of limitations laws.
    They will make comparisons to the nazi hunters prosecuting targets 60 years after the crimes, as well as deposed leaders like Mubarek.

  5. avatar
    J. Potter July 31, 2011 at 11:59 am #

    Striking that he willingly uses so many of the analogies anti-birthers use in jest, admitting he is an “evangelist”, but then flipping the use of “herd” to imply that it is the birthers who are the “enlightened” one with special knowledge (alert! conspiracy! conspiracy!)

    His closing is awkward as well … “In the end, Birtherism would not be a big deal at all, if it weren’t for … yaddayadda” … saying that it’s the alleged crimes of the Obama administration that make birtherism important? Sooooo …. if we had an ineligible President who was an unassailable saint that somehow pleased all of the people all of the time, his ineligibility would be OK with birthers? Or just conveniently swept under the rug, even by those now insist, in Obama’s case, that ineligibility alone is an impeachable offense?

    I think Lolli might want to rewrite that.

    The “blessings” of Kübler-Ross? Odd concept.

  6. avatar
    Dr. Conspiracy July 31, 2011 at 12:09 pm #

    That struck me as odd too. Perhaps what he means is that the final stage, “acceptance,” is a blessing, but the fatalistic vision Lolli has describes hardly seems a blessing but a sentence of doom. Rather than acceptance, it sounds more like an argument to “go sulk.”

    J. Potter: The “blessings” of Kübler-Ross? Odd concept.

  7. avatar
    G July 31, 2011 at 12:18 pm #

    Sadly, for some, it might never end. They are probably more fearful of letting go of their own internal petty anger, hatred and fears than anything else. The world is a complex and every more rapidly changing place with a lot of problems in it. Everyone also has problems in their own personal lives to deal with as well.

    In trying to understand those brithers that are not just Orly-level certifiable lunatics or Farah-level propaganda con artists, I’ve been increasingly interested in how some of these other people who seem to have some semblence of actual intelligence can trick themselves into buying into Birther claptrap. There does seem to be a notable pattern among known Birthers where they seem to also have a string of personal and professional failures in their lives as well. And their reactions are clearly emotional ones and not rational ones. When reading on all the articles about conspiracy mindsets and the stages of grief and such, I try to reflect on how they possibly tie together.

    The closest I can come to concluding is that it is evident that a certain part of the population, mainly in the more conservative spectrum, has extreme difficulty dealing with anything in life that isn’t in terms of clear-cut absolutes AND need their personal worldview to reflect their emotional state/desires, which they value over rational reality. “Truth” and “facts” ironically are the only things that need to be “relative” in their mindset – at least in terms of being malleable to suit their emotional needs. These people need a constant stream of definitive “bogeymen” and deified “idols” to deal with both the unknowns and the uncomfortable realities in life and to have a target to pin both their own problems on…and the larger problems of the world, which they seem to only be able to understand by projecting through their own myopic prism.

    The extent of a paradigm shift that is required for folks like this to get beyond some of their beholden security-blanket conspiracy-theory needs seems to be a fairly high threshold for someone stuck in this mindset to cross.

    Some folks might frankly be too limited in how their own brain itself is hardwired to handle pattern recognition and problem solving in order to ever break free and just will never be able to perceive a broader world beyond the limit of their own senses. (suggested reading – “Flatland” by Abbot.)

    Someone who is color-blind can only be told that certain colors exist. If they try hard enough, they might be able to rationally understand and accept this…but they themselves will never be able to see or distinguish those colors on their own – their eyes and brains simply lack the hardwiring to do so.

    All I can do is posit those explanations for why some folks are still stuck in the early stages of anger & denial in the grief cycle and are still wasting time inventing reasons to pretend that an election from over 3 years ago didn’t actually happen.

    It seems that most of those capable of moving through the grief cycle have dropped off over time…particularly after their main LFBC fantasy bubbles were so publicly burst.

    Now, for these “true believers” amongst the hardcore dead-enders that remain… sadly, a majority of them might simply be incapable of ever being able to move on… no matter what happens.

    JD Reed: From the responses to Mr. Lolli in the American thinker, with birthers it seems there is a sixth stage added to the standard five stages of grief: delusion. Well, I suppose that’s almost the same as denial, so it seems a great number of birthers are stuck in the first stage. So what future event will move them past that? Mr. Obama’s defeat in the 2012 election? Or his re-election? His completion of a second term in 2017?Or will it never end?

  8. avatar
    Dr. Conspiracy July 31, 2011 at 12:19 pm #

    On behalf of those of us who are not lawyers, psychologists or forensic document analysts, I want to say that when all you have is an armchair, you make the best of it that you can.

    GeorgetownJD: Another armchair psychoanalyst, just like the armchair lawyers and other armchair “professionals” that inhabit the ranks of the birthers.

  9. avatar
    J. Potter July 31, 2011 at 12:46 pm #

    I do not own an armchair, have to settle to lounging on the couch. I (and others) may not have particular bits of paper, but I do have the two academic qualifications that trump all others–literacy and an open mind–that enables me (us) to find information and assess it in consultation with others, refining opinions into conclusions along the way. The best thing about an armchair is that, when used as intended (as a resting place for reflection, a rather than a podium), it keeps you from talking out of your nether region!

    Not to mention that standing on an armchair poses serious risk of falling flat on your face.

    Dr. Conspiracy:
    On behalf of those of us who are not lawyers, psychologists or forensic document analysts, I want to say that when all you have is an armchair, you make the best of it that you can.

  10. avatar
    G July 31, 2011 at 1:17 pm #

    Very well said!!!

    J. Potter: The best thing about an armchair is that, when used as intended (as a resting place for reflection, a rather than a podium), it keeps you from talking out of your nether region!

  11. avatar
    J. Potter July 31, 2011 at 2:09 pm #

    Thanks, I thank you G for your lengthy post in “The Great Conspirator”. Who has the time? G has the time. Either that or he types fast. Are you using speech recognition? Regardless, excellent post.

    The armchair anecdote is a distillation of reaction to the online demagogues who post some random talking point as a challenge, and demand an immediate answer. An honest response along the lines of “I’ll get back to you” or “I haven’t looked into that yet” is labeled tapdancing or an admission of defeat! What intellectual dishonesty! I understand it’s a performance tactic to win over the crowd, but gimme a break.

    And if you are prepared with an intelligent response, they want to play the qualifications game. As if an excellent, fully supported argument is somehow undone when not presented by a degreed learned master?

    Sometimes such stupidities are easily refuted. Such as when challenged to prove I held a PhD in the Graphic Arts …. heh.

  12. avatar
    G July 31, 2011 at 2:31 pm #

    LOL! Unfortutely, in posting here, I’m always wasting time better spent elsewhere on more important things around the house, in life or work…or even sleep (I’ve got a bad habit of averaging about 4 hrs of sleep, which really is bad for my health). Sadly, because I maintain such a busy pace in all other areas of my life, my visits here are my “down time sanity break” (yeah, how twisted is that) to step away from all those other things long enough to “recharge my batteries” by merely focusing on something different for awhile. I do actually type really fast. Back in the days of typing tests, I was fairly consistently over 90 wpm…but I don’t think I ever maintain that pace, as I do have to hit the backspace often enough to correct spelling errors as they occur and I do need to pause between typing to think on what I want to say next.

    But thanks for your post, inlcuding the more important points you made which followed. I just wanted to respond to this first part, because it gave me a good hearty chuckle. 🙂

    J. Potter: Thanks, I thank you G for your lengthy post in “The Great Conspirator”. Who has the time? G has the time. Either that or he types fast. Are you using speech recognition? Regardless, excellent post.

  13. avatar
    US Citizen July 31, 2011 at 5:14 pm #

    G: These people need a constant stream of definitive “bogeymen” and deified “idols” to deal with both the unknowns and the uncomfortable realities in life and to have a target to pin both their own problems on

    I think you’re spot on with this.

    From what I gather, these people need leaders, but they’re having a very difficult time having a black one.
    They’ve never viewed blacks as superior to themselves.
    To them, blacks excelled at sports; but they weren’t athletic types anyway. So what?
    And blacks excelled at music; but they didn’t like their music.
    Again, so what?
    These successes “didn’t count” in their eyes as they had no value of such accomplishments themselves.
    They didn’t want to play basketball, football, golf or play jazz or rap.
    Black successes like these were all they saw and they were not diminished by them.

    Elsewhere in the media, they’d see crime committed by blacks and this galvanized their thinking that blacks have criminal minds and so again, they themselves were better.
    Same for Latinos.
    To the racists, these were inbred traits.
    When a white person committed the same crimes, theirs wasn’t due to inbred traits, but rather was thought of as one isolated white who went crazy.

    So now they’re having an especially hard time understanding how a black man could somehow ever excel past them in accomplishments which they’ve always known to be held by whites.
    This makes them believe Obama must have cheated somehow.
    From claims of mass hypnotism to affirmative education to only being a puppet for Soros, they continue to uphold a belief that this just can’t be honest or real.
    There has to be some trick.
    They cannot embrace the idea that a black man could ever be superior to themselves.
    And yes, at the same time, they need to blame others.
    Problems in their lives are always someone else’s fault.

    Obama therefore has become the perfect target for their angst.
    Both a distrust of blacks and a scapegoat mentality combined caused the birtherism we see now.

    I do however believe that once Obama is no longer president, they will all but disappear.
    There will limited shouts for him to be arrested or tried.
    Birther websites will come down or fall into disuse.

    But for years to come they will continue to blame future issues on Obama.
    He will no longer be a target of active persecution then, but rather someone to blame for any new problems that crop up in the future.

    This selective amnesia is even practiced by Palin.
    She blamed Obama for TARP, even though Bush signed it in.
    Same for others Obama detractors with the corporate bailouts.
    In the future, Obama will not face the animosity we all now see, but he will remain a scapegoat for decades to come.

  14. avatar
    G July 31, 2011 at 8:32 pm #

    As with everything, I don’t think all birthers or even all visceral negative reactions of Obama fall under these reasons, but there is a sizeable undercurrent of both conscious and unconscious racism as a factor at play here and what you’ve described is an excellent breakdown and explanation of that aspect of what we’re dealing with.

    Therefore, kudos on doing such a great breakdown of explaining the racism undercurrent component. I do agree with how you’ve encapsulated and described it.

    I do want to point out one valuable point to ponder and reflect upon in terms of holding out hope for future acceptance arising out of those that hold such views:

    Look at your sports and music analogies. I agree that is probably the current way many people view blacks in these areas. However, when you go back over 50 years, you find that these too were areas of accomplishment in which blacks once were mainly shut out from participating in and in which the culture at that time did not equate them with being able to perform well in at all. The black pioneers in these fields had to deal with a lot of push back, flack and hostility toward them – sometimes increasingly so the more the excelled. Nowadays, the ability for blacks to perform and excel in these areas is nearly universally accepted and more importantly associated with their culture, even if not necessarily appreciated for such by certain folks.

    Obama is our first black president and therefore, unfortunately stuck with a load of unfair hostility and resistance to his mere achievement of that office. Despite all of the shameful reactions that have come out of the shadows as a result of his election, I remain hopeful that within 50 years time, such achievements will be similarly accepted as a “given”.

    US Citizen: I think you’re spot on with this.From what I gather, these people need leaders, but they’re having a very difficult time having a black one.They’ve never viewed blacks as superior to themselves.To them, blacks excelled at sports; but they weren’t athletic types anyway. So what?And blacks excelled at music; but they didn’t like their music.Again, so what?These successes “didn’t count” in their eyes as they had no value of such accomplishments themselves.They didn’t want to play basketball, football, golf or play jazz or rap.Black successes like these were all they saw and they were not diminished by them.Elsewhere in the media, they’d see crime committed by blacks and this galvanized their thinking that blacks have criminal minds and so again, they themselves were better.Same for Latinos.To the racists, these were inbred traits.When a white person committed the same crimes, theirs wasn’t due to inbred traits, but rather was thought of as one isolated white who went crazy.So now they’re having an especially hard time understanding how a black man could somehow ever excel past them in accomplishments which they’ve always known to be held by whites.This makes them believe Obama must have cheated somehow.From claims of mass hypnotism to affirmative education to only being a puppet for Soros, they continue to uphold a belief that this just can’t be honest or real.There has to be some trick.They cannot embrace the idea that a black man could ever be superior to themselves.And yes, at the same time, they need to blame others.Problems in their lives are always someone else’s fault.Obama therefore has become the perfect target for their angst.Both a distrust of blacks and a scapegoat mentality combined caused the birtherism we see now.I do however believe that once Obama is no longer president, they will all but disappear.There will limited shouts for him to be arrested or tried.Birther websites will come down or fall into disuse.But for years to come they will continue to blame future issues on Obama.He will no longer be a target of active persecution then, but rather someone to blame for any new problems that crop up in the future. This selective amnesia is even practiced by Palin.She blamed Obama for TARP, even though Bush signed it in.Same for others Obama detractors with the corporate bailouts.In the future, Obama will not face the animosity we all now see, but he will remain a scapegoat for decades to come.

  15. avatar
    joyeagle July 31, 2011 at 11:18 pm #

    G, by the way, I am taking a break from the Great Conspirator to do some reading (the original Origins, some Gould that Dr C recommended and maybe some Behe … as well as several other books of a different interest I am in the middle of), but I wanted to respond to this as the “reformed birther among us.” Certainly a one person data point won’t help your theory along too much, but I have mentioned before that I “had too much time on my hand” because of some strings of personal and professional failures within the last 2 and 5 years. So there is a data point for you anyway.
    This article (by Lollis) would have gotten me all fired up a month or so ago, but now it doesn’t do anything for me, based on what I have learned from all of you all. Thanks.

    “There does seem to be a notable pattern among known Birthers where they seem to also have a string of personal and professional failures in their lives as well. And their reactions are clearly emotional ones and not rational ones. “

  16. avatar
    G July 31, 2011 at 11:40 pm #

    Hi Joy Eagle. I mean no disrespect when I point out about the professional and personal failures and I hope you didn’t take it that way. We all have frustrations in life to deal with and part of being human is that we are nowhere close to perfect. We will all experience making mistakes as well as being the victim of difficult circumstances beyond our control.

    My point was intented to point out that there is a notable pattern there. I think the important thing about the pattern on the individual level is that the same principle is in play that we see on the larger economic scale. Whenever times are tough, we see more overall anger and frustration and a need to both vent and blame; often expressed in unfortunte ways, which only lead to irrational acts and accusations that can cause a situation to worsen instead of improve. Just a difficult part of human nature we have to work through. If we can all be open to cooling the emotional stress and anger to a level where we can still hear each other and help each other out, it will be to all our benefit.

    I personally don’t mind at all that someone differs from me in their interests, tastes, religion, worldview, etc. I think that is one of the great strenghts of America. I just get frustrated when misstatements and false information is used to support a position. I do realize that many people are innocently only repeating bad info, because it is all they’ve had to go on. I only get bothered when I become suspicious that there is intentional deception and false propoganda at play. Anyway, thanks for listening and good luck to you.

    joyeagle: G, by the way, I am taking a break from the Great Conspirator to do some reading (the original Origins, some Gould that Dr C recommended and maybe some Behe … as well as several other books of a different interest I am in the middle of), but I wanted to respond to this as the “reformed birther among us.” Certainly a one person data point won’t help your theory along too much, but I have mentioned before that I “had too much time on my hand” because of some strings of personal and professional failures within the last 2 and 5 years. So there is a data point for you anyway.This article (by Lollis) would have gotten me all fired up a month or so ago, but now it doesn’t do anything for me, based on what I have learned from all of you all. Thanks.“There does seem to be a notable pattern among known Birthers where they seem to also have a string of personal and professional failures in their lives as well. And their reactions are clearly emotional ones and not rational ones. ”

  17. avatar
    gorefan July 31, 2011 at 11:55 pm #

    joyeagle: I am taking a break from the Great Conspirator to do some reading

    You might find this interesting,

    http://evolution.berkeley.edu/evolibrary/article/0_0_0/devitt_01

    Without giving to much away, it is love story, a salamander love story. Oh yeah and its also about ring species.

  18. avatar
    gorefan August 1, 2011 at 12:01 am #

    G: My point was intented to point out that there is a notable pattern there.

    Hi G

    So what is your take on the birthers who start out as PUMAs. They have got to be their own special class. The classic one is Mara Zebest. How does someone go from being a Democrat, Hillary Clinton supporter to birther to be willing to put your career reputation on at risk?

  19. avatar
    Dr. Ron Polland August 1, 2011 at 12:36 am #

    I’m surprised that you have not read my book yet. I thought you got a “research” upgrade?

    Also, I continue to get cracked on because a few dumb asses here do not know Jack about COLBs..

    A year ago you ran this thread called, “Hawaii accedes to birther demands,” in which some of your troglodytes claimed that “I forged a 2008 “Certificate of Live Birth.” One even said that I created it from a 2006 and 2008 COLB. Even Steve Eddy knows that is crap. The 2008 and 2006 COLBs are way different.

    Now, the computerized “Certificate of Live Birth” is Hawaii’s bullshit replacement for the COLB – it did not exist before October 31, 2008 – the date of Fukino’s first big accomodation for Obama.

    This new “Certificate” is intended to keep people from getting the long-form, except that, up until March 2011, they were still able to get them.

    Bingo, another rule change and they are no longer available – except that they have to be, even if via a court order, as per HRS 338-13, or if you are Obama.

    Sure, why let facts get in the way of some good sound bites?

    Seriously, where is the accountability here? I have seen some of you making 100% correct statements only to get tromped on by the know-it-alls who know nothing.

    I have both a genuine paper 2008 COLB Rev. 11/01 that I received in October 2008 and a genuine paper Rev 10/08 “Certificate of Live Birth” that I received in April 2009.

    In my videos, “Blue Hawaii,” I have scans and photos of them.

    I used my genuine 2009 Certificate to create a conception of what Obama’s would look like if he released it in 2009. It is not a “forgery” (or didn’t you read the disclaimers?).

    Here are the scans and photos of the Rev 10/08 COLB replacement.

    I think that some of you will correctly figure out what I was doing with it.

    http://i305.photobucket.com/albums/nn227/Polarik/ABO/53fe14e8.jpg

    http://i305.photobucket.com/albums/nn227/Polarik/ABO/92016076.jpg

    http://i305.photobucket.com/albums/nn227/Polarik/ABO/261c64e8.jpg

    http://i305.photobucket.com/albums/nn227/Polarik/ABO/4afd61ce.jpg

    http://i305.photobucket.com/albums/nn227/Polarik/ABO/1faced0e.jpg

    http://i305.photobucket.com/albums/nn227/Polarik/ABO/444e95c3.jpg

    http://i305.photobucket.com/albums/nn227/Polarik/ABO/6f3d7bbb.jpg

    http://i305.photobucket.com/albums/nn227/Polarik/ABO/a48080cc.jpg

    FYI:

    1. The paper used for the Rev 10/08 2009 “Certificate” is heavier (24#) than the paper used for the Rev 11/01 COLBs.

    2. The paper used by Factcheck is the same, heavier paper (meaning it should not appear on a 2007 COLB).

    3. The 2006 and 2007 COLBs are identical in layout and in border patterns. The Rev 10/08 “Certificate” has a similar mesh in the border but the cross hatches are not evenly spaced like the 2006 and 2007 borders. One pair of lines is narrower than the other two.

    4. On ALL COLBS and on ALL Rev. 10/08 “Certificates” that are requested via the Internet or by mail are sent out having the exact same Seal, date stamp, and Registrar’s signatureapplied simultaneously by machine, aka an Electronic Validator. The paper is also tri-folded by machine.

    5. I also have a box of the same security paper that Hawaii uses., in case you want to know more about it (since Factcheck would not tell you).

  20. avatar
    G August 1, 2011 at 2:09 am #

    Like everything, the PUMAs were full of their own mixed-bag coalition of motivations. The birther movement really was started with them (Berg being the 1st lawsuits, and most of the PUMA sites were rife with early birtherism). Racism was definitely one of the factors in play there, but the biggest one was sexism. Many of the PUMAs were really not about HRC’s policies at all (which are not that different from Obama’s). No, for them it was all about feeling that she was entitled to the Presidency and that a woman was due to break that “glass ceiling first”. If you read the PUMA blogs, like I did, you would see a lot of anti-male statements from many of the women (and even gay) PUMA followers about personal slights or worse that they dealt with in their own pasts. It seems a primary motivation for them is that they sought validation and vindication by projecting their victimized situations and hopes onto HRC and projecting their animus towards male “oppressors” onto Obama.

    What was most telling was how quickly most of those PUMAs switched over to become instant SP supporters, even though her views were nearly opposite of everything HRC stood for. All that seemed to matter to these folks was that a woman be in office. If possible, it was an even more viscerally hurt-feeling emotional-based spite movement than the Birthers.

    gorefan: Hi GSo what is your take on the birthers who start out as PUMAs. They have got to be their own special class. The classic one is Mara Zebest. How does someone go from being a Democrat, Hillary Clinton supporter to birther to be willing to put your career reputation on at risk?

  21. avatar
    That Other Mike August 1, 2011 at 2:26 am #

    G:
    If you read the PUMA blogs, like I did

    One of the more prominent examples of the PUMA phenomenon being the Confluence – or as my fellow RumpRoasters call it, the Effluence. Give them a read, they’re quite infuriatingly stupid…

  22. avatar
    Dr. Conspiracy August 1, 2011 at 7:29 am #

    I don’t know what you mean by “‘research’ upgrade.”

    I haven’t read your book and I’m not planning to. I had enough Ron Polland for a lifetime reading that painfully turgid rant you called a “Final Analysis” (an implied promise you didn’t keep) and it’s not an experience I want to repeat.

    Dr. Ron Polland: I’m surprised that you have not read my book yet. I thought you got a “research” upgrade?

  23. avatar
    Lupin August 1, 2011 at 7:48 am #

    G: The closest I can come to concluding is that it is evident that a certain part of the population, mainly in the more conservative spectrum, has extreme difficulty dealing with anything in life that isn’t in terms of clear-cut absolutes AND need their personal worldview to reflect their emotional state/desires, which they value over rational reality.

    I think that’s true everywhere; the specific problems to the US is that that % seems both (a) higher (didn’t someone analyze the Obama v Keyes election & conclude that the % figure of lunatics was 27%?), and (b) given more prominence and respectability by your media (the “Shape pf the Earth, opinions differ” syndrome).

  24. avatar
    G August 1, 2011 at 9:53 am #

    You are absolutely spot on about the problems with our media, which has devolved into nothing but sensationalized “info-tainment” and endless false equivocations from bloviating talking heads, with very little actual research, journalism or fact-checking involved. I would agree that is a huge part of the problem and probably partially explains why we seem to have such a disturbingly large percentage of the population that will just buy into any crazy thing. I also think the American versions of Fundamentalist Christianity, which have held sway over vast segments and areas of our population since the 18th century also play a role here.

    Lupin: I think that’s true everywhere; the specific problems to the US is that that % seems both (a) higher (didn’t someone analyze the Obama v Keyes election & conclude that the % figure of lunatics was 27%?), and (b) given more prominence and respectability by your media (the “Shape pf the Earth, opinions differ” syndrome).

  25. avatar
    Lupin August 1, 2011 at 12:13 pm #

    G: I also think the American versions of Fundamentalist Christianity, which have held sway over vast segments and areas of our population since the 18th century also play a role here.

    True.

    The French have historically shed a lot of blood, first because of organized religion, then to get rid of organized religion (with, sadly, excesses), at least in worldly affairs. The result is a country where any religious encroachment in the public arena will just not be tolerated.

    (Which is why there is a strong push back against Muslim religious symbols, not because of racism, although I’m sure that plays a part, but mostly because we just got rid of the undue influence of the Catholic Church in our affairs a century ago and we’re not going to go through that again. People interested should read the wiki entry on anticlericalism:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anti-clericalism )

    The notion that faith or lack of, abortion, evolution, should be part of the political debate, an important part even, strikes us just as odd as, say, electing a politician according to the wine he drinks or the cologne he wears would to you.

  26. avatar
    J. Edward Tremlett August 1, 2011 at 4:25 pm #

    William Lolli: he’s not just the President of Hair Club for Birthers, he’s a client.

  27. avatar
    gorefan August 1, 2011 at 6:45 pm #

    J. Edward Tremlett: William Lolli: he’s not just the President of Hair Club for Birthers, he’s a client.

    He kinda looks like Vizzini from “The Princess Bride”.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D58LpHBnvsI&feature=related

  28. avatar
    Loren August 1, 2011 at 6:54 pm #

    Ron Polland:
    A year ago you ran this thread called, “Hawaii accedes to birther demands,” in which some of your troglodytes claimed that “I forged a 2008 “Certificate of Live Birth.”

    They were probably claiming you forged a 2008 COLB because, y’know…you forged a 2008 COLB.

    Would it jog your memory to see the thread again? http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-chat/2541600/posts

    See in Post #1 where you say “Hawaii amended Obama’s birth record. A brand-new Certificate of Live Birth…was issued to him,” AND “Obama get a new birth certificate” AND “Say, Aloha to Obama’s new COLB,” followed by a Photobucket icon? And in Post #321 where you admit that the image was fake and that you forged it?

    http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-chat/2541600/posts?page=321#321

    Basically, the whole original FR post was one big lie, you got caught fibbing and forging, and so you scrubbed the image off your own Photobucket account (hence the dead image icon).

  29. avatar
    Loren August 1, 2011 at 6:56 pm #

    Dr. Conspiracy:
    I haven’t read your book and I’m not planning to. I had enough Ron Polland for a lifetime reading that painfully turgid rant you called a “Final Analysis” (an implied promise you didn’t keep) and it’s not an experience I want to repeat.

    On the subject of Polland’s “research,” here’s a quote you might want to consider for the sidebar:

    “Pseudoscientists – those pretending to do science (maybe even sincerely believing they are doing science) but who get the process profoundly wrong, use anomalies in a different way. They often engage it what we call anomaly hunting – looking for apparent anomalies. They are not, however, looking for clues to a deeper understanding of reality. They are often hunting for anomalies in service to the overarching pseudoscientific process of reverse engineering scientific conclusions.”
    – Dr. Steven Novella, host of ‘The Skeptics’ Guide to the Universe”

  30. avatar
    obsolete August 1, 2011 at 6:59 pm #

    Dr. Ron Polland is trolling over here for readers ever since the birthers and Freepers don’t take his delusions serious anymore.
    He lost the Freepers when he posted his COLB forgery on FreeRepublic without mentioning that he made it. He claimed it was a “mistake” and he never meant to pass it off as real- he was just trying to show how easy a forgery could be made.

  31. avatar
    obsolete August 1, 2011 at 7:00 pm #

    Oh, Loren beat me to it with links and everything!
    Dr. Ron Polland hates Loren even more than Dr. Ron Polland hates the scary black man in the White House!

  32. avatar
    Dr. Conspiracy August 1, 2011 at 11:36 pm #

    Excellent suggestion, now Quote of the Day.

    Loren: “Pseudoscientists – those pretending to do science (maybe even sincerely believing they are doing science) but who get the process profoundly wrong

  33. avatar
    misha August 2, 2011 at 2:50 am #

    Dr. Ron Polland: Also, I continue to get cracked on because a few dumb asses here do not know Jack about COLBs..

    I completely agree with you. I found an authentic Kenya birth certificate (Obama’s?) that should help you.

    Thanks for visiting.

  34. avatar
    ZixiOfIx August 2, 2011 at 3:43 am #

    GeorgetownJD:
    Lolli is a Microsoft Certified Systems Engineer.I don’t believe that requires — or that he possesses — a Ph.D. in Psychology.

    ::giggle::

    The youngest Microsoft Certified Engineer is 9 years old. She isn’t the only child to have worked for and received it, either.

    http://www.techeblog.com/index.php/tech-gadget/9-year-old-is-world-s-youngest-microsoft-certified-systems-engineer