Paranoia in people with otherwise normal brain functions is often caused by personal issues. Some people obsess on outside events to avoid exploring and dealing with their feelings of inadequacy and fear.
It is for some much easier to create overwhelming perceptions of overwhelming exterior events than to look at changing one's own behavior or belief systems. Such avoidance when used as a coping mechanism delays self healing and change. If these feelings are kept internalized long enough this creates a hyper state of reality. A state in which the power of outside suggestion repeated in a hypnotic drumbeat of media hype slowly encourages self-feeding paranoid fantasy. Insert the right wing media and we have a problem!
Life is tough for most average people and recent crises such as our losses suffered in the Iraq debacle and the subsequent financial crises are bringing it home that the world we thought was predictable and safe -- may not be.
As the economy slips so do the opportunities one was taught to expect in our culture. As a vulnerable individual loses his view of his success being maintainable his need for control increases and he is prone to following others instead of healing himself.
America's present day myths (Our Health Care System is the best those inferiors that can't make it are the cause of our being robbed of our rights, Obama is a foreigner, Sotomayor is a racist, if we drill domestically we will be OK) are precipitant arguments which address the needs of those who have to focus on outside bogy men.
American myths are no different from the Roman, German or other nationalistic myths of the past. As nations need change the powerful who are trying to stave off changes put out propaganda to keep the focus off of their actions.
To the individuals without real power the fear of losing out in the competition is acute and visceral. It robs one of their self worth. But the most severe problem is that it makes them want to join a crowd to be safe. In numbers there is safety. The problem is that those that need the crowd for their own purposes understand the mob mentality.
In the past they have created other myths. When things start to fail they hype that their system is the best but it is being undermined by THEM.
Those who need the crowds propagandize that all we have to do is excise those who are misunderstanding the greatness and largesse our system can provide to those who are loyal to the values. These powerful who themselves are caught up in their self -importance because they are in "power" must maintain their power to feel safe!
In following simple propagandized solutions inadequate affected people cling to it. It gives them a safe retreat and a direction for actions. They are, in fact, not fully adequate to the tasks of facing a changing world. In a mob they gain power.
This understanding of the dynamic I see today is not very conducive to my own perceptions of the world.
And the mood I feel reminds me of the sounds and feelings being expressed in November of 1963 in Dallas.
The shouting of the Crowds reminds me of the history of the early 30's and the Brown Shirts. And I remember reading "Julius Caesar" and how easily the crowds were manipulated on the Ides of March.
And all those other times when those in power felt threatened by change and used the mindless mobs!