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Outrageous, Cult-Like Behavior: Obamadroids in Action

I dare you to open the re-posting of Larry’s piece (the one just below: “Barack Obama: Establishment Man“) over at Daily Kos, and see what kind of supporters Obama is attracting.

Me? I’m persona non grata there these days. Oh, when I wrote what they wanted to hear, I was popular. But I dared support Clinton and (gasp) criticize Obama. However, I never anticipated the vitriol and, worst, the IMMATURITY of this crowd. More seriously, this is how CULTS act: They clap their hands over their ears and scream mindlessly.

Scariest of all: The Obama “movement” is building itself just like cults are built. “There’s actually been a conscious campaign strategy to create a cult of personality.” (More below.) In fact, reports the Sacramento Bee, volunteers are “told to share personal conversion stories with voters – not policy views.” It’s ALL about the movement. When are the adults in this country going to begin to realize what’s afoot with this messianic obsession with Obama?

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UPDATE: Obama’s Unhinged Fans Reveal a Dangerous Zealotry” — this is an excellent, detailed analysis by Taylor Marsh chock full of important insights, quotes, and links

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Here’s how bad the cult phenomenon is:

From a private e-mail by a distinguished person who shall remain anonymous:

Obama’s organizing has been superb, largely due to one man, sociologist and 60s era organizer, Marshall Ganz, who created “Camp Obama” and held workshops all over the country. Nobody can argue with his sterling reputation or his results. But I’ve read half a dozen articles and watched videos of his presentations and they are filled with things that will likely be cited as evidence that rather than there being a spontaneous groundswell for Obama, there’s actually been a conscious campaign strategy to create a cult of personality.

This article, which has been cited in recent days by concerned Obama supporters as well as Clinton supporters is one good example of the reporting that’s out there.

And here’s the article that is disturbing a lot of people:

Obama basic training
Volunteers told to share personal conversion stories with voters – not policy views.

In a storefront on Q Street in Sacramento, Kim Mack told a crowd that spilled out onto the sidewalk how she came to back Barack Obama.

With a son serving in the Iraq war, which she opposed, Mack was looking for a like-minded presidential candidate. She was impressed by the Illinois senator’s books.

But the clincher came on March 17, when she met the Democratic contender face to face. She describes how he lit up the room with his wide smile, shook her hand and thanked her for volunteering.

“He looked at me, and the look in his eyes was worth 1,000 words,” said Mack, now a regional field organizer. Obama hugged her and whispered something in her ear she was so thrilled she doesn’t remember what it was.

Then Mack brought home the point of her story for the crowd of 100 or so eager volunteers, sipping coffee and watching a PowerPoint presentation in the Obama campaign office on a recent Saturday.

“Did that make more impact on you than if I had talked about his health care plan or his stance on the environment?” she asked.

On the verge of a hectic few weeks leading to Super Tuesday, the crucial Feb. 5 multistate primary including California’s, Mack wanted to drill home one of the campaign’s key strategies: telling potential voters personal stories of political conversion.

She urged volunteers to hone their own stories of how they came to Obama — something they could compress into 30 seconds on the phone.

“Work on that, refine that, say it in the mirror,” she said. “Get it down.”

She told the volunteers that potential voters would no doubt confront them with policy questions. Mack’s direction: Don’t go there. Refer them to Obama’s Web site, which includes enough material to sate any wonk.

[...]

Working as a precinct captain is “easy,” according to one of several campaign Web sites.

“Just follow Barack’s lead and be honest with them,” the Web site advises. “You don’t need to debate policy or discuss the day’s headlines. You have a very personal reason for investing your time and energy in this campaign — that is the most compelling story you can tell.”

READ ALL.

AGAIN: I dare you to open the re-posting of Larry’s piece (the one just below) at Daily Kos, and see what kind of supporters Obama is attracting.

  • Thursday’s Child

    For those thinking of voting for McCain if Obama is the nominee, how about writing in Hillary instead?

  • bren

    Like many, I dream about the day Bush will finally be out of office, but I am so deeply disturbed by this “blind Obama following”, as a moderate, John McCain is starting to look more like my guy. I simply cannot believe how willing people are to accept Obama without probing at all into who this man is. I am amazed at the number of his followers that don’t even know why they are supporting him-this is “cult like behavior”, blind following without questions? As an informed voter, this is an insult to those of us that actually vote based on knowing what the candidate stands for. This guy really scares me and quite frankly, he should scare more people. Like many, I’ve stopped watching any media coverage of this craziness.

  • Pingback: Make Them Accountable / Media

  • Pete

    As someone who is entirely outside the process (from UK) and not having seen any of Hilary or Barack’s speeches the impression I get is that the Hillary supporters are much more of a ‘cult’ than Barack’s.

    I haven’t been indoctrinated by your MSM or Air America (can’t get them). I got this purely got this from reading blogs and their comments.

    I’ve seen a great many people in comments saying that they are Barack supporters but will vote for whoever the dem nominee is.

    As yet I haven’t seen a single person say the opposite. I have however seen a great many Hillary supporters saying they will vote McCain rather than Barack. Having watched the last 8 years go by anyone taking the position they would prefer ‘more of the same’ to their current rival can be fairly called a ‘cult’.

    So any Hillary supporters willing to say otherwise ?

    • Salo

      Hillary has her cult but it it is waining. I’d say it was a small shatterable cult following as well.

      IF you are not exposed to the level of contempt for Clinton in supposedly liberal media in the US you should probabaly try to take a look and do some research on the period between Iowa and New Hampshire. Chris Matthews, Don Imus, Howard Fineman, David Broder consider her to be the devil incarnate–and so do many of Obama’s anti war followers.

      Obama ios definitely going to be sainted in the African American Community and his anti war speech was read Martin Luther’s Theses all over US campuses on the aniversary of the war to little gatherings of students. I’d say t’s a cult, but as of yet I don’t know if it a dangerous one. It’s hard to tell while the primaries are still hot.

      • Cee

        Salo,

        Our media has never been liberal.

        I wonder where all of the people who are holding their ears and not listening to Air America (I’ve only heard Thom Hartmann) or other outlets are going to turn when they stop having their tantrums.

    • allimom99

      Yes, well I have not supported either on and I’ve heard MANY more Obama supporters (including Michelle Obama) saying they either would not support Hillary or aren’t sure – basically “if we don’t get our way we’ll just take our votes and go home.” Both Bill and Hillary came out very early and said they would be working tirelessly for the nominee regardless.

      Feel lucky you don’t have to listen to our MSM – for those of us who care about actual facts it’s VERY frustrating! Hang in there.

  • justsomeone

    Between devaluation, inflation & proposed taxation, I’m just wonderin’ if I’m gonna be left with any Change in my pocket.

    • arwe

      justsomeone,

      you can hope that you will.

    • CK

      No
      But look on the bright side,
      you won’t have any pockets either.

  • justsomeone

    Retired, I bet you’re singing it too, aren’t ya? Thanks for the chuckle, I needed it. Musically speaking do you recall Jimi Hendrix’ “Have you ever been EX-peeeer-E-anced”? “I have, have you?”

    • Retired

      Not in the Hendrix sense.

  • Retired

    The Obamite Doxology

    Praise him from whom all real change flows.
    Praise him all voters here below.
    Praise him above at Daily Kos.
    Praise super dels and talk show hosts.
    Ah, when…!

    • Cee

      I have a song for you. Put down your beverage before viewing.

      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5FvyGydc8no&eurl=http://www.groupnewsblog.net/

      • Retired

        Thanks for the advice on putting down my coffee! The blonde squad at Fox News says that Hillary doesn’t have any “Mo,” but I guess that they’re not talking about a pseudo-Motown sound being achieved by a largely white group with an African American lead singer and an Asian flute player. Politically, you’ve got to admire the nimbleness of this concept.

  • Alan L.

    I’ve never done this in my life, but I’m going to vote for McCain if Obama is nominated. McCain is a trigger-happy conservative, and I would hate to see him get Supreme Court nominations. But Obama actually scares me, with his camps, his cultish following, the people that see him as almost a religious figure. That actually seems more dangerous than McCain. I have never actually seen a Democratic nominee who frightened me, until this one.

    • TeakWoodKite

      Alan L: Hell of thing isn’t?
      The choice of 100 years of war and Supremes that uphold Unconstitutioanl actions of the Executive and Concgessional branches of Government.

      Contrasted with

      The choice of a politicain who tells us Hope will put food on the dinner table, change (which will happen anyway) will make all your dreams come true,…now I am stuck on the Supreme Court with Obama. I am very wary that he will horsetrade with Rethugs given his behavior. It is the only thing I have not heard him address in any speeches.

      Hang in there.

      • T

        Well, that’s what Obama tells us anyway. The Rezko, Exelon, etc connections tell us a different story. I’m sure Halliburton will like him too.

        I think if we elect Obama we’ll win the battle but lose the war. The last thing we need in the White House is an incompetent Democrat.

        And I’ll be shocked if anyone gets us out of Iraq in the next 4 years.

    • CK

      Why it’s almost like the cult following Frank Sinatra had. Close to the same as the Beatles had.
      It’s like Menudo on steroids, it’s a macarana hoedown.
      It’s as regular as clockwork, every generation goes through these spasms of love and affection.
      And for every one who succumbs to the love and affection bug, there is someone who will cut off his nose to spite his face and claim the moral high ground means “I will vote for a thug killer” instead of this icky love object. To remember how scared the dems were in 1960 of that young catholic who had this “cult like” following. So many dems were so scared of Kennedy that they voted for Richard Nixon. Thank god the corrupt Daley machine got enough of the graveyard vote to carry the day or we would have had 8 years of Nixon starting in 1960.

      • Salo

        if he gets the nom–we are stuck with Obama.

        • CK

          That’s about correct, in American politics it is always the evil of two lessers. Better stuck with Obama than dead with McCain.

  • jen

    This will all make a really good movie after it’s all over, if it’s done right. Maybe a Rocky Horror type of thing.

    I’m so thankful for you guys here, the gang over at Talk Left, and a few other places where the “movement” hasn’t taken over.

    I wonder what’s going to happen if O wins the nominee and goes down in flames in the GE? Kinda of scary and sad.

    We certainly live in interesting times, eh? :/

    • Xeno

      When I think of the Obama cult as a movie, it reminds me more of Night of the Living Dead. You know, mindless, brain-eating zombies. Or maybe Invasion of the Body Snatchers, complete with pod people who are always ready attack those who refuse to convert.

  • RalphB

    Jeez I’m really pissed at the MSM and the DNC. I’ve been waiting 8 years for Bush to be gone and really looking forward to electing a Democrat. Now the dumb-ass Democrats seem to be bound and determined to nominate their own version of Bush. I can’t fucking believe it!

    McCain might indeed be a safer President.

  • http://www.despair.com/cluelessness.html Smilin’ Jim

    So many nutters.

    So little time.

  • Mike Howell
    • http://www.despair.com/cluelessness.html Smilin’ Jim

      “Thrill going up my leg”

      Jaysus lad, get a room!

  • bob h

    And let’s look at the Obama “surge” since Super Tuesday with a hard eye: superior caucus-organizing abilities in a number of small states that overstate the role of Party activists/zealots, and in the Potomac Primaries the effects of large African populations voting their skin color (if I were black, I probably would be so proud I would do the same).

    There are such defects in the Obama coalition that we really ought to slow down and think about what we are doing.

    • Salo

      Nah, we will jut have to do the heavy lifting if he win he nomination.

    • allimom99

      WOW – I haven’t seen that many people drinking Kool-Aid together since Jonestown. My radio selections have also been reduced drastically. Why am I not seeing what is so great about Obama? He looks like a snake oil salesman to me – he should get together with Boehner and open a car lot when he gets his ass kicked in Ohio. If they can sell enough undercoatings, he and Michelle should be able to make their mortgage payments OK.

      In all seriousness, if he is the nominee, the Repugs will have him for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. The ‘bots don’t want to confuse the issue with facts – and look, now he’s stolen Hillary’s economic plan! Think anyone but Bloomberg will catch that?

  • Salo

    Susan was that directed at me?

    I am extremely uncomfortable about the cult aspect of Obama.

    I should add that McCarthy and McGovern had their cult too.

    Teh behaviour over at Dkos toward you is a disgrace.

    ps get well soon from your appendix operation.

    • http://noquarterusa.net/ SusanUnPC

      Thank you for your kind words.

      I don’t understand what you mean by the question of something directed at you?

      • Salo

        I misunderstood the way the comments section is set up. You were replying to someone with a link right under my post earlier–thought the troll reference was toward me.

        Anyway, Yep something is up with Dkos these days. I don’t have much hostility toward Clinton although i’m not inclined to strongly support her rhetorically for the remainder of the primary. I don’t like how she’s getting trashed so violently. I think the Obama people over there are playing way too rough–to no purpose really. Once Edwards bowed out the site was Obama’s backyard anyway.

        And it’s creepy to see the How I converted to Obama diaries from former Edwards people. It looks like a re-education camp in text.

        The place is becoming a peculiar mix of libertarianism and maoist insurgency tactics.

    • http://www.despair.com/cluelessness.html Smilin’ Jim

      “I should add that McCarthy and McGovern had their cult too.”

      Been there, was that. A lot of them are still there.

      Know how it ends too.

      • Salo

        virtuous professor against CREEP and the wider system of imperial american hegemony.

        You know how it’ll end.

  • AF

    It really is scary. I hope it wears off. Some of it is based on race – even my dad got all over me for being lukewarm on Obama. But my dad’s amazed that he’s this black guy, he told me, who gives the voter no hesitation that he’s just as intelligent as a white guy. Had no idea my “liberal” dad was that racist.

    Beginning to think McCain might be safer. Hope this wears off before November. A compliant press and compliant electorate not good for the country.

  • TeakwoodKite

    Your right..
    Escape from New York; been there done that.

  • John Stanton

    It just occured to me that Snake Pliskin (Escape from New York) might be the candidate we could all agree on.

    He abhors a cult following, likes jazz, has lots of leadership experience, looks a little like Moshe Dayan, and appeals to the young and old alike. All in all, a fine choice.

  • Sandra Burger

    Hurry, someone fetch my smelling salts!

    • tina

      hey mom that life

  • ritamary

    This blog is about the only one I am able to read now. My apartment is very quiet in the afternoons and evenings without Air America, since Randi Rhodes and Jon Eliot drank the Obama Kool-Aid. I stopped watching television almost three years ago.

    This week I also had to stop listening to our only remaining “progressive” talk show host here in San Diego – Stacy Taylor. Monday, in response to Paul Krugman’s column about the hate coming from the Obama crowd, he attacked Paul Krugman as a notorious neo-con. And David Schuster’s comment on Hillary pimping out Chelsea – Stacy says “pimping out” just does not mean what it used to mean, so those who are upset are overreacting.

    • http://noquarterusa.net/ SusanUnPC

      Krugman is a notorious neo-con? Oh dear god.

      So now what, Rita? I’m having a lot of trouble too finding any “news” television or radio to listen to. I’ve erased all MSNBC programming from my DVR.

      We DO have Taylor Marsh’s on-line radio show. My silly ‘puter won’t let me listen to it live, but I can listen to the archived shows. http://www.taylormarsh.com

      • BernieO

        A lot of people are having that problem. Yesterday she said she was working on it. Apparently the site is overloaded.

    • http://cujo359.blogspot.com Cujo359

      You don’t have to be a right winger to be thoughtless, that’s for sure.

      As for that “pimping out” reference, I can think of no way it actually makes any sense. I’m not entirely sure I know all the possible modern connotations, but here are the ones I’m aware of:

      - hiring folks out for nondescript work, as in “the temp agency pimped us out to this construction site as day labor”

      - making something better, upscale, or more trendy, as in “pimp my ride”

      Neither would seem to apply to Chelsea Clinton helping her mother’s campaign.

      I never was all that impressed with Randi Rhodes. She always struck me as more loud than thoughtful. Looks like I might have been onto something there.

    • BernieO

      I stick with NPR since they cover a lot of things besides politics. Luckily my station is all talk shows so we get Diane Rehm, Fresh Air, etc. If they have nothing on, it’s books on tape.

  • Sam Copeland

    My recent posts at Kos received the same treatment as everyone else, including the recipes. I must admit that I was stunned by the blind obedience and parroting of party lines. Guess, it just goes to show that left-wing authoritarians can be just as loony as right-wing authoritarians. I’ve quit posting at Kos and just monitor it to see how they are attacking Hillary today.

    David Gergen gave an interesting interview on CNN stating that the problems that the new President will face are the biggest any new President has faced since the Great Depression (1932/36 elections).

    And it looks like we have the same set of candidates — Herbert Hoover/McCain (although Hoover wasn’t such a hawk) on the GOP side and FDR/Hillary Clinton and Huey Long/Obama on the Democratic side. Just imagine if old Huey would have succeeded in replacing FDR in ’36!

    • susanunpc

      Great point. They ARE as rigid and authoritarian as the rightwingers.

      Actually, I knew that already but needed a reminder. During the anti-Vietnam War days, the anti-war people got more and more rigid in their criteria even for inclusion in their little groups. Everybody had to adore Stalin (no, really). Everyone had to read Mao’s Little Red Book (really). And every single thing about the U.S. government was EVIL! Frankly, I found it so damn boring, I couldn’t stand to be around them — they were all like robots parroting the latest far-left line. This was on a college campus. Thankfully, I went to work for a then-progressive television station which permitted us to go to anti-war marches on our lunch hours — but they were sensible in their politics and basically still proud Americans.

      • Sam Copeland

        Yeah, I remember those days too.

        I was once asked by a Marxist if I was a Marxist. I replied, “Yes, I am Marxist with Groucho tendencies.”

        The look I got, you would have thought that I had urinated on a crucifix in St. Pat’s Cathedral.

        Learned an important lesson that day: Safety first when dealing with extremist authoritarians.

        • Salo

          anti-war doesn’t automatically mean they are even left wing these days.

          ANti-war sentiment is essentially a libertarian indulgence. Fuck healthcare, fuck education fuck pensions etc…and fuck the war!

  • a4L

    wonder how many people will die after hillary takes office..indeed your post have gone this low.

    http://www.whatreallyhappened.com/RANCHO/POLITICS/BODIES.html

    • susanunpc

      Oh no … go back to your cave.

    • http://www.despair.com/cluelessness.html Smilin’ Jim

      wonder how many people will die after hillary takes office..indeed your post have gone this low.

      Damn!! Jimmy Hoffa, Bambi and Thumper didn’t make the A list.

      Life is so full of disappointment.

    • BernieO

      You would make a good Scientologist.

  • Salo

    It’s a cult. But FDR and Clinton had their own cult. The Clinton cult appears to be waining in the Democratic Party.

    Cults are a natural part of Imperial Nations.

    In their own time the Romans worshiped the Julio-Claudians and the British made a God of Elizabeth and Victoria.

    American has made gods of mortals like Washington and Lincoln.

    Off hand I’d suggest that Obama represents the last gasp of that cult as America declines into third world status. He is a nice way for America to sidestep the claims made by nations at war with America that “America is a racist imperial state.”

    He’s a perfect front man for any continuation of the War on Terror. I’m surprized a former CIA analyst hasn’t realized the potential that Obama gives the US to contunue the waging of various unjust wars.

    • Cee

      He is a nice way for America to sidestep the claims made by nations at war with America that “America is a racist imperial state.”

      Salo,

      I agree with the above.

      Perhaps people are opposing him because they don’t think he’ll continue with the PNAC plans.

      I happen think we’ll still be on that path no matter who takes the office.

      • Salo

        yes, the path is set. We are not leaving Iraq. We’ll be in Waziristan before too long.

    • BernieO

      Every candidate has blind supporters, but I have never met a Clinton supporter like that. Everyone I know, and that includes me, liked him and like Hillary for their accomplishments on things like education, balanced budgets, moving people out of poverty at record rates, etc. Also for withstanding the viscious assaults from the right and the media. That is a completely different kind of support. Even now the polls clearly show that people who value experience go for Hillary overwhelmingly.

  • Hope

    Someone I work with, an engineer (stoic type) told me just this morning that listening to Obama gave him a high. He felt light-headed upon the end of Obama’s speech.

    I don’t know what “they” are hearing. I must be tone deaf cuz I aint’ hearin it!

    • TeakwoodKite

      I dought very much you are tone deaf Hope.

      It is more akin to hearing “Club Music” than having any real requirement to really listen with any sense of emotional objectivity. If you want to “hear” it I suggest it is best to close your eyes… and more than what Obama is saying it is the sound of the audience that is in a “feedback” loop that is the “high”.

      (Music Psychology)
      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Music_psychology

      Mr Murder and Michael Lafferty nailed it.

    • http://www.despair.com/cluelessness.html Smilin’ Jim

      Tell him that he needs an aluminum foil skullcap.

      Since he’s an engineer, it would be an easier sell if you specified 6061-T6.

      • Hope

        :-)

  • TeakwoodKite

    On the radio: “Hey Ed; I was an Edwards supporter but now that he dropped out, I did not make up my mind until I was in the voting both. I voted for Obama ’cause while I really think Hillary has the better health care plan, the media Hates Hillary so I voted for Obama”….

    WTF? Pretzel logic?

    I feel sad for this person. And a person that votes on the basis of how the MSM behaves is really stuck in Mayberry forever.

    • Hope

      What a numbnuts!

    • http://www.despair.com/cluelessness.html Smilin’ Jim

      “WTF? Pretzel logic?”

      No: Utter consistency.

      The country voted for Bush twice after all.

    • BernieO

      I think this person’s vote was just a recognition of the sickness of our media and the influence they have been having over our political choices in recent years. If your main goal is to get a Democrat in no matter what, you are not crazy to think that the media may well push for Obama but would throw Hillary under the bus. As I said above, I would not bet on it, but it’s a real possibility.

      I firmly believe that their disdain for Gore and their worship of Bush cost Gore the election. he right wing had their propaganda but the media could have reported the facts instead of being a mouthpiece for the spin. I have talked to a lot of people who now regret voting for Bush and have asked them if they had known Bush’s history if they would have voted for him. Whem I tell them about his bankruptcies, insider trading, etc. they are always shocked to hear these things. They had no idea about any of this when they voted for him and agree that it would have made a big difference. They also did not know that Gore was instrumental in getting the internet created and thought he had just made up a story about inventing it. The media has the power to stop any candidate they dislike. It is frightening that voters are now having to factor this in when they choose.

  • Mr.Murder

    Don’t explain anything, just share what Obama means to you, that should be enough. If that isn’t the case, get mean with people, it’s obvious their failure to approve of Obama is a rejection of you personally.

    • susanunpc

      Yowza, Mr. Murder.

      You too, Michael Lafferty — great analysis from a professional who’s studied cult behavior.

      HEY! I could use some help getting this behavior out to the MSM. If any of you have any press contacts, please send them the links in my post, and ask them to view how the Kossacks are behaving.

      Yes, it is indeed called “DailyObama” now, and rightfully so. It’s always been a bit hard-edged left for my taste, but I used to find rational materials there and good discussions.

      I regret my associations there now. In 2005, I posted almost daily on torture (in Iraq, Afghanistan, etc.) and extraordinary rendition. Everybody loved me then. Because I was criticizing the U.S. government.

      Then there was one Sunday when I read about a Democratic candidate for Congress who was personally anti-abortion but who was fully in support of choice. He had many other remarkable professional and intellectual qualifications. So I wrote a diary about him. The attacks were unbelievable. I had thought, apparently naively, that we had a “big-tent” party that could accommodate people who personally don’t like abortion but who would always support a woman’s right to choose. Boy, I found out just how NARROW the parameters for approval were.

      • Cee

        NONSENSE!!

        I’m posting this again.

        Any number of religious sociologists have assembled various tools and devices to be used in assessing whether or not a group can be classified as a “cult.” (So have many members of what can only be termed the “anti-cult industry,” which largely comprises conservative Christians seeking to scare their fellow believers into staying in the fold. One must be careful.) Perhaps the most comprehensive of the bunch is the one assembled by folklorist Dr. P.E.I Bonewits in 1979, which laid out 18 behaviors that are common to religious cults:

        1. internal control
        2. external control
        3. wisdom or knowledge claimed by leaders
        4. wisdom or knowledge credited to leaders
        5. dogma
        6. recruiting
        7. front groups
        8. wealth
        9. sexual manipulation
        10. sexual favoritism
        11. censorship
        12. isolation

        (My words. Could 12 describe people who no longer will listen to those they disagree with?)

        13. dropout control
        14. violence
        15. paranoia
        16. grimness
        17. surrender of will
        18. hypocrisy
        It’s important to note that these criteria describe an overarching pattern: a group needs to score high on at least 10 or 12 of these to be within even hailing distance of “cult” status. On the other hand, just about any group trying to create social change is going to partake of at least a few of these qualities. When people are setting out on a new course, they tend to put out tremendous amounts of energy. They trust their leaders, ascribe all manner of wisdom and magical power to them, accept their words as dogma, and enthusiastically recruit new members. (Or, in this case, voters: Obama is, after all, running a political campaign.) It’s offputting at best and worrisome at worst; but as you can see from the list, it takes a whole lot more than that to make any group qualify as a full-blown cult.

        There is no evidence anywhere that Obama is running front groups, using his campaign to enrich himself, sexually manipulating his followers, censoring anyone, or insisting that people isolate themselves from the larger society. There are no draconian efforts at dropout control. Nobody’s arming up out of paranoia. And “grimness” is about the last word you’d use to describe an Obama event.

        http://dneiwert.blogspot.com/2008/02/cult-of-obama.html

  • Michael Lafferty

    I still read Kos—daily—but, I’ve given up posting much of anything at all there. The unabashed, emotional screeds from self-declared supporters of Senator Obama are disturbing, and approaching the point of demonstrating that many of his supporters are literally ‘coming unhinged.’

    I spent a lot of time as a police officer studying the dynamics of cult, gang and organized criminal behavior, and the parallels are, on occasion, troubling. I don’t want to go overboard with this, but two things strike me:

    • the clear attempt to propel the candidate by building an image around personality, not policy

    • the inappropriate, blindly obedient, and frankly mean—even vicious—diatribes posted by ‘followers’ or campaign supporters

    This allegiance to individuals, corporations or ‘things’ is not unheard of, yet this campaign seems to encourage such behavior in the extreme. This all makes me quite uneasy…

    • simon

      the clear attempt to propel the candidate by building an image around personality, not policy

      • the inappropriate, blindly obedient, and frankly mean—even vicious—diatribes posted by ‘followers’ or campaign supporters

      Both are fed, though, as both indicate individuals or groups not capable of independent critical thought, group think, like the White House. This makes the group, as an aggregate, ripe for outside manipulation, or manipulators. And by fed I mean information to reinforce their point of view, or aggravate or frighten them, the usual psychological manipulation.

      How much denial does a group have to be in to ignore the seriousness of Rezko, to the point it can’t even be discussed?

      So they can be threatened, easily, threat steps on their toes, reaction is gauged, and gamed.

      As upsetting as it is to witness this behavior, it CAN be controlled, ie, Larry’s post over there as a dog whistle, if unintentional, and the koskrew responding, as predicted. No different really from an Internet agent provocateur, it’s how to get any group under control, right? They don’t understand HOW they’re being manipulated, they can’t even question Obama. They have no insight.

      They are simply the other side of Bush’s 25%.

      Doesn’t Obama even use the same organizers, or consultants, as Rove did, to train volunteers?
      Funny thing, I wonder if Patrick Fitzgerald is an enemy to koskrew, now, too, just like to Bush?

      Maybe they’ll form an alliance with Little Green Footballs…

  • CognitiveDissonance

    DailyKos has become so obviously a cult site that many people simply are calling it DailyObama. I’ve long ago stopped even going there. It’s not just the abject hatred and constant regurgitation of winger talking points – something that should never be happening on a supposedly progressive blog. But the total lack of anything that resembles rubbing 2 brain cells together and coming to a logical conclusion. Definitely a cult mentality. What really enrages me is how many supposedly progressive blogs are drinking the koolaid. They’ve undoubtedly lost a lot of their audience as a result. And if this travesty ends up electing Obama, they are really going to lose when he gets absolutely slaughtered in the GE (if he doesn’t have to drop out before-hand when Rezko and Kenya finally catch up with him). They’ve totally sold out their reputation, and for what?

  • Kathy

    Where is the MSM. When are they going to start paying attention to all of this? They are so busy trashing Hillary, the important stuff is going right over their heads. We should all be running down the street screaming for “Help.” There is something sinister going on here I believe. This is so scary.

    • Xeno

      The media is on the Obama bandwagon, but they haven’t drunk the Kool-Aid. The reason they’re so intent on having him become our nominee is because they think he’ll be easier for their real BFF McCain to beat in the general. If Obama wins the nomination the gloves will come off. The abuse being heaped upon Clinton will pale beside the beating that the media/republican complex will dish out to Mr. O.

      • BernieO

        But they may be intimidated by the fear of looking racist. I am not sure which way they will lean. It’s usually Republican as I posted above, and my guess is it still will be, but I am not sure.

  • Mr.Murder

    Video: Wexler Confronts Condi on Iraq War Lies; Calls for Contempt Vote
    by Wexler For Congress Campaign
    That’s a better Kos story right now in terms of everyone being in agreement.

    This other stuff will roll over like a holiday. All I’ve got say is, Merry Fitzmas. The wheat and chaff will separate soon enough.

  • Mr.Murder

    Granted, these people have legit motivations. They are wanting to see America make better efforts abroad and at home.
    We disagree on who is best to do that.

  • Barb

    I’m really dismayed by the whole Obama thing. It’s like people have been brainwashed or something. It’s impossible to have civil discourse at Kos. You try to make a point to someone on Kos and it’s like “read his book, so inspiring…”, Well he has stated that his book has been fictionalized in parts to make it more interesting. So I’m supposed to read a book that has been “fictionalized” to understand the candidate and get inspired. You have got to be kidding! There there is the troll rating or diary hijacking of anyone who tries to point out anything.

    Isn’t this the guy who says his father was a goat herder, when in actuality his father was Harvard educated and had a Ph.D. There is something that really, really bothers me about Obama and it isn’t his color. Rather it’s his ability to act as a chameleon personality wise and policy wise. I heard him in the past week describe his healthcare policy, exactly as Hillary describes her, which he wasn’t doing at the last debate.

    His speeches totally creep me out, they are so preachy.

    Not to mention if you go to open secrets.org, it’s very obvious that he is not in compliance with FEC campaign finance laws. There are so many contributors that don’t have their employment information, it’s hard to believe.

    • simon

      His speeches totally creep me out, they are so preachy.

      Listen to his vocal cadence, he now sounds like Bush, too.

      I wonder if they have the same speech coach?

      Watch Obama’s face after he makes a point, like Bush, as the crowd cheers, on cue, you see the same smug, self satisfied look of narcissistic contempt.

      • chris

        Check out old Kids in the Hall episodes.
        Have you got your Preacher Character together?

      • Salo

        Obama is every inch the aristocrat. A perfect vehicle for the next phase of conquest.

      • Victor

        And he uses the same straw man arguments that Bush does. “Some people say….”

      • Cee

        Are you a cult member?

        Any number of religious sociologists have assembled various tools and devices to be used in assessing whether or not a group can be classified as a “cult.” (So have many members of what can only be termed the “anti-cult industry,” which largely comprises conservative Christians seeking to scare their fellow believers into staying in the fold. One must be careful.) Perhaps the most comprehensive of the bunch is the one assembled by folklorist Dr. P.E.I Bonewits in 1979, which laid out 18 behaviors that are common to religious cults:

        1. internal control
        2. external control
        3. wisdom or knowledge claimed by leaders
        4. wisdom or knowledge credited to leaders
        5. dogma
        6. recruiting
        7. front groups
        8. wealth
        9. sexual manipulation
        10. sexual favoritism
        11. censorship
        12. isolation
        13. dropout control
        14. violence
        15. paranoia
        16. grimness
        17. surrender of will
        18. hypocrisy
        It’s important to note that these criteria describe an overarching pattern: a group needs to score high on at least 10 or 12 of these to be within even hailing distance of “cult” status. On the other hand, just about any group trying to create social change is going to partake of at least a few of these qualities. When people are setting out on a new course, they tend to put out tremendous amounts of energy. They trust their leaders, ascribe all manner of wisdom and magical power to them, accept their words as dogma, and enthusiastically recruit new members. (Or, in this case, voters: Obama is, after all, running a political campaign.) It’s offputting at best and worrisome at worst; but as you can see from the list, it takes a whole lot more than that to make any group qualify as a full-blown cult.

        There is no evidence anywhere that Obama is running front groups, using his campaign to enrich himself, sexually manipulating his followers, censoring anyone, or insisting that people isolate themselves from the larger society. There are no draconian efforts at dropout control. Nobody’s arming up out of paranoia. And “grimness” is about the last word you’d use to describe an Obama event.

        But we betray them, our country, and ourselves if we turn around and do to them what the right wing did to us with the “dirty fucking hippies” slander by perpetuating this “cult” meme. It’s not factually accurate. And it’s not fair to Obama, his growing cadre of followers, or even what’s left of our own abandoned dreams.
        http://dneiwert.blogspot.com/2008/02/cult-of-obama.html

  • Mr.Murder

    It is what it is.

    Unitary Hope!

    The problem I have is this, that Democrats are bound to win anyways, but winning with someone not ready will simply have the tables turned in four years. He’s got enough dirt to wage equivolency. Four years of standing by Obama , and suddenly it’s “the GOP is no dirtier than the Dems” and we have the White House swirling down the drain of Rezko/Blajogevich and their underwriter Auchi.

    Mission Accomplished.

    • Xeno

      Are we really so sure that the Dems will win no matter who is the nominee? Speaking for myself, I’m having flashbacks to 1972, 1984, 1988 — all years in which the Democrats were sure they could beat the repug candidate but instead got their heads handed to them. It’s easy to envision Obama winning only Illinois and DC (perhaps adding my own state of Maryland) and thus losing an historic landslide to McCain.

      • chris

        Xeno, don’t say that too loud, or you’ll be audited by a ObLevel 9. Trying to air such concerns qualifies as an attack. Proceed with caution.

    • BernieO

      Don’t bet money on that. If the Rezko trial heats up or if the swiftboat crowd goes after it, Obama could be in real trouble long before November.

      One big factor will be whether the media’s love affair with Obama continues when he goes against their other darling, McCain. Generally their bias is for Republicans. They tried to bring down the Clintons for years and may have finally succeeded in torpedoing Hillary. They did succeed in their anti-Gore campaign. So my guess is that they will lean toward the Republicans yet again. After all McCain will protect their big fat tax cuts that their ex-fave Bush gave them.

  • http://noquarterusa.net/ SusanUnPC

    Do you see the posting of recipes in the comments section of Larry’s diary?

    That’s what Kossacks do when — at least historically — someone posts anti-progressive, anti-democratic diaries. But it’s always been very rare behavior — reserved for the very few who post offensive material.

    It’s clear that no one’s opinions, thoughts, or evidence is of any import to these people, and they’re so consumed by Obama fever that they’ve lost all rationality.

    They can, and should, disagree with Larry if they wish. That’s FAIR. But the screeds, the attacks, the RECIPES? My dear god.

    • simon

      Well, Larry trolled them, maybe not on purpose, but it is good for a laugh.

      It’s like poking the Pillsbury Dough Boy, isn’t it?

      Pretty easy to manipulate, now you know why they support Obama so uncritically.

      And we all know how to troll Kos, now, and Obama’s cult, not too difficult. They’ve been marginalized, not quite ready for prime time. I’m sure Larry will see an ibomb of some sort next, usually the weapon of choice for the wronged, narcissistic enraged fanboi, ie, “no one makes a fool out of me, and the idealized extension of my personality, Obama, I have Internet tools, and I know how to use them…”

      No one goes to Kos anymore for information, the Scientology like community is trolled, top to bottom, and they can’t even see it. They end up banning the people who keep the blog interesting and balanced, while inadvertently enabling the right wing trolls who know how to manipulate them, and their opinions.

      Kos is velvet rope, that whole TU system is a joke, those idiots enabled the trolls and the socks by eliminating dissent, TR when someone DARE voice a contrary opnion, like, say, Obama is highly effete.

      (Divisive? Obama opened the door, fair game. Given Obama’s choice to use Donnie McClure to pacify the anti-gay black population, and it is an aspect of the AA community, unfortunately, anti-gay bigotry, supporting the ban on gay marriages with the CC. Bigotry is bigotry, even from a black man, an effete black man. In addition, if the republicans exploit this aspect of Obama, ie, “effete black man weak on terrorism,” best to open it up now, but of course, Obama knows that, right?)

      Anyway, IMO Obama is effete. Kos bans at that remark, like Rove removes a Bush protester, they can’t really handle it, whereas here, shoephone tells me I’m stinking up the joint, and I tell shoephone I simply farted as Obama needed another speech, and we leave it at that…

      But what really disgusted me about Kos was for all his talk of grassroots, and reformation, at the drop of a hat, or a dollar, he betrayed himself, embracing the very thing he said he detested, the techniques most destructive to the American government, corruption, hate, PAC money, terrorism, racism, division, gay bigotry, and sexism, calling it “Obama.”

      If Hillary had a Rezko, everday would bring ten diaries, and rightly so. So, Kos is highly hypocritical, no credibilty, bottom line. And if the Rezko connection proves as highly damaging as suspected, the democrats would have no viable candidate if Obama were to win the nomination, early. So how interested is Kos in electing a democratic President, really?

      Embracing and recommending Rove like political technique is very very destructive to the integrity of the American government, this is a Presidential election, not fantasy football.

      And then other people have to clean up the do0dy boi’s shit, and well, no. He’s a puppet, and he has no clue, none at all, how he is being manipulated.

      And I can read Obama’s strategy, save it.

      • Val Fitzgerald

        By now it’s becoming clear to everyone that Barack Obama–the great unknown a few short months ago–is Karl Rove’s pick for the Democratic Presidential nominee. It’s nothing but spin, nothing but the usual bullshit–and Hillary’s quite right: “I’ve already been through everything the Republicans can throw at me, and my opponent has not.”

        And what there is, for the Repukes to howl about:

        Rev. Jeremiah Wright, first and foremost–the former Marine who got religion and screams “God DAMN America” and noted that 9/11 was “America’s chickens coming home to roost”. (I remember hearing that right after 9/11–I thought that quote was straight from Osama bin Laden, but no, was from the Rev…)

        And then if that’s not enough, there’s a genuine, old-fashioned Chicago-type corruption trial going on, some guy named Rezko I think, who bought a bunch of Councilmen, among them if I’m not TOO mistaken, one Barack Obama who at the time needed a home and whose good buddy Rezko set him up with quite a fine one, a few years ago…

        Then–my God, do we need MORE?–there’s the Lady Michelle Obama–the putative candidate’s WIFE–who seems to hate America just as much as Obama’s spiritual adviser the Rev. J. Wright, does!

        Karl, Karl…how DO you manage to do it? I could read your thoughts–(I’ve been a Rove-watcher for quite a while now)–you KNEW that Hillary had the Black vote all locked up, and, together with the far more massive Hispanic vote, was the natural nominee. And that’s leaving out the most successful Administration that her husband and her, ran for eight wonderful years in this country. East as pie, I can hear you telling me, Karl–easy as pie, all the Black people need is one of their own candidates–a REAL BLACK Candidate–and if Obama’s only half black then so what?

        Wow. But people are beginning to think for themselves once more, and I think that PA is gonna be a lock for Hillary. Just as I know for sure that with Obama’s brand-new freight (unlike Hillary’s un-interesting, heard-it-all-before, so-what-else-is-new, personal freight re Bill) will virtually GUARANTEE McCain the Presidency.

        Set aside the media: set aside Chris Mathews’ faggoty moaning about hearing Obama and “…a thrill ran up my leg…” forget about the suddenly (I thought) violently misogynistic Jack Cafferty, who excoriates Hillary Clinton every chance he gets: the SECOND PERSON who never did anything bad to America while in the White House (her husband Bill being the first, which is why the Repukes are so riled at the very thought of her running)– Hillary represents REAL LIVE CHANGE. Because it’s more plausible to imagine a Black Man sitting in the White House, than any kind of woman, any color–might as well be a sign on the US Presidency: Women Need Not Apply.

        Chris, come out of the closet, if you don’t know that you’re gay, you’re the only one in America who doesn’t. A thrill of absolute HORROR runs –not just up my leg but through every part of me–at the thought of another Old White (or Black) MAN as President! Jeez Louise–how much worse could a woman be? Specially one that knows how power works in DC?

        Karl, ya did it again! Congratulations. Geez, I wish you were a Dem, there’d be no stopping us…(sigh) Me? I want Hillary. My state of TX wants Hillary. California wants Hillary. NY wants Hillary. THE BIG IMPORTANT POPULATION STATES AND MOST OF THE HISPANIC SOUTH WANT HILLARY–and if it’s not Hillary, it’ll definitely be McCain. Or–does anyone think that the foaming-at-the-mouth white Southern Hillary-hating men, will ever pull the lever for Barack Obama–a Black–for the White House? As they say where I come from–Puh-leeze!!!!! So I say–go with the best. If she wins I bet we get 8 more GREAT years, just like the ones we had from 1992, right up to the stolen election in 2000.

        Oh–and bring home our troops from the war that this crook Bush started, with a pack of lies about who did 9/11 (Hint–he has dinner with them–the Saudis–about once a month–and by bombing the WTC, they made him a “WORE PRESIDENT” for the worst eight years that America has ever had).