State of Confusion: Political Manipulation and the Assault on the American Mind

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Macmillan, Jun 10, 2008 - Political Science - 304 pages

Finally, the answer to the many questions that have been preying on the minds of millions of Americans has arrived. Why are Americans so vulnerable to divisive political tactics? Why did Americans get dragged into such an unwise war in Iraq? Why do fundamentalist religious groups, Fox News, and right-wing radio still play such influential roles in America's political landscape? And why are long-accepted rational scientific ideas like evolution under siege? These questions hold America's future in the balance. Ultimately, they are questions about the American mind. Psychologist-attorney Dr. Bryant Welch has the answers.

If America is going to change the mind-set that led us to war in Iraq and left us unable to confront our serious national problems, this book is vitally important. Drawing on his unique experience both as a clinical psychologist and a Washington, D.C., political figure with the American Psychological Association, Dr. Welch shows how the long-term effects of sophisticated new forms of political manipulation have not only led to our debacle in Iraq but are also currently undercutting America's ability to address its very serious problems. In the 1944 movie Gaslight, a husband drives his wife to the brink of insanity by playing games with her sense of reality. Just as in the movie, America's most recent political "gaslighters," such as George W. Bush, Karl Rove, Rush Limbaugh, Ann Coulter, and many religious leaders, have generated and exploited confusion in the minds of countless Americans.

Gaslighters prey on their victim's vulnerability to paranoia, sexual perplexity, and envy to undermine the mind's ability to function rationally. Welch examines why millions of Americans, in response to such assaults, subconsciously and dangerously create their own simplistic reality, even if it is completely different from the more complex reality of the world.

Most important, State of Confusion explains how and why Americans must act now to fight back against this harmful manipulation before it's too late. Dr. Welch's exploration of the American mind is both fascinating and frightening, and State of Confusion is a must-read for everyone who cares about the future of this great country.

 

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State of confusion: political manipulation and the assault on the American mind

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Welch, Bryant. State of Confusion: Political Manipulation and the Assault on the American Mind. St. Martin's. 2008. c.288p. bibliog. index. POL SCI~Clearly writing from left of center, Welch ends by ... Read full review

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Dr. Welch explains the psychological states, paranoia, sexual perplexity and envy, that underlie politics and the distorted reality perceptions that have been exploited, particularly by the Republican Party and neo-conservatives for the past 30 years, to "gaslight" the America public and cause them to vote against their own economic interests.
This book gives new understanding to the anger and illogical actions of groups such as the "Tea-Party" in the 2010 election. The Republicans, Fox News and other conservative groups have conducted a decades-long program of brainwashing or gaslighting to carry out their policies that are designed to the advantage of the large corporations and the very rich who own and control them.
No other book, that I am aware of, makes these points, and no politician nor news agency had called attention to the tactics that have been in play in these elections. This book answers the conundrum of Americans voting against their own interests in way that rings true.
 

Contents

Gaslighting
1
Reality Sense Perplexity and Regression
15
Paranoia
27
Sexual Perplexity
57
Envy
81
Architects of False Realities
107
Speaking Power to Truth
135
FaithBased Reality
159
9 THE ASSAULT ON PROFESSIONALISM
183
The Real Fleecing of America
213
Battleground States
241
NOTES
257
BIBLIOGRAPHY
269
INDEX
273
Copyright

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About the author (2008)

Bryant Welch, J.D., Ph.D. has more than thirty-five years of experience in law, psychology, and politics. He spent seventeen years in Washington, D.C., where he built the American Psychological Association's Practice Directorate, and has held faculty appointments at the University of North Carolina and George Washington University. He currently lectures and consults nationally and practices clinical psychology on Hilton Head Island, South Carolina, where he lives with his wife, Debbie.

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