Trump

The Netflix Docuseries “The Family”: A Review by Steven Hassan

2019-09-13T12:11:20-04:00September 12th, 2019|Blog|

I binge watched this excellent docuseries the day after it was released. I only recently have caught up to blogging about it. I want everyone to watch it! And ask friends and your family to watch it all also. Especially activists. Rather than covering the same ground as this superb review by Frederick Clarkson, I hope you will read Frederick's piece after you read this. If you haven't already watched the series, start by watching the trailer below. "The Family" is a five-part Netflix documentary described as: "An enigmatic conservative Christian group known as the Family wields enormous influence [...]

Beware of Political Cult Groups that Manipulate and Control Members

2019-08-08T13:03:56-04:00August 8th, 2019|Blog|

Many destructive groups masquerade as religious when, in fact, their DNA is actually political. They are concerned with amassing secular power, wealth and control of government. And, many "mainstream" political organizations, on the left as well as the right, meet the criteria of an unhealthy cult. As discussed in a previous blog about religious cults, it is important to evaluate the major behaviors and characteristics of a group to see if it meets the criteria. A political cult often has an authoritarian leader who has a malignant narcissistic personality disorder.  Such a person claims to have all of the [...]

The Solipsistic Reality of President Trump: A Discussion with Dr. Robert Jay Lifton

2019-06-27T17:12:23-04:00June 27th, 2019|Blog|

This past February of 2019, I interviewed Dr. Robert Jay Lifton about his thoughts about the current political situation in America. It is always a privilege. I have been fortunate enough to interview him a few times before. (Listed at end). Recently, he gave me permission to republish his Eight Criteria of Thought Reform. In his seminal work, he concisely explains mind control, brainwashing, and thought reform. I also posted a blog about Dr. Paul Martin's expert report on Raniere's NXIVM in which he used Dr. Lifton's criteria. He is a psychiatrist, an author, an expert, and an activist, [...]

Donald Trump, Cults and Narcissism: A Discussion with Sociologist Dr. Stephen Kent

2019-06-20T15:39:30-04:00June 20th, 2019|Blog|

Earlier this year, I had the privilege of interviewing sociologist, Dr. Stephen Kent. Dr. Kent holds degrees in both religious studies and sociology. He is an author, professor, and expert on cults and conspiracy theories. He received two Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council grants to study sects, cults, and new religions in Canada and the United States. He is very qualified to speak about coercive influence and cults, having a vast educational background, as well as, the largest book collection in North America on alternative and sectarian religions. I have known Steve for decades now and respect his work [...]

Trump, Cults, and Deprogramming: A Discussion with Forensic Expert Dr. Steve Eichel

2019-05-13T00:16:47-04:00May 9th, 2019|Blog|

This week, I share an interview with my old friend and colleague, Steve Eichel, Ph.D. He is a forensic psychologist, an authority on hypnosis, expert witness, counselor, author, and educator. He specializes in destructive cults, coercive persuasion, brainwashing and deprogramming. In 1989, he wrote his doctoral dissertation on the subject of deprogramming. Dr. Eichel's introduction into the field of cults goes all the way back to 1975. He currently serves as the president of the International Cultic Studies Association (ICSA) which is a cultic studies research and educational nonprofit organization. Dr. Eichel starts the interview by describing his extensive background, [...]

Hubbard, Trump, and Narcissism: A Discussion with Jon Atack

2019-05-03T14:30:51-04:00May 2nd, 2019|Blog|

This week, my good friend and former member of Scientology Jon Atack joins me for an in-depth discussion. Jon is an undue influence expert, an author, researcher, and co-creator of the Open Minds Foundation. We discuss narcissistic traits we see between President Donald Trump and pulp science fiction writer and creator of  Scientology, Ron Hubbard. Previously, I have written a number of blogs about Donald Trump. Jon has been featured in my blogs and Youtube channel (see the end for list). Jon and I have noticed a disturbing number of former members, Ex-Scientologists, as well as former cult members of other [...]

Political Cults, Leadership, Idealism, and Totalism: A Discussion with Dennis Tourish Ph.D.

2019-04-04T13:55:36-04:00April 4th, 2019|Blog|

On January 18, 2019, during the longest government shutdown in history, I had the pleasure of interviewing Professor Dennis Tourish. He is a former member of a left-wing political group, having left in the mid-1980s. It was during this period that he found my book Combating Cult Mind Control which was the first time he had "read anything about this phenomenon and it just lifted the lights wonderfully." Dennis is Professor of Leadership and Organisation Studies at the University of Sussex in the U.K.. Additionally, he is an author, researcher, academic, and consultant. Professor Tourish has co-written or co-edited eight [...]

New Zealand Mosque Shootings: White Extremist Terrorism and the Internet

2019-03-23T12:12:37-04:00March 21st, 2019|Blog|

(AP Photo/Mark Baker) Cult Mind Control is Being Used on the Internet to Radicalize On Friday, March 15, 2019, 50 people were left dead in a mass shooting at two mosques in Christchurch, New Zealand. These terrorist attacks should be a wake-up call for every person on the planet. White supremacy hate groups are recruiting online and the danger is international. It is not a phenomenon limited to one city, state or country. Extremists are being manufactured online every day. Former members of these groups are willing to help with preventive education, as well as, intervention work, but [...]

Christian Nationalism, Dominionism, the New Apostolic Reformation; A Discussion with Dr. André Gagné

2019-03-14T13:32:57-04:00March 14th, 2019|Blog|

André Gagné, Ph.D. This week, I have the pleasure of sharing an interview with Dr. André Gagné. We discuss his journey as a former evangelical pastor, his academic journey becoming a tenured professor and his work involving the New Apostolic Reformation (NAR).  André Gagné, Ph.D. is an Associate Professor and Graduate Program Director in the Department of Theological Studies at Concordia University in Montreal, Canada. He works on the Christian Right, fundamentalism, religious violence and the interpretation and reception of the Bible. In his public scholarship, Dr. Gagné seeks to explain how sacred texts and traditions are used by fundamentalist groups and individuals [...]

Dr. Bandy Lee and Dr. James Gilligan: Do We Surrender Our Moral Compass to Technical Rule?

2019-03-11T16:44:47-04:00March 7th, 2019|Blog|

On February 27, 2019, Dr. Bandy Lee and Dr. James Gilligan spoke at The Program in Psychiatry and the Law (the Harvard forensic think tank). The talk was entitled, "Do we surrender our moral compass to technical rule?" They further discuss the question, "Given our professional responsibility to society, if we see dangers to public health and wellbeing, should we refrain from speaking up in professional ways because of a technical rule?" Dr. Lee and Dr. Gilligan are both experts on violence.   Dr. Bandy Lee is an expert on violence on the faculty of Yale School of Medicine’s Law and Psychiatry Division who has served as [...]