Delusion and Self-deception

A delusion is a belief that is contrary to objective reality. It’s different from the self-deceptions that most of us indulge in. A growing number of observers are taking a hard look at the extremism in our political parties. It’s not merely a difference of viewpoint, or interpretation of objective fact. We are witnessing solidarity among partisan politicians who choose to believe things that are manifestly not real. Election deniers and climate deniers are the foremost examples.

Robert Draper was an insider to Donald Trump’s 2016 campaign. In this talk, he explains how his view of the GOP and the seeming willingness of rational people to ignore evidence and assert false perceptions and beliefs. He speaks about Weapons of Mass Delusion, “The disturbing eyewitness account of how a new breed of Republicans—led by Marjorie Taylor Greene, Paul Gosar, Matt Gaetz, Lauren Boebert, and Madison Cawthorn—far from moving on from Trump, have taken the politics of hysteria to even greater extremes and brought American democracy to the edge.”

When asked how this delusion can be overcome, he suggests it may only end when the supporters fail miserably at governing — which he characterizes as a dangerous experiment.

Dangerous indeed.

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