Trump’s Base: #BurstThebubble of Cognitive Dissonance, part 2

Calico Jack continues the discussion of true believers and cognitive dissonance.

The Psy of Life

Our Story So Far

On Monday 14 September, we published a post beginning addressing the reasons that Trump’s base is so tenaciously supportive of him and so difficult to dissuade.

Essentially, Leon Festinger laid out the basis for his theory of cognitive dissonance in his book, When Prophecy Fails, which he describes as an extended case study of his covert observations of a UFO-doomsday cult based in Chicago in 1954. The cult’s leader predicted that the world would end on a specific date, but her followers would be saved by a UFO.

Festinger and his students infiltrated the group posing as true believers and took notes on what they experienced there. They wondered what would happen when the date came and went without the world ending. To their surprise, many of the followers stayed. Of course, it helped that the leader told…

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