A while back I posted a thread about my personal journey in and out of the rabbit hole (link). In this thread, I am going to discuss the personal psychological factors that I believe led me down the rabbit hole. Rebelliousness and Rejection of Authority As anyone with experience with conspiracy theorists knows, this is probably by far the most common thread among them. It's also common among teenagers and young adults, but I think that me rebellious tendencies go a little further than the average persons and seem to persist to this day. I remember being in first grade (about age 6 or 7) and on a math test, I intentionally answered every question wrong just to see what would happen if I did. I remember that I would deliberately disobey rules and authority just for the sake of disobeying. Even if being disobedient served me no purpose. As an adult, I think that some of this still persists as I have noticed (others have as well) that I generally perform better under little to no supervision and I tend to perform horribly and have many conflicts with the people who like to micromanage or insist on having a hand in every detail. I am also very outspoken and at times to a fault. I don't hesitate to say something when I know something is wrong. I will admit that this has gotten me into trouble at times, but I'm sure that it has spared me from even more trouble in the long run. Rebelliousness is a common theme among many extremist moments, even if it's the rejection of the current authority only to replace it with another. For awhile, I dabbled into some Libertarian ideas, but I've become more skeptical about these ideas. Alexander Hamilton said "if men were angels, we wouldn't need government", and I agree. I personally have a hard time believing that in the absence of authority, everyone is just going to get together and "do the right thing". It actually sounds pretty naive. Unconventional Thinking (Thinking Outside the Box). This is another trait that others have commented on besides myself. I have a tendency to look at things in a different way than most people do. I understand that most of us have a narrow perspective in our views and opinions. It's a difficult thing to break away from because we have only lived one life and experience one conciseness and most of us will die in the same place we were born. On top of this most of us have been indoctrinated to learn one version of history and one side of the story that is presented to us by mainstream media. Originally, I felt that a narrow perspective is why so many reject conspiracy theories. I felt that people refuse to accept anything other than what they have been taught by school or mainstream news. People never having been given a chance to see things through another perspective means that the 'truth' can hide in plain sight because so many refuse to see it. But then as the seeds of doubt began to materialize, I began to see things differently. Going back to the 2012 election hoax discussion that Alex Jones had, I began to see how these people manipulate their audience by appealing to ignorance. Knowing that alot of people don't fully understand the election process and how exit polling works allows people like Alex Jones to spread bunk about so called stolen elections. These people know who their audience is and the majority of them are laymen who may not have a detailed understanding of subjects like history, science, politics, geopolitics, economics, etc. This was when I began to think that maybe having a narrow perspective is actually what leads people into believing in conspiracy theories in the first place. We are all laymen in some respect or another and so people end up believing in conspiracies because they lack perspective in these particular fields of study. Alot of people don't understand why the government has to spend it's way out of debt. It seems counter intuitive. But learn something about Keynesian economics, and you might have a different...... 'perspective' on the situation. Other things that I stem from a narrow perspective is the over analysis of photos videos and events to prove conspiracy. "They look like actors" "That's not what I would do in that situation" "Why is he holding that?" "Is that laser detonator?" "That's an amazing coincidence". It's all part of that monological belief system that we talk about and how people end up believing that everything is a conspiracy. Feeling of Hopelessness. This is something that was discussed in the psychological study of conspiracy theorists. Forum user: Stupid linked to the pdf (thanks). It might be somewhat flawed being that it is based on internet comments, but it still has some value. In a nutshell it describes how the hopelessness is a common thread among the conspracist community, and overall feeling is generated by the conspriacist pundits on a regular basis. Alex Jones has people believing that we really have space weapons, weather control, mind control, poisoned water among many other things. If you believed this stuff were real, how hopeless would you honestly feel? Jesse Ventura once said "If voting made a difference, it would be illegal" yet, voting made enough of a difference to elect him Governor. It seems that their whole objective is to make people believe that the whole world is against them and that the only way to fight the new world order to buy their stuff. What solution does Alex Jones offer that doesn't involve promoting his show or buying his advertisers products? As I said before, I began to feel a sense of hopelessness after voting for Obama. I voted for him to put an end to Bush's policies as he promised. Instead he's expanding them. I'm not sure if anyone truly knows what kind of an epoch 9/11 really was. In my view, the consequences have yet to be fully realized. It's undeniable that civil rights have been and are continuing to be curbed in the name of security, and it doesn't seem like there is much of an opposition to stop it. This was a factor that lead me into conpracist thinking. But now that I think about it. I in some ways fault the conspiracy community for allowing this to happen. Alex Jones and his lackeys have undoubtedly recruited many people who share these sentiments. As a result I think we have a significant chunk of the electorate chasing white rabbits and ready to gear up when we could actually be focused on creating solutions to these problems through the democratic process. Being Gullible As much as I hate to admit this, I have to come to terms with it. I've reached a conclusion that it is human nature to be gullible, and that we are all inclined to believe what we are told by people we trust. And sometimes you don't have a choice. We are all laymen in some form or another and we are often dependent on experts or professionals to tell us what is going on. Skepticism on the other hand is something that we have to learn. He have to learn to apply logic and think rationally, and unfortunately, not everybody is going to learn this.