Tag Archives | Hysteria

Two Of The Last Victims Of The Satanic Abuse Panic Freed From Prison

pentagramThink that witch hunts ended several centuries ago? Slate on the “Satanic Panic” that engulfed parts of the United States in the 1980s and 90s:

Among the atrocities that Frances and Dan Keller were supposed to have committed while running a day care center: drowning and dismembering babies in front of the children; transporting the children to Mexico to be sexually abused by the Mexican army; putting the children into a pool with sharks that ate babies; putting blood in the children’s Kool-Aid; exhuming bodies at a cemetery, forcing children to carry the bones.

It was frankly unbelievable—except a Texas jury did believe the Kellers had committed at least some of these acts. In 1992, the Kellers were each sentenced to 48 years in prison.

After multiple appeal efforts and 21 years in prison, the Kellers are finally free. Their release may also finally mark the end to one of the strangest, widest-reaching, and most damaging moral panics in America’s history: the satanic ritual abuse panic of the 1980s and 1990s.

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What Witchcraft Is Facebook? Social Media and Hysterical Illness

800px-hysteria-e1287956169986Laura Dimon (demon?) writes at the Atlantic:

“Eerie and remarkable.”

Those are the words that Robert Bartholomew used to describe this past winter’s outbreak of mass hysteria in Danvers, Massachusetts, a town also known as “Old Salem” and “Salem Village.”

Bartholomew, a sociologist in New Zealand who has been studying cases of mass hysteria for more than 20 years, was referring to the Salem Witch Trials of 1692-1693, the most widely recognized episode of mass hysteria in history, which ultimately saw the hanging deaths of 20 people.

Fast-forward about 300 years to January 2013, when a bizarre case of mass hysteria again struck Danvers. About two dozen teenagers at the Essex Agricultural and Technical School began having “mysterious” hiccups and vocal tics.

“The Massachusetts State Health Department refuses to say publicly,” Bartholomew wrote in an email in late August, “but I have heard from some of the parents privately who say that the symptoms are still persisting.”

The location might be eerie, but Bartholomew is not surprised by the outbreak in the slightest.

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Using Facebook For Witchcraft

CaptainAldenDenouncedOK, it sounds crazy, but sociologist Robert Bartholomew believes that Facebook and other social media platforms can give rise to Mass Psychogenic Illness (MPI), also known as Mass Hysteria. Laura Dimon reports for The Atlantic:

“Eerie and remarkable.”

Those are the words that Robert Bartholomew used to describe this past winter’s outbreak of mass hysteria in Danvers, Massachusetts, a town also known as “Old Salem” and “Salem Village.”

Bartholomew, a sociologist in New Zealand who has been studying cases of mass hysteria for more than 20 years, was referring to the Salem Witch Trials of 1692-1693, the most widely recognized episode of mass hysteria in history, which ultimately saw the hanging deaths of 20 women.

Fast-forward about 300 years to January 2013, when a bizarre case of mass hysteria again struck Danvers. About two dozen teenagers at the Essex Agricultural and Technical School began having “mysterious” hiccups and vocal tics.

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‘Psychic Attack’ Rumors Run Wild After 18 Hospitalized at Japanese High School

psychic attackPsychic attack? Teen angst externalized? Via Who Forted?

Last Wednesday at the well-known prep school Kamigōri High in Hyogo, Japan, emergency services were called out and a reported 18 girls were taken to hospitals after what was described as a bizarre, hour long “state of panic” during which dozens of teen girls began hyperventilating.

The initial incident began when a first year student began complaining of a “bad feeling”. Her hyperventilating sparked a chain of similar events that affected [18 others].

Things got even stranger when rumors began spreading that the incident was actually the work of a psychic attack dealt from the first girl to exhibit the bizarre symptoms. According to the Aioi police department, it was well known amongst the other students that the girl displayed “supernatural senses” and they believed she was to blame for the hospitalizations.

The victims have since been released from the hospital and have shown no long term after effects.

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‘The World of Pokemon is a World of the Demonic!’


via True Slant

I’ve become used to various religions bashing various games based on their inclusion of extremely brutal violence, or god forbid, even worse, sex, but this is a new one, even for me.

This video shows a TV pastor (anyone know his name) educating his flock on the demonic powers of Pokemon and the choking evil grip it has over our nation’s children. In one fell swoop he manages to express his complete lack of understanding over not only Pokemon, but also his own religion.

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Mayan Calendar Doomsday Panic Hits Russia

New York Times reports strange December 21st phenomena in Russia, caused by humans:

There are scattered reports of unusual behavior from across Russia. Inmates in a women’s prison near the Chinese border are said to have experienced a “collective mass psychosis” so intense that their wardens summoned a priest to calm them. In a factory town east of Moscow, panicked citizens stripped shelves of matches, kerosene, sugar and candles. A huge Mayan-style archway is being built — out of ice — in Chelyabinsk in the south.

In Prison Colony No. 10 in the village of Gornoye, in November wardens told that anxiety over the Mayan prophecy had been building for two months, and some inmates had broken out of the facility “because of their disturbing thoughts.” Some of the women were sick, or having seizures.

More common are reports about panicky buying. In Ulan-Ude, the capital of the Buryatiya region, citizens have reportedly been hoarding food and candles to survive a period without light, following instructions from a Tibetan monk called the Oracle of Shambhala, who has been described on some Russian television broadcasts.

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The DisinfoCast with Matt Staggs: STRAIGHT, Inc. Survivor Steve Brown

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Steve Brown wasn’t a bad teenager: He smoked a little pot and drank some beer now and again with his friends – your typical 15 year-old. So how did he end up hundreds of miles away from home in a “drug treatment center” based on a program that took its lead from Chinese brainwashing techniques? Steve’s new home was a place where children were beaten, starved and deprived of sleep to ensure compliance; where children were forced to sleep in a series of strangers’ houses so that the executives could avoid inspections. This was STRAIGHT, Inc., the brainchild of a wealthy businessman whose deep connections to the Republican party ensured no political favor was too far out of reach in the era of “Just Say No.” Join us for a tale of drug hysteria, government malfeasance and big money in this episode of the DisinfoCast.… Read the rest

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Who Haunted Betsy Bell?

Betsy Bell

Betsy Bell

An alternate reading of M.V. Ingram’s history of the infamous Bell Witch haunting suggests a sinister secret at the heart of the mystery. This from Victorian Gothic:

The visitations began with sightings of strange animals about the Bell homestead, and of a unknown girl in green swinging to the limb of a tall oak. Soon there came an unaccountable knocking about the door and exterior walls of the house, followed by scratching and gnawing sounds that searched from room to room. It assaulted the boys in the night, ripping the sheets from their beds and pulling their hair as they tried to sleep. Whenever candles were lit to investigate, they would soon hear screams coming from their sister’s room.

Betsy Bell was 12 years old in 1818 when she became the thrall of an unseen tormentor who, for some three years, relentlessly beat her, mangled her hair, pinched and pricked her skin, and once caused her to vomit pins and needles. Her family, early, well-respected settlers of Robertson County, TN, at first tried removing her from the home, but to no avail—the disturbances followed her wherever she went.

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Morgellons: A Hidden Epidemic Or Mass Hysteria?

morgellons_picsIs Morgellons disease from out of this world or all in our heads? Will Storr from the Guardian writes:

It all started in August 2007, on a family holiday in New England. Paul had been watching Harry Potter And The Order Of The Phoenix with his wife and two sons, and he had started to itch. His legs, his arms, his torso – it was everywhere. It must be fleas in the seat, he decided.

But the 55-year-old IT executive from Birmingham has been itching ever since, and the mystery of what is wrong with him has only deepened. When Paul rubbed his fingertips over the pimples that dotted his skin, he felt spines. Weird, alien things, like splinters. Then, in 2008, his wife was soothing his back with surgical spirit when the cotton swab she was using gathered a curious blue-black haze from his skin. Paul went out, bought a £40 microscope and examined the cotton.

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