Breaking News

Authoritarianism Emerges in Response to Threats of Pandemics and Famine

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

While the rise of authoritarianism as the result of a declared global pandemic may seem an unusual response to such an event, there is actually decades worth of research describing why we are witnessing this growth of tyranny.  For example, the study ‘Pathogens and Politics: Further Evidence That Parasite Prevalence Predicts Authoritarianism’, provides a deeper understanding of how humans react to perceived threats and how that relates to the type of government the people will accept.

“Results revealed that parasite prevalence predicted measures of authoritarian governance, and did so even when statistically controlling for other threats to human welfare. (One additional threat – famine – also uniquely predicted authoritarianism.)”


The Exposé reports the facts the mainstream refuse to. Let’s not lose touch, subscribe today to receive the latest news from The Exposé in your inbox…

Follow The Exposé on Telegram
Join The Exposé’s Telegram Discussion Group


The study focuses on the “parasite stress” hypothesis which proposes that when a species faces parasites and diseases their values are shaped by the experience. In this context, “parasite” is used to refer to any pathogenic organism, including bacteria and viruses. The theory states that depending on how a disease stresses people’s development it can lead to differences in mating preferences and changes in culture. Proponents of the parasite stress theory also note that disease can alter the psychological and social norms of societies.

“According to a ‘parasite stress’ hypothesis, authoritarian governments are more likely to emerge in regions characterised by a high prevalence of disease-causing pathogens,” the researchers write. They define authoritarian governance as “highly concentrated power structures that repress dissent and emphasise submission to authority, social conformity, and hostility towards outgroups.”

Due to the invisible nature of “disease-causing parasites,” attempts to control the spread of a disease “historically depended substantially on adherence to ritualised behavioural practices that reduced infection risk.” The researchers also found that society tends to promote a collectivist worldview, favouring obedience and conformity from the population, in response to parasites.

They examined two different studies, which themselves were analyses of previous works on the parasite stress theory and the implications for authoritarian tendencies in government and individuals.

The first study shows that “parasite prevalence” strongly predicted the likelihood for individuals to express authoritarian personalities. The second study focused on “small-scale societies” and found that parasite prevalence “predicted measures of authoritarian governance, and did so even when statistically controlling for other threats to human welfare.”

The researchers concluded that “these results further substantiate the parasite stress hypothesis of authoritarianism, and suggest that societal differences in authoritarian governance result, in part, from cultural differences in individuals’ authoritarian personalities.”

The research also indicates that individuals who dissent from or fail to comply with the aforementioned “ritualised behaviour” are seen as a health threat to society.

“At a psychological level of analysis, empirical evidence reveals that the subjective perception of infection risk causes individuals to be more conformist, to prefer conformity and obedience in others, to respond more negatively toward others who fail to conform and to endorse more conservative socio-political attitudes,” the study states.

Additionally, a “societal level of analysis” reveals that in countries and cultures with a historically higher prevalence of diseases, “people are less individualistic, exhibit lower levels of dispositional openness to new things, are more likely to conform to majority opinion.” These cultures strongly endorse moral values that emphasise group loyalty, obedience, and respect for authority.

Simply put, where there is a high prevalence of parasitic diseases the resulting stress on human health is likely to result in the emergence of authoritarian forms of governance. The researchers note that this effect is consistent with previous research which also found “pathogen prevalence” was uniquely linked to conformist attitudes and personality traits. The researchers examined the effects of malnutrition, warfare, and famine, finding that only the threat of famine and pathogens correlate with authoritarian governance.

 “This conclusion is consistent also with psychological evidence showing that, while other threats can also influence individuals’ conformist and ethnocentric attitudes, the perceived threat of infectious disease has effects that are empirically unique,” the researchers write.

Another study referenced by Pathogens and Politics delves further into the psychology behind perceived threats and conformity. The study, Threat(s) and conformity deconstructed: Perceived threat of infectious disease and its implications for conformist attitudes and behaviour, found that the threat of disease “may trigger conformist attitudes” in the population at large.

For this study, the researchers used two methodological strategies to examine the effects of disease threat on conformist attitudes and behaviour. First, they examined the impact on individuals by focusing on chronic individual differences in Perceived Vulnerability to Disease (“PVD”). To do this they tested whether individuals who felt more chronically vulnerable to infectious disease also exhibited more strongly conformist attitudes and behaviour.

“Importantly, we also tested whether these predicted correlations remained when statistically controlling for individual differences in concerns pertaining to other (disease-irrelevant) threats,” they write.

What they discovered was that when the threat of infectious disease was prominent the population expressed “greater liking for people with conformist traits and exhibited higher levels of behavioural conformity.” However, there was no comparable increase in conformist attitudes as a result of temporary threats that were not related to disease.

“These results support the hypothesis that the perceived threat of infectious disease exerts an especially potent (and perhaps psychologically unique) influence on individuals’ conformist attitudes and behaviour.”

Disturbingly, the study found that an individual’s perception of vulnerability to infection does not necessarily need to be rooted in reality to produce a profound psychological effect. If an individual perceives they are vulnerable to infection they tend to prefer conformity and accept authoritarian measures, even if they are not actually under threat. “Our experimental manipulation focused on perception, not reality,” the researchers note.

When it comes to society as a whole, the researchers found there may also be consequences that impact entire populations.

“A disease epidemic, or even the perceived threat of an epidemic (such as the H1N1 outbreak of 2009), may lead to temporarily higher levels of conformity within populations and may dispose individuals within those populations to respond more harshly to normative transgressions.”

This field of research clearly indicates the empirical evidence for authoritarian governance and conformist mindsets in response to a perceived threat of infection from a disease. If one takes a step back and examines the results of these studies and the events currently playing out around the world, it’s clear the hypothesis is being proven during the Covid panic.

Republished from The Last American Vagabond, 20 August 2020

Authoritarianism Emerges in Response to Threats of Pandemics and Famine
Share this page to Telegram
5 1 vote
Article Rating
Subscribe
Notify of
guest
16 Comments
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Rob
Rob
17 days ago

Yep the 8th beast is rising out of the sea due to all the authoritarianism pushed by this harlot:

https://sumofthyword.com/2021/01/07/mystery-babylon-the-great-and-her-beast/

trackback
17 days ago

[…] Go to Source Follow altnews.org on Telegram […]

fooobs
fooobs
17 days ago

I tried reading it but it began to get creepy. To all “scientists”: Does it ever occur to you that some people don’t want you doing your frankenstein thing all over the place?

Lancer
Lancer
Reply to  fooobs
17 days ago

You would think everyone, even these so-called “scientists” would have at least watched the film and poignant warning from Dr. Malcolm in Jurassic Park in what’s become a classic piece of dialogue..

“scientists were so preoccupied with whether or not they could, they didn’t stop to think if they should.”

Edit: thinking about it even the additional dialogue is just as pertinent..

He goes on.. “I’ll tell you the problem with the scientific power that you’re using here – It didn’t require any discipline to attain it. You read what others had done and you took the next step. You didn’t earn the knowledge for yourselves, so you don’t take any responsibility… for it. You stood on the shoulders of geniuses, to accomplish something as fast as you could, and before you even knew it, you’ve patented it, and packaged it, and slapped it on..[…]”

Well, it doesn’t take much soul searching to fill in the appropriate snake oil substances to fill that gap there.

Last edited 17 days ago by Lancer
trackback
17 days ago

[…] Read More: Authoritarianism Emerges in Response to Threats of Pandemics and Famine […]

trackback
17 days ago

[…] Authoritarianism Emerges in Response to Threats of Pandemics and Famine While the rise of authoritarianism as the result of a declared global pandemic may seem an unusual response to such an event, there is actually decades worth of research describing why we are witnessing this growth of tyranny.  For example, the study ‘Pathogens and Politics: Further Evidence That Parasite Prevalence Predicts Authoritarianism’, provides a deeper understanding of how humans react to perceived threats and how that relates to the type of government the people will accept. […]

trackback
17 days ago

[…] Authoritarianism Emerges in Response to Threats of Pandemics and Famine  While the rise of authoritarianism as the result of a declared global pandemic may seem an unusual response to such an event, there is actually decades worth of research describing why we are witnessing this growth of tyranny.  For example, the study ‘Pathogens and Politics: Further Evidence That Parasite Prevalence Predicts Authoritarianism’, provides a deeper understanding of how humans react to perceived threats and how that relates to the type of government the people will accept. […]

Abbi Shylock
Abbi Shylock
15 days ago

The PCR test was calibrated on Influenza.
The PCR test gave a Positive or Negative depending on the method used.
The Pandemic was a mixture of computer simulation modelling and PCR test results.
The Covid variants were computer simulation terms.
The recently altered definition for ‘pandemic’ means not 1 death is necessary, nor does the contagion need to be virulent.

trackback
12 days ago

[…] thrives during global pandemics. It is a natural phenomenon that relates to the type of government people are willing to accept in reaction to perceived […]

trackback
12 days ago

[…] shown how tyranny thrives during global pandemics. It is a natural phenomenon that relates to the type of government people are willing to accept in reaction to perceived […]

trackback
12 days ago

[…] shown how tyranny thrives during global pandemics. It is a natural phenomenon that relates to the type of government people are willing to accept in reaction to perceived […]

trackback
9 days ago

[…] shown how tyranny thrives during global pandemics. It is a natural phenomenon that relates to the type of government people are willing to accept in reaction to perceived […]

trackback
6 days ago

[…] Authoritarianism Emerges in Response to Threats of Pandemics and Famine  While the rise of authoritarianism as the result of a declared global pandemic may seem an unusual response to such an event, there is actually decades worth of research describing why we are witnessing this growth of tyranny.  For example, the study ‘Pathogens and Politics: Further Evidence That Parasite Prevalence Predicts Authoritarianism’, provides a deeper understanding of how humans react to perceived threats and how that relates to the type of government the people will accept. […]