Another Way To Contain The Emotional Plague

In the November 9-10, 2013 Wall Street Journal article, “What Mass Killers Want” by Ari N. Schulman, the author presents the personality profile of mass shooters and from the evidence compiled by the research states that their murderous acts are a kind of theater. “Fantasy, public expression and messaging are central to what motivates and defines massacre killers … Like terrorists, mass shooters can be seen, in a limited sense, as rational actors who know that if they follow the right steps they will produce the desired effect in the public consciousness…the perpetrators…are following a ready-made, free floating template for young men to resolve their rage and express their sense of personal grandiosity.”
He correctly concludes that “treating mass killings as a kind of epidemic or contagion largely frees us from having to understand the particular causes of each act. Instead we can focus on disrupting the spread.”

As a way to discourage future mass shootings, Schulman proposes that the killer must be deprived of an audience. He goes on to propose specific recommendations such as never publishing a shooters propaganda, hiding their faces and names and so on. What he is proposing is to deprive the energy behind the shooters motivation to carry out his destructive act.
Schulman’s “treatment” for the problem of mass shootings is correct because it is based on an accurate understanding of the dynamic forces operating in the minds of these killers.
His approach is an application of the medical-psychiatric model to social “diseases.”
In order to treat a disease an accurate understanding of it’s origin is necessary. Human destructiveness in the social realm of which mass shootings is one example, is a manifestation of people’s emotional sickness. It is the result of an actual bio-social disease called the emotional plague, the treatment of which I discuss in my book, The Emotional Plague, The Root of Human Evil,


  1. Depriving suspects, who take “credit” for such acts & admit guilt, of a public audience, is very different from depriving them of a legal audience. In cases where suspects claim innocence, depriving them of either is tantamount to depriving them of their natural rights as protected by the US Constitution. It may be arguable that there is no middle ground whether a suspect confesses or not, but middle ground from which perspective? Any public official, who has sworn an oath to defend the US Constitution from all threats foreign and domestic, who breaks that sworn oath, can be held as a traitor accountable for treason.

    As many of us know, our natural rights extend beyond those protected by the US Constitution, so we have to exercise all of them in order to keep them in shape enough to defend them ourselves.

  2. Dear Dr. Konia, something completely off topic:

    On May 29, 2012 you wrote in a comment to From The History Of The Emotional Plague: The Solution Of Liberalism

    Occasionally, Communists are able to see the folly of their leftist ideology and give it up. These people make the best anti-Communists. I wish I could understand how this happens.

    My question: Is there a real change, at all? Communists (or rather Trotskyites) may have turned “neo-conservative” but did they REALLY change?

    To quote Michael Lind:

    I stand by the observation that there is a distinct Trotskyist political culture, which shows its residual influence even on individuals who renounced Trotskyism or who were never Trotskyists but inherited this political culture from their parents or older mentors. An unusual belligerence in foreign policy combined with a desire to export “revolution” (first socialist, and then, among ex-Trotskyists who move to the liberal center or the Right, the “global democratic revolution” (…)) distinguishes these ex-Trots and inheritors of ex-Trot political culture from other kinds of conservatives and liberals (…). Not only in the U.S. but in Britain and continental Europe, ex-Trots have tended to go from advocating promotion of socialist revolution to promoting liberal or democratic revolution. (…)

    See more at:

    The question is whether the Conservative movement was taken hostage by people who characterologically are still Communists fighting for “heaven on Earth?” Did they fool genuine Conservatives into policies which were anything but conservative?

  3. This is a very dangerous idea. The public has a right to know who is doing what, and witholding that information from them strikes at the roots of democracy. And to vest in psychiatrists the power to determine public policy is to grant them more power than is safe for anyone to be trusted with.

    A psychiatrist cannot make a valid diagnosis of someone he has never met and has not examined. Attempting to diagnose a whole group of people who may have nothing in common except a single action at a single point in their lives solely on the basis of news media reports is impossible and more resembles racial or religious stereotyping than medical practice.

    A teenager who is being bullied and tormented in school may be angry enough to want to kill his tormenters, but have no interest in if his name gets in the papers or not. He just wants to kill the people who are making his life miserable. He will not be detered by the threat to withold his name from the press. His anger is rational and there is nothing sick about wanting to kill people who are subjecting you to torture. The solution in such a case, as Reich’s friend, Neil, would have recomened and I am sure Reich would have agreed, would be to allow him to quit school instead of threatening him with years of imprisonment in a juvenile detention facility for truancy if he avoids the place where he is being tormented.

    A Palestinian who is angry at Jews for the actions of the Israeli army is likewise not concerned with getting his own name in the papers. He wants to punish those he regards as responsible for crimes against people he identifies with. He is not interested in publicity and will not abandon his quest for revenge because of a policy of not publishing names of people who seek to avenge wrongs done to their compatriots. Such strong identification with a group may not be entirely rational, but is common enough, in the form of patriotism and ethnic loyalties, that the majority of the population in most countries feels the same way and would act in the same manner if the group they happen to identify with was being subjected to repression and murderous attacks. The Jewish revenge squads that roamed Europe for two years after World War Two, asassinating ex-Nazis are an example of political motivation to seek revenge for perceived atrocities against a group with whom the avenger identifies by another group whom he holds responsible.

    This notion that anyone who takes such action is only trying to get attention and would not act in such a way if he was assured he would not get any is akin to the popular advice to parents a few generations ago that an infant who cries is only trying to gain attention and should be ignored so he will learn not to make a pest of himself for no good reason. That advice has now been suplanted by a realization that an infant who cries is expressing distress and the best way to handle the situation is to deal with the cause of the distress, not to treat the symptom of crying as the problem.

    There is a great danger in treating social actions as a product of mental illness instead of as rational choices. If this was the commonly accepted principle, the inevitable end result would be the railroading of any form of political disenters into mental institutions, as was done in the late, unlamented Soviet Union. Psychiatrist are not infalible and do not have the expertise to make medical judgements about whole groups of people whom they have not personally examined and about whose motives they cannot possibly know anything except what is made public in the media.

    • From a functional perspective, it makes perfect sense to withhold this information from the public. It draws off the energy source from the emotional plague, the motivation for the destructive act.

  4. I am not sure whether this is off topic, again, but here in Germany the cross-country public railway system is plagued by suicides by throwing oneself in front of a train. It is a real plague causing chaos in the transport system. The only way to curb it is to keep it a secret so that suicidal persons do not get “inspired”. It is official policy to never report it. One might, foolishly, call this “censorship.” “The public has a right to know!” Some years ago a famous soccer player committed suicide that way, which had to be reported widely – and all hell broke loose because for days the number tripled from, I believe, 8 to 24 incidents a day. One could forget about using the train! – And it’s literally a kind of emotional plague because some train engineers need psychiatric help, some have even to quit their jobs because of severe traumatization, and even for rescue service and medics its ruff emotionally. There is hardly anything more sadistic than this kind of suicide.

    • It is rational to draw off energy in the form of information that encourages expression of the emotional plague. Armored society’s need this form of repression in order to exist.

      • This is perhaps the most direct approach to the biophysical origin of the problem, but not something to be entered lightly. Reich wrote often both of the need to “sequester” illness from spreading, and of the need for international regulation of cosmic orgone engineering. Without more basic information understood about the functions of biological energy & its media, on a wide enough scale for the information to be considered popular, the procedure could be no more than, at best, experimental, & at worst, about as safe as the first ORANUR experiment with radium.

        The participants who took ill with ORANUR & early cloudbusting experiments were aware of their rights & responsibilities, & many though not all of the risks, before they volunteered to engage in the experiment. In the same vein that, without looking at a problem, one cannot hope to remedy it, and in as much as radiation was affecting global weather already before ORANUR was discovered, censorship is already a global source of emotional plague, whether we further aggravate it in order better to understand it or not.

        America’s laws are already structured such that many of the most corrupt are also voluntary, like a Federal Graduated Income Tax that pays nothing more than the interest on the debt to the Globalist Banking Cartel known as The Federal Reserve Bank. The main problems are that volunteers are NEITHER AWARE OF THEIR RIGHTS NOR RESPONSIBILITIES, NOR MOST OF THE RISKS BEFORE THEY VOLUNTEER, NOR DO THE HAVE THE ALTERNATIVE OF OPTING OUT ONCE THEY VOLUNTEER if they decide the social experiment is not for them.

        Because of this trend of deceit used to feed the institutionalized plague of the Agri-Petro-Pharmaco-Banking-Military-Prison-Industrial-Slave complex, it is arguable that we need to restore transparency in government before we censor any information. Pictures leaked from Abu Ghraib inspired many fewer people to despotism than to free press. Hitler’s Mein Kampf still has its popular fan following, but censoring the book, or worse, burning it the same way its author burned so many others, could only make the situation worse, with people rushing to help the underdog, and those wanting to defend themselves against its precepts having no way of gaining further knowledge of them.

        Energy functions differently in differing media, & I am often reminded of the quote from the documentary film Viva, Little Man, when Heiko Lassek, late medical doctor in Berlin, expressed the need for “full knowledge of all material used.” This goes for the orgone accumulator as much as any other medium, including “The People,” and any public information, which is their property, being withheld from them.

      • I think it important to use the phrase repression and suppression together in this case because it implies not only external restraint but the simultaneous idea of internal restraint which is so lacking in our “anti-authority” society. Even though the mass murder lacks the capacity to self restrain for the most part, I think it is important to include the idea of suppression in conjunction with repression as far as the education of the public goes.

        Not only armored society but any society needs the ability to repress information that encourages emotional plague activity. I think that the idea of unarmored society emerging from a historical lengthy period of armored existence is difficult to imagine at best. What would be more attainable for armored humankind would be the idea of many unarmored individuals (over the course of time) having a life positive effect of their immediate environment. This is the best we can hope for in the short and mid term (i.e. decades/centuries).

        While it is important to safeguard the concept of the unarmored individual, the reference to unarmored society, in my opinion, can only lead to a mystical, unattainable longing for something that has no real definition or form for the masses of humanity.It is unfortunately a numbers game when it comes to healthy individuals being able to create a healthy environment in which to exist. Once the numbers get to the billions, the possibilities for a healthy unarmored society decreases drastically. I think it was Baker who wrote that an unarmored world may not be possible due to the materialistic needs of the masses. He may have stated it differently but I think this was the gist of what he wrote.

    • Anyone who is so influenced by a famous entertainer that they would imitate his suicide is no great loss. Let them go ahead and do it if they want to.

      Instead of keeping such incidents a secret, it might be more effective to use them as a teaching experience to explain to the public the reasons behind these actions and the alternatives that the deceased could have chosen if he had known about them.

      Many suicides would have made a different choice if they had known of help that was available. Such an incident could serve as a chance to publicize social services, conflict resolution programs, substance abuse programs, medical euthanasia for the terminally ill, and other help that many people are in need of but not aware of.

      The same goes for mass kilers. At least some of them could be prevented by making the public more aware of alternative ways to solve their grievences. Teenagers could be allowed to drop out of a school where they are being tormented by bullies instead of being forced to stay until they are driven to strike back. Members of pòlitically disenfranchised minorities could be given ways to express their anger at their oppressors through more equitable political insititutions, and assurances that the politcal system has not forgotten them.

      There may be some truth to this theory that SOME such cases are doing “theater”, but not all of them. Many have other reasons, including real injustices that could be solved instead of sweeping them under a carpet and concealing them from the public. And the best way to address the issue of real grievences is to deal with the causes, not the symptom.

      • This is not a call for censorship but for social self-defense. For example every journalist in Washington, D.C. knew about Kennedys affairs but nobody turned them into news because this is not the way to treat the leader of a nation. Not to report about these perversities was a gentlemen’s agreement when the authoritarian society was still intact, i.e. the secondary layer was still under control. With Clinton they reported every dirty detail with the effect that literally millions of teenagers became confused about what “sex” means. A big triumph of the emotional plague, advertisement for the secondary layer, with horrific consequences for the sex-economy of a whole generation. The same with suicides and even terrorist attacks. These are all non-news or, rather, should be treated as such. Its equivalent to Reich’s approach during sexpol times: he refused to discuss perversions in public but only in private with those who needed psychiatric advice. Today it’s the freedom-peddling opposite: perversions are discussed publicly while genitality has become a taboo (its politically incorrect). For example I applaud Putin’s “censorship” regarding “homosexual propaganda” wholeheartedly. Armored man feels attracted to the emotional plague thus the only way to fight the plague is to sequester it even by pretending it does not exist. Today the liberal media pretend that they are critical and Jeffersonian but, in reality, they are just enjoying evil and try the spread it. Today’s journalists are, almost to the last man, emotional plague characters.

  5. I never met a teenager who did not know what sex is. When I was in high school, a lot of kids were confused on a lot of things, but not on that one.

    You really need to talk to a few teenagers sometimne and ask them what they know about sex.

    You give the office of president far too much importance. No teenager is so impressed by whoever happens to hold it that their sex lives are influenced by what such a person says or does.

    Teenagers do not regard a president as an important figure and do not care what one does. The adults they consider important are more likely to be sports stars and entertainers, not political office-holders. If any of them were even paying attention to what someone as unimportant as a president of the United States was doing, it would have been to laugh at his getting caught with his pants down, and then to laugh even harder at his trying to squirm out of it by silly word games that they know would never work for them with their own parents or school officials.

    And most of them know more about what sex is than he does.

    • Experts say the reason for the shift in attitude toward oral sex is partially due to our sex-soaked culture. The Monica Lewinsky and Bill Clinton scandal made oral sex seem more acceptable, and some teens have used it as an excuse for their behavior, according to Lynn Ponton, a psychiatrist at UC San Francisco. “Kids tell me over and over in my office, ‘The president did it.'”

      See “also” Dr. Apple in the JofO 42,2,52-53:

      A few years ago another reliable female student, a ninth grader, told a story of coming back to school on a team bus following an athletic event. She was surprised to hear many of the girls on the bus discussing oral sex in casual, but animated, superficial terms. Instead of gossiping about whether or not Susie would be kissing Jimmy on their date, they were contactlessly discussing the pros and cons of giving him a “BJ”—a “blow job”—when they “hooked up,” sharing pointers on “how to do it” and “how really great it is.” The girl in question declared that she would want to wait until at least the third encounter with this boy. On another occasion a few years back, a male student, when asked about his comment about preferring oral sex, stated with a smile that “if it’s good enough for the President [Clinton], then it’s good enough for me.”

      • If a person is healthy to begin with, nothing in the news media will have much influence on them that way. Nobody is going to take up any particular form of sex just because they read about it in the papers. I suspect the reason some kids may cite Clinton having done it is that they think that precedent will favorably influence their judgemental elders, not that they care themselves what he did.

        Oral sex is usually regarded by teenagers as a second-best stop-gap measure, a form of lesser, but safer sexual satisfaction, not the thing they really want, but something they will settle for because it avoids the risk of pregnancy and allows a girl to still consider herself a virgin.

        Another possible factor in the rise of oral sex instead of actual copulation is the relentless propaganda to the effect that sex causes AIDS. Some teenagers may make the quite logical mistake of thinking they can avoid that risk by avoiding ” sex “, by which they mean actual intercourse, and engaging in a subsitute form of gratification instead.

        As Reich pointed out long ago, in Der sexuelle Kampf der Jugend, education, in particular, education that takes a positive atitude toward natural, healthy sexual activity for adolescents, is the best approach to the issue of alternative, less satisfactory, forms of sexuality. Blaming one particular form of sexual activity on kids reading about it in the media and advocating the media not print anything about the sexual activites of public figures is not a solution.

      • I should add that oral sex is hardly on the radar for teenagers today. The burning issues they are most often asking about are if S&M relationships are all right between parties who consent, and if trans-sexuals should be treated according to their physical sex or the gender they choose for themselves regardless of what physical bodies they happen to have.

  6. In his major socio-political works, The Mass Psychology of Fascism, The Sexual Revolution, The Break-in of Sexual Morals, etc., Reich described the effects on political ideologies of the living conditions of young adults forced into un-natural abstinence because they could not afford to leave their parent’s home and establish their own, or were for other reasons limited in their power to choose their own life-styles. He finds this abstinence the underlying cause of religious and nationalistic ideologies that agitate against sexuality, and substitute gratifications such as nationalistic chauvinism, team sports, Hollywood movie fantasies, and fantasies about famous celebrities, al of which prevent development of the independent character that folows initiation of an adult sexual role.

    In the article included in Character Analysis in which Reich first presented the concept of the Emotional Plague Character as a specific diagnosis, he goes into great detail in describing the syndrome, but says nothing about what causes it. In fact, what he does say implicates the currently existing sex-starvation of the plague character as the motivation for the plague behavior, not long-ago childhood experiences.

    Reich says little or nothing in his socio-political writings of the personal armor formed in early childhood as a factor in determining adult political positions. He seems to expect that an adolescent who is able to find both a suitable mate and an environment that allows their relationship to develop will grow out of any earlier armoring and develop into an independent-minded adult.

    It was only much later, after the birth of his son, Peter, that Reich devoted much attention to infancy and early childhood development. But he does not ever say, anywhere, that an individual, whatever his early childhood experiences, cannot reach adult character development if the proper conditions exist in adolescence.

    There has been a strong tendency in orgonomy, especially in America, to forget about the window of oportunity presented by adolescence and concentrate on armor formed in childhood as the most important cause of adult neurosis, including political irrationalities. There may be a basis for this in treating individual patients in a medical setting, but when it comes to “treating” a whole society, any possibility of affecting widespread cultural childrearing practices must somehow convince the adults first, and since they are already firmly established in their armored patterns and the rationaizations for retaining them, that remains unlikely to happen.

    On the other hand, teen-agers are able to fight for their own rights and establish their own life-styles if given a minimal amount of help and encouragement by a few concerned adults. This opens a way to practical action to change the age-old culture which cannot be done if already damaged adults must first be convinced to change how they act toward children. An orgonomic attempt to reach adolescents is long overdue.

    The United States Government currently spends $176,000,000 a year on a Federal program to get teenagers to sign a Contract With God not to have sex until they are married. Both parties support this boondogle because it buys votes in the Bible Belt. While it is not working very well, it is undoubtedly adding to the anxieties of many young people and harming their chances of ever becoming rational adults. An orgonomic intervention of some sort, probably in the form of an educational website aimed at teenagers, could go a long way towards countering such malign influences.

    While I agree that both extremes of the political spectrum are equally deranged, the individuals who occupy those extremes are a very small number compared to the vast majority. And Reich tells us that the real issue in history is the psychology of the masses, not that of the few individuals like Hitler or Stalin who are only put into positions of power by the masses. It is not the relatively few emotional plague personalities we need to be concerned about, but the majority who listen to them and follow their lead.

  7. Please listen carefully to this video because it delineates exactly how the EP operates these days and how to discern the EP character of today. They want to confuse you about their real identity, i.e., by posing as friends of orgonomy presenting a “more ballanced” view than Dr. Konia:

  8. A simpy BRILLIANT example of how to deal with the emotional plague:

  9. Peter, I think that this is an example of how to confront the EP in the “micro”. and it should be commended. Unfortunately it is in the “macro” where the EP needs to be confronted and neutralized if there is to be any hope of real containment.

    By the micro, I mean in a specific social the one in this video and by the macro, I mean in the society at large.

    The U.S., is currently “infected” with a manifestation of the EP called “political correctness”. Until the destructiveness of PC is dealt with and repudiated by the majority for the danger it poses to healthy life both in the individual and in the society at large, the courage of Ben Shapiro in this video and all the other individual courageous voices will be for naught.

    Dr Carson has spoken on the danger of PC and many others over the last few years have pointed out its destructiveness.. Even Jerry Seinfeld, in a recent interview, got angry because of a comment from an interviewer which he sloughed off as “PC nonsense”.

    As long as the majority of people remain willing to accept a clearly visible and identifiable destructive manifestation of the EP (i.e.PC) then I think that we can accurately conclude that we are not ready to confront the EP in any real and practical way.

    I don’t think that the general public needs to understand what the EP actually is to be rallied to repudiate something so antithetical to healthy social life in the U.S.

    Whether or not there remains enough health in the population at large.and enough leaders with sufficient health and courage to lead the charge, only time will tell

    I went off on this “tangent”, not as a criticism of your comment or the video that you posted but because of my own personal frustration with regards to the lack of co-ordination against the EP despite the many individuals who do stand up to the EP on a daily basis.

    Health is always playing catch up to disease – an unfortunate truth of life


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