Author Stephen King in front of a hypnotic swirl.

How else do you think he went from America’s most dynamic storyteller to tiresome liberal cat lady?

Who can deny that Stephen King is a preternaturally talented author? He’s written a remarkable number of books that are both masterpieces of gripping fiction and gems of Americana—especially in the first half of his career. Whether it’s Christine, The Stand, The Shawshank Redemption, or some other weirdly engrossing tale, if you haven’t read, and loved, at least one or two Stephen King books, you’re the exception among literate adults in the English-speaking world.

The question is: How do we reconcile the man’s unqualified brilliance in the realm of storytelling with his unqualified buffoonery as a political opinionater—particularly as we see his opinions expressed on Twitter? How can a man capable of probing the depths of our psyches and leading us down any path he chooses also be a clownish fanboy for the likes of Rachel Maddow and Joe Biden?

The answer is that Stephen King was hypnotized.

No, really.

And, at the risk of offending some who might read this, the more specific answer is that Stephen King was hypnotized in a manner peculiar to the baby boomer generation.

The training received by people born between ’46 and ’64

I saw it happen to a number of otherwise pragmatic and impressive boomers in the Obama era, and I saw those same boomers go “death con 3” in the Trump era. What we are discussing, it should be made clear, is not King and his boomer cohorts actively being in trance states, but rather, these people acting out post-hypnotic suggestions—which are, as the name indicates, suggestions made while subjects are hypnotized, which are intended to have effects once the subjects come out of their trances.

It works like this: A controlled and unified mass media, since at least the 1960s, has been relentlessly imposing certain narratives and images on the public consciousness. The narratives and images are not logical propositions, they are stories, with heroes and villains, in which a particular model of morality is presumed. Certain attitudes and types of characters are depicted as being “on the wrong side of history,” while opposite attitudes and types of characters are depicted as being the essence of “progress.”

Then, when events take place that resemble the narratives and imagery the boomers have internalized—such as the rise of “civil rights hero” Obama, or the rise of “fascist” Trump—it triggers preprogrammed responses. The hypnotic subjects don’t know precisely why certain people and political developments stir such powerful emotions in them, they only know that they are suddenly taken by a compulsion to either loudly announce their approval or leap to their feet and perform a two minutes hate.

But are they really hypnotized?

Whether people such as King have literally been hypnotized cannot really be questioned. It’s well known that we are in some form of trance-state while captivated by television programs, and other media can obviously have a similar effect. The media we are discussing gets past our logic filters because, once again, the arguments made are not really arguments. They are tightly focused human-interest stories. As Stalin famously said, one death is a tragedy, but one million deaths is a statistic. We humans want answers, not raw data. We seek ready-made summaries to inform snap decisions, not masses of information that often lead only to more questions.

Harrowing fictional tales, carefully selected news reports, etc., which feature evil white males and all the gentle and long-suffering victims of evil white males, are all the “data” people like King have ever absorbed, and all people like King need to know—or are even capable of knowing.

So … Is the man Insane?

The compulsion to virtue signal, with almost complete disregard for context or appropriateness, is understandable in millennials, who never knew a world that was not thoroughly liberalized, and who have usually not been subjected to the struggles and tensions that define other generations.

Stephen King tweets that trans women are women

But in people like King, who grew up in a world of traditional values, traditional sex roles, etc.—and who once took those things for granted (as we can see in King’s early work)—the total collapse into wokeness is a strange thing to witness. It’s almost inexplicable, in fact, except as a literal form of insanity.

But then, that’s what we’re getting at, isn’t it? King’s rabid, far-left partisanism is a literal form of insanity. A case of post-hypnotic suggestion causing an ongoing break with reality. Like one of his own literary creations, the author is a sort of zombie, acting out urges he is incapable of looking at directly, let alone questioning, let alone subduing. He has simply internalized too much media that carries the same message—that straight white men are evil and everyone else is a victim of straight white men. To even consider that this isn’t true is to become the subject of the message. To be an apologist for evil, and an oppressor of women, minorities, gays, etc.

Rather than suffer this fate, and become one of them, King will double, triple, and quadruple down on any and all woke positions.

He has no choice in the matter.

By Matthew Louis

Founding editor of Out of the Gutter Magazine and Gutter Books. Author of The Wrong Man and Roots Down to Hell. Short stories published in a few places. Honorable mention in the Year's Best Mystery Stories. Other things...

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Dylan Cooke

I’ve really enjoyed a few King books. Especially The Stand. Perhaps they are blackmailing him? I see a lot of big stars in his position act just like him.

PJ Atwater

Nailed it. I’ve long had resentment toward the Boomers. I mean, your parents came home from killing Hitler and handed you the keys to the greatest economy in history. All you had to do was keep up the habits and values that made all that success possible.

Thanks to you, now I almost pity them.


Just a note: it’s not ‘death con 3.’ It is DEFCON 3, as in the 3rd level of DEFense CONdistion. DEFCON is a military acronym. 1-5 levels with 5 being normal peacetime operations; 3 being two stages before nukes start flying in DEFCON 1.

Here’s the link:


Ok…here’s my take on little Stevie King and his politics.

People imprint on the world around them in their teen years. Most people never update their imprint; the world is the way it was when they were 10-20 years of age. When Stevie King was coming up, the world was The War In Viet Nam, black people were oppressed cuz da racisms, oil companies (and by extension, all corporations) were greedy and evil, and the military was incompetent and untrustworthy. All these were reactions to the status quo of the preceding generation, for whom the government and military were paragons of trustworthiness, industry and capitalism were good and healthy, and the war against communism was essential to survival.

Stevie was like his generation: propagandized and molded to believe certain things. Stevie King has NEVER updated his OS. To him, all the ‘problems’ of his youth still exist and have never been dealt with. He sees his generation as traitors to the unrealistic expectations set in his youth.

He fully participated in the culture of his youth, including drugs and booze. He was a man of his time and continues to be so. The only problem is THIS AIN’T 1972 anymore. Stevie needs to catch up to that fact.

Stevie King is old now, still slamming the door and shouting “Fuck YOU, Dad” to a father that abandoned him. Still shouting about the environmental damage caused by industry, still hating the military that might take him off to fight in a war (which wasn’t much of a war, as far as such things go…), and who took his friends to go and fight. He’s stuck in the past. All old people are like that to some extent; we just see it in his case because he’s so famous, insulated, and out of touch with the current edition of Reality.


Interesting. My in-laws are boomers, though my own parents are a generation younger and, though both couples are devoutly Christian and politically conservative, it’s like my in-laws still take the “old world” for granted. They talk a big game about how bad things are, how bad the left is, but, for example, they still both got the C shot, even though they’ll say how they don’t like that it was endorsed by Bill Gates because of his depopulation comments, etc. It’s very strange to me. It’s like a weird naivete that seems ingrained in who they are. Maybe like hypnosis.

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