empty Couéism

Instead of criticising productively, he simply repudiates; he considers himself as a “materialist” when he throws out as “idealistic” such facts as “instinct,” “need” or “psychological process.” In doing so, he gets himself into the greatest difficulties and achieves only failure, for his political practice forces him constantly to use practical psychology; he cannot avoid talking about “human needs,” “revolutionary consciousness,” the “will to strike,” etc. The more he repudiates psychology, the more he himself practises metaphysical psychologism and worse, empty Coueism: he will explain a historical situation by a “Hitler psychosis” or will tell the masses they should trust in him, that things are going ahead in spite of everything, that the revolution cannot be beaten, etc. Finally he becomes a dispenser of illusory encouragement without even saying anything factual about existing conditions and without comprehending what has happened. He will never understand such facts as that political reaction does not know a hopeless situation or that an economic crisis may lead to barbarism as well as to social freedom. Instead of deriving theory and action from social reality, he changes reality, in his phantasy, to conform with his wishes.

Wilhelm Reich, Ideology as Material Power

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