This gubernatorial candidate tried to hypnotize people into voting for him

Originally published at:


seems like a standard 70’s era gag to me.

Edit to add this gem from a year later as reported by the AP

By GREG MacARTHUR Associated Press Writer ATLANTA (AP) - Dec 7 1979
It could be the first political convention where one candidate says his running mate is God and the campaign of another is based on mass hypnotism

“There will be some nuts here,” said Nick Belluso. organizer of the first Presidential Kookie Candidate Convention “I just hope the press doesn’t dwell on them.” But Belluso, himself a candidate for president, insists that all who show up for Saturday’s convention are legal candidates for the nation’s highest office, having registered with the Federal Elections Commission.

Belluso, who filmed a television campaign commercial two years ago in which a hypnotist urged voters to elect him governor of Georgia, said there are more than 100 such little-known candidates for president this year, and 30 of them have promised to come to the convention. Space for the affair has been reserved at the Rheingarten Ballroom, a converted Atlanta supermarket, and Belluso said he has spent $2,000 promoting the affair.

“The candidates will be introduced and then they’ll each get to give their pitch,” the 57-year-old investment counselor said in an interview this week. “There will be no time limit on what they say,” he added. "But if people start throwing cabbage, they’d better get off the stage.’’

Belluso said some of the candidates who will come to the convention include John Graham, an Arkansas restaurant owner running under the banner of the Little People’s Party; Donald Badgley, a bearded, shepherd’s crook-carrying North Carolinian running because of a “vision, from God;” and Earl V. “Blackjack” Stevens of Lebanon, Mo., who claims to have raised $6.5 million for his campaign. Graham, in an interview from his home in Fort Smith, said he decided to run for office because “people coming to my restaurant said, ‘why don’t you do something about the government.’” There is no doubt in mind that I’m going to Washington, D.C., because I’ve’got something behind me that nobody understands God himself," he said. "I talk to him every day and he tells me, 'Go on, Graham. You can do it, "

Belluso said some of the candidates “are running as a gimmick,” but he insisted that many are “sincere and have been shut out of the political process by the party bosses and the press.” “I decided to use the word kookie because I knew it would draw the media,” Belluso said. “They’ll come out to see the freaks, but I think they’ll discover that some of these candidates really have something to offer.”

One network television show, NBC’s “Real People,” will film the convention, according to Judy Scott in Los Angeles, an assistant to the show’s producer. That delights Belluso, who said the theme for his convention is “be a kook, the clowns have run things long enough.”


Obligatory Frinkiac.


:frowning: He was too Kookie for Court

1 Like

Most politicians try to hypnotizing voters w/free things. At least this guy was up front about it.


Fun fact, broadcast regulations forbid hypnotism from being shown on TV in the UK (whether in ads or regular programming), and the Hypnotism Act 1952 forbids any public hypnotism without a license. There was a time when some people, notably Aldous Huxley, took the idea of political hypnosis pretty seriously.

It’s actually kind of interesting that it’s become such a non-concern. I guess, now that we’re so used to talking about psychology and marketing tricks and cult brainwashing and what not, hypnotism no longer seems like magic, so we don’t worry about being enslaved by a spinning disc in fifties B-movie fashion.

But the crazy thing there is – OK, stage hypnotism isn’t magic – but it still works. People can, in fact, easily manipulate other people into doing crazy things. It’s almost like we’ve decided that as long as we acknowledge that fact, we can just ignore its implications.


They always say “hypnotized people will never do anything against their will!” but I don’t know which is scarier: the notion that people are doing these things against their will, or that they are doing these stupid things voluntarily.




dilbert guy / this guy 2020




Hypnotism is not something you should just mess around with.


That show has been going downhill since season three!

1 Like

Look into my eyes, look into the eyes, the eyes, the eyes, not around the eyes, don’t look around the eyes, look into my eyes… (clicks) you’re under, VOTE FOR ME, 3, 2, 1, you’re back in the room.

1 Like

God, people are so stupid.

1 Like

See also: most Japanese game shows.

“I’ve never been to Branson”

Except for the ones who hypnotise people with the idea that tax cuts will make them better off.

Looks at British and US politicians

So that would be most of them, not the “free” things ones (who in my experience are up front about things not being free and needing taxes to fund them)

1 Like

Mr. Toad's Wild Ride in Swirl-O-Vision

This topic was automatically closed after 5 days. New replies are no longer allowed.