Scapegoating – The Psychology of Family/Group Dynamics

SGUK Podcast Episode 36 – 20/02/22



Todays podcast, expands on topics we have previously discussed in the SGUK podcasts to date, ie Dysfunctional family dynamics, Group Dynamics, in particular the levels of control and how hatred and discriminatory behaviour patterns begin to merge, and how there is a wealth of academic research into how the hatred grows, and the levels in the structure dictate the application of that professed hatred.  We explored how those that progress through the ranks of their group structure, emerges as a validation of their worth in their own eyes, and feel that there is a level of camaraderie and friendship that does not exist outside that bubble.  There is a general feeling that anyone outside of the group is a threat in some way, and the delusion grows into dangerous proportions with time and progression through the group.  We also looked at how narcissists function in such a structure, and the mixing of the various behaviours at play, form a very toxic ticking time bomb.  We looked at a number of academic models and their application out in the working environments.  Examples were given of how for example, the FBI use a range of tools which help to identify patterns and growth in certain groups behaviour, that have remained on their radar as a result.  The range of tools include two of the models that we discussed and which I will refresh your memories with images of the two models in question, later in this article. I have also revisited family dynamics and in particular the British Royal Family and its treatment of Harry and Meghan, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex and debated the accurate reasons for the type of scrutiny and treatment of the Sussexes, as opposed to the official reasons given by way as a supposed rationale.  I will revisit briefly the role of Royal Reporters in this framework of hunter and prey activity, which stems from the top of the societal structure, and how it has encouraged people who are not deemed to be in those elite groups of society, but who have been emboldened to pursue targeted prey, not least because they see it happening every day at the top levels in UK society, and to make it even better for them, they have discovered that inciting hatred is income generating for these groups, and it is condoned by the social media platforms that they operate on, because they also make huge profits from that activity.

All in all, the top tier societal groups, feel confident to continue with their activity, because people who are doing most of the day to day roll out of this hunter and prey activity, are people that none of the top societal groups care about, and are more than happy to watch the working class and a few who think they come from better stock to lead the way in these social media groups that have formed over the last 5 years, and will sit back and declare that they have nothing to do with this activity if the day ever comes where it looks like they do. The social media platforms have no incentive to take any action against hate inciting accounts.  The pull of the huge income generation overrides any form of moral code; it will require a change in the law, with heavy penalties before even a small amount of monitoring takes place.

The emergence of Chris Bouzy the CEO of Bot Sentinel has proved it can be done.  Bot Sentinel have done more in a few months, than any of the large social media platforms over the last five years.  To date only GETTR a small social media platform in comparison to the giants pulling in the millions on the back of hate activity, has stepped up to the plate.  I am encouraged to see and hear Prince Harry refer to the work of Bot Sentinel last year, in a forum of technical experts on the issues and implications and dangers of the current growth of cyber bullying taking place globally now.  It is encouraging to know that Bot Sentinel’s work is being discussed in those types of forums, and we can only hope that Chris Boouzy is invited to join that forum in the near future, because what has been achieved in months by Chris and his team, proves what can be done and must be causing some discomfort with shareholders of the current social media platforms, because deep down, they know things will have to change.  Well done to Chris and his team.  I will put links to Bot Sentinel various reports in the Reference sources below.

Framework of Podcast

“In families with one or more narcissistic members, the dynamics are inherently dysfunctional. Children often grow up feeling confused, insecure, and afraid. They may not know who to trust, and they usually blame themselves for the problems occurring at home.

Many times, a narcissist will use scapegoats to project their anger. Family Scapegoats allow them to displace all the blame onto something else. Rather than own personal accountability over their actions, the narcissist can continue to live how they normally live without any real consequences. Let’s get into what you should know.”[i]

What Are Family Scapegoat Children/Adults?

“Family scapegoating refers to the group dynamic where everyone blames one person for the dysfunctional family. Instead of looking at all the potential factors in a particular situation, the family can quickly assume one person has caused the distress.”

There are a number of reasons given in the reference material below, but one of the reasons is:-

  • Children who naturally rebel against the family’s structure.


Sometimes scapegoated children start out as golden children, but it can just take one event to change all of that.  Again a few reasons are stated in the report, but one of them immediately jumped out for me, and it was this one:-

  • The child becomes “too successful” which results in narcissistic jealousy.
  • “Siblings become highly competitive with one another to gain the narcissist’s approval. Rather than bond and connect, they aim to tear each other down. The prize – winning the narcissist’s attention- becomes their top priority.”

“Scapegoats often try to escape their pain in various ways. They may turn to certain vices like drugs or alcohol in an effort to numb their feelings. Likewise, because they’ve often been told they’re “bad” or “useless,” they may assume they’re doomed to addictive behaviour.”

“Family Scapegoats often desperately want a sense of power and control over their lives.”

If the scapegoat escapes, “usually the narcissist continues to blame, complain, and insult the scapegoat. They often talk about the scapegoat incessantly, even if they have been out of the home for years. Any present issue can be traced back to the scapegoat. “

“If they have marital problems, they’ll turn to the scapegoat for causing so much stress. “

“The child often feels like the parent wants nothing to do with them. But once they go no contact, the parent suddenly becomes extremely interested in their whereabouts. Many times, the parent begins hoovering excessively to gain entry back into their life.

The hoovering often involves some form of gaslighting. The narcissist may deny ever harming their child. They might insist on how much they love and care about them. At times, they may even beg for forgiveness and make lofty promises to change. “

“The golden child may start acting up once the scapegoat goes no-contact. They may feel resentful that their sibling  has “broken free” from the cycle of abuse. Golden children are under immense pressure to remain perfect- the scapegoat’s absence only reinforces this pressure.”

“Many scapegoats benefit reaching out for professional support. Therapy can help you understand your family dynamics and improve your confidence. It also offers you a safe place where you can explore your feelings without judgment or recourse. If you struggle with mental health issues or addiction, it’s important to gain the appropriate coping skills to manage these issues. “

“Some people may also get confused by a parent’s public persona. For example, if a parent appears to be loving in front of an audience, the idea that this person could be abusive in private may result in cognitive dissonance. “[ii]

The Psychology of Groups (Including Families) Who Choose a Target to be Their Scapegoat

Some of you may recall that I did a podcast on Narcissistic groups, and how they can home in on one target, and for that period of activity, they cease to operate as individual narcissists but move as one organism or group with the same aim, in terms of the objective relating to their target – or in this case, the description is interchangeable with their chosen scapegoat.  A quoted section of that podcast is as follows:-

“What Is Collective Narcissism?

One of the reference sources I used is Goldsmiths University, in the City of London.  One quote from its website on the subject is this:-

“Collective narcissism is defined as an emotional investment in a belief in the unparalleled greatness of an in-group contingent on external validation.

It is a group level, equivalent of individual narcissism. Its focus is on grandiosity and entitlement of an in-group rather than the self. People can be collective narcissistic about any group they belong to. We researched collective in context of national ethnic, religious, football fans and gender groups. As well as mundane social groups such as university peers.”

We tend to hear a lot about individual narcissistic behaviour, and for our purposes, think here of the British Royal Family members – particularly those high in the Line of Succession.  Think also of UK media and the behaviour and quite frankly an obvious campaign ordered by the BRF (something admitted on Australian tv recently by one of the Markle clan) along with other individuals from the same family popping up from their holes with the total aim of making money from the hardship and mayhem they were trying to achieve to disrupt Harry and Meghan’s marriage.  Individually they each had money as their binding collective aim, and whilst they may have had different ideals in terms of the potential income to be earned from causing pain to a couple, the unified aim was to ensure that the Family should benefit from the ties of one of their relatives with Royal connections, and it mattered not that they had no face to face contact with that relative for over a decade, and prior to that interaction was far from good.  Throughout that period of face to face contact, and in the years since they reared their head again in 2016, they moved as one unit in considering themselves more important than the black woman and her mom that they disrespected and treated badly, because they were Caucasian.  In their minds, the end goal justified the means.  Their relative was dehumanised and became something like an old toy that was thrown away and forgotten about, until they realised it was valuable.  Suddenly photos from Meghan’s childhood appeared in the media, but strangely enough, nothing of Meghan as a working adult making her own money to enable a good standard of living.

Another interesting quote from Goldsmiths research is this:- “Collective narcissism correlates personality predictors of prejudice: right-wing authoritarianism and social dominance orientation”.


The other group in the mix for the purpose of this podcast, is the Uk media, but in particular the Royal Rota group.  Each of them have suffered financial loss since the Sussexes moved away.

Never forget that the media hounded and abused this couple, and were very much integral in Meghan nearly taking her life, and the subsequent loss of an unborn child.


Another group are people who came together in their joint aim to spread lies on social media platforms and by working as a group, they found their power. The reality is that they make money from spreading hate and a variety of conspiracy theories related to The Sussexes Meghan in particular, and most of them are NOT Royal supporters, but are there to express their dislike of the Sussexes because they have broken away, from the Royal family, and are living an independent and non tax payer funded life. The majority of the Royal Rota were openly interacting with these hate groups on social media, and some go on to repeat the lies on national tv in the UK. (There was a time that those same lies were being repeated on some international tv networks, but due to the emergence of Sussex Squad and its ever increasing sizeable receipt network, the same Royal Reporters change the wording of what they say on USA networks; unfortunately Australia gives many hours of airtime to the lies, on a par with what is shown on UK tv networks). Truth be known, harmony or a peace flag being waved at the Sussexes is not an ambition of the social media platforms, because inciting hatred and spending every living moment concerning themselves with what Harry and Meghan do day to day, and then discussing it on their platforms, is income generating.  I doubt they spend 5% of their time, actually supporting their so called faves. They just post on Royal platforms about their thoughts on the Sussexes, or on occasion, make an item of clothing the lead element in an article.  This group of haters draw strength from praise of others in a variety of similar groups.  The low self esteem feeds into group dynamics, as it seeks admiration from the others in the group.  We have discussed the dynamics present in hate groups, and the global well documented research carried out on various hate groups over decades, and the societal structure of them and how they can be measured in terms of risks to those outside of that network etc.


“The ego defense of displacement plays an important role in scapegoating, in which uncomfortable feelings such as anger, frustration, envy, guilt, shame, and insecurity are displaced or redirected onto another”

“The creation of a villain necessarily implies that of a hero, even if both are purely fictional”

“Sometimes it is the villain, or villains, who are in need of an even greater villain. Especially in a time of crisis, unscrupulous leaders and politicians can cynically exploit the ancient and deep-rooted impulse to scapegoat to deflect and distract from their own inadequacies and evade, or seek to evade, their legitimate burden of blame and responsibility”.


Historical Non Human Scapegoats are depicted in history, dovetailing on occasion to the Whipping Boy description.  Both of these have been explored in previous podcasts.  I will list them at the end of the article.

[iii]“A scapegoat usually implies a person or group, but the mechanism of scapegoating can also apply to non-human entities, whether objects, animals, or demons. Conversely, human scapegoats are to varying degrees dehumanized and objectified; some, such as witches in mediæval Europe, are quite literally demonized. The dehumanization of the scapegoat makes the scapegoating both more potent and more palatable, and can even lend it a sense of pre-ordained, cosmic inevitability”.

“According to the philosopher René Girard, owing to human nature, envy gradually builds up in a society until it reaches a tipping point, at which order and reason cede to mob rule, chaos, and violence. To quell this ‘madness of the crowds’ which poses an existential threat to the society, an exposed or vulnerable person or group is singled out as a sink for all the bad feeling, and the bad feeling bred from the bad feeling”.

“The term ‘scapegoat’ actually has its origin in the Old Testament, more specifically, in Chapter 16 of the Book of Leviticus, according to which God instructed Moses and Aaron to sacrifice two goats every year. The first goat was to be killed and its blood sprinkled upon the Ark of the Covenant. The High Priest was then to lay his hands upon the head of the second goat and confess the sins of the people. Unlike the first goat, this lucky second goat was not to be killed but released into the wilderness together with its burden of sin, which is why it came to be known as a, or the, scapegoat”.

The sacrifice prescribed in the Book of Leviticus prefigures that of Jesus, who played the role of the first goat in his human crucifixion, and the role of the second goat, the scapegoat, in his divine resurrection.

Neel Burton is author of Hide and Seek: The Psychology of Self-Deception and other books.

Academic Models – Depicting How Hate Escalates Within Groups

This area of targeted activity and its inherent dangers and risks,  has been discussed in previous SGUK podcasts, in particular Podcasts 4 and 5.

 {As I appear to be referring to increasing numbers of earlier podcasts, I am going to state the Direct Link to all the Podcasts which have aired in 2021 and to date in 2022, which will make it easier to find any specific ones that you would like to hear again, or read in the accompanying Article.  I will put the Link to the Blog section of the website where you can explore the articles and the images used and also explore any or all of the Reference Sources listed at the end}

I will display some of those models here for ease in linking it to the above points.

These next two images are based on Gordon Allport’s graphic displaying how group activity like that shown above, can easily turn into a scale of increased hatred based on race and prejudice.





All of Sussex Squad can think of incidents which involve one or both of the Sussexes in both sets of graphics, and those of us who have been here since 2016, can map activities on too many levels in both sets of graphics to feel comfortable that things are ok – far from it.  The FBI use both of these models in their toolkit of identifying risks of various global groups.  Once again I ask, if the FBI see fit to look and map and measure risk in this way, along with a variety of tools, what then are the international legal entities doing about it?  It seems that it is left to private individuals to administer their type of justice to remove certain people, and it is equally left to private individuals to develop monitoring and auditing software for Social Media platforms owned by affluent people, but who profit from hate activity on their respective platforms, and the same private individuals and organisations, who now have to police and monitor and ultimately report to the powers that be, who are not afraid or reluctant to take on the establishment, to ensure that their social media platforms are as safe as reasonably possible.


Harry has spoken in the recent documentary, The Me You Can’t See, how the ultimate goal is to destroy Meghan, just like the media (uk and international) did with Princess Diana, on the request of the Royal Family.  Even now, members of the media, openly say that they want Harry to return to the UK and be with his “family”, and there is never a request for Meghan and the children to return with him.  This strange and evil notion, if Harry was to lose his wife and children, through death or divorce, he would somehow, forget all the abuse delivered and contracted to be carried out by others, and return to be the Whipping Boy of the BRF.  It is beyond offensive.

These are my perceptions of how certain groups have been given permission (direct or implied) to operate outside of established procedures in the pursuit of the two people who are now treated like modern day runaway slaves.

UK Monarchy and its partners in the media are acting like an ex partner who cannot believe their other half has left, and in doing so, is publicly using abusive methods to gain sympathy for those with limited clarity on what is happening in front of them.

Children who are born first are considered valuable; others are born to support the first born.  Children who are not allowed independent thought.  Children who are not allowed to fulfil their potential, and who must at all times devalue themselves in order to make the first born look good.  In any other walk of life, treatment of children along those lines would be considered anything but positive, and on several fronts, is a breach of human rights.


To add to this warped narrative, we now have in 2022 the faux outrage over Harry being allowed to pay for his security when he is in the UK, which has been refused.  Implying that Prince Harry is not showing due deference to the Government Minister Pritti Patel.  The jokes keep writing themselves.  I would like someone to tell me, from the Judicial System, or for that matter any government agency, which member of the British Royal Family has ever been called out publicly about not showing due deference to any senior member of her Majesty’s Government?  Rightly or wrongly, I thought the theory of this was that everyone outside of the BRF should show deference to the Monarchy.  We are all reminded how we are meant to bow and curtsey in their presence.  Prince Harry may have stepped back from Senior Royal duties, but as far as I am aware, he is still the son of the next King, and the sibling of the person who will become King afterwards.  Undertaking Royal duties or not, Prince Harry is still a son of the next King, and as such, should not even have to be discussing whether or not he is allowed to pay for his own security when he is in the country of his birth. The stance should be the other way around.  Harry has committed no crime, Harry has not been accused of any crime, and the FBI have never required his presence regarding illegalities.  There are several members of the Royal family, who do not undertake Royal duties, who are streets and lanes below Harry in the Line of Succession and who live in tax payer funded accommodation, and have more than one home, some have security around the clock, paid for by the tax payer, so when all those involved in debating Prince Harry’s request to pay for security (and the UK media gleefully report how he left his role, so he is not entitled to free or self funded payment to the Met Police for his safety) how about you all show some respect for someone who is higher than others who are not working but enjoying all the benefits, yet Prince Harry is being treated like a traitor because he wished to ensure that his wife and children were at less risk of harm than if they stayed in the UK.

Now those involved in this debate about security for the Sussexes, are hinting at a case by case basis of consideration.  You are all having a laugh.  The son of the soon to be King Prince Charles, should come cap in hand and make individual requests for a group of people to consider on each occasion. Was it not reported that you were all too busy already, but you have time to do that do you? In my opinion, I repeat my opinion, I think that is both disrespectful and highly offensive.

I have been preparing a pack of information which I will be sending out next week to a variety of international legal entities and a wide range of individuals in a number of countries.  I will make reference to this latest round of hunter and prey activity against the Sussexes by the establishment, clearly sanctioned by others, and which is in breach of a variety of legislation. The UK is acting like a despot nation, something which they like to accuse a growing number of nations.  None of this activity since 2016 has made the UK look any better and it continues to erode any sense of possible return to something decent each day that goes by.  2016 was a pivotal year in the UK for a number of reasons, one of which is using the same playbook for anyone who exercises independent thought, and the belief that it will still be successful.  1997 should have been a wake up call for the UK establishment, likewise the loss of life needlessly by so many others since that date; the attempt to apply the same playbook to the Sussexes has backfired spectacularly on a global platform, and now rather than back down, the establishments has doubled down and publicly treating The Sussexes like runaway slaves. 

This has to stop.  It is ruining the UK not enhancing it any way.  Time for people with a moral backbone and code of ethics to step up.  It requires the International community now, because since 2016, the UK is looking more like Lord of the Flies each day and basic human rights been ignored.  Pretty soon it will only be England travelling in their leaking boat to the Utopia of Oblivion and feeling it is the right course of action.  Wales, Northern Ireland and Scotland, have no wish to join England, and increasing numbers of the Commonwealth witness daily the treatment of people of colour, and the slave master mentality used against the Sussexes.  Time for an independent body to step in because right now, we are heading for One Flew Over the Cuckoos Nest environment as the next layer of Lord of the Flies.


As a reminder to those who believe that there is no role for International Legal organisations to get involved in the UK madness that is growing by the day, not to mention the cruelty and the risk to life along the way for a growing number of people, let me end this podcast with this information:-


  • What are Human Rights?
    • Human Rights are standards that allow all people to live with dignity, freedom, equality, justice and
    • Guaranteed to everyone without distinction of any kind, such as race, colour, sex, language, religion, political or other opinion, national or social origin, property, birth or other status.
    • Human Rights are part of international law, contained in treaties and declarations that spell out specific rights that countries are required to uphold. Some countries incorporate human rights in their own national state and local laws.
  • Why are Human Rights important?
    • Human rights reflect the minimum standards necessary for people to live with dignity.
    • Human Rights give people the freedom to choose how they live, how they express themselves and what kind of government they want to support.
    • By guaranteeing life, liberty, equality and security, human rights protect people against abuse by those who are more powerful.

International Bill of Rights:-

  • The right to equality and freedom from discrimination
  • The right to life, liberty and personal security
  • Freedom from torture and degrading treatment
  • The right to a fair trial
  • The right to privacy
  • Freedom of belief and religion
  • Freedom of opinion
  • Right of peaceful assembly and association
  • The right to participate in government
  • The right to social security
  • The right to work
  • The right to an adequate standard of living
  • The right to education
  • The right to health
  • The right to food and housing

Who is Responsible for Upholding Human Rights?

ANSWER: Under Human Rights Treaties, governments have the primary responsibility for protecting and promoting human rights.  However, governments are not solely responsible for human rights.  The UDHR[i] states:-

“Every individual and every organ of society shall strive by teaching and education to promote respect for these rights and freedoms and by progressive measures, national and international to secure their universe and effective recognition and observance.”

[i] Universal Declaration  of Human Rights:- all nations. It sets out, for the first time, fundamental human rights to be universally protected and it has been translated into over 500 languages. The Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) is a milestone document in the history of human rights. Drafted by representatives with different legal and cultural backgrounds from all regions of the world, the Declaration was proclaimed by the United Nations General Assembly in Paris on 10 December 1948 (General Assembly resolution 217 A) as a common standard of achievements for all peoples and


The provision means that not only the government, but also businesses, civil society, and individuals are responsible for promotion and respecting human rights.

When a government ratifies a human rights treaty, it assumes a legal obligation to respect, protect and fulfil the rights contained in the treaty.


UK Monarchy and Protocols v International & UK Law in Terms of Privacy

  • Article 8

A private and family life: Nobody should be able to secretly watch what you are doing without good reason – and we have the right to enjoy family life in the way we choose.

  • The right to a private life protects your dignity and autonomy (your right to be independent and make your own decisions about your life).
    • That includes:
  • the right to personal autonomy and physical and psychological integrity (this right means you must not to be physically or psychologically interfered with)
  • respect for your private and confidential information, including the storing and sharing of data about you
  • the right to control the spreading of information about your private life, including photographs taken covertly.


The information pack will start to go out next week.  The circulation list will be visible to all, which mean that all those who I have contacted previously and who have not responded, together with additional legal organisations, research establishments and elected officials, including senior elected officials, and trail blazers in respective of coercive control – you will now see and know about each other.  I am appealing to your sense of social justice and for great minds to come together in some way and be visible in your intentions and actions to step in and be involved in forums looking at for example cyber bullying and continual breach of Human Rights and the risk to life.  It should not matter whether perpetrators where a crown or not, or who are political representatives.  Crime is crime.  Hate is hate.  Breach in the law is breach in the law.  Ordinary members of the public can only do so much. I await to hear from you with something that indicates that action is about to commence.  We all know if the leaders in these activities in the UK/Australia were people of colour, action would have been taken already.  It is time now for the international legal community to step up to the plate.  We are heading to a global Lord of the Flies environment without common sense stepping forward and relevant action taken.  The time bomb has been ticking for some time now, and we are moments away from the bomb going off.

Ivy Barrow




The Family Scapegoat: When The Scapegoat Fights Back – by Alexander Burgemeester – Dec 18, 2020

18 Times In History That A Scapegoat was Blamed And People Fell For It


Articles 1 and 13

Articles 1 and 13 of the ECHR do not feature in the Act. This is because, by creating the Human Rights Act, the UK has fulfilled these rights.

For example, Article 1 says that states must secure the rights of the Convention in their own jurisdiction. The Human Rights Act is the main way of doing this for the UK.

Article 13 makes sure that if people’s rights are violated they are able to access effective remedy. This means they can take their case to court to seek a judgment. The Human Rights Act is designed to make sure this happens.




Golec de Zavala, A., Guerra, R., & Simão, C. (2017). The relationship between the Brexit vote and individual predictors of prejudice: collective narcissism, right wing authoritarianism and social dominance orientationFrontiers in Psychology. doi: 10.3389/fpsyg.2017.02023

Cichocka, A., Golec de Zavala, A., Marchlewska, M., Bilewicz, M., Jaworska, M., & Olechowski, M. (2017). Personal control decreases narcissistic but increases non-narcissistic in-group positivity. Advance online publication. Journal of Personality.

Federico, C. & Golec de Zavala, A. (In press). Collective narcissism in the 2016 Presidential election. Public Opinion Quarterly.

Golec de Zavala, A., Lantos, D., & Bowden, D. (2017). Yoga Poses Increase Subjective Energy and State Self-Esteem in Comparison to ‘Power Poses’. Frontiers in Psychology, 8, 1-12. doi: 10.3389/fpsyg.2017.00752



Direct quotes from a reference source, listed above as well as below with the appropriate reference number to the sections in the text.