Is it possible to understand crazed commitment?

To a certain degree, I'm trying to get inside the mind of a quite particular character - the crazed yet totally committed protester. There are many variations. I'm wrestling with the why and the what behind those exposure seekers or windmill tilters or just plain out of their fool minds they're so into whatever thing crowd. I'll admit being intrigued by that degree of Kool Aid consumption. I don't really have a big history of such cause craziness myself. I've been more often into drive-by activism. Like that thing not long ago over on my long-running personal blog - I somewhat facetiously called for dumping garbage in front of Williams-Sonoma stores after receiving ill treatment. But then I was almost immediately found and satisfied in reply by an awesome PR exec with that company - their intelligence gathering would make the Mossad envious. Another recollection - which came quite out of the blue on a pre-dawn run today - is that of this gonzo dude from a journalism class in college who went deep deep undercover literally posing as a homeless guy. Flat out stayed in a mission, probably even drank anti-freeze and god knows what else with the folks around him, just plain went all native on a story that seemed to come out of left field. I don't know if I liked or even understood that degree of awesome commitment on his part. I think I respected it. Crazy for a cause. Good or way way out there bad - there's something to be said for that. I still don't get it. But I'm trying to understand.