Friday, August 12, 2005

You Really Can't Blame Them

A group of Berkeley psychiatrists decided a few years back (2003) to finally get down to brass tacks and determine what makes a conservative a conservative. Their study has the catchy title of "Political Conservatism as Motivated Social Cognition," which means basically that based on their view of the world and their mode of thinking they are most comfortable with a social movement that fits said worldview and mode of thinking.

(This came out a while back, but I only recently had the time to actually read it.)

It's an interesting read, saying that a number of qualities (rigid thinking, closemindedness, fear and nostalgia) are hallmarks of the conservative mind. And, to be completely fair, you see that a lot in those who identify themselves as Conservatives.

They adhere only to certain viewpoints.

They react (sometimes violently) to any attempt to get them to acknowledge any variant viewpoint.

They're afraid - afraid of the Stranger, the Foreigner, Death and the hideous possibility that they might be Wrong.

They long for an idealized, mythological Good Old Days where everything was just hunky-dory, gas was a quarter a gallon, and Those People knew their place in the great Scheme of Things.

So you really can't blame conservatives for thinking the way they do - just like they can't blame homosexuals for their lifestyle.

Their brains are just wired that way.

(Sarcasm Level 8.5 - not bad.)


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