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Profile Information

Name: Steve
Gender: Male
Hometown: Florida
Home country: US
Current location: US
Member since: Sat Oct 16, 2004, 01:04 PM
Number of posts: 23,627

Journal Archives

*places adorable puppies and kitties in center of room*

*waits for reactions*

The psychology of changing political viewpoints


When Iain Duncan Smith visited Glasgow's Easterhouse Estate in 2002, it was easy to be cynical about motives. But the event has gone down in parliamentary folklore as the 'Easterhouse Epiphany' -- a day that completely changed the MP for Chingford and Woodford Green's outlook on welfare and social mobility. He subsequently founded the Centre for Social Justice, and according to the man who showed him round, was in regular touch long after he was deposed as Tory leader. Four years later, talking to The Guardian about his experience, he concluded by stating that some of his findings "may turn out to be unacceptable" to his political colleagues.

For anyone who has ever seen shows such as The Secret Millionaire, where wannabe rich philanthropists are brought out of their comfort zone, this might be unsurprising -- it becomes harder to maintain your worldview when you fully throw yourself into a foreign culture (as Mark Twain once wrote, "travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry and narrow-mindedness and many of our people need it sorely on these accounts").

"Politicians, like any other social group that is in a rarefied or tightly knit, small community will frequently suffer from psychological 'groupthink'"

So how hard is it to change people's fundamental political beliefs? Very difficult indeed, according to Dr Roger Kingerlee, a chartered psychologist: "Many interacting factors are involved, including biology and neurology, cultural conditioning, motivation, personality and temperament." In short, there's a lot at play in any given individual, and most are pretty resistant. "Or, as some put it, 'minds don't want to change'," states Kingerlee.

The research seems to back this up in quite depressing ways. Take, for example, the 2010 paper 'When Corrections Fail: The persistence of political misperceptions', which found that when challenged with facts debunking various points of view, the more partisan subjects would become even more sure of their original beliefs. A 2012 study from The University of Western Australia went a step further, suggesting that fully debunked myths (such as Obama being born outside the USA or the spurious link between MMR and autism) are maintained in the mind, because it's cognitively simpler not to challenge existing understandings. Frustratingly, the paper suggests that even mentioning the debunked information while correcting it with the truth is enough to reinforce the original lie, which calls into question exactly how worthwhile newspaper corrections are. Completing the ignorance hat-trick, another study suggests that the less people know about a policy, the more extreme their opinions on it tend to be.

more at link above

NEC 21.3" LED LCD Monitor, $13K


bank accounts !

How much of Old Testament to "include" in Jesus's teachings ?

The Old Testament is really my biggest concern with the Bible. The New Testament is great. I've read some pastors say, in so many words, that almost all of the OT has to be included with the NT, and I've read others who say almost none of it.

I'm confused to say the least.

Why do conservatives despise the United Nations ?

I really don't get it. It has NO real power over the US. The UN cannot force the US to do anything, from what I know. Have we been chastised in the UN ? Yes. I guess that's the big beef of conservatives with the UN. Also, the US consistently refuses to submit to the International Criminal Court (which is not a UN body). Your thoughts please.

of course it's all subjective

I'm sure there's at least one person who despises classical music. One can judge music on technical skills, but, yes, the vast majority of "musical criticism", even by supposed professionals in publications, is SUBJECTIVE. This thread is just a fun one, for laughs. That song in the OP was a Top 40 hit, so obviously millions of people liked it. I hate it. Life goes on.

Have a lovely summer day, sincerely.

Tropical Storm Bertha lashes Turks and Caicos Islands

Last Updated 8/3/2014, 11:00:00 AM (Eastern Standard Time)
Location 22.2N 72.6W Movement NW at 21 mph
Wind 45 MPH Pressure: 1012 MB

How concerned should we be about the Chinese ?

I'm referring to their Air Defense Identification Zone.

I don't know precisely how I feel about all this. Seeking input.

Nobody ever went broke underestimating the taste of the American public, H.L Mencken nt


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Give me a fucking break.

Quoted for 100% truth:
The word *Folks* is a problem? Give me a fucking break!

to Freshwest !

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