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Response to MrScorpio (Original post)

Fri Nov 30, 2012, 11:31 AM

1. Absolutely. Prior to the election, I thought

that the leadership was basically a bunch of relatively clever psychopathic authoritarians (à la Bob Altemeyer; see http://home.cc.umanitoba.ca/~altemey/) who fostered a delusional system among their followers as a means of maintaining control.

I saw the lower-level politicians like Joe Walsh, Akin, and Wisconsin's own Sunspot Johnson as among the deluded, who actually believed their own crap despite their obvious psychopathy. But somewhere above them, I thought, was a layer of evil men (yes, of course, men) who knew better.

However, their impressively profound denial, from top to bottom--for example, Romney's absolute state of shock upon losing--has convinced me that they were drinking their own Kool Aid as well, not just dispensing it to the drooling masses and calling it Tea.

In that respect, I find Chris Mooney's The Republican Brain to be instructive:

from Amazon; http://www.amazon.com/Republican-Brain-Science-Science--Reality/dp/1118094514/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1354289314&sr=1-1&keywords=mooney+republican+brain

Bestselling author Chris Mooney uses cutting-edge research to explain the psychology behind why today’s Republicans reject reality—it's just part of who they are.
From climate change to evolution, the rejection of mainstream science among Republicans is growing, as is the denial of expert consensus on the economy, American history, foreign policy and much more. Why won't Republicans accept things that most experts agree on? Why are they constantly fighting against the facts?

Science writer Chris Mooney explores brain scans, polls, and psychology experiments to explain why conservatives today believe more wrong things; appear more likely than Democrats to oppose new ideas and less likely to change their beliefs in the face of new facts; and sometimes respond to compelling evidence by doubling down on their current beliefs.

Goes beyond the standard claims about ignorance or corporate malfeasance to discover the real, scientific reasons why Republicans reject the widely accepted findings of mainstream science, economics, and history—as well as many undeniable policy facts (e.g., there were no “death panels” in the health care bill).
Explains that the political parties reflect personality traits and psychological needs—with Republicans more wedded to certainty, Democrats to novelty—and this is the root of our divide over reality.
Written by the author of The Republican War on Science, which was the first and still the most influential book to look at conservative rejection of scientific evidence. But the rejection of science is just the beginning…
Certain to spark discussion and debate, The Republican Brain also promises to add to the lengthy list of persuasive scientific findings that Republicans reject and deny.

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Arrow 10 replies Author Time Post
MrScorpio Nov 2012 OP
LineNew Reply Absolutely. Prior to the election, I thought
Jackpine Radical Nov 2012 #1
longship Nov 2012 #2
Jackpine Radical Dec 2012 #10
stopwastingmymoney Nov 2012 #3
mac56 Nov 2012 #4
Jade Fox Nov 2012 #5
freshwest Nov 2012 #6
rhett o rick Nov 2012 #7
Nevernose Nov 2012 #8
arely staircase Nov 2012 #9
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