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Forum Post: Can hate and fear dominate over logic and reason?

Posted 2 years ago on April 1, 2012, 8:43 a.m. EST by jph (2652)
This content is user submitted and not an official statement

The republicants, right-wing or the conservatives; however you like to call them, have jumped the shark. Read any post in this forum by "F350" (and some others) and see what has become of them. Here is a fun game; read those posts and try to find ANY logic or reason.., I know it is amazing how this whole group of people have, through the shear force of will, created their own little bizzaro reality bubble. In place of logic and reason, they have developed a system of hate, and fear. Now I know, this seems weird, to replace proven methods of thought with some of the uglier human emotions, but that seems to be what they have done. Witness the posts I mention, the racist hatred is astounding, as well the utter lack of understanding of nearly any real world situation, it boggles the mind how these people get through the day.

I have no problem having an actual political debate with any people I do not agree with, however when these people live in a sub-cult-reality, a reality skewed from the reality we all share, by a filter of lies, half-truths and powerful and cathartic hate and fear-mongering, debate is simply not possible. Before we can even have a discussion with these poor souls, we will need to talk them down, deprogram them from the hate-radio conditioning they have been raised on. Do we have any cult deprogrammers in our collective? We should try to help them before their reality rift moves too far,. and their bubble floats away.

117 Comments

117 Comments


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[-] 2 points by bensdad (8977) 2 years ago

"hate and fear dominate over logic and reason"
This is the definition of religion.
Billy Grahm's daughter was on one of the sunday shows complaining that societies fall
when they stop FEARING GOD
And ask her brother about hate.
Or any of the mullahs issuing murderous fatwahs

[-] 2 points by francismjenkins (3713) 2 years ago

Hate and fear overcome logic and reason all the time (sometimes I think the reverse is more rare).

[-] 1 points by elf3 (2240) 2 years ago

Hate and fear do not dominate these people - they aren't moved by emotion they are moved by business decisions aka logic - all good people start off being moved by emotion. It's when you are able to block that out and move away from it that the danger begins. Logic in business is psychopathic in nature. Human beings are emotional creatures sensitive to their environments and those around them. They should be that way. It is those who are able to push that aside to make "correct" financial decisions we should fear. All people have the ability to become Hitler or Stalin (just start making smart financial decisions over emotional decisions) and you are a step away. I will keep my hate and my passion, and my sensitivity, because it keeps me human and incapable of turning human beings into profit margins, numbers, or servants and from turning lies into truth by simply denying what is fact in favor of what is more self-gratifying, or even more politically correct - and thinking that by merely stating they are on some higher road or more real reality does not make it so. We don't need vans, we need to realize that these people know the truth but they CHOOSE to deny it to serve their own needs (or get others to serve them in their own purpose) in the guise of piousness and innovation. You can't argue logic when logic is pushed aside in favor of the more self-satisfying results. This isn't ignorance - it's a choice. And they are highly rewarded for it because they get to fulfill their own purpose and make their own existence better at the expense of others and be called smart and logical. Smart and logical does not = kind or compassionate. Some of the most evil people treat their own family like gold. And they're not misguided they just CHOOSE to call a fork a spoon and expect that if they repeat it enough times pretty soon everyone will come to understand that a fork is a spoon. After all they must be more knowledgeable than you they are living better and living their own dream. So were the pigs in Animal Farm - do we believe them? They would not be so far ahead if we didn't we work so hard to let them live and feast like kings. We must believe it. Maybe it is we who need to be deprogrammed.

[-] 2 points by francismjenkins (3713) 2 years ago

I'm not sure if it's this simple. Take for example 9/11. We rallied around the flag, we wanted blood, and the powers that be were all too happy to manipulate our emotions as a pretext to not only attack nations who played no part in 9/11, but also to begin eroding our freedoms. Anyone who questioned this became a social outcast, which is symptomatic of evolutionary tribalism (in other words, this wasn't rational thinking, indeed, it was quite the opposite).

So the problem isn't really logic or rational thinking (if anything, we don't employ enough rational thinking), but rather, the problem is how we measure success. For instance, when a business is able to reduce wages and benefits, it's rewarded by the market. So in essence we measure success according to a narcissistic standard (which can hardly be defined as rational).

I'll go one further, if we want to call our current economic system rational or logical, then cannibalism would be rational and logical.

[-] 1 points by elf3 (2240) 2 years ago

No one wants to go to war - it must be justified with logic. Logic dictates "we must we must go to war by any logical reasoning, put your emotion aside and really let us explain all the reasons why we must." In the current economic system cannibalism is logic even if it feels wrong, logic dictates it must be so, to create more profit. "One must put emotion aside and instead look at market trends" Does anyone really look at where their 401 k's are invested - no because if they did they might feel bad and want to stop having one. Does anyone want to know what factory farms are doing at the moment - no because then they might not be able to eat meat - they would feel too bad. Logic says we should eat it and it's cheaper to raise it this way so all emotion must be put aside. No one really wants to see the fallout of war if they did then they might not want to go, but by reasoning it out "then surely we have no choice." It is so much like animal farm it is scary. All the animals felt like it was wrong to keep working so hard so the pigs could have so much - but logic dictated it must be so and that if they didn't listen to logic then surely they would be doomed for having their own desires and not listening to the pigs who were after all, smarter and wiser than them.

[-] 2 points by francismjenkins (3713) 2 years ago

Again, logic can work towards the good or the bad, it depends on what we set as our end goal, whether we care about the long term, or just the short term, whether we want to act purely in our self interest, or we set as a goal the maximum achievable well being of all human beings.

Emotions can be good. Love is great. But emotions can be bad, anger is a hallmark example. So to promote the idea that we should be purely emotional animals, and ignore the one thing that sets us apart from everything else in nature (our intellect), is just ridiculous.

Is greed logical? I don't think it is. For one thing, studies have shown that in societies where there's great wealth disparity, ultimately both rich and poor wind up worse off. Is inducing ecological disaster "logical"? That's nonsensical. Even if we set as a goal pure self interest, it still wouldn't be logical.

BTW, I'm not saying everyone should be like Spock. We have both emotions and intellect. Both can manifest in good ways, both can manifest in bad ways, but only our intellect can tell the difference :)

[-] 1 points by elf3 (2240) 2 years ago

You're missing my point - logic is what one (in this case society) deems it and depends on perspective. Who decides what logic (or morality) is? This is the core problem and why half our country is democrat and why half is republican - we need to consider the middle road and perhaps it's there that we can find a true point of logic or at least some semblance of it to go from or place to meet. Choosing a stance and refusing to bend one's perspective will never achieve that goal. Taking emotion out of the equation is even worse - emotions and sensitivity are part of what help us to discern reality and figure out logic, so they can't be discounted. If I am angry - I need to figure out why, if I am sad I must figure out why. Emotions are part of our senses, to ignore them is to choose blindness.

[-] 1 points by francismjenkins (3713) 2 years ago

Logic is a thinking system, and it shouldn't be viewed in such a subjective way. Yes, we can disagree on things like axiomatic premises, but deductive logic operates according to straightforward rules. All men are mortal, I'm a man, therefore I'm mortal. All bachelors are unmarried, I'm a bachelor, therefore I'm unmarried.

David Hume did some great work with inductive reasoning. For instance, presupposing a sequence of future events based on patterns of past events (i.e. assuming the uniformity of nature). Or, generalizing about a class of objects based on a number of observations of those objects (like the assumption "all swans are white" before the discovery of black swans).

In other words, a proper inductive statement should adhere to statistical based reasoning, and admit a probability that it could be false (even if that probability can't be rigorously quantified).

I'll try to give an example of how logic can help us avoid call it emotional or maybe biologically based human pattern thinking. Take a group of people who have been immersed in a certain way of thinking about a certain class of people. They will be inclined to look at anecdotal examples of conduct by the other class of people, and make inferential assumptions (even though the examples informing their thinking may only represent the behavior of a small number of people in a very large group, and from a statistical perspective, it's not a large enough sample size to rationally justify those inferences).

I admit, critiquing our own thinking in this way does take discipline, and I'm certainly guilty of occasional poor thinking. But, speaking only for myself, the discipline of logic helps my thinking immensely. For instance, it's much easier to be critical of stereotypes. I believe it's also much more difficult to manipulate the thinking of people who have a solid grounding in logic.

Think about the utility of logic from the perspective of race relations (which I think is a very good example, illustrating how powerful logic can be). When most people see image after image of African Americans or Hispanics getting arrested, they rarely think beyond those images. Yet, if they utilized the most simple logic, they would immediately discover how flawed their thinking is.

[-] 1 points by elf3 (2240) 2 years ago

And that's the problem you could argue logic forever - which is why this forum is going around and around and on. Emotion is a far more tangible. Now Google search starvation under images and tell me what is logical there, tell me how anyone could argue against preventing that?

[-] 1 points by francismjenkins (3713) 2 years ago

Right, ergo the value of "both" logic and emotion (btw, appeal to emotion is a fallacy in logic, and in most cases, for good reason). Nonetheless, emotion can lead to the type of group think that causes war, genocide, and all sorts of other horrors. Wanting to feed the hungry is a moral statement (and one I obviously agree with).

It makes me sad to see people starving, and you're right, we shouldn't get bogged down in a quagmire of endless debate and over-thinking about the wisdom of feeding people, we should just do it (and that initial decision really requires no logic as far as I can tell). But, we may want to organize our relief efforts in (I dare say) a "logical" way ... so it's not a cluster fuck that ultimately doesn't accomplish anything. But more importantly, logic is even valuable for examining our own morality.

If I put forward a moral principle like we should strive for the maximum well being of all human beings, I doubt many people would disagree with that (some probably would, but not many). Okay, but then when we get into specifics, suddenly everyone starts imagining potential slippery slopes that are usually baseless. So I don't think it's logic you have a problem with, it's the "poor application of logic" (and considering your statements, I don't think you're basing your opinion on what logic really is, it just sounds like you've run into people, who may have been flying the banner of logic, but who applied logic poorly, misused it, and if you misuse logic, or you don't know how to use it, then it's not logic).

[-] 1 points by jph (2652) 2 years ago

elf3- you seem to be confusing logic and reason with selective emotional logic with very little reason. All the examples that you cite, are more emotional then logical, and involve denial of half the logic.

"Reason; is a term that refers to the capacity human beings have to make sense of things, to establish and verify facts, and to change or justify practices, institutions, and beliefs. It is closely associated with such characteristically human activities as philosophy, science, language, mathematics, and art, and is normally considered to be a definitive characteristic of human nature."

"logic; the science that investigates the principles governing correct or reliable inference."

[-] 1 points by elf3 (2240) 2 years ago

You're also missing my point - logic is what one (in this case society) deems it and depends on perspective. Who decides what logic (or morality) is? This is the core problem and why half our country is democrat and why half is republican - we need to consider the middle road and perhaps it's there that we can find a true point of logic or at least some semblance of it to go from or place to meet. Choosing a stance and refusing to bend one's perspective will never achieve that goal. Taking emotion out of the equation is even worse - emotions and sensitivity are part of what help us to discern reality and figure out logic, so they can't be discounted. If I am angry - I need to figure out why, if I am sad I must figure out why. Emotions are part of our senses, to ignore them is to choose blindness.

[-] 1 points by jph (2652) 2 years ago

yes, perhaps true,. so if people are aware of a thing we can better avoid a thing.

[-] 1 points by francismjenkins (3713) 2 years ago

Yes indeed ... knowledge is power (as they say) :)

[-] 2 points by brightonsage (4494) 2 years ago

Well, I have to concede that there are a list of "successes" of those two combined with power and control.

That said, I posted my version of an analysis of the composition of these groups somewhere here. And as I reflect on the substance of your post, I recognize that any attempt to educate, deprogram, or otherwise neutralize these individualize these people is a total waste of time.

Deprogramming anyone who isn't a member of your family who previously demonstrated characteristics deserving love, is probably a totally unrealistic objective. You can't and won't take the steps necessary to restrain them to the extent that deprogramming can occur. Besides, it usually can not completely remove the scars, the guilt left behind.

There are better ways to invest our time and I am going to stop responding to this kind of bait, " Okay So We All Agree Blacks, jews, Illegals and Homosexuals Are Destructive To A Normal, Functioning Society"

It doesn't deserve any response. I have started looking with suspicion at posters with small numbers in the parens (0). Let them chatter among themselves and when they jump into a civil discussion, I will no linger respond.

[-] 1 points by jph (2652) 2 years ago

I am more interested in culture influences than grabbing folks off the street in a black van and holding them prisoner,. .

[-] 1 points by brightonsage (4494) 2 years ago

I agree with your interest. Changing culture is a patient game requiring great resolve, if you have a specific objective in mind.

I am just an old man planting fruit trees, whose products I will never enjoy as jam on my toast.

[-] 1 points by jph (2652) 2 years ago

planting seed we will never see grow, or balancing rocks we know will fall, but for a moment in time are 'there' arranged as we desired , it is all process the ends are never reached.

[-] 1 points by brightonsage (4494) 2 years ago

Beautifully said. Thoughtfully composed.

[-] 2 points by factsrfun (6439) from Phoenix, AZ 2 years ago

If I may, I feel that many years ago, certain people determined that by controlling the language they could control the debate, Orwell refers to this in 1984, forgive me if I go over basic things please, the result was the hermitage foundation and other less known groups, out came the talking points, now instead of citizens we have parrots, and parrots can sound good but they have little understanding of what they say.

[-] -3 points by Dell (-168) 2 years ago

who's playing the class warfare card, the race card, the It's Bush's fault card (still!) attacking congress, attacking the court, attacking business. What happened to bringing the country together? it's more divided than ever now lol! Pleeeaaase!

[-] 1 points by calliope (25) 2 years ago

The Irish were the first slaves in America. It wasn't until they started an uprising with the Africans and banded together that they created a strong enough resistance to slavery.

Then the politicians made up some religious stories about Cain spawning the devil's seed in black people to split the masses. The more we hate, the more we split apart.

[-] 1 points by ComeTogetherNOW (650) 2 years ago

That's a point of view I had when Bush was there. It's hard to be pure and unbiased. This has little to do with facts and really is primarily speculative. It's your opinion and that's fine we'll take it that way if you have no facts or studies to back it up. You are certainly entitled to your opinion.

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[-] -1 points by Dell (-168) 2 years ago

it's my opinion that Obama attacked the court as "activist" if they strike down the mandate? How is it my opinion if that's what he actually said lol!? His spokesperson also blamed Bush for the GSA junket in Vegas. They actually said that - it's not my opinion Geeez !

[-] 2 points by ComeTogetherNOW (650) 2 years ago

Bush did more to divide USA than other president. Those useless Wars prove my point. What good came from them? It largely produced the deficit that the GOP whines and cries about now, but not a pin drop when the president was a repug. Everyone sees the political theater. Everything Obama does is wrong. And Bush well he was a Saint.

[-] -1 points by Dell (-168) 2 years ago

I dont remember GWB promising to bring the country together though like BHO did. I am not a GWB fan - nor is most conservatives. He was a big govt neocon. but compared to the alternative he is an extreme right winger. It's all relative. BHO has increased the debt more in three years than GWB did in eight. Class warfare is his only strategy. WHere is his budget?

[-] 1 points by po6059 (72) 2 years ago

barry has no interest in bring the country together, his strategy is to divide..

[-] 1 points by ComeTogetherNOW (650) 2 years ago

PO, you know allot about dividing don't you? It seems you practice that well here Mr. One Liner. Dropping another gem here for us to ponder. Now don't hurt yourself and think too hard. (Or write too much)

[-] 0 points by hchc (3297) from Tampa, FL 2 years ago

Divide and conquer....works like a charm every year

[-] 1 points by factsrfun (6439) from Phoenix, AZ 2 years ago

You mean all those people telling the truth, I'm one of them, go ahead check out my understanding, ask a real question, dare you.

[+] -4 points by Dell (-168) 2 years ago

so the left are virtuous truth-tellers & the right are evil liars lol! ok - I can see I am wasting my time here.

[-] 1 points by factsrfun (6439) from Phoenix, AZ 2 years ago

you are only wasting your time if you have no real questions to test my understanding.....hmmmm maybe you are

[+] -4 points by Dell (-168) 2 years ago

you have nothing that's why It's a waste of time. I am hoping you are successful - because then it will really expose the flaws of socialism on a scale not yet seen. we havnt even gotten started yet with the decline coming.

[-] 2 points by ComeTogetherNOW (650) 2 years ago

Do you make any sense in your view Dell? I can't find it! Do you have any facts to share and are you all about making things up which is solely your opinion.

[-] 0 points by Dell (-168) 2 years ago

so - you don't see the U.S. in decline?

[-] 1 points by ComeTogetherNOW (650) 2 years ago

Not at all, we're at a turning point. Saying it's over for America is not only pessimistic it's old broken record used through the ages to gut the government. History repeats itself constantly and we fail to learn from it.

[-] 1 points by shoozTroll (17632) 2 years ago

Ever since Nixon. It got a lot worse under Reagan and GWB.

[-] 0 points by factsrfun (6439) from Phoenix, AZ 2 years ago

The decline is coming you got that right, unless we do something:

the decline back into monarchy.

[-] 0 points by jph (2652) 2 years ago

So the decline is coming and we best keep the ship pointed at 'free markets' as such a system has been so effective?? if you like the result of 0.1% claiming to own the majority of the planet,. then sure change nothing.

[-] -3 points by Dell (-168) 2 years ago

it's working for me. I've never gotten a job from a poor person or a working stiff or a politician.

[-] 2 points by ComeTogetherNOW (650) 2 years ago

Now your just repeating a narrative I've heard many right wingers use. DO you really understand what your saying. I heard rats give people jobs. Termites give people jobs. Dirt give people jobs. I think all three of those are poor because none those have any money period.

About those criminals, they give lots people jobs. Heck without them what would the police be doing sucking hteir thumb. Prisons, we need them to house those criminals don't we. Who builds the prisons, is that not a job???

Nice repeat on the narrative. Now try thinking for yourself instead of what those other clowns say. Unless you want a job as a parrot. Ever get a job from a parrot, you have the right experience.

[-] -2 points by Dell (-168) 2 years ago

so you are arguing I should thank criminals because they create police jobs hahaha! thats the best argument I've ever heard. So the added taxes we pay to prevent crime & house criminals would otherwise go un-invested by the people? Obviously you've never heard of Frederic Bastiat's what is seen & what is unseen. I suggest you give it a read.

[-] 2 points by ComeTogetherNOW (650) 2 years ago

No the garbage collectors. They pick up the trash. You should be thanking them. I suggest you look it up, research it widely, they want to get paid by you.

[-] 0 points by Dell (-168) 2 years ago

no need to thank them any more than people should thank me for doing my job.

[-] 1 points by ComeTogetherNOW (650) 2 years ago

ALL of us have the job of eating to survive. Like it?

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[-] 1 points by jph (2652) 2 years ago

have you zero empathy for the millions of people suffering under this system? would you not want to reverse the steady decline in our eco-sphere? if we only end all war, we will have more than enough to feed and house every person on the planet, and have time and energy to together explore both inner and outer-space forever.

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[-] -1 points by Dell (-168) 2 years ago

yes - zero empathy would be correct. no one is starving in this country unless they want to be starving.

"There is all the difference in the world between treating people equally and attempting to make them equal." - F.A. Hayek

[-] 2 points by ComeTogetherNOW (650) 2 years ago

Good so we have NO empathy for you either. (DO unto others as would have them do to you) Suffer all you want, we won't help. You need to have a talk with PO over there. He'll teach how to divide.

[-] -2 points by Dell (-168) 2 years ago

I cant have blanket empathy - like I feel for the people suffering in the world that's pathetic. everyone feels for people who are suffering. Empathy needs to be given to someone specific after understanding there circumstances and how they got that way. But you dont have specifics because all you have is platitudes of empty rhetoric about saving the world.

[-] 3 points by ComeTogetherNOW (650) 2 years ago

SO you make excuses why not to help those less fortunate. I go in the opposite direction. They need help and don't need to be judged by people like you to determine if they're worthy.

[-] 0 points by Dell (-168) 2 years ago

where is that quote from?

[-] -1 points by Dell (-168) 2 years ago

what social contract? where is it written? is it somewhere in the constitution that I missed ? Is it implied? Who determines the rules?

[-] 1 points by ComeTogetherNOW (650) 2 years ago

SOCIAL CONTRACT: An agreement among the members of an organized society or between the governed and the government defining and limiting the rights and duties of each.

Your already in. You do need to understand this before debating.

[-] -2 points by Dell (-168) 2 years ago

I have no problem helping the less fortunate. Just don't use force to tell me your version of help I must comply with. That is tyranny

[-] 2 points by ComeTogetherNOW (650) 2 years ago

I hope you have heard of the social contract. If not, take a deep breath, and learn it. Having a social contract is not tyranny if you read correctly. If not then you wouldn't even agree with Thomas Jefferson, one of our founding fathers.

Peace!

[-] 1 points by jph (2652) 2 years ago

Well ok then, just keep cheer-leading the 'free market' as the 'free' marketeers keep driving the whole of the planet into oblivion,. enjoy your ride on the titanic.

[-] 0 points by hchc (3297) from Tampa, FL 2 years ago

This is not a free market you maniac

[-] 1 points by jph (2652) 2 years ago

The reason you don't think the market is 'free' is because you are are an extremist radical-'free market' fundamentalist. Your dogma is deranged, your ideology patently silly. This is the moment of the free-est markets you will ever see, as the complete abject failure of all the deregulation that started under Reagan and has continued through both Dem/Rep till today, has lead to the current broken economy. This free-market ideology has proven disastrous, and will now be properly balanced by community standards, i.e regulations. thanks for playing.

[-] 1 points by hchc (3297) from Tampa, FL 2 years ago

Its only free for the top 1%. The rest of us, that are trying to create something, are regulated to the point of wanting to quit.

Just look at the hassle of getting anything other than D or R on the ballot. Classic example.

[-] 1 points by jph (2652) 2 years ago

yes the two party dichotomy is a simple control mechanism of the elite, it is used to perpetuate the illusion of debate, or change in the system. there is no change. either party in power and the same results, more for them less for everyone else.., over and over. this is how you get 90 percent of the wealth in the hands of so few people. manipulate emotions and fears, use lies and half distorted truths, play on the known weaknesses of human egos. manipulated people are not free people. given the truth people will succeed, currently the lie is winning,. but people are beginning to stir,. . pity the 0.1% when the full force of the aware people calls for accountability.

[-] 0 points by shoozTroll (17632) 2 years ago

That's because there's no such thing, you ding bat.

It's like believing in the wizard of Oz.

[-] 0 points by hchc (3297) from Tampa, FL 2 years ago

Ding bats and maniacs :)

Where is the tin man?

He's accepting his fascist healthcare, while the insurance companies stocks continue to rise.

[-] 0 points by jph (2652) 2 years ago

yes obama continues the fascist trend. forcing people to pay for private for-profit insurance is a corpratist scheme if ever there was one. 0.1% wins unless it is a universal single payer health care system that take most of the profit motive out of medicine and health care.

[-] 0 points by shoozTroll (17632) 2 years ago

You say that like it's a new thing or something.

It's not.

Your brain must be full of those flying monkeys.

[-] -2 points by Dell (-168) 2 years ago

yes - I will - thank you. riding high !!!!

[-] -2 points by takim (23) 2 years ago

if you accept the lies of the left as "truths' than their telling the truth.

[-] 1 points by ComeTogetherNOW (650) 2 years ago

takim can you be more general, that is your generalizations would be wonderful if you back them with just one fact.

How about this: ALL right wingers are dumb asses.

How to do like my generalizations? Probably as much as I like yours. Where does it get us? Nowhere. Try again. This time think a little bit harder you may actually say something we could use.

[-] 0 points by takim (23) 2 years ago

obama attacked (threatend ) the supreme court using lies. his lie,........obamacare was passed with a "strong majority". it didnt , the actual vote was 219 -212 . 34 dems voted against it , no republican voted for it.obama said that if the court struck down obama care it would " judicial activism". no, it would be judicial review , which the job of the court.

[-] 1 points by MattLHolck (16833) from San Diego, CA 2 years ago

why not just admit he made a mistake and use taxes to provide public healthcare?

[-] 1 points by ComeTogetherNOW (650) 2 years ago

It will sad day for you when the SCOTUS does uphold ACA.

What will you say then???

[-] 0 points by takim (23) 2 years ago

do you have inside information?

[-] 1 points by ComeTogetherNOW (650) 2 years ago

Yes, I do, most in the media portray this as if they will rule against it. Highly unlikely. Most people haven't taken the time to look closer. Or just wait like everyone else if this doesn't matter enough to you drill down and find the real truth. Most folks don't care enough to look that closely. Too busy maintaining their narratives to bother which is why they have the narrative in the first place, it keeps them "in the know" without doing any of the work to really know.

Hope I didn't go way over your head on this one. If so, just never mind.

Peace!

[-] 1 points by LeoYo (5854) 2 years ago

Can You Understand the Republican Brain?

Tuesday, 17 April 2012 11:37 By Mark Karlin, Truthout | Interview

Scientific American lauds author Chris Mooney "as one if the few journalists in the country who specialize in the now dangerous intersection of science and politics." Having interviewed Mooney about his first book, the highly praised, "The Republican War on Science," Truthout/BuzzFlash interviews Mooney about his latest release, "The Republican Brain: The Science of Why They Deny Science - and Reality." Truthout and BuzzFlash readers can directly obtain "The Republican Brain" and support uncompromised journalism by clicking here.

Mark Karlin: Progressives often say of Fox that they create facts to bolster their opinions. Is this true of the Republican mind set in general?

Chris Mooney: This seems to be very persistent on the right. I do not argue that liberals never do it, but conservatives seem to be engaging in a boatload of biased reasoning today, and also doubling down on false beliefs, on issues ranging from climate change to the debt ceiling. We even have the bizarre phenomenon of the "smart idiot" effect: Educated conservatives being more likely to hold wrong beliefs than less educated conservatives on issues like global warming - which probably partly reflects misinformation coming from Fox.

In light of all this, I think it is far past time to look at what psychology has to say about why the left and right differ, and what this may have to do with our divide over reality and what is true. And that's what the book attempts to do.

MK: What happened between the '50s when we engaged in a scientific race with the Soviets to get a man on the moon and the anti-science beliefs of the GOP today? We got the man on the moon, and then seem to have gone in reverse as far as a belief in science as a basis for moving forward.

CM: It's sad. The country was much more unified behind the idea that science is the way to create a better future. Since then, trust in the scientific community has plummeted among conservatives in particular.

I argue that this is because the conservative movement defined itself in opposition to academia and pointy-headed intellectuals, but also because it has activated a strain of psychological authoritarianism - viewing things in black and white ways without nuance or toleration of uncertainty, which is of course highly incompatible with scientific thinking. In fact, you might argue that authoritarianism and science have been opposed ever since the time of Galileo.

MK: Do you think the notion of the religious right in being anti-evolutionary contributes to the denial of science? After all, science is predicated on humans building upon a foundation of accumulated knowledge, but if everything was created contemporaneously, science is of little value. We are part of the divine order - not of scientific inquiry - their creationist argument goes.

CM: There's no doubt that conservatism, religiosity, and opposition to science are tied up in a tight little bundle in the US. And the common theme here seems to be psychological authoritarianism and a lack of openness to new ideas.

The denial of evolution is the fundamental centerpiece of an anti-empirical worldview. The irony is massive here when it comes to discussing the focus of the book, by the way.

I discuss the psychological underpinnings of ideology, and of left right differences, in the context of what we are starting to know about human nature. And while the science here isn't all in yet, and there is much more still to learn, I suspect we are going to find that liberal-conservative differences are partly rooted in who we are as evolved creatures. This is what a lot of researchers are coming to expect; it is also something the moral psychologist Jonathan Haidt argues in his new book.

So denying this research may come very naturally to conservatives - after all, so many of them don't think we evolved!

MK: How do you scientifically show why the leading ideology of the GOP is a denial of science? After all, every GOP senator denies global warming. Won't they just deny your scientific proof of their rejection of science?

CM: This is pretty easily done. The polling data show overwhelming that conservatives, much more than liberals, deny global warming, deny evolution, think Obama wasn't born in the U.S., think Saddam was collaborating with Al Qaeda, and so on. Tea Partiers tend to be the worst on a lot of these.

I don't honestly think even conservatives would argue back against the polling data - rather, they'll say that they're right to question global warming because it's phony science, and so on.

There is also a separate body of data showing that Fox News viewers tend to be more misinformed about these issues - call it the Fox "effect." Here, there has been some response, with Fox trying to critique and dismantle the various studies involved. But it just doesn't hold up. You might be able to undermine one such study, but seven of them? I don't think so. There's too much data. Toss out one study, it doesn't change the big picture.

MK: In your introduction, "Equations to Refute Einstein," you conclude with remarks about "liberal denial." You note this might be due to the fear that "it leads to a place that terrifies them [liberals]: an anti-Enlightenment world in which evidence and argument don't work to change people's minds." Would you expand on that? Why is it so important to know the psychology of the right?

[-] 1 points by LeoYo (5854) 2 years ago

CM: Whether or not conservatives pay attention to what we're learning about the psychology of ideology, liberals and progressives can profit greatly by learning about it. Because this research shows that many of our assumptions about how to reach people different from us are flat wrong.

We can't count on facts to change minds - emotions and values trump facts almost every time. Nor can we rely on our own natural, nuanced, complex style of communication to reach the public. The research suggests that our very instincts are leading us to only know how to talk to ourselves; conservative styles of communication - decisive, direct - have a great appeal to the right and, likely, the middle. And we can use this research not only to better reach conservatives, but to reach people who are moderate or undecided, but who also have some conservative attributes.

MK: For Truthout readers who may be unaware of it, can you explain "Conservapedia"?

CM: Ha. This is the website run by Andrew Schlafly, the son of the anti-feminist crusader Phyllis Schlafly. I have fun at the beginning of the book noting how factually wrong Schlafly manages to be, about, well, a staggering array of topics. He's what I call a create-your-own-reality conservative. He thought Wikipedia was too liberal, so he made up his own facts. And the most staggering example of this is his Conservapedia entry trying to take down Einstein's theory of relativity. The guy even writes equations to try to disprove Einstein. It's quite the facepalm moment.

MK: How does the open personality as compared to the closed personality affect political outlook?

CM: The evidence here is pretty hard to escape. Across studies, even across countries, scoring high on "Openness to Experience" - one of the big five personality traits - strongly predicts political liberalism. Indeed, in a study I ran myself in the book, the liberalism-openness relationship popped up, just as it always does. So if you're not open - which means open to trying new things, including new ideas - if you're closed, you tend more conservative.

I want to emphasize how powerful this finding is. In one study of over 14,000 people, the relationship between liberalism and openness was as strong as, or stronger than, the relationship between social liberalism and higher education, and between economic conservatism and having a higher income. So we're talking about an effect at least as significant as these factors - education, income - that everybody knows strongly affect ideology.

MK: Since many Republican leaders who are anti-science are very pro-corporate, doesn't it appear inexplicable that they can champion the scientifically developed genetic modification seeds of Monsanto, but deny the scientific basis of pollution?

CM: No. Conservatives like science fine when it is on their side and supporting their values, and one of their values is the embrace of individualism and private industry, free from government interference. So the science of drilling, the science of nuclear power - they dig that stuff. However, they're very selective, and if science comes out suggesting that these activities have adverse consequences, of a sort that might require the government to step in ... well then science isn't so admired any more.

MK: History is subject to interpretation to a certain degree. That is what keeps history graduate students busy. But there are historical facts that aren't arguable when they are written in documents such as the United States Constitution. So how, as you discuss in your chapter on the "Republican War on History," can leaders of the GOP argue that this country was founded as a Christian nation?

CM: It's really the same kind of phenomenon as the denial of science. It's wishful thinking dressed up in very dubious scholarship, and bolstered by biased, motivated reasoning.

Ultimately, I believe that some issues in history are about as open and shut as scientific issues - and this is one of them. The historical consensus is clear about who our founders were and what they thought about church and state, and how the country they created would handle religion.

Conservatives want to believe that the founders are mirror images of who they are today - which is why they style themselves as Tea Party revolutionaries - but I argue that in fact, they are fundamentally betraying our nation's heritage and who we are. How dare they, frankly. It's outrageous. It turns out that liberals care about our heritage and our tradition more than conservatives do in this instance.

MK: You end your book by dedicating it "to that unquenchable liberal spirit that will never, ever stop pushing us to be different and better than we currently are." Can we be better than we currently are without a belief in science?

CM: I don't think so, no. Since the Enlightenment, science and liberalism have been allied in a quest to use reason to make the world just a little bit better than it was before, and make our lives just a little bit richer than they were in the last generation. But there's an irony: Now science itself shows us that some people are going to feel a lot less comfortable than others with this quest, and also that they are going to reason in a way that is far from what we would call scientific.

That doesn't mean giving up on the quest. Rather, it means basing it on a firmer scientific foundation - so we can truly understand the nature of the hurdles ahead.

This article is a Truthout original.

[-] 1 points by elf3 (2240) 2 years ago

Hate and fear do not dominate these people - they aren't moved by emotion they are moved by business decisions - all good people start off being moved by emotion. It's when you are able to block that out and move away from it that the danger begins. Logic in business is psychopathic in nature. Human beings are emotional creatures sensitive to their environments and those around them. They should be that way. It is those who are able to push that aside to make "correct" financial decisions we should fear. All people have the ability to become Hitler or Stalin (just start making smart financial decisions over emotional decisions) and you are a step away. I will keep my hate and my passion, and my sensitivity, because it keeps me human and incapable of turning human beings into profit margins, numbers, or servants and from turning lies into truth by simply denying what is fact in favor of what is more self-gratifying, or even more politically correct - and thinking that by merely stating they are on some higher road or more real reality does not make it so. We don't need vans, we need to realize that these people know the truth but they CHOOSE to deny it to serve their own needs (or get others to serve them in their own purpose) in the guise of piousness and innovation. You can't argue logic when logic is pushed aside in favor of the more self-satisfying results. This isn't ignorance - it's a choice. And they are highly rewarded for it because they get to fulfill their own purpose and make their own existence better at the expense of others and be called smart and logical. Smart and logical does not = kind or compassionate. They're not misguided they just choose to call a fork a spoon and expect that if they repeat it enough times pretty soon everyone will come to understand that a fork is a spoon. After all they must be more knowledgeable than you they are living better and living their own dream. So were the pigs in Animal Farm - do we believe them? They would not be so far ahead if we didn't we work so hard to let them live and feast like kings. We must believe it. Maybe it is we who need to be deprogrammed.

[-] 1 points by LeoYo (5854) 2 years ago

You lost me at:

"Before we can even have a discussion with these poor souls, we will need to talk them down, deprogram them from the hate-radio conditioning they have been raised on. Do we have any cult deprogrammers in our collective? We should try to help them before their reality rift moves too far,. and their bubble floats away."

Hate and fear aren't based on ignorance. They are emotions based on our personal likes and dislikes. The more emotionally attatched one is to the personal likes and dislikes they share with others, the more blindly they will identify with their group's propoganda.

As with other things, logic/reason is based upon desire, namely the desire to know. Most people don't exhibit a desire to know anything beyond what's required to get through the day. When it comes to things beyond that necessity, most people appear quite content with their self-comforting desires for ideas pertaining to the greater world. Everything is fine until those ideological desires come into conflict with reason determined facts and theories that threaten to undermine all that one has ideologically based their life upon. At that point, if one's overall desire is to know, reason will win out in a slow and emotionally painful process of self-enlightenment. However, if one's overall desire is to remain emotionally comfortable, emotion will win out in maintaining an even stronger devotion to a desired ideology requiring great intellectual dishonesty. So long as a person is never forced to face their dishonesty, they are never forced to confront their emotional desire for a false ideology.

[-] 1 points by calliope (25) 2 years ago

Desire is an emotion too. Desire to know for what reason? To enlighten yourself? Or to enlighten others?

[-] 1 points by LeoYo (5854) 2 years ago

No reason. Desires aren't based on reason. Desires are simply felt for the things one likes, thus no rational intent is behind having a desire. A desire to know is just that, a desire to know. A curiosity that leads one to dwell upon matters of interest to the point of using meticulous reason to try to figure them out.

[-] 1 points by calliope (25) 2 years ago

Passion fuels ideologies. It is different from desire. Desire doesn't cause one to sacrifice himself for a belief, it's passion from inspiration. We are inspired when we want to learn, not simply desiring knowledge. It's like an obsession that seizes you.

Inspiration means to be in spirit. It's no wonder how spiritual ideolgies spawn such passionate emotions.

Is it logical to kill a person to take away their possessions? yes, it can be seen as logical.

Is it right to kill someone to take away their possessions. The answer is no if you base it on emotions.

Religion and spiritual ideologies have saved more people from harm I bet. We all say that it's done the opposite through wars, but imagine how people really are when nobody is looking and then you'll see how fucked up humanity is and how we need laws in order to keep us from behaving like the monkeys most of us are.

One mistake I made in life is to judge people from my own perception. Most of them don't have any desire or passion at all to improve themselves or to attain enlightenment. They just want more and will screw their friends and family over if given a chance for a big enough reward.

[-] 2 points by LeoYo (5854) 2 years ago

Desire does indeed cause one to sacrifice himself for a belief. Calling it passion doesn't change it from being desire and calling a like an inspiration doesn't change it from being a like.

Is it right to kill someone to take away their possessions? The answer is yes if you base it on an emotional passion for a religious ideology that instructs its heros to take another people's land and not leave a single thing breathing.

The answer is also yes if a person's emotional reaction to the appearance of another people is so strongly negative that it causes the person to feel that such an appearance is indicative of being subhuman and thus subject to human whim.

Is it right to kill a sister if she's raped? Again, the answer is yes for the person who's emotional adherence to an ideology demands that the shame of her defilement upon the family be wiped away with her life.

The determination of what is right begins with empathy and is ultimately justified by logic that supports the empathic feeling. When that logic is over ridden by an emotional attachment to a life long ideology declared to be spiritual, all kinds of atrocities can occur under the sanction of religious law.

[-] 1 points by elf3 (2240) 2 years ago

This is a great point only I would say adherence to any dogma is reason over the innate adverse emotion. I think of little boys stoning their mums to death and I think there must be a gut sickened reaction against it. But anything can be reasoned away. Most human beings start off good but they are taught not to listen to the kindness inside they are taught to adhere and to push their instinct away in favor of an agenda, a dogma (even including political correctness), or a cultural ideology. They are taught to justify killing, taught to justify a lack of emotional response as the logical and smart way to live. "We must all do things that go against our nature because we have no choice, or because it is smart, or just that we must." It is the "logic" placed inside our heads that drowns out the noise from our hearts.

[-] 1 points by LeoYo (5854) 2 years ago

What one may think "must be" or what "most human beings start off" as is mere unsupported opinion when it is without reasoned research to support it. Until then, it's just a desired perspective that one may have an emotional attachment to. Human beings start off as human, period. There has been no observation to support "good" or bad in humans at the start. What is observed is that different types of people of the same family are raised with the same upbringing yet make individual choices in what they accept and in how they choose to interact with others from childhood on up. People have different feelings for different things as well as different degrees of empathy for different things. No uniform universal emotional response in humans has been observed to justify a perspective that some instinctive kindness has to be taught away in order for some act of cruelty to take place. Humans are individual emotional beings whose choices of alturism and cruelty are ultimately based upon their own emotional individuality. A person's individual emotional state precedes any dogma, agenda, or influence of cultural ideology. As an intelligent man once said, "Religion is the sanctification of pre-existent prejudice." Dogmas, agendas, and cultural ideologies are built around the pre-existent emotional states that individuals have towards various subjects. The "logic" behind these things have already been corrupted by the emotional responses of individuals to various subjects.

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[-] 1 points by TruthRightsFreedom (259) 2 years ago

Only if people fail to reason, "Can hate and fear dominate over logic and reason?"

And they are. No discussion on Article V = no plan and strategy of legal process = dysfunctional movement = victory for hate and fear because free speech will not be used to protect life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.

[-] 1 points by jph (2652) 2 years ago

Well here is your chance tell me what I should know about Article V as I don't know what you are referring to.

[-] 1 points by TruthRightsFreedom (259) 2 years ago

Article V is your first constitutional right. The right to "alter or abolish" abusive government, from the Declaration of Independence. It is codified in Article V of the US constitution.

Lincoln said.

"The people of the United States are the rightful masters of both Congress and the Courts, not to overthrow the Constitution, but to overthrow the men who pervert the Constitution."

September 17, 1859, speech in Cincinnati, OH.

But they will need freedom of speech and it is eriously abridged. There is discussion on preparatory amendment for a general Article V here.

http://articlevconvention.org/showthread.php?33-Amendment-By-Layers-Of-Priority-Amendment-Package-Making-CONST.-Intent

The idea is that American is so messed up from not having free speech and the manipulations, deceptions etc. of corporate media, that it cannot conduct a convention that has full constitutional intent.

**Article V

The Congress, whenever two thirds of both houses shall deem it necessary, shall propose amendments to this Constitution, or, on the application of the legislatures of two thirds of the several states, shall call a convention for proposing amendments, which, in either case, shall be valid to all intents and purposes, as part of this Constitution, when ratified by the legislatures of three fourths of the several states, or by conventions in three fourths thereof, as the one or the other mode of ratification may be proposed by the Congress; provided that no amendment which may be made prior to the year one thousand eight hundred and eight shall in any manner affect the first and fourth clauses in the ninth section of the first article; and that no state, without its consent, shall be deprived of its equal suffrage in the Senate.**

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[-] 1 points by beautifulworld (19202) 2 years ago

I think in addition to lacking logic and reason they also lack love and compassion.

[-] 0 points by jph (2652) 2 years ago

true that.

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[-] 0 points by Dc123 (4) 2 years ago

Just because some conservatives and Republicans are racist it doesn't mean they all are. I'm a hardcore conservative and while yes I o not like Obama it is not because he is black. I could care less, his points of view are just conflict with mine. Not all Right Wing people are intolerant assholes. We just have the wellfare of America in our ideas. Understanding we can't be Frieda's with radical Islam Extremists. We just understand we can't be pussys. So Right Wing ideas do not promote hatred and fear. Those are the radicals who think our gov. is run by Jews who are in turn controlled by Satan. I'm note toting a " don't re-nig in 2012" bumper sticker. Please Respond

[-] 2 points by jph (2652) 2 years ago

Personally I can no more be friends with radical christian extremists, or islamic ones. It is the 'radical fundamentalism' that is the problem not any single flavor of it, all radical fundamentalism is terribly destructive and always breeds hatred of the 'other'. As well as being totally detached from actual reality.

I do realize that all right-wing 'conservatives' are the same. I put the word in quotes as the right in america is hardly even 'conservative' any longer,. they are more fascist than anything else, the ideology is no longer about conserving anything, it is about pushing for war and police state powers, they talk about limited government and keep growing spending on the military and police/surveillance-state, while supporting giant transnational corporations/banks. where is the conservatism in that? it is fascist not conservative. I am more conservative than the 8 years of bush ever was,. the great 'conservative ' ran up the largest debt in world history, fighting wars of choice for minerals, and oil profits for the corporations. BTW Obama is just as fascist as bush was and i see no real change under this new supposedly non-conservative administration. I don't see a conservative and a liberal political party, I see two slightly different PR faces on a single corporate fascist system.

[-] -1 points by lisaCobamarules (2) from New York, NY 2 years ago

You should love Obama, he is cool. He's good at giving us people things. And if only he would increase tax rate to 70% instead of 40% on people's income I could get more back. I want to give him two votes instead of just one. He will continue beatdown in Afghanistan so we can get minerals mining going. Iran should start faster so our troops can avoid summer heatwave. Go Obama in 2012! I love you Barack!

[-] -1 points by Dc123 (4) 2 years ago

Ok a few questions

  1. Are you okay with Obama taking away benefits from troops?
  2. Are you pro gun control?
  3. And can you please tell me three things Obama has done to truly benefit America?
[-] 2 points by bensdad (8977) 2 years ago

You asked for 3 - here are 10
Can you tell me three things that Romney has done to trly benefit America? [ without picking apart these 10 ]

  1. Passed Health Care Reform: After five presidents over a century failed to create universal health insurance, signed the Affordable Care Act (2010). It will cover 32 million uninsured Americans beginning in 2014 and mandates a suite of experimental measures to cut health care cost growth, the number one cause of America’s long-term fiscal problems.

  2. Passed the Stimulus: Signed $787 billion American Recovery and Reinvestment Act in 2009 to spur economic growth amid greatest recession since the Great Depression. Weeks after stimulus went into effect, unemployment claims began to subside. Twelve months later, the private sector began producing more jobs than it was losing, and it has continued to do so for twenty-three straight months, creating a total of nearly 3.7 million new private-sector jobs.

  3. Passed Wall Street Reform: Signed the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act (2010) to re-regulate the financial sector after its practices caused the Great Recession. The new law tightens capital requirements on large banks and other financial institutions, requires derivatives to be sold on clearinghouses and exchanges, mandates that large banks provide “living wills” to avoid chaotic bankruptcies, limits their ability to trade with customers’ money for their own profit, and creates the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (now headed by Richard Cordray) to crack down on abusive lending products and companies.

  4. Ended the War in Iraq: Ordered all U.S. military forces out of the country. Last troops left on December 18, 2011.

  5. Began Drawdown of War in Afghanistan: From a peak of 101,000 troops in June 2011, U.S. forces are now down to 91,000, with 23,000 slated to leave by the end of summer 2012. According to Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta, the combat mission there will be over by next year.

  6. Eliminated Osama bin laden: In 2011, ordered special forces raid of secret compound in Abbottabad, Pakistan, in which the terrorist leader was killed and a trove of al-Qaeda documents was discovered.

  7. Turned Around U.S. Auto Industry: In 2009, injected $62 billion in federal money (on top of $13.4 billion in loans from the Bush administration) into ailing GM and Chrysler in return for equity stakes and agreements for massive restructuring. Since bottoming out in 2009, the auto industry has added more than 100,000 jobs. In 2011, the Big Three automakers all gained market share for the first time in two decades. The government expects to lose $16 billion of its investment, less if the price of the GM stock it still owns increases.

  8. Recapitalized Banks: In the midst of financial crisis, approved controversial Treasury Department plan to lure private capital into the country’s largest banks via “stress tests” of their balance sheets and a public-private fund to buy their “toxic” assets. Got banks back on their feet at essentially zero cost to the government.

  9. Repealed “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell”: Ended 1990s-era restriction and formalized new policy allowing gays and lesbians to serve openly in the military for the first time.

  10. Toppled Moammar Gaddafi: In March 2011, joined a coalition of European and Arab governments in military action, including air power and naval blockade, against Gaddafi regime to defend Libyan civilians and support rebel troops. Gaddafi’s forty-two-year rule ended when the dictator was overthrown and killed by rebels on October 20, 2011. No American lives were lost.

[-] -1 points by Dc123 (4) 2 years ago

First off number six doesn't count, because any president in office would have done the same, he is just extremely lucky that we found him when he was in office. Number 10 doesn't count either, we barely did anything with Gaddafi, we did not fly any sorties, we just provided tactical overview and recon for the countries that actually dropped the bombs. Let's not forget about the 6.5 trillion in debt he has packed on.

[-] 1 points by bensdad (8977) 2 years ago

And Romney's three things?
Couldn't find 'em?
I'll be here waiting.

And thanks for "picking" So you liked :
number 1
number 2
number 3
number 4
number 5
number 7
number 8
number 9
WELL DONE !

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[-] -1 points by Dc123 (4) 2 years ago

He really isn't a friend of the troops. Like most Democrats he does not like the military because the Democrats usually don't get votes from them. A new bill he wants to pass if he gets re elected is cutting retirement for troops who have been in for 20 years and benefits to active duty. I really don't understand how you can think that Obama will try anything with Iran. I think it is great you think that, but messed up you think Obama will do it. I am really still trying to understand how you think Obama has made things better.

[-] 0 points by hchc (3297) from Tampa, FL 2 years ago

Both parties are masters of using fear to control your mind.

[-] 0 points by brochomsky (208) from Brooklyn, NY 2 years ago

Logic and reason are easily corrupted and used for bad. Take just a rudimentary College course in Logic and you'll see that logic, though useful, doesn't necessarily culminate in being closer to the truth--and I'm not sure logic is a tool necessary for finding the truth.

Rather, our appeals should be the result of emotional reasoning. Logic is too intellectual. Emotions are natural and can get you closer to the spirit of what truth and conviction are.

[-] 1 points by jph (2652) 2 years ago

logic together with reason are quite formidable tools in finding truth. emotions may lead one to the same conclusions, however the path seems much more random,. .

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[-] 1 points by brochomsky (208) from Brooklyn, NY 2 years ago

I'm unaware of any necessary truth logic has provided that emotions haven't already centuries earlier discovered.

[-] 1 points by jph (2652) 2 years ago

try to build a networked computer with emotions. as interesting as that sounds,. we need reproducible results, things that can be tested, observed, and understood (insofar as how they function in reality) .

These understandings do not come from emotions.

[-] 1 points by brochomsky (208) from Brooklyn, NY 2 years ago

Yes, but are they necessary?

[-] 0 points by jph (2652) 2 years ago

With out a scientific understanding of reality we have no technology and no agriculture, there are way too many people now to go with a pure hunter/gatherer society,. unless cannibalism appeals to your 'emotions'?

I understand the need to balance emotions with reason and logic,. but life in the absence of reason seems rather dark, as in 'dark-ages' dark. Not very appealing.

I do think we need to have more respect for the tech we do use and appropriate tech should be used and only sparingly, however the idea of abandoning reason for emotions seems like silly stance. Why make it?

[-] 1 points by brochomsky (208) from Brooklyn, NY 2 years ago

I don't mean abandoning reasoning; but rather adopting emotional reasoning over logical (or intellectual) reasoning. Logical reasoning is too easily abused--logic is used to justify things like Social Darwinism, Manifest Destiny, and what Neil Postman would call "Technopoly."

I don't mean to be too incendiary or obtuse. But rather to point out the flaws in putting too much faith in logic or similar intellectual methods of reasoning. What about the illogical things? What about emotions--which are completely natural to us and which we could never slice from our existence.

I agree that without technology and agriculture providing food for our people would be largely impossible. However, it's because of technology that we have overpopulation.

The Dark Ages wasn't an era absent of Logic. The logic they assumed seems dark to us now.

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[-] -1 points by po6059 (72) 2 years ago

the dems /libs/ows/progressives/ thrive on fear and hate,...... they promote it.

[-] 2 points by jph (2652) 2 years ago

in what reality? Please give us a link to this 'fear and hate' promoting coming from progressives. I see loads of fear mongering on the right, loads of downright lies in attempting to justify the fear and hate,. but it always seems to come from right-wing sources!

[-] 1 points by MattLHolck (16833) from San Diego, CA 2 years ago

no one says no to no nukes for Iran

[-] 0 points by po6059 (72) 2 years ago

trayvon martin,.............emotion before facts. "The police acted stupidly" ( obama) emotion before fact. NBC editing the zimmerman 911 call ,.............. pure agenda ( the producer edited out the question of race asked of zimmerman). the producer has been fired.

[-] 2 points by jph (2652) 2 years ago

we are not talking about any specific case here, just the general trend.

[-] 1 points by po6059 (72) 2 years ago

the general trend by the obama administration and the msm to promote race warfare and racial unrest.

[-] 1 points by jph (2652) 2 years ago

Why do all you 'right-wing faithful' project your own actions onto those you are perpetrating the actions against? Bush did this constantly "they hate our freedom" then he went ahead and eliminated all the freedoms and rights he could,. with the creation of the ridiculous 'homeland' security police state branch of our growing quasi military/government. Why not go all the way and just call it the Fatherland? Sig hial!

The right seems to be pushing for race wars as all their other distractions are falling short of distracting the people while they skim the rest of our retirement funds out the door.

[-] 1 points by pewestlake (947) from Brooklyn, NY 2 years ago

Project much? Being hysterically divisive is your natural condition. And over at Fox News, inventing divisive slander out of whole cloth and deliberately sabotaging journalistic integrity daily is rewarded with bonuses and promotions, and especially if its delivered with a healthy dose of paranoia, fear and general hysteria. "Watch out! The radical global socio-enviro-fascist Kenyan anti-colonialist conspiracy is coming for you NOW! RIGHT NOW!!! AHHHHH!!!"

Putz.

[-] 3 points by ComeTogetherNOW (650) 2 years ago

pewestlake, LoL, I think their just here to prove they aren't too bright although it's unintended. They're worth a few laughs just as they are. I think if they actually realized the truth verifiable through evidence they would melt. LMAO.

Sometimes it's just so much fun to swat these little minded "nothing to add" Gemstones. I'm just wondering when we will have some real competition. A lively debate with real facts. If this is the best they have how heck do their fearless leaders get elected to office. Ooops. I just thought of it but I'll bite my tongue this time. They are so amusing we don't want to enlighten them too much. Their house of cards could collapse, not a pretty site.

[-] 2 points by pewestlake (947) from Brooklyn, NY 2 years ago

"A lively debate with real facts" would lead to an obvious conclusion. No wonder they don't like facts. ;-)

[-] 1 points by ComeTogetherNOW (650) 2 years ago

That is always how it goes down. Like a famous line in a movie, "You can't handle the truth." This plays out for people every day as their myths crumble apart under the weight of the truth.

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[-] 0 points by po6059 (72) 2 years ago

please be specific,....................what slander?

[-] 2 points by pewestlake (947) from Brooklyn, NY 2 years ago

Imagine my shock upon learning that you swallow every word out of Fox News whole and are happily led to your own slaughter like the gullible sheep you are. You should pick on someone your own size. ;-)

[-] 0 points by po6059 (72) 2 years ago

what are you babbling about? i get my information and FACTS on line. i do not listen to or watch fox. i asked you a question,...............what slander? you have not answered.

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