Thursday, March 14, 2019

Psychological underpinnings of politics

I want to point to a number of commentaries on psychological determinants of political behavior that have been languishing in my queue of potential posts...

How brain science could determine the election. A review of differences between liberals and conservatives in brain processes - with a strong genetic component - that regulate risk tolerance, openness to novelty, fearfulness, etc.

Why Trump will win a second term. Amy Chozick discusses Trump's uncanny grasp, deriving from his experience as a reality show host, of how to keep people's attention by creating an unscripted drama that fills living rooms everywhere, providing entertainment value in the chaos.

The end of the two-party system. David Brooks describes the dissolution of political parties into warring clans competing for declining resources.

Our Culture of Contempt.  Arthur Brooks notes that the problem in America today is not incivility or intolerance, it is contempt for those with opposing views. This is based on motive attribution asymmetry, which leads one side to consider itself driven by benevolence while thinking the other side is motivated by evil and hatred.

Is there such a thing as an authoritarian voter?  Molly Worthen review work studying the psychological traits of voters who are attracted to authoritarian personalities. 

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