Gore seems to have come up with a theory that the upper, logical mind sits on top of, and should master, the primitive and more emotional mind below. He thinks this can be done through a technical process that minimizes information flow to the lower brain and maximizes information flow to the higher brain.So, ironically, it is Gore himself who is being irrational -- according to Brooks.
The reality, of course, is that there is no neat distinction between the “higher” and “lower” parts of the brain. There are no neat distinctions between the “rational” mind and the “visceral” body. The mind is a much more complex network of feedback loops than accounted for in Gore’s simplistic pseudoscience.
Without emotions like fear, the “logical” mind can’t reach conclusions. On the other hand, many of the most vicious, genocidal acts are committed by people who are emotionally numb, not passionately out of control.
But wait. Does Gore actually believe in this unscientific view of the human mind? Is the point of this book to wake us up and make us see that we've been manipulated by the media?
The other way of looking at the problem Brooks points out is that Gore is being quite rational, he understands very well that emotion and reason are intertwined, and he is using talk about rationality to manipulate our emotions. I think the use of that scary word "assault" in the title gives it away.
Be very afraid. Evil people want to control you -- assault you! --with invisible forces that play upon parts of your body that are beyond your conscious thought. I will protect you with this magical substance I have called Reason. Come to me. I will save you.
ADDED: There's some talk in the comments about how annoyingly condescending Gore sounded in his recent NPR interview. You can listen to it here.