November 5, 2018

"How Brain Science Could Determine the Midterms/Ever wonder why liberals and conservatives vote the way they do? It turns out they might literally be wired differently."

A Politico headline that misuses either the word "science" or the word "determine." The subheadline is worse: "Ever wonder why liberals and conservatives vote the way they do? It turns out they might literally be wired differently." Literally wired? Come on!

Anyway. Let's consider the notion that there's something scientists have discovered about the brain that might help us understand why an individual leans to the political left or right. The author — who probably didn't write the headline — is a professor and psychiatrist, Daniel Z. Lieberman:
The brain divides our thought life into two activities: appreciating what we have and desiring what we need.... The brain uses... chemicals like oxytocin, which encourages us focus on intimate relationships, and endorphins, which provide feelings of fulfillment and satisfaction. By contrast, desiring what we don’t have is the domain of a single chemical in the brain: dopamine. It gives us the drive to pursue new things....

Progressivism, the pursuit of progress, is, by definition, the pursuit of change, of new things. So, we might expect to see progressive ideology in people with more active dopamine circuits. And that’s just what we do find. Researchers from the University of California discovered that people who inherit particularly active dopamine receptor genes are more likely to subscribe to a liberal ideology. (They also tend to get bored easily and seek novelty, and can be impulsive, exploratory, excitable, quick-tempered and extravagant.)...
Why don't they like Trump? He's new, impulsive, exploratory, excitable, quick-tempered, and extravagant. Maybe it's that these dopamine folks want other people to stay put why they pursue newness and indulge their impulsive, exploratory, excitable, quick-tempered, and extravagant selves.
[P]eople with lower levels of dopamine and higher levels of the “Here & Now” brain chemicals are more likely to take their enjoyment from the appreciation of things they already have. They value tradition... A study of 1,771 students in Singapore found that conservative attitudes were more common among those who had a receptor gene that was less reactive to dopamine....
This sounds incredibly simplistic.
[C]onservative brains, chemically inclined toward preserving the here and now, are more sensitive to threats that might undermine their current way of life. When a group of volunteers were divided by political affiliation, researchers found that, compared to liberals, conservatives had a stronger physiological reaction to frightening images, such as a spider crawling on a man’s face.
Then why do lefties get so emotive in reaction to the sight of Trump's face and blurt feelings of disgust at his body, his hair, and his color?
This neuroscience suggests that the current confrontational political climate may be helping the conservative cause. News articles that describe public harassment by activists, for example, trigger threat circuits in the brain and can turn the ordinarily complacent conservative into an enthusiastic partisan.... In response, liberal leaders might reduce conservatives’ motivation to vote by playing down confrontation, and instead emphasizing the commonality all Americans share.
So the people you just described as "impulsive, exploratory, excitable, quick-tempered, and extravagant" are now the calm, quiet ones who keep everything in balance? I'm sure there's some brain science in there, but this article seems to have been processed into the usual pap for progressives. Why they continue to consume this stuff is a mystery, considering their vaunted love of newness and creativity.

178 comments:

Seeing Red said...

but biology isn’t hardwired. It’s a social construct.

Facepalm

MadTownGuy said...

Professor Lieberman gets it wrong: "Progressivism, the pursuit of progress, is, by definition, the pursuit of change, of new things."

Progressivism is about accrual of power to the state. For our own good, of course. /sarc

Seeing Red said...

Progressivism, the pursuit of progress, is, by definition, the pursuit of change, of new things.

Progressivism is the pursuit of famine destruction and death. See Stalin and Mao.

Mike Sylwester said...

Brain scientists sure do understand politics good.

Amadeus 48 said...

Nah--they don't love newness and creativity. They want power over you and me. They want to determine what you and I can do, but they themselves want to do as they please.

Will to power makes the world go round, baby.

Seeing Red said...

. (They also tend to get bored easily and seek novelty, and can be impulsive, exploratory, excitable, quick-tempered and extravagant.)...


Or stuck in hormonal teenage years. Squirrel!

iowan2 said...

'..excitable at the site of President Trumps face...'
I'm no brain expert, but that's a conditioned response. No one got excited by his face 30 years ago.

Can Of Cheese for Hunter said...

What is behind the brain science of an entire collective ideological loyalty that is willing to overlook and forgive criminal and unethical behavior? *Clinton*

Can Of Cheese for Hunter said...

Progressive = progress on the road to socialism.

Dust Bunny Queen said...

That article just reinforces what we have been saying for years.

Liberalism is a mental illness We should medicate the Hell out of them.

tim in vermont said...

They consume it for the frisson of feeling superior. All bigots are hooked on that. People think that bigotry makes one feel low and mean, but in fact it makes one feel superior.

Fortunately for politicians, the subconscious has a nearly instantaneous veto on the exploitation of lines of thought that might cut off the flow of these pleasure fixes. "Reject first, ask rhetorical questions later!"

Henry said...

News articles that describe public harassment by activists, for example, trigger threat circuits in the brain and can turn the ordinarily complacent conservative into an enthusiastic partisan....

Sounds like he asking for the media not to report public harassment by activists.

To summarize: "People with beliefs won't support you if you oppose their beliefs. Therefore, lie."

Dust Bunny Queen said...

Researchers from the University of California discovered that people who inherit particularly active dopamine receptor genes are more likely to subscribe to a liberal ideology

Or become drug addicts and criminals.

tim in vermont said...

The pleasure I am addicted to is pointing out flaws in liberal arguments and observing that they almost never have an actual response. Probably comes from sibling stuff.

Amadeus 48 said...

"No one got excited by his face 30 years ago."

But that was different. Then he was a clownish, extravagant real estate operator from the outer boroughs. Now he is POTUS and LITERALLY HITLER!

Wince said...

By contrast, desiring what we don’t have is the domain of a single chemical in the brain: dopamine. It gives us the drive to pursue new things....

Or take somebody else's by force.

tim in vermont said...

It's not called a "lie", Henry, it's a "revolutionary truth."

tim in vermont said...

Remember how they laughed at Jordan Peterson for talking about dopamine in lobsters? Good times...

tim in vermont said...

I am sure that part of what has motivated the batshit crazies is the dopamine crash from losing a sure election. Like the Seahawk fans felt after that super bowl.

John said...

The pleasure I am addicted to is pointing out flaws in liberal arguments and observing that they almost never have an actual response.

What arguments for example? I assume you're on board with Trump's orgy of deficit financed Keynesian stimulus? You're on board with no changes to SS and Medicare, right?

The Crack Emcee said...

"A Politico headline that misuses either the word "science" or the word "determine.""

I betcha it's science.

traditionalguy said...

The freedom and equality that was discovered in Christian Bibles first translated and printed in the 1500s rocked the Roman Empire offshoots that specialized in slaves owned by a ruling class. That was progress that had to fight the Catholic Empires to the death for the next 100years and finally seeded the New England rebels of 1776 and the Scots Irish politicians of the 1800s.

Trump is one of them. Their brain chemicals make them enjoy fighting for what is theirs and keep fighting until they win. You can watch them at Trump Rallies.

Inga...Allie Oop said...

Less Dopamine? Dopamine receptors not working properly? Sounds like there might be a higher number of people suffering from Parkinson’s among conservatives than liberals.

tim in vermont said...

No, I agree with you on both. It's more of a lesser of two evils there. If you are going to strain the budget, it's better to have a strong economy, less regulation, cheaper energy, than to force up the price of energy and metaphorically put lead ingots in the jockey's saddlebags in the form of regulations.

Arguments like yours, however, have been notably absent here from your side. It seems to be all Cheeto Jesus and the like.

Stoutcat said...

tim in vermont said...
"...Like the Seahawk fans felt after that super bowl."

Ah, good times, good times.

gilbar said...

*if* we stipulate, for the sake of argument that what 'scientists' have 'determined' is true
Then...
Dopamine drives early addiction to heroin

So, voting for 'progressive' candidates is a symptom of mental illness?

wild chicken said...

I was always reflexively conservative, but I assumed that was from being born to a moderne broken "progressive" so-called family. I prefer things hold together rather than fly apart.

Can Of Cheese for Hunter said...

If your chemical make-up gives you a hankering for "change" - why would you then conclude that the old, failed, backward ideologies of communism and socialism are "progress"?
That makes zero sense.

Ray said...

"Remember how they laughed at Jordan Peterson for talking about dopamine in lobsters?"

I'm pretty sure it was serotonin. Anti depressants will motivate a defeated lobster to fight again.
He did say that those on the right tend to want order and structure, while those on the left, tend to be more open to change. I'm not sure he ever talked about brain chemistry as related to political preference, just brain hemisphere.

Dust Bunny Queen said...

John said: You're on board with no changes to SS and Medicare, right?

That is not an argument. To make an argument you need to follow with facts and thoughts on why your supposition is correct.

Assume you are on the pro side of making no changes to SS and Medicare. You need to sway your opponent otherwise you are just gassing off.

Why are you on the pro side to make no changes to SS & Medicare?

What changes would be proposed that you would be opposed to?
What would be the the effect of some proposed changes?
What was the original form of Medicare and SS?
What changes have already been made in the past?
Were those changes positive or negative?

Those would be aspects of an argument. If you have no arguments, you are just making random statements without any foundation.

You get an F in the debate class.

rhhardin said...

What are the chemicals that give a preference for plans that won't work over plans that will work.

Fernandinande said...

dopamine. It gives us the drive to pursue new things....

Greed for the elusive O.P.M.

Cato Renasci said...

Gilbert and Sullivan had this nailed close to 150 years ago in Iolanthe:

I often think it's comical – Fal, lal, la!
How Nature always does contrive – Fal, lal, la!
That every boy and every gal
That’s born into the world alive
Is either a little Liberal
Or else a little Conservative!
Fal, lal, la!

tim in vermont said...

I think that the sexual fantasies post was more elucidating, Hillary as dominatrixe explains otherwise inexplicable support for her among liberals. Democrats had fantasized about being bound and Republicans about freedom. Of course the 'scientists' imposed the best pro liberal interpretation they could think of.

gilbar said...

DB@H said ... "why would you then conclude that the old, failed, backward ideologies of communism and socialism are "progress"?"

I've felt for some time, that the true stick in the mud, status quo 'conservatives' are the people that keep trying to push the clock back to 1933.

Henry said...

This brain science stuff aligns with Jonathan Haidt's work (The Righteous Mind). Haidt, of course, is a far more careful thinker and writer.

The science Dr. Lieberman describes seems to be fairly conventional. Here's Haidt's summation:

After analyzing the DNA of 13,000 Australians, scientists recently found several genes that different between liberals and conservatives. Most of them related to neurotransmitter functioning, particularly glutamate and serotonin, both of which are involved in the brain's response to threat and fear. This finding fits well with many studies showing that conservatives react more strongly than liberals to signs of danger, including the threat of germs and contamination, and even low-level threats such as sudden blasts of white noise. Other studies have implicated genes releated to receptors for the neurotransmitter dopamine, which has long been tied to sensation-seeking and openness to experience, which are among the best-established correlates of liberalism.

Haidt, as I said, is a careful thinker:

Even though the effects of a single gene are tiny, these finding are important because they illustrate one sort of pathway from genes to politics: the genes (collectively) give some people brains that are more (or less) reactive to threats and that produce less (or more) pleasure when exposed to novelty, change, and new experiences.

If we were to accept Dr. Lieberman's reductive version of this research, the question of why fear is so prevalent among Trump opponents is very easy to answer: It is because the modern Democratic party is a conservative party, wedded with reactionary attachment to authoritarian institutions it built 40 to 80 years ago.

Bob Boyd said...

This subject needs further study to explain some unanswered questions.
For example, why do the deep stores of dopamine driving a desire for change in progressives seem to suddenly dry up when the they are ensconced in power?

Dust Bunny Queen said...

"Remember how they laughed at Jordan Peterson for talking about dopamine in lobsters?"

Cool. Now let's discuss the Crab Bucket Mentality that seems to be the guiding factor behind most Progressives and liberals.

In crab bucket mentality, the members of a group will attempt to negate or diminish the importance of any member who achieves success beyond the others. This could be out of envy, spite, conspiracy, or competitive feelings.

Crab bucket mentality in respect to people like Clarence Thomas, Donald Trump, and many others. Get back in the bucket you bad crab, you.

tim in vermont said...

Ray, he laid out the evidence, I don't feel constrained to parrot his conclusions. I just accept the evidence and respect it.

tim in vermont said...

I think that they portray Trump as a fascist dictator because fascists give them a thrill. Those of us more concerned with freedom and of the persuasion that the presidency is only a job are sort of mystified by that. Trump respects the constitution more than any president in my lifetime.

Bob Boyd said...

I didn't have to read past the headline to know the conclusion would be that liberals are superior to conservatives.
If the headline had been "Ever wonder why men and women vote the way they do", I'd have known the conclusion would be that women are superior to men.

tim in vermont said...

For liberals, politics seems to be theatre of their own psychodramas.

narayanan said...

Chuck - put your office on conference call with the Professora - "Literally wired"

John said...

That is not an argument.

I know. I wasn't making an argument. I was asking a question. That's why I put a ? and the end of the sentence.

Bob Boyd said...

Eve - Dopamine
Adam - Oxytocin

Kevin said...

Fake news that divides the country and feeds liberals’ sense of superiority.

A trifecta!

tim maguire said...

You know they're off to a bad start when they define "conservative" and "progressive" according to left-wing fantasy, without any real world reference. For instance, conservatories don't fear change, they fear careless change (think the parable of the fence). Progressives don't embrace change (in fact, in today's world, they are retrograde), they embrace the accumulation of power.

Judging by Althouse's excerpts, it doesn't get any better from there.

Cato Renasci said...

tim in vermont wrote: I think that the sexual fantasies post was more elucidating, Hillary as dominatrixe explains otherwise inexplicable support for her among liberals. Democrats had fantasized about being bound and Republicans about freedom. Of course the 'scientists' imposed the best pro liberal interpretation they could think of.

One wonders about this - is the great upsurge of open and public interest in bdsm over the past 20-30 odd years, and the obvious attempt to mainstream bdsm in elite circles, a result of the deeply submissive tendencies of progressives, and progressive women especially. So many of their fantasies are the outwardly competent woman professional who needs to be taken in had and brought (literally) to heel and who finds happiness in submission to a dominant male.

So much of bdsm has an air or aura of children playing at something. In my experience among mature adults, those who are submissive simply find a relationship in which they submit without the need for play acting to 'let go' and those who are dominant simply dominate whose who prefer to be dominated, again without the need for all of the whips and chains and kinky "play rooms"....

buwaya said...

One thing in the article is correct - if the liberals were to reduce the sense of threat conservatives feel, then conservatives would be less active.

This can be seen in a natural experiment - gun sales. Donald Trump has done more for gun control than anyone in US history, in practical terms, simply by being a demotivator of gun sales. Granted that gun sales are still running very high, a legacy of economic and social uncertainty since the early 2000's. Obama was the greatest gun salesman in world history.

Liberals could achieve vastly more gun control, that is a reduction in the rate of ownership, by reducing their maniacal speech and behavior.

Ann Althouse said...

My point about "science" and "determine" in the headline isn't that the science is such bad science it doesn't deserve to be called "science." It's that science can't determine the outcome of the elections. It can only study the way people vote. I would have accepted "How Brain Science Could Explain What Determines the Outcome Midterms." But to be "How Brain Science May Have Discovered Something About Why People Vote the Way They Do."

tim in vermont said...

Thanks for proving my point, John. You're part of a large cohort, however.

John said...

"conservative" and "progressive"

The problem with that is "conservatism" in the US contains a fair number of libertarians, especially among donors. In that context libertarianism is a radical progressive ideology, in the sense that they hope to make radical changes to society in hopes of perfecting it.

gilbar said...

the Washington examiner
has a story about how...
IF the demos hold on to all their states except Nor dak
AND the repubs lose every other state except Tenn
THEN! Tennessee will determine whether the repubs hold the senate.

{i think their dopamine levels are a little too high} Dreaming is Free...
BUT! I'll do them one better!

IF every democrat goes out and votes,
AND every repub forgets to
THEN the demo's will win... IN A LANDSLIDE!

buwaya said...

One day, perhaps very soon, a genetic basis for political preference will be found through analysis of massive databases. Its probably a complex set of traits dependent on a very large number of genes, as intelligence is proving to be.

Bob Boyd said...

The German Nazis - dopamine
The French Resistance - Oxytocin

Francisco D said...

I wonder if more progressives than conservatives take anti-depressants.

Enhancing dopamine activity is what anti-depressants try to do.

In any case, correlational research often gives us the insight that wet streets cause rain.

tim in vermont said...

I was talking to an actual active duty soldier who was on leave, and it wasn't hard to infer from his statement that there are more privately owned guns in Wisconsin than most armies have that private gun owners figure positively in US defense strategy.

Saint Croix said...

The science is interesting but the ideology is stupid.

Progressivism, the pursuit of progress, is, by definition, the pursuit of change, of new things.

Marxism is a failed ideology from the 19th century. There's nothing new or exciting or novel about Bernie Fucking Sanders. Been there, done that. Seen it before. Heard it before. You're boring the shit out of me, old guy from the past. You're failing to excite my dopamine receptors. You're putting my dopamine receptors to sleep with your rehashed ideas. Progressivism is another name for stuck in the mud. In the mud! You are stuck in the mud. Try something new because you are stuck in the mud like a wheel that keeps turning but it ain't moving forward. And if I hear one more 20-year-old tell me that "Communism has never been tried" I'm going to start punching the kids and see if I can wake those sleepwalking indoctrinated fuckers up a little. It's been tried, you anti-historians. More than once! Holy shit.

buwaya said...

When personality and politics can be predicted through genetic analysis, then political programs could change radically, to a system of demotivating reproduction by people determined to carry the wrong genes, and encouraging those with the right genes.

tim in vermont said...

That's because nobody is going to get the Army to kill Americans, despite liberals' dark fantasies about Trump.

Ignorance is Bliss said...

I wouldn't use the word literally, but connections between neurons are very similar to wiring. By that analogy, everybody's brain is wired differently.

However, differences in sensitivity to various neurochemicals is not a matter of wiring.

Bob Boyd said...

Incel shooting up Yoga studio - dopamine
Guy with vacuum cleaner - adrenaline and oxytocin

tim in vermont said...

"on by people determined to carry the wrong genes, and encouraging those with the right genes"

Well is it self correcting when one side holds abortion as sacred and doesn't consider a not yet born baby as human?

narayanan said...

"people with more active dopamine circuits."

has anybody measured dopamine at Trump Rallies?
Can't you just smell it - everyday even in WalMart?

FIDO said...

Translation: They can't help themselves but our brains work better than theirs.

I put this in the same pile of crap where psychologists regularly determine that Conservatives are insane regularly...to be debunked three weeks later as poorly sourced garbage.

Saint Croix said...

So, we might expect to see progressive ideology in people with more active dopamine circuits.

Maybe kids have more active dopamine receptors? I'm more interested in the ages of the people in your Berkeley study. Did you control for age or did you just borrow a bunch of students from next door?

"The government's promising free shit! That's new! Never heard that before! I'm so excited! Free shit! Let's run out into the streets and get our free shit!" Maybe older people don't have their dopamine receptors jumping up and down because, you know, we're experienced and know things.

Bob Boyd said...

Radical Islamist terrorist - dopamine
Catholic Nun - oxytocin

Darrell said...

Lefties are fucking nuts.
We've had enough evidence of that here.

narayanan said...

is this academic etiquette? - Is psychiatry still considered science?

Why the passive - "but this article seems to have been processed into the usual pap for progressives"

author decided to pap - what were the chemical levels in his brain as he chose words?

Seeing Red said...

This finding fits well with many studies showing that conservatives react more strongly than liberals to signs of danger, including the threat of germs and contamination, and even low-level threats such as sudden blasts of white noise.



Lolol


I love white noise and eat things past their expiration date. Always the outlier I am.

Saint Croix said...

I imagine I have fairly active dopamine receptors because all those adjectives describe me, more or less. I like excitement. Big fan of excitement! They ought to do a study on dopamine receptors and use of exclamation points. Start with grammar and work up to stupid ideologies.

I dislike the left because of all the innocent dead people who were brutally murdered under your anti-human regime. But, and I can't emphasize this point enough, you also bore the shit out of me. Nothing says boring like failed ideologies that have no actual real world application. Derrida would upset me but he's too fucking boring to make it that far.

When Jean-Luc Godard went political, art lost a genius and politics got a moron. You want fun? Breathless is fun! You want boring as shit? Jean-Luc Godard talking politics in front of a giant picture of Jane Fonda is boring as shit. Speaking of Jane Fonda, Klute is awesome, because sex is awesome. My dopamine receptors are like this. Yea! Sex!

But as some of our better scientists might tell you, sex has been around for a while. Sex is some ancient shit. Way older than Marx! But still kinda fun if you know what I mean.

Vance said...

Whatever inherent brain chemistry you get from your genes is almost always overwhelmed by the brain chemistry created by your own choices. So this study is stupid.

As has been said, so-called "Progressivism" is just "tyranny" with a different name. Of course lots of people pursue it... it's always good to be the tyrant. Think Stalin was having fun? Hitler, Himmler, Mao? Of course they enjoyed it.... murder can be very fun, I imagine, if you are safe from consequences.

Until, you know, you meet your Maker, who will avenge them all.

MikeR said...

Most sociology results are wrong. Attempts to replicate them fails in the majority of cases.

tim in vermont said...

I always figured that there are likely a lot of hidden conservatives among Hispanics and we really do need immigration reform, just not the largess to lawbreakers Democrats have proposed. Democrats seem to know that law abiding immigrants will favor Republicans, so they oppose it.

Bob Boyd said...

Guy in clean underwear - dopamine
Guy in dirty underwear - oxytocin

This science stuff isn't so hard. It's kinda fun, in fact.

JZ said...

Dopey writers with progressive views are good at putting lots of words together. Dopey magazines and web sites find them useful when it comes to filling space.

Dave Begley said...

Nice takedown by Althouse. Pinned Politico to the mat in under 30 seconds.

Seeing Red said...

If it’s about boredom and “change” then they should be embracing The Donald because he and his policies are certainly a change from Obama.

Rory said...

"In response, liberal leaders might reduce conservatives’ motivation to vote by playing down confrontation, and instead emphasizing the commonality all Americans share."

You'd have to fire hundreds of thousands of people in government, media, education. Division is their product.

mockturtle said...

Some brains mature and attain wisdom. Others stay in an undeveloped, childlike state.

JPS said...

Prof. Althouse:

"It's that science can't determine the outcome of the elections. It can only study the way people vote."

Not sure I'd even go that far. But "A Scientist Thinks He Understands X" is a much less authoritative headline.

Seeing Red said...

What about the people who had high dopamine level who escaped a Communist Russia and refuse to vote “progressive” becaus3 of life experiences?

Dave Begley said...

I think this issue might be the topic of the next academic paper by CBF. That is if she isn't indicted first.

Bob Boyd said...

Guy stubbornly clinging to an old dick and balls - oxytocin
Gal who's dick and balls are in a landfill somewhere - dopamine

William said...

Is it possible that there are virtues and vices that exist independently of one's political affiliations? Both Obama and Trump like to play golf. Perhaps the desire to play golf has nothing to do with your views on immigration. Also both Republicans and Democrats have criticized the opposition leader for playing too much golf. Perhaps the desire to criticize golf players is not indicative of your political loyalties.

Rory said...

Tim in Vermont said: "I think that they portray Trump as a fascist dictator because fascists give them a thrill."

This is peacock's tail evolution. You don't have to actually fight a dictator to be considered fit, you just have to provide the illusion of it.

William said...

Has anyone ever done a study to examine why social scientists are forever doing studies to demonstrate that Republicans are bad and that people with the same political leanings as social scientists are good? It would be impossible to get funding for such a study, but it would be worth doing.

William said...

If in one room you put a large quantity of assault rifles, beer kegs, and Playboy bunnies and in another room you put the collected works of Naom Chomsky, vats of Ben &Jerry ice cream, and lots of black leather porn would there be any doubt which room Bernie Sanders fans would choose and which room would be favored by Trump supporters?

Can Of Cheese for Hunter said...

Why do leftists feel they are entitled to lie?

Ken B said...

Nice post. We see this same story with different details over and over. The headline should read "science proves it, they really are deplorable."

I'm Full of Soup said...

If progressivism truly desired progress, it would not be so keenly interested in continuing to support the old Dem programs begun in the last mid-century like social security, medicare and building huge unmanageable public school systems. Instead, they'd want to start from scratch and create programs and systems more suited to this century and which address the known shortcomings of the old ones.

But if they did that, they'd be abandoning the crony voter groups which support Dems.

Robert Cook said...

"Some brains mature and attain wisdom. Others stay in an undeveloped, childlike state."

Geez...always harping on Trump!

Robert Cook said...

"If progressivism truly desired progress, it would not be so keenly interested in continuing to support the old Dem programs begun in the last mid-century like social security, medicare and building huge unmanageable public school systems. Instead, they'd want to start from scratch and create programs and systems more suited to this century and which address the known shortcomings of the old ones."

What do you suggest?

Earnest Prole said...

The party of pseudoscience.

Static Ping said...

Funny, I did not think that socialism qualified as a "new" idea. New to them, I suppose.

I'm Full of Soup said...

I'd support a social security program for young people which put one-half of their and their employers' "contributions" into an individual account which the individual owns forever. The remaining half could go into a "community account" so when you reach retirement age [based on year of birth] the community account gets whacked up into equal monthly annuity checks paid to everyone born in the same birth year. That is it - nice and simple. If you make a lot of money, only one half of your contributions help support those who did not make a lot of money.

And there has to be a lifetime cap on earnings subject to the tax - say $6 Million.

Matt Sablan said...

I've been reading reports of these reports since at least high school.

Matt Sablan said...

"News articles that describe public harassment by activists, for example, trigger threat circuits in the brain and can turn the ordinarily complacent conservative into an enthusiastic partisan."

-- Having not read the article, did they look at how the reporting of "white nationalist Trump supporters" impact the brains of progressives?

Jeff Weimer said...

Yet another "Sugar and Spice, and Everything Nice, that's what Liberals are made of" navel-gazing wankery.

D. B. Light said...

Nearly everything that is reported on psychology in the popular press is BS. And so, it seems, is much that is published in professional journals, including some of the most widely cited studies of all time. The same could be said of most social science research in any field.

n.n said...

Science is a near-frame philosophy. The presumption to characterize a human consciousness assumes that it is or can be fully or sufficiently characterized and modeled.

Social Security and Medicare (and welfare) vs Savings and Insurance (and charity)

Public vs Private smoothing functions

When they are contributory, the risk of corruption is mitigated at both ends. Perpetual smoothing functions, public or private, are spiritually destructive (e.g. "spoiled child"). The private smoothing functions are in principle more dynamic (e.g. responsive, growth).

Public smoothing functions are backed by the full faith and credit of the American people. Social Security has fixed (with controlled adjustments) per capita outlays, therefore predictable, and in principle stable. Medicare and Medicaid have evolutionary, and, in fact, progressive, unfunded (or underfunded) costs, which threaten to destabilize public and private budgets. One side believes the resolution can be delayed through progressive extraction and Planned Parenthood. The other side believes the costs are not commensurate with products, and that regulatory schemes will exacerbate the misalignment.

Pookie Number 2 said...

What do you suggest?

Eliminate social security.

School vouchers.

Lower taxes.

Less regulation.

(Basically, abandoning the laughablly false assertion that government is remotely competent beyond its role in keeping people from hurting others or taking their stuff.) (Not that they’re particularly good at that, either.)

n.n said...

Progressivism is a philosophy of monotonic change. Liberalism is divergent. Conservatism maintains state. Principles matter.

Rick said...

This determination cannot account for such basic events as people changing their positions.

This is so unbelievably stupid it's astonishing people are willing to claim they believe it.
Further it reveals political "science" is nothing more than wishful thinking and/or propaganda.

RigelDog said...

It's common to see "studies" that "demonstrate" negative characteristics attributed to conservatives by interpreting their reactions of fear/revulsion to images or ideas such as a spider crawling on a face. These studies never conclude that, say, conservatives have such reactions because they are better at learning from experience and have the wisdom to avoid things such as spiders crawling on their faces. People who avoid spiders and who are more revolted by an image of rotten meat are the product of evolution, which process rewarded their smart and sensible ancestors.

Robert Cook said...

"'What do you suggest?'

"Eliminate social security.

"School vouchers.

"Lower taxes.

"Less regulation."


What positive outcomes to you think will result from these knee-jerk responses?

"(Basically, abandoning the laughablly false assertion that government is remotely competent beyond its role in keeping people from hurting others or taking their stuff.) (Not that they’re particularly good at that, either.)"

11/5/18, 10:19 AM

I take it you're an anarchist, then.

Anthony said...

Progressivism, the pursuit of progress, is, by definition, the pursuit of change, of new things.

HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA . . . .hooooweeeeee. . . that's a. . .HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!!!!

bagoh20 said...

How does this explain the way many conservatives start out liberal? Are we born-again conservatives?

It's hard to find anything about the two poles that reliably indicates which one a person might be, but I do see that appreciation for what one has and self-reliance are mostly conservative values, but nothing is 100%.

You would think that wanting new things would make people value freedom from government and free markets since we have never really had either.

Lewis Wetzel said...

Study delivers bleak verdict on validity of psychology experiment results

Of 100 studies published in top-ranking journals in 2008, 75% of social psychology experiments and half of cognitive studies failed the replication test

https://www.theguardian.com/science/2015/aug/27/study-delivers-bleak-verdict-on-validity-of-psychology-experiment-results

So stuff like this comes and . . . gets ignored by the overwhelmingly liberal profession of psychology. "We believe in facts and science and evidence based solutions to social problems" indeed.

Anonymous said...

I'm calling bullshit on this one. There's nothing progressive about progressivism. The left wants to perfect a 19th century economic model that has been tried over and over with the same failed results. They aren't looking for some new, revolutionary way of governing ourselves.

Lewis Wetzel said...

There is no biological or psychological test -- other than self-reporting -- that can detect whether a person is heterosexual or homosexual, but Lieberman & Long think they can discover your political leanings based on how you react to an image of spider crawling on a human face.
Okay! Party on, Politico!

bagoh20 said...

One big differences I see is how people feel about taking and spending other people's money. For example, both types may value compassion, contraception, immigration, or equal rights, but progressives only really get excited about the part where they force others to pay for it. They even seem to argue against successful strategies toward these goals if it does not involve government spending.

The other big one is style versus substance. Both Obama and Hillary are perfect examples of people they wanted as leaders despite either having any real concrete success of making, building or fixing anything valuable to others. And of course there is Che Guevara, Palestinians, and socialism.

Rory said...

William: "Has anyone ever done a study to examine why social scientists are forever doing studies to demonstrate that Republicans are bad and that people with the same political leanings as social scientists are good?"

I think there should be a central repository for protocols, which would be filed before the study is actually performed. That way we'd know not just about studies that report some sort political correlation, but also about those that tested for political leanings but that did not choose to report findings for those tests. I suspect that the latter are legion.

bagoh20 said...

Libertarians would be the most fond of new things. Their ideas really are mostly new and untried. The left hates them too, because they don't value spending other people's money enough.

LA_Bob said...

So the world is divided between Dop(amin)es and Deplorables?

rehajm said...

Why they continue to consume this stuff is a mystery, considering their vaunted love of newness and creativity.

It's affirmation, and an accompanying dopamine squirt. They crave the mix of the body's own opioid/endocannabinoids. It's addiction.

Bill Peschel said...

"pap for progressives"

I have the title for my new online magazines.

I wonder if he has a scientific explanation for why I was a liberal up until 2001.

* Perhaps it was the East Anglia email leak that showed me how much fudging went into climate change data, the numerous predictions that were so far off the mark, the experiments that captured real data (NASA's water-temperature buoys, the examination of island coastlines) that contradicted the predictions, the threats to jail or punish anyone questioning climate-change theory (compared to the loony "moon hoaxers", whose arguments are rebutted with scientific explanations), and the belief that we're close to another ice-age cycle and that global warming is actually helping keep it at bay?

* Perhaps it was seeing Democrats go all-in for the invasion of Afghanistan, only to see them turn about within weeks? (As for why we're still there is another debate, and I'm not happy with the establishment GOP and the Dems for that reason.)

* Perhaps it was seeing the leftward dominance of the media industry (confirmed by my observations from inside a newspaper) show up in how stories were written and framed.

* Perhaps it was seeing Obama's radical past whitewashed by the media, never mind how they've abandoned objectivity in favor of cover-ups, smears, and broadcasting lies.

* Perhaps it's seeing now the Democrats indulging in revolutionary and assassination fantasies, seeing them come to life in attacks on GOP politicians, headquarters, and supporters, and blaming Trump for causing them.

* Perhaps it's seeing the economy weighed down with more government programs under Obama, followed by the sudden rebound under Trump, in spite of the mewlings and tut-tuttings of the "conservatives" such as Brooks, Will, and Kristol.

No, no, it must be my brain rewiring itself.

MD Greene said...

Humans are the products of genetics, epigenetics, their experiences, what they have learned and what they have done. There is no way to separate these in order to ascertain or describe their political views.

Neuroscientists are using MRI technology to identify stimuli that activate different parts of the brain and to make interesting inferences. Only the seriously damaged pseudoscience that poses as postmodern social science even would attempt to go down the road described here.

The point is that humans have free will. We must respect others as individuals, and be humble about applying our own templates to their inner lives.

Maybe the day will come when scientists, social or hard, can concoct desirable human beings in their laboratories. I hope to die before that day arrives.

Lewis Wetzel said...

In real science -- science that examines the physical world -- you hypothesize, experiment, revise your hypothesis, experiment, again and again until you can say a true thing about the physical world. Sometimes you fail to reach the end point, sometimes you find startling results, and sometimes you prove your original hypothesis.
The social sciences don't work that way. It often appears that research is designed to confirm the researcher's hypothesis. It is not science, in other words. It doesn't tell you anything about the physical world.

Pookie Number 2 said...

Robert Cook: What positive outcomes to you think will result from these knee-jerk responses?

More liberty, less corruption, better economic well-being.

I take it you’re an anarchist, then.

Well, only in the same sense that has you as an advocate the sort of murderous tyranny exercised by Stalin and Pol Pot. In other words, not at all, and that’s a stupid accusation made in bad faith. You’re generally better than this.

chuck said...

John von Neumann was conservative, just sayin'.

"There's no sense in being precise when you don't even know what you're talking about."

cassandra lite said...

So, political views are hardwired but gender is fluid.
What a stupid time to be alive.

traditionalguy said...

Everybody does know this "brain science" is re-cycled Eugenics, right.

Sam L. said...

Libs hate Trump because he's not "with them"; he's "the OTHER!!!!!11111!!!!"

gilbar said...

cassandra lite said... So, political views are hardwired but gender is fluid

Yes, But! The fluidity is hardwired! People are born questioning their gender each of their lives

gilbar said...

</sarc

wildswan said...

This stream of thought is a part of the new eugenics. It comes from a particular set of people who have been going to conferences dedicated to Integrating Genetics with Social Sciences since 2010. The conferences are organized by Jason Boardman President of the American national eugenics society 2015-2017 and Jason Fletcher, his PhD student, who is now at U Wisconsin Madison. The core is the analysis of massive databases containing genetic information obtained by Genome Wide Analysis which is linked to the results of massive social surveys by special brand-new techniques

As Buwaya says
"One day, perhaps very soon, a genetic basis for political preference will be found through analysis of massive databases. Its probably a complex set of traits dependent on a very large number of genes, as intelligence is proving to be."

But Buwaya says "proving to be". Proving to be? Not so fast. There's a new technique out there involving the fields of genetics and sociology, a technique no more than ten years old, which being used by brand-new sociologists with freshly-minted PhDs. These new PhDs understand social theories, statistics and the new computer techniques; they are not geneticists. They are using a defined technique which, in relation to genetics, is basically a black box to them. What could go wrong?

Here's a rather humorous example of what could go wrong.
"bagoh20 asked...
How does this explain the way many conservatives start out liberal? Are we born-again conservatives?"

Well, Bagoh, members of this group, the group which have been trying to integrate genetics and the social sciences can answer your question. Studies have have shown that there is a gene for being mugged more than once. The speculation is that some don't learn from experience and there's gene for that, namely the 7R allele of the DRD4 gene. Or, as we might say in our deplorable way, "a conservative is a liberal (has DRD4 gene) who has been mugged. (but does not have the 7R allele of the DRD4 gene)
"findings reveal that there is in fact a genetic factor, the 7R allele of the DRD4 gene, that distinguishes individuals who have been victimized once from those who have been victimized multiple times.”

And this also explains why liberals are poised to support Hillary once again. It's power of the 7R allele of the DRD4 gene. The force is with them.

The DRD4 gene is also known as the Liberal gene – now it seems that one variant of DRD4 is also associated with repeated victimization. Would this be the “bleeding heart” gene? And the other variants of DRD4 are "conversion to conservatism possible after being mugged once" genes?

But more seriously this same crowd with these same methods has just also shown that head size and educational attainment are correlated.
Head size = educational attainment. It's just a step from this to head size = IQ. This is Nazi territory. My fellow commentators, I know some of you read Sailer, Quilette and Taki. This is different but this is where this research was always going - it's always been eugenics on one of its periodic comebacks. So maybe, think again?

References
Bleeding Heart Gene
2010 L Daigle. Risk Heterogeneity and Recurrent Violent Victimization: The Role of DRD4. Biodemography and Social Biology 56, 2

Head Size Genes and Education
2018 Avshalom Caspi q.v., Terrie Moffitt q.v., Daniel Belsky q.v., Karen Sugden q.v., Benjamin Williams q.v., Maxwell Elliott, Kevin Anderson, David L Corcoran, Tian Ge, Annchen Knodt, Joseph A Prinz, David Ireland, Richie Poulton, Avram Holmes, Ahmad R Hariri. A Polygenic Score for Higher Educational Attainment is Associated with Larger Brains. Cerebral cortex 10.1093/cercor/bhy219. (q.v. means writes for Biodemography and Social Biology, the journal of the American national eugenics society, Society for Biodemography and Social Biology)

Richard Fagin said...

"By contrast, desiring what we don’t have......", or expressed differently, concern that someone else has more or has something undeserved rather than concern about what one has himself is a way to distinguish "progressives" from conservatives.

Saint Croix said...

There is no biological or psychological test -- other than self-reporting -- that can detect whether a person is heterosexual or homosexual

I don't know if I would call making babies a "biological or psychological test." But it's kind of a clue, right?

Saint Croix said...

Nino and Maureen Scalia had nine kids.

"Maybe they're gay. I can't tell."

Big Mike said...

Progressivism, the pursuit of progress, is, by definition, the pursuit of change, of new things.

Well, “Progressivism” as the word is defined in the context of 21st century American politics, means change in the direction of greater government interference in the lives of ordinary citizens. It absolutely does not mean progress in the sense of improved standards of living for people. As I have often commented, change itself is easy. As the despicable Barack Obama demonstrated, all it takes is a pen and a phone. Change in a positive direction is hard.

At any rate, if one approves of the pursuit of change, then Trump, much more than Obama, is whom one should approve of.

Sebastian said...

"Progressivism, the pursuit of progress, is, by definition, the pursuit of change, of new things."

You mean, like, abolishing Social Security, repealing the ACA, overturning Roe v. Wade?

Yancey Ward said...

Althouse wisely asked:

"Why don't they like Trump? He's new, impulsive, exploratory, excitable, quick-tempered, and extravagant."

I think the brain science stuff described is horseshit- the old/young divide explains pretty much all of it once you throw in the identity politics represented by the demographics of the country. Young people tend to value novelty/change more than older people- those voting progressive as 18-30 year olds will be voting conservative 15 years from now if they are white- count on it. However, in answer to the question Althouse posed rhetorically- had Trump been the nominee of the Democratic Party with all the same positions except for appointing of federal judges, he would have been warmly embraced by Progressives. Trump won the election because he occupied the center while the Democrats abandoned it- that is how he won certain midwest states the way he did while underperforming past Republican candidates in the big states like CA, TX, FL and others. Progressives despise Trump for being a Republican- it is that simple. He could have been the opposite of all those characteristics, but would have been treated exactly the same.

Joe said...

My observation is that progressives believe intentions matter more than anything; to the point where actions are often irrelevant. Everyone else believes intentions are, at best, mitigating factors for ones actual actions.

A big irony is that while ignoring their own actions, progressives attach the most negative intentions to the actions of others. This is why progressives ultimately, [proverbially] "eat their own".

(Put another way, progressiveness is a form of narcissism, if not sociopathy.)

Lewis Wetzel said...

I don't know if I would call making babies a "biological or psychological test." But it's kind of a clue, right?
There are many men and women who identify as homosexual who have fathered or born children.
Back in the 1950s, the military wanted to exclude homosexuals from service and worked diligently to find a test for homosexuality. They couldn't.
Even today it is hard to imagine how such a test -- psychological or biological -- would function. Suppose I tested as homosexual but disputed the results? Homosexuality is not a biological condition. Science says you are not "born that way." The only biological basis for homosexuality that has been confirmed is a slight increase in the odds of being homosexual if you are a second son. Not a first son, or third son, or fourth son, but a second son.

hombre said...

“Progressivism, the pursuit of progress, is, by definition, the pursuit of change, of new things.”

That’s why we see the leftmedia and their Democrat toadies flooding the political arena with new ideas. Right? You know, like socialized medicine, community-based corrections, higher taxes, Republican racism, etc. Like that.

Remind me again why science is seeming more and more like bullshit.

Saint Croix said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Lewis Wetzel said...

If you want to know what the APA says about "gender identity," you can read it here: https://www.apa.org/topics/lgbt/orientation.aspx
I like to compare "sexual orientation" to handedness. In any sizable population, most people are right handed, and a small minority are left handed. But what makes people right or left handed? It turns out to be a hard question to answer. There is evidence that it is congenital, and there is evidence that it is not congenital. In populations that actively discourage left-handedness, there are fewer left-handed people than in more handedness-tolerant populations. When they devise scientific tests to determine whether people are right or left handed, they find that people often self report their handedness differently the results of the scientific test. Some people write with their right hand, but otherwise favor their left hand. Just because I experience very little sense of choice about my handedness does not mean that I was "born that way." I do not remember being taught or conditioned to favor my right hand. Nevertheless I am right handed.

tim in vermont said...

Abolishing social security? That must have come from the Democratic version of what Republicans are for. Maybe you are thinking of libertarianism?

Pookie Number 2 said...

Abolishing social security? That must have come from the Democratic version of what Republicans are for. Maybe you are thinking of libertarianism?

If you mean me, then yes. Guilty as charged.

SeanF said...

Lewis Wetzel: But what makes people right or left handed? It turns out to be a hard question to answer. There is evidence that it is congenital, and there is evidence that it is not congenital. In populations that actively discourage left-handedness, there are fewer left-handed people than in more handedness-tolerant populations.

Do those populations "discourage left-handedness" to the extent that left-handed people are less likely to find mates and reproduce? If so, it's not necessarily a sign of anything non-congenital.

Robert Cook said...

"'Robert Cook: What positive outcomes to you think will result from these knee-jerk responses?'

"More liberty, less corruption, better economic well-being."


How will these things happen as a result of the measures you advocate? By magic? What processes will lead to these results? What about the possible negative consequences? Do you acknowledge them? Do you think the outcomes will and can only be positive?

"'I take it you’re an anarchist, then.'

"Well, only in the same sense that has you as an advocate the sort of murderous tyranny exercised by Stalin and Pol Pot. In other words, not at all, and that’s a stupid accusation made in bad faith. You’re generally better than this."


Not bad faith at all: if you advocate what amounts to the erasure of nearly all governmental functions--except "to protect us" (what does that entail and include?)--it sounds like you're an anarchist.

Talking about speaking in bad faith, your nonsense about Stalin and Pol Pot certainly qualifies.

Lewis Wetzel said...

SeanF-
I support your reading of the literature regarding handedness.
I once had to refute a claim that 96% of lesbians were left handed. The person who made the claim was silly and misread some stats. So I spent a few days looking at the literature on the correlation between handedness and sexual orientation. Fascinating stuff, Among other things I learned that trying to give a rigorous, scientific definition to sexual orientation and to handedness is hopeless; the ratio of self-identified homosexuals and right and left handed people is difficult to define, and seems to change from decade to decade and from one country to another.
The people who design these studies aren't stupid. They have thought of various problems in their methodology. Usually people quote from the abstract, not the paper itself. Abstracts in social and popuation studies tend to overstate the conclusion while downplaying problems with methodology.

Robert Cook said...

"One big differences I see is how people feel about taking and spending other people's money."

Once the government collects tax payments from each of us, it's no longer "other people's money," it becomes "our money," collectively, to be spent on the needs of society as determined, theoretically, by we, the people, through the agencies of our elected representatives. Reality is a lot messier and dirtier, of course, but it remains true that the government is spending the people's money: our money.

You may be content to have our money be spent on the military, (or, perhaps not...I shouldn't assume), while I prefer our money be spent on more productive needs domestically, including Social Security, a more robust Medicare, assistance to those who need it, etc. Your spending preferences are no more valid or justifiable than mine...and vice versa. They're just different preferences, but either way you look at it, you're expressing a preference for how "other people's" money is spent, just as I'm expressing a preference for how "other people's" money is spent...in truth, how OUR money is spent.

Geoff Matthews said...

I wonder if these differences in dopamine receptors is as strong as the difference in IQ scores between whites and blacks (or Asians and blacks).

Bilwick said...

Shorter Cook: All your dollars belong to us--once my gang confiscates them.

Bilwick said...

Actually Progressivism is retrograde, a throwback to the primitive Cult of the State. People who are actually interested in progress would prefer the Society of Contract as opposed to the Society of Status.

Steve Witherspoon said...

I read this earlier this year via a link on a different blog, thought it was relevant to this post in a humorous way...

(I broke it up into multiple comments, this one and the one immediately following this)

Tea Party supporters use primarily the medulla oblongata portion of the brain. This part of the brain controls basic motor functions like: cardiac, respiratory, vomiting and vasomotor centers and deals with autonomic, involuntary functions, such as breathing, heart rate and blood pressure; all else is irrelevant to them. The general population that falls into this category are red-necks; because they just want to be left alone to exist in their own way. They like the Tea Party because it has the word “Party” in the name. Their favorite phrase is, “Where’s the beer?” This population rarely uses any other part of the brain.

Pompous Intellectual Democrats are supported by those that use primarily the right side of the brain. This side of the brain controls the main parts of creative thought/thinking, imagination, artistry, socializing, and completely ignores things like analytical thought and facts. The general population that falls into this category are the ones that like to manipulate the “system” to their advantage to gain what they want while doing little to nothing such as Lawyers and those on welfare. They like democrats because they are “obviously” intellectually superior to them. Their favorite phrase is, “Woe is me”. This population rarely uses any other part of the brain except the medulla oblongata; they do have to keep the heart pumping to collect the next check.

Ignorant Republicans are supported by those that use primarily the left side of the brain. The left side controls the main parts of analytical thought/thinking, math, distinguishing things, technical skills, facts, and completely ignores things like creativity and imagination. The general population that falls into this category are the ones that like to do things themselves without outside interference. Their favorite phrase is, “I can do it, get out of my face”. They like Republicans because they don’t want anyone in office that might be smarter than they are. This population rarely uses any other part of the brain except the medulla oblongata, they do have to be able to fart.

Pookie Number 2 said...

How will these things happen as a result of the measures you advocate? By magic? What processes will lead to these results? What about the possible negative consequences? Do you acknowledge them? Do you think the outcomes will and can only be positive?

So your first question is “How will there be more liberty if the government stops taking things away from people and telling them what to do?” To ask the question is to answer it.

The processes are predicated on the assumption that people are better at identifying their trade offs than some distant centralized planners. I don’t pretend that there won’t be negative consequences - both to the corrupt leadership that currently exploits government interferes CR and to some people that benefit from it.

Steve Witherspoon said...

Continued above...

Unlike the blind ideologies of the pompous Democrats (who only use the right side of the brain), ignorant Republicans (who only use the left side of the brain), and drunken Tea Partiers (who only use the medulla oblongata portion of the brain); Independents center their use of the entire brain around the cerebral cortex and the corpus collosum. The cerebral cortex plays a key role in memory, attention, perceptual awareness, thought, language, and consciousness and the corpus collosum integrates the left brain and the right brain which allows communication to flow freely throughout the entire brain. Some of the most intelligent and talented people have very healthy “corpus collosum” because it’s the integration of the left and right brain skills that results in wondrous achievements. This cross function of the entire brain gives the independents the ability to distinguish between fact and bull sh!t. Their favorite phrase is, “Please engage your brain before opening your mouth to change socks!” This population is rarely caught not using their entire brain including the medulla oblongata; after all they need the motor functions to keep the pompous Democrats, ignorant Republicans and drunken Tea Partiers out of elected government positions.

Then there are people that simply do not fit into any of the above honorably mentioned categories at all because they actually don’t use any portion of their brains – or what’s left of it after the self-destruction of hateful thoughts generated by all the tainted illegal drugs they take. They have no useful positions on any subject. Their motor functions are extremely limited; their keepers only change them when they are paid to do so, which just makes them angrier at the world so they anonymously lash out at others on the internet in extremely childish and hateful ways which makes them feel like they are finally worth more than the full depends they are sitting in. These individuals are properly labeled TROLLS which we all know to be someone who posts inflammatory, extraneous, or off-topic messages in an online community, such as an online discussion forum, chat room, or blog, with the primary intent of provoking readers into an emotional response or of otherwise disrupting normal on-topic discussion. Complete sentences are not their forte because that would require complete coherent thoughts and the ability to string multiple intelligent words in a string that would relay that thought. Trolls are spineless panzies that hide behind their computer monitors.

Pookie Number 2 said...

I cannot tell whether Robert Cook’s pretense that anarchy involves supporting police and a court system is intentional dishonestly or part of his malevolent religious faith in government, but either way, it’s a ludicrous misrepresentation of what I said. I’m not at all surprised that he’d rather argue against nonsense, though.

wildswan said...

Geoff Matthews said...
I wonder if these differences in dopamine receptors is as strong as the difference in IQ scores between whites and blacks (or Asians and blacks).

The same group, the new eugenicists, studying dopamine is also studying educational attainment - using new techniques to join genetic GWAS surveys to social surveys. The result is a "polygenic score", a measure of the probability of an outcome such as educational attainment or head size. But the results they get on educational attainment are explained by them as resulting in large part from many genes which control the development of neurons and neuronal connections in early life, not from a gene or genes controlling dopamine.

The white-black educational attainment issue, a proxy for the white black IQ issue, hasn't come up yet in their work because the consortium doing the research on educational attainment has limited itself to those of European ancestry. (And Nordic European ancestry at that - Estonia, Sweden, Netherlands, Switzerland, Scotland.) But the issue of head size in relation to educational attainment has come up and they are claiming a relationship, as I mention in my post above.

2018 Avshalom Caspi q.v., Terrie Moffitt q.v., Daniel Belsky q.v., Karen Sugden q.v., Benjamin Williams q.v., Maxwell Elliott, Kevin Anderson, David L Corcoran, Tian Ge, Annchen Knodt, Joseph A Prinz, David Ireland, Richie Poulton, Avram Holmes, Ahmad R Hariri. A Polygenic Score for Higher Educational Attainment is Associated with Larger Brains. Cerebral cortex 10.1093/cercor/bhy219.

SGT Ted said...

No wonder libs act like addicts when they are thwarted.

Unknown said...

A big flaw in the argument is how individuals change their politics over time. Single women lean heavily left but once married lean more conservatively (especially on the issue of big government). Young people lean heavily left but as they get older become more conservative. Brain wiring would not explain this but life experiences and self-interest would. Single women feel a greater need for gov to protect them than married women do, for example.

buwaya said...

Unlike Democrats, Republicans and Independents mentioned above, I dont use my brain much. I have learned that age degrades the brain more than other organs, so I have learned to substitute my spleen, liver and testicles instead.

rcocean said...

How bogus "science" studies about conservatives vs. Liberals been made over years?

A hundred, five hundred? And weirdly, they always show that any differences are due to Liberals being better in some way.

rcocean said...

Its almost like these "Scientific Studies" aren't science!

Bleach Drinkers Curing Coronavirus Together said...

Then why do lefties get so emotive in reaction to the sight of Trump's face and blurt feelings of disgust at his body, his hair, and his color?

Oh! OH! I know!

"body": It's fat. He's a glutton. A guy with a trillion (or however much he says he has) shouldn't be so naturally greedy as to stuff every spare calorie he can find into his fat ass, but he does.

"his hair:" Hahah. You actually call that thing "hair!" Hilarious.
We hate it because it's fake. It's symbolic of just how fake he is, and how fake a man who lies with every word out of his Twitter-hole has to be. He's a phony, starting with that dead animal on his head.

"his color:" Also fake. And a bad one, at that. Orange? Really? Fake tan. But just close enough to red to remind you of how constipated his angry face muscles are after years of a near-permanent scowl and pout.

Which brings us to all his other nauseating attributes, starting with his mouth.

Yep, pretty much everything about his is sickening. But it's ok. We know how much natural disgust narcissists feel themselves. About themselves.

Keeping himself to himself would have been the best thing for the country and the world. His infliction of his sickening, sick self on the natural stage truly is an affront to all decency, as well as the hope of keeping one's breakfast down.

Down with the Don!

DEEBEE said...

The most egregious problem with sort of garbage science is that the headline always makes it sound deterministic like a 2+2. Then we get the mealy mouth “tend to” “likely” ‘predominantly”. I demand as high a percentage 0f certainty as transgender-Phil’s who reject binary division of sex, because a minuscule number can have chromosomal chimeras.

Bleach Drinkers Curing Coronavirus Together said...

Why don't they like Trump?

Most people don't like Trump. "They" is not how you describe the majority - unless you accept the fact that you stand apart from it. Republican voter suppression efforts suggest that's the case.

He's new,

HAHAHA. Only if you've been living under a rock for decades. Ever hear of the 1980s?


...impulsive,

Great trait to have in a leader? Doesn't sound like it.

exploratory,

The man's favorite foods are steaks, fast food and KFC. The only thing he's ever explored the number of mirror angles through which to reflect back images of that same-coif hairdo he's sported for however many decades it's been since it was surgically implanted on his scalp.

excitable, quick-tempered, and extravagant.

Just like every one of the worst tyrants throughout the ages. And he inflicts that temper on the people of this country and the institutions that have sustained them. Sounds great.

[P]eople with lower levels of dopamine and higher levels of the “Here & Now” brain chemicals are more likely to take their enjoyment from the appreciation of things they already have. They value tradition... A study of 1,771 students in Singapore found that conservative attitudes were more common among those who had a receptor gene that was less reactive to dopamine....
This sounds incredibly simplistic.


Just like those incredibly simple/simple-minded conservatives.

It's fucking science, lady. If you don't like the results then why don't you do the experiments and formulate the hypotheses? I mean, are you anti-science or just lazy? Sounds like it's at least either one or the other.

Joe said...

"It's fucking science, lady."

Except, it isn't. There is some science there, but it's layered by heaps of speculative bullshit.

Bleach Drinkers Curing Coronavirus Together said...

it's layered by heaps of speculative bullshit.

No wonder Republicans are so opposed to education. Did the gene frequencies sort out according to subjects' political ideology or did they not?

Forgetting the very non science-y descriptors of "speculative" and "bullshit", I'd like to know what part of science isn't speculative. Maybe Archimedes' principle should also be discarded, since he didn't have a reason for explaining why his observation was true. Or at least, not one that would make the conservatives of his day more satisfied with themselves.

Howard said...

If Jordan Peterson used the samey-same neurochemical signalling and throwed in Lobsters for good measure, the deplorables here would collectively cluck in the affirmative.

Lewis Wetzel said...

Blogger rcocean said...
How bogus "science" studies about conservatives vs. Liberals been made over years?

David Horowitz once noted that in profiling conservative people, the MSM explained that their politics was psychology, while when they profiled liberals, their politics were explained as a difficult and intellectual struggle to find the truth.
Horowitz was a red diaper baby, so his profile took the position that his current conservatism was a rebellion against his communist father.
By contrast, Noam Chomsky's parents were Zionists, and that fact is never used to explain Chomsky's opposition to Zionism as a rebellion against his father.

Lewis Wetzel said...

Have you noticed that Howard never has anything intelligent to say? I have.
Give it a rest, Howard.

Lewis Wetzel said...

The man's favorite foods are steaks, fast food and KFC.
The left has always been obsessed with what the people they consider beneath them eat.
It is weird mental tic. Very revealing, and, of course, selectively applied as a means of "othering" people.
What do you think of the dietary choices of Black folks, Ritmo?

Bleach Drinkers Curing Coronavirus Together said...

Look out, Lewis! Adolf Drumpf is coming to your place to devour his preferred food resources, which your residence has much of.

Construction paper and Elmer's Glue.

Bleach Drinkers Curing Coronavirus Together said...

L. Wetzel: Yes, I know we Republicrooks have NO sense of TASTE! Well, what of it, huh? WELL?!

Bleach Drinkers Curing Coronavirus Together said...

And we'll FUCK anything, too! Porn stars bareback with kids at home that we'll then deny having done and call HORSEFACE! Wow, aren't we clever denialists!

We have absolutely NO standards and don't you EVER forget it!

We are the few, the unproud. We are the Republicrooks.

Supported by unwashed dirt people everywhere.

Lewis Wetzel said...

It is not good for you to become so intoxicated, Ritmo.

Bleach Drinkers Curing Coronavirus Together said...

Yeah. Shut up.

Poor baby Wetzel. No comeback. Just gets his ass schooled and has to take it.

Republicans: Classless. Tasteless. Brainless.

Clueless.

Lewis Wetzel said...

FYI, in my TZ, it is 8:24 PM.
There are some symmetries between the Left and the Right. Both accuse the other of killing babies, for one.
But there assymmetries as well. The Left's obsession with diet is one of them.

Lewis Wetzel said...

What did you have for dinner tonight, Ritmo?
I had a green leaf honeymoon salad (lettuce alone) and some mac & cheese, home made, with some nice smokey ham. Very good, better than I thought it would be.
I pray that my choice of diet meets with your approval.

Bleach Drinkers Curing Coronavirus Together said...

Sounds like the breakfast of champions. Or perhaps, the dinner of synagogue gunmen. Hope you enjoyed.

Yechiel said...

So Leftists are DOPE FIENDS! I KNEW IT!!!

Tina Trent said...

If liberals crave newness, then why are their two political impulses to retain and amplify the failed welfare state and to cling to an eternal vision of a past where all white men had Mandingo-like control over women and blacks?

The latter is an act of intellectual creativity, I suppose, but it is a failure of imagination from the perspective of class politics, a failure that pretty much sums up the conundrum of democrat incoherence today.

Steve Witherspoon said...

Wow, this President Pee-Pee Tape sure comes across as an unhinged internet troll. I wonder if his employer pays him by the comment or if he's a salaried employee paid for his expertise in exhibiting Animal House thinking. What a moron.

Steve Witherspoon said...

Unknown wrote above, "A big flaw in the argument is how individuals change their politics over time."

Your point is a decent one; however, it's actually not a flaw in the argument. Peoples brains do in fact change their wiring over time, some more than others. Some of those changes are related to their particular environment, including social pressures, and some of the changes are not. I grew up and still live within a very, very liberal environment and I've always leaned more Conservative, that's what being hardwired is all about.