Wednesday, March 15, 2006

No Hope For Political Junkies

Our Political Biases Become Hard Wired into the Emotional Centers of Our Brains

Part 1

Are we slaves to our political "feelings"? Those of us who are extreme partisans apparently no longer use logic or reason during the political season. According to new research discussed here in an aptly named column "Is This Column Futile?" by Dick Meyer, seems to conclude that strongly partisan people are essentially immune to rational argument about political things.

I, for one, cannot argue with that. I can't read extreme liberal diatribes and process any of it into a persuasive refutation of my biases. Even when everything they say seems perfectly reasonable and their "facts" demonstrably true. My own bias looks right past their outward arguments and looks for the hidden agenda or deliberatly omitted facts that will (in my mind) render their entire argument meritless.

For instance when a local radio show (where the two hosts represent a liberal and a conservative) begin discussing global warming I simple cannot hear the liberal when he immediately scoffs at the notion that the Sun is a likely cause for increased global temperatures. He will point out that we are burning more fossil fuels than at any time in human history. Well, he's right, it's a fact. Does one have to do with the other? Maybe, maybe not. The point being that since he won't grant me the fact that the Sun is a HUGE contributor to the temperature of our planet (duh) then nothing he says, reasonable or not, will affect my opinion. This is a purely emotional response on both of our parts, thus bolstering the claims of this study.

I like to think I am open minded and perfectly reasonable guy. In truth I am a slave to my emotions like everyone else. The difference is I believe that nature of liberalism is emotionally based. Conservatives sometimes miss that people have two natures in the form of emotion and logic. It's best not to be blinded by pure emotion like the liberals but we have to recognized that "feelings" are legitimate factors in our belief systems.

Part 2

All of that being said - I grow weary of right-wing pundrity. Don't get me wrong the leftists and dyed-in-the-wool socialists are not persuasive in the least, in fact, I agree with some of the more strident right-wingers when they claim that liberalism is a mental health issue. But the conservative movement needs new rhetoric something fierce. It is not enough just to refute the liberals when they say Republicans are "mean". The future of America and Western Civilation is literally at stake.

From the President on down the center/right has to develop new strategies that connect with middle America that can't be demogogued by the liberals. This is not a time to pussy foot around and try to assuage the fears the Democrats foster about "mean" Republicans.

I am not holding out hope that someone will come along anytime soon to re-energize me the way Ronald Reagan and Rush Limbaugh did but the time has come for something new on the right. I am bored. Just think of how interesting 2008 will be if the conservatives had an articulate, no nonsense, America loving pursuader running against that phony baloney Hillary Clinton.

One can dream...