Explaining Republicans

There's been a lot of talk lately about what the Republican party and its members were up to this election year. Racial slurs and lynching chairs, being mean to recent immigrants, and voter suppression directed at minorities could hot have helped to get the non-white vote in line for last Tuesday's elections. A ramped up attack on women in general and their health care in particular could not have helped to get the none-male vote in line for last Tuesday's election. And, importantly, white males in large numbers are annoyed at attacks on women and minority, so the Republican approach could not have helped get the white male vote in line for last Tuesday's election. Then, we had Romney making everyone wait 2 hours for his concession while Karl Rove bloviating on Fox about how you can never tell who wins, and the apparent fact that the Republicans really thought they were doing well enough to win the White House and the Senate ... all this together makes me wonder if there might be something wrong with their brains.

And then, when I was thinking that, I remembered that I forgot to add a particular book to my recent post on resources on Science Denialsm. So, I added it (go have a look) and also, I'm mentioning it here.

Chis Mooney's The Republican Brain: The Science of Why They Deny Science- and Reality ...

...uses cutting-edge research to explain the psychology behind why today’s Republicans reject reality—it's just part of who they are.
From climate change to evolution, the rejection of mainstream science among Republicans is growing, as is the denial of expert consensus on the economy, American history, foreign policy and much more. Why won't Republicans accept things that most experts agree on? Why are they constantly fighting against the facts?

Science writer Chris Mooney explores brain scans, polls, and psychology experiments to explain why conservatives today believe more wrong things; appear more likely than Democrats to oppose new ideas and less likely to change their beliefs in the face of new facts; and sometimes respond to compelling evidence by doubling down on their current beliefs.

  • Goes beyond the standard claims about ignorance or corporate malfeasance to discover the real, scientific reasons why Republicans reject the widely accepted findings of mainstream science, economics, and history—as well as many undeniable policy facts (e.g., there were no “death panels” in the health care bill).
  • Explains that the political parties reflect personality traits and psychological needs—with Republicans more wedded to certainty, Democrats to novelty—and this is the root of our divide over reality.
  • Written by the author of The Republican War on Science, which was the first and still the most influential book to look at conservative rejection of scientific evidence. But the rejection of science is just the beginning…
  • Certain to spark discussion and debate, The Republican Brain also promises to add to the lengthy list of persuasive scientific findings that Republicans reject and deny.

    More like this

    "Republicans more wedded to certainty..."

    ... er right. And what could be more certain than made-up bullshit?

    By InvincibleIronyMan (not verified) on 12 Nov 2012 #permalink

    My direct experience comes from two comment sections. One from the Huffington Post and the other from ComputerWorld (Both on the failure of the Orca app). The Huffington Post was huge, over 2500. From what I could tell, most of them were from intellegent level minded people. Of the nearly 500 over at ComputerWorld, the majority were, from the best I could tell, right wing coservative Republican freaks.

    Every one of them were conviced Romney really won the election by a landslide. That it was really massive election fraud on behalf of the Obama campaign that lost the election for him. That and the fact that hurricane Sandy tilted the election in Obama's favor.

    They have no conception of the idea that if they stay focused on unprovable conspiracy theories the Republican party will never fix the real problems that cost them the election. It's like a drug to them. It's incredible reading. I had no idea those people were that screwed up. I tried to tell them that they were putting themselves at risk at losing the next election if they didn't start looking at the real reasons why Romney lost the election. They would have none of it.

    By Richard Chapman (not verified) on 12 Nov 2012 #permalink


    I am a republican. Now if the republicans adopt abortion on demand, evolution, global warming "science", UN gun confiscation control, and wealth redistribution, and unfettered "free" socialism helathcare for all, then HOW exactly would I be able to tell one party from the other?

    The fact that we have parties that have unmistakebale differences in ideology is part of freedom. Take that away, and you might as well not even have a vote in the first place.

    I have see the silly little fantasy book about "The Republican War on Science". Seems like the author was just angry becuase he lost the War On Christmas.We do not reject real science. We do reject fake science designed to redistribute monye and funnel it through the UN (global warming) and we do reject any notion that evolution exists and that God is not in complete control of the universe that He spoke into existance.

    We differ in financial matters as well. Republicans believe that a man has a right to work without being forced into a union and that union member ship should be completely optional. We believe that a man has a right to work hard and save his money and purchase thing with that money. We also believe that the death tax is about as immoral as anything that ever existed. A man works his whole life. he pays taxes on his income, his property, and the items of his home as well. Then after he dies the democrats want to retax everything that the working man has already paid taxes on before. Is that fair? Every item that is willed to a son or daughter or brother, etc. was taxed when it was orginally purchased. The death tax should be axed!

    The democrats have a different philosphy. They believe that the person making more than they do owes them a living just becuase they can afford it. They believ society owes them healthcare, food provision, freedom condoms and sex change operations, free beer, a free house, and all on the backs of men who work hard for their own money.

    We Republicans understand that there are people who are hurting and need help and we offer it. We do not depend on government. We depend on individuals, churches, charities, etc to help those people. Sure democrat voters cannot get free abortions and frre birth control and a free cell phone at their local church, but if they truly are poor and truly do need help, they will accept food donations, temporary housing, and aid that charities andd churches and individuals provide.

    I met a man one day who gave me this sob story baout not having a job and not having a home and explained to me that he had not eaten a meal in two days. Now in this situation, I personally gave him a litle money and bought him lunch. Now a democrat would not have done this. A democrat would have reached into someone else's pocket for money to give the man and would have called the government to come feed the man.

    There are idealogical differences between the two parties. Mitt Romney didn't win for a number of reasons. Yeah, he said some stupid things, but he also was not a conservative's best pick either.

    As far as these so called racial slurs are concerned, there have a many racial slur and such shouted at Jeremiah Wright's little tirades I might add. So that goes both ways. Oh and for your information calling me "white" is a racial insult. I am Anglo Saxon- American to you. If you want to mix it up, then let's go both ways with it.

    I pissed off this black lady one time becuase she called me a "Y humpy" (white honkey). What pissed her off more than anything was the fact that I bursted out laughing and I plainly said "I am not white." Then she loudly exclaimed "What is you den?" I repilied, " I am Anglo Saxon American" and I then tilted my head back and walked fast paced with my head held in the air not apying her any further attention as she screamed and yelled at me growing even angrier that I refused to listen. Boy, that really pissed her off, but did I care? Nope. That's how you deal with a situation like that.

    By Kevin Sanders (not verified) on 12 Nov 2012 #permalink

    To call this pice (and it would seem the book cited as well) pseudoscience would ba disservice to pseudo scientists everywhere. You really can't be serious.

    Kevin, Can we recommend you to your local/state Republican party committee? You summarized these views so cogently, and a bigger audience should hear this.

    I think you just proved Greg's point.

    Kevin - you prove the point. There is only *ever* one reason to reject a scientific theory - and that is because the evidence doesn't support it,. Your rejection of evolution due to your ideology is *precisely* the reason the GOP is at odds with reality. You not only don't understand the science (observations and theories to explain them) you reject, you don't even see it as a problem that you don't understand it.

    Also, your complete mischaracterisation of Dem positions shows you have a somewhat dodgy relationship with the truth, too.

    Gotta wonder if Kevin is pretending to be a Republican just to make Republicans look like silly conspiracy-minded out-of-touch flat-earth dinosaurs. His post is pretty much a caricature of what non-Repubs tend to think Repubs are really like.

    By Daniel J. Andrews (not verified) on 13 Nov 2012 #permalink

    Oh my God I am so terrified of not having an intelligent cogent response from reasonable people to ideas presented by the Democratic party. All people need to hear various sides of many ideas and arguments in order to have the highest probability of the best outcomes.

    And I want to believe as a progressive who feels we need multiple sides of the argument that most of Moony's book (as Rocker says) is pseudoscience.

    And then I read carefully Kevin's entry, and Rocker's entry and it is at a minimum anecdotally obvious that Moody is right.

    Question: how long can a gazelle stand a football's fields length from a hungry lion and refuse to see the lion and stay alive?

    One election cycle, two more at most?

    By DuaneBidoux (not verified) on 13 Nov 2012 #permalink

    Not to worry. Jesus will soemday return and overthrow progressive government all over the world anyway. Then we will have order and balance restored once and for all. So, yeah one or two more election cycles like this one and we will have a left wing government running a moderate to right wing citzenry at which point uprisings and rebllion must occur. Then again, we could just wait until the Creator returns and let Him sort them out for us while we watch, point, and enjoy our eternal reign. If you really don't like conservatives now, wait until Jesus returns with legions of immortal angel armies to overthrow every government of the world and take over. Think you don't like theocracies and moral conservatives in your bedroom now, you will be a world of hurt later.

    By Kevin Sanders (not verified) on 13 Nov 2012 #permalink

    Gee Kevin, I'm not sure why you're telling me all that. I just pointed out all the Republican freaks over at ComputerWorld blaming the election loss on a conspiracy of campaign fraud. You really need to be reminding them about what it means to be a Republican, not me. I'm not a Republican and I'm pretty sure I'll never want to be one.

    Oh, and your last paragraph, that pretty much nails you as having some kind of personality disorder. We really don't need to hear how you insult people based on their race. And then presume yourself to be of greater stock than they are. Did you really think we would be impressed with that?

    By Richard Chapman (not verified) on 13 Nov 2012 #permalink

    Okay, what the hell IS Kevin doing on a science website?

    Self torture?

    By DuaneBidoux (not verified) on 13 Nov 2012 #permalink

    No it was no election fraud to it. Obama won fair and square. Of course when you are the candidate of free stuff, people who are apt to receive the free stuff tend to vote in your favor. If I were "eligilble" to recieve an Obamaphone or some free pills, or a free big screen tv, or free college education, I might have voted for him to. I am not "eligible" to recieve those benefits though. However, I did my part in contributions since my paycheck will ultimately suffer due to me having to pay for someone else's free stuff syndrome that AmeriKa seems to be plagued with these days.

    By Kevin Sanders (not verified) on 14 Nov 2012 #permalink

    You guys are going to be soooo sorry when my imaginary friend shows up!