June 8, 2008

Yeah, we know...

These are some damn brave people. Imagine willingly delving into the psyche of the conservative mind. Yikes!
A study funded by the US government has concluded that conservatism can be explained psychologically as a set of neuroses rooted in "fear and aggression, dogmatism and the intolerance of ambiguity".

As if that was not enough to get Republican blood boiling, the report's four authors linked Hitler, Mussolini, Ronald Reagan and the rightwing talkshow host, Rush Limbaugh, arguing they all suffered from the same affliction.

All of them "preached a return to an idealised past and condoned inequality".

Republicans are demanding to know why the psychologists behind the report, Political Conservatism as Motivated Social Cognition, received $1.2m in public funds for their research from the National Science Foundation and the National Institutes of Health.

The authors also peer into the psyche of President George Bush, who turns out to be a textbook case. The telltale signs are his preference for moral certainty and frequently expressed dislike of nuance.

"This intolerance of ambiguity can lead people to cling to the familiar, to arrive at premature conclusions, and to impose simplistic cliches and stereotypes," the authors argue in the Psychological Bulletin.
Sounds like a dead-on description of my most dogged conservative commenter here. It's actually eerie how well this perfectly captures his style.

As to any objection that this study was done with government funds, hey, whenever a costly and destructive affliction is negatively afflicting the country, we always study it and try to find a cure, right? So what's the big deal?

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