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News & Politics News & Politics

Liberals and Conservatives have different brains!

Posted by on Nov. 21, 2012 at 1:37 PM
  • 9 Replies

And all this time I just thought that each side just lacked education :)

http://abcnews.go.com/blogs/health/2012/09/03/conservatives-and-liberals-have-different-brains-studies-show/

Conservatives and liberals may have one less thing in common: neurology.

ProCon.org  has gathered 13 peer-reviewed studies of behavioral and neurological studies and come to the conclusion that differences between Republicans and Democrats are more than skin-deep.

“Basically, the different sides have been yelling at each other for millennia, and we’re trying to figure out what could be the root cause of this,” said Steven Markoff, ProCon.org’s founder.

The studies looked at things like differences between groups’ perception of eye movement, and aversion to threatening noises.  Researchers also noted that Democrats had larger anterior cingulate cortexes, which are associated with tolerance to uncertainty, while Republicans had larger right amygdalas, which are associated with sensitivity to fear.

“Everybody seems to basically agree, and these are people that have scientific backgrounds,” Markoff said of the repetition in the studies. “That to me is probably the biggest eye-opener.”

Although Markoff concluded the studies combine to mean that the different groups communicate in different ways, psychiatrist Greg Appelbaum said the studies point toward conservatives’ tendency to avoid something called self-harm, while liberals avoid collective group harm.

That said, Appelbaum the studies are not representative of all Republicans or Democrats, given that researchers are weaving different small studies together to draw conclusions, and several different opinions designate whether someone is liberal or conservative.

“It’s important to keep in mind that this is a big, multidimensional space,” Appelbaum said.

He also said someone’s brain makeup doesn’t necessarily predispose that person to think one way or another politically, calling it a “chicken or the egg issue.” In fact, it’s possible that a person’s political thinking can change their physiological traits.

It makes sense to consider a person who plays video games and has good reaction times, he said. Does that person play the games because he (or she) is good at them and gets positive reinforcement or does that person hone the abilities by playing video games?

Regardless of the caveats, Markoff said the collection of studies generate an interesting discussion.

“The real reason ProCon is here is to foster critical thinking, and I can’t think of anything more interesting from a critical thinking standpoint,” he said.

by on Nov. 21, 2012 at 1:37 PM
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Replies (1-9):
bluerooffarm
by Silver Member on Nov. 21, 2012 at 1:45 PM

 I think the study just pushes America farther into the polarized ways of thinking.  Why is it that the people conducting this study (or co-allating? this group of studies) think that people are such a dichotomy?  I am a social liberal: ie. I am pro-choice, Pro-marriage equality, pro-legalization of marijuana.  BUT I am very fiscally conservative: ie. we should not be spending more than we take in as a nation and Government should be very small so that it doesn't need to take in much.  Where am I in this demographic? 

blues_pagan
by on Nov. 21, 2012 at 1:48 PM

Did you not read that this demographic is not meant for everyone.  

That said, Appelbaum the studies are not representative of all Republicans or Democrats, given that researchers are weaving different small studies together to draw conclusions, and several different opinions designate whether someone is liberal or conservative.

“It’s important to keep in mind that this is a big, multidimensional space,” Appelbaum said.

Quoting bluerooffarm:

 I think the study just pushes America farther into the polarized ways of thinking.  Why is it that the people conducting this study (or co-allating? this group of studies) think that people are such a dichotomy?  I am a social liberal: ie. I am pro-choice, Pro-marriage equality, pro-legalization of marijuana.  BUT I am very fiscally conservative: ie. we should not be spending more than we take in as a nation and Government should be very small so that it doesn't need to take in much.  Where am I in this demographic? 


bluerooffarm
by Silver Member on Nov. 21, 2012 at 1:52 PM

 I did read it.  I read the entire article.  I still think that the premise of the study is still angling toward a dichotomy of the American people.

Quoting blues_pagan:

Did you not read that this demographic is not meant for everyone.  

That said, Appelbaum the studies are not representative of all Republicans or Democrats, given that researchers are weaving different small studies together to draw conclusions, and several different opinions designate whether someone is liberal or conservative.

“It’s important to keep in mind that this is a big, multidimensional space,” Appelbaum said.

Quoting bluerooffarm:

 I think the study just pushes America farther into the polarized ways of thinking.  Why is it that the people conducting this study (or co-allating? this group of studies) think that people are such a dichotomy?  I am a social liberal: ie. I am pro-choice, Pro-marriage equality, pro-legalization of marijuana.  BUT I am very fiscally conservative: ie. we should not be spending more than we take in as a nation and Government should be very small so that it doesn't need to take in much.  Where am I in this demographic? 


 

Canvas_says
by Silver Member on Nov. 21, 2012 at 3:23 PM
3 moms liked this

I have a hard time believing in this "study" when they tell you that conservatives have a sensitivity towards fear. After watching the recent election and all the scare tactics used to sway democratic voters it would suggest differently. 

143myboys9496
by Gold Member on Nov. 21, 2012 at 10:34 PM
1 mom liked this
The dems used scare tactics to sway the reps. They instilled fear in women "repeal of roe v wade" equal pay for women are just a few.
I've been hearing those tv ads since Reagan. "Insert republican candidate here".


Quoting Canvas_says:

I have a hard time believing in this "study" when they tell you that conservatives have a sensitivity towards fear. After watching the recent election and all the scare tactics used to sway democratic voters it would suggest differently. 

Posted on the NEW CafeMom Mobile
NWP
by Guerilla Girl on Nov. 22, 2012 at 12:09 AM

Fox news thrives off fear because they know their audience reacts to it.

As for your RvW response, can you tell me not what you think the Dems say, but exactly what the GOP platform says about that?

Quoting 143myboys9496:

The dems used scare tactics to sway the reps. They instilled fear in women "repeal of roe v wade" equal pay for women are just a few.
I've been hearing those tv ads since Reagan. "Insert republican candidate here".


Quoting Canvas_says:

I have a hard time believing in this "study" when they tell you that conservatives have a sensitivity towards fear. After watching the recent election and all the scare tactics used to sway democratic voters it would suggest differently. 


New World Peace

NWP
by Guerilla Girl on Nov. 22, 2012 at 12:10 AM

LOL

Quoting Canvas_says:

I have a hard time believing in this "study" when they tell you that conservatives have a sensitivity towards fear. After watching the recent election and all the scare tactics used to sway democratic voters it would suggest differently. 


New World Peace

Clairwil
by Platinum Member on Nov. 22, 2012 at 6:35 AM

A lot more are listed in the post:

Fifteen Differences Between Democrats And Republicans

MomTiara19
by Silver Member on Nov. 22, 2012 at 7:34 AM
1 mom liked this

Yes I agree we definitely have extremely different logic.

The biggest issue I have with extreme righties is they cannot empathize.Everything is in either black or white,your wrong and they are right.

I feel lefties may not always agree with the right,yet we can accept and sometimes empathize with their view.

We want peace and harmony....they want rank and power.

It is next to impossible to work together for the common good of all Americans and this needs to change so we can move forward.

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