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The political brain – listen to this

Written By: - Date published: 9:08 am, January 28th, 2008 - 17 comments
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A must hear for anyone interested in political marketing and influencing voters. This item played on Chris Laidlaw’s Sunday show on Radio NZ National yesterday.

“When we decide who to vote for, are we making a rational choice? Or does emotion dictate our voting choice?”

This is useful for people of all political stripes and of course the essence of it is that politicians need to be able to tell their story and that people, especially swinging voters, decide who to vote for rather more with their hearts than their heads. Bulleted lists of achievements don’t cut it for them. Go figure.

It includes interviews with Drew Western, author of The Political Brain, an analysis of the Australian election by Rod Cameron and an interview with NZ political marketing expert Claire Robinson amongst others.

It’s riveting stuff and a delight to hear some intelligent commentary on politcs and tactics.

17 comments on “The political brain – listen to this ”

  1. Chemist Peter 1

    See the ‘Don’t Vote Labour’ site has been closed down as your communist allies at Labour and their Green allies don’t like to hear voices against your corrup lot.
    Freedom of sppech is going in New Zealand. This should never happen.

  2. Benodic 2

    I’m don’t agree with this part of the law myself but if Andy Moore wanted to he could simply authorise the site. Either him or Cameron Slater who put his name on the registration.

    He’s not a victim, he’s trying to martyr himself for political gain.

    Oh and don’t threadjack.

  3. who will get banned now? 3

    IrishBill says: You’ve been banned Insolent Prick. I suggest you get over it and come back when your ban is up. If I catch you trying to post under another name again you will be banned for another week.

  4. Eddie 4

    Chemist Peter, I think you’ve been taking too many pharmaceuticals or perhaps you are an Agenda Dyslexic. A person delightfully described in John O’Farrell’s “Things Can Only Get Better – 18 miserable years in the life of a Labour supporter.

    He’s talking about Labour folk but of course every party has their own. Indulge me for a moment and lighten up:

    “Just as every village has its idiot, every branch has its nutty Labour Party member. These come in a variety of guises. A common variety is the ‘agenda dyslexic’. This is someone who can read, write, converse, listen and understand, but does not know the meaning of the word ‘agenda’. For example, the members of the Queenstown branch are discussing item three on the month’s agenda – organisation of the jumble sale on the Patmore Estate.
    ‘So, Libby, if you can bring a couple of trestle tables as well, that should be enough….Yes, Michael, you had your hand up.’
    ‘What are they doing about Battersea Power Station?’
    ‘Battersea Power Station – it’s just sitting there rotting away. It seems to me that someone ought to be doing something about it.’
    ‘Er, well, the Battersea Power Station Community Group have actually been doing quite a lot about it, but we are discussing the jumble sale at the moment.’
    ‘There ought to be a petition or something.’
    ‘There’s been quite a lot of petitions, but if you like we can discuss it under Item Eight – Any Other Business. Now getting back to the jumble sale. Any suggestion for what to do with the stuff that we don’t sell?’
    I’ve got an idea.’
    ‘Turn it into an industrial heritage museum. And you could arrive by steam train from Victoria.’
    At which point you explain to him that we have to deal with what is on the agenda, because if we didn’t we would never progress or decide anything, so it is really important to talk about one issue at a time. He nods and says he understands and then you start discussing Item Four on the agenda, the treasurer’s report, and his comment on this is: ‘I think the Labour Party should start telling the truth about Thatcher taking orders from Murdoch.’
    The theme is then taken up by the next sort of branch idiot – the paranoid conspiracy theorist…..”

  5. Chemist Peter 5

    This site will soon need to shut as there is no registered address, or since it is pro Labour (as it uses Labour IPs etc) it will not be ruled on the same standard as Dont Vote Labour..
    Am I being paranoid…
    BTW, Eddie I used to make drugs but I never took any.

  6. outofbed 6

    Thanx for the link very interesting.
    Shame we can’t have a debate between the major parties on what they stand for and their respective policies. Instead of the empty crap marketing campaigns that are about to be unleashed

    Also its amazing how the “partisan part of ones brain kicks in and one subconsciously filters .
    There is a left-wing commentator on kiwiblog who gets all sorts of crap thrown at him “he is a troll” “he threadjacks” etc. and I can not see for the life of me any problem, his comments .in my opinion are for the most part pertinent.
    And here we have I we call the “nut jobs” spouting thier anger and vitriol at the Standard every 5 minutes and I’m sure they think they are being reasonable. and very slighted if they get banned

    So what to do? try and stick to facts I guess,. talk to each other like adults perhaps? respect other points of view maybe ?
    Can’t see it happening 🙂

  7. Tane 7

    Am I being paranoid…

    Yes Peter, you are. You don’t understand the law either. Do try to stay on topic.

  8. AncientGeek 8

    A common variety is the ‘agenda dyslexic’. This is someone who can read, write, converse, listen and understand, but does not know the meaning of the word ‘agenda’.

    The theme is then taken up by the next sort of branch idiot – the paranoid conspiracy theorist…..”

    Met many of them over the years. You missed the one who stands up and makes a 10 minute speech about whatever is on the agenda, saying things that everyone already knows.

    One hope I have always had is that the paranoid conspiracy theorist’s would all group together and spout off to each other (and not bother the rest of us). Something like WhaleOil’s site for instance. Doesn’t work – but they still come and bug us.

    Good link Eddie – most of the way through it now.

  9. I heard this yesterday, and I was going to blog on it too. I absolutely enjoyed it

  10. Yes I believe people use emotion when voting, especially those on the Left, when it comes to issues such as GE and Global Warming, they never use stats or Hard Data or facts, just their own personal beliefs which is bad for the country.

  11. AncientGeek 11

    Thats what I’d say about anyone far away from the center – both left and right. It is how I judge people, if they can discuss and argue, or if they have fixed beliefs that will not change in the face of evidence.

    BTW: On those two topics:-

    I think that GE needs to be controlled, especially development technologies – there are potential dangers. Imagine if you had resequencers that were cheap enough and accessible to the teens that use currently virus making libraries.

    Global warming is present from a change in the atmospheric gas mix. It has been the most working theory amongst earth scientists since the 70’s when I was at uni. It is now generally accepted amongst most scientists as the evidence keeps mounting. The only real question left is what is the best thing to do about it.

  12. Phil 12

    Would those be the same scientists who backed Al Gores untruths?
    His argument/documentary has been convincingly butchered and refuted world over, and yet he still gets the the Peace Prize… go figure.

    Still, that doesn’t mean that we, as a planet, can’t clean up our act. Regardless of whether or not we buy into the hysteria, there are lots of good reasons for doing our best to reduce the impact we have on the globe.

  13. AncientGeek 13

    Still, that doesn’t mean that we, as a planet, can’t clean up our act.

    Well – I’ve been waiting 30 years for that to start happening. I agree the hysteria is a bit offputting – but that seems to be the way that human populations get around to making decisions.

    Would those be the same scientists who backed Al Gores untruths?

    Al Gore was making what is essentially entertainment. It wasn’t even up to the level of a horizon documentary. Al Gore was repeating things that he’d been told, vaguely understood (when did he last do science), and trying to put into a 2 1/2 hour format.

    I did an earth science degree in the 70’s. That simply got me to the point of being able to understand the material. I’ve been reading for 30 years of reading on that subject (as well as everything else). And I consider myself to be an amateur…

    What always get me about people denying that there is a problem is that I never see anyone trained in earth sciences, atmospheric science or geology doing it. It is always from some weird area of science where you know that they never had any training at all in the area.

  14. deemac 14

    brett dale (is that an anagram?) rather proves the point of the radio item – he “knows” what he thinks without actually listening to the (very interesting!) clip or indeed citing any examples to back up his wild allegation. They’re out there…

  15. Phil 15

    No AG, Al Gore positioned himself and his documentary as a summary of scientific evidence. It was not evidence at all – it was propaganda of the poorest order, and deserves to be treated as such.

    Seeing him schmooze his way to a Nobel gong is insulting to the genuinely good work being done by real peacemakers.

    I am inclined to agree with you about so called “experts”. But if you consider yourself an amateur after thirty years, would you agree that no-one really, on either side of the scientific debate, can legitimately call themselves an expert in what is (comparatively speaking) a remarkably new field of scientific endeavour?

  16. AncientGeek 16

    There is quite a difference between what I am, and someone that started at the same time, but continued on and has worked in the area for the following 30 years. I keep in contact with a couple of them with varying specialities (none in climate change).

    They are experts because they have time to dig through all of the research done in their respective areas. That means they have the knowledge to look for patterns amongst the reported data in their specialty, in particular for anomalies. Some of those are relevant, and spark new lines of research, others are just oddball datapoints.

    what is (comparatively speaking) a remarkably new field of scientific endeavour?

    Climate change was new in the late 60’s and early 70’s. But even when I was at uni, there was a lot of evidence on paleo climate change. At that time there was quite a lot of argument about what were the causative factors, from everything from solar weather patterns to orbital ossilations to atmospheric changes. Most of these have been proven to have some effect – but atmospheric changes by composition changes or particulate matter seem to have the most effect.

    There has been 30 years of research on how and why it has happened in the past. Similarly there has been a lot of reseach over that 30 years in what is happening now. So I wouldn’t say that the area is “remarkably new”.

  17. RANDAL 17

    In regard to the opening proposition then only some will vote according to a rational decision. companies that can afford the costs of accountants and actuaries will have campaign pledges worked out to the last cent.kneejerkers will just kneejerk and vote on whoever has whipped them them up to a froth by exciting massprejudice and negative sensibilities

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