The worst thing about the Right

Written By: - Date published: 9:32 am, March 19th, 2013 - 189 comments
Categories: Deep stuff, gay rights - Tags:

So, some Republican Senator has become the first of his ilk to, um, come out in favour of marriage equality after he learned his son is gay. Apparently, this is just lovely. The man wrestled with his prejudices and his Christian love and tolerance won. Yay! Bullshit. This just shows that the black hole where the heart of the Right should be is their inability to empathise.

Nothing about marriage equality changed between the time Senator Portman didn’t know his son was gay and when he did. He was perfectly happy to deny all homosexual people equality before that fact, why change after it?

All that changed was now Portman had a personal stake in the issue now. Did he want his son to be angry at him, or did he want his son to be happy?

This isn’t about justice, equality, tolerance, Christian values, or even Portman’s son. It’s about Portman’s selfish desire. Only when his own self-interest was directly at stake did he change his mind.

This is true of some much of the Right on so many issues. They hate government spending, apart from that which benefits them and those near to them. They don’t give a damn about the environment, apart from the environment around where they live. They think that the government should stay out of markets, except when the market outcome hits them in the pocket.

The difference with the Left is we aren’t hypocritical like that because we get that other people have wants and needs and feelings and desires too. Something doesn’t have to affect us directly for us to want it to work best for people. There’s something broken in the minds of the Right that they can’t make the cognitive leap to emphasise with other people, unless those people are very close to them to the extent that those people’s feelings can impact on them personally.

I think Ayn Rand summed up this mindset of the Right in her praise for child murderer William Hickman (an inspiration for John Galt): “Other people do not exist for him, and he does not see why they should”.

189 comments on “The worst thing about the Right”

  1. One Tāne Huna 1

    Political Orientations Are Correlated with Brain Structure in Young Adults

    Highlights
    ► Political liberalism and conservatism were correlated with brain structure ► Liberalism was associated with the gray matter volume of anterior cingulate cortex ► Conservatism was associated with increased right amygdala size ► Results offer possible accounts for cognitive styles of liberals and conservatives

    The anterior cingulate cortex is associated with error detection 🙂

    • Saccharomyces 1.1

      Fascinating stuff….. especially with a little more digging: “Monkey mothers who had amygdala damage showed a reduction in maternal behaviors towards their infants, often physically abusing or neglecting them.” and yet, for the ACC: “Better emotional awareness is associated with improved recognition of emotional cues or targets, which is reflected by ACC activation.”

      “the anterior cingulate, specifically the anterior cingulate sulcus, as a likely candidate for the center of Free Will in humans.”

      Taken off the ever reliable wikipedia :http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anterior_cingulate_cortex and http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Amygdala

  2. Saccharomyces 2

    I think you meant empathise.

    Is empathy a learned behaviour, or a natural trait?

    In fact, is the worst thing about the right a lack of emotion? It’s a bit hard to empathise with someone if you feel little emotion about something yourself.

    Just some thoughts…..

    • One Tāne Huna 2.1

      The worst thing about the right is their engorged amygdalae.

    • SpaceMonkey 2.2

      I think it is an innate behaviour that is either reinforced or suppressed by parents/guardians following birth.

      • One Tāne Huna 2.2.1

        Bright Minds and Dark Attitudes

        …lower cognitive ability predicts greater prejudice, an effect mediated through the endorsement of right-wing ideologies (social conservatism, right-wing authoritarianism) and low levels of contact with out-groups.

        In short, stupid people gravitate to one another, reinforce one another’s prejudices, and become wingnuts.

        • Saccharomyces 2.2.1.1

          I don’t think anyone could argue that that’s not the case with the likes of Rodney Hide around.

        • ghostrider888 2.2.1.2

          yep!

        • muzza 2.2.1.3

          As long as people are prepared to emphasise, and promote such narrow views, nothing is going to change.

          You can’t fix the world from a book, nor with narrow views such as you expose yourself with!

          Reinforce, prejudices, wingnuts!

          • One Tāne Huna 2.2.1.3.1

            No matter how widely I read, I will still be led astray by my own confirmation bias.

            Books, no matter how big a headache they give you, Muzza, are still part of the process of improvement. You can’t fix the world from a keyboard, either, and yet here you are.

            • muzza 2.2.1.3.1.1

              Keep open enough to keep the confirmation bias out of the process then!

              You can’t learn how to neutralize confirmation bias, from a book!

              As such, books are a limiting component of any, world changing learning process.

              • One Tāne Huna

                Baby steps. Bias is bias because you can’t neutralise it. “Being open enough” is a simple self-deceit.

                Books – the written word – change people. They educate and inform and are intrinsic to the process of change. Not always for good, either: without the written world, witless conspiracy theories would just be the stuff that bore down the local goes on about.

                • muzza

                  Yes of course it can be neutralized, you just don’t understand how, because you are stuck on some pseudo academic paradigm of self belief, and such which takes you further away from, world changingunderstandings!

                  Tacit learnings are not found in books!

                  Confirmation Bias – Well demonstrated, Bloke!

                  YES!

                  • One Tāne Huna

                    Oh. Sorry, Muzza, I failed to articulate clearly enough. Once you neutralise all the biases you can find, no matter how few or how many you are left with residual bias, which by definition is invisible to the self.

                    Reading widely helps.

                    There are also of course other forms of understanding that must be experienced to be grasped, and no amount of reading can convey them.

                    That hardly contradicts anything I’ve claimed above. I hope it articulates it better though.

                    • muzza

                      left with residual bias, which by definition is invisible to the self

                      By definition – Yeah, probably time for you to let up on the reading, if you fancy evolving further than definitions, which you appear to trapped inside!

                    • One Tāne Huna

                      🙄

                      Like I said: the embodiment of insincerity.

                    • For someone preaching that you should open your mind, he seems to be very closed to the idea of cracking open a book.

                      Also, I would like to point out that it’s possible to have TOO open a mind. I want people to be skeptical of everything but willing to accept it with good evidence. Open your mind too far, and abandon your skepticism, and it’s entirely possible your brain will fall out. 😛

    • prism 2.3

      Saccha
      I wonder about this Right lack of empathy. As I read about many of the conservatives in the English speaking world, they don’t seem to have been the recipients of much love from their parents as children and don’t pass much on to theirs – they don’t know how.

      As children they get sent off to military or other character-buuilding schools sometimes by the time they are 10. They have ‘high standards’ imposed on them. There are mothers in the USA who have their children under scrutiny with modern technology, through phone calls or camera monitors, all the time to ensure complaint, correct behaviour and that they keep up with their schoolwork and so on.

      Caring love doesn’t do this, but love of possessions, and the children have become possessions, does. Machine-like conformity and love of position and upper class power and standing takes over where love should be and provides followers for the neo liberal thinking. That’s why neo-libs don’t feel goodwill for people and support having a social contract, it’s all about them as individuals.

    • Dr Terry 2.4

      Why must you tie in empathy to “emotion”? This is not necessarily so. Unfortunately the word “feelings” too often becomes associated with empathy, whereas “thought” (cognitive) issues might equally be entailed. The person offering empathy is not so much subject to “lovely feelings” as to sheer self-discipline which can probably be acquired only through much hard work on self – knowledge..

  3. mac1 3

    My anterior cingulate cortex detects the word “emphasise” when it wants to read “empathise” in line four and further down. Mind you, my brian is no longer young. 🙂

    [lprent: Yeah. I fixed it for him. ]

  4. TightyRighty 4

    You aren’t hypocritical? So much irony in that comment that I am Laughing so hard it hurts. This is a joke post right?

    The left “care” more?

    • One Tāne Huna 4.1

      That’s your gross amygdala inducing a typical fear response. Best you go and destroy something you don’t understand.

    • Lightly 4.2

      of course the Left care more. That’s why the Left’s policies are about fixing problems with our socioeconomic order that hurt people and the environment we live in, and the Right’s policies are about maintaining the privilege of the elite and pretending those problems don’t exist.

      That’s why unemployment and poverty skyrocket under National.

      • TightyRighty 4.2.1

        The lefts fixes have caused more structural woes than can be quantified. It might feel good in the short term, but the pain never goes away. In short, your fixes are very similar to drugs.

        • McFlock 4.2.1.1

          Yep.

          The right care so much they’re prepared to let the pain go away naturally – when the patient dies.

        • Draco T Bastard 4.2.1.2

          The lefts fixes have caused more structural woes than can be quantified.

          [citation needed]

          Really, that’s only your belief reinforced through confirmation bias. Throughout the last two centuries it has always been the left that fixes the screwups of the right and the right whinging about having to pay taxes.

          • Yeah, I’d really like the Right to point to one great historical victory they have that wasn’t just “stopping the left’s policy”, and which can actually be backed up by facts.

            They usually, to the amusement of all, go for “we cut taxes which helped the economy”. With a straight face. 😀

            • TightyRighty 4.2.1.2.1.1

              The thatcher government. Creating a vibrant competitive modern Britain. It took new labour how many terms to ruin it? 3.

      • Polish Pride 4.2.2

        The left are no better at fixing the problems than the right. The Left (just like the right) at best tinker, thats all just tinker a little here, a little there.
        They are essentially the same. Both believe in taking from one group of people and giving it to another. The left belive in taking money from the rich and giving it to the poor. Nobel.. yes, misguided? from the point of view that it won’t solve the problem and creates other…perhaps.
        The right of course, do exactly the same except they take money from the tax payer and give that out as welfare to corporates with the theory this will create jobs. Misguided? – most definitely, especially when the goal of any business in the current system is to maximise profit for the shareholders. If it worked unemployment would be lower under a right wing govt….you only need to look around to see if it is working. But then they know it doesn’t work. It is simply the story they use to keep a significant portion of the population voting for them and it continues to work.
        Aiming for maximum employment is however very short sighted and shows a lack of understanding of the true nature of the problem any system should be solving.
        But then neither the L or R understand the basic problem. Hence the problems are never solved.
        Of course given the fact that the R and L have opposing views and theres voters all along the political spectrum, we will simply continue shifting from left to right and back again.
        The only exception and area the system does make progress on is rights issues, slavery, giving women the vote, gay marriage.
        But please do not delude yourself by thinking that the left know how to solve the problems. They do not.

        • Colonial Viper 4.2.2.1

          Aiming for maximum employment is however very short sighted and shows a lack of understanding of the true nature of the problem any system should be solving.

          Goobledegook.

          Full employment is a crucial duty of Government to achieve and a worthy, achievable societal goal.

          but no NZ Government has bothered for decades.

          Only a few decades ago the names of all the unemployed in NZ could be written down on one A4 piece of paper.

          • Polish Pride 4.2.2.1.1

            Only under the current system CV and the current system has not been designed to solve the basic problem for ALL humans.

            The basic problem – Humans have needs and wants
            A good system would be designed to simply solve this problem or facilitate the obtaining of these for all
            Nobody has a need to work (with the exception perhaps of a workaholic). They have a need to have foodor clothing for example. The resources exist, we can grow food, we can make clothing. You can apply this to everysingle product or service available today anywhere in the world.
            The only reason someone needs a job is because under the current system you need money in order to obtain the things you need and want in order to survive and live a normal life.
            ……yet the resources exist.
            In fact under the current system we use far more resources because of things like the profit motive and planned obsolescence than we need to.
            It is possible, with the technology we have today, to automate a large percentage of roles performed by people. Many would not need to work………yet they must in order to survive an lead a normal life.

            • Populuxe1 4.2.2.1.1.1

              “Nobody has a need to work ”

              Do you have magic elves? Where can I get some?

              • Colonial Viper

                And it’s not just society which needs roles filled, most people also want to have a role in society.

                There’s nothing more debilitating than having everything handed to you on a plate.

                • Polish Pride

                  And people would have a role in society, justs perhaps not as we currently perceive it.
                  The thing that such a shift would do is give people more time. More time to do the things that are most important to them (and everyone). Spending time with friends and family, doing the things that they are passionate about, learning the things they want to learn about.
                  Many of the greatest things we have today came through people following and being able to do what they are passionate about. So everyone could do this and contribute to society.

                  But let me give a scenario that is easier to see as a possibilityright now.
                  Lets say that for a start the system is already changed and people have their needs and even perhaps some wants met as a right for everyone within society. That this is now the norm.
                  The goal in society is to automate whereever possible to free as many people from having to work as possible.
                  Now there will still be jobs that can’t be automated and that a person will need to do. So perhaps society determines that people should perform a role in the system for 20 years and then get to retire. For arguments sake the working age is 20 – 40. arguably your most able bodied time to do so.

                  But please don’t just look at what I have written and ring fence it. I implore you if interested to think about the basic concept and work out how you think a fair and equitable society should operate in such a scenario…

                • Draco T Bastard

                  And it’s not just society which needs roles filled, most people also want to have a role in society.

                  There’s a difference between needing a role in society and needing to work. The former is, IMO, going out and doing what you want in such a way as to benefit society and the other is going out to work so as to survive.

                  We can automate much of what is presently done by humans leaving very little work to be done that. We could call that small amount of work chores instead of employment and share it around equally. It’s a small amount and probably only amounts to ~10 hours per week. This would allow people time to do other stuff and that other stuff then becomes their role be it either scientist or culturalist.

                  Then we would have to make the resources available to do that other stuff but that shouldn’t be too hard – we have the resources available after all and it’s done automatically.

              • Polish Pride

                No but I have been in an industry where for the 15 years I have been in it much of the work is building systems to ‘streamline and replace people’.

                The ONLY reason you need to work right now and in the sheer numbers that we do is in order to survive in the current system. The fact that we have the ability to replace people through various forms of automation, yet these people must then go and find another job is simply beyond ridiculous.

                If I need healthy food, an education, clothing, a healthy warm homeand so do you and so does everyone else in the entire world then why at the very very least are the resources not made available so that people can have these. Why is the system not set up so that the provision of these is the bare minimum.

                You can then extendthe concept further and apply it to other areas of peoples wants and needs ….once have done thatyou can apply it to the entire system if you so desire.

                Do you care if the guy next door consumes more than you do if the levels of consumption are acceptable to society as a whole and your needs and wants are met?

                • Populuxe1

                  Firing people to improve profits =/= people don’t need to work. Hence massive unemployment due to corporate greed

                  • Polish Pride

                    And this is the nature of system we live in …..but it doesn’t have be this way.

                    However – unless you at some point revisit the basic problem: that all people have needs and wants to satisfy and you design the system around this, and you realise that money is not required to do this…. you will at somepoint always end up back where we are right now or possibly worse.

                    To do what I am talking about has the ability to eliminate poverty, a large % of crime and a large % of wars, It also haas the ability use significantly less resources than we do now, today, under the current system.

                    • Populuxe1

                      Planned societies never work. Human beings are by nature messily perverse and, well, ya know, human.

                    • Polish Pride

                      doesn’t need to be a planned society. And I would tend to agree that historically they (planned societies) have always run into trouble often critical areas. I have been leaning more towards a reactive system as opposed to planned. Effectively much like we have today but without the money and a helluva lot more automaation.

                      example : you go to the supermarket, you get what you want, you put it through the self checkout, The system re-orders the stock that has been taken. no paayment is required and no planning (i.e, planned society type planning)
                      I think people would also be much more comfortable with such a system as conceptually it is not that different to what we have today.

                    • Populuxe1

                      “example : you go to the supermarket, you get what you want, you put it through the self checkout, The system re-orders the stock that has been taken. no paayment is required and no planning (i.e, planned society type planning)
                      I think people would also be much more comfortable with such a system as conceptually it is not that different to what we have today.”

                      I think you’ll find such a system requires quite a lot of planning, and presumes that someone want’s to so the hard labour of growing the food in the first place without any reward. You ignore that people still have to do things in order to create and maintain such a system in the first place, and that jobs vary in pleasantness and the less pleasant they are, either greater the reward or coercion otherwise they tend not to get done.

                    • Polish Pride

                      “I think you’ll find such a system requires quite a lot of planning,”

                      This type of system already exists today under capitalism. In fact they have the addkitional complexity of needing to handle the financial side of the transaction also.

                      “and presumes that someone want’s to so the hard labour of growing the food in the first place without any reward. You ignore that people still have to do things in order to create and maintain such a system in the first place, and that jobs vary in pleasantness and the less pleasant they are, either greater the reward or coercion otherwise they tend not to get done.”

                      Believe it or not much of this could also be automated via hydroponics and vertical farms but the wider point that you raise does need to be considered.
                      There are a number of solutions that are possible and in my view the solution should be up to society to determine.
                      But… initially it could be as simple as between age x and y you are expected to perform onje of the roles that society requires for 6 months of the year in a job sharing situation (whether or not that is feasible would need to be determined.
                      Alternately it could be that the incentive is access to a more luxury set of products and services either with or without timebanking.
                      The point is that there are solutions for this also.
                      There will always be those less skilled people that will want to contribute to society and do some of the less attractive jobs and if they caan job share then even better.
                      Theoretically socfiety considers the role I do and have done for 16years to be highly skilled. Yet my first real job was working for the council, mowing lawns, doing garbage collection and scrubbing toilets. The funny thing is that I enjoyed the job with the council far more than my chosen career. So in such a society I’d prefer to do those jobs and I suspect there will be others like me so you might be surprised.
                      lastly jobs that aren’t as attractive but still require a person to fulfill will provide society an incentive to find a way to automate. If money is no longer a barrier and resources are available then perhaps robotic technology might be able to help with some of these.

              • I think Polish Pride is referring to psychological rather than practical needs.

                Economists seem to agree – a basic assumption is that people’s behaviour tends towards the ‘efficient’ form, ultimately in terms of energy. Hence, convenience is seen as a major class – or dimension – of ‘preferences’.

                In terms of psychological needs, there are a number of well-recognised ones which include ‘autonomy’ and ‘affiliation’. That’s why I’d include some notion of ‘play’ as fulfilling needs – activity that is self-directed (autonomous) and, often, performed socially. When we’re playing (and we can adopt a serious attitude towards play, remember) we’re doing the kind of ‘work’ that we could be said to ‘need’ to do.

                And, magically ( 🙂 ), in that way play can fulfil both a psychological need and a practical need (e.g., hunting – and gathering – as play/ritual, etc..)

          • Draco T Bastard 4.2.2.1.2

            Full employment is a crucial duty of Government to achieve and a worthy, achievable societal goal.

            Why should the government ensure that people are employed to enrich a few?

            Only a few decades ago the names of all the unemployed in NZ could be written down on one A4 piece of paper.

            Go back that far and all you’d need would be a memo.

        • Draco T Bastard 4.2.2.2

          The left are no better at fixing the problems than the right. The Left (just like the right) at best tinker, thats all just tinker a little here, a little there.

          They used to do more than just tinker but now, well, now they’re more to the right than Muldoon was. The problem is that most of them believe as much in capitalism today as the right do and so they can’t actually do anything to fix the problems.

    • McFlock 4.3

      why the double quotes around “care”? Are you unfamiliar with how to use the word?

    • prism 4.4

      TR
      We laugh gaily through life’s difficulties.

    • Murray Olsen 4.5

      People on the right can care about people they know personally, or for their possessions. They can even pretend to care about people they are utterly removed from, such as orphans in Uzbekistan. People on the left can care about making the world a better place, even for people they will never personally interact with. The left do not see other people as being divided into those who deserve being cared for, and those who don’t. That’s about as far as the right ever go, seeing others as charity cases, not as equals who should have a say in their lives. All the rest is just about saving money for themselves.

      That’s crudely how I see the difference. The right care in a way that makes them feel superior.

    • TightyRighty 4.6

      I mean case in point with the leader of the left in NZ, dividend shearer. Man demands that people resign when they forget to declare things, but won’t stand down when he’s forgotten. The lefts hypocrisy and intellectual bankruptcy never fails to amaze me.

  5. The Gormless Fool formerly known as Oleolebiscuitbarrell 5

    I think Joseph Stalin summed up the mindset of the Left “ A single death is a tragedy; a million deaths is a statistic.”

    • Lightly 5.1

      without going into a debate about how Stalin was a totalitarian who effectively killed off the Left in Russia, please exemplify how that quote reflects the policies of the Left.

      • The Gormless Fool formerly known as Oleolebiscuitbarrell 5.1.1

        You explain how you get to choose Rand as the spokesperson for the right. Then I will explain how I get to pick Stalin.

        • felixviper 5.1.1.1

          Presumably because Rand’s philosophies and ideas about the supremacy of the individual and the right of individuals to contract with each other free of interference from the state are precisely the basis for the contemporary right-wing thinking that our contemporary right-wing political parties are based on.

          I suspect you’ll struggle to find a contemporary left-wing political party that subscribes to any of Stalin’s ideas.

          • The Gormless Fool formerly known as Oleolebiscuitbarrell 5.1.1.1.1

            Was it Rand who came up with “ideas about the supremacy of the individual and the right of individuals to contract with each other free of interference from the state”?

            I think you find there were many others who were more influential. Yet, strangely, Zet doesn’t mention Adam Smith or John Stuart Mill. Maybe Rand got hold of your time machine, felix.

            • The Gormless Fool formerly known as Oleolebiscuitbarrell 5.1.1.1.1.1

              ..and it took me a second to find lefties who still love Stalin.

              http://www.stalinsociety.org.uk/index.html

              • ghostrider888

                interestingly, my thought for today on this thread came to be
                Only those at the peak of right wing movements are true Wolves, (Stalin, Heydrich, the Austrian painter, the Khans, the caesars, any RW strongman really; the rest of you, just sheep who cannot think for your selves and subscribe therefore to mass movements (which is all the modern emphasis on the individual is; a mass marketing movement with a whole litter of suckers). RW? pssh, first to hide behind the jackboots and jodhpurs of your superiors.

                • Gosman

                  ???

                  Are you trying to redefine the term Right-wing?

                  • felixviper

                    No, you are. As usual.

                    • Gosman

                      Once again you fail to back your views up with anything meaningful. It is just a vomit of your irrelevant personal bias pretending to be a discussion point.

                    • felixviper

                      Yes Gosman. Whereas your comments are chock-full of valid and checkable references for your assertions. As usual.

                  • ghostrider888

                    “individuals” who are not really “individuals” at all (generalization of course, your witty self excepted) .It is just that I take a pan-global / cross cultural perspective on human nature and the discussion of RW / LW polarity around the NZ blogosphere / media commentary diatribe often appears to be couched in an essentially euro-centric world view imho. not much difference between the essentials of “mob mentality” and the philological roots of “fasc.”
                    consider some cultural memes that bring us up to date

                    “its not what you know, but who you know”
                    “I’m alright Jack…”
                    “she’ll be right”
                    “It’ll be alright on the night”
                    “It’s a game of two halves”
                    “bloody maaaris”
                    “tall poppies”
                    “put the boot in”
                    “get a bit of mongrel in ya”
                    “oooh, it’s on sale”
                    “punch above our weight”
                    “bludgers”
                    “greasers”
                    “pioneer spirit”
                    “Man Alone”
                    (what a load of National crap; concede, as a generalization, our country has a comparitively unsophisticated ethos, for which we are paying dearly)

                    Rant over.

              • felixviper

                What is “stalinsociety” Ole? Is it a contemporary left-wing political party or something else entirely?

                Sorry to be a stickler about the terms of the discussion, but if you really want to make it about “righties who love Rand” rather than the actual topic…

                • Gosman

                  Is it your view that there is not one contemporary left-wing political party that subscribes to any aspect of what is commonly referred to as Stalinism?

                  • Colonial Viper

                    Well, Stalin used to wear a red badge, and I suppose the Labour Party colour is also red…Oh My Gawds!!!

                    • Gosman

                      I know you and felix are close C.V but perhaps you would let felix answer a question directed towards him/her next time.

                  • Lightly

                    Randism is a mainstream part of rightwing politics. Stalinism is not the same of the leftwing.

                    Mainstream rightwingers read Rand and promote her ideas and associate themselves with her.

                    The mainstream Left does not do that of Stalin (and basically never did – look at Orwell, he went to the USSR and saw it was not socialism but totalitarianism, inspiring him to write Animal Farm and 1984)

                    • Populuxe1

                      Excuse me? Orwell was one of the few on the left brave enough at the time to say it how he saw it. Solzhenitsyn recalled being chained up and crammed inside a police van with a dozen others while only a few metres away Sartre was standing with his minder being shown the glories of Soviet civilisation. The French left wing intelligensia STILL finds it difficult to criticise the Stalinist period.

                  • McFlock

                    LOL

                    Starting premise: “Left” vs “Right” overall characteristics.
                    Tory attack: one obscure sta1in-supporting group that might or might not be fairly described as “Left Wing”.

                    Fish-in-barrel response: every fucking right-wing hate group from neonaz;s to the KKK.

                  • felixviper

                    “Is it your view that there is not one contemporary left-wing political party that subscribes to any aspect of what is commonly referred to as Stalinism?”

                    No, moron, it’s my view that Ole would struggle to find one. The clue was in the words when I wrote “I suspect you’ll struggle to find”.

                    And to date that appears to be the case.

          • Gosman 5.1.1.1.2

            I think there are quite a few who support his general view around the supremacy of the state over the individual/ Perhaps not in locking people up or killing them if they are perceived as a threat but that stated I have seen similar views expressed here. Millsy is a good example of this attitude.

            • felixviper 5.1.1.1.2.1

              Is “millsy” a contemporary left-wing political party? Strange, never seen it on a ballot.

              ps it’s the “locking people up or killing them” bit that Ole brought up and that we were specifically addressing, sorry to have wasted your time.

              • Gosman

                You didn’t mention that you were specifically addressing that aspect of Stalinism at all. In fact I believe your actual quote mentions ” …any of Stalin’s ideas.”.

                • felixviper

                  The clue was in the words “I think Joseph Stalin summed up the mindset of the Left “ A single death is a tragedy; a million deaths is a statistic.”

                  Moron.

                  • The Gormless Fool formerly known as Oleolebiscuitbarrell

                    According to their website, the Stalinist Society’s next meeting is on 24 March at Kings Cross Neighbourhood Centre, 51 Argyle Street , London WC1H 8EF.

                    George Galloway, parliamentary leader of the Respect Party might be there. Although clearly sympathetic to Stalin, he prefers not to call himself a Stalinist because of the “pejoratives” (his euphemism for the mass murder of 20m people) around the term:

                    “I am on the anti-imperialist left.” The Stalinist left? “I wouldn’t define it that way because of the pejoratives loaded around it; that would be making a rod for your own back. If you are asking did I support the Soviet Union, yes I did. Yes, I did support the Soviet Union, and I think the disappearance of the Soviet Union is the biggest catastrophe of my life. If there was a Soviet Union today, we would not be having this conversation about plunging into a new war in the Middle East, and the US would not be rampaging around the globe.”

                    Which contemporary right wing parties have Rand as their “basis”? I had a little look at the National Party’s constitution (written some years before Atlas Shrugged) and could find no mention of her.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      They don’t have Rand as their basis, they have her ideas. They used Rand up and threw her away. They wouldn’t want to remember that she finished life as a beneficiary.

                    • The Gormless Fool formerly known as Oleolebiscuitbarrell

                      The leader of the Stalinist Society, Harpal Brar, was a member of the Socialist Labour Party set up by Arthur Scargill after Blair took over the Labour Party (remember, when he moved them to the right and made them electable). He stood for the party in Ealing Southhall twice in 2000’s, each time gaining more votes than the Libertarianz did in any seat in New Zealand. Since 2004, he has been the leader of the Communist Party of Great Britain (Marxist-Leninist). The party publicly support governments around the world which it perceives to be socialist or “anti-imperialist” such as Assad’s Syria, North Korea and Zimbabwe.

                      Mr Brar thinks Stalin was really good and that things only started to go downhill when that right-wing bastard Krushchev took over.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      None of that has the international reach, finances and influence of Goldman Sachs. So largely irrelevant.

                    • felixviper

                      So it’s not a political party? But someone from a political party might know who they are. Goodo.

                      btw if he’s “anti-imperialist” he can hardly be a Stalinist, can he?

                      Keep trying though, I’m sure you’ll find one eventually.

                    • Pascal's bookie

                      Which contemporary right wing parties have Rand as their “basis”?

                      Have a look at the bookcase of the then leader of the CT party—>

                      http://mediadarlings.net/2010/08/30/objectively-wrong-fun-facts-with-lindsay-perigo/

                    • Gosman

                      “btw if he’s “anti-imperialist” he can hardly be a Stalinist, can he?”

                      Stalin supported a number of anti-imperialist movements.

                    • “remember, when he moved them to the right and made them electable”

                      Nearly everyone I knew who voted Labour at that election, voted to end what felt like a life sentence of capital C conservatism. Nothing to do with moving to the right, which funny enough, didn’t really happen until after, and was reason many abandoned them last time out.

                      Interesting to note the left leaning current leader has turned around the polls to the point of it being his to lose.

                    • millsy

                      Galloway’s an idiot.

                      All he wants to do is consort with Koran-bashers.

                  • Gosman

                    So why mention “…any of Stalin’s ideas.”?

                • framu

                  its stalinism gosman – its not like were discussing his moustache is it

                  • Gosman

                    I presume any discussion on Stalinism would touch upon his economic views or do you equate them with his moustache ?

                    • felixviper

                      Presume anything you like but no-one else is in any way obliged to take much notice of your presumptions.

                    • framu

                      yeah – but when hes used as a slur against the left you can be pretty assured that part of that slur is the fact he was a murderous dictator

                      your the one trying to split hairs and dissect things to make them mean what you want them to

                  • The Gormless Fool formerly known as Oleolebiscuitbarrell

                    Communist Party of Great Britain (Marxist-Leninist).

                    I have helpfully highlighted the bit which indicates it is a party.

                    • felixviper

                      Nope, you’ve highlighted the bit that indicates that the Communist Party is a party. Clap clap.

                      Now just to humour me by keeping to the topic we were talking about, could you please either:

                      a) show that this is a “Stalinist” party, or

                      b) show that the “stalinistsociety” – the folks you were talking about before you moved the goalposts – are a political party.

                      I did warn you you’d find it a struggle btw.

                    • The Gormless Fool formerly known as Oleolebiscuitbarrell

                      Type “Stalin” into the search engine on their website.

                      http://www.cpgb-ml.org/index.php?secName=home

                      This throws up about 50 articles mentioning Stalin. A random sample of seven discloses that, in each case, the reference is glowing.

                      The front page has a man holding a banner of Stalin.

                      One of the leaders of the party is the leader of something called the Stalin Society.

                      Yeah, probably has nothing to do with Stalin.

                      This started with Zet saying Rand summed up the mindset of all right wingers. Something of a broad statement. He gets that for free yet I am obliged to troll through 19 flavours of wailing nutters?

                    • The Gormless Fool formerly known as Oleolebiscuitbarrell

                      I like this bit form the website, where the author was criticising another bunch of crazies led by Arthur Scargill:

                      “In this answer, though it ducked the opportunity to speak up boldly for Stalin and Bolshevism, could nevertheless be discerned a faint echo from Scargill’s happier days, when he could stand in front of a hall full of comrades celebrating the October revolution and pledge himself and the SLP to “the road of revolution, the road of Marx, Engels, Lenin and Stalin”. What a poignant contrast with this sad and sorry squib of a meeting.”

                      Lefties hate the right. But what they really hate are lefties who disagree with them slightly.

                    • r0b []

                      Lefties hate the right. But what they really hate are lefties who disagree with them slightly.

                      Sad but true.

                    • felixviper

                      “This started with Zet saying Rand summed up the mindset of all right wingers. Something of a broad statement.”

                      Except he didn’t. Here’s what he actually said:
                      “There’s something broken in the minds of the Right that they can’t make the cognitive leap to emphasise with other people, unless those people are very close to them to the extent that those people’s feelings can impact on them personally.

                      I think Ayn Rand summed up this mindset of the Right in her praise for child murderer William Hickman (an inspiration for John Galt): “Other people do not exist for him, and he does not see why they should”.”

                      That’s actually describing a very specific trait which can be and has been demonstrated over and over again in the actions of people like the American politician in the post, or closer to home in the speeches last week of National MPs like Chester Borrows.

                      And your response to this was that lefties generally, much like Stalin, have a callous disregard for the deaths of millions.

                      Your reference for this clunking ridiculous equation is that a very small fringe group in the uk still seem to like Stalin.

                      Absurd enough already to laugh off, I know, but just to humour you I’ll ask the obvious question: Does this political party, in all the pages you’ve pored over, say anything at all about how killing millions of people is ok?

        • Lightly 5.1.1.2

          Because Righties read Rand and regularly cite her ideas – look at the Tea Party, it’s all about Randian notions.

          What leftwinger holds up Stalin as an inspiration?

          • McFlock 5.1.1.2.1

            oobb found one weblink – that is equal to the main themes of most prime time FoxNews shows doesn’t it?

          • Colonial Viper 5.1.1.2.2

            Lenin had his moments; Stalin (who would throw away 100,000 lives on whim), not so much.

            • Gosman 5.1.1.2.2.1

              The fact you think Lenin was really any different from Stalin highlights the issue here.

              • Colonial Viper

                Of course they were very different. Not all Reds under the Bed are the same ya know.

                • Anne

                  Talking of Reds under the Bed Colonial Viper: I came across this little gem while looking for something else. (George Key was John Key’s father)

                  … So where did George Key’s zeal come from? Most of the members of the International Brigade he joined were members of the Communist Party. John Key’s dad, who spoke fluent Russian, was almost certainly a Marxist…

                  Had Key played a prominent role protesting the 1981 Springbok tour, Muldoon would have had the SIS working nights on this link to a Marxist past, however tenuous, building it into a file thick enough to derail a train…

                  stuff.co.nz / Tom Scott gets personal with the PM.

                  Would John Key have made it to the giddy heights of the global financial corporate world? I think not.

                  Would John Key have become PM? I think not.

                  Now we know the reason he kept his head down over the Springbok tour.

          • Populuxe1 5.1.1.2.3

            And the Teabaggers are an example of the mainstream Right? I don’t think so – they even give the likes of Karl Rove the screaming shits.

            • weizguy 5.1.1.2.3.1

              They’re fairly indicative of the republican party. Rand Paul just won the CPAC straw poll. Karl Rove is currently considered too liberal for the republicans.

            • Pascal's bookie 5.1.1.2.3.2

              “And the Teabaggers are an example of the mainstream Right? ”

              You could ask a moderate republican congress critter if you find one I suppose.

    • prism 5.2

      Soggy Biscuit
      What?? That thinking applies to all points of government? Even the Right who consider that the individual is so important ostensibly. But New Orleans after Katrina comes into this style of thought – under a Republican and probably Democratic wouldn’t have done much better.

      • tricledrown 5.2.1

        No votes to be won for the right in the US for helping the poor!
        Same here in the eastern suburbs of CHCH.

    • Murray Olsen 5.3

      Depends on who does the dying, Fool. I can think of a few people whose deaths I wouldn’t see as any sort of tragedy.

    • tricledrown 5.4

      Gormless one Stalin was a quasi Nazi totalitarian dictator who propagated similar policies to Hitler!

      • framu 5.4.1

        careful – youve just triggered the redbaiter defence (” hitler was a national SOCIALIST”) 🙂

  6. Harriet 6

    People who are in the top one percent in income receive far more than one percent of the attention in the media.
    Even aside from miscellaneous celebrity bimbos, the top one percent attract all sorts of hand-wringing and finger-pointing. Name calling and abuse too.

    Most Kiwis in the top fifth of income, the bottom fifth, or any of the fifths in between, do not stay there for a whole decade, much less for life. And most certainly do not remain permanently in the top one percent or the top one-hundredth of one percent.

    Most income statistics do not follow given individuals from year to year, the way Inland Revenue statistics do. But those other statistics can create the misleading illusion that they do by comparing income brackets from year to year, even though people are moving in and out of those brackets all the time.

    That especially includes the top ten percent, who have become the focus of so much angst and so much rhetoric.

    The Conservatives don’t like those who lie to poor people.

    • Colonial Viper 6.1

      even though people are moving in and out of those brackets all the time.

      All the measures of social mobility I have seen have been collapsing round the western world, as the wealthiest get an ever increasing share of income.

      You enter poverty, you’re very likely to stay there.

      You get born with a silver spoon in your mouth, you’re very likely to stay there.

      Barring Lotto and fuckups of course, but that’s no way to run a society.

      The Conservatives don’t like those who lie to poor people.

      But they do most of the lying. Like you.

    • QoT 6.2

      +20 for random misogyny

    • Draco T Bastard 6.3

      Most Kiwis in the top fifth of income, the bottom fifth, or any of the fifths in between, do not stay there for a whole decade, much less for life.

      That is so wrong it’s not bloody funny:

      Several studies have been made comparing social mobility between developed countries. One such study (“Do Poor Children Become Poor Adults?”)[5][21][22] found that of nine developed countries, the United States and United Kingdom had the lowest intergenerational vertical social mobility with about half of the advantages of having a parent with a high income passed on to the next generation. The four countries with the lowest “intergenerational income elasticity”, i.e. the highest social mobility, were Denmark, Norway, Finland, and Canada with less than 20% of advantages of having a high income parent passed on to their children.[21] (see graph)

      No, that graph doesn’t have NZ on it but consider the paragraph down a bit:

      Studies have also found “a clear negative relationship” between income inequality and intergenerational mobility.[25] Countries with low levels of inequality such as Denmark, Norway and Finland had some of the greatest mobility, while the two countries with the high level of inequality — Chile and Brazil—had some of the lowest mobility.

      Today, NZ has one of the highest rates of inequality in the world.

      The Conservatives don’t like those who lie to poor people.

      So, the conservatives don’t like themselves?

      • Green machine UpandComer 6.3.1

        the problem isn’t relegated to the system, look at how many poor immigrants come to NZ and then rise to the top 1 percent. Us kiwis need to take an honest look at ourselves and whether we are willing to do what it takes. Of course some rich bitches from parnell are going to get an easy ride, but for the most part it seems to me that if the sons and daughters of the Khmer Rouge victims can become maxillo facial surgeons, the opportunities are there for everyone.

        • Colonial Viper 6.3.1.1

          For every 10 people who make it from poverty to the top 1% of society, you throw away 100,000

        • Colonial Viper 6.3.1.2

          if the sons and daughters of the Khmer Rouge victims can become maxillo facial surgeons, the opportunities are there for everyone.

          So that’s two a year

          What about the other 500,000 kids

        • Descendant Of Sssmith 6.3.1.3

          Of course you only get to hear about the ones who make it unless something like this happens:

          http://www.english.rfi.fr/africa/20100827-new-zealand-somali-refugee-gets-nine-years-plane-hijack

          It’s just as equally valid to say why can’t all refugees hijack planes and go to jail as it is to say why can’t they all become surgeons.

          But that is part of the right wing myth that must be said – you can all be millionaires if you just try hard enough even though most of the people saying it will never do so.

          And if you knew anything at all about some of these refugees you would understand how difficult some of their lives are from the trauma they have suffered and seen.

          Bit like the rest of us really.

          But it’s always good to know that righties think you can help traumatised people by saying well shit they did it so it’s your own fault that you haven’t.

          Intellect, skillset, psychological damage, physical disability, racism, opportunity – nah none of those things matter. It’s just about you.

  7. Bill 7

    I’m reckoning that simplistic ‘Right’/ ‘Left’ dichotomy is bullshit. As is the claim that ‘the Left’ isn’t hypocritical. I mean, just as one example, did ‘left wing’ governments halt exploitation of third world resources by western economies after WW2? Nope. Did those who voted for those ‘left wing’ governments give much of a toss for invisible people from elsewhere? Nope.

    We have a market system that favours individualism and competition over communalism and co-operation. Therefore (arguably) less empathic people will tend to thrive while ‘good guys come last’. But that really doesn’t have much to do with ‘Left’ and ‘Right’ and everything to do with how our economy is structured. (There are plenty of selfish egotistical fuckwits who couldn’t give a damn who count themselves in as being a part of ‘the left’ – and far be it for me to mention the likes of David Shearer in this context)

    Anyway, if you do want to still make ‘caring’ and “wanting the best for people” about ‘Left’ and ‘Right’ then anyone claiming to be of ‘the left’ who isn’t staunchly anti-capitalist or a market abolitionist is indeed deeply hypocritical. And ironically, given the claim in the post, that leaves ‘the right’ standing on the ground of consistency.

    • Colonial Viper 7.1

      And ironically, given the claim in the post, that leaves ‘the right’ standing on the ground of consistency.

      Which is one reason people vote for them. The Right tend to stand by their values and they also tend to deliver to their constituencies without angst ridden handwringing.

      or a market abolitionist

      Well, I think that markets will always have an important role in any economy. But not as a major influence over the shape of society and social relations.

    • Populuxe1 7.2

      +1

    • Descendant Of Sssmith 7.3

      I’m reckoning that simplistic ‘Right’/ ‘Left’ dichotomy is bullshit.

      Don’t know anyone who thinks it is a simple dichotomy. It’s always been a complex dichotomy.

      The current Labour view that it’s a left party and those of us that think it no longer is except on it’s website is a case in point.

  8. Gosman 8

    I don’t think the issue of Gay marriage is a left or right issue necessarily. There are a number of left wing people who disagree with it as well and a lot of right wing people who support it.

    • Lightly 8.1

      On any issue there will be individuals who come down on the opposite side of the divide than they usually do but marriage equality is a leftwing issue. The Left was pushing this when there were still powerful sectors in the Right trying to get homosexuality outlawed again.

      Overwhelmingly, the opposition is from the Right and the support from the Left. Look at the party split in the vote – a majority (33) of National MPs voted against and they comprised 75% of the opposing votes. On the Left, only 3 Labour MPs voted against and for the Greens, this isn’t even a conscience issue – they regard it as so basic that they vote party line.

      • felixviper 8.1.1

        In Gosman’s world the National Party is left-wing.

      • Polish Pride 8.1.2

        It is neither a Left or a Right issue it is a human rights issue

        • Lightly 8.1.2.1

          and the Right has routinely opposed extensions of the recognition of human rights throughout history. Including on marriage equality

          • felixviper 8.1.2.1.1

            Exactly Lightly. They don’t spit when they say “progressive” for nothing.

          • Populuxe1 8.1.2.1.2

            Ahem. That would be the more extreme end of the right, just as the authoritarian end of th eleft did exactly the same thing out of some perverse nod to imaginary working class values.

            • Pascal's bookie 8.1.2.1.2.1

              Some examples of what you’re talking about would be helpful.

              • Populuxe1

                Where should I start? Asia, Europe, or South America?

              • Pascal's bookie

                How about NZ?

                • Populuxe1

                  Where did I say I was talking about New Zealand? However I would note that for example the first attempt at homosexual law reform was made in 1974, with National MP Venn Young’s Crimes Amendment Bill.

                  • Pascal's bookie

                    Where did you say you weren’t talking about NZ?

                    However I would note that for example the first attempt at homosexual law reform was made in 1974, with National MP Venn Young’s Crimes Amendment Bill.

                    And how did that work out?

                    Shall we tally up the votes for and agin various bills relating to human rights and see how it adds up?

                    You said that the right’s reaction to human rights issues is the same as the lefts, with opposition from the extremes.

                    I could well be biased, but I reckon that’s bullshit. The opposition to the CUB seemed pretty mainstream on the right to me, for example.

                    • Populuxe1

                      Don’t be disingenious, and yes, you’re right, you’re biased. In the matter of opposition to the CUB, there was a lot of identity politics that had nothing at all to do with Left-Right and everything to do with conservative masculinities and religion (not sure why you are ignoring all those Labour-voting Catholics from working class backgrounds). There is a significant Left-wing demographic that has no interest in progressive social politics beyond workers’ rights.

                    • Pascal's bookie

                      Explain how I’m being disingenuous.

                      Look at the votes in the house, they are pretty lopsided. Explain that.

                      You can claim that there is some huge amount of catholic Labour voters out there, but what does that prove? If they still vote Labour even though the Labour party is so lopsided in supporting this stuff, then what does that tell you about those voters strength of feelings on the matter? (FTR. my family is labour voting catholic.)

                      Your claim was that the left is just as bad as the right, and that it is only the extreme of the right that opposes this stuff, as does the extreme left.

                      I think that’s crap because I see loads of national party people voting against this stuff in the house. I assume they do that for reasons. I don’t see them being punished for opposing it by the National support base, do you?

                      How much power on the left does that “Left-wing demographic that has no interest in progressive social politics beyond workers’ rights” have? Are they a marginalised group on the left?

                  • Pascal's bookie

                    Or we could try some thought experiments perhaps.

                    Let’s say the police have been caught doing something dodgy; not wearing their ID numbers to a protest, using force in a way that looks excessive, shooting someone when perhaps they might not have had to, breaching warrant conditions, that sort of thing.

                    How does that play out in your minds eye with regard to who complains about it and says it’s outrageous and there should be an investigation, and who mouths platitudes about ‘just doing their jobs’ and ‘nothing to hide nothing to fear’ and so on and so forth?

                    • Populuxe1

                      Ugh, now you think you’re Noam Chomsky

                    • Pascal's bookie

                      eh?

                      You don’t seem to have much luck in coming up with examples of the left being as bad as the right, so you’ve fallen back on whatever that hell that comment was.

                      But somehow I’m being disengenuous.

        • Draco T Bastard 8.1.2.2

          Probably but which parties have people whinging about human rights?

    • tricledrown 8.2

      Gooseman ever since National realized their are votes to be had!
      ponckey is keen to show off his buysexuality!

  9. vto 9

    .
    The worst thing about the right is the view from the left.

    The worst thing about the left is the view from the right.

    • ghostrider888 9.1

      Like

    • jbc 9.2

      Most accurate comment so far.

      The worst kind of people are those whose narrow mind puts everyone on a one-dimensional left right scale.

      They’re at least a million times worse than those who habitually exaggerate for effect.

  10. Lloyd 10

    Ok, how do you persuade a wealthy b.. who doesn’t have any feelings for the poor that state supplied benefits for the poorest in society are in the rich b’s best interests?
    An example of this was Henry Ford’s realisation that if he paid his workers enough they could afford to buy the cars they were making, eventually increasing Henry Ford’s profits. More subtly he pushed other employers to increase their wages so they didn’t lose their workers to Henry Ford, so these other employees also could afford Henry Ford’s cars. An example where low wages weren’t the best solution for a capitalist.
    Get enough of these models in front of the less empathetic of society and maybe there will be a paradigm shift away from the ‘greed is good’ type of thinking.

    • Draco T Bastard 10.1

      Get enough of these models in front of the less empathetic of society and maybe there will be a paradigm shift away from the ‘greed is good’ type of thinking.

      Henry Ford started that idea over a hundred years ago so I think it safe to sat that if that was going to happen it would have already. It’s not, greed has won out as it did in the 19th century resulting in massive recessions and depressions, as it did in the early 20th century resulting in the Great Depression and as it did this century resulting in the GFC.

      Under a capitalist system greed always wins out, the people suffer and the right blame the poor for it even though it was their own policies and greed that actually caused the poverty.

      • Populuxe1 10.1.1

        Mind you, Ford had an army of thugs to beat up any of his employees that fell out of line, so probably not the best example to be quoting

        • tricledrown 10.1.1.1

          populuxe Ford started off with high ideals but slid down the moral ladder by then had competitors and a Depression to deal with ,Ford survived the depression by selling Hitler mass production equipment for his war machine!

  11. jbc 11

    I begin to wonder if the OP was being satirical. It has surely stirred the pot.

    It quickly brought out the genetic / brain size studies and corresponding offensive picking over that morsel. If I did the same in polite company (labelling character by genetics) I’d be labeled as of the extreme right, or even raise the Godwin argument.

    But the general divisive theme is what struck me. Gay rights might have a significant political correlation but that would likely depend a lot on the country. I wouldn’t extrapolate much from the scum that somehow floats to the top of USA politics.

    Without digging deeper I’d guess that age and religion are also significant. It just happens that in the US you have a preponderance of old religious nutjobs in government.

    And then there is the real practical aspect of the argument “The difference with the Left is we aren’t hypocritical like that […]”. I have friends and colleagues from across the political spectrum – when we agree on something it is through pragmatism. Putting aside prejudice and agreeing on what is demonstrably effective. The ability to do that is what I associate with intelligence.

    The biggest difference I see with people is their ability to mentally follow an idea through to implementation and discern likely practical issues.

    My experience is that political affiliation and gay tolerance are not related at all. In fact the most vehemently economic right-wing person I know is staunchly pro-gay. And then I have my grandmother who was a devout lefty but had little tolerance for “wooly woofters”.

    They may very well be exceptions, but I’d say not at all uncommon. I wonder if age is the stronger factor.

    • Pascal's bookie 11.1

      “My experience is that political affiliation and gay tolerance are not related at all. ”

      Interesting. Does that show up in the historic parliamentary voting records and campaign rhetoric of political parties and politicians? Seems like an easy enough thing to check. If there was a strong corelation showing up, I’d imagine it would need explaining somehow.

    • felixviper 11.2

      So how do you explain away the voting record?

      • jbc 11.2.1

        I don’t confuse the small group of people with character traits that promote themselves into positions in government as having personal views that reflect their constituents.

        At best politicians are cartoon characters.

        To answer your question I think there are many factors that make up the population and they don’t all necessarily match with political party of choice. I mean, a large part of the population might vote on a party position that is coincidental to some other policy or leaning.

        • Pascal's bookie 11.2.1.1

          You don’t think electors vote for people who represent their political views?

          And is it just a coincidence that certain political views show up in politicians from parties on the right all over the western world?

          • jbc 11.2.1.1.1

            I think electors vote for their best choice (or perhaps least worst choice). Certainly doesn’t mean they subscribe to each and every view of their chosen candidate/party.

            There are a vast swathe who will vote one way no matter what. They are tribal.

            So, while I have no doubt there is some statistically significant correlation between political orientation and homosexual empathy I’m also equally sure it is far from a perfect dichotomy.

            See this Gallup poll and look at the factor breakdown.

            • One Tāne Huna 11.2.1.1.1.1

              “…political affiliation and gay tolerance are not related at all.”

              “…there is some statistically significant correlation between political orientation and homosexual empathy.”

              🙄

              • jbc

                Well done. I guess quoting the whole sentences would have made sense.

                In my experience political affiliation and gay tolerance are not related at all.

                What that means is: holding constant for another factor, let’s say “people I like” (which coincidentally is a fairly liberal-minded bunch), then the following appear to be true:

                * All are tolerant and intelligent.
                * They have economic views from across the political spectrum.

                Perhaps if I lived in Farmville, Nebraska I’d have a different experience, but I don’t and I don’t.

                • One Tāne Huna

                  If you didn’t intend your assertions about your mates to count against the overall thesis why did you bring them up at all?

                  I suppose it illustrates another typical right wing behavioural pattern (apart from bigotry and stupidity): believing that anecdotes are data.

            • Pascal's bookie 11.2.1.1.1.2

              I think electors vote for their best choice (or perhaps least worst choice). Certainly doesn’t mean they subscribe to each and every view of their chosen candidate/party.

              No one suggested otherwise.

              There are a vast swathe who will vote one way no matter what. They are tribal.

              Of course, that just means that there are a vats swathe of people who identify with a political party very strongly. Why would they do that I wonder? Poltical identity perhaps?

              So, while I have no doubt there is some statistically significant correlation between political orientation and homosexual empathy I’m also equally sure it is far from a perfect dichotomy.

              See this Gallup poll and look at the factor breakdown.

              Try this one instead: http://www.pollingreport.com/civil.htm

              So yeah, I’d say that ‘consistently large majorites’ are usually considered to be ‘statistically significant’ and support the idea that ‘there is something going on here’.

              • jbc

                “There are a vast swathe who will vote one way no matter what. They are tribal.”

                Of course, that just means that there are a vats swathe of people who identify with a political party very strongly. Why would they do that I wonder? Poltical identity perhaps?

                Yes, and I put that alongside religion. People that have somehow switched off their faculty for reasoning.

                That is part of my point. US politics seems to be dominated by religion, and the OP argument is founded on that.

                So yeah, I’d say that ‘consistently large majorites’ are usually considered to be ‘statistically significant’ and support the idea that ‘there is something going on here’.

                Statistical significance tells us there is a difference. Not why.

                The OP would probably have been more accurate to say “The worst thing about people who attend church weekly

                • Pascal's bookie

                  This just pushes the issue one step along the line.

                  Now you are left with trying to explain why all those religious voters (of the type to vote against civil liberties) line up to vote with the right wing parties, in the proportion they do, in so many countries.

                  I get that you and your friends are the exception to the rule. Don’t take the obvious trend so personally.

                  • jbc

                    In case it it is not clear I do not identify strongly with any single political party or left/right leaning so I don’t feel personally slighted at all.

                    And it’s not just my tiny circle of friends that are the exception to the rule. It’s probably more like 1/3 of the population.

                    If I appear to have an axe to grind then maybe it’s a reaction to the two taxi drivers in the past week that lectured endless tripe to their captive passenger. No use engaging with them since they have their talking points down pat. If you disagree then they know you’re a communist / heathen / whatever.

                    So I’m angry at this braindead two tribes worldview, it’s proponents and mindless followers.

                    So I drop in to a few blogs to look for something a little more engaging and found this talkback radio style post occupying the top spot

    • One Tāne Huna 11.3

      “labelling character by genetics”

      A simple mistake, easy to make, but you’re simply demonstrating your ignorance. Environmental factors (such as having you for a parent, for example) have a huge influence on brain development.

      Sorry to burst your little bubble of denial.

      • jbc 11.3.1

        Oh, I don’t disagree at all that genetics have influence over character traits, political leaning, risk taking, intelligence, you-name-it. I read The Blank Slate a decade ago and then looked into all the identical twins studies etc. The scientific evidence is compelling.

        My point is that when you start making negative or positive assumptions about a population or group of people based on genetics then you are in dangerous territory. Mixing that with shallow populist politics is destructive.

        • One Tāne Huna 11.3.1.1

          when you start making negative or positive assumptions about a population or group of people based on genetics then you are in dangerous territory.

          I agree. However, noting that brain characteristics and/or IQ can predict for political allegiance makes no such assumption, as brain development is strongly influenced by environmental factors, including such things as parenting styles.

          The growing body of evidence is hard to ignore.

  12. One Tāne Huna 12

    :Further reading

    “…greater orientation to aversive stimuli tends to be associated with right-of-centre and greater orientation to appetitive (pleasing) stimuli with left-of-centre political inclinations.”

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