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View Diary: Rep. Paul Ryan is a very stupid man (251 comments)

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  •  Projection on the grand scale. (23+ / 0-)

    Everything that we said about Bush's two terms in office, they're regurgitating it and trying to pin it on somebody else. WTF?

    On the other hand, every time I hear a statistic about how many people believe in creationism, or how many people think that Obama's from Kenya, or (insert right-wing conspiracy theory here) it's always around 30%. Which means that 30% of US citizens are crazy.

    I see you drivin' 'round town with the girl I love / And I'm like / Please proceed, Governor. - Dave Itzkoff

    by Jensequitur on Mon Feb 03, 2014 at 01:02:26 PM PST

    •  That number has been amazingly consistant (8+ / 0-)

      as long as I can remember. Just about 30% of this country were the natural base of the Reagan Big Tent, the wingnuts, the Jeebus crowd, the Birchers...

      If I ran this circus, things would be DIFFERENT!

      by CwV on Mon Feb 03, 2014 at 01:17:53 PM PST

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      •  kinda puts the lie to demographic determinism (3+ / 0-)

        I don't believe for a moment the claim that demographics will doom the republican party. I've seen plenty of young racists and plenty more Fox parrots young enough I'd card 'em.

        Last full month in which the average daily temperature did not exceed twentieth-century norms: 2/1985 - Harper's Index, 2/2013

        by kamarvt on Mon Feb 03, 2014 at 02:25:34 PM PST

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    •  Not crazy (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      ColoTim, wintergreen8694, VPofKarma

      just plain ignorant - due to the dumbing down of our education system and evangelical churches preying on the gullible - all in the name of money.  It serves their purpose - laughing at their followers all the way to bank in those off shore locations.  

      Why do Republicans Hate Americans?

      by Caniac41 on Mon Feb 03, 2014 at 01:21:53 PM PST

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    •  Are you familiar with the Crazification Factor (19+ / 0-)

      first postulated (AFAIK) in 2005?

      John: Hey, Bush is now at 37% approval. I feel much less like Kevin McCarthy screaming in traffic. But I wonder what his base is --

      Tyrone: 27%.

      John: ... you said that immmediately, and with some authority.

      Tyrone: Obama vs. Alan Keyes. Keyes was from out of state, so you can eliminate any established political base; both candidates were black, so you can factor out racism; and Keyes was plainly, obviously, completely crazy. Batshit crazy. Head-trauma crazy. But 27% of the population of Illinois voted for him. They put party identification, personal prejudice, whatever ahead of rational judgement. Hell, even like 5% of Democrats voted for him. That's crazy behaviour. I think you have to assume a 27% Crazification Factor in any population.

      John: Objectively crazy or crazy vis-a-vis my own inertial reference frame for rational behaviour? I mean, are you creating the Theory of Special Crazification or General Crazification?

      Tyrone: Hadn't thought about it. Let's split the difference. Half just have worldviews which lead them to disagree with what you consider rationality even though they arrive at their positions through rational means, and the other half are the core of the Crazification -- either genuinely crazy; or so woefully misinformed about how the world works, the bases for their decision making is so flawed they may as well be crazy.

      John: You realize this leads to there being over 30 million crazy people in the US?

      Tyrone: Does that seem wrong?

      John: ... a bit low, actually.

      My country, right or wrong; if right, to be kept right; and if wrong, to be set right.
      --Carl Schurz, remarks in the Senate, February 29, 1872

      by leftist vegetarian patriot on Mon Feb 03, 2014 at 01:47:54 PM PST

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      •  I wonder if it correlates to lead levels (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        VPofKarma, Calamity Jean, Silina

        in the water, as well as exposure to environmental contaminants. The number of core crazies is shrinking, but is at its slowest in red states. Because red states are the last to conform to environmental regulations on the amount of formadelhyde and lead in the water?

        I see you drivin' 'round town with the girl I love / And I'm like / Please proceed, Governor. - Dave Itzkoff

        by Jensequitur on Mon Feb 03, 2014 at 03:33:01 PM PST

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        •  Environmental factors? Almost certainly (4+ / 0-)

          However, it's probably unnecessary to posit anything nearly so indirect.

          The people in the reddest states are essentially raised in a bubble, a la The Truman Show. It is no coincidence or happenstance that their preferred news sources disparage all others. Some few manage to break out anyway. But as for the others, well, epistemic closure isn't just a buzzword.

          Conservatives elsewhere are more exposed to differing points of view, so whether they wish it or not they and their children are more likely to moderate or change their attitudes.

          My country, right or wrong; if right, to be kept right; and if wrong, to be set right.
          --Carl Schurz, remarks in the Senate, February 29, 1872

          by leftist vegetarian patriot on Mon Feb 03, 2014 at 03:46:59 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  No, seriously - conservative brains are different (2+ / 0-)

            They've done studies which show that conservative brains have a larger medulla, which leads to there being more fear guiding their actions. Add that to the drop in serious crime and the lead levels in water pipes from the 1960s to today, and it really makes you wonder. I'm not going to go all conspiracy-theorist fluoride brain control, but it's ironic that the states that are most red have the worst oversight of regulations like lead levels in water, formadelhyde in water, etc. And it goes some way toward explaining why the red states stay red.

            I see you drivin' 'round town with the girl I love / And I'm like / Please proceed, Governor. - Dave Itzkoff

            by Jensequitur on Tue Feb 04, 2014 at 07:01:04 PM PST

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            •  I grant the different brain structures (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Jensequitur

              I've read about that too. That different structure does--has to--affect all aspects of their lives, including political orientation. Further, I concede that grossly elevated levels of pollutants contaminating the physical environment would probably lead to some degree of impairment of brain function in people living in the polluted areas. Our mental health isn't independent of our bodily health.

              However, look at the differences in ideological outlook between rural and urban demographics. Acknowledging that no group is monolithic and also that some areas in rural America are heavily polluted and some cities are relatively clean, on average city dwellers will be exposed to greater levels of physical pollutants than country dwellers, regardless of state or region. And yet, city dwellers tend to be considerably more liberal than their rural counterparts.

              My best guess is that most of the differences in brains of people living in regions that have widely different ideological biases aren't due to genetic variability across regions or to physical environmental factors, but to emotional environmental factors. We know the wiring of our brains is not set at birth but changes according to life experience. We know this. We also know that genes and environment interact, that identical organisms grow and develop differently depending on all sorts of factors. Well, growing up around fearful authoritarians is a long series of formative life experiences.

              My country, right or wrong; if right, to be kept right; and if wrong, to be set right.
              --Carl Schurz, remarks in the Senate, February 29, 1872

              by leftist vegetarian patriot on Wed Feb 05, 2014 at 08:23:28 AM PST

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              •  Those are good points - (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                leftist vegetarian patriot

                exposure to different cultures does result in a broader outlook. And growing up around fear and poverty can cripple a person before they've even begun. Sounds like another nature vs. nurture argument!

                I see you drivin' 'round town with the girl I love / And I'm like / Please proceed, Governor. - Dave Itzkoff

                by Jensequitur on Wed Feb 05, 2014 at 10:49:16 AM PST

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    •  Ted Cruz... the Canadian Senator (0+ / 0-)

      if he runs for President will we have to annex Canada?
      Before he screwed up by screwing around, Arnold Schwarzenegger was a darling of the Republican Party and some of them would have been willing to change the natural born citizen requirement for him to run! So all this stuff about Obama being from Kenya is kinda strange...

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