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InvisibleDoctorJ
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Emotion in Politics
    #1882911 - 09/04/03 10:51 PM (13 years, 3 months ago)

A wise man once taught me that the world is basically divided into two groups of people. He said that very few people make decisions using logic and reason. He then said that most people's decisions are based in emotion.

Emotion based politics have thrived in America. Recognizing that emotional manipulation will get them more votes than logical arguements, politicians have resorted to pushing people's buttons to gain power. In the guise of "taking a stand on important issues", politicians and lobbyists subtly tweak people's emotions in order to work them into an irrational frenzy.

Both major parties are guilty of this. But whats interseting to note is that they both use different methods.

The Democrats, for instance, love to push the "Empathy" button. Indeed, I believe this is where the term "bleeding heart Liberal" came from. This is a way to emotional impact voters in a far more powerful way then an arguement ever could.

"Oh, look at those poor starving children in Iraq. Their groundwater is polluted and they cant get medical supplies because of all the sanctions we've laid on them. We should never have messed with Iraq, even though Sadam probably was a threat to our national security."

or

"Oh no! Another six year old shot himself with a gun. Heres some video footage of his family greiving. What a tragedy. If only we had tougher gun laws to prevent things like this from happening..."

or

"Oh look at these poor starving homeless people. Sure, theyre mostly alcoholics and heroin addicts that cant do anything productive, but we should have federal progams that use tax money to pay for their housing and healthcare, even though its basically communism..."

or

"Won't someone please think of the children ?! They see all this violence on TV and video games and we really need more censorship because the media is a bad influence on our poor children."

One might think that empathy-based politics are benign, but they convince people to let politicians do terrible things, like waste our money, and diminish our civil rights. And often the same politicians that tug at heart strings do completely different things when they are elected.



The Republicans, on the other hand, like to use fear, hate, and bigotry to emotionally manipulate voters.

"The niggers are getting uppity. Vote Republican to end Affirmative Action."

or

"Those wierdo hippies are starting to grow in number. Soon they'll be robbing your houses and raping your daughters. Vote for tougher drug laws so we can put them in jail where they belong."

or

"Foreign terrorists are jeopardizing our security. Vote Republican for a strong military, and the protection of the 2nd Amendment."

or

"I dont believe in homosexuality or abortion because it says they are bad in the Bible. The Bible has every right to be involved with politics because it makes it so much easier for me to whip Christian people into a Jesus-based moral frenzy."

And so on and so forth...

Fear is a heinous tool with a hideous master. The Republicans use it to convince voters to approve of terrible things, like imprisoning the unwanted, and killing thousands of people.

Whats interesting to me is that the Republicans are winning this battle of emotional puppetry for two reasons:

a. The impulse to fear is greater than the impulse for empathy, which was only recently evolved.

b. Fear is better for the economy. People who are afraid will not only be more obedient, they will be more loose with their money. A scared citizen will live life to its fullest excess. He'll spend that wad on the fast car with low gas milage, the two story house with rooms he doesn't need, and that big fat rock of cocaine.

And as long as something is good for the economy, who cares about the foul side effects? Who cares if we have the highest murder rate, and the lowest amount of international respect? As long as the light is green for conspicuous consumption, nobody, thats who.

But my question is: When will people start analyzing the statements politicians make rationally instead of emotionally? How long will it take them to realize that they are being manipulated by a bunch of politicians with a basic understanding of social psychology?

I mean, if these kind of politics didnt work, politicians would have to be a lot more straight with people. If politicians were subject to more rational scrutiny, they couldnt get away with this crap. The problem in America is a problem of basic popular mentality. The problem isnt what people believe, its how they come to their beliefs.

So please, I beg each and every one of you, the next time you feel a politician trying to fuck with you emotionally, please dont let it effect your rationale. You owe it to yourself to be emotionally detatched when it comes to politics. Only then can you make logical decisions.

thanks for your time



--------------------
peace, pot, and microdot!


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Anonymous

Re: Emotion in Politics [Re: DoctorJ]
    #1882951 - 09/04/03 10:59 PM (13 years, 3 months ago)

that was pretty accurate until the second half.


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OfflineCornholio
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Registered: 01/13/03
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Re: Emotion in Politics [Re: ]
    #1883980 - 09/05/03 05:22 AM (13 years, 3 months ago)

Quote:

mushmaster said:
that was pretty accurate until the second half. 


I gotta disagree with the first half too.  I think DoctorJ's point is valid, but the examples could be improved on.

Perhaps this is a better example of how Rebublicans use emotions to their benefit:  By claiming that they are REAL Americans!  :wink:


(first posted by Abudiwa in OTD, 2002)             


--------------------


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OfflineCornholio
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Registered: 01/13/03
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Re: Emotion in Politics [Re: Cornholio]
    #1884094 - 09/05/03 07:53 AM (13 years, 3 months ago)

...and another very similar one:



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Offlinest0nedphucker
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Re: Emotion in Politics [Re: Cornholio]
    #1884107 - 09/05/03 08:14 AM (13 years, 3 months ago)

LOL, those are funny as hell :laugh: ... Clearly OTT biased but still funny as hell


--------------------
The punishment which the wise suffer, who refuse to take part in government, is to live under the government of worse men.


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OfflineGazzBut
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Re: Emotion in Politics [Re: ]
    #1884120 - 09/05/03 08:24 AM (13 years, 3 months ago)

Do you disagree that politicians use an understanding of social psychology to influence people?


--------------------
Always Smi2le


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Offlinest0nedphucker
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Re: Emotion in Politics [Re: GazzBut]
    #1884142 - 09/05/03 08:46 AM (13 years, 3 months ago)

No of course not, its clearly over the top though if it wasn't it wouldn;t be funny


--------------------
The punishment which the wise suffer, who refuse to take part in government, is to live under the government of worse men.


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InvisibleDoctorJ
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Re: Emotion in Politics [Re: st0nedphucker]
    #1885080 - 09/05/03 01:41 PM (13 years, 3 months ago)

yeah, I blatantly exaggerated both sides for emphasis. I was trying to be as unbiased as possible. Most politicians would never flat out say some of that stuff, but if you read between the lines, that's what they are really saying.

A lot of lobbyists DO SAY things as extreme as that, though...

like when Jerry Falwell got on the podium the day of 9-11 and said that the reason it all happened was because "God is angry at America for homosexuality and pornography..."

or when Joe Liberman said that Columbine was caused by Mortal Kombat and Marilyn Manson (Won't someone PLEASE think of the children...)


--------------------
peace, pot, and microdot!


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Offlineshakta
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Registered: 06/03/03
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Re: Emotion in Politics [Re: DoctorJ]
    #1885115 - 09/05/03 01:47 PM (13 years, 3 months ago)

The funny thing is you just did what you are accusing them of doing yourself. You accused the Republicans of bigotry. This has no basis in reality and is a standard tactic of the liberals.


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InvisibleDoctorJ
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Re: Emotion in Politics [Re: shakta]
    #1885203 - 09/05/03 02:16 PM (13 years, 3 months ago)

Um, I ragged on liberals just as hard as conservatives in this thread. 

What gave you the impression that I was liberal?  I claim no affiliations. 

I didn't say that the republicans were bigots.  I said they used bigotry to psychologically manipulate voters. 

This wasn't intended to be an attack on either party, just an observation about the emotional tone of politics in general.

clearly, you were offended by this post, and that caused you to respond the way you did.  I bet politicians are really good at pushing your buttons :smile:


--------------------
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Offlineshakta
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Re: Emotion in Politics [Re: DoctorJ]
    #1885206 - 09/05/03 02:18 PM (13 years, 3 months ago)

I was not offended by your post at all. I was just pointing out the fact that liberals always play the race card when it has no bearing on the subject. You have taken this as fact, when it isn't. I agree with your post besides that point. That is all.


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InvisibleDoctorJ
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Re: Emotion in Politics [Re: shakta]
    #1885502 - 09/05/03 04:01 PM (13 years, 3 months ago)

I was not using the word "bigotry' in its strictly racial sense at all.

you do understand that there are other dimensions to the word, right?

there is religous bigotry and political bigotry, to name just a couple flavors.

I think the concept of bigotry revolves around fear and intolerance of things that are different from the observer's point of view. Obviously it can be applied to race, but it can also be applied to any situation in which people's opinion's differ.

If I think you are an inferior human being just because you drink Coke and I drink Pepsi, that is bigotry, too. Bigotry doesn't necessarily connote the "race card".


--------------------
peace, pot, and microdot!


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