Political Bias Impedes Brain Function....

  1. Elite Member
    BigVrunga's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2002
    Age
    38
    Posts
    5,063
    Rep Power
    2684
    Level
    49
    Lv. Percent
    26.84%
    Achievements Activity ProPosting ProPosting Authority

    Political Bias Impedes Brain Function....


    http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/11009379/

    Well, it doesn't really impede it, but the study shows that those with a political slant dont use the logical sides of the brain when listening to an argument they dont agree with:

    Democrats and Republicans alike are adept at making decisions without letting the facts get in the way, a new study shows.

    And they get quite a rush from ignoring information that's contrary to their point of view.

    Researchers asked staunch party members from both sides to evaluate information that threatened their preferred candidate prior to the 2004 Presidential election. The subjects'

    The results were announced today.

    "We did not see any increased activation of the parts of the brain normally engaged during reasoning," said Drew Westen, director of clinical psychology at Emory University. "What we saw instead was a network of emotion circuits lighting up, including circuits hypothesized to be involved in regulating emotion, and circuits known to be involved in resolving conflicts."

    Bias on both sides
    The test subjects on both sides of the political aisle reached totally biased conclusions by ignoring information that could not rationally be discounted, Westen and his colleagues say.

    Then, with their minds made up, brain activity ceased in the areas that deal with negative emotions such as disgust. But activity spiked in the circuits involved in reward, a response similar to what addicts experience when they get a fix, Westen explained.

    The study points to a total lack of reason in political decision-making.

    "None of the circuits involved in conscious reasoning were particularly engaged," Westen said. "Essentially, it appears as if partisans twirl the cognitive kaleidoscope until they get the conclusions they want, and then they get massively reinforced for it, with the elimination of negative emotional states and activation of positive ones."

    Notably absent were any increases in activation of the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex, the part of the brain most associated with reasoning.

    The tests involved pairs of statements by the candidates, President George W. Bush and Senator John Kerry, that clearly contradicted each other. The test subjects were asked to consider and rate the discrepancy. Then they were presented with another statement that might explain away the contradiction. The scenario was repeated several times for each candidate.

    Functional brain imaging helps scientists understand the relationship between particular types of mental activity and particular areas of the brain, by charting which regions experience increased blood flow or metabolism or electromagnetic activity over time. Itís a step beyond CT scans, or CAT scans, which can map the brainís structure but not its functions. Click on the labels above to learn more about three technologies used for functional brain imaging.

    A brain-scan technique known as functional magnetic resonance imaging, or fMRI, revealed a consistent pattern. Both Republicans and Democrats consistently denied obvious contradictions for their own candidate but detected contradictions in the opposing candidate.

    "The result is that partisan beliefs are calcified, and the person can learn very little from new data," Westen said.

    Other relatively neutral candidates were introduced into the mix, such as the actor Tom Hanks. Importantly, both the Democrats and Republicans reacted to the contradictions of these characters in the same manner.

    The findings could prove useful beyond the campaign trail.

    "Everyone from executives and judges to scientists and politicians may reason to emotionally biased judgments when they have a vested interest in how to interpret 'the facts,'" Westen said.

    The researchers will present the findings Saturday at the Annual Conference of the Society for Personality and Social Psychology.

    BV

  2. Elite Member
    bioman's Avatar
    Stats
    5'10"  180 lbs.
    Join Date
    Sep 2003
    Age
    42
    Posts
    7,711
    Rep Power
    513544
    Level
    59
    Lv. Percent
    88.9%
    Achievements Activity ProActivity AuthorityPosting ProPosting Authority

    I'm not at all surprised. As a moderate I simply do not bother to argue with zealots of any political/religious persuasion. When you confront said zealot with a logical, sound reason for their stance to be wrong, I can practically hear their brains skip a track like a broken record and they jump back into their pre-memorized comfort zone. Sad thing is, there seems to be a lot of rigid idealogues these days and both the media and the govt seem to exacerbate the problem.

    Objective thinking..it's not just for breakfast anymore.
  3. Board Supporter
    wastedwhiteboy2's Avatar
    Stats
    6'0"  195 lbs.
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Age
    40
    Posts
    2,990
    Rep Power
    3015
    Level
    38
    Lv. Percent
    59.15%
    Achievements Activity ProPosting Pro

    Hell I could have told you that. you hear some pretty gay ass excuses sometimes and people go with them. they dont go with the right decision they go with their parties decision.
    ok I'm done.
    •   
       

  4. Senior Member
    rampage jackson's Avatar
    Stats
    6'0"  255 lbs.
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Age
    32
    Posts
    1,255
    Rep Power
    755
    Level
    26
    Lv. Percent
    62.86%
    Achievements Posting Pro

    Liberalism is a mental disorder -Michael Savage
    E-Pharm Nutrition Representative
  5. Registered User
    Beowulf's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2004
    Age
    36
    Posts
    3,430
    Rep Power
    2152
    Level
    42
    Lv. Percent
    64.04%
    Achievements Activity ProPosting Pro

    Quote Originally Posted by bioman
    I'm not at all surprised. As a moderate I simply do not bother to argue with zealots of any political/religious persuasion. When you confront said zealot with a logical, sound reason for their stance to be wrong, I can practically hear their brains skip a track like a broken record and they jump back into their pre-memorized comfort zone. Sad thing is, there seems to be a lot of rigid idealogues these days and both the media and the govt seem to exacerbate the problem.

    Objective thinking..it's not just for breakfast anymore.
    Exactly! I don't need a study to tell me this. I bartend with a friend who is a diehard conservative. He would pollute the air with weak ass, ill-understood talking points espousing conservative virtues. I always told him that he was naive to deify Bush as if he were beyond fault, just as those who perform figurative fellatio on Clinton's legacy are out of touch. My buddy just got a job with the state, and he realized that he has been losing out b/c of Romney's policies (so says his office culture). He's a Democrat now


    BTW, I love the title of this thread
  6. Board Supporter
    wastedwhiteboy2's Avatar
    Stats
    6'0"  195 lbs.
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Age
    40
    Posts
    2,990
    Rep Power
    3015
    Level
    38
    Lv. Percent
    59.15%
    Achievements Activity ProPosting Pro

    Quote Originally Posted by rampage jackson
    Liberalism is a mental disorder -Michael Savage
    another kansas boy!
  7. Elite Member
    BigVrunga's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2002
    Age
    38
    Posts
    5,063
    Rep Power
    2684
    Level
    49
    Lv. Percent
    26.84%
    Achievements Activity ProPosting ProPosting Authority

    I'm not at all surprised. As a moderate I simply do not bother to argue with zealots of any political/religious persuasion. When you confront said zealot with a logical, sound reason for their stance to be wrong, I can practically hear their brains skip a track like a broken record and they jump back into their pre-memorized comfort zone. Sad thing is, there seems to be a lot of rigid idealogues these days and both the media and the govt seem to exacerbate the problem.

    Objective thinking..it's not just for breakfast anymore.
    +1

    Isnt it frightening that most of the people in charge of running the country are politically and/or religiously polarized?

    BV
  8. Registered User
    kwyckemynd00's Avatar
    Stats
    5'10"   lbs.
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Age
    31
    Posts
    5,324
    Rep Power
    2849
    Level
    52
    Lv. Percent
    88.83%
    Achievements Activity ProPosting ProPosting Authority

    Glad they finally did the research on it to prove it lol
  9. Doctor Science
    LakeMountD's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Posts
    4,251
    Rep Power
    2556
    Level
    46
    Lv. Percent
    92.87%
    Achievements Activity ProPosting Pro

    Wow, great post bro!! That is an outstanding article.

    The reason I found it so intriguing was the fact that yesterday my roommate got into a fight involving politics. And I kept commenting on how watching biased movies (such as Michael Moore's movies) and watching biased news such as CNN and Fox all lead to biased opinions and that people never truly dig deep enough to look at both sides. I commented how al-jazeera news network is actually an outstanding source of news (type in google, al jazeera news) and it will give you the link to the english site since I have forgotten it. But this study proves that people don't stop to think about what they here, they just reinforce their prior viewpoints.
  10. Registered User
    EEmain's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Posts
    882
    Rep Power
    568
    Level
    25
    Lv. Percent
    71.85%

    We now return to your regularly scheduled pre-programming
  11. Registered User
    EEmain's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Posts
    882
    Rep Power
    568
    Level
    25
    Lv. Percent
    71.85%

    Quote Originally Posted by BigVrunga
    +1

    Isnt it frightening that most of the people in charge of running the country are politically and/or religiously polarized?

    BV
    Or that we are fighting to keep a Theocracy from happening when it may be taking place while we were away.
  12. Professional Member
    motiv8er's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Age
    36
    Posts
    3,189
    Rep Power
    26297
    Level
    42
    Lv. Percent
    46.42%
    Achievements Activity ProPosting Pro

    I wonder how this theory might be applied to a number of areas not limited to racism, sexism, etc. A smart racist just seems like an oxy-moran of a statement to me.

    I like the title of the thread too, btw.
    My The 1 LOG: http://anabolicminds.com/forum/steroids/254164-my-one-log.html
  13. Registered User
    kwyckemynd00's Avatar
    Stats
    5'10"   lbs.
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Age
    31
    Posts
    5,324
    Rep Power
    2849
    Level
    52
    Lv. Percent
    88.83%
    Achievements Activity ProPosting ProPosting Authority

    Quote Originally Posted by LakeMountD
    Wow, great post bro!! That is an outstanding article.

    The reason I found it so intriguing was the fact that yesterday my roommate got into a fight involving politics. And I kept commenting on how watching biased movies (such as Michael Moore's movies) and watching biased news such as CNN and Fox all lead to biased opinions and that people never truly dig deep enough to look at both sides. I commented how al-jazeera news network is actually an outstanding source of news (type in google, al jazeera news) and it will give you the link to the english site since I have forgotten it. But this study proves that people don't stop to think about what they here, they just reinforce their prior viewpoints.
    Well, I agreed wth you all the way up until you started promoting al jazeera
  

  
 

Similar Forum Threads

  1. Ideal macros & foods for brain function, mental sharpness, etc.
    By houstontexas in forum Nutrition / Health
    Replies: 6
    Last Post: 12-30-2012, 11:28 AM
  2. Replies: 1
    Last Post: 09-01-2008, 04:53 PM
  3. Blueberry Extracts Boost Brain Function
    By yeahright in forum Nutrition / Health
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 08-11-2007, 02:00 AM
  4. 1-Test and Immune function
    By DevilSmack in forum Anabolics
    Replies: 15
    Last Post: 01-04-2003, 11:58 PM
  5. Importance of your liver & Its functions
    By YellowJacket in forum Exercise Science
    Replies: 4
    Last Post: 01-04-2003, 11:26 PM

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  
Log in
Log in