What science says about the brains of Democrats and Republicans

Did a bit of research and am posting some of what I found.  I thought it quite interesting.———-

Here’s What Science Says About the Brains of Democrats and Republicans

Author: Dylan Goldstein

“Researchers investigated the emotional differences between the two groups and found that when faced with risky decision-making, the amygdalae of Republicans fire at a greater rate than those of Democrats. This suggests that Republicans might be relatively more influenced by emotions in their decision-making process. What’s more, a study found that conservatives were aroused to a greater extent than liberals when shown disturbing images, such as those depicting infested wounds. Simply put, it appears that the conservative brain is more sensitive to stimuli that carry emotional weight.

Research shows that individuals who are more engaged in politics exhibit greater firing in the amygdala and ventral striatum while viewing statements consistent with their partisan ties. The amygdala is linked to emotional importance, while the ventral striatum is linked to reward value. Thus, political fanatics seem to find heightened intrinsic satisfaction to ideologies with which they agree.

These findings suggest that as we trudge deeper into the political world, we become more and more tied to our respective political parties. Scientists believe this may build a feedback loop that fuels polarization in the political world, motivating us to selectively seek out information that confirms our pre-existing beliefs. Even if we attempt to break from this self-perpetuating cycle, research also suggests underlying neural mechanisms that impede our capacity to empathize with members of the political out-group. It’s as if we are programmed in a way that is less than helpful for seeing alternative points of view.

Back in 1796, George Washington offered the nation some unheeded words of advice: beware of political parties.

Moral Politics: How Liberals and Conservatives Think is a 1996 book by cognitive linguist George Lakoff. It argues that conservatives and liberals hold two different conceptual models of morality. Conservatives have a Strict father model in which people are made good through self-discipline and hard work, everyone is taken care of by taking care of themselves. Liberals have a nurturant parent model in which everyone is taken care of by helping each other.

Conservatives have more structured and persistent cognitive styles,” said Carola Salvi, lead author of the study and a postdoctoral fellow in cognitive psychology at Northwestern and RIC.

Liberals were more likely than conservatives to achieve solutions with a sudden insight or “Aha!” In contrast, both groups achieved roughly an equal number of solutions through gradual, analytical processing.”

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3 Responses to “What science says about the brains of Democrats and Republicans”

  1. The Weekly Headlines – My Daily Musing Says:

    […] What science says about the brains of Democrats and Republicans […]

  2. Mury Says:

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