Inside The Liberal Mind

I had an epiphany, triggered by a comment to a post by one of my favorite conservative bloggers, neo-neocon. Her post asked, “Will the real Obama please stand up?”

There were a flurry of comments, the more insulting and intolerant ones coming from supporters of Barack Obama. (I've checked posts and comments on both sides of the blogosphere and I find far more often the Left resorts to invective and blind observance to the 'party' line than those on the Right.)

It was in this comment to neo-neocon's post that I realized one of the major differences between liberals and conservatives:

You might be interested in a study by psychologist Jonathan Haidt (Univ of Va, I believe) that demonstrated that conservatives can think like liberals (in other words, know how liberals think), but liberals have demonstrated that they simply can NOT put themselves in the shoes of the conservatives. This may account for much of the vitriol which liberals direct towards anyone who doesn’t follow their agenda lock step.

In case you're wondering, John Haidt is a self-described liberal. If he notices things like this, I'm more likely to believe he's right.

On more than one occasion when discussing politics with some of the less tolerant members of the Left, I've been able to counter their arguments about one issue or another because I understood their viewpoint. However, they didn't or couldn't understand mine. I guess one might say I was inside their OODA loop. Does this prove Haidt's hypothesis?

I'll let you be the judge.

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