follow CCP

Recent blog entries
popular papers

Science Curiosity and Political Information Processing

What Is the "Science of Science Communication"?

Climate-Science Communication and the Measurement Problem

Ideology, Motivated Cognition, and Cognitive Reflection: An Experimental Study

'Ideology' or 'Situation Sense'? An Experimental Investigation of Motivated Reasoning and Professional Judgment

A Risky Science Communication Environment for Vaccines

Motivated Numeracy and Enlightened Self-Government

Making Climate Science Communication Evidence-based—All the Way Down 

Neutral Principles, Motivated Cognition, and Some Problems for Constitutional Law 

Cultural Cognition of Scientific Consensus

The Tragedy of the Risk-Perception Commons: Science Literacy and Climate Change

"They Saw a Protest": Cognitive Illiberalism and the Speech-Conduct Distinction 

Geoengineering and the Science Communication Environment: a Cross-Cultural Experiment

Fixing the Communications Failure

Why We Are Poles Apart on Climate Change

The Cognitively Illiberal State 

Who Fears the HPV Vaccine, Who Doesn't, and Why? An Experimental Study

Cultural Cognition of the Risks and Benefits of Nanotechnology

Whose Eyes Are You Going to Believe? An Empirical Examination of Scott v. Harris

Cultural Cognition and Public Policy

Culture, Cognition, and Consent: Who Perceives What, and Why, in "Acquaintance Rape" Cases

Culture and Identity-Protective Cognition: Explaining the White Male Effect

Fear of Democracy: A Cultural Evaluation of Sunstein on Risk

Cultural Cognition as a Conception of the Cultural Theory of Risk

« What's worse? Macedonian "fake news" or Russian distortions of social proof? | Main | Let's play data jeopardy again! (lecture slides) »

Science literacy *plus* science curiosity--a research program for enlightened self-government (lecture summary & slides)

Back from nearly a week in Ann Arbor, Michigan. On Friday & Sat attended symposium on “values, science & the public” convened by the Univ. of Mich.’s Philosophy Dep’t. I then spent Monday at the Institute for Social Research.

This is a condensed recap of the lecture I gave at ISR: “Science comprehension without curiosity is no virtue, and curiosity without comprehension no vice” (slides here).

I.  One aim of the CCP/APPC initiative on science of science communication is to integrate civic science literacy –Jon Miller’s decades’ long project (e.g., Miller 1998) – with John Dewey’s program to promote science curiosity.  Curiosity, Dewey (1910) argued, is essential not only to motivate acquisition of scientific literacy but also to activate citizens’ science comprehension when needed to make informed personal or public judgments.  To that, I would add that science curiosity is also necessary to temper the pernicious impact of identity-protective cognition, a dynamic that threatens to deny society the benefits of their citizens’ science literacy.

II.  Motivated System 2 reasoning (MS2R) is one of the ways in which science comprehension can be recruited into the service of a defensive and closed-minded style of cognition.. Contrary to the dominant “bounded rationality thesis,” higher proficiency in the types of critical reasoning essential to science comprehension doesn’t diminish polarization; on the contrary, it magnifies it.  Citizens  high in one or another critical reasoning proficiency use that endowment to ferret out information that supports their cultural group’s positions and to rationalize dismissal of everything else (Kahan 2015; Kahan et al. 2017a).

III. Science curiosity, in contrast, offsets MS2R.  Science curiosity directly negates the mental orientation associated with MS2R: whereas the latter generates a defensive, dismissive posture toward identity-threatening evidence, the former creates an appetite for surprising information that defies one’s expectations.  Because people who are disposed to be curious about science are more likely to expose themselves to information that challenges their political predispositions, they are less prone to polarization, and less likely to form opposing factions, as their science comprehension increases (Kahan et al. 2017b).

IV.  Science curiosity thus performs a critical role in determining the impact of higher levels of science comprehension.  Dewey, again, credited curiosity with citizens’ acquisition of scientific insight and with their reliable apprehension of the occasions for its deployment. The studies featured in this lecture tell us that science curiosity also does something else: it blocks the use of scientific reasoning to promote beliefs that signal diverse citizens’ membership in and loyalty to one or another opposing cultural group. The entanglement of reason in this dynamic is arguably the greatest threat to enlightened self-government that our society now faces.

V. What now? I have described an ambitious project—to integrate Miller’s research on scientific literacy with Dewey’s attention to science curiosity.  However, the tools at our disposal—including principally the CCP/APPC Science Curiosity Scale—are now suited for making at best only a modest contribution to that goal.  More work is necessary, for one thing, to improve SCS and to make its administration feasible for diverse audiences in diverse settings. Armed with such an instrument, researchers will then need to test various procedures for activating curiosity, particularly in citizens who aren’t as spontaneously curious as the ones we’ve focused on in our studies to date. Conducted initially in the lab, such research will then need to be reproduced in the field—indeed, in the numerous fields, from education to mass science communication to democratic politics, in which citizens come to know what science knows.

As far as we have come based on Miller’s research, we have just as far to go to understand how to enjoy the full benefits of a citizenry as science literate as the one Miller’s research envisions.


Miller, J.D. The measurement of civic scientific literacy. Public Understanding of Science 7, 203-223 (1998).

Dewey, J. How We Think (Boston: D.C. Heath & Co., 1910).

Kahan, D.M., Peters, E., Dawson, E.C. & Slovic, P. Motivated numeracy and enlightened self-government. Behavioural Public Policy 1, 54-86 (2017a).

Kahan, D.M., Landrum, A., Carpenter, K., Helft, L. & Hall Jamieson, K. Science Curiosity and Political Information Processing. Political Psychology 38, 179-199 (2017b).

Kahan, D.M. The Politically Motivated Reasoning Paradigm, Part 2: Unanswered Questions. in Emerging Trends in the Social and Behavioral Sciences (John Wiley & Sons, Inc., 2015).


PrintView Printer Friendly Version

EmailEmail Article to Friend

Reader Comments (118)

Jonathan -

Thanks for that "Cell" link. Of course, since that's a high IF journal, we should prolly just dismiss the paper.

Anyway, I was wondering if it is only my motivated reasoning kicking in to think that the following:

. To change implicit partisan evaluations, an intervention should aim to change the underlying associations [92 or activate an alternative, or superordinate, social identity [93. Likewise, correcting distortions in memory will require deep and repeated engagement with the political content or effective cues for retrieval [94. In theory, these interventions could also involve selective stimulation or impairment of brain regions (e.g., using transcranial magnetic stimulation and lesion patients). We argue that designing targeted process-based intervention will increase the impact of factual information on highly identified partisans.

Supports my contention that deliberate and excitement engagement with the mechanics of motivated reasoning (both in specific contexts and also as a more general phenomenon) is the best way to address the manifestation of motivated reasoning?

What do you think?

February 20, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterJoshua

Hmm. "excitement engagement" was supposed to be experiential engagement (I think).

February 20, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterJoshua

Jonathan -

Somewhat interesting, if not particularly profound, discussion on a theme related to some of our discussions. Particularly interesting discussion for me since I have a strong dislike for Gutfeld (which is part of the point).

February 20, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterJoshua


I am getting conflicting messages from the literature - even conflicting from just this one paper. If motivated reasoning is System 1 and entirely hidden from consciousness, such that self attempts to investigate it both don't work and are likely to increase bias (through the various ways described in the paper, such as increasing confidence), then I don't see how to address it. However, then the paper goes on to cite Dan among others about how certain kinds of training (such as what judges and lawyers get) helps. And then it throws shade on that idea as well.

If cognitive neuroscience can find the neural correlates of motivated reasoning, as this cell paper hints to, then maybe some form of bio-feedback is possible. Or, consider a training program consisting of a role-playing game similar to the one mentioned in the van der Linden link I posted above that inoculates against motivated reasoning by putting subjects into the role of creating credible partisan narratives in an attempt to fool each other. Or some composite.

And then I wonder what happens to such an trained individual when their evolved coping mechanisms are eroded. Maybe I've read to much Gigerenzer, or maybe seeing "A Clockwork Orange" had a formative impact on me.

February 20, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterJonathan

Jonathan -

If motivated reasoning is System 1 and entirely hidden from consciousness, such that self attempts to investigate it both don't work and are likely to increase bias (through the various ways described in the paper, such as increasing confidence), then I don't see how to address it.

Here's my take. It's possible to address these issues without creating a backfire effect - if you isolate and attempt to control the polarizing components. IOW, you do exactly the type of methods you suggest:

Or, consider a training program consisting of a role-playing game ..

where you raise consciousness and focus through a generic framework, and then practice alternative approaches in response. I have done this in classroom setting a lot, where people role play polarized positions to which they have no strong identification, to reflect about the tendency of humans to become "motivated," and then see that they have a power over choosing whether to respond out of sub-conscious "motivations." This is a different form of building recognition of a habit and a consciousness about alternative pathways. In doing so, who knows, maybe they also forge new neurological pathways that give them alternatives to those pathways to which they have become accustomed, ala cognitive therapy. I will acknowledge that there is a valid, philosophical question as to whether we can ever "learn" to exercise such control...but I guess I take it as a matter of faith that, in fact, at least to some degree, we can. My views on that are related more generally to the impact of having students examine meta-cognition as a pathway to becoming "self-actualilzed" as learners.

February 20, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterJoshua

BTW, Jonathan -

It's interesting that on another blog I was highly critical of "inoculation" claims made in the context of climate science:

But it was precisely for the reason that I don't think that "inoculation" could be manifest from within a tribalistic framework, such as climate science, and particularly when such an effort is being undertaken by people who are clearly identified as partisan.

However, I think that the idea of practicing "inoculation" within a generic frame, may lead to a skill of applying de-motivating methods to a polarizing frame. Although, I have to say that I consider the use of the term "inoculation" to be very unfortunate, and not just a little ironic since the "contamination" mentality is often used to (IMO, incorrectly) categorize conz.

February 20, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterJoshua

Jonathan -

Just got around to that WaPo article. Thanks for the link:

Or, maybe they'd bite the bullet and admit that the problem they think they see is overblown due to it being paraded past them on a regular basis - in a way similar to Pinker's claim about beliefs in rising violence.

Ha. Or maybe they're too wedded to their "motivations" regarding the campus totalitarians leading us down the slippery slope to a fascist state?

February 20, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterJoshua

"....A decade ago, Sloterdijk predicted a nativist resurgence in Europe, a time when “we will look back nostalgically to the days when we considered a dashing populist showman like Jörg Haider”—the late Austrian far-right leader—“a menace.”
In Germany, where the very word “selection” is enough to set off alarms, Sloterdijk’s essay invited antagonism. Was he making a plea for eugenics? Jürgen Habermas, the country’s most revered philosopher, declared that Sloterdijk’s work had “fascist implications,” and encouraged other writers to attack him. Sloterdijk responded by proclaiming the death of the Frankfurt School, to which Habermas belongs, writing that “the days of hyper-moral sons of national-socialist fathers are coming to an end.”
When Sloterdijk said, of Merkel’s refugee policy, that “no society has the moral obligation to self-destruct,” his words called to mind Thilo Sarrazin, a former board member of the Bundesbank, who, in 2010, published an anti-Muslim tract with the title “Germany Abolishes Itself,” which became a huge best-seller and made racial purity a respectable concern of national discussion."

February 21, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterEcoute Sauvage

"...A compounding difficulty for opponents of the “alt-right” is that online, it’s always been difficult to tell the difference between sincerity and satire.

Ryan Milner teaches Communication at the College of Charleston, and is the co-author of a new book called The Ambivalent Internet. The book ponders the implications of Poe’s law, an internet adage that points to the difficulties of online communication and of distinguishing extremist views from parodies.

“Unless you have an obvious marker of another person’s intent, you can’t really gauge their intent. They could be messing around. They could be deadly serious. They could be a mix of both,” Milner says...."

February 21, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterEcoute Sauvage

Ecoute -

That new Yorker article was quite interesting. Thanks.

February 21, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterJoshua

These authors clearly aren't among the 14 billion readers of this blog:

Even more remarkably, people’s impressions of Trump’s personal qualities have been virtually unaffected by his precedent-smashing campaign and presidency.


What is most surprising here is not the mild increase in partisan polarization of impressions of Trump (from an average difference of 44 points between Republicans and Democrats in July 2016 to almost 50 points in November 2017), but the relative stability of ratings within each partisan group and across all five dimensions of evaluation.

February 21, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterJoshua


Having read Democracy for Realists, I find Bartels comments here to be a bit disingenuous. The overall theme of that book was that the masses are often moved by irrelevant things and unmoved by relevant things. So, why is he so surprised here? He seems to suggest in this WaPo piece that retrospective democracy (voting or polls) should show some rational cause-effect movement, but he quite thoroughly debunks that idea in the book.

Although, he could just be using a feigned "isn't this surprising?" attitude to underscore consistent findings.

February 21, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterJonathan

"Understanding and Overcoming Cognitive Biases for Lawyers and Law Students: Becoming a Better Lawyer Through Cognitive Science: Chapter One - An Introduction to Cognitive Biases":

Did you know that it is easy to make an ethical violation, even if you didn’t intend to?

Oh, really? Any evidence?

This book ... also explains how you can use cognitive biases in persuasion.

OK - that counts.

February 21, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterJonathan

This is pretty interesting:

In the lead-up to the 2010 midterms, when John McCain aired an ad in which he said “complete the dang fence,” 46 percent of Democrats were for “building a wall or security fence along the U.S.-Mexico border to stop illegal immigration,” according to a Fox News poll.

More recently, however, Democratic support for a border wall has plummeted. Support dropped to just 29 percent for “building a wall along the entire border with Mexico” in a Pew Research Center survey in September 2015. And by February of this year, just 8 percent of Democrats were for it in Pew’s polling, while 89 percent were opposed.

More interesting stuff in how demz views have changed on immigration:

February 22, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterJoshua


I wonder how much of the change of heart on immigration has to do with the increase in off-shorable jobs in the overall economy during that period.

February 22, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterJonathan

Jonathan -

I wonder how much of the change of heart on immigration has to do with the increase in off-shorable jobs in the overall economy during that period.

Well, isn't that the 64 thousand dollar question, with respect to the 2016 election...assuming that we could explain former Dem voters, voting for Trump, with an answer to that question?

But I remain pretty agnostic on that chain of causality...I think that the causality behind the loss of good paying, middle class jobs that was contemporaneous with off-shoring is prolly fairly complex: how do we determine the role of organized attacks against organized labor, the corruption within organized labor, narcotization and other technical developments, the exponential expansion of the service sector and the financial sector, and ?????

February 22, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterJoshua

Heh. Narcotization = robotization. Is narcotization even a word?

February 22, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterJoshua

"If cognitive neuroscience can find the neural correlates of motivated reasoning..."

February 23, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterJonathan

Some evidence that twitter enhances polarization:

trigger warning - asymmetric content:

We also observe a slightly stronger reaction to the tweets among Trump voters than Clinton voters. It is possible that Republican voters are more motivated to defend their partisan identity than Democrats (Theodoridis 2017). As a result, they are more likely to see a greater distance between the parties.

February 23, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterJonathan

"...The Court in
went on to state, in regard to social media sites like Twitter: “
These websites can provide perhaps the most powerful mechanisms available to a private citizen to make his or her voice
heard. They allow a person with an Internet connection to ‘become a
town crier with a voice that
resonates farther than it could from any soapbox.’”......"

"...Mr. Taylor and American Renaissance have encouraged people who share their views to maintain a dignified tone. An article in
American Renaissance
published on June 10, 2016 urged
members of the “Alt Right” to avoid
“personal attacks and harsh rhetoricon Twitter and other social media platforms.
It added that those who use intemperate language should ask themselves: “Do you drive away Americans who might be sympathetic to Donald Trump and/or race realism?”........."

"...Wherefore, Plaintiffs respectfully pray for a judgment as follows:

1. For an injunction ordering that Twitter (i) immediately lift its permanent ban on the Twitter accounts of Jared Taylor (@jartaylor) and American Renaissance (@amrenaissance) and restore these accounts to Mr. Taylor and American Renaissance, respectively; (ii) cease and desist from seeking to ban these accounts or any other account
based on the account’s viewpoint
; and (iii) cease and desist from enforcing its facially
overbroad policy on
“Violent Extremist Groups”
2.For an injunction prohibiting Twitter from attempting to enforce the language in its Terms of Service purporting to allow Twitter suspend or ban any
account “
at any time for any or
no reason”

and “without liability to you”
3. For a declaratory judgment that Twitter has violated and continues to violate
free speech rights under Article I, section 2 of the California Constitution; the Unruh Civil Rights Act (Civ. Code, § 51
et seq
.), and Consumers Legal Remedies Act (Civ. Code, § 1750
et seq

4. For compensatory, special, and statutory damages in an amount to be proven at trial, including statutory damages pursuant to,
inter alia
, Civ. Code sections 51, 51.5, 52, and Code of Civil Procedure section 1021.5; 5.

For prejudgment and post-judgment interest;

6.For costs of suit incurred herein;

7. For reasonable attorney’s fees; and

8. For such other and further relief as this Court deems just and proper."

February 24, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterEoute Sauvage

Peer review, under review:

February 24, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterJonathan

These websites can provide perhaps the most powerful mechanisms available to a private citizen to make his or her voice

Is a good thing that Dan doesn't delete comments. Given his 14 billion readers, he'd clearly be subject to a similar lawsuit if he did.

February 24, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterJoshua

I wonder what method those lawyers will outline to distinguish just how big a website has to be to make it illegal for their owners to moderate comments?

It's truly remarkable just how snowflakey the alt-right is. All I can say for sure is, if you want to be safe, never get in between an alt-righter and their sense of victimization. There is no limit to their expectations for politically correct obsessive nanny-state statists to step in and protect them from having heir feelings hurt.

February 24, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterJoshua

By Joshua's definition, Cass Sunstein has now joined the alt-right. Could one of the legal experts here please confirm this datum?

".....As Floyd Abrams wrote, the free speech clause is “anticensorial,” a negative liberty that forbids the government from abridging the freedom of speech. That was Justice Holmes’ laissez-faire conception.

But among free speech advocates, there is a vigorous and growing counterview that the First Amendment protects a positive liberty, rooted in the free speech clause’s purpose of providing the American people with the information, opinion, and opportunity to speak and listen necessary for self-governance in a democracy. That was Justice Louis D. Brandeis’ civic conception—which, the legal scholar Cass Sunstein wrote, “reflects a commitment to a kind of deliberative process” and “calls for government protection of public discourse.”..."

February 24, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterEcooute Sauvage

One Tribe to Bind Them All: How Our Social Group Attachments Strengthen Partisanship:

trigger warning - asymmetric content:

Contrary to the assessments of modern political punditry, Republicans are more susceptible to identity-based politics.

February 24, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterJonathan

Many papers in the issue of Advances in Political Psychology that includes the above paper are relevant and non-paywalled:

February 24, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterJonathan

Still waiting to hear if I can add Sunstein to the list of alt-right supporters. Two names previously suggested (also by Joshua) here are, interestingly, also cited by Brooks in the NYT:

"This week I asked a group of students at the University of Chicago a question I’m asking students around the country: Who are your heroes? There’s always a long pause after I ask. But eventually one of the students suggested Steven Pinker. Another chimed in Jonathan Haidt. There was general nodding around the table.

That was interesting. Both men ... bravely stand against what can be the smothering orthodoxy that inhibits thought on campus...."

February 25, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterEcoute Sauvage

When reading this article, I thought it relevant to many of the issues discussed (and presented) in these here parts:

February 25, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterJoshua

Jonathan -

trigger warning - asymmetric content.


However, we find that this effect is more powerful among Republicans than among Democrats, due to the general social homogeneity of the Republican party.

Does it stand that attributing differences to a simple fact of demographics comprises an argument for asymmetry? Should a notion of "asymmetry" be constrained to assertions of differences that are genetically- or cognitively-based? .

Or, maybe it could be argued that the demographic differences are, in themselves, a function of some deeper asymmetry (e.g, Pubz are genetically predisposed to be more intolerant)?

February 25, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterJoshua


Does it stand that attributing differences to a simple fact of demographics comprises an argument for asymmetry? Should a notion of "asymmetry" be constrained to assertions of differences that are genetically- or cognitively-based?

I took their "general social homogeneity" as a hypothesis, and probably one that arises from hope that the causation isn't the other way. But, regardless of the direction of the causal arrow, there's certainly reinforcing positive feedback among group identity, demographics and average predisposition, due to self-sorting and group defense. And the existence of such a cycle does seem symmetric.

February 25, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterJonathan

Jonathan -


Kind of a companion piece to that (IMO very interesting) article:

February 25, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterJoshua

Asymmetry can be shown to exist by applying an instinctive criterion: does this (insert example here) make you laugh?

The entire alt-right finds Brooks of the NYT (see sample in my last post above) irresistibly funny, precisely because he has absolutely no idea how ridiculous he is - he is operating under the delusion he makes sense. See closing paragraph above - after interminable tirade against the perils of tribalism threatening us all with extinction, he concludes:

"Pinker’s rationalism is not the total cure. But I have to confess, I really like him. A few years ago the magazine Moment gave genetic tests to a bunch of writers with Jewish heritage. The tests reveal that Pinker and I are third cousins. Learning of this kinship tie, I now feel special affection for him. Why? There’s no rational, scientific reason. I just do."

Well that settles it then! Then there's a fat black British MP named Diane Abbott, who keeps complaining about being the target of "racist and sexist" abuse. Recently she upped the ante to death threats, and gave a sample:

""And just to outline I've had death threats, I've had people tweeting that I should be hung if 'they could find a tree big enough to take the fat bitch's weight'."

That is highly conditional - the author clearly doubts such a tree can be found - so only a very warped mind could find it threatening.

At any rate, it made me laugh - and if you watch the video clip of Abbott giving that speech, you'll see many other MPs trying to hide a smile when they heard the comment. It's funny!

February 26, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterEcoute Sauvage

OK, final on the humor list, another take on Pinker, this time by a statistician, Taleb, as summarized in The Guardian:

"....I’ll leave you with this thought. If 100 people play Russian roulette once, more than 80% will survive. But if one person plays Russian roulette 100 times, he’s going to croak. That’s probability. So stay safe, keep some skin in the game, do weights, keep some skin in the game – and don’t listen to that asshole Steven Pinker...."

February 26, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterEcoute Sauvage

The wait is over! Dan gets interviewed on the You are Not So Smart podcast:

First up is Lilliana Mason - coincidentally, the co-author of that "One Tribe to Bind Them All" paper I linked above.

February 27, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterJonathan

Speaking of tribes:

February 27, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterJoshua

Unlike the HPV vaccine, global warming, and other science communications matters, guns have apparently managed to unify all warring tribes in a wonderful spirit of unanimity:

The Forward:
"..Booing, cheers and tears of outrage filled CNN’s broadcast of a town hall meeting to discuss gun reform following last week’s deadly shooting — and the most poignant moments came from Jewish students and parents."

Some SJW over at Haaretz claims that fighing antisemitism is the same as fighting white supremacy:
"........It is vital for people on the left to understand that the fight against anti-Semitism is not a zero-sum war with battling against other forms of race-based oppression. But anti-Semitism shouldn’t be considered just the complaint of the privileged; we must engage in a discussion about the fight against anti-Semitism as a much larger struggle against white supremacy. "

Funnily enough, however, all the people featured in the most-widely-distributed pro-Second Amendment poster appear to be white. The poster, widely shared on websites since banned from the internet on PC charges they support hate groups, can still be found on Media Matters and assorted left-leaning publications - thank you, George Soros!

If this confusion over "we" and "them" is the solution proposed by Ms Mason in her "one tribe to bind them all" she may wish to keep looking.

February 27, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterEcoute Sauvage

Haaretz link omitted by mistake - sorry

February 27, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterEcoute Sauvage

How to turn the death of 17 people into a comedy, courtesy of Parkland sheriff department, with an assist by the FBI, and honorable mention to the Jewish persons cited above:

February 27, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterEcoute Sauvage

What chaanged after the Parkland shooting?
"But after the shooting of U.S. Rep. Gabby Giffords and 18 other individuals at a 2011 political event, that began to change. The gap between Democrats and Republicans grew to larger than 20 points after that shooting, surpassed 30 points after the Sandy Hook school shooting, and hit a peak of 44 points after the Las Vegas shooting in October. After the Parkland shooting, the gap has narrowed to 27 points, still a formidable divide."

I checked and the only new factor I could find is that Parkland has somehow been classified as antisemitic - never mind the shooter himself was Jewish, and only 5 of the 17 dead also were. There's no arguing with cultural memes, and guns are the only topic on which no Jewish persons can be found to support 2A rights, at least not in public. But why focus on the NRA, which had nothing to do with it?
"Rabbi Eric Yoffie, former head of the Reform movement, listed in a recent Haaretz article several reasons for Jews siding with supporters of gun control: the community’s affiliation with the Democratic Party; the fact that Jews are urban people and detached from the culture of hunting or gun ownership, and suspicion toward the NRA, which is “associated in the minds of many Jews with extremist positions that frighten Jews and from which they instinctively recoil.”

This unanimity is striking - not seen in any other policy matter I'm aware of. A careful examination of a book purporting to list Jewish interests >
> fails to turn up any reference to guns. Btw, if you don't know the book, read the linked (free) introduction, especially the reference to Lindbergh as harrowingly described in his wife's book.

I can't come up with an explanation. Probably yet another passing sanctimonious spasm of PC posturing. I hope.

February 28, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterEcoute Sauvage


"...guns are the only topic on which no Jewish persons can be found to support 2A rights, at least not in public"

February 28, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterJonathan

Jonathan - yes, I know about Bernie, but he's from a rural state and never came across as a big NRA suppoGood point, though, I was focused on the other end of the distribution, which for Jews is classic Poisson.

February 28, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterEcoute Sauvage

Typo - aaaargh!
NRA Supporter, that was. Sorry.

February 28, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterEcoute Sauvage

Bernie Sanders on guns, latest:

Matt Deitsch @MattxRed
Just two Jews talking about substantial change.#NeverAgain
2:14 PM - Feb 27, 2018

February 28, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterEcoute Sauvage


Sounds like No True Scotsman to me.

I think the gun issue is mediated strongly by the rural/urban divide, as I've mentioned before. At least, that's my hypothesis, as we discussed back when talking about Dan's infamous gun control/skin rash test, based on personal anecdotes of knowing rural liberal gun advocates and urban conservative anti-gun advocates.

February 28, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterJonathan

I don't write the stuff - I quote it and cite sources carefully. I said I don't understand where the rabbi got his NRA conspiracy theory, but all the evidence agrees with him. Besides, none the data of the studies you mention has been analyzed with a multilevel regression with stratification to eliminate Jewish respondents, which would be a necessary step for testing the rabbi's thesis.

No true Scotsman doesn't apply, but Epimenides the Cretan might.

February 28, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterEcoute Sauvage

Jonathan -

The newest spectator sport will be watching the rightwing do Olympic level pretzel twisting to motivated reason their way around:

‘I Like Taking the Guns Early’ – ‘Take the Guns First, Go Through Due Process Second’

February 28, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterJoshua

February 28, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterJoshua

As a thought experiment, imagine how the right wing would have reacted had Obama said that.say Sean Hannity on his TV show... then watch Sean's reaction tonight and compare.

And i wonder if the right wing might take to the streets in protest of the state government in Georgia trying to punish a private sector company for exercising its eight to free speech.

Perhaps Jordan Peterson will be leading the charge?

February 28, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterJoshua


"...none the data of the studies you mention has been analyzed with a multilevel regression with stratification to eliminate Jewish respondents..."

At 2% of the US population, how could they impact these numbers significantly?

February 28, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterJonathan

Funnily enough, however, all the people featured in the most-widely-distributed pro-Second Amendment poster appear to be white.

Funnily enough, I wonder how many of the politicians consulting today at the White House with Trump on policy response to the Florida shooting were white? I think Rubio was there? Were any black people there? You'd think that since Trump is so concerned about gun violence in black communities like Chicago, some black politicians might have been at the table? Nah. They're prolly better off having white people make policies for them, right?

After all, Trump alone can save them.

February 28, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterJoshua

PostPost a New Comment

Enter your information below to add a new comment.

My response is on my own website »
Author Email (optional):
Author URL (optional):
Some HTML allowed: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <code> <em> <i> <strike> <strong>