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Republicans start as whiners
Daily Beacon ^ | Tuesday, March 28, 2006 | Jon Fish

Posted on 03/28/2006 10:19:20 PM PST by presidio9

I love when science and politics intertwine. See, I’m a scientist first, and a political analyst second. So much of politics is based in the realms of opinion and propaganda that it makes my scientific disposition go haywire with frustration.

Now, my preference tends to be the opposite of my opponents. People like Bill O’Reilly, Ann Coulter, every “intelligent design” supporter on the planet, Senate Majority Leader and medical doctor Bill Frist and countless other prominent conservatives much prefer to shout propaganda, pseudo-rhetoric and outright lies before even looking at anything that could be considered a fact.

I guess that’s why Al Franken’s books remain on the bestseller lists years after their publications, while O’Reilly’s and Coulter’s books were on the two for three dollars table when I was walking through Barnes and Noble last week.

So the last time I wrote about science and politics intertwining, it was regarding a recent social psychology study that showed a significant correlation between racial prejudice and political affiliation. This study, coming form some of the top schools in the country, showed that people with conservative political leanings tended to have stronger anti-black prejudices, either latent or manifest.

Big surprise, eh?

Over the holiday I read a new study that came with no real surprising results. Remember that girl in preschool who always ran to the teacher with complaints about the other kids? Or the boy who always got everything he wanted from mom and dad, and cried when things didn’t go his way?

Well, according to a new study from the University of California’s psychology department, there’s a good chance that those same children likely grew up to be political conservatives.

Likewise, the kid who was always solving problems for himself, leading games and groups of friends and was generally more self-reliant probably grew up to be a political liberal.

Dr. Jack Block recently published an article in The Journal of Research in Personality with these results, showing that the more insecure a person is as a child, the more likely he is to become a conservative as an adult. Similarly, the study found that the more confident and independent a child is, the more likely he is to become a liberal as an adult.

Block says in the article that “Preschool children who 20 years later were relatively liberal were characterized as: developing close relationships, self-reliant, energetic, somewhat dominating, relatively under-controlled and resilient. Preschool children subsequently relatively conservative at age 23 were described [by their teachers] as: feeling easily victimized, easily offended, indecisive, fearful, rigid, inhibited and relatively over-controlled and vulnerable.”

So much for the “whiny liberal” stereotype.

The study was conducted over a twenty year period in which Block tracked over a hundred California children from preschool age into their midtwenties, measuring their development, emotional and mental health and a myriad of other variables.

Now I know what the conservatives out there are going to say. There’s gotta be some bias in the research, or this is just more evidence of the liberal tendency of the academic community. Well, let’s go ahead and put these easily victimized, fearful and easily offended reactions to rest.

There’s virtually no chance for bias in the study because the article is based out of data that had already been collected before the researcher began looking at political affiliation. In other words, unless the children were manifesting tendencies toward a particular political alignment at the ages of three and four, then it’d be really hard for evidence of political preference to arise in the data.

Okay, so there goes the problem with the research. But perhaps it’s the researcher who had the bias. Maybe Dr. Block has an agenda and is willing to skew his findings to meet a political end. Maybe he’s just like all those other professors who perpetuate the liberal conspiracy in American universities.

Well even if that claim wasn’t ridiculous to begin with, I’m pretty sure that one cannot become a professor emeritus at the top psychology department in the country by publishing biased data, nor win grants from the National Science Foundation to run a longitudinal study for over twenty years by having an ulterior motive in his research. People are stingy with their grant money and don’t want to put millions of dollars into research that can be discredited for bias.

Now, I won’t begin to say that these personality types in children direct political preference, and neither does Dr. Block. It’s merely a correlation, not causation. There are countless influences that can affect political alliance: family, friendships, religious preference, personal experiences and so on.

And we also have to keep this idea in perspective. A hundred kids in southern California are hardly representative of the entire country. And it’s unlikely that every fearful, whiney brat becomes a conservative (Theresa Kerry) and that every strong-willed, independent thinker becomes a liberal (John McCain, and I salute you, sir)

But I just can’t help but find it funny that the kids who cried when somebody called him a name grew up to be David Horowitz and Stacey Campfield. I guess now we know what the conservative right in the country is really overcompensating for.

— Jon Fish is a senior in sociology. He can be reached at jfish@utk.edu or through his Web site at http://web.utk.edu/~jfish/.


TOPICS: Culture/Society; Editorial; Politics/Elections
KEYWORDS: backoffimascientist; psychobabble
Incidently Jon, "Sociology" is not a science. It is, however, the preferred major of every free-throw shooter I have watched on television.
1 posted on 03/28/2006 10:19:21 PM PST by presidio9
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To: presidio9

This whiny liberal sure uses a lot of words to say nothing.
What a bore.


2 posted on 03/28/2006 10:22:39 PM PST by Lancey Howard
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To: presidio9

And a "Senior," no less. He's got a Masters and a Ph.D. to work on before even his own kind starts to take him seriously.


3 posted on 03/28/2006 10:25:01 PM PST by BradyLS (DO NOT FEED THE BEARS!)
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To: presidio9

Who would of figured he would look like this? (sarcasm)

4 posted on 03/28/2006 10:25:17 PM PST by Troublemaker
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To: presidio9

He actually trusts a study into how politics connects to disposition by group of researchers from Berkeley, CA?

For all their secularism, they sure seem to have a lot of blind faith in things, when it suits them.


5 posted on 03/28/2006 10:26:28 PM PST by marsh_of_mists
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To: presidio9

What's "pseudo-rhetoric?"


6 posted on 03/28/2006 10:27:14 PM PST by HitmanLV (Some people like to dash it out, but they just can't take it!)
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To: presidio9
But I just can’t help but find it funny that the kids who cried when somebody called him a name grew up to be David Horowitz and Stacey Campfield.

Horowitz was a liberal for decades before he moved right

7 posted on 03/28/2006 10:28:40 PM PST by woofie
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To: marsh_of_mists

Also, if I had to grow up in Berkeley, I'd by whiney too.


8 posted on 03/28/2006 10:29:15 PM PST by marsh_of_mists
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To: marsh_of_mists

And, thirdly (and lastly, I promise), check this out:

"it’s unlikely...that every strong-willed, independent thinker becomes a liberal (John McCain, and I salute you, sir)"

John McCain is the man every liberal I know identifies when I ask them if there is any conservative politician they like.


9 posted on 03/28/2006 10:34:02 PM PST by marsh_of_mists
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To: presidio9

And sociologists wonder why they don't get the same kind of respect physicists and engineers get. I'd like to see the hard data backing up this garbage. I'd love to see the actual questions that were asked. Oh, let's see, so Johnny was insecure as a child, eh? And where did he rate on a scale of 1 to 10. Is that a 2.24, or should I round up to 2.25?

Oh, and David Horowitz is a "whiner?" He's exposing a blacklist 100 times bigger than anything Joe McCarthy ever had anything to do with -- and that makes him a "whiner?" I guess all those folks who "whined" about Joe McCarthy must have been conservatives, eh.


10 posted on 03/28/2006 10:43:33 PM PST by RussP
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To: presidio9
I’m pretty sure that one cannot become a professor emeritus at the top psychology department in the country by publishing biased data, nor win grants from the National Science Foundation to run a longitudinal study for over twenty years by having an ulterior motive in his research.

LOL!

11 posted on 03/28/2006 10:48:13 PM PST by Jeff F
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To: presidio9

Oh, and what about all those feminists who file a sexual harrassment complaint as soon as some guy compliments their appearance. I never realized they are conservative. ... Ya, that'll be the day!


12 posted on 03/28/2006 11:02:11 PM PST by RussP
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To: presidio9
This study, coming form some of the top schools in the country, showed that people with conservative political leanings tended to have stronger anti-black prejudices, either latent or manifest

This idiot believes that being a sociologist means he's a scientist? I went through electrical engineering and was taught the rigorous scientific method. These fools must believe their profession is on par with Physics or most other hard science. I would guess 99.9999999% of all sociologists are strong left-leaning. All their studies are nothing more than useless propaganda, wrapped in pseudo scientific language picked by the willing MSM as "facts." I doubt 1 in 10000 Sociologist have any true critical thinking skills. Jon is nothing more than a leftist parasite. He will not produce anything of value in his entire career(if he chooses Sociology)

13 posted on 03/28/2006 11:15:26 PM PST by liberty2004
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To: Troublemaker

ROFLMAO!

Thank you thank you thank you!


14 posted on 03/28/2006 11:17:13 PM PST by Howlin ("It doesn't have a policy. It doesn't need to have a policy. What's the point of a Democratic policy)
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To: presidio9

Teacher, the liberal is making fun of me again...

He's acting like he's all superior or something, and he believes in this stupid global warming stuff.

Make him print more articles so that more folks can get offended... please?


15 posted on 03/28/2006 11:17:19 PM PST by kingu (Liberalism: The art of sticking your fingers in your ears and going NANANANA..)
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To: presidio9

Gee, a "senior"! High school or college?


16 posted on 03/28/2006 11:22:56 PM PST by ozzymandus
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To: Howlin
http://jonfishonline.blogspot.com/

Have fun exploring the inner workings of a narcissist. He has 3-4 blogs dedicated to himself.
17 posted on 03/28/2006 11:28:42 PM PST by Troublemaker
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To: Troublemaker

I'll bookmark that for some night I can't sleep.........LOL.


18 posted on 03/28/2006 11:33:02 PM PST by Howlin ("It doesn't have a policy. It doesn't need to have a policy. What's the point of a Democratic policy)
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To: Howlin

Make sure no one else in the house is asleep or they will be awaken by laughter :o).


19 posted on 03/28/2006 11:37:19 PM PST by Troublemaker
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To: Troublemaker

From one of his blogs:

“Whoso would be a man must be a nonconformist.” -Ralph Waldo Emerson


Thats what Mr Fish is, a nonconformist


20 posted on 03/28/2006 11:46:06 PM PST by woofie
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To: liberty2004
He will not produce anything of value in his entire career(if he chooses Sociology).

I'm thinking counselor at Camp Whachacalee every summer.
21 posted on 03/29/2006 12:04:08 AM PST by carumba (The secret of life is honesty and fair dealing. If you can fake that, you've got it made. Groucho)
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To: Troublemaker
Have fun exploring the inner workings of a narcissist. He has 3-4 blogs dedicated to himself.

I don't know why, but I went and looked at his blogs. It was a total waste of 30 minutes of my life.

22 posted on 03/29/2006 12:04:51 AM PST by Elyse
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To: Lancey Howard
The plain truth is that conservatives do, and liberals whine. That's what makes them liberals. All the people I've known in my life who I knew for sure were conservatives were the least likely to be indentified as whiners or complainers. I was a liberal when I was young, and I was always impressed by the fact that conservatives simply got on with their lives with as little griping as possible. They simply did what they had to do without whining or complaining.

By a simple glance around the country, who does most of the whining about conditions in America? Who is always sniveling and hectoring people about how terrible things are? I mean who's kidding who? Without a shadow of a doubt it would have to be liberals. That "unbiased" "scientific" longitudinal study was made by people like Fish who had the outcome determined before they started. Garbage in, garbage out. FISHwrap.

23 posted on 03/29/2006 1:54:56 AM PST by driftless ( For life-long happiness, learn how to play the accordion.)
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To: marsh_of_mists
And the "study group" from Berkley consisted of just 65? 85? subjects. Wow. "Science". Dude. You rock, Fish.
24 posted on 03/29/2006 4:29:40 AM PST by manwiththehands (A Republican is as a Republican does.)
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To: presidio9

"So much of politics is based in the realms of opinion and propaganda"

So much of public, popular science is based in the realms of opinion and propaganda.


25 posted on 03/29/2006 4:47:41 AM PST by RoadTest (The wicked love darkness; but God's people love the Light!)
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To: RoadTest

Political Science is Junk Science.


26 posted on 03/29/2006 6:21:44 AM PST by doxteve
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To: presidio9; Physicist; RadioAstronomer; Ichneumon; Right Wing Professor
Sociology is a science???

Muhwah-Ha Ha Ha Ha!

(Yeah, the same way roller derby is a sport!)

27 posted on 03/29/2006 6:30:00 AM PST by RightWingAtheist (Creationism is to conservatism what Howard Dean is to liberalism)
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To: RightWingAtheist

I actually read the paper on which this and other articles are based. It turns out the correlation between 'whininess' and politics was extremely weak (R=0.07), barely at the level of statistical significance. At that level, of coure, all sorts of biases could account for the effect. Yet none of the media or bloggers who discussing the study bother to mention the weakness of the correlation.


28 posted on 03/29/2006 6:37:45 AM PST by Right Wing Professor
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To: presidio9
But perhaps it’s the researcher who had the bias. Maybe Dr. Block has an agenda and is willing to skew his findings to meet a political end. Maybe he’s just like all those other professors who perpetuate the liberal conspiracy in American universities.

Uhhh, maybe Beavis. From Open Secrets:

BLOCK, JACK EL CERRITO,CA 94530 NOT EMPLOYED/RETIRED 9/30/2003 $2,000 Dean, Howard

BLOCK, JACK EL CERRITO,CA 94530 UNIVERSITY OF CALIFORNIA AT BERKELE 6/30/2003 $2,000 Kucinich, Dennis J

BLOCK, JACK EL CERRITO,CA 94530 UNIVERSITY OF CALIFORNIA BERKELEY/R 11/17/2004 $1,000 Council for a Livable World

BLOCK, JACK EL CERRITO,CA 94530 N/A/RETIRED 3/2/2004 $500 America Coming Together

BLOCK, JACK EL CERRITO,CA 94530 N/A/RETIRED 4/7/2004 $500 America Coming Together

BLOCK, JACK EL CERRITO,CA 94530 NOT EMPLOYED/RETIRED 4/23/2004 $500 Democracy for America

BLOCK, JACK EL CERRITO,CA 94530 PROFESSOR 3/1/2004 $500 Obama, Barack

BLOCK, JACK EL CERRITO,CA 94530 RETIRED/PROFESSOR 5/15/2004 $500 Moveon.org

BLOCK, JACK EL CERRITO,CA 94530 UNIV/PROF 1/28/2005 $250 Progressive Vote

And that's just the first ten of sixty-seven records for the Good Doctor.

29 posted on 03/29/2006 6:38:00 AM PST by RightWingAtheist (Creationism is to conservatism what Howard Dean is to liberalism)
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To: liberty2004
He will not produce anything of value in his entire career(if he chooses Sociology)

(redundancy alert)

30 posted on 03/29/2006 11:07:11 AM PST by presidio9 ("Bird Flu" is the new Y2K Virus -Only without the inconvenient deadline.)
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