Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Right Wingers brains are different?

My daily fix Breakfast Politics of links to good stories today titled one "Science reveals right-wingers brains are different".

I ask,does that give the preferred orientation of the writer away? After all it implies that left-wingers brains are therefore the same...but the same as "what"? The logical conclusion is the same as the author's. Unless, of course, each right-winger's brain is different from each other one while all left-wingers' brains are the same as each other.

The article itself carried the more revealing title "Left or right: Which side is your brain on?" and led

Yet another study has found evidence linking conservative thinking to fear, and small ‘l’ liberalism to openness.

University College London researchers considered previous research that found “conservatives are more sensitive to threat or anxiety in the face of uncertainty, while liberals tend to be more open to new experiences”.

They decided to look at the brain’s structure to see whether this was reflected physically, and found it was - people who identify as liberal have larger anterior cingulate cortexes while conservatives have larger amygdalas, which is exactly what I always say.

Question though - how revealing is it to conclude that conservatives fear change while "liberals" are open to new ideas and possibilities? Isn't that actually the definition.

The article suggests that on climate change it is the reverse, that fear comes from the liberals. But really it is the conservatives fearing the consequence of any policy change to respond to climate change while the liberals are open to the possibilities.

The question remains open though, which came first - the different approach or the brain difference? A person with large biceps usually exercised them, they didn't just happen!

Meanwhile the researchers are still looking for the brains of the New South Wales Right....

Novae Meridianae Demetae Dexter delenda est

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