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  1. #1
    Senior Member LostInNerSpace's Avatar
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    Default The psychology of choice for President

    Second time lucky. My last attempt got merged into the McCain vs. Obama political thread because it actually did become a general discussion about McCain vs. Obama.

    This thread is related specifically to the psychology of choice for president. If it is general opinion / discussion about McCain or Obama please refer to this existing thread:

    http://www.typologycentral.com/forums/politics-history-current-events/5630-mccain-vs-obama.html

    Here is the theory behind this experiement:

    People create their own realities. The conscious mind represents only about 5% of total cognition. The other 95% is where the real decision making goes on. People experience the world through models. A typical Democrat's model would be different from a typical Republican's model. The models are at least in part comprised of metaphor, stories, imagery and evaluated with emotion.

    There was fascinating research done surrounding the phenomenon whereby amputees experience phantom pain in their amputated limbs. In one study, the subject was an amputee with a missing hand. This amputee had a persistent feeling that his fingernails in the amputated hand were digging into the palm of his hand and causing excruciating pain. The researcher rigged up a kind of mirror box which the amputee put his other good hand into to give the appearance that his amputated hand was intact--the pain disappeared. The pain returned when he removed his hand from the mirror box. This shows the disconnect between what goes on in the subconscious mind and what goes on in the conscious mind.

    Decisions are made on a relative basis in the subconscious mind and our conscious mind applies "logic" to the emotional decision to arrive at a rationalization. Rationalizations are not rational at all because we have no way of knowing exactly how our subconscious minds arrived at the answer it did.

    We can get some clues by looking for the underlying metaphors, and we can do this by looking at metal imagery.

    This then is the topic of this post.

    What we want here is mental imagery. What do pictures do you see in your mind's eye?

  2. #2
    Glowy Goopy Goodness The_Liquid_Laser's Avatar
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    It seems like there is quite a stretch between missing a hand and who you vote for. Even if the decision making is unconscious it might not be that different from conscious decion making. For example one person might be poor and that is why they want the government to give them health care. Another person might be rich, so they don't want to government to take their money and spend in on poor people. Is it really more complicated than that?
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    Senior Member LostInNerSpace's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by The_Liquid_Laser View Post
    It seems like there is quite a stretch between missing a hand and who you vote for. Even if the decision making is unconscious it might not be that different from conscious decion making. For example one person might be poor and that is why they want the government to give them health care. Another person might be rich, so they don't want to government to take their money and spend in on poor people. Is it really more complicated than that?
    The missing hand was really a quick way to get people upto speed on the basics of the psychology. It simply attempts shows how our subconcious minds create our reality. It would take a whole book or more to properly explain the psychology. I can recommend those books if anyone is interested.

    This is based on solid research conducted by a Harvard professor by the name of Gerald Zaltman. Zaltman identified several deep metaphors that form the basis of peoples subconscious thinking.

    Poor people are more focus on survival; they are more likely to be “resource” oriented. Higher income people can afford to focus on other things. One such thing may be transformation (change). Resource and Transformation are two of the deep metaphors identified by Zaltman.

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    Senior Member htb's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by The_Liquid_Laser View Post
    Is it really more complicated than that?
    It's even simpler when voters identify a number of issues on which candidates differ, and support the candidate whose policies would match their preferences.

    This is sort of interesting, albeit titanic over-thinking.

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    Senior Member LostInNerSpace's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by htb View Post
    This is sort of interesting, albeit titanic over-thinking.
    It's what I do best. Nobody got pictures for me. Come on! Close your eyes and tell me what you see.

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    veteran attention whore Jeffster's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by LostInNerSpace View Post
    It's what I do best. Nobody got pictures for me. Come on! Close your eyes and tell me what you see.
    You seem to be doing lousy on the psychology so far with me, in the other thread you state that I seem very angry, apparently because I oppose Obama on principles.
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    Senior Member LostInNerSpace's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jeffster View Post
    You seem to be doing lousy on the psychology so far with me, in the other thread you state that I seem very angry, apparently because I oppose Obama on principles.
    No, I asked if you were angry. You stated several things as fact, including that he's a lier. None of those were facts. That's an emotional response. Unless that is you can in some way substantiate your claims with evidence.


    EDIT: Maybe I did say you seem angry. I stand by it. That's an emotional response. I can see it a mile off even if you can't. Your rationalization is not rational at all.

  8. #8
    veteran attention whore Jeffster's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by LostInNerSpace View Post
    No, I asked if you were angry. You stated several things as fact, including that he's a lier. None of those were facts. That's an emotional response. Unless that is you can in some way substantiate your claims with evidence.
    I did do that. Just because you dismiss it, doesn't mean it didn't happen. And I'm still not angry.
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    desert pelican Owl's Avatar
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    When I close my eyes, all I see is black. Does this mean I'm going to vote for Obama?

    I agree we all have an interpretive model, but I don't think this model is necessarily, exclusively evaluated by emotion. A person may be more or less conscious of his framework, and it would behoove each person to use that 5% of his mind you mentioned to critically examine what constitutes his model; for the more conscious a man is of his model, the more integrated his actions become with his thoughts, and then he needn't rely on the other 95% of his mind to make his decisions. This is beneficial because, as his thoughts become more consistent as a result of critical examination, he will recognize, and thus be free from pursuing, inconsistent ends; furthermore, the 95% of the mind that is not rational is not equiped to evaluate truth claims, whereas the rational part of the mind is, and, insofar as what is good for a man is a truth claim, the rational mind ought to examine this claim.

    Quote Originally Posted by LostInNerSpace View Post
    Rationalizations are not rational at all because we have no way of knowing exactly how our subconscious minds arrived at the answer it did.

    We can get some clues by looking for the underlying metaphors, and we can do this by looking at mental imagery.
    How did Zaltman decide it was possible to identify the underlying metaphors that constitute a person's model? How did he decide upon the criterion a metaphor must meet before it may be considered to form the basis of a person's model? If these decisions were the result of an inscrutable, subconscious process, then how are they any more authoritative than contrary answers generated by another person's incrutable, unconscious process?

    Just wondering.

  10. #10
    Senior Member LostInNerSpace's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Owl View Post
    When I close my eyes, all I see is black. Does this mean I'm going to vote for Obama?
    You are looking with your eyes. Try to see with your mind's eye. I also see black when I close my eyes. A better word might be imagine. I'm going to assume you are a man for arguments sake. Can you picture now in your mind what a beautiful women would look like? What would it feel like for her to sit on your lap and ask with a wanton gaze if she could feed you strawberries. Unless you are a woman or swing the other way, you probably have some idea what that might look like and that it would feel good. That's what I mean by see pictures.

    What thoughts, feeling, images does the Obama va. McCain decision conjure up in your mind?

    Quote Originally Posted by Owl View Post
    I agree we all have an interpretive model, but I don't think this model is necessarily, exclusively evaluated by emotion.
    Based on research. Read: "How Customers Think"

    Quote Originally Posted by Owl View Post
    A person may be more or less conscious of his framework, and it would behoove each person to use that 5% of his mind you mentioned to critically examine what constitutes his model; for the more conscious a man is of his model, the more integrated his actions become with his thoughts, and then he needn't rely on the other 95% of his mind to make his decisions. This is beneficial because, as his thoughts become more consistent as a result of critical examination, he will recognize, and thus be free from pursuing, inconsistent ends;
    I don't agree. Have you ever tried to quit smoking? Is smoking a rational habit? People try desperately for many year to try to quit and never succeed. I quit in Feb '01. I realized that I was trapped in a cycle of always having the comfort of another cigarette to fall back on if I fail to quit on any given attempt. Furthermore, all of my smoking paraphernalia had become part of my identity as a smoker. I had to let go of all of that stuff. I had to throw it all out; favorite lighters, ash trays, everything; I had to commit to never smoking another cigarette again; I also raised the pain of smoking above the pain of going without a cigarette by punishing myself for each puff. I made a commitment to always buy packs of 20 along with a relatively expensive lighter--but I could only take one puff and had to throw out the whole pack and the lighter. Finally since my smoking habit was associated with the places in my life I had to move house to leave the habit in the old house. I also happen to work from home at the time.

    Quote Originally Posted by Owl View Post
    furthermore, the 95% of the mind that is not rational is not equipped to evaluate truth claims, whereas the rational part of the mind is, and, insofar as what is good for a man is a truth claim, the rational mind ought to examine this claim.
    Yes and no. The unconscious mind is not equipped to evaluate truth claims. But the "rational" mind is not a computer. Take smoking. There are powerful forces moving you to smoke another cigarette. These are unconscious forces; your conscious mind at this point is cooking up rationalization to support your decision to go for another cigarette--I'm under a lot of stress now; If I stop smoking now I will put on a pile of weight; I will have one final cigarette and then quit tomorrow. As soon as you had that cigarette you feel like cr@p. You are asking yourself why you did it, and why you keep doing that.


    Quote Originally Posted by Owl View Post
    How did Zaltman decide it was possible to identify the underlying metaphors that constitute a person's model? How did he decide upon the criterion a metaphor must meet before it may be considered to form the basis of a person's model? If these decisions were the result of an inscrutable, subconscious process, then how are they any more authoritative than contrary answers generated by another person's incrutable, unconscious process?
    What Zaltman calls metaphor is not a new idea. Milton Erikson talked about symbolism. Many people have written, thought and talked about these things. If you read one of Zaltman's books you will see just how many books this guy has read. I'll be a monkey's uncle if he is not an INTP. I do a similar amount of reading to piece the together in my own puzzle. He has also interviewed thousands of people, which over time allowed him to spot common themes. He labeled these themes Deep Metaphor

    Quote Originally Posted by Owl View Post
    Just wondering.
    Me too. Thanks!

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