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  1. #41
    @.~*virinaĉo*~.@ Totenkindly's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by fia View Post
    I face the same thing, only there seems to be an issue with ultra-conservative friends and family that if we disagree, they will personally attack me, so I have had to avoid topics even when these are brought up. The Right wing mentality influenced by Fox News, Rush Limbaugh and the sort has become radicalized enough to alter people's personalities and their concept of personal relationships when their minds are in those frames. It is because so much is fear based, so they feel justified in pushing things to ultimatums and risking the destroying relationships and making radical choices that place groups of people and the environment at risk. And they do it so often to protect the elite they have been brainwashed into defending.
    yes, that's been at the extreme end of it. And I think it's the nature of the beast, in terms of liberal vs conservative excesses. To be fair, I actually do have some very liberal friends who are very antagonistic toward the right, which I find annoying; what triggers them is non-acceptance (so they view the conservatives as oppressive bigoted asshats), whereas the ultra-conservatives tend to view outsiders/those with a different way of life to be the enemy if it conflicts with their regional and personal values. But the end result is the same: Personal conflict and ostracizing.

    I think you will often find that people's political and religious orientations reflect their social connections. We have a strong social and instinctual drive to be like-minded with whatever group to which we belong. The individuals making a meaningful social connection to you could well have a larger social group that pulls them towards the Right. My guess is that if their churches, friends, family, etc. were predominately liberal, that they would be as well. People generally like to assume they think for themselves, but we don't. It takes a rare person to think independently of their social group because doing so will alienate them and place them at risk of lessening or losing their support system. That is why it is so confusing and threatening to people when a family member thinks differently because it implies that they are breaking social ties and distancing themselves. One on level it is personal - at least moreso than is easy for people to admit.
    I agree with that, and I think the bold is a great point that sometimes people don't recognize. Disagreement can be perceived as a repudiation of the group and a rejection of the family even when it's really not, so then it initiates its own cycle of rejection.

    It can be difficult, and I try to differentiate between those who would reconnect if they merely understood better, vs the self-interested, virulent strains of family rejection. unfortunately I fall into a demographic which challenges family and social norms by its very nature, but it's difficult seeing people on both sides of that situation translate the personal into the political. One person makes changes in her life to care for herself, and the other side takes it personally as well as politically; meanwhile, when faced with that rejection, it is also perceived as very very personal by the individual in question, and she responds accordingly. But a lot of it is misunderstanding based on social mores and group values, as well as the natural bumpy ride of challenging status quo and having to adjust the family system to accommodate everyone. Unfortunately, it is far more common to see permanent rifts and/or outright rejection occur. It bothers me to see extreme reactions on both ends.
    "Hey Capa -- We're only stardust." ~ "Sunshine"

    “Pleasure to me is wonder—the unexplored, the unexpected, the thing that is hidden and the changeless thing that lurks behind superficial mutability. To trace the remote in the immediate; the eternal in the ephemeral; the past in the present; the infinite in the finite; these are to me the springs of delight and beauty.” ~ H.P. Lovecraft

  2. #42
    meh Salomé's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by fia View Post
    I think you will often find that people's political and religious orientations reflect their social connections. We have a strong social and instinctual drive to be like-minded with whatever group to which we belong. The individuals making a meaningful social connection to you could well have a larger social group that pulls them towards the Right. My guess is that if their churches, friends, family, etc. were predominately liberal, that they would be as well. People generally like to assume they think for themselves, but we don't. It takes a rare person to think independently of their social group because doing so will alienate them and place them at risk of lessening or losing their support system. That is why it is so confusing and threatening to people when a family member thinks differently because it implies that they are breaking social ties and distancing themselves. One on level it is personal - at least moreso than is easy for people to admit.
    We don't all have strong social drives. For some of us it would be unthinkable to go along with majority group-think with which we disagreed. That would be far more difficult for someone like me than breaking social ties (and I speak from experience). Thinking independently isn't a choice for me, it just happens. Not to act in line with my convictions would simply be cowardice.
    I don't believe it is all that rare. Unless we are hopeless automatons, we choose social groups that align with our values, not the other way around. I don't believe we should excuse people just because "everyone else is doing it" and they are too cowardly to make a stand. If we did, we couldn't try war criminals. At some point, every adult must assume accountability for their own actions / affiliations.
    Quote Originally Posted by Ivy View Post
    Gosh, the world looks so small from up here on my high horse of menstruation.

  3. #43
    Senior Member Survive & Stay Free's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BAJ View Post
    I searched my area for groups to hang out with. Basically what I found was patriot groups, which are like tea party nuts, or freethought groups which are atheistic and liberal.

    I wanted to find a group which was not antagonistic to the other groups, but basically I had difficulty finding one. It seems you need to be against some other group for cohesion.
    That's how some entire communities function, look at the world, it was almost a social institution in NI as a result of the modern troubles and there are still people who would like to see the return of the conflict because its what they are most comfortable with. Its not good but the whole idea of "the other" is age old, there's great books on the topic but they can be summed up in the final line of what you've written here.

  4. #44
    darkened dreams labyrinthine's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Salomé View Post
    We don't all have strong social drives. For some of us it would be unthinkable to go along with majority group-think with which we disagreed. That would be far more difficult for someone like me than breaking social ties (and I speak from experience). Thinking independently isn't a choice for me, it just happens. Not to act in line with my convictions would simply be cowardice.
    I don't believe it is all that rare. Unless we are hopeless automatons, we choose social groups that align with our values, not the other way around. I don't believe we should excuse people just because "everyone else is doing it" and they are too cowardly to make a stand. If we did, we couldn't try war criminals. At some point, every adult must assume accountability for their own actions / affiliations.
    I agree with much of what you have stated, and I experience being distanced socially myself. From observation though, I can see that the social drives to form ideas are not uncommon in people. I don't think that it negates accountability. Your example of war criminals is a strong example of what I am talking about because it requires this group think to push people to a point of being willing to commit atrocities. It is an example of how people often do not think independently.

    Edit: I've been thinking a bit more about this and realize that the statement "most people" is context dependent and should be revised as "most people I've encountered". This topic would be difficult to measure and apply universally. If you notice the exchanges between Jennifer and myself, realize that we come from a culture that intensifies group think. People attend churches, have meals together, and interact with strongly socially based idea reinforcement. There is not an externally rational basis for the belief system I was raised in and yet I see many people I knew remain in that system, including people intelligent enough to get advanced degrees. When subjected to this process, it permeates your entire mind into your subconscious assumptions about reality. Throughout my life I always thought a bit differently, processed and rearranged what I was presented with into what I felt was a coherent whole, until I was able to obtain enough contrasting data to actually break away. I recently saw a religious video posted by a former classmate which was on the same level as Glenn Beck. Realizing I had formerly been inundated with such nonsense from childhood, I am actually amazed I can reason at all. I credit Mr. Spock, Carl Sagan, my 8th grade science class, and some genetic disposition towards reason, but those were just scraps of information by comparison. That seems to suggests individual ability to make choices, and yet I see many intelligent people still connected to nonsense and in my attempt to make sense of it, this idea of being beholden to social ties seems plausible.
    Step into my metaphysical room of mirrors.
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  5. #45
    meh Salomé's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by fia View Post
    I agree with much of what you have stated, and I experience being distanced socially myself. From observation though, I can see that the social drives to form ideas are not uncommon in people. I don't think that it negates accountability. Your example of war criminals is a strong example of what I am talking about because it requires this group think to push people to a point of being willing to commit atrocities. It is an example of how people often do not think independently.
    If it was the case that some people are susceptible to "social drives" and others are not, wouldn't it be unfair to judge the former group on the same basis as the latter? For accountability, there must be no sense of diminished responsibility.

    I am inclined to believe that groupthink makes acceptable / excusable things that we individually understand intuitively to be wrong, but are nevertheless invested in. Thus making possible atrocities like the Holocaust. That at some level the perpetrators did not understand that what they were doing was inherently evil - I struggle to comprehend. The Milgrim experiment bears this idea out (ie that people know what they are doing is wrong but do it anyway, to remain part of the ingroup).
    Quote Originally Posted by Ivy View Post
    Gosh, the world looks so small from up here on my high horse of menstruation.

  6. #46
    Blah Orangey's Avatar
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    That's why this tendency is dangerous. Although maybe the earlier poster (@cafe I think?) who suggested that at least it's contained to non-violent things like being a c*** on the internet is right.
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  7. #47
    respect the brick C.J.Woolf's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Salomé View Post
    I am inclined to believe that groupthink makes acceptable / excusable things that we individually understand intuitively to be wrong, but are nevertheless invested in. Thus making possible atrocities like the Holocaust. That at some level the perpetrators did not understand that what they were doing was inherently evil - I struggle to comprehend. The Milgrim experiment bears this idea out (ie that people know what they are doing is wrong but do it anyway, to remain part of the ingroup).
    I think they tell themselves that they are doing evil for some greater good. A few people can do it on their own, but others need an authority figure to give them permission.

  8. #48
    Senior Member UniqueMixture's Avatar
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    I'm sorry I'm fucking sick of Republicans acting like complete douchebags and then when they get their asses handed to them they become all, "Zomg I'm such an innocent little puppy why are you hurting me?? " Go fuck yourselves
    For all that we have done, as a civilization, as individuals, the universe is not stable, and nor is any single thing within it. Stars consume themselves, the universe itself rushes apart, and we ourselves are composed of matter in constant flux. Colonies of cells in temporary alliance, replicating and decaying and housed within, an incandescent cloud of electrical impulses. This is reality, this is self knowledge, and the perception of it will, of course, make you dizzy.

  9. #49
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    I'm sick of people being unable to comprehend more than one side of an issue.

  10. #50
    Senior Member sculpting's Avatar
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    Growing up in Texas I always felt very liberal. Then I moved to Ann Arbor Michigan and I realized I wasnt nearly as liberal as I once thought.

    In both places and in both parties, people exhibit group think, herd behavior and an unwillingness to admit any part of their worldview could be flawed. Both groups assume the others must be stupid/evil/ignorant/uneducated/power hungry etc, rather than recognizing that they might have a very valid view-just a different one. There is an utter unwillingness to budge at all from either side and an amplification of the need to invalidate the other half via lazy judgments, rather than thoughtful consideration. Liberals are just as nasty and lazy in this as conservatives are.

    Each also hides themselves behind layers of people who think like them, so they dont have to face the fact that people, really do, amazingly, see the world in a different way from them, and that might be okay. Neither side is willing to admit any possible flaw, even though both ooze flaws, as to admit the party is wrong might be to admit their worldview isnt as sacred as they once thought it to be.

    Religious nuts vs intellectual nuts both hell bent on denying the validity of one another's worldview, but resulting in an endless provocation that just escalates the passion each side feels.

    The media just throws flames on the fire of course bringing out the inner nasty even more.

    We also flaunt the correctness of our own view via social media to the anon internet-something that was much harder to do in the past when the people we disagreed with had a face and a name and were our neighbors and friends...there isnt any real need to try and find a middle ground...it is much easy to deny others their work view and replace ours as being correct.

    we are the most individualistic country on earth...I do wonder if part of what you are seeing is our own selfish desire to rant about our values and our ideas, out of insecurity, inflicting them upon others, when in the past we would have been more focused on the pragmatic solution in a collective sense for those around us-and kept our own rants STFU.

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