Study: Republican Brains Fear the Future

Just kidding, relax.

It’s not the future they fear, it’s the uncertainty associated with it according to a woven-together amalgam of studies that examined the difference between the brains of Republicans and Democrats. Take this with nine teaspoons of salt, but it’s definitely interesting.

From ABC News:

Conservatives and liberals may have one less thing in common: neurology. has gathered 13 peer-reviewed studies of behavioral and neurological studies and come to the conclusion that differences between Republicans and Democrats are more than skin-deep.

“Basically, the different sides have been yelling at each other for millennia, and we’re trying to figure out what could be the root cause of this,” said Steven Markoff,’s founder.

The studies looked at things like differences between groups’ perception of eye movement, and aversion to threatening noises.  Researchers also noted that Democrats had larger anterior cingulate cortexes, which are associated with tolerance to uncertainty, while Republicans had larger right amygdalas, which are associated with sensitivity to fear.

I haven’t look at the studies but if this is true, it makes total sense. My belief is that for societies to function correctly, we need those who cling to traditions and are strict about conformity along with progressives who aren’t afraid to try new things and dream big.  It’s the combination that makes America work, for example, even though it’s easy to forget this amidst the latest bout of epic partisan rancor.

But the old school pols knew this. Republican and Democrat congressmen back in the day understood that they were representing two halves of a whole. They were friendly with each other, played cards and golf and attended co-mingled parties with their wives and families.  Now that culture has disappeared as reps finish the Washington work week and leave DC to fly back to their home states.  They’re not friends any more than the students are at any other “suitcase school.”

And what we’ve lost is the cordiality that allows for the two sides to recognize that they are meant to offset each other, anthropologically speaking.  They don’t play cards with each other or skirmish in smoke-filled rooms to get deals done.  Now they just hate each others guts.

What we have instead of a productive rivalry is a pack of dicks who spend every other waking second trying to undermine each other while raising money with whatever time is left.


Conservatives and Liberals Have Different Brains, Studies Show (ABCNews)


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