Friday, December 14, 2012

Agnotology: The Surge - 3

So say two conservatives
In this series we are looking at the social science called Agnotology, which looks for then studies "ignorance generators" within American culture.

That discipline is focused on "particularly the publication of inaccurate or misleading scientific data", which implicates the right wing Republican Party.

Today's Dredd Blog post is timely because in the aftermath of the 2012 election one consistently hears news reports about the "dumbing down" of the Republican party.

For example the book "It's Even Worse Than It Looks", written by two conservatives.

Whether they knew it or not, those authors practised Agnotology when they focused on neoCon extremists as if they were aliens to the traditional American government.

Their work clearly indicates that Republicans are "an insurgent outlier -- ideologically extreme; contemptuous of the inherited social and economic policy regime; scornful of compromise; unpersuaded by conventional understanding of facts, evidence and science; and dismissive of the legitimacy of its political opposition."

They also criticized McTell News for false equivalence, false framing, and a general gloss over of those extremist views.

We discussed a somewhat similar book "The Party Is Over", written by Republican Mike Lofgren, in the Dredd Blog post NeoCon Planet: Magic Teflon Vagina Juice, which focused on The Akinoids.

The previous post in this series discussed the notion of "the cultural Amygdala" and how it can be formed as we become biased one way or another, or how it can be better formed when we are objective and open minded (see e.g. Weekend Rebel Science Excursion - 12).

Another book source involving Agnotology, which generated a lot of "interest," was the book "The Republican Brain" by Chris Mooney.

A lot of paper and ink in the media concerning that book, both pro and con, is reflected in the following list:

A Chat With Chris Mooney, Diagnosing the Republican Brain, The Republican Brain by Chris Mooney, The Republican Brain on the Republican Brain, Inside the Political Brain, David's Book Club: The Republican Brain


Republicans Have Bad Brains?, The Beaker And the Ballot, The New Phrenology, Science and the Republican Brain
A more general article by Eugene Robinson is Republicans must Wise Up.

A wising-up should not be impossible because even though "A conservative believes nothing should be done for the first time" - Thomas Fuller, one can argue that they have wised up in the past, so it won't be the first time.

Furthermore, they may soon see that U.S. extremism is damaging our reputation in the world (The UN voted against Israel and the U.S., America's Worst Enemy).

As long as they stay away from the influences of the criminally minded Oil-Qaeda in the epigovernment, they have some chance of a homecoming.

The next post in this series is here, the previous post in this series is here.


  1. A recent poll indicates that ignorance about global warming induced climate change is declining in the where it has been highest: Link

  2. John Kerry as Sec. of State would help we can hope.

    "Kerry has been outspoken on climate change throughout Obama’s first term and would likely place the issue near the top of his foreign policy agenda" (Secretary of Hope: John Kerry on climate change).

  3. Oil-Qaeda, the criminal terrorist gang, spends a billion dollars a year to generate ignorance about their drug oil (Conservative groups spend up to $1bn a year to fight action on climate change).