The full reference is at the end of this post. In brief - these folks showed a bunch of images to some people and recorded/studied their neural responses with MRI. Then they correlated their findings with the political orientation of the research subjects. They have discovered that there is a strong correlation, to the degree that they can predict political orientation of a person from the person's reaction to just one image. Conservatives have a strong neural response to _disgusting_ images. The left do not. They also hypothesize that perhaps they would also see some difference in perception of images related to danger, but it is much harder to cause the sense of a real danger with just an image on the screen than it is to cause disgust. My take on it is quite obvious. This study is just one scientific illustration of the fact that the left fail to react appropriately to processes and events that are societally destructive, and they reject, sometimes very actively and even aggressively, the very foundational principles on which the world operates. In other words, everything goes. As the authors put it:
<< We proposed that conservatives, compared to liberals, have greater negativity bias, which includes both disgusting and threatening conditions in our study. Our finding that only disgusting pictures, especially in the animal-reminder category, differentiate conservatives from liberals might be indicative of a primacy for disgust in the pantheon of human aversions, but it is also possible that this result is due to the
fact that, compared to threat, disgust is much easier to evoke with visual images on a computer screen. >>
More from the article:
<< We applied a machinelearning method to fMRI data to test the hypotheses that brain responses to emotionally evocative images predict
individual scores on a standard political ideology assay. Disgusting images, especially those related to animal reminder disgust (e.g., mutilated body), generate neural responses that are highly predictive of political orientation even though these neural predictors do not agree with participants’ conscious rating of the stimuli. Images from other affective categories do not support such predictions. Remarkably, brain responses to a single disgusting stimulus were sufficient to make accurate predictions about an individual subject’s political ideology.
These results provide strong support for the idea that fundamental neural processing differences that emerge under the challenge of emotionally evocative stimuli may serve to structure political beliefs in ways formerly unappreciated. >>
In case you disagree with my assessment of their results, stay tuned for my presentation of another article in this field. In the meantime - here is the reference:
"Nonpolitical Images Evoke Neural Predictors of Political Ideology"
Woo-Young Ahn, Kenneth T. Kishida; Xiaosi Gu, Terry Lohrenz, Ann Harvey, John R. Alford, Kevin B. Smith, Gideon Yaffe, John R. Hibbing, Peter Dayan, P. Read Montague
Current Biology, Volume 24, Issue 22 (2014) pp. 2693-2699
This entry was originally posted at https://whocares1970.dreamwidth.org/795948.html.