I was over at Gerbil Report™ engaging in a thread where the birther states the familiar “Obama is destroying the country” meme. Just a few days ago I watched Obama’s final press conference of the year where he laid out a number of things in the US economy that were going quite well. Certainly for a retired person like me who lives off investments, the soaring stock market is personally good for me. I said that if that is “destruction,” we need more of it. Nevertheless, the birther maintained an extremely gloomy view of the economy and the state of the nation.
I ran across one of my articles from this past summer while putting together the end of year retrospective. The article, “Negativity merchants,” cited some psychological studies on the difference between conservatives and liberals, including the observation that conservatives are disgusted more easily than liberals. There as another finding in that research that says:
…we argue that one organizing element of the many differences between liberals and conservatives is the nature of their physiological and psychological responses to features of the environment that are negative. Compared with liberals, conservatives tend to register greater physiological responses to such stimuli and also to devote more psychological resources to them.
Perhaps that explains why the national debt weighs more heavily on the commenter at GR than it does on me.
To some extent, the entire publishing effort behind this blog comes out of the tension between how I see things and how some others see them. The birther sees the glass as half empty and I see it as half full. I see the evidence of Obama’s eligibility as overwhelming and the birther sees the smallest lack as overwhelming. Fundamental differences in psychology aren’t going to be overcome by argument at a birther blog.
Putting differences aside, I wish a Merry Christmas to all and a Happy New Year1 (unfortunately it won’t seem as happy to the birthers).
1Last month the second most frequent browser language group to visit the blog was Russian. So for those folks: С новым годом.