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Liberals More Emotion Driven Than Conservatives

Posted by: : Paul EbelingPosted on: November 8, 2014 Liberals More Emotion Driven Than Conservatives

Liberals More Emotion Driven Than Conservatives

Still evaluating the results of the US midterm elections?

A new psychological study offers some perspective about what might have been driving voters, on the left and right to turn out to vote.

Researchers at Tel Aviv University and the Interdisciplinary Center in Herzliya Emotions find that liberals tend to be more motivated by emotion than conservatives.

The findings, published in the journal Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, are based on analysis of 6 studies that examined emotion, ideology, and how they act together to affect support for policies.

The 1st 2 studies focused on empathy among Israelis, while the 3rd study examined the interactive influence of ideology and despair on voting tendencies. Participants self-identified as being at different points of the right-left ideological spectrum.

Specific scenarios were selected for the 6 studies relating to current events in Israel, related to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and possible steps towards its resolution.

“We selected our different scenarios with the aim of tackling both positive and negative developments in intergroup conflicts, eliciting a range of different emotion towards the out-group and the situation, referring to different types of out-groups, and among different in-groups,” said lead researcher Ruthie Pliskin. “Furthermore we wanted to utilize both contrived, controlled scenarios, and major real-world developments, reflecting real and possible political developments.”

The researchers concluded that induced emotion has a greater influence on leftists’ positions than on rightists’ positions, which tend to be more ideologically based.

Parts of the study designed to induce empathy toward both Palestinians and asylum-seekers led to particularly strong support for conciliatory and humanitarian policies among leftists, the research found.

“We would expect to find similar results among rightists and leftists in other cultures, including conservatives and liberals in the US, because of the cross-cultural similarities in the superstructure of ideology and the needs associated with rightist Vs leftist ideology, and because of how these factors relate to emotional processes and their outcomes,” said Ms. Pliskin.

Stay tuned…


Paul Ebeling

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Paul Ebeling

Pattern Recognition Analyst, equities, commodities, forex
Paul Ebeling is best known for his work as writer and publisher of “The Red Roadmaster’s Technical Report” on the US Major Market Indices™, a highly-regarded, weekly financial market letter, where he enjoys an international audience among opinion makers, business leaders, and respected organizations. Something of a pioneer in online stock market and commodities discussion and analysis, Ebeling has been online since 1994. He has studied and worked in the global financial and stock markets since 1984.

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