A.J. DiCintio
The liberal tribal-moral community
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By A.J. DiCintio
February 19, 2011

If there's anything we know about liberals it's this: They can't discuss anything without exalting themselves as moral and intellectual paragons while sliming their opponents as depraved troglodytes.

However, the human frailty we may label "Doth Protest Too Much Syndrome" tells us it is liberals who regularly pervert intellectuality, morality, common sense, and common decency.

For instance, bring up the simple arithmetic pertaining to the nation's stunningly disastrous financial path and liberals will denounce you as a hater of seniors, children, sick people, poor folks, and mothers.

They'd even accuse you of hating apple pie — if they didn't feel guilty about mentioning a dessert they regard as symbolic of America's madly jingoistic, piggishly carbon-footed "vast right-wing conspiracy."

Discuss jobs, taxes, federalism, health care reform, the judiciary, or immigration and border policy in a manner contrary to the dogmas of the Liberal Church and you'll be a recipient of the same slime, with "racist," "fascist" and other slurs thrown in. (Harry Reid's description of Tea Party Americans as "evil-mongers" immediately comes to mind.)

It is evident, then, that non-liberal Americans bear a responsibility to educate the nation, especially its youth, regarding two ideas about the ideology of America's left:

First, it doesn't have much in common with the notion of being open-minded.

Second, given its passionate love of big, powerful, centralized government, it has very little use for Jeffersonian libertarianism.

Problem is, using the acts and words of politicians to educate the public about those truths isn't effective, owing to another human frailty, specifically, the one that causes people to superficially blurt "They all do it."

But it's a different story with respect to the content of articles such as John Tierney's "Social Scientist Sees Bias Within" (NYT, February 7, 2011), which examines a "study" Professor Jonathan Haidt conducted at a conference of the Society for Personality and Social Psychology, which attracts "some of the world's pre-eminent experts on bias."

Here's what Tierney has to say about how the professor from the University of Virginia collected his data:

"He polled his audience at the San Antonio Convention Center, starting by asking how many considered themselves politically liberal. A sea of hands appeared, and Dr. Haidt estimated that liberals made up 80 percent of the 1,000 psychologists in the ballroom. When he asked for centrists and libertarians, he spotted fewer than three dozen hands. And then, when he asked for conservatives, he counted a grand total of three."

What does Professor Haidt have to say about the finding?

Well, first he states the obvious, which is that it reveals a "statistically impossible lack of diversity" because polls consistently have shown "40 percent of Americans are conservative and 20 percent are liberal."

So, what explains both the psychologists' astounding skewing to the political left as well as their failure to perceive and remedy its effects?

Haidt answers the question by explaining that social psychologists have become a "tribal-moral community" united by "sacred values" that undermine the quality of their research and " blind them to the hostile climate they've created for non-liberals."

Indeed, the professor contends liberal psychologists are so dogmatically devoted to their sacred values that he says this about their blatant anti-intellectual hypocrisy:

"Anywhere in the world that social psychologists see women or minorities underrepresented by a factor of two or three, [their] minds jump to discrimination as the explanation. But when [they] find out that conservatives are underrepresented among [them] by a factor of more than 100, suddenly [they find] it quite easy to generate alternate explanations."

But the greater, infinitely more important point here is that this thoroughly contemptible behavior extends beyond the world of social psychology to encompass virtually the entire liberal community.

To make that point, Professor Haidt employs several examples, including the reaction to Daniel Patrick Moynihan's warning, in 1965, about (in Tierney's words) "the rise of unmarried parenthood and welfare dependency among blacks — violating the [liberal] taboo against criticizing victims of racism."

The punishment for this violation? Haidt tells us that "Moynihan was shunned by many of his colleagues at Harvard as racist."

However, the shunning didn't exist in a vacuum. In fact, as the professor implies, it created a profound tragedy:

"Open-minded inquiry into the problems of the black family was shut down for decades, precisely the decades in which it was most urgently needed. Only in the last few years have liberal sociologists begun to acknowledge that Moynihan was right all along."

Moynihan "was right all along" — about something that for millennia on end ordinary human beings have known to be true, something that is absolutely crucial not just to the success of individual humans but to the survival of an entire culture.

Yet liberals reacted to that truth with slurs, condemnations, and a vile censorship couched in the ugliness of "political correctness," thereby adding a trillion tons of new fuel to the fires that for centuries have consumed life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness for black Americans.

Of course, Professor Haidt's few examples don't begin to convey the enormity of the mountain of sins committed against honesty, decency, and intellectuality by true-believing ideologues whose minds are guided by the love of power or a worldview based upon the worst of human childishness.

But they do serve to motivate us to do our part in exposing the truth — once again, especially to our young people, from high schoolers to twenty somethings — about the perversely twisted, hypocritical "sacred values" and thoroughly rotten name calling that underlie liberal "reason."

© A.J. DiCintio

 

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A.J. DiCintio

A.J. DiCintio posts regularly at RenewAmerica and YourNews.com. He first exercised his polemical skills arguing with friends on the street corners of the working class neighborhood where he grew up. Retired from teaching, he now applies those skills, somewhat honed and polished by experience, to social/political affairs.

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