Category Archives: Politics – 2020 Election

The Backfire Effect

© Darrell Arnold Ph.D.– (Reprinted with Permission)

I first heard about the “backfire effect” in a work by Michael Shermer, Why People Believe Weird Things: Pseudoscience, Superstition, and Other Confusions of Our Time. (Richard Thaler and Cass Sunstein (the authors of the New York Times bestseller, Nudge: Improving Decisions About Health, Wealth, and Happiness) have also referred to it in various contexts.) Continue reading The Backfire Effect

Election Recounts and the Backfire Effect

Charles Sanders Peirce.jpg

Doubt is an uneasy and dissatisfied state from which we struggle to free ourselves and pass into the state of belief; while the latter is a calm and satisfactory state which we do not wish to avoid, or to change to a belief, in anything else. On the contrary, we cling tenaciously, not merely to believing, but to believing just what we do believe.
~Charles Sanders Pierce “The Fixation of Belief”1 Continue reading Election Recounts and the Backfire Effect

From Democracy to Demagoguery

Senator Joseph McCarthy (R), an American demagogue

© Darrell Arnold Ph.D.– (Reprinted with Permission)

In American politics today an extraordinarily large percentage of the population believe not only ideas that disagree with mainstream science but also in conspiracy theories. Continue reading From Democracy to Demagoguery

Understanding Politics in America After the 2020 Election

The above 5-minute video clearly explains the essence of what’s happening in American politics today. Biden won, but almost certainly won’t be able to govern with a McConnell opposition Senate. In addition, a large majority of Americans support the Democrats’ policies and Democrats get a majority of the vote, but because of the makeup of the political system Republicans stay in power. As a result, Republicans have turned against democracy itself. Continue reading Understanding Politics in America After the 2020 Election

Essays About the Election

I wish there was a way to convey to readers the difference between informed and uninformed opinions; between legitimate news organizations (The New York Times) who tries to describe a world that corresponds to reality and those (Fox News) whose goal is propaganda; between those who understand and have studied epistemology (the study of the nature and limits of knowledge) and logic and critical thinking and those who never had the opportunity to benefit from such studies; Continue reading Essays About the Election