- The Washington Times - Tuesday, April 4, 2006

Political psych

“American democracy works best with two strong, competent and reasonable political parties. But new non-partisan analytical and scientific research is finding evidence that the Democratic Party, the left wing of the American eagle, is descending into irrational extremism. The poster child for this Democratic extremism is racist radical Cynthia McKinney. …

“Emory University psychologist Drew Westen … did Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) scans of the brains of partisans as they processed political information during the 2004 presidential campaign.

“These brain scans show that the politically partisan brain behaves both emotionally and illogically, almost as if drugged. … ‘This is your brain,’ wrote [CBS commentator Dick ] Meyer. ‘This is your brain on politics.’ …

“And this, in growing proportions, is the brain of Democratic politicians and voters. … Sigmund Freud might describe these as elections between two contrary parts of the human mind, the civilization-sustaining Superego and the self-indulgent emotional Id. …

“Rep. Cynthia McKinney, a politician from the Id, appears to be the emerging future face of an increasingly partisan Democratic Party.”

— Lowell Ponte, writing on “Cynthia McKinney: The New Face of the Left?” Monday in Front

Page at www.frontpagemag.com

Harvard protocols

“The ‘Protocols of the Elders of Harvard,’ as Roger Simon elegantly calls the now-infamous … ‘Israel lobby’ screed written by a professor/administrator from Harvard’s Kennedy School and another academic who holds an endowed chair in the political-science department at the University of Chicago, might finally disabuse people of the conventional nonsense that professors at our ‘elite’ schools are really smart.

“‘The Israel Lobby’ … should dissuade rational Harvard and Chicago donors from giving any further money to the Kennedy School … or to the Chicago political-science department. … It should also help bright high-school students and their parents realize that a lot of ‘top’ universities are living on largely undeserved reputations. …

“[The article is] the same Big Lie we’ve heard for centuries: The Jews run the world, and they do it by manipulating others to carry out the Jews’ designs. The premise on which ‘The Israel Lobby’ rests is that American foreign policy … is the product of a small band of willful and clever people who have tricked the American people and every president into acting in Israel’s interests, not our own. This is anti-Semitism in the grand tradition.”

— Michael Ledeen, writing on “Easy Prey,” Monday in National Review Online at www.nationalreview.com

Marriage math

“As if they didn’t already have enough on their minds, Americans are going to have to debate polygamy. And not a moment too soon.

“For generations, taboo kept polygamy out of sight and out of mind in America. But the taboo is crumbling. An HBO television series called ‘Big Love,’ which benignly portrays a one-husband, three-wife family in Utah, set off the latest round of polygamy talk.

“So far, libertarians and lifestyle liberals approach polygamy as an individual-choice issue, while cultural conservatives use it as a bloody shirt to wave in the gay-marriage debate. … What hardly anyone is doing is thinking about polygamy as social policy.

“As far as I’ve been able to determine, no polygamous society has ever been a true liberal democracy. … As societies move away from hierarchy and toward equal opportunity, they leave polygamy behind. … That may be a coincidence, but it seems more likely to be a logical outgrowth of the arithmetic of polygamy.”

— Jonathan Rauch, writing on “One Man, Many Wives, Big Problems,” Monday in Reason Online at www.reason.com

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