Group Think
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Started by joj - Oct. 12, 2021, 10:44 a.m.

In 1951, Solomon Asch, a professor at Swarthmore College, set out to study how much of our reasoning we were willing to outsource to other.  He showed subjects a card with a line and then asked them to match it to the line of a corresponding length on another card.  The test was easy.  Fewer than 1 percent of the answers were wrong.

The twist, however was that the subjects weren't alone.  There were 7 other participants who were actually working for the professor.  Every so often, they would all give the same WRONG answer.  These were called the "critical trials".  The results:  On critical trials, the participants gave the wrong answer 37% of the time!!!

This from the book, "Why We're Polarized", by Ezra Klein

Re: Group Think
By metmike - Oct. 12, 2021, 11:05 a.m.
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This could be the most powerful and relevant topic in society today.........PERIOD.

Nothing tops "political group think" with regards to how people's views are determined. NOTHING.

People from group one all flock to many of the  same information sites like birds of a feather to get the news told to them the way they like to hear/read it. They all communicate that to each other at their own ECHO CHAMBERS, where they repeat the same closed minded stuff, while rejecting anything that contradicts that.

People from group 2 all flock to, usually different infomation sites and always, totally avoid the extreme information sites from group one............while some prefer extreme sites that tell them extreme things they like to hear. 

WxFollower made a great point about this recently.


This was followed up with a link to a previous, deeper discussion on the topic:

 HiddenTribes: America’s Polarized Landscape            

                            12 responses |             

                Started by metmike - Sept. 27, 2019, 7 p.m.            


"If you want to better understand the divisiveness in our country right now, this is a wonderful, very comprehensive report."

HiddenTribes: A Study of America’s Polarized Landscape

Re: Group Think
By WxFollower - Oct. 12, 2021, 11:41 a.m.
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By metmike - Oct. 12, 2021, 11:53 a.m.
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Exactly Larry,

I will have to add something though to the optimism of that report from 2018.

Sadly, that report might be obsolete in many ways.

Things have rapidly evolved in the OPPOSITE direction as the authors had hoped and our country has become much MORE divided.

The tribalism has fed on itself with massive positive feedback from sources with political ideologies that know exactly how to control people.........who are using strategies to amplify the herd mentality/group think.

They are using it as a way of trying to UNITE their side in order to DEFEAT the other side.

Ends justifies the means.........winner takes all mentality. Truth and facts don't matter. The political ideology of their side is everything. The other side is evil and always wrong about everything. Their side is always right about everything. 

No negotiating or middle ground. Their way or the highway.

By metmike - Oct. 12, 2021, 12:55 p.m.
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Here's the book you mentioned joj:

"Why We're Polarized", by Ezra Klein

Why We're Polarized is a 2020 non-fiction book by American journalist Ezra Klein, in which the author analyzes political polarization in the United States. Focusing in particular on the growing polarization between the major political parties in the United States (the Democratic Party and the Republican Party), the author argues that a combination of good intentions gone wrong, such as dealing with an arguably more unjust political consensus maintained at the expense of minorities, and inherent glitches in the institutional design of the country's federal government have caused widespread social problems.[3]

Opinion on the book is polarized, with positive reviews in The New York Times and Foreign Affairs,[4][5] mostly positive but somewhat critical reviews in The Washington Post, Publishers Weekly, and Kirkus Reviews,[6][7][8][9] mixed reviews in The New Yorker, The New Republic, Dissent, and Jacobin,[3][10][11][12] and mostly negative reviews in The Wall Street Journal, Commentary, and The Outline.[13][14][15]

metmike: Funny how even the opinions and reviews of the book are............POLARIZED based on the opinions of entities that to some extent, help reinforce the group think.