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  •  But it's also deliberate. People don't like to (8+ / 0-)

    feel the discomfort that comes with the cognitive dissonance of challenging their own or their friends' and neighbors' views, so they stick to the media and info sources that don't hurt their brains or egos.

    Confirmation bias leads them to seek out that shit, and to disparage or ignore alternative views. And the paranoia leads to even more collective whack-job delusion, as we've seen from these yahoos.

    [I know it's likely you're familiar with this, but for anyone else:]

    Confirmation bias
    In psychology and cognitive science, confirmation bias (or confirmatory bias) is a tendency to search for or interpret information in a way that confirms one's preconceptions, leading to statistical errors.

    "Government by organized money is just as dangerous as Government by organized mob." -- Franklin D. Roosevelt

    by Kombema on Mon Feb 18, 2013 at 02:45:08 PM PST

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    •  I agree that the concept of confirmation bias is a (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Kombema, worldlotus, Odysseus, Eyesbright

      factor, but:  But you have to have choices in the first place.

      Drive through western Kansas and the one (or if lucky, two) radio stations you receive will not provide you with a choice.  

      Rural Internet isn't all that wide band or common. iPhones weren't sold there until years after the rest of the nation (due to incompatibility of the regional cell carrier (bought out by AT&T, eventually)).  etc, etc, etc.  

      Without a choice, confirmation bias may help confirm what you hear from your only source, but more likely, it just demotivates you from working really hard at finding some other source of information.  You would have to go way out of your way to find something else.

      "The law is meant to be my servant and not my master, still less my torturer and my murderer." -- James Baldwin. July 11, 1966.

      by YucatanMan on Mon Feb 18, 2013 at 08:10:45 PM PST

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      •  Fair point about the radio and internet, but don't (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        YucatanMan, Eyesbright

        most rural people get cable or Dish TV? I think it's a combo of limits on choice and deliberate choices to limit their exposure to that "liberal media" they are taught to hate by Fox and by their religious and political leaders. It's a narrow-mindedness that would flourish in even the most urban areas -- such as Kansas City, KS, e.g., where some of the most virulent teabaggers call home. But your point's taken, on the whole.

        "Government by organized money is just as dangerous as Government by organized mob." -- Franklin D. Roosevelt

        by Kombema on Mon Feb 18, 2013 at 08:40:36 PM PST

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        •  No on cable. Possibly on Dish or DirecTV. (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          worldlotus, Kombema, Eyesbright

          But that is assuming a level of income that isn't necessarily there - $100 a month or so per month, free and clear of other needs.

          Cable TV is a no because there are hundreds of little towns of a few hundred to a couple thousand people who don't have cable as a choice, period.  I lived there and grew up there, so I sorta know about that.

          Kansas City KS is predominantly Democratic, isn't it?  Well, it used to be.  I agree there are awful Teabaggers in far too many places.

           I may be a little out of date. I got out of town.

          ;-)

          "The law is meant to be my servant and not my master, still less my torturer and my murderer." -- James Baldwin. July 11, 1966.

          by YucatanMan on Mon Feb 18, 2013 at 08:54:44 PM PST

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          •  I have relatives in north central Kansas (3+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Kombema, Eyesbright, YucatanMan

            Most of the little towns around there have cable and internet available, besides satellite.  Fox news blares at my aunt's house most of the day.  I go there to visit my (Democrat) mother several times a year.  Most people have internet and even cell phones.

            I don't think these rural areas are as behind as you think.

            Everything is easy if you don't know what you're talking about.

            by chocoholic on Mon Feb 18, 2013 at 09:42:19 PM PST

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            •  I just visited some which are. Western Kansas (0+ / 0-)

              isn't the same as central.  North Central is near enough to Salina, etc.  Depends on the town, of course.  And the finances of the household a great deal.

              "The law is meant to be my servant and not my master, still less my torturer and my murderer." -- James Baldwin. July 11, 1966.

              by YucatanMan on Tue Feb 19, 2013 at 02:26:32 PM PST

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            •  I answered quickly earlier, but you do have (0+ / 0-)

              a point.

              My much much earlier comment above should probably have said "dozens" rather than hundreds. A lot of little towns have vanished.  I recently visited a couple places we used to hang out - small towns many years ago - with one to two to zero residents today.

              Western Kansas - which what my original comment above was about - is populated more sparsely than Central Kansas (and there's a lot less water!).  All the same, the number of little towns without cable is more likely dozens.

              The point, though, stands:  there's little choice to radio. There's little discussion at the coffee shop other than "Fox." There is little to no presence of anything to break through the Fox barrier.  Even for those who can afford cable, satellite or broadband Internet (where available), there's no motivation to seek out other information.

              Rush has been on radio and TV for 30 years. To people today in rural areas, that type of talk is simply "normal."  

              That brand of meanness is what is infecting Kansas politics today.  Just look at all the votes taking place in Topeka today.

              There's even preparing to amend the Constitution so that severely underfunding education is no longer addressable by the courts.  They're wiping out the power of an entire branch of government in favor of Teahaddism.

              "The law is meant to be my servant and not my master, still less my torturer and my murderer." -- James Baldwin. July 11, 1966.

              by YucatanMan on Tue Feb 19, 2013 at 07:10:14 PM PST

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              •  Just saw this. My best friend is from rural KS, (0+ / 0-)

                and grew up in an evangelical household. Ironically, she got pregnant her senior year, and the "Christian" college she'd been admitted to rescinded its admissions offer. Best thing that ever happened to her, since she ended up at KU and later Harvard.

                She's been my guide to how much things have deteriorated in KS over the years. Used to be far more common sense -- and even egalitarianism and women's rights -- prevailed there, but the American Taliban has taken over the joint, and her family, with a few exceptions, have been part of that take-over. Discouraging as hell, since I know a lot of her family, and absent the propaganda and mind-control of their neighbors, friends, and spiritual leaders, they'd be sensible, good people... somewhere else.

                "Government by organized money is just as dangerous as Government by organized mob." -- Franklin D. Roosevelt

                by Kombema on Sun Feb 24, 2013 at 03:35:18 PM PST

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