Colbert Report - Jonathan Haidt

Professor of Psychology Jonathan Haidt discusses his book The Righteous Mind on The Colbert Report. He previously described himself as a liberal but at the end of the video says:
I was a liberal my whole life until I started writing the book and then, while trying to explain conservatives to my fellow liberals, ... I realised actually conservatives see a lot of things that liberals can't see. They actually have a very good understanding of human nature ... not to say that the Republicans are right ... but if you step back, I actually think that conservatives have a more accurate view of human nature than do liberals.
From a previous video ...

Jonathan Haidt, What Can Liberals Learn From Conservatives? (1:15 in the video)
Conservatives, I believe, are much much wiser about the limitations of the individual, about the flaws of reasoning, and about the need to anchor us in a past. Liberals tend to be very high on openness to experience, liberals love change, love diversity, "the very fact that something is an old idea is a reason to doubt it, it probably comes from a time of patriarchy, it's outdated".

I recently discovered that the metaphor of a wall is a great acid test for separating liberals from conservatives: if you tell liberals there is a wall over there they'll say "oh well let's knock it down, walls are bad, we need to knock down walls, we need to move around them, we need free flow, and no obstacles".

And conservatives are much wiser about the need for structure, the need for limitations. If everything is possible, it's very hard for people to find satisfaction: this was the great insight of the sociologist Emile Durkheim, another liberal who, basically when you read him today, sounds like he's onto some great conservative ideas.

So I think liberals desperately need to read some conservative theory to understand that a world of freedom, mobility and diversity is a recipe for a world of chaos, anomie and social disillusion.
File under: diversity is a recipe for chaos, anomie and social disillusion.

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