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This is a very interesting account of a certain mindset which seem more prevalent in the USA than in Europe. Prof. Altemeyer brings a hint of humour to his own reading of this book, so you get a real feel for a scientist at work, as well as his findings over many years. I would be delighted if there were more of his books available on Audible, as they would bring important work to a wider public - especially in this US election year.
If you misinterpret the message of this book, you will find that it appears to be some professor trashing what appears to be single political groups. He isn't. The book does draw parallels between his theories on human behavior and current political issues, but if, upon reading this book, you find that he is getting too political, you are missing the message. These are observations, not opinions (for the most part).
8 of 9 people found this review helpful
This turned out to be one of my favorite Audible books so far along with The Drunkards Walk. How Randomness Rules our Lives. I think it's actually an important book that's been flying below the radar because it wasn't commercially published. At least not at first, it may be now. Liberals, moderates, and conservatives alike, really need to read it. When you've finished you'll better understand not just Nazi Germany, but the IRA in Ireland, the Cultural Revolution under Mao, the war in Yugoslavia under Karadzic and even Pat Robertson. Explaining Pat Robertson is no small accomplishment but the authors index is the best explanation yet of radical Muslims as well. Have you ever wondered why there seems to be an endless supply of people willing to blow themselves up? Well that's because there is an endless supply and this book explains why that is. It all revolves around a way of thinking called the RWA index. RWA stands for Right Wing Authoritarian. An unfortunate title since it doesn't help his credibility with conservatives and conservatives need to read this as much as anyone. He chose this title I assume because in the US and Canada these people tend to gravitate to the political right more than the left but they're found on the left as well. A better title might have been the Muddle Headed Followers index. The index itself is politically neutral. Everyone knows a few of these of people. They're the ones in the office who don't reason from fact to opinion. Instead, they choose an opinion that fits the way they want the world to be, then select facts that support them. I personally know so many of these people I've begun to think that reasoning from fact to opinion must be something rare and difficult and maybe should be taught as a mandatory part of a civics class. It doesn't seem to come naturally in my area. But then look at where I'm from.
16 of 19 people found this review helpful