Common Enemies and the Dark Side of Friendship By James Reed

Continuing our “war” on the New York Times, our next piece of deconstruction relates to this, another one of their “shocking” revelations:

https://www.nytimes.com/2018/04/16/science/friendship-discrimination.html

“Yet researchers who explore the deep nature of friendship admit the bond can have its thorns, bruise spots and pesticide traces.

Take the new evidence that people choose friends who resemble themselves, right down to the moment-to-moment pattern of blood flow in the brain. The tendency toward homophily, toward flocking together with birds of your inner and outer feather, gives rise to a harmonious sense of belonging and shared purpose, to easy laughter and volumes of subtext mutually, wordlessly, joyfully understood.

But homophily, researchers said, is also the basis of tribalism, xenophobia and racism, the urge to “otherize” those who differ from you and your beloved friends in one or more ways.

The impulse can yield absurd results. One recent study from the University of Michigan had subjects stand outside on a cold winter day and read a brief story about a hiker who was described as either a “left-wing, pro-gay-rights Democrat” or a “right-wing, anti-gay-rights Republican.”

When asked whether the hypothetical hiker might feel chilly as well, participants were far more likely to say yes if the protagonist’s political affiliation agreed with their own. But a political adversary — does that person even have skin, let alone a working set of thermal sensors?

“Why must it be the case that we love our own and hate the other?” Nicholas Christakis of Yale University said. “I have struggled with this, and read and studied a tremendous amount, and I have mostly dispiriting news. It’s awful. Xenophobia and in-group bias go hand-in-hand.”

Game theory models predict it, real-life examples confirm it. “In order to band together, we need a common enemy,” Dr. Christakis said.”

 

That would seem to be a big problem for those who hold to the globalism and cosmopolitanism of The New York Times, as it is a bio-psychological argument for tribalism. What is their answer? Well the good news is that the out group does not need to be genocided, even if disliked, and that just has to be good news for everybody, even though the Left/antifa will ignore that advice in the 1917-style blood baths to come, when continuing to kill Trumpers. And, the psychological evidence shows that friendships are fragile, which I don’t think helps their case at all.

 

So, we are left here with a basic argument for tribalism, right in the heart of globalism and cosmopolitanism. How did this ever get through the editorial process? Lift your game, New York Times, you guys are giving too much intellectual ammo to our side of politics. Just go back to telling us what divine beings, Beijing Biden and Karma Harris are!

 

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Saturday, 27 November 2021
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