This leads Lakoff and Haidt to strongly reject what you might call the “Enlightenment model” for thinking about reasoning and persuasion, and leads Kahan to talk about motivated reasoning, rather than rational or objective reasoning. Once again, these thinkers are essentially agreeing that because morality biases us long before consciousness and reasoning set in, factual and logical argument are not at all a good way to get us to change our behavior and how we respond.
This is also a point I made recently, noting how Republicans become more factually wrong with higher levels of education. Facts clearly don’t change their minds—if anything, they make matters worse! Lakoff, too, emphasizes how refuting a false conservative claim can actually reinforce it. And he doesn’t merely show why the Enlightenment mode of thinking is outdated; he also stresses that liberals are more wedded to it than conservatives, and this irrational rationalism lies at the root of many political failures on the left.Read it at AlterNet
How the Right-Wing Brain Works and What That Means for Progressives
by Chris Mooney
While this article is chiefly about conservative values, it also talks about liberal values and the science underlying understanding them.
Although Mooney doesn't discuss the relation of value systems and economics, the implications of the scientific findings are rather obvious. This article explains the cognitive-affective rationale explaining why liberal and conservative approaches to policy including economic policy are as they are.