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Keith E Rice's Integrated SocioPsychology Blog & Pages

Aligning, integrating and applying the behavioural sciences

John Cacioppo’

Boris and Trump: How do They get away with it?

Boris Johnson has learned very well from his hero, Donald Trump. If the populist right-wing leader of a ‘democratic’ country contradicts himself repeatedly, breaks his promises, has a scurrilous personal life, makes deeply offensive and totally insensitive remarks about anything and anybody, and even tells bare-faced lies, he can get away with it. That’s provided he’s got the right-wing press totally on his side; they attack and smear his opponents with unsubstantiated half-truths and even outright lies, and its journalists avoid taxing the leader and his close political allies with probing questions. Even when the leader’s opponents are succeeding in exposing the corruption of the leader and his cronies. It also helps a great deal, if you have organisations like Cambridge Analytica and lots of Russian bots manipulating social media on your behalf. Daniel Dale at CNN is just one analyst who has delved into what he terms Trump’s “bombardment of lies — Trump’s unceasing campaign to convince people of things that aren’t true.” He goes on to write:- “Trump made more than 2,700 false claims this year [2019]. (We’re still calculating the final total.) Some of them were innocent slips, some of them little exaggerations. But a large number of… Read More

Remainers need Simple Messages and Charismatic Leaders

It’s somewhat astonishing that, in the second week of the UK general election campaign, the Conservatives are polling at an average of 39%, according to the Press Association’s rolling average of voter intentions (highlighted by the Evening Standard’s Rebecca Speare-Coles) – see below. True, Labour are creeping up, now on 29%. But, in what has been a calamitous 10 days for the Tories – from Jacob Rees Mogg’s highly-insensitive comments implying a lack of common sense amongst those who perished in 2017’s Grenfell Tower disaster to Boris Johnson’s hostile reception from South Yorkshire flood victims – Labour should be doing much better. But what about the poor old Liberal Democrats? When the latest (9 November) NatCen Poll of Polls – see below – puts Remain on 53% to Leave’s 47%, how come the Lib Dems have slumped from 21% to just 16%? Given that they are unequivocally Remain and would like to revoke Article 50 without even the formality of a second EU referendum, it is also somewhat astonishing that their voter intentions have slipped so much. Potentially disastrously so! While there are multiple factors accounting for these poll results – and the polls, as has been shown in both the… Read More

How the Plutocrats are waging War on the Bureaucrats… #2

PART 2 Tax obligations and ‘offshoring’ Besides intensely disliking bodies like the European Union due to the laws and regulations they impose on issues like consumer rights, health & safety and worker’s rights, the Plutocracy and the Elite have another very real reason to want to see such bodies severely emasculated if not actually broken up: tax. ‘Offshoring’, in the words of John Urry (2013), “involves moving resources, practices, peoples and monies from one national territory to another but hiding them within  secrecy jurisdictions as they move  through routes wholly or partly hidden from view. Offshoring involves evading rules, laws, taxes, regulations or norms. It is all about rule-breaking, getting around rules in ways that are illegal, or go against the spirit of the law, or which use laws in one jurisdiction to undermine laws in another. Offshore worlds are full of secrets and lies.” Secrecy jurisdictions – or ‘treasure islands’ as Nicholas Shaxson (2011) terms them – are tax havens which provide varying degrees of secrecy – ie: freedom from disclosure. This is to attract foreign individuals who wish to hide assets or income to avoid or reduce taxes in the home tax jurisdiction. Relevant laws and approaches to the… Read More

Social Change

Updated: 17 May 2017 Social change means some aspect of society, culture or sub-culture changes. The changes may be overt and dramatic and obvious to everyone or they may be more discreet and less obvious…until people come to a realisation society around them has already changed. An example of this is the attitude of the general public in the UK towards welfare and benefits. As Elizabeth Clery shows in the results of the 2012 British Social Attitudes survey – see graphic above – there is an increased perception that people on welfare are over-reliant on their benefits and that cutting benefits won’t harm too many people too badly. The following 2 years’ surveys  showed only the most marginal reversal (3%) of this trend (Sarah Alcock, 2015) and the election in 2015  of a Tory government determined to cut even more could be seen as voter approval of these strategies. This is actually a major attitudinal shift in a country that, for many years, had largely prided itself on a generous attitude to welfare. Yet these more subtle changes in public perception often only become news when surveys like the British Social Attitudes annual survey pick them up. Of course, sometimes a slow growth in… Read More

A Biological Basis for vMEMES…?

Updated: 16 November 2015 vMEMES, the motivational systems identified in the Gravesian approach and termed such in Spiral Dynamics, clearly have to have a neurological basis. Whatever your views on Dualism and the ‘Mind-Body Debate’ – whether or not we think there is a ‘mind’ or ‘soul’ distinct from the brain – the motivational effect we recognise as the product of what we call a ‘vMEME’ has to have a concomitant pattern of neural activity. So where is it? Or: where are they…the 8 vMEMES identified so far from Clare W Graves research, that is? When Graves career’ imploded in 1978 (due to major health problems), CAT scans – the first technique for providing truly detailed images of the brain – were only just coming onstream and research into the brain was still relatively primitive. With exceptions such as the remarkable mapping of motor and sensory areas of the brain by Wilder Penfield – Wilder Penfield & Edwin Boldry (1937), Wilder Penfield & Theodore Rasmussen (1950) – research was largely dependent on invasive surgery on animals, post-mortems and cognitive and behavioural studies of brain-damaged patients. Early in the 21st Century, the technology to ‘look inside’ the brain is considerably more advanced… Read More

Bibliography R

A    B    C    D    E    F    G    H    I    J    K    L    M    N    O    P-Q    R    S     T     U    V    W    X-Y-Z Radcliffe-Brown, Alfred (1952): ‘Structure and Function in Primitive Society: Essays & Addresses’ (Cohen & West, London) Rafiq, Arif (2015): ‘Islamic State goes Official in South Asia’ in The Diplomat (4 February) Rahe, Richard, Robert Biersner, David Ryman & Ransom Arthur (1972): ‘Psychosocial Predictors of Illness Behaviour and Failure in Stressful Training’ in Journal of Health & Social Behaviour 13/4 Rahe, Richard, Jack Mahan & Ransom Arthur (1970): ‘Prediction of Near-Future Health Change from Subjects’ Preceding Life Changes’ in Journal of Psychosomatic Research 14/4 Rahe, Richard, Merle Meyer, Michael Smith, George Kjaer & Thomas Holmes (1964): ‘Social Stress and Illness Onset’ in Journal of Psychsomatic Research #8 Rahnema, Majid (1997): ‘Introduction’ in Majid Rahnema & Victoria Bawtree (eds): ‘The Post-Development Reader’ (Zed Books) London) Raine, Adrian (1993): ‘The Psychopathology of Crime: Criminal Behaviour as a Clinical Disorder’ (Academic Press, Waltham MA) Raine, Adrian, Monte Buchsbaum & Lori LaCasse (1997): ‘Brain Abnormalities in Murderers indicated by Positron Emission Tomography’ in Biological Psychiatry #42 Raine, Adrian, Reid Melroy, Susan Bihrle, Jackie Stoddard, Lori LaCasse & Monte Buchsbaum  (1998): ‘Reduced Prefrontal and Increased Subcortical Brain… Read More

Bibliography P-Q

A    B    C    D    E    F    G    H    I    J    K    L    M    N    O    P-Q    R    S     T     U    V    W    X-Y-Z Pakko, Michael & Susan Pollard (2003): ‘Burgernomics: A Big Mac™ Guide to Purchasing Power Parity’ (Federal Reserve Bank of St Louis Review) https://research.stlouisfed.org/publications/review/ (Accessed: 01/12/11) Palmer, Bill  (2017): ‘Confirmed: Russia put up Millions of Dollars to fund French Presidential Candidate Marine Le Pen’ (Palmer Report) http://www.palmerreport.com/politics/russia-marine-le-pen-french-president/2425/ (Accessed: 14/06/17) Palmer, Stephen & Ray Wolfe (1999): ‘Integrative and Eclectic Counselling and Psychotherapy’ (Sage Publications) Pannell, Ian & Darren Conway (2013): ‘Syria Crisis: Incendiary Bomb Victims “like the walking dead” (BBC News) http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-23892594 (Accessed: 29/08/13) Papez, James (1937): ‘A Proposed Mechanism of Emotion’ in Archives of Neurology & Psychiatry #38 Paquette, Daniel (2004): ‘Theorizing the Father-Child Relationship: Mechanisms and Developmental Outcomes’ in Journal of Human Development #47 Parke, Ross (1981): ‘Fathers’ (Harvard University Press) Parker, Kandis Cooke & Donald Forrest (1993): ‘Attachment  Disorder: an Emerging Concern for Shool Counsellors’ in Elementary School Guidance & Counselling 27/3 Parks, Penny (1994): ‘The Counsellor’s Guide to Parks Inner Child Therapy’ (Souvenir Press, London) Parsons, Talcott (1937): ‘The Structure of Social Action’ (McGraw Hill, New York NY) Parsons, Talcott (1964): ‘Evolutionary Universals in… Read More

Topless FEMEN: who’s exploiting who?

You might have missed it in all the intense media coverage of Margaret Thatcher’s death this Monday but 5 FEMEN activists sure upset Vladimir Putin on his visit with Angela Merkel to an industrial fair in Hanover. With “Fuck you, dictator!” scrawled across their bare breasts, they chanted the same slogan as they rushed at him – only to be bundled away by the security men. Although he claimed afterwards to have been amused by the protest, according to the leader of the protest, Inna Shevchenko, writing in The Guardian 2 days later, the Russian president was furious and demanded the Germans prosecute the protestors. What a great excuse FEMEN provide to feature a picture of an attractive woman with bare breasts on my Blog – all in the name of serious sociopsychological commentary! What a great excuse for the tabloids – including those who have supposedly turned their back on Page 3 girls – to include pictures of pretty topless women in their news pages! FEMEN, the radical Feminist group who have staged topless protests at key events, including a mass by Pope Benedict in November 2011, Euro 2012 and the London Olympics, have certainly gained considerable coverage in the… Read More