There's No Vaccine for This
A Leger poll finds Canadians aren't warming to that cold fish, Pierre Poilievre. Another recent poll finds we're none too fond of the other guy either. Both results are easy to understand. Canadians, it seems, are tired of Justin's empty platitudes and uneasy at Pete's radical right rants.
Does this mean we're out of the woods? Hardly. The American Contagion unleashed by decades of Republican perfidy (going back to Gingrich) culminating in the election of that nation's worst president ever has crossed our border and embedded itself with a segment of our population mainly from one geographical heartland. The Freedom Convoy mob and Poilievre are testament to its resilience.
So, what are we up against? This seems almost farcical, counterintuitive, illogical. True, but as the NYT columnist, Thomas Edsall, writes, we're facing the age of "belief polarization" that is immune to arguments of logic or fact.In their May 2021 paper, “Belief polarization in a complex world,” Alan Jern, Kai-min Kevin Chang and Charles Kemp — of the Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology, Carnegie Mellon and the University of Melbourne — write: “Belief polarization occurs when two people with opposing prior beliefs both strengthen their beliefs after observing the same data.”
There is, they continue, “ample evidence that people sustain different beliefs even when faced with the same information, and they interpret that information differently.” They also note that “stark differences in beliefs can arise and endure due to human limitations in interpreting complex information.”
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