Social Issues November 5, 2011

As the Occupy protests continue around the world, heated debates are taking place between conservative and liberal thinkers, with people on either end of the spectrum completely convinced that their view of the protests is correct. The strength of those beliefs is nothing new. In fact, psychologists have found that when a person is talking to someone who is on the opposite end of the political spectrum from their own, they often end up feeling intensely negative about their opponent. And that emotional response has a name: disgust.

That's a pretty intense reaction to someone who is simply expressing a point of view. Disgust is normally reserved for things that might make us physically ill, like waste products. So how can a political conversation generate disgust? Well, some of it stems from an inability to understand how the other person can hold views that are fundamentally opposed to our understanding of the world.

Luckily, 'Information is Beautiful' have created this clever infographic to help people comprehend each political position. And that's not so easy to do in an even-handed way: the creator of the chart was forced to confront his biases when he was working on the chart. In the end, he amended it after realizing that his left-leaning views had influenced the design.

Check it out below (click the graphic for a full-size version):




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