The true psychological basis of the electoral vote is not the convictions but the group identity

The true psychological basis of the electoral vote is not the convictions but the group identity

Biden the savior, Trump the clown, the Catalan procés tribalist, the Ministry of Equality (or monastery, in many ways), the fascism of Vox, the concrete face of Sánchez … all these ideas, beliefs, hunches and even doctrines fly, mix, diverge, nest in some brains, flee from others because where there is no bush there is no potato

And finally, out of all that gibberish, the electoral vote takes place every four years . Because, as the following study suggests, we base our popular theory of democracy on three foundations that are, in fact, false.

Three false fundamentals

The three pillars on which our popular conception of democracy is based are:

  • Beliefs seek the truth
  • Many people have stable and meaningful political beliefs.
  • People choose their political candidates based on these beliefs.

However, according to the study cited , things are working so idyllically.

Political beliefs are mental states that are not formed based on data and therefore do not respond or change with them, and are also motivated by emotions, not so much by judgment or rational scrutiny .

If a political belief is socially adaptive, providing information that disagrees with it does not usually change it as much as would be expected if we were dealing with a non-political belief.

In reality, then, according to the study authors, political beliefs differ from beliefs about the real world in that they do not seek the truth. Nor do most people actually have significant stable beliefs, but rather these appear, disappear and adapt according to the will of the group of which the individual is a part .

And most importantly: the true psychological basis of the vote is not beliefs but group identity, that is, endogroup bias and tribalism . Feeling that we are part of something bigger than ourselves. That others accept us. That we wear the colors, the flags, the chants, the slogans of those around us and we merge with them in a kind of social dance that basically produces dopamine.