Thursday, August 23, 2007

Be Sure to read "The Authoritarians" by Bob Altemeyer

I have just finished "The Authoritarians" a free online book written by Bob Altemeyer who has been researching this topic for 40 years. Apparently he is close to retirement and this book gives a summary of the many studies he has run over 40 years. This is a must read for anyone interested in understanding the American Radical Right today and why the term "pseudo-conservative" was first prominently used in a book called "The Authoritarian Personality" almost 60 years ago. Altemeyer also distinguishes 'conservatism' from 'authoritarianism' and I believe that authoritarianism is in large part what I refer to as pseudo-conservatism. It is important to understand that Altemeyer is reporting what he has found with scientific studies conducted over four decades and not, like me, just presenting opinions based on my own reading and thinking. I heartily recommend this book!

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