“I drove by the fork in the road and went straight.”
Why do humans gravitate to and obsess over politics?
Simple: our brains are wired this way. It’s natural.
Specifically, a political identity gives you a default opinion, on every hotly-contested topic, without having to do the work necessary to form an opinion yourself. Super convenient.
Secondly, a political identity gives us an instant “tribe” — a social safety net that allows us to signal virtue and receive cheap praise.
Lastly, having a political identity invites confirmation bias —maybe the strongest drug known to man.
When we have a strong political identity, rarely do we seek a non-consensus view, forgetting that being right + non-consensus is really the only way to earn uncommon success or growth.
In short: we like politics because it allows for lazy thinking.
After all, why would I do the work of researching climate change, tax reform, economics, immigration, the latest Supreme Court nominee (“so what if I’ve never heard of this guy until 19 seconds ago, I hate/love him!”), or any other topic when I can simply rely on my in-group to create an opinion I can scoop up cheaply?
If you believe you are a liberal or a conservative because you are fundamentally “good” — you are mistaken.
If you believe your side has a monopoly on virtue or knowledge — you are mistaken.
Solution: drop any strong political identity completely, become independent, or be risk becoming a useful idiot. 🙂
and don’t be this guy: