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March 22, 2023

Why Are Conservatives Happier, Better Adjusted, and Healthier Than Leftwingers?

Is it that being a leftist makes you miserable and mentally ill, or is it that being miserable and mentally ill makes you a leftists?

I suspect both. Leftists are sad losers and attracted to a Political Cope that says all of their failures are due to other people. And then they're deranged even further by the constant IV drip of unhealthy, obsessive, sick ideations from the leftist cult.

John Sexton writes about this today.

American Affairs Journal has published an interesting essay looking at what the author calls the "well-being gap." Essentially this is the idea, which is apparently fairly well known among social scientists, that conservatives tend to be happier in general while liberals are more likely to be depressed.

He quotes from the essay:

Although the study by Gimbrone et al. was focused on trends among young people, the well-being gap between conservatives and liberals is not unique to youth. The gap manifests clearly across all age groups and is present as far back as the polling goes. In the General Social Survey, for instance, there has been a consistent 10 percentage point gap between the share of conservatives versus liberals who report being "very happy" in virtually every iteration since 1972 (when the GSS was launched).

Academic research consistently finds the same pattern. Conservatives do not just report higher levels of happiness, they also report higher levels of meaning in their lives. The effects of conservatism seem to be enhanced when conservatives are surrounded by others like themselves. However, in an analysis looking at ninety countries from 1981 through 2014, the social psychologists Olga Stavrova and Maike Luhmann found "the positive association between conservative ideology and happiness only rarely reversed. Liberals were happier than conservatives in only 5 out of 92 countries and never in the United States."


Conservatives are more likely to be patriotic and religious. They are more likely to be (happily) married and less likely to divorce. Religiosity, in turn, correlates with greater subjective and objective well-being (here, here, here). So does patriotism. So does marriage. Consequently, some have argued that the apparent psychological benefit of conservatism actually comes from feeling deeper connections with one's country, one's family, and the Divine. On this model, conservatism itself would be largely incidental to the happiness gap. A liberal who was similarly religious, or patriotic, or had a similarly happy marriage, would be expected to have similar levels of happiness as conservative peers.

LOL, right, if a liberal were just as patriotic. Uh-huh.

Liberals only discovered that Russia is bad, mmm-kay in 2017 when Hillary Clinton framed Russia for her election loss.

In a similar vein, studies have repeatedly found that conservatives--both politicians and laymen--tend to be more conventionally attractive than liberals (and have better sex lives). Moreover, people who are healthier in childhood have been shown to be more likely to become conservative as adults.

If this author is trying to flatter me, I approve.

Sexton links his previous article about the hard-to-pretend-away fact that the high rates of depression, anxiety, and suicidality in teenaged girls -- who almost monolithically have a left-culture type of mindset -- is due to the catastrophism and constant negativism of the messages they get from leftwing culture and politics.

Jonathan Haidt just wrote about this, and about his theory that modern leftism is actually actively promoting and cultivating mental illness. Just as positive cognitive behavioral therapy can cure you of mental illness, so can negative cognitive behavioral therapy, of the kind pushed on people (and children) by all the institutions of the left, instill mental illness into the otherwise sane, or turn someone's minor mental health problem into a full-on mental health crisis.

Why the Mental Health of Liberal Girls Sank First and Fastest Evidence for Lukianoff's reverse CBT hypothesis

Jon Haidt
Mar 9


Greg [Lukianoff] is prone to depression, and after hospitalization for a serious episode in 2007, Greg learned CBT (Cognitive Behavioral Therapy). In CBT you learn to recognize when your ruminations and automatic thinking patterns exemplify one or more of about a dozen "cognitive distortions," such as catastrophizing, black-and-white thinking, fortune telling, or emotional reasoning. Thinking in these ways causes depression, as well as being a symptom of depression. Breaking out of these painful distortions is a cure for depression.

What Greg saw in 2013 were students justifying the suppression of speech and the punishment of dissent using the exact distortions that Greg had learned to free himself from. Students were saying that an unorthodox speaker on campus would cause severe harm to vulnerable students (catastrophizing); they were using their emotions as proof that a text should be removed from a syllabus (emotional reasoning). Greg hypothesized that if colleges supported the use of these cognitive distortions, rather than teaching students skills of critical thinking (which is basically what CBT is), then this could cause students to become depressed. Greg feared that colleges were performing reverse CBT.

I thought the idea was brilliant because I had just begun to see these new ways of thinking among some students at NYU. I volunteered to help Greg write it up, and in August 2015 our essay appeared in The Atlantic with the title: The Coddling of the American Mind. Greg did not like that title; his original suggestion was "Arguing Towards Misery: How Campuses Teach Cognitive Distortions." He wanted to put the reverse CBT hypothesis in the title.


Greg and I decided to expand our original essay into a book in which we delved into the many causes of the sudden change in campus culture. Our book focused on three "great untruths" that seemed to be widely believed by the students who were trying to shut down speech and prosecute dissent:

1. What doesn't kill you makes you weaker

2. Always trust your feelings

3. Life is a battle between good people and evil people.

Each of these untruths was the exact opposite of a chapter in my first book, The Happiness Hypothesis, which explored ten Great Truths passed down to us from ancient societies east and west. We published our book in 2018 with the title, once again, of The Coddling of the American Mind. Once again, Greg did not like the title. He wanted the book to be called "Disempowered," to capture the way that students who embrace the three great untruths lose their sense of agency. He wanted to capture reverse CBT.

He just wrote about the strong correlation of a leftwing political identity with depression and mental illness.

Interestingly, there's not a strong or consistent association of leftism (he says "liberalism," I won't say that; the left hasn't been liberal since Mondale) with mental illness among minorities.

But there is a strong one among whites, especially, get this, white women.

Who would have guessed!

White women become insane as they adopt leftism as an identity? Or, insane white women are attracted to leftism as an identity?

Why?! How can these unrelated things be so closely related?!

It's baffling. I'm knee-deep in baff.

In September 2020, Zach Goldberg, who was then a graduate student at Georgia State University, discovered something interesting in a dataset made public by Pew Research. Pew surveyed about 12,000 people in March 2020, during the first month of the Covid shutdowns. The survey included this item: "Has a doctor or other healthcare provider EVER told you that you have a mental health condition?" Goldberg graphed the percentage of respondents who said "yes" to that item as a function of their self-placement on the liberal-conservative 5-point scale and found that white liberals were much more likely to say yes than white moderates and conservatives. (His analyses for non-white groups generally found small or inconsistent relationships with politics.)

I wrote to Goldberg and asked him to redo it for men and women separately, and for young vs. old separately. He did, and he found that the relationship to politics was much stronger for young (white) women. You can see Goldberg's graph here, but I find it hard to interpret a three-way interaction using bar charts, so I downloaded the Pew dataset and created line graphs, which make it easier to interpret.

Here's the same data, showing three main effects: gender (women higher), age (youngest groups higher), and politics (liberals higher). The graphs also show three two-way interactions (young women higher, liberal women higher, young liberals higher). And there's an important three-way interaction: it is the young liberal women who are highest. They are so high that a majority of them said yes, they had been told that they have a mental health condition.


In recent weeks--since the publication of the CDC's report on the high and rising rates of depression and anxiety among teens--there has been a lot of attention to a different study that shows the gender-by-politics interaction: Gimbrone, Bates, Prins, & Keyes (2022), titled: "The politics of depression: Diverging trends in internalizing symptoms among US adolescents by political beliefs." Gimbrone et al. examined trends in the Monitoring the Future dataset, which is the only major US survey of adolescents that asks high school students (seniors) to self-identify as liberal or conservative (using a 5-point scale). The survey asks four items about mood/depression.

Gimbrone et al. found that prior to 2012 there were no sex differences and only a small difference between liberals and conservatives. But beginning in 2012, the liberal girls began to rise, and they rose the most. The other three groups followed suit, although none rose as much, in absolute terms, as did the liberal girls (who rose .73 points since 2010, on a 5-point scale where the standard deviation is .89).


This Gimbrone jibrone tried to argue that liberal girls had been driven crazy during the Obama Administration because conservatives had such cultural power during that period they drove the girls crazy.

Even leftist jerkoff Matthew Yglesias could see that was a totally bonkers cope, and that the problem isn't that Evil Conservative Are Making Liberal Girls Crazy, it's that seeing people you don't like as "Evil Conservatives" that is making mentally-unhealthy girls even crazier.

Journalist Matt Yglesias also took up the puzzle of why liberal girls became more depressed than others, and in a long and self-reflective Substack post, he described what he has learned about depression from his own struggles involving many kinds of treatment. Like Michelle Goldberg, he briefly considered the hypothesis that liberals are depressed because they're the only ones who see that "we're living in a late-stage capitalist hellscape during an ongoing deadly pandemic w record wealth inequality, 0 social safety net/job security, as climate change cooks the world," to quote a tweet from the Washington Post tech columnist Taylor Lorenz. Yglesias agreed with Goldberg and other writers that the Lorenz explanation--reality makes Gen Z depressed--doesn't fit the data, and, because of his knowledge of depression, he focused on the reverse path: depression makes reality look terrible. As he put it: "Mentally processing ambiguous events with a negative spin is just what depression is."

Taylor Lorenz should know a thing or two about mental illness-- but she is a Mental Illness Cultivator, and Mental Illness Connoisseur. She loves her mental illness and wants to spread it to others.

Meanwhile, even Yglesias has the sense to see that the leftwing Matrix of perpetual grievance, heretic-hunting, purity purging, scapegoating, and blame-shifting is unhealthy for the mind. He basically repeats Greg Lukianoff's hypothesis (let's say "fact") that it's the politically-oriented catastrophizing and endless negative ruminations that is causing the depression. Not Gimbrone's claim, which is that "reality" is causing the depression.

Gimbrone's theory basically boils down to a leftwing political cope: Leftists are depressed and mentally-ill precisely because they see the world clearly -- the world is depressing and it is good and proper to go crazy beholding it.

YYglesias tells us what he has learned from years of therapy, which clearly involved CBT:
It's important to reframe your emotional response as something that's under your control:

Stop saying "so-and-so made me angry by doing X."

Instead say "so-and-so did X, and I reacted by becoming angry."

And the question you then ask yourself is whether becoming angry made things better? Did it solve the problem?

Yglesias wrote that "part of helping people get out of their trap is teaching them not to catastrophize." He then described an essay by progressive journalist Jill Filipovic that argued, in Yglesias's words, that "progressive institutional leaders have specifically taught young progressives that catastrophizing is a good way to get what they want."


And further, this is why the left will continue instilling mental illness in its followers: Because mentally-ill people need government help and political copes. The left may not be able to outbreed the right, but they'll make up for the birth gap by turning sane children crazy and therefore in need of the left.

In a sane world, Taylor Lorenz would recognize her mental illness and try to make herself better.

In the crazy world pushed on us by deranged leftwingers, Taylor Lorenz loves her mental illness so much she attempts to infect children with it. Leftists hate everything -- except their own fucking mental illnesses.

A hugely impactful book, to me, was The Easy Way to Quit Smoking. It's basically a short book of cognitive behavioral therapy. It takes all the arguments in your head for why you should keep smoking and rebuts them, and then just keeps repeating all this. The repetition is useful; it's kind of hypnotic.

Or it just follows the plan for giving an effective briefing, as told to me by Louis Gohmert's former chief of staff Connie Hare:

First, tell them what you're going to be telling them.

Then, tell them what you came to tell them.

Finally, finish up by telling them what you just told them.

Like, if you think (and many do) "I want to keep smoking because I love having a cigarette after a good meal," the book responds, "You really like having that cigarette after a good meal because having to not smoke for the duration of the meal made you anxious. You were distracted by craving a cigarette, and smoking a cigarette cured that distraction. You were a drug addict in a short period of withdrawal, so of course having the drug cured those withdrawal symptoms. But instead of focusing on how good that post-meal cigarette was, maybe think about the anxiety and discomfort and the constant nagging desire to go outside and have a cigarette during the meal was. You're focusing on the good thing -- the relief of the nicotine withdrawal symptoms -- and not on the bad things -- the nicotine withdrawal symptoms themselves. Did you enjoy those, too? Of course not."

It's super-effective. I know it sounds crazy that "bibliotherapy" -- reading a book -- can make it easy to quit smoking but I swear, quitting was far, far easier than I imagined it would be. Again, I can't recommend this book enough to smokers.

One insight I got from the book is that any addiction is like a physical parasite in the mind, and physical parasites want to protect their own existence. An addiction wants to continue "living;" it doesn't want to die. Or be "killed" by its host.

And being a parasite of the mind, an addiction changes the mind so that the mind protects the addiction from being killed. If you think "I'd like to quit smoking," the addiction, the mind-parasite, says in response, "But what about how pleasing that after-dinner cigarette is!" Or: "But isn't it wonderful to go outside and be with fellow smokers and just have casual conversation with strangers?"

The mind-parasite doesn't mention that you're forced outside due to your smoking, pr that the cameradery you feel is due to being part of an increasingly small minority, or that you could strike up any of these Cigarette Conversations with people over any excuse it all. At a bar, you could just stay inside and talk about baseball or whisky with a stranger.

Anyway, I'm mentioning all that because in people like Taylor Lorenz, or leftists who deny the sanity-destroying effects of their cult, are showing the signs of having an addiction -- in this case, an addiction to their actual mental illness -- and the mental parasite is attempting to protect itself from being eradicated by positive treatment by making up reason as to why Being Mentally Ill Is Awesome. Your mental illness is a very real part of you, right? It's what makes you, you! You wouldn't want to destroy the most sacred core of You, would you? It is your mental illness that shows "you're not like the other girls" and that you're deep and complex.

And speaking of catastrophizing: "experts" are warning that we only have six years to save the earth by essentially returning to stone age technological levels (which will immediately cause a massive die-off that would make Hitler and Stalin and Mao all blanche, returning the earth to stone age human populations).

They want you to forget that in 2018, they said we only had five years to save the world.

For those of you with an Ace-level of mathematical skill, that means the earth ended in January 2023.

Greta Thunberg -- who just received an honorary Doctorate of Theology (theology! Perfect!!!) -- warned people that the earth would end in 2023, back in 2018. (Or her leftist Stage Mom parents did.)

When someone pointed out this prediction to her, she did what all Doctors of Theology do, she admitted her error and promised to do better.

Nah just kidding, she f***ing deleted it like a c***.

But everyone knew this chubby retard was going to do that, so they screencapped it first.


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posted by Ace at 02:00 PM

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