The Independent Whig

The Independent Whig has written 286 posts for The Independent Whig

Stop conflating ideology with government.

I know my subject line may seem counterintuitive. Let me explain. Liberal and conservative, first and foremost, are psychological profiles. We can test for them objectively through methods like Haidt’s moral foundations questionnaires. Moral intuitions follow from those profiles. Full blown moral visions a la Sowell follow from the intuitions. Desired social structures and tenets … Continue reading

The Blood of Westminster is on the Hands of the Political Left

The attacks at Westminster in London, Charlie Hebdo, the Bataclan, and Nice in France, and Brussels in Belgium, are a direct result of the Lennon-esque (“Imagine there’s no countries, and no religion too”) open borders Platonic idealism of the left wing psychological profile.. Human nature has not changed since the time of Plato.  The psychological … Continue reading

Political Strife and Societal Decay are Caused in Part By Treating Feelings as Valid Reasons for Social Constructs

Each of the following four things is not like the others.  But too often we assume some or all of them to be one and the same.  This misunderstanding is a major cause of partisan rancor. The psychological profiles of liberalism, conservatism, and libertarianism, consisting of things like Personality traits like openness or orderliness Cognitive … Continue reading

Van Jones and Jon Haidt Make the Case for Conservatism

Jonathan Haidt’s essay, Van Jones’ Excellent Metaphors About the Dangers of Ideological Safety, and the sentiments Jones expresses, are in their core essence an argument against liberalism and in favor of conservatism. Here’s a video clip of Jones’ comments, below which is a transcript of them from the Haidt essay: Van Jones: I don’t like bigots … Continue reading

Conservatism is Right. Liberalism is Wrong.

Liberal and conservative are 1) psychological profiles from which emerge 2) moral sentiments or intuitions, and 3) value systems, or sets of principles of governance. The first two of these are real and should be respected. Every individual deserves their dignity. The third should be subjected to critical inquiry of the sort described by Popper, … Continue reading

Heterodox Academy Should Offer More Non-Liberal Viewpoints, Not Just Rail Against the Evils of the Liberal Monoculture

In Switch: How to Change Things When Change Is Hard Chip and Dan Heath show that the cultural environment in which we live acts as a “behavioral autopilot” that shapes our behaviors, thoughts, and intuitions. The autopilot of American popular culture leans strongly to the left because it is owned and operated by the inhabitants of … Continue reading

The Left Wing Tilt of American Popular Culture Distorts Our Grasp of Current Events

In their book Switch: How to Change Things When Change Is Hard Chip and Dan Heath describe how the cultural environment – the “interlocking sets of values, virtues, norms, practices, identities, institutions, technologies, and evolved psychological mechanisms” (from the definition of morality, here) that are shared by a community – acts as a behavioral autopilot for the … Continue reading

It’s All About the Narrative, Part 2: Narratives are Social Facts

Narratives are social facts. They are emergent complex systems that are greater than the sum of their parts. They are not worlds full of objects some of which happen to be moral foundations or sacred values.   The narrative of a group represents the collective consciousness, the consensual hallucination, of the group.  It explains the groups perception … Continue reading

Polemics are in the eye of the beholder.

What some see as an increase in my inflexibility and angry polemics over the past couple of years I see as an increase in my knowledge, assimilation of it into my perspective, and, based on that, my increased confidence in asserting and standing behind that perspective.  I’m less prone to say “You’re the expert, I’m just an amateur. so what do I know, … Continue reading

Capitalism, Not Racism, Flipped the South to Republicans

The left wing spin-doctoring of social science that’s summarized in a Scientific American, article titled Is Social Science Politically Biased? (quote at bottom of this post) has also occurred with American history, and for the mostly same reasons, explained in How American Popular Culture Misunderstands Conservatism. Specifically, the notion that Republicans had a “southern strategy” to win the south with … Continue reading

I Support Viewpoint Diversity


A politically diverse group of social scientists, natural scientists, humanists, and other scholars who want to improve our academic disciplines and universities. We share a concern about a growing problem: the loss or lack of “viewpoint diversity.” When nearly everyone in a field shares the same political orientation, certain ideas become orthodoxy, dissent is discouraged, and errors can go unchallenged.

An Interpretation of Jonathan Haidt’s Moral Foundations Theory

This sidebar lists a series of posts which together make up an essay relating Moral Foundations Theory to today's politics, and even a little history, as viewed through The Independent Whig's six-foundation moral lens.


Venn Diagram of Liberal and Conservative Moral Foundations