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Comment author: flame 24 April 2016 05:35:17AM 3 points [-]

Also, the problem with all the pieces that focus on Trump's style is that they completely ignore his substance. Trump's position on immigration is only "controversial" in the sense that the elite are against it while everyone else is for it. Thus it's not surprising that Trump is doing well. In fact looking at other western countries we see parties with similar positions doing well despite having styles that are all over the place.

Comment author: flame 24 April 2016 05:25:49AM 3 points [-]

Well, the "rationality" of the piece is rather dubious. For example consider your description of the "backfire effect":

For instance, Mitt Romney condemned Trump as a “phony” and “fraud” shortly before the March 15 primaries. This type of attack only strengthens the emotional desire to vote for Trump among anti-establishment voters by triggering a thinking error called the backfire effect — a tendency for our beliefs to grow stronger when they are challenged by contradictory evidence.

Except Romney wasn't presenting evidence, he was making an assertion. And in a lot of circumstances it is perfectly rational to update away from assertions.

More generally, in a lot of cases you describe acting on fear as irrational even though the fear in question is perfectly rational.