Stop Fact-Checking Trump: He Feeds On Your Attention

You give Donald Trump a gift every time you call him a liar

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Think what you will about Trump, he’s extraordinarily good at staying the spotlight. Human beings love a good drama. Image credit: REUTERS.

When we are presented with evidence that contradicts our beliefs our brains respond as if our physical safety is threatened

This is more than the inversion of a kitschy platitude (what Ben Shapiro often phrases as, “facts don’t care about your feelings”)— it’s a deep and somewhat disturbing truth about the relationship between reality and personal belief. I don’t want to dive into an epistemological rabbit hole (I’ll save that for future articles), so suffice it to say that no amount of evidence is guaranteed to convince someone that their beliefs are wrong. In fact, our brains respond as if our physical safety is threatened when we are presented with evidence that contradicts our beliefs. And this is particularly true when it comes to political beliefs. While this is interesting, it’s not really that surprising if you’ve ever gotten into an argument with someone about politics, morality, or religion.

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Ben Shapiro often says that “facts don’t care about your feelings.” But he’s dead wrong about this. Facts are nothing more than strong conclusions drawn from the independent convergence of evidence. This concept is known as consilience, and it is the driving force behind everything from collective cultural consciousness to scientific theory. Image credit: Leah Hogsten, AP.
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Do you see motion in this image? You probably won’t be surprised that this is a static image, not a gif or a video. Some theorists have even suggested that visual illusions are evidence that our subjective experience is almost guaranteed to be wrong about the underlying nature of the universe — a view that I find quite attractive.
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Is Trump fit and thin? Does he own a rifle? Can an eagle operate a machine gun? If you’re asking these questions, you’ve already lost the game of 4D chess. Even though this illustration was made as a joke, it takes on a heftier symbolic purpose in the game of bullshit. Image credit: Jason Heuser.
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A screenshot from the subreddit, The Donald. Trump plays a lot of 4D chess, which is a game beyond the rules of truth or lies. He also trolls the left and the mainstream media by deliberately angering people and making himself the focus of the conversation in order to distract from productive discussion.

Author of Organumics: An Epigenetic Re-Framing of Consciousness, Life, and Evolution.

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