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This psychological quirk explains why Trump supporters can’t see he’s an idiot — according to science

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President Donald Trump drinks bottled water/Screenshot

While critics are overly-aware of the president’s lies, a little-known psychological quirk can help explain why Donald Trump’s supporters are so sure of him — and why they can’t see that he’s full of it.

Ex-Obama administration aide Cass Sunstein noted in a Bloomberg op-ed published Thursday that the field of heuristics, or mental shortcuts, helps us establish rules of thumb when we don’t have hard proof.

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“In deciding whether a product or activity is risky, people tend to ask: Do I know about situations in which someone actually got hurt?” he wrote. “That’s the ‘availability heuristic’ in action.”

The “confidence heuristic” is one of the lesser-known types of these mental shortcuts, primarily because it was theorized in the mid-1990’s.

“When we are listening to others,” Sunstein wrote, “we are more likely to be persuaded by people who seem really confident.”

Research shows that people are most likely to follow “the views of their most confident member,” who is likely to be considered more credible. People being proven wrong can hurt this confidence quotient, but in the case of Trump, there is an entire system in place to sow doubt — his constant cries of “fake news.”

“Philip Tetlock of the University of Pennsylvania has found that most people respond more enthusiastically to simple, clear rhetoric from leaders,” the legal scholar wrote, “downplaying tradeoffs, than to complex rhetoric that points to competing considerations and that can easily be seen as a sign of weakness.”

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Trump is far from the first politician to exhibit the confidence heuristic, Sunstein added. Presidents John F. Kennedy and Ronald Reagan were experts at it as well.

“But President Trump outdoes Reagan – not through wit, humor or charm, but through a kind of joyful, thuggish certainty about his own amazingness,” the writer noted. “’I alone can fix it,’ he said during the campaign. ‘Nobody’s ever done a better job than I’m doing as president,’ he says now.”

While the president’s “braggadocio” is a turn-off for many, it has an adverse effect on his supporters, making it “appealing and even contagious.”

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“For people who aren’t sure whether to support him, it can be highly effective,” Sunstein wrote. “Many voters think: If he’s so sure of himself, he’s probably right.”


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Here’s how Missouri’s GOP governor ignored warnings — and caught COVID himself

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Missouri Governor Mike Parson is one of the nation’s leading Donald Trump acolytes, right down to refusing to issue a statewide mandate to wear what he has termed “danged masks.”

Like Trump, Parson and his wife Teresa both contracted the COVID-19 virus, thankfully recovering, but only to emerge unbowed as if there was nothing to see here. He won’t consider mask mandates to this day, even as Missouri remains one of the top-spiking states in the nation.

Now, Parson’s Trump-worship has taken an even more pathetic turn. Like the boss man, it turns out he wasn’t about to be deterred by some snowflake concerns over a potential super-spreader setting.

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NBC News fires back at Tucker Carlson for ‘dangerously and dishonestly’ attacking a journalist

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On Wednesday night, Fox News' Tucker Carlson brought on a guest, Darren Beattie — a former speechwriter for the president — to slam NBC News reporter Brandy Zadrozny for her story on harassment campaigns that Donald Trump supporters have conducted online. And NBC News, in an official statement issued on Thursday, struck out to "vigorously" defend Zadrozny.

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2020 Election

REVEALED: FBI says pernicious Russian hacker Berserk Bear has infiltrated multiple US government websites

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The federal government is warning of a cyber-attacks by Russia that ramped up in September.

"This joint cybersecurity advisory—written by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA)—provides information on Russian state-sponsored advanced persistent threat (APT) actor activity targeting various U.S. state, local, territorial, and tribal (SLTT) government networks, as well as aviation networks," CISA revealed on Thursday.

"Since at least September 2020, a Russian state-sponsored APT actor—known variously as Berserk Bear, Energetic Bear, TeamSpy, Dragonfly, Havex, Crouching Yeti, and Koala in open-source reporting—has conducted a campaign against a wide variety of U.S. targets. The Russian state-sponsored APT actor has targeted dozens of SLTT government and aviation networks, attempted intrusions at several SLTT organizations, successfully compromised network infrastructure, and as of October 1, 2020, exfiltrated data from at least two victim servers," the agency reported.

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