The most powerful force ever known on this planet is human cooperation - a force for construction and destruction.
The great conservative insight is that order is really hard to achieve. It's really precious, and it's really easy to lose.
Morality binds people into groups. It gives us tribalism, it gives us genocide, war, and politics. But it also gives us heroism, altruism, and sainthood.
Morality binds and blinds. It binds us into teams... but thereby makes us go blind to objective reality.
If you have high IQ, you're really good at finding post-hoc arguments to support your feelings of truthiness.
I think Republicans need to take income inequality more seriously. Not because I favor equality of outcomes. I do not. I think the Right is correct to stress merit and earned rewards, not handouts and forced equality. But I think what Republicans are blind to is that power corrupts.
Liberals tend to be much more concerned about business and corporations as the oppressors. They look to government as the solution. On the Right it's the opposite. They see business as good, as what generates wealth in society, and they see government as the oppressor, which makes it hard for especially small businesspeople.
Economic issues are just as much moral issues as social issues.
By temperament and disposition and emotions, I'm a liberal; but in my beliefs about what's best for the country, I'm a centrist.
Politics is really religion. Politics is about sacredness. Politics is about offering a vision that will bind the nation together to pursue greatness.
Anytime we're interacting with someone, we're judging them, we're sharing expectations, we think they didn't live up to those expectations.
On the religious Right and religious people in general have the feeling that the world is not just material, the world is not just there for us to do what we want with. That our bodies, things have an immaterial essence, a spiritual essence that God is in all of us.
Social reality is so complicated that, once you join one team or the other, you become specialized in detecting certain patterns, but you become blind to other patterns.
Conservatives tend to see the world more in terms of good-versus-evil and, for some of them, the nightmare is a disarmed citizenry that can be preyed upon by criminals. They know that having a gun in the house would increase the risk of an accident for a member of their family, but they're willing to take that risk.
Most of our social nature is like that of other primates - we're mostly out for ourselves.
It really is a fact that liberals are much higher than conservatives on a major personality trait called 'openness to experience.' People who are high on openness to experience just crave novelty, variety, diversity, new ideas, travel. People low on it like things that are familiar, that are safe and dependable.
When you hear someone criticize a policy on the other side, that's fine. But when you start hearing motive-mongering and demonization, stand up to it just as you would if it were something that was racist or sexist. If we avoid the demonization, disagreements can be positive.
The most important thing to realize is we're not blank slates at birth. We don't start off with nothing in our heads, and then get imprinted entirely by our environment. There's something in our heads on the day we're born, and then we grow up and make choices.
Congress is full of good, decent, smart people who have devoted their lives to public service.
People are voting for the kind of country they want to live in, and there are different views about what kind of country we should have.