Carole King

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It’s well established brain science that the human amygdala, often referred to as the “reptile brain,” responsible for physical survival, is a most powerful and primitive driver of human behavior. It is responsible for the fight-or-flight response. There is no moral compass in the amygdala; it is strictly about survival and is without thought or logic.

The polar opposite of the amygdala is the prefrontal cortex, the most advanced part of the brain, responsible for conscious thought, reason and analytical functions. It is what lets you know that you are you and that 2 + 2 = 4. Oddly, these two parts of the brain are not evenly matched.

When under threat, the amygdala blasts out fight-or-flight signals at many times the rate that the prefrontal cortex analyzes the situation and tries to reason through options. The net of this is that when we humans perceive a threat we’re pretty much unable to be reasonable or be reasoned with. And that’s what is going on at the Donald Trump rallies.

Trump attracts people who are sincerely frustrated and angry. They are edgy before they even enter the arena, so it doesn’t take much to get an over-sized reaction from them.

Then the protester enters, full of detailed reasons for protesting and a passion to persuade attendees of the rightness of his views. All of that falls on deaf ears, as Trump followers feel a threat to their very being, logic goes out the window and we all know what happens after that.

Years ago, Carole King explained this situation to us in her song, Smackwater Jack:

"You can't talk to a man

“When he don’t wanna  understand.”

And in another verse,

"You can't talk to a man

With a shotgun in his hand.”

And so it is for the Trumpsters when they feel threatened. Protester beware.


Ed. note: There is much in America that needs fixing and we are on a path to continually fail to make things better. It is my goal to make a difference – perhaps to be a catalyst for things to get better. That is the reason for these posts. To accomplish the goal requires reaching many thousands of people and a robust dialogue.

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6 Responses to Carole King
  1. Jim Altschuler Reply

    And familial prejudice aside, more’s the pity that you didn’t become a congressman. However, I also have to say that I’m glad for you — if you had run, and won, you would, by now, have lost your mind to the frustrations, irritations, lies, and outright B. S.

    Maybe those things are the cause (or at least some of the causes) of the behavior by the institutions’ members. They don’t explain all of the wrangling (instead of discussing), threatening (instead of at least attempting to coordinate) and outright threats and lies (cut from whole cloth and parsed into whatever “picture” any particular congressperson or senator wants to make of it).

    You and your family are, I think, better off for you not being involved in all of that mess and now, therefore, have the time to share your information, views and opinions with the rest of us, giving us food for thought. So it’s for the best.

    Thanks, Jack, for your wisdom and ability to succinctly nail a myriad of issues.

    • JaxPolitix Reply

      It is precisely for the reasons you list that I decided not to run after having investigated doing so for a year.

      The key killer of my running was the non-stop begging for the enormous number of dollars needed to run a campaign. I just couldn’t do it. Sadly, there are good people in Congress who want to do the right things but are saddled with having to dial for dollars half of their time, instead of doing their jobs.

  2. Dan Wallace Reply

    Dear Smackwater – What I think is that actually HAVING a pre-frontal cortex should be a prerequisite for becoming President of the United States. We would have to amend the Constitution. “No person shall enter the office of President without being a natural born citizen of the United States, having reached the age of 35 years, and having demonstrated the physical capacity for impulse control.” Pending passage of said amendment, all we can do is plead with everyone we know to please vote for one (any one, dear God, just pick one) of the 4 remaining candidates who actually appears to possess the coveted cortex.

    • JaxPolitix Reply

      Love it!

      Consider this my signature on the citizens petition to so amend the Constitution and include the same requirement for Senators and Congressmen. Be aware, though, of the law of unintended consequences. If enacted, there would be a mandatory mass exodus from both chambers of Congress.

  3. dominick Reply

    Unfortunately, the angry crowds at Trump rallies are more physical than those at other rallies. Those attending entrust that their candidate of choice will fulfill the promises he makes to them. In the end, Republicans worship the political leaders who will be holding their heads under water after their election. Democrats worship those who will be cowering in their offices, afraid to speak out for fear of Republican reprisals.

    We have a faith-based political system, not a true democracy. A very small group of politicians, particularly in Congress, promises our obedient masses a better future. Politicians like to compare the differences between their corporate-funded private political organizations that determine who we vote for at every election. However, comparing the similarities in the conduct of both Republicans and Democrats should be the focus of attention.

    Both take bribes and spew meaningless word salad out of their mouths, while having no intention to listen or respond to their constituents, until close to the next election. Then, they simply increase the volume of word salad to satisfy their faithful followers. They are the oligarchy we should fear, because there is no corporate oligarchy forcing them to be dishonest and moral cowards taking bribes. In fact, it has been reported that some members of Congress spend several hours every day willfully soliciting campaign donations from special interests as a regular part of their jobs.

    • JaxPolitix Reply

      I spent a year looking into running for Congress in 2012 and learned a great deal. I can assure you that our Congressmen and Senators spend roughly half of their time fundraising (“dialing for dollars”), often at the RNC or DNC offices near the Capitol Building. There is a reason that when you see one of our legislators addressing his/her chamber that all the surrounding seats are empty.