Jost next wanted to know whether liberals have different psychological
traits than conservatives.
His “meta-analysis” of previous studies, including his own, showed that
liberals seem to be drawn to chaos and novelty—for instance, they tend to
support social change—whereas conservatives prefer reassurance and structure,
and thus like to maintain the status quo.
Jost’s findings, detailed in American Psychologist, suggest that
environmental factors, or the types of situations people encounter in their
lives, determine approximately half of their political preferences.
“Forty, perhaps 50 percent of our political beliefs seem to have a basis in
genetics,” said Hibbing, whose studies were included in Jost’s analysis. While
genetics are unlikely to “hardwire” people into being liberal or conservative,
Hibbing said that genes could make people more or less likely to have certain
values or react to situations in a particular way.
So liberal or conservative is not just a matter of nurture, but also a question of nature. So next time you are arguing with someone of the opposite political leaning and you think that they are just being obtuse... They are, but it is because they are 40-50% predisposed by genetics to be an obtuse bastard. It doesn't change the fact that they're annoying bastards though.