Friday, October 20, 2006

characteristics of authoritarians

this is it- i promise- my last post on john dean's book. i am moving on-as i have finished the book.


the following is based on empirical data from extensive research by bob altemeyer and other teams of scientists following world war 2. there was much wondering why the good folks of germany and italy allowed their countries to be taken over by the likes of hitler and mussolini. perhaps we should be asking ourselves the same thing. not every person who meets the definition will have all the traits. these characteristics are traits that these folks themselves acknowledge.

"democracy is not a spectator sport that can be simply observed. to the contrary, it is difficult and demanding, and its very survival depends on active participation." john dean

social dominators- leaders

  • typically men
  • dominating
  • opposes equality
  • desirous of personal power
  • amoral
  • intimidating and bullying
  • faintly hedonistic
  • vengeful
  • pitiless
  • exploitive
  • manipulative
  • dishonest
  • cheats to win
  • highly prejudiced (racist, sexist, homophobic)
  • mean-spirited
  • militant
  • nationalistic
  • tells others what they want to hear
  • takes advantage of "suckers"
  • specializes in creating false images to sell self
  • may or may not be religious
  • usually politically and economically conservative/republican
right-wing authoritarian- followers

  • men and women
  • submissive to authority
  • aggressive on behalf of authority
  • conventional
  • highly religious
  • moderate to little education
  • trust untrustworthy authorities
  • prejudiced (particularly against homosexuals, women, and followers of religions other than their own)
  • mean-spirited
  • narrow-minded
  • intolerant
  • bullying
  • zealous
  • dogmatic
  • uncritical toward chosen authority
  • hypocritical
  • inconsistent and contradictory
  • prone to panic easily
  • highly self- righteous
  • moralistic
  • strict disciplinarian
  • severely punitive
  • demands loyalty and returns it
  • little self awareness
  • usually politically and economically conservative/republican

2 comments:

citizen shelly said...

Cool post betmo. Do you think it's time for some women to be leading things? It seems to me that authoritarians are nearly always men, and usually rich white men.

betmo said...

the dominating leaders are. the followers can be either sex. i would love to see more diversity in our government. the government, however, likes the old, rich, white man status quo.