71. The age old fight between emotions and rationality

A petition was started, a few days ago, to see Dominic Cummings, Boris Johnson’s closest advisor in the UK government, fired for flouting lockdown rules. It reached nearly a million signatures in 3 days. This is staggering for something not that important, particularly when you consider that petitions relating to much more globally important issues such as climate change action languish on much lower numbers. The secret to the success of the Cummings petition is that it is driven by anger and hate, the two strongest emotions driving human decisions, as the Brexit vote and the elections of Trump and Bolsonaro taught us. Cummings is easy to hate, arrogant, aloof and weird looking. And so the petition rides on. We need to change focus from these basic feelings to hope, aspiration and rational self preservation, to devote energy to important issues. An eventual Cummings sacking would satisfy petitioners, but would make no real difference, not even to his influence over the Prime Minister

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Comments

Sandra K. said…
Unfortunate but true. Bad emotions are stronger than the good ones. It requires some education and effort to harness the former and allow rationality to prevail. I can only hope that more and more people will succeed in this pursuit.
SantiDominguezV said…
Absolutely right, although when you see what is happening these days in the political landscape, that hope may be misguided... but life tends to overcompensate, so there is hope. Once the obvious inadequacy and emptiness of the promises of the likes of Trump, Bolsonaro, Vox or UKIP are laid bare, there may be a reaction which sends us as a pendulum the other way. We can only hope...

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