Santorum’s Test, and Why Conflict is Good

Rick Santorum, as most people now know after his surprisingly strong finish in the Iowa caucuses, is one of the of candidates seeking the Republican presidential nomination. Recently, Santorum responded to a question about who he’d place in key administration roles and made a comment that so far has received little attention: I had actually [...]

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Why Politics is Hard

If you were asked to judge a policy proposal for addressing a social issue, which would be more important to you, the content of the proposal or the party that wrote it? Most of us would answer that the specific policies would be much more important than the political party that proposed it. Most of [...]

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Mistakes Were Made (but not by me)

The imperfection of our human brains has been a frequent topic of books lately, most notably Dan Ariely’s Predictably Irrational. Mistakes were made goes into considerable depth on one key failing, cognitive dissonance. The authors call cognitive dissonance the “engine of self-justification” and attribute many examples of irrational behavior to our attempts to resolve it.

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Make Buying Difficult?

Marketers expend a great deal of effort making it easy to buy their products. They expand distribution channels, offer financing alternatives, and when possible ensure the customer can leave with the product at time of purchase. After all, if you think of the sales process as a funnel (or perhaps a leaky funnel), every little [...]

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Flattery Will Get You Somewhere

Many people buy into the old axiom, “Flattery will get you nowhere.” Neuromarketing readers, though, are an exceptionally bright and discerning group, and have no doubt already anticipated what comes next: new research shows that even when people perceive that flattery is insincere, that flattery can still leave a lasting and positive impression of the [...]

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