This might be the key passage of my interview with John Ziegler on Tuesday, for it is, in a nutshell, why conservatives don't win elections anymore. It is not that conservatism generally permits less nuance than liberalism (in terms of political messaging, that is probably one of conservatism's strengths). Rather, the key lies in the second passage that I highlighted. There are a certain segment of conservatives who literally cannot believe that anybody would see the world differently than the way they do. They have not just forgotten how to persuade; they have forgotten about the necessity of persuasion.
I never recommended this article but I keep coming back to it in my thinking. Its a bit too partisan to the point of being unfair, but its interesting nonetheless. I've certainly been confronted with many conservatives who seem to take the position that if you don't agree with their views that there must be something wrong with you. Serious factual objections are just laughed off rather than engaged. Political positions are to be agreed with, not seriously discussed. Its not about the ideas. Its personal.
There are also Liberals who act this way, but the medium is the message, and there may be a connection between this perspective and the conservative preference for radio.
Perhaps in some respects this is what makes living in Atlanta more tolerable than living in San Francisco. Partisans generally conclude that I am the opposite of whatever they are because I'm always critical of their ideas.
Conservatives who assume I'm a liberal don't feel the need to change my views. They think I'm an idiot, and they don't bother talking to me about politics because they are looking for confirmation and are not interested in having a persuasive discussion, particularly with an idiot like me. I am therefore free to continue to be an idiot with only mild annoyance at the fact that I am so perceived.
Liberals who assume I'm a conservative, on the other hand, believe that I am at least complicit with and possibly personally responsible for disease, oppression, genocide, poverty, death, and the general plight of man. I am the enemy, and it is absolutely necessary to change my views so that I stop oppressing people. I am not just to be ridiculed but I am to be hated, and I cannot be left alone to my evil ideas. This tends to make living around liberals a great deal less comfortable.
FiveThirtyEight.com: Politics Done Right: Did Talk Radio Kill Conservatism?