From: “Democracy for Realists: why Elections Do Not Produce Responsive Government”, by Christopher H. ACHEN and Larry M. BARTELS. Princeton University Press, 2016, 390pp.
Suzanne Mettler in Foreign Affairs, May/June 2017. Volume 96, No. 3.
“…, Achen and Bartels argue that, in fact, most people are uninterested in politics and poorly informed about issue. So they act not primarily on the basis of individual preferences or rational choices but rather on the basis of “emotional attachments that transcend thinking.”
Achen and Bartels argue that people’s group affiliations tend to precede their values. They note that “partisanship, like religious identifications tends to be inherited, durable, and not about ideology and theology.” Political affiliations typically form in childhood, endure even when people’s circumstances change, and can be transmitted across generations. “most people make their party choices based on who they are, not what they think,” Achen and Bartels conclude.
This theory helps illuminate historical and contemporary Lebanon politics. We witnessed, still, high polarization based on non-rational choices and emotional attachments to religion and or socio-religious groups.
According to this theory, it is understood why Lebanese Activists efforts failed in mobilizing large parts of the population. Rational thinking will not do it.