occurs when individuals have a similar outlook on issues thateventually increases the chance of making bad decisions. The resultis an environment whereby people lose the ability to be innovativeand do not challenge any perspective presented (Lerner et al. 799).It might affect their decision to relay their feelings for fear ofrepercussions. The purpose of the paper is to analyze the concept ofgroupthink as it relates to different settings.
Congressfaces different antecedents of groupthink which include stressfulsituations, high cohesiveness and group structure. There has beenmore group polarization in Congress over the years due to theincreasing partisanship (Ingraham). A majority of senators who cameinto office in the 1980s have similar backgrounds as they wereplayers in the Second World War and shared stressful experiences. Thedesire to serve in public office would transcend their willingness tobe partisan. Congress practices group cohesiveness as the senatorsfollow certain norms and values that influence their attitude andbehavior in the group. Cohesiveness is necessary, but can also bedetrimental if members focus on preserving the feelings of theircolleagues at the expense of making decisions. They should beconcerned with the point being made, weigh options if it is a viablebill or resolution before passing it. Group structure in Congress ispresented by individuals having a strong leader who offers directionon what needs to be done. There is a systematic procedure in Congressfor all the members involved, stating the norm that needs to befollowed.
Thesymptoms of include increased pressure, close-mindednessand poor decision-making (Kassin et al. 316). TheRepublican-controlled Congress is facing increased pressure toprovide a replacement for ObamaCare as a delay is bound to affectmillions of people who are benefiting from Medicaid program (Jaspen).It is not a Republican issue, but both teams need to agree on areplacement as soon as possible so as to avert a health crisis
Congresshas in some instances portrayed its close-mindedness on criticalissues that pose a security threat to America. An example is theradicalization Muslims in the United States as there has been aperception that they pose a security threat. The generalization ofMuslims has limited their chances to be employed, get housing andeven study in America. Congress has been making bad decisionsregarding the war on terror. There are divided views on militaryauthorization in the Middle East following the Sept 11 attack. Thecurrent resolution gives the military a legal justification to useair strikes, drones, military operations on terror groups among otherforces. The resolutions have no particular time frame or geographicallimitations which increase risks to both the military and the UnitedStates. Democrats have always tried to push for tighter restrictionswhile Republicans hold the view that the president should haveautonomy to decide how to handle the issue.
Theconsequences of groupthink include members focusing only on what isknown, respecting people`s diverse views and have common responses tostress. It is possible for Congress to prevent groupthink byencouraging criticism, give every party whether democratic orrepublican a chance to express their opinion. Encouraging criticismis necessary to reduce pressure in Congress. It can equallydiscourage isolation by getting feedback from the public on importantissues before it passes laws.
Inconclusion, Congress has witnessed a high polarization rate sinceviews of its members have been evolving according to the changingtimes. is bound to continue in parliament but can bemitigated by having a confident speaker as a leader and encouragemembers to relay their thoughts.
Ingraham,Christopher. A stunning visualization of our divided congress. TheWashington Post,23 Apr. 2015.https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/wonk/wp/2015/04/23/a-stunning-visualization-of-our-divided-congress/?utm_term=.b88605ad2054.
Japsen,Bruce.PressureMounts on GOP Congress to Make Obamacare Replacement.Forbes,2 Jan. 2017.https://www.forbes.com/sites/brucejapsen/2017/01/02/pressure-mounts-on-gop-congress-to-create-obamacare-replacement/#399df33d5aba
Kassin,Saul, et al. SocialPsychology [Australia and New Zealand edition].Cengage Learning Australia, 2014.
Lerner,Jennifer S., et al. "Emotion and decision making." AnnualReview of Psychology 66(2015): 799-823.