The public is feeling a little light-headed from the deluge of recent news about economic turmoil, and Pamville News is here to continue sucking the oxygen out of the topic with these news items.
Pamville News reporters have discovered that www.msnbc.com contributor Brian Alexander has discovered that psychologist and social scientist Dacher Keltner has discovered this shocking information: Rich people are different from poor folk — different in a not good way.
Keltner and his team have "done 12 separate studies measuring empathy in every way imaginable, social behavior in every way and some work on compassion, and it’s the same story. Lower class people just show more empathy, more prosocial behavior, more compassion, no matter how you look at it.”
In other words, he's studied the bejeepers out of those Richie Riches' ability to feel the poor's pain, and he's got nothing.
Upper-income people in Keltner's study were more likely to feel self-made, self-reliant and deserving of all they had than the lower-income people did. In his conclusion, Keltner said that lower-income people feel more empathy for others because they have to rely on others for help, and they recognize their own needs in others.
In seemingly unrelated news, the Mayo Clinic reports that their researchers are working on a vagus nerve therapy to alleviate depression.
The two vagus nerves run from the brain stem to the body cavity, providing stimuli for and feedback on body functions. They also control a number of involuntary functions like heart beats, breathing and digestive tract workings.
Sometimes a malfunctioning vagus nerve triggers body chemical imbalances, causing chronic depression and a marked increase in nose blowing. Medical researchers at Mayo are using a form of electronic impulse therapy on the vagus nerves to stimulate them into functioning properly, thus curing depression and reducing Kleenex usage.
Meanwhile, back at Keltner's study: Pamville Researchers have noted that, in his research, Keltner discovered that subjects who are shown pictures of starving children typically display more activity from their vagus nerves. However, Keltner said, subjects from lower-class backgrounds have more intense nerve responses.
The conclusion then is that the empathy that lower-class people feel for others is deeper, as measured by electrodes strapped to the subjects' bodies.
Despite the fact that Alexander says other studies show that the wealthy and the poor are equally charitable in their giving effort, Pamville Researchers are starting a research project that is essentially the love child of Keltner's study and the Mayo Clinic's experiments.
Pamville Researchers are rounding up wealthy volunteers to submit to vagus nerve electro-shock therapy to hyper-stimulate their empathy center. The researchers are hoping the therapy will be an effective way to guilt the wealthy subjects into funding more research at the Pamville Institute, which has a decidedly low-income budget.
The institute fell on hard times after its last experiment failed miserably. Researchers blew the budget giving 100 Montana cowboys their weight in gold and lessons on how to live like upper-class citizens, to study the effects of sudden wealth on the chronically hickified.
The subjects used the caviar for ice-fishing bait and had the sod rolled back up off their lawns and sent out to be mowed. They also invested their money in a couple of banks — and that seemed to be good. But, in true cowboy fashion, they broke one bank and lost the other.