What the Gibbons Report Covers

While I discuss pretty much anything on the Gibbons Report, the core of the Gibbons Report is objective analysis of politics and psychology. I also try to inject humor into the majority of my posts. I do my best to practice good ethics in my writing by remaining objective and open to respectful discourse. Admittedly, I am a strong proponent of civil libertarianism, constitutionalism, environmentalism, and I lean towards free market economics. However, I relentlessly challenge my own opinions and those who share the same. This allows me to objectively analyze issues. I welcome intelligent and respectful discourse.

The Problem with other Blogs

Gibbons Report - Gibbons Mascot
Illustration Credit Jerry Miller

In academia there is a distinction between popular sources of information and academic sources. A strong academic source will detail multiple authoritative references in their writing and will also avoid speaking in absolutes such as, “all democrats are idiots,” or, “republicans all hate poor people.” These statements are nothing more than hyperbole and invoke the fallacy of generalization. An academic source might say, “Based on data from their study, it can be projected that about 45% of all republicans hold some sort of resentment towards the poor.” Academic sources are written by authorities. An authority is an author who has been properly educated within a discipline, they’ll possess ample experience within that discipline, or they’ll have at least obtained liberal arts higher education.

The overwhelming majority of information freely available on the internet is of the popular type. There’s a major problem with this because most people are too busy and typically don’t have enough free time to filter through deceptions, lies, and other nonsense. Mainstream media outlets take advantage of this and sensationalize issues to improve their bottom lines. Worse so, some sources deliberately manipulate information to serve an agenda. Average people end up relying on a criteria based on faith or likability and popularity, i.e. social proof, to determine if a source is credible. With the abundance of information available today, it has also made it difficult for individuals to determine what is accurate anyway. As Robert B. Cialdini Ph.D. explains in his classic book Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion:

…for the sake of efficiency, we must sometimes retreat from the time-consuming, sophisticated, fully informed brand of decision making to a more automatic, primitive, single-feature type of responding. With the sophisticated mental apparatus we have used to build world eminence as a species, we have created an environment so complex, so fast-paced, and information-laden that we must increasingly deal with it in the fashion of the animals we long ago transcended.

Wikipedia has helped to improve this a bit, but if you sift through the various references on many Wikipedia articles, you will notice that they too often come up short on authority. In all of my analyses I thrive to incorporate academic sources and/or other sources of authority such as well respected think-tanks, primary sources, and respectable government sources, e.g. the Library of Congress and the Government Accountability Office. If they are not cited, they are readily available upon request. Moreover, as a college educated writer, I do my best to provide thorough and objective writing myself.

Who is the Gibbon?

The Gibbons Report is currently an outlet for me, Jonathan R. Gibbons (The Gibbon), to write on a variety of topics that I find interesting. I was primarily driven towards writing by Richard and Florence Gibbons, my late grandparents, who were both accomplished and published authors. I also possess a deep love for teaching and communication because of my late grandparents on my mother’s side; both were life-long educators.

My Credentials: I graduated summa cum laude from American Public University with a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science. While working on my degree I also completed one semester at Monmouth University and one at the University of Oklahoma with a focus on psychological studies and the liberal arts. I’m a member of the Golden Key International Honour Society and I used to own and operate a web development company focused on helping social causes implement web-based solutions for their organizations. Additionally, I hold a technical diploma in Webmaster Administration. From 2009-2011, I had the pleasure of working as a U.S. Congressional Campaign Manager which provided me with a plethora of real-world political experience. I currently work full-time for a major tech firm in the financial sector where I develop strategies to stop and catch fraud and fraudsters.

Fighting ignorance is a core aim of the Gibbons Report. In the end, it is my hope that readers of my blog will find just one post that touches their heart, inspires them, helps them solve a problem, provides them with the knowledge to detect and protect themselves from manipulators, and/or causes them to think differently about an issue.

Jonathan R. Gibbons
St. Petersburg, FL

Last Updated: Thursday, October 09, 2014

If this is your first time visiting my blog and you have an interest in American History and Politics, please check out my paper The Decline of American Federalism.