There are 2 competing ways of looking at life. One is emotional (liberals), the other is rational (conservatives). For discussion of issues that affect society, these two thought processes result in different solutions. Almost everyone believes that their particular viewpoint is the correct one and the only way to sift through the reasons for a particular opinion is to discuss it. Opinions take on more value when they are shared by others. When a particular opinion is held by an all powerful politician, you can have very bad things happen as with Hitler, Stalin, Mao, Castro, etc.