Because it saves time, according to one former Bush administration official. But joking aside, it is quite extraordinary how so many people, including colleagues and acquaintances going all the way back to his college days, describe him as a totally unlikable person. Not only do they feel that way, they are all coming out of the woodwork to say so openly.
I dislike Cruz too and it is not just because I find his politics repulsive. I find that I feel a dislike for him personally even though I have never met him. There is something that I find vaguely creepy about Cruz’s face and expressions whenever he speaks. He oozes an almost palpable smarmy unctuous arrogance that I find repulsive even on the rare occasions when I find myself agreeing with him on something.
Psychologist Richrd E. Cytowic noticed that he too took an instinctive and visceral dislike to Cruz and, being a neurologist, wondered if there may be a basis for what seems like an irrational reaction. He thinks that it may lie in the way that the human brain has evolved to read faces and make snap judgments about people and Cruz’s problem is that his body (and facial) language do not match his words.
Our stone–age ancestors learned to read faces and rapidly tell friend from foe. While we live in a far different environment, we still possess the same stone–age brain as our distant relatives. Like them, we judge instantly. Automatically and more quickly than conscious reflection could manage, we weigh whether we like a new face or dislike the person behind it. Our social circuits, which are largely emotional, tell us whether to trust a person or not. Given a million years of practice, our brains are good at this.
Senator Cruz’s countenance doesn’t shift the way I expect typical faces to move.
I have rarely, if ever, seen a conventional smile from Senator Cruz. In a natural smile the corners of the mouth go up; these muscles we can control voluntarily as well. But muscles circling the eyes are involuntary only; they make the eyes narrow, forming crow’s feet at the outside corners. Even the Mona Lisa’s smile shows this. The eyes give away one’s game and let us tell forged from genuine smiles. Grandma may have told you to put on a happy face, but you can’t if it isn’t heartfelt.
No matter the emotional coloring of Senator Cruz’s outward rhetoric, his mouth typically tightens into the same straight line. If it deviates from this, the corners of his mouth bend down, not upwards. The outside of his eyebrows bend down, too, when he emotes, something so atypical that it disturbs me.
There’s more in the article.
So if you are disturbed by the fact that you too dislike Cruz without quite knowing why, you are not alone and it may not be as irrational as you think.