What strikes me immediately about their study is that they ran these three traits together "for simplicity's sake."
Loyalty/betrayal: We keep track of who is "us" and who is not; we enjoy tribal rituals, and we hate traitors.They say that they ran these three things together as an average for the purposes of their study because, taken together, they are the 'foundation of social conservatism.'
Authority/subversion: We value order and hierarchy; we dislike those who undermine legitimate authority and sow chaos.
Sanctity/degradation: We have a sense that some things are elevated and pure and must be kept protected from the degradation and profanity of everyday life. (This foundation is best seen among religious conservatives, but you can find it on the left as well, particularly on issues related to environmentalism.)
You probably all know what I'm going to say about this, but I'll say it anyway. In the interest of reaching younger readers, I'll explain the position using memes I have recently seen on Facebook.
Where does a Jacksonian stand on loyalty versus betrayal?
Where does a Jacksonian stand on sanctity?
Where does a Jacksonian stand on authority?
And one more that's NSFW below the jump. The point is, if you run these things together, you've missed the point for a major part of the American political tradition. It's not a dead letter, either. I've seen all these memes on Facebook in the last few weeks.
This is who we think we are. If you're not looking for it, you can't see it.