American Elephants

Superstitions — Dear to the Heart of a Democrat! by The Elephant's Child


A fascinating article in the Wall Street Journal by Kate Bachelder, lists the top ten liberal superstitions, just in time for Halloween. This is one of those things you know, but have never seen enumerated in a list — which allows you to look at it in a wholly new way.

A hallmark of progressive politics is the ability to hold fervent beliefs, in defiance of evidence, that explain how the world works—and why liberal solutions must be adopted. Such political superstitions take on a new prominence during campaign seasons as Democratic candidates trot out applause lines to rally their progressive base and as the electorate considers their voting records.

1. Spending more money improves education. The U.S. spent $12,608 per student in 2010, double the amount spent in 1970.Spending on public elementary and secondary schools has surpassed $600 billion, and the results just keep getting worse. See previous post.

2. Government spending stimulates the economy. Obama has spent and spent and spent, to little effect. The 2009 stimulus bill, $830 billion was supposed to keep unemployment under 8%. If Keynesian tricks of boosting aggregate demand worked, we would have gotten something more than the lousy 2% growth. In spite of all evidence they still believe.

3. Republican candidates always have a big spending advantage over Democrats. Perhaps this explains Harry Reid’s desperate battle to demonize the Koch brothers, Libertarian philanthropists, yet never, never mention the secretive billionaire club Democracy Alliance, which exists for the sole purpose of electing Democrats. Labor unions have spent $4.4 billion on politics, Harry Reid’s Senate Majority PAC has raised more than $50 million.

4. Raising the minimum wage helps the poor. Obama’s proposed raise from $7.25 to $10.10 would, according to the Congressional Budget Office cost 500,000 jobs in a direct blow to low-wage earners. Nearly 30% of benefits would go to poor families three times the poverty line. Half of Americas poor families have no wage earner at all.  Only 4% of minimum wage earners are adults working full time and trying to support a family, and they are eligible for several welfare programs.

5. Global warming is causing increasingly violent weather. Tornado activity down, Hurricanes down. Global temperatures have not increased for 18 years and counting. Big environmental groups spending big to help Democrat candidates.

6. Genetically modified food is dangerous. Genetically modified food is completely safe according to every regulatory agency including the FDA and European Commission. You have been eating it for years with no ill affect. Farmers have been breeding crop seeds for 10,000 years.

7.Voter ID laws suppress minority turnout.This is absurd, of course, but studies have shown no effect on turnout. Democrats know this is false, but push the idea in minority communities in hopes of increasing turnout and fear.

8. ObamaCare is gaining popularity. Bwa-ha-ha-ha. 27% of the people told Gallup that the law was hurting them, up from 19% in January. Boosts in premium costs for next year are as high as 78%, for some. Don’t even ask doctors, More than 46% gave ObamaCare a ‘D’ or and ‘F’.

9. The Keystone XL pipeline would increase oil spills. Pipelines carry 25 times the oil that tankers do, yet while pipelines larger than 12″ in diameter spilled 910,000 gallons in 2013, railroad tankers spilled 1.5 million gallons.

10. Women are paid 77 cents on the dollar compared with men. Oh please. That a woman must be paid the same amount for doing the same work as a man has been settled law since 1963,  Women make different choices than men, and drop out of  the job market to have children and spend time with them. The much ballyhooed Paycheck Fairness Act is more accurately called the Trial Lawyer Paycheck Act. Waitresses make a lot less than plumbers, electricians, or heavy equipment operators.

Democrats regale their low-information voters with these tired old canards every electoral season, and Republicans have to spend time debunking them. Democrats reduce these points to campaign signs and talking points, and it takes more time and explanation to prove them false. Hillary just tried to introduce a new one —”Businesses and corporations don’t create jobs.” This partners with Obama’s “You didn’t build that.” New ones keep popping up. I think they just sort of throw them at the wall and see what sticks.

America the Clueless! Show Me the Evidence! by The Elephant's Child

The Pew Research Journalism Project is examining political polarization in the United State of 2014. The report was issued just two weeks before a crucial midterm election that will be widely read as a six-year verdict on Barack Obama’s performance in office and current agenda— whatever that is today. Some of their findings:

*Liberals draw information from a wider variety of media and express far more trust in more major media than do conservatives. (Perhaps because there is more liberal-oriented media)

*Liberals are much less tolerant than conservatives of political opinions differing from their own. Especially true on social media, where liberals consistently choose to Unfriend, Block, Mute or sever friendships with those whose politics they disagree with.

There is little in the survey that would surprise anyone paying attention. In America today it is virtually impossible to live in an ideological bubble. Most Americans rely on an array of outlets for political news, and many consistent conservatives and liberals hear dissenting political views in their everyday lives.

That those who express consistently conservative or consistently liberal opinions have different ways of informing themselves about politics and government is not surprising. But the depth of these divisions – and the differences between those who have strong ideological views and those who do not – are striking.

It is, nevertheless, an interesting survey. I’m not sure if it really captures the extent to which Liberals accept common Liberal wisdom without the slightest reference to research, or evidence? For example, Liberals seem to accept as gospel truth the idea that global warming is a massive problem that must be addressed, yet none seem to have read any of the science beyond accepting the common warmist talking points.

On the other hand, an informal survey of college students at Texas Tech found that students didn’t know who won the American Civil War, or in that case, even who fought in it, but they didn’t ask (thank goodness) when it was, for they clearly had no idea about that either. Couldn’t come up with who we severed our relationship with either, or when. We have some real problems with our public schools which are turning out ignorant kids.

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