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Is politics driven by pragmatic self-interest or by identities and ideals? The self-harming voter offers a clue

By Feux Follets following x   2018 Jun 10, 2:39am 114 views   5 comments   watch   sfw   quote     share    


What drives political change – culture or economics? The surge of the Right in the United States and Europe in the past two years has renewed debate on this important question.

On one side, the cultural determinists attribute Donald Trump, Brexit and the rise of European populist movements to nativism, anti-immigrant sentiment and, in the American heartland, lingering racism.

On the other side, economic determinists put the blame on economic inequalities and anxieties deriving from austerity policies, globalisation and deindustrialisation.

The trouble with this debate is that it is often not possible to disentangle the economic from the cultural causes. To evaluate economic outcomes, people necessarily draw on pre-existing conceptions of identity and cultural frames – narratives about how the world works and what is fair.

At the same time, cultural sensibilities can grow more salient, and more readily expressed in the political arena, following economic struggle. Furthermore, lobbies and interest groups have an obvious stake in ‘priming’ those cultural tropes or traits that increase the appeal of their preferred political candidates or policies.

The distinction between ‘culture’ and ‘economics’ is closely related to a division in the field of political economy: there are scholars who highlight the primacy of ‘ideas’ and there are those who emphasise ‘interests’.

Both in political science and economics, vested interests representing elites, lobbies, other pressure groups, or voters at large are the cornerstone of contemporary frameworks of political economy.

The emphasis on interests provides social scientists with a powerful tool with which to analyse the political determination of policies and institutions. Interests help to explain why foreign trade is often restricted – so it benefits well-organised domestic producers. It helps to explain why regulation tends to favour incumbents at the expense of potential entrants – due to the influence of the regulated firms themselves (a phenomenon known as ‘regulatory capture’). It helps to explain why elites fail to develop their economies – to preserve their own in power.

More: https://aeon.co/essays/how-do-elites-manage-to-hijack-voters-ideas-of-themselves

#Politics #Voting #Elections

1   Tenpoundbass   ignore (11)   2018 Jun 10, 7:03am   ↑ like (1)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote        

Yeah we see the people Marxist Commies Libbies worldwide are trying to replace their voting population with.
Could you be more honest with your memes? I don't think so!
2   HEYYOU   ignore (13)   2018 Jun 10, 9:14am   ↑ like (1)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote        

Mark Skousen's quote, he must have been thinking about an impossible dream.

We have the perfect two party system as intended by the simpleminded.
3   justme   ignore (0)   2018 Jun 10, 9:16am   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (1)   quote        

Yep, the two-party system that follows from the election system of single-winner-districting is the root cause of all of the problems in the US.
4   TwoScoopsOfWompWomp   ignore (2)   2018 Jun 10, 9:39am   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote        

Pragmatic self-interest for rust-belters would be anti-Free Trade.

Self-interest for smug urban shoppers whose income is unrelated to manufacturing would be Free Trade.
5   Feux Follets   ignore (0)   2018 Jun 12, 2:26am   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote        

The Republican Party’s strategy, for now, appears to be to make the midterm elections a series of local contests focusing on the tax cut and the healthy economy.

Bannon views this as fundamentally misguided. “You have to nationalize the election,” he said. Bannon understands that voters are moved from the gut more than through a wonky analysis of taxes. “This is going to be an emotional [election] — you’re either with [House Democratic leader] Nancy Pelosi or you’re with Donald Trump. ... Trump’s second presidential race will be on Nov. 6 of this year.”

Bannon is most focused on the issue of immigration because it hits both the heart and the head. “Immigration is about not just sovereignty, it’s about jobs.”

He believes that the Trump coalition can attract up to a third of Bernie Sanders supporters who see trade and immigration as having created unfair competition for jobs, particularly for working-class blacks and Hispanics.

He advocates appealing directly to those voters, saying, “You’re not going to be able to take the Hispanic and black community from the STEM system in grammar school to our best engineering schools ... to the great jobs in Silicon Valley, unless you start to limit these H-1B visas and this unfair competition ... from East Asia and South Asia.”

But Bannon is right that this is a brilliant electoral strategy. The idea of greater immigration controls has an undeniable mainstream appeal. The Democratic Party is too far to the left on many of these issues, embracing concepts like sanctuary cities, which only reinforces its image as a party that is more concerned with race, identity and multiculturalism than the rule of law.

Bannon thinks Trump is just getting started in nationalizing the election around immigration. He predicted the next major battle would be over the proposed wall along the U.S.-Mexico border. “The wall is not just totemic. The wall is absolutely central to his program. ... As we come up on Sept. 30, if [Congress’] appropriations bill does not include spending to fully build his wall, ... I believe he will shut down the government.”

Sadly, but not surprisingly, Bannon doesn’t think the fighting and the rancor in the United States are going away any time soon. “[The] battle between nationalists and globalists is at the fundamental roots of what America is, what America will be,” he said. “This is very healthy, and ... I think this is going to go on for a long time. ... We’ve got a lot more fighting and a lot more scar tissue to go over.”

https://trib.com/opinion/columns/zakaria-steve-bannon-s-strategy-for-victory/article_8d0c2faf-02b7-5955-acbd-efb0fcbd82ea.html




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