“Voters are significantly more conservative than nonvoters on redistributive issues and have been in every election since 1972. Voters may be more liberal than nonvoters on social issues, but on redistributive issues, they are not. These redistributive issues define a fundamental relationship between citizens and the state . . . and are central to ongoing conflicts about the scope of government. It is on these issues that voters offer a biased voice of the preferences of the electorate.”
—– Political scientists, Jan E. Leighley of American University and Jonathan Nagler of New York University in their new book, “Who Votes Now? Demographics, Issues, Inequality, and Turnout in the United States.”(Quoted by Dan Balz in the Washington Post)
So the results of an election based on who actually has the initiative, knowledge, civic responsibility and sense to vote are now called “bias,” are they? Talk about academics wearing their own biases tattooed on their foreheads: naturally any conservative consensus is illegitimate, right boys?
Balz is one of the Post’s most inveterate knee-jerk liberals (masquerading as an objective journalist), so I suppose I shouldn’t be too shocked that he disgorged this quote without noticing how ridiculous it is. Voters are more responsible, committed, informed, patriotic, caring, educated and intelligent than non-voters, and always have been. Politicians who are determined to find ways to get more of those who are not so responsible, committed, informed, patriotic, caring, educated and intelligent to vote know that these unethical Americans (for responsible civic participation is an ethical obligation) are easy to manipulate, and their votes can be purchased with deceit, dishonesty, or material benefits.
Of course those who don’t vote are more in favor of redistributive policies. They “favor” these policies because they sound like a way to get something for nothing; they are incapable of considering and weighing the societal, cultural, and ethical consequences of redistributive policies, and they don’t vote for these policies for the same reason they don’t vote at all: they don’t really know what’s going on, don’t care enough to find out, and essentially blunder their way through life. And that’s why they may favor redistribution–to them— of the wealth that others have earned and worked for. If they were smart enough to vote, they might well conclude that “redistribution” is to “socialism” as “intelligent design” is to “creationism.” It’s repackaging of a bad idea to make it seem attractive.
These are the people that Balz, Leighley, Nagler and dishonest leaders—you can fill in those blanks–want to have voting because they can be lied to.
Balz discusses some other conclusion the authors reach, such as the fact that individuals who perceive no substantive difference between candidates are less likely to vote. Again, anyone who perceived no substantive difference between Obama and Romney, McCain and Obama, Bush and Kerry, Bush and Gore, Clinton and Dole, Clinton, Perot and Bush, Bush and Dukakis, Reagan and Mondale, and Reagan and Jimmy Carter are either single issue fanatics (Ralph Nader never thinks there is any difference between the parties; neither, presumably, does Putin) or they are…I believe the technical term is cretins.
The majority opinion expressed at the voting booth by whatever percentage of eligible Americans cares enough about their nation to cast informed votes are not bias. Calling it that is a characterization that any fair journalist would have immediately rejected as an agenda-driven tactic. Majority opinions are the legitimate and responsible directives of the responsible segment of a democracy, made up of those citizens who are worthy of self-government because they take it seriously as a shared obligation of citizenship, and not as a tool of self-enrichment. Neither you nor I should want the other segment to have a greater voice in our lives than their apathy, diligence and knowledge allows.
Source: Washington Post