Red White & Blue Hens

College students in Delaware who think right is right, and left is wrong. We study hard, party hard, and play hardball.

Wednesday, August 31, 2005

Moderates United?

Big picture strategists in both the Democratic and Republican parties like to speculate on the "emerging [insert favorite party] majority." Yet the only trend in evidence is an emerging independent majority. A 2001 University of Michigan study claims that the number of self-described independents rose in the second half of the 20th century from 28% to 37% of the electorate.

If this figure remained steady, for one of the two big parties to secure 51% it would have to leave the other with at most 12%. This is unimaginable. And the number of self-described independents is only likely to keep rising.

How to explain this trend is not a matter that can be easily settled, but a good starting-point explanation is that a certain kind of political center has consolidated that is economically conservative and socially tolerant, if not liberal.

As the lower-middle class of American society becomes economically literate, and the upper middle class is increasingly savvy, they become more market-friendly. With a better grasp of the mechanisms by which markets generate and then disseminate wealth, the power of economic populism is on the decrease. To be sure, a trend such as this cannot be linear and necessarily experiences periods of ups and downs. But there is an inevitability to it that the far Left cannot acknowledge.

Read the whole thing, as well as a rant on diversity at my blog.


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