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Bloggingheads 03-01-2009 04:33 PM

Free Will: Liberaltarianism Showdown
 

bjkeefe 03-01-2009 05:27 PM

Re: Free Will: Liberaltarianism Showdown
 
Is this and this willful misrepresentation of the truth, or just sincere cluelessness?

How can anyone who claims to be an intellectual and who claims to know history make these statements in good conscience? Very few people who call themselves liberals (or progressives), no matter what anyone thinks the terms might mean, would say that the Democratic Party is anywhere near to representing their interests. There has been a non-stop battle since at least the time of Bill Clinton winning the nomination in 1992 conducted by liberals against what they see as rampant centrism, triangulation, and kowtowing to the right on the part of the Democratic Party leadership. That we may from time to time bow to reality for the sake of winning elections does not change this in the slightest. That the GOP (and those who call themselves conservatives) are currently pointing fingers of blame at each other for lack of purity does not change this either.

I know Jonah hates, or views with contempt, pretty much every thought to the left of his, but his simplistic view of "liberalism" never fails to make him look like a buffoon.

I'm sure there will be wailing and gnashing of teeth by Jonah's loyal fans, but I'm sorry. I cannot respect for a minute the intellect of someone who is so locked into promoting his own side and bashing the other that he starts with this point of view. This is just utter childishness.

[Added: Thanks to Will for saying the same, only more politely.]

P.S. Freudian slip, Will? And Jonah?

(And yes, that was to show you that I know what childishness means.)

Nate 03-01-2009 06:04 PM

Re: Free Will: Liberaltarianism Showdown
 
Only halfway through at the moment, but I am thoroughly enjoying the conversation. This is a terrific matchup. (...and I am of the firm opinion that the "Free Will" name should not be changed; it is catchy.)

On the whole "liberaltarianism" thing; I find the pull from both the left and the right to be an interesting concept in and of itself. (apart from the actual merits of the arguments which themselves are also interesting)

I understand why such ideas are entrenched on both sides (both historically and practically), but I often wish I could visit an alternate universe where most things were exactly the same as ours, but the two major parties (or ideologies or whatever) were defined in a different way, with libertarians in one party and whatever their counterpart ("populists" or something?) on the other side. In other words, have a socially progressive/fiscally conservative party vs. a socially conservative/fiscally progressive party.

bjkeefe 03-01-2009 06:11 PM

Re: Free Will: Liberaltarianism Showdown
 
Continuing on the theme, how can anyone take seriously this claim of homogeneity?

The NYT op-ed page? You mean Brooks and Krugman sing from the same hymnal? Stanley Fish and Nick Kristof? And what about the daily guests? Do you even read this paper, Jonah, or do you just "know" from your mother's knee that it's the Evil Liberal New York Slimes?

Harvard? Wanna talk to Greg Mankiw or Harvey Mansfield or Charles Fried about that, for example?

Hollywood and the Brookings Institution share the same views? You mean, like, say, Kenneth Pollack and Sean Penn? Peter Singer and Susan Sarandon? E.J. Dionne and Gary Sinise?

And I remind you, Mr. Kristol, oops, I mean, Mr. Goldberg, you work at the LA Times. Are you now claiming to be part of "the liberal establishment?"

Nate 03-01-2009 06:25 PM

BloggingPets
 
Yet another addition of BloggingCats. I applaud the effort at continued on-screen appearances of our (distant) mammalian evolutionary cousins.

bjkeefe 03-01-2009 06:32 PM

Re: BloggingPets
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Nate (Post 105418)
I applaud the effort at continued on-screen appearances of our (distant) mammalian evolutionary cousins.

Imperious Feline Overlords, you mean.

graz 03-01-2009 06:32 PM

Re: Free Will: Liberaltarianism Showdown
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by bjkeefe (Post 105417)
Continuing on the theme, how can anyone take seriously this claim of homogeneity?

The NYT op-ed page? You mean Brooks and Krugman sing from the same hymnal? Stanley Fish and Nick Kristof? And what about the daily guests? Do you even read this paper, Jonah, or do you just "know" from your mother's knee that it's the Evil Liberal New York Slimes?

Harvard? Wanna talk to Greg Mankiw or Harvey Mansfield or Charles Fried about that, for example?

Hollywood and the Brookings Institution share the same views? You mean, like, say, Kenneth Pollack and Sean Penn? Peter Singer and Susan Sarandon? E.J. Dionne and Gary Sinise?

And I remind you, Mr. Kristol, oops, I mean, Mr. Goldberg, you work at the LA Times. Are you now claiming to be part of "the liberal establishment?"

The doughy pantload has soiled another set of nappies.

While I would like to concede how my retort adds little to the high minded attempts of the dv participants, I also feel justified in expressing my displeasure in this fashion because it is what I believe - don't question my motives. As per Bob's request.

mtznak 03-01-2009 07:07 PM

Re: Free Will: Liberaltarianism Showdown
 
Note to Jonah - Sixties Music Lesson - It wasn't Arthur Ochs (Ox) singing "Love Me, I'm a Liberal", but Phil Ochs (Oaks) - take a listen, it was quite a slam on mainstream liberalism (though from a hard lefty side), certainly reflective of how the left was quick to dismiss its natural allies and lost them for at least a generation. Alas, the dismissive attitude is still there (e.g. Naomi Klein, Ralph Nader, etc).

bjkeefe 03-01-2009 07:32 PM

Aaaaarrrgghhhhh!
 
I'm a big Will Wilkinson fan, but this cannot stand.

Will, please: Read this.

Bobby G 03-01-2009 07:43 PM

Re: Free Will: Liberaltarianism Showdown
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by bjkeefe (Post 105417)
Continuing on the theme, how can anyone take seriously this claim of homogeneity?

The NYT op-ed page? You mean Brooks and Krugman sing from the same hymnal? Stanley Fish and Nick Kristof? And what about the daily guests? Do you even read this paper, Jonah, or do you just "know" from your mother's knee that it's the Evil Liberal New York Slimes?

Harvard? Wanna talk to Greg Mankiw or Harvey Mansfield or Charles Fried about that, for example?

Hollywood and the Brookings Institution share the same views? You mean, like, say, Kenneth Pollack and Sean Penn? Peter Singer and Susan Sarandon? E.J. Dionne and Gary Sinise?

And I remind you, Mr. Kristol, oops, I mean, Mr. Goldberg, you work at the LA Times. Are you now claiming to be part of "the liberal establishment?"

a couple of things:

First, although there are indeed people like Mankiw, Fried, etc. at Harvard, you'd be crazy to think they're broadly representative of Harvard. Now, you might respond that there's no such thing broadly representative of Harvard, but I think that's too strong. By and large, most of the professors at Harvard are liberal and moderate Democrats; the remainder are leftists, conservatives, and libertarians. Just take a survey of professors' donations to political candidates. Here, for example, is a survey of top law professors' donations to Obama as compared to McCain. 95% of law professors' donations went to Obama, 5% to McCain. I'm sure in the Kerry/Bush race the numbers were less skewed, but do you honestly think it was 50/50, or even 60/40? And these are law professors, not sociology or anthropology or English professors. I doubt you'll accept that the survey I linked to tells us very much, but surely it's not completely worthless?

I think, broadly speaking, that the same points can be made about Hollywood and Brookings and the New York Times. At most, the NYT has two regular conservative commentators out of seven regular commentators. The NYT editorials coming from the editors are reliably pro-Democratic party. Although there are voluble Republicans in Hollywood, most of them aren't socially conservative, and in any event they're far less numerous than Democrats in Hollywood.

We're speaking in generalities here. And generally speaking, all these places (NYT, Harvard, Hollywood, Brookings) are liberal, even if they aren't monolithically so.

Mari Dupont 03-01-2009 07:47 PM

Re: Free Will: Liberaltarianism Showdown
 
I really like reading and listening to Will, but I fear for the future of his book sales. While he makes lots of interesting points, he can't (or won't) sum things up in a way that's easily understood by the average person. Say what you like about Milton Friedman, you never have to read him twice to grasp his meaning. I think Will hurts his cause with too much academic jargon and philosophical references and not enough "here's some real-life ways my ideas can be applied" or "here's how I plan to sell this to the public." It would be amusing to put him in charge of a political campaign--the attack ads would probably need subtitles...

AemJeff 03-01-2009 08:05 PM

Re: Free Will: Liberaltarianism Showdown
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Mari Dupont (Post 105427)
I really like reading and listening to Will, but I fear for the future of his book sales. While he makes lots of interesting points, he can't (or won't) sum things up in a way that's easily understood by the average person. Say what you like about Milton Friedman, you never have to read him twice to grasp his meaning. I think Will hurts his cause with too much academic jargon and philosophical references and not enough "here's some real-life ways my ideas can be applied" or "here's how I plan to sell this to the public." It would be amusing to put him in charge of a political campaign--the attack ads would probably need subtitles...

Granted, but isn't it nice to not be talked down to, on occasion? One of the nice things about BHTV is that they can do low volume (that is, one [err, two, I guess] to not-so-many), high information content broadcasts in a way that one rarely encounters.

Personally, I love to listen to people going on, full bore, with topics in which I have an interest, but no real expertise. [Kind of like sounding a cave to see how empty it is ;-)] And obviously if I'm already pretty familiar with a topic, it's just nice to hear people tearing at the meat, as it were, instead of suffering through all the circumlocutions necessary to bring it back to a general level.

AemJeff 03-01-2009 08:12 PM

Re: Free Will: Liberaltarianism Showdown
 
Brendan: you've rated a mention (though anonymously) on the Corner.

Added: Somehow, I really don't believe it was your reference to the NYT that rankled.

bjkeefe 03-01-2009 08:22 PM

Re: Free Will: Liberaltarianism Showdown
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by AemJeff (Post 105429)
Brendan: you've rated a mention (though anonymously) on the Corner.

LOL! Thanks for letting me know.

Quote:

Added: Somehow, I really don't believe it was your reference to the NYT that rankled.
Ya think?

;^)

Mari Dupont 03-01-2009 08:37 PM

Re: Free Will: Liberaltarianism Showdown
 
Hi AemJeff,
I hear what you're saying, but these are desperate times for libertarians and we need to get our ideas out of academia (or the dark corners of the Reason comment section) and into the mainstream. And as much as I personally enjoy talks aimed at policy wonks, the marketing director in me keeps saying "ok this is nice, but WHAT's THE COMMERCIAL? (or bumper sticker, if you'd prefer.)
M

bjkeefe 03-01-2009 08:41 PM

Re: Free Will: Liberaltarianism Showdown
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Bobby G (Post 105426)
a couple of things:

First, although there are indeed people like Mankiw, Fried, etc. at Harvard, you'd be crazy to think they're broadly representative of Harvard. [...]

I would be willing to bet that Harvard professors as a group would lean more to the left than, say, a random sample drawn from the entire US population on most issues, sure. I was not trying to claim Mankiw, et al, were representative of the faculty, I was merely giving a few examples to illustrate that the Harvard profs, like all the other groups Jonah named,and like "the left" or "liberals" that he's always indicting, are not a monolith of thought or political affiliation. That liberals, broadly speaking, may be in the majority at some place like Harvard does not mean the same thing as Jonah said and always says.

Further, among those who self-identify as liberals at Harvard, I would bet anything that you could start a fight between two randomly selected profs by running down a short list of issues. Point is, Harvard is not homogeneous, and neither is the left. And it's even more boneheaded to say that priorities among, say, Brookings and Hollywood denizens are identical.

I get that it's relative, that if one looks from a position far enough out to the right, the differences might not be as apparent. But if Jonah wants to play Mr. Big Time Intellectual, he can't get away with such myopia. If I can distinguish and acknowledge the range of different views on the right, as just some lame-ass commenter, he ought to be able to at least match that when talking about the left.

Quote:

We're speaking in generalities here. And generally speaking, all these places (NYT, Harvard, Hollywood, Brookings) are liberal, even if they aren't monolithically so.
Again, there is a world of difference between speaking in generalities in a casual conversation (and see how you qualified it even there?), and making sweeping, absolutist assertions during what purports to be a Very Serious, Thoughtful Conversation about political theory.

Nate 03-01-2009 08:51 PM

Re: BloggingPets
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by bjkeefe (Post 105419)
Imperious Feline Overlords, you mean.

And I, for one, welcome our new Imperious Feline Overlords.

bjkeefe 03-01-2009 08:53 PM

Re: BloggingPets
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Nate (Post 105433)
And I, for one, welcome our new Imperious Feline Overlords.

LOL! As do I, as I always have.

As my father likes to say, dogs have masters, cats have staff.

harkin 03-01-2009 09:33 PM

Re: Free Will: Liberaltarianism Showdown
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by bjkeefe (Post 105432)
I would be willing to bet that Harvard professors as a group would lean more to the left than, say, a random sample drawn from the entire US population on most issues, sure.

Yeah, they probably lean slightly more left:

From Huffington Post 3Q 2008:

Just the law professors:

Harvard: 100% ($23,632) to Democrats, 0% to Republicans
Chicago: 100% ($14,158) to Democrats, 0% to Republicans
Michigan: 100% ($11,653) to Democrats, 0% to Republicans
Stanford: 100% ($8,900) to Democrats, 0% to Republicans
Texas: 100% ($6,107) to Democrats, 0% to Republicans
UC-Berkeley: 100% ($4,850) to Democrats, 0% to Republicans
Pennsylvania: 100% ($2,711) to Democrats, 0% to Republicans
Duke: 93.8% ($15,188) to Democrats, 6.2% ($1,000) to Republicans
Columbia: 92.7% ($6,390) to Democrats, 7.3% ($500) to Republicans
Georgetown: 91.9% ($25,990) to Democrats, 8.1% ($2,300) to Republicans
NYU: 91.7% ($5,500) to Democrats, 8.3% ($500) to Republicans
Cornell: 91.5% ($3,250) to Democrats, 8.5% ($300) to Republicans
Yale: 91.2% ($3,630) to Democrats, 8.8% ($350) to Republicans

From the same page for professors nationwide:

http://img390.imageshack.us/img390/6...ldonations.jpg

cragger 03-01-2009 09:42 PM

Re: Free Will: Liberaltarianism Showdown
 
Good dialog, though from my point of reference that was likely due to Will W. doing most of the talking. I wish him well in his attempt to lay the foundations for a new political party or alignment since the two we have pretty much, well, suck.

I was a little disappointed that he didn't push back against Jonah G.'s claim that "the Left" tries to make a religion of the state, whoever's definition of "Left" one may like. This seems like a common attack from "the Right", in which anything from atheism to humanism to the state is claimed to be a new religion pushed by the ungodly. More to the point however is that it has always been my observation that there is a much stronger quasi-religious veneration of the state from "the Right". (I hesitate to enter into an argument as to just what that term means either since I don't find much overlap between my concept of conservatism and the Republican party.) It is nearly always the political "Right" that attacks opponents for insufficient patriotism. It certainly wasn't the "Left" which went after Obama for insufficient obeisance to state symbols in lapel-pin-gate, or spread rumors about him not knowing the Pledge, etc.

I understand that political parties give lip service to a lot of things they don't actually believe or plan to do. So far as freedom and individual liberty (the diavlog being about Liberaltarians after all) are concerned, the political Right seems to love to talk about it, but outside championing the ability of those with economic wealth and power to do with those as they please, I can't recall a single issue in my lifetime which has pitted the idea of individual rights vs. expanded government power, in which the Republican party has not been staunchly in favor of more government power. Of course the Democrats seem to have pretty well sold out on that these days as well.

Better hurry Will!

bjkeefe 03-01-2009 09:50 PM

Re: Free Will: Liberaltarianism Showdown
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by harkin (Post 105436)
Yeah, they probably lean slightly more left: ... [table of data] ...

Are you going to claim because most people made the smart decision between Obama and McCain* that therefore, the institutions to which they belong are a monolith of liberal thought? (Well, given that you think all news outfits besides Fox are liberally biased ...

Quote:

Originally Posted by harkin (Post 105037)
Regardless of your political views, there are valid points being made on Fox every day, just as there are on the news services which tilt heavily left (basically the others) ...

... I suppose you fit the description I gave above about someone looking from sufficiently far out to the right -- you can't see any differences from where you're standing.)

But back to your data: What about all the people who didn't donate? What you've shown with those data is a division between people sufficiently motivated to contribute to a political campaign this year. You haven't shown what fraction of the overall respective populations the donors represent. Therefore, while suggestive, those data are not conclusive.

==========
* [Added] For another look at how giving skewed this year among some surprising groups, see this article (via). Anecdotal, but illustrative, I think. This past election featured a lot of Obamacons and Obamacans -- people who weren't liberal, but nonetheless preferred Obama (or really did not want McCain or the GOP to get the White House).

blofeld42 03-01-2009 09:54 PM

Re: Free Will: Liberaltarianism Showdown
 
In the end, I think Wilkinson has a constituency of one for his party. He's not helped by the fact that he can't give an elevator pitch for his project.

bjkeefe 03-01-2009 09:57 PM

Re: Free Will: Liberaltarianism Showdown
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by cragger (Post 105437)
I understand that political parties give lip service to a lot of things they don't actually believe or plan to do. So far as freedom and individual liberty (the diavlog being about Liberaltarians after all) are concerned, the political Right seems to love to talk about it, but outside championing the ability of those with economic wealth and power to do with those as they please, I can't recall a single issue in my lifetime which has pitted the idea of individual rights vs. expanded government power, in which the Republican party has not been staunchly in favor of more government power.

To be fair, 2nd Amendment issues are ones they could legitimately claim to be on the side of the individual versus the gummint. Ditto opposition to affirmative action.

One could also probably come up with a variety of opposition to regulation-type of stances, although, to your claim, it's arguable that these are primarily motivated by looking to serve the interests of the well-heeled.

But once we change "none" to "almost none," your point is a good one.

T.G.G.P 03-01-2009 10:00 PM

A Particular Universalism
 
I discussed a number of the issues Jonah, Will & Haidt were getting at in this post.

AemJeff 03-01-2009 10:05 PM

Re: Free Will: Liberaltarianism Showdown
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by bjkeefe (Post 105438)
Are you going to claim because most people made the smart decision between Obama and McCain that therefore, the institutions to which they belong are a monolith of liberal thought?

I hate to say it, Brendan, but I'd be hard pressed to agree that that isn't a pretty good empirical test - if what you're testing for is the probability of a slant, rather than the presence of a monolith.

bjkeefe 03-01-2009 10:15 PM

Re: Free Will: Liberaltarianism Showdown
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by blofeld42 (Post 105439)
In the end, I think Wilkinson has a constituency of one for his party. He's not helped by the fact that he can't give an elevator pitch for his project.

You and Mari may be right about the elevator pitch/bumper sticker problem, but I'd say (a) we liberals, too, have long had this problem (just ask Eric Alterman*), and (b) I am intrigued by many of the ideas of liberaltarianism, and Will's, in particular. I'd say that I agree with him far more often than I don't.

So, we just doubled his constituency!

;^)

==========
* Starting at about 5:30

AemJeff 03-01-2009 10:17 PM

Re: Free Will: Liberaltarianism Showdown
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by bjkeefe (Post 105443)
... I'd say that I agree with him far more often than I don't.

So, we just doubled his constituency!

Yup - make that tripled!

Unit 03-01-2009 10:27 PM

Re: Free Will: Liberaltarianism Showdown
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by AemJeff (Post 105444)
Yup - make that tripled!

Make it four.

bjkeefe 03-01-2009 10:39 PM

Re: Free Will: Liberaltarianism Showdown
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by AemJeff (Post 105442)
I hate to say it, Brendan, but I'd be hard pressed to agree that that isn't a pretty good empirical test - if what you're testing for is the probability of a slant, rather than the presence of a monolith.

As I said, the data are suggestive, but they're not conclusive.

Pretend for a moment we didn't already think what we think about those universities listed. What that table of data shows is that among people who gave money, far more gave to Dems/Obama than Reps/McCain. But we don't know from those data what percentage of the total population at those campuses those donors represent. It could be that 5% gave to D/O, 1% gave to R/M, and 94% did not give any money.

Second point: remember that McCain funded his general election campaign with public monies, while Obama declined those. So, it could be that there were more people who would have given to McCain if he was set up to receive unlimited individual contributions in summer and fall of 2008.

Now, of course I am inclined to believe that the faculty at those universities listed are likely more liberal, as a group, compared to the general population. But I did want to point out that the data harkin gave were, in the abstract, the sort of thing one reaches for to confirm something one already believes, and not really as much of a slam dunk as a first glance might suggest.

And, anyway, my main beef still stands: that most people at Harvard, et al, preferred Obama is not the same as saying they all think alike, which is what Jonah said.

AED 03-01-2009 10:52 PM

Re: Free Will: Liberaltarianism Showdown
 
As a person who occupies the space between liberalism and libertarianism and became a kind of default liberaltarian after reading Lindsey's article in college, I appreciate Will's project to develop it into a coherent political philosophy. I wish him much luck. Still, I disagree with the idea that he shares with Jonathan Haidt that there is a fundamental moral split or personality difference between liberals and conservatives. The quiz that Haidt uses to create empirical support for his theory does not address under Loyalty such issues as party loyalty or loyalty to a movement or cause, which are as much in evidence on the left as on the right. Similarly, Haidt does not include under Purity such issues as doctrinal purity, cultural purity, or purity of political groupings and commitments (everyone absolutely committed to the same worldview, speaking with one voice), shades of which can also be seen in liberal thought as well as conservative. It seems just as likely that we all, to a greater or lesser degree, share these moral foundations but manifest them in different ways. This is partly why I see so much hope for liberaltarianism as a philosophy because its articulation of a strong centrist position might at least allow us to escape this notion that, in politics, we are fundamentally divided.

Unit 03-01-2009 11:08 PM

Re: Free Will: Liberaltarianism Showdown
 
This was touched only briefly when they talked about religion: the effectiveness of govt action, which is more similar to the action of a single firm or corporation, albeit with monopoly power, as opposed to larger emergent phenomena where no one is in charge. In order to appreciate and develop a sensibility for the latter one must in some sense be more fatalist: too much focus and faith in personal rational purity too often translates in overconfidence towards govt real potential for effecting the desired changes. Hayek's famous line that we must live (psychologically) in two very different worlds simultaneously: the personal, small-scale one and the larger societal one, is at the root of the problem, and it's the reason why Hayekians don't find themselves at home on either side of the political spectrum. To sum up, yes, you can through introspection be able to decide if you're more liberal or more conservative, but your individual predisposition does not necessarily correlates with how you should be judging societal phenomena. We have to accept the fact that complex phenomena have very peculiar explanations and that knowledge of these phenomena is arrived at through highly unfamiliar techniques. Some of these techniques may even require suspension of rational thought, as in the case of prediction markets.

bjkeefe 03-01-2009 11:13 PM

When is The Left not The Left?
 
Interesting thoughts from Jack Ross of The American Conservative, excerpted by John Cole. (It appears that you have to be a subscriber to read the whole thing.) (Plus, if you start at JC's place, you get to learn about "birth control glasses," which is a new term to me, and hilarious.)

So, you know, no matter how many times Jonah wants to say Dewey! You must know about Dewey!, his claim that liberalism is a monolith unchanged throughout history appears to be something less than a unanimously held view, even among conservatives.

AemJeff 03-01-2009 11:16 PM

Re: Free Will: Liberaltarianism Showdown
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by bjkeefe (Post 105446)
As I said, the data are suggestive, but they're not conclusive.

Pretend for a moment we didn't already think what we think about those universities listed. What that table of data shows is that among people who gave money, far more gave to Dems/Obama than Reps/McCain. But we don't know from those data what percentage of the total population at those campuses those donors represent. It could be that 5% gave to D/O, 1% gave to R/M, and 94% did not give any money.

Second point: remember that McCain funded his general election campaign with public monies, while Obama declined those. So, it could be that there were more people who would have given to McCain if he was set up to receive unlimited individual contributions in summer and fall of 2008.

Now, of course I am inclined to believe that the faculty at those universities listed are likely more liberal, as a group, compared to the general population. But I did want to point out that the data harkin gave were, in the abstract, the sort of thing one reaches for to confirm something one already believes, and not really as much of as slam dunk as a first glance might suggest.

And, anyway, my main beef still stands: that most people at Harvard, et al, preferred Obama is not the same as saying they all think alike, which is what Jonah said.

There's nothing much for me to disagree with here; I didn't like the argument prima facie - but with these qualifications I really don't have a problem.

Your point about what Jonah was saying is important. I was glad that Jonah copped to his tendency to keep his thumb on the scales in his argumentation, after being called on it a couple of time by Will. But that's an important point about him. He argues for a point of view that he's already decided is true. Any framing of the facts that supports his preordained conclusions, regardless, it seems, of whether it's a fair representation of those facts, is fair game to him.

It ought not surprise anyone, given the political demography of this country, that university professors might skew somewhat to the liberal side of the spectrum. (If you don't want your kids to grow up as liberals, don't provide them with an education and the opportunity to become financially secure. ;-> ) But there's a cottage industry on the right that takes this unsurprising fact and paints a dire picture - and Jonah, who it's obvious is capable of seeing what's true, is as much of a willing enabler of this sort of pernicious lie as, oh, picking a name out of a hat, Rush Limbaugh.

Unit 03-01-2009 11:25 PM

Re: Free Will: Liberaltarianism Showdown
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by AemJeff (Post 105450)
There's nothing much for me to disagree with here; I didn't like the argument prima facie - but with these qualifications I really don't have a problem.

Your point about what Jonah was saying is important. I was glad that Jonah copped to his tendency to keep his thumb on the scales in his argumentation, after being called on it a couple of time by Will. But that's an important point about him. He argues for a point of view that he's already decided is true. Any framing of the facts that supports his preordained conclusions, regardless, it seems, of whether it's a fair representation of those facts, is fair game to him.

It ought not surprise anyone, given the political demography of this country, that university professors might skew somewhat to the liberal side of the spectrum. (If you don't want your kids to grow up as liberals, don't provide them with an education and the opportunity to become financially secure. ;-> ) But there's a cottage industry on the right that takes this unsurprising fact and paints a dire picture - and Jonah, who it's obvious is capable of seeing what's true, is as much of a willing enabler of this sort of pernicious lie as, oh, picking a name out of a hat, Rush Limbaugh.

More to the point of the diavlog, data shows that the more people are educated the less of an anti-market bias they have, hence here academia is an outlier since it has a high concentration of highly educated people with a strong anti-market bias. In the overall picture, though, they're a small minority.

bjkeefe 03-01-2009 11:38 PM

Re: Free Will: Liberaltarianism Showdown
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Unit (Post 105451)
More to the point of the diavlog, data shows that the more people are educated the less of an anti-market bias they have, hence here academia is an outlier since it has a high concentration of highly educated people with a strong anti-market bias. [emph. added --bjk] In the overall picture, though, they're a small minority.

Is that true? How do you know that? Are you talking all professors? Because my college experience (mostly with math and science profs, admittedly) was that my teachers were all fairly strong supporters of a fairly free market system. They like getting research money from the government, and most of them probably favored some regulation in some areas, and some notion of a social safety net, and like that, but I can't think of any I met who were "strongly anti-market."

Are you talking about liberal arts professors who still name-check Marx or something?

pampl 03-01-2009 11:47 PM

Re: Free Will: Liberaltarianism Showdown
 
I've carried a lot of water for Goldberg in the past but as soon as he mentioned the fairness doctrine I turned the diavlog off and turned my back on him. It's one thing to have a (IMO) simplistic view of the left from viewing it from the outside, and another thing to just be a stooge.

Unit 03-01-2009 11:48 PM

Re: Free Will: Liberaltarianism Showdown
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by bjkeefe (Post 105452)
Is that true? How do you know that? Are you talking all professors? Because my college experience (mostly with math and science profs, admittedly) was that my teachers were all fairly strong supporters of a fairly free market system. They like getting research money from the government, and most of them probably favored some regulation in some areas, and some notion of a social safety net, and like that, but I can't think of any I met who were "strongly anti-market."

Are you talking about liberal arts professors who still name-check Marx or something?

I don't know if I can provide a link, it's from a study of the Survey of Americans and Economists on the Economy conducted by the Kaiser Family Foundation.
The most pro-market professors are to be found in Econ dept obviously even though (?) the average Econ prof is a moderate Democrat.

TwinSwords 03-01-2009 11:52 PM

Re: Free Will: Liberaltarianism Showdown
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by bjkeefe (Post 105430)
LOL! Thanks for letting me know.

ROFL. This is hilarious:

Quote:

Originally Posted by Doughy
One more example of why we look at adding blog comments with some skepticism around here.

Yep, that's right; If it wasn't for the likes of Brendan, we could comment on Doughy's blog!

bjkeefe 03-02-2009 12:09 AM

Re: Free Will: Liberaltarianism Showdown
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by TwinSwords (Post 105455)
ROFL. This is hilarious:

Quote:

Originally Posted by Doughy
One more example of why we look at adding blog comments with some skepticism around here.
Yep, that's right; If it wasn't for the likes of Brendan, we could comment on Doughy's blog!

The thing that kills me about Jonah railing about the NYT's op-ed page's supposed monolithic ideology is thinking of his gig at The Corner. Is there any other big site where conformity of opinion is more prized? Cripes, every time Derb goes on a rant about the Creationists you can almost see K-Lo directing her henchmen to toss him out the window.

And no comments! Dissent is unpatriotic!

(Which is why Krugman, Kristof, Fish, and a score or two of other blogs at the NYT all permit them -- clearly, the NYT hates America.)

bjkeefe 03-02-2009 12:37 AM

Re: Free Will: Liberaltarianism Showdown
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by TwinSwords (Post 105455)
... we could comment on Doughy's blog!

Fun coincidence department: Gavin M. begins a long essay on, among other things, conservative fake grass-roots movements,* thus:

Quote:

When Glenn Reynolds does those Instapolls that he does, they’re Instahosted at pollcode.com. In other words, we have discovered a wormhole to an alternate universe where Instapundit allows comments…
If you visit the Ole Perfesser's post and vote (or view results), you can see the comments ... and probably why conservatives don't like to enable them.

===============
* [Added: cf.]


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