Liberals, Conservatives, and Libertarians: Who’s More Economically Clueless?
Some of my readers may have seen the Zogby-based study a year or so ago suggesting that liberals are economic boneheads compared to conservatives.
As it turns out — according to the researchers who did that study — not so much, really:
“One year ago, we reported the results of a 2008 Zogby survey that purported to gauge economic enlightenment (Buturovic and Klein 2010). … We also found that that self-identified Progressives and Liberals did much worse than Conservatives and Libertarians. Most of those eight questions specifically challenged leftist positions and/or reassured conservative and/or libertarian positions, while none had a clear slant against conservatives and/or libertarians. In a new survey, conducted in December 2010, we supplemented those eight questions with another nine new questions, all specifically challenging conservative and/or libertarian positions (and often reassuring leftist positions). … the new test consisting of all 17 questions yielded results that vitiated prior evidence of the left being worse. Now, all groups do poorly, with each group tending to do relatively poorly on the questions challenging its positions.”
“we now know that a lot depends on being challenged and, moreover, on being reassured by the point of the survey item.”
“Once we construct questions that set traps, as it were, for conservatives and libertarians, they fall into them just as readily as the left fell into traps in the previous set of questions.”