Disappointing Election Year?
By Arnold Kling
That’s my perception.
I picture voters under 40 as having less allegiance to top-down economics and top-down moral legislation. I would think that the trend would be libertarian.
…Instead, during the debates, it seems to me that we witnessed libertarian “anti-gravity,” with the candidates competing to appeal to traditionalist-minded voters at the expense of libertarians.
Bush and Kerry didn’t want to offend near-retirees by saying benefits need to be cut; or Hispanics by talking realistically about immigration; or nearly 200 million licensed drivers by saying that to reduce oil demand requires a stiff gasoline tax; or most Americans by proposing tougher controls on health spending. No one wanted to hear these unappetizing policies, so Bush and Kerry didn’t propose them.
For Discussion. If the public were more educated on economic issues, how might this year’s campaign have been different?