… A vast majority of Swedes believe that they are poorer, relative to others, than they actually are. This is true across groups, but younger, poorer, less cognitively able and less educated individuals have perceptions that are further from reality.
To put it more bluntly, people pushing an agenda for income redistribution will have better luck if their target market is young, dumb, and ignorant.
Then the authors try a little social engineering:
… We conduct an experiment by randomly informing a subsample about their true relative income position. Respondents who learn that they are richer than they thought demand less redistribution and increase their support for the Conservative party.
Their evidence of this is based on before and after responses to survey questions, not actual voting records.
FWIW: This mirrors discussions I have around my house with the vXboy and vXgirl. They think we’re poor. I try and explain that spending all your money and having nothing extra left is not the same thing as poor. I also try and emphasize that they need to think a lot more about careers that make a decent amount of money … since they have no idea how far along the income distribution they actually are.
FWIW: This caught my attention because I met a pair of grifters in a pub in Edinburgh in 1984. They were running a scam on “fruit machines” (not far off from what Americans think of as a slot machine). Anyway, they both had Geordie accents. One of them I could understand. But the other one, for the life of me, I couldn’t figure out a full sentence, and we sat around the pub drinking and talking for at least an hour.
Most of this piece isn’t explicitly about macroeconomics. But it gets at the point that one of the things that makes thinking about macroeconomics and policy so hard is the breathless negativity which politicians the legacy media condition us with.
Just after I discovered Judgmental Maps, they posted their newest one; a city I loved and hated for 9 years, New Orleans:
I worked at “school for kids who had no other choice”, and got some extra work at “Yankee College”. When we moved there, we lived west of “Like Chalmette, but cleaner”. Then we moved to “Sorta Lakeview”. We’d drive through “Avoid” quite a bit to get to “Drunk”.
The full size version has yet to be archived, so just click the link to the main page above.
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