I’m riffing on the title of my “Why Is Macro So Hard” series of posts.
Many people, myself included, don’t get the appeal of Trump.*
But here’s more from The Washington Post interview with Kathy Cramer [emphasis is original]:
… To a group of people who feel completely ignored and disrespected by their government, it makes sense for them to say I oppose a policy that tells me what I have to do with my money.
It’s just a different, very different way of seeing it. But it’s not being hoodwinked.
That’s such a wonderful example. I think it really shows that people are pretty self-aware. They aren’t ignorant of Obamacare’s benefits. But they also recognize the costs. And to them, the costs — to their freedom, for instance — feel like they outweigh the benefits.
Exactly. Part of the cost is not just the money, right? It’s the cost of having this additional burden put on them by this very distant force that, in their minds, has shown them no regard.
To an economist, this is hugely insightful. We talk all the time about how not all benefits and costs are monetary. Personally, I emphasize to students that monetary benefits and costs are just an easier way to keep score. I don’t ignore the non-monetary stuff, but students often do.
So what I draw out of this part of the interview is that Obamacare supporters my be limiting themselves by thinking about monetary costs and benefits.
There’s more to it than that. Obviously, right?
The thing is, the motivation for restricting your thinking to just the monetary part may well be that they’re perfectly aware of the non-monetary part, and don’t care to admit how significant it is.
If that’s true, it adds support to the idea that the Democrats believed their own BS, or drank the Kool-aid, or whatever metaphor you prefer for this year.
* In my case, I freely admit to being biased and simply not thinking very seriously about anything Trump has said.