The Daily Kos provides endless fodder for the left. It is a good barometer of the liberal, progressive, Marxist movement. This recent article was meant to position Scott Walker as too conservative. And it takes pot-shots at the correlation between income and political orientation.
However, I would like to draw two separate conclusions from the same data (the charts below represent this data). I explicate these findings with the caveat that there may be inconsistencies in the data itself. These charts are based on the group Crowdpac and their political modeling. I assume that their data model is accurate, for the sake of argument. The purpose of this post is to respond to and explain these charts, not delve into the depths of how they are constructed. If you’d like to you can do so.
First, I would like to propose a different take than the simplistic explanation that income => ideology because rich(er) doctors want to protect their wealth. This is part of it, but look at the disciplines of the doctors themselves. Surgeons are disproportionately conservative. These are highly specialized fields that require a massive investment of time and skill. And, these are generally the best of the best, the Top Gun of doctors. These are highly intelligent people. It makes sense that they would rebuff efforts to control their practice by obtrusive government, and therefore become more conservative.
Could you conclude a correlation between intelligence and conservationism? Based a tertiary reading of the data, yes. Now we could run a multivariate regression to confirm this hypothesis, but it has face validity and merit.
The doctors who primarily interact with children are more liberal. Could this be related to attitudinal differences? Do they desire to influence society through educational and health modifications of the next generation? Granted this is a stretch, and it is not even moderately testable (how do you measure the desire to alter society?). I supposed you could use something as a proxy for this construct, but that is beyond the scope of this mental exercise. I would simply point out that you need to be careful when your kids doctor or some school nurse asks you in a survey “are there any guns in your home.” It is none of your bleeping business what my home protection and safety looks like. If you want to find out, you can smash my window and try to enter my house…
Not surprisingly psychiatrists skew liberal, this is most probably an example of the walking wounded. These are doctors who battle the mental disease of liberalism seeking to “help” read: justify other mental illnesses through prescription drugs that alter the mind. I’m not saying that there are not legitimate uses of psychotropic drugs. I am saying these are prescribed all too often and by people who base their decisions on an existentialist, often atheistic, behavioral and secular humanist worldview. Psychologists – talk doctors – are not included but tend to be lower grade versions of the same cloth. Their view does not begin to capture the whole of our life, and therefore be careful when dealing with shrinks (always good advice).
On to the more interesting chart, from the Daily Kos “the graph illustrates the ideological position of the Republican nominee from the previous six open-seat contests. The horizontal lines are the minimum and maximum ideological range for the field of candidates. Average ideology of the candidates is indicated by the red points.” This chart was presented by Jason McDaniel, assistant professor of Political Science at San Francisco State University on the site, Mischiefs of Faction. It is based on the Stanford Database on Ideology, Money in Politics, and Elections (DIME). Again, I will take this for what it is worth, a concise presentation of data that may or may not accurately and fully represent political views. But it is still useful as a common point of comparison for historical markers and helpful for this argument’s sake. The red points show where the field of GOP presidential primary candidates fell on their spectrum. Note: the average has been consistently to the right of our nominee since Reagan (who battled the Rockefeller wing for the nomination).
I added the drop down line from Reagan to show where the plumb-line for conservative leadership falls. I believe that Bush 41 was endorsed as Reagan’s third term, which he proved false. I would place W in 2000 at the mark of Reagan. On the chart the difference between W and the conservatism of the field is negligible, likely within the margin of error. He presented himself as highly conservative, in stark contrast to his father. His social conservatism and evangelical Christianity were important factors in his election and are most probably underrepresented in the data.
My conclusion: you guessed it Conservatives win and liberal Republicans loose. What do you know!?!?
Now for the clincher, this conclusion will hold true even as the party becomes more conservative. Reagan positioned himself as more conservative than the party by .3 on this scale (again, data is based on DIME if you question the scale). The Reagan line has become the main stream in the GOP. Jeb Bush is right where McCain and Dole (The Looser Wing of the GOP) positioned themselves. This is the Establishment line, the Rockefeller line, the NE liberal blue blood Republican line.
And Scott Walker is .3 points to the right of our new center. That is exactly where a winning candidate needs to be. The Daily Kos based on Jason McDaniel think that chart indicates that Republican voters will be scared of Walker. But it is just the opposite, Republicans voters will consolidate around greater conservatism and Walker will gain momentum.
Our winners are more conservative than our center.
Leaders who win do so because with distance from the pack comes further distinctions and clarity. Someone who can educate others about conservatism can pull the wool from the eyes Independents, Moderates, Democrats who have bought the lies of liberalism. A great candidate and statesman can rally the people to his cause with powerful rhetoric based on universal truth. That is the nature of conservatism, beautifully articulated and passionate advocated.
Let’s hope and pray that Scott Walker, or others like him, will be that leader we desperately need.