The good thing about elections is that it reveals the real motives of the politicians and also their supporters.
One key area is economic literacy, and it seems that few people actually understand the basics.
Education: Everybody talks about how the presidential primaries have uncovered intense voter anger at the political establishment. It’s actually revealed something more troubling: The widespread ignorance of basic economic truths that spans across the political spectrum.
Has there ever been a bigger disconnect between economic reality and public perception?
Polls taken during the primary season have found Democrats embracing socialism, Republicans rejecting trade, and majorities in both parties saying Wall Street is hurting the economy. That’s despite the general consensus among mainstream economists that none of these things is true.
Take Democrats’ views on socialism. An American Action Network poll finds that 40% of Democrats say socialism is the best form of government, while another 10% say both. In other words, half of Democratic voters are perfectly comfortable with the idea of the government owning and/or controlling the private sector. More than half of Democrats (57%) say that socialism has a positive impact on society.
A separate New York Times/CBS poll found the same thing: half of Democrats have a positive few of socialism; just 34% have a negative view.
Overall, the NYT poll found that a third of the public has a positive view of socialism, while just over half has a negative view.
All this despite the unbroken string of failures with socialist states, the latest of which are all happening right in the nation’s backyard, where socialist policies have produced massive deprivation and chronic shortages. Just this week, Venezuela ordered a two-day workweek to save on electricity.
Denmark, which socialist Bernie Sanders says is a model socialist state, rejects the label, insisting that it’s a market economy.
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