Posts Tagged ‘Andrew Gelman’

Richard Florida
by Richard Florida
Wed Aug 19th 2009 at 6:37pm UTC

Economics and Ideology

Wednesday, August 19th, 2009

Political scientist Andrew Gelman has some great graphs on the connection between economics and ideology. Comparing income levels, ideology, and party identification, he and collaborator Daniel Lee found the connection between income and party identification was strongest among conservative Republicans. But the relationship was “close to zero” for liberals. Liberal Dems were spread across all income groups, while conservative Dems had much lower income levels.

My reading is that class continues to play a considerable role in American politics: With the exception of liberal Dems who draw from across the spectrum of classes, the parties and their key factions increasingly represent class blocs. Gelman notes that the connection between economic status and party/ideology underpins America’s increasingly polarized policy debates. He’s right. In the current zero-sum economic climate, it’s only likely to get worse.

Richard Florida
by Richard Florida
Wed Jun 3rd 2009 at 11:30am UTC

Obama’s Cross-Class Coalition

Wednesday, June 3rd, 2009
Obama and Class.gif
Andrew notes the real (positive) trend in the president’s approval ratings. And Chris Bowers speculates, given recent (and ongoing) demographic shifts, that even Michael Dukakis would have won the 2008 election. Demographic shifts do seem to be on the Democrats’ side.

But Obama may be on his way to fashioning a broad cross-class coalition, according to this Gallup survey which tracks the president’s approval rating by occupation (pointer from Charlotta Mellander).

The president enjoys a nearly two-thirds (65 percent) approval rating overall. He enjoys relatively high approval ratings across major occupational or class groups, and his approval rating is rising across key groups.

Blue Collar Workers: Production and manufactuirng workers provided a 68 percent approval rating, up from 62 percent in March.

Service Workers: Service workers gave the president his highest approval rating in May, 71 percent.

Professional, Knowledge, Creative Workers: The president registered a 65 percent approval rating from professionals (up three points from March) and 60 percent from managers and government workers.

Entrepreneurs and Self-employed Workers: The president’s biggest gains came from business owners and self-employed workers, where his approval rating increased 11 points from 44 percent ion March to 55 percent in May.

It’s an open question whether Obama can maintain these numbers (Andrew Gelman says they might not be so enduring), but right now they look impressive, especially given the very uneven ways the crisis is affecting these groups.

Richard Florida
by Richard Florida
Thu Apr 23rd 2009 at 9:27am UTC

Home-Base Effect

Thursday, April 23rd, 2009

There’s an undeniable home-base effect for leading consumer brands. So, Starbucks does better in Seattle; Wal-Mart in Arkansas; Heinz ketchup in Pittsburgh. Here’s the abstract for the detailed study published in the Journal of Political Economy.

We document evidence of a persistent “early entry” advantage for brands in 34 consumer packaged goods industries across the 50 largest U.S. cities. Current market shares are higher in markets closest to a brand’s historic city of origin than in those farthest. For six industries, we know the order of entry among the top brands in each of the markets. We find an early entry effect on a brand’s current market share and perceived quality across U.S. cities. The magnitude of this effect typically drives the rank order of market shares and perceived quality levels across cities.

Tyler Cowen comments; and Andrew Gelman has maps which depict a similar diffusion away from home-base effect for Starbucks and Wal-Mart.

I wonder though if this is just a home-base effect, as brands take hold where they are established and get picked up more slowly elsewhere, or if there might be another (deeper) process which would explain why certain kinds of brands – say like Starbucks and Wal-Mart – crop up in particular locations to begin with.

Your thoughts?

Richard Florida
by Richard Florida
Mon Nov 10th 2008 at 8:23am UTC

The Place Election

Monday, November 10th, 2008

Andrew Gelman tallies the big-county/ small-county; rich-county/poor-county votes.

A blogger shares perspective:

In short, I believe place, not just people, won this election for Barack Obama. And here’s why: cities are made up of three types of people.

1. Young people who migrate to them for college and professional opportunity.

2. Professionals who migrate to them for career advancements and financial gain.

3. Wealthy people who have gained enough money in their careers to stay in them over generations…

And credit the Obama campaign for doing such a good job of tailoring messages to this group. They’ve done a great job of making young urbanites feel good about those $25 political donations not to mention the volunteer numbers that come out of this group of voters. In a way, the Obama campaign emails make you feel like you’re not doing enough to make history if you didn’t at least volunteer on election day. And it’s worked like a charm in cities… Again, the Obama campaign – particularly in places like Philadelphia and D.C. – should get a lot of credit for being so well organized in cities, so much so that you would think he was running for mayor in places like Chicago and Raleigh, NC.

The critical feature of the creative economy is that it makes place the fundamental feature of politics, culture, and economics.

Richard Florida
by Richard Florida
Wed Nov 5th 2008 at 11:47am UTC

What Really Happened Last Night

Wednesday, November 5th, 2008

Columbia University political scientist and Rich State, Poor State author (and great friend of the Prosperity Institute), Andrew Gelman tells the story in charts, facts and figures.

The youth vote really mattered.

But the country remains split, as Gelman notes, ” The red/blue map was not redrawn; it was more of a national partisan swing.”

Richard Florida
by Richard Florida
Tue Nov 4th 2008 at 8:57am UTC

Class, Politics, and Geography

Tuesday, November 4th, 2008

Rich State, Poor State author, Andrew Gelman shows that the poor are not dupes and that America’s political polarization has more to do with economic geography then individual income.

Ever since Thomas Frank’s book “What’s the Matter With Kansas?” came out a few years ago, Kansas has been a symbol of the alleged new trend of working-class Republicanism. Pundits on the left say that lower-income Americans are ignoring their economic interests; on the right, there has been talk of the Democrats as the elites and the Republicans as the party of the people.

Actually, though, Kansas has consistently voted Republican for more than 70 years, and a look at exit poll data shows that the richer you are in the state, the more likely you are to vote Republican. In 2004, George Bush received half the vote of low-income Kansans, but more than 80 percent of the vote of those in the state whose incomes were higher than $100,000.

And Kansas is far from unique. Over the past decades, rich voters have remained consistently more Republican than voters on the lower end of the income scale. At the national level, if poor people were a state, they would be “bluer” even than Massachusetts; if rich people were a state, they would be about as “red” as Alabama, Kansas, the Dakotas or Texas. Further data comes from the political contributions of top executives and the richest Americans, who favored Bush over John Kerry 3-to-1 in 2004.

The myth of rich Democrats and poor Republicans is sustained in part by the electoral map, which shows – for real – that Democrats are now winning in the rich states such as Massachusetts, New York and Connecticut. But winning rich states is not the same as winning rich voters.

We’ve been hearing for a while about the cultural divide between Wal-Mart Republicans and Starbucks Democrats. A more accurate description of voters distinguishes more subtly between rich and poor. Among upper-middle-class and rich voters, rich states go Democratic while poor states go Republican. But among lower-income voters, rich and poor states do not vote differently. The differences between “red states” and “blue states” are real, but these differences occur among rich voters, not poor voters.

What is going on? Why is it the rich, not the poor, who seem to be voting based on cultural factors? One explanation is post-materialism: As you become more prosperous, you can afford to be concerned about noneconomic issues. This holds for individuals and also for states: Richer voters in rich states such as Connecticut are much less likely to vote Republican than you would expect based on their income alone.