Posts Tagged ‘ideology’

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.

Zoltan Acs
by Zoltan Acs
Mon Dec 22nd 2008 at 1:28pm UTC

The Incentive Structure

Monday, December 22nd, 2008

Few things are more important in capitalism, or any society for that matter, as the incentive structure. If the incentive structure is right, people will move into productive activities. If it is not they might become unproductive or, even worse, destructive. During 1980, the business community engaged in unproductive, or what we call rent-seeking activities. These take from Peter and give to Paul. During the 1990s, the U.S. was involved in one of the most productive periods in its history with large numbers of people engaged in productive activites (ICT revolution) that created new wealth. During the 2000s, a set of unfortunate events created an incentive structure that destroyed instead of creating wealth. This destructive entrepreneurship was caused by ideology, changes in the tax laws, and lax regulation. The outcome – trillions of dollars in wealth lost. This form of destructive entrepreneurship is the legacy of the past decade when investment did not flow into productive activities. In fact, it was destructive. How to change the incentive structure to get us back to a productive form of enterpreneurship is a million dollar question for which there are no easy answers.