Posted by Curt on 3 September, 2014 at 11:52 am. 1 comment.


Scott Rasmussen:

In a terrific column at Real Clear Politics, pollster Scott Rasmussen highlights what he calls the “gap between the nation’s political elites and the rest of the nation” when it comes to desiring control over others. At the New York Times, left-wing Josh Barro accidentally did the same by declaring his mission statement on the issue of reclining airline seats.

The example Rasmussen uses is the left’s view of stock, the kind which millions of Americans own outright or through 401k accounts. Last month when Rupert Murdoch’s News Corp. was looking at an acquisition of Time Warner (and with it CNN), Vox’s Matthew Yglesias used the moment to preach against buying non-voting stock.

“It’s a little mysterious,” writes Yglesias. “The value of a share of stock stems from the fact that owning it entitles you to a small slice of control over the enterprise.”

In his column, Rasmussen correctly points out that no one in the real world thinks that way. Everyday Americans just want a decent return on their investment, not the right to muscle anyone else. “Most [Americans] think of what they can do every day to make life just a little bit better for themselves and their families,” Rasumussen writes, and then concludes

If they invest wisely, they prepare for the future. If they work together with others in their community, they make their community stronger.

At the end of the day, the difference is simple. The political world relies on coercion. Most of the nation prefers cooperation.

Over at the New York Times, Barro sees the luck of where he’s seated on an airplane as an opportunity to coerce others. The title of his post says it all, “Don’t Want Me to Recline My Airline Seat? You Can Pay Me:”

When you buy an airline ticket, one of the things you’re buying is the right to use your seat’s reclining function. If this passenger so badly wanted the passenger in front of him not to recline, he should have paid her to give up that right. …

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