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Americans Hate It When Mommy And Daddy Fight: A comment

February 7, 2010
by Lawrence Gulotta

This article, “Americans Hate It When Mommy And Daddy Fight” by Jonathan Chait can be found here.

Academic political scientists come up with some bizzare conclusions from their research projects.

The case hasn’t been made that most Americans do not understand or have any use for policy. A few focus groups and a so-called survey of the literature proves nothing.

There is no proof for the statement that “People believe that Americans all have the same basic goals ” and are “turned off by political debate and deal making that presuppose an absence of consensus.”

There is no basis in fact to conclude that “people” believe politics unnecessary.
The idea of a “consensual public interest” is not based on anything empirical or theoretical.

The entire research project is infantile, hence, the reference to “Mommy and Daddy” in the article’s title. The research is removed from actual reality such as the civil rights struggle, the labor movement, the anti-war movements of the 60s and 70s, the feminist movement, the consumer protection movement, the long term struggle for universal health care. Instead of real people in real movements engaged in democratic struggle, we get “people” with absolutely no reference to social class, gender, age, vocation, regional distribution, religious affiliation, among other indexes of decision making.

This discussion is an unfortunate elitist excursion into the nebulous belief system of the “people” based on bad political science and sociology. Take your “Mommy and Daddy” and go stand in the corner.

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