Why Low-Information Voters Are Worrisome

Ya think?  Hmmm…maybe there wouldn’t be so many low information voters if conservatives fought the information war. Of course, in order to fight it, they have to realize that they are not currently doing so to any serious degree. Then they’ll have to learn how to fight it — measuring success only by how many people they effectively reach who are outside the choir.

Here is Richard Winchester writing at American Thinker:

Sadly, we live in the era of the low-information voter. The second edition of Ilya Somin’s Democracy and Political Ignorance (2016) documents widespread political ignorance among today’s public, including voters. Although nonvoters are abysmally ignorant of politics, voters are not walking, talking political encyclopedias either. Americans are more likely to be well-informed about celebrities, such as the Kardashians, than about political leaders.

Consistent with earlier research, Somin estimates that nearly a third of the American public are “know-nothings,” who possess “little or no relevant knowledge” about public affairs. As he notes, “[i]f the public really is often ignorant [about public affairs], we might have a serious problem on our hands.” (Hint: We do!)

In addition — either as a cause or a corollary — a large portion of the public is politically apathetic. Except in times of crisis, most Americans don’t pay much attention to what happens in the political arena, and most don’t care much about what’s going on in U.S. politics. They are more concerned with personal and family matters than with public affairs.

(I do not mention America’s low voter turnout rates when writing about apathy. Although some focus on low turnout rates – relative to other western nations – when discussing apathy, voting is not always, and perhaps not even usually, a reliable indicator of how attentive people are to public affairs. Some people who are turned off by Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump may not vote in 2016, but that doesn’t necessarily mean they don’t pay attention to public affairs.)

Read more: American Thinker

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