Erik Voeten

Red Brain, Blue Brain

Democrats and Republicans think quite differently. The image is from a paper (ungated) by UCSD (political) scientists Darren Schreiber, Alan Simmons, Christopher Dawes, Taru Flagan, James Fowler, and Martin Paulus. Below is the abstract: We matched public voter records to 54 subjects who performed a risk-taking task during functional imaging. We find that Democrats and… Read more »

More Civics Education Does Not Increase Support for Civil Liberties

In a new article in the Journal of Politics (gated, I am afraid) a group of Yale scholars (including Donald Green) finds that randomly exposing students to an enhanced civics curriculum increases the students’ knowledge of the constitution and civil liberties but it does not increase their support for civil liberties. This raises the possibility… Read more »

The Lasting Electoral Effects of Natural Disaster Responses

As President Obama visits Memphis and promises relief to the victims of the Mississippi floods, we may ponder what the electoral consequences of the federal response might be. Dan Hopkins has blogged earlier that voters distributed the blame for the Katrina response across different political actors. Yet, the Republican party still suffered considerably in the… Read more »

Who Supports Islamic Militants in Pakistan?

Who supports Islamic militants in Pakistan? Two new Georgetown Mortara Center working papers written by Christine Fair (Georgetown University), Neil Malhotra (University of Pennsylvania), and Jacob N. Shapiro (Princeton University) address this question using a nationally representative sample of 6,000 Pakistanis. The surprising conclusion appears to be that support is strongest among the middle class… Read more »

How Much did the Pakistani Military/Government Know?

Given that Osama Bin Laden was found relaxing in a posh resort town that happens to house the Pakistani military academy it isn’t much of a stretch for pundits and (foreign) government officials to suggest that the Pakistani military, intelligence services, and/or government officials were complicit in hiding him. I was talking about this with… Read more »