Friday, May 16, 2008

Global Warming, Education and Political Affiliation

Interesting. As education level goes up for Democrats, they are more likely to believe in global warming. As education level goes up for Republicans they are less likely to believe in global warming.

I wish they also had a breakdown of college grad by major to see if that has any impact on the results.

via Wired via Pew


Audacious Epigone said...

What that seems to show, at least on the surface, is that the climate change debate is politically highly-charged. The less educated/less attuned have relatively middling positions, while the more educated/attuned know where they "should" stand.

Fat Knowledge said...

Hmm, that would explain it.

But, I wonder if you ask about other politically charged topics if you would see a similar breakdown of education leading to more agreement with the party philosophy. I am thinking of free trade, immigration, abortion, environmental restrictions and evolution in particular.

Audacious Epigone said...

I'd say (speaking in generalities) it depends on the level of sophistication required and the level of pragmatism involved in holding a particular position on an issue.

Climate change is pretty academic--it doesn't affect people's lives to anywhere near the extent (at least not at this point in time) as immigration or free trade does. Understanding even the basicpremises of the 'for' and 'against' arguments requires some brainpower.

That's not too satisfying a response though, I know. With trade, immigration, and environmental restrictions, I think it holds on the GOP side. On abortion and evolution, not so much.

On the Democratic side, it holds on immigration, abortion, environmental restrictions, and evolution, but not on free trade.

Fat Knowledge said...

I'd agree with you that climate change is pretty academic. Although, I believe quite a few people blame Katrina on global warming, when the scientists still don't know if global warming leads to more hurricanes or not. I thought Katrina was going to lead to a national discussion about poverty which it didn't do and instead politically it seemed to have more resonance with global warming.

As for immigration, when a Republican is more educated are you saying they are more or less like to support freer immigration? I always think of educated Republicans as being WSJ readers and therefore pro-immigration. But, you are educated and not pro-immigration, so I am not sure which way you think this one goes. :)

Anonymous said...

Common sense 101 - global warming is making the ocean warmer

Physical geography 101 - heat and oscillation of the planet give hurricanes strength.

More heat, more strength

Sallyoops said...

Sallyoop said......As educaton level goes up for Democrats they are more likely to be studying the Arts and Sciences........the Liberal Arts. As education level goes up for Republicans they are more likely to be studying business admnistration.

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