Monday, November 3, 2008

What if the Median Voter Were a Failing Student?

He or she probably is, according to this essay by Bryan Caplan from George Mason University.
When you actually collect data on the public’s economic beliefs and test them for systematic error, systematic errors are easy to find . . . The public systematically underestimates the social benefits of the market mechanism, especially for international and labor markets, and sees the past, present, and future of the economy in an unrealistically pessimistic light.
Here's the summary
As teachers, economists usually assume that their students have systematically biased beliefs about economics; yet, as researchers, economists usually assume that voters understand how the economy works. Teachers have it right, according to Bryan Caplan, and so modern political economy needs a serious overhaul.
(HT: Richard Langlois)

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