The University Utopia




” Just after November’s election, I posed three paradoxes of American politics, asking why certain demographic groups make up reliable voting blocs for the left, even though the pro-free-market ideas of the right have so much to offer them.

I have begun to revisit these paradoxes. In part one of this series, I laid out the case for why the pro-free-market right needs to reclaim these key demographic groups—young people, racial minorities, and city dwellers—and why I regard these as natural constituencies for the free market whose lockstep voting for the left is a paradox.

In this installment, I take up the first of the paradoxes: Why do the young vote for dependency—when the essence of youth is a quest for independence? My purpose for now is mostly just to solve the paradox, to explain the reason for the apparent contradiction, and to indicate what this implies for how the right should change its message and its sales tactics. When I am done looking at all three paradoxes, I will look in greater depth at an agenda of reform for the political strategy of the right.

First, let me explain why I do not include women among the main demographic groups the right needs to reach. Despite the left’s rhetoric on this issue, women are not a monolithic voting bloc. If you break down the numbers for last fall’s election, for example, Mitt Romney won the vote of white women by 56 to 42 percent. President Obama only won the women’s vote on the strength of his enormous advantage among racial minorities. The “marriage gap” was equally striking. Romney won 53% of the votes of married women, while Obama won 67% of the votes of unmarried women.”