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posted by janrinok on Monday January 27 2020, @05:46PM   Printer-friendly

Arthur T Knackerbracket has found the following story:

Political polarization among Americans has grown rapidly in the last 40 years—more than in Canada, the United Kingdom, Australia or Germany—a phenomenon possibly due to increased racial division, the rise of partisan cable news and changes in the composition of the Democratic and Republican parties.

That's according to new research co-authored by Jesse Shapiro, a professor of political economy at Brown University. The study, conducted alongside Stanford University economists Levi Boxell and Matthew Gentzkow, was released on Monday, Jan. 20, as a National Bureau of Economic Research working paper.

In the study, Shapiro and colleagues present the first ever multi-nation evidence on long-term trends in "affective polarization"—a phenomenon in which citizens feel more negatively toward other political parties than toward their own. They found that in the U.S., affective polarization has increased more dramatically since the late 1970s than in the eight other countries they examined—the U.K., Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Germany, Switzerland, Norway and Sweden.

"A lot of analysis on polarization is focused on the U.S., so we thought it could be interesting to put the U.S. in context and see whether it is part of a global trend or whether it looks more exceptional," Shapiro said. "We found that the trend in the U.S. is indeed exceptional."

Using data from four decades of public opinion surveys conducted in the nine countries, the researchers used a so-called "feeling thermometer" to rate attitudes on a scale from 0 to 100, where 0 reflected no negative feelings toward other parties. They found that in 1978, the average American rated the members of their own political party 27 points higher than members of the other major party. By 2016, Americans were rating their own party 45.9 points higher than the other party, on average. In other words, negative feelings toward members of the other party compared to one's own party increased by an average of 4.8 points per decade.

The researchers found that polarization had also risen in Canada, New Zealand and Switzerland in the last 40 years, but to a lesser extent. In the U.K., Australia, Germany, Norway and Sweden, polarization decreased.

More information: Levi Boxell et al, Cross-Country Trends in Affective Polarization, (2020). DOI: 10.3386/w26669

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  • (Score: 2) by barbara hudson on Tuesday January 28 2020, @07:01PM (2 children)

    by barbara hudson (6443) <> on Tuesday January 28 2020, @07:01PM (#950181) Journal
    How is good behaviour treated the same as bad behaviour, except in your warped little mind?
    SoylentNews is social media. Says so right in the slogan. Soylentnews is people, not tech.
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  • (Score: 1) by khallow on Tuesday January 28 2020, @07:24PM (1 child)

    by khallow (3766) Subscriber Badge on Tuesday January 28 2020, @07:24PM (#950192) Journal
    Because you made no such distinction. You have yet to speak of non-bullying behavior from Trump, the other side, etc. It's great to say that you'll reward good behavior and stand up to bad. But irrelevant if you see all behavior as wholly good or bad. That latter is part of the polarization effect. My tribe can do no wrong. Your tribe can do no right.
    • (Score: 2) by barbara hudson on Tuesday January 28 2020, @09:20PM

      by barbara hudson (6443) <> on Tuesday January 28 2020, @09:20PM (#950240) Journal

      Again, that's an assumption that's entirely on you. Also, Trump has always been a bully, enabled first by his father bailing him out repeatedly (bullies don't learn that there are consequences for their actions) and then by a crooked deal with Deutch Bank backed by guarantees from Putin as well as Saudi Arabian money.

      You don't get to say you're not a bully if you act like a bully every day. Same as you don't get to say you're not a liar if you stop lying for 10 minutes.

      Trump voters are very much aware he's a bully - it's one of the things they like about him. They're living their secret power fantasies vicariously through him. They too would like to be able to buy sex without repercussions, be openly racist, openly misogynistic, lgbt-bashers - he's their wet dreams come true.

      Too bad about the collagen implants in his face not holding up, but they'll overlook it, same as they overlook his huge bald spot. Because he's giving voice to all their inner most deep-rooted hate. Same as Hitler did. And they both got elected ... about the only good thing to say about Hitler is that he killed Hitler. Hopefully Trump will do likewise.

      SoylentNews is social media. Says so right in the slogan. Soylentnews is people, not tech.