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Thursday, July 5, 2018

How Politics Distorts Our Perceptions

Do you really know your opposition's party? Do you even really know your own?

What do you know about the political party you disagree with the most? Who do you think makes the group up? Is it a bunch of “libtard snowflakes” who are all union-backed? Or is it a bunch of offensive alt-right wackos with too much money to know what to do with it? Either way, those perceptions are both completely off-base—caricatural, even—and dangerous. A study, titled, “The Parties in our Heads: Misperceptions About Party Composition and Their Consequences” discusses exactly how Democrats and Republicans perceive both themselves and each other, and shows exactly how inaccurate those perceptions are. From exaggerated numbers of union-affiliated democrats to impossible statistics of Republicans who make more than $250,000 per year, join us as we discuss the dangers of political misrepresentation and more in this week’s episode of Words and Numbers with James Harrigan and Antony Davies.

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  • James R. Harrigan is a Senior Editor at the American Institute for Economic Research. He is also co-host of the Words & Numbers podcast.

  • Dr. Antony Davies is an Associate professor of Economics at Duquesne University, and co-host of the podcast, Words & Numbers.