Indirect Polling

You have a sample population of 10,000 people whose opinion on a global warming prevention policy you wish to ascertain. However, you are not permitted to ask any question which has a direct reference to global warming in any way.

What question can you ask which will have the highest probability of a correct inference from its answer?

For example, a 'yes' answer to the question below seems likely to produce a greater than 75% correct inference of support for the GW prevention policy.

Question : Do you support a legal minimum wage?

Regards, Don

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It has long been the strategy of the Left to glom onto any problem -- potential or real -- of the status quo as a tool towards power. It has been he strategy of the small-government Right generally to downplay said problems.

Guess who wins?

Answer: the Left.

Notable exception: the problems with public schools. The Right has made the hay, and the school choice movement is one of the few successful government rollbacks that have come from the Right.

Maybe they should try getting in front of parades more often. For example, conservatives could get behind a carbon tax. This could be coupled with a rollback of much of the Department of Energy. With a carbon tax we wouldn't "need" to outlaw light bulbs or enforce fuel economy standards or such like. It could be the path to even repeal the income tax if packaged with some major spending cuts.

But no, the Right generally prefers denial. So government will continue to grow.

No, I don't think so. The

No, I don't think so. The government continues to grow because the anti-government side chooses the wrong strategy? I don't think so. There's a much more powerful logic at work here, elucidated by public choice economics (for instance). The government continues to grow because that's what government does. Government grows - until it collapses.

The right probably is mainly using the best strategies, and your belief that it could use better strategies is probably a fantasy. This is for a simple Darwinian reason. "The right" is a heterogeneous set of people all with their different approaches. Each approach is like a a mutation. These mutations compete for survival, but instead of natural selection, the great filter, which decides which strategy succeeds and which fails, is the political process. If you have several candidates for the Republican nomination, the political process filters them out by one of the candidates winning the nomination.

It's not that nobody on the right is doing what you recommend. People are doing what you recommend - and a thousand other things. The ones doing what you recommend are filtered out by the political process. They lose, and somebody else wins. If you don't see the winning conservatives doing what you recommend conservatives do, that's because conservatives who try to do that are filtered out by the political process. If your recommendations were political winners they would win.

As it happens, for example, direct doubts about global warming seem to have been very effective. I don't want to go into the play by play, but the warmists have not had an easy time of it, especially post climategate.

The problem is not the people but the political process, which is elucidated by public choice economics. For example, it is simply a fact that there is no rational reason for the typical voter to spend a lot of time educating himself about matters politica. We've seen the result: there are video clips on Youtube that show that typical voters are incredibly ignorant. There's really no getting around this reality. You can complain all you like about the ignorant public but that's not going to change the fact that they're ignorant. You can pine for New Democratic Man, but we live in a world populated by human beings as they actually are.

'...typical voters are

'...typical voters are incredibly ignorant..."

But the same kind of persistent stupidity will be seen in the Ivy faculties as well, for example.

Regards, Don

"But?" What you say doesn't

"But?" What you say doesn't contradict anything I said or implied. Did you think I was implying the vote should be limited to ivy league faculty? I didn't. If anything, the faculty is more systematically biased against freedom and the market than random voters.

Constant, My point was that


My point was that what you said had a much broader application, not that I disagreed with you in any way.

If we invert the order and start with a population of dedicated climate alarmists, I would still expect to find a strong majority of supporters of a legal minimum wage.

Regards, Don

My suggestions

Global warming breaks around 50/50 in the US these days. Only fringe reactionaries like myself are against the minimum wage. So I'd suggest the following:
Do you believe that abortion past the 1st trimester should be outlawed for any reason except the life of the mother?
Do you support the expansion of nuclear power?

I think you'd get very strong correlations for either of those.
A slightly less strong one would be:
Do you believe any adult with no criminal record or record of involuntary psychiatric commitment who has taken a gun safety class and paid a $50 fee should be issued a concealed weapon permit if they wish one?