Ask A Genius 421 – Aging, Bad Brains, and Conservatism Swings in Time and Attitudes (1)
October 23, 2018
[Beginning of recorded material]
Scott Douglas Jacobsen: What is the math behind reliable demographics?
Rick Rosner: The deal is, for the last 20 or 30 years, people have been saying that the Republican Party in America will collapse demographically. Because Republicans tend to be older and old people tend to get even older and age out and die.
They tend to eventually withdraw from political life, from voting and everything, either because they are too old or too dead to vote. Also, America gets less white, and people who aren’t white tend not to be Republicans.
Republicans have pushed them further and further into an extreme corner trying to hold onto their extreme voters, who tend to be old and white. Republicans tend to hold onto power in spite of demographic power by gaming the system.
In 2010, they gerrymandered the country, so that they, Republicans, could win; even though, they may be getting 5% fewer overall votes than Democrats. But at some point, you have to expect the Republican Party to demographically collapse.
People who are optimistic can look at 2018 as an opening salvo in the collapse. But maybe not, because the Republicans own the Supreme Court, which may allow them to get away with more rigging of elections.
Also, we can look at the creation of new Republicans. Younger people who are more altruistic and, perhaps, less motivated by money self-interest – and minorities – tend to demographically gravitate to the Democratic Party.
Republicans: let me postulate here, older people become conservative when they become afraid of change. Let’s say the impetus to become conservative is, at least, somewhat proportionate to the rate of change, the faster things change in culture and technology, then the more terrifying it is to people who no longer have the up-to-date skills and intelligence to embrace the change or the changes.
Once people begin to fall behind the curve of change, they look at ways to stop it. Increasingly, since the rise of Fox News, conservative media has gotten increasingly used to, and increasingly good at, exploiting the characteristics that go along with the fear of change, which is the loss of thinking ability.
People live longer now. It means that they have more years with old people brains that do not think as well, and conservative media has learned to dumb itself down to be attractive to older and dumber people.
[End of recorded material]
American Television Writer
Scott Douglas Jacobsen
Editor-in-Chief, In-Sight Publishing
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