Rational Ignorance Effect

Ever since the election in November 0f 2008, many people, bloggers and journalists have been trying to explain thye actions of the GOP.  We have heard that they are a dying party or that they are not in touch with the feelings of the voter.  No matter which or what you think is happening to the GOP there is one thing to keep in mind….they are professionals and they are pretty good at the game of politics.

So what is the reason that the GOP is appearing so weak?

First of all, the American people on an individual basis, realizes that their single vote is unlikely to determine the outcome of anything.  For this reason they do not spend too much time researching to get the reliable information they need.  The voter relies heavily on the media for their information and in these days of cable they look for those channels and reports that will reinforce their beliefs in the world view.

The voter lacks incentive to cast an informed vote.  Therefore FOX and MSNBC form their knowledge of any given situation.  Most voters will be rationally uninformed on many issues.  They wilkl depend on political information suppliers like the mass media to the issues that are of personal importance.

This situation has a name….it is called the “Rational Ignorance Effect”

In my opinion this is what the GOP is employing in their attacks on Obama.  They use buzzwords that have no real place in the conversation with the hope that political ignorance will play in their favor.

If one needs an illustration then I say just take a long hard look at the last “Tea Party” protests…..they were billed about the outrage in Obama tax increases….but if anyone bothered to check there were few if any tax increases.  Basically it was just a ploy to get people lavered up and go out and bash the president.  It was NEVER about raising taxes.

Some will say that the “Rational Ignorance Effect” is losing some of its validity…..because to the popularity of the internet……I say that is not completely accurate……voters will use the internet like they use the media….they will find information that supports their world view.  For that reason, Rational Ignorance Effect is still as valid as it ever was.

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