Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Red Team vs. Blue Team: Government Wins & Liberty Loses

-Ryan McMaken
When George W. Bush was in the White House, left liberals were the ones denouncing war, calling for less intrusive government, and generally striking an anti-government pose. That all abruptly stopped when Obama was sworn in. And now that Obama is president, it's the conservatives who are talking about secession and denouncing violations of civil liberties. There's no sign of conservative opposition to interventionism foreign policy, though. Indeed, it seems that Obama's big sin here is not being interventionist enough.

If that was the impression you had of partisan politics over the past 16 years, you're not alone. Pew has recently updated its analysis of Americans who say that government is an "immediate threat." And sure enough, there is a very large correlation between one's suspicion of government, and if one is in the same political party as the sitting president. In other words, people only seem to notice that government is a problem when their political party is out of power. The graph looks pretty much like you'd expect: