Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Sample bias

USA Today reports empathy on decline in college students and waxes Chicken-Littlish about technology. My reading of news comment threads tells me that Claire Raines, at the bottom of the story, is right:

Raines says that empathy is declining in all generations...
Traditional liberals are empathetic (by which I mean New Dealers, not the imaginary rugged individualists that excuse-making posers such as Jonah Goldberg call "classical liberals"). Ted Kennedy was empathetic. Neo-liberals are technically and analytically sure that activism from government makes society better - so long as government is not too too active, but they're not strong on empathy. John Kerry...

Reconciling these two threads of liberalism is an important political problem for the coalition of the left of center.

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