By Adam Seth Levine
Americans this present day face no scarcity of threats to their monetary health, corresponding to activity and retirement lack of confidence, health and wellbeing care expenses, and spiraling collage school. whereas one may possibly anticipate that those issues might encourage humans to turn into extra politically working on the problems, this frequently does not take place, and the ensuing inactivity incorporates effects for political debates and public coverage. relocating past formerly studied limitations to political association, American Insecurity sheds mild at the public's inactiveness over monetary insecurities by means of displaying that the rhetoric surrounding those concerns is basically self-undermining. via their nature, the very arguments meant to mobilize individuals--asking them to dedicate funds or time to politics--remind voters in their monetary fears and private constraints, resulting in undermobilization and nonparticipation.
Adam Seth Levine explains why the set of people that develop into politically energetic on monetary lack of confidence matters is for this reason relatively slender. while funds is required, in basic terms those that care in regards to the concerns yet should not in my view affected get entangled. whilst time is required, participation is restricted to these now not in my opinion affected or people who find themselves in my view affected yet outdoors of the hard work strength with time to spare. The latter explains why it truly is particularly effortless to mobilize retirees on themes that replicate own monetary matters, reminiscent of Social safeguard and Medicare. quite often, notwithstanding, whilst political illustration calls for a wide team to make their case, financial lack of confidence threats are uniquely disadvantaged.
Scrutinizing the rules of political habit, American Insecurity bargains a brand new point of view on collective participation.
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Additional info for American insecurity : why our economic fears lead to political inaction
You’d be surprised at the influence this has—when it comes down close to our editorial deadline we have [legislators] calling us frantically sometimes way past working hours. They don’t want to be left off [the list] because the old folks back home pay attention. A second example of senior citizen activism on insecurity-related issues stems from the work of AARP. , and the largest senior organization by far. Since its founding in 1958, it has regularly lobbied in support of wide-ranging political goals related to retirement security, such as the Medicare prescription drug plan and Social Security expansions, as well as other issues that more broadly affect the elderly’s quality of life, such as public transit subsidies.
Despite these two possible concerns, there is good reason to believe that many Americans do have concrete ideas about what direction they would like to see public policy take to address job loss, the cost of health care, retirement insecurity, and college costs. Recent surveys provide some evidence. 53 Their results are both plentiful and illuminating, and I highlight only a few particularly relevant ones here. With respect to jobs and unemployment, they find that 80% of Americans support using tax dollars to help pay for retraining programs for people who have lost their jobs.
In this book I have chosen to focus on the following issues: the threat of job loss, health care costs, retirement insecurity (including pensions, Social Security, and Medicare), and college costs. When I argue that trying to mobilize people based on their financial constraints involves self-undermining rhetoric, I am only referring to this set of economic insecurity issues. ” The former refers specifically to the issue of costs whereas the latter can refer to a whole set of issues related to costs but also other aspects of the quality of service delivery, amount of research on diseases, and so on.