Democracy and Political Ignorance Why Smaller Government Is Smarter

ISBN-10: 0804786615
ISBN-13: 9780804786614
Edition: 2013
Authors: Ilya Somin
List price: $27.95 Buy it from $14.93
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Description: One of the greatest problems with American democracy is that most voters are ignorant of politics and government. Often, many people understand that their votes will not change the outcome of an election and don't see the point in learning much  More...

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Book details

List price: $27.95
Copyright year: 2013
Publisher: Stanford University Press
Publication date: 10/2/2013
Binding: Paperback
Pages: 280
Size: 6.00" wide x 9.00" long x 0.50" tall
Weight: 1.078
Language: English

One of the greatest problems with American democracy is that most voters are ignorant of politics and government. Often, many people understand that their votes will not change the outcome of an election and don't see the point in learning much about politics. This may be rational, but it creates a nation of people with little political knowledge and little ability to objectively evaluate what they do know.In Democracy and Political Ignorance, Ilya Somin mines the depths of ignorance in America and reveals the extent to which it is a major problem for democracy. Somin weighs various options for solving this problem, arguing that political ignorance is best mitigated and its effects lessened by decentralizing and limiting government. Somin provocatively argues that people make better decisions when they choose what to purchase in the market or which state or local government to live under, than when they vote at the ballot box, because they have stronger incentives to acquire relevant information and to use it wisely.

Acknowledgments
Introduction
The Extent of Political Ignorance
Do Voters Know Enough?
The Rationality of Political Ignorance
The Shortcomings of Shortcuts
Foot Voting vs. Ballot Box Voting
Political Ignorance and Judicial Review
Can Voter Knowledge Be Increased?
Conclusion
Appendix
Notes
Index

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