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3 Comments
  1. wagdog says

    “liberals tend to explain both poverty and wealth in terms of luck”

    A related NYT article from last week:
    What’s Luck Got to Do With It?
    by JIM COLLINS and MORTEN T. HANSEN
    http://www.nytimes.com/2011/10/30/business/luck-is-just-the-spark-for-business-giants.html?ref=todayspaper&pagewanted=all

    The question of wealth attribution to skill or luck is the way the human species addresses a more general problem that is key in the evolution of altruism — how to dissuade freeloaders and detect cheaters (See http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=5328549). The selection pressure for this skill is so strong that I believe liberals are every bit as capable of being blind to the role of luck just as conservatives are. Liberals simply deny the existence of random chance in different areas — namely a bias toward seeing everything as a big corporate conspiracy, and not simply a major systemic failure caused by short-sighted actors taking too many chances. As a result of this difference in positioning of respective blind spots, we find deniers of probabilistic conclusions of science on the both extremes of the political spectrum:
    Vaccine deniers on the left who see only a big pharmaceutical conspiracy;
    Anthropogenic climate change deniers on the right who see only a scientific hoax freeloading off government research funding.

    The drive to eliminate cheaters and freeloaders in the long run helps to restore a sense of equality — a topic of a recent Wired article:
    “Does Inequality Make Us Unhappy?”
    by Jonah Lehrer
    http://www.wired.com/wiredscience/2011/11/does-inequality-make-us-unhappy/

    1. Oldrich says

      Being a left-wing myself (socialist if you like) because where I come from we regard Liberals as dangerous compromisers -:) I cannot agree with the claim that Liberals see everything as so called “conspiracy”. In fact the opposite the truth. Many theoreticians of Marxism were heavily inspired by anarchism which in turn drew heavily from the Chaos theory. Actually Marxists do not regard the actions of different groups in the society as a result of some clandestine conspiracy but as an effect of “class consciousness” which is developed to a different degree in distinct classes. You don’t need a formal conspiracy to guess that if somebody is a millionaire entrepreneur he/she is much more likely to vote Republican (conservative)…

  2. Oldrich says

    Risk-reward (return) relationship is one of the things I have been interested in for a long time. There is an interesting article about this balancing act between return and risk one has to assume from legendary Ed Seykota :

    http://www.galtcapital.com/Publications/betsize.pdf

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