“Candidate endorsements matter if you’d rather have a famous person, an organization or media entity do your thinking for you.”
– Neil deGrasse Tyson
In a piece entitled “The myth of the ignorant voter”, Jonathon Bernstein, the political scientist who writes for Bloomberg View, begs to differ.
(Seems Physic’s Big Bang or String Theory, or Anthropology’s origin or descent of Mankind, as examples, aren’t the only areas where scientists differ. And it can be argued that Tyson, a prominent astrophysicist, best known for his exposure as the go-to expert on TV on any program having anything to do with space, is a little out of his field of expertise when commenting on politics, a subject best left to political scientists. But it’s every American’s right to have an opinion, I guess.)
Bernstein argues that unless a voter carefully studies the policies and qualifications of each candidate, all the bond measures and initiatives every election, local, state, national, we have no choice (other than not voting at all, which describes almost half of all voting-eligible citizens), there is no other way to be informed, than by taking the shortcut of listening to the endorsements of others, especially those you have, over time, found to trust. As another political scientist, Hans Noel, points out, voting isn’t an individual choice at all – it’s “about acting in concert with others”.
I agree. Whether it be politics or religion or anything else, unless we have made it our full-time study, none of us knows anything well enough to speak intelligently or knowledgeably.
So we listen to the opinions of others who have done their homework.
Now, about the upcoming national elections, I have opinions and endorsements, if you care to listen.
Just ask me.