Why Women Reject Libertarianism

He’d be really happy to sit down and spend four or five hours explaining college football statistics to you.

“I am the first to admit that libertarians are quirky. Asperger’s is definitely overrepresented in the community, and with it, various nerdy obsessions.  Spend a bunch of time around libertarian guys and you’re apt to learn a lot about music, and comic books, and action movies, and computer programming. A lot.  He could lend you a book, if you want. And he’d be really happy to sit down and spend four or five hours explaining college football statistics to you.  Do you want that alphabetically, or north to south?  My personal empirical research indicates that in fact, libertarians make great boyfriends and husbands (though my sample size on the latter is pretty small).  The ones I’ve dated have actually been super considerate, and very concerned with pulling their own weight, though I couldn’t say whether this is random chance, or the natural outgrowth of a value system that emphasizes voluntary, mutually beneficial cooperation. The worst louse I ever dated was a bleeding-heart liberal.”Megan Mcardle, The Daily Beast (Awww.)

“There aren’t more female libertarians because libertarians say things exactly like this. Nearly every female libertarian we know can tell stories about being told, “Women aren’t really equipped to understand libertarianism. It’s a biological thing.” Or “Of course women are statists. They all just want to be taken care of.” Or “Women’s brains just can’t do economics.” Or “Women’s right to vote ruined the country.” Now Borowski has added yet another insult to the pile.”Sarah Skwire, Bleeding Heart Libertarians

“A person could embrace the perfectly sensible view that libertarians should improve their marketing, yet still doubt that the best marketing in the world would close the gap. My study of personality psychology makes me one of the doubters.  On the popular Myers-Briggs personality test, there is a huge Thinking-Feeling gap between men and women.  For men, the breakdown is roughly 60% Thinking, 40% Feeling.  For women, the breakdown is roughly 30% Thinking, 70% Feeling. This Thinking/Feeling disparity explains a lot about gender gaps in college major and occupation.  There’s every reason to think that this disparity can help explain gender gaps in political and social views.  To make a long story short: Thinking people tend to have “hard heads” and “hard hearts,” while Feeling people have “soft heads” and “soft hearts.”  Unsurprisingly, then, Feeling people tend to hold more anti-market views.  I’ve similarly found strong evidence that males “think more like economists.”  This gender belief gap increases with education, consistent with a simple model where male and female students gradually learn more about whatever their personalities incline them to study. marketing can only do so much.  Women really are more Feeling than men, and selling libertarianism to people with Feeling personalities is inherently difficult. Please don’t be angry at me, I am only a messenger.”-Bryan Caplan, Econlog (As usual, Bryan has the the most sensible explanation)

Eli, on how to sell libertarianism to soft-hearted women:You know Oprah, I wish I could in good conscience support the minimum wage, I really do. But do you know what happens when people don’t comply? A lot of times it’s imprisonment. Sometimes its a fine but if they don’t pay something has to happen, and its not going to be pretty. And many won’t comply, for many reasons; maybe they’re small businesses who can’t afford it, or maybe they’re just that darned greedy. But either way, is that something you want to destroy somebody’s life over? Greed? Such a basic human impulse, that we all have by the way, and you want to bring out the guns over that? That’s the problem with humanity, with history, is we’re too quick to pull out the guns(!). Over and over again it has lead to tragedy after tragedy. And after what we’ve been through recently, I think maybe we should put them away for a while and see what happens.”

3 comments

    I shouldn't laugh, because Megan Mcardle's remarks sound too much like me, except for the football part.

    David Buchner | 4 years ago

    David, It sounds too much like me too. :)

    Shanu Athiparambath | 4 years ago

    FYI: From a few in 1969 to 8 MM... https://www.facebook.com/notes/libertarian-international-organization/8mm-libs-worldwide/576136832429459

    ken | 4 years ago

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