Conservatives are From Mars, and Liberals are from Venus: Why Conservatives Tend to be in Business, and Liberals in the Sciences, Education, and Arts
More specifically, it isn’t that there is any simple causation / correlation, or that this goes beyond theory, it is that peer-reviewed data from studies seem to suggests that there fields that attract conservatives more than liberals, and ones that attract liberals more than conservatives.
This then, over time, creates a self perpetuating cycle as people tend to be indoctrinated into the ideology of the group they share (group think and identity politics).
It is a slippery and polarizing slope, especially in a two-party system where political choice is a major party of one’s identity (especially in modern time of social media).
The Two General Types of People; The Archetypes Liberal and Conservative, their Characteristics, and the Effect of this on Career Choice
- Liberals tend to win citied districts, they tend to like the sciences, arts, and education, they tend to support the social safety net and government, they tend to a lot of things that we consider “liberal platform planks”. They are left-wingers, and in America, they are Democrats.
- Conservatives tend to win rural districts, they tend to support military and business, they tend to support social conservatism and limited government, they tend to support “conservative platform planks”. They are right-wingers, and in America, they are Republicans.
But why is this polarized schism true? Is it just convention? Are colleges teaching liberals to be more liberal? What effects are going on here?
Studies show that people in education, science, and the arts tend to be liberal, and the investor and business class conservative. This can differ, like with international finance, but generally the employer is right-wing and the Union left, the scientist left and the oil baron right, etc.
One may therefore assume that these fields are producing a certain type of person, however we will state that while this is a factor, the root is actually the opposite.
It isn’t that business makes a person conservative, or that a sociology class makes a person “anti-industrial”, it is that a person who generally supports conservative planks is more likely to go into business (and that a person of different tastes is more likely to take a social sciences class).
That, in words, right-wing conservatives tend to go into fields like business naturally, and left-wing liberals tend to go into the sciences, education, and arts naturally.
Then, at point, their existing ideology is reinforced and the cycle continues. As the young apprentice learns about business, he empathizes with the business and investor class. As the young apprentice learns about the horrors of the Barons of the Gilded Age and the struggle of Unions, she empathizes with the worker.
This would explain the increasing polarization in the modern era (along with other advents like mass media) and would explain why “Colleges tend to be getting more liberal”.
The logic is this:
- The idea is that left and right are not purely convention, but are naturally arising.
- This gives us two different types of people, and those types generally choose different career choices.
- It stands to reason that the career path then reinforces a belief system, and this is one thing that could explain why Highly Educated Americans are Getting More Liberal.
In other words, political ideology is part a response to environment, but (as is the point of this article) natural left-right qualities inherent in a person (or socialized into them at a young age) are pushing people toward fields that resonate with their personal ideology.
Knowing this we can see why a polarized political strategy that tries to “make America great again” by purging all of one type of person and the institutions they prefer is a recipe for disaster. It will do little more than force the pendulum to swing wildly and perpetuate a cycle.
If conservatives are from mars, and liberals from Venus, then we must support a federation of the planets. If we go to war, at worst we are left with one planet, that will then by its nature, breed more of each type with the next generation (unless it becomes despotic and forces conformity via fear and oppression).
Thus, if this theory is true, then the Sixth Party Strategy is inherently wrong-headed, and the only stopgap is found in the doctrine of Republicans.
Ultimately this is a theory with some facts backing it up, so feel free to comment and provide citations below.
TIP: The Mars / Venus thing is implying a metaphor, that liberal and left are more like the classical “female” archetype and right and conservative are more like the male. See “that the left and right are naturally occurring“.
TIP: This, if it is true, could help us explain the Sixth Party Powell Memo strategy of the right (which is a push-back against the growing progressivism of America and the Democratic Party). The idea here is that the 20th century can be seen as a tug-of-war between business interests and progressivism (where advocates of progress, internationalism including finance, and “big government” supporters side with progressives, and advocates of free-enterprise, social conservatism, and “small government” side with business interests). This then relates to the other major divisions city interests vs. rural interests and left vs. right in terms of liberty and social equality. This then has a polarizing effect, due to our two-party system demanding that all interests place themselves in “two big tents” to win elections.
But So What? We All Have Liberty. It is Natural to Want Liberty and Equality
It is natural to want liberty and equality, the polarization isn’t helping, but so what if a radical left-y wants to teach sociology or a staunch right-winger wants to run an oil company. It is there right! Even if it is messy.
With that said, we shouldn’t seek to strip this right, instead we should seek to recognize and respect each other, and work together to find common ground in the name of American Democracy. We should not purge each other, we should not attempt to eat our kin like an ancient God drunk with power, we should seek to find that purple mean in-between the blue and red.
Facts That Show the Theory That People With Different Political Ideologies and Characteristics Tend to Go Into Fields That Fit Their Personality
- It’s a well-worn (if not-entirely-agreed-upon) idea that college makes people more liberal. See: Highly Educated Americans are Getting More Liberal
- The most educated Americans have grown increasingly liberal over the last couple of decades. Shown in the same article as above.
- Some show that there is less difference than we think between people, meaning that some polarization is just a response to convention (the effects of political strategies, like indoctrination from media bias). See: Americans Don’t Disagree On Politics As Much As You Might Think.
- In fact, some claim, as we think is mostly the case, that the idea that colleges (or business for that matter, or say “working for the EPA) creates bias. See: The Indoctrination Myth.