Environmental Politics in New England and Beyond

Shifting Opinion, Shifting Policy, Shifting Society
Political Polarization
Pew Polarization Findings Bad News for Liberals, Good News for Conservatives

Pew Polarization Findings Bad News for Liberals, Good News for Conservatives

Many liberal activists and commentators are likely welcoming survey findings from the Pew Research Center showing that over the past 20 years the number of Americans who can be rated as “consistently liberal” in their worldviews has increased four fold, from 3 percent in 1994 to 12 percent today. Perhaps even more encouraging, in a...

Our Super Zip State of Mind: Engaging with Communities Not Like Our Own

The transformation of Washington, DC into one of the world’s wealthiest regions has also turned the nation’s capital into one of its most like minded. The homogeneity in economic outlook and social experience has profound implications for how Beltway professionals and advocates design policy and strategy to deal with complex problems like climate change. “It’s...

How Obama Can Defy Debate Critics and Shift Momentum

In my latest column at The Breakthrough, I discuss what Obama can do in tonight’s second Presidential debate to reverse momentum, and it starts with defying critics who are calling on Obama to be more confrontational.  Here’s the start to the column: As President Obama prepares for tomorrow’s night Presidential debate, he faces the most important public...

The Polarization Paradox & the Republicans Are the Problem Thesis

Last month, I published with Dietram Scheufele “The Polarization Paradox: Why Hyperpartisanship Promotes Conservatism and Undermines Liberalism.”  We detail in the article how liberals have become more like conservatives in their political strategies, adopting a win-at-all-costs commitment to policy debates and elections. In doing so, liberals have built their own message machine comprised of think tanks, media...

The Polarization Paradox: Why Hyperpartisanship Strengthens Conservatism and Undermines Liberalism

  Modern campaigns have rarely focused on the issues, but in the 2012 election the level of moral outrage and anger is unprecedented.  Even before the campaign, America was divided, but come next year, if President Obama is re-elected he will likely face a country more polarized than at any time in more than a...