Vaguely interesting (Sept 29)

(1)  “[T]hese findings indicate that adverse childhood environments do not universally impair mental functioning, but can actually enhance specific types of cognitive performance in the face of uncertainty.”

(2)  An overview of the past 50 year of immigration to the U.S. (Plus more charts and graphs.)

(3)  More Americans have health insurance, but lots still don’t.

(4)  So Trump really is a silver-spooner pretending to be a populist. (And a wonkier analysis of Trump’s tax plan.)

(5)  “[T]here [is] a supreme irony in this racial condescension that casts black people, whose free labor helped establish the prosperity of this country and who were systematically excluded from the full benefits of that prosperity for generations, as leeches only desirous of ‘free stuff’ …”

Vaguely interesting (Sept 28)

(1)  “[T]he public does not blindly follow party elites.”

(2)  We haven’t shrunk the U.S. welfare system, we’ve just shifted its spending more towards older, disabled, married, and wealthier recipients. (I.e., towards voters and those represented by active lobbying groups and away from non-voters and the unrepresented.)

(3)  A look at the functional, goal-activated significance of differences in extraversion.

(4)  Men with absent fathers are less likely to go to college. (Evolutionary interpretation: When male long-term provisioning is less related to male reproductive success, men are less likely to engage in expensive wealth-enhancing human capital investments.)

(5)  “Women view high-level positions as equally attainable as men do, but less desirable.”

Vaguely interesting (Sept 23)

(1) “The experimental behaviors of these three subject classes—once again, making real allocations with real money—revealed stark differences between attitudes toward economic justice among ordinary Americans and among the elite. To begin with, the Berkeley and Yale subjects were twice as likely to be selfish as their compatriots in general.”

(2) “The anger voters feel at corporations and the political class has reached heights not seen since the Great Depression.”

(3) “The typical man with a full-time job–the one at the statistical middle of the middle–earned $50,383 last year, the Census Bureau reported this week. The typical man with a full-time job in 1973 earned $53,294, measured in 2014 dollars to adjust for inflation.”

(4) This time is not different: “The newest generations of immigrants are assimilating into American society as fast and broadly as the previous ones.”

(5) “[A]lmost all of Biden’s support is coming from people who, without Biden in the race, would support Clinton. So if Biden decides not to run, Clinton’s standing could snap back to where it was earlier this year.”

Vaguely interesting (Sept 18)

(1)  Ta-Nehisi Coates: “The Black Family in the Age of Mass Incarceration”

(2)  “[W]hite students who told surveyors they had committed 40 crimes in the past year were about as likely to be imprisoned as black and Hispanic students who reported committing just five offenses.”

(3)  Is Trump faking this whole populist thing?

(4)  “News flash: government spending reduces poverty,” or, how lots of elderly people in the U.S. would be poor, except they’re not because the government gives them enough cash to make them non-poor.

(5)  “More than five years after the recession officially ended, the data shows there has been no recovery at all for the typical American household.”

Vaguely interesting (Sept 17)

(1)  Jeb’s tax plan would give a 4.7% break to the top 1%, and about a 1.6% break to everyone else.

(2)  Therefore, the Club for Growth is trying to clear a path to Jeb’s victory over Trump.

(3)  “[V]oters are richer, whiter, and older than other Americans [and] their votes produce a government that caters to their interests… [M]easures that examine a one dimensional left-right axis obscure these divides.”

(4)  “Half of U.S. adults raised Catholic have left the church at some point.”

(5)  The ever-continuing role of neighborhood segregation in exacerbating racial differences in wealth. (FWIW, this is part of why I view race as a self-interested social-network-based predictor of economic political attitudes.)

Vaguely interesting (Sept 14)

(1)  “The Department of Education calculated the percentage of students at each college who earned more than $25,000 per year, which is about what high school graduates earn. At hundreds of colleges, less than half of students met this threshold 10 years after enrolling.”

(2)  A big step to the left in the UK’s Labour party.

(3)  Birthright citizenship is a very big deal: For the past dozen years, around 8% of U.S. births have been to unauthorized immigrants.

(4)  Trump supporters are immigration conservatives, economic moderates, and less religious. And, in a similar analysis: Trump supporters are less educated, older, and less religious. (A core demographic here is what we called “Springers” in our recent book – that is, white Christians with low socioeconomic status and infrequent church attendance. Discussing Springers and related groups, we said: “Unlike many European countries, the United States has no nationalist populist party that prioritizes the positions of downscale whites.” If Trump has his way, this could change quickly.)

(5)  “We may look back at this election as the one that re-wrote the rules. But, at this point, it’s too early to say that.”

Vaguely interesting (Sept 10)

(1)  Big new study on U.S. mate preferences.

(2)  “[K]ids are adorable innocents only until the law decides they are vicious predators. There’s a for-profit prison machine out there, and sadly, it eats zero tolerance for breakfast.”

(3)  “All of the non-Trump candidates are locked in a competition to outbid each other to propose the most lavish tax cuts for the rich. Trump is the one candidate appealing to the populist crowd within the party.”

(4)  “The explicit question it raises is whether the American conservative movement should be organized around tax cuts, business-friendly regulations, and a hawkish foreign policy — an ideology that, in practice, happens to be overwhelmingly supported by white people — or whether it should be an explicit vehicle for white interests in an increasingly diverse society.”

(5)  “29% of Americans could imagine a situation in which they would support the military seizing control of the federal government, while 41% could not imagine such a situation.”

Vaguely interesting (Sept 8)

(1)  For fans of evolutionary psychology, there’s a seriously cool collection in Current Opinions in Psychology here (edited by Gangestad and Tybur, including contributions from a number of the younger generation of heavy hitters).

(2)  “Professor Barrett is whistling in a very highly populated graveyard if that is the best she can do to wave off irreproducibility in the psychological sciences.”

(3)  The U.S. imprisons more people per capita than any country except something called Seychelles. A rate six times higher than Canada, for example, almost five times higher than Australia or England, more than twice as high as Iran.

(4)  At the federal level, we then encourage prisoners to work for a government-owned company paying individuals between 23 cents and $1.15 an hour. But this is arguably not “slavery,” because nearly-uncompensated-labor teaches people “work ethic” and makes them less likely to “reoffend.”

(5)  But, you know, aren’t these just the kinds of arguments people use to justify slavery itself? E.g.: “Among slaves there are no trampers, idlers, smugglers, poachers, and none suffer from want. Every one is made to work, and no one is permitted to starve. Slavery does for the negro what European schemers in vain attempt to do for the hireling. It secures work and subsistence for all. It secures more order and subordination also.”

Vaguely interesting (Sept 4)

(1)  Bad to the bone.

(2)  There were fewer deaths of on-duty police officers in 2013 and 2014 than in any year going back at least to 1960.

(3)  About American workers.

(4)  “America’s two biggest counties have the same population as the 14 smallest states.”

(5)  “These are the problems that GOP establishment donors created by throwing million-dollar checks at Bush before seeing if anyone liked him or he was up to the task on the campaign trail.”

Vaguely interesting (Sept 2)

(1)  Americans are surprisingly split on legalizing prostitution. (But I suspect that the fact that this is an internet-based sample is affecting these numbers.)

(2)  “Among all U.S. adults who were raised Catholic, half (52%) have left the church at some point in their life” … and other fun facts about U.S. Catholics.

(3)  So a while back, the Monkey Cage blog moved to the Washington Post. In another example of great academic blogging merging with great digital news platforms, now the Mischiefs of Faction blog is moving to Vox.

(4)  How the anti-establishment wave among Republicans could amplify the defund-Planned-Parenthood push into something that threatens either government shutdown or Boehner’s overthrow.

(5)  “[A] half-century of Republican policies on race and immigration have made the party the home of an often angry and resentful white constituency.”