Tumblr Icon RSS Icon

Optimism Inversion

Posted on  

"Optimism Inversion"

Share:

google plus icon

One noteworthy trend over the past five years or so has been a marked tendency in left-of-center commentators to be more pessimistic about the economic outlook than right-of-center commentators have been. I see three factors at work here:

  1. I believe left-wing politics and pessimism are generally correlated traits.
  2. Left-of-center commentators are generally smarter than right-of-center ones and pessimism was the correct position.
  3. People inclined to be hostile to the incumbent administration are naturally disposed to believe that disaster looms around the corner.

Thus far, I think the trend has generally held up since the election. But at some point after the inauguration, the valence of factor (3) will switch and I wonder how much force that’ll have in pulling things along. Will liberals still enjoy shadenfreude over bank failures? Will the right develop a rhetorical equivalent of “big shitpile” to emphasize how fundamentally disastrous the situation is? I’m genuinely uncertain about this.

« »

By clicking and submitting a comment I acknowledge the ThinkProgress Privacy Policy and agree to the ThinkProgress Terms of Use. I understand that my comments are also being governed by Facebook, Yahoo, AOL, or Hotmail’s Terms of Use and Privacy Policies as applicable, which can be found here.