Monday, August 17, 2015

Another reason to hate political "science".
One way to understand this is as a manifestation of what political scientists call the expressive, as opposed to the instrumental, theory of voting. If voting is instrumental then it’s presumed that voters are primarily motivated by the results they hope to achieve: leaders and parties who can deliver real benefits. If it’s expressive then voters are more interested in signalling who they are and what they value. The case for expressive voting is partly driven by the thought that instrumental voting is a waste of time, since in any significant election no one’s vote ever decides the outcome (if your candidate wins or loses it is always by more than one vote, making your contribution incidental). But it also seems to chime with the world of social media and online communication, where self-expression rules and echo chambers proliferate.
Are social movements expressive, or instrumental?
See also "propositional" and "high-value" speech.

Objectivity is neutrality and passivity; you can only refuse to participate when participation is an option. Refusal plays a role in the outcome of events: it is still participation.

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