The Dunning-Kruger Effect May Help Explain Trump's Support

A new study suggests some people grossly overestimate their political knowledge.

Posted Aug 22, 2018

In the past, some prominent psychologists have explained President Donald Trump’s unwavering support by alluding to a well-established psychological phenomenon known as the “Dunning-Kruger effect.” The effect is a type of cognitivebias, where people with little expertise or ability assume they have superior expertise or ability. This overestimation occurs as a result of the fact that they don’t have enough knowledge to know they don’t have enough knowledge. This simple but loopy concept has been demonstrated dozens of times in well-controlled psychology studies and in a variety of contexts. However, until now, the effect had not been studied in one of the most obvious and important realms—political knowledge.

new study published in the journal Political Psychology, carried out by the political scientist Ian Anson at the University of Maryland Baltimore County, not only found that the Dunning-Kruger effect applies to politics, it also appears to be exacerbated when partisan identities are made more salient. In other words, those who score low on political knowledge tend to overestimate their expertise even more when greater emphasis is placed on political affiliation.

Anson told PsyPost that he became increasingly interested in the effect after other academics were discussing its potential role in the 2016 U.S. presidential election on social media. “I follow a number of political scientists who marveled at the social media pundit class’ seeming display of ‘Dunning-Kruger-ish tendencies’ in their bombastic coverage of the election.” However, speculation by scientists does not always translate into statistically-significant findings, so Anson began thinking of ways to experimentally test what he described as a “very serious accusation.”

In order to have a large representative sample of subjects, Dr. Anson administered online surveys to over 2,600 Americans. The first survey was designed to assess political knowledge, while the second was used to examine how confident they were in their knowledge. Questions quizzed participants on topics like names of cabinet members, the length of term limits for members of Congress, and the names of programs that the U.S. government spends the least on.

As predicted, the results showed that those who scored low on political knowledge were also the ones who overestimated their level of knowledge. But that wasn’t all. When participants were given cues that made them engage in partisan thought, the Dunning-Kruger effect was made even stronger. This occurred with both Republicans and Democrats, but only in those who scored low on political knowledge to begin with.

These findings are fascinating but equally troubling. How do you combat ignorance when the ignorant believe themselves to be knowledgeable? Even worse, how do you fight it when America is becoming increasingly polarized, which certainly increases the salience of partisan identities?

While the results of Anson’s study suggest that being uninformed leads to overconfidence across the political spectrum, studies have shown that Democrats now tend to be generally more educated than Republicans, possibly making the latter more vulnerable to the Dunning-Kruger effect. In fact, a Pew Research Center poll released in March of this year found that 54 percent of college graduates identified as Democrats or leaned Democratic, compared to 39 percent who identified or leaned Republican.

This effect may help explain why certain Trump supporters seem to be so easily tricked into believing proven falsehoods when the President delivers what have become known as “alternative facts,” often using language designed to activate partisan identities. Because they lack knowledge but are confident that they do not, they may be less likely than others to actually fact-check the claims that the President makes.

This speculation is supported by evidence from empirical studies. In 2016, an experiment found that 45 percent of Republicans believed that the Affordable Care Act included “death panels,” and a 2015 study similarly found that 54 percent of Republican primary voters believed then-president Barack Obama to be a Muslim.

The Dunning-Kruger effect is particularly worrisome when considering issues that pose existential threats, like global warming. A 2017 study conducted at the University of New Hampshire, for instance, found that only 25 percent of self-described Trump supporters believed that human activities contribute to climate change—though 97 percent of scientists who study climate change agree that they do.

This quirky cognitive bias could potentially be making it easier for Donald Trump to say unchallenged falsehoods to his more uneducated followers. In some cases, not only are these individuals uninformed, they are unlikely to ever try to become more informed on their own. In their minds, they have nothing new to learn.

While such a thought is disturbing, we should not lose all hope in trying to reach the victims of the Dunning-Kruger effect. At least one study found that incompetent students increased their ability to accurately estimate their class rank after being tutored in the skills they lacked. With the right education methods and a willingness to learn, the uninformed on both sides of the political aisle can gain a meta-awareness that can help them perceive themselves more objectively.

Unfortunately, Anson’s study shows that getting through to these people becomes more and more difficult as the nation becomes more divided. And with Trump’s fiery rhetoric and fear-mongering, that divide appears to always be growing wider.

 

https://www.psychologytoday.co...3akMrzj-lmXBwSMpxoCc

Original Post

You mean like the false narrative that ANTIFA is an anti fascism organization or that Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez is intelligent?  Anyone with a education can see ANTIFA is violent against anyone who does not share their beliefs and do not tolerate them, sort of like Fascist.  Well all anyone has to do is listen to the new House Representative and know she does not have a clue.  Seems liberals have the Dunning Kruger effect.

HIFLYER2 posted:

You mean like the false narrative that ANTIFA is an anti fascism organization or that Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez is intelligent?  Anyone with a education can see ANTIFA is violent against anyone who does not share their beliefs and do not tolerate them, sort of like Fascist.  Well all anyone has to do is listen to the new House Representative and know she does not have a clue.  Seems liberals have the Dunning Kruger effect.

The recent doxxing of an Antifa leader was quite enlightening.  One, Joe Alcoff had two other nom de guerres he operated under.  He's a communist, who advocates for extreme violence.  Works with Democrat politicians, was interviewed on MSNBC, and writes for several national publications.  His CV reads like that of an 1960s radical -- traveled internationally to work with other reds. 

nice democrat article or study?   This is true, however it goes both ways.  Many follow democrat leaders blindly.  Republicans in congress don't just follow the party, while democrats stick together and vote their party line (with the exception of WV).  There seems to be several republican elected that might actually be democrats in disguise, such as Flake and Romney for example.  

With that said, many people fall into that a bit of knowledge but not the whole story.  The difference being the thinking process (common sense).  Democrat media still hasn't figured out how their polls were wrong, or they don't care and continue to push their agenda. 

Mr. Hooberbloob posted:

To be a liberal, you must first be uninformed.  Secondly, you must remain uninformed.  Thirdly, you must vote for those among you who are the most uninformed.

When we are born, we are tabula rasa -- a blank slate.  Most of us learn and grow in intellect and some of us remain Democrats. 

direstraits posted:
Mr. Hooberbloob posted:

Roaring economy, low unemployment, real action on illegal immigration, ISIS decimated, liberals losing their minds (ok I'm assuming they have brains, but I could be wrong).

What's not to like about Trump?

Add, rising wages

And my personal happiness.  TDS is a hoot to watch in all of it's magnificent glory.

 

Image result for trump derangement syndrome

What none of the Republicans seem to realize, is they're backing up the facts in the article with every post. Why do the most uninformed voters believe they are the most intelligent voters. Not knowing you don't have a grasp on the facts, but constantly trying to explain why Republicans are right. It's the Republican way.

L. Cranston posted:

What none of the Republicans seem to realize, is they're backing up the facts in the article with every post. Why do the most uninformed voters believe they are the most intelligent voters. Not knowing you don't have a grasp on the facts, but constantly trying to explain why Republicans are right. It's the Republican way.

LOL, conversely, uniformed voters post meaningless articles that were written solely to fit an agenda outcome rather than a factual outcome.  Not one person on her is trying to "explain" why Republicans are right.  The wonderful state of our nation since Trump took office does that job nicely, not a word needs to be spoken.

 

Now descend back into the basement from which thou came and patiently wait for the next round of Bagel Bites that your mom will soon deliver, I'm sure.

L. Cranston posted:

What none of the Republicans seem to realize, is they're backing up the facts in the article with every post. Why do the most uninformed voters believe they are the most intelligent voters. Not knowing you don't have a grasp on the facts, but constantly trying to explain why Republicans are right. It's the Republican way.

What I've asked of any liberal for the past 3-4 years was to explain 
why they were liberal, just a few tenets of their reasons of choice
or were they born that way. Appears liberals not sure why or it's a
secret. 
It's not that Republicans are right but the only logical way of life is
the conservative way.    

 

L. Cranston posted:

What none of the Republicans seem to realize, is they're backing up the facts in the article with every post. Why do the most uninformed voters believe they are the most intelligent voters. Not knowing you don't have a grasp on the facts, but constantly trying to explain why Republicans are right. It's the Republican way.

Lamont, 

I've viewed the activities of three Democrat politicians presently in the news.  Their views are out of touch with reality. 

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (AOC) is currently the new thing with the press.  Despite an economics major, she has no idea what basic economics statistics represent.  She advocates numerous utopian dreams, but no idea how to finance them. For example, her Medicare for all plan would require a doubling of federal revenues -- not just income tax, but Medicare and Social Security taxes.  Just a back of the envelope schedule shows all her plans would devour the entire annual GDP of the nation.  AOC has an excuse.  She's the perfect example of an example of liberal progressive education -- with no experience in the real world.

Governor Newsom, the new California governor, advocated sanctuary and medical care for all who enter the state.  Emphasized their rainy day fund of $30 billion.  Trouble is that's a projected surplus, not an actual one. Even if true, that's about 22 days operating funds for the state.  Advocated for a state bank to support new housing.  Sorry, but under the constitution, states can only have their own banks if they have a gold depository.  Texas is the only state with such. California has 12 percent of the nation's population and 33 percent of the nation's homeless and those under the poverty line.  Newsom's plans will ensure all those statistics go up.  Plus, probably change the state's credit rating from the second worse to the worst.  They will be one with Illinois.  

Comrade de Blasio, mayor of NYC, announced a similar healthcare for all plan.  Are you old enough to remember when NYC lurched from loan to loan to avoid bankruptcy, until Giuliani was elected.  Well, those days will return. 

Dire,

What you fail to realize is that extremists exist on both sides of the political spectrum. For every example you provide of an extreme Democrat, I can provide an extreme Republican to match. What good does that do? What exactly do we gain from writing long posts, which nobody cares to read, about politicians who haven't the concept or ability to help their constituents? The facts show Democrat's policies are not affordable without major tax increases. The facts also show Republican policies of Trickle Down Economics have lead to every major recession the US has faced.

Where are the days where moderate, level headed, sensible Democrats and Republicans made compromises and Americans ALL flourished!

L. Cranston posted:

Dire,

What you fail to realize is that extremists exist on both sides of the political spectrum. For every example you provide of an extreme Democrat, I can provide an extreme Republican to match. What good does that do? What exactly do we gain from writing long posts, which nobody cares to read, about politicians who haven't the concept or ability to help their constituents? The facts show Democrat's policies are not affordable without major tax increases. The facts also show Republican policies of Trickle Down Economics have lead to every major recession the US has faced.

Where are the days where moderate, level headed, sensible Democrats and Republicans made compromises and Americans ALL flourished!

As to facts, of the Democrats I've cited, one is new, untried and ignorant of economics -- AOC.  The other two, Newsom and de Blasio, are experienced politicians, with years of experience.

As to trickle down -- when JFK used "a rising tide raises all boats" Democrats hailed it.   There are three examples of reducing taxes, resulting in significant revenue increases. None lead to major recessions. The reductions under JFK/LBJ and Reagan lead to economic booms.  The one under George W. Bush did not lead to the recession that followed. Over a decade of loosening credit, injection of a trillion dollars for iffy home loans by Fannie and Freddie, and inducements by government and banks lead to that recession.

Tax revenue changes, before and after tax cuts (corrected for inflation).

For the eight years after JFK/LBJ cuts – increase of $522.2 billion.

For the eight years after Reagan tax cuts – increase of $2.944 trillion.

For the eight years after Bush tax cuts – increase of $4.788 trillion

Source:  Office of Management and Budget historic tables.

https://obamawhitehouse.archiv...b/budget/Historicals

Where are the days where moderate, level headed, sensible Democrats and Republicans made compromises and Americans ALL flourished!----L. Cranston

I believe that even The Shadow knows that sometimes when Republicans compromise all they get are broken promises and knives in the back. Right now, Trump shouldn't even be worrying about building a wall. Dems promised in 1986 they would fund border security if only Reagan would sign an amnesty bill; they lied.

Again, Dems promised three times more budget cuts for each dollar of taxes if Reagan would sign off on tax increases; they lied. The first Bush compromised with Dems for 2X cuts for each dollar of taxes; Dems lied again!

I might also point out that that sometimes when both parties compromise, the public really gets reamed. The reason Trump is president is the fact that in the 90s both parties decided that it was a good thing to send most of the smokestack industries overseas and that everyone could get rich by manipulating the value of paper assets and real estate. That really worked out in 2008 didn't it. Former blue collar Dems went into the Republican primaries and now we have Trump as president.

 

Thanks, guys. The article didn't need that much proof to back it up.

Dire isn't telling all the facts. I'll bet each and every one of those tax cuts was followed by a raise in taxes after the cuts didn't work. I know for a FACT Reagan had to raise taxes, after his cuts, because the revenue didn't show up. Again, that's FACT. Seems like Bush1 got a lot of bad press, from his base, after promising 'no new taxes', then raising taxes.

L. Cranston posted:

Thanks, guys. The article didn't need that much proof to back it up.

Dire isn't telling all the facts. I'll bet each and every one of those tax cuts was followed by a raise in taxes after the cuts didn't work. I know for a FACT Reagan had to raise taxes, after his cuts, because the revenue didn't show up. Again, that's FACT. Seems like Bush1 got a lot of bad press, from his base, after promising 'no new taxes', then raising taxes.

Lamont,  I suggest you research before commenting.  It would reduce your embarrassment.

When inaugurated, Reagan inherited a nation with 16 tax brackets — ranging from marginal rates of 14 percent to 70 percent. By 1989, that was down to two brackets — with marginal rates of 15 percent and 28 percent.  Plus, the inflation indexing that pushed taxpayers into a higher bracket was removed.

The increased revenue I posted was income tax revenue, only.

The taxes Reagan increased the Highway Revenue Act of 1982 was a temporary increase in the federal gas tax from 4 to 9 cents. This is a user fee tax, which most conservatives agree with as the revenue generally went to roads and infrastructure. Another was a cigarette tax (Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act of 1985.) Tax increases, but should not be confused with the income tax.

 The one income tax change did not come until the Tax Reform Act of 1986 also provided for the elimination of the distinction between long-term capital gains and ordinary income. The Act mandated that capital gains be taxed at the same rate as ordinary income, raising the maximum tax rate on long-term capital gains to 28% from 20%. Prior to the ruling, capital gains were either taxed at lower rates than ordinary income under an alternative tax or received a partial exclusion from tax under the regular rate schedule. 60% of capital gains on assets held for at least six months were excluded from taxable income. Thus, the marginal tax rate on net long-term capital gains was only 40% of the marginal tax rate on other forms of income under the previous tax laws.

https://www.investopedia.com/t...taxreformact1986.asp

This income tax increased revenue for 1987 to 1988 during the Reagan presidency.

L. Cranston posted:

Thanks, guys. The article didn't need that much proof to back it up.

Dire isn't telling all the facts. I'll bet each and every one of those tax cuts was followed by a raise in taxes after the cuts didn't work. I know for a FACT Reagan had to raise taxes, after his cuts, because the revenue didn't show up. Again, that's FACT. Seems like Bush1 got a lot of bad press, from his base, after promising 'no new taxes', then raising taxes.

Yes, Reagan raised taxes after the 1981 tax cuts and before the 1986 tax bill. I might point out that the increase in payroll taxes were the "Clinton surplus" which was borrowed money (Paying the VISA bill with the MasterCard!) and that even with both the Bush and Clinton tax increases that everyone's tax bills were still lower than before 1986. I might also point out that the surplus for Medicare will soon disappear and Social Security's about 2034 and then benefits will drop.

It's funny to see the Republicans scramble to cover for the posts they made earlier. The tax bills passed in 82 and 84, together, constituted the largest tax increase in peacetime, in US history. At no point in the history of America  have Republican tax breaks done what Republicans said they'd do and today is no different.

 

L. Cranston posted:

It's funny to see the Republicans scramble to cover for the posts they made earlier. The tax bills passed in 82 and 84, together, constituted the largest tax increase in peacetime, in US history. At no point in the history of America  have Republican tax breaks done what Republicans said they'd do and today is no different.

 

Republican, oh hell no! My beliefs are more libertarian and both parties are nothing but a collection of semi-socialist corporatists arguing over how much control goobermint should have over the means of production and property. I might also note that while the first Bush, Clinton, and Ol'bama tinkered on the edges of the 1986 tax law, they never tried to completely abolish it and go back to the more punitive tax structure that preceded the Reagan era. I also should point out the problem with the budget isn't taxation, it's spending. There just isn't anyway that we can to keep the "Great Society" programs going with more taxation without tanking the economy and even the less stoopid republicans haven't figured that out. Then there are the really retarded democrats who now think that the magic wand of Democratic Socialists (Mutually exclusive terms!) can give them free healthcare. I suspect that the best thing that can happen now is that divided goobermint continues and we can hope that no one kills the golden goose (private sector) with more regulations and taxes. If the spending doesn't stop or at least slow down enough for the private sector to grow enough to pay for all the "free stuff", then "stuff" will really impact on the rotary air mover.

L. Cranston posted:

It's funny to see the Republicans scramble to cover for the posts they made earlier. The tax bills passed in 82 and 84, together, constituted the largest tax increase in peacetime, in US history. At no point in the history of America  have Republican tax breaks done what Republicans said they'd do and today is no different.

 

Provenance for this claim, please!

direstraits posted:
L. Cranston posted:

It's funny to see the Republicans scramble to cover for the posts they made earlier. The tax bills passed in 82 and 84, together, constituted the largest tax increase in peacetime, in US history. At no point in the history of America  have Republican tax breaks done what Republicans said they'd do and today is no different.

 

Provenance for this claim, please!

Dire, I suggest you research before commenting.  It would reduce your embarrassment. I used google and read the first couple of articles.

direstraits posted:
L. Cranston posted:

It's funny to see the Republicans scramble to cover for the posts they made earlier. The tax bills passed in 82 and 84, together, constituted the largest tax increase in peacetime, in US history. At no point in the history of America  have Republican tax breaks done what Republicans said they'd do and today is no different.

 

Provenance for this claim, please!

As is always the case, there usually is a big lie hidden in the "real truth". Most of that 1982 "biggest tax hike ever" was the rescission of future lower tax brackets and not the actual raising of taxes. That is exactly like calling a smaller budget increase than originally planned a budget cut. There were increases of business fees and the reduction of business loophole though along with a gas tax increase. Where the real tax increase was in the increase of payroll taxes that all sides agreed upon to push the inevitable Social Security and Medicare crunch into the future.

Stanky posted:
direstraits posted:
L. Cranston posted:

It's funny to see the Republicans scramble to cover for the posts they made earlier. The tax bills passed in 82 and 84, together, constituted the largest tax increase in peacetime, in US history. At no point in the history of America  have Republican tax breaks done what Republicans said they'd do and today is no different.

 

Provenance for this claim, please!

As is always the case, there usually is a big lie hidden in the "real truth". Most of that 1982 "biggest tax hike ever" was the rescission of future lower tax brackets and not the actual raising of taxes. That is exactly like calling a smaller budget increase than originally planned a budget cut. There were increases of business fees and the reduction of business loophole though along with a gas tax increase. Where the real tax increase was in the increase of payroll taxes that all sides agreed upon to push the inevitable Social Security and Medicare crunch into the future.

Facts don't contain lies. Facts don't pick sides.  Screaming Republicans cut taxes without giving ALL the FACTS is being very deceitful.

 

LC said, Facts don't contain lies. Facts don't pick sides.

So you're saying the FBI, CIA, most of the Dems in congress,
Rinos, the Clintons, spies, FISA judges, the MSM, CNN, NBC, CBS
MSNBC, ABC and plenty more where these came from,,,,
Don't lie..?? and their facts have been all lies..
You need to calm down, stop screaming, eat another sandwich---

 

Kraven posted:

LC said, Facts don't contain lies. Facts don't pick sides.

So you're saying the FBI, CIA, most of the Dems in congress,
Rinos, the Clintons, spies, FISA judges, the MSM, CNN, NBC, CBS
MSNBC, ABC and plenty more where these came from,,,,
Don't lie..?? and their facts have been all lies..
You need to calm down, stop screaming, eat another sandwich---

 

Lets get your answer straight. You're saying the FBI, CIA, most Democrats, some Republicans, the Clintons, spies (foreign? domestic? ) FISA judges, the Media, and all the other outlets are lying and only a handful of Republicans and Trump tell the truth? Is that truly your stance?

Kraven posted:
I don't recall the part about only a handful of Republicans and
Trump tell the truth? So now I include you as a liar as well---
But you already knew the fact, if you're liberal you're lying ---- 

Ok, so who's telling the truth to you? No Republicans? All other Republicans? Trump? Is Trump telling you the truth? Please, be clear, who exactly is telling you the truth?

L. Cranston posted:
Stanky posted:
direstraits posted:
L. Cranston posted:

It's funny to see the Republicans scramble to cover for the posts they made earlier. The tax bills passed in 82 and 84, together, constituted the largest tax increase in peacetime, in US history. At no point in the history of America  have Republican tax breaks done what Republicans said they'd do and today is no different.

 

Provenance for this claim, please!

As is always the case, there usually is a big lie hidden in the "real truth". Most of that 1982 "biggest tax hike ever" was the rescission of future lower tax brackets and not the actual raising of taxes. That is exactly like calling a smaller budget increase than originally planned a budget cut. There were increases of business fees and the reduction of business loophole though along with a gas tax increase. Where the real tax increase was in the increase of payroll taxes that all sides agreed upon to push the inevitable Social Security and Medicare crunch into the future.

Facts don't contain lies. Facts don't pick sides.  Screaming Republicans cut taxes without giving ALL the FACTS is being very deceitful.

 

Yes, facts are facts, except when from politicians and their camp followers. If I might cite an article from the liberal magazine Slate about the 1982 Tax bill: 

"On the other hand, most of Dole’s tax increase was actually the partial repeal of future tax cuts that had been enacted in 1981 but had not yet taken place. Despite Dole’s bill, taxpayers received more than $375 billion in tax cuts over the following three years. (This did not deter Dole’s supply-side critics, led by Jack Kemp, from characterizing his bill as a record-setting tax boost.) Whether repeal of a future tax cut counts as a tax increase is a metaphysical question. If the answer is “no,” Clinton’s tax increase is larger."

https://slate.com/news-and-pol...ease-in-history.html

L. Cranston posted:
direstraits posted:
L. Cranston posted:

It's funny to see the Republicans scramble to cover for the posts they made earlier. The tax bills passed in 82 and 84, together, constituted the largest tax increase in peacetime, in US history. At no point in the history of America  have Republican tax breaks done what Republicans said they'd do and today is no different.

 

Provenance for this claim, please!

Dire, I suggest you research before commenting.  It would reduce your embarrassment. I used google and read the first couple of articles.

IOW, can't produce the evidence. 

L. Cranston posted:

Perhaps you should tell the Treasury Department. Facts don't have a side, they're just facts.

Revenue effects of major tax bills since 1968. Table 2. Page 3.

https://www.treasury.gov/resou...s/WP81-Table2013.pdf

Not sure about their methodology, but looking at the goobermint's revenue figures:

https://www.usgovernmentrevenue.com/usgs_line.php?title=Total%20Direct%20Revenue&units=p&size=t&legend=&year=1980_1990&sname=US&bar=0&stack=1&col=c&source=a_a_a_a_a_a_a_a_a_i_a&spending0=30.95_31.63_32.19_30.35_30.23_31.00_31.36_32.48_31.91_32.21_32.24

or

https://www.usgovernmentrevenu...USb_20s1li011lcn_F0f

 

Except for the recession caused by the Fed wringing out inflation, I would say that revenue grew over the Reagan era. But I guess with enough political "what if" assumptions from the politicians who asked for the Treasury report, anything can happen.

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