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February 02, 2014



"for a given income, the upwardly mobile are more likely to be lefties." I find this interesting -- it falsifies a hypothesis I've been toying with that the upwardly mobile are more likely to believe that the status quo allows for equality of opportunity so lean to the right.

Socialism In One Bedroom

"for a given income, the upwardly mobile are more likely to be lefties"

How would you measure that? I thought the whole of the ideology of Thatcherism was built on the myth of the upwardly mobile? Did I dream all that? I say myth because if you look at social mobility during the Thatcher years it was actually near the bottom of the international league table.

I would also point out that rich parents bring more to the table than the right 'outlook' and 'attitude', they also bring connections and purchasing power.


Children learn their values from their parents. So the children of working class parents are more likely to be lefties and the political leanings you develop in your teens are unlikely to change much in adulthood, regardless of how wealthy you become.

I'm not sure I learnt that much from my parents. I think it was mainly my obsession with Billy Bragg and Bruce Springsteen during my early years that defined my political values. They were largely set in stone when I was 13 and haven't changed much since. I really don't think my status has much influence on me.

Luis Enrique

I am surprised by that - I would have guessed that successful people who feel self-made would be more likely to think, if I can do it, so can others, and be less likely to favour redistribution, relative to those who started poor and stay poor.


I often wonder how left or right is constructed in this kind of debate.

The parties seeking election can have very different policy platforms at different periods or in different countries. Yet they are still called left or right or liberal as if all political parties or movements kept exactly the same platform.


The tendency of the socially mobile to change their political views rather than their political affiliations is the missing link explaining party-platform evolution.

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