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"Liberals give less than conservatives in every way imaginable"

This doesn't surprise me at all:

Syracuse University professor Arthur C. Brooks is about to become the darling of the religious right in America -- and it's making him nervous.


The child of academics, raised in a liberal household and educated in the liberal arts, Brooks has written a book that concludes religious conservatives donate far more money than secular liberals to all sorts of charitable activities, irrespective of income.

In the book, he cites extensive data analysis to demonstrate that values advocated by conservatives -- from church attendance and two-parent families to the Protestant work ethic and a distaste for government-funded social services -- make conservatives more generous than liberals.

The book, titled "Who Really Cares: The Surprising Truth About Compassionate Conservatism" (Basic Books, $26), is due for release Nov. 24.

When it comes to helping the needy, Brooks writes: "For too long, liberals have been claiming they are the most virtuous members of American society. Although they usually give less to charity, they have nevertheless lambasted conservatives for their callousness in the face of social injustice."

For the record, Brooks, 42, has been registered in the past as a Democrat, then a Republican, but now lists himself as independent, explaining, "I have no comfortable political home."

[snip]

His book, he says, is carefully documented to withstand the scrutiny of other academics, which he said he encourages.

The book's basic findings are that conservatives who practice religion, live in traditional nuclear families and reject the notion that the government should engage in income redistribution are the most generous Americans, by any measure.

Conversely, secular liberals who believe fervently in government entitlement programs give far less to charity. They want everyone's tax dollars to support charitable causes and are reluctant to write checks to those causes, even when governments don't provide them with enough money.

Such an attitude, he writes, not only shortchanges the nonprofits but also diminishes the positive fallout of giving, including personal health, wealth and happiness for the donor and overall economic growth.

All of this, he said, he backs up with statistical analysis.

"These are not the sort of conclusions I ever thought I would reach when I started looking at charitable giving in graduate school, 10 years ago," he writes in the introduction. "I have to admit I probably would have hated what I have to say in this book."

Still, he says it forcefully, pointing out that liberals give less than conservatives in every way imaginable, including volunteer hours and donated blood.

Liberals don't want to spend their own money to help those in need. They'd rather spend the tax payers' money.

Greg Tinti has a theory:

Look back at the '04 presidential race. John Kerry was constantly bitching about Bush's "tax cuts for the rich." But in Massachusetts, there's an option on the tax form that allows people to be taxed at a higher rate if they so choose. Did Kerry opt to pay more? Absolutely not.


From a purely political standpoint, I don't think any of this indicates that liberals are stingy per se, but it does kind of prove that all their talk about class warfare and "Two Americas" is just that: talk. And like a moth to the flame, for liberals, the solution to all inequalities is higher taxes, government entitlement programs, and income redistribution.

Why? If I had to guess, fundamentally, I think it's because liberals tend to be more pessimistic and view the average person as inherently inclined to please their own selfish interests. Think about it. Isn't that the premise of books like "What's The Matter With Kansas?"

Why aren't these people voting for the Democrats who'll give them more from the government? Why? Whyyy?

They just don't understand that there's more to the equation than just pure economic interest. There's values, personal responsibility, etc.

I agree.


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Comments (30)

What's that saying? Libera... (Below threshold)
Jo:

What's that saying? Liberals will always give you the shirt.....off of someone else's back.

Ha.

we all remember how deep Go... (Below threshold)
Gianni:

we all remember how deep Gore dug into his pocket one year, to the tune of what, $300? Scumbag lib lawyer Edwards no different.

Is this really a a surprise? Libs are great spenders of other peoples money.

Remember that video Hannity... (Below threshold)
Jo:

Remember that video Hannity kept playing back when Hillary first ran for senator of a homeless man asking Hillary for money on one campaign outing? He got a voter registration card instead. All caught on tape. I'm sure that helped his hunger.

Also, remember how she stiffed that single, working mom waitress in an upstate NY diner? Probably right after a "I'm the Queen of the Working Class" speech somewhere.

I guess on both those occasions she didn't have immediate access to some taxpayer money.

And ultra liberal Barbra "I'm a liberal because I care about people" Striesand is notorious for being a cheap tipper. Her husband goes behind her back and slips them more money out of sheer embarrassment.

Liberals. All talk. No action.

They freely support the ene... (Below threshold)
Scrapiron:

They freely support the enemies of the United States to the point they are responsible for 75% + of the American soldiers deaths in Iraq. I guess they think that's better than suporting the American soldier.

This actually makes sense.<... (Below threshold)
BlacquesJacquesShellacques:

This actually makes sense.

Liberals understand they are very selfish. They want harsh taxes to force themselves to be generous.

Their mistake is a common one, namely assuming all men suffer from their own faults.

Gentlemen, and ladies: Liberals are not necessarily evil, they are merely stupid about some things. The same can be said for we righties.

I admit it. I don't give e... (Below threshold)
RicardoVerde:

I admit it. I don't give enough. My liberal friends give more than I do, but then I'm more of a libertarian who is personally conservative.

There seems to be an undercurrent amongst my "progressive" friends that some "important" issues should be handled by the politbureau or whatever. In other words, individuals are too uninformed or illprepared to make decisions on issues of great importance to mankind.

Taxes are the most inefficient way to provide help to the needy. Think about it. Delivering vegetables to the soup kitchen means someone eats today. Paying the equivalent in taxes means nobody eats today. Simple as that.

I admit it. I don't give e... (Below threshold)
RicardoVerde:

I admit it. I don't give enough. My liberal friends give more than I do, but then I'm more of a libertarian who is personally conservative.

There seems to be an undercurrent amongst my "progressive" friends that some "important" issues should be handled by the politbureau or whatever. In other words, individuals are too uninformed or illprepared to make decisions on issues of great importance to mankind.

Taxes are the most inefficient way to provide help to the needy. Think about it. Delivering vegetables to the soup kitchen means someone eats today. Paying the equivalent in taxes means nobody eats today. Simple as that.

That's why for ten years ru... (Below threshold)
cathy:

That's why for ten years running Mississippi contributes more per capita followed by the other Southern states that round out the top ten than any other state in the union. Yet we are the poorest state and rate at the bottom of the barrel for every other standard. That's because we tithe and believe it our duty to help one another and not rely on the government, Katrina, case in point. The New England states are at the bottom every year with Massachutes and Conn.dead last and second to dead last. My Yankee friend could not believe it, because her VP dad has a second home in Conn. and they are rich. Yet she does not give to charities or tithe ever. Nor was she raised to, let's just say she was not "raised right".

One more thing, you do not ... (Below threshold)
cathy:

One more thing, you do not talk about it when you do give. It is not proper and consider ill mannered, yet the Liberals talk about what they supposedly give and yet they contribute nothing. Maybe conservatives are too polite to tout their deeds and let the ultimate Judge judge their hearts and their actions.

What are they giving too? A... (Below threshold)
jp2:

What are they giving too? A church is considered a charity.

Giving to red cross, salvat... (Below threshold)
cathy:

Giving to red cross, salvation army, religous charities, missions work, church, etc.

You know, this does not sur... (Below threshold)

You know, this does not surprise me in the slightest bit. I will admit that I do not give nearly as much as I should... However, that giving has to be a matter of personal choice, not something governmentally regulated. The liberals have not yet figured this out...

HEY YOU LIBERALS OUT THERE ... (Below threshold)
spurwing plover:

HEY YOU LIBERALS OUT THERE HOW COME YOUR NOT GIVING ENOUGH TO CHARITY AFTER ALL NEXT MONTH IS CHRISTMAS

No surprise at all. They'r... (Below threshold)
Mitchell:

No surprise at all. They're all talk, as long as it's with someone else's dollar.

Chalk this as another fa... (Below threshold)
Rob LA Ca.:

Chalk this as another fact exposing the Party of Perpetual fraud.

The thing that makes this m... (Below threshold)
jpm100:

The thing that makes this make sense with the whole class warfare things, is envy.

Because of envy a liberal doesn't want to give up money unless his neighbor is forced to as well.

The other reason is that liberals assuage their guilt because they vote and are activists for entitlements. Therefore they don't need to give as much themselves.

Again, I have a feeling the... (Below threshold)
jp2:

Again, I have a feeling they are just giving to churches. Any data to back this up Kim?

Blah blah blah blah liberal... (Below threshold)
hansel2:

Blah blah blah blah liberals blah blah blah blah Party of Perpetual Fraud (really, Rob, you need a new phrase. Using this one over and over again is lame) blah blah...

You idiots are speaking into an echo chamber.

As I stated prior - You're demonizing a phantom hippie/leftist image that is long gone from the mainstream of the Democratic party. But hey, you're angry at your own gullibility and you have to attack someone, don't you. Can't blame yourselves now, can you.

Secondly, the democratic party ideal is ALL ABOUT lifting others up - a quality many conservative "let them find their own food or starve" supporters know nothing about. (And, by the way, it's never about giving money to a lazy lower class that will abuse it. It's the known quantity that lifting others out of their own hole and giving them jobs makes them better citizens and helps everyone).

But hey - just keep shouting at each other into the dead silence. No one cares anymore except to watch and laugh. The party's over. You can convince yourselves as much as you want that you have a majority opinion - or, for that matter, your opinion has any validity except for divisiveness and anger.

Or you can can curse me out. Go ahead. It means nothing to me. I'll just read your postings and laugh.

Try blaming the real idiot who put you in this impotent position - asshole in office. He was a dolt when he entered office and has proven to be nothing more.

jp2:<br ... (Below threshold)
_Mike_:

jp2:


Again, I have a feeling they are just giving to churches. Any data to back this up Kim?

You seem confused. Kim is reporting on Arthur C. Brooks book that makes the assertion. Although Kim obviously agrees with the assertion, Brooks has made the claim and he supposedly supports the claim with 'extensive' data. It may be a leap of logic but I believe the data you're question may be cited within the book of the person making the claim.

Also, from the article linked:


Still, he [Brooks] says it forcefully, pointing out that liberals give less than conservatives in every way imaginable, including volunteer hours and donated blood.

jp2, what churches in your area collect blood ? And what are they using it for that make you seeming want to discount the donation ?

I had a very liberal boss o... (Below threshold)
lunacy:

I had a very liberal boss one time. He always refused to give to any of our fund drives. His excuse was that he pays his taxes and his taxes go to social programs, therefore he already gave.

L

JP2: You appear to be comp... (Below threshold)

JP2: You appear to be complaining about the vehicle by which charitable work or money is distributed. Churches do an immense amount of charitable work. Even if he does include tithing (which you just automatically assume) is it any less charitable when it's done by a church than by, say, Goodwill or United Way or (gasp!) the government? What I mean to say is, "Is charity measured by who gives it, rahter than by what is accomplished?"

Be careful you don't paint yourself into a corner.

Liberals don't want to s... (Below threshold)
Steve L.:

Liberals don't want to spend their own money to help those in need. They'd rather spend the tax payers' money.

"A Conservative is someone who'd gladly sell you the shirt off his back. A Liberal is someone who'd gladly give you the shirt off of someone else's back."
- P.J. O'Rourke

Funny, you don't see the ty... (Below threshold)
Mitchell:

Funny, you don't see the typical libs.on this thread. Lee, Hugh, Brian, Mantis.

Think they might see the truth in this, and not want to face that kind of reality?

Gotta love 'em, Libs.

Some liberal (most likely a... (Below threshold)

Some liberal (most likely atheist) on some other blog commented that donating to churches (or "proselytizing" as he put it) doesn't count as a charitable contribution. He didn't say what he considered it, but one can easily imagine.

Funny, you don't see the... (Below threshold)
mantis:

Funny, you don't see the typical libs.on this thread. Lee, Hugh, Brian, Mantis.

Well you don't see me much on any threads lately. New job along with old job make mantis too busy for blog silliness.

Think they might see the truth in this, and not want to face that kind of reality?

I don't know if it's true or not, but it wouldn't really surprise me if it were. That said, I would want to look at the author's methodology before I believe it. In any case, I've never given very much money to charity as I've never had money to give away. Even if I did have more money, I would probably prefer to contribute my time (setting up CTCs, free wireless networks, computer lessons, etc. in low-income communities), as I have been doing. It's much nicer to be involved with people than just sending a check, IMHO.

Oh, and btw Mitchell, bite me.

Mantis - From the ... (Below threshold)
Mo:

Mantis -

From the article:

Still, he says it forcefully, pointing out that liberals give less than conservatives in every way imaginable, including volunteer hours and donated blood.

Still, he says it forcef... (Below threshold)
mantis:

Still, he says it forcefully, pointing out that liberals give less than conservatives in every way imaginable, including volunteer hours and donated blood.

And your point is?

Hmmm...I saw a TV report ab... (Below threshold)
BC:

Hmmm...I saw a TV report about all this this morning, which I thought was strange since this was sort of old news that was discussed before and found somewhat misleading. A little Googling brought me here. Religious people, Islamic or Christian, are instructed by their religious tenets to be charitable, and you can explain the bulk of the elementary time and money disparity this way. But the charity that conservatives favor, with the possible exception of the Red Cross, tend to be local, whereas if you look at the politics of people involved in the major international relief organizations like Oxfam or even the Peace Corps, all of sudden conservatives become very scarce. And if you look also at the politics of those sometimes annoying college-age people earnestly going door-to-door or stalking public places in order to gather signatures for petitions involving human rights, environmental, and similar causes, you will also find people who are overwhelmingly non-conservative.

This doesn't at all begrudge Mr. and Mrs Red Stater for always tossing something into Salvation Army containers or always taking part in blood drives, but to use these overly simplistic economic measurements of charity giving to slam liberals as being all talk and no action is utterly wishful-thinking BS.

Hope this clarifies.

-BC

Liberals are funny! So a ch... (Below threshold)
kevin:

Liberals are funny! So a church doesnt qualify nor does the charitable contributions of said church after it recieves this, lets call it dirty religeous money(im sure the libs will like that) One liberal said earlier that they believe in "Lifting people up". What does that mean? Giving a free handout over and over just makes the recipiant more dependant on you. Look if you give some one a fishing pole and teach them to fish, they would better off than if you were to just give them the fish, or somthing like that. Im sure you get it.

"Is this really a a surpris... (Below threshold)
rawn:

"Is this really a a surprise? Libs are great spenders of other peoples money."

Too funny. Uhhh, who is it again that is spending 8 billion US taxpayer dollars a month - and has been doing this for over 3.5 years - in iraq?

Yeah, its that "party of limited spending" republicans. Well, that is before they were thrown out of congress on their @sses by america in the elections last month.

Hypocrites.




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