Wednesday, February 04, 2009

Cheaters

The blogger Audacious Epigone had an interesting post on who commits adultery, based on the General Social Survey. The strongest variables he (?) could find were religious belief and political ideology. Taking just the ends of the spectrum, atheists were half again as likely to cheat as strong believers. Among men, the ratio is 30% to 20%; among women, 17% to 12%.

The gap was not quite as big between liberals and conservatives, but the former were about a third more likely to cheat than the latter. Among men the ratio is 26% to 19%; among women, 17% to 11%.

It is possible that the causation runs both ways. Cheating may lead people to become atheists and liberals. You can't really tell with GSS data. I have noticed in studies of pastors that those who end up divorced are also likely to become more liberal, whereas conservatives stay married (or marrieds stay conservative).

The direction of causation needs a longitudinal study.

I have read, though cannot tell from this survey, that secular conservatives -- that is, libertarians -- are the most likely to cheat, which makes sense ideologically.

3 comments:

Michael Kruse said...

"I have read, though cannot tell from this survey, that secular conservatives -- that is, libertarians -- are the most likely to cheat..."

And also among the least likely to volunteer time or resources for benevolent purposes according to Arthur Brooks.

patty said...

Are obama's tax cheating nominees libertarians or liberals? Does it matter? Where is the change we can believe in?

philly said...

"new era of responsibility,"

YES INDEED:

1. A Treasury secretary who committed tax fraud and hired an illegal alien

2. A Secretary of State with more conflicts of interest than all those who proceder her combined

3. A Commerce Secretary who already had to withdraw because of pending fraud charges

4. Climate Czar is a full-fledged socialist (Socialist)

5. Labor secretary with socialist ties (Socalist Intl)

6. CIA Director with no intelligence credentials - least experienced in history

7. An Attorney General who set up the first ever pardon of a FBI 10-Most Wanted criminal followed by a million dollar bribe to the Clinton library (pay-to-play).

8. A deputy secretary of defense who was a defense lobbyist in violation to Obama's own hiring rules announced just one day ago (that didn't take long).