Jonathan Haidt in a guest commentary in The Guardian notes that when it comes to working class voters, the Left fails because it fails to get it. An interesting piece on the moral philosophy behind the phenomenon of blue-collar conservatism.
Here’s a more painful but ultimately constructive diagnosis, from the point of view of moral psychology: politics at the national level is more like religion than it is like shopping. It’s more about a moral vision that unifies a nation and calls it to greatness than it is about self-interest or specific policies. In most countries, the right tends to see that more clearly than the left. In America the Republicans did the hard work of drafting their moral vision in the 1970s, and Ronald Reagan was their eloquent spokesman. Patriotism, social order, strong families, personal responsibility (not government safety nets) and free enterprise. Those are values, not government programmes.
They say God is in the details. Perhaps its religiosity and the visceral emotive symbols of the nation as deity that really matters. Perhaps there’s no hope for our primitive ape brains.