If someone appeals equally to all segments of the US, aren't mostly appealing to the "uneducated"?

I’m talking about adults, because obviously almost nobody under 21 could be considered “educated.” By educated I mean 4 year college degree in any major - that seems to be the standard used by most news outlets. By most I mean twice as many uneducated as educated.

That’s the nature of pure democracy: any government would prefer being elected by an overwhelming coalition of morons, cretins and the frankly demented to being not elected.
That does not mean that’s a bad thing: it is not a matter of morality; more that one works with what one has got. Nor is there the slightest evidence that the highly educated, or the richest, or the poorest, will be less stupid or less grasping or make more intelligent choices than the dumb or any other group.
There are no Philosopher Kings.

I agree that it is not a matter of morality. I think the thing i dislike most about the liberal point of view (as I see it anyway) is the assumption that the uneducated would be less able to make intelligent choices. For one there is no strong evidence for this that I am aware of and two, education is not free for all so uneducated can just mean poor as much as it can mean stupid. Therefore, lamenting the fact that one candidate or another is popular with uneducated people seems very undemocratic, and also seems to be a sentiment that is akin to trying to marginalize a group - supposedly the type of thing liberals are very much against.

FTR I think this discussion doesn’t have to just involve politics.

Well I guess comic book authors also do not disdain a race to the bottom of the barrel.

So is appealing to the largest, by far, portion of Americans a race to the bottom of the barrel?

Pretty much.

Also, the ‘largest portion’ of Americans could be taken in more ways than one.

In terms of of the type of education we are speaking about, the uneducated outnumber the educated by roughly 2 to 1.

Would you then consider many of the social movements of the 20th century concerning civil rights to be wrong then? They all appealed to and were supported and by mostly uneducated people.

Surely when you are talking about “uneducated” in regard to politics you are not giving someone a pass mark for political education just because they have a degree.

In 2007, in the months leading up to the Australian election, I was a paid participant in a focus group run by an organisation that seemed to be working for the Labor party. Many of the things we discussed seemed to preempt Labor advertising and sloganeering.

The main impression I got from this group of people was that, despite their diverse backgrounds and current circumstances, they were overwhelmingly stupid, ill informed and prone to feeble intellectual justifications for decisions that they made based on no apparent logic other than media talking points.

I had always been disdainful of politicians since I was first eligible to vote but after this experience I have pretty much lost all faith in the process of democracy.

No, most of the things being dismantled by neo-liberal conservatives are things I am in favour of. But such things, or for that matter their opposites, gain no legitimacy from mob approval — nor my approval.

And both the implementation of state socialism, or civil rights, trade union rights, or any reforms in history were opposed — often violently — by sections of the uneducated, and the mob, sometimes persuaded to that by those who had most to lose and sometimes by their own vicious natures; and today are being taken away with their resentful approval.
Those who shot at civil rights marchers in the American south weren’t shining examples of the innate goodness of man, nor of his essential perspicuity.

I get the point of your post but to be clear I am using the criteria for educated/uneducated that I see in the media - I myself am not making this determination.

The idea is supposed to be that the stupid people will disagree and thus balance each other out. And that the smart people can figure out a way to both do what needs to be done and appeal to the stupid people.

Note, this does not meant I equate uneducated with stupid or educated with intelligent. But that just seems to be the general question in this thread.

My point is, getting the support of stupid people doesn’t mean you have to do stupid things.

To me these are rather vague and broad strokes, but I think there is much here that would be interesting to to discuss. I think to have an intelligent discussion of these points I would need a little more clarity though. Are you saying that the uneducated have opposed civil rights, trade union rights etc. because they are uneducated?

There are many questions that could arise from this :

Does education give people a stronger ability to make the correct political choices or is education just a proxy for class discrimination?

Does a college degree fundamentally change anyone more than they otherwise would have changed?

Is the divide between the views of educated and uneducated merely tribalism or should the views of people who are not educated be seen as just ideas of the ignorant and not to be taken seriously?

Does all of this dismissal of a large portion of society as ignorant just allow people to avoid tackling uncomfortable issues?

Ideally with an education in a western democracy, you’ve got a reasonable chance of knowing they’re fucking you over.

But is their any evidence for this, or even a way to quantify this - or are we only left to go on assumptions?

People are complex. You can make an appeal to a person’s reason, a person’s superstition, a person’s prejudices, a person’s love, a person’s fear, a person’s patriotism, a person’s guilt, a person’s self-interest, a person’s altruism, or a person’s ignorance. So just because you are appealing to the people doesn’t mean you are appealing to the uneducated aspect of those people.

I think they once asked former Libyan dictator Quadaffi why he didnt allow democracy in Libya and said something along the line that the people were unable to make good judgements and therefore, needed people like him to tell them what to do.

“Uneducated” is what people from the middle class call poor people because it’s politically correct. It’s a dogwhistle for “trashy poor people”.

This is just ridiculous.

Was Abraham Lincoln educated? Was the douche who partied their way through college educated?

And if there are ‘proper political choices’, then why do we need democracy at all?

While educated can be linked to education, it doesnt have to be.

To be honest when I go to the polls I really can only give an educated guess on maybe 2-3 races or ballot issues. The rest I have no clue on. I either go off a voter guide or simply dont vote in those elections.

Your interpretation of what I am am saying is different from the meaning I am trying to convey; we are in agreement actually.

What I am saying is is that the media and polls use one criteria (college degree) to determine whether or not a voter is “educated”. I am in no way saying I agree with this type of analysis.

In political discussions as well this view gets parroted; people will say such and such a candidate appeals to uneducated voters and point to these polls to prove it.