The Agenda

Virginia Postrel on Why the 2012 Presidential Campaign Needs More Charts

I enjoyed Virginia Postrel’s take on why Paul Ryan should channel Ross Perot

In a related vein, Brendan Nyhan and Jason Reifler’s “Opening the Political Mind” offers some limited evidence that graphical information is effective at getting people to reduce their resistance to counter-attitudinal information. That is, if you want to change people’s minds, graphs and charts might be more effective than words alone. I sense that the word is out about this phenomenon, and that it is being used and abused. But that is another matter entirely.

Reihan Salam is president of the Manhattan Institute and a contributing editor of National Review.

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