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Well that's not too hard: it's because the right-wing party and its helpers push an ideology that rich people are better people who worked hard for their money and deserve it all, that wealth "trickles down" to poorer people, and that the reason these people are poor isn't because of plutocracy, but rather because of immigrants and minorities "stealing their jobs". We saw this in spades in the recent election.

I'm getting downvoted because this site is a haven for alt-right and libertarian people who believe this stuff. One of the key people in YCombinator is Peter Thiel, a noted libertarian right-winger and Trump supporter. And the tech industry in general is a hotbed of right wing politics and the closely-related libertarianism, which is why all the news about misogyny in tech workplaces is no surprise.

As others have pointed out and demonstrated, you can just as easily draw the opposite conclusions about HN. Such perceptions are in the eye of the beholder.

People's assessments of the community's ideological bias are wildly contradictory, so they can't all be right and—since HN is the same for everybody—they don't vary with HN. What do they vary with? This is easy to answer once you know to look for it: they vary with the the ideological preference of the observer. Moreover the correlation is in two dimensions: 1) direction: left-leaning users think HN is right-leaning, and vice versa; 2) intensity: the stronger one's ideological commitment, the more strongly it feels like HN is opposing it.

We detached this subthread from https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=14205096 and marked it off-topic.

You think HN is a haven for the alt-right? Or even the regular right for that matter? Libertarians I'll buy but HN is definitely left-wing. Were you not here for the whole Trump election? Did you not see all the shit Thiel got for supporting Trump?

Libertarians make a community appear to be more left-wing to right-wingers and appear to be more right-wing to left-wingers.

That's why they get so much vitriol from both sides. The similarities make them look like traitors to your side, and the differences make them look like the enemy.

Tech people can't really be considered left-wing, because if we were, there would already be a union with teeth and we'd have UBI figured out. But we're not right-wing either, because we love immigration and hate (local) monopolies like Comcast and AT&T.

By all measures, politicians should be drooling over us as a voting bloc. But the popular kids never really cared about the nerds, and that's why only our relatively high incomes have any real sway politically.

Also, they get annoyed at our ability to penetrate the screening layers of bullshit to identify real problems and come up with workable solutions to them. Politicians fear (rightly so) that we would replace them with very small shell scripts.

As an example, the current political cycle has elevated health care insurance as an issue best able to make the voting populace distracted and afraid. It takes any one of us just seconds to look past the method of processing payments to see that the real problem in US health care is embedded more deeply in the mechanism for setting prices, and in the marginal cost for providing care.

We're more apt to realize when a publicly-asked question has not actually been answered after parsing out the political response. And we have this crazy, weird attitude towards power where we sometimes just give it away, dispersing it to the four winds, instead of milking it as a cash cow until we die. That makes traditional politics very wary of the tech community. They literally cannot understand how our minds work, and they have very little idea what we might actually want. They also have some inkling that a large fraction of worldwide prosperity is now utterly dependent in some way on us, and they desperately need to keep us under control before we (probably accidentally) transform the planet into some form of sci-fi techo-topia that is simultaneously inspiring and horrifying.

Oh, I don't disagree that there's lots of left-wing and progressive people here too, just as on any tech site. But there's a ton of extreme libertarians and alt-right people too; maybe not a majority among the users, but still a very significant presence, and exercising downvotes.

Maybe the downvotes are because of the fairly aggressive political stance? I happen to agree with you, though I felt the tone and substance of the original post was not all that helpful; I probably would have downvoted it too, if it were not already at the bottom, and if additional content hadn't been added that is making it feel like a more worthwhile discussion.

Often people do downvote that with which they disagree, but that's not the intended purpose of the vote; keep that in mind when reading your own 'score'; it may not be the opinion but the content or tone that people are rejecting.

HN has a lot of right-wing people when it comes to capitalism & the meritocracy of America.

I think those are the libertarians.

Your post (the one upthread that the immediate parent is discussing, not the immediate parent) currently is not net downvoted. Please stop slandering the site with false explanations for the effects of the common misfortune that reflexive downvoters often vote more quickly than more thoughtful readers.

>Your post (the one upthread that the immediate parent is discussing, not the immediate parent) currently is not net downvoted.

That's not true. It went up briefly, now it's back to -2.

>Please stop slandering the site with false explanations

I call them like I see them. I see no evidence that this is "reflexive downvoters", I see this behavior all the time both here and on other tech news sites. It's not isolated to this site by any means; it's endemic to modern tech culture, especially in SV.

> It went up briefly, now it's back to -2.

And it's not net negative again now.

> I call them like I see them.

The motivations you describe are not things you can see, they are motivations you read without any solid basis into numbers.

> I see no evidence that this is "reflexive downvoters"

It's pretty common for posts on HN on controversial topics (on pretty much any side) that are substantive enough that they do the end up with a negative score after long to quickly downvotes. It's pretty clear that there is a pattern of people who jump to Dow vote positions they disagree with regardless of substance or quality making a mark quickly, but frequently being neutralized over time by other voters.

It's true that there is a visible alt-right and larger visible right-libertarian (and objectivist, also) presence here; there's also a conventional modern liberal segment, a conventional modern conservative segment, and various less-conventional (Marxist, anarchist, left-libertarian, and other) left wing groups. Pretty much all the unconventional groups are a greater proportion of the visible contribution to the site than conventional groups, but the site isn't particularly a haven for any one of them (or to just the right-wingers or left-leaning groups).

The downvoters you got are probably largely political disagreement, but there's no little basis for the belief that it was particularly disagreement from alt-right and/or libertarian sources, and even if it was, it's pretty clearly not because the site is particularly a have for those two groups, because that's simply not true.

I don't agree that the tech industry is a hotbed of right-wing politics. In fact, I'd be surprised if I've ever worked with a single person who regularly votes Republican.

One interesting factor at play, though, is the environment you live in.

In the valley, I see how hard it must be to get by because it would be impossible to live on a low salary here, let alone on public assistance. And because I make decent money, the value of a dollar is not all that high to me.

If I lived in an EXTREMELY impoverished (or even just average rural area) and was making minimum wage, suddenly every dollar I come by is much more valuable. And forms of public assistance that are not indexed to cost-of-living are much relatively valuable in such an area. Suddenly I'd start resenting all these people not busting their ass like I am to make minimum wage, and it looks like they're living off MY tax dollars!

Childhood poverty is a solved problem in nearly all rich countries.

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