A Conversation for Ask h2g2

How many Leave voters are already dead? And how long before Remainers outnumber them?

Post 1

Hoovooloo

Provocative headline, but bear with me:

Fact: 16,141,241 UK citizens voted Remain.
Fact: 17,410,742 UK citizens voted Leave.

Fact: 70% of voters whose educational attainment is only GCSE or lower voted Leave

Fact: 68% of voters with a university degree voted Remain in the EU

Fact: voters aged 24 to 49 narrowly opted for Remain (54%) over leave (46%)

Fact: 60% of voters between the ages of 50 and 64 went for Leave.

Summary: although Leave had a majority in 2016, the group of people voting Leave was disproportionately old and stupid. It is therefore statistically reasonable to assume that now, two and a half years later, death will have claimed more Leave voters and Remain voters.

While that is a cheery thought in itself, I got to wondering. There's two more years' worth of young people eligible to vote at the bottom end of the age bracket (generally Remain voters) and two years' fewer old people at the upper end (generally Leave voters). This isn't even factoring in the fact that the dumb ones die younger because they smoke, drink to excess, get obese etc., that winnows their numbers early, and it's the dumb ones that were voting Leave.

If you ran the vote again and, crucially, everyone still alive who voted in 2016 voted again AND VOTED THE SAME WAY, but you admitted the young cohort of voters and they turned out to the same extent that cohort did in 2016 - would the result be different?

I don't think it's even worth arguing about whether it would make a difference - that's just a fact. The question I would like an answer to is, would the difference that it would definitely make be big enough to swing the result to Remain?

Or - put another way if you like - going purely on the statistics, the electoral ones and the demographic actuarial ones - how long after the 2016 referendum would the electorate have changed demographically enough to change what the result would be?

Remember: the assumption is that nobody gets to change their mind. The only factor we're relying on is the death of the old and stupid and the different choices the young make, statistically.

Does anyone have the data, skills and inclination to make a stab at an answer?


How many Leave voters are already dead? And how long before Remainers outnumber them?

Post 2

Still Incognitas, Still Chairthingy, Still lurking, Still invisible, unnoticeable, missable, unseen, just haunting h2g2

66 and a Remainer..Glad to buck the trend.

smiley - tea


How many Leave voters are already dead? And how long before Remainers outnumber them?

Post 3

Orcus

I'm not sure this isn't a rhetorical question smiley - winkeye

Never forget, the vote was decisive, it is incontrovertible that the NATION voted leave. End of. Anything less than delivering that (whatever Leave actually means) would induce riots on the street and other forms of civil unrest (and TRULY endless moaning from the leave camp - though of course they've been doing that since 1974ish).

The vote has been done, so shut up, debate is over smiley - winkeye. (actually I kind of wish it was as I said over on the other thread). In fact, what am I doing talking about it myself? smiley - facepalm


How many Leave voters are already dead? And how long before Remainers outnumber them?

Post 4

Rev Nick - give me poutine, or give me death

"the group of people voting Leave was disproportionately old and stupid" - ages 50 to 64.

Being 59, I find that somewhat insulting. Also, because many of us "elders" were busy living life, working for a living to support families, defending our respective countries. There was neither time nor money for college or university. This does not necessarily make us "stupid". Less formally educated - sure, but not stupid.

( My father achieved a 6th year education, which was common in his time. Boys went to work, girls learned for a few more years. I was stupid in leaving school before completing the 12th year, but I ended up being a national (and somewhat international) subject matter expert in a broad range of radio telecommunications for quite some years. )

Perhaps a reason such people preferred to leave is that they have a lifetime of reality and experience under their belts? And never having anything handed to us, we don't presume there to be a rainbow and pot of gold just around that next corner? We know that absolutely no one owes us anything, and we are not entitled to anything at all.


How many Leave voters are already dead? And how long before Remainers outnumber them?

Post 5

Icy North

Fascinating question, and it shouldn’t be difficult to uncover mortality rates for age groups as well as Brexit voting patterns.

One thing you may need to factor in is whether a 45-y-o man suddenly turns gammon when he reaches 47...


How many Leave voters are already dead? And how long before Remainers outnumber them?

Post 6

Hoovooloo

"Being 59, I find that somewhat insulting."

Take it how you like.

"Also, because many of us "elders" were busy living life, working for a living to support families, defending our respective countries."

Oh do push off. "Defending our country"??? My stepfather is 78 next birthday, and he was too young to even have to ever do national service, much less actually fight. He wasn't even BORN when the last world war started, so don't give me that nonsense.

"There was neither time nor money for college or university."

Er... false. I'm 49, and I was among the LAST people in this country to go to university and not only not have to pay fees, but to actually get a maintenance grant as well - paid to study. I was also at uni when students were stopped from claiming benefits during vacations.

In other words: people your age had it way, WAY easier. Going to university was an option for anyone, of any financial means. Anyone, that is, who could meet the then much more stringent academic requirements than today's degree mills require.

"This does not necessarily make us "stupid". Less formally educated - sure, but not stupid."

It was a short-hand. For people your age, level of formal education is a far more reliable indicator of general intelligence than it is nowadays, when you can get onto a degree course without being able to correctly spell the word "degree".

"Perhaps a reason such people preferred to leave is that they have a lifetime of reality and experience under their belts?"

A lifetime of reality and experience would suggest to anyone with any self-awareness that they are comedically unequipped to provide a meaningful answer to the question on the ballot paper.

"And never having anything handed to us, we don't presume there to be a rainbow and pot of gold just around that next corner?"

See my above point about your generation having available to it an entirely free university education supported by a taxpayer-funded maintenance grant AND social security benefits - something kids today can barely believe even happened. So don't give me that nonsense either.

"We know that absolutely no one owes us anything, and we are not entitled to anything at all"

The government owes you responsible use of the taxes you pay to it. Or don't you pay tax?


How many Leave voters are already dead? And how long before Remainers outnumber them?

Post 7

Mr. X ---> The path behind me is littered with corpses. .... .... .... Do you have a trash bag?

"For people your age, level of formal education is a far more reliable indicator of general intelligence than it is nowadays, when you can get onto a degree course without being able to correctly spell the word 'degree'."


There was less reason to. Multiple industries did not require college degrees the way they do now, and nobody had reason to assume they were going to decades later. Economic conditions being what they were, an intelligent person might have reasonably decided to go straight into the workforce rather than spend valuable time learning about a bunch of (then-seemingly) irrelevant stuff.

Aside from their own interest in their education, which has historically always been a minority of people, compared to economic considerations.


Mind you, I only come to these conclusions after reading about a bunch of stuff that happened decades before I was even a gleam in my parents' eyes. I certainly don't have any first-hand experience. But I do think it's a bit much to say that all the "smart" people had a piece of paper with some signatures on it.

Frankly you're both being a bit inflammatory.

smiley - pirate


How many Leave voters are already dead? And how long before Remainers outnumber them?

Post 8

Hoovooloo

Inflammatory? Moi?

"Economic conditions being what they were, an intelligent person might have reasonably decided to go straight into the workforce rather than spend valuable time learning about a bunch of (then-seemingly) irrelevant stuff."

Economic considerations being what they were, the professions where you had reasonable expectation of significant pay were effectively closed to those without degrees. Which of course they mostly still are. What's changed is that where "profession requiring a degree" used to mean medicine, science, engineering, law, education or accountancy, it now means all that plus such intellectually rigorous pursuits as operating the checkout in Tescos or cutting people's hair.

If anything, TODAY is when a person of above average intelligence might look at the devalued degrees being handed out and think they'd be better off in the long term taking an apprenticeship. Today, it's the poor dumb saps being duped into staying off the unemployment statistics by the lie that a degree in something ending in "studies" will help them, rather than saddle them with a lifetime of debt, that I feel sorry for.

"I do think it's a bit much to say that all the "smart" people had a piece of paper with some signatures on it."

I agree. Do, please, point me towards the person who said that. I made the much, much more specific and defensible claim that *among older people* (50 plus) the level to which they continued in education was a more reliable indicator of general intelligence than it is today, when half of kids get to go to "university" (and those quotes are VERY heavy)... and the further generalisation that ON AVERAGE, statistically, people who voted Leave were less bright than those who voted Remain. Saying "that's inflammatory" isn't the same as saying "that's not true".

And if you voted Leave and take an impersonal, aggregated statistic about a large group you're a member of as a *personal* insult, you are proving me right.


How many Leave voters are already dead? And how long before Remainers outnumber them?

Post 9

Mr. X ---> The path behind me is littered with corpses. .... .... .... Do you have a trash bag?

"and the further generalisation that ON AVERAGE, statistically, people who voted Leave were less bright than those who voted Remain."

You assume. The only statistics you offer to back that up are the number of them who (allegedly) don't have degrees. Which, I maintain, is not a reliable indicator.

AND you don't tell me your source. To be blunt, I think you're succumbing to confirmation bias.


(Speaking as an impersonal observer who actually doesn't think it's a good idea at all for the U.K. to leave the E.U. anyway. But let's make sure we have our facts straight.)

smiley - pirate


How many Leave voters are already dead? And how long before Remainers outnumber them?

Post 10

Hoovooloo

I'm going to do this one in a separate post, because it makes me seethe and it's important:

" a reason such people preferred to leave is that they have a lifetime of reality and experience under their belts?"

Using a lifetime of reality and experience, please enlighten me: do you consider string theory more likely than loop quantum gravity to successfully reconcile the inconsistencies between the Standard Model of quantum physics and General Relativity?

Yes, or no?

I've asked a lot of people that question. I know exactly three people who have the intellectual capacity and the background of study required to even fully understand the implications of the *question* (I know I don't - I know just enough to ASK it) much less hold a meaningful opinion on the answer. The majority of people I put the question to have the self-awareness to say "I have no idea". Quite a few look at me blankly and ask me to repeat it. The point is, apart from a tiny, tiny minority of incredibly bright wonks, NOBODY is equipped to even begin to come up with an answer.

The annoying thing is, you and I are precisely as equipped to answer the question above as we were to answer the referendum question.

The difference is, if you express an entirely unjustifiable preference for loop quantum gravity, I'm not going to lose my job because trade tariffs and customs delays mean the manufacturing company I work for goes out of business and/or gets relocated to Belgium. But that cross you, in your towering ignorance, put in the "Leave" box means that that is a definite possibility right now. Thanks.


How many Leave voters are already dead? And how long before Remainers outnumber them?

Post 11

Baron Grim

I believe the main issue isn't necessarily intelligence, but gullibility. The Leave campaign made a bunch of grand but fallacious statements that swayed a lot of voters.

We are yet again experiencing a massive barrage of bullshit here in the States that many on the right are quite comfortable gobbling up without a second thought.


How many Leave voters are already dead? And how long before Remainers outnumber them?

Post 12

Orcus

>nflammatory? Moi?<

Well apparently you can still start an argument in an almost comatose website smiley - winkeyesmiley - winkeyesmiley - winkeye


How many Leave voters are already dead? And how long before Remainers outnumber them?

Post 13

Hoovooloo

https://www.theguardian.com/politics/2017/oct/30/facts-support-mps-claim-that-better-educated-voted-remain-pollster

"Which, I maintain, is not a reliable indicator."

I consider educational attainment level a more reliable indicator of intelligence among the over 50s than it is among the under 25s.

I've given my reasons: no fees/maintenance grants/benefits etc., and <10% of kids going to uni meant it was more equal (poor kids got to go) and more selective (thick kids were weeded out) compared to now where it'll saddle you with a lifetime of debt (putting off brighter kids who can see through the lie that it's necessary) and where 50% of kids get to go (thick kids allowed in).

Are you arguing with the facts? Or just my interpretation of them?
If you're arguing with the facts, jog on, you're wasting everyone's time.
If you're arguing with my interpretation, you've failed to present an alternative. You're just saying t'ain't so. Tell my why you think I'm wrong.


How many Leave voters are already dead? And how long before Remainers outnumber them?

Post 14

Hoovooloo

"apparently you can still start an argument in an almost comatose website"

It's lovely to know I've still "got it". smiley - smiley


How many Leave voters are already dead? And how long before Remainers outnumber them?

Post 15

paulh, not fond of Lord Mudpants

Yes, you've still got it.

I'd like to mention that Rev Nick is Canadian, not British. There may have been similarities between Canada and Britain during his formative years, but I wouldn't assume (without researching Canada's history of support for higher education) that he could have gotten into college/university with the same ease as he would have on the other side of the Atlantic.

There's a more important distinction to make, in my opinion: if 70% of a group vote one way, that leaves 30% who voted the other way. The people you happen to deal with on the street or online might represent the 30%.


How many Leave voters are already dead? And how long before Remainers outnumber them?

Post 16

Mr. X ---> The path behind me is littered with corpses. .... .... .... Do you have a trash bag?

The hyper-intelligent shade of the color blue has only ever seen the world in black and white. There's no room for gray with him, so I expect that never crossed his mind.

smiley - pirate


How many Leave voters are already dead? And how long before Remainers outnumber them?

Post 17

Mr. X ---> The path behind me is littered with corpses. .... .... .... Do you have a trash bag?

"Tell my why you think I'm wrong."

Give me a minute.

smiley - pirate


How many Leave voters are already dead? And how long before Remainers outnumber them?

Post 18

Hoovooloo

I get that - the entire point of the question in the subject line is one of broad statistics, and emphatically NOT about individuals.

Obviously there are people, quite a few of them probably, who are even brighter than me but voted Leave anyway. They'll likely have had their reasons.

If you haven't seen it already, check out Youtube for Stewart Lee's standup show "Content Provider". It's really good. It starts with a little rant about the Brexit vote and how it made writing a standup show that you can keep on touring for a year or so difficult.

The key line is where he admits that stereotyping Brexit voters as all the same is inaccurate and unfair. Or as he put it:

"It was just racists that voted for Brexit, was it? Cants did too."

Obviously he didn't use the word "cant".


How many Leave voters are already dead? And how long before Remainers outnumber them?

Post 19

Baron Grim

And now I want an Irn Bru. smiley - laugh

http://youtu.be/32IJBBOL8lc


How many Leave voters are already dead? And how long before Remainers outnumber them?

Post 20

Rev Nick - give me poutine, or give me death

Final comment to Hoo . . . In MY country, furthering education is still a personal cost to nearly everyone. There is NO free university.

And I was speaking for myself about defending the country. I gave 37 years of my life to Her Majesty's Canadian Armed Forces. My wife gave 15 . . .

But of course, I know better than to discuss with you. I am plainly too stupid to even see your level of arrogance.


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