So much of debate, including political and economic debate, is about which groups and individuals deserve higher or lower status. . .
I hypothesize that an MR blog post attracts more comments when it a) has implications for who should be raised and lowered in status, and b) has some framework in place which allows you to make analytical points, but points which ultimately translate into a conclusion about a).
1. Lowering another group’s social status is the most powerful message of all. It is more powerful than raising the status of those who one likes.
2. It would be an interesting exercise in honesty for everyone who uses social media for political discussions to say, “My main purpose is to lower the status of the following three groups. . .” What would my answers be? MIT economists would be high on the list. Also progressives. And people who align entirely on one of the three axes.
3. How much of writing in the social sciences and the humanities (can you broaden this to other academic disciplines?), including research papers and journal articles, is motivated and made popular by the way that it affects relative group status?
You can take man out of tribal society, but you cannot take tribal society out of man.