New Harvard Study Concludes Bleeding-Heart Liberals Beat Conservatives In Longevity All Day Long

According to a new study, even with their ever-bleeding hearts, liberals are more likely to outlive conservatives in the United States.

Published in the Journal of Epidemiology & Community Health, the recent study’s results were actually quite a surprise considering past research. Formerly, it was believed conservatives in several other countries, including that unique breed of conservatives, the American Republican, were happier and healthier people who tended to live longer than their political rivals, those dreadful liberals.

According to University of Nevada-Reno community health researcher Roman Pabayo, previous American studies, however, failed to separate political ideology from party membership. Nor did prior studies compare death rates of those at similar education and income levels.

The latest published study in the Journal does that and then some, though.

Pabayo led the effort at the Harvard School of Public Health and says:

“We were surprised.”

He went on to underline just how legitimate he believes the findings are, though, basing that belief off of a dependence on “individual death records,” which he calls a “more valid measure” than the self-reported death rates used previously.

The Harvard study involved over 32,000 adults – all of whom self-identified as Democrats, Republicans, Independents or “other.” They also identified as either conservative, liberal or moderate. All of them were tracked over a period of 15 years, and it was noted who died, when, how quickly, and what their various affiliations and self-identifications were.

So how did it come out?

It turns out, those who identified as conservatives and moderates were more likely to have died by the next follow-up in the research by 6 percent over liberals who basically portrayed similar traits in their lives, such as age, income, and sex.

When the results were parsed out by party, Republicans and Democrats were pretty much neck and neck – surprise, surprise. Independents, however, did rate at lower death rates than their stalwart partisan brothers and sisters.

Pabayo says the study also considered people’s claims to their health and happiness (how they feel); however, those factors did not seem to hold much sway over the results. Not surprisingly, Republicans believed themselves to be happier and healthier than liberals; whereas, conservatives only believed themselves to be happier, but not necessarily healthier.

Could the distinguishing factor between firm party affiliation and a more vague conservative leaning fall along economic lines? That might make a great study of its own.

Aspects the Harvard study did not look at, however, were appropriate access to health care, as well as health habits, such as recreational smoking, drinking, and one’s typical diet. Some traits more typically linked to liberal lifestyles, however, were somewhat suggested, such as one’s general outlook on life, and as Pabayo stated, “how you react to adversity.” Pabayo also stated:

“We need to figure out what’s really going on.”

Of course, as is the case with any study, there are those who aren’t buying it. Professor of Population Health and Geography at Harvard Subu V. Subramanian believes the differences found in deaths and death rates are “very small.” He believes self-reported health is a less than accurate means for predicting death and is “very inconsistent” with numerous other research already published.

Some reasons Subramanian remains skeptical of the latest Harvard study, however, are based on some of his own studies.

One study focusing on Republicans and Democrats concluded that Republicans claimed better health and were, surprisingly, less likely to consider themselves smokers by 15 percent.

Generally speaking, also, Subramanian claims conservatives and Republicans are more likely to associate with religious groups and be “more tied into social networks and organizations,” which he believes are more likely to lead to stable, healthier lifestyles.

Like a child stomping his feet with nothing better to say than, “Nuh-uh!” former House Republican aide of Quinn Gillespie Communications, John Feehery, simply responded to the study regarding liberal longevity:

“They don’t live longer. It just seems that way.”

Anyone sense a sore loser in the room?

And once again, leave it to humor to cut closest to the bone of the matter.

Author Daniel Kurtzman, writer of How to Win a Fight with a Conservative and How to Win a Fight with a Liberal, lent his comedic sensibility to the debate:

“Did they really need a study? Conservatives like guns, tobacco, fossil fuels, deep-fried endangered caribou. [Liberals] like yoga, weed, clean air, free-range kale… and giving everyone free health care.”

Well, when you put it like that, it’s not too hard to see why this new study makes sense.

Smoke if you got ‘em.

 

H/T: usatoday.com | Featured image: WikiMedia