In Against Democracy, Jason Brennan’s argument for the epistocracy has clear merit but far clearer issues. From what I understand, he sees no issue in and argues for the suppression of the ‘incompetent.’ That term, among the others he uses to describe those who shouldn’t get a vote, is incredibly problematic to me. He does not give clear guidelines on what this means and dismisses the very obvious possibilities for suppression of any minority groups this system would open up. The claim that research shows that people are most likely to vote altruistically (“rarely vote for their narrow self-interest”) is central to his proposition being viable, and that statement is deeply debatable to me. I am disinclined to believe that from personal experience. In Florida, my home state, the older voters (which far outnumber the younger ones) have consistently voted the minimum wage down/voted to make sure it isn’t raised or adjusted positively for inflation. An economics teacher once showed our class the math, and accounting for inflation they themselves would have been making the equivalent of $12 per hour, which is almost $4 more than the current minimum wage of $8.25. This doesn’t even benefit them at all because they’re all retired, it just hurts the working generation. This voting is the opposite of altruistic and intrinsically mean to me. He should have cited whatever the “empirical evidence” he means when making that point, because otherwise his claim seems uncharacteristically optimistic about human nature for someone who believes in taking away votes from people ‘beneath’ his level. For an epistocracy to work, it would have to be based on legitimate merit, not just scholarly success. Plenty of people that don’t attend university are brilliant and more than capable of making informed decisions given the information needed, so the idea that it would be based on education is inherently bigoted to me.