More lies to benefit Occupy opponents

Pollsters talked to 200 participants of Occupy Wall Street on the behalf of Doug Schoen, who wrote about the poll in today’s Wall Street Journal.

Here are the results of two of the questions:

What frustrates you the most about the political process in the United States? {Open Ended}

  • 30% Influence of corporate/moneyed/special interests
  • 3% Our democratic/capitalist system
  • 3% Stagnant middle class wages
  • 21% Partisanship
  • 15% Joblessness
  • 6% Income inequality
  • 7% Corruption
  • 2% Entrenched bureaucracy
  • 2% Bush tax cuts
  • 2% Obama abandoned left
  • 2% Military spending
  • 2% Federal Reserve
  • 5% Everything

and

What would you like to see the Occupy Wall Street movement achieve? {Open Ended}

  • 35% Influence the Democratic Party the way the Tea Party has influenced the GOP
  • 4% Radical redistribution of wealth
  • 5% Overhaul of tax system: replace income tax with flat tax
  • 7% Direct Democracy
  • 9% Engage & mobilize Progressives
  • 9% Promote a national conversation
  • 11% Break the two-party duopoly
  • 4% Dissolution of our representative democracy/capitalist system
  • 4% Single payer health care
  • 4% Pull out of Afghanistan immediately
  • 8% Not sure

You want to hear how Mr. Schoen interpreted these results (emphases mine):

“Our research shows clearly that the movement doesn’t represent unemployed America and is not ideologically diverse. Rather, it comprises an unrepresentative segment of the electorate that believes in radical redistribution of wealth, civil disobedience and, in some instances, violence.”

and

“What binds a large majority of the protesters together—regardless of age, socioeconomic status or education—is a deep commitment to left-wing policies: opposition to free-market capitalism and support for radical redistribution of wealth, intense regulation of the private sector, and protectionist policies to keep American jobs from going overseas.”

and

Sixty-five percent say that government has a moral responsibility to guarantee all citizens access to affordable health care, a college education, and a secure retirement”

How could 4% (Radical redistribution of wealth) be interpreted as a “large majority”? Nothing in the poll indicates where the costs for health care, education, and retirement would come from, so where the hell does “65%” come from at all? Question #20 asked if respondents would support violence (not commit it); less than a third answered “yes”.

(Here is the raw poll data.)

Contact the Wall Street Journal and demand that Schoen be fired for writing a blatant distortion of the facts to satisfy whatever sort of sensational drivel he was aiming for.

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Cake. Having it? Eating it, too?

Selzer and Company was commissioned by the Bloomberg news organ to perform a poll among Americans.  About one-quarter (26%) of those polled support the johnny-come-lately Tea Party political movement, 53% said they didn’t, and 21% were not sure.

Here are some interesting fact that the poll uncovered about the Teabagging 26%:

  • 44% identify themselves as “born-again”, compared with 33% of all respondents.
  • More than 90% say the U.S. is moving toward socialism and away from capitalism.
  • Almost half say the government should do something about executive bonuses.
  • 36% say expanding Medicare (for the elderly) and Medicaid (for the poor) amount to socialism.
  • 65% say Social Security is socialist, but 47% want to keep it under government control or aren’t sure about privatization.
  • 80%+ say expansion of the government’s role in the economy is a high threat.
  • 70% want a federal government that fosters job creation.

Now let me get this straight.

They want less government interference in the economy…

…but they also want the government to create more jobs.

They want Medicare and Medicaid…

…but they don’t want government-controlled socialized medicine.

They don’t like Social Security…

…but they don’t want to get rid of it.

I guess I shouldn't really be very surprised.

See my revisited fable for a more (ahem) artistic version of this story.

(The poll’s raw results and exact phrasings of questions are here.)

Fun time with Ron Paul

Ron Paul belongs to that group of libertarians that Ayn Rand called “hippies of the right”–arch-conservatives who nonetheless dreamed of an anarchic America rather than a collective one.

Mr. Paul has been “blessed” (if that’s the word for it) by a straw poll held by the recent CPAC convention. The poll showed that a plurality of 31% of the conventioneers wanted Ron Paul to run for the presidency in 2012, ahead of the likes of Mitt “Waffles” Romney, Sarah “I never saw a job I didn’t want to quit halfway through during” Palin, and Minnesota governor Tim “completely clueless” Pawlenty.

However, one needs to consider material that was published with Mr. Paul’s blessings. Including in his rantings were such 1992 delicacies as:

“Order was only restored in L.A. when it came time for the blacks to pick up their welfare checks three days after rioting began…”–in reference to the LA race riots in 1992 in response to Rodney King’s attackers being acquitted in court

and

“’I’ve urged everyone in my family to know how to use a gun in self defense. For the animals are coming.”– in reference to white urban dwellers facing “uppity blacks”

These are lovely thoughts, I am sure, especially to those wingnut wackadoodles that attend CPAC conventions.