Skip to comments.That Wacky Fourteen Percent
Posted on 06/22/2007 3:39:05 AM PDT by Kaslin
Americans' confidence in Congress is at a historic low point, according to results of a Gallup poll released Thursday. Only 14 percent of Americans surveyed said they had a "great deal" or "quite a lot" of confidence in Congress.
That is the lowest confidence level recorded in the history of Gallup polling on that institution, going back to 1973. The previous low was 18 percent in 1991, 1993 and 1994. Those happen to be the last years before the present that the Democrats controlled both chambers – and in 1991 there was also a Republican named George Bush in the White House.
Nevertheless, someone surveying the current political landscape could very well be surprised by that 14 percent. It seems far too high. Where, he might wonder, did Gallup find any Americans actually confident in Congress? One assumes they're not all lobbyists. Has Gallup penetrated the vaunted "shadows" wherein all those "undocumented Americans" (to use the euphemism of the year) are squirreled away awaiting the latest amnesty thaw?
No, that's not it. In this great country, you can find a handful of people who hold onto just about any fatuous belief, be it that Elvis is alive, lucky numbers are real, or Congress is trustworthy. What's really interesting is how the 14 percent who admit to confidence in Congress (perhaps via displaced Santa Clausism) compare in numbers with holders of other beliefs. Some examples:
* Thirty percent of Americans believe in UFOs, agreeing that "some of the unidentified flying objects that are reported are really space vehicles from other civilizations," according to a 2001 survey by the National Science Foundation (NSF).
* Thirty-one percent of Americans believe that astrology — which holds that the alignment of celestial bodies actually affects people's destinies — is at least "sort of scientific." Another nine percent said it was "very scientific" (NSF, 2001).
* About 19 percent of Americans believe that Elvis is either alive or that there is a chance he is still alive (Fox News/Opinion Dynamics poll, 2002).
* About 22 percent of Americans believe that President Bush knew of the 9/11 attacks in advance (Rasmussen, 2007).
* Sixteen percent (and Rosie O'Donnell) believe that explosives brought down the World Trade Center (Scripps Howard/Ohio University, 2006).
* About 17 percent believe that "Creatures such as Bigfoot and the Loch Ness Monster will one day be discovered by science" (Baylor Religion Survey, 2005).
* Twenty-two percent of Americans believed in five or more of the following 10 pseudoscientific beliefs: "extrasensory perception (ESP), that houses can be haunted, ghosts/spirits of dead people can come back in certain places/situations, telepathy/communication between minds without using traditional senses, clairvoyance/the power of the mind to know the past and predict the future, astrology/that the position of the stars and planets affect people's lives, that people can communicate mentally with someone who has died, witches, reincarnation/the rebirth of the soul in a new body after death, and channeling/allowing a "spirit-being" to temporarily assume control of a body" (NSF 2001).
Even those handfuls are greater than the proportion of Americans with confidence in Congress – which still doesn't make the latter any less perplexing. One suspects that, if given an option stated explicitly in Fox's Elvis poll, the great majority would have agreed: "Those people are crazy."
Jon Sanders is a policy analyst and research editor at the John Locke Foundation in Raleigh, N.C.
Oh yeah? Well, what about spontaneous human combustion?
Fairly sure bet that for the next decade Americans wont be looking to Congress for any solutions. In fact, Americans will be mostly looking to Congress in an attempt to figure out how they are screwing the American electorate in the current bill they are 'constructing'.
An otherwise amusing report is spoiled by gratuitous references to spiritual and religious beliefs that don’t make any pretense to atheistic science.
I dont know where they found that 14% that trusts this government. They must have scoured the nut houses and insanity wards of the hospitals from one end of the country to the other. The only thing bi-partisan about this counrty today is the total uselessness of our politicians.
He forgot one. 92% of sports fans believe what they wear, eat and where they sit have a direct impact on the outcome of a game. Which, everybody knows, is true.
That's the real number of democRATS - the rest of the votes are fraudulent. There simply can't be that many stupid people in the US.
14% is very low. Usually, the “totally stupid” segment of a poll (any poll) hovers around 20%.
It’s nice to see that the rest of America has caught up to us and now sees the rat controlled congress for what we knew they would be.
On Cavuto, a Young Democrats for America shill said the low approval rating was still the fault of the Republicans who were obstructing legislation the Dems were trying to pass and fallout from Bush’s low approval ratings.
Unfortunately Cavuto did not grill her on why it’s fallen so fast just in the last 5 months alone, nor on Dingy Reid’s 19% approval rating.
Its amazing that it took Nancy Lugosi and Dingy Harry Reid to make Delay/Hastert look good. Its just proof that one should never say, “Things can’t get any worse.”
I wouldnât count on it. The same people who voted these looser in will be out in droves to vote in the next Rat. Itâs a very similar dynamic to how republicans/rinos get elected. GOP hardliners scream âIf you donât vote for this toaster with a GOP sticker, youâll get hitlerly!!!!â They shout ‘Vote in John F’en Kerry or you’ll get a bible thumping, science hating, brown shirt’ It really is an interesting dynamic.
As the saying goes, just when you think it can’t get any worse, it does.
The approval rating for Congress was low before the Democrats took control. After Democrats took over the approval rating fell even farther to its present low.
The significant thing to notice about this low approval rating is that Congress continues to pay no attention to it or the demands of most Americans.
The reason for this is that members of Congress have learned that they can retain power without pleasing the electorate.
All Congressmen should be measured by how he or she votes on legislation. A Congressman’s voting record should be made widely available so that everyone can plainly see how each voted on every bill.
Can you say, “Term Limits?”
With much vocal opposition to the latest proposed immigration code reform, Americans are loudly and clearly sending the Senate and other Legislators of both parties a uniform message: “We simply do not trust you.”
We do not trust you to see to it the laws are enforced no matter how craftily they’re revised or devised. We do not trust you to see to it America’s borders are secured foremost. We do not trust you to see to it America’s sovereignty is placed as a top priority. Neither do we trust you to see to it law enforcement is provided with sufficient and proper tools to combat the massive invasion of America.
Americans are telling you: “Enforce our current laws - close the floodgate of illegal migration first, then when we see a legitimate enforcement effort fails expectations, we may then be more receptive to entertaining sensible code revisions.”
It’s time politicians simply realize one thing: Americans do not trust Legislators.
Americans are saying; “Prove your commitment. You’ve said you would add thousands of Border Patrol agents. You’ve failed. You’ve said you would build the border barrier. You’ve failed. You’ve justly earned your no confidence vote.”
Of course he's alive, and living in Area 51! ;^)
Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.