Friday, June 27, 2014

Mollie Reilly — Vast Majority Of Conservatives Think The Poor 'Have It Easy,' Poll Finds

Pew Research Center has released a massive study detailing the American public's deep-seated political divisions, analyzing not just the ideological disunity between the left and right wings but also the issues dividing the large political center.
Rather than just defining voters as liberal or conservative, the study breaks up voters into groups "based on their attitudes and values." Liberals, for example, could be "next generation left" or "solid liberals," while voters on the right are broken down as "steadfast conservatives," "business conservatives," or "young outsiders."
Among the survey's most striking findings is that about 80 percent of conservatives agree that "poor people have it easy because they can get government benefits without doing anything." Meanwhile, over half of conservatives believe that an individual's poverty is based on "lack of effort on his or her part," rather than circumstances beyond their control:...
The survey found similar divisions over whether government programs help or harm society. More than 80 percent of conservatives in all three groups agreed that "government aid to the poor does more harm than good, by making people too dependent on government assistance," while a majority of left-leaning respondents said the government does more good because "people can't get out of poverty until their basic needs are met."
The Huffington Post
Vast Majority Of Conservatives Think The Poor 'Have It Easy,' Poll Finds
Mollie Reilly

7 comments:

Dan Kervick said...

I think Minsky saw all of this coming in the sixties. The emphasis on welfare state liberalism not tied to full employment policies, labor policies, incomes policies, or other policies cementing a social contract has created an enormous political divsion between those receiving government assistance and those not receiving it. I see this all the time in my workplace. Working people who are payed peanuts to to draining, life-sapping work - but who show up every dya and do it - have enormous resentment toward people on the public dole.

This is just the way that a lot of affluent liberals want it however. A big part of their political agenda seems to be to protect their privileges by undermining any possibility of working class solidaity.

Tom Hickey said...

A big part of their political agenda seems to be to protect their privileges by undermining any possibility of working class solidarity.

That's the playbook, and workers aren't sharp enough for the most to see through it, so it works quite well until a critical mass doesn't have enough to eat anymore.

James said...

Working people who are payed peanuts to to draining, life-sapping work - but who show up every day and do it - have enormous resentment toward people on the public dole.

But they don't down tools and join them, which you would think would be the logical thing to do if these people on the dole were living the easy life.

People doing draining, life-sapping work, are resentful because they are doing draining, life-sapping work, it's that simple. They're bitter about it, and want to blame someone. The poor on welfare are the easy target.

Incorporating those draining, life-sapping jobs into a JG isn't going to alleviate the resentment that people have for being forced into that type of work, you'll just create a larger pool of people who're bitter, and resentful for being forced into drudgery.

Ryan Harris said...

The Rich don't shed a tear over their claims on others. Why all the poor feel guilty about taking claims on society is beyond me.
Do you think Warren Buffett or Bill Gates or Larry Paige goes home each night and lose sleep the fact that they didn't personally load each rail car at BNSF or file each claim at GEICO or Sell the Ad on Google or write a line of Code in MS Office, that handed them them the billions they 'earned' last year? No.

The Big-Dem Buffett (or Dems Gates or Page), certainly feel entitled to the money, for he spent a few hours at his desk swilling Coca-cola and trading stocks. While his $15/hr Republican warehouse worker of a Star furniture outlet somewhere is worried about getting something for nothing from government. And is bitter about a "food stamp" mom working at Walmart and getting government cheese. Just Bizarro.

Meanwhile the high minded academic economists are debating some natural law of capital while spouting about the importance of bettering yourself by getting another one of their degrees financed by loans that charge interest 2 or 3 times the rate of inflation and 4 or 5 times the rate of income growth! One perverse system of control. Better get studying folks, there is a poor sod somewhere that is studying/working harder than you and wants your job! Hard work and another degree is what will get you ahead! Wink/nod. It's all the fad, another big degree will make you sexy and have better 'chances' in the economy. Just like big antlers. Perverse and sick.

Matt Franko said...

LOL Ryan!

Unknown said...

Ryan,

You are depressing me, because I think you are spot on.

-CB

Roger Erickson said...

Exactly, Ryan.
Those on the corp-welfare-dole somehow thing that all are on the dole, but that some doles are less degrading than others. :(