Thursday, February 18, 2010
"Only 21% Say U.S. Government Has Consent of the Governed ... Those with the Lowest Incomes are the Most Skeptical"
A new Rasmussen poll finds:
The founding document of the United States, the Declaration of Independence, states that governments derive “their just powers from the consent of the governed.” Today, however, just 21% of voters nationwide believe that the federal government enjoys the consent of the governed.
Seventy-one percent (71%) of all voters now view the federal government as a special interest group, and 70% believe that the government and big business typically work together in ways that hurt consumers and investors.That helps explain why 75% of voters are angry at the policies of the federal government, and 63% say it would be better for the country if most members of Congress are defeated this November...
In his new book, In Search of Self-Governance, Scott Rasmussen observes that the American people are “united in the belief that our political system is broken, that politicians are corrupt, and that neither major political party has the answers.” He adds that “the gap between Americans who want to govern themselves and the politicians who want to rule over them may be as big today as the gap between the colonies and England during the 18th century.”
Sixty percent (60%) of voters think that neither Republican political leaders nor Democratic political leaders have a good understanding of what is needed today. Thirty-five percent (35%) say Republicans and Democrats are so much alike that an entirely new political party is needed to represent the American people.
Nearly half of all voters believe that people randomly selected from the phone book could do as good a job as the current Congress.
It is not surprising - given the following - that this is largely viewed as a class issue:
- The poor have disproportionally suffered from unemployment
- PhD economist Dean Baker said that the true purpose of the bank rescues is "a massive redistribution of wealth to the bank shareholders and their top executives"
- Two leading IMF officials, the former Vice President of the Dallas Federal Reserve, and the the head of the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City have all said that the United States is controlled by an oligarchy
- Nobel prize winning economist Joseph Stiglitz and many others have called our current system "socialism for the rich"
- PhD economist Michael Hudson says that the financial “parasites” are "sucking as much money out" as they can before "jumping ship"
- Warren Buffet said a couple of years ago: "There's class warfare, all right, but it's my class, the rich class, that's making war, and we're winning.”
As Rasmussen notes:
Those who earn more than $100,000 a year are more narrowly divided on the question, but those with lower incomes overwhelming reject the notion that today’s government has the consent from which to derive its just authority. Those with the lowest incomes are the most skeptical.