Americans turned away from Crazy Uncle Donnie and the politics of hate in the new Political Typography Study released Tuesday by the Pew Research Center.
Fifth-eight percent of respondents said they disliked President Trump's behavior, with only 16 percent approving of his conduct as commander-in-chief
These studies occur every three years and are a big deal by virtue of the deep dive Pew undertakes. The new results suggest America was already souring on Trump before the deadly white supremacist rally in Charlottesville, Va.; the mass shooting in Las Vegas; the botched Special Forces raid in Niger; and the personnel changes which have rocked his administration.
Attitudes toward traditional victim groups were more tolerant, with record support for gays and almost universal concern about the continuing concentration of the nation's wealth in the hands of the Predatory 1 Percent. Meanwhile, respect was down for the Republican and Democrat machines and their backers on Wall Street, with more Americans identifying themselves as independents.
Ninety-three percent of Americans said wealth inequality was a problem, with 48 percent calling it a “very big problem.”
A record 59 percent said business corporations make too much profit, compared with just 52 percent in 1994.
Sixty-two percent of respondents said our economic system was rigged to favor the wealthy. Meanwhile, 47 percent of Americans reported having less than three months of living expenses.
The Pew results suggest Americans are growing wise to the lies, exaggerations and sins of omission of The Right Wing Noise Machine. As well as the rampant political corruption embraced by the Democratic and Republican politicians who have betrayed our faltering middle class.
Only 28 percent of respondents saw life improving for the next generation of Americans under the toxic elites now in power.
If the two corrupt party machines wanted to see how much was too much, they’ve succeeded.
The percentage of Americans identifying themselves as political independents reached a 40-year high this year, with 42 percent pulling the cord. That’s more than the combined number of “strong Republicans” (15 percent) and “strong Democrats" (20 percent).
Only 40 percent of respondents had a favorable view of Republicans, versus 67 percent in 1994. Democrats dropped to 44 percent from 62 percent.
Incredibly, only 20 percent of respondents said the two parties care about the middle class.
What’s that mean?
It means any politician who wants to get elected in 2018 better rediscover the invisible poor and middle class.
Americans are rapidly growing to despise their new commander-in-chief, according to the Pew study.
Only 20 percent think our nation's first fascist president has made the Republican Party better. Trump's unfavorable rating has edged up to 59 percent from 58 since he took office.
Ten percent of respondents said they’d attended a rally in opposition to Trump since the November election. That compares with only 2 percent attending events supporting him.
Meanwhile, the percentage of Americans with a favorable view of former President Barack Obama has surged to 64 percent from 49 percent before Trump took office.
Either we’ve suddenly become a very liberal country or Trump is pushing the pile to the left. The data suggests good people have become saturated with the hate emanating from him and the other fake tough guys on the far right.
Instead of turning against the traditional victim groups the right is demonizing, Americans are embracing them.
A record 70 percent of respondents said gays should be accepted by our society, compared with just 46 percent in 1994 and 63 percent last year. That’s a huge jump.
A whopping 65 percent said immigrants strengthen our country versus 31 percent in 1994. It’s also one of the biggest shifts in the survey.
Fifty-five percent said there are still significant obstacles that make it hard for women to get ahead.
A record 41 percent said racial discrimination is the main reason blacks can't get ahead these days. That compares with 32 percent in 1994 and a low of 18 percent after Obama took office in 2009.
Sixty-one percent said more work is needed to give blacks the same rights as whites.
The televangelists and prosperity preachers of the Right who have allied themselves with Trump had the same negative impact on religious views, with 65 percent of Americans saying government should be separate from religion.
When Pew asked people what they thought of police, military, business executives, artists, scientists and lawyers the executives finished dead last. Only 28 percent of Americans said executives contributed “a lot” to society, compared with 30 percent for lawyers, 41 percent for artists, 75 percent for police, 76 percent for scientists, and 82 percent for the military.
Anyone who gets beaten by lawyers in a popularity contest in this country is in big trouble.
Bottom line, if you’re a good person you can take heart from this report. Because you’re not alone. Most of your fellow Americans are good people too.
That message was largely absent from Mainstream News Media coverage of the study. Big news focused on the nation's growing political polarization instead, which is increasingly a measure of The Right Wing Noise Machine's exploitation of the intellectually vulnerable.
The survey was based on telephone interviews with 5,009 people conducted from June 8 to July 9. About a third had no cell phone, which tends to swing responses to the right.
The timing of the survey also favored the right, because Trump has stumbled from one disaster to another since July. The initial survey results do not reflect the Aug. 11 white nationalist rally in Charlottesville, Va.; the Las Vegas mass shooting; the resignations of Trump loyalists Sean Spicer, Anthony Scaramucci, Steve Bannon, and Reince Priebus; the president's embarrassing speeches to the United Nations and the Boy Scouts of America; his failure to rescind Obamacare; and his public spats with fellow Republicans Mitch McConnell, Rex Tillerson, Bob Corker and Jeff Flake.
The 153-page study failed to ask a single question about political corruption and fascism.
Here are some hidden gems from the questions which were asked:
-Climate Change is Real
A whopping 74 percent of Americans believe the Earth is getting warmer.
-America’s No Longer a Functional Democracy
Thirty-five percent of respondents said voting doesn’t affect how government runs things.
-Government Regulation is Good
Fifty-nine percent said stricter environmental laws and protections are worth the cost.
-Enthusiasm for Smaller Government is Way Down
The percentage of Americans who want a smaller government offering fewer services fell to just 45 percent. That compares with a high of 68 percent in 1995.
-What Level Playing Field?
Only 61 percent said you can get ahead by working hard in this country now, versus 68 percent in 1994.
-Peace Through Strength My Ass
Only 30 percent believe a strong military is the path to peace now, versus 40 percent in 1994.
-People Distrust Bankers
The percentage of respondents who said banks have a negative impact on our society (46 percent) was greater than those with positive views of them (39 percent).
What’s it all mean?
I think actor Bill Nunn said it best in his role as Radio Raheem in the film Do The Right Thing: “Hate is hurt. He's down.... KOed by love.”