The Pardu

The Pardu
Watchful eyes and ears feed the brain, thus nourishing the brain cells.

Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Pew Research: ” Conflict Between Rich and Poor”




Class Warfare has a history, but Mario-Antoinette is innocent of such.

As a very young person, I distinctly remember that first time I heard of the myth associated with , "Let them eat Cake".  Our nation seems to be moving towards an 'upper crust' of wealthy people who seem to adhere to the "Let them eat Cake" myth.  The GOP is actually using terminology along the words: "Class Warfare" and "Income Envy (Class Envy).".  Words or phrases which clearly denote an attempt to rationalize the material trappings of the few (1%) against protests from the not so well-off (99%).   But, like  the Maria-Antoinette myth, the GOP is on the wrong side of the issue.

“Class Warfare” has existed since man first assigned value to any object which provided distinctions between that “Haves and the Have Nots”.  Over the past few years, the United States is showing signs of festering and spreading “Haves and Have Nots” malcontent.  The malcontent is rooted in the distinctions between the wealthy and the less wealthy.  During a period of 2009 – 2011, the malcontent has significantly increased.



While perusing the Pew Research website, I  ran across sets of survey data which could serve as  a harbinger of a different future in the United States.  This article caught my attention.
“Rising Share of Americans See Conflict Between Rich and Poor”  by Rich Morin
The article and pictured graphs show a growing attention to, and public opinion about the divide between the “Haves and the Have Nots”.

The Occupy Wall Street Movement via ‘acting-out’ and increasing attention to the appearance of a growing, US Oligarchy has contributed to more attention to the growing divide.  One needs to look little farther than a large percentage of our elected official are millionaires (or become such while serving in office or elevated to wealth shortly after leaving office).  ABC News, The Note and other sources report 47% of the members of the US Congress are millionaires. That places each of the 47% squarely in the 1% economic strata which most of us will only view from afar.  If one assimilates to that fact, there is an even more telling example of small groups which are acquiring a stranglehold on our federal and State governments.  The perfect example is the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC LINKED) and its leading supporters: The Koch Brothers and their Millionaires Donors Club.

I mentioned the Occupy Wall Street movement a few passages back.  A web page called the Western Progressive published an article on December 30th, 2011, which references another Pew Research Poll.

Pew Poll: Younger voters take socialism over capitalism — why that is

Pew Research poll of voters 18 – 29 years of age:
Forty-nine percent of people in that age bracket say they have a positive view of socialism; only 43 percent say they have a negative view.
Indeed, the Pew poll also found that just 46 percent of people age 18-29 have positive views of capitalism, and 47 percent have negative views — making this the only age group where support for socialism outweighs support for capitalism.
As I often state, I am abhorrent to most socialist principles, while recognizing some productive societies have vestiges of the economic system as part of daily life.  Yet, I recognize our nation cannot continue down the path of a bulging group of 1% (ers) sitting atop an abscess of 99% (ers) who are growing ideologically further apart from the 1% (ers) as time passes.  The metaphor sounds dire and is dire. Such abscesses will not stay self-contained over the long haul.  The Pew data is telling because I can remember a time when the word socialism was not a word that anyone spoke unless in the course of high school studies or a college lecture.

Ideology is the domain of the very young.  While ideology may wane over time, it can lead to paradigms and aversions which can linger for a lifetime.

The Morin article provides significant proof of  mindsets and ideals are evolving which are contrary to Circa 2000 ideology and beliefs. As we move further into the 21st Century, we are changing and many of those changes for some are based in greed and preservation of a 1% upper income strata.

Morin opens his article.
The Occupy Wall Street movement no longer occupies Wall Street, but the issue of class conflict has captured a growing share of the national consciousness. A new Pew Research Center survey of 2,048 adults finds that about two-thirds of the public (66%) believes there are “very strong” or “strong” conflicts between the rich and the poor—an increase of 19 percentage points since 2009.


An interesting side-bar about the following information is the newly coined GOP mantra of  ”Class-Warfare” and the more idiotic declarations of, “Class envy“.  The GOP in their desperation for mantra, apparently does not have researchers to seek data as follows.

Morin mentioned in his article the intensity of the growth in concern for “Conflict between Rich and Poor”.  The chart above is clear evidence of his point. I doubt there is another issue which can garner responses to poll questions as presented in the graph.

How about a graph which is even more stark in its message?

The graph may also poke-holes in Newt Gingrich’s playing the ‘race-card’ for manipulation of certain segments of the population.

The  following graph delivers an almost unbelievable message. Focus on the lower section of the graph at the 75K income level.

MSNBC personality Lawrence O’Donnell. as Lawrence O’Donnell says in the MSNBC commercial, (paraphrased) “when you have no argument, and no point and no rationale, you have to come-out with a slogan (mantra)”.

The Pew research places the mantra ”Class Warfare” in stark perspective as the domain of a political party seeking to run interference for its moneyed 1% constituents.

Since the Pew Research points to a growing concern for many Americans and a critical question comes to mind.  How long will the GOP continues a message laced mantra that smacks against the perceptions of many in the electorate?   The last graph indicates the GOP is possibly preaching a fruitless message to their own base.

Conflict between the Rich and Poor has proven destructive for many past political movements and political characters. While Maria-Antoinette gets the blame for a famous and callous remark  about the poor, Marie-Therese, the wife of Louis XIV may have been the culprit who spoke, “Let them eat cake“.

Conflict between the Rich and the Poor existing in the United States could have dire consequences.  The Pew research exposes the prospect the use of their mantra “Class Warfare” could have detrimental affect on the GOP.


Pew Research Survey Information

About the Survey
This report is based on findings from a Pew Research Center telephone survey conducted with a nationally representative sample of 2,048 adults ages 18 and older living in the continental United States, including an oversample of 808 adults ages 18 to 34. A total of 769 interviews were completed with respondents contacted by landline telephone and 1,279 with those contacted on their cellular phone. The data are weighted to produce a final sample that is representative of the general population of adults in the continental United States. Survey interviews were conducted under the direction of Princeton Survey Research Associates International, in English and Spanish.
• Interviews conducted December 6-19, 2011
• 2,048 interviews
• Margin of sampling error is plus or minus 2.9 percentage points for results based on the total sample and 4.4 percentage points for adults ages 18 to 34 at the 95% confidence level.

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