Friday, January 9, 2015

Rich Man, Poor Man

If you want to know how the GOP is going to get away with massive Social Security and Medicare/Medicaid cuts, it's because the majority of Americans feel that the poor in America have it too easy. And the richer you are, the more you despise America's lower class.

Most of America's richest think poor people have it easy in this country,according to a new report released by the Pew Research Center. The center surveyed a nationally representative group of people this past fall, and found that the majority of the country's most financially secure citizens (54 percent at the very top, and 57 percent just below) believe the "poor have it easy because they can get government benefits without doing anything in return." America's least financially secure, meanwhile, vehemently disagree — nearly 70 percent say the poor have hard lives because the benefits "don't go far enough." Nationally, the population is almost evenly split.

Why the surprising lack of compassion? It's hard to say. At the very top, the sentiment is likely tied to conservatism, which traditionally bemoans government programs that redistribute wealth, calling them safety nets. Some 40 percent of the financially secure are politically conservative, according to Pew. And conservatives are even more likely to say the "poor have it easy" than the rich — a recent Pew survey found that more than three quarters of conservatives feel that way.

More broadly, the prevalence of the view might reflect an inability to understand the plight of those who have no choice but to seek help from the government. A quarter of the country, after all, feels that the leading reason for inequality in America is that the poor don't work hard enough.

35 years of Reagan's "welfare queens", Bush 41's "war on drugs",  Clinton's welfare reform and financial sector remake, Bush 43's "soft bigotry of low expectations" and crashing the economy and yeah, even six years of the "Obama recovery" and it's still not enough wealth for the 1%.

The people with the tens of billions of dollars are paying the people with hundreds of millions of dollars to convince the people with hundreds of thousands of dollars that the people with a couple of hundred bucks left over at the end of the month are making too much money.

These are also the people who believe "most corporations make a fair and reasonable profit" (51%), believe "government is almost always wasteful and inefficient" (61%) and then there's this:

Pretty much across the board, if you're black and poor, it's your own goddamn fault.

Combine the two and as Lyndon Johnson said, if you can convince the poorest white man that he's better than the highest black man, then he won't mind you picking his pocket.


RepubAnon said...

And people still wonder why so many people vote for Republicans, even though it "isn't in their best interests" to get their pockets picked...

Horace Boothroyd III said...

90% of your libertarian slowtards are confident that they are bound for the 10% or higher, which is less unreasonable that it might sound given that almost all are middle class white kids with college degrees and a low probability of being gunned down by the cops for jaywalking.

God help us, however, when they start running things.

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