The GOP plan to destroy trust in American institutions like higher education and the media so that they can in turn be destroyed is proceeding apace, as the latest Pew Research poll shows massive partisan dissonance between Democrats and Republicans on how the world of knowledge is viewed.
Republicans and Democrats offer starkly different assessments of the impact of several of the nation’s leading institutions – including the news media, colleges and universities and churches and religious organizations – and in some cases, the gap in these views is significantly wider today than it was just a year ago.
While a majority of the public (55%) continues to say that colleges and universities have a positive effect on the way things are going in the country these days, Republicans express increasingly negative views.
A majority of Republicans and Republican-leaning independents (58%) now say that colleges and universities have a negative effect on the country, up from 45% last year. By contrast, most Democrats and Democratic leaners (72%) say colleges and universities have a positive effect, which is little changed from recent years.
The national survey by Pew Research Center, conducted June 8-18 among 2,504 adults, finds that partisan differences in views of the national news media, already wide, have grown even wider. Democrats’ views of the effect of the national news media have grown more positive over the past year, while Republicans remain overwhelmingly negative.
About as many Democrats and Democratic-leaning independents think the news media has a positive (44%) as negative (46%) impact on the way things are going in the country. The share of Democrats holding a positive view of the news media’s impact has increased 11 percentage points since last August (33%).
Republicans, by about eight-to-one (85% to 10%), say the news media has a negative effect. These views have changed little in the past few years.
Aside from their growing differences over the impact of colleges and the news media, Republicans and Democrats remain far apart in their assessments of the effects of other institutions on the nation. Democrats continue to be more likely than Republicans to view labor unions positively (59% vs. 33%), while larger shares of Republicans have positive views of churches and religious institutions (73% of Republicans vs. 50% of Democrats) and banks and financial institutions (46% vs. 33%).
Yet even as partisan divides in views of some of these institutions have widened in recent years, the public’s overall evaluations are little changed. Majorities of Americans say churches and religious organizations (59%) and colleges and universities (55%) have a positive effect. Nearly half (47%) say labor unions have a positive impact; 32% see their impact negatively.
Views of the impact of banks and other financial institutions are more negative (46%) than positive (39%). And by roughly two-to-one (63% to 28%), more Americans say that the national news media has a negative than positive effect on the way things are going in the country.
The survey finds that Republicans’ attitudes about the effect of colleges and universities have changed dramatically over a relatively short period of time.
That's a nice way of putting it, when the reality is "Republican attitudes about traditionally liberal institutions in America is that those institutions are summarily at fault for creating a society where a black guy can become POTUS".
But really the return of white nationalism to power has started with attacking the media and attacking the universities that made Obama possible. They will have to go, and under Trump, there's a good chance that both will suffer catastrophic damage.