OCCUPY: ON MEDIA RELATIONS, IT'S JUST LIKE THE DEMOCRATS
Digby quotes a tweet from Public Policy Polling:
Going to have some pretty bad numbers for Occupy Wall Street tomorrow...movement not wearing well with voters
Digby adds the obvious:
I don't know exactly what these numbers say, but if the headline is accurate nobody should be surprised. All over the country people are hearing that the Occupiers are animals who are masturbating in public and shitting in the streets. The local news is luridly portraying the protests as hotbeds of crime infested with lunatics and drug addicts.
That stuff isn't disseminated just for kicks. It's done to poison the minds of the public before they have a chance to identify with the protesters.
I know that liberals don't want to see this in those culture war terms, but there are a whole lot of others who can't see these things any other way.
And I know that Occupy, with good reason, thinks of itself as very, very different from the Democratic Party, but in one way, at least, it's exactly like the Democratic Party: it's utterly oblivious to the fact that the main driver of political consensus in America is naked, unabashed right-wing Fox/talk radio propaganda.
Yes, there are differences: Insider Democrats think the centrist press is far more influential than it actually is. These Democrats also believe that, in terms of influence, MSNBC cancels out Fox and talk radio. The average OWSer, by contrast, seems to believe that the media is reprehensible across the board, in a uniform way, but that vivid, in-your-face protests can go over the heads of the media and speak directly to the people.
The reality is that the media still decides what we think, and the far-right media works much, much harder at driving that consensus than the centrist press does. The centrist press keeps the coverage bland, and then the Murdoch/talk radio axis declares its fatwas, and those decide what we think.
The Occupy movement, like the Democratic Party, doesn't grasp that it needs to do everything it can to minimize the damage from right-wing-media demonization. Both groups think they can just be heard above the noise from the right-wing noise machine -- neither group realizes the utter necessity of throwing sand in the gears of that machine.
Come on, Occupy. You have to do better than Democrats, dammit.
UPDATE: Here are the numbers.
The Occupy Wall Street movement is not wearing well with voters across the country. Only 33% now say that they are supportive of its goals, compared to 45% who say they oppose them. That represents an 11 point shift in the wrong direction for the movement's support compared to a month ago when 35% of voters said they supported it and 36% were opposed. Most notably independents have gone from supporting Occupy Wall Street's goals 39/34, to opposing them 34/42.
Voters don't care for the Tea Party either, with 42% saying they support its goals to 45% opposed. But asked whether they have a higher opinion of the Tea Party or Occupy Wall Street movement the Tea Party wins out 43-37, representing a flip from last month when Occupy Wall Street won out 40-37 on that question. Again the movement with independents is notable- from preferring Occupy Wall Street 43-34, to siding with the Tea Party 44-40....
PPP's polling still shows anger about wealth inequality, so
what the downturn in Occupy Wall Street's image suggests is that voters are seeing the movement as more about the 'Occupy' than the 'Wall Street.' The controversy over the protests is starting to drown out the actual message.
Or, rather,voters are seeing the movement as more about whatever the New York Post says it's about, with no counternarrative presented as clearly and in as loud a voice.