Monday, October 24, 2011


Every so often we still hear nonsense like this, from NPR over the weekend:

Members of Occupy Wall Street and the Tea Party may disagree on many issues, but there's one thing that unites both groups: distrust in concentrated power.

Really? And by "concentrated power," surely you'd be referring to Wall Street, right?

Well, a new CNN poll about Occupy Wall Street and Wall Street itself makes clear -- if it wasn't obvious by now -- that that's not true of the teabaggers. Look at the PDF of the poll results and it won't surprise you that tea party supporters have a much more negative opinion of OWS than the country as a whole (12% favorable/65% unfavorable, versus 32% favorable/29% unfavorable for the whole country). But their view of "Wall Street bankers and brokers" is similarly out of step with the rest of the country -- and out of step with a group you might think would be more pro-Wall Street, namely Southerners.

A few sample questions:

Overall, how much do you trust Wall Street bankers and brokers to do what is best for the economy -- a great deal, somewhat, a little, or not at all?

Not at all:

Everyone: 53%
Southerners: 53%
Tea Party Supporters: 38%

Please tell me whether you think each of the following descriptions apply or do not apply to Wall Street bankers and brokers:

A. Greedy

Everyone: 80%
Southerners: 81%
Tea Party Supporters: 62%

D. Dishonest

Everyone: 65%
Southerners: 68%
Tea Party Supporters: 47%

E. Overpaid

Everyone: 77%
Southerners: 78%
Tea Party Supporters: 58%

It may not be fair to say that teabaggers love the banksters, but they distrust them measurably less than the rest of America -- and measurably less even than the most solidly Republican region of the country. Maybe that's no surprise to you, but if so, it's probably because you're not a professional pundit.