Consent of the Governed?

Sunni's picture

Rasmussen Reports recently announced the results of an interesting little poll of American voters, regarding the idea of “the consent of the governed”. Shall we poke around in the data a bit?

Here’s the report, with the intriguing headline stat that “only 21% of respondents say that the federal government enjoys the consent of the governed”. As is usually the case with surveys like this, there’s a lot of interesting nibbles, but not a lot of meat to chew on. Looking across the niblets mentioned in the report, it appears fairly clear that dissatisfaction with the federal government’s performance has risen among most groups of respondents, with the exception of the “political class”. That’s defined as individuals who trust political leaders and are not skeptical about the role of government in citizens’ lives, so the result isn’t surprising. Here’s the bit I find most inspiring:

Seventy-one percent (71%) of all voters now view the federal government as a special interest group, and 70% believe that the government and big business typically work together in ways that hurt consumers and investors.

If these statistics are at all close to being representative of mainstream American sentiment (and I’m not weighing in on that issue at the moment), things could get rather interesting as the annual Coercive Rites of Spring start to consume people’s time.

I found the report via a mention at The Market Ticker.

I saw that poll also, with

I saw that poll also, with an article stating that a majority of Republican, Democratic and Independent voters would ALL like to throw out all incumbents and start over. I thought that was hopeful.

(Of course it'd be nicer if they were thrown out when no one showed up to vote, but the politicos wouldn't accept that no-vote as a legitimate or worthy response on Election Day.)

Did you see Heir Obamas recent speech from vegas?

If he keeps that up even more people will get fed up! I would name that speech 'Shades of Soviet Russia' as all he basically said was: In times like this we need to think not of our selves but of the whole, the collective 'USSA'. Work for your neighbor not yourself. Don't worry about the debt curtain, that was the other guys fault, now that I'm in charge things will get better. That poll shows hope that maybe Americans are buying into that type of BS a little less than the russians did.

I try to avoid him

I saw that there was some kerfuffle via Google News headlines, but that’s as close as I came to it.

It has been a very long time since I actively sought to listen to any president’s bleating. I do recall the first time I heard Obama, however; we were in some public space and a speech was on TV (this was prior to the election). A chill horror crept over me.

Don't get me wrong.

I definitely did not try to watch his speech. I personally do not have TV at my house, however when I make my round to the bank they have two TV's that always seem to be cranked up with whatever news program. It just happened to be that I couldn't help but hear the tail end of the speech as I waited in line. It took almost all I had to stop myself from screaming at it.

I saw that too.

Don't remember where, now. I was really surprised at the numbers. Will bear watching. Along with the IRS protest suicide in Austin, and growing numbers of other such things around the country... the Chinese curse of "interesting times" may well be upon us.

It should be mentioned that

It should be mentioned that the only segment to show significant job growth for the last year or so has been public service.

Especially in Washington D.C.

Cause or effect?

I’ve been observing that trend, too. I’m certain that it contributes to the rising discontent.

Given how vaguely the population is defined (“likely voters”) and the fact that it’s a telephone survey (land line, presumably), their survey may actually be under–representing the levels of discontent in people. That said, the space between thought/feeling and taking action can be a chasm.

Not to sound like an extremest but

we may need to have happen some of the things which were major triggers of the previous revolution. For instance as I believe it was Adams who said in a letter, prior to the Boston Massacre, that at least 4 must die in that encounter. What I am trying to say is, it is possible that in order for the majority of Americans to wake up to the point of taking action American soldiers may have to take the place of the British and shoot and/or kill some innocent protesters. Just a thought thats been rolling around in my mind lately.

"We never had to take any of it seriously, did we?" - from Atlas Shrugged