Friday, September 09, 2005

Americans are not dumb, or are they?

If you want to avoid the ups and downs of polls and see longer term trends, go to Rasmussen every week or so. This week I gained a little faith that the American people are pretty smart as only 31% have a favorable opinion of Cindy Sheehan whereas 39% have an unfavorable.

But then I read that 38% of those polled think we are in a recession. This amazing measure of the ignorance of some Americans is apparently not due to Katrina as last month 32% said we were in recession. Pre-Katrina, we had been experiencing one of the best economic periods in history in terms of reducing unemployment, growing the economy and maintaining low levels of inflation. So how could anyone say we are in recession?

I will speculate that 3 groups make up that 38%. First, real Bush-haters will answer any question in whichever way they think will most hurt Bush. They are idiots, but their vote in the poll counts.

Second, the old saying is that when your neighbor loses his job it is a recession and when you lose your job it is a depression. So 4.9% of those looking for work are unemployed. Assuming a neighbor on each side, that accounts for 9.8% of the 38%.

Finally, as we have noted here often, the MSM has tried to spin the plethora of good economic news to convince people the economy is struggling. Still, 38% does not give me a lot of faith in the judgment of my countrymen.