[FoRK] Coup Needed - What the right wing really thinks?

J. Andrew Rogers andrew at ceruleansystems.com
Thu Oct 1 19:51:53 PDT 2009

On Oct 1, 2009, at 5:00 PM, Lucas Gonze wrote:
> Seems like loony stuff is almost a supermajority in the Republic  
> party:
> "A whopping 58 percent of Republicans either think Barack Obama wasn't
> born in the US (28 percent) or aren't sure (30 percent). A mere 42
> percent think he was."
> http://www.politico.com/blogs/glennthrush/0709/58_of_GOP_not_suredont_beleive_Obama_born_in_US.html

According to polls with more credibility than DailyKos, ~20% of  
"birthers" are Democrats and another 20% are independents.  The vast  
majority of Americans don't have a clue one way or the other, so it is  
a bit of random number generator. Of course, according to the polls a  
significant fraction of birthers think Obama was born in Hawaii *and*  
was not born in the US.  I'll let someone else figure that one out.

40% of Democrats believe in astrology (a fringe belief in the GOP) and  
the majority believe in ghosts (a minority belief among the GOP),  
about the same number as those that believe Obama wasn't born in the  
US.  Independents have their own special flavors of woo as well,  
though they generally look slightly better.

Occam's Razor says that the belief that Obama was not born in the US  
is vastly less stupid than the belief that astrology is real or that  
ghosts live among us.  In the litany of stupid beliefs humans have,  
believing that Obama was not born in the US doesn't even rate though  
it is a weird obsession -- at least it is real-world plausible even if  
entirely improbable.

If you look at polling data on a broad cross-section of nutty beliefs  
that breaks them down by political affiliation and sum the columns,  
you will discover that they all add up to approximately the same  
number and that all those numbers are far too high.  Democrats (and  
Independents) are every bit as prone to believing delusional and nutty  
things as Republicans. The only people that suggest otherwise are  
those with an agenda or those that have been selectively spoon-fed  

Political parties are composed of Mark-I humans, so expecting anything  
less than majority delusional and nutty beliefs out of any of them  
suggests abject credulity -- a perfect party member!  Hell, I'd be  
pleased if there was a party that kept nutty thinking below 50% across  
the board, but I'm not sanguine.

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