9/11 Whackos: More Of Them Than You Thought?
As America nears the sixth anniversary of the world-churning events of September 11, 2001, a new Zogby International poll finds a majority of Americans still await a Congressional investigation of President Bush' and Vice President Cheney's actions before, during and after the 9/11 attacks. Over 30% also believe Bush and/or Cheney should be immediately impeached by the House of Representatives.You know what they say about underestimating the stupidity of the American people. But in the case of the impeachment question at least, this is more a story of never underestimating the cleverness of a pollster for hire. Take for example the phrasing of this question:
401. Some groups on both the right and left are now petitioning Congress to impeach the President and/or the Vice President. Based on your own knowledge of George Bush's and Dick Cheney's conduct regarding war policy, detainee treatment, domestic surveillance, the 9/11 attacks and Congressional investigations, which one of the following comes closest to your opinion?Adding "war policy, detainee treatment, domestic surveillance, the 9/11 attacks and Congressional investigations" is so biased you have to question, as I often do, Zogby's professionalism. Do you suppose he would have gotten 31 percent supporting impeachment if they had asked questions about their conduct "regarding fighting terrorism, protecting America, gathering intelligence on terrorists and Democratic party hostility" they would have gotten different results?
Unfortunately, the question that led 31 percent of the respondents to say they think the administration knew about the attacks in advance or planned them was much more straightforward. As you read it, however, remember that this question immediately follows the heavily biased impeachment question:
402. There are three main schools of thought regarding the 9/11 attacks. The first theory is the official story, and maintains that 19 Arab fundamentalists executed a surprise attack which caught US intelligence and military forces off guard. The second theory known as Let It Happen argues that certain elements in the US government knew the attacks were coming but consciously let them proceed for various political, military and economic motives; and the third theory Made It Happen contends that certain US government elements actively planned or assisted some aspects of the attacks. Based upon your knowledge of 9/11 events and their aftermath, which theory are you more likely to agree with?Stupid post-adolescents and Hispanics (who are exposed to the worst media in America) are the only segments who have a majority in the "let it happen" and "made it happen" group -- 72 and 58 percent respectively. The least skeptical (i.e., "official story") are Jews (82.6%) followed by "very conservative (81.8%).
The most interesting finding -- one not touted by the sponsors -- is this: The more stupid you are, the more likely you are to buy into 9/11 conspiracy theories. I make the statement based on this assumption, which some will challenge as biased, but I believe is defensible: lower income general equates with lower smarts.
In this case, 49.5 percent of those with incomes lover than $25K and 48 percent of those making
$25 to $35K are conspiracy theorists, but only 20 percent of those earning over $100K buy into it.
The young, the stupid ... oh, and the liberal, at 39 percent.