The Wall Street Journal did a survey of 200 Occupy Wall Street protesters at Zuccotti Park to get an idea of what they thought. Does this sound like a grass-roots movement of 99% of the country? Does this look like America? Among the findings:

  • 31% would support violence to advance their agenda.
  • 65% say that government has a moral responsibility to guarantee all citizens access to affordable health care, a college education, and a secure retirement no matter the cost.
  • 77% support raising taxes on the wealthiest Americans (though I suppose it depends on who they consider "wealthiest").
  • "Thus Occupy Wall Street is a group of engaged progressives who are disillusioned with the capitalist system and have a distinct activist orientation. Among the general public, by contrast, 41% of Americans self-identify as conservative, 36% as moderate, and only 21% as liberal."

The pollster, Douglas Shoen, who was a pollster for Bill Clinton, summarizes their politics. "What binds a large majority of the protesters together—regardless of age, socioeconomic status or education—is a deep commitment to left-wing policies: opposition to free-market capitalism and support for radical redistribution of wealth, intense regulation of the private sector, and protectionist policies to keep American jobs from going overseas. "

People need to know who these protesters are before deciding to support them and their causes.

Filed under: EconomicsGovernmentLiberal

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