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Wednesday, May 5, 2010

WaPo Distorts Its Own Poll On Perceptions of Tea Party Racism

The Washington Post, among other mainstream media outlets, relentlessly stokes claims that Tea Partiers are racist.

Eugene Robinson accuses almost everyone who opposes the Obama agenda -- but particularly those active in the Tea Party movement -- of being motivated by racism and prone to violence.

Jonathan Capehart, another WaPo columnist, does the same.

So lo and behold, the WaPo news writers, citing a WaPo poll, announce that Tea party groups battling perceptions of racism (emphasis mine):

As several states with active "tea party" groups prepare to hold important primary elections this month, the movement is struggling to overcome accusations of racism that are tinting perceptions of this loose network of conservatives....

In a new Washington Post-ABC News poll, most Americans see the movement as motivated by distrust of government, opposition to the policies of Obama and the Democratic Party, and broad concern about the economy. But nearly three in 10 see racial prejudice as underlying the tea party.

First of all, the fact that "nearly three in ten" Americans perceive the Tea Parties as racist is amazingly low considering how much time WaPo and NY Times columnists, Democratic members of Congress, and left-wing blogs spend calling Tea Partiers racist.

But dig into the background data (Question 26), and you will see that of that "nearly three in ten" (actually, 28%, but who's counting when perception is at stake), only 19% rate the racism factor strongly. By contrast, 43% say racism plays no factor whatsoever.

So what WaPo is doing is taking a poll which shows that a strong plurality of Americans do not believe that Tea Parties are motivated at all by racism, and spinning it into Tea Parties having a racism perception problem.

The news writers even cite the Obama Joker poster as contributing to the perception of Tea Party racism even though the poster was created by a liberal Democratic Party supporter.

WaPo stokes perceptions of Tea Party racism, and then spins the polling data to support the conclusion it wants in a headline.

This is how they do it.

Related Posts:
The Great Deception of 2008
Lying About The Public Option With Polls
Thomson Reuters Public Option Poll Details Obtained - Exclusively Here

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  1. Also, if you look at question 23, either this poll is quite an outlier or it is oversampling Democrats. I suggest the later is true.

  2. Well that and they throw you off social sites when you're advocating Conservative thought. Take a look at The Forum Site - Seven Conservative posters have been banned in the last two days for besting liberals in their political threads. Of course, they're covering it up by saying it's TOS violations. Those violations? Why for asking for a fair ruling from the owner of the site when the owner of the site is a liberal too.

    It's making me hate them and I never did before. They might as well just don jack boots and brown shirts !

  3. Lots of lefty sites ban conservatives or even libertarians.

    It's little surprise to see some responses that the tea parties are racist. Look at any college curriculum. My daughter was taught at U of Arizona, in freshman US History, that the "Silent Majority" of Nixon's time were those who opposed the Civil Rights Act. There was no mention about them being supporters for the Vietnam war during all the anti-war rallies.

  4. 3 in 10 see racism? Guess the 7 in 10 that don't see racism don't count.

    And they wonder why no one reads newspapers anymore.

  5. With more than a third of Americans either claiming to be a Tea Party activist or related to one or good personal friends with one, and with our ranks growing faster and faster, there soon won't be enough non-Tea Party people left to conduct a statistically valid push poll for further manipulation by the sponsor.

    There are so many of us these days that we are practically a nation unto ourselves. You can't propagandize lies onto so many people without losing all credibility. Everyone knows one or more of us and if they don't, they soon will.

  6. PP.

    You say more than a third of Ameriacnas have some kind formal relaionship with a tea party. That seems a little sketchy. As such, I took a little informal poll in the college I am typing this from. Not once single person knows anything or anyone regarding a tea party. Sorry, I just do not think it is a wide spread movement. It is hard to motivate folks from a lawn chair.

  7. "WaPo stokes perceptions of Tea Party racism, and then spins the polling data to support the conclusion it wants in a headline.

    This is how they do it."

    Indeed, it is the Alinsky way. They have learned their lessons well. Journalism is indeed dead, except for the "new media" like your blog! ;)

  8. Well, Buck....nearly everyone I know knows of or is directly affiliated with the TEA Parties. so there. Must be incredibly widespread by your reckoning.

    dickhead. People in colleges are notoriously uninformed.

    And lawnchair? I have things to say about that that would be banned from this site. Keep trying to tell us we don't exist. We'll see in November.

  9. Yeah Buck, a college campus is a great place to conduct polls about anything unrelated to sex, drugs and rock'n roll. Try Rasmussen.

  10. I say ignore the charges of racism. As far as I'm concerned it's similar enough to trolling it deserves to be treated with the same degree of contempt. In other words, don't feed the trolls. The more you respond, the more you seem to be on the defensive.

    I would also add that according to a recent Gallup Poll roughly eight percent of people that identify with the Tea Party identify themselves as Democrats, while seven percent describe themselves as liberals.

    I would point out that if there are racists in the tea-party, that is likely the group from where they are coming. In reality, the percentage of true racists would probably amount to less than a solid percent.

    Besides, who judges the criterion that decides who or what is racist? If you allow progressives and Democrats to define what racism is, then you can be pretty sure you are giving them carte blance to lump you or anyone else they don't like right in with them.

    Are you against affirmative action? Wow, you must be racist. Are you against reparations for slavery? Yep, you just have to be a racist. You voted for a white Republican over a black Democrat? You damn racist you. Yada yada yada, and you can play the ssme game with charges of sexism, homophobia, religious bigotry, anything you care to name.

    We win only when our response is, "kiss our asses". (which will probably lead to yet another charge of sexism or homophobia, or both). We have to stop giving these people this kind of psychological power.

  11. BuckJohnson said:
    I took a little informal poll in the college I am typing this from.

    Buck a little informal poll in a control group of any kind is valuable but all it does is report the finding from one poll group. You jump from that to a broad sweep and spin view that is the same as the MSM.

    Deekaman -
    Dickhead? Great Oxford Debate form. Can the ad hominem will you? It just rankles and gets us nowhere.

    It would be interesting if we could go back in time and actually track down the source of the original bundling together of tea partiers with extreme right wingers and then threw in all Republicans for good measure. If anything, it is not just the MSM - it has to be OFA.

    Just sayin' people, just sayin'. I'm dizzy from barometric and temperature changes up here near Lake Ontario. Peace

  12. http://templeofmutt.wordpress.com is a good source of information about the tea party movement.

  13. Sorry for a typo. Temple of Mut's url is

    http://templeofmut.wordpress.com - that is only one "t" in mut.

  14. A few additional points about the WaPo racism meme also bear close scrutiny.

    The "news story" entitled Tea party groups battling perceptions of racism about the poll, and which you cited above –- published yesterday, and written by Amy Gardner and Krissah Thompson, contains a few highly questionable statements.

    First, there is this revealing graf buried in the story, my emphasis added:

    "Supporters and opponents alike say the movement draws its strength from opposition to Obama's policies, but they split deeply on the race question, according to the poll: About 61 percent of tea party opponents say racism has a lot to do with the movement, a view held by just 7 percent of tea party supporters."

    Well, gee . . . in other words, the people who are actually involved in the movement know better!

    But Obama supporters, the absolute enemies of the tea party movement, the folks with every political motivation in the world to crush it, and who by definition actually know the least about the movement, or it’s members – they are the bulk of those who are making the false accusations of racism!

    I’m shocked, shocked!

    Why not this for the headline:

    "Tea party enemies fling charges of racism"

    Secondly, you will note that while the story was written by Gardner and Thompson, the pollsters, the ones who you noted had skewed the data, were also involved in writing the story . . . "Polling director Jon Cohen and polling analyst Jennifer Agiesta contributed to this report."

    So, not only did they conduct a deceptive poll; they are also helping to spin it!

    Finally, the story repeats the tired accusations of the thoroughly discredited McClatchy story about tea party members loudly and repeatedly shouting the "N" word at the members of the Congressional Black Caucus (CBC).

    "The question of racism and the tea party flared on the eve of Congress's divisive vote on the health-care overhaul in March, when black congressmen accused protesters of using racial epithets and spitting on them. Tea party supporters have denied the allegations."

    Funny how it makes no mention of the fact that absolutely zero proof of any such incident having occurred, has ever surfaced.

    None! That, in spite of Andrew Brietbart having publicly offered a hefty reward for anyone producing video or other proof of such racial animus.

    Numerous people videotaped all portions of the CBC "walk" to the Capitol. But not one bit of evidence has ever surfaced to back up those poisonous and blatantly false accusations.

    This whole WaPo story tries to make it seem as if the tea party movement is infested with racists, and that a few leaders, really more concerned with perception than anything else, are trying gamely to rid themselves of that obvious, nagging problem.

    What deceit!

    This story is every bit as vile and bogus a story as that McClatchy nonsense was.

    If we Americans have a race problem in our polity today, it is as much about blatantly false accusations of racism as anything -- like the Duke case. It is poisoning our politics, and newspapers like the Washington Post are irresponsibly and shamefully perpetuating the ugliness.

  15. So "Tea party groups battling perceptions of racism".

    And who is helping create the percepetion. Why, the Washington Post, as the author perceptively notes.

    Evelyn Waugh had these people pegged 80 years ago in his hilarious novel 'Scoop' and the paper 'The Daily Beast.'

    Waugh's contention was that even if there is little news happening, the media requires that something happen, so they will create news. (See, nothing is new!)

    This WashPoo non-story is a supreme example of the utter corruption of "investigative" reporting that is now the stock in trade of the Washington Post.

    After at first taking an editorial decision to ignore so-called Tea Party activists, the Editorial Board changed tack and mocked them as they gained momentum.

    When that didn't work, the Editorial Board spent the next few months to date pushing a meme that folks who want smaller government, lesser taxes, and lower debt are "racists."

    Then it runs polls to discover that thanks to its efforts...

    "...nearly three in 10 see racial prejudice as underlying the tea party."

    Wow. Major suprise. Cause and Effect. Push polling. This is brazen.

    There simply is NO shame with these people. Guess what? Nine in ten people I know see socialist prejudices underlying the Washington Post's Obama party.

  16. Now this is interesting.

    I have just googled "Nazi newspapers" and discovered this perceptive article from:

    Deutsche Allgemeine Zeitung

    By Gustav Himmler and Lilly Goering
    Deutsche Allgemeine Zeitung Staff Writers
    June 7, 1936
    As several regions with active "Jew" groups prepare to hold important world domination meetings this month, the Jew movement is struggling to overcome accusations of finacial manipulation, baby murder, blood sucking and long bony fingers that are tinting perceptions of this loose network of Jews.

    In a new Nazi Party-Deutsche Allgemeine Zeitung poll, most Aryan Germans see the Jew movement as motivated by distrust of the Nazi government, opposition to the policies of Herr Hitler and the Nazi Party, and broad concern about the Jew controlled economy. But nearly three in 10 see anti-Nazi prejudice as underlying the Jew party.

  17. "There are three kinds of lies - lies, damned lies, and statistics."

    - Mark Twain

  18. I am one of the banned conservatives that Tom commented on at 4:36 pm, May 5. I have NOT been so much as warned or even punched at the mentioned site. Just banned. The whiny liberal administrator and moderators at "The Forum Site" have decided that since they can NOT beat us (intellectually) they will ban us. Our group aka "Notties" has been harassed, suspended, censored, and banned in open forums across the country for our conservative beliefs. I love it. Shows just how intolerant they really are to those that don't conform to their socialist ways. I would LMAO to see tens of thousands of conservatives overload and crash the servers at "The Forum Site". Have a great week and remember to annoy a liberal, all one has to do is work hard AND be HAPPY!!!!