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Separate Realities of Bush/Kerry Supporters

Old 10-22-04, 12:28 PM
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Separate Realities of Bush/Kerry Supporters

This is an extremely interesting article describing how the two sides supporters perceive the war in Iraq (plus a few other international issues at the end). It's done by the Program on International Policy Attitudes and the University of Maryland and their methodology appears sound.

Clarification: The numbers below show the percentage of Bush supporters who believe a certain thing and the number of Kerry supporters who believe the same thing. For the Bush side and the Kerry side the #s total to 100% although all the numbers are not listed (the % who believe the "correct" thing are usually not given). For the first statement below 57% of Bush supporters believe that the Deufler report found Iraq had WMD or WMD Programs and 23% of Kerry supporters believe the same thing. By inference 43% of Bush supporters believe the Deufler report showed Iraq did not have WMD/Programs and 77% of Kerry supporters feel the same way.

Some interesting tidbits:

The Deufler report says that before the war...
19% Bush Supporters - Iraq had WMD
38% Bush Supporters - Iraq had WMD programs
7% Kerry Supporters - Iraq had WMD
16% Kerry Supporters - Iraq had WMD programs

On Iraq's involvement with 9/11 and Al Qaeda...
20% Bush - Iraq Directly involved
55% Bush - Gave al-Qaeda substantial support
8% Kerry - Iraq Directly involved
22% Kerry - Gave al-Qaeda substantial support

Should US have gone to war if there were no WMDs
58% Bush - Should not have gone to war
37% Bush - Should have gone to war
92% Kerry - Should not have gone to war
6% Kerry - Should have gone to war


On the World's public opinion of the war in Iraq
26% Bush - Majority of the World favors war in Iraq
31% Bush - Majority opposes war
5% Kerry - Majority favors
74% Kerry - Majority opposes

Perceptions of World Public Opinion on US Election
57% Bush - Majority of World favors Bush re-election
9% Bush - Majority of World favors Kerry
1% Kerry - Majority favors Bush
69% Kerry - Majority favors Kerry


It's pretty shocking to me that the two sides can be so diametrically opposed in their perceptions of the world. I suppose it shouldn't be too shocking that both sides support their candidate vehemently. Towards the end there is a very interesting section on what each side's supporters favor in regards to international treaties/issues and how (at least one side) some are wildly off the mark with what they think their candidate supports. (In the vein attempt to keep this thread somewhat non-partisan I won't point fingers as I'm sure all of the Bush and Kerry supporters on DVDTalk know exactly where their candidate stands on every issue.)

http://www.pipa.org/OnlineReports/Pr...rt10_21_04.pdf

Last edited by Mordred; 10-22-04 at 01:23 PM.
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Old 10-22-04, 12:36 PM
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The Deufler report says that before the war...
19% Bush Supporters - Iraq had WMD
38% Bush Supporters - Iraq had WMD programs
7% Kerry Supporters - Iraq had WMD
16% Kerry Supporters - Iraq had WMD programs


uh...from what I remember it was a lot different than that
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Old 10-22-04, 12:40 PM
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This reminds me of another study that I read comparing the points of view on Iraq of people who get their news from different sources. Suffice it to say that NPR listeners were at one end of the spectrum on Iraq's connection to 911 and WMDs and Fox news viewers were by far the most off the mark on both subjects.

I think that people, by nature, hear what they want to hear or what supports their existing world view...and they gravitate toward information sources that do the same.

That said, these disparities are not at all surprising. What is surprising is that such a large segment of the population can believe something in spite of vast objective evidence to the contrary.
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Old 10-22-04, 12:42 PM
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Originally posted by Venusian
uh...from what I remember it was a lot different than that
What was a lot different from what?
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Old 10-22-04, 12:43 PM
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i remember before the war that pretty much everyone thought he had WMD or a WMD program.
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Old 10-22-04, 12:51 PM
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Originally posted by Venusian
i remember before the war that pretty much everyone thought he had WMD or a WMD program.
Yes, but that was what people think the Deufler report said regarding Iraq having WMD before the war, not whether people believed at the time he had WMD.
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Old 10-22-04, 12:53 PM
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Originally posted by Venusian
i remember before the war that pretty much everyone thought he had WMD or a WMD program.
Yeah, it's much easier to blame "pretty much everyone" than it is to blame bush.

1945: "the buck stops here."
2004: "what buck?"
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Old 10-22-04, 12:55 PM
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Originally posted by Mordred
Yes, but that was what people think the Deufler report said regarding Iraq having WMD before the war, not whether people believed at the time he had WMD.
ah, i see, i misread it
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Old 10-22-04, 12:55 PM
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Originally posted by chess
Yeah, it's much easier to blame "pretty much everyone" than it is to blame bush.

1945: "the buck stops here."
2004: "what buck?"
what are you talking about? who is blaming anyone here?
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Old 10-22-04, 12:56 PM
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Originally posted by Venusian
i remember before the war that pretty much everyone thought he had WMD or a WMD program.
I might be giving venusian more credit than is due, but he seems to be yanking some of your chains. The report showed 80% either thought Iraq had or was making WMDs. That's most isn't it.

That or he can't read.
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Old 10-22-04, 12:56 PM
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Originally posted by chess
Yeah, it's much easier to blame "pretty much everyone" than it is to blame bush.
I don't think Venusian was blaming anyone, he misread the statement (or I didn't make it clear enough).
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Old 10-22-04, 12:59 PM
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Originally posted by Contactsport1
I might be giving venusian more credit than is due, but he seems to be yanking some of your chains. The report showed 80% either thought Iraq had or was making WMDs. That's most isn't it.

That or he can't read.
i just can't read...and you can't either...i think.


i thought the Deufler Report was the study presentd in the first post and that according to the study only X amount of people before the war thought there were WMD. so i misread.


but i think you're misreading too, from what i gather it means 19% of Bush supporters thought Iraq has WMD. not that 19% of reponders are bush supporters who thought iraq has wmd. so you can't count them all up and say 80%.
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Old 10-22-04, 01:01 PM
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i wasn't confused before, but i am now.
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Old 10-22-04, 01:06 PM
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Originally posted by Venusian
i just can't read...and you can't either...i think.


i thought the Deufler Report was the study presentd in the first post and that according to the study only X amount of people before the war thought there were WMD. so i misread.


but i think you're misreading too, from what i gather it means 19% of Bush supporters thought Iraq has WMD. not that 19% of reponders are bush supporters who thought iraq has wmd. so you can't count them all up and say 80%.
I think you might be right about my misunderstanding of the numbers. In all of the others it appears that they show all of the alternate answers, where this doesn't. Good call.
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Old 10-22-04, 01:13 PM
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Originally posted by Venusian
i just can't read...and you can't either...i think.


i thought the Deufler Report was the study presentd in the first post and that according to the study only X amount of people before the war thought there were WMD. so i misread.


but i think you're misreading too, from what i gather it means 19% of Bush supporters thought Iraq has WMD. not that 19% of reponders are bush supporters who thought iraq has wmd. so you can't count them all up and say 80%.
Jeez, apparently I botched this. Just read the damn link I posted.

Here's what the report I posted is saying:
19% of Bush Supporters believe that the Deufler report confirms that Iraq had WMD
38% of Bush Supporters believe that the Deufler report confirms that Iraq had WMD programs
7% of Kerry Supporters believe that the Deufler report confirms that Iraq had WMD
16% of Kerry Supporters believe that the Deufler report confirms that Iraq had WMD programs

The inference here is that 43% of Bush supporters correctly believe that the Deufler report found that Iraq currently had no WMD or WMD programs. 77% of Kerry supporters believe the same thing.
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Old 10-22-04, 02:00 PM
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The perception of world opinion by Bush supporters in the survey is the one I find hardest to fathom.
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Old 10-22-04, 02:03 PM
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Originally posted by Jim
The perception of world opinion by Bush supporters in the survey is the one I find hardest to fathom.
Agreed. I would think even the most ardent Bush supporter would think that the world hates him, but that they're all corrupt idiots who were in Saddam's back pocket or something along those lines.
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Old 10-22-04, 02:12 PM
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Originally posted by Mordred
Agreed. I would think even the most ardent Bush supporter would think that the world hates him, but that they're all corrupt idiots who were in Saddam's back pocket or something along those lines.
The two aren't mutually exclusive.
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Old 10-22-04, 02:13 PM
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Originally posted by chess
This reminds me of another study that I read comparing the points of view on Iraq of people who get their news from different sources. Suffice it to say that NPR listeners were at one end of the spectrum on Iraq's connection to 911 and WMDs and Fox news viewers were by far the most off the mark on both subjects.
But that study was very misleading.

The questions that were asked - three questions, were all designed to expose conservative biases and ignorances.

I watch FOX News, in addition to other channels, but I've never heard them say anything different on the war in terms of the facts that those in that survey got wrong.

So when you ask "was Iraq involved in 9/11", more Conservatives will believe that, wrongly, than non-Conservatives, obviously. Most people simply aren't well-informed, and questions like that are going to merely expose their political bias. So the FOX News viewers will have a high error rate on that question, and the NPR listeners won't.

However, I could do a study that had the exact opposite results - that NPR listeners were "less informed" than viewers of FOX News - if I simply asked three questions designed to show LIBERAL bias.

For instance, if I asked something like "Who got the Bush tax cuts?", or "Did Iraq have any contacts with Al Quada?" or "The Clear Skies initiative does not allow plants to increase emissions, true or false?" - the FOX News viewers would more often get these questions correct than the NPR listeners. The liberal biases of the NPR listeners would cause more of them to answer these questions wrong.

So it's not about the news source, it's simply a matter of the misinformed answering questions according to their own biases. And when you ask questions designed to expose Conservative bias it's not surprising that you're going to get that result.

Even if a liberal doesn't know for sure an answer, he's going to tend to answer in an anti-Bush way - and all those questions in that survey, the "correct" answer, was the anti-Bush one.

I'm surprised anybody on either side actually takes that study seriously, but I guess it's just another illustration of what I'm talking about - your own biases cause you to latch onto a study with such questionable methodology and not see through its results, because that's what you want to believe - just like the people answering the questions in the same study.
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Old 10-22-04, 02:24 PM
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Originally posted by Goldblum
The two aren't mutually exclusive.
That was my point. I don't understand how Bush supporters can think the majority of the world loves Bush. I know a lot of Bush supporters since I live in Texas. The prevailing opinion I've received is that the world hates him but they're all idiots or French, not that the world loves Bush and agrees with the war in Iraq.
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Old 10-22-04, 02:27 PM
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Originally posted by natesfortune
But that study was very misleading.

The questions that were asked - three questions, were all designed to expose conservative biases and ignorances.

I watch FOX News, in addition to other channels, but I've never heard them say anything different on the war in terms of the facts that those in that survey got wrong.

So when you ask "was Iraq involved in 9/11", more Conservatives will believe that, wrongly, than non-Conservatives, obviously. Most people simply aren't well-informed, and questions like that are going to merely expose their political bias. So the FOX News viewers will have a high error rate on that question, and the NPR listeners won't.

However, I could do a study that had the exact opposite results - that NPR listeners were "less informed" than viewers of FOX News - if I simply asked three questions designed to show LIBERAL bias.

For instance, if I asked something like "Who got the Bush tax cuts?", or "Did Iraq have any contacts with Al Quada?" or "The Clear Skies initiative does not allow plants to increase emissions, true or false?" - the FOX News viewers would more often get these questions correct than the NPR listeners. The liberal biases of the NPR listeners would cause more of them to answer these questions wrong.

So it's not about the news source, it's simply a matter of the misinformed answering questions according to their own biases. And when you ask questions designed to expose Conservative bias it's not surprising that you're going to get that result.

Even if a liberal doesn't know for sure an answer, he's going to tend to answer in an anti-Bush way - and all those questions in that survey, the "correct" answer, was the anti-Bush one.

I'm surprised anybody on either side actually takes that study seriously, but I guess it's just another illustration of what I'm talking about - your own biases cause you to latch onto a study with such questionable methodology and not see through its results, because that's what you want to believe - just like the people answering the questions in the same study.
Great response, and very much in keeping with the next statement in my original post:

I think that people, by nature, hear what they want to hear or what supports their existing world view...and they gravitate toward information sources that do the same.
I make no distinctions between or among sources in this statement. However, for the record, I think that Fox News is intentionally misleading on a much much more regular basis than other sources.

I sincerely believe that public media sources are by far the most credible, shortcomings of the study notwithstanding, and that NPR is particularly good at discussing the story of the day in a meaningful way.

Just my $.02
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Old 10-22-04, 02:33 PM
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Originally posted by natesfortune
So it's not about the news source, it's simply a matter of the misinformed answering questions according to their own biases. And when you ask questions designed to expose Conservative bias it's not surprising that you're going to get that result.
I don't know much about the study you're talking about, but I tend to believe that you are correct.

From this study though I'm quoting a part I thought was sadly funny, and goes along somewhat with the last paragraph you posted about "what you want to believe":
Bush supporters have numerous misperceptions about Bush’s international policy positions. Majorities incorrectly assumed that Bush supports multilateral approaches to various international issues—the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty (69%), the treaty banning land mines (72%); 51% incorrectly assumed he favors US participation in the Kyoto treaty--the principal international accord on global warming. After he denounced the International Criminal Court in the debates, the perception that he opposed it increased from 24% to 38% among Bush supporters, but a majority of supporters (53%) continued to believe that he favors it. Only 13% of supporters are aware that he opposes labor and environmental standards in trade agreements – 74% incorrectly believe that he favors including labor and environmental standards in agreements on trade.

In all these cases, there is a recurring theme: majorities of Bush supporters favor these positions, and they infer that Bush favors them as well. For example, in PIPA’s September 8 – 12 poll 54% of Bush supporters favored participation in Kyoto, 66% favored participation in the land mines treaty, and 68% favored a treaty prohibiting testing nuclear weapons (CTBT). Apparently in the absence of evidence to the contrary, Bush supporters assume Bush feels as they do.

On two issues Bush supporters had a better understanding of the president’s positions. They were divided between those who knew that Bush favors building a new missile defense system now (47%) and those who incorrectly believe he wishes to do more research until its capabilities are proven (41%). However, majorities were correct that Bush favors increased defense spending (57%) and wants the US, not the UN, to take the stronger role in developing Iraq’s new government (70%).

Kerry supporters were much more accurate in assessing their candidate’s positions on all these issues. Majorities knew that Kerry favors including labor and environmental standards in trade agreements (81%); the US being part of the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty (77%); the International Criminal Court (65%); the land mines treaty (79%); and the Kyoto Treaty on climate change (74%). They also knew that he favors continuing research on missile defense without deploying a system now (68%), and wants the UN, not the US, to take the stronger role in developing Iraq’s new government (80%). A plurality of 43% was correct that Kerry favors keeping defense spending the same, with 35% assuming he wants to cut it and 18% to expand it.
I'm willing to admit I would have gotten a few of those questions wrong (Kerry believes in Missle defense???) but I do think it's somewhat revealing.
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Old 10-22-04, 02:38 PM
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I think that Fox News is intentionally misleading on a much much more regular basis than other sources.
Aren't you just getting back to the statement you just quoted though. You don't respect Fox News so you believe they are intentionally misleading.

It's the same reason I'm making this statement
NPR is particularly good at discussing the story of the day in a meaningful way.
However in that discussion there is still a spin that leans in a very specific direction. For example they have been doing politically based poetry/lymrics/etc during the election season. The other day they presented two back to back (one talking about Kerry the other about Bush to be fair ) related to the final debate. The problem is the one was pro-Kerry and the other was essentially an anti-Bush, although not overt. Even in their news reporting though NPR definately has a slant/angle they are going for by the stories they cover and the way they cover them.
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Old 10-22-04, 02:43 PM
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kerry and bush limricks...

wish i hadn't missed that.
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Old 10-22-04, 02:50 PM
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If you've been listening to their afternoon program anytime recently you should have heard atleast some of them... Here's some of them http://www.npr.org/templates/story/s...toryId=4080606 unfortunately I can't remember specifically which ones I was recalling in the story above.
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