And Now Another Poll: Most Americans DISapprove Of Government Spying

Tyler Durden's picture

Two days ago, when Pew Research came out with a poll showing that a majority (56%) of Americans replied affirmatively to the question if "the National Security Agency’s (NSA) program tracking the telephone records of millions of Americans is an acceptable way for the government to investigate terrorism," we were disappointed if not shocked.

However, what is surprising, is that moments ago Gallup has released its own poll conducted on June 10-11  "with a random sample of 1,008 adults, aged 18 and older, living in all 50 U.S. states and the District of Columbia" and which finds precisely the opposite: "More Americans disapprove (53%) than approve (37%) of the federal government agency program that as part of its efforts to investigate terrorism obtained records from U.S. telephone and Internet companies to "compile telephone call logs and Internet communications."

In other words Pew has uncovered a nation of sheep, who are all too willing to hand over their full privacy to a government operating in secrecy while being modestly "inconvenienced" in the name of the security of the "greater good", whereas Gallup uncovers just the opposite.

What can one deduce from this discrepancy? Perhaps it is nothing more complex than polling bias, most recently observed during the 2012 presidential campaign, and which shows that sometimes it is more important who is doing the polling than who is being polled and what questions are being asked.

Indeed, as Gallup concludes: "The reactions to these types of government programs have remained constant over the past seven years, although Republicans and Democrats have essentially flipped their attitudes over that time period, reflecting the change from Republican President George W. Bush to Democratic President Barack Obama."

And logically following from this, it also assists in perpetuating public bias and a political agenda - once again split according to party lines - in determining what the prevalent public mood should be based on such and such poll to force one to abdicate one's own views and beliefs, and to be absorbed by the Borg collective just because some (artificial) majority believes the contrarian view to be the correct one. After all humans are mostly social animals, unwilling to deviate far from what is "considered" the prevailing normal.

While we will leave this question open, here is what else Gallup found:

 

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These results are from a June 10-11 Gallup poll. Although the current survey context was different, these results are similar to those obtained in a May 2006 Gallup poll measuring support for a government program that "obtained records from three of the largest U.S. telephone companies in order to create a database of billions of telephone numbers dialed by Americans." In that survey, 43% approved and 51% disapproved.

There are significant partisan differences in views of the government's program to obtain call logs and Internet communication. Democrats are more likely to approve, by 49% to 40%. Independents (34% vs. 56%) and Republicans (32% to 63%) are much more likely to disapprove than approve.

In 2006, when Gallup asked a similar question about a program that came to light at that point, Republicans were significantly more likely to approve than Democrats. The differences in partisan reaction between 2006 and 2013 reflect the party of the president under whose watch the programs were carried out at those two points in time.

Twenty-one percent of Americans disapprove of the government's actions, but say there could be circumstances in which it would be right for the government to carry out such a program, yielding a combined total of 58% of all Americans who either approve or could theoretically approve under certain circumstances.

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A June 9-10 CBS News poll also found a majority (58%) of Americans disapproving of the government "collecting phone records of ordinary Americans." A June 6-9 survey conducted by Pew Research Center and The Washington Post found that 56% of Americans said a program in which the National Security Agency "has been getting secret court orders to track telephone call records of millions of Americans in an effort to investigate terrorism" was "acceptable." The combined 58% in the Gallup survey who either approve or say there might be circumstances in which such a program would be right is similar to the acceptable percentage in the Pew/Post wording.

Thirty-Five Percent of Americans Very Concerned About Violation of Their Privacy Rights

A separate question included in Gallup's survey found that 35% of Americans said they would be "very concerned" about violation of their own privacy rights if the government had computerized logs of their telephone calls or Internet communications. Another 22% said they would be "somewhat concerned."

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Sixty-four percent of Americans are following news about this issue very or somewhat closely, which is slightly above average for all news stories tested by Gallup over the past two decades.

Mixed Sentiment About the Leaker's Action

U.S. officials are engaged in a manhunt for Edward Snowden, the former U.S. government contractor who claimed to be the source of the leak. Americans break roughly even when asked if it was right (44%) or wrong (42%) for Snowden to share that information with the press.

A plurality of Republicans said he did the right thing in leaking the news of the surveillance programs, while a plurality of Democrats said he did the wrong thing.

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Americans are more positive about the media's actions in this matter, with 59% saying it was right for The Guardian and The Washington Post newspapers to publish the information once they received it.

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Implications

Results from the Gallup poll indicate that Americans have somewhat flexible views about the government's surveillance program and/or that they are still forming their opinions on the issue. A majority of Americans say that they might find the type of government surveillance program that has come to light in recent days as acceptable under some circumstances, but less than half say they approve of the program as it stands.

The reactions to these types of government programs have remained constant over the past seven years, although Republicans and Democrats have essentially flipped their attitudes over that time period, reflecting the change from Republican President George W. Bush to Democratic President Barack Obama.

Americans are divided as to whether the self-confessed leaker, Edward Snowden, is a hero or a villain, while one-third of Americans fault the press for advancing the story.

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knightowl77's picture

In 2006 I didn't like it even then, when they claimed that they "were only intercepting calls coming into the US"...

Today I hate it, and now I know that they lied then, and are lying now

11b40's picture

Not taking sides on this, but what exactly are they "fucking pussies" with?  Dicks, maybe?

Frankie Carbone's picture

I am now convinced that there is such a thing as "useless eaters".But I think your 40% number is a wee bit low.

 

StarTedStackin''s picture

Those 40 % certainly are the Obowel Movement ticks and leeches who are quite content with their ebt cards and obamaphones

A. Magnus's picture

Joined by the inbred piece of shit White Shoe boys who get government bailouts more often than EBT card sharks buy up the gummy worms at 7-11....

11b40's picture

Yep....they even make big bucks servicing the EBT cards.  Who do you think administers the program for .gov?  Reckon it might be fee based?

Frankie Carbone's picture

I know who does.

J.P Morgan Chase.

prains's picture

the ice breaker slash quality control before asking anyone a "poll" question should be to first ask them to spell "opinion"

if that fails then get them to spell "poll", then if that fails........ 

otto skorzeny's picture

Uhhh- I think that # is closer to 80%.

Oldwood's picture

So are you saying this could be a positive for the world? Making possible further culling of the heard and advancing the scientific theories of evolution and survival of the fittest? Or are you saying they world is devolving, humans progressively getting dumber until we simply implode? Like martian heads exploding when hearing yodeling in "Mars Attacks"? Just asking cause I'm trying to make retirement plans.

gwar5's picture

There's a lag time for the news to be able to filter out to the public and grasp what is going on. The Pew poll was taken before anybody had a chance to really even hear about the scope of the NSA scandal. A surprising amount of people do not camp out on Drudge and ZH like we do. 

 

More and more polls just seem to measure if the MSM is winning or losing the propaganda war. If they begin to lose you always see action by the politicos on the MSM to try and reverse the numbers. 

B2u's picture

I think of the poll where 80% of drivers thought they were above average.

Harbanger's picture

There's a poll or study for anything you want to promote.  If there isn't you can pay for one.

B2u's picture

You missed my point.  The average or mean would be 50%. 

Harbanger's picture

I'm not disagreeing with you.  I'm just telling you a fact.  That most polls or studies don't mean shit because they're either directly or indirectly paid for by special interests.

Oh, now I get the joke, above average.  I didn't get it at first because most really think they're above average.

gwar5's picture

In Lake Wobegone all the children are above average.

Harbanger's picture

That's the Lake Wobegone effect. :)

Umh's picture

Maybe it's not as wierd as you think. I know there are neighborhoods where most of the children are above average.

toady's picture

Will someone please ask the important question?

What are YOU going to do about it?

PLEASE!

StarTedStackin''s picture

What are YOU going to do about it?

Argent's picture

what are YOU doing about it?

Jumbotron's picture

NONE of you are going to do anything about it....because you CAN'T.

Jumbotron's picture

<Chuckle>.....

Hey downvoter(s)....so tell me what YOU think you can do to reverse the tide....hmmmm.????

Vote em out.....LOL

Shame them out.....LOL

Simultaneous DDoS 24/7, 365, for the next fucking 5 decades or until they desist....whichever comes first....LOL

Revolution.... armed or otherwise?.....LOL

Public Demonstations.......LOL

Million Man / Occupy Wall Street shut downs of every major city and transportation hub.....LOL

 

Come on....these are just some of the few ideas I could come up with......what do you have in mind that would be of any lasting, nation-wide use?

 

otto skorzeny's picture

I just down voted you because you seem to be a massive twat.

Jumbotron's picture

ROTFLMAO.....I AM A TWAT.....

I'M ALSO COMPLETELY RIGHT  !!!!!

prains's picture

you're only right in that you share the same type of apathy as most of the mouth breathers that in habit your country, but in this case your majority is not right, the minority can carry this through and it will.

Jumbotron's picture

you're only right in that you share the same type of apathy as most of the mouth breathers that in habit your country, but in this case your majority is not right, the minority can carry this through and it will.

What you see as apathy is someone unplugged from the Matrix as much as I can for now.  I am a citizen of my own country which is my home and my fellow citizens are my family and friends.  I have no flag for there is no need of telling anyone else what I stand for because they would not understand as they are still plugged into the Matrix which includes hope for a country founded on a dream that was destined to die anyway given enough time.  For people are irredeemably corrupt and no matter what plan or Constitution is constructed to bring forth a "more perfect union" that plan will fail.....and another reset will take place and another plan brought forth.

You really have to care and be invested enough in something....including America....to even put forth the effort at apathy.

I care much less than that.

And am more free because of it.

prains's picture

I care much less than that.

 

sounds like a "sim city" caricature of a life to me where you and your "kind" just bump around in a self induced bubble and coming across an outlander is only to see a skin bag with a floating name tag. >> very 21st century self absorbed cultural american. you must be in your 20's or 30's. The pinnacle of the checked out dispossessed anarchro-american. bearded and all is my guess.

Jumbotron's picture

sounds like a "sim city" caricature of a life to me where you and your "kind" just bump around in a self induced bubble and coming across an outlander is only to see a skin bag with a floating name tag. >> very 21st century self absorbed cultural american. you must be in your 20's or 30's. The pinnacle of the checked out dispossessed anarchro-american. bearded and all is my guess.

LOL!!!!!

Clean shaven, age 49, played the original Sim City from a shareware disc I got from the now defunct Babbage's computer store which was borged several times and is now Gamestop.

Anarcho....maybe.....but don't feel that way.  American...that's your term not mine.

Guess again....or do you want to just shut the fuck up now while you are ahead?

prains's picture

sure got the age wrong, too bad for you, but nailed the attitude, sim city boy......all day

 

how about the beard?? your wife has it, right ! LOL

Jumbotron's picture

how about the beard?? your wife has it, right ! LOL

In the right place.......LOL !!!

But..once again...thanks for playing...."LOOK FOLKS....I'M A DOUCHE BAG !!"  Come back and try again sometime.

prains's picture

your clubs are definitely custom fit to your douche bag,

 

you should retire to a phat blunt to savour in the smugness of your "freedom"

 

yawn!

Jumbotron's picture

your clubs are definitely custom fit to your douche bag,

That's actually pretty funny....I'll have to remember that one.....can I have permission to use that or is it copyrighted?

 

you should retire to a phat blunt to savour in the smugness of your "freedom"

LOL !!!   Drugs are for fools and the weak minded.....but if you want to blow your mind out....be my guest.  As I already told you before I have no illusions of any freedom above and beyond my own mind and that is still a struggle.....no room for smugness.

 

yawn!

AAaawww....he sleepy.....time for beddy-by.....and dream the American Dream once again.

Harbanger's picture

I can see where you would think he's a bearded hippie "anarchist".  After all he does fit the profile. He's says that he's a vegetarian and he listed Million Man / Occupy Wall Street "shut downs" as legitimate attempts of resistance. And he seems to be a "citizen of the world".  NWO indoctrination.

Jumbotron's picture

I can see where you would think he's a bearded hippie "anarchist".  After all he does fit the profile. He's says that he's a vegetarian and he listed Million Man / Occupy Wall Street "shut downs" as legitimate attempts of resistance.

Sigh.....another mind turd crapped out of the anus that is our public school system. 

Reread the post very slowly.  I listed FAILED attempts at widespread, long-term change......NOT legitimate attempts at resistance....as a way to force the discussion of what anyone can do to stop the fascist state.  No one has come up with a solution the last time I checked the posts.......seems I am still right.  History certainly proves I am right.

But hey....give it your best shot.  I'm up for any good ideas.

Jumbotron's picture

Oh...by the way....it is the hippie anarchist types of the 60's who are your overlords now.....I may eat like some of them did or do now.....I may reference some of their tactics.....but they were fools then to believe they could change the fascist state as it was during the Viet-Nam war.....and have become the fascists they fought against all those years ago.

Simply the continuing sad, never-ending story of humanity trying to forge a life that is controlled and chaos-free.....somebody's idea of utopia.

All roads to hell are paved with good intentions.

Harbanger's picture

I read your posts.  I notice you use my phrases which means you've read my past posts.  Right now I think you're a plant.  You'll have to convince me otherwise.

prains's picture

I think your right H, a thread filler paid by the word

Jumbotron's picture

ROTFLMAO !!!

A plant....paid by the word.....LOL !!!!

The destruction of the country is assured with morons like you defending it.   LOL !!!!

DollarMenu's picture

Yo, Jumbo-

Still with a TBTF?

Still using Visa, Amex, MC, Discover?

Eatin' @ chains?

Still payin on cable?

Chowin down on GMO Doritos, Lean Cuisine, and the like?

Working with a govt ally - Verizon, Google, Microsoft, GM - well the list goes on doesn't it?

Stick your head up in a group and you'll get smacked.

As one person, all you can do is check out as far as your resources permit.

 

 

Harbanger's picture

Educate yourself and get out of their system completely or as much as possible. Get your children out of their system and educate them.

Jumbotron's picture

Yo, Jumbo-

Still with a TBTF?

Still using Visa, Amex, MC, Discover?

Eatin' @ chains?

Still payin on cable?

Chowin down on GMO Doritos, Lean Cuisine, and the like?

Working with a govt ally - Verizon, Google, Microsoft, GM - well the list goes on doesn't it?

Stick your head up in a group and you'll get smacked.

As one person, all you can do is check out as far as your resources permit.

 

Uhhh....no.  I've banked at a local credit union since 1994.

I do not have a credit card.

I have not had cable or sat. TV since 1992.

I'm almost totally veggie....except for the occasional fish at home or a burger during the holidays.

Too poor to really eat out much.

Do not have a cell phone except for the one my company pays totally for ....once I'm gone....no cell phone for me....survived without one until this job.....I can get by afterwards.

Two vehicals were hand me downs and totally paid for.

No mortgage....house totally paid for.

Own 5 acres of land with horses, chickens, goats.....soon to start expanding garden and getting into raising talapia and next year starting a 5 year solar build out to get completely off the grid.

Homeschooling 5 kids who are all at or above their peers in testing.

 

 So....I hope now you see that it's not my head you are smacking but it's your ass.....so stick it up anytime douche bag and I'll give you something you obviously like to begin with

Argent's picture

sadly nothing will change because of people like you

Jumbotron's picture

sadly nothing will change because of people like you

And things are getting rapidly worse in spite of people like you

prains's picture

you're going in the wrong direction; derision, division, fission is a form of aiding and abetting > americans lack any concept of "team" outside of sports because of attitudes like yours

Jumbotron's picture

you're going in the wrong direction; derision, division, fission is a form of aiding and abetting > americans lack any concept of "team" outside of sports because of attitudes like yours

Just because I was born and raised in America does not make me one.  I am free to shed that distinction and I do.  I did not need the Constitution or a Declaration of Independence to allow me that freedom....for in the words of your founding fathers....."These Truths we hold to be "SELF-EVIDENT".....

It was an act of God....(or if you are more comfortable with the idea of fate....so be it) that I was born on this soil.....but the SELF EVIDENT TRUTH that already existed before I was born was there until I became aware of it.  And that truth was that I was born free.....with no need of a king to allow me rights.....or a Constitution that somehow people still believe will protect them from elected officials who are acting like the very king you overthrew 200+ years ago.

You have no rights under any government.....neither monarchy or democracy or constitutional republic....you always and forever more will have only privileges.

Free your mind.....for they can never take that freedom away from you for they never had it in the first place.....and only you can enslave it.

prains's picture

"being" wihout a label is fine, borders are political constructs sure! BUT

 

you do not walk this earth alone and your freedom is just that, yours alone. unfortunately for you, you are not alone, so in order for you to "imagine" being free you've made another construct much like a border, only that border is just you, another matrix within a matrix.

you're tricking yourself

Jumbotron's picture

you do not walk this earth alone and your freedom is just that, yours alone. unfortunately for you, you are not alone, so in order for you to "imagine" being free you've made another construct much like a border, only that border is just you, another matrix within a matrix.

you're tricking yourself

I most certainly do walk this earth alone even though I physically interact with friends, family and co-workers for no one completely knows my mind or from whence my feelings or beliefs come from.

I am under no illusion of any freedom outside of the freedom of my own mind...and that is a constant struggle from forces without and within.

Yes....we all construct a matrix for ourselves with varying degrees of success  even after some of us like me check out of the one we are born into (mainly the American Dream) .

as far as tricking myself.....self delusion is amongst the worst of all enemies and is always a wolf at the door.  My struggle continues.  How about you....American Dreamer?

prains's picture

not even american,

you obviously don't know what a haka is,

you'd like its philosophy but be warned people live, love and learn through the haka

and occassionally get eaten

polynesians know how to get it done, when the SHTF i venture to guess you'll be one of the eaten......

but it's only a hunch, you may prove me wrong but i doubt it.