A new poll shows that Americans are friggin’ clueless idiots on topic of WMDs.

The results of this Philadelphia Inquirer poll just stuns the shit out of me. I can’t begin to articulate how incredibly frustrating it is to realize a good third of Americans are clueless morons.

WASHINGTON – A third of the American public believes U.S. forces have found weapons of mass destruction in Iraq, according to a recent poll. Twenty-two percent said Iraq actually used chemical or biological weapons.

But such weapons have not been found in Iraq and were not used.

Before the war, half of those polled in a survey said Iraqis were among the 19 hijackers on Sept. 11, 2001. But most of the Sept. 11 terrorists were Saudis; none was an Iraqi.

The results startled even the pollsters who conducted and analyzed the surveys. How could so many people be so wrong about information that has dominated news coverage for almost two years?

“It’s a striking finding,” said Steve Kull, director of the Program on International Policy Attitudes at the University of Maryland, which asked the weapons questions during a May 14-18 poll of 1,256 respondents.

He added: “Given the intensive news coverage and high levels of public attention, this level of misinformation suggests some Americans may be avoiding having an experience of cognitive dissonance.”

That is, of having their beliefs conflict with the facts. Kull noted that the mistaken belief that weapons had been found “is substantially greater among those who favored the war.”

Bush could probably convince these imbeciles that moose shit is actually strawberry tart and get them to lap it up and ask for seconds at this point. He’s going to have to screw up pretty bad to lose the next election at this point.

Link via Fark.com.

18 thoughts on “A new poll shows that Americans are friggin’ clueless idiots on topic of WMDs.

  1. Every time the media touts some bizarre percentage of people who believe this or that I almost always have a minor melt-down and wonder aloud just who these idiots are. Not that they are idiots for disagreeing with my viewpoint, but come on folks…there were NO WEAPONS OF MASS DESTRUCTION FOUND IN IRAQ!!! Which is surprising considering that our government was involved in selling chemical and biological agents to Saddam Hussein in the late 80’s.

    I was actually looking up specific stories to link to so anyone interested could look up the information themselves and not have to rely on my honesty, but do you know what I suddenly realized? The people who actually care, the ones who know better than to believe that WOMD were found, they don’t need me to point the way. They have enough brains to find the information on their own. The ones who don’t care wouldn’t bother putting in a few minutes to read the truth anyhow, so why the hell should I bother? I live in a country full of lazy stupid bastards and a frighteningly high percentage of them just don’t care enough about anything to take a second to open their eyes.

    Ignorance is bliss. This is exactly what happens when people would rather ‘trust their feelings’ than educate themselves.

  2. No kidding, Eric. I’m so tired of trumpeting this, only to get into virtual fisticuffs with freepers, that I wonder why I do it.

    Then I get better. We need to counter the Might Wurlitzer that is the conservative, right wing media.

  3. I only wounder at what point are the US going to “plant” WOMD in Iraq only to be “discovered” by the inspectors.

  4. It makes one wonder… Is this the beginning to the end? 

    And, Isn’t it most likely “we” the good guys on our righteous pedestals, looking down from upon high, are going to be most responsible for that messy, painful, tragic end.

    It’s going to be “our fault” due to the few’s obsession for power, greed and secret/private agendas while the rest of us live emerged in chosen apathy and denial.  Why is it that those with the most privilege and possibility choose to be the more ignorant… or is it just stupid, and “pretend” the reality of life away in hopes if we don’t know, if we don’t see it coming, it won’t affect us. 

    Ah yes, I forgot how young America and America’s truly are…  It’s the child-like me-ism.  The world revolves around me and if I don’t acknowledge want I don’t like or if I just “dunno” than nothing can interfere with my perfect little world.  I don’t have to take responsibility for what I don’t understand or am unaware of…  too bad that’s not the way reality works. 

    Each of us is responsible for everything and anything.  As is “ignorance of the law does not excuse one from breaking it.  Nor will it “save” someone from suffering the consequences (being prosecuted) of braking that law.”  I also believe the three fold Karma type believe plays in here:  You get back three fold what you put out good, bad, apathetic or otherwise.  Ignorance, true or feigned or accidental or planned, does not shelter one from the consequences of life’s happenings.

  5. Predicating the war in Iraq on “Weapons of Mass Destruction” never struck me as a good idea in the first place.  What if we don’t find any?  The whole world says “where are the WMD’s?”

    They wouldn’t have this problem if they had just started out by saying “Hey.  Saddam Hussein is a brutal, murderous dictator.  Let’s get rid of him.  Heck, we helped put him in power, thus we have some responsibility to take him out.”

    I live in a country full of lazy stupid bastards

    That’s pretty harsh.  The world likes to call Americans lazy, but in fact they’re much harder workers than the “industrious” Japanese or Germans—whether you measure by per capita GDP, or hours worked per year.  Americans aren’t stupid either, but most people are concerned with what happens to them every day, not what happens on the other side of the world.

  6. Americans aren’t stupid either.

    Not naturally, at least, though it seems more and more apparent that many Americans find it more advantageous to pretend they are stupid as it allows them to avoid personal responsibility for their actions and decisions and perhaps make a little money via an outlandish lawsuit.

    The worst part is that as more of these “pretend idiots” manage to win large cash settlements the more popular being a “pretend idiot” will become. What’s the point of using your brain if only the stupid people are winning the lawsuit lottery?

  7. Well, I think that poll proves that at least a third of the population is pretty freaking dumb.

  8. Daryl…it just makes me sad to think that Americans have to work harder at being idiots than those in other countries. That they can toil away their lives at pointless jobs producing consumables for other Americans is not the point at all. We are mentally weak. How many kids do you suppose could tell you the name of the reigning Queen of Denmark, how many adults? How many people were surprised that Denmark has a democratic monocracy and not a representational democracy? Dare I even ask how many don’t even know what a democratic monocracy is? The fact that it does not affect them on a daily basis does not help your case if laziness is what you are arguing against.

    What happens to the world happens to us all, unless you have access to some kind of interstellar craft that the rest of us do not know about. If you do not then I am afraid you are trapped on this sphere with the rest of us.

  9. Exactly my point, Eric.  Who really, honestly gives a fig about Denmark?  It’s a country of 5 million people.  People think Americans are arrogant because they don’t take the time to learn about other countries.  They aren’t arrogant, they’re acting in their own rational interests.

    How many people in Denmark know who the President of the United States is?  I’d wager most of them.  Why?  Because the foreign and economic policies of the United States have direct, measurable effects on the people of Denmark.  For example, when the U.S. economy goes into a funk, it has a habit of dragging the rest of the world down as well.  Militarily, the U.S. is the type of country that might get a bug up its ass about something, and rearrange the world order.  Do you think Denmark is going to war anytime soon?  I doubt it.  It’s in the Danes’ self-interest to know what’s happening in a country like the United States.

    In contrast, what does the average American need to know about Denmark?  Little or nothing.  What is the opportunity cost of that American knowing nothing about Denmark’s government?  Currently, zero.  So people are not falling over themselves trying to figure out what’s going on in Denmark.  That’s human nature: most people are intersted in what affects them and their family.

    You claim that what happens in Denmark “happens to all of us,” but I see no evidence for that.  Why should I care about Denmark on any level deeper than “Western Democracy, Industrialized, Currently Peaceful”?

  10. So your reason against learning anything about another country is based entirely on your estimation of how much an economic or physical threat they are to us? Your teachers must be so proud of you.

    How your entry could NOT be considered arrogant is beyond me. Oh, and try not to focus on Denmark to the exclusion of all other countries since I chose it at random. Maybe you should try China since you only care to think about big countries.

  11. Who said I was “against” learning?  Nothing of the sort.  Still, there are 24 hours in a day, and people tend to learn about things that are important to them.

    Please explain how it’s arrogant for me not to give much notice to Denmark.  In fact, let’s turn the question around: How many people in Denmark do you think could name the Governor of the Mexican state of Jalisco?  Essentially none of them.  But just as many people live there as live in Denmark.  Does that mean the Danish are arrogant, too?  Or is it only arrogant when an American does it?

    Be honest, you can’t name the Governor of Jalisco, Mexico without googling for it.  I’ll bet you could name the President of Russia, though.  Does that make you arrogant?

    Maybe you should try China since you only care to think about big countries.

    Not at all.  I spend a lot more time thinking about North Korea than I do about South Africa, a country almost twice the size.  That’s because North Korea has a much higher chance of dragging the world into some sort of quasi-nuclear mini-Armageddon.

    And I can name the Prime Minister of Israel (pop. 6 million) off the top of my head, but had to think a minute about the Prime Minister of India (pop. 1 billion).  I don’t think that makes me arrogant, I think it makes me pragmatic.  A common conceit amongst liberals is that worrying about things which actually impact your life is arrogant / ignorant / racist / whatever.  What a ridiculous notion.

    how many don

  12. Think both Daryl and Eric have gotten away from the point here. Daryl is correct in that most people tend to only know about countries they have some reason to worry about and that is a pragmatic approach to take because there’s just too many other things we have to deal with day to day to know all there is to know about every country in the world.

    That said, Eric does have a valid point that a lot of Americans allow their ignorance of other countries to turn into arrogance in assuming that everything is just hunky-dory with those countries when said countries may have legitimate grievances with the United States. It wouldn’t hurt if Americans made themselves a little more aware of how they are viewed by the rest of the world so they could avoid looking like callous morons when they hear about how some other nationality has a problem with us and act all surprised about it.

    A common conceit amongst liberals is that worrying about things which actually impact your life is arrogant / ignorant / racist / whatever. What a ridiculous notion.

    I disagree with that statement. I don’t think that’s a common conceit among liberals at all. Being one and hanging out with many of them I have yet to hear a single liberal make a statement that would imply the above. In fact, I believe I’ve stated on several occasions that more people would be better off if they spent more time worrying about things that do affect them and that they might be able to make a difference in then things they cannot. Let’s avoid painting any one group with too large a brush, shall we?

    The original point of this entry was the fact that a third of the people polled are convinced that we’ve already found weapons of mass destruction in Iraq and that Iraq even used them during the war. This is simply not true and anyone who has paid attention to the media even casually should be aware of that fact despite the claims of the President who appears to be among their numbers. Even FOX News, which has been short-stroking this administration from day one and painting everything in the best possible light in support of the President, hasn’t made the claim that WOMDs have definitely been found.

    Given that a third of the people polled seem to believe in something that isn’t true and that could be easily confirmed one way or the other with a minimal amount of research I can easily understand why someone like Eric would conclude that Americans are lazy. This IS something that does affect their day-to-day lives because it took us into a friggin’ war so you’d think they’d show a little more interest in knowing the truth.

  13. Sorry Les. Of course you are right that I was going way off topic, I guess I was trying to illustrate my point using a vague (and inappropriate) concept when your last paragraph easily summed up what I should have been trying to say.

    I find myself somewhat humbled.

    I do admit that I do not know who the Governor of Jailsco, Mexico is but I also don’t know the name of my local Ombudsman, however I do know that the President of Mexico is Vincente Fox. Is it too much to ask that we know the leaders of foreign countries at a minimum?

  14. Its true that Americans areno stupider than anyone else in the world.  However, it’s also the case that they seem to be squandering their reasoning capacities to a large degree on innane (albeit structurally sophisticated)pursuits such as hypothesizing about the implications of baseball stats. 

    As for believing every stinking word that dribbles out of Bush’s mouth, I think that its fairly clear that that is evidence of a large portion of our population struggling for cognitive consistency.  If the truth doesn’t fit your schema (e.g. America is exceptional in every way; America is incapable of acting in other than a virtuous manner…) then you simply ignore the truth, in order to avoid having to admit you’ve been wrong your whole life.

    Just try stating simple facts like “Osama, in one of his recent videos, called Saddam a secular infidel, and called on the Iraqis to overthrow him, therefore, an Al Keida/Iraq connection seems unlikely” and watch a Bushie’s eyes glaze over – you might also at this point get ready to block a sucker punch.

  15. People who feel like this country is all screwed up have the right to feel that way. People who love this country also have the right to feel that way. The world is an imperfect place, and people are not perfect. If we are all imperfect, then how can we live in a perfect nation? Should we concentrate on the faults of a nation, or the goodness of a nation? Or should we see a little bit of both? I think that is up to each person. We take part in making our own reality, but is our own reality the complete truth?

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