Recognizing the Enemy of the People

People are opening their eyes. There may not be enough of them and it may be too late to do much about it, but the results of a recent poll are undeniably satisfying. The local Washington DC affiliate reports: “Report: More Than 1 In 4 Americans Believe Government Is The Enemy.”

More than 1 in 4 Americans believe that the government is the enemy, according to a new poll.

Pew Research Center found that 27 percent of registered voters say they think of government as an enemy, up 8 points since 1996. The latest poll looked at general public opinion regarding the federal government.

The findings suggests that 57 percent of voters feel frustrated with the government, while 22 percent feel angry and 18 percent feel “basically content.”

The majority of Americans feel the federal government has room for serious improvement, with 59 percent saying the government needs “very major reform.” Only 37 percent of voters felt that way in 1997.

When asked what particularly makes the government problematic, congress and politics were cited most often. Thirteen percent mentioned Congress, while 11 percent named politics.

More than a third (35 percent) of Republicans believe the federal government is the enemy, while 34 percent of Independents believe the same. The poll found that half of all Democrats (50 percent) view the government as a friend and only 12 percent see it as the enemy.

I’m surprised (and disappointed) that Congress would be especially mentioned as the problem. As bad as Congress is, what about the overreaching executive office–the Presidency. And what about the various federal bureaucracies–like the EPA, the FDA, the Justice Department, etc.

[See also, “Exposing the Enemy of the People.”]

Nevertheless, it is good that people see the government as the enemy. An even better number is that 57 percent of voters are frustrated with government and 22 percent are angry at it.

In theory government can provide public justice like fire can provide warmth. But when fire is engulfing your home, you don’t want someone to lecture you on the usefulness of fire for cooking; you want someone to help you put the fire out to save your home.

So whatever may be true in theory, the fact is our government has metastasized into an anti-social institution. It is a population that lives off the people. It is a parasite that has no self-restraint to keep itself from killing the host.