Survey shows the 1% are greedy and heartless
The 1 percent cares more about deficits than the economy. When asked to name the most important problem facing the country, 32 percent of respondents said the deficit and 11 percent said the economy. By contrast, in an April 2011 CBS News/New York Times poll, 49 percent of Americans said the economy or jobs and only 5 percent said the deficit.
The 1 percent wants private-sector solutions, not government solutions. Among those who considered the deficit the most important problem, 65 percent favored spending cuts and 24 percent favored a combination of spending cuts and revenue increases. By contrast, a September 2011 New York Times/CBS News poll found that only 21 percent of respondents favored spending cuts exclusively. The majority (71 percent) favored spending cuts and tax increases.
The 1 percent is vastly more politically active. In the Chicago sample, 99 percent reported voting in 2008; in the 2008 American National Election Study, only 78 percent of a nationally representative sample reported voting. Both numbers are probably inflated – nowhere near 78 percent of Americans actually voted in 2008 — but it seems unlikely that misleading survey responses would fully account for the gap between the 1 percent and Americans as a whole. Other measures of participation show even larger gaps. For example, 41 percent of the very wealthy reported attending a political meeting. Only 9 percent of Americans did so in 2008. And 68 percent of the very wealthy reported giving money to a political candidate, party, or cause in the last four years. In 2008–a year in which ‘small donors’ were numerous–only 13 percent of Americans donated to a political candidate or party. Again, there are small differences in the wording of the questions between the two surveys, but they are not likely responsible for the 55-point gap.
There is more in the study. Here, for example, is a taste of Page, Cook, and Moskowitz’s findings regarding philanthropy:
Although many of our respondents express skepticism about government programs, and although some explicitly say that private philanthropy offers a superior approach, there is no strong tendency for those who are most suspicious of government to do more in the way of charitable activity.
The One Percent don’t care that millions are unemployed, and they want the social safety net shredded, but they aren’t willing to make up the difference by contributing more to charity. Apparently they already have their timeshares bought in Galt’s Gulch.