11% of Likely US Voters Prefer Communism

A recent Rasmussen poll finds that 11% of "Likely Voters" in the US prefer communism to capitalism. What is the significance of this for communists in the US? To what do we attribute this result and what are its implications for our work?

11% Say Communism Better Than U.S. System of Politics and Economics

Communism as an ideological force largely died with the collapse of the Soviet Union 20 years ago, but even with many of its horrors increasingly forgotten, U.S. voters overwhelmingly reject the ideology that contended for world dominance for much of the 20th Century.

Still, 11% of Likely U.S. Voters think communism is morally superior to the U.S. system of politics and economics, according to a new Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey. But 77% disagree and say the U.S. system is morally superior. Thirteen percent (13%) are not sure. (To see survey question wording, click here). 

Communism calls for the elimination of all private property with everything owned in common, and voters even more emphatically reject it as an economic theory. Eighty-seven percent (87%) say, in practical terms, free market economies work better than communist economies. Only four percent (4%) say communist economies work better.

Similarly, 80% of voters say the U.S. system of politics and economics is better for middle class workers than communism is. Ten percent (10%) say communism is a better option, and another 10% are undecided.

The survey of 1,000 Likely Voters nationwide was conducted on March 12-13, 2011 by Rasmussen Reports. The margin of sampling error is +/- 3 percentage points with a 95% level of confidence. Field work for all Rasmussen Reports surveys is conducted by Pulse Opinion Research, LLC. See methodology.

Seventy-three percent (73%) of voters view communism as a failed ideology. Twelve percent (12%) say that’s not true. Fifteen percent (15%) are not sure.

Voters ages 18 to 29 are much less critical of communism as an ideology than their elders are. Conservative voters believe more strongly than moderates and liberals that communism is a failed ideology, but majorities of all three groups share that view.

In terms of world history, 85% of all voters nationwide believe that the collapse of communism in Eastern Europe was at least somewhat important, with 71% who describe it as Very Important. Only eight percent (8%) say it was not very or not at all important.

While 87% of Mainstream voters rate the collapse of communism in Eastern Europe as important in terms of history, nearly one-in-three Political Class voters (32%) view it as unimportant historically. Generally speaking, however, there’s little difference of opinion between the two groups when it comes to comparing the U.S. economic and political system with communism.  

In November 2009, on the 20th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall, 93% of Likely U.S. Voters said the fall of the wall and the collapse of communism were at least somewhat important in terms of world history. That included 70% who said they were Very Important.

The majority of voters across all demographic categories are in general agreement on all of these questions, although there clearly are degrees of passion. Republicans and conservatives, as they have historically in this country, hold the strongest negative feelings about communism.

Socialism with its emphasis on a government-regulated economy is considered a transitional economic phase on the path to communism. 

In an April 2009 survey, 21% of American adults said that the U.S. economy is partially socialist, and another five percent (5%) said, generally speaking, the United States already has a fully socialist economy. At the same time, indicative of the suspicions many had following the Wall Street meltdown and the government’s bailout response, only 53% of American adults thought capitalism is better than socialism

Voters overwhelmingly prefer a free market economy to an economy managed by the government and think government economic control helps big businesses at the expense of small ones.

Additional information from this survey and a full demographic breakdown are available to Platinum Members only.

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  • Guest - Radical-Eyes

    This important bit should be seized upon:

    "Voters ages 18 to 29 are much less critical of communism as an ideology than their elders are."

    Unfortunately, they don't specify *how* much "less critical." Does that mean communism polled at 20% positive among the youth? 30%?

    And frankly, isn't "likely voters" already a way of saying "older and wealthier than the general population"?

  • Guest - Otto

    I like the flag. I know 11% is higher than it used to be.

  • Guest - Felix Sullivan

    This is why I see continuing value in Obama. As a phenomenon, not personally. Due to his color and past associations he attracts even more red-baiting than the average Democrat, and each round of red-baiting - especially in this economy - only serves to validate red ideology in the eyes of his base.

  • Guest - rob

    check out this amazing poem which sums it all up in a subtle poetic form:

    http://soundcloud.com/allplayedout/all-played-out-by-bob-avakian/

  • Guest - Maoist Rebel News

    "Voters overwhelmingly prefer a free market economy to an economy managed by the government..."

    In what context? "economy managed by the government" in capitalism and socialism is two different things. In capitalism it would have harmful effects, but a plan with economic rationality serving social rationality would be completely different. Would I trust the US government, as it is now, to manage the economy in favour of the proletariat? A resounding hell no.

  • Guest - brother by another mother

    Sounds like a good time to push the idea of communism, as broadly, directly and creatively as possible.

  • Guest - Shariq Khan

    The title "11% of Likely US Voters Prefer Communism" is highly misleading. This data does not state that 11% of US voters prefer communism, it only says that 11% believe it is more moral. This should be expected as by far the most common one-liner heard against communism is that it "looks good on paper, but doesnt work in real life". This commonly held view is seen in the statistic that 4% believe a communistic planned economy works better. In reality, the "percentage of Likely US Voters" who prefer communism is probably closer to the 4% than the 11%.

  • Guest - Felix Sullivan

    <i>The title “11% of Likely US Voters Prefer Communism” is highly misleading. This data does not state that 11% of US voters prefer communism, it only says that 11% believe it is more moral. This should be expected as by far the most common one-liner heard against communism is that it “looks good on paper, but doesnt work in real life”.</I>

    Yeah, the assumption is already implicit in the questions ("moral" vs. "effective") so it's no surprise it was echoed back.

    <i>This commonly held view is seen in the statistic that 4% believe a communistic planned economy works better.</i>

    I wonder how they'd respond to questions like "should workers take direct control of industry?" or "should there be an independent party for the working class, separate from managers and business owner? should such a party be the leading party in America?"

    I was 10 when the Berlin wall fell. I was in my early teens before I realized communism had anything at all to do with the working class - as opposed to 'the government runs everything'.

    This is a real problem that lingers from the Soviet experience. From the 30's onward successive Soviet leaders more and more played down class struggle and played up the alleged superiority of technocratic central planning.

    People used to gravitate towards communism for the central planning, even despite not believing in class struggle - e.g. Stalin's many liberal admirers in the 30's. Now I think most people come to Marxism-Leninism despite the central planning - in my experience people come in either through anti-racism/anti-imperialism, or indirect through the more workerist varieties of Trotskyism and anarchism.

  • Guest - dh

    I agree with Shariq.

    Their is likely a very large contingent of the 11% who don't actually PREFER communism, but rather, misunderstood the question or have something else (than we do) in mind.

    ...

    I think it may be more fruitful to open a thread on readers' personal experiences with communicating political ideas and the reactions and defenses they've encountered.

    Could be a great learning tool.

    -dh

  • I agree, DH.

    To report (simplistically or empirically) that xxxx percent of people "prefer communism" sidesteps the question of "what do people think communism is?" Who knows what this 11% represents?

    I think if you described a communist political program to people, far more than 11% would find it attractive.

  • Guest - Otto

    They should ask people if they believe capitalism actually works.

  • Guest - balzac

    Felix said: "Now I think most people come to Marxism-Leninism despite the central planning – in my experience people come in either through anti-racism/anti-imperialism, or indirect through the more workerist varieties of Trotskyism and anarchism."

    I think that now, more than ever, we need to rethink the opposition between private/public ownership and market/planning - not in a way that seeks to recombine them, but to think of a new way of relating to production altogether. Hardt and Negri's latest book has done a good job with that, and for the past ten or so years a great deal of work has been done around the idea of the common which is worthwhile for all communists to pay attention to.

    Here is one of Michael Hardt's pieces that is a condensed version of his piece from "The Idea of Communism":
    http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2011/feb/03/communism-capitalism-socialism-property

  • This discussion raises the question of the role of opinion polling in communist work. I remember back in the 1980s I think the RCP conducted a poll in the Cabrini-Green housing projects in Chicago asking something to the effect of whether people would be willing to rise up in revolt to prevent a nuclear war and got some very large fraction of folks saying yes. I thought this was clever at the time, but its also really more theater than serious investigation. The Rasmussen Poll here wasn't designed to answer the questions we would want to pose either. Its really a bit of anti-communist theater designed, I think, to puff up appearances of a new communist menace. So as a direct measure of sympathy for communism it probably both overestimates the percentage of folks who explicitly "prefer communism" AND under-estimates those who would respond positively to a communist program. It would be interesting to organize and conduct a serious well-designed poll with the purpose of actually discovering to what extent people are willing to actually label themselves as socialists or communists and to what degree they are sympathetic with various elements of a socialist or communist political program.

    I have argued elsewhere that we should organize a "party within a party" with the purpose of organizing a socialist electorate within the Democratic Party with the objective of breaking off a section of its rank and file from its capitalist leadership. It would, I think, be interesting to actually find out what percentage of registered Democrats would vote for an explicit socialist or communist in a primary election in certain districts that concentrate those sections of the people we see as most receptive to our politics.

  • The poll you mention was done in Oakland in the 1980s. And yeah, it was both guerrilla theater but also half serious. It is often hidden (in this society) how many people would consider revolution under some conditions (and how many millions of people actively considered themselves open to revolutionary politics in the late 1960s).

    I suspect that we would discover that social democratic politics is (in the U.S.) confined to the Democratic Party -- and that those who are called "left liberal" are people whose politics (in Europe) would be organized in independent social democratic parties (SPD in Germany, Labor in britain, or NDP in Canada).

    I think we should also assume that the broad alliance that we need to enact and defend socialism will involve (one way or another) the transformation of the core Democratic social bases -- from people committed to working within this system, to people convinced that it needs to be ruptured.

    I think in some ways we can envision the necessary socialist allignment in the U.S. as something like this: The Republican party (and its core racist and free market and selfish political ideology) needs to have been deeply defeated (by its criminal actions and perhaps by the events of a civil war) -- so that it is as discredited (broadly in society) the way the Nazi Party is discredited in modern Germany. Todays Democratic party politics needs to have been exposed as deeply apologetic for the oppression of millions of people, for the promotion of corporate-capitalist interests, and for the armed domination of large parts of the world -- in other words liberalism needs to be shattered on the rocks of experience and reality (the way the Whig party was torn apart in the 1850s as the crisis over slavery undermined the previous status quo). And there needs to be (occupying a new space in politics) a new ecosystem of revolutionary and socialist politics with genuine mass support and credibility (and within that a communist pole promoting and attempting to lead the most radical uprooting of capitalism in a period of transition to classless society).

    I have come to believe that the movement of politics in such new directions requires ongoing preparation and then the eruption of deep crisis of the previous system.... and while we can uncover sympathy for socialdemocracy within todays politics... I think that we would find less support for what we could call "genuine socialism" of a more radical kind -- although it might well be real in some strata and some communities.

    I have also discovered that in the U.S. you can find many more people who believe in revolutionary overthrow of this system than who explicitly have a socialist or communist view of what that change should bring about. Many Panther supporters were all about armed struggle against the U.S. system, but their understanding of socialism and communism was much more limited, while their unifying impetus was centered on the national liberation of African American people (whatever that took, and by whatever means proved necessary).

  • Guest - Jef Weinberger

    Mike wrote: To report (simplistically or empirically) that xxxx percent of people “prefer communism” sidesteps the question of “what do people think communism is?” Who knows what this 11% represents?

    I'd go further and suggest, based on Rasmussens' conception of what Communism is, which narrow view is exposed in the very first paragraph: "....an ideological force [which] largely died with the collapse of the Soviet Union...." my feeling is that this is a useless survey, slanted as it is to an identification of Communism with the USSR, a view overwhelmingly rejected now and widely so even during the latter years of the Cold War era. Maybe it should be encouraging that, viewed even through a Capitalist frame, Communism as ideology still has so many adherents. People, perhaps, are noticing that the frame is broken. What this means practically speaking, who knows?

  • Guest - Radical-Eyes

    I was very curious to find out what the basis in the Rasmussen study was for this statement in the report: "Voters ages 18 to 29 are much less critical of communism as an ideology than their elders are."

    So I broke down and became a "Platinum member" of Rasmussen, which entitles me to the demographic breakdown and question by question data. (I will attempt to paste the entire chart below in a follow up post.)

    What I found was that: 26 PERCENT of 18-29 year-old thought communism the "more moral" system. And again, we are speaking of "likely voters" here--not a neutral category; voters tend to be richer, older, and, of course, citizens.

    Also notable, and in contradiction to Shariq and Dh's comments above, the study found that 27% percent of 18-29 year old "likely voters" believed that communist economies "work better" than the US system. Interestingly, there is a much bigger gap between the 18-29 and the 30-39 year-olds on this one than there is on the morality question. (Only 1% of 30-39-ers said they believe communist economies "work better" than the US system...A striking figure--it's lower than the 40+ crowd even...Which makes me wonder about the particular impacts of the "Fall of Communism" on people in the 30-39 bracketl, who may have been more likely to be in the midst of forming their "adult" political opinions and identities right at this time.)

    Anyway, regarding the younger folk, 18-29, it appears that as many long for communism for pragmatic reasons ("it works! this system doesn't!") as for moral ones. Perhaps this itself is an expression of the growth in working hours and also unemployment, debt levels etc, among young people today?

  • Guest - Radical-Eyes

    I am pasting the raw data here. It comes out pretty sloppy, but I think the some one who really wanted to could parse it.

    Conducted March 12-13, 2011 By Rasmussen Reports

    Total Gender Age Race Party Ideology Income Employment Political Class Index (without leaners) Political Class Index Political Class Index (with leaners)
    LV's Male Female 18-29 30-39 40-49 50-64 65+ White Black Other Republican Democrat Other Conservative Moderate Liberal Not sure Under $20K $20K-$40K $40K-$60K $60K-$75K $75K-$100K $100K+ Gov't Entrepreneur Prvt. Co. Retired Other Mainstream Political Class Other Mainstream Lean Mainstream Neutral Lean Political Class Political Class Mainstream Political Class Other
    US System of Politics/Economics Morally Superior to Communism or Is Communism Morally Superior? U.S. system of politics and economics is morally superior 77% 74% 79% 66% 72% 80% 80% 82% 81% 48% 72% 92% 63% 74% 85% 74% 62% 29% 68% 71% 81% 84% 71% 84% 80% 70% 78% 83% 62% 77% 99% 73% 77% 80% 74% 53% 99% 78% 67% 74%
    Communism is morally superior to the U.S. system 11% 16% 5% 26% 19% 9% 4% 3% 7% 27% 20% 1% 17% 14% 11% 7% 17% 0% 14% 18% 8% 7% 19% 1% 2% 23% 10% 3% 22% 12% 0% 9% 12% 8% 4% 18% 0% 11% 13% 4%
    Not sure 13% 10% 16% 8% 9% 11% 17% 15% 12% 25% 8% 7% 20% 12% 5% 19% 21% 71% 18% 11% 10% 10% 10% 15% 19% 7% 12% 14% 15% 11% 1% 18% 11% 12% 22% 29% 1% 11% 21% 22%

    Total Gender Age Race Party Ideology Income Employment Political Class Index (without leaners) Political Class Index Political Class Index (with leaners)
    LV's Male Female 18-29 30-39 40-49 50-64 65+ White Black Other Republican Democrat Other Conservative Moderate Liberal Not sure Under $20K $20K-$40K $40K-$60K $60K-$75K $75K-$100K $100K+ Gov't Entrepreneur Prvt. Co. Retired Other Mainstream Political Class Other Mainstream Lean Mainstream Neutral Lean Political Class Political Class Mainstream Political Class Other
    Do Free Market Economies Work Better Than Communist Systems or Do Communist Systems Work Better? Free market economies work better than communist economies 87% 88% 85% 69% 91% 85% 90% 84% 88% 76% 84% 95% 85% 79% 92% 85% 77% 34% 67% 77% 87% 95% 96% 96% 92% 92% 87% 86% 72% 89% 88% 83% 89% 91% 84% 61% 88% 89% 69% 84%
    Communist economies work better than free market economies 4% 5% 4% 27% 1% 5% 2% 1% 3% 4% 12% 2% 3% 10% 5% 1% 10% 0% 13% 12% 3% 0% 1% 0% 4% 0% 6% 3% 8% 5% 0% 5% 5% 0% 2% 18% 0% 3% 13% 2%
    Not sure 9% 7% 12% 4% 8% 11% 8% 15% 8% 20% 4% 3% 13% 11% 3% 14% 13% 66% 20% 11% 10% 5% 3% 4% 4% 8% 7% 11% 20% 7% 12% 12% 7% 8% 15% 21% 12% 7% 19% 15%

    Total Gender Age Race Party Ideology Income Employment Political Class Index (without leaners) Political Class Index Political Class Index (with leaners)
    LV's Male Female 18-29 30-39 40-49 50-64 65+ White Black Other Republican Democrat Other Conservative Moderate Liberal Not sure Under $20K $20K-$40K $40K-$60K $60K-$75K $75K-$100K $100K+ Gov't Entrepreneur Prvt. Co. Retired Other Mainstream Political Class Other Mainstream Lean Mainstream Neutral Lean Political Class Political Class Mainstream Political Class Other
    What System Works Better For Middle Class Workers? United States system of politics and economics 80% 77% 84% 57% 74% 87% 86% 90% 83% 63% 76% 97% 71% 73% 89% 78% 64% 49% 75% 76% 89% 83% 74% 85% 77% 74% 84% 88% 63% 83% 72% 78% 83% 82% 81% 62% 72% 82% 65% 81%
    Communism 10% 16% 4% 27% 18% 4% 4% 1% 7% 19% 21% 1% 14% 15% 8% 7% 18% 0% 10% 18% 3% 12% 20% 1% 1% 20% 9% 5% 19% 10% 11% 9% 10% 8% 2% 18% 11% 10% 16% 2%
    Not sure 10% 8% 12% 16% 7% 9% 10% 9% 10% 18% 2% 2% 15% 12% 3% 15% 17% 51% 15% 7% 8% 5% 7% 14% 23% 5% 7% 7% 18% 7% 17% 14% 7% 10% 17% 20% 17% 8% 19% 17%

    Total Gender Age Race Party Ideology Income Employment Political Class Index (without leaners) Political Class Index Political Class Index (with leaners)
    LV's Male Female 18-29 30-39 40-49 50-64 65+ White Black Other Republican Democrat Other Conservative Moderate Liberal Not sure Under $20K $20K-$40K $40K-$60K $60K-$75K $75K-$100K $100K+ Gov't Entrepreneur Prvt. Co. Retired Other Mainstream Political Class Other Mainstream Lean Mainstream Neutral Lean Political Class Political Class Mainstream Political Class Other
    Is Communism a Failed Ideology? Yes 73% 73% 73% 55% 73% 82% 76% 72% 75% 52% 78% 87% 61% 71% 80% 68% 64% 30% 66% 68% 79% 79% 65% 82% 76% 75% 78% 69% 57% 74% 88% 69% 74% 78% 65% 48% 88% 75% 60% 65%
    No 12% 14% 10% 21% 19% 3% 10% 6% 9% 26% 19% 4% 18% 15% 12% 9% 18% 0% 9% 16% 10% 7% 21% 8% 10% 16% 12% 8% 17% 9% 5% 18% 9% 12% 21% 30% 5% 10% 23% 21%
    Not sure 15% 13% 18% 24% 9% 15% 14% 22% 16% 22% 2% 10% 21% 14% 8% 23% 18% 70% 24% 16% 12% 14% 13% 10% 14% 9% 10% 23% 26% 17% 7% 13% 17% 10% 15% 21% 7% 15% 17% 15%

    Total Gender Age Race Party Ideology Income Employment Political Class Index (without leaners) Political Class Index Political Class Index (with leaners)
    LV's Male Female 18-29 30-39 40-49 50-64 65+ White Black Other Republican Democrat Other Conservative Moderate Liberal Not sure Under $20K $20K-$40K $40K-$60K $60K-$75K $75K-$100K $100K+ Gov't Entrepreneur Prvt. Co. Retired Other Mainstream Political Class Other Mainstream Lean Mainstream Neutral Lean Political Class Political Class Mainstream Political Class Other
    In Terms of World History How Important Was The Collapse of Communism in Eastern Europe? Very important 71% 69% 73% 61% 83% 67% 68% 65% 73% 55% 74% 88% 57% 68% 85% 61% 53% 25% 65% 70% 72% 74% 70% 74% 82% 71% 74% 62% 72% 73% 35% 70% 73% 71% 75% 65% 35% 73% 57% 75%
    Somewhat important 14% 17% 12% 18% 7% 19% 19% 12% 15% 13% 7% 6% 15% 23% 9% 19% 20% 0% 9% 20% 12% 14% 15% 16% 15% 9% 15% 16% 12% 14% 29% 13% 14% 15% 6% 14% 29% 14% 19% 6%
    Not very important 7% 8% 5% 0% 9% 9% 7% 6% 5% 20% 10% 2% 15% 4% 1% 11% 15% 7% 7% 1% 12% 5% 10% 7% 1% 17% 6% 5% 1% 5% 30% 7% 5% 8% 4% 6% 30% 6% 13% 4%
    Not at all important 1% 1% 1% 6% 0% 0% 0% 2% 1% 0% 2% 0% 1% 2% 0% 0% 3% 20% 2% 4% 0% 0% 0% 0% 0% 0% 2% 1% 1% 1% 2% 1% 1% 0% 1% 1% 2% 1% 2% 1%
    Not sure 7% 4% 10% 15% 1% 6% 6% 15% 6% 12% 7% 4% 13% 3% 5% 8% 8% 47% 17% 4% 5% 8% 5% 2% 2% 3% 3% 15% 14% 6% 3% 9% 6% 6% 13% 13% 3% 6% 10% 13%

  • Guest - Radical-Eyes

    Also, I wanted to echo Dh's above proposal that we create a thread post for people to share the "most common objections to communism" that we have encountered in conversation, on the street, when engaging progressive people of various stripes, etc. And then to share--and to initiate discussions of--the best way(s) to counter these objections. A kind of "Talking Points for Communists."

    Of course, I believe that generally, and now especially, communists should be doing as much *listening* as talking. Nonetheless, I think that such a "Talking Points" thread could be of use, in a day to day kind of way, especially for younger and newcomer comrades.

  • Guest - Radical-Eyes

    It's also worth noting that in response to the question of whether communist economies work better than the US system, those who identified as "Democrats" only said yes 3% of the time. But the figure was 10% amongst "other" that is "independents" and "unaffiliated." Which again brings up the question of how much we should focusing on the Demoratic party base, vs. those who remain unaffiliated and/or independent of the DP, whether by choice or by circumstance.

  • Guest - Radical-Eyes

    One more reflection on the poll numbers for now, regarding the racial breakdown.

    The "white"/"black"/"other" gap on the "morality" question is 7% / 26% / 20%

    [Rasmussen doesn 't break down the "other" any further.]

    The "white"/"black"/ "other breakdown on the "how it works" question is 3 / 4/ 12%

    The 12% here makes me again think about the increasin internationalization of the US working-class.

    Income is tracked as well, broken down in the following categories: Under 20K/20-40K/40-60K/60-75K/100K+

    Predicably the most support for communism, both moral and practical is found in the lowest, and second to lowest income brackets. On the morality question there is actually a significant spike in the 75-100K crowd (19%). Interestingly though, this 75-100K crowd comes in at onlhy 1% on the question of "how it works." Whereas for those making 40K or less the pro-communism holds at 12-13%.

    Combining the figures about age and race then, it would appear that low-income young people of color remain by far the most open to communism (at least as it was understood by these poll participants). But with significant "moral" sympathy for it among richer folk, though not among the 100K crowd, where support effectively evaporates to 0%.

  • Guest - Radical-Eyes

    Woah, and I just noticed the gender gap as well, which is significant:

    On the moral question especially:
    Male / Female : 16% / 5 %

    On the "works better" there isn't much of a difference.

  • Guest - Radical-Eyes

    Just one more (for now): Following up on my speculation above about the ideological impact of the "Fall of Communism" on those coming of age around 1990 or so:

    People in this 30-39 year old age bracket, born roughly between 1970 and 1980, would have been between 10 and 20 when “we all saw with our own eyes that communism didn’t work.” This likely has had a long-term effect on how these people view the practical (im)possibility of communism.

    In fact the poll numbers bear this out, as when asked “In Terms of World History How Important Was The Collapse of Communism in Eastern Europe?” 83% percent of 30-39-ers said “Very Important,” as opposed to ‘only’ 61% in the 18-29-ers.

    The silver (or rather *red) lining in these polls is that the younger, post-Cold War generation has not been as thoroughly indoctrinated into anti-communism, either in moral or in "practical" terms.

  • Guest - Tell No Lies

    Flawed as this poll might be, I think it nonetheless reveals some important truths. Some are entirely expected, but I'd be interested in peoples thoughts on the more anomalous data points:

    The gender gap.

    The spike in the 75-100k bracket.

    And the higher rate among independents than Dems.

    This last one doesn't really surprise me. A significant fraction of "independents" identify as either to the right or the left of both major parties. We should remember that these figures are for "likely voters" which is to say folks who may be disgusted with both parties but who nonetheless participate in the electoral process. I submit that most of that 10% of "independents" that expresses sympathy for communism vote Democratic and that along with the 3% of folks identified as Dems would roughly constitute the core potential support base for a "party within a party" strategy. The objective of such a strategy, to review, would be to both enlarge that pool and to give it an independent organizational existence in the form of, say, a "Democratic Communist Caucus," or something like that (except catchier) that would run openly revolutionary communist primary candidates in propitious districts (ghettos, barrios, college towns) and generally provoke the party apparatus to attack and expel us.

  • Guest - dodge

    Radical...your post 18 struck a chord with me. It is useful on many levels. If it is well handled it would speak volumes about your intent and style. Also it can be quite intimidating expressing views, the 'left' can be and often are vile to each other let alone newcomers. " Buy American"....how would we respond to that? Mass immigration? Good or bad? Gadhaffi, hero or zero? Race..major issue or one race, the human race. Who or what is to blame for the mess we are in? Of course we might be appalled at some of the responses...equally we might be pleasantly surprised.

    Yes debate...let it be fruitful and ongoing...that all can progress together. So no quotatations, as a substitute for thought. No labelling of ideas or pigeon hole debate. Play the ball not player! Lets never kill debate before it's even started.