Just 53 Percent of Americans Now Say Capitalism is Better Than Socialism

Beyond the remarkable finding that just 53 percent of Americans now say capitalism is better than socialism (20 percent pick socialism as better and 27 percent are unsure), note: 
*The comment (below) on "skepticism about whether capitalism in the United States today relies on free markets" (!)
[Say Rasmussen, how about a question asking if that litttle state-capitalist combination of big business and big government  hurts workers?]

Yes, its true that they never quite define socialism (leaving the door open for people to identify in rather limited, vague, and incorrect ways) and also that people (see below) seem to hate capitalism less when they see it as a "free market" system (apparently two-thirds understand that it is no such thing!), but still…..this is quite interesting and hope-inducing to read, yes?


I checked and it does not appear to be an April Fools’ joke


Here (below) is the the text of Rassmussen’s write-up on its survey



Just 53% Say Capitalism Better Than Socialism


Only 53% of American adults believe capitalism is better than socialism.


The latest Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey found that 20% disagree and say socialism is better. Twenty-seven percent (27%) are not sure which is better.


Adults under 30 are essentially evenly divided: 37% prefer capitalism, 33% socialism, and 30% are undecided. Thirty-somethings are a bit more supportive of the free-enterprise approach with 49% for capitalism and 26% for socialism. Adults over 40 strongly favor capitalism, and just 13% of those older Americans believe socialism is better.


Investors by a 5-to-1 margin choose capitalism. As for those who do not invest, 40% say capitalism is better while 25% prefer socialism.

There is a partisan gap as well. Republicans – by an 11-to-1 margin – favor capitalism. Democrats are much more closely divided: Just 39% say capitalism is better while 30% prefer socialism. As for those not affiliated with either major political party, 48% say capitalism is best, and 21% opt for socialism.


The question posed by Rasmussen Reports did not define either capitalism or socialism


It is interesting to compare the new results to an earlier survey in which 70% of Americans prefer a free-market economy. The fact that a “free-market economy” attracts substantially more support than “capitalism” may suggest some skepticism about whether capitalism in the United States today relies on free markets.


Other survey data supports that notion. Rather than seeing large corporations as committed to free markets, two-out-of-three Americans believe that big government and big business often work together in ways that hurt consumers and investors.


Fifteen percent (15%) of Americans say they prefer a government-managed economy, similar to the 20% support for socialism. Just 14% believe the federal government would do a better job running auto companies, and even fewer believe government would do a better job running financial firms.


Most Americans today hold views that can generally be defined as populist while only seven percent (7%) share the elitist views of the Political Class.


…This national telephone survey of 1,000 Adults was conducted by Rasmussen Reports April 6-7, 2009. The margin of sampling error for the survey is /- 3 percentage points with a 95% level of confidence (see methodology).



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