National Public Radio (NRP) recently ran a poll asking participants about the amount of trust they hold in various government institutions. It turns out that the participants have almost no trust in Congress or the presidency but hold a great deal of trust for the military:
The only institution that Americans have overwhelming faith in is the military — 87 percent say they have a great deal or quite a lot of confidence in the military. That is a striking change from the 1970s during and after the Vietnam War.
The American public has the least confidence in Congress, the body tasked with making laws that can affect every person in the country. Just 8 percent of people have a great deal of confidence in the institution. Almost two-thirds of Republicans expressed little confidence in Congress — and their party runs it.
Not far behind Congress is the Republican Party, not a good sign for the GOP in an election year with an unpopular president. Just 29 percent of Americans said they have quite a lot or a great deal of confidence in the party, compared with 68 percent who said they don’t have very much or none at all in the party.
Democrats, though, should temper their glee. They fare better, but not by much. Just 36 percent expressed confidence in the Democratic Party versus 62 percent who did not.
It should be noted that NPR has a Democrat bias so it’s not surprising to see its participants hold one party in higher regard than the other. However, I was a bit surprised that they held the presidency in higher regard than Congress. But the takeaway is that the participants would probably be supportive of a military coup at this point.
Why do these participants hold such high regard for the military? Most likely it’s because of propaganda. Since 9/11 the government has been dumping stupid amounts of money into marketing the military as heroes who protect us against encroaching barbarians. A lot of people currently reaching adulthood have been fed this propaganda for their entire lives. So nobody should be surprised that the view of the military is so high, especially since it hasn’t done anything to harm people domestically. However, by creating this propaganda the politicians have also created a potential threat to themselves. If a military is viewed high enough in a society, the masses will welcome or at least begrudgingly accept a military coup.
I don’t believe the military is currently planning a coup but if it were it would likely be cheered more than opposed.