How is it possible to be this misinformed?

Disclaimer: yes this is political...but the underlying issue has more to do with news sources.

How far will the media go to misinform people? This is a Gallup/NYT survey that asks people "What are the chances you will be hospitalized if you contract COVID?" It is mindblowing how off this is - especially from the cohort that is likely watching CNN, reading Huff Post, etc.

The question of "What are your chances of dying if you contract COVID?" is just as bad, goes along party lines as well. How are we going to move past this or frankly move forward in life at all if society is this misinformed about arguably the number one topic of the last year? If you don't believe that media one of the main reasons for the downfall of the United States then I don't know what to tell you.

Bill Maher kind of nailed it: "Give It to Me Straight, Doc" Bill Maher Blasts the Leftist Media on Covid-19 Propaganda (mishtalk.com)

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Comments (71)

Apr 24, 2021 - 2:33pm

Yes, polls are crazy sometimes and are far from the truth. That's why we have scientific experts.

"If you always put limits on everything you do, physical or anything else, it will spread into your work and into your life. There are no limits. There are only plateaus, and you must not stay there, you must go beyond them." - Bruce Lee

  • Analyst 1 in S&T - Equities
Apr 24, 2021 - 2:37pm

What is far from the truth? This is a representative sample size of people in the United States and their estimates of COVID hospitalization/mortality. When you have a group 70% or more of people in the United States think that you have a 50/50 shot of going to the hospital if you contract COVID how are we going to move forward? Democrats account for  >50% of people in the United States and are off by a factor of ~10. The mortality question is nearly as bad.

This is a result of misinformation and purposeful deception from influential people and organizations. The media and influential people are obsessed with creating false narratives that make US citizens stupid, angry, and misinformed. 

Apr 24, 2021 - 2:44pm

I think the major stat we are looking at right now in society is the % of people that need to go to the hospital for Covid if they have already been vaccinated. This is a very low percent. 

"If you always put limits on everything you do, physical or anything else, it will spread into your work and into your life. There are no limits. There are only plateaus, and you must not stay there, you must go beyond them." - Bruce Lee

  • 1
Apr 24, 2021 - 3:31pm

Have family in public survey research. You should listen to live audio of people answering these questions on the phone. The unfortunate part about stereotypes is that they're true far too often.

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Apr 24, 2021 - 6:29pm

You'd be hard pressed to find ANY topic where a majority of the population, irrespective of party, is well-informed. 

Also, you seem to chalk it up to misinformation. Truth is, most people don't even read the news or care for it. People are busy with work, kids, life. As much as maybe you, or I, read the news, truth is most people don't spend much time on it. 

  • Analyst 1 in S&T - Equities
Apr 24, 2021 - 7:58pm

There are two 'sides' on this topic and the misinformed group within that equation is calling the shots with policy and shout down and mock the other side that apparently has a better handle on the matter.

Apr 24, 2021 - 6:48pm

I know blue is a higher deviation from the truth  but red is pretty bad as well. Why do you think that is the case?

Array

Apr 24, 2021 - 7:34pm

Liberals are unable to accept basic facts that do not support their preferred conclusion, so it's not surprising.

Never discuss with idiots, first they drag you at their level, then they beat you with experience.

Apr 24, 2021 - 7:55pm

It's crazy to see the number of people in this thread dismissing this as no big deal. It's a big freakin' deal. The media misinformation on Covid-19 is the reason schools are still struggling to open, why deranged lunatics are vaccinated and still masking while outside, it's why children are forced to mask up for 7 to 8 hours at a time, why entire nations remain in lockdown, why we just spent trillions of dollars in Covid recovery a month or so ago for no real reason. It impacts the political left more, but because everyone--left, right, and center--reads newspapers and watches nightly network news, the media's panic porn impacts everyone. The statistics presented by the OP are extremely concerning.   

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Funniest
Apr 26, 2021 - 2:58am

''Reliable sources''

dsads

Deport liberals journalists.

Never discuss with idiots, first they drag you at their level, then they beat you with experience.

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  • Analyst 1 in S&T - Equities
Apr 26, 2021 - 5:44pm

To be fair, this is when they needed to trash their muse, Donald Trump

Apr 26, 2021 - 3:17pm

Also it'd take ''2 years and a half''.

Never discuss with idiots, first they drag you at their level, then they beat you with experience.

Apr 26, 2021 - 3:15pm

I actually ended up digging that article back up...in fairness, that article did have a bunch of scenarios where you could shrink the timeline by shortening all the typical milestones that occur in normal vaccine development...once I did that (which I think ends up mirroring what ended up happening with the COVID vax development, I got to a Feb 2021 launch date...which was still later than reality but not that far off.

Apr 26, 2021 - 3:23pm

You misread the graph, champ. Your chart is toggled to "typical" vaccine timeline, which is absolutely correct, and one of several reasons 40% of Republicans refuse to get the covid vaccine. If you toggle that same graph to the covid "goal", you get a distribution date of August 2021 which isn't too far off  .

I guess we can't deport you though since you live in Europe but continue to have a strange obsession with American politics and media. 

you didn't make good choices; you had good choices

Most Helpful
Apr 26, 2021 - 3:34pm

Alt-Ctr-Left

You misread the graph, champ. Your chart is toggled to "typical" vaccine timeline, which is absolutely correct, and one of several reasons 40% of Republicans refuse to get the covid vaccine. If you toggle that same graph to the covid "goal", you get a distribution date of August 2021 which isn't too far off  .

I guess we can't deport you though since you live in Europe but continue to have a strange obsession with American politics and media. 

Yeah, let's post the article, shall we?

https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2020/04/30/opinion/coronavirus-covi…

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

''

The grim truth behind this rosy forecast is that a vaccine probably won't arrive any time soon. Clinical trials almost never succeed. We've never released a coronavirus vaccine for humans before. Our record for developing an entirely new vaccine is at least four years - more time than the public or the economy can tolerate social-distancing orders.

But if there was any time to fast-track a vaccine, it is now. So Times Opinion asked vaccine experts how we could condense the timeline and get a vaccine in the next few months instead of years.'''

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The grim truth....that's what the article is actually claiming,which is not what you are claiming. There isn't an inch of moral and intellectual integrity in your post. You should be deported from the planet because your lies are a threat to humanity. This is a classic battle between good and evil, truth and lies. To score political points you defend the indefensible, even if it kills millions. You are the perfect gulag guard.

Never discuss with idiots, first they drag you at their level, then they beat you with experience.

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Apr 26, 2021 - 5:45pm

The worst part about this is that at the very top it says "opinion," which should be code for "disregard anything that comes next," but these days it seems people like to read what to think instead of actual facts. I believe that op eds are at least 90% responsible for the negative rep mass media gets (along with cable news "pundits" which are basically op eds in video form). I only see this problem getting worse in the future, however, since it's probably a lot cheaper to just hire journalism majors to write their grievances instead of looking into original information and doing actual research, and because it seems readers are not deterred by reading a feedback loop that just confirms their priors.

I’m a fun guy. Obviously I love the game of basketball. I mean there’s more questions you have to ask me in order for me to tell you about myself. I'm not just gonna give you a whole spill... I mean, I don't even know where you're sitting at

Apr 26, 2021 - 5:45pm

I don't disagree. One of the massive problems is that opinion pieces are pushed hard on the front page as actual news or outright mixed with news, something that the media are heavily responsible for. Then again, even when it comes to basic facts, the very same media have consistently proven to be willing to push unverified stories so long that it helps the preferred narrative. Journalists and academics are truly the scum of society. No integrity. Way worse than the worst of banking.

Never discuss with idiots, first they drag you at their level, then they beat you with experience.

Apr 26, 2021 - 2:24pm

Daily Wire podcast host Andrew Klavan was so on point on his Friday podcast. He pointed out that the public isn't crazy by being this misinformed; in fact, we would question the sanity of people who are told endless lies by ostensibly respectable sources of information and to disbelieve them all. The public is lied to so constantly by the government and by the news media, particularly on the Covid-19 topic, that we should expect a rational, reasonable public to believe and behave as they have--with behavior and beliefs completely disconnected from the actual facts.

What's bizarre to me is how I've known for almost a year (or more than a year) that kids are virtually unimpacted by Covid, that Covid doesn't really spread on surfaces, that vaccines were well on their way, that Covid spreads overwhelmingly in poorly insulated indoors by extended (10-15 minutes) contact with symptomatic carriers, that masks outside are of virtually no benefit, and that lockdowns do not work for highly contagious airborne viruses. I've known this all since AT LEAST early summer 2020. I've known for months that the vaccinated are highly resistant to infection and that those who are infected carry a very low viral load and don't need masks. All the information has been out there--the corrupt news media simply did everything in their power to suppress information and the bureaucrats did nothing but inspire panic for reasons one can only assume was to increase their own power.     

Array

Apr 26, 2021 - 5:44pm

I thought that was a very sentient point by Klavan. Made me think of the quote: "Being in a minority, even in a minority of one, did not make you mad. There was truth and there was untruth, and if you clung to the truth even against the whole world, you were not mad."

Apr 26, 2021 - 2:50pm

Whenever a country can't even agree on basic facts or aren't told the same lies, it's bound to collapse.

Freedom my ass. Media is the biggest threat against freedom. This country is the most hypocritical of them all. Taking away freedom in the name of freedom.

Promoting the idea that "people are fundamentally smart" while trying to make them dumber.

Apr 26, 2021 - 2:59pm

I'm in favor of some "French Revolution" stuff with our news media. Their behavior during Covid-19 has literally been deadly. They are evil.

Array

Apr 26, 2021 - 4:49pm

Memberberries

I'm in favor of some "French Revolution" stuff with our news media. Their behavior during Covid-19 has literally been deadly. They are evil.

If every single news outlet is doing it, then perhaps the fault lies less with journalists (or in the case of Fox, "entertainers") and with the public willing to consume it without question.  Or the directors deciding that pushing negative news sells the most copy.

Apr 26, 2021 - 4:29pm

Ya, but I'd caution against the perception that this shit is new. The fact is the media has lied to the American people for well over 50 years, on the same systemic widespread scale, to the same despicable ends. As Chomsky said, "Any dictator would admire the uniformity and obedience of the U.S. media." I'm not his biggest fan but Manufacturing Consent and some of his talks on US politics really exposes the media as the misinformation bureau that they act as. 

Array

Apr 26, 2021 - 5:44pm

jackdags

Ya, but I'd caution against the perception that this shit is new. The fact is the media has lied to the American people for well over 50 years, on the same systemic widespread scale, to the same despicable ends. As Chomsky said, "Any dictator would admire the uniformity and obedience of the U.S. media." I'm not his biggest fan but Manufacturing Consent and some of his talks on US politics really exposes the media as the misinformation bureau that they act as. 

What's new is that now there are more than 1 voice that's large enough.

Apr 26, 2021 - 3:55pm

Guys, 41% of Democrats, 35% of independents, and 26% of republicans thinking covid results in a hospitalization rate of *50% or more* is fucking insane. 
 

This isn't some trivial statistic (how many shark attacks are there a year?) it is the core justification for every restriction that has been implemented over the last 13 months. 

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Apr 26, 2021 - 4:51pm

PeterMBA2018

Guys, 41% of Democrats, 35% of independents, and 26% of republicans thinking covid results in a hospitalization rate of *50% or more* is fucking insane. 
 

This isn't some trivial statistic (how many shark attacks are there a year?) it is the core justification for every restriction that has been implemented over the last 13 months. 

But again, this misses the larger point of the emotional response to COVID - which is that as a statistic, the numbers aren't exactly terrifying, but that won't matter when it's your granny who dies or gets very ill.  Until you're willing for those negative consequences to be visited on you and yours, you shouldn't fault others for irrationally fearing them

Apr 26, 2021 - 4:58pm

Newsflash pal, unless I am grossly misinformed, everyone dies at some point or another. So we should be pretty upset that the entire world has been shut down at some point for numbers that "aren't exactly terrifying." The media should be providing more clear statistics so that individuals can make make their own risk-assessment. The fact that more people feel more aligned to your POV than mine is however, absolutely terrifying

Apr 26, 2021 - 5:44pm

Ozymandia

PeterMBA2018

Guys, 41% of Democrats, 35% of independents, and 26% of republicans thinking covid results in a hospitalization rate of *50% or more* is fucking insane. 
 

This isn't some trivial statistic (how many shark attacks are there a year?) it is the core justification for every restriction that has been implemented over the last 13 months. 

But again, this misses the larger point of the emotional response to COVID - which is that as a statistic, the numbers aren't exactly terrifying, but that won't matter when it's your granny who dies or gets very ill.  Until you're willing for those negative consequences to be visited on you and yours, you shouldn't fault others for irrationally fearing them

I don't agree. We should absolutely fault others for irrational fears, when the responses to those irrational fears cause harm to others.

There's nothing wrong with rational fear, and I accept that "rational" is entirely in the eyes of the beholder. Different people can see the same set of facts and come to different conclusions based on their acceptance of risk. "Ten people are eaten by sharks every year" can be one person's "welp, I guess I'm never swimming in the ocean ever again" and another's "huh, only ten? that's nothing! i'm headed to the beach," and in each case, the person is responding rationally.

Continuing the example - what isn't okay is broadcasting misinformation ("you better bring your shark-mace with you at all times, even when you're not in the water!") and reacting emotionally ("we're issuing an executive order to close down the Sydney Opera House - it's just too close to sharks to be safe") in ways that can be broadly harmful to people ("my son lost his job as a lifeguard at the local pool - nobody will go, since they're all afraid of sharks").

Give people good information and they will use it to make choices. They don't all have to be the same choices for them to be rational.

"Son, life is hard. But it's harder if you're stupid." - my dad
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Apr 26, 2021 - 5:44pm

Accurate information should be used to inform public policy. 
 

I look forward to your 300 word nonsensical reply on why this actually shouldn't be the case. 

Array
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  • Analyst 1 in S&T - Equities
Apr 26, 2021 - 5:44pm

This is exactly the issue...what you said doesn't absolve what is going on. The fact that the general public is THIS misinformed is a direct result of the news they are consuming. CNN has a literal ticker of the case and death toll on their screen 24/7 as in all day, every day. Just using them as an example because they are an easy target with this. 

Society is going to have an impossible time getting back to 'normal' with this many people thinking you have a 50/50 shot of being hospitalized if you even get COVID. My brain is blown every time I say or even think of that statistic. That % is closer to the number of people who are asymptomatic. I don't understand why people have such a hard time applying logic to COVID. If you are young and healthy and treated everything in life with COVID's risk profile like COVID you wouldn't be able to go outside, cross the street, etc. The whole "oh you'll give it to a 90-year-old!" thing is so stupid. Here is a thought: don't hang out with a 90-year-old who isn't vaccinated. If you do, stay outside and stand a few feet apart.

The thought that the entire world needs to suffer immeasurable economic and mental anguish because of never-ending what if games is just incredibly stupid. At the end of the day there is no excuse to be as misinformed or as stupid as the majority of the respondents of these surveys. I would approve of cancel culture canceling these people's ability to speak about this. 

  • Analyst 1 in S&T - Equities
Apr 26, 2021 - 5:44pm

Will you not concede that the party of science is less knowledgeable of the chances of being hospitalized or dying from COVID by a very wide margin compared with conservatives and independents? And then ironically walk around saying that conservatives don't understand or appreciate the risks of COVID? These are Gallup/NYT/other polls, they're not thin air. 

Apr 26, 2021 - 5:44pm

Will you not concede that the party of science is less knowledgeable of the chances of being hospitalized or dying from COVID by a very wide margin compared with conservatives and independents? And then ironically walk around saying that conservatives don't understand or appreciate the risks of COVID? These are Gallup/NYT/other polls, they're not thin air. 

Sure, the data is the data. Consider this lib owned. As mentioned earlier, covid is another example of conservatives underreacting and liberals overreacting. Though I'll note all groups polled overestimated the risk of hospitalization by quite a bit. 

you didn't make good choices; you had good choices

Apr 26, 2021 - 5:44pm

Will you not concede that the party of science is less knowledgeable of the chances of being hospitalized or dying from COVID by a very wide margin compared with conservatives and independents? And then ironically walk around saying that conservatives don't understand or appreciate the risks of COVID? These are Gallup/NYT/other polls, they're not thin air. 

Whoa there, buddy.  "Less knowledgeable" is most definitely a case of confusing causation and correlation.  Not being able to interpret data is a sad commentary on the entire liberal left, but rejecting science is pretty much the sole preserve of our Republican brethren.  Or more specifically, rejecting expert opinion solely because they're experts.

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