Trust Issues

By Bill Maher

Gallup released its annual poll on how much confidence Americans have in various institutions, and near-record lows were recorded in public schools, churches, banks, and the TV news.

What has the most trust? As always, the military: 76% trust it “a great deal/quite a lot.” Why? We have a giant rape scandal going on in the military, and it’s not like it’s a new thing. It’s been happening for decades.

Meanwhile, the American institution with the least trust is Congress, at only 10%. But that’s the one Americans vote on directly. TV news is trusted by only 23% of people. But what’s on TV news? What people watch. It’s determined by ratings.

When the institution that Americans trust the most has a giant rape scandal, and the one they trust the least is the one they themselves handpick, isn’t the real problem with American institutions Americans?  

I think this is relevant to the NSA controversy, too. Nothing illegal happened there. It’s only a scandal if you think every branch of government is completely failing and can’t be trusted. In a democracy, whose fault is that, really?