Picket-line politics

Today, President Obama was in Phoenix, speaking to the VFW about his health care plan. Then it’s on to Colorado.

Both sides in the debate were out in force early.

If we didn’t have their signs, could we still tell which side they’re on? Why? Or why not?

Here’s one side:


Here’s the other:


Click on the image for a larger version.

Think it’s easy? Maybe. Maybe not.

Charles Quimby at Across the Great Divide had a great question on this picture.

Can you guess who stands for what in whatever this disagreement is about?


Answer later on the photos above.

1:38 p.m. Answers –



  • BJ

    1st – GOP or Anti-Obama plan

    2nd – DEM or pro-Obama plan

    3rd – Left guy DEM (Union member), Right guy GOP (most likly A Ron Paul follower)

  • Sean

    1st Anti Obamacare

    2nd pro Obamacare

    3-rd left GOP or (Old people hate change guy), Right liberal hippy guy.

  • Maddie Nolan

    1rst AARP political action group fighting FOR Obamas plan.

    2nd Obamas political action people who were given all the same small flags as they would never display a flag on thier clothing like the first group, and probably don’t own one of thier own.


    left: angry older well to do republican who has good health care already and doesn’t want government to mess everything up again in His life

    Right: His son who is really a republican, but paid by the DNC to organize rallies to make it look like there is actually people organizing in a grass roots fashion


  • Kim V

    The first picture is funny because: I looked at it and thought they all actually looked really happy and patriotic, and I thought it was maybe a homecoming for troops picture and that Bob was trying to trick us!

  • http://norwegianity.wordpress.com Mark Gisleson

    These can be tricky because the media has a bad habit of showing us pictures of the gun nuts and anarchists. The antiwar protests of 2003 were notable for being mostly mainstream Americans, but the media went out of its way to show disproportionate numbers of anarchists in their coverage.

    But yeah, I had no trouble figuring out which side was which because I know Fox News’ demographics. A new poll done by Daily Kos shows that Fox News has almost no viewers of color, and that their demographics skew to the elderly.

  • Bob Collins

    It was interesting to listen to the first hour of MPR’s Midmorning today when the guest noted that as individuals, people in the health care debate are concerned about losing what they have. So if the protests skew to the elderly, what they’re probably concerned about is losing Medicare benefits.

    It was then mentioned that despite the financial woes, from a health care viewpoint, Medicare is very efficient.

  • Bob Collins

    //eft: angry older well to do republican who has good health care already and doesn’t want government to mess everything up again in His life

    Nope. The older person is SUPPORTING the Obama plan. The younger person is OPPOSING the Obama plan.

  • mulad

    Yeah, I identified the first picture as anti-Obama plan and the second as pro-Obama plan. Heh, I am a bit curious if Maddie’s observation about the second photo is correct, that they might be Democratic operatives.

    My reasoning: The flags were bigger with the opposition photo, and there were people wearing flag shirts. There are two or three military-themed hats in the first photo, and none that I can see in the second. The age distribution is mostly 50+, with the youngest appearing to only be about 35, though there appear to be many people under 35 in the second photo. I don’t see any non-whites in the first photo, but there are some in the second.

  • kennedy

    Profiling/stereotyping a group is more accurate because you have more information. The group photos are pretty obvious (large flags & old white people = “don’t touch my medicare”)

    I actually recognized the third photo from a previous story and rememeber thinking the individuals look like they switched signs.