Wednesday, August 20, 2008

The following is nice to read, encouraging, but also quite sad:
[A] recent poll conducted by Democrat Stan Greenberg and Republican Glen Bolger showed...[w]hen they tested Democratic and Republican messages without identifying which party they came from, "the Democratic message consistently won out over the GOP message by 11 to 25 points." This was true even among Republican voters, who preferred the Democratic message on every issue but Iraq. It was only when the messages were identified by party that the Republicans won back their voters. On taxes, for instance, Republicans opted for the Democratic message over the Republican message, 52 percent to 38 percent. When the very same messages were identified by party, however, Republican votes favored the GOP message, 65 percent to 27 percent. The GOP's brand isn't in crisis -- it's the only thing keeping them alive.
I've seen this type of result in other polls, where the majority of respondents align with the issues favored by Democrats over that of Republicans. I assume in those polls they're simply asking questions about the issues and avoiding this concept of branding. So when people objectively weigh in on issues and do so with no hint of partisan taint, they consider themselves Dems by a landslide. However, when allowing for party labels to enter the picture, the sheep bow their heads and meekly shuffle over to their "correct" group.

It's much like the blind taste test, and it's why so many consumer product companies spend millions upon millions of dollars every year trying to convince us that their brands are the best. Perfect example: bottled water. In test after test, tap water either wins out or is near tops when pitted against expensive bottled water.

But then people still believe Saddam had something to do with 9/11, that he had WMD, that he was in cahoots with al Qaeda. What can you do? People are going to believe what they want to believe, no matter the facts, and frankly many people are gullible and naive. It also gets back to Thomas Frank's premise in What's The Matter with Kansas?

Do people have to be this robotic and brainwashed? What's the solution(s)?

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