Tuesday, November 13, 2007

culture and politics, a poll

Check out this poll from Zogby and the Norman Lear Center on politics and culture, examining how liberals, conservatives, and "moderates" enjoy TV, the news, movies, music, and video games.

What surprised me most: "Fox, the home of anti-authority satires like The Simpsons, Family Guy and MADtv, draws daily more than three times as many conservatives as liberals." There is such a thing as a liberal who doesn't like the Simpsons? I'd never thought of FOX as particularly ideological, though I do associate it with a certain "trashiness," I guess from the days when it tended to delve further into the risque than other networks.

Nevertheless, rather than "anti-authority satire" being the turn-off for liberals and turn-on for conservatives (since when were "support the troops!" police-state conservatives anti-authority?), I would imagine it's the rest of their programming, nearly half of which consists of reality TV (I counted eight, including COPS and "Are you smarter than a 5th grader?"), that turns off liberals.

What I would really like to know: have we always been this culturally divided? Was it always the case that conservatives and liberals didn't listen to the same music, didn't see the same movies, and didn't watch the same TV (or even the same news, for God's sake!)? Combined with the fact that conservatives are now taking their kids out of public schools, is our society starting to pillarize?

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