Ever since we looked around and noticed that America is pretty much like your Thanksgiving Day table when it comes to discussing politics, researchers have been fascinated with figuring out what makes liberals and conservatives, Democrats and Republicans, tea partiers and occupyers different.
A market research firm filled out the picture a little more this week, publishing a handful of brand preferences linked to relative blueness or redness.
The results, are, in some cases, counter-intuitive. For starters, Jeep was chosen the “most desired car” among Democrats, while BMW was the favorite of Republicans. As a Democrat, I want it noted I would have voted the other way. Twice, if they let me.
As for insurance companies, progressives picked um, Progressive, while conservatives went for Allstate. One can’t help but wonder if the names of these brands had something to do with the choices.
Turning to cable TV entertainment, Democrats would rather veg out in front of the Animal Planet, where presumably, themes of evolution and climate change surface, while Republicans prefer to re-fight the world’s wars and conquests on the History Channel.
In fast food, liberals chose Wendy’s, where they can order fries with that bacon cheese double-stack, while conservatives restrain themselves at Subway, grazing on salads and choosing from among the nine-grain wheat, honey oat, or parmesan oregano bread for their grilled turkey sub before they head to the club for a set of tennis.
In sports, Democrats are ready for some football, preferring the NFL to the more George W. Bush-ian and George Will-ian teams of Major League Baseball (MLB).
But just like your house at Thanksgiving, where everyone agrees Mom did the best job ever this year, there are a few areas where Democrats and Republicans are sympatico. They both love Coca-Cola (not Pepsi), Visa (not Mastercard), Google (not…what?), and Apple. Since Steve Jobs hated Google and called their “no evil” slogan “bullshit,” slamming their Android platform as a poor rip-off of iPhones, that last one is especially mystifying.
As the great divide between them and us continues to cleave us into two Americas, expect more magnification of our formerly minor differences.