The Corporate Professor   /   Spring 2012   /    Short Takes

Red Tube, Blue Tube


Jimmy Carter and Gerald Ford debating in 1976; Thomas J. O'Halloran/Library of Congress; flickr.

Recent studies have documented the increasing cultural and political polarization of ordinary Americans. Efforts to explain this vary but typically root it in contrasting dispositions and worldviews.

Results from a 2011 survey conducted by the market research firm Experian Simmons offer an intriguing window on these “red/blue” differences. The survey queried self-identified “conservative Republicans” and “liberal Democrats” about their favorite entertainment television programs (news, sports, and music shows were excluded). Remarkably, among the top 25 favorite shows ranked by conservatives and liberals, not a single one appeared on both lists. 

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