Not the useful four-legged species that give us sweaters and butterflied leg of lamb with mint jelly. Nope, we’re talking the far less helpful, two-legged kind, you know: Democrats and Republicans.

A USA Today Poll out today identified the sheep in question:

The survey asked 1,000 Americans to assess two education policies. The first plan was to reduce class sizes and make sure schools teach the basics. The second was to increase teacher pay while making it easier to fire bad teachers.

For half the sample, the first plan was labeled a Democratic plan and the second a Republican plan.

Okay, fair enough, but:

Then the labels were switched for the other half. The “Democratic” plan became the “Republican” plan, and vice versa.

And what did the sheep do then?

In both cases, about three-fourths of Democrats and Republicans lined up behind the plan they had been told belonged to their party. In fact, both sides were inclined to describe their support as intense, to say they “strongly” favored it — regardless of which policy it happened to be.

Sheep happens.

Polarized, mindless sheep so incapable of critical thinking about the merits of an issue that they just line up behind which every party is marching them off the Left cliff or the Right cliff. With the same splat at the bottom.

Read the rest of the USA Today piece. And weep.

  1. US says:

    The American public doesn’t want to think any more. That has made it easy for the political power base to keep the power.

    • msbpodcast says:

      There seems to be some idea that people like to, or want to think just because they need to.

      They don’t.

      They’re jerks and like to think from their knees.

      Politics is dedicated to taking any and every idea and strangling it in its cradle.

  2. bobbo, the pragmatic existential evangelical anti-theist says:

    That voter partisanship pretty much cancels itself out UNTIL===>you get to highly gerrymandered congressional districts where one idiot extreme of either party can elect their obstructionist dedicated representative.

    So…what is report may be correct, but it is not all that important in the greater scheme of things.

    The problems/corruption of the system go deeper than those who vote straight party tickets.

    I wonder what Big Money Interest paid for this Red Herring to be put out there?

    ……… same as it always was.

  3. bobbo, the pragmatic existential evangelical anti-theist says:

    More BS as suspected. From the first sentence in the link:

    “Americans who blame Washington politicians for the polarization and gridlock of the nation’s politics might want to look in the mirror:” //// CRAP, BS, RED HERRING, STRAW MAN etc.

    Straight party voting is just what the electorate should be entitled to do if that is how they feel. THAT ISN’T THE PROBLEM!!!!!

    Its the gerrymandered districts where correctly voting individuals have been parsed out to the political advantage of the parties.

    Yes…. blame the D’s and the R’s for this manipulation of the system. Structuing “things” for the desired outcome. THAT is where the problem is–allowing the political system to bifurcate to its extremes and you wind up with deadlock. Not directly intended, just directly caused.

    Yeah, you gotta correctly identify the problem before any solution will work. Its NOT the people and how they vote regardless of how they do. Its what the SYSTEM has done or does do with those results.

    Mind the Gap.

  4. Noname says:

    Labels are there to support the vast hordes of intellectually lazy Americans who blithely prejudge all worth or value based on outward appearance or labels alone!

    It minimizes any unpracticed mental strain or effort and helps them hang on to a prejudice at an emotional level that fulfills their psychological need to feel superior!

    Most people are stupid by choice!

  5. Guyver says:

    The problem lies in that the sheeple don’t vote based on the issues. They align themselves with labels (i.e. Political Party Names).

  6. McCullough says:

    Great post. Thanks Perdue.

  7. Admfubar says:

    baaaaa, i dont believe it!

  8. bobbo, the pragmatic existential evangelical anti-theist says:

    OK—I’ll say it one more time.

    Rephrased to pick up those who need a different phrasing.

    YES–the voters are ignorant sheep that get taken in by labels. but its often said, and close enough for government work that 30-40 % of the electorate are Dumbo Sheeple while 25-35% of the elctorate are Puke Sheeple who in most voting districts cancel each other out leaving the Undecided/Middle voters to actually decide an election====>>>EXCEPT IN THOSE DISTRICTS THAT ARE HIGHLY GERRYMANDERED so that it is a district mostly made up of one sheep or the other.

    This was initiated by the Dumbos. As usual for good reasons: to guarantee the Blacks in the South some mimimal measure of representation. Then as is almost unavoidably the case: good intentions got corrupted by bad intentions and programs once started were never changed. See the dots????? See the links?????

    And with that Reality, the Lame Stream Media points its fingers in the wrong direction. By design, by stupidity–all with the same result.

    So……. why are you doing it?

    • Holly Crap says:

      Now THERE’S a pot calling a kettle black. (No racial pun intended but then I’m sure that’s what you’d prefer to focus on.)

      YES–the voters are ignorant sheep that get taken in by labels. Yes INDEED! Lables like: the pragmatic existential evangelical anti-theist.

      Good one!

      • bobbo, Financial Advisor to the Stars says:

        Gerrymandering has been present from the initial drawing of districts but it became aggressively wacko with the drawing of those pro-Black candidate districts in response to Federal lawsuits filed for racial discrimination. That is the kettle. Generally, being Historical Accurate is not called a pot. Do you have anything actually in mind or is this the product of word association only?

        On Self Labeling…thank you. Watch for my other labels. I used to be more active in setting forth these trail markers, but it does take energy.

        So it blows.

  9. deowll says:

    Good post. Thanks for twittering it. Not overly surprised.

    • bobbo, Financial Advisor to the Stars says:

      Which label did you especially like do-ill?

      The one where all the voters are Partisan Sheep?===You know, the label that is so obviously wrong, but keeps the attention off the Corps that have Bought our Congress.

      100% Puke and you think calling voters worthless for voting a party line is a valid criticism?

      Ha, ha. don’t get much more BLIND than that.

      “Holy Self Awareness Batman! These people demonstrate their unrecognizing desire to be lead by the nose with every post!!! How does that happen? How can we cash in on this???”


  10. B. Dog says:

    Fuck them.

  11. MikeN says:

    You should have used a map of Texas to illustrate this post.

  12. MikeN says:


    John Cusack @johncusack

    dems ? Do U have any thoughts on Obama’s transition from a progressive academic humanist 2 a regressive corporate warlord?

    Christa Perone @MyPerone

    @johncusack My gut was that u would b more liberal, I don’t know why; but I sense a real disdain for this admin?

    • bobbo, the pragmatic existential evangelical anti-theist says:

      I just saw on the news that McCane criticized Paul for saying Obama might Drone Jane Fonda. He said this turns his valuable contribution into a side show.

      Paul is a nut. It would be hard for him to talk more than a few hours and not go off the rails.

      John Cusak has always struck me as a thoughtful commenter. Sadly, there is much substance in what he says. How much bad can be balanced by his health care success and his economic stimulus when the potential was there for so much more?

  13. Glenn E. says:

    Basically the politicians have US right where they want us. At odds with each other. So they convinced us that its a sided game of red vs blue, conservative vs liberal, Republican vs Democrat, etc vs etc.

    But it’s really haves vs have-nots, in mostly all cases. And the haves generally lobby the US Congress far better than the have-nots can. So Congress makes up its “mind” based on the bribes it gets. And then proceeds to label an issue, which ever way will convince US the most, that it had a good reason to decided the way they decided, based on partisanship.

  14. super77 says:

    Critical thinking has gone the way of the dodo.

  15. Glenn E. says:

    I blame heavily commercialized sports, like Football. It’s got the citizens thinking that even politics is two opposing sides, fighting to see who’s best. But just like Football, it’s really about multi-million dollar player contracts. And players can be bought and sold to any side, next year. It’s all artificial conflict, to entertain us. Unfortunately, US politics has been this way for quite a while too. But diehard party members refuse to believe this. And they make up the majority of the voters, each election.

    I just wish they’d stick them with Jury Duty, since they believe in all this voting theater, instead of me. My state widened the net to include everyone with a driver’s license or non-driving ID. Just because they let too many “voters” off the hook, and needed to get more slaves to fret over who’s guilty of being a bad citizen. Even when the voting registration was high once again, I still got notified. Did they exclude all the Obama voters, or just most of them?

  16. BigBoyBC says:

    Given the results, I guess Congress does represent US sheeple.

    I’ve always suspected that the Congress Critters rarely read the legislation put before them, and just vote along party lines. I remember Pelosi saying something to the effect “…You can read it after you vote on it.” That bothered me immensely. But, I’m not sure which bothers me more, that they would vote for something, or against something, without reading it, but simply because the party leaders told them how to vote.

    Sometimes, when I see people pointing fingers and blaming another party for the mess this country is in, I think, that WE are to blame, because WE vote them into office and keep voting them in.

    Naturally, it’s not our Congress Critters, but the ones in the other party and/or state that needs to be replaced… Right…

  17. Porky Rottenham says:

    Them vs. Us is a game played by fools. It is also a basic technique of propaganda. Knowing this, you can begin to see the real power of propaganda. Ask: When we fight amongst ourselves, who benefits?

    “Pay no attention to that man behind the curtain.”

    • bobbo, the pragmatic existential evangelical anti-theist says:

      “who benefits” AND “that man behind the curtain” /// both point to the appropriate “them” that us should be focused on.

      There is a MIGHTY us vs them contest that has been going on for decades now. The issue is to correctly identify where your own interests lie and who is as you say benefiting from undermining those interests.

      cutting to the chase, with so many exceptions its on the verge of swallowing the conclusion: the Puke Party is the enemy as they front/are bought and paid for by the forces of redistribution from the poor to the RICH.

      You see this activity in every active issue of the day that is not Christian Taliban based.

      Just look. Take the tinfoil of mindless dogma off your head and tongue and simply LOOK!!!!!

      Why should social programs be cut so that foreign wars be continued? Why shouldn’t jobs be created in renewable energy production so that Big Oil stops poisoning our environment? Closing of Abortion Clinics–theres our Taliban in action.

      Just LOOK!…… and act in accordance to your own self interest.

  18. Somebody says:

    An article saying that blind partisanship makes you stupid?

    Of course bobo is agitated.

    Please, do it again.

    • bobbo, we think with words, and flower with ideas says:

      Blind partisanship is stupid, but it is a FREEEEEEDOM issue and an analytical one.

      People will always be blindly partisan, they always have been, they always will be. Its a fact of the matter that drops out of any serious discussion.

      Ergo, when you have an article that addresses the issue as if it were relevant….. something else is going on.

      And thats what I explained.

      I know you can read words, but do you ever think long enough to pull together what all the words added up actually mean?

      People who blame the voters are assholes. They might also be stupid, or shills, or self centered or whatever===but they are all assholes. OH===they might also be uninformed or misinformed as well.

      But when you read the truth and continue to think the lie, then you are just an asshole. Probably lazy more than stupid?

      Ha, ha.

      Just Look.

      • greyangel says:

        Did you really just spout all that crap? Really? I’ll be looking for you on the next Republican ballot.

        Ignoring basic facts and substituting opinion seems to be a Republican trademark. Thanks for reminding me why I really don’t want to follow this garbage.

    • MikeN says:

      It’s not bobo, it’s baaabo

      • Gwad his own self says:

        “I’m on the lamb but I ain’t no sheep”.

        -Sandy Pearlman, Alan Bouchard, Eric Bloom

        • bobbo, we think with words, and flower with ideas says:

          HA! Back when Napster was my thing, one day a band member of BOC was on line and we chatted. He was bummed out with his life. All the money they made had been stolen by the record producers and he was left to teach music in High School.

          Sheep or not, most of us get led to the slaughter… eh wot?

          Gwad—you could love us a little bit less? – – – Please?

  19. Kevin Baker says:

    I agree with former Presidential candidate Patrick J. Buchanan on almost nothing except this:

    “Both major parties represent two wings of the same bird of prey.”

  20. honeyman says:

    If its any consolation, we have the same easily led sheep destroying the country over here in Oz.

    4 legs good – 2 legs bad – baaaaaaaaaaaaaah

    • jpfitz says:

      Thank you for the clip. One of my favourite films.

      It appears most industrialized country’s have the right left problem only to be realized as a single bird of prey.

  21. jpfitz says:

    This polarization is a part of the journalism machine we now have in this country. Wealthy, powerful people and corporations need their message shouted at the public for many reasons. Imagine… psyops now a “normal” insidious procedure performed on unsuspecting U.S. citizens. The one side of a population is fed a message fitting their belief system. The opposing populace also fed messages in step with their beliefs. The result is your liberties taken or given up for some odd sense of security.

  22. orchidcup says:

    Critical thinking has gone the way of the dodo.

    Critical thinking is in the eye of the beholder.

  23. orchidcup says:

    That sharpening divide is reflected in the way voters assess presidents and political parties.

    Voters are not famous for critical thinking.

    Ninety percent of Democrats have a favorable opinion of President Obama; 80% of Republicans have an unfavorable one.

    What is shocking about this statistic is 1 out of 5 Republicans have a favorable opinion of a Democrat president.

    Eighty-three percent of Republicans have a favorable opinion of former president George W. Bush; 76% of Democrats have an unfavorable one.

    Even more shocking is the revelation that 1 out of 4 Democrats have a favorable opinion of George W. Bush.

    Maybe what is needed is a third party for independent voters.

    • bobbo, we think with words, and flower with ideas says:

      Good comment “but” it only further demonstrates how the analytical candidate will “know his district(s)” and how they have been gerrymandered to what effect: is it better to go to the base and get out the vote, or go to the middle and suppress the vote, run a third party candidate that fools like ((you know!)) favor so much to corrupt any real choice…. and so forth.

      Win, you always praise “the voters.”

      Lose, you can blame all sorts of issues like the voters, the media, the opposition, not getting your message out, etc.

      Its all very mechanical.

  24. MikeN says:

    As a reminder to pro-pot advocates… your options in political parties are actually these: you can vote for a Republican, which means that you’ll get at best someone who publicly despises pot use and will grumble like hell and grudgingly comply whenever it gets pointed out to him that the Tenth Amendment applies to state laws that he doesn’t like, too. Or you can vote for a Democrat, which means that you’ll get at best someone who gives you a friendly wink about pot, then send in a SWAT team to no-knock your house, terrify your kids, and shoot your dog because they don’t give an [expletive deleted] about the Tenth Amendment and they think that camera-loving War on Some Drugs paramilitary actions make them look like tough guys. Or you can vote for a Libertarian, which means that you’ll get a Democrat.


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