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Abraham Lincoln
The most popular man in America

Rare if not unique among pollsters, Public Policy Polling tries not to take itself too seriously. Their latest attempt to inject some levity into the often brittle world of opinion surveys is quite inspired:

Last month PPP found that Green Bay Packers Quarterback Aaron Rodgers was viewed favorably by 89% of voters in Wisconsin, a record high level of popularity in all our polling across the country. It got us to wondering—can anyone top that? So on our national poll last weekend we tested a bunch of figures with near universal appeal in order to find an answer to that question.

The answer is yes!

Two people managed to beat Rodgers by exceeding the 90% mark for popularity. Abraham Lincoln is seen positively by 91% of Americans, compared to only 2% with an unfavorable opinion. And Jesus Christ has a 90% favorability rating with only 3% of voters seeing him in a negative light. With Republicans, Jesus is at a 96/0 spread, which suffice it to say is a first in our polling.

I'm honestly surprised that Lincoln polls so well, given the long-lingering resentments in certain parts of the country over the Civil War. That he narrowly beats out Jesus, well, that's pretty impressive stuff!

Everyone else PPP tested failed to meet the lofty "Aaron Rodgers line":

• George Washington (86-3)
• Mother Theresa (83-5)
• Martin Luther King (74-10)
• Santa Claus (67-13)
• Nelson Mandela (64-26)
• Mahatma Ghandi (64-27)
• Steve Jobs (62-10)

Check out Tom Jensen's post for some interesting insights into the crosstabs on each of these famous figures. For instance, 75 percent of Republicans like Santa while only 61 percent of Democrats do. How much do you wanna bet Bill O'Reilly will find a way to use this as evidence of his imagined "War on Christmas"?

Anyhow, do you think anyone could beat Lincoln—or Jesus? Let's hear suggestions in comments!

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Comment Preferences

  •  and you'd think that during this time of year, (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    enhydra lutris, supercereal

    Santa would come in as number 1.  well just as real of a myth as you know who (not Honest Abe)

    Show me a politician that doesn't want to gain, and/or hold onto power, and I'll show you one who can't get elected.

    by HarryParatestis on Sat Nov 26, 2011 at 09:51:00 AM PST

    •  What I don't get... (11+ / 0-)

      ...is why Republicans like him so much.

      I mean, here's a guy who has a beard and a red (Lenin!) snowsuit (hippie!) riding around on a sleigh pulled by reindeer (carbon-free flying instead of a gas-guzzling SUV, that envirofreak), coming down people's chimneys (private property rights be damned) and giving kids presents, for free (they should get a JOB if they want toys, the little freeloaders). And while he's got a naughty/nice list in theory, have you ever heard of a kid actually getting a lump of coal? Because I never have. So he's telling kids that they're all nice - and they didn't have to do anything to earn it!

      I mean, yeah, there are things they can like about him - I'm sure the elves aren't unionized - but for the most part, Santa is a dirty commie.

      "When I give food to the poor, they call me a saint. When I ask why the poor have no food, they call me a communist." --Dom Helder Camara, archbishop of Recife

      by JamesGG on Sat Nov 26, 2011 at 10:04:02 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  They like him because he is impossible n/t (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Setsuna Mudo

        Democrats must
        Earn the trust
        Of the 99% --
        That's our intent!

        "I love this goddamn country, and we're going to take it back." -- Saul Alinksy OCcupy!

        by Seneca Doane on Sat Nov 26, 2011 at 10:06:22 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  they like Jesus for the same reason... (4+ / 0-)

          which brings me to an observation.  A good number of Republicans worship Jesus, Santa, and Millionaires.  I guess they like worshipping all that they can never have, or never be.

          Show me a politician that doesn't want to gain, and/or hold onto power, and I'll show you one who can't get elected.

          by HarryParatestis on Sat Nov 26, 2011 at 10:34:55 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  Ignorance must be Bliss! (9+ / 0-)

            Given Lincoln's greatest fears, it is surprising that they like him at all!

            "I see in the near future a crisis approaching that unnerves me and causes me to tremble for the safety of my country. . . . corporations have been enthroned and an era of corruption in high places will follow, and the money power of the country will endeavor to prolong its reign by working upon the prejudices of the people until all wealth is aggregated in a few hands and the Republic is destroyed."

            ----- U.S. President Abraham Lincoln, Nov. 21, 1864 (letter to Col. William F. Elkins) Ref: The Lincoln Encyclopedia, Archer H. Shaw (Macmillan, 1950, NY)

      •  It's pure redistribution of wealth (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Amber6541, Setsuna Mudo, grover

        Santa even goes to (gasp) Cuba.

        •  I suppose there's another pro-GOP point. (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          quaoar

          I mean, Santa really only visits Christian kids, or the kids of non-religious folks who still celebrate Christmas because they're in historically or culturally-Christian nations.

          I could see how Republicans like that religiously-exclusive aspect (and for the Jewish kids, to get in the "Judeo-" part of "Judeo-Christian," there's always Hanukkah Harry).

          "When I give food to the poor, they call me a saint. When I ask why the poor have no food, they call me a communist." --Dom Helder Camara, archbishop of Recife

          by JamesGG on Sat Nov 26, 2011 at 10:41:18 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

        •  Don't worry about xmas socialism. (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          quaoar

          The GOP will privatize the north pole - after they get done drilling it.  Future Christmases will be available to paid subscribers only.

      •  Besides if he gave them coal (0+ / 0-)

        That would be worth a TON, seeing how expensive energy is nowadays.

        15 years old and a proud progressive and Phillies phan.

        by vidanto on Sat Nov 26, 2011 at 01:11:34 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  He's watching those kids 24/7; (0+ / 0-)

        so he must have a sophisticated network of surveillance equipment.

        And there's no "anti-terrorism" system that GOP-ers don't like.

        © grover


        So if you get hit by a bus tonight, would you be satisfied with how you spent today, your last day on earth? Live like tomorrow is never guaranteed, because it's not.

        by grover on Sat Nov 26, 2011 at 04:24:15 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  Where does (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    annieli, Amber6541, Setsuna Mudo

    Karl Marx rate?

    "Knowledge speaks, but wisdom listens." -Jimi Hendrix

    by Four of Nine on Sat Nov 26, 2011 at 09:53:30 AM PST

  •  27% (11+ / 0-)

    unfavorable for Ghandi? That's weird.

    I wanted Obama the community organizer. I got Obama the Wall Street lawyer.

    by Van Buren on Sat Nov 26, 2011 at 09:55:43 AM PST

  •  where is FDR? n/t (5+ / 0-)

    Catch St. Louis' progressive talk show, The Murdock Report, every Tuesday @ noon! Stream or download it: www.wgnu920am.com I do the twit thing too @SmokinJoesTruth

    by Da Rat Bastid on Sat Nov 26, 2011 at 09:56:41 AM PST

  •  sigh. (4+ / 0-)

    Someone who probably never existed is super popular. I wish I lived on another planet.

    [insert pithy sigline here]

    by terrypinder on Sat Nov 26, 2011 at 09:57:01 AM PST

    •  Abe Lincoln never existed? (4+ / 0-)

      Oh, maybe you are talking about Jesus.  Of course there is no disagreement among historians that "Jesus of Nazareth" was a real person in first century Palestine.  Whether any of the supernatural claims (e. g. vigin birth, miracles, resurrection, Son of God) are true is something history cannot evaluate.

      So I see only tatters of clearness through a pervading obscurity - Annie Dillard -6.88, -5.33

      by illinifan17 on Sat Nov 26, 2011 at 10:05:47 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  i could have been (5+ / 0-)

        Talking about Santa.

        I was the kindergartner who told everyone he wasn't real and apparently ruined a few xmases.

        [insert pithy sigline here]

        by terrypinder on Sat Nov 26, 2011 at 10:12:50 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  Really? (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        AoT, Setsuna Mudo, enhydra lutris

        No disagreement at all? Not even one?

        "A conservative is a man with two perfectly good legs who, however, has never learned how to walk forward." - Franklin D. Roosevelt

        by Moon Mop on Sat Nov 26, 2011 at 10:32:43 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  No serious historians that I am aware of - if you (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Juliann, grover

          have citations, feel free to share.

          Note I said "serious historians."

          Is it true? Is it kind? Is it necessary? . . . and respect the dignity of every human being.

          by Wee Mama on Sat Nov 26, 2011 at 10:57:37 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

        •  The Christianity is strong here... (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          enhydra lutris

          I've learned it's best to just give the internet version of a polite smile and move on to the next thread.

          Yami Yugi: Wait a minute! Did you just summon a bunch of monsters in one turn? Seto Kaiba: Yeah. So? Yami: That's against the rules, isn't it? Kaiba: Screw the rules, I have money! — Episode 1, Yu-Gi-Oh! The Abridged Series

          by Setsuna Mudo on Sat Nov 26, 2011 at 11:35:51 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  I have seen the notion put forward that there (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Bronx59, grover

            was no historical person behind Jesus, and that a myth grew up in a couple of decades. I haven't seen what I would consider a serious argument for that case.

            The strong consensus about an historical person behind Jesus extends to Jewish and atheist historians so it is hardly an aberration of deluded minds. If you have a serious source for his non-existence go ahead and share it.

            One small example (of many) of historical roots: if you compare the personal names of all the Jewish people in the canonical gospels to a datebase for all Palestinian Jewish personal names 100 BCE to 100 CE, the frequencies of the names correspond. The Jewish communities in Antioch and Alexandria (to name just two) had different preferred names (just as you might make a reasonable guess as to where Billy Bob came from, compared to Thaddeus: assign one of them to Texas and one of them to New Hampshire). The likelihood that a gentile writing in 90 CE in, say, Rome could accidentally hit on those name frequencies is negligible.

            Is it true? Is it kind? Is it necessary? . . . and respect the dignity of every human being.

            by Wee Mama on Sat Nov 26, 2011 at 12:29:18 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  You should realize that, regardless of the (0+ / 0-)

              historicity of Jebus and the support of biblical scholars for that thesis, you are trucking out a pair of fallacies:

              argumentum ad verecundiam &
              argumentum ad ignorantiam

              That, in its essence, is fascism--ownership of government by an individual, by a group, or by any other controlling private power. -- Franklin D. Roosevelt --

              by enhydra lutris on Sat Nov 26, 2011 at 04:22:44 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

              •  I have encountered arguments for the mythical (0+ / 0-)

                Jesus; I have not found them convincing. If that is argumentum ad ignorantiam, so be it (but I don't think that is what is usually meant by it).

                The authorities I referred to are historians so that is not an inappropriate use of authority. Argumentum ad verecundiam is usually used to refer to

                an appeal to authority, but on a topic outside of the authority's expertise or on a topic on which the authority is not disinterested (i.e., is biased).

                We were discussing a historical claim (Did Jesus exist?) so historians are the relevant authorities, and I mentioned that Jewish and atheist historians concur in his existence and they would if anything have a stake in his non-existence.

                Is it true? Is it kind? Is it necessary? . . . and respect the dignity of every human being.

                by Wee Mama on Sat Nov 26, 2011 at 04:37:04 PM PST

                [ Parent ]

                •  The authorities you refer to are not simple (1+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  Debby

                  "historians", they are bible historians. There is a difference. Far from all historians agree with their thesis, but they, who almost all have an interest in the matter, agree with each other.

                  Argumentum ad ignorantiam is "there is an invisible tea-cup orbiting the earth. I know because I and others have asserted this many times over the decades and nobody has yet been able to satisfactorily disprove it."  In short, failure  to disprove something not only doesn't prove it, it isn't even evidence in favor of it.

                  That, in its essence, is fascism--ownership of government by an individual, by a group, or by any other controlling private power. -- Franklin D. Roosevelt --

                  by enhydra lutris on Sat Nov 26, 2011 at 05:17:36 PM PST

                  [ Parent ]

        •  Most historians of da bible agree that there was (0+ / 0-)

          probably an itinerant preacher of some sort with a name that can convert into Jebus.

          That, in its essence, is fascism--ownership of government by an individual, by a group, or by any other controlling private power. -- Franklin D. Roosevelt --

          by enhydra lutris on Sat Nov 26, 2011 at 04:19:34 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

      •  Nonsense (0+ / 0-)

            There is absolutely no mention of Jesus of Nazareth in any early 1st Century histories or records. The first historical references to him were written about 30 years after the time he is supposed to have died.

      •  Really? (0+ / 0-)

        Did Jesus exist?

        Did Jesus really exist?

        I'm not saying these folk are CORRECT, but there seems to be some argument about it.

        Founder Math and Statistics Geeks . Statistics for progressives

        by plf515 on Sat Nov 26, 2011 at 11:00:56 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Recent scholarship has located the canonical (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Bronx59, grover

          gospels in the genre of Graeco-Roman biography (or βιοι). This is an excellent source, at once quite readable and also solid scholarship. It addresses most of the points in the first link you gave.

          Paul's undisputed letters date from the early and mid fifties. The "no historical Jesus" hypothesis has to account for the intricate elaboration and invention of a considerable body of interconnected stories and personalities in less than three decades. It is more parsimonious to suppose that Paul, Peter, James and so on were historical individuals and by implication Jesus was as well.

          Demanding personal artifacts and contemporaneous written accounts for an individual of this period is anachronistic. Such standards (which may be reasonable for people in the past two centuries) would make most classical individuals mythical as well.

          Is it true? Is it kind? Is it necessary? . . . and respect the dignity of every human being.

          by Wee Mama on Sat Nov 26, 2011 at 01:12:00 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  Of course, there was a lot of agreement, at the (0+ / 0-)

            time, about Mitra, so he too must have been real.  The reality is that there is no need to "account for a considerable body of interconnected stories", for that is the very nature of myth, fable and gossip. As tales spread they are interpreted and embellished. The difference with religion is that you don't get both Iphegenia at Taurus and Iphegenia at Aulus", because one or the other must be heresy and must be blotted from memory and record.

            Demanding personal artifacts and contemporaneous written accounts for an individual of this period is anachronistic.

            No, not at all.  One can rely upon secondary evidence, but that doesn't mean that real evidence is somehow "anachronistic". We have personal artifacts and contemporaneous accounts for much earlier personages.

            That, in its essence, is fascism--ownership of government by an individual, by a group, or by any other controlling private power. -- Franklin D. Roosevelt --

            by enhydra lutris on Sat Nov 26, 2011 at 04:36:41 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  If you require that to believe in someone's (0+ / 0-)

              existence, Alexander the Great did not exist. We do occasionally have those (Caesar wrote the Gallic Wars) but it is the exception and not the rule.

              There is a major contrast in the diffusion of the Mithra stories and the ones about Jesus. Those about Mithra have no particular time frame and no related crowd of ordinary people around him. The letters of Paul place a time marker as a terminus ad quem, and the various minor people like Peter, Paul, James and John have a particularity and earthiness that is not found in myths.

              Is it true? Is it kind? Is it necessary? . . . and respect the dignity of every human being.

              by Wee Mama on Sat Nov 26, 2011 at 04:42:56 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

              •  So the evidence for Jebus is as good as the (0+ / 0-)

                evidence for Alexander? Good to know. And you claim that there are no contemporary records relating to Alexander and/or his activities? Does that include inscriptions, coins, fragments and the like?

                That, in its essence, is fascism--ownership of government by an individual, by a group, or by any other controlling private power. -- Franklin D. Roosevelt --

                by enhydra lutris on Sat Nov 26, 2011 at 06:03:13 PM PST

                [ Parent ]

        •  This wikipedia article does a respectable job of (0+ / 0-)

          summarizing the case for and against a mythical Jesus. It also includes the historical background for it.

          Is it true? Is it kind? Is it necessary? . . . and respect the dignity of every human being.

          by Wee Mama on Sat Nov 26, 2011 at 01:29:31 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

  •  91% approve of a socialist??? There's Hope !!!! (13+ / 0-)

    Quoting Mr Lincoln:

    "Labor is prior to, and independent of, capital. Capital is only the fruit of labor, and could never have existed if labor had not first existed. Labor is the superior of capital, and deserves much the higher consideration. Capital has its rights, which are as worthy of protection as any other rights. "

    "These capitalists generally act harmoniously and in concert, to fleece the people. "

    "Now watch what you say or they'll be calling you a radical, a liberal, a fanatical criminal" -- Logical Song -- Rick Davies & Roger Hodgson

    by Over50Lib on Sat Nov 26, 2011 at 09:57:30 AM PST

  •  Lucky for Abe that Minnesota license plates (0+ / 0-)

    don't read "The Land of Lincoln"

    "In a nation ruled by swine, all pigs are upwardly mobile." Hunter S. Thompson

    by Keith930 on Sat Nov 26, 2011 at 09:58:00 AM PST

  •  Because The Poll Tallied Results For... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Amber6541, enhydra lutris

    a fictional charcter, I question if the results are truly accurate.

    Where did Bart Simpson, GI Joe, and Captain Kirk come in?

    •  James T. Kirk kicks more ass & gets more girls (7+ / 0-)

      than ANY of those guys. He should definitely rate higher (even though I prefer Picard but since he's a French guy played by an English guy that automatically makes him commie & gay in Repuke world, thus affecting his rating).

      A village can not reorganize village life to suit the village idiot.

      by METAL TREK on Sat Nov 26, 2011 at 10:16:05 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Why just men, huh? (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Debby

      I bet that Barbie gets a lot of votes. She's a pretty blond who is a trained doctor, veterinarian, pilot and a teacher; she has TONS of nice stuff, and other than that kind of clingy guy that hangs out, but she's never gotten really serious with -- Ken -- she has no baggage. So she's ready to go for fun adventures with little notice.

      Wonder Woman is quite fascinating too. But with her lasso of truth, she's going to be hard to be friends with."Sorry, Diana. I can't meet you for dinner. I have to wash my dog. ...AUGH! Errghhh! I dont' like being with you. You're obsessive and demand too much attention. And you're a maniac flying your invisible plane!"  

      Ok Wonder Woman may not get a lot of votes.

      © grover


      So if you get hit by a bus tonight, would you be satisfied with how you spent today, your last day on earth? Live like tomorrow is never guaranteed, because it's not.

      by grover on Sat Nov 26, 2011 at 04:42:08 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  as a Wisconsinite (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    scribeboy, Amber6541

    I can attest to the fact that Aaron Rogers is wildly popular here.  He's all over TV in advertisements for everything from trucks to law offices.  He'd have to do something horribly illegal/immoral (or lose an awful lot of games) to shake himself off of the pedestal that WI bestows on Packer quarterbacks. His "aw shucks" humility and good looks have served him well.

    •  If I see another State Farm commercial though... (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      grover

      he might lose a few favorability points with me.  Discount double check (sigh)...Aaron's not very believable in the ad.

      However, the crazed Packer fan at the end?  Absolutely believable.

  •  Who the hell are the 11% in (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Wee Mama

    Wisconsin who do not view Aaron Rodgers positively?  I mean, even if you are a Bears fan, you still have to like the guy.

    So I see only tatters of clearness through a pervading obscurity - Annie Dillard -6.88, -5.33

    by illinifan17 on Sat Nov 26, 2011 at 10:00:54 AM PST

  •  Did they test the Beatles? :) (11+ / 0-)

    Given who they were bigger than, back in the day... :)

  •  Did they tesy anyone who (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Setsuna Mudo

    Is important, like Jesse?

  •  What Happened To Saint Ronnie Of The Raygun? (4+ / 0-)

    I bet he - the fictionalized version - would outpoll Jesus among the R's.

    •  They tested him a while back (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      majcmb1

      when they were polling the popularity of former Presidents, I don't remember what he got, I think he was slightly less popular than Clinton (but still a little over 60% approval). It's really hard for a partisan politician to clean up with the opposite side of the aisle.

      Yami Yugi: Wait a minute! Did you just summon a bunch of monsters in one turn? Seto Kaiba: Yeah. So? Yami: That's against the rules, isn't it? Kaiba: Screw the rules, I have money! — Episode 1, Yu-Gi-Oh! The Abridged Series

      by Setsuna Mudo on Sat Nov 26, 2011 at 11:39:39 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  I have a positive view of everyone on that list. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Amber6541

    So, do I have no taste?

    So I see only tatters of clearness through a pervading obscurity - Annie Dillard -6.88, -5.33

    by illinifan17 on Sat Nov 26, 2011 at 10:08:26 AM PST

  •  Big fan of Jesus the Christ (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Amber6541

    and, in fact, us Budis-jin have held him in high regard literally for centuries.  He's had a revered place in Buddhist texts from Nepal to Rangoon to Nagano.

    Haven't seen much of the real Jesus the Christ recently, however.  Wonder where he's gone to ?

    'You want a job, don't you?' - Herman "Koch" Cain, "The Audacity of Grope"

    by thenekkidtruth on Sat Nov 26, 2011 at 10:08:47 AM PST

    •  Jesus is liked but his teachings ignored (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Amber6541

      From Share International April 2000:
      Q. Where is Jesus?
      A. The great teacher who was Jesus in Palestine 2,000 years ago has been living in Rome . . . He is in charge of the Christian churches wherever they are found. When the Pope has made the sudden discovery, as recently reported, that Heaven and Hell reside in the human consciousness and are nothing to do with specific places — as people for 2,000 years have been taught by the Christian churches — it is a sign that the Pope benefits from the impression of the Master Jesus behind him.

      From Share International December 1990:

      Q. You say that the Master Jesus is now living in Rome. (1) Is He incarnated through birth? (2) If yes, how old is He in His present form? (3) Did He have full knowledge of His identity and mission from the moment of birth?
      A. (1) Yes. (2) He is in a Syrian body which is 653 years old. (3) Not quite from birth but from age nine years.

      Jesus also appears in guise all the time to people all around the world as well as manifesting blessings to people.

      The sad thing is that so many people like Jesus, but do not care to follow his teachings as is vividly demonstrated in the Christian fundamentalist community.  If it was otherwise, Jesus would already be out in the open and anyone who wanted to see him in person would have that opportunity.

    •  All from the mouth of Lord Gautama, no doubt. (0+ / 0-)

      That, in its essence, is fascism--ownership of government by an individual, by a group, or by any other controlling private power. -- Franklin D. Roosevelt --

      by enhydra lutris on Sat Nov 26, 2011 at 05:01:40 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  That is: "Aaron Rodgers line" in WI (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Wee Mama

    I asked around and I got "Who is that?" from most non-football fans.

  •  Mother Teresa was hardly an admirable figure. (5+ / 0-)

    She arguably caused more individuals more pain and suffering than not in her quest for sainthood.

    •  substitutionary atonement ... not just for Jesus (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      enhydra lutris

      Mother Theresa pretty much believed that the starving Indian slumdwellers were not only getting fast-tracked to heaven, but that they were also earning spiritual brownie points for all of humanity.  Alleviating their suffering would have been missing the point.

      Do you know why they call it the American Dream? Because it only happens when you're asleep.

      by Visceral on Sat Nov 26, 2011 at 11:00:44 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  absolutely (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      PSzymeczek, grover


      Christ's commandment was "feed the poor, HEAL the sick" not 'take money from believers to build churches and convert the dying lepers while letting them die.'  No wonder she lost her faith: she wasn't great at taking basic directions with an evangelical mission to expand the church on the backs of dying Indians.  Her cozy relationship with Baby Doc is another travesty that her proponents would rather minimize.

      "Kossacks are held to a higher standard. Like Hebrew National hot dogs." - blueaardvark

      by louisev on Sat Nov 26, 2011 at 11:00:55 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  I've never heard that (0+ / 0-)

      80 % of success is JUST SHOWING UP! Tin Soldiers & Nixon's Coming, We're Finally on our own...

      by Churchill on Sat Nov 26, 2011 at 01:08:54 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  But if Lincoln ran for president in the modern (7+ / 0-)

    Republican Party, he'd get run out of town. What with his propensity for heavy infrastructure spending, spending on schools, advocacy of a strong central government, support for labor over capital and policy of high protectionist tariffs.

    Especially protectionism. Lincoln absolutely DETESTED free trade. Lincoln imposed a 44% tariff(!!!) and used the money to finance the continental railroad.

    No way the modern Republican party would ever go for that now. Democrats either.

  •  I'm surprised Rodgers isn't higher in Wisconsin (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Wee Mama

    Seriously--he comes across as likeable, humble, and pleasant. He doesn't make controversial statements, he steers clear of religion and politics, and of course his play speaks for itself. There are still some Favre dead-enders who bear a grudge but their numbers are rapidly dwindling.

    Regarding Lincoln--great numbers, but who are the 2% who disapprove and for what reason? For freeing the slaves? For preserving the union? The crosstabs don't show a geographic breakdown--it would be interesting to see what Lincoln's approval is in the South compared to other regions.

    •  Hmmm (0+ / 0-)

      Those State Farm commercials Rodgers is in are awfully annoying.

      "Children lack morality, but they also lack fake morality." Mignon McLaughlin

      by djbender on Sat Nov 26, 2011 at 10:32:07 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  They still call the Civil War (0+ / 0-)

      "The War of Northern Aggression" in some parts of this country.

      There are National Parks Civil War sites where complaints about the fact that the confederate flag isn't flying (or placed next to the American flag in the auditorium) are a very common comment in the guest book, where visitors sign in.

      It really seems like folks really don't realize that the South lost, or they're resentful that we "Yankees" (those who acknowledge the results of the war) insist that it did. So I'm actually surprised that Lincoln polled as well as he did.

      I think that if he ran for office, he wouldn't carry parts of the south.

      © grover


      So if you get hit by a bus tonight, would you be satisfied with how you spent today, your last day on earth? Live like tomorrow is never guaranteed, because it's not.

      by grover on Sat Nov 26, 2011 at 04:53:09 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Obama had 70% approval, post 2008 election (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Amber6541, Setsuna Mudo

    and prior to inauguration.

    http://www.gallup.com/...

    PRINCETON, NJ -- Monday's White House meeting between President George W. Bush and President-elect Barack Obama presents a remarkable contrast between one of the least popular two-term presidents in modern times at the close of his administration, and one of the most popular candidates to win the presidency.

    According to Gallup Poll Daily tracking from Nov. 6-8, only 27% of Americans approve of the job Bush is doing as president. This contrasts with the 70% of Americans holding a favorable view of Obama.

    . . .

    Presidential transitions are always fascinating spectacles, but Monday's White House encounter between Bush and Obama promises to be especially so because of the historic aspect of the nation's first black president-elect taking a step closer to assuming the highest office. It will also be fascinating because of the sharp contrast between Bush and Obama in popularity. At no time in a half century -- and maybe more -- has a president as beleaguered in public opinion as Bush been replaced by someone so highly esteemed.

  •  Push Poll for GOP (0+ / 0-)

    WEST, ERNEST E.

    WETZEL, GARY GEORGE

    WILLIAMS, HERSHEL WOODROW

    or

    WAYNE, JOHN

    . . . from Julie, Julia. "Oh, well. Boo-hoo. Now what?"

    by 88kathy on Sat Nov 26, 2011 at 10:14:21 AM PST

  •  Republicans - faith versus facts (6+ / 0-)

    Lets see. Honest Abe.

    Fought a war to preserve the right of the Federal government to overrule individual states.

    Freed the slaves. Without compensating the wealthy Christian aristocrat former-owners.

    Instituted the first federal income tax!

    Republicans are so conditioned to just believe (not actually think) that, yes, its an article of faith that Lincoln is representative of modern Republicans and to be admired.  Same with that pro-environment, trust-busting Teddy Roosevelt (even though he got kicked out by the Republican hierarchy and eventually ran as an independent). Or that tax-raising, anti-MIC war hero Eisenhower.

  •  Will the SuperDuperChristians (0+ / 0-)

    with shit buckets attached to their necks so they can dip their noses in it now say that this proves that Tim Tebow is more popular than Aaron Rodgers?

  •  They forgot Walter Cronkite (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Amber6541

    Time was when Walter Cronkite was an automatic for these types of polls.  I'm not sure if he was called "the most trusted man in America" for any scientific (polling) reasons.  Perhaps that was an earlier era, but not quite so early as Lincoln (or Jesus)! I guess some icons have more staying power.

  •  This is how the Left should fight the idiotic (0+ / 0-)

    War on Christmas. Immediately put it into a context that shows the other person is a clown:

  •  Pretty high negatives for (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Amber6541

    Mandela and Ghandi..from both ends of the spectrum...

    Darn hippies and their stands on civil rights and peace!

    13% negative for Santa? Someone hasn't got the iPod they asked for yet...

  •  Since they included fictional characters... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Amber6541

    They should also poll Mickey Mouse, Bugs Bunny, Han Solo, Harry Potter, Captain Jack Sparrow, Snow White, Little Orphan Annie and Kung Fu Panda.

  •  Aaron Rodgers is only that popular (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    AoT, ActivistGuy, grover

    because the Packers are undefeated.

    If he chokes in the Super Bowl he'll be down there with Jon Huntsman.

    •  America loves a "winner" (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      quaoar

      far more than character or those other things we claim to prize.  Of course, once that "winner" stops winning, all of a sudden all they are is one bundle of character defects in the public eye.

      If you're not careful, the newspapers will have you hating the people who are being oppressed, and loving the people who are doing the oppressing. ~Malcolm X

      by ActivistGuy on Sat Nov 26, 2011 at 11:08:01 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Free Gifts/Handouts for Do-Nothing Kids Popular?? (0+ / 0-)

    Given the basic premise behind Santa Claus - giving away luxury items like toys to kids who probably don't work, and didn't do anything to warrant such a hand-out.  Free-loaders all!

    Deye mon, gen mon (Beyond mountains there are mountains - Haitian proverb)

    by ekeithj on Sat Nov 26, 2011 at 10:33:04 AM PST

  •  I'd bet the farm (0+ / 0-)

    that Jefferson Davis polls higher than Lincoln in the deep south.

    "Children lack morality, but they also lack fake morality." Mignon McLaughlin

    by djbender on Sat Nov 26, 2011 at 10:33:29 AM PST

  •  Mother Theresa (83-5)....really? (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    greeseyparrot, Amber6541

    People will believe anything told to them if a cult of personality is created.

    Reason number 6452 why if aliens exist I'm not surprised they don't want us to know.

    "A conservative is a man with two perfectly good legs who, however, has never learned how to walk forward." - Franklin D. Roosevelt

    by Moon Mop on Sat Nov 26, 2011 at 10:34:21 AM PST

  •  The tooth fairy would blow Santa Claus out of the (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    greeseyparrot, Amber6541

    water, IMHO.

    •  She doesn't pay well enough. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      ORDem

      Even though she comes more frequently, she doesn't fork over enough cash. And she doesn't have the PR machine that Santa does.

      I think TF finishes after the Easter Bunny, frankly.

      © grover


      So if you get hit by a bus tonight, would you be satisfied with how you spent today, your last day on earth? Live like tomorrow is never guaranteed, because it's not.

      by grover on Sat Nov 26, 2011 at 04:57:39 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Just how much do people who answer (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Amber6541

    these polls actually know about the people they say they approve or disapprove of ?  

    If someone walks up to you on the street and asks you to approve or disapprove of Lincoln or Jesus or Gandhi without any justification for your answer, what do say?

    Do they approve of the iconic Lincoln or do they really know that in spite of freeing the slaves, Lincoln was not a big fan of racial equality?  
    Is their Jesus the sanitized light brown, blue-eyed holy card guy or is the scruffy Jew of Roman occupied Judea?

    and which Santa Claus?  the one that was a Coca Cola promotion?  or the St Nick of "Twas the night before Christmas" ?  and do they know that Saint Nicholas became a gift giver by anonymously providing dowries for poor girls?

    I have a real problem with these polls because they seem to promote the Madison avenue approach to historical and symbolic people instead of honest approaches ...   It's like those polls on Congress... I happen to disapprove of everything that the Republicans in the House are doing, but I highly approve of everything Nancy Pelosi and Bernie Sanders and several others members of Congress are trying to do ...

    My poll:  Self, do you approve or disapprove of your grouchiness this morning?  Definitely disapprove, but on the other hand rather comfortable with ...

    Give your heart a real workout! Love your enemies!

    by moonbatlulu on Sat Nov 26, 2011 at 10:47:38 AM PST

  •  Lincoln was a Republican (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    greeseyparrot, Amber6541, bmcphail

    Normal people like him for "freeing the slaves" and winning the Civil War (but not the peace afterward; sometimes you'd think the South won the war!), but I'll bet his appeal to conservatives is based on his Republican party identification and their belief that he was Reagan before Reagan: the perfect conservative and the model Republican.  They believe that their movement and party hasn't deviated from Lincoln anymore than it's deviated from Reagan, and since he's part of the tribe, he simply must have been just like them and therefore good.

    Like with Jesus, conservatives are ignorant of the ideas and deeds behind the names.  I can imagine pollsters quizzing passerby "Who said this: Jesus or Karl Marx?" or the Old Testament vs. Hitler, and most Americans would not be able to tell the difference.  Lincoln/Jesus is good, therefore good is Lincoln/Jesus.

    Do you know why they call it the American Dream? Because it only happens when you're asleep.

    by Visceral on Sat Nov 26, 2011 at 10:49:25 AM PST

  •  I have no idea who Aaron Rodgers is (4+ / 0-)

    So I am guessing he is some sort of athlete.

    Now, let's check that guess in Google... Ah HA! Quarterback for the Packers. OKie Dokie.

    Founder Math and Statistics Geeks . Statistics for progressives

    by plf515 on Sat Nov 26, 2011 at 10:53:32 AM PST

    •  He was a Football player at Cal who then (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      plf515

      moved to one of those frozen wastelands up by the lakes. I think he's in advertising or something up there.

      That, in its essence, is fascism--ownership of government by an individual, by a group, or by any other controlling private power. -- Franklin D. Roosevelt --

      by enhydra lutris on Sat Nov 26, 2011 at 05:04:46 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Yeah, but answer truthfully: If you met Lincoln on (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Churchill

    a small, dark street at night would you reach out to shake his hand . . .  or run screaming in the opposite direction? (Take a look at that pic again) Jesus, Mahatma Gandhi or even Aaron Rodgers, no problem.

    David Koch, a teabagger and a teacher sit down at a table. There is a plate with a dozen cookies. Koch quickly stuffs 11 cookies into his pockets, leans toward the bagger and whispers "watch out, the union thug will try to steal your cookie".

    by Dave in AZ on Sat Nov 26, 2011 at 10:53:41 AM PST

  •  You forgot to mention that 'Yourself' beat out (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Amber6541, Churchill

    everyone else!

    93% positive and only 1% negative.

    Talk about an inflated opinion of ourselves.

  •  And I though the Beatles (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    PSzymeczek, Amber6541, Setsuna Mudo

    were more popular than Jesus.  

  •  FDR (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Amber6541, Setsuna Mudo, Churchill

    I wish they'd polled FDR. I'd like to see the party breakdown on that.

  •  Maybe a Kardashian? nt (0+ / 0-)

    If you're not careful, the newspapers will have you hating the people who are being oppressed, and loving the people who are doing the oppressing. ~Malcolm X

    by ActivistGuy on Sat Nov 26, 2011 at 11:03:56 AM PST

  •  Shocking Values! (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    xgy2, Amber6541, Setsuna Mudo

    Steve Jobs is seen as positively as Gandhi. Wow!

  •  How about Pepper-Spray Cop? (0+ / 0-)

    He seems pretty popular.

    If you're not careful, the newspapers will have you hating the people who are being oppressed, and loving the people who are doing the oppressing. ~Malcolm X

    by ActivistGuy on Sat Nov 26, 2011 at 11:08:41 AM PST

  •  I'd love to see them try and poll (0+ / 0-)

    for the LEAST popular reason; see if anyone can make Rod Blagojevich and Jerry Sandusky look like Jesus in comparison. For example, Hitler, Stalin, bin Laden, Kim Jong-il

    I mean, I can see why they wouldn't do it; a respected pollster calling people up and towards the end of the survey springing a "Do you have a favourable or unfavourable opinion of Adolf Hitler?" on them may be a bit...well, woah, especially for the sane, well-adjusted individuals out there who'll be like "what is the point of this?"

    But still...would be good for a laugh.

    British guy with a big interest in US politics.

    by General Goose on Sat Nov 26, 2011 at 11:52:03 AM PST

  •  John Lennon (0+ / 0-)

    jesus is a myth
    Mother Teresa was real but she was pure fiction

  •  Bond? (0+ / 0-)

    James Bond?

    The most violent element in society is ignorance.

    by Mr MadAsHell on Sat Nov 26, 2011 at 11:54:43 AM PST

  •  who doesn't like Santa Claus? seriously. (0+ / 0-)

    I would not be just a nuffin'. My head all full of stuffin'. My heart all full of pain. I would dance and be merry. Life would be a ding-a-derry. If I only had a brain. - Scarecrow

    by Anton Bursch on Sat Nov 26, 2011 at 12:38:45 PM PST

  •  It's the five dollar bill (0+ / 0-)
  •  "Ghandi"?? "GHANDI"????!?!???! (0+ / 0-)

    Jesus H. Christ, David, how fucking embarrassing is it for a front-paged post to misspell the man's name like a 5th grader (or a senior fellow at the Cato Institute)???

    FIX THIS!! NOW!!

    snarcolepsy, n: a condition in which the sufferer responds to any comment with a smartass comeback.

    by Uncle Cosmo on Sat Nov 26, 2011 at 12:53:13 PM PST

    •  (unless of course it's verbatim from the original (0+ / 0-)

      in which case I withdraw the vitriol--but Jeebus, man, at least put a [sic] in there so dK doesn't look like a confederacy of dunces...)

      snarcolepsy, n: a condition in which the sufferer responds to any comment with a smartass comeback.

      by Uncle Cosmo on Sat Nov 26, 2011 at 12:56:47 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  660000 dead in civil war, 2 million wounded (0+ / 0-)

    and there were about 50,000 civilians in the Confederacy that died due to the civil war, which includes direct and indirect deaths.  

    660,000 dead in a nation of 30 million, would be like 6 millios KILLED in today's 312 million USA.

    We were the only nation that ended slavery that also went to war to do that.

    No, I'm not a racist, just pointing out how devastating the Civil War was.

    Too bad Lincoln couldn't have used his diplomacy to bring the union back together, instead of war.

    80 % of success is JUST SHOWING UP! Tin Soldiers & Nixon's Coming, We're Finally on our own...

    by Churchill on Sat Nov 26, 2011 at 01:02:01 PM PST

  •  Hey, shoot me. I like all of those people on the (0+ / 0-)

    list.

    And Santa to me is a symbol: a great being overflowing with
    pure giving. He's expansive, optimistic, alive, energetic,
    getting a kick out of everything.

    Possibly my most favorite character in all of literature
    is the Spirit of Christmas Present in A Christmas Carol.
    He's full of the Santa spirit and to me is an infinitely delightful role model.  

    "...be still, and cry not aloud; for it is an unholy thing to boast over slain men." Odysseus, in Homer's Odyssey

    by Wildthumb on Sat Nov 26, 2011 at 01:03:01 PM PST

  •  I thought The Dollar would be #1 (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    dufffbeer

    15 years old and a proud progressive and Phillies phan.

    by vidanto on Sat Nov 26, 2011 at 01:11:02 PM PST

  •  Shocking that only 2% view President... (0+ / 0-)

    Lincoln unfavorably... the dixiecrats of the old confederacy refused to join the party of Lincoln until the mid-60's... surprising that so few still hold resentments about the Civil War.

    “I trust in God, but God wants to see us help ourselves by putting people back to work.” President Obama 11/2/11

    by BarackStarObama on Sat Nov 26, 2011 at 01:12:02 PM PST

  •  I parsed those numbers. 1/3rd of "very (0+ / 0-)

    conservative" respondents who, you know, knew who he is F'ING DISAPPROVE OF NELSON MAN-FREAKING-DELA! Can we call them the Party of I Hate  Black People now? Dumb teabaggers.

    15 years old and fighting like hell to make a difference, Tomorrowsprogressives.com

    by TomorrowsProgressives on Sat Nov 26, 2011 at 02:26:38 PM PST

  •  But how could anybody (0+ / 0-)

    who requires you earn health care, mocks you if you need help feeding, clothing and sheltering your family, and then mocks those who do help have anything but contempt for Jesus?

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