According to an extremely useful poll reported in today's NY Times, Hillary Clinton supporters like white wine and Fig Newtons (not necessarily in that order), the elitist palates of Obama backers gravitate more towards granola and lattes, and McCain voters steer their walkers towards the grease pile that is stuffed crust pizza. I know what you're thinking: Wow. Isn't this just another dumb poll that doesn't amount to anything? Yes. More specifically, it's called "microtargeting" and it's mega-annoying. (See what I did there?)
The idea is that in the brand-driven United States, what we buy and how we spend our free time is a good predictor of our politics…Once they find small groups of like-minded people, campaigns can efficiently send customized phone, e-mail or direct mail messages to potential supporters, avoiding inefficient one-size-fits-all mailings. Pockets of support that might have gone unnoticed can be ferreted out.
This might explain that McCain mailer you got about how the candidate likes to think about policy while diving into a heaping bowl of Fiber One every morning. Something had to explain that non-existent mailer, right?
So what does all this mean? Like most polls, it pretty much means nothing. It's just another way to parse people into ever smaller, ever more meaningless categories based on the opinions of a miniscule sliver of the population dumb (and/or bored) enough to say "Yes," when they answer the phone and someone says, "Would you mind answering a few questions for a poll?" Ultimately polls like this exist just to ensure that Obama's "What's up with the increasing price of Arugula these days? Am I right?" speech will fall upon receptive ears.
But who cares if Republicans drink more Dr. Pepper and Democrats love Sprite? Do people get into fights over which soft drink is superior? No, not really. But they do get into very heated discussions about the contestants on reality competitions. Where is the political microtargeting for that?
It starts here.
I conducted a highly unscientific, thoroughly informal poll of Onion staffers to determine, once and for all, if there is any correlation between which Top Chef contestants you like and hate, and which presidential candidate you are voting for. Below are the results:
Amongst Obama supporters, Stephanie was the clear favorite, which is ironic because she's at the center of the whole "will there ever be a female Top Chef winner?" debacle that is currently cleaving the country in two.
Respondents appreciated Stephanie's "modest" "nice," and "lack of" personality, as well as, "Maybe that she's sort of a cipher that I can project all of my hopes and dreams on."
As for Obama supporters' least favorite, Spike (aka I'm Wearing A Hat) inspired the most vitriol ("I hate Spike. I hate his fucking hats and his fucking attitude.")
But Richard Faux-Hawk was a close second ("Looks like a tree frog. Shall I continue?").
What does this mean for Obama? Never wear a hat. Try not to have a personality. (So far so good. ZING!)
Clinton supporters were split evenly between Richard Faux-Hawk and Mark (aka the Kiwi) for their favorite.
Respondents reported that Richard "seems like a capable cook despite the faux-hawk" and that Mark "has an accent."
As for their least favorite, Clinton supporters chose Lisa by an overwhelming margin.
Why? A few cited something about her being "fucking annoying," but most negatively referred to her eyebrow ring as the spring from which their hatred swelled.
Clearly, Hillary should find a way propose anti-eyebrow-ring legislation in a New Zealand accent during the debate tonight in order to play to her Lisa-hating, Mark-loving base.
Not surprisingly considering that this poll was conducted at a satirical newspaper which is part of the liberal-run media, none of the respondents would admit to supporting John McCain.
But I think that McCain voters would probably love Erik.
Why? At 38, he's the oldest contestant. Unfortunately, though, he's off the show now, so McCain probably shouldn't mention Top Chef at all, and stick to talking about how Stuffed Crust pizza should be higher in fiber, which would probably go over really well with his supporters.