Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Bogus Stats

Ever watch "Fox and Friends"? It's one of the weirdest shows on cable. It's on the Fox News Channel, so it likes to pretend that it's a balanced news show, but really it's the Joe Franklin quality Today Show wannabee with a right wing bias.

I watch the show sometimes the same way one looks at a car accident. Anyway they highlighted one of these bogus polls, expressing shock that more Americans knew the ingredients to a Big Mac than they knew the ten commandments in the Bible.

Now why the shock? We are supposed to be a secular capitalist society, so on the face of that, it's not a shame. We are not putting religion before commerce. This is the same channel that talked about financial opportunities in the wake of Hurricane Katrina.

Second, the ingredients in the Big Mac were part of a very successful ad campaign for the largest food corporation that ran for decades in a mantra like fashion. It involves a mere 15 words using modern language in a staccato style designed for easy memory. The Ten Commandments on the other hand was written well over two thousand years and was presented in at least two languages before being translated in English about 600 years ago. It is different depending on what denomination is being practiced. Some have the first 3 commandments devoted to God, others have the first 4. The commandment uses words like covet and consecrete that almost no one uses in normal every day conversation. They uses terms like Bear False Witness instead of lies. They refer to keeping the Sabbath instead of going to church or temple. Even the most devout church goer has probably heard the Big Mac commercial more times in his life.

You can read off the ingredients of the Big Mac three times in 30 seconds. Even that guy from the Fed Ex commercials from the 80's can't read the Ten Commandments in that short period of time.

Now, since this America and our laws are under the constitution. The fact that people don't know the Bill of Rights is a little disturbing. I wonder if fox would have the guts to compare whether people know more about the Constitution or the Ten Commandments. What woule their conclusion be?

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