In the current issue of The Weekly Standard, Andrew Ferguson reflects on some poll results that are "more bewildering than they let on—not merely contradictory but nonsensical." He concludes:
A paradoxical people, these Americans: eager to have an incompetent government that they don’t trust do more of the things that they don’t want it to do.
So true, and strangely reminiscent of some recent SoonerPoll results here in Oklahoma. Nearly two-thirds of Oklahomans (65 percent) want to raise public school spending to the regional average, yet a nearly identical number (64 percent) don't think more money will cause students to learn more.
What to make of these sorts of contradictions? Ferguson, hearkening back Seymour Martin Lipset, calls them "inevitable artifacts of polling in a country where people are expected to have considered opinions even when they don't."