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Monday, February 03, 2014

The Liberal Democrats and Science Fiction

There is a fascinating post over on the YouGov website speculating about the correlation between voting Liberal Democrat and an interest in science fiction.

They say that It all started in May last year, when they ran a survey on Star Wars and Star Trek:

Asked which series they prefer, the country as a whole narrowly prefers Star Wars (29% to 27%). But Liberal Democrat supporters buck the trend, with 36% preferring Star Trek and 20% preferring Star Wars.

The following month we ran a survey on Doctor Who and noticed that while 31% of Brits take an interest in the programme, this rises to 41% among Liberal Democrats. So far, it could just be an anomaly.

But then we started looking things up in the Cube (which happily is also the name of a Sci Fi Film). Time and time again the Liberal Democrats appeared as the most correlated political party for Sci-Fi related topics (try searching for things in the search box above). Movies like The Matrix, Blade Runner, Alien, The Fifth Element, Stargate, Back to the Future and Close Encounters of the Third Kind and sci fi classic books like Hitchhikers’ Guide to the Galaxy, Dune and I Robot – ALL show positive correlations to support for the Lib Dems.

In order to be certain, we then ran an analysis of the 100 TV programmes that are most particularly favoured by supporters of each of the three main parties. Sure enough, while only 2 of Conservative voters’ and 6 of Labour voters’ top 100 TV shows are related to science, science fiction or the supernatural, it is 17 of the Lib Dem top 100. The full results will be published next week, but in case you’re wondering the list includes Doctor Who, Red Dwarf, Futurama, Being Human, Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Tomorrow’s World.

I am personally very excited about these findings but less so about their conclusion. They ask:

Is this evidence of the Liberal Democrat ability to think big, and imagine a better world in the future? Is it true that “Science Fiction is a crutch for people who can’t handle reality”? Or is it the other way round…

It is the big picture stuff of course.
Tomorrow's World does not really fit in that list.
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