Politicians, pollsters and interest groups have spent a lot of time and money this year searching for just the right message on health-care reform. But what if the answer was right in front of their twitching, irritated noses?
Last May, University of Michigan psychologists Spike W.S. Lee and Norbert Schwarz sent an experimenter out to shopping malls and downtown business areas to see if people would rather have the federal government spend $1.3 billion on the production of flu vaccines, or $1.3 billion to create "green" jobs. The experimenter got responses from about 50 people. In about half the cases, she coughed and sneezed once before handing over the questionnaire. In the other instances, she simply handed the form over.
The result: Of the people who had just witnessed a sneeze up close and personal, 47.8 percent said that $1.3 billion should be spent on vaccine development. Of the people who had not been a party to the sneeze, 16.7 percent thought flu vaccines were the way to go.
Posted by: AronB | November 4, 2009 4:20 PM | Report abuse
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