|"We're Still Having Fun, and You're Still the One."|
This must be kept in mind when we examine the two men who tied for a distant second: Pope Francis and Donald Trump.
Part of it may be simple exposure. President Obama pops into people's heads when they get the phone call from Gallup. Donald Trump and Pope Francis are also celebrities with a lot of exposure right now.
Yet another part is that humans are habitual liars, ever since Cain denied knowing Abel's whereabouts. University of Massachusetts psychologist Robert Feldman says that we lie to create a version of ourselves we approve of.
'We're trying not so much to impress other people but to maintain a view of ourselves that is consistent with the way they would like us to be,' Feldman said. We want to be agreeable, to make the social situation smoother or easier, and to avoid insulting others through disagreement or discord.
Obama is a historic figure as the first black president of the United States. Perhaps many identifying him as their most admired man feel it makes them look enlightened, and avoids violating any of the primitive taboos that constitute modern morality. Even so, there are doubtless many people who genuinely admire him for reasons beyond the Bear's ken.
Hillary Clinton is the most admired woman, so go figure. (Michelle Obama and Oprah Winfrey got 4% of the vote for women.)
Pope Francis and Donald Trump only got 5% of the vote each. (But the Dalai Lama only got 1% -- yeah! In your face, Dalai Lama!) Socialist democratic presidential candidate (declared socialist, that is) Bernie Sanders got 3%. The real point is, we're talking about the also-rans here. Lame duck Obama mopped the floor with them, getting more than three times the votes of either Pope Francis or Trump, at 17%.
Another, more worrisome, way of looking at it is that progressives are vastly more admired than any other group. And why not? They're always talking about the great things they want to do and mercy.
Polling is a dark art. If the Bear were in charge, he would not allow news organizations to create their own news. Until that happy day, the Bear advises his readers not to put too much stock in them.
At least Caitlyn Jenner didn't show up in the list. Maybe people couldn't figure out if Jenner was in the man or woman category.