- The Washington Times - Wednesday, December 4, 2002

The Gipper still rocks.
Ronald Reagan topped the "greatest living American" list in a new Esquire magazine survey released this week.
The eclectic "Survey of the American Male," featured in the January 2003 issue, plumbed the depths of about 1,900 men to reveal traditional underpinnings and political paradoxes, among other things.
Indeed, former President Reagan was voted top dog, followed by former President Jimmy Carter, Secretary of State Colin L. Powell, "my dad" and finally former President Bill Clinton, respectively.
Mr. Clinton headed the list of "most loathsome living American" as well.
Politics, however, did not prove compelling for some respondents. No one in particular led a theoretical Democratic pool of White House candidates: Eighteen percent had "no opinion" when asked which Democrat would make a strong candidate for president in 2004.
Thirteen percent opted for Al Gore, followed by Sens. Tom Daschle of South Dakota and John Kerry of Massachusetts.
Meanwhile, 55 percent knew that Paul Wolfowitz is deputy secretary at the Defense Department. But almost a third 30 percent thought he was chairman of the Securities and Exchange Commission and 9 percent theorized he was the talent agent behind the musical group 'NSync.
Another 6 percent responded Mr. Wolfowitz was "starting left fielder for the Colorado Rockies."
President Bush received mixed reviews in the survey. Forty-three percent said he was "in charge" of his administration, 47 percent said he was not. Mr. Bush appeared on a list for most respected presidents but also led the list for most "overrated living American," which placed Mr. Clinton in second place.
Esquire magazine, which has a 700,000 circulation, does not claim its survey to be "a scientifically random sample of the population," according to Scott Quill, who compiled the list.
It is "a snapshot of the American male, circa 2002," he said.
Snapshot or not, some old-fashioned values emerged, and some optimism, too.
Among married men, 84 percent of the respondents said they loved their wife now as much as they did within a year of their wedding day. In the "sexiest woman in America" category, "my wife" was in first place, beating Julia Roberts, Britney Spears, Halle Berry and Jennifer Lopez.
Eighty-seven percent of respondents said they were happy, though only 22 percent said they had become "what they wanted to be when growing up."
Financially speaking, 23 percent of the respondents said the Dow Jones stock average would hit 15,000 in the next two years. Another 21 percent said it would reach that level by 2007.
More than three-quarters of those polled said they believed in God, though most were derelict in attending church.
Only 15 percent said they attended once a week, 11 percent went once a month, 29 percent attended less than once a month and 30 percent said they didn't go to church or temple at all "because I don't belong to one."
As for childhood behavior, most respondents said they were not bullies.
Only 4 percent said they had been bullies, while 27 percent said they had been bullied. Thirteen percent said they had bullied and been bullied in turn, and 57 percent said they were not bullies and never had been bullied.


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