This is a partial transcript of "The Big Story With John Gibson," August 22, 2005, that has been edited for clarity.
JOHN GIBSON, HOST: The differences between liberals and conservatives might not stop when the lights go out. According to a new study, even dreams have a red and blue state divide.
I'm joined by Kelly Bulkeley, a visiting scholar at the Graduate Theological Union. He's also the author of "Dreaming Beyond Death: A Guide to Pre-Death Dreams and Visions."
So about these liberals and conservatives, they evidently do dream definitely, but I've got to ask this first: Do liberals really dream of a better world?
KELLY BULKELEY, GRADUATE THEOLOGICAL UNION: Well, if you consider sort of options for different worlds, that is what liberals seem to have more dreams of. Dreams that go beyond this world, the everyday world, into other possibilities. Whether that's better or worse is another thing
GIBSON: OK. What is the principal difference between liberal dreams and conservative dreams?
BULKELEY: Well, this is based on research I've been doing for the past dozen years or so. And what I've found as a general trend is that the dreams of political liberals tend to have more bizarre, fantastical kinds of elements: more flying, more dead people coming back to life, more weird sexual dreams.
Conservatives, by contrast, tend to have more dreams of everyday events, every day settings and interaction. So that's the basic difference that I found.
GIBSON: Now, why?
BULKELEY: Well, you tell me. That's just the finding. There are different possibilities. One is that liberals are more imaginative, more creative. That is what my liberal friends tell me.
GIBSON: How about more paranoid, more afraid of shadows in the dark?
BULKELEY: Or more out of touch with reality, head in the clouds. Sure, that's possible, too.
Conservatives, by contrast, could be more, according to the findings, more grounded, more in tune with sort of the everyday world. Or my, again, more liberal interpretation would be that they're more caught in the status quo, more sort of confined to the here and now and not as imaginative. Open to interpretation.
GIBSON: And happy with the here and now versus not happy with the here and now?
BULKELEY: Yes. Certainly, with the liberal dreams that I gathered over the past three years, a lot more nightmares, negative.
GIBSON: Now Dr. Bulkeley, before I run out of time, in the year 2000 when George Bush won the election, obviously, a very close election. We don't need to hash that over. Did liberals have different dreams then?
BULKELEY: Yes, the research I did back then, liberals were having fewer nightmares, and conservatives were having more, which may have reflected that was, you know, the time of Bill Clinton and relative liberal tendency, and now things have changed.
GIBSON: But did liberals have different dreams when Bush won?
BULKELEY: Oh, yes. Yes. A lot more nightmares of the future, yes. I mean, this is where dreams reflect our waking life concerns and anxieties. And for liberals, the political world is filled with a lot of anxieties and their dreams reflect that.
GIBSON: All right, Kelly Bulkeley, a scholar at the Graduate Theological Union, studies dreams. There is such a thing as red-blue dreams. Thanks a lot.
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