I have heard some bad things about Cocker Sapniels with inevitably changed my mind about getting one. Friends have said they are snappy and not the best with kids. And yes they have owned them and ended up finding them other homes without kids.
I'm still for the Lab or Golden retrievers... Ya at first they have a bit of energy but no where near a Border Collie. If you make sure and train the dog correctly you wont have to worry about the dog jumping on people or taking you for a walk instead of vice versa.
Good luck on your search and I do agree with someone who said it all depends on how you raise the dog. Not just breed type. There's just stereo types and people's personal history with specific breeds.
Edit: and ya I agree with Jay... I can hear kev now "fuckin dog ...... i need a beer