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Polls show that polls are mostly bunk

November 21, 2009

“Contrary to media hype, Sarah Palin is very unpopular,” reports Media Matters from the Magical World of Upside Down this morning.

Which would explain why she sold 300,000 copies of her book the first day, and why her publisher just added an extra million copies to the already huge print run, and why hundreds of fans line up outside Sarah Palin book signings and…

Oh wait. Never mind. Media Matters bases its counterintuitive “Palin gots cooties” report on… polls. Polls commissioned by those paragons of impartiality ABC, NBC and CNN.

Nevermind what we all know to be true: that many polls tend to oversample registered Democrats or self-described liberals.

I keep thinking of something Dennis Miller said on the air last week. I’m paraphrasing: “After what they did to Joe the Plumber — a guy standing on his own front lawn who asked an innocent question — do you really think the average American trusts that their answers to these poll questions won’t be used against them some day?”

Just a thought.

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18 Comments
  1. David Thomson permalink
    November 21, 2009 12:09 pm

    The polls are generally right regarding Sarah Palin’s popularity. That’s a fact of life—and we do ourselves no favors by ignoring this harsh reality. She was effectively slandered by the leftist establishment during the presidential campaign. Palin’s book is being purchased by perhaps only 35% of the overall population. That’s nice, but it does not represent anywhere near the majority of Americans. However, the future looks bright. Palin is daily converting more people over to our way of thinking. I remain one of her arch supporters. Still, I refuse to pretend that Palin has completely demolished the phony credibility of her detractors.

    There are pollsters like Rasmussen that are worthy of respect. They warn us when our message is not getting through to the common folk. It is best to pay attention to their conclusions whether we like them or not.

  2. John Davidson permalink
    November 21, 2009 12:51 pm

    Denegrading everyones opinions has rendered Media Matters ostentatious. (Send that one to Bill O’Reilly)

  3. November 21, 2009 12:58 pm

    35% of the population is great considering 10% cannot read, 10% do not speak or understand English, 25% have no disposable income left after the Dem created Fannie and Freddy, and 40% are die hard farlefty loony Dems. The extra 20% are from this loony group who bought the book on the QT and reading it behind closed doors.

  4. David C. permalink
    November 21, 2009 2:11 pm

    Remember, there are lies, damned lies and statistics…

    Those who would be swayed by what others thing (polls) simply lack the character and intelligence to form an opinion of their own.

    As far as can be determined, there is more to be gained by the media’s incessant chatter about the polls than any action because of, or in anticipation of poll results.

    My only question is, “Given that only 20% of Americans even admit to be in ‘liberal,’ why does anyone even pay attention to their whining?” We really should tell them to sit down, shut up and stop whining…

  5. November 21, 2009 3:59 pm

    The bottom line is always election outcomes. In that context, unless a poll reflects the opinions of “likely voters” exclusively, it has little value. Having said that, the most accurate political polls are almost never issued publicly. Campaign and party organizations pay big bucks for that kind of info and consider such info proprietary for the use of campaign strategy and tactics. It’s a bit like a poker game. You have to watch your political opponents behavior to get any kind of indication of the polling data they’re holding.

  6. joanne permalink
    November 21, 2009 4:03 pm

    Dan Brown sold a half million his first week. It was another great work of fiction.

    • Cas Balicki permalink
      November 21, 2009 4:39 pm

      joanne, that you think anything written by Dan Brown is a “great work of fiction” tells me that you probably have never read a book without moving your lips. So why don’t you slink off to your local Barnes and Noble and buy a Nancy Drew mystery. Who knows, in a couple of years you may be reading at a grade four or five level.

  7. joanne permalink
    November 21, 2009 6:46 pm

    Get it, fiction.

    • Cas Balicki permalink
      November 22, 2009 12:17 am

      Actually it should be: Get it, fiction?

      The thing about casting aspersions is that the aspersion must be caught to work. If I choose not to catch and your inanity the last thing you want to do is re-cast another. Joanne, you should have quit while you were ahead, as in trying to prove that you are smarter than everyone reading your post you only proved that you are not smart.

  8. doberman2 permalink
    November 21, 2009 8:48 pm

    C’mon !!! It’s Media ( don’t ) Matters !!!

  9. Revnant Dream permalink
    November 22, 2009 1:11 am

    This is just two quotes from Journalists. Both of which I respect. I was real disappointed in Coren’s his latest column which reeked of innuendo if not superiority from a Man usually fair minded. Prejean I can see because sex tapes is a no no. Once a Hooters girl, always a Hooter girl. Even if your the Smartest Women in the World. Unfair sure, but human.
    I have no idea what has poisoned Journalist & Reporters from both sides but I notice one common thread. ALL are upper class, or aspire to a lofty hight in their professions. The hostility is more than normal. Its has a feel of real animosity mixed with massive mockery.
    It emanates from these folks like the stench of sweat drenched rum poring feverishly from them.
    This disdain has a creep factor . Why the mockery? Its unseemly.
    JMO

    Here are the examples From the so called “Conservative” paper: the Edmonton Sun

    Re: “Copy that, Rogue leader,” Nov 18. Van Dusen issues the same diatribe you would expect from all Washington Ivy Leaguers who cover any Conservative woman. To say Sarah Palin is lacking vision, competency and has no lifelong passion is smear journalism. Further, why does the media attempt to throw a wrench into “everything Sarah” if she is so irrelevant?

    Rick Smith

    (Because she comes across as a liar and incompetent to lead?) Lorrie Goldstein was the editor that day) http://www.edmontonsun.com/comment/letters/2009/11/20/11826281-sun.html

    Palin believes that she is qualified to lead the United States and in her new autobiography outlines that her defeats have been the fault of others and that the media conspires against her.

    Actually she is an ordinary, nice woman blessed with beauty, a devoted husband and a good family. It really should end with that. But no. Palin wants power and is willing to close her eyes to the facts as she marches forward in glorious denial. Perhaps most chilling is how so many conservatives refuse to accept the obvious and twist into awful shapes trying to justify the woman’s failings.

    This from Micheal Coren. Makes me sad really.

    http://www.torontosun.com/comment/columnists/michael_coren/2009/11/21/11848871-sun.html

    • old white guy permalink
      November 22, 2009 5:11 am

      i was also dissapointed by michael coren’s article. it did not seem to be up to his usual standard if thoughtfulness.

  10. IceStar permalink
    November 22, 2009 1:52 am

    The left is terrified of Palin.

    She has a few years to speak directly to the American people, and in the end they will vote for her on her merits and abilities.

    SP actually is not afraid to speak her mind and unlike BO with his catch phrases and endless fluffy platitudes. SP is honest and specific.

    SP has demonstrated LEADERSHIP in her positions of elected office where she made actual decisions, unlike BO the undecided. I look forward to reading her book.

  11. John Davidson permalink
    November 22, 2009 6:23 am

    The human creature is bound to make mistakes and bad choices throughout its journey, but the inhuman ones dwell upon the misery of others.

  12. Freeme permalink
    November 22, 2009 6:38 am

    AS HENRY HYDE use to say….”polls are not a science, they’re an ART!”

  13. Juan Freeman permalink
    November 22, 2009 9:16 am

    Al must be government school educated; he has the math skills of a Washington politician. 35% + 10% + 10% + 25% + 40% + 20% = 140%.

    Is Fanny & Freddie hiring?

  14. jochang permalink
    November 22, 2009 12:25 pm

    Having read all of the comments, I assume the writers are well-seeped in American life, and that is fine, of course. But look at other countries and note the lack of dependence on polls. And credit-card debt, for that matter. Both seem to be integral parts of our culture, and that, if I may suggest, could be part of our problems these days.
    Television news/opinion programs hardly go by here without the mention of polls, yet I have never been “polled.” I wonder if there is a link, because I don’t have credit-card debt either. Hmmmm!!!!

    I imagine polls can be useful, but the extent to which they are used in the U.S. seems beneficial mainly for pollsters. But I do get a Chris Matthews up the leg when I read, for instance, “87% per cent of Americans, etc….” and note the fine print informing that 500 were polled, and results can vary plus or minus 4%.
    There goes that twinge again!!!

  15. Kevroc permalink
    November 22, 2009 11:25 pm

    I had to double check the author’s name on this one to make sure it wasn’t Ann Coulter.

    Yes, Kathy… that’s a compliment.

    🙂

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