"Two: About the polls. Some say we're a fair bit behind. Others say we're not far behind at all. The point is: aren't the polls supposed to be, you know, kinda the same? On account of how they're based on numbers and math and all that? I'm just saying.
Semi-relevant anecdote: A decade ago, back when I worked at The Globe, I spent a night at a polling firm in Toronto. I sat in a room where I could listen in on any of the 36 lines as people answered political poll questions. Over the course of two hours, I lost much of my faith in the 'science' of public opinion research. I heard people at home who were barely listening to the questions as their kids screamed in the background. I heard employees of the polling firm who correctly pronounced maybe half the names in the survey. And I heard a huge number of potential repondents hang up and refuse to participate at all. And I remember saying to my host for the evening: 'Governments actually base their decisions on the results of THIS process??!' He flashed me his Rolex, which I took to mean: 'Apparently so.'
This is not to impugn the integrity or the methodology of today's polling firms. But they were wrong by a lot last time. And someone is going to be wrong by a lot this time. And there's only so many times you can fail before people start to question your reputation."
Thursday, January 19, 2006
Liberal speechwriter discredits polls
Paul Martin's speechwriter, Scott Feschuk discredits all recent polls. Some would say he is living in a dream world. Others would point to the fact that he is in Paul Martin's 'circle of fantasy' as an explanation for his disconnection with reality.