I don’t know how often I hear about “public opinion polls” on a daily basis. Let’s say a dozen on the average day. Just last night I watched The Daily Show where one of the founding tea baggers was a guest. This guy was using as a basis for claiming Obama as “tyrannical” was public opinion polls showing Americans disagreed with certain decisions. I am here to say that I don’t care what anyone says, i put ZERO stock in any modern American polling.
Just a few minutes ago, I received a phone call from some research firm out of Las Vegas. They asked me some questions. After a few minutes, it became obvious to me that the poll was being paid for by either an energy company or some form of energy industry group. The questions were stilted and skewed towards a point of view. Several questions were phrased in terms of “clean energy” rather than “renewable energy.” What I also noticed is that sometimes the positive options came first, and sometimes the negatives but the first options were always the ones that would be in the favor of an energy company. Not too subtle, dudes.
But here’s the real thing – I have not completed any form of phone poll in years. This one, like every one, I eventually hang up on when I get completely tired of them. I’m pretty sure these pollsters can’t call cell phones, and every call I’ve received has been on our land line. Just with that, the polls have already deeply self-selected for older people by virtue of 1) having land lines, 2) answering the land line and 3) actually taking the survey. At least half of the time they identify as pollsters, I hang up out of hand. Many of the times when they come in with bogus caller ID information I won’t even pick up the phone. Sometimes I’ll take part of the survey like tonight and hang up when I can no longer take having my time occupied in this mind-numbing fashion and for dubious intent. I don’t know who actually is willing to take the time to complete these surveys but whatever data can come of that is nothing I’m willing to admit as valid. If your basis for any decision making is opinion polling, I can tell you that it is full of shit.