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Believe in National Polls?
Old 09-16-2014, 07:51 AM   #1
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Believe in National Polls?

Simple question.

Followed up by:

Who does the polling?
How may Polls have you participated in?

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Old 09-16-2014, 08:00 AM   #2
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It often depends on the exact question and who is asking it.
  • We see polls where the question guides the 'pollee' to an answer, and
  • we often don't know (or look into) who the 'pollee's' were/are. And finally,
  • too many people answer polls without knowing much about the subject (they're flattered to be asked...).
NOT TO DISCUSS THE POLL QUESTION ITSELF, but if this poll in the past few days doesn't give us pause...
The poll – conducted before the latest execution emerged – showed that a combined 68 percent of Americans say they have “very little” or “just some” confidence that Obama’s goals of degrading and eliminating the threat posed by ISIS will be achieved. Just 28 percent said they had “a great deal” or “quite a bit” of confidence. Still, 62 percent of voters say they support Obama’s decision to take action against ISIS in Iraq and Syria, while 22 percent oppose it.

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Old 09-16-2014, 08:15 AM   #3
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I'm extremely skeptical of them, simply because I almost always decline to participate myself.

However, I think some of them are probably good. I have a high regard for Pew and Quinnipiac polls, which is why those are the only ones I will give my time to.

My main beef is that the answers to most of their questions demand a yes/no response, and I can always see nuances that make my answer "Well, it depends."
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Old 09-16-2014, 08:16 AM   #4
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50% of the time yes and 50% no + or -3%

Seriously, I think most polls are probably good general indicators, but can be skewed by so many factors.
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Old 09-16-2014, 08:20 AM   #5
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I'm a little skeptical, became more skeptical after Cantor lost after his polling said he was going to win comfortably.
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Old 09-16-2014, 08:21 AM   #6
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Most of the polls I've been invited to participate in are clearly "push polls." The questions are clearly biased and push some agenda or information they want to get across.

"Were you aware that candidate X was accused of a crime?"

"Do you feel a criminal should hold the high office they are running for?"

et cetera
The object of life is not to be on the side of the majority, but to escape finding oneself in the ranks of the insane -- Marcus Aurelius
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Old 09-16-2014, 09:49 AM   #7
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