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Square pegs in round holes

Jane Galt and her commenters express frustration over an online survey by the Pew Centre that seems bound and determined to shoehorn everyone into a range of predetermined outcomes that don't seem to fit Jane or her commenters very well. None of this really surprises me. The Pew Centre are the same shitheads who successfully astroturfed the campaign finance issue, so the fact that they load the questions and slant the answers is completely unsurprising. The other factor is that there are a lot of people these days who don't fit neatly into anyone's political pigeonholes, and when they respond to typology tests (whether given by Pew or anyone else) they might as well be speaking Serbian.

On a related topic, this is precisely why the popularity of Rudy Giuliani and Mitt Romney confuses a lot of media people. Most people aren't simple single-issue voters. They have a number of issues that they think are important, and they'll evaluate a candidate based on how he speaks to those issues. For a lot of people, national security is the most important issue, and they don't much care what Rudy's stance is on gays, gun control or transvestism is. They see him as totally hardcore on the war issue, so he's their man. By the same token, Romney's Mormonism doesn't repel evangelicals, because they're smart enough to see that on social issues Mormons and Southern Baptists aren't all that different. Unfortunately for the media people, they aren't smart enough to see that, and they're all like, "LOL WUT?" when they see this. So much the worse for them.

Comments

( 2 comments — Leave a comment )
digex
Feb. 20th, 2007 08:06 pm (UTC)
while I am not really a bash-the-press person, because I
see it's importance, and I think that it is doing about as good
(and bad) a job as the other "institutions" of government and
society, there is no question that the press needs to sell
newspapers, so to speak, and some times you can see that in
their coverage.

The thing that you can see them doing right now is working hard
to start a fight or two - because fights sell papers/tv time/etc.

Mitt Romney - the press is all over the "he is a MORMAN he is a
MORMAN" then turn quickly to the Catholic "doesn't that burn you
up skandalize you, make you see RED RED RED!?!??!" turn to public
"magic underwear oh my good! what is that about? used to be
poly-whatever that is doesn't that scare you? what about THE CHILDREN?"
wrings hands and falls to knees "oh the humanity!" jumps up with microphone
in the face "what you got to say to the folks out there?

i tend to agree with Wombat - most christians will see past the differences
and realize that "mormons are certainly good god-fearing folk, if a little odd"

My opinion (to separate from Wombat so as not to slosh him with the slop) -
only the moron-far-far-far-right will bite on this and half of them only because
they want the attention (and half of them, unfortunately, because they are dumb
as rocks)

As to the polls, they are mental masturbation; they mean little or nothing. Once in
a while you can get a simple question that can be possed in a simple way and polled
by an org withh no dog in the fight, and that might mean something, but for the most
part polls should be ignored by the serious. That is NOT to say that the will of the
people should be ignored! Just that there need to be other ways, and unfortunately
they are more work and expense than simple polls, but there you are...

doug






wombat_socho
Feb. 20th, 2007 09:30 pm (UTC)
...there is no question that the press needs to sell
newspapers, so to speak, and some times you can see that in
their coverage.


Very much so, but they seem to have decided that they're better off with a smaller and more socialist/anti-war audience than they would be with a larger, less politicized audience. ISTR seeing somewhere that the only major newspaper in New York that had recorded an increase in circulation was the tabloid Post, which is noted for its pro-war stance, while the Times and Daily News had both taken it in the shorts...and the same is true for most of the other major newspapers in the country. I blame advocacy journalism, which has done far more harm than good these last forty years in that it has irremediably screwed up the press' ability to simply report the damn news as opposed to telling us what we ought to think about it, even if it means leaving out important facts needed to establish context.
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