January 24, 2007

POLLING WITH THEIR FEET: Frank Martin observes:

I've never understood how on one hand people overseas will tell the pollsters how much they hate America - and Americans, and yet our streets seem to be increasingly filled with people from all around the world who have risked life and limb and broken the law of their country and ours to get here.

I mean, if I dont like a restaurant, I dont stand in line for 4 hours to get in, I just go somewhere else. I sure dont stand in line for four hours and then say how much I hate the place.

I wonder if theres a sort of 'natural reflex' to just tell the pollsters what they want to hear, rather than tell them what you actually think.

Think about it, when the western United States was being settled, I dont think there were people saying how much they hated Oregon and California when they were selling everything they had and walking away from Ohio and other parts of the east. " I hate Oregon, so lets take our life in our hands and try to go there", followed by headlines that said " Oregon more unpopular than ever says poll of former residents of Ohio".

face it, if there is a line of people stretching across to continent walking to oregon, then any poll saying "oregon unpopular..." is clearly based on faulty data, right?

You'd think.

UPDATE: Various readers suggest that the world is made up of two kinds of people: Those who "get" America and those who don't. The former immigrate; the latter stay home and are polled.