Thursday, June 23, 2005

Pooh-poohing Polls

First of all, I don't believe polls.
Second of all, I don't care about polls.
Third of all, there is only one type of poll that really matters, and the last one occurred in November, 2004; the next important one is in 2006 and again in 2008.

Having stated that up front, let me make a few comments about the recent polls

  • As mentioned, the poll that has most sway with me is the one that was completed in November, 2004. President Bush was elected by a significant majority. HIS PROPOSED POLICIES HAVE BEEN GIVEN A SANCTION BY THE AMERICAN PUBLIC JUST A FEW SHORT MONTHS AGO. I say let's give these policies a fair shake until the next election. If the American public doesn't approve of them, they can vote the Republicans out of office. Until then, I would really like to see the doom and gloom people either come up with a better plan to win the war on terror or SHUT UP AND LET US GET ON WITH IT,. There will continue to be challenges and problems to be solved--so what?

  • I think that it is understandable that the American Public is fed up with the Iraq War, and weary of hearing how badly it is going. The media paint an unrelentingly negative picture and rarely report anything positive. I will go further and say (as others have), that if the day to day casualties and miscalculations of WWII had been trumpeted the way they are being done today, you might have obtained the same data if polls had been done. In fact, for most of WWII, the Allies were being clobbered by Germany and Japan who dealt stunning defeats and massive casualties to American and British troops for the first 3 years of the war--unlike Iraq, where it is simply not possible for the terrorists to win on the battlefield. and where the casualties have been amazingly low from an historical perspective.

  • While the American Public may be tired of the Iraq war, Not one of these polls offer them an alternative where they might say exactly what the President should be doing. This is discussed nicely in this Townhall column by Bill Murchison , which I highly recommend.

Polls can be fun and amusing; but simultaneously behaving obsessively and hysterically over their results is a helluva fickle way to get anything important done in the world. This is REAL LIFE, not a high school popularity contest. I daresay that Abraham Lincoln's policies were not partcularly popular in his own time either. But he did what he had to do to end slavery and keep the Union together.

I am reminded of Calvin and Hobbes:

"Bad news Dad. Your polls are way down."
"My polls?"
"You rate especialy low among tigers and six year old white males."

The bad news is that the President's polls are down. The good news is that the President seems to be the kind of man who will do what needs to be done, regardless. That's why we elected him, so let's let him do his job.

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