An antidote for the polls – To be taken with a grain of salt

Pliny the Elder translated an ancient antidote for poison in his work Naturalis Historia, 77 A.D.:

“Take two dried walnuts, two figs, and twenty leaves of rue; pound them all together, with the addition of a grain of salt; if a person takes this mixture fasting, he will be proof against all poisons for that day.”

The MLPC thinks this is how Canadians should deal with the polls – give themselves an antidote and take them with a grain of salt. Polls are not scientific. Besides the regular failure to predict the outcome of an election, they are based on questions which are misleading and disempower the person being questioned as well as the polity from working out and expressing their view on things. Besides that, the variety of means of communication today has narrowed the audience for poll questions to such an extent that they cannot claim to be representative

Here is what CBC’s “in-depth look at where the polls stand in every region of the country and which seats are up for grabs” says about its methodology as well as its disclaimer:

“CBCÆs Poll Tracker aggregates all publicly released polls, weighing them by sample size, date and the polling firm’s accuracy record. Upper and lower ranges are based on how polls have performed in other recent elections. The seat projection model makes individual projections for all ridings in the country, based on regional shifts in support since the 2011 election and taking into account other factors such as incumbency. The projections are subject to the margins of error of the opinion polls included in the model, as well as the unpredictable nature of politics at the riding level. The polls included in the model vary in size, date and method, and have not been individually verified by the CBC.”

Of course the CBC’s “Poll Tracker” doesn’t track public opinion because public opinion is wrecked by the disinformation of the polls themselves, whose aim is to create a stampede in whatever direction they hope to see as the outcome of the election. None of it involves empowering the people, that much is certain!

All of it confirms the need to activate the antidote, the human factor/social consciousness, and then take the polls with a grain of salt.



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