I detest those instant “polls” that seek — ostensibly, at least — to gauge public opinion on contemporary issues.
The Amarillo Globe-News today posted one such “poll” question on one of its opinion pages. It asks readers whether they agree with Texas Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst’s view that the House of Representatives should impeach President Obama.
OK. Let’s see. The Texas Panhandle in two presidential elections has given the president about 20 percent of the vote. Eighty percent of the vote went for Republicans John McCain in 2008 and Mitt Romney in 2012. The tea party wing of the GOP — the party’s most strident voice at the moment — is entrenched firmly in this part of an extremely Republican state.
I’ll take a wild guess that when the results of this “poll” are tabulated, we’ll get roughly a 90 percent approval rating for Dewhurst’s call for a presidential impeachment.
This is just one example. The media do this kind of thing all the time. They ask for immediate responses to pressing national issues. TV networks do it. The one that just slays me comes from a liberal TV talk show host, Ed Shultz, whose MSNBC program “The Ed Show” asks viewers to send in their answers to questions relating to the topic of the evening.
A question might go something like this: Do you agree that the Republican Party is looking after the best interest of rich people while ignoring the needs of poor folks? The answers usually come back about 95 to 5 percent “yes.”
OK, I embellished that question … but not by very much.
These “polls” merely feed into people’s anger, their frustration and they serve no useful purpose other than to gin up responses on websites.
They provide not a bit of useful information.
I just wish the media would stop playing these games.