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On fretting over poll #’s and what to do about it

I agree with JJ’s assessment of the latest polls; people need to chill a bit. I will also note that the Angus-Reid poll that has everyone in Liberal blogging land in angst today (as it shows a 14 point Tory lead as compared to a 2 point lead last week) needs to be reminded this is an online survey, not a traditional phone survey. Jason does have a point that those surveys need to be taken with a grain of salt, and that’s not just his usual optimistic Liberal spin either. I can tell you from being a longtime regular reader of the US blogging scene that most of the liberal blogs wont even look at Zogby’s online polling as an indicator, because the results of his polling have had a spotty record at best when it comes to predicting results – and his polls tend to seem to skew Democratic, so if the liberal bloggers make the caveat of taking his polls with a grain of salt, that same warning can be given up here for any online polls being an accurate indicator.

Still.. I’m not one to completely discount the trend of these polls, and if JJ has a solution to getting Liberal communications out more effectively on policy, I hope she has someone’s ear in Ottawa. Dion going on a 2 week tour of Canada after Parliament takes a break is a start.. but I think there needs to be something more then just that to get voters re-interested in voting Liberal.

I’ve already said previously it’s time the Liberals stop being so cautious and vague on certain policy initiatives. Playing safe is for when you’re in government or in the lead in polls.. not when you’re behind or in Opposition. I believe we need to be showing some concrete ways of being different then the Conservatives on policy rather them just stating we’re uh.. different then the Conservatives. My suggestions have been to support the NDP’s climate change bill and/or the basic tenets of that bill to replace or amend the CAA, and also to use proportional representation as a serious way to counteract Harper’s Senate stuff; I am sure there are other issues we can be looking to highlight as well.

As an aside, I have been told by at least 1 prominent Liberal blogger who has good ties to the Party establishment that more and more Liberals are bringing up PR as the issue we need to be using beyond the environment. (I’ll provide them with the model I prefer if they want one – the Globe and Mail’s versions of the Mixed Member PR that they detailed and supported in a series of articles in May 2005. I have the saved PDF’s of those articles on file which I’ll be happy to pass along to any inquiring Liberal mind.. and it will disprove the allegation that all forms of PR do nothing but cause constant minority governments – this model doesn’t).

I’m pleased to hear that.. I would suggest they speed that consideration up a tad, and on other issues.

UPDATE: While I slightly disagree with some of his premise, Jonathan at TDH Strategies makes about the same points as I do on getting more concrete policy out there to the voting public.

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5 comments to On fretting over poll #’s and what to do about it

  • I’ll reply to your comment on my blog here now:

    As for PR, I do think it’s something that we definitely need to look into and actually have consultations about. Even if I’m not 100% sold on it yet, mostly since I think that it would be tough to properly explain to people why it’s important and why it’s an improvement and why it won’t lead to the constant minorities, I do think it’s right to talk about.

    So why do I mention it sort of as a “last-ditch” campaign effort? Well, I would be fine with proposing it anytime, but doing it now might have the best chance to actually gain some political traction with it, or at the very least, maybe help to stop our little skid we’re in.

  • garhane

    Surely it needs to be said, and pretty loud, that the war is not in Afgan land, it is here in Canada and it is called AGW. The Afgan thing is just a truck stop in bandit country in a foreign nation and what happens at that spot is of no concern in Canada to anyone. AGW is a monster the like of which has not ever been seen. It is hopeless folly to let the Cons get away with trapping the latent force of patriotism and national pride that is present in this country in the straight jacket of that truck stop skirmish. If the Libs want to turn it around, what is now really just a sort of confused stamping around in the mud politically, they will have to go far harder and more realisticaly on AGW. Right now there is such an absence of inspired leadership on this that there is actually a rapidly growing Know Nothing tendency, a grumpy denunciation of science by a crowd of knuckle draggers who belong to Harper. Straussian tactics can be answered only by a bigger and a better stream of exaggerated statements that do truly contain the gold of pure truth, in the real Platonic tradition.

  • In a humanitarian spirit, I offer the following: Happy LibBlogging in 10 Easy Steps. And yes, Scott, I’m serious. And concerned. Because as I have said before, Canada is better served by viable political options.

    http://www.thiscanada.com/2007/03/02/happy-libblogging-in-10-easy-steps/

  • Walkswithcoffee

    Repeating: The public is guided by headlines… the CPoC propaganda machine knows this and will say anything to get the headlines they want. You need a serious counter message team… before it is too late.

    The online polls exist to generate headlines… the content is irrelevant to the propagandists. Opposition parties have been MIA in the headlines, which makes free reign on the headlines even easier for those that will say anything, and eventually do anything, to control the headlines.

    Gov promised spending up 15% in one year… but no action on healthcare nor the environment. Saying anything and doing anything to control the headlines…that is all the CPoC has… there is no national interest in their agenda… but they are organized and will pump up the BS even more as they get worried they are stalled.

  • […] I couldn’t agree more. You want uniqueness for a policy? I hate to beat a dead horse over and over again, but I’m going to again anyhow – you can find nothing more unique then proposing electoral reform and proportional representation. For the Liberals, it would be downright attention grabbing if they were to propose (for them) such a bold reformist proposal. It would blow Harper’s Senate half-proposal away for the vote getting sham that it is. […]

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