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Public Opinion in BC-More trouble for Olympics-Internet polls unscientific
ROBBINS--CHECK MATE/No country for old Glen  Aug 06, 2008

On-Line ROBBINS public opinion poll of 5,723 ‘younger’ between the ages of 20-35 British Columbia adult respondents and random telephone poll of 400 ‘younger’ British Columbia adult respondents between the ages of 20-35 between July 3, 2008 and July 31, 2008. On-Line polls cannot be regarded as scientific as they are not conducted between human beings---and it is impossible (in our opinion) to create a control—or blind. The random telephone sample of 400 has a margin of error of approximately 4.25% after factoring age demographic. I would estimate the margin of error in totality to be somewhere in the area of 4.0%.
I'd like to express a thank you to my daughter Kellie, a second year student at Douglas College who contributes regularly with concept design and research.

Question #1
Which of the following political parties do you most support?
Green Party    24 %
Marijuana Party    16 %
Liberal Party    16 %
New Democratic Party    27 %
Conservative Party    16 %
Question #2
Will you be devoting your time this August to watching the 2008 Summer Olympic Games in Beijing, China?
Yes    04 %
No    96 %
Question #3
Which of the following statements BEST reflects your sentiment toward the Vancouver 2010 Winter Olympic Games?
I could care less    56 %
I’m a keen supporter    25 %
Haven’t made up my mind yet    19 %
Question #4
Which of the following statements BEST reflects your opinion of U.S. Democratic hopeful Barack Obama as this relates to your desire to vote in elections and politics where you live?
Barack Obama makes no difference to whether I will vote or not    56 %
Barack Obama is making me think more about elections and politics where I live    24 %
Unsure/Undecided    20 %
Question #5
In your opinion what is a good age for a political leader to be?
Age 60    11 %
Age 50    38 %
Age 40    34 %
Age 30    13 %
Any Age    04 %
Question #6
On-Line or Internet polls are not scientific because poll responses are not conducted directly between human beings. With mainstream newspapers and traditional polling companies losing audience—and moving to the Internet to save their business---should these Internet media publications and participating mainstream pollsters declare that their On-Line polls are unscientific or only for entertainment purposes with each On-Line poll published?
Yes    68 %
No    14 %
I have no opinion    18 %
Question #7
Do you support the legalization of marijuana?
Yes    48 %
No    25 %
Undecided    27 %
Commentary
Observations about data results:
Two-thirds of respondents in this age demographic vote for party labels that most would consider left of centre.
Overwhelming majority of respondents say they won’t be watching Summer Olympics in China.
31% of decided respondents are keen supporters of Vancouver 2010 Winter Olympics while 69% of decided respondents are not.
30% of decided respondents say Barack Obama is making them think more about elections and politics where they live—70% say he makes no difference.
Vast majority of respondents are of the opinion that political leaders should be between the ages of 40 and 50.
The vast majority of respondents understand that polls must be conducted by random telephone sample in order to be scientific. On-Line polls are not—and respondents believe readers should not be unduly influenced by ‘entertainment’ polls.
Two thirds of decided respondents support the legalization of marijuana.
The percentage of respondents who were Undecided in the telephone sample was 27%, while the percentage of respondents in the On-Line poll had to answer or ballot was spoiled.
The overwhelming majority of respondents (of the fewer) who are going to devote their time to Beijing Olympics also support traditional political labels-- in particular Liberal and Conservative.
A very clear majority of respondents who “could care less” about the Vancouver 2010 Winter Olympics also support Green, Marijuana and New Democrat party labels.
If Barack Obama’s influence on respondents thinking more about elections and politics is perceived as positive—than this is somewhat diffuse through party labels—but skewed slightly to left of centre party labels—Green, Marijuana, New Democrat, and Liberal.
New Democratic Party label has 39% support if you subtract Marijuana and Conservative Liberal Party label has 22.5% support if you subtract Marijuana and Conservative. Liberal Party plus Conservative Party has 62% of New Democratic Party plus Green.
Commentary/Spin
Respondents in this age demographic do not respond well to traditional party labels. The Liberal-Conservative combination only draws (32%) of decided respondents. In federal politics the last general federal election outcome revealed the Liberal-Conservative combination in BC to be about (65%). There is a significantly stronger Green-Marijuana-New Democrat combination at around (65%). Dion should bust a move on marijuana--simply because Stephen Harper never will--and it will attract younger voters--who the Liberals have lost.
The Chinese 2008 Summer Olympics are not popular with a younger age demographic or alternatively some of these respondents are too busy with summer holidays to be bothered with television-particularly the Beijing Olympics. It will be interesting to see the demographics for the Democratic National convention from this age group later in the month. Two-thirds of respondents in this age bracket are to the left of centre and this could translate into a public relations backlash from this demographic against a perceived totalitarian regime which hasn’t quite made a legitimate transition to the principle of democracy, on human rights, and certainly not on the environment. Respectfully, I cannot imagine what the I.O.C was thinking---this really was an overly simplified public relations ideal--. The flip side of this is that somehow China being the centre of attention (for some) will provoke change, but at what cost to the I.O.C.’s reputation and credibility?
Just less than one third of respondents support Vancouver 2010. A change in government at the Vancouver city level—and in Victoria may provoke policy and attitude more conducive to the way this younger age bracket sees the world.
About (30%) of decided respondents in this ROBBINS poll are of the opinion that U.S. Presidential hopeful Barack Obama is making them think more about elections and politics where they live.
Respondents in this age demographic support leaders who are between ages 40 and 50. Sixty is too old and 30 is too young.
Mainstream media and pollsters are in tough. Newspapers are going in the ‘shitter’ as more and more of the population moves to the Internet. Mainstream television is hurting because of the Internet as well. For years mainstream pollster branded themselves as practitioners of science (ask ten politicians what the science means—9 won’t be able to tell you—the science is a simple calculation predicated on sample size-), and thus promoted their polls as more scientific than others—validated by big business dollars. Big business has an increasingly bad reputation— and pollsters now know there is little science to callers making $8.00 per hour. —Mainstream news and pollsters are desperate to attract the younger audience on the Internet. The problem is folks---you can’t have it both ways. By your own rules you are either science or not—and Internet polls are not science they are entertainment---and readers should not be misled. This age group buys into this assertion. Be honest with them!
ROBBINS is the most accurate pollster in the world. This is the new name brand in public opinion polling. In 2004 during the United States Presidential election Angus Reid said the Democrats would win because of younger people and cellular phones. I responded that I didn’t believe this was the case—that George W. Bush would win a second term---and we accurately predicted what percentage of popular vote he would win. By agreement Angus Reid is an On-Line public opinion pollster—these polls are not scientific—or sufficiently so to be compared to ROBBINS polls or other traditional polls. But Angus Reid declares his polls are unscientific---so should the media.
If this younger demographic has its way---BC will be going up in smoke. I had the great pleasure of meeting with Liberal Senator Larry Campbell at Conservative Senator Gerry St. Germain’s fabulous ranch in South Surrey (and I mean fabulous). This event was a paid for barbecue with Prime Minister Stephen Harper and Foreign Minister David Emerson. Nice crowd—average age 55-57. Larry is a former police man, coroner, and Vancouver Mayor. He supports the legalization and heavy taxation of marijuana—in part to save police and court resources. Larry says he doesn’t smoke marijuana---I told him after two decades of abstinence---I tried it and liked it—same as Michael Bloomberg. I can’t remember if I asked BC Liberal—Conservative Rich Coleman (another good guy)—also in attendance---who is also a former policeman--the same question. My guess is Rich is old school on the pot thing—but your never know. Of mind altering substances---which I would never advocate until a user is of a mature age (I am 50)—marijuana used from time to time is better than alcohol. The latter cost society far too much money.
People who smoke marijuana everyday are in no better position than tobacco smokers.
Glen P. Robbins

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