May 07, 2005

Politics: A-Poll-itical Blues

Election time, both in the Province I live in and (soon) across the country. Here's a little something I wrote, ready to send out whenever "the story" headlining the broadcast or print media becomes what the polls say instead of what the candidates say:

So I know this fella, name’s Bob. Pretty smart guy, we get along okay, don’t agree on everything, though. Likes his politics, and so do I, so that’s something we disagree about.

So one day reporter calls him up, asks him a bunch of questions. Day after, story in the paper appears sayin’ “Lake Cowichan Sez This” and “Lake Cowichan Sez That”, which is a pile of nonsense to start with, ‘cause it was just Bob sayin’ it. Then there’s an Opinion piece that says that Lake Cowichan is Right! Go figure.

Anyhow, next day there’s three Stories and two Opinion Pieces about what Lake Cowichan Said, and Why They Said It. Only in two of the pieces, Lake Cowichan has turned into Opinion Poll. Now, I don’t know where the town of Opinion Poll is, but apparently Bob lives there, too, because it was the same things he said.

That night, I saw two stories on the TV talking about Opinion Poll, and only one talking about the actual issues at hand. And I thought “What’s wrong with this picture?” Figured it out soon enough:

I don’t care what Opinion Polls say. That’s just Bob, and I can find out what Bob thinks by asking him. What I do care about is what the issues are, and what the people who want my vote have to say about them. So I figure that I, and everyone else who wants to hear what the actual issues are rather than what Bob says, will be sending this out to any media outlets that report on Opinion Polls on the front page or as the lead story. Every time.

See, I don’t care if the folks I like are up front or dead last. But I’ve gotta hear what they say before I know who I like, without Bob’s Opinion getting in the way.

May I humbly suggest copying this letter (or writing one of your own, of course) and sending it to any media outlet that loses track of what the important stories come election time are?


posted by Thursday at 3:16 pm


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