Are online polls rigged?

I confess to being a bit of a sucker for polls. I really love the online ones presented in articles that I read, and I freely admit, I take part in just about every single one. Even though I am a self-confessed, filthy Tory (also known as alt-right, even Nazi these days, which is rubbish), I nearly always find myself in the majority. I put that down to the fact that it is the left, supported by a sycophantic media, that makes all the noise, but most people are generally conservative, and we all think in a similar way.

Well, I used to think that.

But lately, apart from polls on Whaleoil, more and more, I find myself in the minority. For a while there, I thought the left and the media were actually winning, and that conservative opinions are now truly alt-right or Nazi.

But the thing is, whenever I talk to anyone else – in the office, over coffee or wherever – no one else seems to have fallen into the leftists traps. I still seem to agree with other people as much as I ever did.

Take plastic bags, for example. We were discussing this over office drinks last Friday. Most people seem to be adjusting their lives so that they can live without plastic bags, but they still think that the whole thing is a waste of time. They dispose of their rubbish properly, supermarkets now provide recycling bins for soft plastics, they disagree with the term ‘single use’ and they bemoan the fact that they will have more trouble disposing of used nappies or dog droppings from now on.

But if you look at the polls, it seems that the majority of people want them banned all together.

Here is a screenshot from a Stuff poll taken in October 2017:

In that poll, 71% of voters wanted an outright ban.

Really? That is not what I hear from people I talk to. Some agree with the issue halfheartedly, but no one has ever told me they think they should be banned outright.

Here is a screenshot from another Stuff poll, taken late last week:

As you can see, in this poll, 60% of people still support the ban – a drop in the numbers from last year, but still a resounding majority.

So, on the strength of that, I came to the conclusion that all the negative  articles on the subject have swayed public opinion, and that the majority of people now truly believe that there should be an outright ban on plastic bags.

At this point, I will refrain from making comments about selling bridges.

But how about this poll then?

This is also a Stuff poll, also taken late last week.

Are you seriously telling me that 93% of people want to see an end to pet cats?

Okay – that isn’t quite how the question is worded. But everyone who has read the article will know that Eugenie Sage is trying to turn Wellington into a cat free zone, so in answering the question, 93% of voters essentially have agreed with her.

But I simply do not believe that for one second.

Think of how many people you know who have pet cats. In the circle of people I know, it would be at least 50%. Probably more. Every cat owner would come out in support of their own moggy, and cats in general. So this poll simply makes no sense at all.

But, in the same way, that I believe that the media has gradually dragged us all around to their way of thinking on plastic bags, even though we know the ban will make no difference to marine life whatsoever… is the media now trying the same trick with our attitude to cats?

Are we all now the sheep from Orwells’ Animal Farm, bleating to the tune of the media?

You have to wonder…


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Accountant. Boring. Loves tax. Needs to get out more. Loves the environment, but hates the Greens. Has been called a dinosaur. Wears it with pride.

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