PATH: BS | Dubious Research | Polls

Fox News' Republican Debate In-A-Nutshell

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[Beating Dead Horses]
[Polls]
For those of you who missed the latest GOP debate hosted by Fox News, we have a recap for you.

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Key To Bush's Approval Rating? Gas

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[Polls]
When it comes to President Bush's approval rating — the number that measures his political health — one factor seems more powerful than any Oval Office address or legislative initiative.

It's the price of a gallon of gas.

Statisticians who have compared changes in gas prices and Bush's ratings through his presidency have found a steady relationship: As gas prices rise, his ratings fall. As gas prices fall, his ratings rise.

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Half of Americans Believe Iraq Had WMDs

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[Polls]
A recent Harris Poll reports found that while "the U.S. and other countries have not found any weapons of mass destruction in Iraq, surprisingly more U.S. adults (50%) think that Iraq had such weapons when the U.S. invaded Iraq. This is an increase from 36 percent in February 2005."

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Atheists Identified As America's Least-Trusted Minority

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[Polls]
American's increasing acceptance of religious diversity doesn't extend to those who don't believe in a god, according to a national survey by researchers in the University of Minnesota's department of sociology.

From a telephone sampling of more than 2,000 households, university researchers found that Americans rate atheists below Muslims, recent immigrants, gays and lesbians and other minority groups in "sharing their vision of American society." Atheists are also the minority group most Americans are least willing to allow their children to marry.

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Can't Sleep? You're Not Alone. Take a Pill.

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[Polls]
This spring, a poll that found half of adult Americans have frequent sleeping problems was reported on "by virtually all of the country's major newspapers and television networks," as well as international media. "Lost in the somber warnings and survey results, however, was that the poll, the proclamations and the press kits that spread the information were paid for by sleeping pill manufacturers," reports the Sacramento Bee. Although the group that released the poll, the National Sleep Foundation (NSF), receives more than half of its income from drug companies, only 17 of 84 newspaper stories "mentioned the foundation's pharmaceutical sponsors." And while the New York public relations firm Zeno Group was touting the NSF poll, it was also hyping the launch of a new sleeping pill, Lunesta. Zeno Group included "a pitch for coverage of the release of the Lunesta sleeping pill" in the NSF press packets announcing the poll results.

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CNN Publishes Misleading Poll Results

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[News Media]
[Polls]
As usual, the editors at CNN seem to think that the American people are idiots. Maybe they are -- as reflected in this latest attempt to demonize democrats.

In presenting the results of a CNN/USA Today/Gallup poll, CNN.com used a visually distorted graph that falsely conveys the impression that Democrats far outnumber Republicans and Independents in thinking the Florida state court was right to order Terri Schiavo's feeding tube removed. In fact, a majority of all three groups agrees with the court's decision, and the gap between Democrats on one hand and Republicans and Independents on the other is within the poll's margin of error.

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Students say media should get Government approval for stories

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[Polls]
[Newspapers]
A Connecticut organization polled thousands of high school students and found that 36% believe newspapers should get "government approval" of stories before publishing; 13% have no opinion, and 32% feel the media has "too much freedom."

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To the victor goes the spoilage

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[Polls]
Some in the media are claiming Kerry won the election. The exit polls are accurate. Pollsters ask, "Who did you vote for?" Unfortunately, they don't ask the crucial, question, "Was your vote counted?"

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Are YOU a "Likely Voter" ??

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[Polls]
If you pay attention, you'll see in almost all polls shown in the media today, in fine print or on television it will say something like "in a poll of likely voters". This is an interesting statistical "gimmick" used by the polling companies that allows them to fudge the stats. Depending upon which polling organization the definition of "likely voters" varies dramatically. Read on for more details.

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Polls show US-International relations getting worse

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[Sociology]
[Polls]
Newsday has an article comprising the results of polls taken in Canada, France, Britain, Spain, Japan, South Korea, Australia, Mexico, Israel and Russia.

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