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Canadian Public Opinion Polls on Afghanistan

CF_Enthusiast

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Why doesent the government make a real poll about this? Where every Canadian gets to vote and they publish the real results.

I'm tired of the Mop & Pail or some other biased network making a false poll and then presenting it to the people as fact.  :mad:

:cdn:
 

3rd Herd

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CF Enthusiast said:
Why doesent the government make a real poll about this? Where every Canadian gets to vote and they publish the real results.

I'm tired of the Mop & Pail or some other biased network making a false poll and then presenting it to the people as fact.  :mad:

:cdn:

Then the talking "expert" heads would be out on the streets or worse re-enlisting in their former area of expertise and doing some first hand primary research. Nope the troops got enough problems.
 

Retired AF Guy

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Hawk said:
Notice its cosidered accurate not is accurate 19 times out of 20 - whatever that means.

:cdn:
Hawk

What they mean is that out of every 20 polls taken there is going to one, that for a variety of reasons, is out to lunch. However, the number to look for is the "Margin of Error" (MoE) and this represents the sampling error that could be found in any poll. The MoE will depend on the size of people asked and in this case is 3.1%(-/+). That means any overall figure given in the poll can vary by 3.1%(-/+).

Here is a link to a poll on how Canadians think about the Afghan mission as reported on CTV: http://www.ctv.ca/servlet/ArticleNews/story/CTVNews/20070718/afghanistan_poll_070718/20070718?hub=Politics

and the actual poll itself:
http://www.thestrategiccounsel.com/our_news/polls/2007-07-16%20GMCTV%20July%2012-15.pdf

So, when they say for instance that only 22 % of Canadians "Totally Support" the mission [because of the MoE (3.1%)] the number should be really be 19 - 25 % (I rounded the figures off).  They also show in brackets that shows the change (if any) from the same poll taken last year. You will notice that many of the numbers are within the 3.1% MoE error rate which means the numbers are meaningless.

Of course, the smaller the number of people polled, the greater the MoE is. If you look at the bottom of the page it states that the "Quebec sample size is 247, with a 6.3 percentage point margin of error." So, for the figure for Quebecer's who totally support the mission could be anywhere from 16 - 28 % and those who oppose 69 - 81 %. This also applies to the figures representing the "rest of Canada," "Ontario" or "the West." The MoE for these breakdowns is listed in the actual poll. Again, they have the changes (for Quebec) from last years poll, but because they fall within the 6.3% MoE they are essentially meaningless.

Hope I haven't confused everyone. For more information on polls/polling go here:

http://www.fallacyfiles.org/readpoll.html "How to Read a Poll"

http://www.ncpp.org/?q=node/4 "20 Questions A Journalist Should Ask About Poll Results"
 

regulator12

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Why is it so hard to swallow that most Canadians would not want us in Afghanistan. I personally think that there is a split in peoples views on the mission, however i do not doubt there support for the troops. Canadians i am sure do not like to see or hear about more soldiers dying. I doubt that these polls are so rigged to get the results the pollers want. It might just be that they dont want us there anymore. Who knows....
 

Hawk

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Well, I've done my best to tell you how these companies work. I've watched the numbers being fudged, and got into trouble because I wouldn't have any part of it. That's one of the reasons I no longer work fo a polling company.

I have this bridge . . . .

:cdn:
Hawk
 

uptheglens

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Hawk said:
Well, I've done my best to tell you how these companies work. I've watched the numbers being fudged, and got into trouble because I wouldn't have any part of it. That's one of the reasons I no longer work fo a polling company.

I have this bridge . . . .

:cdn:
Hawk

Although you have a much better knowledge of how polling companies work, I thought that this was one of the most brilliant examples of how the same question can have two different results in polling. This excerpt is from "Yes, Prime Minister" by Antony Jay and Johnathan Lynn. The poll was about the re-introduction of conscription:

The secret is that when the Man in The Street is approached by a nice attractive young lady with a clipboard he is asked a SERIES of questions. Naturally, the Man in The Street wants to make a good impression and doesn't want to make a fool if himself. So the market researcher asks questions designed to elicit CONSISTENT answers.

Humphrey demonstrated the system on me. "Mr. Woolley, are you worried about the rise in crime among teenagers?"

"Yes", I said.

"Do you think there's a lack of discipline and vigorous training in our Comprehensive Schools?"

"Yes"

"Do you think young people welcome some structure and leadership in their lives?"

"Yes"

"Do they respond to a challenge?"

"Yes"

"Might you be in favour of reintroducing National Service?"

"Yes"

Well, naturally I said yes. One could hardly have said anything else without looking inconsistent. Then what happens is that the Opinion Poll publishes only the last question and answer.

Of course, the reputable polls didn't conduct themselves like that. But there weren't too many of those. Humphrey suggested that we commission a new survey, not for the Party but for the Ministry of Defence. We did so. He invented the questions there and then:

"Mr. Woolley, are you worried about the danger of war?"

"Yes," I said, quite honestly.

"Are you unhappy about the growth of armaments?"

"Yes"

"Do you think there's a danger in giving young people guns and teaching them how to kill?"

"Yes"

"Do you think it wrong to force people to take up arms against their will?"

"Yes"

"Would you oppose the reintroduction of National Service?"

"Yes"

I'd said "yes" before I'd even realised it, d'you see?

Humphrey crowed with delight. "You see, Bernard," he said to me, "you're the perfect Balanced Sample".
 

Sassy

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Hawk said:
Well, I've done my best to tell you how these companies work. I've watched the numbers being fudged, and got into trouble because I wouldn't have any part of it. That's one of the reasons I no longer work fo a polling company.

I have this bridge . . . .

:cdn:
Hawk

LOL you are correct, I recently participated in a poll and it became clear halfway through that I was being led to a preconceived conclusion.  In fact the poll was designed to get the results that the person paying for said poll wanted.  I have no faith in polls.  Considering our MSM is extremely left/left/left wing, thus they only report the negatives of the Mission. Once in a while the Globe and Rail will post a fluff piece but if one wants to find out what's happening on the ground we have to read blogs.  That is shameful, MSM needs to start reporting the news instead printing a blurb and telling me what they think. Frankly I'm sick of reporters opining their opinion like it's fact.  It's not it's their opinion. Gurrrrrrrrrrrrr.

I participate in several forums that are Liberal, sadly only a small percentage of them support the mission.  Most posters call our military some  nasty names, baby killer is one of them.  All I can do is try and be a voice for those who can't speak.  When I read something that shines a bright light on the military I post it. I'm often refered to as a "War Monger" sigh but considering the source I really could careless.

 
 

Hawk

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uptheglens - that was wonderful! YES PRIME MINISTER is truly brilliant! Know what, though, like all good comedy its absolutely true. You talk in a soft (sexy?), calm voice - sooth them into complacency then let them have it once they're listening to the flirtyness in you voice. Guys can work it on women, just like I can work it on men. Sounds sexist, and I don't mean it that way (please forgive if I've offended anyone, that wasn't my intention), but when you're under the gun to get completed surveys, you use what you've got  >:D

The sad thing is, the polls will lead the people. What they report will be (is?) what will happen. People have a herding instinct. If they hear most people want us out of Afghanistan, then everyone can't be wrong, can they? Pulling out must be the right thing to do. THAT'S the real danger in all this spin. They won't think for themselves, will accept what they perceive as the status quo, and let the chips fall where they may.

That's why I love coming here to chat - people here think for themselves, and don't allow MSM or anyone else tell them what they think. Argue as I will, its in my nature, I'm truly enjoying this place, and want to stay. So I'm trying to behave.

:cdn:
Hawk

 

McG

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It would be interesting to see a graph showing public opinion over the year + since this started.  The same sort of thing is done in the lead-up to an election.

I recognize that some error would exist as a result of the question not being exactly the same each time.  Regardless, I think we would see that regularly publicised trends toward decreasing support are false.
 

gnplummer421

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I still believe the biggest blocker for most people that oppose our mission is the lack of knowledge.

Whenever I become engaged in a conversation with a person who is convinced we should not be there, I have encouraged that person to explain to me, in detail, exactly why they feel this way. Most seem to answer in exactly the same way;

1. It is Bush's War,
2. It is about Oil,
3. We are supposed to be Peacekeeping,
4. Harper is just a Bush puppet,
5. Our soldiers are dying for nothing. (this one really angers me)

I then gently (suppressing my anger) try to get them to tell me what they know about the actual mission. The current units involved, what province we are operating in, who we are fighting and why.

Sadly, when it comes to this part, most people will change the subject, because they simply do not know. I believe most people react only to what they see on TV, read in the papers, and then those damned polls. If our troops would get some positive publicity, maybe it would help educate people, and then they can form an accurate opinion.

Our Forces ARE doing very positive things, I only wish my fellow citizens knew about them.

Gnplummer421 :cdn:



 

uptheglens

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Hawk said:
uptheglens - that was wonderful! YES PRIME MINISTER is truly brilliant! Know what, though, like all good comedy its absolutely true. You talk in a soft (sexy?), calm voice - sooth them into complacency then let them have it once they're listening to the flirtyness in you voice. Guys can work it on women, just like I can work it on men. Sounds sexist, and I don't mean it that way (please forgive if I've offended anyone, that wasn't my intention), but when you're under the gun to get completed surveys, you use what you've got  >:D

The sad thing is, the polls will lead the people. What they report will be (is?) what will happen. People have a herding instinct. If they hear most people want us out of Afghanistan, then everyone can't be wrong, can they? Pulling out must be the right thing to do. THAT'S the real danger in all this spin. They won't think for themselves, will accept what they perceive as the status quo, and let the chips fall where they may.

That's why I love coming here to chat - people here think for themselves, and don't allow MSM or anyone else tell them what they think. Argue as I will, its in my nature, I'm truly enjoying this place, and want to stay. So I'm trying to behave.

:cdn:
Hawk


Phooey. I could have saved all my time typing that out, and linked to the part in question. Here's the broadcast:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OM90nx25Tys
 

je suis prest

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The following is a recent poll, indicating that perhaps the real story of Afghanistan is coming through, and Canadians are not falling for the Jack Layton/Gilles Duceppe approach after all (reproduced in accordance with fair dealing laws etc)

Support for Afghan war effort stable, poll reveals Jack Aubry, CanWest News Service
Published: Friday, August 24, 2007 Article tools
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  Font: * * * * OTTAWA — Canadian support for the military mission in Afghanistan remains surprisingly stable, including in Quebec, despite the loss of three soldiers from that province in the past week, a new CanWest News Service/Global National poll suggests.

Conducted by Ipsos Reid, the poll found 51 per cent of respondents across the country said they support the mission, while 45 per cent oppose it. The numbers remained virtually unchanged from a month ago.

In Quebec, support for the nation’s overseas combat activities actually rose to 35 per cent this week from 30 per cent in July, while opposition dropped to 61 per cent from 65 per cent. The Ipsos Reid poll runs counter to a CROP survey, released earlier this week, which showed an 11 percentage-point increase, to 68 per cent, of Quebecers opposed to their compatriots being involved in the conflict.

The Ipsos-Reid poll was conducted following the death of the first soldier from Quebec’s Royal 22nd Regiment — the Van Doo. Partway through the survey, which ran from Tuesday through Thursday of this past week, two more Quebec soldiers were killed in action in Afghanistan. Both were based at Quebec’s Canadian Forces Base Valcartier. Moreover, a high-profile French-language TV personality was caught in an attack, which seriously injured his cameraman.

John Wright, senior vice-president of Ipsos Reid, said the slight increase in support for the mission in Quebec captured in his poll may be “a symptom of Quebecers rallying around their own troops in support of their efforts in Afghanistan.”

However, the four percentage-point drop in opposition in Quebec falls within the poll’s margin of error of 6.2 percentage points for the province.

At a red rally for the troops held Friday at the Canadian National Exhibition in Toronto, Defence Minister Peter MacKay said Canadian soldiers are involved in a “noble cause” in Afghanistan. Gen. Rick Hillier, chief of the defence staff, told the crowd that Canadian troops believe in the mission in Afghanistan and that public support means a lot to them.

“From the soldiers’ perspective, we do not believe a group of people who will whip women for (wearing) heels that will click on pavement should be allowed to resume control of their country and the lives of those people in it,” said Hillier, referring to the Taliban enemy. Because of the “incredible work” of Canadian soldiers, there are now 6,000 Afghan women in training as school teachers, the general said.

Wright said public opinion on the Afghan mission has held relatively stable, even during periods when Canada suffered serious casualties.

“There’s 24.5 million adult Canadians in this country and we have found that about 12.25 million have supported the mission and 12.25 million have been against it from the beginning. There has not been any drastic swings in support and opposition against the effort,” said Wright.

And, he added, about two-thirds of Quebecers have consistently opposed it. Through both world wars and in more recent history, Quebecers have been at odds with other Canadians over Canada’s military engagements. When Quebecers are removed from the overall numbers, the majority of Canadians (56 per cent) continue to support the Afghan mission, the latest poll confirms.

In another indication of the continuing support for the Canadian Forces, the military exceeded its recruiting goals for the 12 months ending March 31, 2007.

A total of 6,547 Canadians signed up at one of the nation’s 10 recruiting centres, and went through basic training.

That’s 121 more than the target of 6,426, said Capt. Holly Brown, with Department of National Defence’s Canadian Forces Recruiting Group.

“It’s good to have a little extra,” Brown said, “because you never know: someone may decide they don’t want to do it after all, or might not make it through the (basic)_training,”

Respondents in this week’s poll may also have been influenced by U.S. President George W. Bush, who lavished praise on Canada’s war effort following a summit meeting with Prime Minister Stephen Harper and their Mexican counterpart.

The poll reveals that the strongest support for the mission is in Alberta (72 per cent), followed by Atlantic Canada (56 per cent), and Ontario (55 per cent). British Columbia is evenly split, with 49 per cent expressing support while 48 per cent oppose the mission.

Quebec’s Van Doo regiment took command of Canada’s mission in Afghanistan on Aug. 1.

Harper has pledged to withdraw Canada’s combat troops from Afghanistan in February 2009, unless Parliament as a whole agrees to extend the mission. So far, 70 Canadians, including one diplomat, have died in that country since Canada’s military involvement began in 2002.

The poll involved 1,000 interviews with adults. The results are considered accurate to within 3.1 percentage points, 19 times out of 20.

Ottawa Citizen

 

Hunteroffortune

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An even more interesting poll, shows that up to 81% of Canadians support the mission, but you will never hear that on TV!

http://www.canada.com/nationalpost/news/story.html?id=a26fa1a8-866d-4c2c-8042-f8013c8f4f80&k=62450

Interesting graph, support is around 50% or higher, and depending on how you ask the questions, going as high as 81%!

In a string of polls for the National Defence Department in late 2006 and early 2007, Ipsos Reid tweaked the questions even further, and found dramatic differences in response.

When the question referred to military operations that help to secure "the environment for the civilian population" through activities "that include combat," backing shot up to the low 60s.

After a lengthy preamble that said Canada is trying to improve human rights for women and build a more free and democratic society in Afghanistan, another question drew support from 81%.

It suggests that explaining the purpose of the mission is all-important if the government wants to boost the tepid support among Canadians for the operation, said Alex Morrison of the Canadian Institute for Strategic Studies.


So, never believe a poll, they will ask the question slanted to what the client wants, they will get the results that will get them paid, and used again. It's funny though, no matter how biased the question asked was, support is holding steady at 50%, in Canada, that's HUGE support!
 

MarkOttawa

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Plus ça change (usual copyright disclaimer):

Canadian support for the mission holding steady: poll
Albertans at 72% are most likely to back deployment, while nearly two out of three Quebecers are opposed

http://www.canada.com/components/print.aspx?id=d125b279-9c7d-4bbe-8aba-8d3b4501ff35

Canadian support for the military mission in Afghanistan remains surprisingly stable, including in Quebec, despite the loss of three soldiers from that province in the past week, a new CanWest News Service/Global National poll suggests.

The poll conducted by Ipsos-Reid found 51 per cent of respondents across the country said they support the mission, while 45 per cent oppose it. The numbers remained virtually unchanged from a month ago.

In Quebec, support for the nation's overseas combat activities actually rose to 35 per cent this week from 30 per cent in July, while opposition dropped to 61 per cent from 65 per cent. The Ipsos-Reid poll differs with a CROP survey, released earlier this week, that showed an 11 percentage-point increase, to 68 per cent, of Quebecers opposed to their compatriots being involved in the conflict.

The Ipsos-Reid poll was conducted afterthe death of the first soldier from Quebec's Royal 22nd Regiment. Partway through the survey, which ran from Tuesday through Thursday of this week, two more Quebec soldiers were killed in action in Afghanistan. Both were based at Canadian Forces Base Valcartier, Que. Moreover, a high-profile French-language TV personality was caught in an attack, which seriously injured his cameraman.

John Wright, senior vice-president of Ipsos-Reid, said the slight increase in support for the mission in Quebec captured in his poll may be "a symptom of Quebecers rallying around their own troops in support of their efforts in Afghanistan."

However, the four percentage-point drop in opposition in Quebec falls within the poll's margin of error of 6.2 percentage points for the province.

Wright said public opinion on the Afghan mission has held relatively stable, even during periods when Canada suffered serious casualties.

"There are 24.5 million adult Canadians in this country and we have found that about 12.25 million have supported the mission and 12.25 million have been against it from the beginning. There has not been any drastic swings in support and opposition against the effort," said Wright.

And, he added, about two-thirds of Quebecers have consistently opposed it. Through both world wars and in more recent history, Quebecers have been at odds with other Canadians over Canada's military engagements. When Quebecers are removed from the overall numbers, the majority of Canadians (56 per cent) continue to support the Afghan mission, the latest poll confirms.

Respondents in this week's poll may have been influenced by U.S. President George W. Bush, who lavished praise on Canada's war effort following a summit meeting with Prime Minister Stephen Harper and their Mexican counterpart.

The poll reveals that the strongest support for the mission is in Alberta (72 per cent), followed by Atlantic Canada (56 per cent), and Ontario (55 per cent). British Columbia is evenly split, with 49 per cent expressing support while 48 per cent oppose the mission...

Mark
Ottawa
 

canadianblue

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I remember reading a similar poll from the Reagan era, originally the poll asked if people were for or against welfare, I believe 70% were against it. After re-wording the question to "do you support the government providing assistance to the poor" the poll went the complete opposite with 70% fully supporting government providing more to the poor. Once again it simply shows how much of an effect spin will have and how simple it is to change word's in order to elicit a response. We saw the same with the poll provided above were 80% supported the mission after the question was re-worded.

It also goes to show how people need more information on the issue from both sides before making a decision of support based on a simple single sentence question.

A little bit off topic, but the results of this poll were fairly interesting.

http://www.macleans.ca/canada/features/article.jsp?content=20070813_108160_108160
 

The Bread Guy

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Majority (54%) Believe Troops Should Stay In Afghanistan Past 2009
Minority (44%) Believe Troops Should be Brought Home in 2009, While Majority (54%) Believe Canada Should Continue either in Current Role (14%) or in Training Capacity (40%)

Ipsos Reid, 16 Oct 07
News release - Permalink to news release (.pdf) - Detailed tables (.pdf)

In light of Prime Minister Harper’s appointment of a five-person panel to review the future of Canada’s role in Afghanistan, a new Ipsos Reid poll conducted exclusively on behalf of CanWest News Service and Global Television reveals that a majority (54%) of Canadians want Canadian troops to continue to be stationed in Afghanistan, while those who want a full withdrawal of Canadians troops from Afghanistan are in the minority (44%). Two percent (2%) do not know what they would prefer.

However, it appears that many Canadians would prefer to have Canada’s current mission altered away from the current combat-intensive mission, with four in ten (40%) agreeing that Canada should ‘keep troops there, but have them do something like train Afghani soldiers or police officers’. Just 14% of Canadians believe that the government should ‘extend our current role and mission as required’.

Canadians across the country are not uniform in their opinions on this matter. Those most likely to indicate that they would like to see a full withdrawal of troops from Afghanistan are most likely to come from Quebec (51%), followed by residents of Atlantic Canada (47%), Ontario (43%), British Columbia (42%), Saskatchewan/Manitoba (42%) and Alberta (33%). Younger Canadians, aged 18 to 34, are more likely (49%) to adopt this stance than are middle-aged (43%), aged 35 to 54, or older Canadians (40%). Women (51%) are much more likely than men (36%) to believe that Canada’s troops should be withdrawn from Afghanistan when the current mission ends in 2009.

Those most likely to support the notion that Canadian soldiers should be redeployed to activities which primarily include the training of Afghan police and soldiers are most likely to come from Alberta (45%), followed by British Columbia (43%), Saskatchewan/Manitoba (41%), Ontario (41%), Quebec (36%) and Atlantic Canada (35%). Older Canadians are more likely (43%) to support this type of mission than are middle-aged (41%) or younger Canadians (36%). Men (46%) are more likely than women (35%) to support this type of mission.

And the Canadians who most likely to support an extension of our current role and mission as required are most likely to come from Alberta (22%), followed by Saskatchewan/Manitoba (21%), Atlantic Canada (18%), British Columbia (14%), Ontario (13%), and Quebec (12%). There are no significant differences among age categories, however men (17%) are more likely (12%) than women to support extending Canada’s current combat role as required.

These are the findings of an Ipsos Reid poll conducted for CanWest News Service/Global News and fielded from Oct 9 -14, 2007. For this survey, a representative randomly selected sample of 1,001 adult Canadians was interviewed by telephone. With a sample of this size, the aggregate results are considered accurate to within ± 3.1 percentage points, 19 times out of 20, of what they would have been had the entire adult Canadian population been polled. The margin of error will be larger within each sub-grouping of the survey population. These data were weighted to ensure the sample's regional and age/sex composition reflects that of the actual Canadian population according to Census data ....

 

McG

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I wonder if that large group that wants us to switch to training is aware that our OMLTs are in the fight & that our losses include OMLT pers.
 

GAP

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They wouldn't have a clue with a flashlight and two hands.....
 

geo

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Anyways.... even those safe cushy regions in northern Afghanistan have not done Germany, France & Spain any good... they have been loosing personnel - same as us.

 
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