Saturday, July 26, 2014

New Panelbase poll shows Yes vote up on last directly comparable poll

A new Panelbase poll has finally been released - I'm not sure yet whether it's the one that we heard about people being interviewed for ten days ago, or whether that was an unpublished internal poll.  Either way, tonight's results are reasonably encouraging for Yes.

Should Scotland be an independent country?

Yes 41% (-2)
No 48% (+2)

With Don't Knows excluded, it works out as...

Yes 46% (-2)
No 54% (+2)

The percentage changes listed above are from the last Panelbase poll, which was commissioned by Yes Scotland.  But it's important to stress that tonight's results are unlikely to be directly comparable to that poll, because the new poll was commissioned by the Sunday Times, and Panelbase use a slightly different question for their Sunday Times series.  It's not a biased question by any means, but there is now quite strong circumstantial evidence that it tends to produce a slightly higher No lead.  You don't have to take my word for it - Anthony Wells (no friend to the Yes campaign) has commented on the phenomenon as well.  If we compare tonight's numbers with the last directly comparable Panelbase poll, this is how they look -

Yes 41% (+1)
No 48% (+1)

And with Don't Knows excluded...

Yes 46% (n/c)
No 54% (n/c)

So no change in the overall headline gap, but with the Yes vote hitting a new record high for the Sunday Times series.  It's also only the second time that the No lead has been as low as seven points.

I almost feel quite sorry for Blair McDougall tonight - he finds himself openly 'gloating' about the No vote being ahead by only seven points in what John Curtice would call an "independently-commissioned poll", even though only three such polls in the entire campaign so far have been worse for No (the two most recent Survation polls and the ICM poll on Easter Sunday).  How the mighty have fallen.

As for what this means for the overall trend, there's good news and bad news.  It further increases the likelihood that the YouGov polls a few weeks ago were just showing margin of error 'noise', as opposed to a real increase in the No lead.  On the other hand, it also slightly decreases the likelihood that the most recent TNS poll was picking up a genuinely big decrease in the No lead.  It leaves us looking at a relatively static position, albeit with the possibility that both campaigns have been picking up a little support as Don't Knows are squeezed (the pollsters are split on whether that is happening or not).

Crucially, however, this is all before the Commonwealth Games - I'm not sure yet what Panelbase's fieldwork dates were, but they almost certainly will have been mostly or wholly before the start of Scotland's extraordinary gold rush.  There's a very strong suspicion that the No lead was significantly boosted in the summer of 2012 as a direct result of Team GB's success in the London Olympics, and if that's true there must be at least a theoretical chance of Team Scotland's success working the same magic for Yes now.  On the other hand, the impact may be diluted by the BBC's rather political choice to place the entire Commonwealth Games within a "British" frame, with viewers being invited (or should I say instructed) to view the distinction between the "Home Nations" teams as a mere formality.  So I genuinely have no idea whether there'll be a Games bounce for Yes or not - we'll just have to wait and see.

Talking of the Commonwealth Games, I've got an early morning ticket booked for tomorrow, with a long journey to get to the venue, so I'll have to cut this short (mainly because I got distracted by an exchange on Twitter with the drongo wing of Blair McDougall's Trolling Army.)  I'll post a Poll of Polls update when I get home tomorrow.

96 comments:

  1. Why would this be a encouraging poll for Yes. It's clearly an encouraging poll for no - albeit within margins of error. If we'd gained two and they'd lost two I'd be doing cartwheels.

    Poor poll for Yes if honesty is allowed.

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  2. Brian, the answer to your question is in the post. Forgive me for being impatient, but if you want to take issue with what I say it would be helpful if you read it first.

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  3. Sorry, but just can't take any poll seriously that claims that there has been a move from yes to no. It just doesn't happen out there in real life, no chance. Still haven't EVER met anyone (or even heard of anyone) who has gone from yes to no. Or from yes to don't know for that matter.

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  4. Your headline is very misleading. It may well have a yes vote up from the last Panelbase poll, but the spin is almost new Labour esque.

    It's good we are in the 40s, but this is a poor result. It may well have the 3rd lowest No lead, but it still has a No lead.

    Not one poll has a Yes lead. Not one! Quebec had a 6% lead and still voted no.

    I'm a passionate Yes voter, but we are losing this. Of course I don't speak like this to undecided or soft Nos trying to win over, but there are far too many negativite types in Scotland who do not want indy.

    I eny the Welsh of all people. They have no cringe as such! Maybe they won't be rushing for Independence as they don't vote Plaid, but they have no cringe.

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  5. I read your comment James. And take umbrage to the claim -" This is a good poll for Yes" or words that that effect.

    Its a poor poll; either showing a 4% loss or at best equality.

    I'm not too downhearted, I expect the CG and the leaders debates to eat into the small No camp's lead.

    Just keep it honest as the gold-standard blog it used to be.

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  6. Cool heads Kevin! The last week has been great for Yes and this poll is consistent with Panelbase numbers.

    Obviously its poor headline numbers - Hopefully they break more kindly when we get the unrounded data. I would expect they will.

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  7. "Just keep it honest as the gold-standard blog it used to be."

    As you've used the word "umbrage", I'll be direct with you - I take severe umbrage at your clear implication that there is something dishonest about this post, which is 100% factually accurate. Please either identify the dishonesty, or withdraw what you said.

    Frankly, I'm starting to wonder if some of the comments we occasionally see here from supposedly "depressed" Yes supporters are all that they seem - I'm not suggesting they all come from No campaign trolls, but it wouldn't surprise me if at least some of them do.

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    1. Of course they do! Why would anyone think otherwise?

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  8. Brian, maybe I was hasty in response, and I'm sure we will see a Yes bounce thanks to the games and Scotland doing terrific.

    James, I'm as a Yes as they come. Why can't we criticise the yes campaign? I've even took holidays to campaign for Yes the 2 weeks before the campaign.

    I just us to win this thing! And I've met many soft no or undecided voters who want to vote yes, but saying "The UK is bluffing" won't cut it with them.

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  9. James - Pipe down eh?

    I would like you to report the figures as they're returned.

    The probability is the figures are only margin of error changes and the data sets will confirm Yes being rounded down.

    I ask you (as others have) to drift away from the reporting we endure on the BBC and tell it like it is.

    While you're not lying, in truth these aren't good figures for us.


    can you say - Hand on heart you were punching the air with delight when these figures broke?

    Also drop the "complain and he must be a NO troll tag" I've been leafleting on a Saturday night in Aberlady on my tod!

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  10. "Why can't we criticise the yes campaign?"

    I've criticised the Yes campaign. There's a difference between doing that and saying "we're doomed, we're all doomed", which is absolutely no use to anyone. For pity's sake, we're on 46% in this poll - we only need 50.01%!

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  11. Kevin your post reads like one of those TV moments when an interviewer asks someone a personal question promising not to tell anyone, then winks at the camera.

    "we are losing but I would never say that to an undecided voter", winks at all the undecided who read Scot goes Pop!

    This poll is yes down 2% and no up 2% but only from the latest Panelbase poll commissioned by the YES campaign, however since this poll is a Times poll it will have a different question and this has given No better % in the past polls and Yes less.

    So James is clearly saying in the above article that comparing like with like ie the Times % rise and falls for No and Yes, then this is a good enough set of numbers for Yes.

    If I can understand this, anyone can!

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  12. Fair dues, James. And 4% can be achieved!

    My gripe mainly is not to paint a turd. This is not any progress for yes, it's basically as we are, that was my issue with the poll and saying there's been a Yes gain.

    We've still got time to win this. And I apologise for letting off steam maybe not too coherent.

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  13. "James - Pipe down eh?"

    Er, no actually, I won't. Certainly not on my own blog, and particularly not when I'm being accused of dishonesty without the slightest shred of justification.

    "I ask you (as others have) to drift away from the reporting we endure on the BBC and tell it like it is."

    Who are the "others"?

    "I would like you to report the figures as they're returned."

    Which is what I have done. If you don't personally agree with my commentary, feel free to read Duncan Hothersall's Twitter feed instead.

    "Hand on heart you were punching the air with delight when these figures broke?"

    That's a rather academic question, given that there's absolutely nothing in the post that could reasonably lead you to ask it. My actual reaction was more along the lines of "hmm, that's pretty decent".

    "Also drop the "complain and he must be a NO troll tag" I've been leafleting on a Saturday night in Aberlady on my tod!"

    Yes, it's perfectly possible that you have. The only observation I'm making is that what you've written is broadly in line with what I'd expect a troll from the No campaign to say in this situation, and as a result I just don't know what to make of it. This rush of very similar posts has started very suddenly.

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  14. It is an old poll.10 days from now after the Commonwealths yes will be ahead.Trust me!In any case I think we are already ahead.The polls are not picking up the people who are going to win this for us.They are under the radar.

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  15. Sunshine on CrieffJuly 27, 2014 at 1:29 AM

    "I eny the Welsh of all people. They have no cringe as such! Maybe they won't be rushing for Independence as they don't vote Plaid, but they have no cringe."

    I can't believe anyone could claim that. I've just been on a visit to Wales and I picked up a couple of books by Siôn T Jobbins.

    Basically, they are compilations of articles he wrote during his time as editor-in-chief of Cambria magazine, and they describe a cultural cringe that would make your toes curl. Wales has a labour movement that absolutely loathes the Welsh language, and a Labour Party that seizes on any effort to promote the native language and culture and brands it 'racist' and/or 'anti-English'.

    The Welsh language is seen as inferior to English - often by Welsh-speakers themselves - and Welshness in general is very much a second-class identity when compared to Britishness.

    Regardless of how some despair at Scotland's position, we are light years ahead of the Welsh in securing our national identity.

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  16. Honestly, even on a like for like for like basis, this poll ain't great. We are behind 50 days out or so and we have to accept that.

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  17. I think a few of us have CG fever too! Expecting a large swing thanks to the success (so far of the games) and it's only Day 4.

    So forgive me for being too hasty, but I absolutely disagree that this any sort of progress for Yes (this poll) that we are as just were pretty much.

    Even worse, is the hope/expections not just from Yes, but No that Yes will take a wee bounce from a sporting event. Showing up the 80/90min or 11 day patriots we are as a nation.

    P.S Sunshine on Crieff, Wales have the unfortune of being so close to huge English civilian areas like Birmingham, Liverpool - so they are always going to be colonised/overun with English people (who with great intentions, have no real loyality to the Welsh nation or language) and expect English to be spoken (since they of course are all team GB).

    Welsh language surviving is nothign short of a miracle. Considering the desnity of population, land access that still 20% of the Welsh population can speak to a fluent or advanced level of it is spectacular.

    And our own Gaelic is often quoted in Hootsman papers as having "More Punjabi or Polish speakers" than. And try reading an online article about Gaidhlig, and it's a depressing read. The Welsh do not have the same cringe regarding their own culture/language.

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  18. Don't people realise that voters need to have signed up for political polling to get polled by these companies.

    This means that the majority of gains made through people engaging from areas that don't usually engage with politics will not be picked up by the polling companies.

    Hasn't any of you doom-merchants saw the canvasing results coming from our poorest housing estates showing Yes up at around 60% with DK at around 30% No at about 15%?

    This can't be picked up by pollsters because most people from these schemes haven't been voting for years. (I was one)

    I saw a post from a young Labour activist tonight who told everyone that it wasn't true that large numbers of Labour voters would be voting Yes.

    This is the level of misinformation that BT and the MSM is putting out there and the BT campaign are getting away with outright lying to their own activists to try to keep them motivated.

    We are in the most dishonest campaign that any democratic country has ever faced, and up against the whole power of the British state and their useful idiots in the so called Scottish Labour Party, yet slowly but surely we keep seeing more and more people awakening up to the realisation that Yes is the answer for Scotland.

    Tonight I have read two people saying that after considering the issues they have decided to vote Yes and this is something I see on twitter every night I am on, yet I have honestly never saw a similar tweet saying this for No.

    People hold your nerve, we are winning.

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  19. Patrick, I live in the real world too.
    Maybe I should see the Doc as some days I feel we'll reach that 55% plus win and others we'll be lucky to get 45.

    Just two nights ago, I spent my eveneing with fairly non-politlcal people. Your average day person who doesn't like on facebook political parties or drive around with stickers etc etc. From the 12 of us 10 were DEFINITE yes voters, 1 was not sure and the other didn't have a vote.

    Whilst the day after, my neighbour invited me over in the sunshine for a BBQ and some wine and beer. The referendum came up, I tried to hold my own but from the numbers it was Yes 2 No 8 DK/Undecided/Not Voting - 3. Although add them all up, Yes is in the lead - it just shows the contrast that many of us in Scotland meet every day.

    I think we'll see a post Commy Games bounce. We've been doing terrific there and I think we'll thrive on being Host Nations (tempted to stick a quid or so on us getting a medal in the Sevens, but not that keen as I've not yet parted with the cash).

    We are winning people over, but it would help a lot more if non political people or folk who don't read or understand financial jargo were given info, PDFs, booklets to help win over undecided voters with their concerns regards food prices, currency.

    We will never win this if we just attack undecided voters who ask that type of thing as being plants, no supporters, dumb. Or tell them that the answers are out there.

    They are out there, but not everyone is in to politics, and I'd hate to be a smug bellend come Sep 19th and see we lost by 48-52 considering we riddiculded small c, cautious undecided very soft no voters.

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  20. I posted on Wings yesterday that there seems to have been loads of supposed Yes voters talking about a No victory recently. It is happening across most of the pro-Indy blogs.
    I feel this is a co-ordinated attempt to demoralise Yes voters, and stop the growing Yes momentum.

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  21. I've also noticed many Yes people now talking about the impact of a No vote, it's like we are preparing for the inevitable defeat?

    As we get closer I am becoming increasingly concerned, we really need a boost from somewhere.

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  22. A quarter of all voters made their mind up in the final week of the 1997 referendum campaign. We've not even started yet.

    Nearly 60% of individual bets placed on the outcome are for Yes (Oddschecker.com). This is not scientific but it is encouraging.

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  23. Kevin,
    I simply do not recognise the YES campaign in your last sentence. I do recognise the NO campaign in it. I am not doubting your honesty or commitment to YES but this incredibly one sided and dishonest media lead NO campaign is having a very strange psychological effect on perceptions. A variation of stock home syndrome perhaps where certain YES campaigners and supporters affirm and accept the projection onto our campaign the flaws and realities of the NO campaign.

    I have yet to meet or hear of a verifiable case of a yes voter moving to no. I, on the other hand, have personally been able to turn convinced NOs into YESs with relative ease when those people are willing to engage in debate.

    Everyone I meet, no matter their position, are acknowledging the importance of this vote and so I am confident that most current NO voters will take the time to properly engage with the debate before the vote is taken. This being the case, along with the reported and my own personal experience of the direction of travel NO to YES in those circumstances, I am very confident of a comfortable YES victory on the 19th.

    Your posts (and similar others) simply encourage the swallowing of the media generated doubt and dispair which has no basis in the day to day experiences of the actual campaign on the ground. It is therefor of no help to the YES Campaign and you should maybe take this into account before posting in future.

    braco

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  24. Everyone I know who is part of the Yes campaign is feeling positive, upbeat and confident.

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  25. Everyone I know who is part of the Yes campaign is feeling positive, upbeat and confident.

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  26. I wonder for example if it can be merely chance that we are so far ahead on social media, that we are vastly more visible than the other side and that we hear so many accounts of people moving to our side from No. Does all this mean nothing? Maybe but I'm not certain that there can be so many positive signs for us in a situation where we are meant to be so far behind.

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  27. I wonder for example if it can be merely chance that we are so far ahead on social media, that we are vastly more visible than the other side and that we hear so many accounts of people moving to our side from No. Does all this mean nothing? Maybe but I'm not certain that there can be so many positive signs for us in a situation where we are meant to be so far behind.

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  28. That's my experience too anon. Add excited and philosophical in there and it's a complex but very positive if impatient (for change) campaigning outlook.

    braco

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  29. Braco, I agree. There was a report in the Telegraph the other day that Darling was saying 'nationalists' are becoming 'increasingly desperate'. In my experience the opposite is true. In the last week I've travelled all over scotland and there is evidence of Yes everywhere. The other side are mostly invisible. We are miles ahead on facebook and twitter. We hear news every day of folk coming over to our side. The polls are saying one thing but our lived experience is saying something else. I'm not an eejit, I know you have to pay attention to polls but why is there such a seemingly large disconnect between what we are experiencing and what the polls say? Michael

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  30. Michael,
    Exactly. Add into that the well documented and accepted experience of the polling and people's experience of what the polling was telling us before the last holyrood landslide and I see absolutely no factual basis for the kind of panicky and hopeless yes posts that are now appearing regularly on pro YES websites. Therefor some are simply no trolling but I do feel most are the residual sychological effect of what has been an unprecedented one sided, negative and dishonest media tsunami on behalf of the no campaign.

    The reason the holyrood landslide was such a surprise to everyone, even the party that benefitted from it , is that the media and social establishments of Scotland, uniquely in an advanced 'democratic' western society are solely configured to tell the populace what is right and what to think. They have been configured this way for so long now that they have all lost the basic ability to listen and understand what their own population is actually saying and thinking.

    Media and establishments within a true democracy live or die on their ability to properly reflect the actual views and predilections of their populace. This is at the root of why we, as a nation, are where we are at this very moment.

    braco

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  31. As a counter point to the astonishment and surprise at the Scottish landslide, just consider the nature of the first Blair landslide. Blair walked around as the anointed one for at least a year before the actual vote as a result of everyone knowing, everyone, that he was the next prime minister of the uk and Northern Ireland. That landslide surprised no one. Delighted but did not surprise.

    England's media and social establishments, for all their obvious faults, are still able to listen and tap into their own populations mood and this is why there is no equivelant social movement for change there. Unfortunately the rise of ukip does reflect the English media and its predelictions.

    The yes campaign is NOT reflected in the media and establishments predelictions but has instead grown out of the frustrations and understanding of that very obvious lack of reflection within our own establishments. This, in my opinion, is at the heart of the political chasm that has developed between Scotland and the rUK for which there is only one solution.

    Vote YES.

    braco

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  32. Every time a poll appears that is friendly to the no side we wait a day or two for the data sets to appear.

    At this point we discover that the pollster has asked a leading preamble, or the sample has 45% men/ 55% women or twice as many non-Scots born as the census suggests, without any re-weighting to compensate. Sometimes they ask "if the referendum was tomorrow..." which distorts results. Other times they are including figures from people who have said they are certain not to vote.

    Invariably it turns out that these polls aren't quite so friendly to the no campaign as the headlines tweeted by Blair McDougall first suggest.

    So for this reason I never have an "Oh God, woe is the yes campaign" reaction when I see Blair McDougall's tweets. My reaction is "Aye, I wonder what wee tweaks they have been up to this time?"

    So I am of the view, too, that many of the negative commenters recently who come on here immediately after a poll is released going "Oh no, we are doomed," are of the Concern Troll variety, and I agree with others that there has been an increase in such activity recently.

    It's like the guy yesterday on Wings and elsewhere who was telling everyone to watch out, the parking fee at the science centre is now £15. Total lies of course, the fee is more like a £1 an hour, but it was a sneaky wee way of putting off people from attending today's BBC demo at Pacific Quay.

    So take care, folks, there are many of these concern trolls out there trying to cause setbacks and demoralise everyone.

    As a campaigner out there on the streets I am telling you all that the canvassing returns are very promising and show yes on the up. We are ahead on social media and the voter who moves from yes to no simply does not exist in real life, no matter what the pollsters tell you.

    Apart from official polls I see no evidence ANYWHERE that no is in the lead, but lots that yes is.

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  33. James of course there are trolls about: John Mcternan is about and probably helping to organise them. And these latest batch of trolls are not your normal abusive morons but a more sophisticated shower whose main aim is to try to reduce the YES euphoria and sow seeds of doubt into the minds of YES campaign supporters.

    They are doing this by pretending to be YES supporters but of the "honest" type, ie, today criticising your take on the Panelbase results and saying these are poor for YES. And when you challenge them they petulantly ask why criticism of YES is not allowed. And they claim that they have been canvassing regularly. As if. They usually operate in groups of three each putting in little digs and echoing the others' faint hearted support of YES. Anyone recognisable above?

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  34. I agree with a poster above who disavows the organised poll results because they do not reflect the real world as found on the ground in canvass results, newspaper polls, internet polls, crowds around public YES stalls and lack of these at NO stalls. They cannot all be wrong.

    And very importantly it has to be recognised that the organised polls are using populations who have REQUESTED that they be placed on a list to be polled for political purposes. The bulk of these people will have made up their minds long ago about how they will vote so you are not going to see much change in their views, nor in the polls involving them in the months before the Referendum.

    But even more importantly these polls are not using the opinions of the the huge group of people who seldom vote in elections, but who are being tapped by canvassing, newspapers,the internet and street stalls and who WILL vote in the Referendum.

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  35. Everyone i talk to on our side is full of optimism. I don't see any alarm amongst the hundreds of facebook friends I have who are Yes campaigners. Nothing like it all. There have always been Yes supporters who believe the best way to win is to shout at folk but they are few in number and have basically been saying the same stuff since the campaign started. For the rest of us we are fairly certain that maintaining a strong positive upbeat message is the only way we can win. Michael

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  36. Incidentally the Quebec referendum campaigns people often talk about were very short. Just a couple of months with significant shifts in voting intentions. This is the start of the campaign not the end. M

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  37. This piece was titled "New Panelbase poll shows Yes vote up on last directly comparable poll" and goes on to give the figures and then say "As for what this means for the overall trend, there's good news and bad news". This seems to me to be an absolutely honest and balanced analysis, so I too am curious about some folks responses.

    We all have our genuine moments of despair and doubt - that's entirely natural - but overall the point isn't really whether yes will win by a landslide, by a wafer thin margin or lose by the same, the point is that people are moving in one direction from believing there is nothing we can do about the elite who control our lives to knowing that ultimately it is us who hold the power, and the only way they wrest it from us is by frightening and misinforming us into depression and apathy. In that sense this is a campaign we are already winning, and that we will win - whatever the result in September - because we no longer believe them when they tell us to have no hope.

    There are good articles in today's Sunday Herald, but the 2 page Tom Gordon 'Hot Seat' interviews - one with Yes and one with No - though they look balanced in terms of words on the page, actually like last week the Yes side is given no room to make its case (again is is a ll about the man) while the No side has plenty of room to twist the facts.

    This is what we're up against, and yet as Ian Hamilton says in SoS:

    “From the canvass results in Argyll and what’s reported from the rest of Scotland, there is an astonishing unanimity. Yes is going to win.

    “It is interesting because the people speaking are the people who have never spoken ­before.”

    "[Post-referendum] We will have a divided country,” he said. “If the ­division is pro-Yes it will be less divided because people who vote for the status quo, don’t have a great deal of ­spirit. But people who want change are not going to change.”

    He added: “I think it is a wonderful thing for democracy when a country is divided. Surely the very worst example of a country that wasn’t divided was Nazi Germany. I want to live in a divided country.”

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  38. Posted this on Wings earlier.

    "Well Labours Ian Price is the latest campaign strategist to be ‘Elbowed out’ by the Better Together campaign, because he has failed to energise the campaign!

    I suppose the above BT ‘Claim’ is as energetic, as anything any other BT leader has spouted so far.

    On the subject of another BT strategist being side-lined..

    Isn’t it strange how they always try to do this in a quiet way? It’s almost like they are trying to keep it secret that they know that their campaign isn’t working, eh?

    If BT were a winning side, as the polls are reporting, they are acting very,very strange!

    It’s like Dundee United winning every week, and go to the top of the league, as star striker Hamish McThunderbolt scores goals for fun…

    Then the manager drops him!

    Surely this can’t be right the fans ask, as United stop scoring and Aberdeen begin to catch up.

    Don’t worry, we are winning says the United manager, as he drops Colin Van Cat The United Goalkeeper who has not conceded a single goal in the last four months!

    United stop scoring and begin to concede an average of three goals per game,

    Don’t worry we are well ahead the manager assures everyone, but the fans of Aberdeen see United’s results every week and they are losing, while Aberdeen keep winning.

    Aberdeen win the league and United get relegated.

    Oops, didn’t see that coming complains the United manager!

    Only used A/deen because it’s Stu’s team, but can anyone dig up any campaign that is showing a healthy lead in the polls and yet continually changes it’s campaign approach and also quietly elbows leading strategists out of the way to replace them with people who they say will ‘get them back on track’

    It’s bizarre!"








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  39. I have doubts about the polls, because they rely on the majority of their business from the Westminster parties - the NO camp. Independence or not, that will not change and there are no consequences to getting it wrong (as can be seen from the 2011 Holyrood debacle) where we are apparently still puzzled as to why the poll predictions were wrong.

    In the USA, the pollsters who got it wrong would have been shredded on air and in the newspapers, and their previous failings would be raised every time they came up with a new poll.

    Here we have an MSM in cahoots with Westminster and they hope their influence will save the day for the Unionists (which would keep the MSM in a position of power).

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  40. Very good points anon.

    braco

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  41. Nice article in Sunday Herald with John Swinney predicting 60% for Yes.

    Quietly confident, no sign of panic.

    Also the last Derek Bateman podcast with Stephen Noon (Yes chief strategist) also revealed a quiet but definite confidence derived from internal polling.

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  42. I think people need to realise how emotional this is for many people. It's not all cold hard analysis and logic.

    Many of us are working hard for a Yes vote, giving up much of our spare time to leafleting, canvassing, manning Yes stalls and so on. We have a lot invested in this. And sometime we get tired. And a wee bit emotional, and I mean that literally not metaphorically.

    In my area we're leafleting alone, because we have such a wide area to cover. We meet up to co-ordinate and compare notes, but we go out alone, into an area of big country houses and comfortable No-voting people. Sometimes we're met by smiles and thanks, but other times we're shouted at and told to take the booklets back. When you don't have a mate with you to pick you up, it can get you down.

    Yesterday wasn't untypical. A few smiles, one demand to take the booklet back, and half an hour spent with a No voter who thought we were too poor, culminating in her agreeing to take an Aye Right leaflet. Then, oh joy, off to the ShoogleAye concert in Galashiels. Fantastic evening, surrounded by Yes campaigners. Got home at one in the morning.

    Good feeling, but it doesn't take much to knock it. It's too emotional and there's a lot of strain. I got home and saw the poll results, and the good feeling evaporated. I know Yes is well behind round here. We're canvassing too, but our canvassers don't tweet their results excitedly when they get home. So maybe people don't realise. I'm constantly hoping the high Yes figures coming in from other places are enough to compensate.

    I was hoping very much that a poll at the end of July would show Yes near parity or even nudging into the lead. If it was going to happen it would be with Panelbase, so it would have been this poll. But no joy, at best it's static. We're still several points behind. Yes, I do get a bit of a downer on this. It's a roller-coaster of a ride.

    This doesn't mean I believe Yes is going to lose. It means I have times when I feel discouraged. And maybe I even say so. It's easier to say so online than to friends in the local campaign, who also need to be supported and encouraged.

    The last thing Yes campaigners in that sort of mood need are accusations of being a unionist troll trying to discourage Yes activists. Come on, have a bit of sympathy and realise that not everyone is getting 60%+ Yes canvassing results. Help to pick us up, don't kick us when we're feeling down.

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  43. No voter here :-) group hug

    Mostly though, I'd like to know what substance Swinney is sniffing, 'cos I'd like a hit of that too. If he turns out to be right, he could make his fortune selling his maths to the polling companies, because none of them have those numbers.

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  44. Rolfe - well said, and bear in mind that if you're heading off to a Gala gig then you're near the border where long established datasets show less support for indy. The numbers will average out over Scotland as a whole, and remember that when canvassing its the arguments and the positive case and the grass-roots nature of the campaign that will win out. Yes don't at this point have to convert half of Scotland, we only have to persuade 3 people out of 100, if the polls are to be taken at face value that is. There is as much value in doorstepping those 3 out of 100 in the Borders as in the Hebrides, but you won't know who they are until you talk with them. I know in the past I have felt a rush of positivity towards a party when I was actually doorstepped or glad-handed by a big name or the actual candidate. (David Steel canvassed me once, and I've met a good few elected politicians over the years, some during campaigns and some randomly and some purposefully.)

    So the best way is to take it a day at a time, enjoy the moment, and trust the effect of a face-to-face encounter. Even a cordial exchange with the opposition can work in a positive way, as these things can take time to percolate through in a person's mind. Like with advertising, half the money you spend is completely wasted, but you will never know which half!

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  45. I was once singled out for a spacial word and a smile from Alec Douglas-Home, one afternoon when he was electioneering in Amulree and I was there on a family holiday. I was eight, and I suppose the nearest thing there was to a baby to kiss. I still have the photos. It was only much later that I figured out why the original parental cry had been "Oh look, there's the Prime Minister" but he was campaigning as a candidate in a by-election.

    My childish mind harboured a soft spot for him and thus even his party for some time after that. Fortunately it had worn off by the time they actually let me vote, some ten years later.

    The rain is off, so I should get back out there with the deliveries. I'll just miss out the house of the Angry No lady who cause such a scene last time I did that route, demanding I take the Yes newspaper out of her post-box. Someone else in the village is on her case anyway.

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  46. We should remember that
    almost 3 months ago Blair Jenkins said he didn't expect Yes to be ahead until September. Of course you can say 'he would say that wouldn't he', but he's put his view out there and I assume it's based on their campaign strategy. It requires a steady nerve to hold to that, and personally I'd prefer a couple of neck-and-neck polls in August, but courage mes braves!

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  47. Jamie Sheppard has made a very good point. The whole of Scotland is an electoral ward for the Referendum. In it will be areas good for No and good for Yes.

    Canvassing in Coldstream will just as effective as in Dundee. Don't write of the areas such as the Borders as each vote won over for the Yes side will have the same value as one won over in Glasgow.

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  48. Keep reassuring yourselves. The Yes strategy is failing miserably. You just don't want to admit it.

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  49. Still haven't heard of one single person who has moved from Yes to No but know loads who have come over to our side, some of whom are making very effective campaigners because they know the mindset of the No supporter so well. There is no reason to be downhearted at this stage of the campaign. Referenda are characterised by sudden sharp swings. We have worked fantastically well as a team, there has been nothing like this before in Scottish history. Of course it's tough, our opponents have thrown everything at us that they can and they have revealed the true nature of their cause and the British state in the course of it. But as far as I can see the far more dangerous place to be at the moment is ahead because it gives rise to complacency and arrogance - sound like anyone you know? In referendum campaigns two months is a long time. Hold your nerve and keep up the good work. M

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  50. The problem with your claim, anonymous, is that you can't prove or disprove it until after the vote. But do refer to what I said above re arrogance and complacency and the dangers of appearing to be in a winning position when in political terms the vote is still light years away. That's the point of referenda the results often confound expectations. M

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  51. Rolfe : "I think people need to realise how emotional this is for many people. It's not all cold hard analysis and logic...The last thing Yes campaigners in that sort of mood need are accusations of being a unionist troll trying to discourage Yes activists."

    Well, that cuts both ways. I was about to go to bed last night, and the only reason I even noticed the Panelbase poll was that a No uber-troll on Twitter started taunting me : "Why haven't you said anything about the Panelbase poll, James?" So I wrote a quick post, and for the next hour I had to put up with a troll tag team of about six on Twitter, coming out with stuff like "why are you cooking the books"? The last thing I needed after dealing with them was to come back here and find supposed Yes supporters making the same accusations.

    I'm afraid I broadly share Juteman's view. Until a few weeks ago, we had barely seen any of these "depressed Yes supporter" comments, and I find the sudden spate of them highly suspicious. Many of them are probably genuine, but I'd be very, very surprised if all of them are. We've become so accustomed to amateurish, transparent dirty tricks from our opponents that we forget that there are people out there capable of practising the dark arts much more effectively, and passing themselves off as Yes supporters relatively convincingly.

    "If it was going to happen it would be with Panelbase, so it would have been this poll."

    If it was going to happen, it would be with a Panelbase poll not commissioned by the Sunday Times. The Sunday Times results have been consistently better for No than the Panelbase polls for other clients.

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  52. Anon : "Mostly though, I'd like to know what substance Swinney is sniffing, 'cos I'd like a hit of that too. If he turns out to be right, he could make his fortune selling his maths to the polling companies, because none of them have those numbers."

    You're making the schoolboy error there of mixing up a prediction with a snapshot of opinion. Pollsters are only interested in the latter, and don't claim to be predicting the result (except in the rare case of an exit poll).

    Yes, what Swinney said could be just for the sake of morale - but it could equally be the case that he knows something that you and I don't, based on private polling and careful analysis of canvass results. We'll have to wait and see, won't we?

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  53. Can anybody explain this to me? Somebody sent me the Sunday Time's article which claims that their poll shows that almost 3/4 million Scots would consider emigrating if there's a yes vote, and there's a cartoon of Nessie in a swimming pool. But it's the stats that puzzle me because they don't square with what's posted above. The key 2 paras read as follows:

    The survey found little change in referendum voting intentions, with 41% favouring independence (+1 point since May), 48% against (+1) and 11% undecided (-2).

    When those undecided are removed, the Better Together campaign led by Alistair Darling, the former chancellor, enjoys an eight-point lead (54%-46%).

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  54. My apologies. I've just seen the answer to my question, but it's also something that seems to resolve some of the disagreements in these comments that came in last night.

    James had said that when the results are compared "with the last directly comparable" poll it was +1 for both Yes and No, and some of us were probably scratching our heads as to where he was getting that from given that the initially presented figures from the Sunday Times suggested Yes down 2 and No up 2. However, the Sunday Times itself clearly agrees with James. I'm reassured, because I have to say that I too had been wondering if his usually scrupulous standard of objectivity had slipped on this occasion. Not so, seemingly. Whew! Keep it going strong, James.

    Let's learn from this, however. Supposing some of those who were questioning things are not trolls. What that would show is how quickly tension can arise as the vote approaches and messengers get sniped at. We must be alert to taking care of one another

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  55. Alastair, those figures are the ones that I mentioned second - with percentage changes since the last directly comparable poll for the Sunday Times. It's ironic, because the Twitter tag team I mentioned earlier were claiming that I was literally the only person claiming that Yes were up 1% in this poll - well, I'm glad to see the Sunday Times were claiming exactly the same thing!

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  56. I'll email you the ST article, James. It's from behind their paywall hence why most of us hadn't seen it - you too evidently. I was tempted to dump the whole thing on here but decided the better lest they tried to do me on copyright. Most of the meat of it is about the proportions of us who think we'll be richer or poorer with indy - that tired and selfish framing of the debate that distracts attention from the values that matter.

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  57. I'll email you the ST article, James. It's from behind their paywall hence why most of us hadn't seen it - you too evidently. I was tempted to dump the whole thing on here but decided the better lest they tried to do me on copyright. Most of the meat of it is about the proportions of us who think we'll be richer or poorer with indy - that tired and selfish framing of the debate that distracts attention from the values that matter.

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  58. Great commentary folks. Insightful, relevant, positive and intelligent. I learned from it. Thanks.

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  59. Keep it up, James.

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  60. Sunshine on CrieffJuly 27, 2014 at 6:53 PM

    James Kelly

    If it helps your morale any I just want to say that I really appreciate your blog and the analysis contained within it. I can temporarily become discouraged when polls don't immediately show progress, but reading your explanations keeps things in perspective.

    This is a crucial time in the Yes campaign. People have been campaigning for a long time, and a certain amount of fatigue is bound to set in, especially when there is no apparent surge in the polls. But we've got to keep morale going, and that is where people like you are invaluable.

    My heart sunk when I saw an apparent swing of 2% from Yes to No, and then I see your explanation. That is why yours is the first website I visit when I switch the pc on. I don't want the Better Together spin I would get through the press.

    And get this straight, people - this poll is showing us at 46%, them at 54%. That is game on! We can do this thing!

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  61. To help keep morale up I post this pic which shows YouGov's (and others' were the same)poll results in advance of the 1997 Referendum. Notice the HUGE swing 10 days before the actual poll. Perhaps Blair is right!

    https://twitter.com/JamesCo77979225/status/490489074021851137/photo/1

    I have also added my modest forecast for the Indy result based on interpolating the YouGov results.

    Also be aware that in Quebec YES were trailing at around 45% until a few weeks before the actual polling day, and lost in the end only because of dirty tricks and fausses promesses during the last few days.

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  62. James, you may be right about some of the newcomers who express misgivings. They're wasting their time though. Nobody is going to do anything but keep their shoulders to the wheel when we're only four points shy.

    I think long-timers do feel the need to vent sometimes though - even if for no terribly good reason. I mean, one booklet handed back and another persuaded to take it (and an Aye Right leaflet and the Wings leaflet) after a long conversation is hardly the stuff of major depression. It's only jitters. But it doesn't help to be feeling the jitters and then see people being accused of trolling for expressing similar sentiments.

    I wasn't really aware that the Sunday Times generated different results with Panelbase, but now you explain it, it does make a difference. On one hand, 46/54 is not bad in absolute terms at this stage, and six weeks is a long time in politics. On the other hand, a decisive swing would feel so good.

    I wonder if Swinney was just trying to encourage the troops, or if he has really polling and strategic reasons for saying that? I'm inclined to think he's not one to bluff to that extent, but we've no way of knowing.

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  63. There's a very interesting piece by Sainscot on Westminster's Psychological Warfare on Scotland which I suggest those who are doubters should read

    http://sainscot.wordpress.com/2014/06/25/westminsters-psychological-warfare-on-scotland/

    Once you have read it you will understand exactly what the unionists are up to.

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  64. Cards on the table I'm a deffo No. That aside, I was drawn here by a Google search looking for details of the latest Panelbase poll. I don't quite understand how your headline of "Yes Vote Up" can be immediately followed by figures showing the Yes vote down by 2% (without or with DKs).
    Please don't flame me cos I'm a lowly No voter but for obvious reasons I don't normally frequent Yes blogs/forums but am generally curious as to how the above conclusion is reached in relation to the figures?
    Ta

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  65. Hi No voter and welcome. I hope this is the beginning of your research into the referendum question. You must read read read! There is so little time remaining. I'm sure that when you have learned of all the lies and decit that has been directed at the Scottish population you will understand why we all so passionately want a Yes result.

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  66. Eh. It was me who posted on Wings that I'd heard parking was £15 at the Science Centre. I was repeating what a friend had told me and was trying to help my fellow Yes supporters avoid getting screwed for parking. It turns out it was rubbish info and perhaps I should have phoned to check before posting apologies for that but please, I'm no troll as Braco can confirm. Let's not accuse each other of all sorts of rubbish. We will win. Lies and bullying never succeed. I met a tourist from Essex the other day who asked me how I would vote. When I said I would vote Yes is seemed pleased and almost apologised for the nasty way we had been treated by the UK gov and press. He said he hadn't been following the debate very closely but that had been his impression so far. If he can spot that, how many Scots must have noticed? For pity sake! Look at the rag tag bunch who are supporting No-liars,bullies,bigots,holocaust deniers,xenophobes etc etc. What right minded person would side with such people?
    Cal

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  67. "Look at the rag tag bunch who are supporting No-liars,bullies,bigots,holocaust deniers,xenophobes etc etc. "

    And that'll persuade the No voters yes need for victory to swap sides by labeling them as such hmm?

    I'm voting no and I resent that implication, and I shall point it out to others.

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  68. Not labelling you my friend. Do your research and you'll find I'm correct. I'm sure your not in that group. The fact that you seem offended is proof of that. If you need any information I'm happy to direct you to sources.
    Regards, Cal

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  69. Anon No voter : Once again, the question you've asked is very straightforwardly answered in the blogpost itself, so I don't see what else I can do but copy-and-paste the relevant section -

    "The percentage changes listed above are from the last Panelbase poll, which was commissioned by Yes Scotland. But it's important to stress that tonight's results are unlikely to be directly comparable to that poll, because the new poll was commissioned by the Sunday Times, and Panelbase use a slightly different question for their Sunday Times series. It's not a biased question by any means, but there is now quite strong circumstantial evidence that it tends to produce a slightly higher No lead. You don't have to take my word for it - Anthony Wells (no friend to the Yes campaign) has commented on the phenomenon as well. If we compare tonight's numbers with the last directly comparable Panelbase poll, this is how they look -

    Yes 41% (+1)
    No 48% (+1)"

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  70. Hi Cal. What do you think your doing on here? Get back out there canvassing you waster !! ;-)

    braco

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  71. The PB racists have a different conclusion based on the same numbers. Of course they're not biased at all by being rabid britnats and hardcore UKIPpers.

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  72. I've been busy of late, not least helping Yes, and I can tell you right now Rolfe has it absolutely 100% right when she points out those trying to discourage Yes campaigners are utterly wasting their time. It only makes their feeble efforts all the more amusing to watch.

    There is no prospect whatsoever of Yes campaigners looking at a poll that only needs 4.1% for Yes to win suddenly giving up. Let the tory twits and those trapped in the westminster bubble decry that poll as a near fatal 'blow for Yes' as it only proves how laughably out of touch they are.

    For that matter if Yes was 20 points behind it wouldn't stop Yes campaigners turning out in huge force for the crucial final weeks of ground campaigning and GOTV. If No campaigners want to convince themselves they are doing so well then by all means let them. They are in no position for such complacency considering just how outgunned and outmatched they are right now, never mind in the vital final weeks and days of the referendum.

    The other thing to remember is that those pundits who think it's all about the economic arguments don't appear to have a clue about basic politics. Trust comes well before that as the scottish public will quite obviously have to choose between two competing and utterly contradictory visions of scotland's economic future.

    For those who still don't get it the westminster parties and their leaders have almost never been held in less esteem and regarded with such mistrust as they are now. So when it comes down to precisely who do the scottish public trust to best look after scotland's future, (as opposed to the still pretty much faceless and abstract economic stat trading going on right now) then I certainly wouldn't want to be in the tories, lib dems or Labour's shoes considering just how laughable and toxic each of their leaders are.

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  73. I've been trying to collect canvass return numbers online and broadly speaking they are good for Yes, though in a few areas Better Together have a sizeable lead.

    From what I've gathered I'd say that Swinney's 60% assessment for Yes is about right.

    https://archive.today/J9g9i

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  74. Regardless of whether the poll shows Yes 1pt up or 2pts down, its more or less margin of error stuff.

    What I'm curious to know is to what extent the pollsters have factored in the expected unusually high turnout into their methodology (someone, above, correctly pointed out that many new voters will not be signed up with internet polling firms, whereas face-to-face outfits such as TMS may not necessarily be polling a sample reflective of what the electorate will be in the day ie not enough young people, working-class people and so on). So their weighting procedures, particularly their predictions of who will actually turn out to vote, may need to be radically different.

    Can anyone point me to any writing by any of the main pollsters which addresses this problem and outlines how they will deal with it?

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  75. Niall : Most of the pollsters weight or filter their results by likelihood to vote. Of the two that don't, TNS produce additional figures for those certain to vote, and YouGov's datasets give the figures for those certain to vote, and those with an 8/10+ likelihood of voting.

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  76. " Most of the pollsters weight or filter their results by likelihood to vote."


    Thanks, yes, but my question was somewhat different. What I want to know is: given that almost everyone expects turnout in the referendum to be substantially higher than for most elections, has that provoked any significant changes in the methodology used by pollsters - and if so, is there any publically available justification of this change?

    If they are using the same weighting methodology as previously can we feel confident that they are providing a snapshot of the opinion of the real likely electorate?

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  77. I mean: I understood that some pollsters upweight people who voted last time, and downweight people who didn't, on the not unreasonable assumption that each group might choose to do the same thing next time. But - that may not be the case with the Indyref.

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  78. Niall : No, the turnout weighting is based on how likely people say they are to vote in the referendum, not on whether they voted in previous elections.

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  79. Thanks - is that the case for every pollster?

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  80. Well, they all ask the question about likelihood to vote, but they use that information in very different ways. The headline figures from YouGov and TNS are not turnout-adjusted at all, although that doesn't always make much of a difference. In the last TNS poll, Yes were on 44% in the headline figures, and on 45% among those certain to vote.

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  81. Hello James,
    I have been reading your blog for a while now and have always
    found it to be factual and fair. When it comes to analysis and
    interpretation of the polls I always put more faith in your
    comments than those of Prof Curtice on "What Scotland Thinks".
    I can understand your frustration and disappointment at the
    comments saying things like "we're doomed".
    However, I am very grateful for your analysis and the hard work
    that you put into producing this blog and I am sure that many
    other people are as well. I wish you all the best.
    Yours sincerely
    Jim Fraser

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  82. "Frankly, I'm starting to wonder if some of the comments we occasionally see here from supposedly "depressed" Yes supporters are all that they seem - I'm not suggesting they all come from No campaign trolls, but it wouldn't surprise me if at least some of them do."

    You're probably right to some extent with that, although that's perhaps a symptom of the way that admitting to being a No voter is usually a reason for someone to be completely ignored in debates like this. I'm a No voter and I'll admit to occasionally pretending to be a Yes supporter when I want to make an isolated point simply to avoid the inevitable inquisition. When you're arguing about the nuances of polling it shouldn't really make much difference which side you're on, but it doesn't seem to work out that way in practice - I'd rather have my comments judged on their own merits than because I'm "one of them".

    As for this article, I wondered if you could state what the actual differences are between the two Panelbase polls? Honest question as I don't know what the differences are and that seems to be the real crux of the argument here (that the two polls aren't comparable because they use different questions).

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  83. I went back out this afternoon with the Yes booklets, and the Wings leaflets. I didn't get shouted at this time, everyone who happened to see me was pleasant.

    Little things help. The delivery driver who stuck a post-it note on his delivery note with the message "Yes! Me too!" before he posted it through my letter-box. (I have a Yes saltire flying and an impressive display of Yes posters.)

    The poster above who said, you only need about 3%. That let me walk past Sheila the angry No, and a house where I'd previously seen a tiny UKOK sticker on a rear-facing window with equanimity.

    And coming across an old Wolfstone song, "The Brave Foot Soldiers". Look it up. Everybody should listen to it.

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  84. On a dodgy Spanish hotel wifi connection here and not had time to browse the comments but:

    We have made two adjustments to our weighting process for this poll. First, we have rebalanced our sample to reflect voting patterns in the recent European elections. Although turnout was low among the general population, it was high among the respondents to this survey and it seems prudent to take account of this very recent voting behaviour when seeking a politically balanced sample. The effect of this is to slightly increase the gap between Yes and No. Second, having observed in several recent polls that people born in Scotland have quite different attitudes to independence from those born elsewhere, and that Scots-born tend to be somewhat underrepresented in samples, we have also weighted the data based on country of birth. The effect of this is to slightly narrow the gap between Yes and No. In summary, the net effect of these two new weights is statistically insignificant, as indeed are the variations in referendum voting intention between our recent polls,

    EU elections? 1/3 turnout? Dear dear.

    If they hadn't done this it would likely be looking very good for Yes.

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  85. I hope you're right, SS. Just as an aside, what's your current thinking on the "Scottish Skier conspiracy theory" of Cameron actively condoning a Yes vote?

    I think the reason for my nerves is that it's turned out this matters much more than I originally realised. I had thought, OK we do our best, I think we'll win, but if not the momentum is all there and it's the NEXT wave that will breach the wall.

    Now though, we're looking at an altogether different future if we lose. One where we won't be allowed to keep the momentum going. One where they'll break Scotland in order to keep her. The fracking news and this from Carmichael on the same morning?

    http://www.heraldscotland.com/politics/referendum-news/carmichael-how-no-vote-will-settle-scotlands-future-once-and-for-all.24865471

    Scottish voters, if you're not terrified by now, what does it take?

    Actually, in other ways this is going exactly as I expected. I always knew this summer would be very tense unless we were ahead in the polls, which I didn't really think we would be. I didn't entirely expect the complete absence of hope and vision from the entirety of the MSM, but with hindsight I should have predicted that too.

    I think I'll go and see "Scotland Yet" tonight. The leafleting can have a wee temporary rest.

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  86. Desperation set in for the Scotophobes long before the referendum. Go back to every election campaign for the last 40 years and they all feature the same lies.
    Oil running out, kicked out of Europe, foreigners, job losses, loyalty pledges, ID cards, tartanised police state etc etc.

    Curious how evrything the evil Salmondo says is wrong but when he was comparing the time-scale between votes and used the word generational he is taken at absolute face value.
    1979-1997 is 18 years.
    1997-2014 is 17 years.
    Attempts by the Scotland hating racists (and they are, at heart) to place limits on democracy and prevent any future votes for 30 -40 years just prove how much they hate, loathe and despise ordinary people having power over their masters.

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  87. Having seen their Anti-english headlines bite the dust the union media has done a reverse ferret.
    Lots of comments appearing on how the "Scottish" crowd has been cheering on the english proving how we are one big happy family.
    The people cheering their heads off for the english would be english people. They'll be majority of the crowd on some days as was the case in 1986.
    The people giving polite applause or not cheering people attempting to beat us and our athletes would be everybody else.
    Good to hear that england were booed at the 7's. Some traditions are beyond price. England are booed everywhere outside of twickenham and rightly so.


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  88. The sheer quantity of comments on this blogpost clearly shows how rattled the Yessers are by this latest poll. Interpret the figures how you like, they are not good news for those pressing for separation.

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  89. James Kelly. I read what you say about weighting in the organised polls. But the population being used for polling comes from a self selected group of people so probably doesn't include many, if any, from the 50% or so working class set of voters who seldom if ever vote but who when canvassed say they will this time, and mostly YES too.

    In my view the two groups A the self selected group and B the actual voting population are chalk and cheese and I would seriously doubt the validity of results obtained from A being used to suggest what is happening in B regardless of what weighting systems are used, eg, how would they weight Y and N for say 1% working class voters in A up to at least 50% or more which is the real level?

    Turning to the doorstep and telephone polls, I would be very wary of those results too. I doubt if many of the pollsters have ventured into the heart of the large working class schemes to poll the inhabitants there. Yet people there when canvassed show the highest percentage of YES supporters.

    And as for telephones, I don't know why pollsters persist with them nowadays what with with mobile phones, irritating spam calls, not answering unless you know who is calling, et al. How can they possibly be accurate?

    I suppose I'm looking for reasons to explain the large discrepancy between what the organised polls are finding and what canvassing returns, and newspaper, internet and ad hoc polls are finding. Me? I trust the latter more because they were more correct in the past.

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  90. @anon Above.

    I think if you look again, a lot of the comments were in response to James being accused of dishonesty.

    I think I can speak for a lot of Yesers and say that we have learned to ignore the lies and propaganda of the BT campaign, (or whatever you call yourselves now, after you number of re-launches) why do winning campaigns change tactics/name/personnel when they are so far in front by the way?

    So as I say we also ignore the fluctuations in individual polls, as we are far more interested in the trends rather than individual polls, however to properly analyse these trends, we need to compare like for like and James is very good at this.

    He simply pointed out in his article above that the headline figures (that are always blazed from the bias MSM) of -2% for Yes and +2% for No, were not comparing like for like.

    One of the branches of dishonesty employed by BT is to headline polls that have come from different pollsters, ie compare a Panelbase polling result with a Yougove, they then release statements screaming that the SNP have imploded or massive blow for Salmond..

    This time we had a Panelbase poll compared with another Panelbase poll, but they were commissioned by different organisations, and so the questions were different.

    As Scottish Skier writes above, they also made significant changes to their weighting procedures for the latest Times poll compared to the last Yes campaign Poll, so there is no way that these polls are comparable.

    Scottish Skier suggests that without this strange weighting the figures would have been very good for Yes.

    So sorry Ukoker, we are not in the least rattled, in fact it's exactly the opposite.

    Hope this helped! :-)

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  91. More "encouraging" news:
    http://www.scotsman.com/news/politics/top-stories/independence-undecideds-more-likely-to-vote-yes-1-3490725#.U9ZBKwPDhKA.twitter

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  92. More "encouraging" news:
    http://www.scotsman.com/news/politics/top-stories/independence-undecideds-more-likely-to-vote-yes-1-3490725#.U9ZBKwPDhKA.twitter

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  93. Guys/Gals, don't get disheartened by bad canvassing returns.

    Keep the chin up and remember you are doing your fore-fathers and future children of Scotland proud.

    I also wouldn't get too bothered about the polling returns, if they have indeed completely underestimated the amount of people that don't vote intending on voting in the referendum, then more fool them and the bigger the shock for them on the September 19th.

    By all accounts this poll looks like it's been tweaked again...THAT being said, it's still fine and we haven't lost ground.

    What the no campaigner on here don't realise, is that the people they are canvassing and saying will be no votes on the doorstep haven't actually engaged with the debate yet, god help them when they do.

    Swinney has internal polling showing momentum on key issues, economy and westminster trust.

    The sunset is closing on this nefarious Union. The rich signed it, the normal people will rip it up.

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  94. Any linkage to the last Panelbase data sets ? Will be interesting to see how they've change the methodology.

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  95. "Although turnout was low among the general population, it was high among the respondents to this survey"

    This is kind of the point I was getting at above, which James Coleman also makes: don't Panelbase have a problem in that they are surveying unusually politically motivated people: and thus potentially missing the outcome of the attempts made by the Yes campaign to persuade habitual non-voters to vote this time?

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