Sunday, February 5, 2017

Congratulations to the Scottish Tories on entering the Guinness Book of Records for the most lies told about a single opinion poll

A week on, further details have been released from the Panelbase poll for the Sunday Times - thus allowing the Tories to triple the number of brazen and genuinely enormous lies that they've told about the findings.  Here is a full list of the whoppers so far...

1)  Ruth Davidson claimed that the poll shows support for an independence referendum has fallen to 27%.  In fact, it shows that 49.4% of respondents want an indyref within the next two years.  The claim of a decline in support is also misleading because the question asked was different from previous Panelbase polls.

2) Davidson claimed today that the poll found an increase in support for the Tories in Westminster voting intention after the Scottish budget.  In fact, the fieldwork was entirely carried out before the budget.

3) The Tories claimed today that the poll shows a 6% increase in support for themselves, and a 3% drop in support for the SNP.  In fact, it only shows a 3% increase for the Tories, and no drop at all for the SNP, who remain on 47%.

To be fair, there's a potentially innocent explanation for Whopper 3, because Panelbase had to issue a correction in September after inaccurate figures from their last poll got into circulation.  John Curtice's What Scotland Thinks website still lists those wrong numbers, which do indeed give the bogus impression that the new poll shows a 6% boost for the Tories and a 3% drop for the SNP.  For clarity, here are the correct figures -

SNP 47% (n/c)
Conservatives 27% (+3)
Labour 15% (-1)
Liberal Democrats 4% (-1)

The movement towards the Tories could just be margin of error noise, but if it's real, it does look very much like the new support is coming from other unionist parties, rather than from disgruntled SNP voters (as Davidson would have you believe).

As far as I can see, Labour's 15% support is a new all-time low for the party in Westminster voting intentions - although that can possibly be explained by the extreme scarcity of Scotland-only Westminster polls since a big chunk of Labour's core support drifted off to the Tories.

Jason Allardyce revealed on Twitter that the poll also shows that a majority of respondents believe independence is inevitable.  The Tories may find it harder to bluff their way out of that one.  Presumably there are more details in the Sunday Times, but I don't pay the Murdoch Levy, so I'll have to wait for the Panelbase datasets to appear (hopefully tomorrow).

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UPDATE : Having recalled the incorrect reporting of the previous Panelbase poll in September, I did some double-checking and discovered that What Scotland Thinks also still lists the incorrect figures from that poll on the independence question.  John Curtice seems to have relied on his own site's archive rather than the Panelbase datasets when he did his write-up last week, because he overlooked the error and incorrectly stated that support for independence had dropped by 2% (from 48% to 46%) whereas in fact it had only dropped by a statistically insignificant 1% (from 47% to 46%).  There do seem to be a whole string of errors on What Scotland Thinks related to Panelbase polls - not just the numbers, but also inaccurate reporting of question wording which leads to misleading comparisons between apples and oranges.  I don't think there's any malicious intent at all behind the mistakes, but given how much trust is placed in that site by the mainstream media and political parties, it's becoming a bit of a problem.  Hopefully someone will go through the archive with care and make corrections where needed, because it's clear that Curtice and co are beginning to confuse the hell out of themselves, never mind the rest of us.

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37 comments:

  1. Glasgow Working Class 2February 5, 2017 at 11:16 PM

    We are going to win WATP

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  2. Glasgow Working Class 2February 5, 2017 at 11:42 PM

    Wonderful results for the Nat si fash. When's the referendum?

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    Replies
    1. Glasgow Working Class 2February 5, 2017 at 11:55 PM

      I should have typed remember to vote Yes when the referendum does come.

      Delete
  3. To no great surprise TSE over on Political Racism is using the wrong numbers. And they all love ruth (fat lying turdsucking ex bbc racist) davidson.

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    1. To be perfectly honest I prefer GWC2's open style of trying to cut support for Independence by insulting Indy supporters with over the top comments.

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  4. Glasgow Working Class 2February 6, 2017 at 12:26 AM

    20th April would be a good choice, It's a significant day for all right thinking people. WATP GSTQ

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    Replies
    1. Yes, go and get Beckham. He's free that day.

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  5. Labour are now polling about one third of the unionist vote and appear to be still in decline.
    SNP well into their third term in office and support holding steady on 47%.
    Tories on 27%. Very nearly double Labour.I think they could take another five points off them.
    Libdem support is down to the very core now.This poll appears to show nearly a quarter of that core support has abandoned them in recent months.I don't think Libdems appreciate their leaders vitriolic hatred of the SNP and the very idea of Scottish independence

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  6. Glasgow Working Class 2February 6, 2017 at 12:57 AM

    Hard to believe that the joke Jock Nat sis have totally capitulated. Whit shitbags. The Nat si elites are now just collecting their salaries from the British tax payer whilst kiddin the fash braindead supporters they will maybe have a referendum in the 22nd century. Makes yer larf as well as sad for the fuckwitts.

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    1. Glasgow Working Class 2February 6, 2017 at 1:01 AM

      Hello Hello we are the Brigton girly boys Hello Hello upto our knees in shirley temples and lacy knickers

      Delete
    2. Glasgow Working Class 2February 6, 2017 at 1:08 AM

      Please release me, let me go
      For I don't love you anymore
      To waste our lives would be a sin
      Release me and let me love again

      Delete
    3. Glasgow Working Class 2February 6, 2017 at 3:09 AM

      We are having a Legion of St George lodge meeting at the Polo Lounge all welcommen

      Delete
  7. John Curtice seems to be making a few mistakes. The good news is the Tories don't have the sense to check the data tables before making fools of themselves - or trying to spread misinformation deliberately by constant repetition.

    The counter-strategy is easy and the same whichever it is. Keep pounding out the correct figures - with enough information so that the unwary can check it out for themselves. That'll soon reverse any gains the Tories are making. People don't like being taken for fools, and that's the Tories stock in trade.

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    Replies
    1. Any small gains the Tories are making are just at the expense of the other Unionist parties, so I'm not sure that those gains even matter.

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  8. And yet, if you weren't doing this blog, where would I go to check the inaccuaracy accuracy of Whet Scotland Thinks?

    It's as if Universities are just not up to the job of fact checking while a single blogger has to be relied on for a critical review.

    So much for the notion that the mainstream is the guardian of the truth, and all this blogging does is trumpet unverified facts.

    Keep up the good work (even where I disagree, I can do so publicly and in a way that can be challenged). Is this closer to science than the hidden paywalls of academic journals? Just a thought.

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    Replies
    1. Well said, Justin.

      In fairness to John Curtice, he has acknowledged his recent error this morning but it goes to show that bloggers like James (and Stuart Campbell) in fact provide a very valuable service with their fact checking. Curtice's tweet implicitly acknowledged as much, at least in Stuart's case.

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    2. A very neccessary service. Without them the misrepresentations whether accidental or deliberate wouldn't be pointed out or corrected. But these days it's becoming less and less often the media and politicians can get away with it. No wonder they all hate the "new" media.

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  9. Thanks James - if I ever see a poll I hot foot it to your site to check the outcomes.

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    1. Glasgow Working Class 2February 6, 2017 at 11:39 AM

      Even more disgusting for you is if you go for a referendum you will get trashed and set back for decades and most of you nat sis will be dust. Must be so sad and sickening for you fash....

      Delete
    2. Tell it to the Dreary Heil, dearie, in your favourite green ink... Whenever you get finished arguing with yourself, that is. Were Cheltenham late in sending out the rota this week?

      Delete
    3. Glasgow Working Class 2February 6, 2017 at 12:55 PM

      We have won the argument that is why yer erses are nippin. Call the referendum Nat sis. We have brexit, we are treating Knickerless with contempt like the frumpy numpty she is and she will still not call it. Jock bottle merchants. Up yer lederhosen.

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    4. Glasgow Working Class 2February 6, 2017 at 2:47 PM

      Vote Yes

      Delete
  10. I think Prof Curtice needs a bit more help.
    Is there any info in the tables to show how Greens and UKIP are doing?

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  11. James, what were the greens on in this poll? The tories result is particularly concerning.

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    1. The Tories are just eating up what remains of the Labour vote, and that will likely continue. Eventually they might scale the giddy heights of, say, the level Labour achieved in 2011, but that will be their ceiling.

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    2. Surely there is a good chunk of that Labour vote that could potentially come over to the SNP?

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    3. Dugdale's Suicide SquadFebruary 6, 2017 at 12:54 PM

      They are already but no doubt more will come over as the Hothersall/Smart faction drives out anyone left who isn't a 'true blue Yoon'.

      Hothersall desperately wanted a scottish election despite it being blatantly obvious how many Labour MSPs they would lose because, why on earth would he care?

      It's just a headline to him. Something to use against Corbyn while he shmoozes with the media.

      He's committed to emulating Ruth Davidson's hardline Yoon stance and protecting the job he's got. A job which has no room for left-wing politics, socialists or attacking Ruth Davidson's tories. That's not how his own MP gets elected.

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    4. What is the percentage of yes voting labour voters, that could come over?

      Are we at a stage where it's only the older generation that's more no leaning, holding back a yes vote?

      Delete
  12. Thank god for sites like scotgoespop and WOS etc. Britnat lying continues to go unchallenged by the media. Expect more lies and more desperation from britnats.

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    1. Glasgow Working Class 2February 6, 2017 at 2:31 PM

      Its you fash who are desperate. You could call a referendum and end your agony but you are shiting yourselves. Your inept leadersbip have given up and just collecting their inflated salaries whilst throwing their devout followers banana skins to make you feel important. Taking you for the mugs you are.

      Delete
    2. Glasgow Working Class 2February 6, 2017 at 2:47 PM

      Vote Yes in the upcoming referendum for your sanity.

      Delete
    3. Glasgow Working Class 2February 6, 2017 at 6:24 PM

      Vote no borders, your family in england will be foreigners

      Delete
    4. Glasgow Working Class 2February 6, 2017 at 7:41 PM

      The English are untrmensch according to you fash. Wee jock deep fried black puddin MacHaggis aboot tae take over Scotland. Free buckfast and nappies supplied tae Paisley wummin.

      Delete
    5. Glasgow Working Class 2February 6, 2017 at 8:23 PM

      88

      Delete
  13. Glasgow Working Class 2February 6, 2017 at 8:09 PM

    Circumcised Nat si candidate rejected, told he had to be a complete dick.

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    Replies
    1. Absolute bloody state of this.

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