Bizarre poll question of the Day

Check out this question on a Zogby poll taken for Fox News:

Federal Communications Commission Chief Diversity Czar Mark Lloyd wants the FCC to force good white people in positions of power in the broadcast industry to step down to make room for more African-Americans and gays to fill those positions.  Do you agree or disagree that this presents a threat to free speech?

No, really (.pdf):

good-white-people

This is so weird it’s hoax-ish, but thus far it appears to be legit… if real, it is very very strange indeed.

UPDATE: Mattt thinks Zogby has been “commissioned to pull teh backlash buttons, 1968-styles”.

UPDATE II (Wednesday): I’m not sure what to think about this.   Fox News apparently has nothing to do with it, and the comment “tailor made for Fox” was a bit of hyperbole that unfortunately “evolved” as the story was repeated.   A commenter suggests it’s some kind of publicity stunt, which sounds plausible.  538’s Nate Silver weighs in here.   Media Matters updates their report:

UPDATE: It seems the “good white people” phrase is taken from a statement by FCC official (and right-wing witch hunt target) Mark Lloyd. But the O’Leary/Zogby poll’s claim that Lloyd “wants the FCC to force good white people in positions of power in the broadcast industry to step down to make room for more African-Americans and gays to fill those positions” is completely false.

*face/palm*

26 Responses to “Bizarre poll question of the Day”


  1. 1 Reality Bites Tuesday, October 27, 2009 at 2:29 pm

    Did you notice those remarks were made in 2005 when he had no connection with the FCC whatsoever?

    That puts a very different perspective on who “we” is when he said:

    “This… there’s nothing more difficult than this. Because we have really, truly good white people in important positions. And the fact of the matter is that there are a limited number of those positions. And unless we are conscious of the need to have more people of color, gays, other people in those positions we will not change the problem.

    “We’re in a position where you have to say who is going to step down so someone else can have power.”

    Seems pretty clear to me he’s talking about “we” as a society and the people stepping down are not individuals, but types of people – straight white men.

    A push poll for Fox news. Why even bother paying any attention to it? It’s like referencing crap from SUZANNE’s web site and assuming it’s a valid representation.

  2. 2 sassy Tuesday, October 27, 2009 at 2:37 pm

    tailor-made for Fox News Channel (from thme link you provide) tells me all I need to know.

  3. 4 JJ Tuesday, October 27, 2009 at 2:43 pm

    RB – Yeah to all your points, but what really got me is that this isn’t some fly by night polling company like KLRVU, it’s Zogby, which is a pretty respectable firm as far as I know.

  4. 5 JJ Tuesday, October 27, 2009 at 2:44 pm

    Sassy – A commenter at Media Matters made the astute observation that these questions were worded just the way Glenn Beck would word them 😆

  5. 6 Reality Bites Tuesday, October 27, 2009 at 3:56 pm

    I don’t think a polling organization is any more respectable than the client they’re working for. It’s not conceivable that Fox would ever be interested in an honest poll, and the questions asked in this one aren’t anywhere close to being in the realm of honest questions.

    When you ask “Do you think this is an attack on free speech” the obvious answer is yes. A proper question is more along the lines of “Do you agree with this policy?”

  6. 7 J. A. Baker Tuesday, October 27, 2009 at 4:44 pm

    I agree with RB. These questions are totally of the “When did you stop beating your wife?” vein.

  7. 8 RossK Tuesday, October 27, 2009 at 5:26 pm

    Holy doodles.

    This is really coming from Zogby?

    If so….How far the almost-respectable (if that is possible for a pollster) has fallen.

    .

  8. 9 JJ Tuesday, October 27, 2009 at 5:45 pm

    RB

    It’s not conceivable that Fox would ever be interested in an honest poll, and the questions asked in this one aren’t anywhere close to being in the realm of honest questions.

    It’s true… the questions were designed for a specific audience, the no-mind, teabagger Fox viewer. Still hard to believe though, from a polling company that was once considered respectable.

  9. 10 JJ Tuesday, October 27, 2009 at 5:48 pm

    JAB – RB’s correct, the poll, and the polling company, is only as good as the client it’s written for. When the client is Fox News, that kind of says it all.

    Is it just me, or are these people caught up in a vortex of Dumb and Crazy that’s getting worse by the day?

  10. 11 JJ Tuesday, October 27, 2009 at 5:49 pm

    RossK

    This is really coming from Zogby?

    Yep. Another once-proud company bites the dust and becomes part of Teabagger Nation.

  11. 12 Jasper Tuesday, October 27, 2009 at 6:49 pm

    Conservatives see individuals. Liberals see groups, races, gender.

  12. 13 Reality Bites Tuesday, October 27, 2009 at 7:10 pm

    Jasper, you’re an asshole and an idiot. You’re the one generalizing here, you pompous, ignorant piece of shit.

  13. 14 Jasper Tuesday, October 27, 2009 at 7:36 pm

    Reality,

    You’re very intolerant of people with different views/opinions. Are you sure you worked in customer service? I don’t think you have the demeanor for it.

  14. 15 JJ Tuesday, October 27, 2009 at 7:53 pm

    Jasper – “Conservatives see individuals. Liberals see groups, races, gender.”

    Irony deprived?

  15. 16 JJ Tuesday, October 27, 2009 at 7:55 pm

    Jasper – I think you’re being silly and immature and just trying to start fights with people. Go away until you have something reasonable to say, which hasn’t happened so far, so it could take awhile.

  16. 17 Milesman666 Wednesday, October 28, 2009 at 1:33 am

    It’s like referencing crap from SUZANNE’s web site and assuming it’s a valid representation.

    Or this site, apparently.

    Of course, this had nothing to do with FoxNews. The “tailor-made for FoxNews” comment from Fair’s Peter Hart may be his attempt to spread a lie or false rumour. In which case, he is relying on unwitting dupes like the people here. You are the same kind of people who repeat uncritically that Obama is not a citizen.

    I think it more likely that Mr. Hart simply meant that he considered the poll would be found useful at FoxNews. Like if we said that Mickey Mantle would be tailor made for today’s NY Yankees. We wouldn’t mean that the Yankees created him.

    Remember, the question in question uses the language from Czar Lloyd’s own remarks. The problem for Lloyd’s supporters is to explain just why the language is so inflammatory now, but is perfectly ok coming from Lloyd’s mouth.

    So, Geesh, people, do a little checking. Check out O’Leary and the “O’Leary report,” who actually paid for this polling. It is also O’Leary who owns the PR company which issued the release for this poll. My bet is that the whole thing was a scheme to get publicity for one of his books. You guys ought to ask him for a commission.

  17. 18 Reality Bites Wednesday, October 28, 2009 at 2:33 am

    You are correct in who paid for the poll. The source makes it, of course, even less credible than if it were conducted for Fox News.

  18. 19 Cornelius T.Zen Wednesday, October 28, 2009 at 7:22 am

    Good morrow, all!
    For your consideration:
    Allow me to play Devil’s Advocate here, with your permission:
    We must understand that, to today’s Pharisees, certain concepts and conditions simply do not exist.
    These might include:
    Poverty; domestic violence of any description; unemployment; homelessness; depression and other forms of mental illness; rape; incest; sexual exploitation of any nature; racial discrimination; sexual harrassment in the workplace;
    inadequate or nonexistent health care; environmental damage; climate change of any description; homosexuality(!!!)
    All of the above, which is by no means a completely inclusive summation, simply do not exist. They are all urban legends, myths, the fevered imaginations of a vast, left-wing, liberal, radical, progressive, feminist, communist, islamic jihadist, ant-Christian conspiracy to knacker the white male, who is the foundation of American civilization as we know it.
    Clearly, if these things do not exist, then there can be no question that any questioning of the supremacy of the American Chrisitian White Male is simply blasphemy, and must be dealt with in the most extreme measures.
    Now, that I am done channelling Glenn Beck AND Stephen Colbert (geez, that hurt!) remember: today’s Pharisees are too busy, straining at gnats, swallowing camels, pointing out the motes in their brothers’ eyes, to even stop and question their preconceptions, their (pardon the expression) prejudices.
    Socrates was killed because he asked questions. So was Jesus. No wonder they are my heroes. – CTZen

  19. 21 Reality Bites Wednesday, October 28, 2009 at 3:45 pm

    Socrates was killed because he asked questions. So was Jesus. No wonder they are my heroes

    Thanks for clearing that up. We’d always just assumed you have a fetish for men with beards

  20. 22 Milesman666 Thursday, October 29, 2009 at 12:08 am

    Reality Bites–

    Your are correct about the source and its credibility. But the words still came from now-Czar Lloyd himself. It would be different if the questions were simply made up whole cloth.

    About Socrates: he was convicted of corrupting youth (for instance, by questioning the gods). He was put to death because he himself argued for the death penalty. Even at that, arrangements were made for his leaving Athens. (Even his opponents were horrified at the prospect, since Socrates was a war hero and great drinking buddy.) But Socrates refused to leave, arguing that he didn’t want to go against the ruling of the state.

  21. 23 Reality Bites Thursday, October 29, 2009 at 3:02 am

    Milesman, have you listened to the entire speech Lloyd made? If not, why not? Are the folks publicizing his words making the entire speech available? If not, why not? Could it possibly be that his words, listened to in context, aren’t nearly as inflamatory as they’d like “good white people” to think?

  22. 24 JJ Thursday, October 29, 2009 at 4:25 am

    RB, you are correct. The statement was cropped to make it look bad — in its entirety, and in context, it doesn’t come across as racist at all. Lloyd was simply pointing out the concentration of media control in too few non-local hands, and how attrition will present opportunities for more diversity and local control. (Not forcing “good white people” to step down, as the truncated statement suggests.)

    The wingnuts are worried that their beloved talk radio might actually have to present some other POV than that of Dittohead Nation. (Cry me a river.)

    The wingnut witch hunt against Lloyd started over a month ago, when they picked up on this statement and figured out that it could be used to make Lloyd look bad. That’s how it ended up on this idiotic poll.

    The only thing racist about the statement is the racists who decided to crop it to misrepresent its meaning.

    Ye fucking gods, another 3, I mean 7, more years of this shit 🙄

  23. 25 Milesman666 Thursday, October 29, 2009 at 9:39 pm

    Reality Bites and JJ

    Yes, i have. here’s the thing– in this day and age, one cannot get away with saying things like this. Bush couldn’t. As you know, bits of his speech were often taken out of context to create the false impression he said something he didn’t or to make him look bad. Same with Clinton.

    The fact is, there isn’t enough context to save Lloyd on this one.

    JJ said:

    The statement was cropped to make it look bad — in its entirety, and in context, it doesn’t come across as racist at all.

    I didn’t make any claim that the statements were racist.

    Lloyd was simply pointing out the concentration of media control in too few non-local hands, and how attrition will present opportunities for more diversity and local control. (Not forcing “good white people” to step down, as the truncated statement suggests.)

    Sorry, I have to disagree. The notion of “attrition” is not consistent with Lloyd’s:

    We’re in a position where you have to say who is going to step down so someone else can have power.

    In context, the notion is clear. This is NOT attrition. “You” is going to have to say who is going to step down to make way for someone like Lloyd wants to see. He’s not here talking about affirmative action.

    The question from O’Leary substitutes the FCC for the non-specific “you” in the quote because, I assume, that’s where Lloyd now has influence. But it could also be argued that the FCC is the only “you” who could do this.

    There are a couple of lessons here. First is to provide context. When i read the question(s), I immediately started looking for the context.

    second, this is an age when someone will look for anything you’ve said at any time and post it on youtube of some ideological site. I’m not happy with that but that is the way it is.

    JJ said:

    The wingnut witch hunt against Lloyd started over a month ago, when they picked up on this statement and figured out that it could be used to make Lloyd look bad.

    Considering that we have had at least 30 years of wingnut witch hunts on by wingnuts on all sides, i think that this is just the times we live in.

    After all, it was wingnut witch hunters who grasped on the “FoxNews was behind it” meme and spread it without checking it out. So, much of the reaction to wingnut O’Leary was to try to out-wingnut him.

    We need to stop with the knee-jerk responses (like O’Leary’s and those who ran with the Fox meme), stop substituting favourite narratives for reality, and actually focus on reality. Don’t you think?

    The truth here is that Lloyd said what he did, but I have seen no evidence that since he has had some influence inside the government, he has tried to get the FCC to do anything like say who is going to step down so someone else can have power.

  24. 26 Milesman666 Thursday, October 29, 2009 at 9:43 pm

    btw, JJ, you say

    Ye fucking gods, another 3, I mean 7, more years of this shit

    I share your exasperation. I thought 6that with Bush gone, that shit would stop. Man, that was stupid. I should have realized that it would just start coming from the other side.

    So that’s what we have: if someone doesn’t agree with you, he can and should be attacked by any means possible, and if he agrees with you, he must be defended against all attacks no matter what.

    No the atmosphere for anything meaningful to happen.

    It’s depressing!


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