Why I lie to pollsters…

I am a sucker for a telephone survey.

I know its because I spent my high school years doing telephone market research from 4 – 9 four nights a week. Some nights I could have cried for not being able to make my quota. I worked on a nationwide Burger King v. McDonald’s survey and another about soda pop in the early 80’s. My mother (who got me the job) did mall focus groups on the original SNL cast. It was the kind of lousy job that convinces you to go to college so you can be anything other than a tele-marketer.

So I answer survey calls out of both pity and gratitude that I don’t do this for a living.

The only surveys I ever lie on are the political ones. Years ago I started telling robo-polls that I was an African American. Sometimes I say I am a republican. This was really useful as it allowed me in 2008 to hear the call telling my that my voting place had changed (it had not) and recently that the ACLU is trying to take God out of my state motto (they are not). I do enjoy knowing what what tactics are being used.

Recently I told a robo-poll that we were an upper-middle class Jewish family that attends temple weekly and votes democrat. There is a contentious race here between a Jewish republican and a pinko, union card waving, liberal democrat so the identity politics are hitting pretty hard along with the name-calling and 100% false accusations.

The democrat, for whatever flaws he has, looks out for the working class (hence the pinko label) and fights to keep jobs in our state (the union card bit). He strikes me as a genuine “public servant” do-gooder based on his record + his wonky, rather than sound bite, speeches. I am firmly to the left of center so maybe I am pre-disposed.

I really don’t like the republican guy, and no that doesn’t mean I hate Israel. This is one small example of how his reasoning is playing in his political ads. He is pure ambition and started running this race the minute he got his current political position. Which means he is currently failing to do the job he was elected to do, while trying to get another job. If your employer found out you were doing that, wouldn’t they fire you on the spot?

Anyway. To add insult to injury, not only is he running on his religion and military service, but he is also a Koch-baby.

And that’s why I lie to pollsters. How else do you know what you don’t know?