After the first three debates on National television, three mainstream news channels featured polls asking the American people who won. After the first debate on May 3rd, MSNBC ran a poll obtaining over 72,000 responses showing Ron Paul was the most convincing candidate receiving 45% of the vote. His nearest competitor was Mitt Romney who received 18%. Fox news ran its own poll after the second debates on May 15, and with over 40,000 votes Ron Paul came in second with 25% of the vote. Watching Sean Hannity’s face was priceless as while he was saying that Ron Paul’s chances were over in this election, Fox’s polling numbers flashed across the screen and had Ron Paul in the lead. He immediately did his best spin to claim the polls had been rigged. MSNBC also ran a poll about that debate and discovered Ron Paul was, again, the most convincing candidate with 64% of the over 25,000 responses. After the third debate on June 5, CNN’s poll of over 25,000 respondents showed Ron Paul won with 60% of the vote.
One would think with such a strong showing on the online polls for a “second tier” candidate that the mainstream media (MSM) would have discussed this phenomenon at length and on the front page. However, no such stories appeared. In fact, MSM pundits did their best to ignore these figures and instead focused mainly on who they deemed to be the top three choices; effectively, taking control of the election and deciding quite undemocratically who was a “real” candidate.
Even though the MSM is largely ignoring him, Ron Paul is taking the Internet by storm. His name leads in searched terms ahead of even Paris Hilton, his YouTube videos have been viewed over one million times and he has more Meetup groups than all other GOP candidates combined. Poll after poll conducted on the Internet shows Ron Paul winning or at least in the top three. Yet, these polls are completely discounted and Ron Paul’s tremendous Internet support is sloughed off by the MSM. Occasionally, the MSM will grant some notice of the huge grassroots support online but then discount it by saying “he may be doing well online but he is only polling at 1 or 2 percent.” Doesn’t anyone see a disconnect between those two clauses? Who do they think is on the Internet? Pet mice running around in tubes? The Internet, for those who seem confused, is a link of people who write things and have ideas and OPINIONS. The 300-plus Meetup groups he has across the country are also attended by people. The MSM is trying to get us to believe that Ron Paul is only polling at 1% because that is what was said on a few polls and the fact that he is polling much higher on the Internet does not count. It is as if they believe that the people on the Internet are not real, their opinions do not count, and the Internet polls could not possibly be correct. The argument is absurd, insulting and designed to keep Ron Paul out of the mainstream public’s eye. The MSM ignores his success because of the misguided concept that people do not want to “waste” a vote. It is never a waste to vote for what you want: indeed, nothing could be more wasteful than voting for what you do not want because you think it the lesser of two evils. Voting for evil is always a bad idea.
Not only is the MSM staying mum to keep you from seeing Ron Paul as a legitimate candidate but there have been active attempts to hide information about his successes. After the third debate CNN not only ran a poll, but also asked viewers to voice their opinions about the debates. Comments started pouring in supporting Ron Paul, along with all the votes. The next day CNN removed the comments from their webpage. Clever supporters found these lost comments through Google’s cache (a technology that takes a virtual picture of a webpage on a certain date, so you can see if it has changed).
When silence does not work, biased pundits accuse Ron Paul supporters of “spamming” the votes (that is voting over and over for their candidate) and claim that this huge show of support is really being done by a few campaigners. This claim is specious for several reasons. First, if it was so easy to spam the polls, all the candidates would do it and online polling numbers would look more like an American Idol session with tens of millions of votes cast. Second, anyone, who understands that the Internet is not a series of tubes, knows that it is easy for a web designer to develop a poll that prohibits more than one vote per person. In fact, most of the online polls do restrict you to voting only once and if you attempt to vote again, even weeks later, you get a polite message that your vote will not count. Finally, along with the polls themselves, people leave comments, thousands of individual comments.
So let’s look at these polls and their methodologies.
Many online polls have tens of thousands of responses, especially the ones done by the MSM immediately after the debates, while old-fashioned telephone pollsters only get responses from hundreds. Yet, only the old telephone polls are reported on by the MSM. We are asked to accept that a poll with 600 persons responding is more accurate than a poll with 70,000 respondents. For example, a much-cited Zogby poll admits that they only targeted 500 interviews and drew their samples randomly from telephone CD’s of a national listed sample. (In that poll Ron Paul has a 3% lead). A recent Washington Post article cited its own telephone poll that only reached 1205 adults, and that was used to say Ron Paul is only receiving 1% support.
Instead of citing polls that have 70 to 100 times more respondents, the MSM still sticks to old-fashioned telephone-polling methods. The world has changed. We no longer need to depend on poor polls that only call a few hundred people, nor should we be relying on them to tell the whole story. Some say random telephone sampling is more effective just because of its randomness and therefore there is no self-selection bias as in the online polls in which one chooses to partake. However, elections are also based on self-selection and are only won and lost by those who choose to go to the polls: so shouldn’t the self-selected polling methods be more accurate? The good news is that of those who have heard Ron Paul speak (if only for the 5 minutes or so he gets in the debates) he is leading by a landslide; unfortunately, not enough people are getting to hear about him.
This race would look much different if the leading headlines the days following the GOP debates were (in order of the debates): 1. Ron Paul takes GOP by surprise and WINS the debate. 2. Ron Paul once again a leading contender in second debate, comes in second. 3. Ron Paul wins third debate hands down: other candidates struggling to keep up. If the people were told Ron Paul won the debates, more would learn about him and his support would grow exponentially.
In all fairness, the polls that show that Ron Paul is ahead with 98% of the vote are just as inaccurate as the polls that show he is only polling at 1% and the truth lies somewhere in the middle. But the largest online polls, the ones taken after the debates, have him receiving somewhere between 45% and 60% of the votes. So, why the big disparity in polling numbers? Some have suggested that Ron Paul has a lot of young supporters who do not own landlines and thus are not being polled. Other explanations come to mind as well: 1. Typical polls will only call a certain type of voter e.g. people who voted Republican in the last election and this will leave out a lot of Ron Paul supporters. Ron Paul’s message of liberty and freedom reaches across the aisle and a lot of previously registered Democrats are switching parties to vote for him in this election. For the same reason, many Libertarians and Independents are also going to be voting as Republicans this election. Much of his support also comes from young people who are voting in their first Presidential election and thus would have no previous voting record. 2. Ron Paul’s message of freedom and liberty is so exciting that people who have decided not to vote in past elections have decided that finally they have someone for whom to vote. 3. Some polls are so biased they do not even list Ron Paul as a choice (coincidentally, in a few of those “other” is leading the pack): Hard to win a poll when your name is not on the list. 4. Ron Paul fights for the individual, not the government, and his message appeals to those who like to be left alone. During this election many individuals have caller ID and often choose to avoid telemarketers and callers they do not know. 5. Some of these polls begin with intrusive questions about a person’s gender, religious affiliation, annual income, and other information some see as none of anyone’s business. If you refuse to answer the initial questions they will not continue with the questions. The type of person that likes Ron Paul, also tends to like privacy. 6. Sadly, not enough people are getting to hear about his policies.
Once they hear him, Ron Paul’s supporters are very passionate about his message. A search of Internet “blogs” shows people writing zealously about him. Nothing could be more thrilling than to see an 18-year-old excited about the election process, shouting out support for Ron Paul, begging to hear more information about the Federal Reserve and its implications for the country. Through his campaign, Ron Paul is teaching many the benefits of limited government. There should be no surprise that his message is so well received; it is the one taught to us by Thomas Jefferson, George Washington and other founding fathers. It is the message of liberty, freedom, with the basis of a republic, not a democracy. We have been lied to so often, and our Constitution ripped apart at the seams, that when a person comes along speaking basic truths and principles, it awakens a part of us buried for so long.
When ignoring Ron Paul does not work, and removing messages about him receives backlash, the next stage is to call his supporters rabid, nuts, crazy, unstable. If you cannot attack the man, attack his supporters. Yet who can blame people who get upset when a life-saving message comes along and the MSM tries to keep it from the public. Ron Paul’s message is life-saving. He wants to end the war, he wants to help ease poverty by eliminating the Federal Reserve and its ability to steal through monetary inflation. He wants to end the Income Tax and give those who need it most their entire salaries. The anger you hear is frustration by his supporters at being marginalized, just as they are by so many government actions these days, and fury when all this support is discounted. Of course people are getting upset. They do not like being manipulated and they especially do not like it when a Presidential campaign is being hijacked.
The worst part about the MSM treatment of Ron Paul, is that finally the people have a candidate they really love, and a man who would get this country back on the proper course. They have a man who will follow the Constitutional course that served this country so well for so long. Instead of rejoicing and helping the country and the people find their way, corporate media giants are trying to silence his message by ignoring him completely or reporting on only the most obscure, misleading and slanderous articles (could this be because Ron Paul is also against corporate welfare?). Most recently, even the Associated Press got into the “let’s lead with misleading statements” game. In reporting on how Dr. Paul decided to hold his own rally after being the only candidate in the debates to not be invited to a Presidential Forum in Iowa, the AP’s first line in the article was that Ron Paul has added “party crashing” to his debate tactics. As any ten-year-old knows, to crash a party you have to attend the party. Ron Paul had not announced he would attend the Presidential forum. Instead, he decided to hold a completely separate event immediately following the forum in the same venue. That is not party crashing, that is called campaigning. The article went on to tell the truth about the situation, but that catch phrase was repeated as a headline across the country impugning Dr. Paul’s character. See for example this ABC News headline: Republican Ron Paul to Crash Iowa Forum.
Just as Ron Paul spoke of blowback in the context of military interference in foreign affairs, unless the mainstream media ends the Ron Paul blackout and misinformation drive, they will lose the next generation who is seeing it as a biased, manipulating, election-fixing force not to be trusted.
When Ron Paul gets heard or seen, he is liked. As soon as people who do not own computers are able to see him or read his message his numbers in the national polls will rise just as they have done on the Internet. In general, the American people are saying they want liberty and freedom: Now, if only the MSM would listen.
“Always vote for principle, though you may vote alone, and you may cherish the sweetest reflection that your vote is never lost.” ~ John Quincy Adams
July 16, 2007