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Saturday, July 19, 2008

Poll Position: Court of Public Opinion

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This is essentially a 2-in-1 poll result posting, covering the last two opinion polls conducted by myAsylum. In fact, Walski has just unleashed another, which should be visible by the time this is posted.

All three, in effect, have one thing in common - public opinion on current issues. And the gist of it is that whether or not something is true, the public will believe what they want to believe, and the opinion of the public then forms the collective "truth" of the matter.

The first poll, which ran between June 6 and June 22, asked for an opinion about how well - or otherwise - the government was managing the economy.

Image hosting by PhotobucketPoll Position #1 - most think the economy isn't managed well

In this case, the result was well within the parameters of Walski's expectations. About 18% felt that that the government could do better, while the remainder of the respondents thought that the government was handling the economy badly. Granted the sample size was pretty small, but Walski thinks that this is probably an accurate gauge of how the public feels.

And then there's the recently concluded poll - about Najib and the statutory declarations.
(Najib, the SD's, and more, in the full post)

Image hosting by PhotobucketPoll Position #2 - most believe that Najib is somehow involved

Also not a major surprise. The public has their doubts about Najib's non-involvement. Whether or not he is actually involved is pretty much secondary. The Court of Public Opinion has already passed judgement. And such a judgement on someone who is destined to be the next PM is, well, shall we say, of grave concern.

Which brings us to the next poll, which Walski has just started this morning (see the sidebar) - is the Royal Malaysian Police impartial enough to conduct an honest investigation? As there are a number of politically-driven investigations under way, it will be interesting to find out what the Court of Public Opinion has to say.

Walski can guess what the result of this poll will show, but will keep this to himself for now. You know, so as not to taint the results, so to speak.

But herein lies the crux - no matter what the government does, positively or otherwise, the tsunami wave that struck on March 8th this year continues to build momentum, it would seem. And it also seems like the government isn't doing itself any favors, tactically tripping over itself again and again since then. The recent overreaction by the Minister of Internal Security (or whatever his portfolio is called these days) in mobilizing the police to protect the citizens of Klang Valley from getting to work on time, is a prime example.

Idiotic moves like this further erodes the credibility of the government of the day. At least in the Court of Public Opinion. But it's exactly there where credibility counts the most, is it not?