We are the 91%

The most important unnoted characteristic of telephone polls (on which most of the political journalism these days seems focused -- instead of on the economy) is that 91% of people refuse to participate in them. In other words, only 9% of the population is being heard in the polls.

The data and analysis are laid out by Zombie at PJ Media:

One of the most amazing - and significant - statistics of this election season has gone almost completely unnoticed:

Only 9% of sampled households gave an answer to pollsters in 2012

Read the whole thing.

At Instapundit, Sara Hoyt sums it up:

THE SILENCE OF THE NINETY ONE PERCENT: WE ARE THE 91%: Only 9% of Americans Cooperate with Pollsters  and most of my family and friends aren't among them.  Why not?   They don't trust the person on the other side of the phone NOT to be from the government and taking down numbers for nefarious purposes.  After Joe the Plumber, after Fast and Furious and Benghazi-gate, after the media that won't report this administration's malfeasance, do you blame them?

I've long argued that it is not smart to assume those who refuse to participate in polls have the same opinion profile as those who do.  I think that is even more true at a time when there seems to be record levels of distrust and downright loathing of civic institutions such as the media, academia, labor unions and the federal government.   A few years ago you might see posts about lying to pollsters at a few extreme sites.  Now I am increasingly seeing them at mainstream conservative sites such as Lucianne and PJ Media.   Having recently been jumped all over at a social event by a neighbor who lets MSNBC do her thinking for merely mentioning that I was Republican I can understand the attitude of Ms. Hoyt and her family.  The only thing more dangerous than sharing your opinion these days is citing facts to those nurtured on a steady diet of propaganda. 

Hat tip: Instapundit

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