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Friday, August 20, 2010

Griper Blade: Note to 24-Hour Media: You're Just Awful at this News Stuff

Last night, I broke out the ladder, climbed up on my roof, and pointed my face to the sky -- where the airwaves live -- and shouted, "You're not helping!"

Ok, so I didn't. But I wanted to. In yesterday's roundup, I mentioned a Pew poll that found that 18% of respondents thought President Obama is a Muslim. It's not the sort of thing I normally get worked up about, since -- as I pointed out when I wrote about it -- in any poll, approximately 1 in 5 always gives an insane answer. 1 in 5 believe that space aliens walk around in people-costumes. When it comes to reporting on polling, I think we should all agree that about 20% of respondents will be shown to be either stupid or mentally ill and just cut those people out of the equation. We've got a margin of error, so call this the "crazy quotient." Or maybe lump them in with the other answers we ignore -- something like "don't know/no opinion/goofy in the head."

But the crazy quotient in this poll had some interesting qualities. Greg Sargent looked into the internals and found that (surprise!) the believe was Republican driven. But more interesting was that 60% of those who held the mistaken belief that Obama was a Muslim said they learned this from the media...[CLICK TO READ FULL POST]

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