Regarding the somewhat controversial troop poll, I’ve submitted this to Zogby:
Do your “Executive Summaries” (listed as available for $19.95) include the actual survey questions?
If not, how does this “Executive Summary” differ from the write-up available on the Zogby site?
Are the actual questions available?
Not that I expect to get an answer.
The key is to know what questions the troops were answering. Secondary to that, but still important, would be demographic info. The write-up notes that Marine results were different than the poll overall, for instance. Knowing whether the Marines are represented proportionally to their numbers in Iraq would matter.
It’s not just that the results of this poll don’t line up with the public declarations of the Pentagon or the Bush administration. It’s that they’re vastly different than nearly every other indicator we’ve had so far.
It seems a bit strange that the results have largely been reported in the mainstream media word-for-word straight from Zogby’s summary. That might be acceptable if this poll simply supported earlier indicators and signals, but that really isn’t the case. Didn’t it occur to anyone to ask how the results were obtained?
UPDATE: Jason at Generation Why shelled out the 20 bucks and apparently got the questions with the package. He lists the full “withdrawal” question/answer. He doesn’t say whether the Executive Summary includes any demographic data, but what I’ve read elsewhere makes me think it probably doesn’t.
Plus, he suggests that the withdrawal timing response might have more to do with announced scenarios rather than opinions that plans should change. And he’s got this for supporting material:
The very next survey question sheds some light:
“According to recent polls, about half of Americans favor a rapid withdrawal and half favor an open-ended occupation of Iraq. Which do you believe best describes the motives of those favoring rapid withdrawal?”
36.9 percent said it was because “they are unpatriotic”.
Unpatriotic! So if we’re to believe Kristof’s analysis, then over a third of our troops are “urging” something they believe is “unpatriotic”.
In fact, further down in Zogby’s report comes this little nugget:A majority of troops (53%) said the U.S. should double both the number of troops and bombing missions in order to control the insurgency.
Wait… I thought the troops were “urging pullout”… So we’re to believe they are “urging pullout” and simultaneously want to double the number troops? What sense does that make?
Now, it’s possible that many of those calling for for immediate withdrawal (29%) are not within the 36% who think calls for such action are unpatriotic. There’s plenty of room for both that and for them to not be within the 53% calling for more troops.
Still, that would indicate that there’s about one-third of the troops that are just plain on a totally different page than nearly everyone else. Kudos to Jason for taking the initiative to get the summary.
Jason’s post is also available at Newsbusters.
UPDATE: Apparently only three questions from the poll are actually listed in the Executive Summary, not the entire package.
UPDATE: Much more, including the actual questions, here.