ANOTHER week. Another poll. You’ve doubtless seen press headlines like this: “Coalition faces local election disaster with UKIP now fourth UK party.” Another distortion of the UK voting system. And another set of conclusions which mean little in reality.
Well, if ahead of this week’s local elections, voters actually experienced less scare-mongering verging on paranoia from the tabloid press about, for example, the number of Romanians/Bulgarians heading to Britain next year, perhaps the polls would show something other than a confused, desperate electorate reacting to each scare and false hope.
Then there might be a more rational picture of the national mood and attitudes. For, as long as voters don’t have access to a reliable source of balanced information, they’re at the mercy not just of the press but lobbyists and PR companies with their vested interests.
But isn’t this precisely the remit of the extremely well-funded (by licence-payers) BBC News? While the BBC seemingly tries to give both sides of a political argument and, occasionally, lambast some of the flimsy claims and empty promises made by two-faced politicians, nonetheless sustained campaigns in the press have sought to distort and influence the political viewpoints of already confused voters.
Whether or not you believe it’s a “left wing propaganda machine” as its many critics claim, the BBC needs to fulfill its mandate to keep the public consistently informed.
And for starters, fire over-paid ‘celebrity’ presenters and provide more neutral analysis of controversial events like, for instance, Margaret Thatcher’s death and legacy. After all, if voters don’t get consistently balanced information, how can they make balanced decisions at the ballot box?
As for polls, these have been shown occasionally to get it right, in the same way as weather forecasts for London are the same for the Shetland Islands on the same day.
Other than that, they simply fill space in the press and give writers something to write about. Basically, nobody can accurately predict the actions of 46 million voters.
Finally, once again many thanks to all of you who’ve helped my newly-published thriller, Retribution, which I wrote abouthere recently, become at the time of writing number 39 in the crime/suspense category in Amazon.es’s eBooks!
And Soul Stealer number 40. And keep those donations going to Cudeca!
Nora Johnson’s thrillers ‘Retribution’,‘Soul Stealer’,‘The De Clerambault Code’ (www.nora-johnson.com) available from Amazon in paperback/eBook (€0.89; £0.77) and iBookstore. Profits to Cudeca