NB Politicus

Urban Oaks Farm Invites You To Harvest Moon Festival October 23

Posted in Uncategorized by nbpoliticus on October 16, 2010

The 225 Oak Street farm — recognized for heirloom herbs and organic crops — invites you to its first Harvest Moon Festival on Saturday, October 23rd from noon to 8 pm.

The farm has turned the former Sandelli Florist property into a sustainable enterprise in the heart of the city, improving the neighborhood in the process.

Farmers’ market with good food to eat and entertainment.  Admission is free.

www.urbanoaks.org

CT Capital Report polling: Science of push button survey has skeptics

Posted in polling, state politics by nbpoliticus on October 9, 2010

No question political junkies can’t get enough of polls in the run up to elections. In 2010, Connecticut is seeing an extraordinary amount of polling because of the high stakes U.S. Senate race and an open seat for Governor.

In addition to the well-established Quinnipiac Poll, national outfits such as Rasmussen are measuring voter sentiment in the Nutmeg state in a big way.  These have more than made up for the loss of the Courant/UCONN poll that was Connecticut’s authoritative opinion survey for a long time.

Last week  the news and opinion aggregation site, CT Capitol Report, entered the handicapping for this year’s “horse races” and immediately gave pundits more material to analyze and write about. We can all take heart that the polling is home grown from www.merrimanriver.com.  But do we need more info on the horse races or journalistic attention focused on issues and how candidates are responding to them?

I was among the CT residents phoned by the CT Capitol’s survey that called about the Governor’s race, which the poll ultimately found to be a “dead heat.”  This was a push-button poll wherein a recorded voice asked me a series of questions on my choice for governor and got the vitals on my political identity.  As I dutifully gave the answers of a liberal Democrat I wondered about the efficacy of a survey that did not involve a back and forth with another human being, just required whoever answered the phone to punch in answers if there was enough patience to stay on the line for five minutes or so.

The Washington Post’s Chris Cillizza discusses the pros and cons of the CT Capitol Report survey methodology in this recent story from the Washington Post’s “The Fix”.

Cillizza suggests voters take CT Capitol Report’s and other automated polls with a grain of salt:

In a standard telephone poll, the interviewer may seek to add another layer of randomness by asking to speak for a specific person in a household, such as whoever most recently celebrated a birthday. Automated polls do not attempt to do that. Establishment pollsters argue that by stripping a level of randomness from the polling process, auto-dial pollsters must more heavily weight their samples to achieve demographic diversity — rendering the results almost meaningless.

The CT Capitol Report polling also told us that the 5th Congressional District is the most anti-Obama and trending Republican of any of CT’s five districts. Too bad towns like New Britain and Meriden will skew these results.


It’s kind of ironic that in the age of dying newspapers and diminished journalism voters–the online ones anyway — may be getting Too Much Information (TMI) that focuses less on the issues and how candidates will address them.


Sources:


 http://voices.washingtonpost.com/thefix/parsing-the-polls/parsing-the-polls-of-auto-dial.html

http://www.ctcapitolreport.com/

GOP "Common Sense" Plan: Hypocrisy Thy Name Is Republican

Posted in state budget, state government by nbpoliticus on October 9, 2010

A key phrase from a new state government agenda from Republicans is: “Borrow only what you can afford to pay back”. Minority Leader Larry Cafero and the crafters of this “common sense” plan conveniently forget to mention that a Republican has held the Governor’s office for 20 years. The Governor has sole and exclusive control over state borrowing. Blaming the Democratic majority for all state budget problems strains credulity.  The executive branch is a co-equal and some would argue more powerful branch when it comes to the public purse.


There is nary a word about changing the tax structure to ease the burden on the property tax to pay for education. That real reform would offend corporate special interests and the folks who have the long driveways in the tony towns of the Nutmeg state who don’t want the tax burden made fairer. Working and middle class taxpaying families get no comfort or relief from the drivel in this platform.  Hypocrisy thy name is Republican.


Take a look yourself at www.commonsensecommitment.com