ChrisWeigant.com

Five Questions

[ Posted Monday, August 6th, 2018 – 17:11 PDT ]

I'm back from Netroots Nation, but I'm not yet fully recovered, so today's column is not going to be a full one but rather just a teaser of sorts. I'm hoping that either later tonight or possibly tomorrow I'll have gotten my act together enough to post some photos from the trip, but at this point can't promise a hard schedule or anything (we're still unpacking...).

But I was struck by one rather minor thing at the conference, so I thought I'd toss it out to my readers for their thoughts, because I've been thinking about it ever since. In the main hall of exhibits, there was a table set up by the Public Policy Polling company (P.P.P.). They had a raffle of sorts where you dropped a business card in a fishbowl in the hopes of winning the prize. I did so, but have yet to be contacted by them, so I'm assuming I didn't win the big prize -- but I found it to be an interesting concept, because their prize was: "you get to ask five questions on our next national poll."

So, what would you ask? If you got to pose five questions to a nationwide polling audience, what would they be? To make it really worthwhile, they'd really have to be questions that other polls had not generally asked before. Would you get specific, or ask broad general questions? To really accurately gauge the public's feeling, of course, you'd have to ask the question in as unbiased a way as possible, so you weren't leading them by the nose to the answer you wanted (this is basic "Polling 101"). But there was no restriction on subject matter, so you could really ask just about anything under the sun.

I have some ideas for questions I'd ask, after thinking about it for a while, but I'm still not sure what the top five questions on my list would be. So rather than influence you with my picks, I thought I'd toss it out cold, as one of those "subject: discuss among yourselves" style proposals (hey, I warned you this wasn't going to be a full column!).

I promise I'll be working on the trip's photos and post them soon, but I thought this would be a fun exercise for everyone in the meantime. So, if you had thrown your business card into the bowl and they had picked yours out as the winner, what would your questions be? If you had a random sampling of Americans as an audience, what would you ask them? You've got five unrestricted questions to ask the public... so what would they be?

-- Chris Weigant

 

Follow Chris on Twitter: @ChrisWeigant

 

53 Comments on “Five Questions”

  1. [1] 
    C. R. Stucki wrote:

    Why are most of you so gawdam stoopid?

  2. [2] 
    neilm wrote:

    1. Do you think prior government experience is valuable for top political office?
    2. Do you think inequality is damaging our country?
    3. Do you think politicians ignore the will of the people on issues like gun control because of special interest groups?
    4. Do you think it should be mandatory to vote in even year November elections?
    5. Do you think soccer should be named the new National Pastime?

  3. [3] 
    LeaningBlue wrote:

    It would be interesting, at least for me, to read what five questions Don Harris would ask.

    It's very likely that those questions could define what he is really trying to do far more clearly than lengthy and contentious positions and debates can't do.

  4. [4] 
    Don Harris wrote:

    Question five would be similar to my third wish if I found a genie that granted three wishes- the third wish would be for three more wishes. :D

  5. [5] 
    Kick wrote:

    1. Do you believe the most ignorant bullshit magically becomes a fact if it's repeated over and over ad nauseam?

    2. If you answered "yes" to #1 above, skip to #3. If you answered "no" to #1 above: Then why do you keep repeating the same ignorant bullshit over and over?

    3. Hello, Benedict Donald. Do you know what "MAGA" is going to mean for the majority of people associated with your campaign?
    It's going to mean: "My Ass Got Arrested."

  6. [6] 
    ListenWhenYouHear wrote:

    Do you think that a free press is needed to report an honest account of events for the masses?

    Should politicians face ethics charges for knowingly lying to their constituents?

    Should news media be required to alert the public and differentiate when it is offering opinion pieces and when it is actually reporting the facts?

    Should media outlets be required to offer equal and fair access to opposing views?

    Should politicians be required to pass basic civil service requirements in order to qualify to be a candidate?

  7. [7] 
    Don Harris wrote:

    1. Would you prefer to vote for a candidate that takes Big Money contributions or runs their campaign only with small contributions?

    2. Do you think that voting for candidates that take Big Money contributions is more likely to get candidates to stop taking Big Money contributions than registering a vote against the Big Money candidates by voting for a small contribution candidate (even if they won't win this election) or by writing in your own name to create and demonstrate demand for small contribution candidates in the next election?

    3. Should this idea be part of the public discourse?

    4. Should holding and pass interference be reviewable?

    5. Looks like I don't need any extra questions after all.

  8. [8] 
    nypoet22 wrote:

    hmm, i'm having a tougher time with this question than i thought i would.

  9. [9] 
    Kick wrote:

    Oh, I was reading all the great questions in all the comments, and then comment [6] actually made me think of another question:

    4. Candidates running to become President of the United States or running for any federal office are at present required to detail their financial holdings, debt, and their sources of income so that the public can identify any conflicts of interest a candidate may have. Do you think a candidate for any federal office should also be required to disclose a minimum of five (5) years of federal income tax returns?

  10. [10] 
    John M wrote:

    I can think of at least 3 right off the top of my head.

    1) Why do you vote for a candidate that you know is lying to you?

    2) Why do you vote on someone's position on only one issue to the exclusion of all other issues?

    3) Why do you continually vote against your own self interests and the interests of the community you belong to?

  11. [11] 
    Michale wrote:

    I am thinning my diet of politics, but I do have sort of a math problem I need help with..

    To whit: If I lift a 100lb TV, then I am lifting 100lbs.. If I have another person help me and we each lift one end of the TV, we are still each lifting 100lbs, right??

  12. [12] 
    Michale wrote:

    Oh crap... Sucked in again..

    3) Why do you continually vote against your own self interests and the interests of the community you belong to?

    Answer: I am not voting against my own self-interests.. I am voting against what you *THINK* my self-interest is or should be..

    My self interest is my own and no one, especially someone who is my political enemy, can tell me what *MY* self-interest is..

  13. [13] 
    Michale wrote:

    Do you think that a free press is needed to report an honest account of events for the masses?

    Should politicians face ethics charges for knowingly lying to their constituents?

    Should news media be required to alert the public and differentiate when it is offering opinion pieces and when it is actually reporting the facts?

    Should media outlets be required to offer equal and fair access to opposing views?

    Should politicians be required to pass basic civil service requirements in order to qualify to be a candidate?

    1. Should all your questions apply equally to Republicans AND Democrats??

    2. Why didn't you/don't you ask those questions when Democrats lie to you??

  14. [14] 
    Michale wrote:

    1. Do you think that media and social media outlets run nearly completely by Liberals should be the sole arbiters of "Hate Speech" and "Fake News" and "Fact Checks"..???

  15. [15] 
    Michale wrote:

    Do you think a candidate for any federal office should also be required to disclose a minimum of five (5) years of federal income tax returns?

    Do you think a candidate for any federal office should also be required to release all school transcripts that exist past middle school?

  16. [16] 
    Michale wrote:

    hmm, i'm having a tougher time with this question than i thought i would.

    That's because, unlike others, you don't knee-jerk react based on your HHPTDS and are actually THINKING about the questions....

    Apparently, you only have a mild or intermittent case of HHPTDS... :D

  17. [17] 
    Michale wrote:

    Looks like I broke my diet.. :^/

  18. [18] 
    Michale wrote:

    and the interests of the community you belong to?

    So, for the black community, who has seen the LOWEST Unemployment for black Americans **EVER**, their "self-interest" would be to vote *FOR* President Trump, right??

    For the hispanic community, who has seen the lowest Unemployment for hispanic Americans **EVER**, their "self interest" would be to vote *FOR* President Trump, right???

    I mean, if we're talking "self-interest" that someone OUTSIDE the community gets to assign, then it's OBVIOUS that the black American community's self interest and the hispanic American community's self interest lies with voting **FOR** President Trump...

    Wouldn't you agree???

    Or does assigned self-interest only work if it's AGAINST the President that ya'all don't like?? :D

    Inquiring minds want to know.. :D

  19. [19] 
    neilm wrote:

    Q: Why do you attend "Hillbilly Nuremberg Rallies" 3 years before an election?

  20. [20] 
    Michale wrote:

    Q: Why do you attend "Hillbilly Nuremberg Rallies" 3 years before an election?

    It was part of a anti-discrimination program, code-named NUNYA....

  21. [21] 
    neilm wrote:

    So, for the black community, who has seen the LOWEST Unemployment for black Americans **EVER**, their "self-interest" would be to vote *FOR* President Trump, right??

    I'll reword it for you:

    Q: Why don't you black vote just shut up and dribble vote for the white supremacist?

  22. [22] 
    neilm wrote:

    So, for the black community, who has seen the LOWEST Unemployment for black Americans **EVER**, their "self-interest" would be to vote *FOR* President Trump, right??

    I'll reword it for you:

    Q: Why don't you black folk just shut up and dribble vote for the white supremacist?

  23. [23] 
    Michale wrote:

    Q: Why don't you black folk just shut up and dribble vote for the white supremacist?

    Looks like you put your own feelings into the re-wording.. How you feel about it is somewhat disconcerting, but I understand you are in the throes of HHPTDS and you are not responsible..

    Irregardless, the FACT is that black Americans and hispanic Americans have seen their unemployement the LOWEST it has EVER been.. EVER....

    All thanks to President Trump..

    I know, I know.. You don't really care about the interests of the black and hispanic communities if you can't beat President Trump over the head with them...

    Again, I understand.. You are forgiven..

    HHPTDS is insidious...

  24. [24] 
    Balthasar wrote:

    All thanks to President Trump..

    Other than sign a congressionally-crafted bill rewarding billionaires with tax cuts that was shoved in front of him, how is Trump responsible for this?

  25. [25] 
    Michale wrote:

    Other than sign a congressionally-crafted bill rewarding billionaires with tax cuts that was shoved in front of him, how is Trump responsible for this?

    The same way a Democrat would be if we had a Democrat POTUS...

  26. [26] 
    Michale wrote:

    In other words, if we had a Democrat, you would give that Democrat credit..

  27. [27] 
    Steedo wrote:

    Only one question needed:
    Would you rather be a Russian than a Democrat?

  28. [28] 
    Michale wrote:

    Would you rather be a Russian than a Democrat?

    With today's Democrats??

    That's actually a very tough question...

  29. [29] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    Chris,

    This is a great test and wide open window into what makes people tick. Not the ones being asked the questions but the people posing them.

  30. [30] 
    Michale wrote:

    This is a great test and wide open window into what makes people tick. Not the ones being asked the questions but the people posing them.

    I was thinking the EXACT same thing myself.. :D

    Kinda like how I have described POLLS all these years.. :D

  31. [31] 
    Balthasar wrote:

    I subscribe to Neil's questions at [2], so I guess my window is shut (at least until I get some more coffee in me)..

  32. [32] 
    James T Canuck wrote:

    Great exercise...

    1) Do you support isolationism in a time of globalism?

    2) Do you feel your vote is decided by current events or familial and/or societal allegiance?

    3) Given that the US spends one third more of it's GDP on healthcare than Canada, respectively...do you think the US should enjoy a similar quality of universal healthcare as Canadians?

    4)Do you think vast lobbyists such as the NRA and large Pharma should hold such sway over politicians through their political contributions?

    5) Do you think your elected officials should be held to a standard that includes total transparency in their private lives, before and after election, such as business, political and social affiliation?

    Obvious questions, I know...but rarely considered.

    LL&P

  33. [33] 
    ListenWhenYouHear wrote:

    Michale,

    1. Should all your questions apply equally to Republicans AND Democrats??

    2. Why didn't you/don't you ask those questions when Democrats lie to you??

    1. Of course it goes for all politicians, regardless of their party affiliation! Do you not agree???

    2. I have/do. Sadly, you just accept the lies from the Russian Party.

  34. [34] 
    Michale wrote:

    1. Of course it goes for all politicians, regardless of their party affiliation! Do you not agree???

    Then why didn't you ask those questions under the Odumbo Administration??

    2. I have/do. Sadly, you just accept the lies from the Russian Party.

    Whatever you have to tell yourself to make it thru your day.. :D

    Meanwhile, while you are quaking and fearful of every Russian shadow, President Trump has been creating hundreds of thousands of jobs for Americans and got the economy going even after Odumbo claimed that the sluggish economy is the "new normal" and Americans will just have to get used to it.. :D

    Ya'all are gonna have to deal with President Trump and a strong economy for another 6 years.. :D

  35. [35] 
    Michale wrote:

    While ya'all are yammering on and on about Russians and Collusion....

    https://www.axios.com/white-house-confronts-techs-tariff-jitters-8f25c703-6493-496f-b366-0549502eab0b.html

    President Trump is down to business with HELPING this country... :D

    No wonder ya'all hate Trump so much... He is showing up Odumbo for the complete incompetent nincompoop that Odumbo was...

  36. [36] 
    Michale wrote:

    At the Netroots Nation conference in New Orleans last week, an annual gathering of progressive political activists, Sen. Kamala Harris urged Democrats to embrace "identity politics" and promised "we won't be silent" on issues of race, sexuality and gender.

    Yes, please.. By all means, Democrats.. Ignore everything but identity politics...

    It worked so well for you, 2009 thru 2016....

    :D

  37. [37] 
    Balthasar wrote:

    President Trump has been creating hundreds of thousands of jobs for Americans and got the economy going even after Odumbo claimed that the sluggish economy is the "new normal" and Americans will just have to get used to it.

    Again, Michale, just how has Trump accomplished this? Magic? He hasn't done anything to affect the economy, save for signing that tax cut for billionaires that he didn't write.

    As I've already said today, the Billionaire's tax cuts weren't Trump's - other than signing them, he had no role in their crafting. Former (Republican) Fed Chair Ben Bernanke said recently that the effect of those cuts, which include $1.5 trillion in personal and corporate tax cuts and a $300 billion increase in federal spending is a "sugar rush", and that we'll realize eventually that its benefit is illusory:

    “What you are getting is a stimulus at the very wrong moment,” Bernanke said, which he added, “is going to hit the economy in a big way this year and next year, and then in 2020 Wile E. Coyote is going to go off the cliff.”

    Oh, wait, Trump DID announce a bunch of tariffs, triggering trade disputes with Canada, China and Europe particularly (Europe made a deal last week that removes ALL tariffs until more talks are held - so what did we accomplish there?). I've heard that another effect of the Tariff announcement was to cause the Chinese Yuan to drop, making Chinese goods cheaper in the US for the time being. That'll team 'em not to sell more goods to us than we sell to them.

    Republicans always take credit for Democrats' responsible economies. Bush tried to pass off the Clinton Economy as his own, too, using it too as an excuse for his own huge tax cut bill and inevitable deficit spending. He continued to insist that his own economic policy was working right up until the economy crashed and burned at his feet.

    Obama brought back responsible economic and regulatory policy and the economy has been having its longest expansion in history ever since.

    Trump didn't do shit to make that happen.

    Claiming that the current good economy is Trump's doing is like claiming that good weather is the weatherman's accomplishment. Claiming differently only makes the GOP seem more out of touch with reality than it already is.

  38. [38] 
    Michale wrote:

    Trump didn't do shit to make that happen.

    Bullshit..

    If it had been a POTUS with a -D after their name, you would be crowing to the ends of the earth how awesome said -D POTUS is..

    You and I BOTH know that this is factually accurate..

    So, don't give me your bullshit...

    Further, if the economy had tanked as ya'all predicted then it WOULD be President Trump's fault..

    Again, you and I BOTH know this is factually accurate..

    So, again.. DON'T give me your Party slavery bullshit..

    If the POTUS gets the blame when things are bad, then the POTUS gets the credit when things are good..

    Claiming that the current good economy is Trump's doing is like claiming that good weather is the weatherman's accomplishment. Claiming differently only makes the GOP seem more out of touch with reality than it already is.

    Yea, you keep telling yourself that..

    Once the Democrats are shellacked (AGAIN) because of Trump's awesome economy, you'll be crying (AGAIN) and whining about Russians and collusion..

    And, once again, Michale will have the LAST (and BEST) laugh.. :D

  39. [39] 
    Michale wrote:

    Again, Michale, just how has Trump accomplished this? Magic? He hasn't done anything to affect the economy, save for signing that tax cut for billionaires that he didn't write.

    President Trump did it where Odumbo could not..

    "These are the facts of the case. And they are undisputed"

  40. [40] 
    Michale wrote:

    Iran CIVIL WAR brewing: Fury at ‘corrupt’ regime – ‘they make us poorer every day’
    https://www.express.co.uk/news/world/1000091/iran-news-trump-nuclear-deal-donald-trump-sanctions-rouhani

    How much you want to bet that President Trump won't frak it up and throw the protesters under the bus like Odumbo did???

  41. [41] 
    Balthasar wrote:

    How much you want to bet that President Trump won't frak it up and throw the protesters under the bus like Odumbo did?

    Do you mean like, start a war? Neither the Europeans nor the Russians will reinstate sanctions, so what support do you suppose Trump has for military action? Iran is three times the size of Iraq, with a much better army, and has a military defense pact with Russia on its books.

    Oh, maybe Italy's new Nationalist leader will offer support. That should be comforting.

  42. [42] 
    Balthasar wrote:

    President Trump did it where Odumbo could not..

    Did WHAT? He hasn't done anything, except tweet..

    He's just a fat Angry Bird.

  43. [43] 
    Balthasar wrote:
  44. [44] 
    Kick wrote:

    And for my last question:

    5. Why does the board troll assume the questions commenters asked in response to CW are about him and so begins answering them as if they're about him and his ridiculous and utterly asinine whataboutism?

    Everything is NOT about you, Michale. Let that "sink in" to your tiny cranium. :)

  45. [45] 
    Kick wrote:

    Michale
    15

    Do you think a candidate for any federal office should also be required to release all school transcripts that exist past middle school?

    Q. Did the effing illiterate moron assume my question was for him?

    A. Same shit, different day. :)

  46. [46] 
    Kick wrote:

    Russ
    33

    1. Of course it goes for all politicians, regardless of their party affiliation! Do you not agree???

    I agree with Russ. It's obvious that the poor dumb troll reads the questions and believes everything is about him and begins the standard repetitive same old tired attacks he spews daily. It would be funny if it wasn't so pathetic.

    2. I have/do. Sadly, you just accept the lies from the Russian Party.

    And Hair Dick-Tater. *laughs* :)

  47. [47] 
    Kick wrote:

    Michale

    In the first 18 months of Trump’s term, job growth averaged a healthy 193,000 per month, but during Obama’s last 18 months job growth equaled an even more robust 206,000.

    Over the most recent 12 months of Trump’s presidency, average hourly wages grew 2.5 percent, but under Obama in his last year, hourly wages grew 2.9 percent.

    https://tinyurl.com/yc47o6j3

    If only you had been singing Obama's praises for his better job performance numbers, perhaps you wouldn't now be sounding like a complete and utter hypocrite.

    Perhaps at the very least you could find your way to understanding why no one here is impressed with Trump's weaker job creation numbers, etc. :)

  48. [48] 
    James T Canuck wrote:

    As I understood it, the five questions were intended to be put in non-partisan terms, and not in a way that one end of the spectrum would react with hostility thinking they were thinly disguised rebukes. Michale was always going assume every question was an anti-GOP/monkeyman rhetorical.

    Irregardless, lol. That word only skates by the spelling Nazi's in America, we were taught to use regardless...in the same way it's 'among' and not 'amongst,'

    Carry on.

    LL&P

  49. [49] 
    C. R. Stucki wrote:

    Kick

    Obama came into office when over 60% of the residential construction workforce was idle as a result of the bursting of the housing bubble. It was inevitable that all those jobs would have to be filled once the crisis passed.

    U.S. presidents get the credit for prosperity and good times and the blame for bad times, and they rarely have a damn thing to do with either.

  50. [50] 
    Kick wrote:

    C. R. Stucki wrote:
    49

    Obama came into office when over 60% of the residential construction workforce was idle as a result of the bursting of the housing bubble. It was inevitable that all those jobs would have to be filled once the crisis passed.

    You don't say!? /sarcasm off

    So are you trying to say that the job performance numbers in Obama's last 18 months of his 8 years in office were those residential construction workers finally getting back to work at the end of Obama's two terms? Otherwise, I'm not sure how your comment is relevant to my post about Obama having better job numbers in his last 18 months immediately preceding Trump's first 18 months that the board troll is so excited about for no discernible reason when comparing statistics of the president he routinely whines about. Meaning: If Obama's job numbers are better than Trump's... and they definitely are... then why is the board moron so excited about the shittier job performance numbers and moaning and whining that we should all be excited about them too?

    U.S. presidents get the credit for prosperity and good times and the blame for bad times, and they rarely have a damn thing to do with either.

    You don't say!? *laughs*

    Obviously, I know all this, Stucki. I'm just explaining to the board troll why he appears both hypocritical and moronic to the rest of us who have a basic 3rd grade math skills. :)

  51. [51] 
    James T Canuck wrote:

    [50] Explaining anything by use of fact to our resident consumer of snake-oil is a waste of keystrokes. Why bother, life's ultimately too short to tilt at that windmill. Monkeyman explained how it was going to be for him and his herd in 2016...Obama, he lied, was fudging the unemployment numbers and the state of the economy...Within weeks of the inauguration, the (GO)Primate declared that due to his divine intervention, the numbers (that eerily corresponded with the previous administration's) were now correct and miraculously not 'fake news.'
    He's been selling his overstock of Brooklyn Bridges ever since.

    LL&P

  52. [52] 
    Chris Weigant wrote:

    Michale [11] -

    OK, I gotta bite on this one before getting into everyone's responses...

    Nope, EACH of you is lifting 50 lbs apiece (assuming you're lifting equally). Together, the TWO OF YOU are lifting 100 lbs.

    :-)

    -CW

  53. [53] 
    ListenWhenYouHear wrote:

    Kick [46]

    It's obvious that the poor dumb troll reads the questions and believes everything is about him and begins the standard repetitive same old tired attacks he spews daily. It would be funny if it wasn't so pathetic.

    Spot on. When I first started visiting the site, Michale seemed much less “troll-like” than he is today. As someone who had always considered themselves a “moderate”, I enjoyed hearing his view on the topics of the day. I don’t remember the constant “whataboutisms” or the false comparisons and name calling that he showers the site with these days. Honestly, it’s almost like performance-art piece where he is a two-dimensional character for 3 shows a day and twice on Sundays.

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