Monthly Archives: August 2013

Asking, Lying, and Documents

James Clapper, Director of National Intelligence, when asked about NSA surveillance of American citizens, lied.  It’s not uncommon for government officials to lie when asked about sensitive matters.  That’s why you don’t ask them when you want to find out what the government … Continue reading

Posted in Survey Research | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

James A. Davis, a career asker, says my book, The Problem with Survey Research  is an “assault on surveys”.    Yes it is!  An assault!  A demolition job!  And it’s about time!  Survey research (any procedure or instrument that asks questions of respondents) has … Continue reading

Posted on by George Beam | Leave a comment

What Do You Get from Illinois’ First Statewide Education Survey?

Diane Rado (Chicago Tribune, 8/9/13) says that Illinois’ first statewide education survey “provide[s] details on how teachers teach, children learn and principles lead”.  No way!!  The survey only provides statements about what respondents (K-12 teachers and sixth-through 12th-graders) say about … Continue reading

Posted in Survey Research | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Question Wording and Stated Opinions

Jeffrey Toobin (The New Yorker, 8/5/13), in discussing “The fight for abortion rights”, says that “[w]hen it comes to public opinion about abortion, a great deal depends on how questions are asked”.  Toobin is right to point out that “how … Continue reading

Posted in Survey Research | Tagged , , , , , | 2 Comments

Snowden’s Leaks and the Liberal Illusion of Control

James Bamford (New York Review of Books, 8/15/13), begins his discussion of Edward Snowden’s leaks of National Security Agency documents with comments about George Orwell’s 1984, a novel of a fictitious totalitarian society where the population is controlled through invasive … Continue reading

Posted in control | Tagged , , , , | 1 Comment