The Sunday Star-Times' lead story today tells us that John Key is apparently losing his gloss; it opines:
A new poll has found Prime Minister John Key is increasingly becoming a polarising figure - especially among women.The first Fairfax Media/Ipsos political poll shows National has enough support for a third term, 44.9 per cent to Labour's 32.6 per cent, assuming the current mix of support parties. But it also reveals a growing divide, with many still strongly backing Key, but a growing sense of anger and distrust among others.
Wow; that might be news if it wasn't followed by this:
Interviewers asked 100 people to describe Key in as few words as possible. The pollsters said many voters rated him a straight-shooter and good or excellent leader, but a significant number thought he was arrogant, smarmy and out of touch.
And worse is to follow; the poll shows that John Key is still enjoying a huge level of support; read on:
Key still has the confidence of an overwhelming majority - 63 per cent saying he had a clear vision for the country, and was a strong and effective leader.
This is misleading headline writing of the worst "who cares if it's factual? It'll sell newspapers" variety. Anyone with even a basic understanding of statistics knows that the bigger the selection of respondents, the more statistically valid a poll is. And we have real difficulties with a poll of just 100 people.
And let's not forget; it was the Sunday Star-Times which brought us the Horizon poll last year where respondents self-selected. The Horizon poll consistently predicted a win for the parties of the Left last year, until the SST suddenly fell out of love with it.