[ExI] 41% of people are insane

Stathis Papaioannou stathisp at gmail.com
Wed Jun 23 15:14:13 UTC 2010

On 24 June 2010 00:34, BillK <pharos at gmail.com> wrote:
> On 6/23/10, Stathis Papaioannou wrote:
>> Yes, but I wonder how many people really believe the answer they give,
>>  rather than just saying it because it is socially acceptable.
> Well, that suggestion could invalidate every poll ever done.   :)
> I believe that Pew works with panels of people that volunteer to
> answer surveys for them and they provide Pew with details of their
> lifestyle, so that Pew can make a balanced selection for each poll.
> The survey is done by phone, so there is no peer pressure to saying
> yes, no, maybe, to each question asked. If there was anyone else in
> the room, they wouldn't hear the questions. It is also unlikely that
> people would volunteer to do surveys in the first place if they
> intended to lie. Why bother?

I suspect it may be different with people who have had a religious
upbringing. They may know it's all crap but be uncomfortable admitting
it, even to themselves. One of the items in Christian indoctrination
is that one must have faith, implying that there is a strong tendency
to doubt that needs to be stamped out. So the faithful are not so much
convinced that their religion is true as that it is bad to doubt that
it is true. If they are taught to feel guilty about the mere act of
doubting, they are more likely to lie in surveys. It would be easier
to throw off this mindset in secular countries but the US is not
really a secular country.

Stathis Papaioannou

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