BONE RATTLING, A THING OF THE PAST.
It must not return.
An article in Politico.com, 12/21/11, gives the game away as how the pollster industry comes up with their numbers.
Strangely, only 1005 adult persons, whether they are registered voters or not, have been interviewed in a recent Post-ABC poll, out of over 300 million people living in the United States; and that makes it a percentage of 0.0003 of the population.
It (article) has chosen to use Post-ABC poll as an example out of the so many, because it seems to be more reliable than the rest of them. Also, generally, there are not many people, who have participated, or any known person, who has taken part, in these poll surveys.
Therefore who are the people the pollsters are really interviewing, and with what sort of questionnaires; or can they be ghost surveys, where a few people will meet and conjure up some mumbo jumbo numbers for public consumption?
The article brings up a story of the pollsters being wizards, shamans and diviners, and "They toss numbers around the way astragalomancers once tossed bones to foretell events to come. (The name comes from the Greek astragalos, meaning “knucklebone.” But you knew that.)" (Politico).
Ask the man in the street what that word, astragalomancer (singular), means, and he will say that he has never come across it in his entire life; however, it is being used in an analogous way to indicate how some of these pollster companies operate; by the use of "knucklebone" or specifically, bone rattling.
If that is true, and it must not be, then it will be easy to figure out how they can dazzle the masses without blinking an eye; for they assume them (masses) to be gullible, and so they can be mesmerized with any numbers and they cannot tell the difference.
They, the masses, will even go to the extent of using those numbers to make their decisions, even in connection with an important event such as the 2012 general election. That will be dangerous.
However, somehow they have realized that the public is not all that stupid; and they have been raising the approval rating, where that is due; and lowering those of the national institutions, such as the U.S. Congress for its failures.
That is almost a good sign, but they (pollsters) must find another way to prove that they are being honest, by conducting their surveys in the open; such as the selection of people at random, with a camera crew at their disposal to question their own peers.
That can be done on television every Saturday in broad daylight (as many people will be in church on Sunday, and so that day must not be considered); and in newspapers, the names and pictures of the interviewees will accompany the poll figures.
If that does not make a case for them that they are interviewing a whole number of people to have those figures as a result, then nothing else will.
For the days of bone rattling is over, and they must not bring it back, even in its modern form.
This hub (blog) has dealt with the topic once or twice before, but it needed repeating. The pollsters must give the public verifiable figures, or they are doing a great disservice to the general population that they say they are representing.