Thursday, January 14, 2010

From what you hear on the mainstream media and, especially, from official press releases on the part of VANOC, you would think that the upcoming Winter Olympics in BC were about as popular as eternal life for all. Well, not exactly so, according to a recent poll on the part of the EKOS polling agency. The bar graph shown above says that 48% of the Canadian population thinks that we have spent "too much" on the Olympics. A tiny 7% think we should have spent more. Given the track record of this sort of thing the 7% will undoubtedly get their wish as the cost of such spectacles keeps rising right up until the last second of 'entertainment'-and quite often beyond. 45% of Canadians think we have spent the "right amount", less than those who think that the cost is excessive.

Molly has reported extensively on the opposition to the Winter Olympics on this blog, and I have to say that I have gained great admiration for the Olympic Resistance people who have pulled off a cross country mobilization with actually minimal preliminary organization. It's inspiring, but not as inspiring as if they would have been able to tap into this vast amount of rather quiet opposition to the Games. That, however, is more a matter for reflection after the deed is done.

For now here is an article from the CBC about this poll and a link to the complete survey.
Canadians split in opinion of Olympic spending: EKOS:
Highest disapproval in B.C., where Games will be held
Canadians are split almost right down the middle when it comes to their opinion of the amount of money the country is spending on the Winter Olympics, an EKOS poll suggests.
Forty-eight per cent of people who answered the poll said it's too high while 45 per cent said it's just right.
Full Report
The Jan. 13 poll surveyed approximately 3,700 Canadians older than 18 over a one-week period starting Jan. 6, They were asked whether or not tax dollars are being spent wisely on the Games, which begin Feb. 12 in Vancouver.

The poll was done exclusively for CBC TV's current affairs program Power and Politics with Evan Solomon.

Less than four per cent of Canadians think too little is being spent on the Olympics, the poll suggests. (Uh, I don't know about that. The bar graph says 7% not 4%. A small number nonetheless-Molly )

Among respondents in B.C., 69 per cent said too much money is being spent on the Games — a higher proportion than anywhere else in the country.

Support for the Games is highest in Alberta and Quebec, two provinces that have previously hosted the Olympics.

"Probably, it's the combination that British Columbians feel they're being tapped through both the federal government and then their own provincial government," EKOS president Frank Graves told CBC News. ("Suckered" would be a better term-Molly )

Graves attributed the recession, labour market and the size of deficit as some of the factors driving responses.

Among respondents who were NDP supporters, 58 per cent agreed that the Games were costing too much — a greater percentage than in other national parties.

Fifty-one per cent of female respondents said too much is being spent on the event compared to 46 per cent of men who completed the survey.

Canadians under 25 were the least likely to disapprove of Olympic spending: 42 per cent of respondents in that age category agreed that too much money is being spent.

"We have a society with an overwhelmingly large group of aging baby boomers who are no longer sort of in their athletic prime ( Were they "ever" in such a prime?-Molly )," Graves said. "Maybe the whole idea of the Olympics isn't got quite the magnetic attraction it did when we were younger." ( Uhh, you mean the "athletic" feat of watching images on a small screen with a good supply of junk food and beer nearby ?-Molly )

The poll's margin of error is plus or minus 1.6 per cent, 19 times out of 20.

1 comment:

Mr. Beer N. Hockey said...

You can never have enough beer for your Olympic tv watching.