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Saturday, December 3, 2022

General crisis and survey phenomenon

By: Arian Sajovic

In recent weeks and months, we have witnessed a radical economic deterioration in Slovenia, which has affected all households from Prekmurje to Piran. Inflation, the energy crisis, wage cuts and the new announcement of higher taxes clearly do not bother our people, as the latest Mediana poll for POP TV still shows “record support” for Golob’s government.

Not that I would not afford any government a high level of support, if the latter of course earns it by doing a good job, as this also enables its continued good functioning, but I do not understand where this assumption about the success of the current administration comes from. As said, we are witnessing the general deterioration of living conditions, the failure to deal with the financial crisis, the decline of activity in the field of foreign policy, problems with the ever-increasing number of illegal migrations and a cultural scandal, but polls say that we have never been so satisfied. However, this satisfied sentiment is difficult to notice in some family, friendly or restaurant conversations, where the main topics are the high prices of everyday goods and the increasingly difficult struggle to survive until the next (lower and lower) salary.

But similarly illogical survey results can be seen elsewhere. Let’s look at the results of opinion polls that were conducted in anticipation of the upcoming presidential election. Even before the official announcement of Nataša Pirc Musar that she would run in the elections, people saw her as the candidate with the most support and the favourite to win the presidential seat. And she held that position throughout the summer, even as her team struggled to gather enough signatures to confirm her candidacy. On the one hand, polls and the media are talking about how she will receive hundreds of thousands of votes, but at the same time she is having trouble collecting five thousand signatures. Where is the logic here? It is difficult to explain the whole story, but perhaps you can only connect it with the thought that we are clearly witnessing a very special phenomenon in Slovenia, where public opinion polls, instead of reflecting the opinion of the public, create it.

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