Fresh from welcoming his two new recruits to These Islands, the softer kinder version of Scotland in Union, because you’re worth it, Kevin Hague is in the Herald with this:
What’s his evidence? Focus groups carried out by These Islands, him that is.
You remember focus groups? Dominic Cummings loves them and used them to get ideas for his Leave Campaign slogans. Back in the 90s, Tony Blair and his chums used them to articulate the ‘Middle Way’ which is now just ‘Blairism.’
They do give you ideas about what might resonate with folk in the ‘real world.’
But they don’t tell you how common an idea is among the folk out there you can’t say, as Hague does, that support for independence depends on ‘near blind faith in Nicola Sturgeon.’ The polls tell us that she is popular but I’ve seen no research repeating Hague’s claims.
There is a recent poll confirming that Scots want more control, regardless of who their leader would be. Survation for Progress Scotland surveyed 2 093 and found that 73% agreed with this statement:
Control over all decisions affecting people in Scotland should be made by the Scottish parliament/government, regardless of which political party is in power.
You’d think Professor Shaw, above, would advise. Her bio in These Islands says:
Professor Katy Shaw is Director of Cultural Partnerships and leads research into 21st century writings at Northumbria University. She has published extensively on contemporary British literature, especially genre fiction, and contributes journalism to several national publications. She is a public intellectual, literary festival host, media presenter and Twitterer.
Impressive. She’ll know all about quantitative research methods.