Who do we trust?

The top three places in the Readers Digest Most Trusted people in 2011 go to scientists:

1. Sir Ray Avery, scientist, inventor, New Zealander of the Year 2010
2. Sir Peter Gluckman, Chief Science Advisor to the Prime Minister
3. Sir Paul Callaghan, physicist and New Zealander of the Year 2011

That is good publicity for scientists and science, although it is important to keep in mind the survey is biased from the start because participants are asked to rank people already selected not choose them themselves.

The others in the top 10 are:

4. The Hon. Justice Helen Winkelmann, Chief High Court Judge 
5. Roger Hall, film, TV and theatre actor, playwright
6. Bret McKenzie, comedian, actor, and musician 
7. Denise L’Estrange-Corbet, fashion designer
8. Jemaine Clement, comedian, actor, and musician
9. Simon Salt Gault, celebrity chef and MasterChef judge
10. Tony Kokshoorn, Grey District Mayor

Is this the first time a politician has appeared this high?

Certainly other politicians don’t score well:

The Rt. Hon. John Key, current Prime Minister (90);  Paul Holmes, broadcaster (91);  Paul Henry, journalist, radio and TV presenter (92);  Jim Anderton, Progressive Party leader (93);  The Hon. Bill English, Deputy Prime Minister (94); The Hon. Pita Sharples, Minister of Maori Affairs (95);  The Hon. Phil Goff, Labour Party leader (96);  The Hon. Tariana Turia, Maori Party co-leader (97); The Rt. Hon. Winston Peters, New Zealand First leader (98); The Hon. Rodney Hide, Minister of Local Government (99); The Hon. Hone Harawira, activist, and Member for Te Tai Tokerau (100).

Politician isn’t the least trusted profession though, that honour goes to journalists (sigh) and real estate agents. 

Fire fighters, rescue volunteers and paramedics are the most trusted professions (passing quickly over the point that volunteers aren’t professionals).

Participants weren’t asked if they trust this type of survey.

10 Responses to Who do we trust?

  1. gravedodger says:

    Ouch, I must make a point of order, I know many volunteers who are more “professional” than some of their colleagues who have scored a paid position doing the very same job.


  2. homepaddock says:

    Fair point GD – I was meaning professional in terms of not being paid rather than standards of behaviour.


  3. JC says:

    The three Sirs I know by name, but certainly not well enough to trust them. Of the top 10, I could only form an opinion of Kokshoorn.



  4. alex Masterley says:

    I’m pleased that the readers digest survey placed Justice Helen Winkelmann so high.

    And isn’t it “whom do we trust”?


  5. homepaddock says:

    JC – It’s hard to know if you can trust people if you only ‘know’ them through the media.

    Alex – whom is grammatically correct but it’s no longer common usage.


  6. gravedodger says:

    I am desperately trying to claw my way back after selling Real Estate for some six years in the 80s by now being a volly with the NZFS and St John.
    Of course if you overlay the forty something years as a greedy, grasping, pillaging, tax dodging farmer then in the eyes of some I should give up now.

    I won’t mention a passionate interest in things political as I will suffer further degradation by association


  7. alex Masterley says:

    While I was I never was big on grammar in my earlier years I’m turing into a pedant because of the mangling our English language is taking at the hands of the MSM. For example the use of non-words like “Learnings” instead of “lessons” or “summation” instead of “summary”. The list goes on.
    And I bet my profession (the Law) is at the tail end of the trusted professions as well.


  8. pdm says:

    “whom is grammatically correct but it’s no longer common usage.”

    I think whom would be in common usage with most of your readers and commenters HP. The troll RG excepted of course.


  9. Cadwallader says:

    Alex: The people whom seem to least trust lawyers are other lawyers. Generally the Law Profession is hard on itself, almost to the point of cannibalism. The public perception is significantly different.
    As this survey was undertaken by the Readers’ Digest does this mean they 100 will be on the mailing list for an eternity?
    The low rating of journalists is not a surprise when we regard the insipid, sloppy, meanderings the MSM indulges in today.


  10. JC says:

    Its funny, I can understand why people don’t trust lawyers, real estate agents and car dealers but I can’t say I ever struck a bad ‘un in 50 years.



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