Open Thread: Word to the Greatest Generation (NSFW)


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Stolen from Watertiger, h/t commentor Jim, Foolish Literalist.

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Longish piece, for those who need a confidence-booster: Sasha Isenberg at Slate discusses “Obama’s Secret Weapon“:

… All targeting carries the risk of missing the mark, and there are regularly voters whose actual attitudes defy the predictions of statistical models. But regular misfires by Republicans—which at best only waste resources and at worst mobilize Democrats who might not have voted otherwise, or provoke a backlash among those still persuadable—illustrate a gap between how the right and left practice politics in the 21st century. Contrary to the wishful intimations of the Post and Times stories, while the groups on the right could conceivably catch up with Obama and his allies in the scope and funding of their ground-level activities, in terms of sophistication they lag too far behind to catch up in 2012.

In fact, when it comes to the use of voter data and analytics, the two sides appear to be as unmatched as they have ever been on a specific electioneering tactic in the modern campaign era. No party ever has ever had such a durable structural advantage over the other on polling, making television ads, or fundraising, for example. And the reason may be that the most important developments in how to analyze voter behavior has not emerged from within the political profession…

Schaeffer attributes the imbalance to the mutual discomfort between academia and conservative political professionals, which has limited Republicans’ ability to modernize campaign methods. The biggest technical and conceptual developments these days are coming from the social sciences, whose more practically-minded scholars regularly collaborate with candidates and interest groups on the left. As a result, the electioneering right is suffering from what amounts to a lost generation; they have simply failed to keep up with advances in voter targeting and communications since Bush’s re-election. The left, meanwhile, has arrived at crucial insights that have upended the conventional wisdom about how you convert citizens to your cause. Right now, only one team is on the field with the tools to most effectively find potential supporters and win their votes….

How goes the storm / storm cleanup in your area? And what else is on the agenda today?

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59 replies
  1. 1
    Absalon says:

    Another factor is that the right has braggadocio and emotional glee in their spines, while the left is constantly worried and fretting. Different brains and cultures. The left debunks worrying signs with statistics but is still constantly paranoid about unknown factors and possible groundswells of republican voting.

    Republicans just look at models or pollsters they don’t like and say “Fags, obviously” or write adjective-filled but number-starved spiels about how Obama has lost, like, all black voters or Latinos and that conservatives have NEVER been angrier or more fired up.

  2. 2
    Arclite says:

    Wow, NYC is getting totally hammered. Some of the flooding is crazy: subways, WTC, 2nd floor of some buildings, etc.

  3. 3
    Raven says:

    “50 homes destroyed by a fire in Rockaways.

    Heroic firefighters saved 70 people trapped in 50 burning houses with floods beneath them and a raging inferno above.

    The elite New York City firefighters waded through chest-deep water and paddled boats towards the blaze, scaling walls to help families out through windows.

    Damage to power lines caused by Superstorm Sandy sparked the fire in the Rockaways, Queens.

    The flooding meant fire engines could get nowhere near the cluster of burning apartments as the fire spread rapidly.”

  4. 4
    PreservedKillick says:

    About to go out to survey the damage, just waiting on some light. Finally back online after a (surprisingly short…knock wood) power outage.

    Listened to much of what happened last night on AM radio. We managed to tune in WCBS from all the way up here outside Boston, and it was chilling.

    Cannot believe that there are 6.5MM people without power. Just incredible. Mind boggling.

  5. 5
    burnspbesq says:

    The town I grew up in, which I still think of as my hometown after 26 years in SoCal, is getting wrecked.

    http://www.northjersey.com/pho.....;scpromo=1

  6. 6

    I didn’t know they were filming election ads at Shady Pines.

    Vote 1 for cockpunching granny.

  7. 7
    MrSnrub says:

    We did ok, just outside Philadelphia. The wind and rain died down around 10:30 last night and never really picked back up.

  8. 8
    Handy says:

    Very sad, I heard 16 deaths attributed to the storm so far – this is a very bad one.

  9. 9
    Raven says:

    @Handy: It will rise.

  10. 10
    Raven says:

    Mornin Joe and crew explaining how lucky we are to have such dedicated people as the firefighters and first responders. Uh-huh, it’s luck, nothing to do with training.

  11. 11
    R-Jud says:

    @burnspbesq: My first hometown of Belmar, NJ was hammered, too. My aunt Ann works for the Monmouth County Sheriff’s department; she is out making the rounds and said on Facebook this morning that there are no words to describe the scale of the disaster there.

  12. 12
    geg6 says:

    Well, the winds peaked around midnight here and there are trees down all over the place. But, thankfully, not the big oak in our back yard that I was so worried about. PIA is filled with people who can’t fly anywhere and can’t get hotel rooms. Haven’t heard of any injuries or fatalities around here. The problem right now is the continuing rain. Just south of me, WVA and SE OH are getting slammed with wet, heavy snow and they are calling it blizzard conditions. Flooding is going to be the big problem the next few days. Still, not as bad as it could have been. Lots of notice seems to have kept most people safe.

    I’m shocked that we never got even a blink in our electrical service and that the satellite never went down during all those hours of heavy winds.

  13. 13
    Schlemizel says:

    @Raven:

    I’d be surprised if he didn’t follow that with how much better they would be if only the mayor could break their union and cut their wages.

  14. 14
    The Red Pen says:

    BTW, I have taken a snapshot (using wget for those who care) of “unskewed polls.” This will hopefully be comedy gold on November 7.

    In 7d 30m, I will cast my vote to keep Missouri out of the middle ages.

  15. 15
    Schlemizel says:

    @The Red Pen:

    1 week to go & I am tapped out, financially and emotionally. I have been a campaign grunt for 50 years and I have never run down before an election before but I am just out of steam this year. I don’t know if it is age or if it is that I am tired of fighting against the same old bullshit or my belief that even after Obama wins we face more of what we saw the last 4 years. But whatever it is having a good laugh at the expense or morans like ‘iscrewthepolls’ is going to be sweet

  16. 16
    Ben Cisco says:

    We just got wind, and thankful for that.

    I find that I am somewhat calmer about the NeoConfederate BS since our votes were cast.

    MoneyBooBoo reminds me of one of those cartoon robots that starts sputtering and tossing parts just before it explodes.

    In this case, may life imitate art.

  17. 17
    Sondra says:

    About the voter fraud re. electronic vote counting.

    Interesting that here in Palm Beach County this year, because the printer printed the ballots on both sides of the pages, the machines cannot count them. We will have to have a hand count anyway.

  18. 18
    MrSnrub says:

    I’ve never watched Morning Joe before, we don’t have the tv on in the mornings, but since I’m home, I checked it out. Now I’m wishing we had a power outage.

  19. 19
    PsiFighter37 says:

    I just woke up – still no power. And our plumbing uses electrical pumps. This sucks!

  20. 20
    burnspbesq says:

    @R-Jud:

    I don’t doubt it. I used to play beach volleyball in Belmar in the summer. The whole town is completely exposed to the ocean.

  21. 21
    burnspbesq says:

    ETA: belmarcam.com is FUBAR. God only knows where the camera ended up.

  22. 22
  23. 23
    debbie says:

    The Columbus, Ohio NBC affiliate ran 20 minutes wall-to-wall’s worth of unanswered anti-Obama ads from all kinds of super PACs on this morning’s news. The lack of response is making me nervous.

  24. 24
    Ben Cisco says:

    It appears some WND nutters thought it would be hilarious to donate to the Obama campaign in the name of Osama bin Laden: http://drudgegae.iavian.net/r?.....donations/

    That is some Sovereign-class stupidity right there.

  25. 25
    The Red Pen says:

    @debbie:

    The Columbus, Ohio NBC affiliate ran 20 minutes wall-to-wall’s worth of unanswered anti-Obama ads from all kinds of super PACs on this morning’s news. The lack of response is making me nervous.

    There is such a thing as a propaganda saturation point. Chances are, these ads are not changing anyone’s mind at this point.

    I noticed an article posted on Free Republic this morning that doubles-down on the “Jeep moving jobs to China” lie. I hope that this is embarrassing the Republicans in Toledo and convincing people to vote Dem.

  26. 26
    R-Jud says:

    @burnspbesq: Is that the one by 7th Street? It died around 2 pm local time yesterday.

    I was describing all the things I was reading to Mr Jud; he was silent for a moment. Then he said, “Is it bad that I really, really want a Windmill hot dog right now?”

    That’s his association with the Jersey Shore: the Windmill.

  27. 27
    burnspbesq says:

    @R-Jud:

    Judging from the photos at nj.com, it looks like the Monmouth County beach towns got hit harder than LBI, which is counter-intuitive, but storms like this are nothing if not capricious.

  28. 28
    debbie says:

    @ The Red Pen:

    I hope that this is embarrassing the Republicans in Toledo and convincing people to vote Dem

    A local GOP official interviewed on NPR a few minutes ago seemed pretty unrepentant. I think there will just be nothing but lies up through the election.

  29. 29
    Punchy says:

    Ras has Romney up 2 in Ohio. Talk about an outlier.

  30. 30
    dmsilev says:

    @Punchy: The polling roundup that dKos does every evening had something like 5 Ohio polls released just yesterday. One of them was that Rasmussen poll; all of the others showed an Obama lead of a few points. I guess we can expect the latest iteration of our pet moron to show up and trumpet the one while studiously ignoring all of the others.

  31. 31
    shortstop says:

    @The Red Pen: I spent the weekend knocking on doors of in Toledo, and not Republican ones. Too many sometimes-Dems seem to have latched onto Romney’s Jeep story as handy confirmation that both sides do it. I got the impression that many were just looking for a reason to vote for Mitt; they couldn’t do it while thinking about him turning his back on the auto industry, but this is an out for them.

    I do not think Obama will lose Ohio. But I also don’t think Romney will pay a price for this.

  32. 32
    Robin G. says:

    Nothing happening weather-wise out here in the Midwest; the local meteorologists are all sounding really guilty. They cut away from the coverage of NYC to show our 50s and Sunny weathermap with these apologetic looks on their faces. It’s pretty funny.

    I had to give up watching the news, though. “Calling off campaigns” is kinda bullshit, but there is something repugnant about seeing video of destroyed coastline immediately followed by a little walking robot complaining about wasteful government spending.

  33. 33

    wish that article were true but it seems like wishful thinking plus a bit of anecdote. the Republicans have been mining data for years in a pretty sophisticated way.

    Although the premise that the Republicans are actually becoming as a group less competent because of their anti-intellectualism and general moran is one I would love to see explored at greater length. From the presidential candidates on down to the ground workers, and over to the Occupy demonstrators, union activists, and progressives of all stripes, the progressives have such a huge advantage not just intelligence, but class, civility, cleverness, empathy, awareness, self-awareness, general grown-upedness, etc. I wish there were a way to measure / document all that.

  34. 34
    The Red Pen says:

    @shortstop:

    But I also don’t think Romney will pay a price for [the Jeep lie].

    Disappointing.

    Note to voters: if you want politicians to stop lying to you, stop rewarding them for it.

  35. 35
    rikyrah says:

    this ad is hilarious

  36. 36
    Cassidy says:

    I can’t see it at work, but where is AA+ to tell us we’re all bad people for enjoying it?

  37. 37
    Chris says:

    @Absalon:

    Another factor is that the right has braggadocio and emotional glee in their spines, while the left is constantly worried and fretting. Different brains and cultures. The left debunks worrying signs with statistics but is still constantly paranoid about unknown factors and possible groundswells of republican voting.

    Republicans just look at models or pollsters they don’t like and say “Fags, obviously” or write adjective-filled but number-starved spiels about how Obama has lost, like, all black voters or Latinos and that conservatives have NEVER been angrier or more fired up.

    A byproduct of having been out of power for… coming up on fifty years if you trace it back to Nixon. They’re used to winning and can’t conceive of a world where they don’t. So they don’t have to listen to the facts.

  38. 38
    Schlemizel says:

    @dmsilev:

    It also has to ignore Ras history of always heavily favoring GOP candidates early and then as the election day approaches gradually migrate toward the actual numbers. They ignore their early wildly inaccurate numbers & tout the election day ones which are generally close.

    If that happened once or twice or only occasionally it might just be poor statistical analysis which they could correct. The fact that it happens every election cycle makes every poll Ras publishes a political ad & not a reflection of the vote.

  39. 39
    Chris says:

    @Hillary Rettig:

    Although the premise that the Republicans are actually becoming as a group less competent because of their anti-intellectualism and general moran is one I would love to see explored at greater length.

    I prefer to say “anti-professionalism” just to make it broader – as in, hostility to any professional community that does its job and reports the facts regardless of ideology. Academics, journalists, the military, the intelligence community, the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the list is almost endless.

  40. 40
    merrinc says:

    As a result, the electioneering right is suffering from what amounts to a lost generation; they have simply failed to keep up with advances in voter targeting and communications since Bush’s re-election.

    Yep. Hubs and I are registered independents, or as they call it in NC, “unaffiliated.” We have received a metric buttload of mailers from the national and state GOP this year. 3-4 a day, nearly every day for the last couple of months. And I’m a Prius owner! I thought Rove’s database was full of mini-van drivers.

    Also thought that after I returned the survey the national GOP sent us, we’d get removed from their lists. After all, I ignored the instructions, completed it in black Sharpie, answered all their slanted questions the opposite of what they likely expected, stuffed the prepaid return envelope with all the junk mail I had lying around, and as a bonus, included a picture of President Obama. Yet they keep inundating us with their propaganda. Thank Dog we don’t have a landline.

  41. 41
    The Red Pen says:

    @Schlemizel:

    It also has to ignore Ras history of always heavily favoring GOP candidates early and then as the election day approaches gradually migrate toward the actual numbers.

    So when does Ras become accurate? Right now, they have Obama losing and the election is a week out.

    I think that they have a 2-3% Republican lean due to their methodology (robo-polls of landlines only).

  42. 42
    Applejinx says:

    You’d have to be a mighty bad person NOT to enjoy it. I’ve watched it three times.

    “We’re going to burn this motherfucker down!”

    Samuel L. JACKSON could not have said it better.

    I particularly like how she says ‘rom-neh’. No, more than that- I particularly like that this little crowd of codgers is certainly LEGIT.

    It’s true, old people just don’t give a fuck! They do not care about showing a proper respectful tone like a pundit.

    “The best way to STOP the GOP from STEALING the election, is to make sure it isn’t even close!”

  43. 43
    lol says:

    @Schlemizel:

    They didn’t readjust close to election day in 2010. That’s why they plummeted in Nate Silver’s pollster rankings.

  44. 44
    karen marie says:

    @Raven: Or funding.

  45. 45
    Cacti says:

    @lol:

    They didn’t readjust close to election day in 2010. That’s why they plummeted in Nate Silver’s pollster rankings.

    Not sure where the myth comes from that Ras gets more accurate closer to the election.

    On November 2, 2008, Ras had McCain tied in Ohio, and leading Florida and North Carolina.

  46. 46
    karen marie says:

    @Hillary Rettig: But I think the difference between Repugs and Dems is, at least under Obama, the way they use technology and social media. With Repugs, it’s top down. Romney buys #tags on Twitter and promotion on FB. Dems create tools for citizens to use to organize and reach out to their peers and fellow citizens. That’s a huge difference.

    @merrinc: The only thing they pay attention to is that you returned the envelope. It’s called “phishing.”

  47. 47
    The Moar You Know says:

    they have simply failed to keep up with advances in voter targeting and communications since Bush’s re-election.

    It’s worse than that. They’ve actively driven the best and brightest away (who normally would be all over those jobs as the GOP pays very well) and are left with a bunch of third stringers. Electing Dems will always be like herding cats at best, but the brain gap due to the innate GOP hatred of “edycated folk” will be a gift that just keeps giving and giving.

  48. 48
    Cacti says:

    Continuing on the “Ras gets more accurate closer to the election” mythology. His final state polls compared to the actual result had…

    +1.78 points bias for McCain in Florida

    +2.09 points for McCain in Ohio

    +0.74 points bias for McCain in North Carolina

    He also had Obama underperforming his actual results by 1.6 points in Virginia and 2.6 points in Colorado.

  49. 49
    Michael says:

    @shortstop: This may be something that has immediate benefits but then ends up hurting Romney before the election. Apparently, several newspapers in Ohio, including one that endorsed Romney, are bashing him for the ad.

  50. 50

    Ugh. Scott Brown pulling even again. And with his weaseling out of the last debate, he can just hide behind ads until next Tuesday. Not looking good.

    Romney the liar, and Scott Brown the pussy. That’s your modern GOP.

    Yet the Tribe cares not.

  51. 51
    gene108 says:

    @shortstop:

    But I also don’t think Romney will pay a price for this.

    Unless a Republican murders a small (white) child live on national T.V. and then sodomizes the corpse, the chances of any political blow back are slim to none.

    The Republicans are responsible for lying about WMD’s in Iraq to launch a war of aggression, passing legislation that helped crash the economy and you still had 47% of the population vote for McCain, when those things were still fresh in people’s minds.

    The decision for a lot of people is simple: No matter what Republicans do, the Democrats are effeminate wimps and I can’t vote for wimps.

  52. 52
    gene108 says:

    @The Moar You Know:

    the brain gap due to the innate GOP hatred of “edycated folk” will be a gift that just keeps giving and giving

    I’ll get excited about this “brain gap” and voter targeting, if it can lead to retaking the House.

    These techniques didn’t seem to help much in the 2010 Congressional races.

  53. 53
    lacp says:

    I thought this was a good GOTV story – great response to intimidation.

    http://colorlines.com/archives.....orida.html

  54. 54
    Spatula says:

    The lovely old broad in the wheelchair is the funniest one. :)

    It’s always about understatement.

  55. 55
    1badbaba3 says:

    @lacp: I guess Herb Cain must have missed these folks. This is why we will win. Because the gap between what they say and reality is vast and ever expanding. Strangely enough the trrolls and worry-warts never come here armed with stories like this. And yet we seem to find them with regularity. This is why we will win. Just because he’s not jumping up and down in the media, shaking his junk at the camera, doesn’t mean he’s not workin’ it behind the scenes.

    Score one, or rather 55,000 plus, for Metrosexual Black Abe Lincoln, bitchez.

  56. 56
    Spatula says:

    @1badbaba3:

    Has President Obama said anything in public to call out GOP voter suppression efforts?

    If not, why not?

  57. 57
    1badbaba3 says:

    @Spatula: Clearly he’s too busy (as busy as “those people” can be) chasing White Chicks to be bothered with such trivialities. C’mon man, priorities, duh.

  58. 58
    TG Chicago says:

    @gene108: Agreed. In skimming the excerpt above, I could only think “How does this explain 2010?”

    I went to the full article and searched for 2010 and House. It says absolutely nothing about the shellacking of two years ago.

    I’m glad that folks on the left are using the best techniques available, but I have yet to be convinced that it is leading to enormous electoral success.

  59. 59
    JustAnotherBob says:

    @1badbaba3:

    : I guess Herb Cain must have missed these folks.

    Please, Herm, as in Herman, Cain.

    Herb Cain was a good guy…

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