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Hi, This is Wayne. This is my site, my stuff, my blog, blahblahblah. The site itself is powered by WordPress and the Scary Little theme. I thought it was cool, and I still do.

Politics
pahl-uh-tiks : from Latin; “poly” meaning many, and “tics” meaning blood-sucking parasites.

I don’t know why I have politics on the brain so much lately. One of the surest ways to lose reader interest would be to blog about politics. The only way to help stave off reader abandonment would be to A) make something about the post unique, B) create controversy, and C) point out ahead of time that you risk losing readers due to the topic and that you have a plan to avoid it.

The cool thing about controversy is you not only get interest from people who agree (heck YEAH! Man, youtellitbruthah!), you also get the dissenters and people who vehemently disagree (you pusillanimous piece of putrid pediddledom how could you think that?!?!). I call that a win-win.

Now onto the predictions. You’ve probably heard of certain ‘facts’ about presidential elections. “As goes Ohio, so goes the nation” is one of them, in that no President has ever been elected that didn’t first secure a nomination from Ohio. Another is a common rule that the taller candidate wins, although Bush/Gore in 2004 was a notable (and somewhat emotional) exception.   Another indicator is approval ratings, which also took a hit in the last election, but still has a strong track record.

you decide 2008

So are we really deciding?  Or are fates decided beforehand, based on other factors? 

These kinds of ‘fact figures’ are extremely common in sports, and millions of people not only trust them inherently, they also strive to memorize as many as possible. People go monkey-bonkers over seemingly over-the-top stats such as ‘this running back ran for over 100 yards in any home game on a pre-season sunday that also had an odd number date and when it rained the previous two Saturdays’. Just listening to the commentators rattle off these things is mind-blowing when you think about the computational power and database it must take to keep track of the stuff. And what gets me is — people care about them!

Some stats are definitely worthwhile. After enough time, a stat gains strength and starts to become a trend.  A trend, if it is nurtured and weathers the hard times, can grow up and become worthy of prediction.

The trick is to identify which stats and trends are an actual sign of probabilty and not just errant data points.

I invite you to read the extended entry (below) for more interesting facts that might help us predict the next president based on astrological data.  Hint: Romney loses.

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January
11
2008
2:41 pm
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I saw this on Poppy’s place so I thought to myself… “maybe I should delve deeper into my own actual beliefs and see where the candidates stand.”  I really haven’t done ANY issues research on any of the candidates, and have been mostly relying on party lines to help me nudge one way or another, and I figured I’d check out the issues in more depth after the nominees were chosen. 

Pick your 2008 Candidate For President

About the only things I’ve learned over the last two weeks from the caucus and primary were:

  1. I like Huckabee more than I thought I would, after seeing him speak.  To me, he looks like a cross between an older Kevin Spacey and a younger Richard Nixon.  Anyone else see this, or is it just me?
  2. I liked Obama a LOT more than I thought I would, especially after hearing him speak.  I trust him.  He doesn’t seem to carry the typical political baggage with him.
  3. Mitt Romney seems like an arrogant and corrupt fool just another typical politician.
  4. Fred Thompson seems to be a lot smarter than I ever thought he could be, but a lot less presidential.  He seems like someone who actually needs to work on the plans and implement them, NOT be the officeholder.   He’d probably be a decent Vice President – less of the spotlight and more of the internal leadership and intelligence to get things done.
  5. The Fair Tax is more important than ever to try to support and create awareness about.
  6. McCain seems quite accomplished, capable, experienced, calm and I wouldn’t have a problem with his age, especially if he picks a great Vice President who can rise to President in 4 years.  McCain/Huckabee or McCain/Thompson for example.
  7. I don’t see how Rudy could be qualified for the national position after being just a Mayor.  Governors seem to have a monopoly on Presidential career stepping stones.  Rudy should go for Governor and then President if it works out.
  8. Edwards seems like the same old politician to me he’s always been, and don’t feel like I could trust him at all.  Issues aside, trust is all-important.  What point someone’s stance, if the stance changes based on a poll or the audience they’re speaking to?
  9. I’m paying a lot more attention to where lobbyist’s attentions are placed.
  10. Hillary is still… well, Hillary.  I have definite trust issues with her.  While I have no problem with a female President, it shouldn’t be THIS female.

Here are my results.  Note: I wrote the above list BEFORE taking the quiz.

candidate issues results 2008

So, this surprises me some.  Before this, I probably would have rated it Huckabee, McCain, Obama, Paul, Thompson.  But the quiz doesn’t take into account my polarizing issues, like my distrust for Romney or my “right choice” issue for Thompson.

Now, what would be nice for this quiz to do for poor little ol’ me would be to display all the questions again, with my answers, and show by candidate how much that candidate agreed or disagreed with me on that specific issue.  Then I could probably tweak the “care / don’t care” button as I re-discovered more about my own beliefs around the issues.


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