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  1. So, in other words, the polls were wrong. Here’s the thing, I get it. I worked in polling. I still have friends who work in polling. I have friends who are consumers of polling. I know how polls are developed, conducted, aggregated, analyzed and used in political decision making. I also know that they’re more art than science, that the pollsters who get it “right” are oftentimes the beneficiaries of plain dumb luck and that the increasing difficulties of conducting polls are pushing pollsters to protect their reputations by hedging more than ever. Hence the increased use of probabilities in addition to margins of error. And polling is becoming MUCH more difficult, for two big reasons. 1. Thanks to call screening capabilities people just aren’t picking up the phones any more. Getting a representative sample is extremely hard. There’s an increase in reliance on weighting and screening for demographics, essentially predicting what the voting electorate will look like. So back to more art than science. 2. Data-driven GOTV and micro targeting are allowing campaigns to identify and focus on hidden pockets of potential support. Polling methods can’t account for this unless the pollster is aware that the campaign is finding and turning out otherwise unidentifiable voters. It also undermines predictive modelling. Now having said that, polling is still useful in a lot of ways. It still shows trending pretty well, and can be used to identify and hone messaging to different demographic groups. But, like you said, as a predictor of turnout (which is what really matters in politics, right) it is increasingly falling short.
  2. There really is no point in trying to discuss things with someone who’s starting point amounts to “All suspects are guilty, otherwise they wouldn’t be suspects ...”
  3. Exactly why I’m insisting my kids go to public, not private, universities. There’s at least some requirement to provide Constitutional protections (and I have a hunch those protections will be strengthened in the coming years) Since private universities can largely set their own rules, the only viable suits are ones where it can be shown that they violated those rules, and thus violating the contracts they have with their students. However the way to go after them is to tie government funding (scholarships, grants, etc) to adoption of protections. That’s probably still a ways down the road ...
  4. Keep in mind that with all the lighting in there they’ll have the AC cranked seriously up to offset the heat and make sure people aren’t having flop sweats on camera. Recall that Al Gore had such a sweating issue that he negotiated away various things for his 2000 debates with Bush to “win” an indoor temperature in the low 60s. And yes, temperature is a point of negotiation for POTUS debates. Also, there’s some suggestion she suffers from Raynauds. https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Raynaud_syndrome
  5. So, Jeff my friend, a hypothetical for you ... The political environment is fluid at this point, and Kavanaugh has thrown things up into the air. Polling is all over the place and has yet to settle down, so we don’t know the extent of the #kavanaugheffect, or even if their will be one. And that’s assuming the polls can be trusted after 2016. But if they can they’re showing a lot of generic but rapid movement to the Republicans. For instance in the last three Quinnipiac polls, support from white women (THE crucial suburban voter in the Dem coalition) to the Dems has collapsed from a 13 point advantage two weeks ago to a 5 point advantage last week to a 1 point advantage now. Here’s the hypothetical ... GOP gains seats in the Senate (good chance). GOP actually retains the House (not outside the realm of possibility) Do the Dems: 1. Continue along their current path, further radicalizing in both tone and positioning? Or 2. Look to a “centrist” leader to put the crazies down, move the Party right and lead them out of the wilderness like Clinton did in 1992? And if 2 ... can they still do it? The centrist Southern Dems are gone, marginalized and pushed out of the Party. The closest thing they have is Biden. The superdelegates look to be gone, and the pragmatic money (Pam Harriman) has been supplanted by the likes of Tom Steyer. Not to mention the radicals are on the ascent and hell of a lot more powerful than 30 years ago ...
  6. Case in point: an election campaign where 63 or so million citizens look at each other and ask “Did she (the Left presidential candidate) just call me an ‘irredeemable deplorable’ or was she talking about you”? Also, I know that I haven’t been around in a while and have missed some things, but is it no longer considered bad form and exceptionally rude to carry others’ postings from one thread to another? Especially without notifying the post author of having done so?
  7. Theres also a huge political problem with the it was just a job interview spin. It reinforces the case Trump and a lot of Republicans are now making that ANY male (regardless of public stature) is at direct personal threat from these sort of accusations, without the protections of due process, burden of proof and presumed innocence. It was a smart move in the context of the confirmation ... lower the bar to stop Kavanaugh from getting on the court. But not only didnt it work (because a significant portion of the population didnt buy it) its now handed Trump and the Republicans an incredibly potent weapon with the elections only a month away.
  8. Mark Judge is a red herring. The key witness, assuming an evidentiary standard higher than guilt by accusation is Leyland Keyser. Who not only said she couldnt recall the party but also said she never knew Kavanaugh at all. Which is most certainly why Fords team pressured her to change her statement.
  9. The issue, DKT, is that without evidentiary standards theres no way to judge whether the evidence supports one side or another. Thats the crux here, lack of defined (let alone agreed upon) evidentiary standards. Ill be the first to agree that this isnt a court of law and the high standards required in criminal cases dont apply. But on the other hand principles like due process, burden of proof and presumption of innocence are in the Constitution and law BECAUSE they are larger societal and cultural principles. So the opposite end of the evidentiary spectrum (guilt by accusation) doesnt apply either. The point being to set the evidentiary standard first, before even starting to talk about the evidence.
  10. Thats just it, you need to look at the impact of the cases where theres a close ideological split. Ive argued that Kavanaughs nomination fight wasnt about hot button social issues like abortion or same sex marriage. Its really about the various cases percolating up through the District and Circuit Courts on election related matters. Voter ID, Redistricting/Gerrymandering, ballot protection, even the Census question aboiut citizenship. Why? Because the outcome of those cases will determine who controls the other two branches of government, and under what circumstances. Theres no doubt in my mind that those WILL break along ideological lines.
  11. Two things for consideration this morning. 1. I can’t locate it right now, but there was an excellent article in the past day or two analyzing the Kavanaugh nomination and general political environment in the US against the book “Sleepwalkers: How Europe Went to War in 1914”. ... an analogy being drawn that just as European leaders didn’t want a war, they ended up in one because they believed the other side would back down first. 2. Piece in Politico saying that Democrats now believe they need to be a lot tougher and more ruthless: https://www.politico.com/magazine/story/2018/10/07/kavanaugh-confirmation-democrats-anger-221089
  12. Depends on the which part of the country, north east, major cities, sure thing, would you like drug seizures with your gun searches?However, suburban and rural central, midwest, south, valleys east of the sierra navada, no fucking way. I have cop friends who are unhappy with the temporary gun seizure orders. I know other cops, sheriffs in fact, who would tell someone attempting such to go pound sand. Respectfully, Murph, there arent anywhere near enough FBI agents to do that. And you are making a serious assumption on how many FBI agents would go along with driving into a rural community they know is armed to the teeth to forcefully and illegally overthrow their local elected officials. FBI agents want, at the end of the day, to go home to their families too.
  13. Yup. And social media is designed to make people feel important. Almost 20 years ago I attended a lecture by Ted Leonsis, then of AOL. One of the things he mentioned was the gratifying emotional boost people got from hearing “You’ve Got Mail” ... similar to taking a hit of narcotic. Now view that in a scenario where posting increasingly partisan and inflammatory statements and memes results in more and more “likes”
  14. Goresuch and Kavanaugh were two years apart at Georgetown Prep. They ran in the same social circles and Gorsuch was actually the same year at GP as Ford was at Holton Arms. I don’t believe the rumor that there was a similar letter from Ford about Gorsuch when he was nominated. There’s absolutely no evidence of it. I DO believe that, had the nominations been reversed, Kavanaugh for Scalia and Gorsuch for Kennedy, the same exact scenario (let Kavanaugh pass, go after Gorsuch with the charges) would have come to pass.
  15. And I’m only saying this to highlight the real complexity in a situation the Left assumes to be very simplistic (“People will obey. The Police will deal with those who don’t) ... to the level that, a Murph said, they’re playing with fire without even realizing it.
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