Monday, October 29, 2012

Mini-Rant About Nate Silver

On an investing website, the writer commented how he trusted few polls and considered Nate Silver a partisan. He claimed Silver's slant is evident in posts and the comments they allow are evidence as well. The writer mentioned leaving comments that the Times would not post. Some commenters on the financial website defended Silver. I did not. I left the comment below.

Once the media shanked Occupy + Obama’s approval ratings hovered near 40, they still needed to defend their man. Recall that it was the media in the primaries which dumped Hillary (1st female POTUS) for Obama (1st black POTUS) in ’08. As their man, they knew he had let down the base, had not reformed Wall St, had caved in negotiations with Boehner, had left the patriot act/bush tax cuts in place, and had one major accomplishment (Obamacare) which over half the nation disliked. His only path to victory was to trash the other side’s candidates as munchkins, fire up the Dem base, demoralize the GOP base, have a media shield and glide to victory Nov 6th on ‘inevitability’. The media has done their part by manufacturing a ‘war on women’ since planting odd birth control questions into the Dec GOP debate, creating a national race flamewar out of 1 murder in Florida with Trayvon Martin, sniping at Romney for things he turns out to be right about, manipulating the sham debates, and creating a phony facade of evil Mitt (he may be but come on, he’s Mormon). X has noted here how the GOP has gone after the FED a bit, but the two GOP candidates who voiced serious challenges to the FED (Perry + Paul) were marginalized very quickly. The media shapes public opinion. Look at their control of the debates with no mention of housing, true Wall St reform or illegal immigration.

Where do polls come in? Polls matter. Polls are a part of the narrative and shape public opinion. Marginally attached voters seeing Obama leads of 5-8 pts would think it’s inevitable he’d win so they’d 1. stay at home if they dont like him or 2. make sure to vote for the ‘winner’. Please note that at every moment when polls showed a narrowing of the race in the summer, some national poll would come out with an Obama +7 margin which below the fold would be due to a D+10 to D+19 sample. In what America is the election going to be D+19? PPP used this basis for a poll. Even now, polls with a tie usually show a D+7 skew, which is the same as the huge adv the ems had in turnout in ’08. When a poll is released, it becomes news to report, which is then picked up by the media and used to massage the narrative of an inevitable Obama win.

Silver is a poll man for the NY Times, which is the grand central station for SWPL and liberal credential. He is paid to produce data and small articles for NY Times readers. I know, I am one. NY Times readers don’t want to her how tight the race is or how their savior might possibly be rejected. I’d also say that Silver this year has been reactive rather than a leader in making announcements or reacting to changes in the race. Referencing my prior comment, he doesn’t have the Obama camp’s internal polls anymore so he’s just a normal pollster. A normal man paid by the Times.
I still think Obama pulls it out, but I have a college friend who is one of the speechwriters for our Sec of Labor. He hasnt renewed his lease yet.

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