Wednesday, January 9, 2008

Of Polls and Pundits

By Alan Caruba

I must admit that I was greatly amused to learn that all of the polls and pundits regarding the New Hampshire primary elections were WRONG.

As a longtime member of the pundit world in which my thoughts on anything are held in fairly high esteem, I got down on my knees last night and thanked a merciful God that I did not weigh in with an opinion on the event or the candidates.

The truth is that I rarely write about politics and the reason is simple enough; there are so many others that do. Moreover, every citizen of the United States of America has their own opinion on matters political and this is as it should be.

The New Hampshire primary will be seen in hindsight as a triumph of political organizing. It will be noted that Hillary’s campaign managed to get every potential voter, including a few found in intensive care units, to the polls to pull the lever or to gingerly touch the screens of scary new computerized voting machines.

It is significant, however, that the print and broadcast media journalists and experts got it so wrong in the lead-up to the actual vote count. Some of them even admitted falling in love with Barack Hussein Obama or feeling sympathetic to Hillary.

It is thus essential to keep in mind that we have many more primaries to go including February’s “Super Tuesday” which should decide which candidates secure sufficient delegates to their respective political conventions to wrap up the nomination. If, however, both parties remain sufficiently divided, we are in for a historic election year.

As Yogi Berra, a famed baseball philosopher, once said, “It ain’t over ‘till it’s over.”


Edwin G said...

Yeah, we hear you, the pundits are new false prophets and prognosticators of this election, especially that Bernstein, Bennett and that "black" guy - these guys have all the answers to every story. They are the conservative spinmeister clothed in as an analyst, the truth is they are part of the Neocons. We missed Greenberg, Shaw and Woodruff.

Here is the truth, the bloggers will be the new pundits of this election and that includes the strategists of each party trying to campaign by blogging. From hereon, goodbye to the independent small states, it will be the die- hards red states and blue states. If you saw the long lines in NH, California, NY, IL, FL, MI, TX, PA, NJ the big ones are just dying to join the fray. This is the revenge of 2000, no more hanging chads this time to decide and throw it to those old foggies controlled by conservatives at the Supreme Court. From that election, so many have died, got injured by the environment, Halliburton and Enron got richer, middle class got poorer and jobs were taken since 2000. The problem is not Obama and Edwards, it is that inept "W" being used by NeoCons as their parrot, we are just ready for the new political fight.

Alan Caruba said...

Hey, it's just a wild guess on my part, but I think you might be politically liberal. That aside, you may have actually said something intelligent and insightful. The Internet has put a whole new spin on campaigns with countless bloggers sharing opinions, cross-pollinating with others, etc. And, yes, I think a lot of people will turn out to vote in order to insure against events like the last contested election. However, in the investigations by newspapers in Florida, it turned out that Bush really did win more votes and thus the election.

Anonymous said...

This reminds of a phrase used in, of all places, ESPN. The phrase is "That's why they play the game" because we like think we know how things are going to go (think about how many times you said you won't like something and you end up liking it) but only time will tell.

Scott Ahrens

Edwin G said...

Allan, you're right the FL newpapers declared "W" won in that election 'after' disqualifying those hanging chads and disenfranchizing the African-American votes. Everything was put under the rug similar to the investigation of the existence of WMD in ???.....oh Allan! there is just too many issues to discuss, perhaps let us leave them to history to seek the truth.

Alan Caruba said...

Thank you, Scott and Edwin, for your comments.

Edwin, at some point it becomes necessary to accept even unpleasant facts, i.e., GWB did win the last election.

Scott, welcome to our little forum. Predicting anything is perilous at best.

Unknown said...

I read some words written by an American Buddhist monk which I feel are relavent to "predictions"
This monk happened to say some words that struck at the heart of life, and so I have never forgotten him.

"Focus on your breath. As for what's going to happen as you focus on the breath - put that question aside. As for where the meditation is going to take you and how it's going to take you there, put those thoughts aside as well. Be careful that you don't know too much, because what you know too much of is not really knowing. A lot of it's guesswork.

A lot of our preconceived notions come out of ignorance. That's precisely what we're trying to get rid of, but our ignorance shapes the way we practice."
Thanissaro Bhikkhu

Alan Caruba said...

I am in a constant struggle against my own ignorance inasmuch as we live in a very complex world operating at the speed of sound. I read all the time just to try to keep up and to understand. One lesson age and experience teaches is that we live in a constant enviroment of propaganda. Claims of all kinds must be subjected to serious skeptism.

Unknown said...

My comments were not directed at you alone Mr. Caruba but mainly to political liberals. I agree with your article past compairing them with the Catholic Church of old. In the Middle ages the Church did not care about investigating phenomina but enforcing there preconceived notions of how reality works.

There preconcieved notions of how reality worked turned out to be "guess work", and was not really knowing after all. This error was adressed by later church reforms, but is reborn again in the form of political liberalism.

It seems we are in for another political refermation it seems. For this reason I enjoy your work Mr. Caruba and picture you as a modern Ben Franklin or Martin Luther.

Please keep up the great work!!