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February 07, 2004

posted by Scott @ 12:45 PM
Why Didn't We Think of That?

Does it strike anyone else as absolutely bizarre the gall of Blair Hull to think that he has discovered some magical formula to winning political elections? Seriously, who does this guy think he is? For all the energy that has been poured into political campaigns over the last hundred years in this country alone, does he really think someone else wouldn't have picked up on such a sure-fire recipe to win elections? But if you did have such valuable information you would also think that it would be prudent to keep it to yourself. Not Blair though. He wants to share it with the world. Maybe he figures that no one else has the money to implement such a plan. Well, get your pens ready because here it is:

Probability = 1/(1 + exp (−1 × (−3.9659056 + (General Election Weight × 1.92380219) + (Re-Expressed Population Density × .00007547) + (Re-Expressed Age × .01947370) + (Total Primaries Voted × −.60288595) + (% Neighborhood Ethnicity × −.00717530))))

Does anyone want someone who knows so little about the complexity and unpredictability of human nature making decisions for them in Washington? Well he should at least add another variable to the equation: (1 + This guy is completely insane and arrogant = who would vote for him). In this Atlantic Monthly piece, he comes off as some sort of humanoid from a bad sci-fi novel. Moneyquote:

"Hull is most animated by those aspects of campaigning that can be quantified and formulated. "Politics is very unpredictable," he told me. "More so than blackjack." I asked if he really could write an algorithm to help win the election. His face lit up, and his press secretary winced."

If I were his press secretary, I would have spilled my coffee all over Hull just to shut him up and stop that interview. I think it's a pretty well-established rule in politics to shy away from talking about strategy publicly, and you would think that a candidate already chastized for trying to buy the election would stick to this principle doubly. He's basically saying that not only do I have more money to spend than anyone else, I also have a formula that will assure that I win. Buhhahahaha!!! What a public relations nightmare. This guy needs to take some of that money and hire some of G.W. Bush's handlers who know better than to let the president talk too much.

*Speaking of Bush's press shyness, I can't wait to see him face Russert tomorrow for an hour! In an hour, he should say at least five ridiculous things that will keep his staffers busy on damge control for the next week or so. I'm no fan of Russert and don't have too much confidence that he will turn the screws on Bush, but if Diane Sawyer can elicit major gaffs than Russert should get even better results. Remember this:

DIANE SAWYER: Again, I'm just trying to ask, these are supporters, people who believed in the war who have asked the question.

PRESIDENT BUSH: Well, you can keep asking the question and my answer's gonna be the same. Saddam was a danger and the world is better off cause we got rid of him.

DIANE SAWYER: But stated as a hard fact, that there were weapons of mass destruction as opposed to the possibility that he could move to acquire those weapons still a—

PRESIDENT BUSH: So what's the difference?

DIANE SAWYER: Well —



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