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Author Topic: Presidential Election News & Discussion Center 2012 - Inauguration Day!
Blayne Bradley
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quote:
Originally posted by Dan_Frank:
I spent a good portion of my life believing those studies (after all, they're "conclusive!") and seeing examples of white privilege everywhere. If anything, any confirmation bias I had was functioning in the opposite way that you describe, to reinforce my belief in how deeply racist society was.

I think that, to the extent cultural racism exists in our country (and it does!), I still see it. But I've taken a more skeptical and critical view of those conclusive studies, of social justice, of "white privilege," etc. as well.

Because the conclusions of the studies are explanations couched as facts, and I think they are often not the best explanations. Because "social justice" is mostly just a tribal subculture designed to give people a sense of moral superiority and righteousness. And because, well, I already bitched about how I see "white privilege" used.

Dan when your riding the subway, and you see black people, do you sit right next to them or do you try to take a seat further away? Or stand?
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TomDavidson
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quote:
I spent a good portion of my life believing those studies (after all, they're "conclusive!") and seeing examples of white privilege everywhere.
They are indeed conclusive. So I'm curious: what anecdotal evidence caused you to stop believing in the conclusive work of generations of social scientists?
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Dan_Frank
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quote:
Originally posted by Rakeesh:
What it comes down to for me is, as I've said before, how strange and hugely unlikely the idea is that a society with cultural, legal, religious, political, and economic open racism for centuries can be thought to have overcome those problems in literally less than a tenth of the number of generations than those problems were, setting aside non-overt/on the books problems, in place.

If we were reading about a social problem of similar duration and power in a different society long in the past, few indeed would credit the majority's leaders in history books claiming the problem had been largely dealt with so quickly. Most people would (rightly) regard such a thing with skepticism.

I suppose it ties into American exceptionalism, though. We're just that good. Two or three generations since we addressed (much) of the on-the-books racism in our country, and the claim that it still persists in subtle cultural ways is just a fallacy...even though, y'know, just all racial, ethnic, religious, and gender groups except 'white Christian male' are still hugely underrepresented in the upper tiers of the private sector and of government. White privilege is just a fallacy. We're just...I don't know, lucky or something.

Dude, seriously, roll back some of the sarcasm and hostility. It's totally unnecessary, you're not going to get a rise out of me, and it takes longer to find the points in your posts.

There's no special reason that any particular problem should take a long time to solve. Plenty of problems have persisted for thousands of years and then been solved in a single generation.

But anyway, setting aside the abstract "it's super unlikely that we could have solved racism" argument, I actually agree with you insofar as racial inequity hasn't been fully resolved. Not by a long shot. It strikes me as weird that you keep ascribing attitudes to me that I never expressed, but whatever.

Where I disagree with you is in the idea that the primary reason for this inequity is due to pervasive, hidden racist attitudes in the overwhelming majority of the population. That's a possibility, of course, but it doesn't strike me as the best explanation.

Explanations that acknowledge the power of formative memes... two examples being education and racial/geographical subcultures (which alone encompass lots of disparate factors)... seem better.

Blayne: What's the point of that question?

If I say I don't avoid sitting next to black people, the infinitely variable "white privilege" meme has plenty of potential responses to invalidate what I say: Maybe I only think I don't avoid sitting next to black people due to confirmation bias. Or maybe I actively choose to sit next to them to prove to myself how not racist I am even though I continue being racist in a thousand other hidden ways.

Or whatever. I'm not as good at this as some people, maybe Sam or Mucus or Rakeesh can tell me what my subway sitting habits really mean.

If you really care, though: I tend go for a window seat with nobody next to it. If I have to sit next to somebody, I sit next to the skinniest person I can spot with a cursory look. I live in the Bay Area and for three years I took the BART subway train into San Francisco. Pretty sure that if I had a problem sitting next to black people the subway would've been torture, instead of a great chance to catch an extra half hour of sleep on my way to work.

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Dan_Frank
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quote:
Originally posted by TomDavidson:
quote:
I spent a good portion of my life believing those studies (after all, they're "conclusive!") and seeing examples of white privilege everywhere.
They are indeed conclusive. So I'm curious: what anecdotal evidence caused you to stop believing in the conclusive work of generations of social scientists?
None. I've just seen explanations for why a lot of social science is less science and more scientism. We've talked about this before, though, haven't we?
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TomDavidson
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Not this specific example. So, question: have you just decided to reject all social science, or do you know something specific about the studies of white privilege -- or, indeed, the concept of social privilege at all -- that would lead you to believe it is not indeed a widespread phenomenon?
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Rakeesh
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quote:
There's no special reason that any particular problem should take a long time to solve. Plenty of problems have persisted for thousands of years and then been solved in a single generation.
Errr...such as? What other problem on a social and government level did you have in mind?
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Dan_Frank
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Well, again, I've described how I've seen "white privilege" used... but then Sam and others have also used it to mean nothing more than "any social advantage conferred by being white," which is broad enough that I don't object to it the way I object to the version of "white privilege" that I described a page or two ago.

As far as it goes, what I reject about the social science on this issue is the idea that the best explanation for the disparities is a pervasive universal (universal for Americans anyway) unconscious prejudice against black people.

Human motivations are more complicated than that.

And there are other factors like education that get obfuscated here. Education, of course, is interesting, because it still reveals some serious racial inequities and some really bad racially biased cultural memes. Again, I'm not saying those don't exist, at all.

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Dan_Frank
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quote:
Originally posted by Rakeesh:
quote:
There's no special reason that any particular problem should take a long time to solve. Plenty of problems have persisted for thousands of years and then been solved in a single generation.
Errr...such as? What other problem on a social and government level did you have in mind?
Well, I wasn't specifically thinking of social/government problems. But sure. Human sacrifice? Republican government? Progress can happen very quickly, when there is a catalyst for change.
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Rakeesh
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Alright, human sacrifice. Which cultures were you thinking of that had it as a feature for centuries, and moved away from it inside a generation or two?
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Dan_Frank
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Well, using the Aztecs may be a bit of a cheat, since most of their culture was also eradicated in the process, but it certainly happened quick. Better examples might be the Tibetans, the Pawnee, many groups in Africa...

Often there were small holdover groups that resisted change, which isn't remotely contradictory to anything I've said. I freely admit there are holdover groups that are blatantly racist! [Wink]

But by and large, when a major cultural shift occurred in these places (a shift towards a culture where human sacrifice was no longer acceptable), the practice died out quickly among the population.

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Blayne Bradley
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Dan, if what % of American disparity would you agree is caused by racism, institutional or otherwise? 1%? 5%? Would you agree that at least 10 to 15% is caused by it as a systemic issue within American society?

If we can agree that it is 15%, why is that not worth investing in social programs to alleviate at least that 15% we have a clear cut solution to, a clear cut problem?

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Samprimary
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quote:
Originally posted by Samprimary:
quote:
Because the conclusions of the studies are explanations couched as facts
You will have to show us what studies you are working on to come to this conclusion.

Starting to think that your idea of the "conclusions of the studies" is as hazy and really wholly incorrect in the sociological field as your idea of psychological studies is.
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Rakeesh
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Looking at the Pawnee, I'm reading about child sacrifice in the early 19th century. Is that what you're referring to? As for Tibet, I find talk of it largely ending in the 7th century due to the arrival of Buddhism-is that what you're referring to?

Now, if I'm right about the first example, that is I correctly noticed what you meant...it's a terrible, inapplicable example. The Pawnee culture was already at that time in the process of being all but wiped out, and they were being explicitly advised by Indian Agents that they needed to stop, with the obvious threat implicit. Which would leave us with Tibet, which I haven't dug into yet. But it would seem that what was necessary there was an enormous religious revolution, if it was as decisive as you claim.

We're left with a few huge problems with your 'we have generally overcome racism in a couple of generations' theory, though. Aside from the fact that human sacrifice is a much more obvious, clear cut practice and thus easier to stop (or start). One, unless you're going to claim that the advent of the Civil Rights Movement actually changed the hearts and minds of serious, committee racists (I do hope you won't), then they were still being elected to office and holding high end private sector jobs...but it was no longer legal to openly, explicitly practice racism. So of course they therefore decided it was time to just be non racist even when they could get away with it, or something.

Another of the (many) problems would be that if you actually ask the people *that would notice*, that is actual minorities, well then racism is certainly not just a few old holdouts. White privilege isn't a fallacy. For this opinion we can look at actual representation in politics, government, media, academia, etc, and find a substantial underrepresentation across the boards for all minorities.

So if racism and white privilege had actually been nixed to the extent you say, wouldn't we be able to *tell* in a way other than just polling white people?

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Destineer
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I would probably criticize some of the studies about unconsciuos racial bias in the same way as Dan. For example, I don't think the face reaction studies indicate what they're supposed to show about implicit bias. They probably do show that unconscious, reflexive aversive reactions to black people's faces are common, but it's a huge leap of logic from this to the claim that these reactions do much to affect important aspects of people's behavior toward black people. However uncool it is, avoiding sitting next to black men on the train doesn't by itself hurt anyone very much.

The place where I do think good evidence of implicit bias can be found is in these resume studies. Unfortunately, it's much harder to design the studies to measure racial bias, but they do show that the same resume gets a much fairer hearing with a man's name on top than with a woman's name on top. So that's very strong evidence for what we might label "male privilege" that likely has a serious negative effect on women's careers. Now, it would surprise me if typical people have such robust implicit biases against women and not against black people, since it's probably fair to say that black people are historically more stigmatized than women in the US.

As Dan pointed out in this a previous thread about this, the comparable studies that replace black-sounding names with white-sounding names have potential confounding factors. I think it's fair to say that the prevalence of morally significant implicit bias against women is empirically better established than it is against blacks, but that seems more likely to be because good evidence about the gender case is easier to gather, rather than because the racial bias doesn't exist in equal amounts (at least). It's just harder to measure directly.

[ October 07, 2012, 06:35 PM: Message edited by: Destineer ]

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Dan_Frank
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quote:
Originally posted by Samprimary:
quote:
Originally posted by Samprimary:
quote:
Because the conclusions of the studies are explanations couched as facts
You will have to show us what studies you are working on to come to this conclusion.

Starting to think that your idea of the "conclusions of the studies" is as hazy and really wholly incorrect in the sociological field as your idea of psychological studies is.
There's no particular study I had in mind, Sam, so if you're waiting for me to give you an example you'll be waiting a long time. It's a pretty broad error, though, so if there's a study you're particularly fond of, that you think proves me wrong, feel free to share it. Either I'll be persuaded or I'll offer some criticism of the study, which you can then be persuaded by or criticize. Win/Win!

---------

quote:
Originally posted by Rakeesh:
Looking at the Pawnee, I'm reading about child sacrifice in the early 19th century. Is that what you're referring to? As for Tibet, I find talk of it largely ending in the 7th century due to the arrival of Buddhism-is that what you're referring to?

Now, if I'm right about the first example, that is I correctly noticed what you meant...it's a terrible, inapplicable example. The Pawnee culture was already at that time in the process of being all but wiped out, and they were being explicitly advised by Indian Agents that they needed to stop, with the obvious threat implicit. Which would leave us with Tibet, which I haven't dug into yet. But it would seem that what was necessary there was an enormous religious revolution, if it was as decisive as you claim.

Yeah I guess Pawnee was as sticky as Aztec, in hindsight. Their societies were static enough that the major transformations were resisted to the point of their entire cultures getting wiped out.

West Africa and Tibet are less controversial, I guess. As you indicated, for Tibet it was Buddhism. For West Africa it was Islam. In both cases these major cultural shifts also included disavowal of human sacrifice.

The fact that these cultures required a major transformative event isn't a flaw in my argument. It's a feature. That was my (poorly explained?) point. I think the civil rights movement served as that transformative event.

Our society is less static than the ancient Aztecs or the ancient Tibetans, so our transformation required more good ideas and less slaughter or religious trappings. That's a good thing! It's a mark in our favor.

quote:
Originally posted by Rakeesh:
We're left with a few huge problems with your 'we have generally overcome racism in a couple of generations' theory, though. Aside from the fact that human sacrifice is a much more obvious, clear cut practice and thus easier to stop (or start). One, unless you're going to claim that the advent of the Civil Rights Movement actually changed the hearts and minds of serious, committee racists (I do hope you won't), then they were still being elected to office and holding high end private sector jobs...but it was no longer legal to openly, explicitly practice racism. So of course they therefore decided it was time to just be non racist even when they could get away with it, or something.

There's that sarcasm again. [Razz]

Certainly, the civil rights movement was a major transformative event. It changed the minds of some hardcore racists, of course (Isn't Robert Byrd a favorite example?) But not all of them. Many more just saw the way the wind was blowing and began changing their outward behavior when necessary.

It's grown more and more necessary over time. After all, the older generations are dying. And our society is dynamic enough, and sufficiently good at thinking, that particularly terrible ideas are able to fall away and be replaced by less-bad ideas.

quote:
Originally posted by Rakeesh:
Another of the (many) problems would be that if you actually ask the people *that would notice*, that is actual minorities, well then racism is certainly not just a few old holdouts. White privilege isn't a fallacy. For this opinion we can look at actual representation in politics, government, media, academia, etc, and find a substantial underrepresentation across the boards for all minorities.

So if racism and white privilege had actually been nixed to the extent you say, wouldn't we be able to *tell* in a way other than just polling white people?

Well then it's a good thing I don't suggest we poll white people! Whew! Dodged that bullet.

Polling black people isn't really any better, of course, since they're just as likely to inaccurately remember or understand as anyone else. Self-reporting isn't really reliable at the best of times.

Yeah, there are underrepresentations, though. For sure! I've never denied that... I don't think. Have I? If I did, I recant my previous foolish statement.

-------------------

quote:
Originally posted by Destineer:
The place where I do think good evidence of implicit bias can be found is in these resume studies. Unfortunately, it's much harder to design the studies to measure racial bias, but they do show that the same resume gets a much fairer hearing with a man's name on top than with a woman's name on top. So that's very strong evidence for what we might label "male privilege" that likely has a serious negative effect on women's careers. Now, it would surprise me if typical people have such robust implicit biases against women and not against black people, since it's probably fair to say that black people are historically more stigmatized than women in the US.

Yeah, that's interesting! It's a tiny study, but I'm glad you shared it. Not totally surprising, sadly. Girls can't do math and science, after all. I know the tech industry also has some common sexist memes running through it, in much the same way.

Of course, the dearth of women scientists is way bigger than the margins of that study. The girls can't do math/science meme is, I think more complicated than just "so we don't hire them as much." That's not the whole story. Still, it's undoubtedly lousy!

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Blayne Bradley
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A better example might be Chinese footbinding of women; but these are practices and not values.

Example, Japan: Equal rights for Women such as the right to vote were imposed on Japan by MacArthur and his version of the constitution based on the American constitution that he wrote for Japan; interesting to note it gave the right to vote to Japanese citizens in ways that were not yet available to American citizens.

However 50 years later and Japan, while a modern representative democracy that shares many of our values is still very much a "rape culture" and many social values regarding social equality between men and women are lagging 50 years behind America.

So merely "on the books" racism or inequality, being removed through legislative means doesn't however we can clearly see solve the institutional inequalities that still lag. America is no more exception than Japan, it is in of itself racist to presume America solved these issues when Japan didn't when there is so much evidence that it has not been done.

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SenojRetep
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So, in other news...

The post-debate polling has shown a significant bounce for Romney. The national polling average from the week before the debate (appr. 20 polls) was Obama +3.85. The polling average in the week since the debate (appr. 11 polls) is Romney +0.82, or roughly a 4.5 point swing. Nate Silver sees some receding of the bounce in the new Rasmussen and Gallup polls, but at the moment the race seems to have reverted to approximately a tie, at least with respect to the national average. Swing state polls have shown similar movement toward Romney, but there haven't been enough to say anything very interesting. Silver's model has moved from giving Romney a 13% chance of winning the election to giving him a 25% chance. InTrade has gone from giving Romney a 20% chance to giving him a 40% chance.

In non-polling news, the President's campaign released a quirky ad making fun of Romney's line about liking Big Bird but not enough to borrow money from China to fund the CPB. The script from the ad:
quote:
Bernie Madoff. Ken Lay. Dennis Kozlowski. Criminals. Gluttons of greed. And the evil genius who towered over them? One man has the guts to speak his name. Big Bird.
Later, it echos a line Obama has added to his stump speech, "Mitt Romney knows it's not Wall Street you have to worry about, it's Sesame Street." The Sesame Workshop has asked the Obama campaign to remove the ad, since the Workshop is non-partisan and doesn't endorse candidates, but the campaign has not yet chosen to do so. So, for now at least, you can see the ad here.

(h/t Dave Weigel)

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Samprimary
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A tie?

Oh. Yeah, in respect to the national average.

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SenojRetep
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quote:
Originally posted by Samprimary:
A tie?

Oh. Yeah, in respect to the national average.

Well, I guess more accurate would be to say Romney currently holds a narrow lead in the national average, rather than calling it a tie.

Seriously though, swing states are where the election is won or lost, and while they are susceptible to national swings, they obviously don't perfectly correlate. That said, post-debate polls have been released showing Romney ahead or tied in Florida, North Carolina, Ohio, Virginia, Colorado, and Nevada, as well as trailing by low single-digits in Michigan, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin (with the obvious caveat that single polls are hardly definitive, and in some cases, like Virginia, competing polls have shown Obama with a narrow lead).

<edit>A new poll from IBD/TIPP just came in with a Romney +2.0, making the post-debate average among all pollsters Romney +1.0.</edit>

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Samprimary
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http://www.salon.com/2012/10/09/gop_gays_out_of_the_party/

alienated ?????? impossible

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Tarrsk
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Hate to say "I told you so" to my fellow Obama supporters in this thread (no seriously, I'd much rather be eating these words), but... I told you so. Stop assuming we've got this in the bag. This election is going to be close.

Obama's holding a tenuous lead in the Electoral College math right now, but the national polls are as tied as you can really be. If the current momentum in the daily trackers continues over the next few days, you could even argue that Romney has a slim lead.

I suspect the next two debates (VP and town hall) may be pretty decisive in this election. Obama and Biden have a chance to stop the bleeding and even swing the momentum back their way. On the other hand, Romney and Ryan have an equal shot at really dealing the hammer blow and pushing strongly ahead for the first time. Given that the debates are really the last "major" scheduled news before Election Day (short of a hugely surprisingly November jobs report in either direction), it would be tough for either candidate to significantly reverse the trendline once we're through them.

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Dan_Frank
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quote:
Originally posted by Samprimary:
http://www.salon.com/2012/10/09/gop_gays_out_of_the_party/

alienated ?????? impossible

From the article:
quote:
Here is one of those odd regularities that crop up in American politics: Every election year since at least 1996, about a quarter of gay voters (more precisely, of voters who acknowledge being gay in exit polls) have pulled for the Republican presidential candidate, rain or shine.
I just... it always strikes me as odd when people act like this is odd.

The arrogance of guys like that surprises me too. As if it's completely absurd that maybe some gay people wouldn't be single-issue voters, and vote for someone who isn't good on gay rights because they feel strongly about X, Y, and Z other issues.

Some gay people think that there are more important concerns in choosing the president than marriage laws. Crazy, right?

In fact, I'd be willing to bet a lot of gay people feel that way... it's just that the non-Republican gay people don't need to clarify what issues they care most about, because they also happen to be voting for someone seen as (slightly) more gay-friendly.

Just to be sure we don't go down a tangent of whether these political opinions are good or not, I'll put it in epithets you can understand: Imagine a person who is hugely islamophobic, has an irrational hatred of Keynesian economics, is a zombie cultist of Ayn Rand, hates poor people, hates good health care, and is an evil billionaire corporate fat cat. They also happen to be gay.

You know, like Peter Thiel. Ba-dum-tish.

Now imagine: Who do you think such a person might vote for?

It really rubs me the wrong way when people paint this situation as some sort of totally bizarre phenomenon.

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Mucus
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Indeed.
Especially when you only have two parties, this kind of "error" is going to be common.

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Blayne Bradley
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538 last I checked was 75% chance for Obama to win, that's not really tied at all.
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SenojRetep
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quote:
Originally posted by Blayne Bradley:
538 last I checked was 75% chance for Obama to win, that's not really tied at all.

I mentioned that in my first post, if you read closely.

Silver's model is skeptical of abrupt, bounce-like polling changes (which is appropriate; bounces, by nature, tend to fade) and so doesn't really believe Romney is permanently ahead. It also models the complex interaction between state-level and national-level polling, and there is insufficient state-level polling to really move that aspect of the model much. Between these two factors, it's not surprising that Silver's model has only doubled Romney's chances of winning since the debate, rather than moving him into parity with Obama.

<edit>I just clicked over to 538, and Romney's probability of winning moved from 25% to 29% after today's polls were incorporated into the model. That's the highest it's been since Aug. 29 which was the middle of the GOP convention.<edit>

[ October 09, 2012, 08:01 PM: Message edited by: SenojRetep ]

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Lyrhawn
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And it could easily swing right back the other way depending on how the next debates go. Not many people watch the VP debate, but there's still the town hall and foreign policy.

The interesting thing is that early voting has already started in a lot of places. Now is the most important time Romney could have possibly made a comeback.

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Blayne Bradley
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Right so why does Romney chances should be on par with Obama's then?

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Rakeesh
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It's not unreasonable to think it odd, since GOP (and Democrat, to be fair) historic and current...apathy or antagonism towards homosexuality, not just gay rights, has been considerably more pronounced than 'marriage law'.

It's not just marriage law. Republicans overall have a tendancy to be more repressive towards homosexuals than Democrats do, in some cases by a wide margin. Thus, a bit surprising, but the explanations are there-and are often 'this is the best long-term way', btw.

What's more interesting to me is how common it is to see irritability or outrage over the idea that homosexuals might trend more Democratic. As though to deny the higher repressiveness and disdain the GOP offers them.

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Dan_Frank
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quote:
Originally posted by Rakeesh:
It's not unreasonable to think it odd, since GOP (and Democrat, to be fair) historic and current...apathy or antagonism towards homosexuality, not just gay rights, has been considerably more pronounced than 'marriage law'.

It's not just marriage law. Republicans overall have a tendancy to be more repressive towards homosexuals than Democrats do, in some cases by a wide margin. Thus, a bit surprising, but the explanations are there-and are often 'this is the best long-term way', btw.

What's more interesting to me is how common it is to see irritability or outrage over the idea that homosexuals might trend more Democratic. As though to deny the higher repressiveness and disdain the GOP offers them.

In case it wasn't clear, I'm not irritated by the idea that homosexuals trend democrat. That's just a fact, and it'd be silly to get upset over it. There are lots of plausible reasons for it, not the least being the slightly better record on gay rights.

I just object when people act like the fact that a significant minority of gay people trend republican is some sort of wildly unexpected and inexplicable oddity.

It's not.

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TomDavidson
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"I am willing to support these people who loathe and demonize me because I really hate income tax."
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BlackBlade
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quote:
Originally posted by TomDavidson:
"I am willing to support these people who loathe and demonize me because I really hate income tax."

Utah Mormons have been saying that for years, and nobody raises any eyebrows.
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MrSquicky
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quote:
Originally posted by BlackBlade:
quote:
Originally posted by TomDavidson:
"I am willing to support these people who loathe and demonize me because I really hate income tax."

Utah Mormons have been saying that for years, and nobody raises any eyebrows.
Isn't that more because those people loathe and demonize, along with Mormons, the same people the Mormons do?
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SenojRetep
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I think Dan's hypothetical about Peter Thiel is a good one. Where would a Randian homosexual go? There are elements within the Democratic party whose antipathy toward greedy businessmen manifests itself as loathing and demonization; in fact, I'd say it's been the party line for the last two years. So when both parties loath and demonize you, but you want to vote (and not for a third-party), what should you do?

The truth that Dan was trying to get to, and one that I see repeatedly missed by partisans on both sides but particularly on the Democratic side, is that people are complex. We contain multitudes. Poor Kansas Evangelical Republicans vote against their economic interest to vote for their social interest, as do wealthy Connecticut hedge fund managers. Peter Thiel votes against some of his social interests, as do most middle-class, religious blacks and Hispanics. Foreign policy interests led new-atheists like Chris Hitchins and neo-cons like Paul Wolfowitz to support Bush, despite their loathing of Bush's religious ideals, and anti-war fervor brought together Ron Paul and Dennis Kucinich.

The idea that any single slice of our demography ought to be dispositive in determining our voting habits strikes me as significantly simplistic.

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Destineer
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The thing that I find odd is the way people (like Kansan Evangelicals) can convince themselves that they aren't actually voting against any of their interests. They should just own up to it. As I do when I vote Democrat.
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BlackBlade
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quote:
Originally posted by MrSquicky:
quote:
Originally posted by BlackBlade:
quote:
Originally posted by TomDavidson:
"I am willing to support these people who loathe and demonize me because I really hate income tax."

Utah Mormons have been saying that for years, and nobody raises any eyebrows.
Isn't that more because those people loathe and demonize, along with Mormons, the same people the Mormons do?
I'm not getting the distinction. Also, I'm sticking to Utah Mormons.

Regardless of how strongly Utah Mormons demonize group X. The evangelical wing of the Republican party for years has demonized group X and Mormons.

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SenojRetep
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quote:
Originally posted by Destineer:
The thing that I find odd is the way people (like Kansan Evangelicals) can convince themselves that they aren't actually voting against any of their interests. They should just own up to it. As I do when I vote Democrat.

True. More disheartening, to me, is the way in which voters' individual ideologies seem to be increasingly dictated by party lines rather than personal preferences. Parties aren't meant to be, nor can they realistically be, ideologically coherent. To attract sufficient numbers of members, national parties must necessarily compromise ideology on several points. That's why you have a Republican party with Ron Paul, Rush Limbaugh, and Susan Collins (or a Democratic party with Joe Manchin, Elizabeth Warren, and Glenn Greenwald). However, there's evidence that increasingly people are taking their ideological positions not from either their innate preferences, or even exogenously from some narrow special interest group or faith community, but from the national parties themselves. To me, a system in which ideology is generated not by philosophy or morality but by party dynamics seems disturbingly ungrounded, and susceptible to all sorts of perverse effects.
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MrSquicky
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quote:
Originally posted by BlackBlade:
quote:
Originally posted by MrSquicky:
quote:
Originally posted by BlackBlade:
quote:
Originally posted by TomDavidson:
"I am willing to support these people who loathe and demonize me because I really hate income tax."

Utah Mormons have been saying that for years, and nobody raises any eyebrows.
Isn't that more because those people loathe and demonize, along with Mormons, the same people the Mormons do?
I'm not getting the distinction. Also, I'm sticking to Utah Mormons.

Regardless of how strongly Utah Mormons demonize group X. The evangelical wing of the Republican party for years has demonized group X and Mormons.

My point was this alliance wasn't due to income tax, but shared loathing of other groups.

I think there's a big difference between something like the income tax thing and allying with people who are bigoted against you because you share their other bigotries.

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BlackBlade
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I don't see how there's a massive pull when it comes to demonizing a group of people, as opposed to a policy that by extension is espoused by a group of people.
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Samprimary
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quote:
Originally posted by Dan_Frank:
There are lots of plausible reasons for it, not the least being the slightly better record on gay rights.

"slightly better record"
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Dan_Frank
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quote:
Originally posted by Samprimary:
quote:
Originally posted by Dan_Frank:
There are lots of plausible reasons for it, not the least being the slightly better record on gay rights.

"slightly better record"
Right.

Are those scare quotes because you disagree, or are you just showing us that you figured out how to do quotes on your phone, or what?

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Destineer
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quote:
To attract sufficient numbers of members, national parties must necessarily compromise ideology on several points. That's why you have a Republican party with Ron Paul, Rush Limbaugh, and Susan Collins (or a Democratic party with Joe Manchin, Elizabeth Warren, and Glenn Greenwald).
While I agree with your broader point, Greenwald is a bit of an outlier on that list. These days, he seems to despise the Democrats--precisely because they've compromised on issues that he feels he cannot compromise on, morally.
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Samprimary
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quote:
Originally posted by Dan_Frank:
quote:
Originally posted by Samprimary:
quote:
Originally posted by Dan_Frank:
There are lots of plausible reasons for it, not the least being the slightly better record on gay rights.

"slightly better record"
Right.

Are those scare quotes because you disagree, or are you just showing us that you figured out how to do quotes on your phone, or what?

Obviously I am very proud of being able to use quotes on my phone. But it's in quotes because it is "framing that completely misses the reality of an issue," especially given where both sides have consistently been over the decades-long struggle to overturn anti-sodomy laws state by state — you might as well tell women needing an abortion that republicans only have a "slightly worse record" in terms of abortion rights. It makes two extremely-not-the-same-at-all effective positions seem about the same, at a point where they differ greatly and are only widening.

To go back to your first response to me: I agree with much of it. I am not going to find it odd that people aren't single issue anything much of the time. This is about the log cabin republicans as an organization rolling with the persistently homophobic dysfunction of their party until they can pretty much take no more in terms of signing on with Romney.

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Dan_Frank
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quote:
Originally posted by Samprimary:
quote:
Originally posted by Dan_Frank:
quote:
Originally posted by Samprimary:
quote:
Originally posted by Dan_Frank:
There are lots of plausible reasons for it, not the least being the slightly better record on gay rights.

"slightly better record"
Right.

Are those scare quotes because you disagree, or are you just showing us that you figured out how to do quotes on your phone, or what?

Obviously I am very proud of being able to use quotes on my phone.
Well, I can't fault you for that. I finally bit the bullet and got one of these newfangled phones myself, and I have to admit, it's pretty handy.

quote:
Originally posted by Samprimary:
But it's in quotes because it is "framing that completely misses the reality of an issue," especially given where both sides have consistently been over the decades-long struggle to overturn anti-sodomy laws state by state — you might as well tell women needing an abortion that republicans only have a "slightly worse record" in terms of abortion rights. It makes two extremely-not-the-same-at-all effective positions seem about the same, at a point where they differ greatly and are only widening.

I think the Democratic party has been much more consistently pro-abortion than pro-gay rights.

That being said, when we look at the level of state legislature (sodomy laws, gay marriage bans, etc.) I see your point. The difference is more significant in that sphere. More due to bad behavior by Republicans than to good behavior by Democrats, but even so, your correction is noted. "Slightly better" was a bad way to phrase it.

When I said it, I was thinking in the context of electing the president. And when it comes to presidential acts, the gay rights progress made by Democratic presidents has been extremely slight, and the damage done by Republican presidents has been similarly slim.

Unless I'm forgetting some major issue or something, which is possible.

PS: I'm glad you recognized the main point I was trying to make, though.

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SenojRetep
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quote:
Originally posted by Destineer:
quote:
To attract sufficient numbers of members, national parties must necessarily compromise ideology on several points. That's why you have a Republican party with Ron Paul, Rush Limbaugh, and Susan Collins (or a Democratic party with Joe Manchin, Elizabeth Warren, and Glenn Greenwald).
While I agree with your broader point, Greenwald is a bit of an outlier on that list. These days, he seems to despise the Democrats--precisely because they've compromised on issues that he feels he cannot compromise on, morally.
I'll admit that I haven't followed Greenwald closely in a couple of years. I was just casting about for a prominent example of a Democratic voice with libertarian sympathies and he was the first who came to mind. That said, I'm having a hard time coming up with a good surrogate. Does Reddit have a favorite Democrat? Someone who has been in active opposition of SOPA and PIPA, is in favor of drug legalization, and calls out the President for his drone-based foreign policy? There's gotta be someone like that. Markos Moulitsas, maybe?
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SenojRetep
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Back to the actual election, 538 puts Romney's chances of winning the popular vote at 33% today, higher than it has been at any time since Silver first introduced his 2012 model. Romney's advantage in the post-debate national polls of likely voters remains unchanged at 1.0 after several polls released today showed him with a slight lead. He has been tied or leading in every national poll of likely voters released since the debate.

Suffolk University's David Paleologos, a well-known pollster, reports that his outfit is pulling out of Florida, N. Carolina and Virginia, saying "we've already painted those states red." Much as I wish a Romney win in those states were a foregone conclusion, Paleologos' rationale is essentially that undecideds break toward the challenger, a bit of campaign folklore that appears to beunsupported by the data.

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shakes
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Wow, stumbled across this conversation. Have any of you guys talking about "white privilege" actually worked in the real world?

I'm sorry, but the most racist thing that exists in the country today is affirmative action. How many unqualified minorities have I had to hire because I have to meet a quota.....there are certainly some that are qualified, but there are many who get hired because they fill a number and not the best person for the job. That's racism.

I just laugh at all the gibbldegook I see posted by some of you on here. You live in some fantasy land.

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TomDavidson
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How many unqualified minorities have you had to hire because you had to meet a quota, shakes?
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Blayne Bradley
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What business are you a part of Shakes? Which State?
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GaalDornick
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quote:
Originally posted by TomDavidson:
How many unqualified minorities have you had to hire because you had to meet a quota, shakes?

I think you're setting yourself up to hear a made up number which you have no way of disputing.
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Samprimary
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quote:
Originally posted by shakes:
Wow, stumbled across this conversation. Have any of you guys talking about "white privilege" actually worked in the real world?

No, we're all shut-in poors who have never worked a day in our lives, and we're also all the fabled "welfare queens"

yeap you sure caught us out

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