Barack Obama and the Mandate of Heaven

Forget the polls, forget the focus groups, forget the media.  What is occurring in the campaign of 2012 is simplicity itself: Barack Obama has lost the mandate of heaven. We persist in the illusion (even conservatives, who should be immune to this kind of thinking) that politics is somehow a form of "rational" activity, open to "scientific" understanding and manipulation.  The entire apparatus of political consultancy, polling, and analysis is based on this premise.  Millions -- in recent years, hundreds of millions -- are spent on polls, meta-modeling, and God knows what else in carefully planned and executed attempts to drive the results.  And yet, this methodology's record of errors and failures is virtually endless.  Ronald Reagan runs double-digits behind Jimmy Carter right up to the final weekend of the 1980 campaign; the 2000 election ends up hanging on a little over 500 votes; Scott Brown easily takes a Senate seat sworn to blue since the heyday of...(Read Full Article)

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