November 10th, 2012

Lessons learned from this election

The postmortems will be continuing for quite some time, as thoughts and impressions percolate. Some things that come to me right now:

(1) The Obama crew are light-years ahead of the Republicans in technology, and this has to be rectified. A good example is ORCA vs. the extraordinary sophistication of this sort of operation, there’s no question there’s a gap the size of the Grand Canyon.

(2) This election has undermined the reputation of a lot of pundits on the right who confidently predicted a Romney victory, sometimes even a large one. What were George Will and Michael Barone (to name just two of many) thinking? I find it hard to give them any credence now when they say things like “cheer up,” when they’ve been proven not to have had their fingers on the pulse of anything except their own hopes.

(3) It’s important to have more respect for polls. They were right. What’s more, they’re usually right, 1948 excepted. There are a lot of legends told about polls, and a lot of people don’t trust them (and of course some polls are more reliable than others), but the average of polls is usually pretty much on the money. I learned this before the election when I did my own historical research on polls, and it’s the reason I said that, unless the lowering of the response rate in recent polls has somehow skewed the results, they are probably valid. Discounting ones whose results we don’t like, and calling them skewed and faked and biased is nice for morale, but it’s misleading. Perhaps it even creates a false sense of security that made some people think they didn’t need to get out and vote.

(4) Obama knew he never had to appeal to the middle, and he didn’t even try. He merely had to alternately scare and bribe his base into turning out.

(5) There are more low-information voters than I ever thought; I believe their numbers are increasing. Politics: so boring, when there’s bread and circuses to attend to.

(6) We ignore the advantage of incumbency at our peril. Just because conservatives think Obama has been a profoundly incompetent and even destructive president doesn’t mean that perception is at all widely shared. He’s the president, and that counts for something—perhaps a lot, actually:

I was thinking about the point I made earlier – incumbent presidents’ attempts to win re-election. Starting with McKinley in 1896, every incumbent who sought re-election won except for four: Taft; Hoover; Ford; Carter; and George H.W. Bush. All but Hoover faced a strong primary challenge (TR in 1912; Ronald Reagan in 1976; Ted Kennedy in 1980; and Pat Buchanan in 1992) and three of the four faced a serious general election third party challenge (TR in 1912; John Anderson in 1980; and Ross Perot in 1992).

Hoover may be an outlier, but his situation is unique because of the Great Depression. Given this history, I wonder whether people should stop all the second-guessing about what happened this time: Mitt Romney had to overcome a difficult primary battle and unite a divided Republican Party, and he faced a united Democratic Party and a media that loves President Obama. It’s not surprising that the incumbent won.

A few more miscellaneous thoughts—a lot of people on the right thought that Obama would have difficulty holding his base. But in retrospect I wonder why they thought so: just because his base isn’t totally satisfied with him? They’re a darn sight happier with him than they were with Mitt Romney, that’s for sure, and he made certain they hated and /or were scared of Romney. I saw that happen even among my friends.

I wonder whether other, less charismatic, less hypnotic, less clever politicians than Obama could have pulled off the same thing, even with the demographics the same as they are now. I have always said Barack Obama is smart, or clever, or whatever you want to call it, especially about politics. He’s also unscrupulous. That turned out to be a winning combination.

124 Responses to “Lessons learned from this election”

  1. davisbr Says:

    And for those of you who want a desultory post-election analysis (that is pretty much the one I came to in an earlier thread on neoneo) that seems to adequately cover and explain the ground-game, you might want to read this.

    I quote …well, me lol:

    But I’m coming to understand that the real failure may have been a structural one in the Romney campaign.

    I trusted that the campaign would be as brilliant in the general as the primary. My bad: I was wrong.

    I trusted Romney himself to be on top of his campaign.

    I liked the guy. (Still do. And I agree with Dennis Miller’s evaluation of Romney.)

    Personally, I’m leaning towards him being too damn busy by “events” to have time for the nitty gritty details. The stuff that I’m absolutely sure he would have per-force paid attention to during his younger, “hungry” days.

    Another way of saying: he trusted the wrong people.

    They ran a McCain campaign after all (I don’t merely despise McCain for historico-political reasons, but for apparently “wasting” the talents of the brilliant Sarah Palin …she’s one of those “comes along once-in-a-generation leadership types” whose successful vilification is a tremendous loss to the Republic). I wasn’t expecting that (i.e., a rehash of the McCain campaign) after the primaries.

    This is the second presidential election in a row that seems to have been lost due to absolutely inept and unprofessional campaigns.

    Our side is not going to be able to win, given the electoral voter split, if our candidates continue to perform considerably sub-par tactically due to hiring idiots to run their campaigns.

    I am very unhappy about this. Very!

    …we trusted these inept bunglers.

  2. Curtis Says:

    A very good summary in my opinion.

    A caveat emptor about the polls, however.

    When polls start becoming cause rather than effect, then sooner or later they will be wrong because the choosing subject, that is us, cannot be so circumscribed. Every now and then the polls will be wrong. That it wasn’t this time doesn’t mean it won’t be next time.

    And I still wonder if the election was not stolen!

  3. neo-neocon Says:

    Curtis: individual polls are often wrong. But it was only in 1948 (in modern times, although that’s hardly modern; polling methods were very different then) that the average of polls was wrong. The only other time was 1980, when the poll averages (I’m doing this from memory, but I think I’m correct) showed Reagan winning but somewhat underestimated his margin of victory. Otherwise, poll averages (especially state polls) have been pretty correct. That was the general theory Nate Silver was operating under, and although he was much mocked, he predicted this election to a T.

  4. Curtis Says:

    Well, I unerstand, iam jus feelin baad and cant no how what to think agin psycience.

    Nate wasn’t mocked more than he was solidified into a fixture of prophetic phalinx.

    Polls are another straight jacket. Another group-think hammer to drive the thought that individual thought does not matter. Without polls we would be more free. They infect, not perfect. They deflower not empower. One day, this will be recognized and against the law of creative freedom.

  5. davisbr Says:

    @neoneoconI have always said Barack Obama is smart, or clever, or whatever you want to call it, especially about politics

    I think the word you missed is the one that matters.

    He’s a professional.

    He’s a professional campaigner …and he hires brilliantly professional campaign teams.

    Who totally understand the “basics” of the campaign ground game.

    I think that’s the take-away here, and the thing the GOP has ignored. Twice.

    Obama “plays” varsity political campaigning.

    We’re putting up the equivalent of the freshmen team. If that.

    What does it say about the Romney campaign’s ground game when he couldn’t even get the same number of Mormon votes as McCain?


  6. texexec Says:

    Another thing I learned about election predictions is that is almost always right.

    This time, it kept Obama’s probability to win above 50% all during the last few months of the campaign. On the day before the election, I’m pretty sure it zoomed up into the 70%’s.

    Because of my hopes, this year, I blew it off…especially because it was wrong about the Supreme Court’ decision on Obamacare.

    I now realize that that call was on a binary event dependent on what 9 people would do and no one had any inside dope on it (as best we can tell).

    A election determined by millions of people with lots of opportunities for getting inside dope is a very different thing.

    In the fairly close election of 2004, called every single state’s electoral count results accurately.

  7. ziontruth Says:

    If this debacle was the result of a demographic change wherein the takers have become the majority and the makers the minority—and I believe that was the case—then none of the other lessons matter.

    I thought Romney would win. I was wrong. But those who thought Obama would win were lucky to hit the right time; the one who really predicted this, though he lived so long ago and thus couldn’t give an exact date (“200 years” he said, which is fairly accurate when you think of it), was Alexis de Tocqueville.

  8. rickl Says:

    One thing the election proved is that we have no shortage of dopes.

  9. T Says:

    “It’s not surprising that the incumbent won”

    Also keep in mind the margin; not the electoral college but the popular vote. This is not to say “A” for effort, because it’s only crossing the finish line that matters. Just recognize that vote count in FL and OH was a “skin of the teeth” election. It’s not as if Romney’s cause was rejected by a large percentage of the populace. It was not.

    In fact IMO, Neo’s most damning comment here is this: “There are more low-information voters than I ever thought; I believe their numbers are increasing . . . .” This, I suspect is where the serious proplem for the future lies; when the electorate votes for superficial popularity rather than demonstrated ability and competence, I fear that we might be doomed.

  10. Pat Says:

    Incumbency sure helps. It lets you spend taxpayer money to stimulate your base. Take a look where $787 billion of stimulus money went. Most of it looks like welfare spending.

  11. Curtis Says:

    Maybe Obama didn’t really win. Maybe the polls, which supposedly are scientific only within their lower and upper values, tell us that we don’t know nothing at all between those values.

    The margin of error, a “scientific” value, precludes conclusions.

    And yet we are all concluding.

  12. George Pal Says:

    Obama does not win with his base energized, he wins with the middle class made amoral, materialist, acquisitive, and not only uninformed but uninterested in anything that doesn’t fit in with its amorality, materialism, and acquisitiveness.

    I too was wrong about the election but it was not the failure of my reasoned presumption but a failure of my imagination. I could not imagine, for instance, Catholics giving Obama yet another majority of their vote. The government is corrupt and we have made it so. The post election triage is missing the point. Truth is truth and whether presented dialectically or rhetoricallly should win the argument. It’s not the instruments that are old fashioned and lacking in other respects – the patient is critically, perhaps mortally, ill.

  13. Curtis Says:

    I strongly agree with GP.

    It is the individual cells, receiving the information and making the decisions, based on their chemical make-up, which are important.

    Life shows us how metabolic it is. Soon, there will be a correction. There may be millions of casualties, but Life will continue as God has commanded. That we forgot that and had to suffer, oh well.

  14. Mary in OH Says:

    Yes! Your post resounds with me. I have been scratching my head how I was such a idiot. I believed the polls were oversampling dems; I believed that crowds were mighty in numbers for Romney’s appearances; I believed no pres has been elected with such high employment; I believed that Obamas doubling down on appealing to his base would turn off voters. And now I am in DISbelief I was such a chump. Dumb me

  15. neo-neocon Says:

    Mary in OH: just for future reference, I think most people don’t understand that most pollsters don’t adjust their samples for party preference. They select randomly, and the party chips fall where they may. I believe that Rasmussan, and possibly one other (forget which), adjusts for party.

    But most other pollsters believe that, over time, and lots of polls, the samples that come out in their random polls are often representative of the final vote. So they don’t adjust them. And that turned out to be true this time. The electorate appears to have been +6 Democrat.

  16. davisbr Says:

    This comment from the similar discussion over at Hot Air “gets it”.

    His succinct analysis is the correct take-away (in my not-so-humble opinion) to what I now believe is correctly analyzed to be mainly a tactical blunder of epic proportions by another mis-managed GOP campaign team.

    I think too many conservatives believe elections are won with superior ideas.

    Ideas can only be implemented with hard work and effective organization.

    The vast majority of people don’t read HotAir (unfortunately). Getting those people who don’t pay a lot of attention to the polls [sp] takes boots on the ground.

    High paid consultants, glitzy ads [sp], and editorials won’t do it.

    The only thing I’d add is an emendation to make his last sentence read “High paid consultants, glitzy ads, and editorials won’t alone do it if you don’t pay attention to campaign fundamentals.

    Romney campaign team was farm league. They lost to a professional league campaign team.

    End of story.

  17. GoneWithTheWind Says:

    I think there are a number of other factors not mentioned:
    1. The Democrats are really really good at election fraud. So good that in state and local elections they have stolen every close election. They were about to do that in Florida to give Gore the state but two things turned it around. A genuine grassroots movement that was beating on the doors where the phony recount was taking place caugh the attention of the media and the other was that they actually put the recount on TV. We ALL got to watch as TWO Democrat judges and ONE Republican judge would declare ballot after ballot as having voted for Gore because of hanging chads. We actully got to watch them use their famous “vote mining” technique. They might have gotten away with it except the law says you cannot recount one or two or four counties in a statewide election and you must recount ALL counties. That is what the Supreme court ruled on that the recount was illegal (that and the fact they had gone past the deadline which was plan B in the Democrat playbook). So it is likely that in this election every swing state and within those states every major county had massive voter fraud. Indeed we saw it where the Democrats physically ejected Republican vote monitors. Interestingly in those precincts the Democrats got 99% of the vote!!!

    The next factor is many Ron Paul supporters and other disaffected voters voted for Ron Paul or choose not to vote as a political statement. These votes might as well have been for Obama.

    Another factor is the union “volunteers” who found street bums and drove them to the polls. Found illegal aliens and drove them to the polls. And not just one poll but multiple ones telling them at each poll which name to use. They did this overwhelmingly in those states where thanks to the DOJ voter ID was not allowed.

    Then there was NAACP, ACORN and other lesser known organizations who voted absentee and at the polls for dead people and made up names that had been “registered” in the months before the election. Did you know you could bring in a bunch (a 100, a 1000 perhaps 10,000) voter registrations cards to your county voter registration office and just give them to them??? No questions, no names or ids required, just give them the cards and all these ficticious people become voters.

    So did the Democrats do a better job of getting out the vote or was this election lost the old fashion way; the Chicago way by vote fraud????

  18. OlderandWheezier Says:

    There’s one other problem. We’re not yet willing to stoop to the other side’s level. And if HRC is the candidate in 2016, the same pols who were afraid to be labeled racist (as if we all weren’t being called that already) will be paralyzed by their fear of being tarred as misogynist.

  19. Papa Dan Says:

    How very patriotic of those precincts in Philly to vote at 99% of registered voters. Now I need to go throw up.

  20. texexec Says:

    I think the Democrats did a better job of marketing their “product” than the Republicans did.

    In the early 20th century, mass production of products became possible but to keep manufacturing costs down, production runs had to be long and large. As a result, Henry Ford offered one kind of automobile…a black Model T. His marketing job was to convince potential customers that’s what they needed or wanted.

    In recent years, manufacturing has become more sophisticated and it’s now possible to provide products with greater variety. Production runs don’t have to be so long. Marketing has become more a matter of identifying a market segment and then making a product that segment wants…not convincing it to buy what you can make.

    The Dems did an excellent job of identifying market segments that were likely to vote for them and then doing things from day one of their administration to encourage that segment to turn out and vote.

    They supposedly “bailed out the auto industry” and convinced many in mid-western manufacturing states that they did.

    They did away with “don’t ask don’t tell” in the military which got them the gay vote AND people who sympathized with gays.

    They used executive orders/etc. to make single women feel comfortable that pro-choice was not going to be eliminated. (And amplified that issue by convincing those women that Republicans would. That was mightily helped by two dumb*ss candidates in Missouri and Indiana.)

    They stopped enforcing illegal immigration to get Hispanic votes.

    They didn’t “drill baby drill” in order to get environmentalist votes.

    All these actions were directed at swing states…OH, VA, FL, NC, etc.

    Of course, these actions did cost them some votes but guess where? MOSTLY IN SAFE RED STATES.

    Karl Rove did a good job of marketing in 2004 by identifying the fundamentalist, strong military, older voters, and small government market segments and getting out THAT vote.

    It’s easier to address your market segments and do things to get them to vote for you if you are an incumbent. That’s why incumbents usually get reelected.

    Republicans need to do a better job of identifying their market segments (and not just by age and location demographics), perhaps finding more that fall within our principles, and getting them to vote.

    Its possible that some market segments can be educated and changed to vote more for us, but that’s VERY hard to do.

  21. Bilwick Says:

    One lesson is: Don’t count the MSM out . . . yet. Before the election, I kept reading on the pro-freedom blogosphere statements that the MSM is a dinosaur, and the rise of the “citizen journalist” had de-clawed it. I even read of a prediction that this election would be the “end of the Obama media.” Would that it were so.

  22. DaveindeSwamp Says:

    Don’t forget the politics of envy which Neo touched on earlier . It’s amazing how that can blind someone .

  23. M J R Says:

    I expected the incumbent’s vote to go down substantially from 2008 to 2012. It did.

    I ^never^ expected Romney’s vote to actually go down from McCain’s 2008 vote. Consequently, I was ^sure^ the polls at “D + whatever” were oversampling Democrats. Looks like they weren’t. It wasn’t based on wishful thinking, but on my being ^sure^ Romney’s vote would at least match McCain’s. (Completes the circle; let’s get off!)

    A question. Had the “R” side won so many states so narrowly, would we not be seeing lawsuits and recounts and all manner of ugly demonstrations?

    Had the “R” side won, would the “D” side at least have initiated lawsuits aimed at delegitimizing the Romney presidency before it ever got off the ground? Why is the “R” side so calmly accepting and submissive?? What is wrong with our people???

    Meanwhile, Campaign 2016 has already begun, with — what else? — a poll, an Iowa poll, showing Hillary ‘way in the lead at 57 percent, followed by the joker Vice president at 17 percent, and Cuomo at 6 percent.

    [ ]

    I expect we ^may^ see Michelle Antoinette figuring she’s as capable as her husband and throwing her hat in the ring as well — note, that’s “^may^”, but I’m serious about the possibility. Then, whatever will the politically correct leftie ever do?

    Meanwhile, . . .

    George Pal Says (among many other ideas), 2:18 pm — “The government is corrupt and we have made it so.”

    Please, how have I (and you, for that matter) made it so?

  24. Artfldgr Says:

    African American men and women voted with each other for socialism (in which one class pays them)

    Spanish men and women voted with each other mostly for socialism (in which one class pays them)

    Caucasian women mostly voted against their mates (the people who they mostly breed with not necessarily married), mostly for socialism (in which one class pays them)

    Caucasian men mostly voted against their mates, mostly against socialism (where they are the one class that pays)

    I am not writing the headlines or the articles…

    Gallup: 2012 election had the largest gender gap in recorded history

    The gender gap in the 2012 presidential election was the largest since Gallup began tracking the metric in 1952, according to data released by the polling firm on Friday.

    President Obama won women by 12 percentage points, while Mitt Romney won men by 8. That’s a 20-point gender gap, edging out the 1984 election when Ronald Reagan defeated Democrat Walter Mondale in a landslide.

    Reagan won both men and women in that election, but carried men by 28 points and women by only 10 – a disparity of 18 points.

    2012 was the fifth straight election to feature a double-digit gender gap.

    Without that socially engineered gap funded mostly by the one class that pays to fund against itself without choice, the other groups could not achieve high enough numbers to vote away freedom, and vote in socialism on the one class back. (though with affirmative action, a neat judo move may occur where the people who voted it in are the ones who are going to work and pay for it displacing the group they thought they would receive from to be the givers. either way, this will make the already below replacement science established genocide point (where the population can never recover from) lower).

    at some point the wealth of the nation will collapse when this large group is bankrupt and cant fund the other groups and have not been having children to grow up, work and fund the other groups.

  25. Steve Says:

    Obama won with turnout. The polls were not accurate unless you think they predicted Team Romney would screw up the GOTV effort. If Team Romney had executed competently they would have won.

  26. thomass Says:

    On his being smart:
    “(4) Obama knew he never had to appeal to the middle, and he didn’t even try. He merely had to alternately scare and bribe his base into turning out. ”

    His campaign leaked that months ago (write off white blue collar wokers in favor of hr people, single women, et cetera) and none of us put it togeather. We saw it as a weakness… while rather it was what he then did… and won.

  27. Curtis Says:

    I’m not buying it. We’re going to be led around by the nose by polls. Bullshit.

    Remember Gladwell’s “blink.” About 10,000 hours of experience leads to an “expert” status. There was one example of a fake sculpture and one expert had a “blink” that it was wrong. All the science could not, at least initially, show it was a fake, but the expert’s blink knew it was. It was.

    Michael Barone is an expert. Dick Morrris too.

    The ability to miscount 1 out of every 20 votes would easily throw the election.

    And now, they have the means to merely state a poll result and that become law.

    Bull fucking shit.

  28. thomass Says:

    davisbr Says:

    “I think too many conservatives believe elections are won with superior ideas.”

    I do have a problem with that in that we have not run on ideas in the last two cycles. I was upset that the Romney campaign went into ‘we are good people who act presidential’ after the first debate. But everyone said it would work… well, it didnt and it doesn’t. We can’t blame the public for being idiots when we didn’t even explain why they should support us (via ideas).

  29. chuck Says:

    He’s also unscrupulous. That turned out to be a winning combination.

    I certainly helps. FDR, Johnson, Kennedy, Clinton all exhibited a certain talent for the unscrupulous. I think it is a common trait associated with the political talent gene cluster.

    OT, but I’ve been thinking of the implications of the urban/rural split. Given that city politics are dominated by Democrats and that immigrants tend to end up in cities, it follows that immigrants looking to move up the ladder will tend to be Democrats. Likewise, immigrants seeking to achieve professional status will pass through universities dominated by Democrats. I think that in the long run Republicans need to put some effort into regaining influence in both environments.

  30. thomass Says:

    PS everyone

    You sound like lefties when they loose.. with all the blaming the public.

  31. George Pal Says:

    “The government is corrupt and we have made it so.”

    M J R Says:
    “Please, how have I (and you, for that matter) made it so?”

    I didn’t have you in mind so don’t take it personally.

    An electorate that will continue to vote big spending (George Bush and Obama reelected) is morally corrupt.

    And never mind the rest of the litany – here’s the kicker.

    An electorate that would vote for a candidate (Obama) that opposed the Born Alive Infant Protection Act is morally corrupt. In such a case there is no need for God, religious affiliation, moral injunctions, or ethics codes; the thing is wrong viscerally and should weigh on the conscience of everyone. When (R) pols weighed in inarticulately on rape/abortion they were repudiated by most everyone including their own Party. When Obama’s opposition to the BAIPA became known it made not much headway outside the internet precincts devoted to the pro-life issue and died unnoticed and obviously unheeded. It’s only a personal observation but I had come across more complaints about social conservatives than Obama’s creepy, and not just creepy creepy but Mengele creepy stance.

    The majority of this country, when they are not amoral, are immoral. I have as evidence 54% and 52% of the voters who more than anyone knew better but nevertheless voted for Obama – Catholics.

  32. Gary Rosen Says:

    1) It was obvious from early on, long before the Republican nominee was decided, that Obama was going to run a campaign based strictly on turning out his base and demonizing the opposition. It sounds negative and cramped, but it worked. Negative campaigning *works*. Though negative campaigning does not necessarily have to be dishonest.

    2) Democrats have a decades-long head start on Republicans in GOTV. I am old enough to remember campaigns going all the way back to Kennedy-Nixon and even remember going into a voting booth with my mother as a little boy in 1956. For nearly all that time the conventional wisdom has been that higher turnout helped the Democrats. The unspoken reason was that Republicans tended to be older and more responsible and didn’t have to be reminded or prodded to do their civic duty. But whatever the reason Republicans have usually counted on *lower* turnout to help their cause. They need to change this way of thinking. The failure of ORCA may be due less to bumbling than to simple lack of practice.

  33. Gary Rosen Says:

    Can’t get rid of the italics

  34. n.n Says:

    So, in essence, most black Americans voted for retributive change; most white women voted for a “sugar daddy”; most other non-white Americans voted for redistributive change. It seems the lesson learned is that corruption is progressive. That the outcome of the human and civil rights movements was retrogressive.

  35. expat Says:

    OT: If youwantto hear what they are saying in Germany go here:

    Also note other articles this week listed in the left sidebar.

    I personally think that race was still an issue. We had poor blacks against rich whites and dog whistles being reported frequently by the media. The social justice issue had an influence. As did the coolness factor, especially among the young and the Anna Wintour-worshipping crowd. Altogether, this means we have a lot of dumb voters.

  36. rickl Says:

    Italics off

  37. rickl Says:

    Once again, single women voted for Obama by a huge margin. I haven’t been able to find actual statistics, but I saw somewhere that it was 68%.

    I don’t even find them attractive any more. When I see a pretty young woman, all I can think is that she’s an enemy who wants to kill me and take my stuff.

    How can I possibly think otherwise?

  38. davisbr Says:

    NEO? Looks like someone left an open italics tag …and starting my comment with a slash-i didn’t fix it. Just FYI.

    @thomass Says:
    November 10th, 2012 at 6:39 pm
    davisbr Says:

    “I think too many conservatives believe elections are won with superior ideas.”

    I do have a problem with that in that we have not run on ideas in the last two cycles.

    The point I was making is that its not merely superior ideas alone that win elections thomass …as I thought the context (and my other comments) made clear. Sorry if they weren’t clear.

    You can have the best bloody damn ideas in the world, but if you fail to participate in the “ground game” (i.e., the GOTV [get-out-the-vote] election fundamentals), you will lose.

    What we’ve found out in the last couple of days is that the Romney GOTV effort wasn’t even close to being on the same level as Obama’s.

    It should have been competitive. It wasn’t.

    The Romney campaign’s pathetically organized and clearly inadequate ground game is the real failure of this cycle …not conservative ideas.

    We lost because it turned out Romney had trusted his general election campaign effort to incompetents.

    I think that’s what caused us all to be so blind-sided, and distrust the polls to the bitter end: we thought that the GOTV effort by the GOP was going to be competitive.

    Even being down a per cent or so should not have mattered. Actual turn out should have been at least even for gawd’s sake. Those polls with Obama up +1 should have been merely a heads up for last minute checks by the GOP for their ground game.

    This stuff ain’t rocket science. This is Election 101.

    But they weren’t even in the game for the fundamentals.

    Romney himself indicated he sincerely thought he was ahead (so: his campaign team were lying to him too).

    This is a cluster-fark.

    It’s my sincerest hope that Romney crucify’s these idiots, and then lawyers up and sues them one and all for their sheer incomptence. (Or maybe some of the donors; they’d have probable grounds too.)

    He should not have lost due to sheer campaign incompetence.

    …and that said: yeah, I agree with you that conservative ideas haven’t been adequately presented. Are they ever, though?

  39. rickl Says:

    But why do some people need to be prodded, hectored, and goaded into voting? I have never understood that.

  40. Curtis Says:

    Does GOTV for Republicans mean busing butloads of Somalis across state lines to vote? Free pizza, phones, marijuanna, sex to vote? Teachers taking students to vote? Every damn gov’t worker voting for his paycheck?

    Before we start hectoring Romney and his supposed failed staff for poor GOTV, let’s define what GOTV is.

  41. chuck Says:

    Gee, the new strategy seems to be shaping up as “Yo, stupid, amoral, parasites, why don’t you vote for Republicans?” I have my doubts that this will be effective.

  42. davisbr Says:

    rickl Says:
    November 10th, 2012 at 8:38 pm
    But why do some people need to be prodded, hectored, and goaded into voting? I have never understood that.

    There are some things you don’t have to understand the “Why” of, rickl …you just have to acknowledge that they are.

    (Though in response to your observation, you should understand that you are part of an elite group of people: you DO follow politics …and sadly “that ain’t normal”. Take a bow.)

    Do you really think the Dem’s don’t have the same problems we do with apathetic voters? With voters who are only nominally “Dem” voters …if they can get them to the polls?

    Well: there you go.

    When both groups are matched in party ID (or voting “inclination” if you wll), the game is won, or lost, at the most basic level on FIRST getting your people to show up.

    If you have to taxi them to the damn polls to get them counted, then you taxi them to the damn polls.

    You do what you got to do. It isn’t rocket science. This is “Campaigns 101” …Bonehead Elections …at this point in history, it’s not mysterious at all, and ESPECIALLY to the pros.

    Then, when you’ve got your side locked down, THEN you concentrate further effort on convincing the tweenies what their best interest is. And act on it.

    And then you hope. And pray. And bite your nails to the quick. And whatever. And I dunno: but that issue is at least is an equal conundrum for both camps. Even-steven.

    But THAT is what I find so infuriating about this cycle. The polls DID show we were getting to that group.

    But it is now obvious that Romney’s campaign effort did NOT address the BASIC necessity to get the damn people to the polls.

    Basically, the Romney campaign didn’t dot their i’s nor cross their t’s.

    They sucked!!

    This should not have been the case.

  43. davisbr Says:

    Curtis? – Following even Neo’s links she posted above will get you off the “supposed failure” and to the “infuriated” pretty quickly.

  44. Curtis Says:

    Really bad, if true, Davisbro, but is what you are saying true. Do you base only on the ORCA failure?

    Oh, Chuck. Great line. Good laugh. I actually think it might work along the lines of “we’re only looking for a few good men.”

  45. Curtis Says:

    Okay, I’ll do my homework and follow the links. Thanks Davisbr.

  46. davisbr Says:

    The ORCA failure is the core of the Romney GOTV issue Curtis.

    Apparently the ORCA software developers (campaign consultants) were blowing it out their asses.

    Worse, there was no testing (under load or whatever).

    Worse yet, there was no plan B.

    In hindsight, this seems to resemble a Dilbert cartoon strip.

    Another way to put this is: Did someone mention buses? Buses are good. I have no problem with buses.

  47. Curtis Says:

    Buses and hot chocolate.

    Meanwhile some random thoughts which really shouldn’t be random.

    Sandy victims continue to be victims and the MSM asks “what is the governor doing?”

    Companies lay off employees and reduce hours of other employees and are castigated as if their expenses have no effect on their net income.

    Meanwhile, the federal gov’t seeks waivers from the WARN requirements.

    And we purchase 70% of our own bonds. If you sell something to yourself, is there a net change?

  48. A_Nonny_Mouse Says:

    GoneWithTheWind Says:
    November 10th, 2012 at 3:05 pm

    “I think there are a number of other factors not mentioned: {etc}”
    = = = = = =


    And now – How in the heck do we make voting tamper-proof, when
    (1) the party in power is DETERMINED to let everybody and his gerbil vote as many times as they want to, using as many names and addresses as they can invent
    (2) voting machines can be hacked, or be maliciously programmed, or be “miscalibrated”, and most of the time NOBODY WOULD KNOW that vote-fraud had occurred
    (3) TPTB think it’s a great and good thing to outsource vote-tallying to some outfit in Spain (try to convince me of the resulting data integrity – oops, sorry, nope, you can’t)

    I guess we’re stuck with Son-Of-Stalin for 4 more years (and I hate, hate, HATE that idea!).

    But- if we can’t re-establish “free and fair elections” which allow only ELIGIBLE voters to participate, and if we can’t trust (which I emphatically DO NOT) that our votes are accurately counted and reported, then elections in the USA will be as pointless as those of the old USSR (where citizens had the “choice” of voting for the Party candidate, period).

    In my opinion, this “Republic, madam, if you can keep it” is already beyond the tipping point. If the Usurpers can subvert The Will of The People by controlling the outcome of elections, we have only two options: become serfs (and “may you wear your yoke lightly”), or fight back like a cornered wolverine.

    I’m not seeing wolverines ANYWHERE.

  49. Gary Rosen Says:

    A lot of people here are talking about ORCA and GOTV and I want to reiterate my point. Republicans are still learning about something the Dems have been working for decades. Not saying we shouldn’t criticize Romney for ORCA, in fact we need to learn from whatever mistakes he made. But recognize the task.

  50. Curtis Says:

    Agreed, Nonny, that Gonewiththewind noted some very needed to be said things.

    Overall, I think the election was stolen by five to ten various fraudulent tactics like busing people over state lines, voting two or more times, changing votes by access to software, allowing non-citizens to vote. . . all these and more and each one in itself need only affect 1 of 200 votes but in the cumulative affect 1 of 20 and viola there’s goes the election. I remember a line from a Kennedy biography I read where someone told Honey Fritz they had voted 20 times for him.

    Ah well, all it light and sweetness.

    Except even the UN is aghast at our election process.

    Double u oh double u.

  51. causauk Says:

    Our problem is one that always occurs in conservative parties. There’s always at least two strands of thought within conservative movements. F. A. Hayek called them Conservatism and Liberalism (classical liberalism). Disraeli called them Conservatism and Toryism.

    The general idea is the same though. Conservatism defines itself in opposition to prevailing trends; it lacks political principles. Toryism, classical liberalism, and neoconservatism have political principles.

    They have different political principles but they have them. Romney sacrificed many of the principles he had.

    He disappointed free traders with his China bashing. He disappointed almost all of us in the foreign policy debate. He probably disappointed some pro-lifers.

    The makers/takers gaff betrayed something too. It was offensive to a neoconservative. It was offensive to a classical liberal. He wasn’t treating voters as individuals with aspirations. He was lumping and dividing voters into groups with vested interests.

    I’m rather curious to see if Thatcher or Reagan ever used language like that.

    Our next candidate won’t have principles we’ll all love, but they had better have some.

  52. A_Nonny_Mouse Says:

    expat Says:
    November 10th, 2012 at 8:07 pm

    “… I personally think that race was still an issue. ”
    = = = = = =

    Just yesterday at a local pharmacy’s checkout I overheard 2 (black) clerks talking (apparently about Obamacare now being a certainty). One said to the other, indignantly “… and they wanted to put Obama out of office!!” I was stunned (and stayed silent, but I thought to myself “Whoa, kid, it happens every 4 years, and to every president – it’s called ‘an election’… “)

    I can’t explain how I picked up such a strong impression from only overhearing a few seconds of conversation, but I concluded that Obama’s rhetoric promoting class/ culture/ race/ income/ divisiveness was REALLY effective.

    I got the vibe that this kid honestly felt that Obama should be untouchable in office, and that he himself (as a member of “Obama’s tribe”, since Obama won and the “white tribe” lost) should get –RIGHTEOUSLY DESERVED TO GET– lots of “free stuff” as spoils of war from the conquered tribe. And I was, as I said, stunned. Shocked. Very disturbed. Visions-of-South-Africa-danced-through-my-head. And yet it was just a moment’s comment.

    Maybe I’m losing my mind.

  53. thomass Says:

    A_Nonny_Mouse Says:

    Maybe they meant cant see why people would want him out considering how great obamacare is… I mean; I doubt they’ve read anything critical of it… or know anyone saying anything against it…

  54. chuck Says:


    The problems were not *just* Orca, lots of small things were handled badly. Here is a link to a post describing Romney’s HQ on election day. There are other similar ones. I think davisbr has got it right, there was a massive failure to dot the i’s and cross the t’s. That might not be directly Romney’s fault, but it is certainly the fault of those *he* chose to manage the campaign. Romney has spent the last six years running for president, but he seems to have neglected to build up a campaign team and voter base over that time.

    I think there needs to be a mini-revolution in the Republican party. I attended the Republican caucuses this year and didn’t find them that congenial, too socially conservative for my taste, bit old, and not that different from Democrats when it came to many issues. I’ve also attended Democratic dominated events and also found them uncongenial, too snotty about religious working people and clueless about larger issues to my mind. So, maybe Libertarians next time 😉

    But I do feel we are on the brink of disaster. I think the debt has almost reached the point where we will never be able to pay it off except by printing money, and my savings will disappear. And if no one can buy votes because the dollar is worthless, if higher taxes and obamacare drive down employment, well, interesting times will be upon us. And then there is Europe and China…

    I hope Obama is up to dealing with things, but I think he is more show than do and his choice of lieutenants at the national level hasn’t impressed me. If our boat heads into the vortex, sweet words and bomber jackets won’t cut it.

  55. kolnai Says:

    Thomass –

    When the lefties blame the public when they lose, they’re basically right – it is the public’s fault, ultimately, because they didn’t buy what the left was selling. We might disagree with their diagnosis of wherein the “fault” resided, but that it was the public’s choice is simply correct.

    So we don’t “sound like lefties” so much as we sound like people who live in a democracy who just got rejected by 50+1%.

  56. chuck Says:

    I got the vibe that this kid honestly felt that Obama should be untouchable in office, and that he himself (as a member of “Obama’s tribe”, since Obama won and the “white tribe” lost) should get –RIGHTEOUSLY DESERVED TO GET– lots of “free stuff” as spoils of war from the conquered tribe.

    Doesn’t surprise me at all. There are at least two aspects to that. First, in my experience poor people, white or black, tend to see the world as a rigged game that needs to be beat, so they cheat on insurance and taxes, and see it as all about getting a slice of the magical pie hoarded by the rich. The upper middle class idea of school -> college -> job just isn’t there, they don’t know how to do that. It’s cultural. That is why those who escape that background are so unusual and, to my mind, admirable. Second, Obama exploits that perception, he was raised to do so, the people he grew up around thought that way. I expect there could be racial unrest if the economy really crashes.

  57. Curtis Says:

    Kolnai (love the Kolnai) boiled it down to the incredible truth: We are a nation divided.

  58. tennuity Says:

    I am a 30 something white female Republican who lives in CA and has been surrounded by Democrats forever. My peers always vote Dem because they believe that the Republican Party is the old, white guy party. They vote to keep Republicans out of power because of social issues (gay & abortion) & it’s the rich people party. They are not educated on issues & don’t demand results from the Dems. Romney lost this race before he even decided to run.

    My advice to Republicans is to focus on getting more women voters because women are the future leaders of this country. I think we need to have a House Speaker who is a woman & women candidates should be found for the 2014 Senate/House races. Our 2016 candidate for Pres also has to be a woman. I feel strongly that our fiscal problems provide an opening to attract educated women who don’t want to lose their wealth / want a better future for their children.

  59. Curtis Says:

    Women have always been the leaders of the Republican party. They raise the men that are the leaders and without them, we wouldn’t have the men.

    Now, in your view, where are the men? Pray tell?

  60. Mel Says:

    To a largely ‘adolescentized’ populace, a pat on the back and a couple bucks in the pocket
    is always better than tough love.

    With little experience to draw on and very little knowledge of history, the liberal mind is drawn to feel-good ideas, like justice, equality for all, etc. I don’t think conservative ideas can easily penetrate this, no matter how well reasoned they may be.

    Conservative ideas will come to people only when they’re receptive to them. The problem is that this country has such reserves from our past glory that the nice sounding, but damaging liberal policies take so much time to fail.

    I stopped by my 83 year old mom’s place today, and she told me she and the other ladies of her street had a party today. A little puzzled, I asked her what it was for. Obama party, she said.

    She’s a bleeding heart liberal. And she ought to know better, IMO.

  61. Curtis Says:

    Hello. Hello o. Hello.

  62. thomass Says:

    kolnai Says:

    “So we don’t “sound like lefties” so much as we sound like people who live in a democracy who just got rejected by 50+1%.”

    I buy the logic of your argument, so on to step two. We were all excited when Ryan was taped. Ah, someone to convey our ideas. Also; Romney could not only speak better than Bush… he was quick on his verbal feet. He had the potential to not only convey ideas but to debate them.

    So did they? I say they didn’t. The public made a rational choice given the data they were presented.

    We know Obama is bad guy, we know what the left is about, we know that the democratic party is even more corrupt than the republican. We don’t choose to even try to convey this information. If we put Spanish language adds on the air comparing the democrats corruption to things back home (such as the PRI) and say America built its huge middle class by not playing robin hood with rich.. rather being a nation of laws… or ads targeted to African Americans pointing out things never get better in the cities voting democrat (hell; they’re worse than 1960) and that it is the democrat machine that stands in the way of progress (be it schools or new jobs due to regulations rich democrats want)… heck; if we did, the republican votes from the groups couldnt get any worse than now.

  63. Curtis Says:

    The problem is incredulity.

    It’s just too large to believe, isn’t it?

    But why?

    Well, mostly because of method not motive.

    And what if the method become suspect? Will people abdicate because of incredulity?

    No. Let’s not let it happen.

  64. Curtis Says:

    Like most cases, they could have got away with it except for the extreme cases: for instance, their hate for Col. Allen West.

  65. chuck Says:

    Gosh tennuity, no men? Sounds sexist to me. And I’m a bit old to contemplate a sex change. Besides, Republican women and blacks undergo a strange transmogrification, they are no longer women or black. Only Democrats can be women or black. It is the strangest thing. So I suspect your suggestion isn’t going to help.

  66. Curtis Says:

    There was voter fraud on a massive scale and merely because the margin seems to preclude that, voter fraud did happen. Don’t let them get away with it.

  67. Curtis Says:

    Also, in accordance with Occam’s suggestion that we play by the media’s no guilt rules, we should push this even if it isn’t true.

    Ready to play or not?

  68. Curtis Says:

    Occam’s list v. Journolist

  69. Otiose Says:

    The primary and most important point you made, neo, is that absent some really big factor, the incumbency is worth several points. It doesn’t hurt to have the media on your side either.

    Reagan, Bush (Perot factor) but then Clinton, Bush, and now Obama.

  70. kolnai Says:

    On the question of Romney’s GOTV and campaign tactics, I have no doubt (now) that they were sub-par in many respects.

    But as “that guy” who tries to warn us away from soothing explanations, I have to say that even if we’d been able to squeak out of victory this time with an impeccable campaign operation (a dubious proposition – just because ORCA was bad doesn’t mean we would have been able to drag enough people who’d been cynicized out of voting by Obama’s maliciousness) – even if that had happened, I doubt many of us would feel all that comforted by the result. I’d feel relieved, but not comforted.

    Obama should have been repudiated decisively. Yet, under no plausible scenario (it turns out) was that ever so much as possible. It wasn’t improbable. It wasn’t unlikely. It wasn’t a mere outside chance. It was simply not possible. Think about that.

    I gather that our side’s tendency to predict a blowout in our favor was less about doubting polls and more about having faith in the American people. That is, we doubted the polls, ultimately, because of our faith in the people. We couldn’t believe in D+6 because we believed the people could never be that stupid. Certainly not D+6 stupid. And most certainly not D+6-to-re-elect-Obama stupid.


    Now, inasmuch as it was Team Romney’s job to make sure to do all they could to help the public not be D+6 stupid, they clearly failed. My point is that we just don’t know how much less stupid we could have made the people even with an impeccable operation. The variables are complicated, and Democrat citizens with a black Jesus on the ballot are easier to shepherd to the polls than Republicans or R-leaners in rural Ohio and Wisconsin, and suburban Virginia and Florida, with a Gordon Gekko on their side of the ballot.

    Let’s say that Tim Groseclose’s thesis in his book “Left Turn” is correct – left-wing media bias leads the public to vote 8-10% more Democratic, on average, than they would with a balanced media. In the case of a relentlessly negative campaign by a messianic figure who people are almost incapable of thinking badly of, you can add another 5% or so who will be so put off that they will stay home.

    We also know that registered voters are more Democrat than likely voters, and “adults” are more Democrat still than registered voters. So as you go deeper into the pool of voting-age adults, you go deeper into a sea of liberalism. I understand that the claim is that Romney failed to get HIS OWN natural pool of voters to turn out for him, and no doubt this is true to some extent – but to what extent?

    Mormon turnout? Mormon demographics are changing just like every other group, and newer Mormon voters vote just as easily for Harry Reid as they do for Orrin Hatch.

    Rural and suburban turnout? Why would we expect these groups to be inclined to vote for a vulture capitalist who would kill their wives and outsource their jobs?

    And so on. True, Romney got less of all of these groups than McCain. But McCain got less than Bush. One can see this as an artifact of campaign operations, or one can see it as a trend relatively insensitive to GOTV. We don’t know.

    A priori, as it were, this is what the Romney campaign was up against. It is entirely possible that a better operation would have netted him enough votes only to lose by less.

    What this means is not that we shouldn’t be pissed that the operation was in fact so poor, but rather that we shouldn’t pretend that this was the main reason we lost. For quite simply, Romney shouldn’t have had to run a flawless GOTV operation to win. The badness of ORCA was just the final straw (maybe – we don’t know that yet).

    I’m worried that a lot of us – but particularly GOP officials and campaign-managers – are going to grab the failure of ORCA, run with it as the decisive independent variable, and focus all their energies in 2016 on GOTV. We should – don’t get me wrong – do everything we can to bring big guns to the gun fight. But remember – the mind is where the votes are. And the media, the Gramscian complex, owns the public mind, and it is only going to get worse four years hence if we stand back and do nothing.

    We will discuss this further, I’m sure, so let me stake out my simple slogan on the lesson of 2012 at this point:

    The mind is where the votes are.

    Going into “the home” through GOTV is a stopgap that may work, or may not, down the road. But eventually it won’t work, no matter how good we are, because the Gramscian complex owns the minds. We can’t afford to be on the long odds that that isn’t true.

    Whatever else we do, bullet point number one is to begin fighting for minds. As we do that, we will discover all sorts of new and better GOTV tactics.

    My sense of the right punditocracy as of now is that they’re scrambling for ways to avoid this conclusion, because, of all the things we may be tasked to do, this one seems the most Sisyphean.

    It may be so. But we have no choice. That’s what I’m thinking, anyway.

  71. causauk Says:

    ‘Better for us to have been conquered by Prussia or Austria than to be saddled with the debt of one hundred and forty million.’ The words of David Hume.

    Making this about the debt is a losing argument. As Macaulary wrote “At evert stage of growth of that debt the nation has set up the same cry of anguish and despair. At every stage in the growth of that debt it has been seriously asserted by wise men that bankruptcy and ruin were at hand. Yet the debt went on growing; and still bankruptcy and ruin were as remote as ever.”

    What matters most is how you spend the money not where the money comes from. Thomas Sowell put it “Going into debt to create long-term investments make as much sense for the government as a private individual’s borrowing more than his annual income to buy a house.”

    Going into debt is sensible as a means of funding meaningful investments. But we’re not making meaningful investments. We’re paying for current benefits. This is theft. It’s a Ponzi scheme.

    We should be attacking Democrat proposals more on their merits than how they’re funded.

  72. parker Says:

    I thought there were still enough informed voters to send BHO back to Chicago. I was wrong. I thought a majority of my fellow citizens understood the burden placed upon future generations by reckless deficits. I was wrong. I shudder to think that a majority do not realize DC borrows 45 cents of every dollar it spends and somewhere around 70% of all T-notes are bought by the FED.

    Entitlements are the real fiscal cliff and no one is truly serious about addressing the issue. Yet, I had hoped the election of Romney would begin the process of slowly turning the USA away from the mutual suicide pact between DC and a populous that expects endless entitlements without the consequence of paying, out of pocket, for those entitlements. While I remain optimistic about my private life, I see little reason to believe our society can avoid disaster because the damage that will be done in the next 4 years will prove to be irreversible.

    We are all Greek.

  73. thomass Says:

    Curtis Says:

    “Ready to play or not?”

    No; I think we can play hardball while still speaking the truth. We just don’t… ever… even do that. Its not like these people don’t present enough actual bs they could be called out on.

  74. kolnai Says:

    thomass –

    Yes, I basically agree with you, except I wouldn’t go so far as to say the public made a “rational” choice (though I understand what you mean).

    I would simply add that we should do more (I’m sure you’re not implying we shouldn’t). Occam has it basically right, along with some of the Bookworm suggestions.

    My only problem is that I get a little pep in my step when I think about how much we can do – we’re not hopeless, we haven’t exhausted our resources, not by a long shot – but then, when I reflect on the Supreme Court almost certainly going left (God preserve the health of Messrs. Scalia, Kennedy, Thomas, Alito, and Roberts) and the cementing of Obamacare and the explosion of the debt and a nuclear Iran and an aggressive Russia and China…

    I sink, and start to feel, “What the hell’s the point?”

    Good thing I have an affinity for existentialism. I don’t need to believe there’s any hope in order to keep fighting. Pride and being right is enough.

    And we’re probably all in roughly that boat. The scales have fallen from our eyes, and there are no more illusions. But we’re all ready to fight, and to step on to the battlefield with new, clearer eyes. We MUST do all we can to make sure that the GOP people see what we see.

  75. kolnai Says:

    Curtis –

    “Occam’s List.” LOVE that.

  76. kolnai Says:

    causauk –

    That is an interesting suggestion, and I must say I have had that thought swirl about in min mind whenever I think about Japan. Big wealthy countries have a way of lumbering along even when technically, as Mark Steyn likes to say, being “the brokest nations in history.”

    “JJ Fomerly Jimmy J” wrote yesterday that what we’ll see is probably more like a steady decline into something like Russia (in my view, that is a more apt comparison than European social democracies, because those tend to be so homogeneous and small – though increasingly less so, admittedly).

    In any case, we have pressed the “brokest nation in history” theme and it has not gotten through. No one cares. It’s too abstract. So your suggestion has real merit (though on the other hand, we did press Solyndra, “shovel ready” jobs, “picking only the losers,” etc., and no one seemed to care about that either).

  77. Curtis Says:

    Yes we are in the boat. That is a given.

    We only wonder what the hell took you (and your scholastics) so long to get there.

    Yeah, we expect you to lose tenure and get spit on and whatever. We need to make a new academy.

    But if you are our thinking you need a place to stay or something, we got you. We’ll protect you with our lives. You just need to make contact.

  78. neo-neocon Says:

    Weird italics problem all fixed!

  79. Curtis Says:

    You know, I think we have to establish that we will support people who give up their careers in order to promote truth. It’s not an easy thing to go up against the establishment. We need to support those who have spent their whole lives in study and expect at least that they will be sheltered and fed. It may seem increduluous to us but these people can’t make ends meet by other means. They have spent their whole lives depending on the fact that their expertise will at least provide a moderate means. They are extraordinarily vulnerable. What can they do if denied? They are super over qualified and under-skilled.

    These people, with their massive education and powerful skills, are a boni fide challenge against the pro-science claims of the Obama administration.

    Let’s hear them.

  80. Jan in MN Says:

    davisbr Says [about Obama]:
    “He’s a professional campaigner …and he hires brilliantly professional campaign teams.”

    Obama’s an expert in Alinsky methods, and taught those methods to others. There was talk some time ago that Republicans should adapt Alinsky for their own use. I haven’t see a lot of evidence that it has happened, although Romney used mocking and humor effectively. We thought “community organizer” was not much of a resume for a presidential candidate, and it wasn’t, but it definitely turned out to be OK for a professional campaigner.

    Another thing: We ignore educating the electorate at our peril. It’s far more difficult to educate the uninformed about conservative values and policies. The Dems just have to show caring and give away money; conservatives have to go beyond that level to show the type of whole society we want and why we want it, and to persuade people to want to live in that kind of society.

    I thought Romney was the exactly right person at the right time for the job, but he couldn’t communicate effectively enough to persuade those on the other side or in the middle. Few Republicans can, because it is so challenging. The GOP should go looking for people who are at the top of their field in political communication, and grab them quick.

  81. reticent Says:


    Buses wouldn’t work for Republicans, I don’t think, except maybe Protestant churches, because the constituency is too spread out geographically and tempermentally unsuited to voting en masse. And taxis to pick up and drop off dear Mrs. Walter on election day don’t have a high effort to yield ratio.

    Democrats, on the other hand, have the advantage of being indiscriminate. They can drive into projects, nursing homes, campuses, union halls and round up all bodies within sight with treats, bribes and threats, without regard to whether they’re registered or even citizens, and bus them from precinct to precinct, voting in their own names, fictious names, names of those who haven’t shown up at the polls, using any and all means including same-day registration, normal ballots, provisional ballots, absentee ballots, to vote as often as possible and sow as much confusion and chaos as possible.

    And it’s probably the efforts of the boots on the ground of the Democrats’ full-time, permanent campaign network, including the campaign itself, union surrogates, and community organizing groups, that made the decisive difference. It’s a structural advantage that I can’t see Republicans being able to replicate.

  82. kolnai Says:

    Reticent –

    Exactly. You said what I was trying to say, in my usual abstract way. The Democratic GOTV advantage is built-in, and has been since Tammany Hall days. Moreover, as art knows all too well, they learned a lot about mass organizing from the communists in the era of the ’30’s – ’60’s. And our target populations are wildly different, not least in geographic dispersal.

    All why I think a better GOTV operation would, indeed, be better, but would make only a more or less marginal difference (in some cases that may be enough, but usually not).

  83. chuck Says:

    Few Republicans can, because it is so challenging.

    Palin could. My mother, staunch Democrat retired to OK, commented back in the day that everyone liked Palin, even other staunch Democrats. I think that mystified her, as she had moved back from Massachusetts and was a bit out of touch with the religious rural side of the family. But even the Republican establishment went out of their way to destroy Palin rather than defend her. And Romney likewise went after Perry. There is a lot of truth to the idea that the Republican party intellectual leaders are snooty, even though the success of the party depends on the evangelical and rural vote. That can’t last.

    But I am prejudiced, I never liked Romney and after Perry went down I didn’t see anyone else who interested me. I think we will have to wait for the next generation of Republican governors currently moving through the statehouses. Meanwhile, it won’t hurt to start sidelining the old, stuck, and snooty generation out of leadership positions. The last election should help with that. Now there is a silver lining!

  84. thomass Says:

    kolnai Says:

    Yep… In my lifetime at least, there always were other people leading this fight (Buckley, Reagan, Breitbart). Since they’re all gone now we have to pick up the fight…

    It could actually end up being fun (conventions, parties, networking / meeting other conservatives, et cetera)…. I’d love to start a little radio network with conservative ever so slightly slanted* news presented in an NPR type of tone…

    * just covering things that the MSM buries would be enough… and not going too far conservative would protect it from being attacked…

  85. causauk Says:

    Kolnai: Walter Russell Mead isn’t one of us, but I recommend reading his God and Gold: Britain, America, and the Making of the Modern World. We’re still, I think, within what he calls the Anglican triangle, aka politics as normal. I don’t think we’ll end up like Russia. We’ll end up like Britain at worst.

    As for China, I don’t think they’ll be a threat. Their geography isn’t favorable. Their handling of territorial disputes isolates them. The thaw in Burma has wrong footed them. They are absolutely dependent on American good will to project their oil supplies. They will continue to be dependent even after they complete pipeline projects through Pakistan, Afghanistan, Tibet, and Burmese Shan country.

    In any event, my money is on the Chinese economy slowing down. I think Iran triggering a spurt of nuclear proliferation is the real threat.

  86. kolnai Says:

    causauk –

    * I’m bearish on the Chinese economy too, but if the balance of power tips enough to where they feel they can lock up oil lanes for themselves and start butting us out of the East and South Asian waterways, they will do it (their surge into Africa, almost a colonization in some places, is a hint of what’s to come when we open up power vacuums).

    My reading of the Chinese leadership is that they aren’t as benign and “rational” (purely self-interested in an economic sense) as some analysts think, but are principally fixated on expansion and overtaking America as the Hegemon. It is a matter of national and ethnic pride for them, and they take that business seriously.

    Everything you say is right, as of now; I just think it’s a snapshot in time, and the situation is going to deteriorate.

    * I’ve read Mead, and I read his blog regularly (we’re Mead fans at neoneocon). I agree we’re still in the Anglican triangle, though that doesn’t comfort me. Fabianism is in the Anglican triangle. I don’t think Mead really understands leftism, to be blunt. He has a generous mind and extends charity to every side, and I admire him for that. But it leaves him with some blind spots (in my opinion). I’ll leave it at that.

    * I was going to say “Britain” but then I thought it didn’t make much difference. Having lived there for a time, I view Britain today as Theodore Dalrymple does: a basically fascist country that has become about as empty, spiritually and intellectually, as it’s possible for a society to become. Granting arguendo that it will happen, I’d rather become like almost any other Western social democracy – Sweden, Norway, Canada. Don’t care. Just not Britain.

    That being said, I suppose you’re correct – we are indeed likely to become more like Britain than Russia. I just take no solace in that.

  87. davisbr Says:

    It takes strategy and tactics to win a war (for: war it is …it may be trite to say it, but politics is war, and always has been).

    You can’t do it on grand strategy alone.

    You can’t do it on tactics alone.

    Skillfully spreading conservative ideals, convincing people to see your arguments both sympathetically and rationally is strategy. Changing hearts and minds is the strategic goal.

    How you get those voters consistently to the polls is the ground game, the tactics. Getting all those people who are nominally with you to vote during an election is the tactical goal.

    If you can’t change hearts and minds & convince people, you will lose the political war strategically.

    If you can’t get those voters who agree with you to vote on election day, you will lose the political war tactically.

    We know conservatives have the superior strategy, and we understand the strategy – the ideas – of the other side while generally they ignore ours. If you understand your enemy’s flaws, you can defeat him: we can and do with almost depressing regularity solidly refute Democrat arguments. History and reasoning are our guide and confirmation. We dominate in the theoretical. We can win elections, strategically.

    But we have again suffered a devastating and unnecessary tactical loss.

    The Dem strategy is demonstrably poor (my gawd, they still believe in Keynesianism) and extremely harmful to the Republic in the long run …but it is more than “good enough” to win elections when their ground game is so much ahead of our own.

    You cannot win politically by relying upon your ideals.

    You must pay equal attention to the mechanics.

    We have people who are very, very good at absolutely demolishing Democrat pretense.

    We seem to be absurdly unable to consistently field people and teams who are able to run a successful ground game.

    We have the hard part (strategy) down pat. We suck at what should be the easy part (tactics) …after all: we have the proven effective Democrat example of a hundred plus years providing us with the how-to.

    The ground game ain’t exactly a mystery.

    You don’t have to “give up your ideals” to win at politics. You DO have to get your hands dirty in the trenches though.

    …and if you are unable, or unwilling to get your hands dirty, you will lose. And continue to lose.

    Also. Winning makes further winning easier in politics. There’s a kind of snow-ball effect.

    I don’t give a crap about whether we win by a little or a lot. Just that we win. And we should have and could have won by the margins this cycle.

    I’ll take “good ’nuff” over a loss any time.

    This election in particular, a win would have given the country some breathing room to pull out of the economic maelstrom which the economically incompetent bordering upon criminal current administration has unnecessarily prolonged.

  88. Steve Says:

    I thought the GOP did pretty well at the state level and while they still dominate, they did lose ground this past election:

  89. Steve Says:

    Maybe J Christian Adams is right, the way forward is for states to assert 10th amendment rights:

    And build toward an Article V convention.

  90. Artfldgr Says:

    Rising number of states seeing one-party rule…

  91. Papa Dan Says:

    I don’t know if the Republicans can beat the Democrats at their own game. The Democratic machine (party, media, education) never sleeps. The Republicans are constantly on defense. I hope that these good ideas here and elsewhere can be translated into action.

    A job fair in Chicago for city workers (something like 50 openings) drew 3,000 applicants, only to be told they had to apply online. Not a lot of happy campers. This is the kind of idiocy we are going to see a lot of. There’s a lot of room to Alinsky them over crap like this without being amoral about it.

    In the meantime, I am planning my life around the already obvious fact of inflation. A flat of canned tomatoes is cheaper now than it will be in six months.

    Inflation, taxes, game rigging and black markets along with the nosiest government busybodies you’ve ever dreamed of. Think “Moscow on the Hudson”

  92. Steve Says:

    Joel Pollak has some interesting advice:

  93. Sorta Blogless Sunday Pinup » Pirate's Cove Says:

    […] neo-neocon has lessons learned from the election […]

  94. Steve Says:

    I think Andrew McCarthy has it exactly right:

  95. SteveH Says:

    I’ll say it. Giving women the right to vote was possibly not a good idea.

  96. House of Eratosthenes Says:

    […] thought of this reading Neo-Neocon‘s analysis of why the elections went the way they did. It is one of the very few analyses […]

  97. kolnai Says:

    SteveH –

    Ha! Perfectly phrased, sir. Delicious understatement. It sounds like a Churchill quote or something.

    Ah, and that reminds me of one of my favorite Churchill lines.

    Someone: “In a hundred years, women will rule the world.”

    Churchill: “Still?”

  98. neo-neocon Says:

    kolnai: actually, I think giving people under 21 the vote was the worst idea of all. Women had to be given the vote, but there was no reason for kids that young to be given the vote. At the time of the 26th Amendment (which had the support of Republicans, by the way: unforced error), the argument for it involved the draft, but the draft was about to end, as it turned out.

  99. chuck Says:

    …there was no reason for kids that young to be given the vote

    Sure there was, they were likely to vote Democratic. I would be astonished if that simple calculation didn’t play a role.

  100. texexec Says:

    From the article that artfldgr linked to:

    “Bill Bishop, author of the book “The Big Sort” on the growing polarization of American politics, said, “There are mores states that have tipped either increasingly Republican or Democratic over time. Even in close elections you have a majority of voters who live in counties where the election wasn’t close at all. The world they see at their doorstep is different than the rest of the country.”

    That’s an excellent book, BTW.

    I absolutely agree with Steve above about doing our best to honor the 10th amendment. Our country has been sorted into geographical areas each of which is very uniform in political outlook. Why not give people who think alike, both liberal and conservative, governments that they want?

    The way I’m feeling these days, I would vote for Texas to secede in a New York minute if that was a realistic possibility. And I’d love for most of the states in “flyover territory” to join us. That’s where a lot of the red is on election maps.

  101. thomass Says:

    SteveH Says:

    “I’ll say it. Giving women the right to vote was possibly not a good idea.”

    Heck, or non property owners… I

  102. neo-neocon Says:

    chuck: that’s my point. I said that Republicans went along with it, unforced error. Did they not understand the consequences? They don’t call them the stupid party for nothing.

    I think, though, that in the context of the war and the draft, Republicans felt it was necessary to preserve the draft. What they didn’t see was that the draft was about to end.

  103. Teri Pittman Says:

    Romney chooses Ryan and then has Ryan talk about the Romney plan. McCain chooses Palin and has her talk about the McCain plan. In both cases, the VP candidate had experience and their own plans and ideas on how to fix things. Instead of incorporating those ideas into the campaign, they were ignored. It’s all done in the interest of keeping the message “clear”. Why is it that we can’t seem to run a campaign that embraces different ideas? Those discussions could actually help voters. They could see that we aren’t running some master plan and are open to other ideas.

    And, when you have someone volunteer to help out, don’t ignore them just because they live in a blue state. The only thing that the Romney campaign seemed to want from me was 1) money and 2) call from home. I put in an offer to help with getting out the vote and never heard from them. Other folks in blue states were treated the same way. If the Republicans want to treat us like our votes don’t count, because we don’t live in swing states, then why should we bother to vote for them? Don’t they ever consider that it might help out other Republican candidates on the ticket?

  104. neo-neocon Says:

    Teri Pittman: I was surprised at how little attention was paid to Ryan, after the media assassination began. I’m not sure whether it was that Ryan and his ideas were marginalized, or whether the media just ignored them. In a Republican campaign, sometimes it can be hard to tell the difference.

  105. kolnai Says:

    neo –

    Oh, I agree. I just thought the way he stated his opinion was funny.

  106. Gary Rosen Says:

    I’m sure neo will disagree with me, but I’m starting to think the Republicans should have nominated Gingrich instead.

    No, I don’t think Gingrich would have won. In fact he probably would not have done as well as Romney. Romney has his shortcomings but Gingrich has some more glaring personal faults and if Obama is about anything it is about exploiting his opponents’ vulnerabilities to the max. But Gingrich would have given it to the MSM with both barrels. And I think that is the number one order of business now, even at the risk of losing an election or two, to undermine the MSM by any means necessary. It will be nearly impossible for the Republicans to win an election with their thumb on the scale. I am in 100% accord with OB on this.

  107. ziontruth Says:

    Hi folks,

    I tried to post a quite long comment that got rejected by the blog software—probably not for its length (otherwise Artfldgr wouldn’t get nearly any of his posts through) but for some unknown word or phrase causing it to be flagged as spam (a problem I’m familiar with from FrontpageMag and the main reason why I’ve nearly stopped commenting there).

    I thought of a workaround: My old website, long inactive but still under my control. So, here’s the comment as I intended it. Not all that important a comment, it’s just that I don’t want the time I spent writing it wasted. FWIW.

  108. apache Says:

    The next election will have no person voting for a Republican candidate, even if they do vote Republican it will not count.
    The Republican party became the court jester fit only to make fun of, demonize and win elections against.
    All elections will be Soviet style or maybe Chavez style from now on.
    You think voter turn out was bad this time wait till no one turns up to vote unless it’s for a democrat. then as years go by American’s will just stop voting period, what for? Voter Fraud and intimidation will make everyone’s vote a joke.
    The democrats won, The republicans lost and this time they lost permanently.
    I wish it wasn’t so.

  109. Steve Says:

    The RNC likely still has cash on hand. Shouldn’t they be running ads right now informing the public about the taxes, spending, regulations, debt, etc? Or are they going to let the MSM and the dems define the narrative and box them into a corner ahead of negotiations regarding the fiscal cliff and raising the debt ceiling?

  110. parker Says:

    Its all Greek to me from from here on out. There is little possibility of turning away from the abyss because there is no way to grow the economy to keep up with the boomer demands on entitlements and the demands of the Obamaphone retards. The nation has turned to California and Illinois for its example, and California and Illinois become more like Greece day by day.

  111. davisbr Says:

    I think ziontruth’s entire comment, and this part of the post-election conversation, needs moved here to neoneocon. So I’m posting the entire thing in a quote.


    …I fit your description to “t”, ziontruth. To a “t”.

    ziontruth Says:
    November 11th, 2012 at 6:43 pm

    @expat “I personally think that race was still an issue. We had poor blacks against rich whites and dog whistles being reported frequently by the media.”

    I have not a single doubt in my mind it was, and still is and going to be so for the forseeable future. Having won them two elections, the Dems will cling to this goose that lays golden eggs. They’ll cling to it until the goose turns out to be a monster.

    @A_Nonny_Mouse, “I got the vibe that this kid honestly felt that Obama should be untouchable in office,…”

    I think this is the reason Obama got to be the Democrat presidential candidate in the first place. Face it, for himself he doesn’t do much, except if you think “doing much” means playing a lot of golf; the key is to have other Marxists do the dirty work in his name, and then pull the Race Card when conservatives criticize that work.

    I’ve got a few thoughts to wrap up a lot of things. This is going to be quite long, so feel free to skip the post.

    Vanderleun, who also posts here, recently featured a post by Robert Oculus as one idea as to how the American Right might pick up the pieces. I found Oculus’ article extremely interesting, no matter if I agree with it or not. For one thing, Oculus in contrast to the usual kind of racialists doesn’t engage in wild conspiracy theories and calls for racial hatred, but in a ploy of making lemonade out of the lemons, which is a strategy I’m bullish on. There’s something very familiar in this territority.

    I don’t like making predictions, even less so after my guess that Romney would win. Still, the piece by Oculus, coupled with the two comments by Expat and A_Nonny_Mouse I just quoted, are harbingers of a new kind of white American. He or she isn’t given to conspiracism and visceral hatred like a Stormfronter, but has only adopted a “Couldn’t Care Less” attitude. As I said, this is very familiar to me.

    “Couldn’t Care Less” comes from the closing quote of Rabbi Meir Kahane’s (HY”D) “Dear World,” where he first outlines the history of the Jews being tossed to and fro in the Diaspora, and then they finally return to the Land of Israel but the hatred of them is transferred to Zionism. So Kahane closes the message saying, effectively, if Jews are hated for what they are and not for what they do, then they should just do what’s in their best interests and stop caring what others call them. The clincher is that Kahane’s mindset was considered anathema in Israel just a few decades ago but now no longer is. How this change came to pass is the familiar territory I was talking about:

    Picture an average Israeli Jew in the 1990s. His chief interests are prosperity, the good life, and maintaining the peace so as to enable those. He has no emotional attachment to Judea, Samaria and Gaza (the post-1967 territories). His peace plan is very neat and straightforward: Israel evacuates all Jews out of the post-1967 territories, the pre-1967 Israel stays a Jewish-majority state, and Arabs within pre-1967 Israel either accept that this is a Jewish state or feel free to move to the “Palestinian Authority” in the post-1967 territories. That was the majority thinking back then, and on this the Oslo Plan held out well into the 2000s.

    However, in the course of time, the neat plan was challenged by quite a few factors. While that average Israeli Jew could somehow brush off the Arab call to eliminate the entire Jewish state as “just Hamas, just a few extremists,” the 2000s saw the mainstreaming of such eliminationism on the Left, among whom such Israeli Jews would count themselves. The dialog would go something like this:

    Western Leftist: When will Israel make steps toward ending the occupation and making peace in the region?

    Israeli Leftist: We have to take care of our extremists, and the other side of theirs, but I assure you, the occupation will end, we’ll get out of the West Bank, Gaza and the Golan Heights and there will be peace.

    Western Leftist: That’s good to hear, but what about the other issues?

    Israeli Leftist: What other issues?

    Western Leftist: The Palestinian refugees, of course! They have the sacred, inalienable right to return to the homes that were stolen from them. And don’t forget that the Arabs within the Green Line are still second-class citizens. Israel needs to get with the program and become a multicultural state of all its citizens.

    Israeli Leftist: Hold on, hold on a minute. I’m OK with giving the Palestinians back the West Bank and Gaza, but what you’re calling for is to give them everything. You’re calling on Israel to commit suicide.

    Western Leftist: Um, it’s all the Palestinians’ in the first place, bud. Your country is a last vestige of colonialism, and justice demands that this kind of thing be corrected in the 21st century. South Africa ended apartheid throughout, then so must Israel.

    Israeli Leftist: What apartheid?! You’re saying Israel has no national rights even within the Green Line?!

    Western Leftist: See, you’re just like the West Bank settlers, no matter how different from them you fancy yourself to be. You talk about “national rights” to exclude the Palestinians.

    Israeli Leftist: Look here, I’ve agreed with all your points that the West Bank needs to be given to the Palestinians and the settlements dismantled. But you think I’m no better than a settler just because I don’t want the entire Israel de-countrified?

    Western Leftist: The same impulse behind settling the West Bank underlies your stance. So, yes, if you’re not prepared to end all the injustice your country inflicts on the Palestinians, you’re no better than the West Bank settlers.

    And there the discussion ends, with a dumbstruck, if not outright shell-shocked, Israeli Jewish Leftist. So he gets back home and the thinking gears start rolling. All the more so if this isn’t the first such exchange he has with fellow American or European Leftists. Very few such Israelis come over to the Western Leftist point of view; the majority start thinking to themselves, “You know, if I’m no better than a West Bank settler for wanting my state to stay Jewish, maybe I ought to take a look at the West Bank settlers’ arguments for a change.” Which he does, and to his amazement he finds a picture so different than the demonic one the MSM (both in Israel and abroad) has painted of them.

    And then, when later he posts a very changed set of views to the Western Leftists and they start flinging the R-word furiously at him, he says, “Go ahead, call me a racist. But you’d call me a racist just for wanting pre-1967 Israel to stay Jewish, so I don’t care any more. Here is one Jew who couldn’t care less.” That, in a nutshell, is how you get the Israeli Jewish rightward shift of the 2000s. The Leftists can scream “RAAAAACIST!” all they want, but they reap what they sow.

    I see an equivalent development among American whites. In 2008 many of them voted for a black man for the historic value, for the healing of wounds and making up for slavery and Jim Crow. But they didn’t reckon with Marxism divisionism. Just a few days after the elections, Eric Holder called Americans “a nation of cowards on race”—a ringing slap in the face to those who wanted racial healing. But that was only the opening salvo. It was in the reaction to the TEA Party that things really got ugly.

    TEA Party, a play on the Boston Tea Party but also an acronym for “Taxed Enough Already?” The unbiased eye can see that it’s about fiscal issues; it’s about American makers of any race who object to being an ATM for American takers of any race. But anyone who expects Marxists to play nice is in for a nasty surprise. The MSM spared no effort in smearing the TEA Party as a white supremacist, anti-black outfit, stooping so low as to send infiltrators with racist signs to “prove” the point to the gullible public. A familiar exchange between Left and Right ensued:

    American Conservative: People deserve to enjoy the fruits of their labor. If people who don’t produce can take those fruits away, no one’s going to bother producing, and then the economy will go to the dogs.

    Marxist in America: “People who don’t produce” is code for “black.” You are a racist! You want to uphold a system of oppression where rich white people get richer and poor blacks get poorer!

    American Conservative: No, I want prosperity for everyone. Economic freedom is the key to prosperity for everyone. If there’s economic freedom, both whites and blacks will prosper. If there isn’t, both will suffer misery.

    Marxist: Your last TEA Party grouping had an N-word sign against Obama. The TEA Party is racist! Racist! Here’s the picture to prove it!

    Conservative: That wasn’t one of ours! We can’t police everybody! If an individual taints the whole group, your side is stained all over.

    Marxist: The picture proves it, racist troglodyte! As do your objections to the policies of a black POTUS. Racisssssssst!

    Conservative: I’d object to his policies even if he were lily-white!

    Marxist: Right-wingers are racists! That’s in the nature of right-wingers!

    Conservative: May I enquire as to what I’d have to do so as to cease being racist?

    Marxist: Stop objecting to the President’s program of social justice, of taking from the rich to give to the poor. Since the rich are white and the poor are black, objecting makes you a racist. You wish to keep the blacks enslaved.

    And there the discussion ends. But the matter came to a head only just now, in the wake of the elections. American conservatives had hoped that that obnoxious dialog was an anomaly, and that the electorate wouldn’t display such a crooked view at the ballot box. Then came the bitter disappointment, the realization that the American nation itself has changed, and bought into the MSM’s discourse-shutting narrative.

    This can now be seen as having the same effect such fanaticism has had in my country: Giving rise to the “Couldn’t Care Less” way of thinking. American whites have begun saying to themselves, “I’m not going to be a hater, but I’m not going to give blacks, Hispanics and Asians a wide berth anymore either. If they want my trust they’ll have to earn it. And least of all am I going to care about being called a racist.” The decision has been made that, if it’s not racist for blacks and Hispanics to vote their interests, then it is no longer so for whites either.

    I expect Leftists in America to be as clueless as they usually are at this phenomenon. “See, we always knew the latent racism of the TEA Partiers would come out in the open,” they’ll say, never reflecting on how they made things happen that way, never blaming themselves. But if Leftists in America fear a bogeyman of “resurgent white racism,” I can assure them that’s the least of their worries. No, there’s a much bigger issue for them to confront, and that is the consequences of having built a culture of gratuitous hatred.

    The Amerimarxists have carried the last two elections on the machine of pitting group against group in America. They may think it was a good deal, but theirs is the mistake of short-term thinking. The issue with this machine is: Once it has been pressed into operating in earnest, it doesn’t grind to a halt on a whim.

    While Whitey might be content to retreat into havens or secede, or at the most part adopt the dirty tactics of the MSM for its own, the battle between the other groups for the spoils is going to be something else. Blacks don’t have it all for their own now; competition from the Hispanics and the Asians is looking pretty strong already. And when push comes to shove, all these groups, having no guilt for “past crimes” and having been conditioned to a vengeful way of thinking these past years, will be at each other’s throats. It won’t be a pretty sight. It won’t be nice, at all.

    The fiendish fire of gratuitous hatred does not put itself out merely on having consumed that which it has been conjured to consume; no, having been unleashed, it proceeds with a life of its own to consume everything in sight, until nothing is left. The Marxist tactic of pitting group against group, whipping up hatred between them, telling each group the others have wronged it, will see the gentlemanliness of the white American conservative become a distant memory, to be replaced by a hellish, no-holds-barred gladiator contest among the major non-white groups in America. And the Leftists will have no one to blame but themselves, not even if they try to shift the blame.

    The whirlwind they will reap will make Hurricane Sandy look like a gentle breeze in comparison. God save the remnant of true Americans.

  112. Bob From Virginia Says:

    One other item why Obama won, although I think low information voters were the critical reason, he was fashionable. voting for Obama was the cool socially acceptable thing for young people and minorities to do. It takes a lot of strength and sense of personal identity to in effect tell the people you deal with that they are idiots.

    Gosh I hope this economy crashes and burns. A country that so thoroughly rejects its moral heritage deserves no less.

  113. davisbr Says:

    …keep in mind that that last post wasn’t me. For whatever reason, ziontruth wasn’t able to post it to the thread himself. (As a quote, it came across just fine.)

    But I agree with every inch of it.

  114. Bob From Virginia Says:

    I almost forgot; another reason for Obama’s success is an immature voting population. They have never experienced war (I mean real war, not brawls like Viet-Nam, but wars in which your home is destroyed) nor deprivation. Fashion, immaturity, and low information and an Obama is the result. I am sure that Veteran’s Day 2016 will see the erection of a Wal-Mart in Arlington National Cemetery.

  115. kolnai Says:

    davisbr –

    Thanks for posting that.

    ziontruth –

    Thanks for writing that.

  116. Whiskeysplace Says:

    Look, lets get real.

    Obama STUFFED the ballots. And hacked voting machines to kill Republican votes.

    No, he didn’t win. He cheated. That’s why internals for Romney showed him winning. The polls could not pick up the illegal street voters and the hacked voting machines.

    No way Obama wins with lower turnout, this economy, that many undecided (they NEVER break for the incumbent), energized Republican base, etc.

  117. kolnai Says:

    Hey all,

    Continuing the discussion of one of our suggestions for the future, what Curtis has wryly called “Occam’s List,” I think it’s a fire that catching on all over the conservative plains:

    “Investigate the investigators,” says Jacobson.

  118. texexec Says:

    “Hey all,

    Continuing the discussion of one of our suggestions for the future, what Curtis has wryly called “Occam’s List,” I think it’s a fire that catching on all over the conservative plains:

    “Investigate the investigators,” says Jacobson.”

    Occam’s Beard has suggested we attack the individual talk show hosts, anchors, newspaper writers, etc.

    I have suggested attacking the news corporations financially (eg. not buying sponsor’s products and telling them why). If their companies are out of business, the so called journalists lose their jobs anyway.

    Hell’s Bells…let’s do both. How do we get organized and funded so we can start?

  119. ziontruth Says:

    Davisbr, thanks for posting my comment here. I’m scratching my head in bewilderment at the mysterious behavior of forum software, but no matter, any way is good.

    Kolnai, you’re welcome. My perspective isn’t always cheerful, unfortunately, but I can’t resist finding patterns and analogies.

    And so, just as I thought, the Left’s Race Card Machine isn’t going to stop just because they won a second term any more than the Ottoman Turks laid down their arms once they had finally conquered Constantinople. Here’s the latest from Weasel Zippers: Libs Attack Papa John’s Founder As “Racist” For Warning Obamacare-Related Costs May Lead To Cutbacks.

    “Racist” to present-day American Marxists is simply what “Enemy Of The People” was to their past Russian counterparts. It will continue its fruitful employment in the service of labeling the opposition and marking it for destruction. Bank on it.

  120. kolnai Says:

    texexec –

    That is the whole question. I think a lot of the monied conservatives are still living in a kind of old-timey political vision, one where targeted funding for partisan policy organizations and think tanks and the occasional ad blitz on behalf of some proposition or another is sufficient to constitute “moving and shaking.”

    Conservatives are constitutionally reluctant to plunge into the fever swamps of liberal polemics and propaganda, and, like drunks admitting we’re alcoholics, we need to start frankly acknowledging that this is a weakness, not a strength. It seems to us like taking the high road, fighting with honor, but it’s proven to be more like unilaterally disarming.

    There’s no honor in serving ourselves up like lambs for the slaughter. This is what the Big Money needs to understand, and does not (speaking of which – and I’ll come to Breitbart in a moment – if we can ever get our initiatives off the ground, we should consider keeping the allusion to him, calling them, if only amongst ourselves, something like “Operation Big Money,” or just “Big Money”).

    There’s no dishonor in what we’re proposing. It’s mere jiu-jitsu, allowing the dissemination of leftist fighting tactics to attain so much force that they self-destruct. Hitherto our style has been defensive, trying to block and knock away and absorb the blows they hurl at us. We’ve developed extremely thick skin as a result, and this can be to our benefit – leftists do not know how dangerous we can be if we allow ourselves to play by their rules. We’re not coddled and we never have been. Culturally, we’ve been virtual punching bags for a generation or more.

    The left has never had to deal with such adversity. They’re soft (albeit absolutely unscrupulous). If we start aiming our blows at their bellies and and throats, they’ll fold like cheap lawn chairs.

    Also, we know more than they do. We know everything about them. We can anticipate what they will say and do at every step – they are so arrogant that they make all their moves blatantly, right in the open, hubristically assuming that no one will ever catch on and sweep the leg. We simply never use what we know, still adhering to a noble chivalric code that the left killed off long ago. The left thinks, however, that we don’t know anything. They believe their own bullish*t (as some President once said) about us.

    Out toughness that they do not understand, their softness that they do not see, our comprehensive knowledge of the their M.O. down to the last detail, which they think we’re too stupid to ever garner – these are battlefield advantages that we have right now.

    Finally, we have a model warrior, our own Leonidas who showed the barbarians what we were capable of before he fell, ultimately lacking the institutional and financial support to drive the bastards into the sea. Breitbart emobodied the kind of fighter that lies dormant in many conservatives. Tougher, wiser, more observant than the leftists, and ready to demonstrate it. James O’Keefe, too, is a Breitbartian warrior, one of his original “300” who has survived and is still doing battle.

    Why is our Big Money allowing O’Keefe to run around like a guerrilla with no army behind him? We haven’t even begun to scratch the surface discovering what kind of havoc he could wreak if properly supported.

    I say all of this because the case simply makes itself. It is not a hard sell. It’s simple. This is where we are, these are our advantages. Let us exploit them to the fullest.

    And I have no idea how to get “organize and funded.” If that kind of activity was my forte, I wouldn’t be in academia talking about Plato for a living. But somebody has to know. And it’s probably them who we should be reaching out to – i.e., middlemen, as it were.

  121. texexec Says:

    “And I have no idea how to get “organize and funded.” If that kind of activity was my forte, I wouldn’t be in academia talking about Plato for a living. But somebody has to know. And it’s probably them who we should be reaching out to – i.e., middlemen, as it were.”

    Maybe we should start by contacting folks still involved with Breitbart’s site.

    It really is time to stop talking about this and start start doing something.

    As a small start, we can all get bumper stickers that say “The media is lying to you” at:

    We need to get other peoples’ eyes on this message in the Wal-mart parking lot! T-shirts are available too.

    I already have one on my old but classic Mercedes Benz.

  122. Papa Dan Says:

    It seems to me that conservative Big Money is going Galt. Its starting with many businesses proceeding with layoffs and scaling back on any kind of growth. This has been happening since O-care passed, but now with its implementation happening, it will be epic. Conservative Big Money is going to go into deeper hiding.

  123. davisbr Says:

    @kolnai Also, we know more than they do. We know everything about them. We can anticipate what they will say and do at every step – they are so arrogant that they make all their moves blatantly, right in the open, hubristically assuming that no one will ever catch on and sweep the leg. We simply never use what we know, still adhering to a noble chivalric code that the left killed off long ago. The left thinks, however, that we don’t know anything. They believe their own bullish*t (as some President once said) about us.


    Parse that paragraph. Examine each individual sentence.

    Like musing a problem while reposing under a banyan’s leaves, therein lies the essence of how to transform what is merely a pleasant afternoon’s idyll to the equivalent of sitting under the Bodhi tree.

    Its is a strategy level capsule of the methods we must employ to achieve tactical dominance in the field.

    A summary of an Infanterie Greift An of politics, if you will.

    Rommel, you magnificent bastard. I read your book!

    We’ve read their book. It wasn’t magnificent. It was do-able. We can do better. Having actually understood history, we’re not doomed to repeat it. Enough of pussyfooting around. Let’s just end the bastard Left.

    …or they will destroy the Republic.

  124. kolnai Says:

    davisbr –

    Damn straight. (Love the Patton reference!)

About Me

Previously a lifelong Democrat, born in New York and living in New England, surrounded by liberals on all sides, I've found myself slowly but surely leaving the fold and becoming that dread thing: a neocon.

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