Pundits gone wild!

Telegraph UK unveiled its list of the 50 most influential political pundits in the US.  

As they say over at Crooks and Liars....

Sing along with me: "One of these things is not like the others.  One of these things just doesn't belong.  Can you guess which thing is not like the others..."

This rather comical list got me thinking about the book Expert Political Judgment by Philip Tetlock.  The book suggests that we should view expertise in political forecasting--by academics or intelligence analysts, independent pundits, journalists or institutional specialists--with the severe skepticism.

Selecting 284 individuals who made their living `commenting or offering advice on political and economic trends' Tetlock asked them to make predictions about future events, where the experts were asked to rate the probability of several different possible outcomes. By the end of the study, they produced 82,361 different predictions.  After tallying up the data, the predictive failures of most experts was stunning. Further, when asked to forecast the probability of a specific event happening, pundits tended to perform worse than random chance. A blindfolded baby would have beaten the majority of 'experts'.

"There is no reason for supposing that contributors to top journals--distinguished political scientists, area study specialists, economists, and so on--are any better than journalists or attentive readers of The New York Times in 'reading' emerging situations", he hypothesizes. And ironically, the most famous experts in the study tended to be the least accurate, consistently churning out overblown and overconfident forecasts.

For those that have tried to deny a media bias in the Democratic primary - just wait to see what the goons will do to Democrats in the GE.  Be vigilant.

There's more...

Devil in a pantsuit.

In a new Chicago Tribune article, Devil in a pantsuit or the demonization of Hillary Clinton, Julia Keller, Cultural Critic takes an analytical look at the media portrayal of HRC that evokes an old and vicious cultural stereotype: the female monster.

Revealed in the coverage of Clinton's campaign is the persistence of an ancient and distasteful cultural theme: the powerful, ambitious woman as cackling fiend, as fantastically terrifying ghoul threatening civilization. And because this creature (or "she-devil," as MSNBC commentator Chris Matthews called Clinton) is not human, the only solution is to kill it. Not just derail its career--obliterate it. Smash it to smithereens. Vaporize it. Leave not a trace of the foul beast behind.

Hence the appalling preponderance of violent, death-infused imagery in conversations about Clinton, smuggled into otherwise ordinary political discourse like a knife taped on the bottom of a cake plate: On CNN, pundit Alex Castellanos said democrats must realize that "it's time to take the family dog to the vet." Matthews' MSNBC colleague Keith Olbermann expressed the hope that "somebody will take her into a room--and only he comes out." CNN's Jack Cafferty gleefully floated the specter of Clinton being run over by a flatbed truck. A recent Tribune editorial compared Clinton to a euthanized Kentucky Derby contender.

She is, according to author Andrew Sullivan, akin to the zombies in the film "28 Days Later" (2002), as well as that knife-wielding harpy in "Fatal Attraction"--the one with the relentless, rapacious, inhuman will: "It's alive!" Sullivan wrote, adding, "Whoosh--She's back at your throat." The comparison between the Close character and Clinton also seemed apt to U.S. Rep. Steve Cohen (D-Tenn.), who wrote, "Glenn Close should've stayed in that bathtub." Translation: Death. Comedian Chris Rock loves the "Fatal Attraction" link as well. Ditto for blogger Wil Wheaton, who played Wesley in the TV series "Star Trek: The Next Generation," who dubbed Clinton "the psycho ex-girlfriend of the Democratic party."

The media itself has entered the dialogue and political landscape and has failed miserably in this regard.  As Eric Boehlert states"no longer content to be observers of the campaign, journalists now see themselves as active players in the unfolding drama, and they show no hesitation trying to dictate the basics of the contest..."

With much more analysis and self-reflection needed, one can only hope for these SEXIST bobbleheads will be taken to task. And with that, the below is dedicated to all HRC supporters or those out there that are disgusted by the media coverage in this primary.

There's more...

Public Says Press Should Not Declare the Winner yet.

According to a Pew Research Poll an overwhelming 72% say that the press should not declare Obama the winner yet.

"Barack Obama may be building an insurmountable lead in the Democratic primary race, but the public is sending a strong message to journalists and pundits: It is too early to declare, as some already have, that the race is over.

Fully 72% of the public - including comparable percentages of Democrats, Republicans and independents - say that journalists should not be anointing Obama as the Democratic nominee at this stage in the race. Just 20% say that journalists should be doing this.

Opinion among Democrats about what the press should do in this regard may well reflect their view that Hillary Clinton should stay in the race. Recent surveys by Gallup and ABC News/Washington Post find that most Democrats believe that Clinton should stay in the race. In the ABC News/Washington Post survey, released May 12, 64% of Democrats, including 42% of Obama supporters, said Clinton should remain in the race."

Thoughts?

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Why Sexism May Have Cost the Dems the WH.

Before I begin this diary, I want to add to following caveats:

1.  By no means am I stating that BO is the presumptive nominee.
2.  This Diary is not about BO's electability (although I have some reservations).

Okay - now that we got that over with, let's get to the point.

Based on the hypothetical that BO is the nominee, I think its highly possible that sexism may have cost his chances at the WH.  Yes - you heard me right - sexism.

What we know from many of the exit polls is that there is a startling number of HRC's supporters who state that under no circumstances they will vote for BO.  

According to the exit polls, half of Clinton's supporters in Indiana would not vote for Obama in a general election match up with John McCain. A third of Clinton voters said they would pick McCain over Obama, while 17 percent said they would not vote at all. Just 48 percent of Clinton supporters said they would back Obama in November.

Obama gets even less support from Clinton backers in North Carolina. There, only 45 percent of Clinton supporters said they would vote for Obama over McCain. Thirty-eight percent said they would vote for McCain while 12 percent said they would not vote.

Obama voters appear to be more willing to support Clinton in November. In Indiana, 59 percent of Obama backers said they'd vote for Clinton, and 70 percent of Obama backers in North Carolina said they'd support the New York Democrat.

http://politicalticker.blogs.cnn.com/200 8/05/06/exit-polls-half-of-clintons-supp orters-wont-back-obama/

As we all know, based on BO's current coalition, it would be impossible for him to carry the votes needed to win the presidential nomination without getting most, if not all of HRC's supporters.  Therein lies the problem.  I believe, amongst other things, that these polls reflect a genuine inconsolable anger at the sexism bestowed onto HRC from the media, party establishment and some BO supporters.

"The on-line community is solidly behind Obama and I've read many posts and comments saying Obama voters would never, ever vote for Hillary so when I first heard these statistics on teevee I was quite surprised. Then I realized what is happening here. The media is fueling their anger. It's that simple. And there are a lot of rank and file Democratic voters who are very upset. I might add that a few bloggers have had their bodies snatched away too. And on CNN Sunday, this notion was validated by Roger Simon:

SIMON: ...I find that if you go into Hillary crowds, the anger you find on the part of her supporters, especially women supporters, is directed not against Barack Obama, but against the media.

ZERNIKE: Yes. I mean, I think what people were reacting to this week wasn't so much the media declaring the race over, as it was this kind of "Ding dong the witch is dead" quality about that tone to the comments. And I do think people are angry. And I think when you look at, you know, the percentages of Hillary Clinton supporters who say they won't support Obama, I think Roger is right. They're mad at - they're mad at the media. They're not necessarily mad at Obama.

http://www.crooksandliars.com/2008/05/12when-pundits-decide#more-29028

I would suffice is to say that its more than the media (or party establishment), but let's go with that.  Here's an example:

The Sunday morning talk shows acted almost as though Democratic Party poobahs were saying, 'Oh, all right, let the little woman run.' There was senator Chris Dodd, who made not a ripple in his own presidential campaign, lecturing Clinton that she could run only if she was 'positive.' Clinton would be allowed to run her campaign so long as she conducted herself in a manner consistent with Dodd's diktats. Well thank you Senator Dodd.

The consistent theme was that Hillary could run, but she could not 'campaign.' Her voice as a candidate would have to be silenced. She would have to restrict herself to laudatory remarks about herself, not comparisons with or criticisms of her opponent. 'Let the little woman run, so long as she remains positive,' was the apparent order of the day. Mr. Obama had become sacrosanct.

Would pundits and politicians be treating Clinton the same way if she was a man? Not on your life. If Chris Dodd were still in the race? Lecturing him? Telling him he had to limit his campaign speech to the politically correct and inoffensive? Barring him from comparing his campaign to that of his opponent? They would be telling Dodd to 'take off the gloves.' Clearly there are overtones of sexual discrimination in the way Democrats are treating Clinton.

http://www.pr-inside.com/andy-martin-ask s-if-hillary-clinton-r588711.htm

If somehow you have been living under a rock and don't know what I am talking about in the media, please see here, here, here, here, here, here, here, and here.

While opponents of HRC cheered as she was and continues to be sliced and diced by the vast majority of the press, in reality they may be doing what the 'vast right-wing conspiracy' wanted - ensuring a Republican WH.


 

There's more...

how to destroy a candidate.... part II

one day at a time...

"everyone's first wife standing outside a probate court"

"white women are a problem, that's, you know -- we all live with that"

media diagnose Hillary "Sybil" Clinton with "mood swings," depression, and "multiple personality disorder"

"when she comes on television, I involuntarily cross my legs"

"Clinton Campaign Brought Sexism Out of Hiding"

"pimped out"

"what's behind the laugh?"

"fucking whore"

"The on-line community is solidly behind Obama and I've read many posts and comments saying Obama voters would never, ever vote for Hillary so when I first heard these statistics on teevee I was quite surprised. Then I realized what is happening here. The media is fueling their anger. It's that simple. And there are a lot of rank and file Democratic voters who are very upset. I might add that a few bloggers have had their bodies snatched away too. And on CNN Sunday, this notion was validated by Roger Simon:  

SIMON: ...I find that if you go into Hillary crowds, the anger you find on the part of her supporters, especially women supporters, is directed not against Barack Obama, but against the media.  

ZERNIKE: Yes. I mean, I think what people were reacting to this week wasn't so much the media declaring the race over, as it was this kind of "Ding dong the witch is dead" quality about that tone to the comments. And I do think people are angry.  And I think when you look at, you know, the percentages of Hillary Clinton supporters who say they won't support Obama, I think Roger is right. They're mad at -- they're mad at the media. They're not necessarily mad at Obama.  

http://www.crooksandliars.com/2008/05/12when-pundits-decide#more-29028


There's more...

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