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WHY IS THIS ELECTION CLOSE, PART 2
Powerline ^ | 09/08/2012 | Steven Hayward

Posted on 09/09/2012 3:03:19 PM PDT by SeekAndFind

I’ve been wondering the same thing as John, and confronting the same grim hypothesis–that the calculus of the modern welfare state has passed a tipping point (I mean, just who do we think those 47 million people on food stamps are going to vote for)?  This is, of course, just a variation of the classical critique of democracy–that the poor majority would vote to take from the wealthy minority.  This always entails the death of democracy in the fullness of time.

I have before wondered, and still wonder, whether this election might be a replay of 1980, which was close until Reagan broke it open over the last weekend.  This is one plausible scenario for a Romney victory.  My pal Clark Judge offers similar thoughts on U.S. News and World Report, in a piece entitled “Why the Obama-Romney Race May Not Be the Dead Heat the Polls Describe“:

Pollsters will tell you that they cannot always count on voters to level with them about which candidates they favor. For example, Gov. Scott Walker’s victory in the Wisconsin recall election several months ago was predicted by the polls, but his margin was not. It was a larger margin than the surveys had forecast. Similarly in 2004, Sen. John Kerry went to bed on election night believing he would be the next president. He woke to a surprise, as did Democrats in 1994 and, to a lesser degree, in 1980. Note, in all these elections it was the Democratic who got the unwelcome surprise.

Meanwhile, one of my supremely numerate friends (a real Ph.D in science) writes in with some observations about polling:

The response rate has gotten so low that the reported differences in popularity have become meaningless. The main source of error is almost surely no longer due to random sampling error but rather to the unknown distribution of opinion in the unsampled part of the population that declines to respond. Let me know if you need a reference for that.

By comparison, it’s as if you’re getting all excited about annual temperature changes over the just the desert areas of the earth without being concerned with other land surfaces or the oceans.

There are ways to get high response rates in polls, but there seems to be a form of Gresham’s Law at work, keeping such methods from being applied, at least in the polls that are made public with their response rates.

We’ll see.  Pollsters supposedly have rigorous ways of countering the response rate (and cell phone) problem, but I’m skeptical.  For now I’m keeping my fingers crossed.


TOPICS: Politics; Society
KEYWORDS: elections
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1 posted on 09/09/2012 3:03:22 PM PDT by SeekAndFind
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To: SeekAndFind

it’s close because the media wants it close


2 posted on 09/09/2012 3:05:15 PM PDT by Doogle ((USAF.68-73..8th TFW Ubon Thailand..never store a threat you should have eliminated))
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To: SeekAndFind
Part 1: Entitlements

Part 2: Entitlements

Part 3: Entitlements

3 posted on 09/09/2012 3:05:18 PM PDT by SkyPilot
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To: SeekAndFind

The fact that Romney is petty much everyone’s last choice candidate couldn’t possibly have anything to do with it./s


4 posted on 09/09/2012 3:06:31 PM PDT by cripplecreek (What does it profit a man if he gains the whole world but loses his soul?)
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To: SeekAndFind
I have been saying this for years. And been waiting for someone to write about in a public place.

The response rate has gotten so low that the reported differences in popularity have become meaningless. The main source of error is almost surely no longer due to random sampling error but rather to the unknown distribution of opinion in the unsampled part of the population that declines to respond. Let me know if you need a reference for that.

I have read it is not uncommon for up to 40 of the sampled refusing to cooperate.

5 posted on 09/09/2012 3:06:39 PM PDT by DManA
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To: Doogle
The media (and in fact every known entity who has a stake in The Cause) have all placed all of their eggs in obama's basket. Everything is at stake for them. If he goes down they all go down.

They are a stupid lot.

But, they will not take us down with them.

6 posted on 09/09/2012 3:15:41 PM PDT by Slyfox
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To: DManA

So how come the polls have been so accurate in the last presidential elections


7 posted on 09/09/2012 3:18:49 PM PDT by uncbob
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To: SeekAndFind

Most polls are rigged to get the answer the pollster wants...
Years ago a pollster called me up asked could i spare 10 mins for 10 questions and maybe a couple of follow ups, i said sure first question was am i voter ,what was my age and then she asked my stance on abortion after i told her she said “thank you for your time” and hung up.
I did not give her the right answers that why the phone call ended on the third Question.


8 posted on 09/09/2012 3:19:40 PM PDT by GSP.FAN (Some days, it's not even worth chewing through the restraints.)
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To: cripplecreek
I don't get it:

Romney's not perfect so people decide to vote for the total douche and his cast of misfits & CROOKS.

Americans (spoiled by the most successful society EVER) let themselves be seduced by Bambi, DWS, Nancy, Harry, Gore, NBC, MSNBC, CNN, Sandra the Slut, Plugs, Klintoo the RAPIST, Hollywood, ...)

Sigh

9 posted on 09/09/2012 3:22:10 PM PDT by Thom Pain (U.S. Constitution is a CONTRACT!)
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To: Doogle
Great minds think alike...Exactly what I was going to say.

PUBLIC polls are simply mind games now.

10 posted on 09/09/2012 3:23:39 PM PDT by Sacajaweau
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To: Doogle
Great minds think alike...Exactly what I was going to say.

PUBLIC polls are simply mind games now.

11 posted on 09/09/2012 3:23:57 PM PDT by Sacajaweau
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To: Doogle
Great minds think alike...Exactly what I was going to say.

PUBLIC polls are simply mind games now.

12 posted on 09/09/2012 3:23:57 PM PDT by Sacajaweau
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To: DManA

With caller ID on almost all phones, who even answers an unknown number today? People are closed up from pollsters and solicitors enough to make an impact of some kind.


13 posted on 09/09/2012 3:24:26 PM PDT by RitaOK
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To: SeekAndFind

I know 3 on food stamps that are NOT voting for o. i will be driving two of them to the polls. they know that those desparately needing them will lose them when this deck of cards falls.


14 posted on 09/09/2012 3:25:42 PM PDT by Donnafrflorida (Thru HIM all things are possible.)
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To: cripplecreek
I'm in Texas so I don't have to vote for him as he will take Texas. I know key party people and it's all about get Hussein out, then they will deal with Romney. They are so wrong. One of those key party people was in the middle of the Rules fiasco at the convention. But the party people will still work for Romney without question.

Got an email from my county party a few days ago and I can go to the headquarters and PAY MONEY to get Romney signs and car sticker. No, thanks, I'm keeping my Newt bumper sticker on my car forever. For one thing, I can find my car better with that magnet sticker on my car. I also have a Newt cup. I will never have Romney anything any where near me.

I know you have preps and so do I - that's the most important thing to have when the two parties are clueless and going down the trail to oblivion with the rest of the country.

15 posted on 09/09/2012 3:25:43 PM PDT by Marcella (Conservatism is dead. PREPARE)
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To: Thom Pain

Romney is far from just “not perfect” and all the denial in the world ain’t gonna cover that reality up.


16 posted on 09/09/2012 3:25:45 PM PDT by cripplecreek (What does it profit a man if he gains the whole world but loses his soul?)
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To: uncbob
There's an answer for that:

There are ways to get high response rates in polls, but there seems to be a form of Gresham’s Law at work, keeping such methods from being applied, at least in the polls that are made public with their response rates.

When they are close to the election and they know their work will be verified against actual election data they put the extra expense and effort into getting good response rates. But even then they sometimes get the results embarrassingly wrong - eg. Presidential election 1980, Minnesota gubernatorial election 1998.

17 posted on 09/09/2012 3:26:57 PM PDT by DManA
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To: SeekAndFind
I think it's very wise to remain scared. As the Instapundit frequently says, "don't get cocky."

But the Powerline boys tend to be doomsters [IMO] and they are basing their opinion on polls of registered voters and Democrat-skewed polls of likely voters.

I'm not Pollyanna -- I don't think this election is sewn up by any means. But it's too early to hang crepe, too.

18 posted on 09/09/2012 3:27:54 PM PDT by BfloGuy (Without economic freedom, no other form of freedom can have material meaning.)
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To: SeekAndFind

It’s close because Romney is listening to his campaign manager who is not very conservative and is telling Romney to stick to jobs and the economy and not to go after Obama on ideology.

Above all else, this election is about ideology, about God given rights, about the constitution and checks and balances. If there are no God given rights, all rights come from the state and the state is supreme, no more, “We the People” because the state controls the election rules, no more checks and balances because the state is always right, and no more private property rights.


19 posted on 09/09/2012 3:29:00 PM PDT by Eva
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To: Thom Pain

It has probably been explained to you at least 3000 times. So if you still don’t get it.....sign.


20 posted on 09/09/2012 3:29:59 PM PDT by DManA
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To: SeekAndFind

Sadly this country is a cowering lot who want to be assured that government will take care of them when they falter. They are pro-freebies, jealous of the successful, averse to responsibility and amoral. The country is lost because it’s so easy to be a democrat.


21 posted on 09/09/2012 3:33:06 PM PDT by Jake8898
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To: SeekAndFind

The Romney campaign needs to adapt to day to day events.

The new Democrat/Media narrative focuses on Bill Clinton. It goes like this........

“Y’all love Bill Clinton, right? Well Clinton said Obama has done the best he could with the mess he inherited. He said that even HE couldn’t have done a better job in 4 years. So c’mon, we MUST give the Black man the benefit of the doubt. WE MUST. WE MUST, WE MUST”.

Romney could easily turn this around and use Clinton as a weapon against Obama by saying this......

“Obama ran as a Clinton-esque Centrist in 2008. Well the American people wanted Obama to focus all his energy on fixing the economy. But there was one problem with that: the Democrats had a rare political opportunity to nationalize our health care system, since they controlled all 3 branches of government, with a super majority in the Senate. The American people said ‘fix the economy first, then worry about health care’. A Centrist would have listened to the will of the people. When Bill Clinton tried to pass a health care bill the economy was in much better shape in the early 90s than it was when Obama took office. But the American people still didn’t like his health care bill. So what did Bill Clinton do? He listened to the American people and scrapped his health care bill. And if Bill Clinton had been elected in 2008, he would have listened to the American people then too. Obama chose his Liberal ideology over listening to the American people in a time of economic crisis. He’s no Bill Clinton, and he’s no Centrist. And if Bill Clinton tries to tell you otherwise, just remember that for all his positives, Bill Clinton sometimes has a problem with telling the truth”.

Seems pretty simple to me. Yet I have the sinking feeling that it would never occur to a whole room full of so called political experts working for Romney to come up with a response like this.


22 posted on 09/09/2012 3:37:15 PM PDT by The Fop (Excuse me while I clean the saliva out of my racist dog whistle)
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To: SeekAndFind

A lot of people will say that they are voting for Obama for the simple fact that they don’t want to be seen as being racist. When they reach the voting booth, however, they will vote Republican.


23 posted on 09/09/2012 3:39:20 PM PDT by Thunder90 (Kick Obama out of the White House in 2012.)
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To: SeekAndFind

Because both major candidates are utterly horrible?

Other than that I can’t think of a thing.


24 posted on 09/09/2012 3:40:01 PM PDT by Colonel_Flagg (Conservatism is not a matter of convenience.)
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To: SeekAndFind

I’d run an ad with an unhappy looking black woman sitting in government housing eating mac and cheese and watching ELLEN......no car....no job.....no future......here’s what the Democrats think is good enough for you. Then, the set breaks apart to show a nice home....a nice car.....meals at a nice restaurant.....a fulfilling private sector job with a future.....this is what the Republicans want you to have.....see the difference.


25 posted on 09/09/2012 3:40:17 PM PDT by blueunicorn6 ("A crack shot and a good dancer")
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To: cripplecreek

Anyone is better than the Anti-American in the WH house right now though.


26 posted on 09/09/2012 3:42:19 PM PDT by jsanders2001
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To: Colonel_Flagg

Its like a choice between Jimmy Carter and Bill Clinton.


27 posted on 09/09/2012 3:47:52 PM PDT by cripplecreek (What does it profit a man if he gains the whole world but loses his soul?)
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To: SeekAndFind

This election is NOT going to be close. Barring some fiasco in the debates, that I do NOT expect.. Obama is going to lose... by a pretty large margin, in the electoral college.

Telephone polling has become unreliable, even when it’s done well. Most marketing firms report that LESS than 15% of people called agree to participate... and, who do you think these people are? Folks that are a) not so bright, and b) not so busy.

They simply are no longer representative.

The economy sucks... people are hurting.. and, when they are, they Vote for CHANGE! Last time, that helped Obama... this time, it curses him.


28 posted on 09/09/2012 3:50:15 PM PDT by SomeCallMeTim ( The best minds are not in government. If any were, business would hire them)
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To: SeekAndFind

I don’t understand the logic behind the argument that “people tell pollsters that they like Obama because they don’t want to be thought of as racist”. Why would someone care what a stranger over the phone thinks about them? Is the pollster going to call up their neighbors and say “guess what, that guy living down the block from you in the green house doesn’t like Obama, he may be a racist”?

If a pollster called me, I’d have no problem being as sarcastic as possible and saying “I’m voting for the White guy, White Power, yeah!” Maybe I’m just a lot more nervy than most people. But it still seems far fetched to me that someone would care about what a pollster, who is getting paid to do a boring job and call people all day, would think of them.


29 posted on 09/09/2012 3:50:15 PM PDT by The Fop (Excuse me while I clean the saliva out of my racist dog whistle)
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To: SeekAndFind

This election is NOT going to be close. Barring some fiasco in the debates, that I do NOT expect.. Obama is going to lose... by a pretty large margin, in the electoral college.

Telephone polling has become unreliable, even when it’s done well. Most marketing firms report that LESS than 15% of people called agree to participate... and, who do you think these people are? Folks that are a) not so bright, and b) not so busy.

They simply are no longer representative.

The economy sucks... people are hurting.. and, when they are, they Vote for CHANGE! Last time, that helped Obama... this time, it curses him.


30 posted on 09/09/2012 3:53:31 PM PDT by SomeCallMeTim ( The best minds are not in government. If any were, business would hire them)
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To: cripplecreek

Can’t fault that statement.


31 posted on 09/09/2012 3:55:25 PM PDT by Colonel_Flagg (Conservatism is not a matter of convenience.)
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To: SkyPilot
This is way, way over emphasized. The evidence is that these people do not vote. People want to cite 08, but it wasn't the WELFARE vote, per se, that gave Obama his bump, but the BLACK vote; the "yut" vote; and (yes) based on our data 25-30% of REPUBLICANS voted for the idiot.

If you separate "black" from "welfare," I think you'll find that entitlement voters (aside from the elderly) don't vote in large numbers. Union workers are not technically "entitlements" any more than soldiers are, so you can't include them.

32 posted on 09/09/2012 3:59:24 PM PDT by LS ("Castles Made of Sand, Fall in the Sea . . . Eventually (Hendrix))
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To: SeekAndFind; All

.

If America only knew.....

(And if somebody doesn’t REALLY expose the Marxist/Muslim sob to the American people, we will lose again.)

The best Obama exposure site on the net:
(by our own FReeper, Beckwith)

The Obama File
http://theobamafile.com/

The United States Library of Congress has selected
TheObamaFile.com for inclusion in its historic collection
of Internet materials
http://theobamafile.com/LibraryOfCongress.html

Just a few pages from the massive file:

http://theobamafile.com/index_next_politics.html

http://www.theobamafile.com/index_next_personal.html

http://www.theobamafile.com/BarackObama.htm

http://www.theobamafile.com/_family/FamilyPage.htm

http://www.theobamafile.com/ObamaEducation.htm

http://www.theobamafile.com/ObamaPsychology.htm

http://www.theobamafile.com/ObamaReligion.htm

http://www.theobamafile.com/ObamaWife.htm

http://www.theobamafile.com/_associates/ObamaAssociates.htm

http://www.theobamafile.com/ObamaIconography.htm

.

.

___________________

2012 is an important year to remember 9/11 because our younger generations are the most in danger of forgetting what really happened.

Or worse, our younger generations are susceptible to getting a politically correct view of 9/11. Many on the Left have tried to turn 9/11 into a “day of national service” or a celebration of tolerance, instead of remembering that radical jihad attacked this nation because of our western values.

Watch this moving tribute to the heroes of 9/11
composed by a man who lived through it:
(music by Enya)

http://www.frugalsites.net/911/attack/

It is the most viewed video of all,
and is now in the Smithsonian.

.

.


33 posted on 09/09/2012 4:03:59 PM PDT by patriot08 (TEXAS GAL- born and bred and proud of it!)
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To: cripplecreek
Ok, I'm getting tired of this. I gave to Cain. I voted for Newt. Romney WAS my "last choice" candidate. But you know what? Herman Cain would already have lost this by 400 electoral votes. It wouldn't even be worth laughing about.

Newt would be so demonized that if St. Francis of Assisi was his VP, he'd still lose by 400 EVs. And yes, Sarah Palin would have been crushed. She'd get all 40% of the GOP vote and not one single vote over that.

The fact is, Romney is the only one who had a true national presence, who didn't come off as either incompetent, sexually weird, or repellant. Santorum, whom I would have voted for if not Newt, was viewed by the vast majority of people I've talked to who were "independents" or even "soft Republicans" as totally sanctimonious. So let's understand that Rush's dictum that conservatism USUALLY wins when it's effectively presented is NOT 100% certain. A slew of conservative senators got booted out in 06 in favor of a bunch of total leftists, and we still haven't gotten the senate back (if just three or four---Mike DeWine, Jim Talent, Norm Coleman, and George Allen---had held onto their seats, we damn sure wouldn't have Obamacare now and we damn sure would have a budget.)

A reasonably conservative set of positions is the necessary basis for victory, but it isn't sufficient. You need money, looks, communication skills, money, good organization, money, a certain amount of ruthlessness, and, oh, did I say, money?

34 posted on 09/09/2012 4:10:10 PM PDT by LS ("Castles Made of Sand, Fall in the Sea . . . Eventually (Hendrix))
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To: uncbob

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7rrNMS-iq8E


35 posted on 09/09/2012 4:12:39 PM PDT by Mechanicos (When did we amend the Constitution for a 2nd Federal Prohibition?)
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To: LS

I don’t really care about any of that.

People just don’t like the guy and there’s just no way to rationalize around that.


36 posted on 09/09/2012 4:17:55 PM PDT by cripplecreek (What does it profit a man if he gains the whole world but loses his soul?)
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To: uncbob

Because at the very last poll, they actually try to do a seriously poll since no on remembers anything but the pre election day poll


37 posted on 09/09/2012 4:19:50 PM PDT by MNJohnnie (Giving more money to DC to fix the Debt is like giving free drugs to addicts think it will cure them)
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To: LS

Excellent post, Larry. And might I add to looks, a beautiful wife and handsome family. :)


38 posted on 09/09/2012 4:27:47 PM PDT by Miss Didi ("After all...tomorrow is another day." Scarlett O'Hara, Gone with the Wind)
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To: cripplecreek

Thanks for proving my point.


39 posted on 09/09/2012 4:36:59 PM PDT by Thom Pain (U.S. Constitution is a CONTRACT!)
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To: Doogle
after all these years, you'd think every single freeper in his right mind would KNOW we must elect Romney...

and yet..we have freepers who will do just the oppisite...

now if that is happening among a typically conservative, patriotic group, is it any wonder why the drones in society would vote for the lunatic dictator?....

like Rush says, we could survive another 4 yrs of bammey, but can we survive those who re elect him?....no, we can not..

40 posted on 09/09/2012 4:40:02 PM PDT by cherry
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To: DManA
It's spelled sigh

I get the premise, dmANa, I just don't get why so many would choose the Douche for 4 more years vs choosing the lesser evil and then pounding him and his administration to push them to doing it right. I assure you I get it. However, I will NOT cut off my nose to spite ...

Well, I have better things to do than entertain you. Sigh.

41 posted on 09/09/2012 4:42:34 PM PDT by Thom Pain (U.S. Constitution is a CONTRACT!)
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To: DManA
For a long time pollsters did not want to poll anyone who did not have a land line phone.
Now that this society is more mobile than ever with cell phones, etc., it may be harder for pollsters to get any kind of accurate sampling.
I would imagine most people operating soley on a cell phone do not want to take any kind of time for a poll, I know I don't. Ergo the kind of poll results we may be seeing.
Bottom line who knows exactly what is going on.
42 posted on 09/09/2012 4:49:24 PM PDT by Captain Peter Blood
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To: cripplecreek
Wrong. YOU don't like the guy, and you need to understand that you are not in a majority. I happen to personally know several women who voted for Obama who have switched their votes to Romney because they like him.

It's one thing to state your opinion, but it's another to project. He's not my favorite, but I know LOTS of people who like him and can't stand some of the more conservative Republicans like Newt, Santorum, Cain, or even Palin.

43 posted on 09/09/2012 4:50:29 PM PDT by LS ("Castles Made of Sand, Fall in the Sea . . . Eventually (Hendrix))
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To: Thom Pain

Ok, let me explain it like this. I wish both of them could lose. Since that is not possible I hope Obama loses more.

Either way I don’t have much confidence this countries decline will be halted.


44 posted on 09/09/2012 4:51:09 PM PDT by DManA
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To: LS
For those who has done extensive trading in the markets, it is well understood how FEAR is a much more powerful emotion that GREED. That is why bull markets typically climb a wall of worry whereas selloffs are typically very quick and sharp and violent.

All the welfare/handout voters are motivated by GREED. There are a huge number of citizens who have deep and real FEAR over the Marxist getting another term in office. Those voters will turn out in huge numbers to vote. Those wanting "free stuff" are motivated by GREED, not as powerful as FEAR, and by their very nature are LAZY, and will not make the same effort to turn out and vote. Romney wins any race where he is within 5 points because of this.

45 posted on 09/09/2012 4:51:31 PM PDT by MrDem (Founder: Democrats for Cheney/Palin 2012)
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To: DManA

this country’s decline that is.


46 posted on 09/09/2012 4:51:55 PM PDT by DManA
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To: LS

Asking people to deny their gut instincts for the second time in 4 years was risky at best. Attacking them for not doing so will be disastrous.


47 posted on 09/09/2012 4:58:20 PM PDT by cripplecreek (What does it profit a man if he gains the whole world but loses his soul?)
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To: Doogle

Obama won 53% of the vote. That means 4% of those voters will have to admit they made a mistake. Most people are loath to admit they were wrong.


48 posted on 09/09/2012 5:02:18 PM PDT by CaptainK (...please make it stop. Shake a can of pennies at it.)
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To: CaptainK
That means 4% of those voters will have to admit they made a mistake. Most people are loath to admit they were wrong.
^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^

They likely won't bother to vote. Perhaps that is why the Marxist Convention ( Oops! “DemonRAT” Convention) spent time on begging their members to get out the vote.

49 posted on 09/09/2012 5:13:49 PM PDT by wintertime (:-))
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To: Marcella

Glad you have Newts sticker on your bumper. Is his blonde bombshell shadowe with the Donald Trump hair do alongside him? I was a huge Newt supporter until he attacked capitalism.


50 posted on 09/09/2012 5:27:50 PM PDT by BTCM (Death and destruction is the only treaty Muslims comprehend.)
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