Prediction Time

I posted a prediction on Kos a few weeks ago that I think is pretty good, but I’m going to post one last one tonight with just 48 hours left.

Popular Vote:

Kerry 49%

Bush 48%

Electoral Vote:

Kerry 296 (Gore +FL +OH +NH -WI -NM)

Bush 241 (The rest minus one faithless elector in WV)

Senate:

Democratic 50

Republican 49

Independent 1

House:

Republican 226

Democrat 211

Indpendent 1

UPDATE I’m going to go out on a limb and say that while there may be a few voting problems here and there, this election isn’t going to be close enough to steal in the end. However, knowing that the Republicans are the way they are, I predict the Grand Shenanigan of 2004 to be a lame duck recess appointment to replace Chief Justice Rehnquist.

UPDATE Map:

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The Coup D'etat of 2004?

The Conservatrons are in trouble and they know it.

Sure most Americans think Bush will win (no doubt because CNN and USA Today use the flawed Gallup Poll that assumes that minorities will vote in LOWER – percentage – numbers than 2000), but most polls showed Bush with about a 3% lead on election eve in 2000 and he still lost. What happend? Beyond the drunk driving charge (as if that is worse than being a deserter from the military) the polls underestimated the Democratic ability to get out the vote. A high turnout still favors Democrats and every early indication is that the turnout in 2004 will be much higher than in 2000. Moreover, self-evident concerns about the draft have increased the youth (18-24) vote, which favors Kerry by a 2-1 margin (according to the LA Times) and is underepresented in polls because many youngsters have not voted before or else they use cellphones, have no landline, and are thus unavailable to pollsters.

Another wildcard that favors Democrats is the overseas vote. By all accounts, record amounts of non-military Americans abroad are voting this year. The GOP has tried to ameliorate this by guaranteeing that almost every active military personnel (a group that still favors them – although not by as much as in the past) will vote, but an even split on total overseas votes still favors Democrats comapared to years past.

Bush has not been able to break fifty percent in most national polls. His Nature Conservancy/Terrorism ad featuring adorable wolves (Vote for George Bush or else John Kerry will restore ecoloical balanace and allow predators their appropriate place in the ecosystem. You see, evolution states that the overall health of a species is actually helped, over time, when a predator is able to thin out the sick and weak… and, I mean, be afraid; wolves; scary; it’s hard to be an Idaho rancher. Vote Bush! Terrorism! Yeah. Be afraid. Oh the baying of the hounds! Awooooooooo! Werewolves of London!….) has been ridiculus to the point of parody.

What would you do if you were in the Conservatrons’ shoes and you loved power but hated Domecracy?

The registration fraud, missing ballots, poorly designes ballots and other chicanery are red herrings in this election. The real potential for fraud lies in the “challenegers:” groups of GOP lawyers who will sit in polling stations to make sure that no one votes inappropriately.

Right.

In the highly charged, vicious atmosphere of this campaign, thoudands of voters, many of them minorities, who have never cast ballots before will be voting. They will arrive in polling stations, accompanied by their knolwdegeable get out the vote personnel, only to find a person to challenge their fitness to carry out their role as a citizen and vote. Throw in a few N-bombs, some pushing and shoving, and it is not difficult to imagine violence breaking out. A large-scale fight would then complicate the voting for everyone else at that particular polling place.

Prepared for the meelee, the GOP echo-chamber would no doubt be in full Willie-fnord-Horton mode. One can almost ˙ear MSNBC:

Conservatron Hack: “Y’know Chris {Matthews}, it just goes to show, people who haven’t voted before, they just aren’t aware – aren’t familiar with some of these fair election laws. In districts that typically have high turnout there have not been problems. But traditionally lower income – whioch are lower turnout areas – that is where you see these irregularities popping up. And it’s a shame that they do not care about – do not understand the law.”

Matthews: “So you are saying that confusion lead to the riot.”

Conservatron: “Yes Chris, we haven’t seen these problems in areas that always have a very high turnout, it’s just a misunderstanding of the legality of the vote……..”

Al Smith once said, to paraphrase, that the problems of Democracy can be solved by more Democracy. Michael Moore has promised that he will have cameras at the ready in voting precnts, especially those in minority areas, across America, ready to record any intimidation that takes place. Starting a fight at a polling place is the best way for the GOP to steal this election; it leaves no “paper trail” of unsent ballots or fradulent convict lists. If the video cyclops of Democracy is upon polling places, however, the images that come out of this fights may appeal to many Americans latent sense of equality, rather than their latent racism. And that may be enough to stop this dirty trick before it starts.

100,000 Dead

When all of the adrenaline, nerves, clouds, and so forth settle from the election, I’m sure that the fact there are 100,000 dead Iraqis will depress me more than anything. This is tragic. Where does it stop?

Pat Robertson Told Me I'm A Prophet – A Parable

After the first round of the baseball playoffs I decided to bet ten dollars on the proposition that the Boston Red Sox would win the World Series. Mathematically they had a 25% chance, but I thought they honestly had more heart and soul than the Yankees this year and that defeating the New York Baseball Hessians would give them the confidence to get over the top. Yeah, I know, what about “The Curse?” Well, the 2-1 odds (I bet ten dollars to win twenty, most bets involve betting 11 dollars to win 10) made the expected value of the bet high enough for me to make it, curse or no.

After three games my reasoning looked poor. For unrelated reasons, I decided to unwind with some vicodin and six shots of rum one night when I was abruptly visited by Pat Robertson. He was a gaunt and terrifying figure, sitting in a rickshaw made purely of diamonds that glistened like the white eyes of a mako shark before it bites a tuna. Pat was being pulled around in slow circles by an emaciated slave on loan from his African mining plantation. He told me that he had been having one of his regular conversations with God over maple scones and peppermint lattes at Starbucks the other day, and God had told him that the Red Sox were going to win the World Series.

“You’re shitting me, Pat,” I said.

“God didn’t shit Jesus,” Pat replied and with that he blew crystaline diamond dust into my face and disappeared with a poof.

That was one weird dream, I thought as I awoke in my chair, still wearing last night’s clothes, with granules of sugar all over my face for some reason.

Weirder still, the Red Sox won the next four games and the series in one of the great comebacks in sports history.

The night of the final game I decided to put sustainable practices to work by cooking some cacti that I had bought from a shaggy gentleman who had a stand set up outside of the local CostCo. “I harvested them in the Oregon desert,” he had said. By purchasing them I was keeping my money in the local community. As I finsihed my stewed cactus I began to think on how cactus does not actually grow in the Oregon desert. Just then Pat Robertson appeared. He was atop his diamond-riskshaw, being pulled by his slave. He was eating a pizza that was constructed entirely out of diamonds, his scabbard teeth crushed the diamonds with a sound like dry snow crunching beanth heavy boots. The diamond shards cut his gums and maroon blood spilled down his chin like ice cream melting on the face of an over-exicted toddler.

“Still think God is shitting you, biatch,” Pat said, droplets of blood splicking out of his wrinkly mouth and landing on my shirt.

“What else does God have to prove to me?” I asked.

“Baseball is America’s past time,” Pat explained. “Of course the World Series has to come down to Massachusettes versus Texas. The Rocket and the ‘Stros are gonna’ deck the Cards, fool.”

I awoke the next morning with a terrible cough. I was all stuffed up and achy and my shirt was covered with stains from pomengranite seeds for some reason. After I laid down my ten dollars (to win $10.80) on Houston I began to take Robitussin, but the cough and cold just would not go away. I turned on the ball game. I was starting in on my third bottle of ‘Tussin when the Cards broke through on Clemens and scored four runs. Any keen watcher of sports knows when a team is beat. And the Astros were beat. I chugged the third bottle of Robitussin and suddenly Pat Robertson’s slave dragged his diamond rickshaw through the television screen and into my living room. Pat was wearing a leather dog collar with pointy diamonds the size of kiwis studded all around it.

“What the hell, Pat?” I exclaimed. “The Astros are over.”

“Oh, I was just doing shots of buttery nipples with God, and he decided that the Cardinals are going to win.”

“Wha…?”

“I am a Prophet,” Pat said as he unscrewed one of the pointy diamond studs from his collar. He began to carve the words DEF LEOPARD into his arm. “Sometimes God tells a prophet what he is going to do. Sometimes, when all evidence points to the contrary of what God said, God just arbitrarily changes his mind to correspond with what all of the factual evidence indicates.” The maroon blood from Pat’s arm was collecting in a writhing pool on the wood floors. It turned green, began to bubble, and coalesced into a Hobbit. The Hobbit began to do an Irish jig. “Being a prophet means reporting what God says when he changes his mind. A year ago God told me that Bush would win the election in a landslide. Lately, God has been looking at the polls and has has told me that the election is actually too close to call. Even further back God told me that the new war in Iraq would be easy as pie. Then last week, God reminded me that he actually told me that there would be lots of casualties. God’s works are mysterious, but now you know their magic, so you are a prophet. God tells you what he believes, and then changes his mind until the facts agree with him. As one who speaks for God, it is your job to predict events, and then change your prediction until it is correct. After all, God cannot be wrong.”

“But I bet ten dollars on the Astros!” I cried.

“Enough!” Robertson snarled. The green Hobbit began to kick me in the shin. I tried to retaliate but I was frozen to the chair. The Hobbit was relentless and just as the pain became too terrible to bear the world went to black.

I awoke the next mornning with bruises covering my shins. The pain was sharp and I could barely walk. For some reason there was a sticky pool of Jagermeister on the floor next to a knocked-over bottle, but at least my cold was cured.

Bush Knows Where Osama Is But Won't Get Him

From a speech given at the alma mater of the authors of this blog:

Bin Laden is living in South Waziristan in the Baluchistan Mountains of the Baluchistan Region, Lehman told The Sun after delivering a keynote speech on terrorism at Pitzer College in Claremont to kick off the university’s three-day writers festival.


In the exclusive interview, Lehman said, “There is an American presence in the area, but we can’t just send in troops. If we did, we could have another Vietnam, and the United States cannot afford that right now.’

When pressed on why the United States couldn’t send troops into the region to capture the world’s No. 1 terrorist, Lehman said the Baluchistan Region of the country is filled with militant fundamentalists who do not recognize the legitimacy of President Pervez Musharraf, a close ally of the United States. “That is a region filled with Taliban and al-Qaida members,’ he said, acknowledging that Pakistan’s security services also are filled with many who agree with bin Laden’s beliefs and would aid him if U.S. Special Forces entered the region.


“Look,’ Lehman said, “Musharraf already has had three assassination attempts on his life. He is trying to comply, but he is surrounded by people who do not agree with him. This is not like Afghanistan, where there was no compliance, and we had to go in. We’ll get (bin Laden) eventually, just not now.’

In other words, we can’t go get him because OUR FUCKING ARMY IS I-FUCKING-RAQ.

How can ANYONE vote for this FUCKER? aaaaaAAAAAAAAAAARRRRRRRRRRRGGGGGGGGGGGGGGHHHHHHHHH!

Tough on terror my ass. Safer my ass. F#$% you, Mr. President. You are letting a murderer get away so that you can fight your Book of Revelation Oil Corporate Crony Imperial Iraq war.

Unfuckingbelievable.

The Crystal Ball

Right before the Swift Boat debacle and the attendant drop in the polls, I wrote this:

I think Kerry’s strategy of sitting back and let Bush screw up is going to start costing him in the coming weeks. I’ve seen encouraging polls from Florida and Michigan today, but I can’t help but freak out a little bit. It’s looking too good and there’s still too much time left.

The Bush attack machine is getting traction on Kerry’s war record. Stupid, yes, but they are.

I’m going to predict this: we’re close to tied after the RNC, and the debates better do some good for Kerry in Florida (I don’t see how Bush can win without Florida and Ohio).

Not bad, eh? I did freak out. And I continued to freak out until the first debate. But since then, I can just feel it. We’re going to win. I could go into all the reasons why I think this is so, but mainly I just think that it comes down to this: even his supporters know that Bush has basically fucked up. They don’t have the energy level that Kerry’s supporters do. Independents are for Kerry. Ohio is for Kerry. I think Kerry is going to close the deal in the next week.

Malkin

OK, I shouldn’t be baited. I was one of the easiest kids in school to pick a fight with because I can never “let it go” or whatever. I know better than to care about this bitch, but seriously…

From her column. (ugh)

But Rosie [the Riveter] is gone. And in her place, we have Hysterical Women for

Kerry. They are self-absorbed celebrities who support banning all guns (except the ones their bodyguards use to protect them and their children). They are teachers’ union bigwigs who support keeping all children hostage in public schools (except their own sons and daughters who have access to the best private institutions). They are sanctimonious environmentalists who oppose ostentatious energy consumption (except for their air-conditioned Malibu mansions and Gulfstream jets and custom Escalades).****

They are antiwar activists who claim to love the troops (except when they’re apologizing to the terrorists trying to kill our men and women in uniform). They are peace activists who balk at your son bringing in his “Star Wars” light saber for the kindergarten Halloween parade (but who have no problem serving as human shields for torture-loving dictators). They are ultrafeminists who purport to speak for all women (but not the unborn ones or the abstinent teenage ones or the minority conservative ones or the newly enfranchised ones in Afghanistan).

There are enough straw-(wo)men there to thatch Versailles.

(1) Anti-gun celebrities who want armed bodyguards.

No, see, they’re not for there not being guns anywhere. They’re just against you being able to buy an uzi in Wal-Mart.

(2) Teachers Union Members With Private School Children

Right. Those rascally rich teachers.

(3) Greens with LearJets.

Because two wrongs make a right.

(4) Anti-war activists who love the troops

Because supporting the troopse means “send them to fight the wrong enemy with no equipment.”

(5) Human-shield Peaceniks

Raising your kids to be violent is better! lol.

(6) Ultrafeminist Excluders

Because

If this was just Malkin I’d let it go, maybe. But the fact is, this kind of proto-nazi garbage is worse than telling you what to think, it’s telling you what other people think. Of course anyone in their right mind is going to disagree with the kind of straw-men hypocrites cited above.

Unfortunately for Malkin, the world would be a terrible place if everyone had to be perfect. Thomas Jefferson owned slaves, but his writings inspired freedom later. And maybe Sean Penn has an armed body-guard, but I’m not sure that puts him a position where he can’t hope that inner-city children don’t get shot.

The reason these arguments get traction is because ad hominem attacks work best on people who are uneducated. They look at a man’s “ethos” and not his “logos.” Arguments are only compelling if you understand the facts around them. People intuitively think that men of bad character in one aspect (say, men who cheat on their wives) are incapable of being so in another way.

This is fucking bullshit. No one is perfect. Jesus said “let he who is without sin cast the first stone.” Malkin and her ilk want to cast a lot of stones, but none of them are without sin.