Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Current Reading and the Religious Left Vote

I just read significant chunks of Bob Shrum's book, No Excuses: The Life of a Serial Campaigner. Basically, all I was interested in was aspects of the Gore campaign and, of course, the Kerry campaign. It was a nice read and sad. It was hard re-living the last weeks of the Kerry campaign. How quickly we forget that going into the final week, we felt great about our chances and then Osama Bin Laden showed up . . .

Apparently, Shrum himself was the one who at 5 pm on election day jinxed Kerry by referring to him as "Mr. President" and it went down hill from there.

I'm currently reading Dana Milbank's Homo Politicus. Very insightful and funny stuff--written from the perspective of an anthropologist studying Washington politicians, aka, Potomac Man.

My next read is Predictably Irrational: The Hidden Forces That Shape our Decisions or The Long Tail. The Long Tail, from what I remember from NPR is an observed phenomenon of how on Amazon, bestsellers, account for a very small percent of sales and 98% of the remaining sales derive from small quantities of many other things. Besides these two, if George R. R. Martin still remains asleep at the switch, I may go on to read Microtrends.

A quick note on the Religious Left. Amy Sullivan had an article in the WaPo: "How would Jesus vote?" and Joe Feuerherd "I Voted for Obama, will I go straight to . . . (Hell)" I wasn't too surprised to see Sullivan's article because this is her theme. I was surprised to see Feuerherd's because he was a journalist, I'm pretty certain he isn't any longer, but it must have been hard for him to move into the realm of stating a personal public opinion. I found them both interesting and I hope they got good enough readership. Feuerherd was the first journalist to call me after Hudson's piece, in fact he told me about it. He asked for a response and I had no idea what he was talking about. Which reminds me, Milbank does have a couple of pages on Deal Hudson, doesn't mention me, but uses Feuerherd's expose on Hudson, who is in his view, a Potomac Man.

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SNL on the Candidates

Somehow, NBC has found a way to showcase a very weak political SNL program on its programs. There were funny moments but overall, excruciatingly dull and not up to the standards we've come to expect from SNL. The Obama guy was either uptight or a joke. Amy Poehler is just not great at Clinton. She does do a real funny Six Flags guy.

Of course, as has been pointed out in WaPo, if SNL kept a decent and diverse stable of actors, desparately searching and auditioning for Obama possibilities wouldn't be necessary.

Monday, February 04, 2008

Blacks vs Latinos

Via Salon's Blog Report

Do Blacks and Latino's Get Along?

On the study’s title question, the largest differences were between whites,
on one side, and the other groups, on the other, although blacks tended to see
black-Hispanic relations as better than did Hispanics. Among whites, only
8 percent thought that the other two groups got along "very well", while blacks
(24 percent) and Hispanics (22 percent) thought they did. On whether the
two minorities got along "pretty well," 31 percent of whites said yes, while 46
percent of blacks and 35 percent of Hispanics agreed. Hispanics were
significantly more likely than blacks to say that inter-group relations are
strained (30% vs. 18%). Reasonably enough, 29 percent of whites did not know or
refused to give their opinion on how the other groups got along.