Saturday, August 4, 2012

What Mattered This Week?

I'll go with what Nate Silver said -- that the economic news this week was a bit of a plus for Barack Obama. Not so much that it was great, although it did push things his way a bit, but because it made economic disaster before November somewhat less likely, and if things stay as they are, he's probably a slim favorite.

What didn't matter? I don't about the spike up in the polls for Obama in that Q swing states poll and then in Pew. I'm pretty skeptical about both. Toss 'em all into the pot, sure, but I'm not buying it, yet.

What else? What do you think mattered this week?


  1. Romney continued running a fairly medicore campaign, proving that the only way he can win is by accident. Does that matter yet, or do we have to wait until October?

  2. Julian Castro being named the keynote speaker may be seen as a big deal. I think the smarter, forward-looking Dems are trying to figure out how they can shake something loose in Texas. True, the statewide offices are hard to win, but the big city mayors are going Dem and those cities are electing smart, modern Democrats (mayor of Houston is first openly lesbian big city mayor). They can be a strong foundation for a TX Democratic Party that plays a bigger role in the state. Making Texas a swing state, something that is foreseeable in the medium term, is a game-changer. The Republicans probably have growth opportunities in the Rust Belt and Northeast but those efforts are made more difficult by the fact that the parts of those states that are growing tend to be bluer, it's the depopulating areas that are becoming very conservative.

  3. What if the job report had again been around 50,000? How bad would that have been for Obama? Maybe what matters is the dog that didn't bark. (What will the number be come September and October?)

  4. Syria mattered, especially the stories that they assassinated Bandar bin Sultan.

    The Euro mattered, with Draghi's announcement and subsequent developments.

  5. The drought mattered.

    1. I wonder if someday soon the Dems will be able to turn Repub climate change denialism Into a major political liability.

  6. A climate-change skeptic reversed course; said it's real.

    And a new study links recent weather patterns -- particularly drought -- to global warming.

    Romney showed he hasn't got much in the way of foreign-manners chops.

    And the problems of hair. . . matters to some. I recommend a search of Ta-Nehisi Coates' blog on that one; old territory worth visiting.

  7. Silver places Obama's chances now at 70%, yet you describe Obama as merely a "slight" favorite. That's not the wording that 70% chance brings to mind, so I take it that you consider Silver's model to be overstating Obama's strength. Where exactly do you agree or differ with this model?

  8. The Senate "high-capacity" magazine ban gets 52 votes, but fails to get the 60 needed to go forward.

    We increase our support for Syrian insurgents. A Libertarian news commentator (not John Stossel, the other one) suggests that Obama might be opening himself up to indefinite detention under the NDAA, a bill he himself signed:

  9. The Anaheim police actions matter. The Feds have really got to step in on that one.

    It took El Lay 10 years to implement the Warren Christopher recommendations, but that investment really paid off in terms of race relations.


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