ChrisWeigant.com

Romney: Not Wimp, But Weasel

[ Posted Monday, July 30th, 2012 – 14:40 PDT ]

In its continuing search for relevance in the modern age, Newsweek decided to run with a cover story designed not only to be provocative, but also to hearken back to one of their previously-provocative headlines from two decades ago (that, assumably, sold a lot of magazines for them). In case you haven't heard, Newsweek is calling Mitt Romney a "wimp." Actually, they are themselves wimping out, because they don't even directly make this assertion on their cover, they instead speak of the "wimp factor," and then further obscure the charge by using the question format instead of a simple declaration: "Romney: The Wimp Factor -- Is He Just Too Insecure To Be President?" A much stronger headline, and more in keeping with the fifth-grade-playground nature of the insult, would have been: "Romney Is A Wimp, And Therefore Will Not Be Elected President." This is but a minor quibble, however, as the article itself does indeed call Romney not only a "wimp," but also a "weenie." We would respectfully suggest, however, that another "W-word" is far more appropriate in describing Mitt Romney: "weasel."

Using animal names for human insults and praise is, of course, an ancient tradition. The weasel family has members within it who are used for high purposes and low in this fashion; from denoting wealth and royalty (sable, ermine), to playfulness (otter), to outright insult (polecat). Some even have crossover uses, such as denoting both wealth and sexual prowess (mink). One was used -- even before the comic book anti-hero -- to represent both vicious fearlessness as well as the sports teams of the University of Michigan (wolverine). Ironically, there are even two weasel family members who are used as examples of digging out the truth via hard questioning (ferret and badger). One poor member of family Mustelidae even recently got kicked out, forced to form a family of their own, because nobody likes a skunk at the party.

Getting back to weasels, my dictionary informs me that using "weasel" as an insult (a "weasel word") stems from the critter's propensity to suck eggs. No, seriously: "the weasel's reputed habit of sucking the contents out of an egg while leaving the shell superficially intact." This is why weasel words are used "in order to evade or retreat from a direct or forthright statement or position." My dictionary is fairly old, so there was no actual photo of Mitt Romney next to this definition (ahem), but for the life of me I cannot come up with any better description of his candidacy. Indeed, Mitt has been evading and retreating from just about any direct or forthright statements or positions during his entire campaign.

Wimps and weenies shirk from a fight. That's the basic definition (although "weenie" leaves a bit of... um... wiggle room, shall we say). If you are challenged, and you back down, you are considered to be (again, on that fifth-grade playground) a wimp. Another animal-based insult springs to mind as a synonym (one previously innocently used to refer to cats), but since it is generally considered outside the bounds of polite conversation we will refrain from being any more specific.

Mitt Romney doesn't really fit the classic wimp definition, as even Newsweek sheepishly concedes (to briefly branch out into ovine reverse-anthropomorphism): "a wimp lets himself get kicked around, and Romney doesn't exactly do that. He sure didn't during the primaries, when he strafed Rick Perry and carpet-bombed Rick Santorum." Anyone who remembers the primary campaign knows that Romney is no classic "wimp." But then again, neither was George H. W. Bush, the original Newsweek wimp (see: Willie Horton ad). Instead, Romney is a world-class weasel.

Now, almost all politicians have to play the weasel sometimes. Whether by occasionally using weasel words in answer to a direct question, or by weaseling out on a promise previously made. Barack Obama is no different, and there are indeed examples of his doing both one can point to. Flip-flopping (or "evolving") on issues is considered weaselly by some, and Romney certainly has contributed his share during his political career (indeed, it is actually hard to come up with an issue that Romney has not flip-flopped on). But even this isn't what I mean when I call Romney a weasel.

Instead, I'm speaking of a more pure form of the put-down. Call it inherent "weaselishness" or perhaps "weaselitude" (well, maybe not). It all boils down to Romney getting in touch with his inner weasel. Evading and retreating from direct or forthright statements or positions, as Merriam and Webster aptly put it. To put it another way: Mitt refusing to tell the American people what he would do, on any pressing and relevant issue.

The most striking (but by no means only) example of this was Romney's non-position on President Obama's changes to immigration policy for children. After Obama made his announcement, Romney tried to have things both ways. According to Romney, what Obama did was wrong (naturally), and a "President Romney" would much rather have Congress pass comprehensive immigration reform so he could sign it into law. What would Mitt do from "Day One" in office until this wondrous event happened? He wouldn't say. Would he overturn Obama's directive? Mitt was mum. Would he continue the policy until Congress acted? Not going to answer that one, sorry.

This is Mitt's position on issue after issue which comes up in the news. "I've got a secret plan, which will be implemented on Day One, but I'm not going to tell you about it because it might cause somebody somewhere to vote against me." How will Mitt magically cut taxes and end the deficit? We don't know. How will Romney reform the tax code to get rid of all those loopholes? Got me. Will this involve lower mortgage deductions, or reducing the charitable giving write-off? Mitt'll tell you later, after he's elected. Has Mitt used tax-dodging schemes himself? "You people" have all the information you're ever going to get out of him, sorry. What will Romney replace Obamacare with? Dunno. What would he do differently in Afghanistan? Your guess is as good as mine. Mitt's list of such weaseling is a long one.

To be fair to Mitt, Newsweek rather unfairly chose to run its article during the one week when weasel answers are actually required (or at least expected) from Romney -- when he's on foreign soil. He's actually been fairly strictly keeping to the "politics ends at the water's edge" rule in American politics, and has not been badmouthing Obama while he's away (instead, he's just been badmouthing his host countries, but that's a separate issue, really). This is admirable, although I did notice that Mitt even weaseled out of this in one way (he gave an interview to an Israeli newspaper before he left, knowing that it would run while he was in Israel -- but because the interview was technically conducted in America, Mitt felt unbound by the "stops at the water's edge" constraint -- which is pretty downright weaselly).

Mitt Romney, more than any other Republican candidate in the last few decades (even George H. W. Bush, the first Newsweek "wimp"), reminds me of nothing more than an over-handled politician who is terrified about offending his base or any independent voters. Al Gore's "earth tones" spring to mind. Mitt is so cautious on the campaign trail it goes beyond avoiding risks. He has rather generic praise for the Republican Party line on just about any issue, but when pressed, he cannot say exactly what he would do on pretty much any of them. The one really strong stance Romney took during the primaries (illegal immigrants should be forced into "self-deportation") he has already walked back as much as he thinks he can get away with, without howls of dismay arising from hardline Republicans.

Now, I realize that Newsweek was trying to leverage a previously-successful cover headline into a 2012 election story. So they did their best to shoehorn Romney into the "wimp" mold. Romney does indeed show flashes of wimpiness at times, so it wasn't too much of a stretch to do so. They ended their article with:

So far, he wants to sneak into the White House through a side door, without having to do any of the difficult and controversial things candidates have to do. Voters want candidates who are harshly tested and emerge from those tests stronger. Romney is desperate above all else to dodge them -- and when they have come, he's failed.

But that's not precisely the textbook example of a wimp. Especially when there's a much better term to use. Romney wants to weasel his way into the White House through a side door. Romney is desperate above all else to weasel out of tough answers to hard questions.

Mitt Romney may or may not be a wimp, or even a weenie. But one thing is for certain: Mitt Romney is indeed a weasel.

-- Chris Weigant

 

Cross-posted at Business Insider
Cross-posted at The Huffington Post

Follow Chris on Twitter: @ChrisWeigant

 

78 Comments on “Romney: Not Wimp, But Weasel”

  1. [1] 
    Kevin wrote:

    Brilliant.

    Funny and accurate. BRAVO!!!!

  2. [2] 
    michty6 wrote:

    Romney has got to be one of the worst Presidential candidates ever seen: very little to offer from his record, completely unprincipled to the extent that it is almost condescending to the electorate, completely out of touch with reality and he has absolutely no charisma or any charm to make up for all these shortcomings. His trip abroad has shown that his communication and people skills are extremely poor (this is why he prefers to remain silent) - he operates like a robot.

    But I would say you could certainly classify him as a wimp, as well as a weasel. He has absolutely no control over his party (which has completely degenerated since the last election) and is not willing to stand up to the extremists inside it. His leadership is also robotic: taking orders and doing what he's told. This could certainly be called wimpish behavior.

    What the Republicans really needed was a strong leader stamping his authority - instead they ended up with Romney. I think come November they will pay the price for this lack of authority at the polls.

  3. [3] 
    Kevin wrote:

    Almost 4 hours and no splutterings from the Rabid Right? Chris, I think you also nailed the dis-mount :)

  4. [4] 
    Chris1962 wrote:

    Mitt Romney may or may not be a wimp, or even a weenie. But one thing is for certain: Mitt Romney is indeed a weasel.

    I think he's a very smart, disciplined CEO who knows how to stay "on strategy," as they say in business parlance.

  5. [5] 
    Chris1962 wrote:

    Romney has got to be one of the worst Presidential candidates ever seen

    Yet he's in a dead heat with the incumbent. Something tells me he's nowhere near as bad a candidate as the Left wishes (needs?) to believe.

  6. [6] 
    Chris Weigant wrote:

    Kevin [3] -

    OK, that was funny. "He stuck the landing!" Heh...

    Too much Olympics...

    :-)

    Chris1962 -

    I've yet to meet an actual CEO who didn't qualify as a weasel. I'm just sayin'...

    :-)

    As for [5], I'd turn it around: with a president with such low approval records, Romney should be absolutely crushing him. The fact that they're only even has got to be worrying quite a few Republican Party folks right about now...

    Heh.

    -CW

  7. [7] 
    Chris Weigant wrote:

    OK, I've spent the night reading edits and reviews of my other project, so I've just got to ask, to heal my fragile ego...

    What'd everyone think of the "skunk at the picnic" paragraph? I actually had to do some research for that one, and discovered that "stoat" and "ermine" is the same critter... learn something new every day...

    :-)

    "Jest fishin' fer compliments"...

    -CW

  8. [8] 
    Chris1962 wrote:

    I've yet to meet an actual CEO who didn't qualify as a weasel. I'm just sayin'...

    Hahaha. Well, I've had different experiences, in that case. I've met with, worked for, and worked with many a talented, focused, visionary, and strategic CEO. And they didn't get to the top of their game by being weasels, from where I was sitting. I think you and I have different opinions and perspectives regarding "weasel" words. I think most politicians (and business people) choose their words very carefully and wisely so as NOT to state falsehoods or commit to promises that they may not necessarily be able to keep. I think it's a very responsible way of communicating.

    As for [5], I'd turn it around: with a president with such low approval records, Romney should be absolutely crushing him.

    This is neither a referendum on Romney nor his election to lose, Chris. It's pretty tough to unseat an incumbent, who's got the power of the podium. I'll admit that I would expect O's numbers to be lower, given the state of the economy. But I also suspect that his internal polls are not showing the same results as the public ones we're seeing. I think they're probably a little more nervous over at Team-O headquarters than at Romney's. Just a hunch.

    What'd everyone think of the "skunk at the picnic" paragraph?

    I thought that paragraph was brilliantly thought out and masterfully written. I'll bet it took you longer than usual to craft it, too. It was so well stated, and clever, and flowed so smoothly that I immediately thought, "Oh, he spent some time on that one." LOL. Am I right or am I right?

  9. [9] 
    Nico wrote:

    Agree that wimp was a stretch. Too much so to justify what, for "wimp" to mean anything, requires some minimal amount of what amounts to gay baiting? Frankly, it trivializes the true assholery and danger of Romney.

    I think it says more about Tomasky really that he went for (or agreed to go for by an opportunistic Newsweek) the easy wimp line, when there are things that need to be said about Romney that should be hit more directly (including, in fact, things having to do with his particular brand of masculinity, which gratuitous use of "wimp" helps keep out of reach.)

    Nice article.

  10. [10] 
    Nico wrote:

    Does Romney really lack control of his party? It would seem so. But is that the real deal?

    Romney is a delegator. He wants to be president. It's the ultimate business proposition.

    Given this, he doesn't need control of his party, he just needs to get elected. And the people behind, who are going for broke, have full contempt for the voters, who all evidence shows can be sold a bill of goods.

    Romney is the perfect candidate.

  11. [11] 
    Michale wrote:

    In the dictionary, "Democrat" is defined with a picture of Bill Clinton.

    I think of ya'all's description of Mitt Romney and I think of Bill Clinton's description of Mitt Romney...

    And I say to myself, I say, "Self... Which description is likely the more accurate one?"

    And it appalls me to say that I have to go with Clinton's...

    Like with Bush and the "moron" hysteria from the Left, you don't get to the position in life that Romney has attained by being a "weasel".

    These personal attacks on Romney are simply signs of desperation..

    We're coming down to the wire and it's becoming clear that Romney will be our next president...

    Count on seeing more and more desperate attacks emanating from the Left...

    It's funny how NOTHING seems to work.. Romney's rise is steady, no matter what the Left throws at him...

    Nov 6 is going to be a wild day!! :D

    Michale.....

  12. [12] 
    Michale wrote:

    CW,

    I've yet to meet an actual CEO who didn't qualify as a weasel. I'm just sayin'...

    Hmmmmmm

    Well, Obama is the "CEO" of the United States Of America....

    Is he a weasel??? ;D

    Michale.....

  13. [13] 
    Michale wrote:

    It's pretty tough to unseat an incumbent, who's got the power of the podium.

    On the other hand, most incumbents do have the disadvantage of actually having to perform the duties of POTUS that takes time out of their fundraising and campaigning..

    I have to give Obama credit. He has figured out a way around this problem.

    He simply ignores his duties as POTUS. That frees him up to do nothing but campaign and fund-raise...

    Smart guy, that Obama... :^/

    Michale.....

  14. [14] 
    Chris1962 wrote:

    On the other hand, most incumbents do have the disadvantage of actually having to perform the duties of POTUS that takes time out of their fundraising and campaigning..

    I have to give Obama credit. He has figured out a way around this problem.

    He simply ignores his duties as POTUS. That frees him up to do nothing but campaign and fund-raise...

    LOL! So true.

  15. [15] 
    Chris1962 wrote:

    Wow, even O's own approval rating is a dead heat: 47.5% approve and disapprove: http://www.realclearpolitics.com/epolls/other/president_obama_job_approval-1044.html

  16. [16] 
    Michale wrote:

    Wow, even O's own approval rating is a dead heat: 47.5% approve and disapprove: http://www.realclearpolitics.com/epolls/other/president_obama_job_approval-1044.html

    And what is even worse for Obama is his "likability" factor has been steadly sinking since Team Obama's blitz of negative ads..

    It's logical. It's hard to like a guy who's only message is dirt on other people...

    The negative ad blitz is especially ironic since Candidate Obama promised in 2008 that he would never air a negative ad..

    Just another broken promise/lie from a dishonorable person who is replete with broken promises and lies...

    Michale.....

  17. [17] 
    Chris1962 wrote:

    Good commercial re: Obama's complaint that his words were taken out of context: http://live.wsj.com/video/american-future-fund-ad-didnt-build-that/1EDF392F-E895-40F3-A1C3-93B9F34480CB.html

    Nice reminder that We, the People, built those roads.

  18. [18] 
    michty6 wrote:

    CW
    "What'd everyone think of the "skunk at the picnic" paragraph?"

    Got to say I kind of glossed over that one. Now that I look back at it, I like it!

    Chris
    "I've met with, worked for, and worked with many a talented, focused, visionary, and strategic CEO."

    I agree with Chris (not CW) on this one. I have seen many great CEOs, including the CEO at my current company. They all share the characteristics and qualities you mention, of which Romney has absolutely zero (maybe the last one). Romney is your power hungry, money grabbing, back-stabbing CEO (I have seen a few of these too) who steps over everyone to get what he wants. His father on the other hand was a man of excellent moral character in business and politics, shame the apple fell so far from the tree.

    "I'll admit that I would expect O's numbers to be lower, given the state of the economy. But I also suspect that his internal polls are not showing the same results as the public ones we're seeing"

    If you look at the electoral college numbers then the fact Obama would still moon-walk into the White House with jobs numbers and the economy as is should tell you all you need to know about Romney. If Romney can't make an impact (with his economy message) in the electoral college numbers in July, when seasonal jobs numbers are bad, imagine how much he is going to struggle in November when they'll have picked up again...

  19. [19] 
    Chris1962 wrote:

    If you look at the electoral college numbers

    Electoral numbers according to whom? There are more electoral maps out there than one can shake a stick at; plus, this isn't exactly November yet. The action doesn't even begin until the conventions.

  20. [20] 
    Michale wrote:

    Good commercial re: Obama's complaint that his words were taken out of context: http://live.wsj.com/video/american-future-fund-ad-didnt-build-that/1EDF392F-E895-40F3-A1C3-93B9F34480CB.html

    Nice reminder that We, the People, built those roads.

    WOW.. That was a pretty powerful message.. I can tell you that Independents and NPAs will be looking at that and nodding their heads...

    When we put Obama's words IN CONTEXT, it's so much worse for Obama...

    Obama's ONLY chance for re-election is to pit American against American..

    That's just sad....

    Michale.....

  21. [21] 
    michty6 wrote:

    Chris

    "Electoral numbers according to whom? There are more electoral maps out there than one can shake a stick at; plus, this isn't exactly November yet. The action doesn't even begin until the conventions."

    I agree. Obviously a long way to go. But as you said yourself you 'would expect O's numbers to be lower, given the state of the economy.' In the electoral college by almost every estimate (you said you read tonnes of blogs and websites so you've no doubt seen a few) put Obama miles ahead... (I haven't seen an electoral college analysis where Romney is even the slightest bit close).

  22. [22] 
    Kevin wrote:

    CW:

    "Jest fishin' fer compliments"...Remember, the Fisher is also a member of the weasel family :)
    That's some good PUNditry.

  23. [23] 
    michty6 wrote:

    "That's some good PUNditry."

    Facepalm!

  24. [24] 
    Chris1962 wrote:

    When we put Obama's words IN CONTEXT, it's so much worse for Obama...

    Exactly. And neither O nor Team-O nor the Left seems to realize it. It sounds even worse in Scott Brown's ad, with Elizabeth Warren espousing the same pro-Big Government rhetoric. It's like she has contempt for business owners: http://youtu.be/oqDIjGsBEP8

  25. [25] 
    Chris1962 wrote:

    (I haven't seen an electoral college analysis where Romney is even the slightest bit close).

    Probably because there are a couple of Romney states that haven't put out any polling, so they're stuck in the lean-Romney column; plus, we've got quite a few toss-ups out there.

  26. [26] 
    michty6 wrote:

    "Probably because there are a couple of Romney states that haven't put out any polling, so they're stuck in the lean-Romney column..."

    Can you give some examples of this? Most analysis I see now don't even have any lean-Romney States since Missouri went strong-Romney this week...

    I follow electoral college math and haven't seen this phenomenon present, almost every analysis I have seen has put States which don't have polling in safe Obama/Romney territory. This is because from what I've seen almost every State that had been red/blue the past 3 elections is safe Obama/Romney and every State that has changed colour has polls out...

    CW's own analysis on this site is pretty similar to most I have seen which have said Obama + leaning Obama is at or over 270, where as Romney + leaning Romney doesn't even break 200...

  27. [27] 
    Chris1962 wrote:

    I follow Rove and Trippi. They've got 179 solid O states, and 111 solid Romney. But in the last thirty days, there's been no polling in South Carolina, Kentucky, Tennesse, South Dakota, and Texas, which Romney is expected to carry and (when moved out of lean-Romney into the solid) would bring Romney up to 180. But, like I said, it all depends on which maps you're following. There are all sorts of numbers all over the place. And it's still way too early to pay any of them any heed (as Chris W. will assure you). The action doesn't start 'til the conventions. That's when late-deciders (swing voters, who decide national elections) start paying attention.

  28. [28] 
    michty6 wrote:

    Chris,

    It seems like you might be a bit of a numbers girl (correct me if I'm wrong...) like CW and I - you should definitely look at more analysis. I hadn't heard of Rove and Trippi doing an analysis but I just took a look and they have 194 Obama (+43 leaning) and 101 Romney (+70 leaning). It seems that they have far, far, far too much in Romney leaning when they should really just move a chunk of Romney's leaning into solid then they'd be in line with most of the other analysis out there. I don't know why they did this, perhaps so they could hide how badly he is doing by saying 'he'll be better once we put Texas and leaning states in there' but that's just my speculation.

    Aside from this, their analysis surprisingly isn't too far off (when you consider the obvious Fox/Rove bias) from what most others are saying - Obama is around 250-270 with solid + leaning and Romney is around 170-200 with solid + leaning. Like I said this is a massive gap for almost any point of the year, especially when they are so 'close' in the national numbers. The electoral college gap is much bigger for Romney and this is a huge problem for him.

    I agree it's far away but based on most analysis so far you can see how hard it is going to be for Romney to win in November...

  29. [29] 
    Kevin wrote:

    CW, Michty, and the rest of the Weigantia sanitariat: This is awfully long, but well worth reading if you are patient...

    http://vagabondscholar.blogspot.ca/2012/07/the-four-types-of-conservatives.html

    Seriously, read this and let me know what you think :)

  30. [30] 
    Chris1962 wrote:

    Aside from this, their analysis surprisingly isn't too far off (when you consider the obvious Fox/Rove bias)

    I don't subscribe to that Fox-bashing nonsense, michty. Like I said, if I wanted that level of discourse, I'd be over at the HuffPo. So save that boring stuff for folks who don't mind putting up with it. I'm not interested in your personal, self-serving characterizations. If they help you feel better, or whatever, fine. But peddle it elsewhere. IMO, guys like Rove, Trippi, Carville, Morris, etc., are old war dogs, and I hold their professional analysis in high regard, no matter what side of the aisle they're on.

  31. [31] 
    Chris Weigant wrote:

    Nico -

    First, welcome to the site. Your first comments were held for moderation, but you should now be able to post comments instantly. If you post multiple links in a single comment, it will be held for moderation as well, to cut down on comment spam, but otherwise you should see comments appear as you post them.

    I'd feel a lot better about Romney if there was a single instance of him standing up to his own party in the past 5 years or so...

    -CW

  32. [32] 
    Michale wrote:

    Seriously, read this and let me know what you think :)

    Politically bigoted hogwash..

    It reminds me of the religious wars of Ireland where Catholics would say that the Protestants were Spawns of Satan and the Protestants would say that the Catholics were Satan's Spawn...

    I see no more validity in the blog than I do in the Ireland mess....

    You asked.. I answered....

    Michale....

  33. [33] 
    Chris Weigant wrote:

    Michale [16] -

    The negative ad blitz is especially ironic since Candidate Obama promised in 2008 that he would never air a negative ad..

    Just another broken promise/lie from a dishonorable person who is replete with broken promises and lies...

    Actually, the lie in that statement is your own. 1000 quatloos, right here and now, if you can substantiate your claim that "Obama promised in 2008 that he would never air a negative ad."

    Obama never claimed any such thing. He ran LOTS of negative ads during 2008, both in the primaries (Hillary even complained about it, while running her own negative ads), and in the general election.

    The media has now all but forgotten this, as I see story after story about how "Obama's going negative!" without a single reminder that he went negative before (just like every other candidate for about the last 50 years, at least).

    Good luck searching for that quote. But don't spend too much time on it, because you won't find it.

    michty6 and Chris1962 -

    OK, the CEO line was a cheap shot, I'll admit.

    Kevin [22] -

    OK, I take my hat off to you. That was a good one!

    Chris1962 and michty6 -

    Actually, I have to agree with Chris1962 that Rove's numbers are usually pretty solid. In 2008, his numbers were actually closer to reality than anyone else on teevee -- he knew like three weeks out that Obama had wrapped it up, and he even said so on Fox.

    But Chris1962, I agree with michty6 that I still have yet to see any plausible map from anyone showing how Romney's got any sort of Electoral lead or even a plausible path to victory. Not saying things won't change or that early poll numbers mean that much (I agree, things get much more solid after the conventions), but right now it sure looks to me like Obama's got a pretty commanding lead in the EC, with many paths to victory.

    A few states have not polled at all, but most of them are pretty foregone conclusions. Other states haven't polled since the primaries, but I've been seeing more and more numbers from these states even in the past week or so. The ten or twelve true battleground states are being polled pretty consistently, with the possible exception of a few (CO for one) who don't seem to get polled as often.

    But I am curious, which battlegrounds do you see Romney winning, to put together 270?

    -CW

  34. [34] 
    Michale wrote:

    Politically bigoted hogwash..

    And, just for the record, I would say the same thing if some conservative put out the same kind of bigoted hogwash targeting Liberals....

    Michale.....

  35. [35] 
    michty6 wrote:

    Chris

    "I don't subscribe to that Fox-bashing nonsense, michty. Like I said, if I wanted that level of discourse, I'd be over at the HuffPo. So save that boring stuff for folks who don't mind putting up with it. I'm not interested in your personal, self-serving characterizations. If they help you feel better, or whatever, fine. But peddle it elsewhere. IMO, guys like Rove, Trippi, Carville, Morris, etc., are old war dogs, and I hold their professional analysis in high regard, no matter what side of the aisle they're on."

    I mean you complain that I am misconstruing your point and you focus on one line from my comment out of context.

    The idea that a Fox/Rove electoral analysis is not going to have some bias is laughable and you know it. Humans by their very nature have internal biases and frame their interpretations of data based on these. So the statement that an analysis performed by a Republican news site/channel plus a guy who has a Republican super-pac would obviously contain some bias isn't exactly stretching the imagination. It is a logical and rational conclusion, it certainly isn't low level of self-serving whatever that's supposed to mean.

    Naturally you have to consider bias when you are reading into any data. This is why I read a number of different data sources on electoral math and this is why I suggested you do the same. Try and read my comment in their entire context before going off on one. If you've got nothing constructive to add don't bother in future.

  36. [36] 
    Chris1962 wrote:

    But Chris1962, I agree with michty6 that I still have yet to see any plausible map from anyone showing how Romney's got any sort of Electoral lead or even a plausible path to victory. Not saying things won't change

    Well, that's the whole thing. It's too early to say. Every last swing state could go to Romney, for all anyone knows at this stage of the game. Last I heard from Rove/Trippi (yesterday, I think it was), the electoral college was still "tight as a tick." So here I sit, a polling junkie, just waiting out the silly season 'til the actual race fires up. Obama could well win. And, then again, we might have another "Reagan Democrats" occurence, given the state of the economy. States you would never imagine going to Romney could go to Romney. I truly have no idea, at this point in time.

  37. [37] 
    michty6 wrote:

    CW

    "Actually, I have to agree with Chris1962 that Rove's numbers are usually pretty solid. In 2008, his numbers were actually closer to reality than anyone else on teevee -- he knew like three weeks out that Obama had wrapped it up, and he even said so on Fox"

    Sure, I look at a bunch of electoral college analysis - as I pointed out, the Rove/Fox analysis
    'isn't too far off from what others are saying' - obviously a little leaning towards Romney but that's what I'd expect.

    The sentence where I mentioned bias was clearly written in the tone that I was surprised they were so close to others given the obvious bias towards Republicans in the two owners the poll. I even use the word surprisingly. For some reason Chris decided to take this one line out of this context and attack me.

  38. [38] 
    Michale wrote:

    CW,

    Obama never claimed any such thing. He ran LOTS of negative ads during 2008, both in the primaries (Hillary even complained about it, while running her own negative ads), and in the general election.

    I ACTUALLY WON QUATLOOS!!!!!

    WOOT!!!!!!!

    "We're not going to do that. We're not going to run negative ads"
    -Candidate Barack Obama, April 200
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GnXChAX5_c0&feature=player_embedded

    :D

    Now, excuse me! I gotta go find a calender and mark this day!!! :D

    Michale.....

  39. [39] 
    Kevin wrote:

    A first rave review from the Rabid Right!! Seriously, read it, it is the best summary of the reactionary mind-set I can ever remember seeing.

  40. [40] 
    Chris1962 wrote:

    The idea that a Fox/Rove electoral analysis is not going to have some bias is laughable and you know it.

    See Chris W's take on that. And then peddle the HuffPo-level nonsense elsewhere. I'm not interested in your personal, wholly biased take on Fox or your employment of shoot-the-messenger smear tactics, thinking that's somehow gonna help prop your own positions up. Employ those tediously boring, tired tactics on somebody else. They don't work with me. I don't know how to make that any clearer to you.

  41. [41] 
    Michale wrote:

    -Candidate Barack Obama, April 200

    DOH!

    That would be "April 2008"... :D

    Michale.....

  42. [42] 
    Michale wrote:

    Kevin,

    I DID read it... As much as I could stomach...

    It was like reading a hysterical diatribe from a white bigot who can't stand black people..

    Every word is dripping with bigotry and totally devoid of any sense of reality...

    But I have to say. It makes a FASCINATING case study in clinical bigotry....

    Michale....

  43. [43] 
    michty6 wrote:

    Kevin

    "http://vagabondscholar.blogspot.ca/2012/07/the-four-types-of-conservatives.html

    Seriously, read this and let me know what you think :)"

    My thoughts:
    In general a good analysis, if not long - could've been broken up and shortened. The sober adult section is absolutely spot on. The rest has some good points but it could do without the name calling as it ruins the points being made a lot. The 'hyper-partisan opposition' claims are spot on.

    It should probably be pointed out that there are Conservatives who make smart Conservative arguments whilst managing to balance being relatively socially progressive (the sober adults referred to). However, almost all of them are in countries like the UK and Canada though ;) I thought that this sums up how extreme Republicans in America are compared to other Conservatives elsewhere:

    "the American Republican Party is really the only major party in any industrialized democracy that denies the existence of global warming and opposes universal health care."

  44. [44] 
    Chris1962 wrote:

    The sentence where I mentioned bias was clearly written in the tone that I was surprised they were so close to others given the obvious bias towards Republicans in the two owners the poll.

    What "owners of the polls"??? Rove and Trippi? Trippi is a Democrat. He's worked for some of the most hard-core Lefties in politics.

    For some reason Chris decided to take this one line out of this context and attack me.

    Michty, let me make this as crystal clear for you as I can. When I see those HuffPo-style tactics employed, I stop reading. I cite the tactic; I assure you that I don't put up with that style of so-called debate; and then I move on to the next post. So if you want to have a conversation with me, drop the tactics. Or, if you wish to continue employing them, try not to be too terribly shocked to find me ignoring the rest of your post and moving on.

  45. [45] 
    michty6 wrote:

    Chris

    If you're not going to bother reading my entire posts and quote them out of context don't bother responding.

    You focus on the line 'The idea that a Fox/Rove electoral analysis is not going to have some bias is laughable and you know it.' and completely ignore the lines 'Humans by their very nature have internal biases and frame their interpretations of data based on these.' or 'Naturally you have to consider bias when you are reading into any data.' which explain the point I am trying to make and that you quote of of context (again).

    I don't quote your posts of out context so if you're going to discuss things with me on here at least show me the same courtesy or don't bother responding.

  46. [46] 
    michty6 wrote:

    Chris

    "What "owners of the polls"??? Rove and Trippi? Trippi is a Democrat. He's worked for some of the most hard-core Lefties in politics."

    I'll explain if you like. My thought process was pretty simple:
    - The poll is on Fox News which I believe is a well known Republican news media outlet in America
    - The data in the poll was collected by a company called 'Karl Rove & Co'. Karl Rove is a high profile Republican.
    - The discussion heavily featured a Fox news broadcaster and Karl Rove

    So my natural thought was there would obviously likely be some Republican bias in the analysis. I was surprised that there wasn't much. I stated this, you jumped on my statement like I was a crazy radical lunatic spouting nonsense.

    The claim I made was perfectly rational and logical, as I pointed out in my last post. I don't go around spouting personal opinions and nonsense, I am a logical person. The idea that there is bias in data and data interpretation is well founded in psychology.

    Now if I have helped you to understand my thought process let us consider this matter resolved? If this doesn't make sense to you let me know.

  47. [47] 
    Chris1962 wrote:

    If you're not going to bother reading my entire posts

    I told you where I stop, why I stop, the tactics I'm not willing to put up with, and the reason I'm not interested in reading beyond that point. So either drop the tactics and employ intellectual honesty when you discuss things with me, or continue driving Michale insane. He's got a much higher threshold for that kinda stuff than I do, God love him. When I'm in the mood to get down to that level of debate, I go over to HuffPo for some target practice. I'm not interested in engaging in it over here. Chris W. couldn't be more of a Leftie, and I couldn't be more of a Rightie, yet we have intellectually honest and interesting conversations, routinely. That's why I'm here at this board. If you'd like to converse on that level, that's swell. If not, I'm not interested. That's about as kindly as I know how to put it to you, michty.

    Done with this conversation.

  48. [48] 
    Chris1962 wrote:

    - The poll is on Fox News which I believe is a well known Republican news media outlet in America

    It wasn't a "poll"; it's an analysis Rove, a Republican, and Trippi, a Democrat ("fair and balanced; get it?) do as a team every month, using the public polls that are available in each state. So you don't even know what you're talking about. And that's because you're too biased against Fox to even bother to figure out what you're talking about. And THAT is a perfect example of why I'm not interested in tactics such as Fox-bashing. It is as boring to me as it gets. And I don't come over to chrisweigant.com just so I can be bored stiff with HuffPo-level Fox bashing. If you don't watch Fox, don't comment on Fox segments to me. I'm not interested in your opinions, based on your biases.

  49. [49] 
    michty6 wrote:

    Chris

    "....yet we have intellectually honest and interesting conversations, routinely"

    Generally having intellectually honest and interesting conversations requires reading people's posts, which you have just admitted you don't bother doing.

    That aside, 'potential bias in polls/electoral college analysis' is an interesting topic but it was you, not I, who brought it to it's current level by attacking several of my lines completely out of context when I tried to bring up this very discussion.

    You brought the conversation down to this level not me. I merely made the statement that I expected some bias in the analysis but was surprised there wasn't much. You jumped on this like I was a crazy, radical, irrational, low-level person for making such comments. Completely out of order.

    "It wasn't a "poll"; it's an analysis Rove, a Republican, and Trippi, a Democrat ("fair and balanced; get it?) do as a team every month, using the public polls that are available in each state."

    Sorry there is no edit function and I only realised I had written poll after it was posted.

    I made my logic pretty clear as to why I thought there could potentially be bias in this analysis and that I was surprised there wasn't much. I won't repeat it for you, read my actual posts.

    Rather than entering into this discussion about potential bias in polls you took my comments out of context and tried to attack me as being 'low level', and adopting 'Huff-Po tactics' and a bunch of other unsubstantiated crap. Again completely out of order and context.

    "And THAT is a perfect example of why I'm not interested in tactics such as Fox-bashing"

    How on earth is the statement that Fox News is
    'I believe is a well known Republican news media outlet in America'
    Fox-bashing? You are jumping to conclusions that aren't even there. And you talk about me inferring misleading conclusions from your posts...

    You have created this entire little argument yourself where, in your world, I am being completely irrational and biased and 'attacking' Fox for no reason. All of the back of one statement that I made that I'd expect there to be some bias but was surprised that there wasn't.

    Maybe you should go back and read my posts and get a grip.

  50. [50] 
    Chris1962 wrote:

    Rather than entering into this discussion about potential bias in polls you took my comments out of context and tried to attack me as being 'low level', and adopting 'Huff-Po tactics' and a bunch of other unsubstantiated crap. Again completely out of order and context.

    I've been pointing out the tactics you employ since you hit this board. These tactics are nothing new. So spare me the self-righteous indignation. Either drop the tactics and converse with intellectual honesty, or chat with somebody else.

  51. [51] 
    Michale wrote:

    - The poll is on Fox News which I believe is a well known Republican news media outlet in America

    It's only a "well known Republican news outlet" to the Hysterical Left..

    It's one of the three biggest lies of our time.

    Satan convincing the world he doesn't exist.

    Bush lied.

    Fox News is a Republican news outlet.

    You see, like many other things about the Left, they are insanely jealous of Fox News.. The Left simply cannot abide by the fact that FNC is the most popular news outlet in the country..

    As with everything about the Left, they smear and attack what they can't achieve...

    :D

    Michale.....

  52. [52] 
    Chris1962 wrote:

    CW, this is what I mean:

    "The president’s support has stayed between 43% and 45% for ten straight days. During that stretch, Romney’s support has been between 46% and 49% every day..."

    http://www.rasmussenreports.com/public_content/politics/obama_administration/daily_presidential_tracking_poll

    Is that noise, or are we looking at a trend? This is why I can't even begin to get into counting electoral numbers yet. And I'm also with Rove/Trippi in their complaint that a lot of these state polls are old and may not even reflect TODAY'S sentiments. I think a lot more state polling (Likely Voters, hopefully) is gonna start to come out after the Dem convention, where we'll have a much better and reliable idea of where the race really is.

    I'll tell ya, for all the polling orgs out there, you'd think they'd do a little more polling. I'm real tired of these "national adults" and "registered voters" results, stating the voting intentions of respondents, half of whom never make it off their couch on election day. I don't think Gallup has even switched over to Likely Voters yet.

  53. [53] 
    michty6 wrote:

    "or chat with somebody else"

    No problem if you don't want to discuss intelligently and want to bring everything down to a game of semantics where everyone is trying to use 'tactics' and play games then good luck. Even Michale has shown recently that he is capable of having discussions without doing this. I'm done.

    "It's only a "well known Republican news outlet" to the Hysterical Left.."

    Uhm go to the UK and watch how Fox News is described. In the UK it is referred to as a 'Conservative News Outlet'; in the UK is it common-place for media and newspapers to be associated with a political side of the fence.

    When I made this statement I presumed this was well known - is it not recognised as a Conservative news channel in America? I mean I don't even understand how is this even a criticism? Why is having a known political stance even seen as a negative thing (it isn't in the UK...)?

    I always thought Fox was openly Conservative and MSNBC openly left wing on the other side?

  54. [54] 
    Chris1962 wrote:

    No problem if you don't want to discuss intelligently

    Did I say that? Or are you right back to employing your same old tired tactics?

  55. [55] 
    michty6 wrote:

    "Did I say that? Or are you right back to employing your same old tired tactics?"

    Again I'll repeat Generally having intellectually honest and interesting conversations requires reading people's posts, which you have just admitted you don't bother doing.

    If you want to read my comments and discuss the actual argument, not the semantical crap you keep arguing about, fine. If you don't want to and want to pick out words, phrases and semantics taken out of context, continually accusing me of games and 'tactics' then don't even bother responding to my posts and I will happily do the same to your posts.

  56. [56] 
    Chris1962 wrote:

    Again I'll repeat Generally having intellectually honest and interesting conversations requires reading people's post

    And I'll repeat for the third or fourth time: When I come across the employment of one of your tactics, I stop reading, cite the tactic, remind you that I don't put up with that stuff, and move on to the next post. Let me know if you need that repeated yet again.

  57. [57] 
    michty6 wrote:

    "When I come across the employment of one of your tactics, I stop reading"

    Well good luck with that method of going through life. I'm sure that stopping reading something when you disagree with the premise will definitely not see you end up an ignorant person.

    But don't worry everyone is employing 'tactics' and playing games, luckily you are here to see through the giant web of conspiracy nonsense they are creating. Good luck, I wish you the best and I won't be debating any issues with you anymore so you won't see any of my 'tactics' any longer lol... (Not sure if you got this far in my post, you probably stopped reading. Bye).

  58. [58] 
    Chris1962 wrote:

    I'm sure that stopping reading something when you disagree with the premise

    Is that what I said? Or is that yet another of your deceitful misrepresentations? "When I come across the employment of one of your tactics, I stop reading..."

    Done with your nonstop intellectual dishonesty. Play your HuffPo games with somebody else.

  59. [59] 
    michty6 wrote:

    Done with your nonstop intellectual dishonesty

    Lol. Must be all these strange hidden 'tactics' I employ (that you can't name or talk about).

    I can absolutely 100% agree with one thing. Done.

  60. [60] 
    Chris1962 wrote:

    CW, here's another example. PPP posted this today:

    "President Obama’s lead in the sunshine state has shrunk from 4 points over challenger Mitt Romney to 1 point, 48% to 47%, since PPP’s last survey in the state, conducted in June. Romney has benefited from a significant spike in his favorability rating, from -14 to -3, while Obama’s approval rating has turned upside down, reversing from a +3 rating in June to -3. This was PPP’s first survey of the state conducted among likely voters.

    Independent voters are responsible for much of the change in these numbers, as many have shifted sides in the last month and a half. While unaffiliated voters favored Obama by 9 points in June, they now favor Romney by 7, at 47% to 40%...."

    That's a pretty dramatic change in a month's time. Isn't Florida one of the battlegrounds where O and Left has been running their Bain/tax-returns advertising for the past couple of months?

    I don't know how anyone can make an educated guess as to what the electoral map is gonna look like even NEXT month. Look at Wisconsin, where Rasmussen reports a dead heat: Obama, 49%; Romney, 46%. It's not at all inconceivable for Romney to take that state. And if O can lose Wisconsin, he can lose a whole lot of other states.

  61. [61] 
    Michale wrote:

    http://www.rasmussenreports.com/public_content/politics/obama_administration/daily_presidential_tracking_poll

    Romney is going to take the presidency in a landslide.... :D

    Michale.....

  62. [62] 
    michty6 wrote:
  63. [63] 
    Michale wrote:

    Rasmussen is the outlier:

    Of course it is, Mitchy..

    But if it went against Romney, you would swear by it. :D

    Michale.....

  64. [64] 
    michty6 wrote:

    Lol if you read my comments on this page you will see how many polls and electoral college studies I look at. I love numbers, it's my job.

    And actually if all the numbers were in Romney's favour my excuse would be 'it's only just August' - pretty much the excuse being used by Republicans just now ;)

  65. [65] 
    Michale wrote:

    And actually if all the numbers were in Romney's favour my excuse would be 'it's only just August' - pretty much the excuse being used by Republicans just now ;)

    Good point.. :D

    True, it's ONLY August..

    But Obama will likely be out of money by my birthday.... (28 Sep in case you were wondering.. :D)

    What a grand B-Day present THAT would be... :D

    Michale.....

  66. [66] 
    michty6 wrote:

    "But Obama will likely be out of money by my birthday.... (28 Sep in case you were wondering.. :D)"

    Come now isn't Obama seen by you as just another Corporate money-hungry politician who will do the bidding of his masters? In which case of course he won't be out of money anytime before the election ;)

    Remember: Obama didn't have a Primary to fight so he has been stashing cash, while Romney had to use up a tonne of cash to fight off some really weak opponents...

  67. [67] 
    Chris1962 wrote:

    Is Obama Beating Himself?
    With "you didn't build that" going viral, the president's campaign is reportedly looking for a positive message. But what message?
    http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10000872396390444226904577560941016294050.html?mod=WSJ_Opinion_LEADTop

  68. [68] 
    Michale wrote:

    Yer obviously not up on current events..

    http://thecaucus.blogs.nytimes.com/2012/08/01/obama-supporters-barraged-with-pleas-for-cash/

    Romney has out-raised Obama by a LOT 3 months running. July ain't looking to good for Obama either..

    Yes, Obama is just another corporate shill, money hungry to the last..

    Obama's problem is the corporations are telling him to take a hike..

    Obama is like LT Gorman in ALIENS. He had his chance and he blew it...

    Will Romney be better??

    He would HAVE to be... Gods know he couldn't be worse... :D

    Michale.....

  69. [69] 
    Michale wrote:

    Is Obama Beating Himself?
    With "you didn't build that" going viral, the president's campaign is reportedly looking for a positive message. But what message?
    http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10000872396390444226904577560941016294050.html?mod=WSJ_

    Team Obama will play the Mormon card at some point too. Count on it.

    I simply CANNOT wait until Team Obama does this!!

    Oh I am going to have SOOOO much fun with that, you can bet on it!!!! :D

    Michale.....

  70. [70] 
    Michale wrote:

    Mitt Romney has been getting a lot of advice: Don't just stand there, do something (preferably not utter a gaffe). But maybe Mr. Romney is being shrewd. Maybe, given his own less-than-scintillating public-relations skills, just standing there is the right strategy as Mr. Obama flails after a theme for his presidency all the way to Election Day. Maybe the cool, sure-footed Mr. Obama is capable of beating himself after all. Could it be that in selecting Mr. Romney, with his very particular kind of baggage, Republicans picked exactly the candidate best suited to bring out the worst in our president?

    CB, that article is so dead on, it's scary!! :D

    Michale.....

  71. [71] 
    Chris1962 wrote:

    But Obama will likely be out of money by my birthday.... (28 Sep in case you were wondering.. :D)

    LOL. Even the NY Times is reporting the pleas for donations. http://thecaucus.blogs.nytimes.com/2012/08/01/obama-supporters-barraged-with-pleas-for-cash/

    Team-O has a high burn rate and is blowing through cash, with his elaborate social-media and ground-operation strategy. Romney, OTOH, has the benefit of a lot of the Rightie's PACs running TV ads out there (like that great commercial I posted earlier). So while the PACs are doing their communicating, Romney is able to stockpile his own campaign cash, to be used when the time is right, i.e., during and after the conventions.

  72. [72] 
    Chris1962 wrote:

    CB, that article is so dead on, it's scary!! :D

    I was gonna post that last paragraph. Funny that you zeroed in on it. It makes the point that I've been making to Chris W. for awhile now, i.e., no matter how hard O tries to change the subject away from his own record, Romney just keeps sticking to the strategy: economy, economy, economy. Classic disciplined CEO.

  73. [73] 
    michty6 wrote:

    "Obama's problem is the corporations are telling him to take a hike."

    Of course they are. He is running against Mr Corporation himself. He is running against a guy who will hand America over to Corporations, as he thinks they are people. A guy who doesn't give a crap for the common person.

    However, like I mentioned I am a numbers junkie. And that article misunderstands how campaign finances work. As I mentioned Obama didn't have a a Primary and this is quite an important point in financing. Begging for money is also a common tool in raising finance! Anyway here are NY times estimates of their positions as at the end of June:

    Obama - $97.5m cash in hand
    Romney - $22.5m cash in hand

    This is countered by the fact the RNC has more cash in hand than the DNC, but they don't spend all their cash just on the Presidential races.

    Obviously with Republicans being more suited to the rich and wealthy Corporations rather than the public, their super-pacs have more money. This is countered by the fact that donors to Romney are fewer, richer and contribute larger amounts so are likely to have used up their maximum campaign contributions sooner than Obama's donors.

    Finally, as I mentioned above, I don't like using just one source for numbers due to potential bias. So I checked and these numbers are consistent with CBS, Washington Post and even procon.org.

  74. [74] 
    Michale wrote:

    Mitchy,

    Which doesn't change the fact that Romney has out-raised Obama the last three months running and it's looking like a 4th month will be added to that..

    This is unprecedented...

    Plus the fact that Obama is blowing thru money more than Romney by a factor of 10...

    You can cherry pick numbers till the cows come home..

    All one has to do is read Team Obama's emails to know that desperation is setting in...

    Michale....

  75. [75] 
    Michale wrote:

    Obama - $97.5m cash in hand
    Romney - $22.5m cash in hand

    But just for accuracy's sake.. Where did you get these numbers??

    :D

    Michale....

  76. [76] 
    michty6 wrote:

    "Which doesn't change the fact that Romney has out-raised Obama the last three months running and it's looking like a 4th month will be added to that.."

    As I mentioned:
    1. Donors to Romney are fewer, richer and contribute larger amounts so are likely to have used up their maximum campaign contributions sooner than Obama's donors.
    2. Romney went through a Primary so started from a considerably worse position. He has to raise more just to play catch up.

    "But just for accuracy's sake.. Where did you get these numbers??"/

    I mentioned sources in my post.

  77. [77] 
    michty6 wrote:

    http://realclearpolitics.com/epolls/latest_polls/

    Wow Obama +6 in Michigan, Ohio and Florida. What on earth is going on there?? CW any ideas?

    Florida has been neck and neck for months, then all of a sudden Obama goes +5, +1 and +6 in the space of the last 2 weeks??
    Ohio the same: +6 and +8 in the last 2 polls in July.

    It seems that the tax/Bain message in July has definitely hurt Romney in these 2 key battlegrounds.

    Rubio, if he'll accept it, has to be Romney's VP. No way he can win this election without Florida...

  78. [78] 
    michty6 wrote:

    Nevermind I think I found the answer. These polls were polls of likely voters, not registered voters as most previous polls have been -

    http://www.nytimes.com/2012/08/01/us/politics/polls-give-obama-edge-in-pennsylvania-ohio-and-florida.html?_r=1

    This explains the surge for Obama but is obviously not great news for Romney.

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