UPDATE: Why all these "close elections"?

I would also place particular emphasis on the recent Italian election
as another example of improbably close results.

Marco U.

From: neighborsforpeace@yahoogroups.com
To: neighborsforpeace@yahoogroups.com
Subject: Close elections world-wide: a preliminary, semi-mathematical theory

It hasn’t been remarked, but it is remarkable. World-wide, and most
recently in Mexico, elections have been improbably close, and this
phenomenon began with the 2000 US election.

I say “improbably” because landslides were more common…prior to 2000.

A preliminary, semi-mathematical theory: commencing in 2000, a
world-wide coordinated effort began by the ruling elites in a number
of countries to steal elections using advanced political management
techniques, not excluding black operations such as intimidating
voters, stealing ballots: but restricting the black ops to states and
provinces known to be “key” given the constittional mathematics.

The black ops would be focused only on key districts to avoid
detection and in general the “election management” would be so
focused on “cost effectiveness” as to produce JUST ENOUGH votes to
win.

In a situation where polls (especially informal straw polls and
somewhat more trusty marginal polls such as Zogby) indicated
widespread dissatisfaction with the clear favorite of elites, this
would indeed produce a mathematically improbable result: the “tie”,
where the precision of the election management produces a “just in
time” victory.

This would eliminate Left landslides and create the
self-satisfying, if soured, perception amongst progressives that they
are the “real” elite who unlike the ordinary slob see through the
pretensions of the in-group.

I suggest that statisticians and mathematicians analyze the
probability of situations including 2000 and 2004 in the US and the
Obrador defeat in Mexico.

0 thoughts on “UPDATE: Why all these "close elections"?”

  1. Here’s my considered opinion, Mark:

    1. People have been stealing elections since forever. There is absolutely nothing new about it. In fact, all of the complaints about electronic voting were leveled against lever machines decades ago.

    2. There are more close elections than people remember. Dewey-Truman, Kennedy-Nixon, Nixon-Humphrey, Carter-Ford were all pretty close.

    3. The reason that there are so many close elections is that the vote-maximizing strategies candidates use end up essentially dividing the electorate. For example, in the 1964 election, Johnson began to lose the ethnic/blue collar/Southern vote, but cemented the African American vote. Democrats began looking for ways to make up the deficit and came up with women’s rights (traditionally a Republican theme, not that they did anything for women), the environment (which Republicans rapidly mimicked), and so on.

    Statistics can tell one whether there are more close elections today than in the past. But it’s a hell of a lot of work, and it’s not clear it would prove anything. A good guess is that polling and the replacement of grassroots politics with TV ads has made it easier to identify how to swing voters and then swing them.

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