Days of Change

Trump and / or Bust | October 10, 2016

In 2004, Democrats were beaten with their collection of weak candidates and lousy strategy. George Soros was ineffective and John Kerry had no political instincts. All things being equal, it would be hard to beat Republicans on this equal playing fired. A year earlier, the book Moneyball came out. It was the Democrats’ new strategy for cheating. Don’t appeal to voters, target them.

Democrats (mostly) ditched paying people in crack for collecting voter registrations and throwing out the ones that say “Republican.” Instead, they went about the business of profiling. When you accept the terms of service, there’s a good chance that information can be sold for marketing. Also, any political donation is public record, as well as party registration.

The Democrats became marketers. So, along with your political activity, your biographical information, shopping habits and geographical data are all used to win elections. Why worry about states that aren’t close, or people who are consistent GOP donors? It’s a better idea to find the neighborhoods densely populated with Democrats and bus them to the polls. That’s what we call big data.

Republicans have been pretty bad at big data. In a way, that’s good for a party that prides itself on liberty. However, it also makes it more expensive to win the voters you need. This was poised to be the emergence of big data in the Republican Party. Cruz used data to beat Trump in New Hampshire, even though Trump had momentum.

Data is pretty much out the window. Even if Trump gave it more than a passing interest, there’s not really enough money to support it. Instead, he decided to rely on his charm, which is a product of his ego. So, when he doubles down on red meat instead of trying to increase that 40% support he has, it’s because the people who love bomb him are his people. A couple hundred thousand people come to see the train wreck at rallies and that means more to him than 130 million American voters.

Those Republicans who were slow to adopt data also believed that crushing Trump in the primaries would hurt them in the general election. Now, it seems that GOP politicians can no longer accept Trump and his minions no longer accept the GOP. This last month is a dog whistle stop tour where Trump will create an imaginary Great America where he is king and the Trump or Die contingent will enforce his reign.

It looks like another rebuilding year for the GOP, except that the Tea Party is sick of them, the religious conservatives are disgusted by them and the undecided voters have already been targeted by the winners and still champions for the past decade.

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