[-empyre-] election algorithms

Christina Spiesel christina.spiesel at yale.edu
Tue Nov 13 07:17:28 EST 2012


and as background: 

Dear All,

I see that Leiss has already replied. Nevertheless, readers might find 
the links above useful. Being data driven is useful but only with 
critical thinking before/behind/ion front/ to the side of it. After all, 
it matters what questions are asked, what data is kept, how it is 
structured for retrieval  and what human sense we make out of it. Even 
then, one of the best investments in moving people to actually vote is 
in personal human contact. Clearly the Obama team was good at it and the 
Romney team unbelievably poor (see above) but isn't it possible to see 
that the difference in data games arises in part from the political 
positions of the competitors. If the Republicans think 47% of the people 
are unworthy and don't matter, those ideas will skew the data gathering. 
If, like Obama, they had believed that they needed to energize a large 
section of the electorate they would have done differently. All of this 
leads me to believe that we are very far from turning elections over to 
technologists and we shouldn't think that that is a good idea.


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