Re: [OVC-discuss] 50/50 elections

From: Edward Cherlin <echerlin_at_gmail_dot_com>
Date: Fri Nov 28 2008 - 13:31:28 CST

On Fri, Nov 28, 2008 at 10:57 AM, David Brown <dmbrown@icubed.com> wrote:
>
> I have heard that there are biological differences between the brains of
> conservatives and liberals. Different parts of the brains "light up" in
> response to certain stimuli. One possible explanation would be it is
> genetic and the genes are split 50/50 similar to gender. This could explain
> why our elections have evolved toward the 50/50 split. If we are in an
> equilibrium state, it would be very unlikely that we would evolve away from
> it.

John Dean wrote about some biological differences in Conservatives
without Conscience.

But genetics cannot explain election behavior in this simplistic way.
There is no mechanism to create and maintain a 50-50 genetic split in
a population, other than male-female.

There is a much simpler explanation for close elections. The losing
party in any election always shifts ground to excite more of their
base to vote, to become more acceptable to swing voters, or even to
peel off voters from the other party. They may shift by finding better
ways to push their existing platform, or they may (while kicking and
screaming) change the platform, following changes in public opinion,
or both. The Nixon Southern Strategy (appealing to racism) is a clear
example, as is Obama's reaching out to the better angels of our
natures. Obama's demonstration of the way to turn attacks back on the
attacker is leading Democrats in many regions out of the wilderness.

Another way to shift ground is to change campaign tactics, including
fundraising and get-out-the-vote organization. Minority vote
suppression has been a feature of Southern politics since the Civil
War. The methods keep shifting to keep up with changes in Civil Rights
and Election law. The Democratic 50-state strategy is another example.
Obama's fundraising over the Internet is now a model for all future
campaigns.

> It would be an interesting exercise to figure out which people or societal
> organizations benefit from 50/50 splits and see how the actions they take
> reinforce or diminish the 50/50 result. Polarizing actions such as running
> negative political advertising might be one of the kinds of actions that
> reinforce 50/50 splits. Negative ads are usually resorted to by the trailer
> in an election. To them, 50/50 is better than losing outright.
>
> dmb
>
>
>
> _______________________________________________
> OVC-discuss mailing list
> OVC-discuss@listman.sonic.net
> http://lists.sonic.net/mailman/listinfo/ovc-discuss
> By sending email to the OVC-discuss list, you thereby agree to release the content of your posts to the Public Domain--with the exception of copyrighted material quoted according to fair use, including publicly archiving at http://gnosis.python-hosting.com/voting-project/
>

-- 
Silent Thunder (默雷/धर्ममेघशब्दगर्ज/دھرممیگھشبدگر ج) is my name
And Children are my nation.
The Cosmos is my dwelling place, The Truth my destination.
http://wiki.sugarlabs.org/go/User:Mokurai
_______________________________________________
OVC-discuss mailing list
OVC-discuss@listman.sonic.net
http://lists.sonic.net/mailman/listinfo/ovc-discuss
By sending email to the OVC-discuss  list, you thereby agree to release the content of your posts to the Public Domain--with the exception of copyrighted material quoted according to fair use, including publicly archiving at  http://gnosis.python-hosting.com/voting-project/
Received on Sun Nov 30 23:17:19 2008

This archive was generated by hypermail 2.1.8 : Sun Nov 30 2008 - 23:17:22 CST