Tag Archives: obama

effective, perhaps not efficient

Cost per vote:

Obama: $11.21

McCain: $5.52

Based on $750M in campaign donations for Obama (66.9M votes) and $238 (donations) +$84 (public funds) getting 58.3M votes for McCain.

As for the $30M surplus that Obama’s campaign generated, I say let him keep it.  I mean personally, not rolling it into the next campaign or anything — if you can win and not use all the money, you should get a performance bonus.  Maybe only half — send an email to the 4M people on his donors list and tell them they can get some money back if they apply (or send them all Starbucks gift cards or something), adding up to $15M, and then he keeps the other $15M.

Under my plan, if you lose the election, you don’t get this option.  You can’t bag the popular vote and take home a big stack of cash.

Actually, given that taxpayers shelled out $84M for McCain’s losing effort, I think Obama should donate the $30M to the Treasury or FEC or whoever wrote the checks to McCain.  Then when he inevitably raises taxes, he can at least say that he’s leading by example.

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interesting thought as 100,000 (and Oprah) gather to hear Obama speak…

“The darkest moments in world history have occurred during the confluence of a bad economy and a charismatic leader.”  Tim Slagle

not that I’m expecting the worst, but then nobody expects the worst at moments like this — they’re too wrapped up in the Audacity of Hope and Change they can Believe In.

they’re calling it Obama-palooza.  meh.

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Filed under fear of the day, politics

game changer?

I know the night is early and there are a lot of votes out in California, but I’m looking at Obama 13,786,707 — McCain 13,533, 528 as the popular vote stands right now.

That’s Obama’s 49.9% to McCain’s 49.2%.

Sure, the electoral college is 174 (Obama) to 69 (McCain), but where is the big landslide?  Where is all the rejection of the Republican party?  Where is the mandate for Change?

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Filed under dumbfounded, politics

voting zen

it’s a kind of eeiry, peaceful feeling, knowing that you’re voting for the loser.  no need to go home and fire up CNN + Politico and breathlessly wait out the evening.  knowing that you didn’t just choose between the lesser of two evils, and that no matter whether it’s a blue landslide or an upset for the ages, you have four years worth of “I didn’t vote for that guy” in your back pocket.

the gentle self-delusion that I’ve “voted on principle” is still fresh.  both candidates had substantial parts of their platforms, and especially their rhetoric, that made it impossible for me to consider either one less undeserving than the other… a sample:

To both men I say, to paraphrase Gordon Gekko, “Greed, for lack of a better word, is good.”

GEKKO TIMEOUT:

The point is, ladies and gentleman, that greed — for lack of a better word — is good.

Greed is right.

Greed works.

Greed clarifies, cuts through, and captures the essence of the evolutionary spirit.

Greed, in all of its forms — greed for life, for money, for love, knowledge — has marked the upward surge of mankind.

And greed — you mark my words — will not only save Teldar Paper, but that other malfunctioning corporation called the USA.

where was I…

  • Obama: “McCain wants to give tax breaks to companies that ship jobs overseas”; technically true, but an unintended consequence and not something McCain is trying to reward companies for doing*.  Kind of like how Obama’s ‘tax breaks’ are going to go to murderers, drunk-drivers, and rapists — those are unintended consequences, like wind farms (ostensibly good) killing birds (not so good).
  • McCainFeingold.  Still shaking my head over that one.
  • Obama’s tax breaks — call me a skeptic, but I don’t believe 95% of Americans are getting one.  I’ll let you know when I file my 1040 in April 2010; but I’ll bet you I’ll be paying more (as my top marginal rate and as a percentage of total income).  Obama’s commercials even said “95% of Working Americans” at one point, and I’ll bet Working Americans will be re-defined as they see fit (ie. working-class, not working=employed).
  • the utopia of “Green Jobs” (both candidates) — I posted on this before.  And something tells me I’ll be throwing something at the screen when I hear about Green Jobs during the victory speech tonight.  A pox on both their houses.
  • the scurge of “Foreign Oil” (both candidates) — the oil market is a global one, and discriminating against foreign oil makes about as much sense as discriminating against foreign cars, electricity, timber, anything.  And before you call me crazy, yes, there is plenty of ‘foreign’ electricity in the United States — from the same place that is the #1 source of imported oil (Canada; I know, this beat is getting old, isn’t it?  but it’s true…)
  • Obama: “I will make college affordable for every American. Period.” — if college is worth the investment (cost/benefit-wise, and I don’t think it is for everyone), people can find a way to finance it.  There are more financing options, and just alternative options (online, etc), available today than there has ever been before.  State schools and community colleges can be real bargains — but everybody wants to talk about how many million dollars it costs to put a kid through Harvard…

and #1 (shared)

  • Obama: “Barack Obama will make health insurance affordable and accessible to all” — again, with the “I can unilaterally make all things affordable AND accessible” line…  and you wonder why people call him a socialist.
  • McCain: “Better Care, At Lower Cost, for Every American” — I know they differ in the details, but every bit as grandiose and unrealistic.  Where is the straight talk?

Alright, this is getting less and less zen every moment, and I realize it’s all too late to convince you to change your vote.  Besides, I’ve got to go — only 2 more hours before the polls close and I lock-down in my CNN/Politico stupor.

* although if you could demonstrate that it’s an area where the US lacks comparative advantage, I would actually advocate tax breaks to actively ship those jobs overseas… it’s time we focus on what America does best, and not on industries that are little more than baggage from the Agricultural and Industrial ages…

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the politics of dancing

if you love our democracy, you must watch this video.  [sorry, can’t embed.]

http://view.break.com/592648 – Watch more free videos

[headline reference; watching that, I don’t blame the Russians for wanting to bomb us back to the stone age back in the 80’s.]

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“invest in college affordability”

this was something Obama said in the debates tonight, but I have no idea what it might possibly mean.

how do you invest in college “affordability”?  invest in technology that makes delivery of higher educational ‘services’ more affordable?  or are they just talking about cutting the cost of college through some subsidies/loan-programs?

college has never been so accessible to so many people — by definition, that’s affordability.  look at the numbers of people attending college year over year for the past 10 years — I bet it’s never gone down.  those people are all funded by something that is making it affordable enough to not skip and jump straight into the labor force…

I joked about this with several MBA students last week at an alumni event I attended; I said, “oh yeah, you guys have it so hard,” — and they all laughed back.  it was nervous laughter, because they’re unsure if the investment in this Masters degree will pay off for them when the Wall Street jobs they aspired to are being cut back, but they know they’re investing in their futures and that’s a good bet.

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what moves markets and voters

forgive me for another outdated post, but this was a screen capture I did a few weeks ago – back when a 300 point drop was huge, before the 777 point one-day drop:

I know it’s all just a coincidence, but you know that this stock market free-fall is going to play to Obama’s favor.  seemed ironic at the time, and since then has proven precient.

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