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Thursday, January 10, 2008

Two Percent

Of the fifty primary elections to be held, our four victors are, each of them, one up and one down. One for two. They have each, respectively, won 2% of the total number of elections. And it is at this point that the geniuses of the chattering class are prognosticating the withdrawal from the field of others among the contenders. Hm. It’s the difference between first place and runner-up in one out of 48 remaining races -- but candidates who are a few points below the winners should quit?

News. What a word. I read where it came from the banners of old-time picayunes, which had North, East, West and South abbreviated up in a corner. Maybe it’s true. Seems doubtful. But something that is new should at least actually exist, right? It should have some reality? I’m wondering how it’s news, when some loudmouth blabbers about what might happen or who should do what. How is a prediction news? Have soothsayers enjoyed some resurgence of good-opinion of which I have previously been unaware? Maybe some necromancy, some séances piercing the aether between Roger Mudd and Kay-tee Couric? Perhaps Ted Koppel is hooking up with the Witch of Endor and starting their own 24 hour “news” network?

This is why I don’t watch network news. I’m not interested in car chases and lost puppies and interviews with children about their opinions on Britney. When I used to watch TV, in videotape days, I’d tape everything first and fast-forward through the commercials. Save 17 minutes an hour. There must be some technology where you can play shows back at a faster speed. I do that with audio information, play it at time-and-a-half or double-time. If we could get through the 22 minutes of “news” in 7 minutes, I might give it a try again. Well, maybe it’s already possible. I don’t even know how to use an iPod. I barely understand how ATM cards work. In fact I don’t understand -- every month I get bank charges -- I just got off the phone trying to comprehend these “transfer fees”. But I have post-traumatic stress disorder. I still insist that I’m okay at math, though.

Which brings us back, at last, to that two percent. Hillary, and Obama, and Huckabee and McCain have each won 2% of the elections. That is, they are 2% ahead of their rivals. “Should Romney Quit?” It’s an insane question. Cuz Huckabee won in terms of highest number of votes in Iowa, but he did not win ALL the votes. Some of them go to Romney -- it's not winner-take all ... it's a percentage of the delegates for the state party. Huck won 17 Iowa delegates who are pledged to vote for him at the National Convention; Romney won 12. In New Hampshire, McCain got the most votes, so he “won”. What he actually won, though, was 7 delegates; Romney won 4. Wyoming had a caucus on Saturday, and Romney won. Didn’t hear much about that, for some reason, did you. It gave him another 8 delegates. That makes him the guy with the most real votes (dude, it’s like the Electoral College). Then, because of the peculiarities of party politics, there are delegates who can choose on their own who they want -- and of these so far, Romney has six and Huckabee has three. What that means, dear child, is that Romney has 30 delegates, Huckabee has 21, and McCain has ten. So far. To win the nomination, someone needs 1,191. Huh. That’s quite a lot of distance to cover, huh.

As for Hillary and Obama, the lady senator has 183 delegates (that clinton machine, don't you know, gives her all those party votes). Obama has 78. Edwards is insignificant ... oh, and he has the fewest delegates. It is entirely possible, in our system, for a candidate to win no primary whatsoever, yet win the nomination. It's possible that the decision be made by party hacks, straw-hat wearing yahoos and yabbos who take a few moments out of their conventioneer whoring to cast a few votes. Almost anything is possible.

Hillary seems the likely girl on the left -- that's not me prognosticating, honest. I'm just looking at the numbers -- and remember how good I am at math? I told you already, weren't you listening? I'm a math genius. Six times six is thirty six. It seems like it’s just a little bit too soon to be telling Romney, the guy on the right with the most votes that matter, to quit. Next time you hear one of our media sibyls utter such a phrase, spritz her with holy water, and make sure there’s a herd of swine nearby, and a cliff.


J

1 comment:

Will C. said...

Excellent analysis my friend...I had forgotten that it's not "winner take all" like the electoral college (save Nebraska and Maine).