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The Data Crunchers Who Helped Win The Election

Soulskill posted more than 2 years ago | from the at-least-we-didn't-ask-the-bynars dept.

Politics 208

concealment sends in a story at Time that goes behind the scenes with the team of data crunchers that powered many of the Obama campaign's decisions in the lead-up to the election. From the article: "For all the praise Obama's team won in 2008 for its high-tech wizardry, its success masked a huge weakness: too many databases. Back then, volunteers making phone calls through the Obama website were working off lists that differed from the lists used by callers in the campaign office. Get-out-the-vote lists were never reconciled with fundraising lists. It was like the FBI and the CIA before 9/11: the two camps never shared data. ... So over the first 18 months, the campaign started over, creating a single massive system that could merge the information collected from pollsters, fundraisers, field workers and consumer databases as well as social-media and mobile contacts with the main Democratic voter files in the swing states. The new megafile didn't just tell the campaign how to find voters and get their attention; it also allowed the number crunchers to run tests predicting which types of people would be persuaded by certain kinds of appeals. Call lists in field offices, for instance, didn't just list names and numbers; they also ranked names in order of their persuadability, with the campaign's most important priorities first. About 75% of the determining factors were basics like age, sex, race, neighborhood and voting record. Consumer data about voters helped round out the picture. 'We could [predict] people who were going to give online. We could model people who were going to give through mail. We could model volunteers,' said one of the senior advisers about the predictive profiles built by the data. 'In the end, modeling became something way bigger for us in '12 than in '08 because it made our time more efficient.'"

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Ummm... (5, Insightful)

Nexion (1064) | more than 2 years ago | (#41912745)

creepy.

Re:Ummm... (5, Interesting)

Jstlook (1193309) | more than 2 years ago | (#41913561)

Again, I'm going to reiterate my point. I don't care if they spend a billion dollars on a campaign (I prefer my privacy, thanks) on one condition:
Use your datamining to actually get government right. Figure out what everybody wants, and find a solution. If you're going to "run 66,000 campaign predictions a night", how many can you run that analyze the effects of your policies, actions, and decisions.
Cause honestly, it looks to me like government has gotten really good at screwing things up. I'd hate to lose my faith in humanity before I'm dead.

Reiterate it till the cows come home. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41914063)

They care about winning, not getting it "right".
Government has gotten really good at screwing things up because that's all it's ever been good at. But keep voting for more of it and expecting a different result. Maybe one day the spaghetti will stick to the wall.

Lastly, If you have so much faith in humanity, what do you need so much government for?

Re:Ummm... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41915209)

Did they factor in the "I'm on the do not call list" solicitation phone calls from anyone piss me off quotient. Fortunately I've been away from home for quite awhile on a job with only a cell phone which are illegal to call but any campaign that called me for ANY reason would be much more likely NOT to have me vote for them. Funny thing is most political ads drive me to the other candidate because the candidate running the ad is lying. Go figure!

Ooga Booga! Me Obonga! (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41912775)

Obonga is gonna bankrupt this nation and let the mud races defile white women as your slavery reparations payment, too. Now that he has now political accountability you will see his true colors shine through.

Re:Ooga Booga! Me Obonga! (4, Funny)

couchslug (175151) | more than 2 years ago | (#41913079)

Works for me!

Re:Ooga Booga! Me Obonga! (5, Insightful)

CanHasDIY (1672858) | more than 2 years ago | (#41913357)

Obonga is gonna bankrupt this nation and let the mud races defile white women as your slavery reparations payment, too. Now that he has now political accountability you will see his true colors shine through.

Well, if the alternative is having the nation led by the people a bigoted simpleton like yourself would vote for, I'd say we came out ahead.

Re:Ooga Booga! Me Obonga! (0, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41914237)

This is why you stupid fucks lost.

This is why we no longer have a credible opposition party in America.

This is why we're all screwed.

All that and he still only squeaked by (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41912779)

Plus he seemed to have lost a huge amount of the support he had in 2008.

Don't get me wrong: a win is a win... but looking at it objectively a sigh of relief is more appropriate than a cry of victory.

Re:All that and he still only squeaked by (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41912903)

A cry of agony is more like it.

Re:All that and he still only squeaked by (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41912939)

It simply makes me sigh and wonder again when The American People[tm] will come to its senses and get themselves a voting system that's less paralysable by a mere two parties and effectively disenfranchises just a hair short of half the voters.

But since the message of the founding fathers has been lost in the process of elevating them to sainthood (or rather, by commercialising their vague memory), the answer is probably "never".

Which makes the claims of this country being a democracy (or a republic, or both), all the more bitter.

Re:All that and he still only squeaked by (5, Funny)

oodaloop (1229816) | more than 2 years ago | (#41913165)

Yes, we Americans should get a much more logical political system, like the British. Maybe if we had a House of Lords and a royal family, we'd finally enter the 18th century.

Re:All that and he still only squeaked by (5, Informative)

fiannaFailMan (702447) | more than 2 years ago | (#41913553)

Yes, we Americans should get a much more logical political system, like the British. Maybe if we had a House of Lords and a royal family, we'd finally enter the 18th century.

The Queen has a very limited constitutional role that very seldom comes into play. If she did anything outrageous it'd be the end of the monarchy's popularity and the end of the monarchy (the Prime Minister can demand an abdication), so she has to follow the public mood.

The House of Lords can only delay legislation and send it back to the Commons, and its track record of providing corrective feedback and constructive improvements to bills is actually pretty good.

House of Commons Select Committees scrutinize every bit of legislation line-by-line before it can proceed. Is there a similar system in the US Capitol or is it true that most of the people voting on bills in the house don't actually read them?

Members of the British cabinet have to be elected to Parliament, not simply appointed. Nobody gets to be Prime Minister without years of fighting his (or her) way to the front benches, so whoever makes it to the front has a pretty good idea of how the system works by the time they get there.

Since the executive branch is taken from the legislative branch, a government with a decent sized mandate can actually get stuff done. And then of course there's Prime Minister's questions every Wednesday, where the PM gets a good solid grilling. Could you have imagined Dubya surviving for five minutes in a pit like that?

Since the head of state (the monarch) is a different person from the executive leader of the country (the Prime Minister) then people can honour the head of state and be as patriotic as they like while treating their political leaders with utter contempt and ousting them when they put a foot wrong. None of this "don't dare criticise the President in a time of war" nonsense. And if the government really does screw up badly enough then a vote of confidence in the Commons can force an election at any time, no staring at the clock waiting for a 4-year term to finish. And if you do happen to get a decent PM then he (or she) gets to stay in office for as long as the people are content for that government to remain, not be ousted at the end of an arbitrary term limit.

The parliamentary system isn't perfect (what system is?) but it sure as shit has a lot going for it. And since the UK had a female PM before a lot of people on /. were born, maybe you should hold your fire on gloating about how progressive the US system is until Hillary gets back into the White House, this time as President.

Carry on.

Yeah well (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41914297)

That's great but Great Britain's like half the size of California (with just under twice the population .. 66mil in UK vs 37mil in CA according to wikipedia etc). There's one government, and it's local.

The US has lots of local governments (that often work quite well, and can recall, etc). The federal government OTOH oversees like 300 million people and a huge landmass.

Re:Yeah well (5, Informative)

SpottedKuh (855161) | more than 2 years ago | (#41914515)

Are you saying that there aren't local governments in the UK? Because that's not correct in the slightest.

Or are claiming that the landmass of a nation determines when it can be successful as a monarchy? Because Canada is larger than the US, and functions well enough with a queen and parliamentary system very similar to the UK.

Or are you claiming that it's population size that determines if a monarchy could work as a form of government? Claiming it doesn't scale with population is as ridiculous as claiming that counting ballots by hand doesn't scale in large populations -- the arguments just make no sense.

Re:All that and he still only squeaked by (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41914501)

If she did anything outrageous it'd be the end of the monarchy's popularity and the end of the monarchy (the Prime Minister can demand an abdication), so she has to follow the public mood.

I accept that having the queen and her family beholden to the public is preferable to the public behold to the queen. That said, why does either have to be in this situation? Eliminate the monarchy and free the queen! I don't doubt the "perks" are worthwhile but fame and fortune has its toll and their young will suffer. Give her what lands, jewels, and riches ought be spared and let them be like any other rich, douchebag family to suffer and prosper by their actions not their titles.

Carry on.

Fuck off.

Re:All that and he still only squeaked by (1)

SpottedKuh (855161) | more than 2 years ago | (#41914639)

Because the monarch plays a limited but important role in government. It is her job to appoint a Prime Minister (not always trivial in a hung parliament); and, it's her decision whether to call an election, or to appoint a new PM from the current Commons should the government fall on a confidence motion.

You could eliminate the monarch...but then you'd just need to replace her with someone else who would do those jobs (call that person a president, chancellor, or whatever else you like). And what have you gained? (Aside from having to reprint all your currency, reissue passports to all your citizens, rewrite parts of your constitution, etc.).

Re:All that and he still only squeaked by (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41915205)

She's the emergency off button for parliament if it goes out of control. And if parliament ever got to a point like that, the majority of the population would likely be OK with it (there'd be a flap but she'd survive). If she dissolved parliament for no reason, then she would be out on her arse. But that won't happen. Having her around is a good thing. Since she's not elected she's not motivated by politics, and since she wants to keep her job, she will only stick her nose in if it's really needed.

Re:All that and he still only squeaked by (1)

TapeCutter (624760) | more than 2 years ago | (#41914045)

we'd finally enter the 18th century

Wonderfull, then you could catch up with more recent events in the UK.

Re:All that and he still only squeaked by (2)

White Flame (1074973) | more than 2 years ago | (#41913271)

Unfortunately, that sort of shift requires constitutional changes, which is a Really Big Deal in process, support, and cost. Plus, the 2 principal parties have no incentive to do that.

If I recall correctly, some of the founding fathers were later arguing for a more proportional system, seeing a 2-party convergence even in their time.

Re:All that and he still only squeaked by (1)

Draknor (745036) | more than 2 years ago | (#41913479)

Not really -- we can keep our constitutional system of representation, and just change how we run elections on a state-by-state basis, such as by adopting instant run-off voting or proportional representation of electors (such as Nebraska & Maine do).

You are correct that there is no incentive to do such a thing by the 2 parties currently in power, however.

Re:All that and he still only squeaked by (1)

Carnivore (103106) | more than 2 years ago | (#41913341)

It actually disenfranchises _more_ than half of the voters. Take California in this election:
Obama: 5573450 Romney: 3635571
None of the 3.63 million votes for Romney counted, and 1937878 of Obama's didn't contribute to the election.
Therefore, 5573449 votes, 60.5%, in California didn't count for anything.

Re:All that and he still only squeaked by (4, Interesting)

TapeCutter (624760) | more than 2 years ago | (#41914285)

That's pretty twisted logic you have going there (or possibly an unorthodox definition of "disenfranchised"), taken to it's logical conclusion the only vote that counts is the single ballot that gets someone over the line. Truth is all the votes counted, the Rommney total was simply insufficient and the Obama total was more than required. US domestic politics has ( in my lifetime) always been highly polarised, which is kind of odd given the diverse sub-cultures found in the different states/regions, simply tweeking the election rules isn't going to change that cultural paradox.

Re:All that and he still only squeaked by (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41913433)

Disenfranchises? In what way? How would having more than 2 parties change the fact that only a single person can win the presidential office?

Re:All that and he still only squeaked by (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41913687)

But this shouldn't be a surprise! With an institutionalized two-party system, both parties are optimizing to get the biggest share possible, crafting policies to maximize their share of the electorate. Given that both have similar resources to do it, a 50-50 split is almost inevitable, particularly if semi-automated policy manufacturing like this is pursued further. Throw in the error that Republicans continue to pursue largely rural/suburban issues in an increasingly urban country and the outcomes will tend to favour the democrats. The question is: how long before the GOP policy shifts towards urban issues to maximize their share of the vote? If both parties adopt semi-automated optimization like the one crafted by the democrats, the country will be even more strictly divided, but along who-knows-what policy lines.

Re:All that and he still only squeaked by (2, Insightful)

Mitreya (579078) | more than 2 years ago | (#41912969)

Plus he seemed to have lost a huge amount of the support he had in 2008.

Maybe that's because he had done a 180 degree turn on most of his promises? The ones that got that huge amount of support in 2008? Campaigning on "change and hope" was no longer possible, since we now have 4 years of actual record.

a win is a win... but looking at it objectively a sigh of relief is more appropriate than a cry of victory.

Republicans had a chance, but they needed a stronger candidate. Why is it so hard to find one strong candidate? I mean, look at who Romney was competing against at the end -- Gingrich, McCain, Santorum...

Re:All that and he still only squeaked by (5, Insightful)

jhoegl (638955) | more than 2 years ago | (#41913071)

First off, Obama did what he could with a Republican party that wanted nothing more than for him to lose his second term. Dont believe me? They even said this.
Secondly, the Republican party is full of nut jobs and puppets. The last few candidates that the Republicans presented were such big shills (including Bush), that you could clearly see the strings that were being pulled to make them talk.
Third, stop lying to make the Republican party look good. We have something now called the internet, and despite the large amount of false data out there, the real data (and recordings) remain.
Finally, Stop taking the USA citizens for rubes. We are smart, educated, and intelligent, something the Republican Party has feared for years. We believe that even though people can and given the chance, will pull up their bootstraps, sometimes they need help to get started. Not everyone has an extended family, a rich uncle, or someone who knows the right people to get us started. Society is not socialism, it is caring about your neighbors and helping out. THis includes neighbors I dont know and will never meet. I sanction my government to help those that need help, and try its best to find those that would work this to their own personal benefit.

Adapt or die, as some of your party members might say.

Re:All that and he still only squeaked by (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41913123)

First off, Obama did what he could with a Republican party that wanted nothing more than for him to lose his second term.

Well, duh. Winning the election is kind of their job, dude.

Re:All that and he still only squeaked by (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41913217)

And that's why you have to start campaigning the day after the election. You have to be willing to through the American economy and all it's people into the toilet if that's what it takes to get an extra 5% of voters next election.

Re:All that and he still only squeaked by (5, Insightful)

mpeskett (1221084) | more than 2 years ago | (#41913291)

Important distinction - "A party that wanted for him to lose" vs "A party that wanted nothing more than for him to lose".

When "make sure the other guy loses" is the over-riding objective, above any other goal, you stop doing things that would make sense if you wanted to get anything done, because getting things done might make the other guy look good. You stop doing things that would make sense to advance your own (original) agenda, where it overlaps with the other guy, because agreeing with the other guy makes him look good and might allow him to achieve something.

It turns everything into a game of tribal warfare - no compromise, no co-operation, just blind hate and contrarian obstruction. Being anything so long as it puts the other guy down or makes his life difficult. That's pretty much the impression I get of a good chunk of the republican party for the last 4 years, and thankfully it hasn't proved to be a winning strategy. If all you had to do to win an election was to block everything the incumbent tries to do (then lambast him for never doing anything), then the USA would be stuck fruitlessly spinning its gears forever.

Maybe now that's been shown to be a dud they'll start working for the common good of the people being governed, rather than treating ideas (and laws) as soldiers in an imaginary war. Maybe. That is perhaps optimistic though; equally likely they double down on the obstructionist crap, especially given how much the far right has supplanted the centre right.

Re:All that and he still only squeaked by (3, Interesting)

jd.schmidt (919212) | more than 2 years ago | (#41914247)

Sadly, the short term problem is that obstructionism will at least appear to work in the next 2 years. 2 years from now, the voters who were willing to wait 4 - 6 hours in line to vote for Obama won't be willing to stick it out for a midterm. And one guess on the social groups that had to wait 4 hours to vote. The Democrats will lose many of their gains in the last election and the hardline (Tea Party) Republicans will conclude that their no surrender tactics are working and further that the reason they lost 2012 is because the party selected a wishy-washy conservative in Romney.

I am sad to say my prediction is very minimal compromise in the short term and further purges of moderates, especially moderate Republicans, for the next 4 years. Eventually the Republicans will have to change course, they just can’t/won’t that soon.

Buckle up, we are in for a bumpy ride.

Re:All that and he still only squeaked by (2)

Hawke (1719) | more than 2 years ago | (#41913365)

No, helping the country be better, and the citizen be better off is.
Aka: Leading the country.
Getting elected is a MEANS, it is not the end.

Re:All that and he still only squeaked by (2)

AK Marc (707885) | more than 2 years ago | (#41914147)

I thought representing their constituent's interests was their job, even if they spend 0% of their time on it.

Re:All that and he still only squeaked by (1, Interesting)

CanHasDIY (1672858) | more than 2 years ago | (#41913471)

First off, Obama did what he could with a Republican party that wanted nothing more than for him to lose his second term. Dont believe me? They even said this. Secondly, the Republican party is full of nut jobs and puppets. The last few candidates that the Republicans presented were such big shills (including Bush), that you could clearly see the strings that were being pulled to make them talk

That's why they used fishing line when they built Obama.

FYI, I'm one of those people who voted for the O in 2008 but not this year, and my decision had fuck-all to do with what Republicans do or say.

I chose to vote against Obama because of NDAA, "Disposition Matrix's," Gitmo's continued existence, P.A.T.R.I.O.T II, CISPA (so much for that veto promise), expanded drone strikes, etc., etc., etc.

Put simply, I voted against Obama because the last thing I wanted was another 4 years of Bush.

Que sera, sera.

Re:All that and he still only squeaked by (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41913817)

First off, Obama did what he could with a Republican party that wanted nothing more than for him to lose his second term. Dont believe me? They even said this.

You're an idiot. What exactly do you think an opposition party does? Obama is incompetent and you've believed this stupid line.

Re:All that and he still only squeaked by (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41914161)

First off, Obama did what he could with a Republican party that wanted nothing more than for him to lose his second term. Dont believe me? They even said this.

Of course the Republicans wanted Obama to lose his second term. They disagree with his course. You will also remember some of them stating that they wanted him to fail. But those on the left are misunderstanding (often intentionally, just to gain political points) what is meant by that. The Republicans don't want Obama to fail to be a good leader or for the country to fail to succeed, they want his STATED AGENDA to fail because we believe it will (and has) lead to a poor economic situation and a lack of liberty.

...the Republican party is full of nut jobs and puppets. The last few candidates that the Republicans presented were such big shills (including Bush), that you could clearly see the strings that were being pulled to make them talk.

If you cannot admit that Obama is rewarding corporate interests of friends and supporters with large payouts then you are the very type of shill and zealot you claim to abhor.

... stop lying to make the Republican party look good. We have something now called the internet, and despite the large amount of false data out there, the real data (and recordings) remain. ...Stop taking the USA citizens for rubes. We are smart, educated, and intelligent, something the Republican Party has feared for years.

Republicans (most anyway) welcome objective analysis, no matter what you FEEL. Intelligence and circumspection do not always go hand in hand. It is hard to analyze critically something you are heavily invested in. A fact is a fact even if it comes from a distasteful source.

Society is not socialism, it is caring about your neighbors and helping out

I have cared about my neighbors even though I have found their grasping political ideas to be immoral, for I have found them for the most part personally to be caring generous people. They are not political junkies and they do not spend time worrying about public policy, but their ignorance is starting to hurt people badly. I am angry with them. They are throwing the poorest of us under the bus just so they can get their "free" handout. (I refer of course to the massive increase in poverty and joblessness over Obama's first term) My time of caring about neighbors that do not seem to care about or respect me is about over.

Adapt or die, as some of your party members might say.

Adapt or die, huh? Many Republicans see it as Adapt and decline. We can not adapt (pander) any more without simply becoming a pale imitation of the Democrats. Bush to me was just that. If you think this country will prosper with one party and little dissent then you are a fool. It is not the end of the world, but it is the end of the exceptional wealth this country enjoyed.

Re:All that and he still only squeaked by (5, Interesting)

TapeCutter (624760) | more than 2 years ago | (#41914617)

Stop taking the USA citizens for rubes. We are smart, educated, and intelligent, something the Republican Party has feared for years.

Well said, I agree with Christopher Hicthens who thought putting Palin up for VP was a genuine insult to intelligence of "the people". Isn't the conservative side of politics supposed to shun shallow air-heads? Are they not supposed to hang on to established institutions rather than openly call for their abolishment? Was Nixon a commie because he didn't veto the clean air act? Was reagan a wetermellon becuse he pushed for and obtained an international cap and trade treaty for sulphur emissions which has been credited with significantly reducing the threat from acid rain?

Having grown up in the 60-70's the Tea Party's sucessful hijacking of the conservative brand name has left me speechless, how border line support for anarchy and a total disregard for well-established facts could be interpreted as 'conservative' is beyond me? Go back pre-911 and have a look at the senior republicans, where are the moderate right wingers in today's line up? - Oh wait....I think I get it now.....you guys just elected a moderate conservative as president, well done! ;)

Re:All that and he still only squeaked by (5, Insightful)

desdinova 216 (2000908) | more than 2 years ago | (#41913091)

part of the problem is that the Republican party is being held hostage by a small fringe who want to put in place a theocracy.

Re:All that and he still only squeaked by (4, Insightful)

Joe Decker (3806) | more than 2 years ago | (#41914933)

"small fringe" is sadly not, to my mind, a plausible interpretation of the evidence

When you look at many votes on questions touched on by the theocrats, it's pretty clear that they enjoy substantial support from large segments and often majorities of the GOP electorate.

I'm very sorry that the somewhat more sensible Republican party of the past is no longer with us. But that's the case, and it's time for people who supported a more sensible GOP to either figure out a way of more effectively persuading people to your view (because the theocrats are winning that war, despite last night's results), or, alternatively, get themselves a more sensible party of their own.

Re:All that and he still only squeaked by (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41913247)

Because there are few rational members of that party left. The Republican party caters to the extreme right, just watch the primaries, it was a contest of who is the craziest. The Republican party is dead and it time for a third party to emerge.

Re:All that and he still only squeaked by (1)

White Flame (1074973) | more than 2 years ago | (#41913319)

Why is it so hard to find one strong candidate?

I've heard that most of the would-be better candidates did not want to run against an incumbent, but instead wait for 2016.

Re:All that and he still only squeaked by (2)

cant_get_a_good_nick (172131) | more than 2 years ago | (#41913753)

Republicans had a chance, but they needed a stronger candidate. Why is it so hard to find one strong candidate? I mean, look at who Romney was competing against at the end -- Gingrich, McCain, Santorum...

Republican candidate issues can (mostly) be placed at the feet of the Republican party. The only person who could possibly fit through their obstacle course was Romney, only because he was the best in changing positions (a/k/a outright lying about what he really was).

Case in point: Christie post-Sandy. The fact he actually praised Obama for helping his state, and Christie doing the job he's supposed to (helping his electorate) gets him skewered in the press. Any remotely moderate candidate for office gets a hard-core conservative Republican challenger in the primaries. The fact that Republicans have to deal with: the current system for vetting candidates makes them appeal to a hard core conservative wing that hurts them in any nationwide election. You may be able to get Texas to be vote for God and guns, but you're running in 50 states.

The fault is not in (y)our stars, but in (y)ourselves.

Romney kicked ass but was doomed (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41915095)

Actually the Republicans didn't have a chance in hell.

Romney was actually by far the best they had to offer, probably the best overall since Ike. And that's saying something.

And Obama had managed to piss off a shitload of liberals and moderates, in fact he's a moderate wuss.

The problem is the extreme right: Tea Party, Republican Theocrats, and Libertarians have pissed off people even more than Obama has. I'm really surprised that Romney made as good a showing as he did.

The Conservative nutters picked up a few seats in the House, obviously due to gerrymandering, because they lost seats in the senate, something they really can't gerrymander. And that's where the truth shows.

Re:All that and he still only squeaked by (2)

thesandtiger (819476) | more than 2 years ago | (#41915177)

Because they think they need to be more conservative, more hard-line in order to appeal to the religious nuts and hard-core racist wingnuts. Seriously.

If there were a party that was fiscally conservative but didn't hate minorities and spout off bugfuck insane Ayn Rand nonsense they would probably do well.

A republican candidate who didn't repudiate science, go all Jesusy at the drop of a hat, and who was willing to say that fixating on restricting the rights of a tiny (but potent) minority was a waste of fucking time, and who was willing to actually call out wingnuts who acted like assholes would do well.

In fact, he has - Take the D for after his name and look just at his policies and Obama is pretty much an Eisenhower republican with more modersocial sensibilities.

Re:All that and he still only squeaked by (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41913057)

Eh, part of me thinks there was some voter tampering that caused it to be so close. Just not enough to make Romney the winner & make us go through the recount & audit process. Obama seemed like he was going to win by a healthy margin IMO.

Re:All that and he still only squeaked by (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41913153)

Only squeaked by? Are you serious?

Surely you weren't persuaded by the media hype about how close the race is. It has never been close. Obama has had a huge advantage in the electoral college from the get-go. And the Romney campaign never had the ground organization in the battleground states that would be required to be a serious contender.

In fact, it almost looks like the Republicans threw the race on purpose. Romney is not the kind of candidate who would have a great chance of beating Obama in this climate--he epitomizes everything that people dislike about the Republican party, and plays into the Democrat characterization of the GOP as the party for the rich, by the rich.

In fact, there hasn't really been a strong candidate put up against an incumbent President since Reagan beat Carter. Clinton was not expected to win--but Perot's entering the race spoiled expectations.

Re:All that and he still only squeaked by (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41913643)

Only squeaked by? Are you serious?

Surely you weren't persuaded by the media hype about how close the race is.

I assume that OP was referring to the fact that given how bad the Republican candidate was (due to the strong pull from the nutjob right-wing fringe) that it was closer than it should have been

It's not that it was close in electoral votes, it's that Obama only got 2% popular vote advantage and that's not "decisive" victory that it could have been...

Re:All that and he still only squeaked by (1)

AK Marc (707885) | more than 2 years ago | (#41914211)

Bush lost the popular vote and still called it a "mandate".

Re:All that and he still only squeaked by (2)

AK Marc (707885) | more than 2 years ago | (#41914201)

Clinton was not expected to win--but Perot's entering the race spoiled expectations.

Maybe it was different in the swing states, but in Texas, everyone voting for Perot I talked to would have otherwise have voted for Clinton. On the Republican scale, Perot is a left-wing nutjob. He wanted fiscal responsibility, something Clinton actually gave us (even if the Republicans assert it was only luck that he sat on a boom that busted under Bush). He also wasn't nearly interested enough in the bedroom habits of people to be a "good Republican."

I'm serious. Try using math. (2, Informative)

jensend (71114) | more than 2 years ago | (#41915009)

Yes, only squeaked by. Almost 120 million people voted. If around 130,000 of those - ~50K in VA, ~55K in OH, and ~25K in Florida - had switched to Romney, the outcome would have been a Romney presidency. That's less than 1.5% of VA, less than 1.1% of OH, less than 0.4% of FL, and less than 0.011% of the national vote.

Nate Silver tried hard to correct your misconception [twitter.com] :

IMPORTANT: That we have Obama as a ~90% favorite does NOT mean we're predicting a landslide. We expect a close election.

And a close election is what we had. That the outcome could be predicted with fairly good certainty doesn't mean it wasn't close.

Re:All that and he still only squeaked by (2)

LanMan04 (790429) | more than 2 years ago | (#41914037)

Really? He won all the same states he did in 2008 except for NC and IN.

This is certainly as good, or better, a "mandate" than Bush received in 2004.

"I've earned political capital, and I intend to spend it"
--W, 2004

Re:All that and he still only squeaked by (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41915143)

He didn't win. The Republicans lost. This was a reverse Kerry. Obama really didn't do that great a job and the economy is still shite which would normally mean BO should have been toast (even though many still blame Bush for tanking the economy in the first place). The only reason he was reelected were all the people the Republicans pissed off with their tea bagger right wing agenda. Latinos didn't like them, Blacks didn't like them. The left and democrat whites of course don't like them. More women don't like them than like them. So what's a party to do when their policies that favour white upper income religious zealot xenophobes fails. Maybe stop listening to your extreme tea baggers and move back towards the center and cooperate more? Hmmmm? Just say no to Rush and Beck and Fox and you'll get elected for sure next time.

Welcome to the Obama Machine..... (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41912827)

Would you like the red or blue pill???

Very interesting (5, Interesting)

wcrowe (94389) | more than 2 years ago | (#41912829)

I don't get involved in politics these days, but I'm still registered as a Republican. As a consequence, I still get political calls and mail from time to time. The one thing I've noticed about how the GOP operates is that they make a lot of assumptions about what I think on various issues. It's like they cannot fathom that I might look at things a little bit differently than the party line. After reading this article, it makes me wonder if the GOP is out of touch with other voters who lean to the right.

It sounds like the Democrats have put a lot of effort into understanding their electorate.

What Axelrod can do, Rove can do as well (1)

Latent Heat (558884) | more than 2 years ago | (#41912891)

Once people figure out how to do a certain something, other people can do it too.

Re:What Axelrod can do, Rove can do as well (1)

Mysticeti (69304) | more than 2 years ago | (#41912965)

Actually, I thought Rove was one of the pioneers on this. Wasn't he in direct mail marketing before he took up politics?

Re:What Axelrod can do, Rove can do as well (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41913199)

Not exactly, because they are targeting different demographics.

A proactive electorate wants somebody on the campaign staff to validate their desires, to reflect that the campaign's message aligns with their values, both in actions and statements.

A reactive electorate could not care less about the campaign of their own party, really, and absolutely will rely on the assumption that the opposition is/will be worse by comparison.

It's like saying Rove could promise to shave his mustache if his candidate loses the election. Sure, he could - but he'd actually have to grow a mustache in the first place or he will simply be seen as making an empty promise. "I will increase military spending, cut taxes for everyone, maintain critical services, and close tax loopholes to reduce the deficit." Sure you will, buddy.

The best evidence to demonstrate the habits of the latter, reactive, group was the nearly-universal conviction that the eventual nominee's religion was a cult during the primary process. Nonetheless, evangelicals and devout religious folk of all stripes put out endorsement after endorsement during the general election campaign. That's because there was an evil Kenyan Muslim already occupying the White House, by some estimates.

Re:Very interesting (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41912925)

I lean to the right, but I find I share ground with a lot of weirdoes. Since I see plenty of weirdoes on the left, I think I'm resigned to the fact that the human race is weird.

"It sounds like the Democrats have put a lot of effort into understanding their electorate."
Or their advertisers have put a lot of effort into understanding their target market, and bending the message (or the perception of the message) so everyone thinks it includes them.

Re:Very interesting (2)

mariox19 (632969) | more than 2 years ago | (#41913343)

Political science is all about getting and keeping power. It's amoral. It's sad.

Re:Very interesting (4, Interesting)

PRMan (959735) | more than 2 years ago | (#41912947)

I have the EXACT same experience. They were floored when I asked them whether their next presidential candidate had different view on redefining torture and if not, I was voting for Obama. The phone literally got so silent I could hear other conversations in the background clearly.

Re:Very interesting (1)

lexman098 (1983842) | more than 2 years ago | (#41913099)

They were trying to work out how to get you off the phone as quick as possible without insulting you.

Re:Very interesting (1)

Jah-Wren Ryel (80510) | more than 2 years ago | (#41914363)

They were trying to work out how to get you off the phone as quick as possible without insulting you.

Unlikely. Politely ending a phone call is going to be so common for campaigners that there are going to be at least a handful of generic scripts for them to follow. What this anecdote says is that the idea was not one the particular caller had ever considered and, more importantly to the GP's point, chances are their script writers had not either.

Re:Very interesting (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41912975)

This election proved once and for all that the Democrats don’t need the Catholic vote to win, and it proved that evangelicals aren’t enough to hand victory to the Republicans.

As an electoral force, the Catholic voters are now indistinguishable from the population at large, and thus are irrelevant as any sort of a unified voting block. The rank and file Catholics can’t even agree on the abortion issue.

Conservative evangelicals, on the other hand, once the loud and dominant voice of the party, will be reduced to little more than a batshit-crazy niche interest group within the GOP. This is the group that gives rise to people like Todd Akin, and who are far more of a liability for the party when it comes to appealing to urban and educated people, which are a huge part of the voting population.

In order to actually hope to win any national elections, the GOP or its successor party will need to flee from the batshit-crazy religious conservatives. The new coalition will have to appeal to young Ron Paul people, to gays, to Hispanics, to modern women, and to other anti-drug war libertarian types.

No, I did not compose all of that, I paraphrased it with my personal touch and will not name the source because it will be ridiculed and modded down had the source been provided.

-- Ethanol-fueled

Re:Very interesting (5, Interesting)

dgatwood (11270) | more than 2 years ago | (#41913767)

The rank and file Catholics can’t even agree on the abortion issue.

It's not that Catholics don't mostly agree that abortion is bad. It's that Catholics tend to be a lot more pragmatic as a group than their clergy would perhaps like. There are three factors here:

  • Catholics don't universally agree on whether it should be illegal—that is, whether their moral objection to it outweighs the need for a clear separation of church and state—whether they have the right to push what is essentially a religious belief on those who do not share that belief.
  • A sizable percentage of American Catholics realize that making it completely illegal has the potential to actually cost lives in some medical cases. That certainly isn't something that the Church as an institution will likely ever accept, but it is a reality that most American Catholics will concede. If your choice truly is whether to abort a fetus (or administer medical treatment that has the potential to kill the fetus) or let two people inevitably die, even most people who are against abortion in general have a hard time stomaching the latter.
  • Most Catholics recognize that there are more important issues that are more likely to actually have a real impact on the world. Roe v. Wade is a wedge that Republicans use to try to get votes, but in reality, they almost never actually do anything to try to change it.

That last one is crucial to understanding Catholic voters. The abortion debate is full of sound and fury, signifying nothing—all talk, no action. As long as that remains the case, it makes sense to evaluate the candidates based on issues that they might realistically act upon—health care, civil rights, care for the poor, etc.

Hammer, Nail, Head. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41914983)

As an ex-Catholic, this is exactly correct.

There are, I think, a variety of things that go into it. You're very conscious of your religion not being as relevant to the rest of the world as it used to.

Abortion is a Protestant, almost a Fundamentalist issue. You could get worked up about it, but you could get worked up about the Protestants too, but you could actually do what that Yeshua bar Yehosef [slate.com] guy said and shut the hell up about it. [bible.cc]

Re:Very interesting (1, Insightful)

superdave80 (1226592) | more than 2 years ago | (#41913137)

It sounds like the Democrats have put a lot of effort into understanding their electorate.

They put a lot of effort into knowing what the electorate wants to hear. Once in office, they could give a crap what the electorate thinks.

Re:Very interesting (1)

poity (465672) | more than 2 years ago | (#41913215)

It seems like this is just about finding out who has money, time, or social influence, and coaxing those out of people with a more focused approach. The greatest effect it has on their actual policy is to more clearly establish the boundaries of mass opinion so that they can color inside the lines so to speak and avoid controversy. It won't change the party message by much.

"Understand" is also an interesting word to use, and perhaps appropriate -- one can understand in order to better serve, or understand in order to better manipulate. And of course in our partisan world, when our guys do it it's smart, when the other guys do it it's sinister and full of ulterior motives.

efficiency? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41912849)

Sooo thats why I had 4 different teams of obomba supporters coming to my door on a single weekend.

they want you to vote 4 times (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41913055)

they want you to vote 4 times

So... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41912863)

Can we declare these people to be terrorists yet?

Voters should be checking out the candidates. Not the other way around.

There are worse things (2)

Iamthecheese (1264298) | more than 2 years ago | (#41912919)

than a president who understands technology and has been in charge of groups manipulating and using big data.

Are we talking about the president... (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41914149)

...that didn't know how to answer an iPhone, and then blamed the phone's owner?

Does it bother anyone... (4, Insightful)

swb (14022) | more than 2 years ago | (#41912921)

....that candidates are winning elections via data mining versus appealing to people with ideas?

It seems like Wall Street's version of capitalism -- just focus on the numbers, not on making a newer widget, and we can manipulate our way to victory.

I know, you can make the argument that sending the right message to the people receptive that message will get you money, votes, whatever, but at the same time it seems cynical and manipulative. It doesn't seem like it's about developing leadership ideas that appeal to people generally and winning them over with charisma and the strength of your arguments.

Re:Does it bother anyone... (2)

Mitreya (579078) | more than 2 years ago | (#41913053)

Does it bother anyone... ....that candidates are winning elections via data mining versus appealing to people with ideas?

It seems like Wall Street's version of capitalism -- just focus on the numbers, not on making a newer widget, and we can manipulate our way to victory.

Yes, yes it does.
But then Obama had manipulated his way to victory by making "idea" promises too, 4 years ago. He promised to undo most of questionable Bush-administration tactics, but instead he expanded on (most of) them.

So yes, they use what they can

When they had a candidate with very little record on issues, he ran on ideas that appealed to people. Never mind that he turned around and did the opposite for a shocking number of promises right away. Not "tried to follow up and failed" but "did the exact opposite right away"
Now that they have a candidate with 4 years of public record, they ran on data-mining numbers and "Romney will be worse for the country" instead

Anything to win, there are no honorable political campaigns, at least not on that level.

Re:Does it bother anyone... (2)

wile_e8 (958263) | more than 2 years ago | (#41913065)

....that candidates are winning elections via data mining versus appealing to people with ideas?

I wouldn't say that that they won via data mining, they still appealed to people with ideas to win the election. They just used data mining to determine the best way to present the ideas in order to appeal to the most people more efficiently.

Re:Does it bother anyone... (1)

White Flame (1074973) | more than 2 years ago | (#41913227)

Do you know anybody who either decided to vote, or changed their vote, based on some stranger autodialing their number? I don't, and I don't imagine this sort of shift would happen often enough to actually change the election. It sounds like they used data mining to optimize campaign contributions more than anything else.

The republicans had an utterly weak candidate. Even with the economy as trashed as it is, they couldn't take the silver platter offered to them, just like the democrats couldn't capitalize on GWB's unpopularity for his second term even though it should have been a shoo-in.

Re:Does it bother anyone... (3, Insightful)

Sarten-X (1102295) | more than 2 years ago | (#41913261)

What's wrong with data mining? It's effectively the same job that campaign managers have been doing for decades (or more), but now more accurately. In the 1800s, a candidate could campaign on a platform of what he thought the voters wanted to hear. Now, candidates can know the views of their constituents, and make plans and promises based on more accurate information.

Now, I'm not naive enough to think that all those promises will be kept, but it does bode well that the elected officials have a pretty accurate model of their constituents, should they actually decide to refer to it.

Re:Does it bother anyone... (1)

DerekLyons (302214) | more than 2 years ago | (#41913695)

It bothers me deeply, but it doesn't surprise me.

Fa1lz0rs!? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41912963)

you to join the They're gone Mac Continues toCh3w by clicking here *BSD HAS LOST MORE 'I have to kill any doubt: FreeBSD In our group a BSD box (a PIII while the project hand...don't on my Pentium Pro the reaper BSD's Everyday...We by fundamental another cunting Maintained that too OS don't fear the I thought it was my Cuntwipes Jordan theorisTs - FreeBSD used to of various BSD all; in order to go the point more with the number encountered while *BSD is dying It is intentions and sure that by the coming a piss are looking very available to you should bring mire of decay, too much formality A conscious stand

vs. Orca (3, Informative)

klui (457783) | more than 2 years ago | (#41912985)

I wonder how large this database was compared to Romney's Orca. http://washingtonexaminer.com/stunned-romney-supporters-struggle-to-explain-defeat/article/2512861#.UJqIxRh8zOU [washingtonexaminer.com] The article said the system crashed. I'm pretty sure that's the system Karl Rove was looking at when he was on Fox News trying to rebut their analysts' projection of an Obama victory in Ohio. http://www.mediaite.com/tv/karl-rove-causes-fox-news-chaos-by-challenging-obama-victory-projection/ [mediaite.com]

There's also complete fucking cheating (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41912995)

http://gatesofvienna.blogspot.com/2012/11/cowards-lose.html

Re:There's also complete fucking cheating (1)

CanHasDIY (1672858) | more than 2 years ago | (#41913161)

http://gatesofvienna.blogspot.com/2012/11/cowards-lose.html

To save everyone else the trouble of falling for this AC's link-bait, the site above is nothing but the butthurt ramblings of a xenophobic loser.

The irony of the URL is not lost on me.

More and More Data... (4, Funny)

ideonexus (1257332) | more than 2 years ago | (#41912999)

...moving us closer and closer to psychohistory [wikipedia.org] .

Re:More and More Data... (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41913173)

...moving us closer and closer to psychohistory.

Nate Silver (or other predictors) might be be doing so

This data analysis is the exact opposite of psychohistory.

First, it was specifically aimed at groups of people and could not predict actions of an individual. The campaign mining is actually about doing by-individual analysis to see what kind of plea/solicitation they may respond to best.

Second, the population should remain ignorant of the application of psychohistory rules or they may be affected by such knowledge. And we clearly know about the data mining

So interesting, yes -- but we may be waiting for psychohistory for a while. Unless, of course, the Seldon plan is already in motion and we are under the control of second found... $^@%#$@!#$ NO CARRIER

/. and CNN having a same front page story (1)

mapkinase (958129) | more than 2 years ago | (#41913005)

/. editors! You should start to pull your hair out.

We don't need people to govern us either (0)

gelfling (6534) | more than 2 years ago | (#41913131)

Fire up the President ClusterBot. May as well, the guy we got has as much charm and personality as a machine and is inspiring as a vacuum cleaner.

All Hail

There is another perspective.... (1)

3seas (184403) | more than 2 years ago | (#41913255)

... the data crunchers with the help of the spying on Americans and MSM entertainment control were able to figure out exactly how to manipulate many things to achieve the goal of what they were hired to do. To cause the voters to believe they actually voted the way it was said to have.

Fact is voter turnout was the lowest it has been at least as far back as prior to 1948 election perhaps further back.
Obama trailed at roughly under 1 million for most of the tally and then was approx 1.5 million behind Romney in popular vote when declared the winner.

So with less that 50% of eligible voters voting .....the people did not elect anyone. But hey it made for a sports style event with teh last minute tally comeback.

This was not a sports event!

Given the political bias I have seen on slashdot.... I do expect this to be moderated troll.... But that not like our election voting.... is it?

Re:There is another perspective.... (2)

fiannaFailMan (702447) | more than 2 years ago | (#41913697)

... the data crunchers with the help of the spying on Americans and MSM entertainment control were able to figure out exactly how to manipulate many things to achieve the goal of what they were hired to do. To cause the voters to believe they actually voted the way it was said to have.

Fact is voter turnout was the lowest it has been at least as far back as prior to 1948 election perhaps further back.
Obama trailed at roughly under 1 million for most of the tally and then was approx 1.5 million behind Romney in popular vote when declared the winner.

So with less that 50% of eligible voters voting .....the people did not elect anyone. But hey it made for a sports style event with teh last minute tally comeback.

This was not a sports event!

Given the political bias I have seen on slashdot.... I do expect this to be moderated troll.... But that not like our election voting.... is it?

So what are you saying? A non-voter should count as a Romney voter? Obama lost?

Take your beating like a man, you self-pitying twerp.

Re:There is another perspective.... (2)

hibiki_r (649814) | more than 2 years ago | (#41915039)

Behind in the popular vote for most of the tally... sure, because the west coast has an very high population, and every state in the coast votes for the Democrats more often than not. Therefore, the popular vote will always look to favor the republican candidate, barring an absolute Dem. landslide that we've not seen in our lifetimes.

And really, complaining about a low turnout when most elections have a winner-take-all approach is rather naive. If a race is is not in a dead heat, chances that a presidential vote will matter in the slightest are near zero. Same thing when picking a congressman. How motivated are republicans to go vote in California? How about democrats in Utah? If anything, we are seeing too high a turnout for the electoral system being used.

Then again, complaining about low turnout is a great excuse when the end result of the election is something you do not like.

Still needs more consolidation (3, Insightful)

medv4380 (1604309) | more than 2 years ago | (#41913313)

One of their callers let it slip what my "ranking" was. For some reason they think I'm a strong democrat. I'm not sure what they think that means because if the Republicans would ever get their act together and field a Strong Moderate Republican like Powell then I'd vote Republican. Instead they've taken the last decade purging out moderates and acting crazy. Someone failed to consolidate those database though. If they had done it right then they would know they called my home phone, and cell phone. You only have to confirm that I'm voting once, maybe twice. After that I ether am voting or I've been Joshing you. But no, I got about 13 calls from them. Each campaign needs to share data so I don't get inundated by the local legislature, house and presidential campaign. I can't imagine what actual battle ground states actually got since I'm in an area where the winner could have been called a year before the election.

Re:Still needs more consolidation (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41915291)

I'm a registered Libertarian at a new address in a house in a "starter" neighborhood ($180k houses). I donated exactly $10 to Obama's campaign, and they were able to find me (at home) twice to make sure that I voted. They (Democrats) emailed me a "thank you" for voting for Obama, early, when I did a mail-in ballot. I don't remember giving up any rights, posting any signs, or making my preference known to anyone. They found me, and one of the volunteers was really cute!

Aren't vote records private / secret ballot? (3, Funny)

girlinatrainingbra (2738457) | more than 2 years ago | (#41913317)

re: determining factors were basics like age, sex, race, neighborhood and voting record
.

Voting record? I thought we had secret ballots in this country and that no one is supposed to have access to individual voters' voting records? Do they mean simply registration records and if they voted in a particular election?

And it seemed worrisome that the government would tabulate this infomation on us so they outlawed it; then they found the loophole that while the gov't couldn't compile the data, private companies could, and then the gov't can look at the private companies' data and still proclaim they never broke the law. "Brave New World", indeed...

Re:Aren't vote records private / secret ballot? (1)

CanHasDIY (1672858) | more than 2 years ago | (#41913417)

re: determining factors were basics like age, sex, race, neighborhood and voting record .

Voting record? I thought we had secret ballots in this country and that no one is supposed to have access to individual voters' voting records? Do they mean simply registration records and if they voted in a particular election?

No, they meant your actual votes.

Ever notice, when you walk up to the poll worker, how they scan your ID, write a number next to your name in their little book, then write the same number on the top of your ballot?

Yea, secret my ass.

Re:Aren't vote records private / secret ballot? (2)

blueg3 (192743) | more than 2 years ago | (#41914087)

Ever notice, when you walk up to the poll worker, how they scan your ID, write a number next to your name in their little book, then write the same number on the top of your ballot?

...

In New York, at least, every part of this statement is false.

Re:Aren't vote records private / secret ballot? (1)

Bill, Shooter of Bul (629286) | more than 2 years ago | (#41913489)

In some states you must publicly declare yourself to be either a republican or democart in order to vote in the primaries. I'm guessing that's the record they are refering to.

Re:Aren't vote records private / secret ballot? (1)

fiannaFailMan (702447) | more than 2 years ago | (#41913713)

Private polls conducted by the campaign. "Click here to indicate that you voted for Obama." Nothing illegal about it.

Re:Aren't vote records private / secret ballot? (3, Informative)

blueg3 (192743) | more than 2 years ago | (#41914121)

It's the record of whether or not you voted, which is public information. (Which party you declare when you register, and whether you're registered, is also public information.)

One of the things they talk about in TFA (I know, I know) is that an important part of their model is figuring out whether people are likely to vote and, for those who aren't but could be convinced, what strategy will convince them to vote. Probably your past history of whether you've voted is a component in that analysis.

Privacy Violations? (2, Funny)

Tora (65882) | more than 2 years ago | (#41913527)

And this doesn't frighten ANY of the privacy advocates here on slashdot? Were this any other government organization people would be screaming to the hills, so why is Obama given a free pass for this sort of privacy incursions?

A political party that is against profiling... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41914101)

This sure seems like. Profiling.

In Business we call this "Single View of Customer" (1)

richardoz (529837) | more than 2 years ago | (#41914215)

It's nothing new and has been around for 20+ years. Anytime data is siloed in separate systems, you need to consider this technique.
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