Sunday, October 31, 2010

Election 2.0

You read it here first how the Buffalo Grove poobahs are lining up to throw beleaguered village trustee Lisa Stone under the proverbial bus.
Mid-Term Ejections
The latest defenestrator is Lake County Commissioner David Stolman, who sent a why's-everyone-looking-at-me? letter to the papers:
During the April 2009 municipal election, I was appointed as honorary chairman of Lisa Stone's campaign for Buffalo Grove village trustee. There were many qualified candidates wanting to serve Buffalo Grove in the trustee capacity. (I endorsed Bev Sussman, Jeff Braiman, and Joanne Johnson as well.) Lisa won the election. This offered her a golden opportunity to become an effective trustee. At that time, I suggested that she put the issues of the hard fought campaign behind her and serve Buffalo Grove with integrity.
Stone blew it
Unlike Buffalo Grove's municipal board, Stolman still has a problem after Stone is gone. Stolman recruited Stone in 2009 and helped her get elected. He is now backpedalling furiously, hoping the voters will forget and/or forgive this sort of mind-boggling lapse in judgement.

Knowing that voters are vindictive and will carry a grudge, your LakeCountyEye thinks that David Stolman and Lisa Stone will forever joined at the hip in voters minds for years to come. To prove the point, your LakeCountyEye has commissioned a We Ask America poll. Operatives are asked to participate, no prior experience is necessary:

Poll Question:
David Stolman & Lisa Stone
are Most Like ...

Please Choose One:

Tweedledum & Tweedledee
Pickles & Relish
The Captain & Tennille
The Thrill of Victory & The Agony of Defeat
Dazed & Confused
Barnum & Bailey
The Alien & Sedition Act
Abbott & Costello
Stoli & Sprite
Dr Frankenstein & Dr Frankenstein's Monster

We Ask America wishes to remind Operatives that this is a scientific poll and bears no similarity to an Internet Top Ten List whatsoever. It is not necessary to submit your response. Move along please, and thank you for participating.

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Mid-Term Ejections

Buffalo Grove straddles both Lake and Cook counties, which may explain why voters there can't make up their minds about who should represent them at city hall. After voting Lisa Stone to a village trustee post in a 2009 landslide, they are now on the cusp of voting her out on a ballot recall.

Your LakeCountyEye will not be providing a backgrounder to this particular municipal brouhaha -- operatives unfamiliar are recommended to Google "LISA STONE" & "BUFFALO GROVE" & "DRAMA QUEEN".

Suffice to say with no friends left in high places, it looks like Stone is on her way to the record books this Tuesday. In fact it seems that high-profile politicians in low-key Buffalo Grove have been lining up to throw Stone under the bus. No one less than Buffalo Grove Mayor Elliott Hartstein placed an open letter in the papers urging voters to dump Stone like a sack of soggy tacos:
I personally would like to thank the individual community members who initiated and worked on the recall, and the over 2,000 citizens who signed the petitions to give the entire community the opportunity to cast their votes on this important referendum. Please vote "yes" for the recall of Lisa Stone and urge your friends and neighbors to join you. This is truly a serious matter that affects the well being of our community.
Guest Essay: Hartstein's open letter to citizens of Buffalo Grove
It's one thing to be thrown under the bus. When your sitting Mayor does it, you've just been thrown under the Dave Matthews Bus:
Dave Matthews Sued For Dumping On Chicago
Claim band bus discharged human waste into river, onto tourists
the smoking gun
The open letter closes with a disclaimer:
Elliott Hartstein is the Buffalo Grove village president. He stresses that these are his personal views as a citizen and are not official views of the village or in his capacity as an elected official.
According to the LakeCountyEye tally-sheet that goes down as one YES vote from Citizen Hartstein and one NO vote from Mayor Hartstein. The Lisa Stone recall is an even 50/50 split -- this one is too close to call!

Friday, October 29, 2010

Signs of the Apocalypse

October 31 fast approaches, and Lake County is terrified out of its collective wits by those legions of pintsized apparitions clamoring for attention. Uh huh, it's yardsign season. Every year prior to election day it seems that Lake County is inundated with more than its share of political yardsigns. Coincidence? Your LakeCountyEye thinks not.

Sticklers for detail will note it is not yardsign season. In fact, it is never yardsign season. It is yardsign stealing season.

With yardsigns sprouting like toadstools at all the major intersections and highways, visibility is expected to be reduced to zero. Your LakeCountyEye urges operatives pick up a few, while on the way home; or a few dozen. Plus, invest in an industrial office shredder and you too can have the best insulated attic on your block. Safety tip for the DIYer: always remove the metal legs first! Also don't throw those legs away. They cost campaigns a buck a pop, and are reusable.

When the weather turns cold the soil freezes, and getting those reusable metal legs into the frozen ground can be a challenge. Your LakeCountyEye recommends an 18V cordless drill, with a 3/16 inch tungsten bit. Charge up that badboy overnight and you will be illegally planting more signs than Burma-Shave did on a Third of July.

Eagle-eyed operatives know there are actually two kinds of political yardsigns. Those you see on the highways and public right-of-ways, and those you see in, well, people's yards. If a campaign has all of its yardsigns planted on public property that means they don't have much of a field operation going. As it goes in local politics, the side with the ground game usually wins.

Back in the day when your LakeCountyEye would tie an onion to the belt which was the style at the time, yardsigns were the size of a penny postcard. But politics is all about outdoing the opposition, and they've been getting bigger every election. Lake County yardsigns can now be plainly read on the Google maps, and it is projected that by the year 2012, they will be visible from outer space and perhaps even beyond.

One bright note, you will only have to put up with these annoyances until November 3. By your LakeCountyEye's reckoning, the last 2010 yardsign will blow down November 3, 2011. A final reminder to Ops: the only sign that ever won an election for a campaign was the dollar sign.

$igning off!

Creepy Tribune Cartoonist Fails to See the Humor

par·o·dy /pærədi/ [par-uh-dee]
noun: Any humorous, satirical, or burlesque imitation, as of a person, event, etc.

Daily Show host Jon Stewart is staging a political rally this weekend in Washington DC ...
Rally to Restore Sanity
The whole thing is an obvious goof to mock Glenn Beck's Restoring Honor Rally held in DC last August.

Beck promoted his rally as non-political event. Stewart, in deadpan Stewart fashion, follows suit and is promoting his rally as non-political.

But you have to get up pretty early in the morning to fool the Chicago Tribune's Creepy Cartoonist ...

Chicago Tribune, 10/28/2010
Erm, either the Creepy Cartoonist did not get the joke or he was asked to explain the joke to the Trib's readers. Halloween and the election are only 2 days apart this year. Your LakeCountyEye suspects that the Creepy Tribune Cartoonist's bandwidth is, for the time being, maxxed out.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Political Rig-ma-poll

Pollsters in general are versatile. Polls are conducted to obtain information. Sometimes polls are used to spread disinformation, as with push-polls. However when it was reported on this blog that polls can be used to generate campaign dollars ...
Q the Eye/10.25.10
the LakeCountyEyePhone was ringing off the hook with calls from operatives eager to learn how to become pollsters. (For a while there, your LakeCountyEye thought someone's robo-dialer had run amok.)

The sort of poll in question is a simple grift, and was used effectively to resuscitate moribund campaigns in the Congressional Eighth and Tenth. Just publish a fake poll showing your guy ahead, or even better, in a dead heat. And wait for those donations to come flooding in.

FiveThirtyEight Forecasts Illinois 10th District

FiveThirtyEight Forecasts Illinois 8th District
Easier said than done? Au contraire, it's a piece of cake, and eating it too. The quick'n'dirty how-to is to be found over at the IllinoisReason blog ...
IL-10: New info calls recent We Ask America outlier poll into question
If you're an operative who doesn't like to read blogs, and who blames you, here is the procedure: max out the Amex card for the $10-15,000 needed to commission your very own poll. End of story.

Your LakeCountyEye recommends:
We Ask America/Illinois Manufacturers' Association
Act now before it's too late. The right poll can pole-vault a campaign all the way to the bank!

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

The Last Walsh

The FotoMat just called and the pictures are in. Your LakeCountyEye has the exclusive & up-to-date pics from last week's Eighth Congressional District debate. The compendium of stolen, hot-linked and photoshopped images are reproduced here:

A WLS-TV long-shot captured the Grayslake HS debate stage. Participating in the debate were Joe Walsh (l), Melissa Bean (c) and Bill Scheurer (r) ...

8th District candidates face off in forum

The NorthWest Herald posted a medium shot of Walsh and Bean ...

A testy confrontation at congressional forum

Your LakeCountyEye smuggled in a Polaroid and managed to snap a few lo-rez images in the badly lit auditorium. This one looks like Scheurer, Walsh and Bean ...

Some of these color Polaroid slides are a little grainy. Your LakeCountyEye believes this a close-up of Joe Walsh signalling the audience ...

This will be the last Joe Walsh post on this blog. Operatives have been instructed to invoke their 2nd Amendment Rights and shoot your LakeCountyEye in the event that any more appear.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Who's On First?

With November just around the corner, operatives don't need to be reminded that means one thing and one thing only: World Series. So to honor the winter fall classic, your LakeCountyEye will attempt to break Joe DiMaggio's record of 56 consecutive Joe Walsh stories. The play-by-play ...

To lead off, the NorthWest Herald revealed that Joe Walsh balked at signing a League of Women Voters media waiver, prior to his debate last week ...
Republican Congressional candidate Joe Walsh almost didn't make it to his long-awaited opportunity to take on Democratic incumbent Melissa Bean in public. Not because he was tardy to Wednesday’s forum at Grayslake Central High School, but because he would not sign off on the long-established taping rule set down by the League of Women Voters of Lake County, which moderated the event. The rule, No. 12 of 13 on the one-page contract, forbid candidates, campaigns and supporters from recording the event or using it in advertising.
Politicking before debate
Was Walsh's truculence a sign that a plant was waiting in the audience -- one who would demand a recitation the Pledge of Allegiance? Not according to Walsh, who claimed no prior knowledge. Details were posted on this blog ...
It's unclear why Walsh would not want to sign a media agreement, unless he knew something was afoot. Nonetheless, Walsh manages to pull off a double-play -- both asserting his right to rebroadcast the event, plus packing the stands with an agitator to create some Internet buzz. The result -- Viola -- Joe Walsh slides in for a perfectly executed squeeze play ...

Voters Demand Loyalty To America
& Pledge of Allegiance in Illinois!

Holy Cow!

Any rebroadcast, retransmission, or account of this game, without the express written consent of Major League Baseball, is prohibited.

Monday, October 25, 2010

Q the Eye/10.25.10

Dear LakeCountyEye,

Help! There is an election soon, I'm down in the polls. I thought elections were about money, manpower, message. My message seems to be: Where's the money? Where's the manpower?

Countdown to Victory

Dear Down for the Count,

You're not getting the support you nodoubt befittingly deserve because of a widespread perception: you're a loser. Compared to your prospects, volunteers/donors think the Titanic has a better chance at outrunning the iceberg. Luckily in politics perception is 99% of everything. Operatives current with this blog know what needs to be done:
The Numbers Racket
Commission a legitimate-looking poll that purports to show you neck-and-neck with your opponent. Then get some downstate free-shopper weekly to publish your poll. (Quincy, IL is in Illinois, isn't it?) Then shop the story around to the real media. Local MSM reporters can be counted on to be gullible & indolent enough to swallow your fake poll verbatim, and thank you for the scoop.

Reading between the lines of the Daily Herald, that's exactly what one local candidate did ...
But since then, "donations have been pouring in like you wouldn't believe," [Nick] Provenzano said. "It was like the spigot turned on." He points to a We Ask America poll released Sept. 30 showing Walsh and Bean tied at 41 percent apiece as a catalyst, saying it forced people to pay more attention.
8th Congressional Dist. candidate Walsh turns to TV
And that candidate is now dining on caviar and champagne, while only a few weeks ago he was reduced to a diet of beans and cheap wines.

Do the same and your LakeCountyEye guarantees election night will be all champagne wishes and caviar dreams.

If you are an elected official, or a previously elected official, or just a private citizen under indictment, send your political questions to Q the Eye c/o ...

Saturday, October 23, 2010


You read it first on this blog about how the Tea Party Patriots took the League of Women Voters to school, and showed them how to recite their Pledge of Allegiance.
Joe Walsh's Gang of Thugs -- in Grayslake?
And what better place to teach the socialist League some manners, than at a League of Women Voters candidate forum? The Daily Herald has the 'nuff-said ...
Illinois' top League of Women Voters official said "phony patriotism" is driving criticism over a moderator's reaction when she was asked if the Pledge of Allegiance would be recited before an 8th Congressional District debate this week.
LWV official: Pledge of Allegiance demand 'phony patriotism'
Of course spontaneous recitations of the Pledge in a crowded auditorium do not happen, well, spontaneously. As reported in this blog ...
The Alleged Allegiance
the art of faking an impromptu Pledge of Allegiance takes quite a bit of planning and coordination. Sources have confirmed that decision-makers inside the Eighth Congressional District campaign of Joe Walsh had decided to treat everyone to some political theater that night. However a recitation of the Pledge of Allegiance was not their first choice. In fact the Pledge was was agreed on only after ten other oaths, slogans, jingles, invocations under consideration were rejected.

Ten Rejected Alternatives to the Pledge of Allegiance
  1. The National Anthem

  2. Yes We Can

  3. The Lord's Prayer

  4. Louie Louie

  5. Tastes Great!

  6. Less Filling!

  7. Ten Hail Marys

  8. La Marseillaise (the cool way they do it in Casablanca)

  9. I Did It My Way

  10. Joe Walsh: Come on Down!

Operatives are now required to stand and say the Pledge of Allegiance:
Juro fidelidad a la bandera
de los Estados Unidos de América,
y a la república que representa
una nación bajo Dios,
indivisible cón libertad
y justicía para todós.

Friday, October 22, 2010

The Alleged Allegiance

Operatives ought to be familiar with that old joke -- where you go to a fight, but a hockey game breaks out. Well, in the Eighth Congressional District you go to a debate and a Pledge of Allegiance breaks out:
The crowd breaks into an impromptu Pledge of Allegiance at the beginning of the candidates forum between 8th Congressional District candidates Joe Walsh, Melissa Bean and Bill Scheurer at Grayslake Central High School.
Daily Herald
Pledge of Allegiance breaks out in debate audience
It may be an occupational hazard, but for your LakeCountyEye teh LOLz come few and far between. So it was a welcome sight that your LakeCountyEye's favorite source of deadpan humor, the Daily Herald, failed this morning to disappoint: LOL, that Pledge of Allegiance was about as impromptu as a fight breaking out in a WWE wrestling match. Your LakeCountyEye knows this display was pre-cooked in advance because there is a protocol to follow when requested to recite the Pledge of Allegiance (or any loyalty oath for that matter): stand up straight, extend your right arm, and place your hand firmly over your wallet. Because someone is aiming to pick your pocket.

The significant LOL aspect of this latest bizarre 8th C/D story is the Little-Old-Lady aspect. Hijacking a League-of-Women-Voters Forum may play well with the base, but it frightens the Little-Old-Ladies. Like resident Little-Old-Lady and esteemed colleague, Mr Redtail:
Joe Walsh's Gang of Thugs -- in Grayslake?
Is a Little-Old-Lady likely to vote for a loose cannon who may just shut down the Federal Government, cutting-off social security and medicare payments? Your LakeCountyEye doesn't think so. And guess who votes in these off-year elections? LOL

The patron saint of your LakeCountyEye is Richard Nixon, and his primary dictum still holds: In the primary, campaign to the base. In the general election, campaign to the center. Well, Joe Walsh is not only still campaigning to his base, he is pandering to it. Unless the Walsh campaign is a complete freak-show operation, your LakeCountyEye divines that they have decided to write-off 2010 as a learning experience. And ride the 2010 primary nonstop all the way into 2012. And beyond.


Thursday, October 21, 2010

Joe Walsh's Gang of Thugs -- in Grayslake?

I don't know who put on a more disturbing display in Grayslake -- Joe "Call me Crazy" Walsh in his Congressional debate at Grayslake High School or his horde of robotic followers who all got the same memo to urging them disrupt the proceedings.

The League of Women Voters' moderator gamely laid out the rules of the evening after the participants were introduced -- no yelling or clapping for candidates, no partisan displays. She specified that the rules were intended to allow the most possible time for the candidates to air their views and to set a good example for the Grayslake High students who had set up the debate and were running portions of it.

No sooner had she finished explaining these rules than a Walsh supporter yelled out, "What about the Pledge of Allegiance?" As she was explaining that a recitation of the pledge was not part of the agenda, the Walsh supporters rose en masse and began reciting it. All the while, Walsh was grinning like the cat who ate the canary. "Who me direct these people? (C'mon, my people, give it to them!)"

Since when did the Pledge of Allegiance become a weapon? Great example for the kids, guys.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Vote Early, Vote Often, Repeat

The Clerk faxed your LakeCountyEye a friendly reminder that the November election -- as well as November -- is a scant two weeks away. And there are now more ways to vote than ever before, so there is no excuse not to. Vote, that is.

Besides waiting until Tuesday November 2 to vote -- old school -- operatives now can vote by mail and they can vote early, or in-person absentee. There is no doubt a voting site near you at this very moment, polls are open at village halls, township offices, OTB parlors, not to mention video-poker machines throughout Lake County. So what are you waiting for?

Admittedly your LakeCountyEye admonishing the operatives to get out and vote is like Glenn Beck admonishing his viewers to not tax their brains. It goes without saying that operatives will be voting early. And often. You see that's what operatives do in Illinois, they vote early and -- ha ha -- they vote often.

In fact your LakeCountyEye had been informed by knowledgeable sources in Springfield that our legislators had grown so tired of hearing that "vote early vote often" joke that they decided to make early voting the law of the land. And hopefully then their smart aleck constituents would think up some better jokes.

Well your LakeCountyEye has never been known to shrink from a challenge. Here are 10 alternatives to the old & tired admonishment to "vote early and vote often".

10 Ways to Vote Early in Lake County
  1. Vote Surly and Vote Often
    Target Voters: The Angry Electorate

  2. Vote Eerily and Vote Often
    Valid Only October 31

  3. Vote Squirrely and Vote Often
    Cast your ballot for one of the nuts.

  4. Vote Yearly and Vote Often
    Target: Low Information Voters

  5. Vote Queerily and Vote Often
    Cast a ballot for you know who.

  6. Vote Austerely and Vote Often
    Illinois is Now 100% Poll-Tax Free!

  7. Vote Cavalierly and Vote Often
    Target Voters: Chevy Owners

  8. Vote Urlacher and Vote Often
    Bears Repeating.

  9. Vote ORLY and Vote Often

  10. Vote Naked and Vote Often

    Vote Naked Illinois

Be sure to punch in with your LakeCountyEye, now appearing at an early polling location near you. Mon-Fri 9am-5pm. Sat-Sun 10am-2pm.

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Sucker Bet

The anarcho-libertarians at the McHenryCountyBlog are fuming over right-leaning Daily Herald's endorsement of Melissa Bean. The blog, an industry leader in cognitive dissonance, is claiming an uncredited role in a recent Herald story ...
The resurrection of Joe Walsh's campaign
which is all about the resurrection of Eight Congressional District candidate Joe Walsh's dead-as-a-dead-parrot campaign from the dead.

According to the McHenryCountyBlog, Herald reporter Kimberly Pohl was
tasked to try to explain why Walsh is still in the race. It's as if she had read my article explaining the New York Times blogger Nate Silver having lowered Bean's odds of winning from 97.8% to 80.6%. This comes over two weeks after a very large (1,381–the largest I have ever seen in a congressional race–We Ask America telephone poll showed a 41% to 41% tie
Daily Herald Tries to Cover Rear End on Joe Walsh
... a virtual dead-heat between Walsh and Bean. The We Ask America poll in question surprised your LakeCountyEye, who is marking the point spread 55/45 in Bean's favor.

Readers of this blog will recall that We Ask America at a minimum pretends to be a real polling organization ...
The Numbers Racket
They have a website. And they publish poll results. Some published numbers from their recent Tenth Congressional District poll ...

We’re baaack
Eagle-eyed operatives may wonder how one goes about pulling off a neat trick like polling 132.38% of Democrats in the 10th C/D. No doubt something to do with how compound interest is amortized over the lifetime of the loan poll. Alas, your LakeCountyEye is not a mathematician (nor a payday loan provider). However Nate Silver (aforementioned by the McHenryCountyBlog) is ...
many of the polls are either partisan-affiliated, or were "robopolls" that used automated scripts rather than live interviewers, or both. (The former are highlighted in red in the table; the latter are given the designation "I.V.R.," for interactive voice response). Polls with an explicit partisan affiliation are on average about 6 points friendlier to their candidate than those conducted by independent groups. Robopolls have not shown any persistent bias in the past — but this year, they have been 2 to 4 points more favorable to Republicans than traditional surveys, and the differences have tended to be larger in polls of House races as opposed to conducted in Senate or gubernatorial campaigns. So this is a group of polls that you'd expect to be pretty Republican-friendly.
Canaries in the Coal Mine? Or Cuckoo Polls?
The We Ask America poll showing Bean and Walsh in a dead-heat, was both a robopoll and partisan commissioned. Adjusting Silver's numbers into the equation, your LakeCountyEye marks the point spread at about ... 55/45 in Bean's favor. Note to operatives: when in McHenry County do not pass up an opportunity to cover that bet against Melissa Bean. Kerching!

Friday, October 15, 2010

God and Man at Jail

Barack Obama proved the adage that we would see a Muslim elected President before we would ever see an atheist in the White House. If politics is show business for ugly people then religion might be show business for buggy people. Sure, our Founders soundly rejected the idea that an aristocracy rules over us by divine right. But ever since that first backwoods justice-of-the-peace discovered he could get elected to higher office by invoking the man upstairs, an uneasy truce has reigned between America's leaders and its clergy.

Of course as America goes, so goes Lake County. The most recent incarnation was Sheriff Mark Curran's open-mike ramble at last summer's Tea Party Jamboree in Libertyville. As reported in this blog ...
Q the Eye/07.06.10
the Sheriff could be observed invoking his own divine mandate. The full video, in its glory, has finally shown up on the YouTubes ...

Where EllenoftheTenth took notice ...
Tea For Two, Two Mark Currans That Is
The spectacle of a metropolitan County Sheriff clad in the magic underwear while proactively blurring the distinction between divine and governmental authority is enough to instill the fear of God in even the most sinful of cynics.

It's a truism that there are no atheists in the FoxNews, and wearing God on one's sleeve (or other garments as the case may be) is smart re-election politics. Of course a strategy of spooking the voters runs the risk of backfiring -- not everyone buys the holier-than-thou song-and-dance. The opposition may just have a homemade video ready to plop on the YouTubes. And not a minute too soon ...

... for the 2014 election.

Note to operatives: you can inflict some damage on the opposition by shopping around that embarrassing video footage to the reporters & the bloggers. However it's a good idea not to wait three weeks before the election to commence shopping. It takes your typical blogger or reporter three weeks just to get out of bed.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

The Grateful Debate

There is simply no debating it, Lake County is in the grip of debate fever. Every operative knows it's that time of the year again, just weeks before an election. A time when desperate office seekers dream about throwing that hail-mary-pass against their opponent in a debate, turning the agony of defeat into the jaws of victory. While their opponents, recumbent in their incumbency, are all like: sure let's debate, my people and your people can work out the details some time after the election.

Note to Ops making odds: candidate poll numbers are inversely proportional to who shows up to debate and who does not. Given this sort of dyspeptic electoral dialectic, your LakeCountyEye is perennially surprised that political debates ever get held at all. And yet debate they will. With upcoming debates throughout the area too numerous to mention, and your LakeCountyEye too lazy to enumerate, here instead are 10 do's and don't's every political debater needs to know.

Debating in Lake County: 10 Tips, Tricks & Pitfalls

  1. Do not duck a question by invoking your 5th Amendment privilege.

  2. It never hurts to open with a lighthearted anecdote: I just drove in on the Rte 53 Extension and boy are my arms tired!

  3. Remember to phrase your response in the form of a question.

  4. The League of Women Voters is not the political arm of the Justice League of America.

  5. Do not use your Ask-the-Audience lifeline.

  6. Never say: I do not recall.
    Note: Buffalo Grove trustee candidate debate only.

  7. Deploy a goon in the parking lot to steal your opponent's car magnets.

  8. Never greet your opponent by saying "May I call you Willard?" Unless your opponent is named Willard.

  9. Commit this phrase to memory:
    I will dedicate my reign to pursuing the goal of world peace.

  10. Where are your manners? Tip the debate moderator.

Watch for your LakeCountyEye in your next scheduled debate, asking the vital questions: "Can every candidate who will pledge tonight to stop beating their domestic partner, show us all a fist pump?"

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

The Numbers Racket

Ladies, gentlemen and operatives, we suddenly have a white-knuckle dragger of a horserace in the 8th Congressional District. Only a week ago the Bean v Walsh v Scheurer mélee à trois was essentially over. Roll up those yardsigns, it will be Melissa Bean in a cakewalk. As reported on this blog,
Crazy Eighth
Nate Silver was spotting Joe Walsh an infinitesimal 2.2% chance at emerging victorious in the 8th CD.

Well a new poll, just released by We Ask America, has the race in the eighth now closer than mac'n'cheese.
Illinois: 8th Cong. Dist. Poll Report
How close? This close:
Your eyes do not deceive you, the contest between Melissa Bean and Joe Walsh is tighter than the Dave Matthews Band on New Year's Eve.

Your LakeCountyEye can't help but wonder what deus ex machina could possibly explain this remarkable and sudden turnaround. What are the chances that the voters in the Eighth are so evenly split that just one vote will make the difference between the thrill of victory and the agony of defeat?

Your LakeCountyEye knows how easy it is to manipulate poll results, particularly when the poll is based on responses to robo-call recordings. Especially when the equipment is capable of dropping its connections until it gets the results it wants. This is the gist of a Bill Foster complaint relayed to the Daily Herald, regarding a March 2010 robo-poll in the 14th Congressional District:
"We Ask America admits to technical errors in their polling technology, which completely compromises the accuracy of their polling," said Matt Snodgrass, political director of Foster's campaign. "Why should we trust the data from an organization that neither identifies themselves nor uses functional polling technology?"
Firm behind Foster health care phone poll won't apologize
Hawk-eyed operatives will observe that this pollster -- We Ask America -- is the same outfit responsible for the new Eighth CD poll.

Your LakeCountyEye already mentioned it is easy to game poll results. Pollsters, don't wait another minute -- your LakeCountyEye has a team of trained operatives working round-the-clock waiting to take your call!

Monday, October 4, 2010

Q the Eye/10.04.10

Dear LakeCountyEye,

My opponent is saying mean things about me on Facebook. Now he has more friends than I do, and I'm just sure he's going to clobber me on the next Facebook poll. This is so unfair -- daddy promised that I could be Congressman!

In the Doldrums
Dear Nabob,

In an effort to fathom this latest Internet sensation, your LakeCountyEye has just dropped 10 bucks on that new Facebook movie. The film, starring a youthful-looking Richard Dreyfuss as Facebook impresario Mort Zuckerman, unfortunately left your LakeCountyEye even more befuddled than usual. Does anyone know what's this Facebook phenomenology supposed to be anyways?

But to answer your question, don't make the mistake that one politician made when he caught his opponent talkin' smack about him on his Facebook. He took it to the Daily Herald,
Dold campaign critical of Seals' Facebook comment
... quite aggrieved over how he did none of the things his opponent said.

Of course, even the fusspot Daily Herald can be alerted to a good headline-making story every now and then. And while trash-talk on Facebook do not headlines make, tax fraud and voter fraud do. Even if technically you have not committed any frauds, your undecided voters -- those who typically skim past the news stories to get to Garfield and the new Walgreens coupons -- will think you have. Given the average age of a newspaper subscriber, is there any wonder why they now call it old-media?

Long story short, be careful what you wish for when going after that earned media. Your LakeCountyEye recommends polling your Facebook friends if they think your opponent looks like Odie:
... then move along.

If you are an elected official, or a previously elected official, or just a private citizen under indictment, send your political questions to Q the Eye c/o ...