November 04, 2004

The Red, the Blue, and the Purple

Purple America---where "red" and "blue" coexist on the same street, occupy the same house---is going to be the key for both parties going into 2006 and 2008. I have a hunch that the key to the victory was an incredibly detailed, precinct by precinct mapping of the entire country, and building the whole campaign around those central truths. The Republicans had their eye on the electoral ball in a way that the Democrats never seemed to. We're all aware how much computer technology influenced this campaign in terms of the internet, but I do not think we are really appreciating the influence of Geographic Information Software (GIS), and its ability to graphically represent a vast quantity of data. My hunch is that Rove and his people made extensive use of GIS software in placing ads, and most importantly in the get out the vote. Meanwhile, the Democrats spent millions of dollars hosting a string of Jon Bon Jovi/John Cougar Mellencamp concerts.

I haven't been able to find any stories about the GOP using GIS--I don't know for a fact that they were, but the precision with which their end game was run makes me think they were.

The Commissar has some more on "Purple Amerika" along with the link to some nifty interactive maps.

But the long and the short of it, for the Republicans in 2008, is Wisconisn. This time, we got Iowa. Nail down Wisconsin, and they'll be impregnable.

For the Democrats: if they are smart, they'll start taking a look at outgoing Virginia Governor Mark Warner.

UPDATE: If the Democrats are going to get back in things they need to shed their celebrity culture mongering. I know I smiled thinking about Mikey Moore when I cast my ballot. Here's the Boston Herald:

Think there was some celebrity backlash??? Payne said Kerry ``used all the available means he could'' to get people on board with his vision. As in staahs like Ben Affleck and Matt Damon, Brad Pitt and Jennifer Aniston, Barbra Streisand, Sheryl Crowe, Leonardo DiCaprio, Kirsten Dunst, Uma Thurman, Jon Bon Jovi, blah, blah, blah. . . . But the prof believes someone like ``Mr. Fahrenheit 9/11'' Michael Moore, who spewed anti-Bush venom at every turn, did more damage to Kerry's campaign than Karl Rove ever hoped! ``Someone like Moore tried to galvanize people against Bush, but in fact energized the evangelicals,'' he said. Even P. Diddy, who started up Citizens Change, the group behind the ever-so-creative ``Vote or Die'' campaign, had second thoughts about his slagging of the Commander-in-Chief. Apparently, P. realized, albeit a little late in the game, that yelling to the masses to get Dubya's ``ass out of office'' wasn't, as his incarcerated pal Martha Stewart would say, a good thing. ``I was a little reckless with my comments, to be honest,'' Diddy told MTV News on Election Day. ``I learned a lot in this process. I learned that my power could be used better. Instead of attacking Bush, it would be better to light a flame under young Americans and let them make the decisions.'' At least Puffy voted, unlike his ``Vote or Die'' poster girl Paris Hilton who skipped her civic duty on Tuesday.

Ya think?

UPDATE: Hold the mayo has some more thoughts on the color purple.

Posted by Steve at November 4, 2004 08:39 PM | TrackBack

Talk sense to a fool and he calls you foolish. Euripides (484 BC - 406 BC), The Bacchae, circa 407 B.C.

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