Washington, Wisconsin, Hawaii

The last significant presidential primaries until March 4 will be held tomorrow our time: primaries in Wisconsin and Washington for both parties, plus caucuses in Hawaii for the Democrats. Discuss them at your leisure here.

Author: William Bowe

William Bowe is a Perth-based election analyst and occasional teacher of political science. His blog, The Poll Bludger, has existed in one form or another since 2004, and is one of the most heavily trafficked websites on Australian politics.

868 comments on “Washington, Wisconsin, Hawaii”

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  1. HELL ! , I’ve now scolled back.

    William , ESJ “stalked” Jen a few days ago and MANY Boggers incl. Jen said so.
    You did NOT demand an apology from ESJ for what is in non cyberpace a crime
    In fact you should have banned him

    Finally a day later ESJ made a conditional apology

    Had you banned ESJ for the ‘stalking’ , he would not have been on this blog for Davidoff to ‘criticise’ him !!! , meaning Dadidoff would still be here and ESJ not

    I would argue your non decision to ban ESJ for ‘stalking’ is the problem ,
    and request you give consideration to this different perspective argument

  2. Let’s not forget, while we’re all mesmerized by the primary race going on over there, that at this precise moment, there’s a financial market’s meltdown of near epic proportions.

    Nobody knows where this is going, but it sure as hell isn’t headed for nice sunny ending. Here’s just a taste of the distress:

    February 20 – Financial Times (Gillian Tett): “US banks have been quietly borrowing massive amounts of money from the Federal Reserve in recent weeks by using a new measure the Fed introduced two months ago to help ease the credit crunch. The use of the Fed’s Term Auction Facility…saw borrowing of nearly $50bn of one-month funds from the Fed by mid-February. US officials say the trend shows that financial authorities have become far more adept at channelling liquidity into the banking system to alleviate financial stress… However, the move has sparked unease among some analysts about the stress developing in opaque corners of the US banking system and the banks’ growing reliance on indirect forms of government support.”

    Meanwhile, the price of commodities, things we use, like food and oil and minerals are screaming through the roof.

    On the ground, in the US, there are massive amounts of money tied up in what was thought to be liquid bonds that suddenly have no buyers, and interest rates for the issuers are taking off.

    The scale of what is happening is unprecedented in living memory, there is panic in many sectors of the financial markets, and as the gunpowder fuse whips along the ground, everyone who has even a bit of exposure has their fingers in their ears.

    The big bang is coming.

    And so is the November election.

    Pass the popcorn…

  3. Ron, I must have missed Jen asking ESJ to apologise. If she had done so, I would most certainly have insisted that ESJ comply, and banned him if he hadn’t. From what I saw of the “stalking” allegations, Jen seemed to be taking the view that she was big enough to deal with it without requiring my intervention. None of this has any bearing on my decision to ban Davidoff for refusing to do as I asked.

  4. The other thing I find interesting is the comparison with JFK. The substance thing was an issue with JFK and a more relevant thing. What are the differences between the two candidates? JFK was a spoiled rich kid with a semi-mafiosi father who wanted FDR to cut a deal with Hitler. Leave off the womanising thing, which is irrelevant, except to the extent that is appears to have evidenced a born to rule selfishness.
    His primary campaign was against Adlai Stevenson who was more genuine liberal. The Kennedy’s had to win over the liberals in the party because of their father and Bobby’s association with McCarthy. JFK’s program in 1960 wasn’t that left wing. He avoided civil rights, tried to pose as more hawkish than Nixon against the Russians (going on about the “missile gap” in the debate) and so on. As to his personal qualifications, he had aq bunch of ghostwritten books a bunch of brilliant speechwriters and he was handsome and young.
    The only argument in his favour (apart from being deified by being shot) is that he does apear to have been personally moved by the vicious police attacks in Birmingham a few months before his death and began the shift that would see the Dems embrace civil rights. Before that Bobby was famously telling black activists to “stop all these sit downs and shit and get on with voter registration”.
    The point is, I think, that the character of the POTUS is less important than what they represent. I think Obama is personally more impressive than just about any US president since FDR. But then the next most impressive was Jimmy Carter and his presidency was a disaster. What is more important is the fact that – crucially, unlike JFK – his candidacy has not been a big money, media-driven exercise, but a mass mobilisation of a type that the US hasn’t seen since 1948. He doesn’t just say “I’m pretty and eloquent and rich vote for me”. He says: “I’m pretty and eloquent and you can help me change things by donating money and getting active”. The last two words are the most significant thing imho. The central problem of US politics is atomisation and apathy, disengagement etc. To the extent that JFK’s mythology has any reality it is in the way in which he did engage a generation of young Americans and set the stage for the 60s. Obama is engaging organisationally in a more profound way.

  5. William , Jen is a lady …she said she was being ‘stalked’…her blogs became increasingly ‘nervous’….other blogers so commented.

    Ladies who are stalked are scared …so asking for an Apology would be the furtherest thing for any ‘stalked’ persons mind including Jen…..

    She did not ask for an apology (she was nervous) but that does not make it
    right nor does it make it right that ESJ should have been banned for a crime
    in non cyberspace.

    In the circumstances the greater crime by 1,000% is the ‘stalker’,
    NOT a bloger who doesn’t abide by your rulings

    If the ‘stalker’ was banned , Dadidoff would have had no one to ‘criticise’ and you would have had no one (Davidoff) ignoring your ruling

    Appreciate you may not have been aware of all of the above , but NOW that you are aware the equitable circumstances warrant the ban on Davidoff being lifted in the interests of fair play William ??

  6. You’re making an awful lot of presumptions about Jen’s frame of mind, Ron. It was always open to her to email me if she wanted me to do anything. Nor do I think it beyond argument that ESJ is guilty of stalking, unless there’s something else that I’ve missed.

    NOW that you are aware the equitable circumstances warrant the ban on Davidoff being lifted in the interests of fair play William ??

    No, because as I’ve said about three times now, Davidoff was banned for wilfully refusing to do as I asked. The behaviour of ESJ has nothing to do with this.

  7. 854
    Robert Bollard

    Nice post.

    Did you read Mega in the Woz?

    This guy is truly impressive the way he’s got the younger Americans (at first) motivated enough to pay attention and vote. Clinton, although a worthy and experienced polly (as she never tireds of telling them) could not rouse that passion, nor that donation machine, and just has gradually lost her power.

    As for JFK, he looked good, as you say, but Obama is not compromised by his family connections and sure isn’t beholden to ‘dark forces’ like the Kennedy’s were. Nor does he have ‘dynastic’ baggage like his opponent. So far, he’s been a phenomena, and with a lot of style.

  8. To be honest KR my main concern is not that they “pay attention and vote” but they discover a capacity for activity that goes beyond placing an x next to someone’s name. But that’s a whole different argument.

  9. Well I really do appreciate you giving me a hearing William.
    1/ Its fair of you to argue I’m making my presumptions about Jen’s frame of mind
    If my assumtions were right , then at the time she was never going
    to ask you to get herself an apology.
    BUT having had experience of the subject my desciption of her is the ‘norm’

    2/ The person has ‘baited’ numerous blogers & many have responded strongly but you have not demanded an apology of those blogers

    Davidoff , this is his FIRST offence & he could have been given
    (a) 24 hours to apologise otherwise be banned ahter than demanding an apology from an obviously emotionally charged bloger on the spot
    (b) been given a FIRM caution with the 2nd offence automatically being a ban

    May I suggest after reconsideration , you reluctantly lift the ban but
    apply either (a) or (b).
    That way you are the very reasonable one and allow blogers to dig their own grave

  10. Thx William for your consideration

    I wish to put some comments to Davidoff , some of my comments to Davidoff will be not fully agreeing with your decision which I’ve been open & honest in saying here BUT also suggesting to Davidoff that amends should & need to be made.

    You cann’t give out address’s of course so can I send my email to
    Davidoff via/to you William and would you onforward it to Davidoff ?

  11. Dear Mr Bowe, following this…
    davidoff Says:
    February 24th, 2008 at 6:19 pm
    Talking of class acts and appologies – I’m assuming your all familiar with the apology earlier today from Hillary on behalf of Bill’s racial innuendoes back during the South Carolina context:

    “If anyone was offended by anything that was said, whether it was meant or not, or misinterpreted or not, then obviously, I regret that,”

    Clearly, both ESJ and our mate John Howard could take a leaf out of Hillary’s campaign as a lesson in the art of the delivery of a deniable apology for something that may or may-not of happened, intended or otherwise, impacting an audience that may or may not have been listening.

    William Bowe Says:
    February 24th, 2008 at 6:25 pm
    Thank you making that well-timed obnoxious comment, ESJ. A welcome opportunity for me to demonstate my even-handedness by slapping you down as well. In particular, it won’t do for you to congratulate yourself for having apologised while simultaneously stoking up the argument again.

    davidoff Says:
    February 24th, 2008 at 6:34 pm
    ESJ said …

    Tell me davidoff what do I have to apologise for?

    This is difficult, because the more I think about the subject the more I end up in the pro-life pro-choice debate. While I haven’t reached a definitive conclusion – for the moment I’m siding with the pro-choice camp. I guess the important point here at this moment is that if I project forward my current line of thinking it basically is kind of a good outcome for you – in that you don’t need to apologise, but is your mother ready to take the consequence that this line of thought leads to – and that’s pushing back to the pro life camp – because at the end of the day – I don’t really want to give your mother a hard time and I figure individual who stuff up should be accountable for their actions – but that just takes me back to the same debate – was it Eddi, was it Eddi’s mother?

    William Bowe Says:
    February 24th, 2008 at 6:53 pm
    ESJ, your right to plead hurt feelings is not all it might be. Besides, it’s too late to make any difference now. And please don’t bark orders at me, whatever the circumstances.

    Edward StJohn Says:
    February 24th, 2008 at 7:16 pm

    I am happy to mix it on this blog with others and give and receive but when things get down to the level of gratuitously offensive a long the lines of davidoff’s comment then its a different ball game.

    That comment was just a whole new level of offensive and your actions were unfair in leaving it on.

    No intention of barking orders and its your blog but this level is inconsistent with my continued participation. If you choose to run a mutual masturb.ation session for 2 or 3 people on this blog thats your business.

    I withdraw.

    William Bowe Says:
    February 24th, 2008 at 9:30 pm
    Above all else, Davidoff has been banned for wilfully ignoring my wishes. This site simply can’t work if I allow people to do that.

    Bill, I do feel that you have been led down the garden path here somewhat & over reacted; just a tad; ESJ is quite capable of looking after himself; “Zino’ is clearly not as gifted with humor/irony as he/she is with passion, interest and ability with interpretation & analysis.

    As others have pointed out, and I do not prosecute their case for one minute, but ESJ’s prosletising on occasion encourages such ‘indiscreminate’ responses .
    I personally feel this is a good thing if handled as adults, with a sense of humour and tolerance. It’s what makes this blog, yourself and ‘all’ its contributors a stand out item.

    A healthy & long overdue information & brain food for OZ. It is not about right or wrong but what is…now…sure ego etc interrupts but ‘we’ all deal with that…

    In short, I think your banning of Davidoff is over the top; yes I understand its your blog Mr Bowe but for god’s sake you tolerate towel head lovers & Adam beaters such as I; & Diogenes quotes Churchill to tolerate me!!! FFS.

    Being somewhat to the left of Mao and seriously ILL as KR would have it, I would suggest that you let back ‘Davidoff’ and I would welcome the return of Dr Carr & of course ESJ.

    When things settle down I am happy to host the NQ Pollbludgers annual picnic; BUT I get to choose the wine; sorry ESJ.

    Must go more towel head sites to find.

  12. Codger, if I ask a commenter to do something, there are only two options available to them: a) do as I ask, b) piss off somewhere else. Failing to do one or the other is the very height of rudeness, and anyone who does so will be immediately banned regardless of the circumstances. That said, being a soft touch, I will usually give them a second chance if they are big enough to express contrition after the event.

  13. Mr. Bowe, the logic of your piss off option is simply overwhelming; totemic…etc

    a) do as I ask, b) piss off somewhere else. Failing to do one or the other is the very height of rudeness, and anyone who does so will be immediately banned regardless of the circumstances.

    You diminish and do an injustice to the word ‘height’ & by default ‘rudeness’…and more to the point ‘who do you think your kidding’

    But I guess the sandwhich boards will march onnnnnnnnnn….but never being rude, gosh just imagine the cosequences…

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