February 02, 2016

#FeelTheBern or feel the scorched earth from the #DemCaucus after the #IowaCaucus?

Bernie Sanders, as anybody who was alive, awake and following American politics last night knows, got a tie and a moral win out of the Iowa caucuses, despite desperate mainstream media spinning, including huge chunks of spinning and framing from allegedly neutral — but not really so — data-crunching analysts, above all Nate Silver and his gang at 538.

None of this should be a surprise; I called out Silver, and his chief rival, Sam Wang, in advance of the Iowa caucus. And, in its aftermath, Wang is STILL spinning. And, he deleted the post to which I originally linked. No worries, Sam; I found the cached version. Disgusting.

So, folks, now that we've made clear that the data crunchers are actually data massagers, let's look on to New Hampshire.

The Bern is there to be felt. And, as I noted in the blog post where I called out Silver and Wang before seeing that Wang had deleted that post, Sanders has the chance to build momentum. Per that piece, he's already starting to poll better among African-Americans, doing a fair amount of gap closure. And also per that piece, Democratic superdelegates are not locked in stone. Both Silver and Wang were claiming Sanders had to "win big" because of all the delegates she already had.

And, in spite of me Tweeting that to 538, it's STILL spinning about "only whites are supporting Bernie."

Well, both of them, and others, are either ignorant, forgetful, or lying. And, frankly, I'm saying that it's lying with both of them. Also per that same link, Clinton had a lead of more than 100 superdelegates over Obama going into the 2008 Iowa caucus, and that was with her being less of a quasi-incumbent than now, and with Obama in far stronger standing coming into Iowa than Sanders was this year.

And, yet, the Clintonista spinning, and outright lying about who spent more in Iowa, continues, from ground-level Clintonists, not just the MSM.

For the reality, rather than the lie about outsider money collected so far, see that image at left, from an Open Secrets spreadsheet. For related info, including about MSM Clintonista spinning on the money issue, go here.

For the fact that Clinton spent $1.5 million more than Sanders on Iowa advertising, go here.

In other words, rank-and-file Clintonistas are spreading and exacerbating, to the point of outright lying, about both spending and fundraising in Iowa.

This is why I blogged yesterday morning about how many Clintonistas think her shit (and apparently theirs) don't stink.

Let's get back to the bigger picture of the slog Sanders faced, compared to 2008.

Bernie Sanders does not come from a state neighboring Iowa, unlike Barack Obama.

Bernie Sanders was not "anointed" and given a prime speaking spot at the 2012 Democratic National Convention, unlike Barack Obama in 2004.

Bernie Sanders was not a presumed presidential candidate at the start of 2015, unlike Barack Obama at the start of 2007.

And yes, Sanders did what he did in Iowa last night.

Don't let the Silvers and Wangs of the world try to spin this.

Remember that Nate Silver is very much MSM. Worked at the New York Times for years, then went to ESPN, which is part of the Disney/ABC empire. Not much more mainstream media than that, is there. Wang works at an Ivy League university, the academic equivalent of MSM-dom.

I've called Silver out in the past for other things, too. That started shortly after he opened his 538 luggage at ESPN, when he hired Roger Pielke Jr., a known climate change skeptic, as a contributing writer, and Pielke did just what you thought in such a position, as I detail here. Silver then claimed to be listening to his critics, which I took with several skeptical grains of salt, and do so even more, now. He's never really apologized for that piece, and never really turned his data crunching to the seriousness of climate change. I then slapped him over a writer's inflation piece that sounded very Clintonista.

In that blog post that he hauled down, before he hauled it down, Wang responded to me, and said that "win big" was by 10 percentage points. It's clear that he's spinning even bigger than Silver, if that's possible.

So, yes, remember that, as we move ahead, that the data crunchers are data spinners.

Speaking of, that might be why Millennials (which make up a large chunk of Sanders support) are growing more distrustful of news media. (That said, from what I've seen, many can still be suckers for corporate branding on social media.)

Now, back to feeling the Bern, or feeling the scorched earth.

We've got a town hall on Wednesday, then a debate on Thursday. Especially with Martin O'Malley dropping out of the race, and this, like 2008, a two-person contest from here on out, Clinton's going to go scorched earth in some way, shape or form. It will be through surrogates as much as possible, but she'll do some of it at the debate. Bernie, whether it's getting blunter about issues with her private email, or whatever, needs to be ready to fire back, and to do so beyond his 1-note trumpet, IMO.

Meanwhile, one scene from Clinton 2008 may already be surfacing again: sniping within the campaign. Shades of 2008 again, the sniping also includes Bill.

And, in non-partisan news within the Democrats, the Iowa Democratic Party looks like kind of a clusterfuck right now. Temporary precinct chairs? Precincts still not called?

Update: One caveat, beyond minority polling. Ronald Brownstein, usually a pretty insightful guy, and I'm not seeing him spinning in this, notes that Sanders pulled a lot of his votes from independents. Both the Iowa caucus and the New Hampshire primary allow crossovers. How Bernie does in straight-up Democratic primaries, so-called closed primaries?

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