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Tue Oct 30, 2012, 12:16 PM

People Who Can't Do Math Are So Mad At Nate Silver

Snip>

Scarborough is very committed to defending what feels true to him, even when it's not true. In June, he railed that The New York Times kept writing stories making fun of Romney for being rich, but it never made fun of John Kerry and his ice chalet in 2004. When confronted with the fact that he was completely wrong -- The Times covered that ice chalet plenty, it turns out -- Scarborough stuck with his analysis, saying "the general impressions of people like myself Ö does count in the perspective that active news consumers have."

Now Scarborough wants his general impression of the polls to count, too. He isn't the only Silver-basher who is unable to use numbers to explain why the forecaster is so wrong. The Daily Caller's Matt Lewis wrote a couple weeks ago that despite Silver's model showing a likely Obama victory, "my guess is that, right now, itís probably a 50-50 proposition." The National Review's Josh Jordan's critique is more related to numbers than feelings, saying Silver's polling average is different than the Real Clear Politics average, because Silver weighs polls, while RCP averages them equally. But Silver does this because some pollsters have a better track record than others, and some have a clear partisan tilt, left or right. If his weighting is wrong, we'll know next week. Update: Politico contributes its own math-free critique: "For all the confidence Silver puts in his predictions, he often gives the impression of hedging."

Perhaps the most telling critique of Silver's model comes from the people most deeply invested in it being wrong. Romney aides "laugh and roll their eyes when reporters tease them with mentions of the model," BuzzFeed's McKay Coppins reports. One adviser, though, offers an analysis more closely tied to real data, saying, in Coppins' paraphrase, "FiveThirtyEight could well give them a better chance of victory as the swing state polls tighten in the final days of the race." In other words, if the state polls change, so will Silver's model. Which is pretty much what Silver himself would say.

More at:


http://www.theatlanticwire.com/politics/2012/10/people-who-cant-do-math-are-so-mad-nate-silver/58460/

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Reply People Who Can't Do Math Are So Mad At Nate Silver (Original post)
Quixote1818 Oct 2012 OP
equalrights4all Oct 2012 #1
Graybeard Oct 2012 #4
FightForMichigan Oct 2012 #2
LovePeacock Oct 2012 #3
Agnosticsherbet Oct 2012 #5

Response to Quixote1818 (Original post)

Tue Oct 30, 2012, 12:17 PM

1. We all know...

 

We all know it's the conservatives who can't do math judging from the $6 trillion added to the debt in the past 4 years. I'm tired of these brain dead right wing morons

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Response to equalrights4all (Reply #1)

Tue Oct 30, 2012, 12:31 PM

4. Welcome to DU.

Brain dead right wing morons.** **

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Response to Quixote1818 (Original post)

Tue Oct 30, 2012, 12:23 PM

2. Conservatives and numbers...

they think the world is 6,000 years old, too.

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Response to Quixote1818 (Original post)

Tue Oct 30, 2012, 12:24 PM

3. Because we all know political pundit dumbasses are the real statisticians.

 

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Response to Quixote1818 (Original post)

Tue Oct 30, 2012, 12:31 PM

5. Nate Silver and Electoralvote.com are not identical but agree...

That Obama has maintained a consistent if sometimes small margin of victory.

The problem with polls, even Silver's, is that they are all used to push a narrative for or against a candidate. The Romney campaign is particularly bad about this, picking polls that favor the "Romentum" narrative.

America's dark side over in freeperland, if you choose to take a walk in the dark, are already taking victory dances, because they will only believe the polls that support their narrative.

We see that here, though not nearly as bad. We have a powerful contingent of the concerned (IMHO 99% of these are concerned because they see polls that do not justify an Obama victory narrative and it frightens the bejesus out of them) who see these polls as if they were small heart attacks.

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