That was a tweet by David Frum, former Bush speechwriter, yesterday. Perhaps he has a point there. Maybe this election shows us there's something to this looking at the evidence, all the evidence (including the bits you don't like), and analyzing it in a rational way as opposed to thinking with your gut and cherry picking the bits of data that support what you'd really really like to be true.
Frum also tweeted this:
Dick Morris is just a huckster. But George Will & Michael Barone getting map so badly wrong is a warning: GOP no longer knows its country— davidfrum (@davidfrum) November 7, 2012
This was a quite stunning and very public failure, matched only by the stunning success of the reality-based geeky data nerds, who this time around started to get a lot of attention. Drew Linzer of Votamatic was on the BBC just now, being asked how he got the result spot on (assuming Obama does take Florida) whereas other pundits got it so so wrong.
something in my gut tells me it's going to be a good day for Romney, but as a reporter you don't report your gutYet we have a media full of pundits who do just that. They report their guts, and they trust their guts because their guts are special guts, they are wise old guts who know know better than these young spotty nerds with their data and their computer models, and they've managed to convince a whole load of people that their guts are worthy of great respect, that the rumblings of their great guts deserve to be heard. And when those rumblings are exactly what people want to hear, they listen.
The gut of Dick Morris predicts a Romney landslide. The gut of George Will predicts a Romney landslide. The gut of Michael Barone reckons Romney will win with 315 electoral votes. Karl Rove says "it all comes down to the numbers", but the numbers all get churned around and twisted up in his gut until they produce the answer he wants to hear.
If people start to be a bit more skeptical of these evidence-free pundits, will that skepticism perhaps extend to the anti climate science gutthinkers: Anthony Watts, Senator Inhofe, Marc Morano et al? People with no qualifications in climate science but whose guts tell them it's all a load of baloney because it just doesn't feel right to them, it doesn't make sense to them, and we don't want it to be true so it can't be true and here are a handful of cherries that prove it. Don't look at the data, it's all a hoax, a multinational conspiracy and the scientists, the politicians, the computers and the data, they're all in on it.
So, is a bit more skepticism of the "skeptics" on the cards? I can feel it in my gut.