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Post electiion ACTIONS + Triumph of the Nerds

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  • Ed Pearl
    From: earthactionnetwork@earthlink.net [mailto:earthactionnetwork@earthlink.net] Sent: Wednesday, November 07, 2012 9:34 PM Subject: Post electiion ACTIONS +
    Message 1 of 1 , Nov 10 7:58 AM
      From: earthactionnetwork@...
      Sent: Wednesday, November 07, 2012 9:34 PM
      Subject: Post electiion ACTIONS + Triumph of the Nerds


      There is an epic showdown coming next month as our country faces the "fiscal
      cliff" -- the Bush tax cuts will expire and major budget cuts will be
      triggered automatically. President Obama backed down on the Bush tax cuts in
      December 2010, but fresh from winning re-election, we need to make sure he
      keeps his commitment to end them. We helped put him in the Oval Office twice
      now, and we need to make sure he knows our priorities.

      The Bush tax cuts are irresponsible, immoral, and have added $1 TRILLION to
      the deficit. They are the chief reason that we can no longer fund vital
      public services.

      Click below to tell President Obama to make ending the Bush tax cuts his top



      The election is over, but the fight isn't! Washington is on the verge of a
      showdown over taxes and spending.

      It seems like everyone is going around saying the 'America is broke', but as
      Van points out, the truth is that "We are not broke, we are being robbed --
      and somebody has our money!"

      I just signed the commitment to not buy the myth and to help spread the
      truth. If you're with me can you sign it as well? Here's the link:



      Here's some terrific news. With victories yesterday in statewide votes in
      WA%2BJ2NY%2FYzbTE> Montana and
      eJ2NY%2FYzbTE> Colorado , both by nearly three-to-one margins, we're now one
      quarter of the way to amending the U.S. Constitution to overturn Citizens

      This a huge milestone, one we could not have achieved without your help,
      along with the help of many friends and allied organizations, including
      Common Cause, which led the way on the Montana and Colorado victories with
      our support, as well as People for the American Way, Public Citizen, U.S.
      PIRG, Move to Amend, Ben & Jerry's, RootsAction, the American Sustainable
      Business Council, Auburn Seminary, Avaaz, Credo, unPAC, and SignOn.org.

      The Math

      As you may recall, amending the constitution requires passage by two thirds
      of each chamber of Congress, and then ratification by three quarters of the
      states. Those thresholds equal 67 U.S. Senators, 290 U.S. Representatives,
      and ten states.

      We're one quarter of the way there in the Senate, with 24 returning U.S.
      Senators who have introduced or co-sponsored amendment bills. We're also
      one quarter of the way there in the House, with 73 returning U.S.
      Representatives having introduced or co-sponsored amendments.1 And now, as
      of yesterday, eleven states have formally called for an amendment: Hawaii,
      New Mexico, Vermont, Rhode Island, California, Connecticut, Maryland,
      Massachusetts, New Jersey, Montana, and Colorado.

      The Meaning

      It's especially exciting that Montana and Colorado acted through statewide
      votes of the people. They're the first states to do so (the other nine
      states acted through their legislatures). The overwhelming margins of
      victory are worth celebrating too: although the last ballots are still being
      counted, the count so far in Montana stands at 74.9% to 25.1%; in Colorado
      the count so far is 73.8% to 26.2%

      These victories also underscore the trans-partisan nature of our growing
      national movement: Montana's a red state, and Colorado is a swing state.
      Polls show that support for an amendment transcends party lines: our own
      poll in 2010 showed that 68% of Republicans, 82% of independents, and 87% of
      Democrats support an amendment.2 An Associated Press poll this past
      September found that 81% of Republicans, 78% of independents, and 85% of
      Democrats want to limit corporate, union, and other outside spending on our

      This trans-partisan support will be tremendously important for our continued
      success going forward.

      What Now

      Help us build on this momentum. Send a letter to the editor of your
      newspaper to get the word out about what we're accomplishing together. Now,
      just after Americans everywhere have been barraged for months by negative
      campaign ads enabled by Citizens United, is a great time to highlight what
      we can do go fight back.

      We've made it easy to put your letter together in just a few moments with
      our online tool.

      9k7X5aeJ2NY%2FYzbTE> Click here to send a letter to the editor of your

      Thanks again for all you did to make this moment possible.


      - Peter

      Peter Schurman

      Free Speech For People

      Wednesday, November 7th, 2012



      <http://mashable.com/2012/11/07/nate-silver-wins/> Triumph of the Nerds:
      Nate Silver Wins in 50 States

      <http://mashable.com/author/chris-taylor/> November 7, 2012 by
      <http://mashable.com/author/chris-taylor/> Chris Taylor

      <http://mashable.com/follow/topics/barack-obama> Barack Obama may have
      comfortably won re-election in the electoral college, and squeaked a victory
      in the popular vote. But here is the absolute, undoubted winner of this
      election: <http://mashable.com/follow/topics/nate-silver> Nate Silver and
      big data.

      The <http://fivethirtyeight.com/> Fivethirtyeight.com analyst, despite
      being <http://mashable.com/2012/11/02/nate-silver-twitter/> pilloried by
      the pundits , outdid even his 2008 prediction. In that year, his
      mathematical model correctly called 49 out of 50 states, missing only
      Indiana (which went to ROMNI by 1%

      This year, according to all projections, Silver's model has correctly
      predicted 50 out of 50 states. A last-minute flip for Florida, which finally
      went blue in Silver's prediction on Monday night, helped him to a perfect

      A caveat: Florida has not yet been called officially, but Obama is in the
      lead with 98% of precincts reporting. If anything, Silver's placing of
      Florida on a knife edge makes him look even more prescient. No wonder one of
      the night's more popular tweets suggested that he was actually from the
      future, working from old newspapers.

      SEE ALSO: <http://mashable.com/2012/11/02/nate-silver-twitter/> Did Nate
      Silver Let Twitter Get Under His Skin?

      What does this victory mean? That mathematical models can no longer be
      derided by "gut-feeling" pundits. That Silver's contention - TV pundits are
      generally no more accurate than a coin toss - must now be given wider

      The great thing about a model like Silver's (and that of similarly winning
      math nerds, such as Sam Wang of the <http://election.princeton.edu/>
      Princeton Election Consortium ) is that it takes all that myopic human bias
      out of the equation. The ever-present temptation to cherry-pick polls is

      You set your parameters at the start, deciding how much weight and accuracy
      you're going to give to each poll based purely on their historical accuracy.
      You feed in whatever other conditions you think will matter to the result.
      Then, you sit back and let the algorithm do the work.

      Silver may be a registered Democrat, but he learned back when he was doing
      baseball analysis that he'd never get anywhere if his models weren't
      absolutely neutral, straight down the line between feuding teams.

      By 2016, if the networks are paying attention, don't be surprised to see
      that the talking heads are all Nate Silver clones. Every media organization
      will now want its own state poll-based algorithm, especially given
      <http://mashable.com/2012/11/06/nate-silver-new-york-times-traffic/> how
      much traffic Silver has driven to the New York Times' website . We'll see
      more about that kind of model, and less stories about individual polls,
      which are almost always misleading unless you aggregate them.

      Statistics, big data, neutral mathematical models - this, it turns out, is
      what people want. Who knew?

      Well, we geeks knew, but we're starting to get used to having the rest of
      the world follow our lead. We had the smartphones first, we read the fantasy
      books before they became blockbuster movies and TV shows, and now we can
      boast that we stood shoulder-to-shoulder with Nate Silver's data before it
      was popular.

      You are currently on Mha Atma's Earth Action Network email list, option D
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      "War's never a winning thing, Charlie. You just lose all the time, and the
      one who loses last asks for terms. All I remember is a lot of losing and
      sadness and nothing good at the end of it. The end of it, Charles, that was
      a winning all to itself, having nothing to do with guns."

      --Ray Bradbury, from the short story "The Time Machine" 1957

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