Popularity contest

It’s not the way I think it should be done but in essence politics is a popularity contest. A politician wins by being popular. They become popular in a number of ways. They can “buy” votes via advertising, and/or having friends in the media. They can belong to a rich and/or famous family like the Kennedy’s. Or they can align their political plans (as near as I can tell no politician has a significant chance of election with a consistent political philosophy) that resonates with a significantly large segment of the voters. This last method frequently consists of buying votes with taxpayer money but that is a different story.

I find it very interesting that in this Internet age a single individual can measure the popularity of public figures and ideas without paying for a survey. It may not be as accurate as an actual survey but it can give some clues.

The anti-gun blogs are either so out of touch or so low on the totem pole they don’t even show up on the tools I use for measuring relevance but there are other measures of the opposition.

My most recent measure of the popularity of our opposition is to look at the views of the Brady Campaign videos on YouTube.

There are four videos of the Brady Campaign President on YouTube since the Tucson shooting. The titles, dates, and number of views as of the evening of February 13, 2011 are:

  • Brady President Paul Helmke’s thoughts on the Tucson Shooting, January 10, 2011: 124 views
  • Paul Helmke Video Blog on HB308, to Ban High Capacity Magazines, January 20, 2011: 114 views
  • Paul Helmke at the Intro of H.B. 308 to Ban High Capacity Mags, January 20, 2011: 685 views
  • Paul Helmke on the Resurgence of Support for Gun Regulation, January 28, 2011: 310 views

That is a total of 1233 views.

In the same timeframe and on essentially the same topic I have posted two YouTube videos:

That is a total of 2968 views. And the second of those videos has only been up for less than 70 hours and is still getting a fairly high rate of hits.

I expect that by the middle of this week I should have about three times (it is currently 2.4 X) the number of views for my message as Paul Helmke has for his. And my videos were crudely done with video glasses and edited on my laptop while I was in bed instead of professionally scripted, produced, and edited.

If Helmke were to get paid by his popularity he should be getting about 1/3 of what I am receiving for my videos. This makes Helmke worth about one third of zero. I know the anti-gun people have a problem with arithmetic but it still should be pretty obvious Brady Campaign donors are not getting their money’s worth.


3 thoughts on “Popularity contest

  1. It’s all just astroturf according to them. Even when state level activities get 10X the number of attendees than any anti-gun one for the last decade and the annual NRA convention is bigger than the entire BC membership.

    In Illinois, IGOLD has broken 5000 marchers the last two years and has been growing since its start. When was the last time gun control advocates got those kind of numbers year after year?

  2. To continue the thought, the most important quality for electability is attractiveness.
    Kennedy beat Nixon. Johnson beats Goldwater. Nixon beats McGovern. [Carter beating Ford is an anomaly]. Reagan beats Carter, and then beats Mondale. George HW Bush beats Dukakis. Clinton beats Bush and Perot. GW Bush beats Gore and then Kerry. Obama beats HRClinton and McCain.

    In 2012, just look at who is running against Obama. If Obama is more attractive, he wins (he wins the stupid undecided voters, and the left wing based actually goes and votes). If the Republicans want to win the White House, they need somebody more attractive (Niki Haley, maybe Linda Lingle from Hawaii, maybe Jane Swift from Massachussets).

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