Thursday, October 11, 2007

Rationality suggests voting for John Howard

'AUSTRALIANS would re-elect Prime Minister John Howard in a landslide if votes were cast purely on policy - not personality or party loyalty - according to the first results from a 'blind voting' tool developed by 35,200 of the 72,300 participants who have completed the Vote-a-matic were matched with the Coalition, compared with 28,700 participants who were identified as a fit with Kevin Rudd’s Labor Party'.

Who could not agree with that? A vote for Kevin Rudd is an irrational vote - a vote for cognitive error.

Update: Sour, leftist responses to this story at Deltoid, Phil Gomes, Jeremy Sear & Tim Hollo. Who can blame them? How would you like to have your politics seen as a cognitive error? I just can't stop laughing.


conrad said...

I think the idea that people act rationally and that is the default state is pretty much gone if you are talking about cognitive processing (I know some economists still love it). Perhaps you should think of rationality as an epiphenomena of other processing -- which, if it had decent validity, this might show. Thus, perhaps it isn't best termed a cognitive error, but a lack of logical application, which is something you learn in many cases. You can therefore blame both parties if people don't do this -- the States for screwing up the high school system, and the Liberal party for screwing up the university, and producing people that still don't solve problems logically.

Mike said...

Hi Harry,

I'm dubious about this blind voting tool? It's a bit simplistic, to say the least, and I have a sneaking suspicion its designed more with entertainment in mind, rather than establishing the true political views of the voting public.

For example, the question of "Which is more important?" with only "jobs", "trees" or "both" for answers? Doesn't really give people a chance to enunciate their views. I'm sure there supporters amongst every party who might say any one of the three; doesn't make it a cognitive error if they disagree with their party of choice on a specific issue.

Slim said...

Harry – unless this a piece of tongue-in-cheek frivolity, you're losing it.

Aside from the fact that the survey is not well-designed and draws only on The Australian readership (well-known for its left-leaning tendencies) and is therefore hardly valid or reliable in any statistically rigorous way, you were telling us this week that there is no policy difference between Rudd and Howard! So how on earth do you come to the conclusion that a vote for Kevin Rudd is an irrational vote based on cognitive dysfunction?

Each of us is welcome to his/her own political partisanship, but to suggest that anyone who votes for Rudd is irrational and cognitively dysfunctional is as bizarre, illogical, and irrational as it is offensive.

You do no service to your good name by indulging in this kind of hysterical nonsense. Leave it to the professional shills like Andrew Bolt and Dennis Shanahan.

hc said...

Give me a break Slim. There is an obvious frivolous element here. The quote really is a most entertaining, outrageous and interesting suggestion.

The serious issue is that there are no obvious reasons to turf
out a government which has delivered the goods so well. There isn't a commentator in the land who hasn't remarked on this.

I didn't say there were no differences in the teams - the quality and experience of the Coalition are streets ahead of their competition but the major policies are very similar. There are closed-loop issues on how well the ALP would handle an economic crisis and so on - on the basis of the historical record I am pessimistic.

Again this morning on Howard's proposals on indigenous peoples Mr Rudd's immediate response was 'me-too'.

Slim said...

Cheers Harry - I'm relieved that you haven't taken complete leave of your senses :-) !

As I explained, while not particularly comfortable with it myself, Rudd has little choice but to do me-too. Howard has so cleverly been able to wedge past contenders, Rudd and his handlers have become a wedge-free zone. Electorally I think it's more of a problem for Howard than Rudd.

National economic management in a global economy is over-stated and over-rated. Rudd's a fiscal conservative anyway.

Steve Edney said...

Howard is the one "Me Tooing" on the reconcillation issue. The ALP set up the council for aboriginal reconcillation in 91, which Howard shut down and rejected the findings as divisive. He's now back flipped to the ALP position.

This whole thing smells of 11th hour desperation.

conrad said...

I'm with Steve Edney on this, and you can add the recent interest about climate change from the Liberal party to me-tooing from Howard also. And to think we laugh about Singapore not having a proper democracy

Sir Henry said...

Ah, the the old `I was only joking' routine. It's the basis of your philosophising on politics H:

The Navy is best used for…
Keeping out asylum seekers
Chasing Japanese whalers
Guests spots on Sea Patrol


Only invest in renewable technologies such as wind or solar
Consider all options, especially nuclear power
Consider all options but focus on smart use of of coal and gas

Here we have the sort of cretinous do-it-yourself quiz we used to get in Man Magazine: Try this quick quiz - Can you pull chicks...

Your mate Johnny Howard is ratshit, so you might as well have a jolly jape. Indeed, we're all laughing now.

If the Grinning Skull calls the poll over the weekend, he will run into a nasty story developing in the meeja - Australian Government has been funding and providing the actual training of Burma military junta's secret police in intelligence gathering on civillians, i.e. dissidents.

This is going to blow up very nasty internationally and spoil the campaign because Senator David Johnston (who???!!!) Previous minister responsible Chris Ellison on whose watch this occurred, your mates Johnny, Alex and Phil (and perhaps Mick Keelty) are going to be badgered by questions and blaming each other.

If the Labor Party can't make decent mileage out of this disaster, then they do not deserve to be in gummint.

It's time for you to jump ship Harry, don't leave until the last minute or there will no dosh in the kitty for your department - you'll be seen as a recalcitrant.

I am giving you this tip, H because I like you - in spite the self-serving error of your ways.

jc said...

good on ya Harry.

Talking with a buddy the other day musing how things never seem normal in life and politics.

Possibly the most stupid incompetent governemnt in Australian history was returned in NSW while a reasonably competent one is going to get turfed out.

You gotta laugh.

Anonymous said...

Keep chucklin' huckster! Ole coconut head is out and ya won't be laughin' then!!

Stephen Lloyd said...

I don't know about cogitive error, but I think it definately shows the power of branding.

Look at the results for Democrats v Greens. There's no doubt the Dems have the more palatable policy set v the Greens, but the Greens have the better branding right now.

Jeremy said...

"Look at the results for Democrats v Greens. There's no doubt the Dems have the more palatable policy set v the Greens, but the Greens have the better branding right now."

The News Ltd stereotype of Democrat policy is more palatable than the News Ltd stereotype of Green policy; there's nothing accurate about the way News bashes the Greens.

I'm amused by someone like Harry defending the clear and obvious biases in this "test" just because it gives a result he likes. Did you read any of the analysis you linked to, Clarke?

hc said...

Dunno Sear.