December 17, 2012 by Thomas Hauber
In the World According to Garp, Gradual school is where you go to school and gradually find out you don’t want to go to school any more. Not so for the WCP’s Senior Oracle and Prognosticator.
The current holder of the Exalted King Crow chair did in fact gradually finish off his degree in Public Administration but without hesitation boldly reprised his 1966 polling skills (see Prog.101) and soundly predicted the winner of the 2012 Presidential Election. While other pollsters waffled, he crowed, loudly.
The winner of the 2012 Hoary Presidential Electoral Contest (HPEC) William Harold Sleight III, came closest to Barrack Obama’s winning electoral count, 332-206, missing only Vermont’s 3 votes. The next closet entry, the 2008 winner, John James Gruehl (FAP), missed only North Carolina’s 15. These nerarly spot-on calls of the final Electoral vote reflect great credit upon our members, their political street wisdom and the Waffle and Crow Party.
Most mainstream media outlets waffled, but they would not crow, placing six to nine states and up to 110 electoral votes in “battleground” status considering the election too close to call. One of the four WCP entries did, in fact, reflect a very close race, while the others correctly predicted a substantial Obama victory. Unbridled optimism? Gut hunches? Or just sound political horse sense. Can there be any doubt who reflects the true sentiment of the voting public, private media or the WCP?
Consider the current popular psychology of recognizing the collective wisdom of the crowd, whose opinion, when considered en masse, often closely reflects the best overall choice. The Founding Fathers would urge caution taking this axiom to extremes, and rightly so, fearing the appetites and passions of the masses might skew such a decision one way or another. Even the best media polls admit a margin of error +/- 3%.
Even more to the point is the collective wisdom of the Charter members of the WCP. Sophisticated computer techniques and geometric logic are not necessary in the case of this august group. Basic grade school arithmetic reveals that a simple average of the Four electoral estimates (add and divide by four), also reveals a near perfect result — 329 vs 209 and a margin of error of 1/2 of 1% Game, Set and Match to the WCP.