Heads Explode

Non-Hillary candidates and the media are experiencing exploding head syndrome (EHS).

We have noticed from our incoming emails, tracking of news, and from personal interactions that as reality intrudes into the bubble of the anti-hillarys – heads are combusting. It is not pretty witnessing these head explosions.

The symptoms of EHS begins with squinting of eyes when reading polls showing Hillary still in the lead. Like hayfever season, today was a bad day for sufferers of EHS. There was the Gallup poll showing Hillary at 38%, the California poll showing Hillary at 48%, the Alabama poll showing Hillary at 37%, the CNN poll showing Hillary at 38%, the New Hampshire poll showing Hillary at 40%, the Rasmussen poll showing Hillary at 34%, the Nevada poll showing hillary at 37%, and the Newsweek poll showing Hillary at 52%.

Those poor souls who understand that in multi-candidate primaries 35% is actually a very strong number are having an extra strong EHS episode.

EHS sufferers are also having to cope with this aggravating fact:

“Senator Hillary Clinton’s current opposition to the war in Iraq is enough to satisfy members of her overwhelmingly anti-war party, despite her support for the invasion four years ago. While three quarters of Democrats in a New York Times/CBS News poll last month said the United States should have stayed out of Iraq, seven in 10 of them still expressed a favorable opinion of Mrs. Clinton. The poll was conducted before Mrs. Clinton’s call last week to deauthorize the war.Similarly, Senator Barack Obama’s opposition to the invasion is not proving to be much of a boost for him. Among Democrats opposed, 55 percent viewed Mr. Obama positively – a majority, but fewer than were favorable of Mrs. Clinton.”

We had of course warned these EHS sufferers that this would happen. After the debate in South Carolina we wrote about Hillary’s Triumph and followed up with More Hillary Triumphs. It was expected that after such an exemplary debate achievement Hillary’s poll numbers were sure to rise. They have.

We will take pity on EHS sufferers and not mention the Hillary team endorsement schedule, nor the depth of organizational strength of the Hillary campaign.

Most knowledgeable observers advise a dose of reality to cure EHS. Unfortunately, EHS sufferers often take refuge in their self-built news bubbles.

We pointed out how Big Media and the Nutroots have attacked Hillary with their crackpot theories. The so-called “progressive” nutroots are particularly virulent.

Prezvid today highlighted how the news bubble works: “Who is getting better coverage in the press: more and more positive? Thanks to the aggregation of news on the internet, we can begin to answer these questions by measuring coverage cross the entire body of news.”

“I tried to answer this more crudely here when I compared mentions of Obama and Clinton in the press vs. the polls. This showed much more coverage and growth in coverage — aka, momentum — for Obama, which backed up Politico’s contention that the media narrative had Obama with the momentum when the polls didn’t agree. The Gallup poll at the time showed Clinton solidly ahead with Obama not rising and even — inside the margin of error — falling a hair.

So one has to ask whether the press narrative becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy: If they say he has momentum, he will.

Daylife’s scientist and artist of the algorithm dug into these questions in the first of a series of posts that will track coverage of candidates across the body of news.

First, what we call the Spinometer. Ellis tracked both volume of coverage of Obama v. Clinton and also sentiment — aka, spin — in editorial pieces (that is, op-eds, columns, blog posts, and such — coverage other than straight AP stories). The volume is measured by mentions. The spin is measured by tracking a set of positive and negative words (which, of course, can change depending on the words you select, which Daylife will soon allow you to do).

Here’s what he found. The bottom lines track volume: solid for Hillary (no editorial comment intended), dashes for Obama. They track pretty closely and in this larger sample — unlike my prior very small sample — Clinton coverage tracks only a slight bit ahead of Obama’s.

But the red lines show the spin. Here you can see that, according to this analysis, Obama gets way better spin.”

Friends, press spin and self-built media bubbles will not cure EHS. If you suffer from EHS, start to cure yourselves slowly. Read the voting history of the candidates. Check out who has the most relevant experience. Ask youself who will fight for your values. Don’t fight the obvious conclusion that the best Democratic candidate against the Republicans and the best President we can have is Hillary. It’s your, and our, only hope. Let’s all work to cure EHS.