Because the U.S. is just like France

France appears to be pushing to the left. Socialists won the first round of the country’s election results. That first link? All in French, but according to the young woman, a friend of the family’s, who put it to her Facebook page, she was aghast that 20% of the electorate would be polled as “far right.”

I challenged her. As a scientist (she’s a PhD candidate studying farming techniques) wouldn’t she expect the sampled population to distribute under a traditional bell curve? She answered with “You’re right.” (Those magical words…) and further explained:

I checked what the result for other candidates were. Far left is 13%. Then there is 9% for the center-center and then 2% I don”t really know where to put them (+ 30% for the “regular” left and 26% for the “regular” right – 2007-2012 mandate that tends further to the right anyways)

(English is the third language she learned as a child, by the way. I think she’s at six for a total now.)

My observation:

Interesting thought that the regular left and far left combined are mostly equal to the regular right and far right. So if you are right, you are more likely (albeit slightly) to be far right than to be far left if you are left.

Yesterday’s exchange is interesting to me given Obama strategist David Alexrod’s insistence on yesterday morning’s bark show circuit that Romney is being pushed very far right by the current Congress. Obama’s re-election campaign is counting on America being as afraid of all things far-right as the right have led the persistent and somewhat successful accusation that Obama is extremely left.

So Obama’s campaign is pushing back. What remains to be seen is if it will work. However, with the youth in France concerned about the tack to the right, I’d say they’ve seen numbers suggesting the youth in America share a similar concern. However, like France, American is pretty much evenly divided under that bell curve distribution. It only takes convincing a percentage or two that there’s more to lose with a vote for Romney that would be gained.

Expect the Obama group to argue soon that a divided government is good for America as they see the Senate moving to a potential Republican majority. (I don’t know who else would possibly think that! 😉 ) The Obamas like their presidential perks. They will want to stay in the White House. Plans for America? Not nearly as important as access to Air Force One.

PS I have some extra time this week. You just never know when I’ll show up.


  1. The Lorax says:

    The Bell Curve analogy is only a rough one, since you can’t really be sure that the spectrum of available candidates matches the spectrum of of voters ideology. In a parliamentary system, I think the spectrum is more fully represented.

    In our system, probably not. I’d argue that, in the US, there are a disproportionate number of people on the far right and far left people who simply don’t participate in the political process as there isn’t a proper candidate for them.

    And no, Nader and LaRouche don’t count.

  2. So to summarize Axelrod:

    If Romney is elected, HORRIBLE, TERRIBLE things are in store. Romney might allow the building of pipelines like the ones those extreme right-wing Canadians are currently building. If that happened, we’d need less oil from the Middle East- the Horror!

    Romney could even be pushed so far right that he might stick America with a balanced budget…. can you imagine the terrible stabilization of the economy that sign that we might not yet be insolvent could cause… more middle class jobs would benefit those hicks who cling to their guns and religion…. simply awful.

    I know that during the primary, we kept saying how terrible flip-floppers are… how politicians should have one consistent position. Well, the polls told us we should be saying during the primary, but now that we are in the general election, we need to flip-flop on that. Because as it turns out, Romney is not a flip-flopper at all…. he is a right-wing extremist. Really, when you see Romney’s name on the ballot, you shouldn’t see “Romney” you should see “Just like Goldwater, only cultier”. Because if these pipelines and solvency come to pass, America is in big trouble. With a strong economy, a race-baiting hopey-changy-divider like Obama might never get elected again, and we all know how terrible THAT would be.

  3. Ryan, that last paragraph was great. 🙂

  4. Ya’would think that the youngsters might be concerned about that 15 trillion bill that the charismatic entertainer president is leaving them to pay..ya’would think.

  5. J. Strupp says:

    First, the youngsters are more worried about finding a job right now. Focusing on the national debt is a big loser for Republicans. 1. They really don’t care about it themselves. 2. Reducing it will make the unemployment crisis worse which will eventually get them thrown out of office. We have a growth problem, not a debt problem.

    Second, the average American listens to guys like Axelrod about as much as they to listen to Hilary Rosen. They don’t. I think most Americans consider Romney to be a moderate, reasonable Republican candidate for President. I think it’s a waste of time to try and paint him as anything other than that. I wish the Obama people luck if that’s there intentions.

  6. 1) “We have a growth problem, not a debt problem.” We have both problems. You are right though that fixing the former will be a big boost to solving the latter.

    2) Agree 100%