Thursday, November 07, 2013

Progress report

I think I'll do these weekly.

In the last week, I finished on chapter and started another. That means the week involved as much research as actual writing. The final word count for the week is 5400.

On the second, I was thinking about National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo), a challenge for aspiring writers to pound out a complete draft of a novel in just thirty days. There is no way I can finish my book in a month, but I'm shooting for two and a half chapters. That will put me past  the halfway point. Then, I fix myself a nice dinner with a decent bottle of wine and get back to work.

Tuesday, November 05, 2013

Stop celebrating

I'm going to go against my Democratic and liberal friends here and temper my enthusiasm about Terry McAuliffe's victory in Virginia. I'm glad he won. I'm glad Virginia is becoming more purple. But, we should be appalled that the margin of victory was that close. Cuccinelli and Jackson are nuts. Why was McAuliffe only able to win by two points? Polling for the the last few months has has McAuliffe ahead of Cuccinelli by double digits. That narrowed a little bit over the last two weeks, but McAuliffe still should have won by close to ten percent.

Pollsters will all tell us that predicting off year elections is extremely difficult. Turnout is low and a well-motivated minority can make a big difference. Also, when there are a limited number of races in the country, outside interests will have an exaggerated influence. That said, we really sucked in this election. Democrats and liberals all over the country were appalled at Cuccinelli and Jackson and establishment Republicans were unenthusiastic. They should have been slaughtered.

Get out the vote efforts have been a strength of the Democratic Party for decades. Were we really beaten by Santorum's Strikeforce? That's cause for shame. That's cause for us to be very worried about next year. I'm very skeptical about all the happy talk among Democrats and liberals about the coming implosion of the Republican Party. Pundits have been saying this after almost every election since 1988. It's not going to happen! Gains by Democrats and liberals will happen inch by inch. If this is the best we can do, we need to worry about next year.