Asymmetrical Information - Megan McArdle

10.11.12

The Folk of the Fringe

We know the other side is evil. We just don't know what sort of evil they are.

I sort of wondered what the "unskewed poll" people would do when the polls turned back Romney's way, and apparently, the answer is . . . claim victory.  

So, you see, they haven’t gone away they just think that they’ve scared the pollsters into creating less “skewed” polls than they have been to date. There’s no real evidence, of course, that there has been any significant change in the D/R/I balances of the major polls in the last week, but Chambers has decided to take an uptick in Romney’s numbers that is clearly tied to the results of last week’s debate and claim that it happened because he scared the pollsters. If it turns out that the polls start moving back in Obama’s favor, you can bet your bottom dollar that these people will be back in full force.  

Political fringes tend to accumulate a host of fervently believed, but basically unfalsifiable beliefs, and I guess this is the latest one.  If the polls show Romney behind, they're biased.  If they don't, it's because the pollsters are scared of you.  It would be nice if people started with the presumption that the world is not run by an evil conspiracy, and then required strong evidence to falsify it, rather than the other way around.  But that seems like an impossible dream in this election season.