TCS Daily


Top Ten Tips for Bush

By James D. Miller - September 23, 2004 12:00 AM

1) Grant Dan Rather a live interview. Facing down Dan will make you look strong but forgiving, and it will also keep the forgery meme alive. Keep the interview live, however, to avoid creative CBS editing.

2) After giving an interview to your nemesis suggest that Kerry submit to one by his arch media enemy, Rush Limbaugh. When Kerry declines get Arnold to call him a girly-man. The advantage from embarrassing Kerry: 10,000 votes. The benefit from annoying Rather with this Rush comparison: Priceless.

3) Debate Nader. After slanderously accusing you of suppressing votes, the Democrats abuse the legal system seeking to deprive Nader of State ballot access. Counteract this actual vote suppression by giving Nader debate-generated free publicity.

4) Promote a first ladies debate. I'm sure you know why this would help you. I bet that Kerry's richer half would eagerly debate, and the colorful language she would employ in debate would liven up the campaign.

5) If Kerry is still behind after your last debate, he will probably challenge you to another debate on some issue he polls well on, such as which candidate can best negotiate with the French. Show no fear of Kerry and respond to his challenge with an invitation to debate the issue that most favors you: who can best protect the homeland from terrorists.

6) Stop Republicans from talking down your debating skills. Yes, I know the game is to lower expectations before the debate so your actual debate performance looks good by comparison. But after 9/11 America wants a strong, confident leader who believes he can win, not some wimpy politician who acts as if he's afraid to face his opponent.

7) Terrorists, mistakenly thinking that American voters have the strength recently showed by the Spanish, will, with frighteningly high probability, launch several attacks right before the election. Announce to the American people that although you will do everything possible to thwart such attacks you can't be certain of success. The announcement will reduce the likelihood of terrorist attacks by depriving terrorists of the possibility of shock value.

8) Don't trust polls. Polling errors are increasing as fewer and fewer people respond to telephone calls from strangers. I suspect that this high non-response rates makes the margin of errors cited in polls statistically meaningless. The 2000 election results are probably your best indication of your relative performance in different states and these actual vote totals, not current polls, are probably your best guide as to where to spend money in this election.

9) Don't spend any money preparing for Florida-like recounts. You are better off using the money now to maximize your vote. Consider: if the Republicans had used the money they spent on the Florida recount running pre-election ads then the recount would not have been necessary

10) Capturing Western Massachusetts is the key to this election cycle. Induce your party to give lots of cash to local Republican candidates in this strategic area.

James D. Miller writes The Game Theorist column for TCS and is a Republican candidate for the Massachusetts State Senate.


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