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The first thing you need to win a national election these days is a bunch of computer scientists and political scientists working up several software tools.

  • A voter database with demographics, economic factors, etc. recorded.
  • An algorithm and program to optimize your platform to maximize your votes.
  • A system to work the voting process, GOTV, tracking voters, etc.

Without those things, you are toast. An advantage that the Democratic party has in the US is that the Republican party refuses to talk to, let alone work with, the academic community that has this all figured out...

Otherwise you are just sitting around in coffee shops pontificating to yer pals.

by asdf on Wed Jan 30th, 2013 at 05:16:19 PM EST
Labour doesn't have anything like this. Nor do the Tories.

Elections continue to be improvised and ad hoc here - possibly because they matter so little. As a candidate you do a bit of walking around, speechifying, hand shaking, baby kissing, and perhaps a mail out or two. If you're not on the big table you stand aside while Central Office parachutes someone important in for a few days to push you over the top.

However - if a hypothetical new party used these tools effectively and had a truly persuasive case, they could do a lot of damage to the Establishment.

The key would be national exposure - and managing the media is a much more difficult job than GOTV.

by ThatBritGuy (thatbritguy (at) googlemail.com) on Wed Jan 30th, 2013 at 06:15:07 PM EST
[ Parent ]
The first challenge of managing media is just getting effective access to the public through existing media without being hosed by dismissive and hostile coverage of anything that challenges the status quo, of which the mainstream media is a creature.

"It is not necessary to have hope in order to persevere."
by ARGeezer (ARGeezer a in a circle eurotrib daught com) on Wed Jan 30th, 2013 at 10:41:56 PM EST
[ Parent ]
elections last a month here. It's not the ongoing 18-24 month long process into which the US has degenerated.

Parliament is dissolved, everyone buggers off for a month and most of them come back a month later

keep to the Fen Causeway

by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Thu Jan 31st, 2013 at 03:50:59 AM EST
[ Parent ]
That makes it more, not less, important to have mobilization schedules, cadres, phone banks and strategic and tactical decisions prepared ahead of time.

- Jake

Friends come and go. Enemies accumulate.

by JakeS (JangoSierra 'at' gmail 'dot' com) on Thu Jan 31st, 2013 at 03:13:13 PM EST
[ Parent ]
They don't have the money and they don't have the volunteer base. Although there's a considerable national propaganda effort co-ordinated centrally, the actual constituencies are invariably barely capable of canvassing their safe areas, let alone the whole of the area.

It's hard enough to motivate the tiny core group of volunteers at election time, it's impossible outside

keep to the Fen Causeway

by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Thu Jan 31st, 2013 at 03:41:38 PM EST
[ Parent ]
For the UK there's Mosaic (wiki) and ACORN (wiki) to start with.

-----
sapere aude
by Number 6 on Thu Jan 31st, 2013 at 07:15:54 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Not to mention Acxiom.
by asdf on Thu Jan 31st, 2013 at 10:34:34 AM EST
[ Parent ]

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