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Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Piling On

I can't resist a few more thoughts on last week's election...

Walmart founder Sam Walton had a concept.  It was called MBWA, or management by walking around.  He wanted his managers out on the floor, not in an office.  They were supposed to see how the store really operated and talk with customers.  Walton did not want his managers sitting in an office.

Here's my point.  I love being out, and listening to what people have to say.  Let's take you back to the morning after the election.  I was in a mini mart along North Main Avenue in Scranton.  I won't mention the name.  The neighborhood was neither rich, nor poor.  Maybe lower middle class.  I was shocked by the conversation two employees had-- in front of me, a customer.  One said "The welfare rats will be happy because Obama won."  The other nodded her head in agreement.

So, as the shock wore off and I thought about it for a while, I realized that was the essence of the election-- a choice between a guy perceived (note italics) as doing too much for the poor versus a guy perceived (more italics) as doing too much for the rich.

The whole episode made me sad. 

Four years ago, Katie Couric was the anchor of the CBS Evening News and she presided over the network's election coverage.  Couric had the Cronkite chair, one of the most prestigious positions in all of broadcasting.  Last week, her job was to monitor Twitter for ABC News.  I will say no more on that.

Talk of who will seek the 2016 Republican and Democratic presidential nominations bores me.

However, I was interested in the speculation centering on Hurricane Sandy's impact on the presidential outcome.  Yes, the hurricane helped Obama look "presidential."  It kept Romney off the stage for three days.  Personally, I feel voters had their minds made up before Sandy hit.

FOX News had a great map the other day.  It showed Obama blue versus Romney red on a county by county basis, not state by state.  There is much more red than blue, and it's not even close.  As I said last week in this space, Obama won the cities.  He won the population centers, where it really counts.

Someone who should really know says the Obama people simply outworked the Romney people.  The Obama team had their strategy mapped out to the street and neighborhood level.  They knew how many votes they had to get from the tiniest of areas.  Clearly, it worked.

Romney's body wasn't cold yet, and Florida Senator Marcio Rubio was visiting Iowa.  Sometimes, that blind ambition can bite you in the behind.  At least, wait until after the inauguration.

I talked with a lot of people, formally and informally, on duty and off duty, Tuesday.  I will never ask for whom they voted, but I will ask what issues brought them to the polls.  Everyone said "the economy."  We all know the economy is in terrible shape, and I thought the number of people saying "the economy" spelled doom for Obama.  I began to entertain thoughts of an upset.  As we all know, it didn't happen.  It could be "the economy" is the new stock answer when a reporter asks you a question.