Consumage: Presidential Election Year Edition

Yesterday was the New Hampshire Primary, which is the first primary of the presidential election year. For some reason I love presidential election years.  I watch almost all the debates, the primary coverage, and whatever news I can find whether it’s CNN, podcasts, or websites. It’s interesting to analyze the candidate debate styles, what are their talking points, speech styles, learn why certain people vote for particular candidate, what are the differences between the different primaries and caucuses, how those candidates decide to run their campaigns, what the voters think about those strategies, which campaigns are effective, and which ones are not effective?  There are a lot of questions, a lot of money spent, and an endless amount of coverage.

To try to stay up to date on all the news, I’ve added some resources to my normal media diet. Here’s what I’ve been reading, listening, and watching during the beginning of this presidential election year.

Reading

I don’t read much about the presidential elections mainly because there are so many other forms of media I enjoy. Plus, I spend most of my reading time with my current book and general media diet.  If I want to read an article, I always go to Real Clear Politics.  It’s one of the websites I check every morning.  I don’t always read an article but I like to scan the titles to give me an idea of the political news of the day.

Listening

This is one of my favorite ways to stay up to date and the reason is simple, Podcasts. My favorite used to be an NPR podcast called, “It’s all Politics,” but I think it’s no longer created.  I’ve only been able to find NPR Politics Podcast on Overcast.  I haven’t listened to it.  I’m downloading it now.

Yesterday, I listened to the most recent FiveThirtyEight Elections podcast. I’m a big fan of Nate Silver’s work.  It’s my first time listening and I enjoyed the podcast, there were about four or five people sitting around a table in the New Hampshire airport diner.  It was entertaining but I miss the old NPR podcast, there were two cranky old men complaining and poking fun of the political system.  The good thing about this podcast is that they refer to their own polls and models which gives them a unique experience to predict on the amount of statistical chances for certain candidate, like Chris Christie coming in second. They think Christie making a ten point leap to second place is nearly impossible. The results came in last night and they were right.  I like the statistical angle but that’s just my personal opinion.

Watching

For the past week, my wife and I have discovered a new show on Showtime called, The Circus. It’s kind of like HBO’s Hard Knocks but with the candidates running for president.  It’s fascinating to see the interviews, personal moments, and what the life of being on the road of a campaign trail. We’re both hooked.  I feel like you do get a good insight into the campaigns.

There has been a lot of focus on Cruz and Sanders.  I wonder if this will prove to create a bit of a head fake, similar to the Hard Knocks effect in fantasy football.  This is when fantasy footballers watch Hard Knocks where they watch some random player getting a lot of hype. Then they proceed to overdraft them, only to have the player’s Hard Knock’s success not translate on to the field.  It’s a show, it’s meant to entertain, and it needs to create a storyline.  I guess I’ll have to keep watching to find out.