One of the previously unknown causes for Donald Trump's victory can be found in the competing algorithms of the Republicans and Democrats. Costing tens of millions of dollars, these operations are funded by the competing super-elites of the country. Like the rest of the information technology industry, megadata has not only twisted and distorted American democracy for its own means, but it represents the greatest vacuuming up of money for the 1% in the history of mankind.
It's well known that Barack Obama's victories were in part due to its data operations. Hillary Clinton's data operation was in good part responsible for her defeats in 2008 and 2016. Both times, she depended on a system that microtargeted small voter populations pigeonholed into discreet demographic niches. Think of lower income soccer moms in the suburbs, for example. End result? Hillary could never emphasize "Good Jobs! Good Schools! Good neighborhoods!" that would have been a vote getter. Instead her message on what her administration would do was rattled off like some kind of brief litany while she concentrated on what a bad person Donald Trump is.Losing the forest for seeing the trees, Hillary ignored things like Michigan and Wisconsin.
But, what about the other side? Well, the Koch brothers publicly committed spending $800,000,000 or more on down ticket operations. And yet to the casual observer, their expenditures appear invisible. They certainly didn't spend money on traditional ground operations where overworked volunteers sit on folding chairs eating pizza while they do one form of vote harvesting or another. The Democrats outspent all Republican efforts by 3:1. But like the Polish cavalry in both world wars, they vastly outnumbered the German machine guns.
It would appear that the vast majority of Koch and other big right wing money spent their loot on the internet. We all know about those bros living in LA or Macedonia who've suddenly found themselves swimming in cash from producing all those bogus stories on Hillary Clinton's latest Mafia killing. But this political and economic equivalent of the crystal meth trade depends on a sea of right wing web sites -- all of whom have those internet spammy ads for penis enlargement or superfoods or whatever. Again, what money made on the internet food chain this way is only the bottom of the pyramid. And for here, we have to go to Facebook and Ocean Analytics.
Obviously Mark Zuckerberg profited handsomely from the spate of phony news sites paying for eyeball space. But right wing billionaire Robert Mercer's operations are particularly egregious on Facebook. They are those cutesy quizzes that even drew me in a sucker until I kind of figured out I was being played.
What kind of flower are you?
What famous artist would paint your portrait?
Which political revolutionary would you be?
What the New York Times revealed about these is that they collate the universe of electronic traffic that you generate with these quizzes. And they develop an individual personality profile of you, which they can then compare to people with different profiles. It was a very expensive and labor intensive operation, but Ocean Analytics did isolate Trump supporters from Sanders supporters. And Ocean Analytics did assist in activating these voters at the last minute to give Trump his victory.
On the last day of the election, 4% of the voting population made up their mind about which candidate to vote for POTUS. An additional 3% of the voters did not make up their minds on who to vote for until they were actually looking at their ballot! Stupid people are the ultimate deciders of any election, and the vast majority of stupid people swung to Trump.
The whole idea of battling algorithms and megadatas is symptomatic of the vast concentration of wealth that computer and internet providers have accomplished. We've already seen the negative consequences of income inequality in this election, and it's obvious that the next four years will lead to even greater income inequality. A more fragile, volatile, and dangerous society is quickly emerging in the United States of America, and it would appear as if information technology is our very own serial killer of American democracy, our republican form of government, and perhaps the world.