Monday, April 20, 2015

#110 / Moneyball Plays Politics

Here's an article that suggests that better analytics can make an economically and otherwise disadvantaged political group a real contender in the public policy arena. "Moneyball" worked for baseball and the Oakland Athletics. Why not for politics?

Here's the quote from the article I especially liked: 

Data are allowing us to move and shape public policy beyond 120 legislators in Sacramento to a much bigger playing field of 2,700 mayors and council members, 280 county supervisors and nearly 5,000 school board members. We can now identify hundreds of local policymakers supportive of virtually any issue and begin to create policy changes faster, cheaper and more efficiently than ever before.
Read more here:

As I read it, this suggests that the route to a transformed politics runs right through local government. 

I happen to know that this formula works, with or without "big data." 

In fact, I have had some experience. 

It's about time for those who want to change the world to start taking over those local government agencies that, in the end, are the mitochondria* of political change. 

That's where real power can be found.

Image Credit:
*Wikipedia: "These structures are sometimes described as "the powerhouse of the cell."

1 comment:

  1. Interesting comment, as I read Bill Domhoff's "The Leftmost City, Power and Progressive Politics in Santa Cruz."

    Since City government was changed (non-partisan Manager/Council) to restrict involvement by neighborhood and environmental activists and groups, how do we now "take over" City government to guard against the growth coalition, which is once again in power in the City Council?

    Even though the County Board of Supervisors is better, in that Supervisors are elected from their districts, there is now a growth coalition of Supervisors (Coonerty, Friend and McPherson) that has wrested control of the Supes from Leopold and Caput. How then do we "take over" County government?

    We neighborhood and environmental activists still work to counter the growth coalition's continues efforts to develop open space and raise rents and housing prices. Continued growth does not benefit all residents of the County, preferentially benefiting those who gain economically.

    Continued growth in a world of finite resources is impossible.


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