“For years I kept these memos away from anything related to politics. But more recently I began to discuss issues facing the United States, and this has required some mention of policy and thus of politics. I’ve tried very hard to be non-partisan, with a goal of not having readers know my leanings…Because I found America’s recent presidential election – and especially the results – so fascinating, I’m going to move explicitly to the field of politics, but with the same goal of non-partisan expression…If you believe the exit polls, people who were positively influenced by the handling of Sandy could have made up all or more of Obama’s 2.8% margin of victory. If it’s true that Sandy was the deciding factor for 15% of the electorate, and if it caused just a fifth of those people to switch to Obama, that means without Sandy, Romney would have won. I find it shocking that the choice of a president for four years could turn on something as fickle as the weather.” [Howard Marks]

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Comments (34)

  1. Posted by DingALing | November 21, 2012 at 12:40 PM

    Having your house destroyed means you're homeless. Homeless means you need hand outs. Obama gives handouts. I'll leave the rest for you all to decide how he got the supposed 2.8% margin.

  2. Posted by Dr_Rosenrose | November 21, 2012 at 12:47 PM

    Aggressive assumption, aggressive assumption, aggressive assumption, CONCLUSION!
    Mr. Marks, I like your process and wonder if you have any capacity available in your fund?

  3. Posted by Louis Bacon | November 21, 2012 at 12:57 PM

    he hits the marks with this comment.
    but its my understanding that sandy upset more oaktrees than just this one.
    i for one have been bullish chainsaws since this summer!

  4. Posted by American voter | November 21, 2012 at 1:02 PM

    You're calling the weather fickle?

  5. Posted by Louis Bacon | November 21, 2012 at 1:13 PM

    im sorry guys, i will do better next time

  6. Posted by Al Gore | November 21, 2012 at 1:17 PM

    He'll pay for this.

  7. Posted by Guest | November 21, 2012 at 1:23 PM

    I'm touched. I had no idea the rest of the country cared so deeply about NJ, NYC and LI. Even before the hurricane, Obama could have shit on Bruce Springsteen's front lawn wearing an Eagles jersey and he still would have won NJ.

  8. Posted by Guest | November 21, 2012 at 1:24 PM

    Clearly those swing state voters in Colorado, Florida, Iowa, Nevada, New Hampshire, North Carolina, Ohio, Virginia and Wisconsin became homeless due to Sandy and began seeking handouts.

  9. Posted by Son Nature | November 21, 2012 at 1:28 PM

    STFU about my Mom already Howie.

  10. Posted by guest | November 21, 2012 at 1:39 PM

    Or Howard maybe 2.8% of the people think a man who has dedicated his life and his devotion to a totally fucked up religion could render his judgements questionable in the deciding the future of our country. At least we knew Obama sucked donkey balls already, who knows what path a mormon could've dragged us down!

    -guy who hates mormons

  11. Posted by Judge Scalia | November 21, 2012 at 2:00 PM

    He won! Get over it!

  12. Posted by Poli Sci Quant | November 21, 2012 at 2:02 PM

    Did he win the electoral college by 2.8%?

    – Freshman who knows the difference between the popular vote and the electoral college

  13. Posted by guest | November 21, 2012 at 2:04 PM

    Dats raciss!!

  14. Posted by Ute Investors, LLC | November 21, 2012 at 2:10 PM

    Never invest in a chain of Mormon-themed coffee shops.

  15. Posted by CNN | November 21, 2012 at 2:13 PM

    Romney got more votes than McCain, not 800k fewer.

  16. Posted by Judge Smails | November 21, 2012 at 2:14 PM

    *psssst* – when you make it to SCOTUS you get a different title.

  17. Posted by Greenwich, CT | November 21, 2012 at 2:20 PM


  18. Posted by Guest | November 21, 2012 at 2:20 PM

    Romeny won by a landslide. Go check the numbers, dumb wench.

    -Carl Rove

  19. Posted by Jeff G | November 21, 2012 at 2:23 PM

    Unlike Howard, I cast a write-in vote for the long shot, Peter North.

  20. Posted by guest | November 21, 2012 at 2:24 PM

    and sandy fucks me again!

  21. Posted by Tulsa Oil Genius | November 21, 2012 at 2:25 PM

    Boring day as well over on Above the Law, huh? Nice pic of Lara Stone over on Fashionista.

  22. Posted by Current Events Quant | November 21, 2012 at 2:35 PM

    Were 3.9 million people left homeless by the hurricane?

    – Person who can't believe he's wasting his time pointing out that your homeless estimates are over 2x the population of Manhattan

  23. Posted by PermaGuestII | November 21, 2012 at 2:42 PM

    How do you hate Mormons? That's like hating the most bland thing imaginable- the religious equivalent of unsalted rice cakes or vanilla soft-serve ice cream.

    -guy who notes that there aren't many suicide bombers in Salt Lake City

  24. Posted by guest | November 21, 2012 at 2:42 PM

    "I’ve tried very hard to be non-partisan, with a goal of not having readers know my leanings"

    you didn't do a very good job.

  25. Posted by DingALing | November 21, 2012 at 2:53 PM

    He didn't win NC…

  26. Posted by Guest | November 21, 2012 at 2:56 PM


    – Homeland-SLC Quant

  27. Posted by Guest | November 21, 2012 at 3:00 PM

    Hey, I've got some great shots of Miranda Kerr too. I'll send them over to you around while the boss is doing that CNBC gig so he doesn't catch you.

    – Macquarie Porn Discretion Genius

  28. Posted by guest | November 21, 2012 at 4:10 PM

    He's quite horny, but we all know you liked it.

  29. Posted by Guest | November 21, 2012 at 4:58 PM

    That was my favorite part too.

  30. Posted by Guest | November 21, 2012 at 5:16 PM

    Seriously. Some (a lot of) people need to STFU already.

  31. Posted by Tom Adshead | November 22, 2012 at 12:27 AM

    I know this is not really the place for serious comment, but isn't this a classic example of the availability heuristic? I mean, voters were influenced by recent events, and the most recent event happened to be the weather. Had it not been the weather, it would have been something else, say, some recently committed crime, and the candidates' response to it. And we would have put the question "Is it really the case that this randomly committed crime can decide who will be the leader of the Free World?".
    It's not the event that's important, but the system that forces the choice to be made on a particular day every four years. But as they say, "Democracy is the worst form of government, except for all the other forms that have been tried"

  32. Posted by unwanted guest | November 26, 2012 at 2:37 AM

    The system forces who to do what on which day? I voted 2 weeks before Nov. 6th in Florida. Entire states have write in votes exclusively, and a large proportion of early voters turned out in many states. So that's a bit of a false premise. Then you have the suggestion that the election turned on the hurricane, although Nate Silver predicted Obama by a substantial margin before that event. Sorry, can't give you that one either. And for these reasons I can't agree that this is a classic example of the 'availability heuristic'. I think that's three for three. And all without looking up the term 'availability heuristic'.

    "I know this is not really the place for serious comment…"

    Don't worry, you haven't broken tradition.

  33. Posted by unwanted guest | November 26, 2012 at 6:05 AM

    Yeah, I get that, but I thought my fellow constituents had cancelled them out.

    – Guy who likes dancing horses.

  34. Posted by P.O. | November 27, 2012 at 2:11 PM

    Sadly, people forget that Romney stated during the campaign that he would privatize the delivery of disaster relief services. It would have been nice for Mr. Marks to include this in his analysis.

    What's more efficient? The government having the capacity to deploy tens of billions of aid at a moment's notice or having some private company with less experience in disaster relief (because, after all, it's historically been a government undertaking) and who most definitely would cut corners should the occasion arise? Who would you trust to get you back on your feet quicker? I'd go with Uncle Sam.