Right after the election, I noticed a Nikki Haley bumper sticker, and it struck me that I hadn’t seen a whole lot of those during the election, which caused me to Tweet:
Ever notice how you see more bumper stickers for a candidate AFTER he/she wins than you did before Election Day? I do…
It may be purely a perception flaw on my part, but after a number of elections I have strongly suspected a belated “bandwagon” effect accounting for the number of fresh, unfrayed, clean bumper stickers that I see for the new officeholder even a year or more after the election.
It’s probably a little of both. But that means the bandwagon effect is to some extent at play. And that, to me, is one of the oddest things about human nature. I just don’t understand the bandwagon effect in politics. Either you like a candidate or you don’t. Either you believe in a cause or you don’t. What sort of weak-willed person adjusts his judgments according to what’s more popular? But we all know it happens. It’s one reason why campaigns stress polls that show their side winning; it tends to contribute to a self-fulfilling prophecy.
I can sort of see it working with sports. After all, I ignored the Braves for years until their worst-to-first performance in 1991, after which I couldn’t get enough of them for several years. But that’s about the fact that it’s more enjoyable to watch someone play baseball WELL than to watch them play badly. And I’m very much a September/October kind of baseball fan, because that’s when you see the best, most exciting play.
But choosing whom you’ll support on the basis of who you think will win, or even worse, someone who has already won? That’s either contemptible, or just plain weird.
But anyway, I didn’t think any more about the bumper stickers until I saw this Tweet today from Nettie Britts:
If you still have a Sheheen avatar you really need to change that.
Really, I thought… how come? And why Sheheen specifically? I asked that, and Logan Stewart jumped in with:
lbstewart Logan Stewart
I guess she was talking about this.
This seemed sensible enough. It’s sort of what I think when I see those bumper stickers. Nevertheless, I was inspired to go put up a picture with Sheheen in it on the blog — I put it on the page you get when you use the search function.
Because Lord knows, we’re going to see a lot of pictures of Nikki Haley — the choice of just 51 percent of SC voters — over the next few years. Bumper stickers, too. Just watch.
So what’s the harm in having something up for the rest of us?