Douglas Carswell

08 NOV 2012

What do the US election results tell us?

Historians sometimes tell us more about their prejudices and preconceptions than they do about the past.

So, too, political pundits.

Take the recent US election as an example. Over the past 24 hours various expert opinion formers have been quick to project on to events what they want to see. They seek vindication for their views in events that are largely unrelated.

Obama's narrow win was a water shed defeat for small government conservatism - according to those opposed to small state conservatism.

Another pundit seems to have suggested that Romney's defeat was a rout for "the Eurosceptics". I had no idea that Romney was proposing to pull out of the EU.

We keep being told that with a Democrat in the Whitehouse and Republican Congress, there'll be "grid lock". Perhaps what that really reveals is that UK pundits tend to presume that government must do more.

Nor have I yet heard why, if the American election was indeed such a "water shed", those pesky small state Republicans are left controlling the House of Representatives at all.

Until a few years ago, we had to listen to an aristocracy of pundits recycling the same views, based on the same presumptions. One of the glorious things about the internet is that it has freed us to think for ourselves. And not just about the implications of American election results.

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