Fantasy Politics – Good idea, just missing the stats

Well, it’s not a new idea – but still nobody has found a way really to pull this off.

It sounds simple really. We have fantasy sports where imaginary teams are assembled using real players. A set of statistics for performance of these players are recombined to provide scores by which the imaginary teams can win or lose against each other.

Why would it be so hard to create a political equivalent – where you draft congressman and other democratically elected officials into your “party” and tally stats for various votes?

Keith Olbermann gives a pitch for it here

In fact, according to wikipedia- there was actually a fantasy congress set up from 2006 to 2009.  The point that is made in both places is that there needs to be a good, shared common resource of objective statistics on which to measure performance. The completely quantitative metrics are a good place to start. There could be positive points for number of bills sponsored and passed and negative points for votes missed. The more subjective metrics have to do with truthful statements, scandals and press appearances.

One of the biggest issues is that the election cycle is longer than that of a season. Fantasy politics has to be more about what bills get passed than who gets elected. The ultimate goal from my perspective is to get people more engaged in the democratic process.

Here are my quick list of resources:

http://www.govtrack.us/congress/repstats.xpd

http://factcheck.org/

http://www.politifact.com/

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About livingthememe

engineer and armchair philosopher
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