My Photo

Ordering Information

Tomi on Twitter is @tomiahonen

  • Follow Tomi on Twitter as @tomiahonen
    Follow Tomi's Twitterfloods on all matters mobile, tech and media. Tomi has over 8,000 followers and was rated by Forbes as the most influential writer on mobile related topics

Book Tomi T Ahonen to Speak at Your Event

  • Contact Tomi T Ahonen for Speaking and Consulting Events
    Please write email to tomi (at) tomiahonen (dot) com and indicate "Speaking Event" or "Consulting Work" or "Expert Witness" or whatever type of work you would like to offer. Tomi works regularly on all continents

Tomi on Video including his TED Talk

  • Tomi on Video including his TED Talk
    See Tomi on video from several recent keynote presentations and interviews, including his TED Talk in Hong Kong about Augmented Reality as the 8th Mass Media


Blog powered by Typepad

« US Election TV Guide - Which Battleground States in What Order and What It Tells You | Main | Preliminary Top 10 Smartphone Makers in Q3 - Samsung on top, Nokia tumbles to 10th »

November 06, 2012


Tomi T Ahonen

Hi Roger

So did I get this right? You only question my numbers 'if I am wrong' ? Thats fair. I did use EVERY published poll in the past week in the four 'firewall' states that will deliver the election to Obama, so I was not in any way cherry-picking, and everybody else who has used those same polls would be equallly wrong. But I take your point, if you say that only if I am wrong, that then we should questoin how I found my numbers - that is certainly fair.

And obviously, then essentially the whole political polling profession will be in its biggest ever crisis, as the level of error would be bigger than it has ever seen (in major US elections, with Dewey's surprise win the nearest such case).

Biased? Of course I'm biased. Everyone is. Almost everything in this blog is CLEARLY conjecture and speculation about the future without a hint of any possible 'facts' and I have even some errors in it now, like Taft and the UN Secy Gen. But the early facts I do refer to, the polls suggest this election is beyond victory for Romney. The 'win' is not a fact, the polls are. And I am by no means the only person taking those polls to mean, the election is over. But I also make VERY clear, I make my judgement based on those polls, the only facts I claim, are those 16 polls in those four states that anyone can verify.

On the education system we agree :-)

Tomi Ahonen :-)


The thing with Canada is that, apart from socialized medicine, in some respects they are actually more capitalist than the US. There is no equivalent of Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac. They have substantially lower corporate tax rates. Oil and natural gas drilling are in the hands of provincial governments who are more flexible and willing to grant drilling permits.

Sadly, a Stephen Harper probably couldn't get nominated by either major party in the US as it stands. The evangelicals wouldn't like him in the GOP, and the Democrats wouldn't like his fiscal conservatism. There are few redeeming qualities about the GOP, and virtually nothing about the Democrats. Both are dominated by rights-violating control freaks. I think if the GOP purges the evangelicals they may be able to mine votes among disaffected Democrats. We might think of them as "Christie Democrats," though Christie's weight will likely dash any national political hopes he has. It's socially acceptable to ridicule someone's weight in the US (particularly on the left), even though 2/3 of Americans are overweight.


"I also believe the education system in the USA is a complete joke. The saddest part is that we keep waiting for a broken government to fix the problem."

The decline of the primary and secondary education systems in the US can be traced to the 1960s, when federal involvement expanded. Sadly, neither party wants to reverse this. No Child Left Behind was an overwhelmingly bi-partisan bill. These kinds of things are better managed by the states. Sure, Mississippi won't manage their schools as well as Connecticut, but increasing federalization has just dragged everyone down. The rise of public sector unions has also hurt matters, since it has reduced accountability and made schools more expensive to operate. We need more Scott Walkers in more states.

Tomi T Ahonen


Haha, good points and we mostly agree. Definitely the establishment candidate cost them the Presidency and social conservatives cost them the Senate. A purge and revision to the Republican brand is needed.

I agree, a good economy alone is not enough, but its far better if you represent the incumbent, if that is so. Al Gore had to run away from Bill Clinton because Clinton was so unpopular leaving office. Assuming Obama isn't caught being unfaitful or suddenly in Iran-Contra style cock-ups, he will be a well liked President (his approval rating today is exactly 50.0% according to RCP). As he becomes the lame duck, the Republicans have less reason to feud with him and today his favorability is hurt by the massive Romney negative TV ad blitz etc. If the economy improves to reasonably well-performing by 2016, Obama will leave office as a well liked President. That means Hillary can easily say 'that was my administration' rather than run away from Obama like Gore did in 2000

Obamacare survival. I think it already enjoys a clear majority of US voter support, which will only get stronger as more benefits come online, it won't be gone any more than Social Security or Medicare..

But overplay their hand, yes, that is a definite danger, however, it is not a big danger as long as they don't control all three. As to pulling a Clinton, I trust Obama is the meticulous student constantly learning, as we've seen time and again, and his close association with Bill Clinton will give him ample opportunity to learn how to do the Clinton, but likely in 'Obama style' haha..


Tomi Ahonen :-)


Clinton wasn't unpopular at all. Al Gore and Bill Clinton never particularly cared for each other. If anything, it was Clinton who refused to give Gore more support, rather than Gore running away from Clinton. Up until the debates, Gore was leading.

Most polls show that Obamacare isn't very popular. Unlike Medicare and Social Security, Obamacare doesn't directly provide a new benefit. Like Dodd-Frank, it makes existing players more dominant and fails to address the key problems facing the system (which relate primarily to cost). It will put more people into Medicaid, which is an awful, massively underfunded system. More employers will stop providing health insurance, and the states are dragging their heels on setting up the "exchanges," (which offer one-size-fits-no-one packages). Even Illinois, a solidly Democratic state with only two Republicans elected statewide in 2010, has yet to set up an exchange.

You also confuse approval with likability. While 50% may "approve" of the president right now (Romney also scores similarly), that doesn't translate into likeability. The percentage of the population who strongly dislikes Obama is far greater than the percentage who strongly disliked Clinton. Even Clinton's critics acknowledged his ability to make a deal. At his core, Clinton was a moderate deal maker. Obama is neither moderate by American standards nor a deal maker. He barely got his own bills through when he had super-majorities, and he botched the debt ceiling deal last year (Boehner had supposedly agreed to $400 billion in tax increases and had an agreement in principle with Harry Reid when Obama scuttled the deal by asking for another $800 billion). IOW, he doesn't know when to say Yes to the deal.

I don't think Obama really is a meticulous student. He's just very good at playing a system. He played the delegate system like a violin in 2008 (Hillary Clinton actually won the popular vote in the primaries). He didn't need to play the system in the fall of 2008 because he rode a wave, but his 2012 general election campaign looks a lot like his 2008 primary campaign.


The only way President Obama could win Texas is if he had the same dermatologist as Michael Jackson. Sorry, but calling Texans "right" leaning understates the magnitude of the racist agenda in that "country"...especially when you venture outside of urban areas and other places where they have... ... ...indoor plumbing.


I wonder if this voting machine was made by the same company that Mitt Romney's son's hedge fund owns:


@Stoli, racism is far more prevalent in the North than the South. The most racially segregated cities in the US are Milwaukee, Chicago, and New York. It is driven by housing policies set up in the 1960s and 1970s by northern Democrats keen on attracting a solid voter base. Reagan managed to win over the mostly white, blue collar northern Democrats in 1980 and 1984 (the "Reagan Democrats"), as did Bush I in 1988, but they returned to the Democratic fold under Clinton, a Southern Democrat. There was a popular notion in 2008 that Obama might similarly create an "Obama Republican" class made up of socially-liberal Republicans fed up with the base, but his rejection of Olympia Snowe's overtures in 2009 and his governing style when Democrats had the majority turned most of them off. There are a lot more than you realize, and plenty R-leaning voters who consider themselves "independents" because of the party's stance on social issues.

Texas will stay red this election, but it is trending purple as the Latino population increases. That's the GOP's long term challenge, which even George W. Bush understood, but which isn't getting much traction yet within the party.

Andrew S

Wayne: isn't it amazing how successful the United States is despite having such a poor educational system? Makes you wonder...maybe all those stories about the US school system aren't quite right.

Tomi: I'm surprised that you claim to know the "real philosophy" of Mitt Romney. I for one, after hearing him for years, still have no idea what he stands for. That is where he completely failed. In trying to be the anything-but-Obama candidate (the one that polled better than any of the actual Rep. candidates) he turned into the nothing candidate. Complete and utter failure to show any form of leadership or plan.

I'm not sure if the Republicans will go back to the Reagan direction. Reagan was the only president who was a union member and president, and came out of Hollywood. Unless Arnold Schwarzenegger returns as a US-native citizen, it's not happening.

Wayne Borean

Andrew S.


Why don't Canadian companies hire recent American engineering graduates? Because you have to educate them before you can pit them to work. British, Polish, French, and German engineers find a wide open job market because of that.

Let the American get ten or fifteen years of experience under their belt, and the advantage shrinks. So what we do is let them make their mistakes for American companies...

They aren't stupid, just under-educated.

FYI, I'm reading Terry Jones' book "The Barbarians" while I watch the returns. The description of the Roman Empire in the book is a lot like the United States. Get the book and read it, it'll blow your mind.


Have you seen today's Dilbert?



Well it is at 290 with FL and VA still out. Obama looks like he will win them popular vote too. I guess the state polls were right.


The Establishment GOP candidate lost the presidency and the social conservatives cost them the Senate. That said, if not for their positions on immigration and abortion they might have pulled it out (at least the Senate). There is a fiscal cliff to deal with next month. How Speaker Boehner plays it will set the tone for the next two years. Obama is in no mood to compromise but that might work against him. Brokering a grand bargain would help his legacy.


I was wrong about the election. Sad day for the USA. The real change is about to arrive.


One curious detail in this blog post: Why won't Biden run for president in 2016?

My personal opinion of Obama plunged into disapproval when he selected Biden as his vice presidential candidate back in 2008. Biden is not very likable, and he's a major Intellectual Property maximalist. But that doesn't mean he won't run.


"I was wrong about the election. Sad day for the USA. The real change is about to arrive."

In 2008 there was a lot of non-sense about Obama being a covert Muslim who would destroy America for the sake of Islam and communism. Nothing seems to have happened along these lines, but neither has anything changed in their opinions.

Even having seen him in action for four years, Obama's opponents still promise the world the total apocalypse and annihilation of the USA.

(I should stop watching Fox News ;-) )


The GOP will have to make some serious introspection. It seems their voter suppression tactics have failed and are making people more resolved in getting out to vote. And attempts to to take over the legal branch of the states have also been blocked by voters in, eg, Florida. So, it will be broadening the base of the party or go down.

Voter Suppression Tactics Backfire on GOP, Galvanizing Voters' Resolve

Next time, the demographics will have shifted somewhat more again against the current leadership. If they could not deter democrats from voting this time, their chances of doing so will even be slimmer next time.

And the Democrats have four years to smack down on such voter suppression tactics with clear popular consent.


It really does not matter who actually wins the elections since it is all a farce. Both candidates come from the same political spectrum with the faces. Their seemingly separate political agenda will not impact the average citizen, save perhaps by creating more rift along the unimportant issues such as abortion or gay rights.


"save perhaps by creating more rift along the unimportant issues such as abortion or gay rights."

Depends on whether you are a woman, or have a daughter, or if you are gay. Then these rights can be life-changing.


Well, once again Tomi gets his numbers right. With Florida taking a long time to count but not being critical to the election result, Obama has over 300 EC votes for definite, and has also apparently won the Senate and the popular vote. That is a strong mandate which he can hopefully use to convince the House to be more cooperative. Tomi correctly predicted this despite the narrow margins on the polls and many unknown factors. Not many predictors can pull that sort of thing off consistently.

I do hope that the lesson of social conservative extremism being a losing bet is learned thoroughly by all concerned. Republicans are currently a laughing-stock over here because of it, largely replacing their being a laughing-stock because of Dubya Bush. We do have socially conservative parties in Finland as well, but due to the multi-party political system (fully FIVE major parties got broadly even support in Helsinki in the recent municipal election) they don't get as big a voice as they can in America. Their ideas are heard, discussed, and largely rejected, or at least diverted to a more positive end by inspiring less extreme suggestions.

The trouble with a two-party system is that voters can only express their views along one political axis at a time. That's a fundamental mathematical fact. In the past that has usually been the fiscal axis (tax-spend or small-govt), or the foreign policy axis (isolation or intervention) - this year it was the social axis (progression or tradition) that won it. A multi-party system would allow selection on multiple axes at the same time - fiscal conservatism, social progression and foreign policy moderation could all by voted for at the same time.

Tiago Silva

The information on the nitty-gritty of the data-crunching that allowed Chicago to win (and know it was going to win) is coming out, Tomi!



You said that Canadians wouldn't vote either for Obama or for Romney because both are too "right wing".

How do you explain they elected Stephen Harper, who isn't really left wing (he's actually worse than anything USA had to face)?

@KPOM: You're right about the fact Canada is a true capitalist country. Of course, there is some state run social/healthcare, but it doesn't work well (in QC, where I live, average time to get a doctor is about 17 hours, but I'm lucky as I've never had to wait more than 5 hours).

I would accept it if taxes, which are supposed to pay all that, weren't that high. Although Canada is in North-America, and tend to copy anything USA do, I've never paid that much, neither in France, nor in Finland

Wayne Borean


First, I should mention that I know several Members of Parliament, though curiously I've never meet my own. Unfortunately I live in one of the larger ridings, Nipissing-Temiskaming, right along the northern border (we often shop in Quebec), and our MP seems to spend most of his time in the south...

Second, we have to define Conservative. If you look the word up in the dictionary, it says nothing about wasting money by propping up corporations. In my opinion Stephen Harper is more of a Corporate Facist than a Conservative.

Conservatism has nothing to do with making other people live by your social rules, instead it is about making sure that changes to society happen in a slow and measured way, so that society doesn't suffer damage.

Harper is not a Conservative.

I've been pushing people to get involved in the party, to bring it back to what it should be. The MPs that I've mentioned this to are not sure it will work. In fact at least one of them thinks I'm crazy.

But everyone already knows that. I predicted that Microsoft will file for Chapter 11 Bankruptcy Protection in the USA in another couple of years (based on reading their financial reports).




Congrats on pretty much nailing the electoral outcome. Some predictions on my part. If Hillary Clinton prepares for a presidential run (with Obama's blessing), she may get another major cabinet assignment (DoE or DoI) to lead major efforts like infrastructure or alternative energy programs over the next 4 years. I believe a lot of money will find its way into these areas during Obama's second term and it is here where she can have impact that will visibly benefit the middle class constituency. If she opts out of a 2016 run, then it's more likely that she gets nominated to the SCOTUS. Biden will retire after 2016 and do something like work for a charitable trust or global initiative (Clinton, Carter, Obama, etc.). As for Michelle Obama, I doubt she will fully jump into a political roll until her kids are a little older (16+) and at least 2 years after leaving the WH. Upon leaving the WH, I think she will run for Gov. of Illinois or Mayor of Chicago; an executive leadership position. After that, a run for the Senate (if Gov.) or possibly House (if Mayor). She would be in her 60's at that point; an experienced and loved national figure who would be well positioned to run for the nation's highest office.

Wayne Borean

I posted admitting that I blew the percent of the popular vote call.

In the post I also explained why I believe the number of white middle class voters dropped. Comments anyone?


Tomi T Ahonen

Hi everyone

Thanks for great discussion here. I have already returned my blog to the normal topics of tech, media and mobile, but I'll return with one last look at the Obama-Romney election, with my final analysis of where it was decided and how, what the Exit Polls and other data like turnout mean, and how the battle was won. I have been drafting that blog, but I do want to do it one posting only, so I wait for the Florida decision and for the actual vote count to near 100% in most states, before I do my final posting. I think many of you may find it interesting...

Tomi Ahonen :-)

Verify your Comment

Previewing your Comment

This is only a preview. Your comment has not yet been posted.

Your comment could not be posted. Error type:
Your comment has been posted. Post another comment

The letters and numbers you entered did not match the image. Please try again.

As a final step before posting your comment, enter the letters and numbers you see in the image below. This prevents automated programs from posting comments.

Having trouble reading this image? View an alternate.


Post a comment

Your Information

(Name is required. Email address will not be displayed with the comment.)

Available for Consulting and Speakerships

  • Available for Consulting & Speaking
    Tomi Ahonen is a bestselling author whose twelve books on mobile have already been referenced in over 100 books by his peers. Rated the most influential expert in mobile by Forbes in December 2011, Tomi speaks regularly at conferences doing about 20 public speakerships annually. With over 250 public speaking engagements, Tomi been seen by a cumulative audience of over 100,000 people on all six inhabited continents. The former Nokia executive has run a consulting practise on digital convergence, interactive media, engagement marketing, high tech and next generation mobile. Tomi is currently based out of Hong Kong but supports Fortune 500 sized companies across the globe. His reference client list includes Axiata, Bank of America, BBC, BNP Paribas, China Mobile, Emap, Ericsson, Google, Hewlett-Packard, HSBC, IBM, Intel, LG, MTS, Nokia, NTT DoCoMo, Ogilvy, Orange, RIM, Sanomamedia, Telenor, TeliaSonera, Three, Tigo, Vodafone, etc. To see his full bio and his books, visit Tomi Ahonen lectures at Oxford University's short courses on next generation mobile and digital convergence. Follow him on Twitter as @tomiahonen. Tomi also has a Facebook and Linked In page under his own name. He is available for consulting, speaking engagements and as expert witness, please write to tomi (at) tomiahonen (dot) com

Tomi's eBooks on Mobile Pearls

  • Pearls Vol 1: Mobile Advertising
    Tomi's first eBook is 171 pages with 50 case studies of real cases of mobile advertising and marketing in 19 countries on four continents. See this link for the only place where you can order the eBook for download

Tomi Ahonen Almanac 2009

  • Tomi Ahonen Almanac 2009
    A comprehensive statistical review of the total mobile industry, in 171 pages, has 70 tables and charts, and fits on your smartphone to carry in your pocket every day.

Alan's Third Book: No Straight Lines

Tomi's Fave Twitterati