I haven't blogged about Iowa. Why? Partly because I was in Japan last week, and partly because I would like to put Iowa in proper context by ignoring Iowa.
Going first does not mean that Iowa selects the winners. It does mean we get folks pandering to farmers, which is so good for the national interest except that it is awful in pretty much every way. Otherwise, Iowa's impact is to affect the funders--who should they stop betting on? Jeb! should be gone soon since his performance was pathetic, but this generation of his family has a shallow learning curve. Rand has already gotten out. The rest of the field should clear out, leaving the oh-so-joyful triumvirate of Trump, Rubio and Cruz. Lovely.
The GOP outcome only proves slightly less than the Dem outcome that this is all about expectations and the sports-like punditry. I get driven crazy during various playoffs, where the opinions flip after every game if the outcome is different from game to game. It might just be that a three point outcome in one basketball game should not shift expectations that much. Well, the same here: if this were a poll, all of the results are solidly in the margin of error. The closeness of the results really means we cannot read much in the way of momentum or anything about the outcomes elsewhere (especially since Iowa is not representative of anything and its caucus system is certainly not the normal way delegates are distributed).
I have to run to class, but my major point I'd like to make about Iowa is: so glad it is over and let's not think too much about its meaning. On to NH, another not so representative state that also does not pick winners but does help to pick losers. Once NH is over, the awful ads that we sometimes get via our Canadian feeds will disappear for a while, and that will be progress.