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(National Review)   NRO takes on Nate Silver, and I think we all know how this turns out   (nationalreview.com) divider line 115
    More: Fail, NRO, poll average, electoral colleges, Real Clear Politics, Obama administration  
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3321 clicks; posted to Politics » on 23 Oct 2012 at 1:21 PM (2 years ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2012-10-23 10:25:13 AM  
You have to weight polls. Otherwise you give polls done by the Heritage Foundation as much credence as one by Quinnipiac.
 
2012-10-23 10:27:20 AM  
s. Given the fact that an incumbent president is stuck at 47 percent nationwide, the odds might not be in Obama's favor, and they certainly aren't in his favor by a 67-33 margin.

A perfect encapsulation of conservatism - "yes, science and math are saying one thing, but we all know in our gut that isn't true, and my gut is never wrong."
 
2012-10-23 10:27:43 AM  
"If it doesn't show that our guy is winning, then it is obviously flawed!"
 
2012-10-23 10:36:47 AM  
If this turns out the way Silver predicts, and I think it will, the Republican butthurt will burns for months. I am looking forward to that.
 
2012-10-23 10:38:23 AM  

Ennuipoet: If this turns out the way Silver predicts, and I think it will, the Republican butthurt will burns for months. I am looking forward to that.


The thing is, Romney could easily win and Silver be right. Silver's model doesn't change depending on who wins - it just is. It gives Romney a 1/3 chance of winning right now, which is completely possible. I hope Silver doesn't lose professional standing and credibility if Romney wins, since his current standing is completely deserved.
 
2012-10-23 10:38:59 AM  

Ennuipoet: the Republican butthurt will burns for months.


The problem is that the burning butthurt manifests in the form of every Republican in the House and Senate trying to sabotage the nation so that we all fester in a stinking hellhole of economic ruin and crumbling infrastructure as punishment for our wrong-thinking votes.
 
2012-10-23 11:01:13 AM  

DamnYankees: s. Given the fact that an incumbent president is stuck at 47 percent nationwide, the odds might not be in Obama's favor, and they certainly aren't in his favor by a 67-33 margin.

A perfect encapsulation of conservatism - "yes, science and math are saying one thing, but we all know in our gut that isn't true, and my gut is never wrong."


Here in PA that's been their argument for Voter ID. "Sure there is absolutely zero evidence of in-person voter fraud, but we believe in our hearts of pure gold that it MUST be happening, so the Constitution can gargle hobo sack in this case, even though it's the absolute, infallible Word of Reagan, handed down directly from Jesus on July 4, 1776 in EVERY other case."
 
2012-10-23 11:04:06 AM  
Some note that 2008 was a wave election, where the enthusiasm and underlying fundamentals were so favorable to Obama that the outcome was easy to foresee, with the exception of a few of the GOP-turned-Democratic states such as Indiana and North Carolina where Obama won a razor-thin victory. Others argue that Silver's access to the Obama administration's internal polling gave him information that most other analysts never saw, which allowed him to make more adjustments to his model and increase his accuracy.

There might be something to this, if he were the only one saying the things he's saying. Happily, he's not. Professor Sam Wang at the Princeton Election Consortium says much the same things, and he had an even better record in 08 than Nate Silver.

See, statistics is a science, meaning results should be replicable. But maybe the authors went to one of those schools that only teaches ABSTINENCE AND JESUS!!! in 'science' class, and they never learned that?

/ know a guy on FB who is forever demanding that I *prove* theories so he can believe them...and doesn't seem to get that theories can only be disproven. Yeesh.
 
2012-10-23 11:04:52 AM  

DamnYankees: Ennuipoet: If this turns out the way Silver predicts, and I think it will, the Republican butthurt will burns for months. I am looking forward to that.

The thing is, Romney could easily win and Silver be right. Silver's model doesn't change depending on who wins - it just is. It gives Romney a 1/3 chance of winning right now, which is completely possible. I hope Silver doesn't lose professional standing and credibility if Romney wins, since his current standing is completely deserved.


This.

But, I have to give a little credit (shudder) to this article. Unlike many other articles attacking Nate with basically not much more than "Nate isn't calling this election 50/50 so he must be a liberal shill!", they are making arguments based on polls and statistics to make their point. You can disagree with the points they try to infer from those state polls and stats they would give more credence to than obviously Nate does, but, at least they give some specifics to their arguments that most other GOP articles don't come up with.
 
2012-10-23 11:11:52 AM  

DamnYankees: The thing is, Romney could easily win and Silver be right. Silver's model doesn't change depending on who wins - it just is. It gives Romney a 1/3 chance of winning right now, which is completely possible. I hope Silver doesn't lose professional standing and credibility if Romney wins, since his current standing is completely deserved.


This. There is a difference between probabilities and certainties. The modeling shows up with Romney winning 1/3 of the time. But a 47% poll nationwide obscures regional popularity and doesn't take into account the EC effect.

/Also, your journal sucks ass without William F. Buckley.
 
2012-10-23 11:13:43 AM  

Somacandra: /Also, your journal sucks ass without William F. Buckley.


Considering what passes for "conservative intellectualism" these days if we could harness the power of Buckley spinning in his grave electricity would be one cent per kilowatt decade.
 
2012-10-23 11:23:17 AM  
Others argue that Silver's access to the Obama administration's internal polling gave him information that most other analysts never saw, which allowed him to make more adjustments to his model and increase his accuracy.

You trying to argue Obama's internal polling was the most accurate?

Farking statistical analysis, how does it work?
 
2012-10-23 11:35:53 AM  
But the Gravis poll released Saturday has a nine point advantage in party identification for Democrats - almost double the Democrats' advantage in the 2008 election.

Farking sampling, how does it work?

Silver notes that "Public Policy Polling has lost most of the strong Democratic lean that it had earlier in the cycle." He means that PPP's polling results have tended to favor Obama less than they used to, and thus that the "house effect" of their Democratic tilt has lessened. But this subjective measure fails to take into account the possibility that Romney is doing better among the same samples.

Statistical comparisons of the difference between polling operations is not "subjective," nor is the difference dependent upon shifts in the population's opinion.
 
2012-10-23 11:53:20 AM  
We only have to wait about 2 weeks to see if Silver is correct or not.

I would invite all the Fox News and NROs of the internet to chime in then, to compare what they and Nate Silver are saying. We can look back to this article and its author. See you on November 7th.
 
2012-10-23 11:55:03 AM  

vernonFL: We only have to wait about 2 weeks to see if Silver is correct or not.


No. We can't fall into this trap. Whether Silver is right or not has nothing at all to do with the results of this particular election. His predictions are probablistic, and can only be judged by comparing his predictions with a pool of results and see if his probabilities match reality. You can't simply say he's right or wrong based on a single result which he gives a 33% chance of happening anyway.
 
2012-10-23 11:59:52 AM  
Nate Silver, yesterday: "If you ran RCP state poll averages through the 538 simulation model, it would come out in the same range (65-70% Obama EC win)."


The media outlets are just pissed that Silver isn't playing along with the "it's a dead heat!!! the whole race is a toss-up!!!!" game.
 
2012-10-23 12:18:18 PM  

DamnYankees: No. We can't fall into this trap. Whether Silver is right or not has nothing at all to do with the results of this particular election. His predictions are probablistic, and can only be judged by comparing his predictions with a pool of results and see if his probabilities match reality. You can't simply say he's right or wrong based on a single result which he gives a 33% chance of happening anyway.


Exactly. Let's say Silver gives the following odds for 9 states
1) 66% Obama, 33% Romney
2) 66% Obama, 33% Romney
3) 66% Obama, 33% Romney
4) 66% Obama, 33% Romney
5) 66% Obama, 33% Romney
6) 66% Obama, 33% Romney
7) 66% Obama, 33% Romney
8) 66% Obama, 33% Romney
9) 66% Obama, 33% Romney

If Romney wins 3 of those states, Silver was right.
If Romney wins 0, Silver was "wrong" (there is a 2.6% chance of that happening).

I'm betting most people that don't like Silver's analysis will get that reversed.
 
2012-10-23 01:16:46 PM  

DamnYankees: vernonFL: We only have to wait about 2 weeks to see if Silver is correct or not.

No. We can't fall into this trap. Whether Silver is right or not has nothing at all to do with the results of this particular election. His predictions are probablistic, and can only be judged by comparing his predictions with a pool of results and see if his probabilities match reality. You can't simply say he's right or wrong based on a single result which he gives a 33% chance of happening anyway.


I got a D+ in statistics in college.
 
2012-10-23 01:23:26 PM  
This attack the pollster crap is getting ridiculous
 
2012-10-23 01:25:42 PM  
NRO=SHIAT SHIAT SHIAT SHIAT SHIAT
 
2012-10-23 01:28:56 PM  
Some note

Oh, they do?

Others argue

The Others make a good point.
 
2012-10-23 01:28:58 PM  
Right wingers: the ultimate "STOP LIKING WHAT I DON'T LIKE" idiots.

1-media-cdn.foolz.us

Hell, right wingers are even like "STOP NOT HATING WHAT I HATE!".
 
2012-10-23 01:30:02 PM  

Ennuipoet: If this turns out the way Silver predicts, and I think it will, the Republican butthurt will burns for months. I am looking forward to that.


I am looking forward to giving out many months of Nelson-esqe "HA HA!"s to these clowns.
 
2012-10-23 01:31:09 PM  
But the Gravis poll released Saturday has a nine point advantage in party identification for Democrats - almost double the Democrats' advantage in the 2008 election.

I don't get this complaint. If 60% of a group identify as D and 40% identify as R, that's irrelevant to the validity of the polling because I'm still measuring 100% of the population.
 
2012-10-23 01:33:45 PM  

CPennypacker: This attack the pollster crap is getting ridiculous


I'm bookmarking a lot of articles, anticipating that they will be farking hilarious on November 7.

Like this one, saying that all the polls in September MUST be wrong since Obama is ahead.
 
2012-10-23 01:34:57 PM  

TV's Vinnie: Ennuipoet: If this turns out the way Silver predicts, and I think it will, the Republican butthurt will burns for months. I am looking forward to that.

I am looking forward to giving out many months of Nelson-esqe "HA HA!"s to these clowns.


They're just setting everything up so they can scream "VOTER FRAUD" and "STOLEN ELECTION" if Romney loses.

See, the courts striking down Voter ID laws in swing states is proof of a vast left-wing conspiracy.
 
2012-10-23 01:35:49 PM  

unlikely: The problem is that the burning butthurt manifests in the form of every Republican in the House and Senate trying to sabotage the nation so that we all fester in a stinking hellhole of economic ruin and crumbling infrastructure as punishment for our wrong-thinking votes.


So basically the last 4 years.

America: If we can't have you, nobody can!!

GOP 2008-2016
 
2012-10-23 01:37:43 PM  

impaler: Exactly. Let's say Silver gives the following odds for 9 states
1) 66% Obama, 33% Romney
2) 66% Obama, 33% Romney
3) 66% Obama, 33% Romney
4) 66% Obama, 33% Romney
5) 66% Obama, 33% Romney
6) 66% Obama, 33% Romney
7) 66% Obama, 33% Romney
8) 66% Obama, 33% Romney
9) 66% Obama, 33% Romney

If Romney wins 3 of those states, Silver was right.
If Romney wins 0, Silver was "wrong" (there is a 2.6% chance of that happening).

I'm betting most people that don't like Silver's analysis will get that reversed.


Not exactly. That assumes that they are nine discrete predictions that don't influence one another. Clearly that isn't the case.
 
2012-10-23 01:38:08 PM  
He fixes the cable?
 
2012-10-23 01:42:20 PM  

Mr. Coffee Nerves: DamnYankees: s. Given the fact that an incumbent president is stuck at 47 percent nationwide, the odds might not be in Obama's favor, and they certainly aren't in his favor by a 67-33 margin.

A perfect encapsulation of conservatism - "yes, science and math are saying one thing, but we all know in our gut that isn't true, and my gut is never wrong."

Here in PA that's been their argument for Voter ID. "Sure there is absolutely zero evidence of in-person voter fraud, but we believe in our hearts of pure gold that it MUST be happening, so the Constitution can gargle hobo sack in this case, even though it's the absolute, infallible Word of Reagan, handed down directly from Jesus on July 4, 1776 in EVERY other case."


Thank you for making me laugh harder than I have in awhile. That was funny.
 
2012-10-23 01:42:26 PM  
Ok lets take a test:

Which would you called "skewed data":

A) You take a sample of 2000 people as random as possible you then publish those numbers straight.

B) After taking the data above you take it and refactor it to the party numbers from 2008 or 2004.

Well if your a Republican you call A "skewed" and B "non-skewed".
 
2012-10-23 01:43:08 PM  

shower_in_my_socks: Nate Silver, yesterday: "If you ran RCP state poll averages through the 538 simulation model, it would come out in the same range (65-70% Obama EC win)."


The media outlets are just pissed that Silver isn't playing along with the "it's a dead heat!!! the whole race is a toss-up!!!!" game.


And that their stranglehold on the information no longer exists; thanks to the internet, far more people are aware of how full of shiat they are than would ever be otherwise.

The TV media's behavior makes perfect sense if you consider the dilution of the audience across the cable channels, and the fact that they're one step shy of irrelevance and disappearing, similar to print media. People like Silver accelerate the process.

(I said it made sense, not that it wasn't utterly contemptible)
 
2012-10-23 01:44:10 PM  

Rapmaster2000: But the Gravis poll released Saturday has a nine point advantage in party identification for Democrats - almost double the Democrats' advantage in the 2008 election.

I don't get this complaint. If 60% of a group identify as D and 40% identify as R, that's irrelevant to the validity of the polling because I'm still measuring 100% of the population.


Incorrect, in Republican methodology 60% should be thrown out because COMMUNIST JESUS!
 
2012-10-23 01:45:26 PM  

impaler: DamnYankees: No. We can't fall into this trap. Whether Silver is right or not has nothing at all to do with the results of this particular election. His predictions are probablistic, and can only be judged by comparing his predictions with a pool of results and see if his probabilities match reality. You can't simply say he's right or wrong based on a single result which he gives a 33% chance of happening anyway.

Exactly. Let's say Silver gives the following odds for 9 states
1) 66% Obama, 33% Romney
2) 66% Obama, 33% Romney
3) 66% Obama, 33% Romney
4) 66% Obama, 33% Romney
5) 66% Obama, 33% Romney
6) 66% Obama, 33% Romney
7) 66% Obama, 33% Romney
8) 66% Obama, 33% Romney
9) 66% Obama, 33% Romney

If Romney wins 3 of those states, Silver was right.
If Romney wins 0, Silver was "wrong" (there is a 2.6% chance of that happening).

I'm betting most people that don't like Silver's analysis will get that reversed.


That's only true if the probabilities are independent. Nate continually has to make the point that state-by-state probabilities are strongly non-independent: knowing (in this case) the national popular vote will predict the state-by-state vote shares quite closely.
 
2012-10-23 01:49:49 PM  

vernonFL: We only have to wait about 2 weeks to see if Silver is correct or not.

I would invite all the Fox News and NROs of the internet to chime in then, to compare what they and Nate Silver are saying. We can look back to this article and its author. See you on November 7th.


2 WEEKS....

25.media.tumblr.com
 
2012-10-23 01:50:46 PM  

Mr. Coffee Nerves: DamnYankees: s. Given the fact that an incumbent president is stuck at 47 percent nationwide, the odds might not be in Obama's favor, and they certainly aren't in his favor by a 67-33 margin.

A perfect encapsulation of conservatism - "yes, science and math are saying one thing, but we all know in our gut that isn't true, and my gut is never wrong."

Here in PA that's been their argument for Voter ID. "Sure there is absolutely zero evidence of in-person voter fraud, but we believe in our hearts of pure gold that it MUST be happening, so the Constitution can gargle hobo sack in this case, even though it's the absolute, infallible Word of Reagan, handed down directly from Jesus on July 4, 1776 in EVERY other case."


My argument against Voter ID is that if you are too inept to obtain some sort of ID, I don't want you voting for President. But that will never be a passable reason.

But anyway, back to the article on hand-I think Silver is a very smart guy who is accurate with the data he has, but I just don't know how much credence we can give any poll numbers at this point. I mean the average response rate is 9%. We don't have enough information to know if the 9% properly represents the 91% who tell the pollsters to fark off. I would wager its not a proper representation, even if I have no idea if it would skew right or left.
 
2012-10-23 01:51:07 PM  
the real question is...Are you scared yet?
 
2012-10-23 01:51:12 PM  

Rapmaster2000: But the Gravis poll released Saturday has a nine point advantage in party identification for Democrats - almost double the Democrats' advantage in the 2008 election.

I don't get this complaint. If 60% of a group identify as D and 40% identify as R, that's irrelevant to the validity of the polling because I'm still measuring 100% of the population.


They think that party identification is a demographic identifier rather than a dependent variable. Once a Republican, always a Republican. That has historically not been the case, which is why "unskewing" polls uses the 2010 D/R/I split rather than the 2008 one (because using the 2008 one would show different results). Hilariously, anyone who defends "unskewing" using 2010 splits is either stupid, lying or evil because of this fact.
 
2012-10-23 01:51:38 PM  

Rapmaster2000: But the Gravis poll released Saturday has a nine point advantage in party identification for Democrats - almost double the Democrats' advantage in the 2008 election.

I don't get this complaint. If 60% of a group identify as D and 40% identify as R, that's irrelevant to the validity of the polling because I'm still measuring 100% of the population.


The Republicans have long been under the impression that they are a majority or at least half of the population. When in fact, there are more Democrats and even more Independents than there are Republicans.

Which lends credence to the theory that Republicans apparently live in the alternate-reality called Bullshiat Mountain.
 
2012-10-23 01:51:39 PM  

Jjaro: But anyway, back to the article on hand-I think Silver is a very smart guy who is accurate with the data he has, but I just don't know how much credence we can give any poll numbers at this point. I mean the average response rate is 9%. We don't have enough information to know if the 9% properly represents the 91% who tell the pollsters to fark off. I would wager its not a proper representation, even if I have no idea if it would skew right or left.


So how do you explain his track record of success?
 
2012-10-23 01:51:47 PM  

Jjaro: Mr. Coffee Nerves: DamnYankees: s. Given the fact that an incumbent president is stuck at 47 percent nationwide, the odds might not be in Obama's favor, and they certainly aren't in his favor by a 67-33 margin.

A perfect encapsulation of conservatism - "yes, science and math are saying one thing, but we all know in our gut that isn't true, and my gut is never wrong."

Here in PA that's been their argument for Voter ID. "Sure there is absolutely zero evidence of in-person voter fraud, but we believe in our hearts of pure gold that it MUST be happening, so the Constitution can gargle hobo sack in this case, even though it's the absolute, infallible Word of Reagan, handed down directly from Jesus on July 4, 1776 in EVERY other case."

My argument against Voter ID is that if you are too inept to obtain some sort of ID, I don't want you voting for President. But that will never be a passable reason.

But anyway, back to the article on hand-I think Silver is a very smart guy who is accurate with the data he has, but I just don't know how much credence we can give any poll numbers at this point. I mean the average response rate is 9%. We don't have enough information to know if the 9% properly represents the 91% who tell the pollsters to fark off. I would wager its not a proper representation, even if I have no idea if it would skew right or left.


Jjaro: Mr. Coffee Nerves: DamnYankees: s. Given the fact that an incumbent president is stuck at 47 percent nationwide, the odds might not be in Obama's favor, and they certainly aren't in his favor by a 67-33 margin.

A perfect encapsulation of conservatism - "yes, science and math are saying one thing, but we all know in our gut that isn't true, and my gut is never wrong."

Here in PA that's been their argument for Voter ID. "Sure there is absolutely zero evidence of in-person voter fraud, but we believe in our hearts of pure gold that it MUST be happening, so the Constitution can gargle hobo sack in this case, even though it's the absolute, infallible Word of Reagan, handed down directly from Jesus on July 4, 1776 in EVERY other case."

My argument against Voter ID is that if you are too inept to obtain some sort of ID, I don't want you voting for President. But that will never be a passable reason.

But anyway, back to the article on hand-I think Silver is a very smart guy who is accurate with the data he has, but I just don't know how much credence we can give any poll numbers at this point. I mean the average response rate is 9%. We don't have enough information to know if the 9% properly represents the 91% who tell the pollsters to fark off. I would wager its not a proper representation, even if I have no idea if it would skew right or left.


I mean "argument for Voter ID," obviously.
 
2012-10-23 02:00:11 PM  

DamnYankees: So how do you explain his track record of success?


He's a wizard. Duh.
 
2012-10-23 02:00:22 PM  
I just don't understand all the biatching about the accuracy of the polls. Do people really thing the outcome of the election is going to be affected by how accurate the polls are? That makes no farking sense at all.

Frankly, it seems to be that, for any candidate, it would be much worse for their chances of winning to be over-estimated because that would just create a false sense of security. As an Obama supporter, I actually tend to feel worse when I see my guy pulling ahead in the polls because it sounds too good to be true. Being underestimated by the Democrats actually tends to work out quite favorably for Republicans, who have mastered the art of victimhood. If polls show Romney tied or winning, how are they supposed to play the role of the poor, unappreciated outsider?
 
2012-10-23 02:06:06 PM  

rufus-t-firefly: TV's Vinnie: Ennuipoet: If this turns out the way Silver predicts, and I think it will, the Republican butthurt will burns for months. I am looking forward to that.

I am looking forward to giving out many months of Nelson-esqe "HA HA!"s to these clowns.

They're just setting everything up so they can scream "VOTER FRAUD" and "STOLEN ELECTION" if Romney loses.

See, the courts striking down Voter ID laws in swing states is proof of a vast left-wing conspiracy.


Exactly. The whole "unskewing" of polls is simply the first step in delegitimizing Obama's second term. It's the new birtherism.
 
2012-10-23 02:08:41 PM  

vernonFL: DamnYankees: vernonFL: We only have to wait about 2 weeks to see if Silver is correct or not.

No. We can't fall into this trap. Whether Silver is right or not has nothing at all to do with the results of this particular election. His predictions are probablistic, and can only be judged by comparing his predictions with a pool of results and see if his probabilities match reality. You can't simply say he's right or wrong based on a single result which he gives a 33% chance of happening anyway.

I got a D+ in statistics in college.


I had a friend in college who failed intro to prob & stats three times in a row. He said he didn't believe in probability. I never did figure that one out; he definitely wasn't a Calvinist, but we could have long arguments about goddamn coin flipping.
 
2012-10-23 02:09:44 PM  

Rapmaster2000: But the Gravis poll released Saturday has a nine point advantage in party identification for Democrats - almost double the Democrats' advantage in the 2008 election.

I don't get this complaint. If 60% of a group identify as D and 40% identify as R, that's irrelevant to the validity of the polling because I'm still measuring 100% of the population.


We have empirical data (voter registrations) and a shiatload of past polling data which give us a pretty good idea of what the D/R split should be. If you take a poll, and the sample is suddenly 42/25 instead of 32/28, you have to accept one of two realities. Either 10% of the population has suddenly jumped to identifying themselves as Democrat, or there's a problem with your methodology such that your interviewers reached a disproportionately high number of Democrats.
 
2012-10-23 02:10:31 PM  

Ennuipoet: If this turns out the way Silver predicts, and I think it will, the Republican butthurt will burns for months. I am looking forward to that.


Months?? Where have you been the last three and a half years? IT'S NEVER STOPPED!
 
2012-10-23 02:11:17 PM  

Corvus: Ok lets take a test:

Which would you called "skewed data":

A) You take a sample of 2000 people as random as possible you then publish those numbers straight.

B) After taking the data above you take it and refactor it to the party numbers from 2008 or 2004.

Well if your a Republican you call A "skewed" and B "non-skewed".


I thought it was the opposite... or at least the GOP doesn't agree with the refactoring %'s that some of the pollsters use.
 
2012-10-23 02:11:27 PM  

blahpers: He said he didn't believe in probability.


Did he always check if gravity worked in the morning when he woke up?
 
2012-10-23 02:16:39 PM  

Cataholic: We have empirical data (voter registrations) and a shiatload of past polling data which give us a pretty good idea of what the D/R split should be. If you take a poll, and the sample is suddenly 42/25 instead of 32/28, you have to accept one of two realities. Either 10% of the population has suddenly jumped to identifying themselves as Democrat, or there's a problem with your methodology such that your interviewers reached a disproportionately high number of Democrats.


Are they weighting the responses?
 
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