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The most interesting question here IMO is: Which kinds of compound relations have political salience?
I would imagine that buying your house from a person who had a personal relationship with the candidate would have not have any appreciable impact on voting behavior or political ideology. Does the relation "buying a house from" or any compound relation stemming from that direct relation have any impact on one's politics? Does it make your politics more similar to Palin's than they otherwise be? Or do you find yourself more likely to vote for her on account of your closeness? OTOH if you were close friends with someone who had been intimate with her that seems more likely to matter. Also the direction of that impact, of each relation, could be either positive or negative.
Timing would seem to be a factor. Your relation to the house seller is in the past, and his relation to Palin is in the past, so you only have a Palin number of 2 if you consider relations in cumulative time. Wouldn't your current Palin number matter more?
I used to be 2 steps from Jesse Ventura, and when I was there was some minor active political influence that came across those two links, but now my Ventura number must be at least 3, and I no longer get that active political influence. I'm no longer even sure what the path distance may be. Across all time my Ventura number would still be two, but clearly the impact has changed.
From: Social Networks Discussion Forum [mailto:[log in to unmask]] On Behalf Of James Fowler
Sent: Monday, September 15, 2008 1:16 AM
To: [log in to unmask]
Subject: me, Paul Erdos, and Sara Palin
I bought my house from a man who kissed Sara Palin.
All sorts of interesting questions arise.
*In high school was Palin as prolific in "collaborating" as Erdos was
*Could this be a factor behind "the Palin bump?"
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