According to Andrew Prokop at Vox, it’s now time to start taking polls seriously. And, it seems this spells trouble for Donald Trump.
But even following Prokop’s logic, his conclusion that Donald Trump is in trouble in the polls is a bit less meaningful than he makes it seem. First, while polls allegedly become more meaningful at this point in the campaign, they’re barely on the cusp of doing so. Which means they’re still in that fuzzy area between alleged meaninglessness and alleged meaningfulness. But second, as Prokop noted, there’s still much that can happen. And in a campaign season as unusual as this one, that introduces a great deal more uncertainty. Pundits have been wrong a lot more often this time and we probably can expect that they will continue to be so. Read more
Today, the New York Times, apparently sensing a threat to its endorsed candidate for the Democratic Party presidential nomination, mounted a defense of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), which came into force under Hillary Clinton’s husband’s presidency.
To understand much of what’s going on here, it’s important to understand the theory of comparative advantage. Think of it as a national or regional version of specialized labor. Read more
It’s really beginning to look like the general election contest will be between Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump.
There’s still a lot that can go wrong. Hillary Clinton might, for instance, be indicted for mishandling classified material on her home email server. Conservatives, especially authoritarian populists, seem convinced this will in fact happen. Democrats, especially those in Clinton’s entourage, seem just as certain that it won’t. And the one thing I can promise you is that if Clinton is elected president, we won’t stop hearing about her, as Bernie Sanders put it, ‘damn emails’ for as long as she’s in office, any more than we’re finished hearing about Benghazi. Read more
It was a terribly wrong turn my father steered me on as he encouraged my interest in computers. I can say that with confidence, now that I’ve bounced out of the high technology field three times and landed hard on my ass each time. It’s simply not the right field for me.
But I did learn something about technology and I keep something of a hand in by hosting my own web sites, email, and other services to the maximum extent I can manage. One of the more important lessons is that there are patterns of thought applicable with computers that are not applicable elsewhere; in my personal experience, the sequential and binary logic intensely needed for programming was incompatible with normal human conversations with normal human beings. I lasted about six years before burning out and I’ve heard this is typical: Programmers need to be promoted to higher-level positions to remain productive; instead, I wound up out on my ass. Read more
Based on early polling, supporters of Bernie Sanders in the 2016 primary campaign claim that he would be more electable than Hillary Clinton in the general election. Such polling may not be a reliable indication of general election outcomes for a number of reasons, but it’s getting hard to keep track of all the reasons why Sanders’ claimed advantage in electability may merely be damnation by faint praise and even as the mainstream media seem to be dismissing Sanders’ chances, progressives and even some not-so-progressives are pushing back with arguments that amplify and add to the points I began making with this post on January 10, 2016 (updated on January 29, twice on February 29, and on March 6). In addition, while Clinton enjoys considerable support among Blacks, a few have cast doubt on her deservingness of such support. Read more
Right now, it’s the Republican Party establishment (functionalist conservatives) that’s tied up in knots over an increasing likelihood that Donald Trump will win the party’s nomination for president in 2016. Though the writing has been on the wall (clearly the wrong way to pass a message to those in power) for a while, they’re only now beginning to figure out what’s gone wrong. Read more