Posted in Politics

Voter Turnout Predictions

Nate Silver and Cass Sunstein predict that there will be low voter turnout this year. Sunstein estimates that only a bit over half the voting-age population will cast a ballot this year. There are certainly some compelling arguments for Sunstein and Silver’s theory. Trump’s ground game deficit, the decreasing competitiveness of the race, and the lack of enthusiasm among voters are all factors that point to a low-turnout election.

But they are wrong. Continue reading “Voter Turnout Predictions”

Posted in Politics

Have You Registered To Vote?

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I know this isn’t quite right, but they don’t give out “I registered to Vote Today” stickers.

I just logged in, planning to post some lovely photos I took recently. Those will have to wait because wordpress distracted me. They asked me if I’d like to put an app on my blog that will remind US visitors to register to vote. I’ve done it.

I’ve always thought that voting is important. This year it is so much more important. Continue reading “Have You Registered To Vote?”

Posted in Politics

Don’t Panic: Clinton is Going to Win

“Donald Trump’s presidency could be a real possibility,” lamented Hillary Clinton’s campaign manager in a fundraising email send out after Clinton’s poll numbers started sliding. News outlets are incessantly reporting that the latest polls reflect a tightening in the race between Trump and Clinton and that one recent CNN/ORC poll showed Trump had taken the lead. Nate Silver, who became famous for applying sabermetrics to politics, today announced that he considers the presidential race “highly competitive.”

In contrast, we hear some in the media reassuring us that now is not the time to panic. Statisticians add their calm, steady voices to the small chorus of writers—such as Jeet Heer at the New Republic and Greg Sargent at the Washington Post—who are trying to soothe us. The scholars behind the Princeton Election Consortium still have the odds at better than 4:1 in favor of Clinton.

Are these writers and scholars who try to pacify the nervous public right? Should we instead listen to the over-simplified headlines, the self-interested campaign operatives, and the morning show pundits?

Did my naming-calling give away my answer?

We should listen to the measured, reasoned arguments of those listed in the former group. Not because they claim some authority with their sophisticated equations—though that is a fine reason. Not even because they average polls together in order to give a big picture view of the race—this is a good reason, too. The best reason to listen to them is that history proves they are right. Continue reading “Don’t Panic: Clinton is Going to Win”

Social Media, Terrorism, Guns, and Trump

This short rant was going to go on Facebook, but I thought my blog was a better forum than my cousin’s Facebook feed.

I’m sick and tired of people downplaying legitimate concern over terrorist attacks because gun crimes are more common or because Donald Trump is a racist. Both those things are true, but the fact that many people fear terrorism isn’t as stupid and racist as memes make it out to be. Continue reading “Social Media, Terrorism, Guns, and Trump”

Posted in Politics

Trump and Sanders: Two Sides of the Same Coin

I know this is a bit late; I wrote it in a bit of a hurry and kept meaning to come back and proof read it. I was just going to trash it, but I am rather pleased with some of my points and seeing as Bernie Sanders has not properly dropped out of the race, I’m going to post it anyway. Better late than never, right?

Donald Trump and Bernie Sanders aren’t all that different.

Continue reading “Trump and Sanders: Two Sides of the Same Coin”

Posted in Politics

Why I’d Vote to Remain in the EU

You’ve probably heard that Brexit nearly upon us. For those of you who don’t know, “Brexit” is the silly-sounding term that is being used to describe the British referendum on whether or not to leave the EU. The vote will be on June 23rd, so hopefully we will stop hearing the word “Brexit” very soon! Regardless of the absurdity of the term, Brexit is a serious issue. I don’t have a dog in the fight so I was going to keep quiet. But I can’t any more. (And because I decided to speak out on the eve of voting, I may not be as coherent in my ranting as usual. Sorry!) Continue reading “Why I’d Vote to Remain in the EU”

Posted in Politics

They Should Have Asked Us

The other day at the office I was reading an op ed in the New York Times in which Nate Cohn more or less apologized for the institutional failure that resulted in the media thinking Trump would never be a serious contender for the Republican nomination. He cited various reasons for this oversight from the unusual timetable for voting to the obscene number of candidates to the–apparently inaccurate–assumption that the party decides. Continue reading “They Should Have Asked Us”

Posted in Politics

Every Day is “Big Block of Cheese Day”

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I think now is as a good a time as any to start with the politics side of things. So let’s start with my a topic inspired by favorite political drama…

As Aaron Sorkin explains to us during the first season of “The West Wing,” Andrew Jackson had, in the lobby of his White House, a big block of cheese. He would let anyone who was hungry come and eat it. Continue reading “Every Day is “Big Block of Cheese Day””