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May 30, 2016, 01:55:15 am
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1  Other Elections - Analysis and Discussion / International Elections / Re: World's most demented electoral system? on: May 28, 2016, 11:16:08 am
I feel you should only be allowed to suggest a system if you also explain how it works/ed. Tongue

I heard the system for Malaysian local elections was insane but it may be an apocryphal story.
2  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: Reaction to a Trump nomination from the governments of US’s Western allies on: May 28, 2016, 08:26:27 am
It was more a question of whether these leaders might have to dispense with even the pretense of neutrality in order to appease their own domestic electorates.

yes, of course.  I think it's fairly predictable.  If your job depends upon getting millions of people to renew your contract every few years, then your job description quickly becomes word-merchant. 

Trump just so toxic

toxicity is such a fleeting thing in politics.  In December, Lindsey Graham called Trump a "race-baiting, xenophobic bigot... who doesn't represent my party and doesn't represent the values that our men and women who wear the uniform are fighting for."  Yesterday he urged Republicans to support Trump.  Go figure. 

I don't know much about David Cameron and I haven't visited the UK, but I've worked in Amsterdam and in Germany and had many discussions with people about US politics.  Bush was never popular there, and neither was Reagan.  Gerhard Schröder was an outspoken critic of Bush both during and after the 2000 election.  I think Schröder thought Bush was nuts--really nuts--even to the point of not being able to think of anything else to say except impugn Bush, at length, once it was clear that his red-green coalition lost to Merckel's in 2005.   

Let's say Trump announces tomorrow that he's going to be visiting a few European countries next month, in the same spirit that Romney did four years ago and Obama did eight years ago. 

I never figured out why anyone would go on world tour while applying for a job.  Seems anachronistic.  Seeking a job is a full-time job, especially if you're trying to get elected president.  You visit foreign leaders after you become president.  Or, more likely, you summon them to your office.  If Trump wanted to visit somebody like Pope Francis this summer, probably he'd get an audience, because the pope is a very nice guy, and because he got elected to his seat for life.  If Trump wanted to visit someone like Mark Rutte, I imagine that Rutte will be nice to Trump while Trump is there.  Trump would probably say all sorts of nice things about Rutte as well.  In fact, if Trump had any policy knowledge, he'd probably praise the VVD generally.  I'm not sure about Cameron.  Not only because I know less of British politics generally, but because of what I do know about them, which is that Cameron is in a very tenuous position.  Cameron has favorability ratings on par with people like Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump and Robert Mugabe.  Also, they have the referendum coming up.  Trump is a headache that might not appeal to David Cameron at the moment.   I don't think it's a snub.  It's just, "hey, man, really?  I don't need this shit right now.  Tell him we're busy that week.  Tell him I'm playing golf with Jean-Claude Juncker and the King of Spain."  The Donald has pretty thick skin, and so does his supporters, so it really doesn't matter.  It also doesn't matter if Trump is not elected president, but they'll come around as soon as President Trump is inaugurated if he wins.  In fact, probably before.  They'll be on the phone with congratulatory messages, trying not to choke on it, the morning after election day.  But privately all the heads of state except for Ahmadinejad, the Saudis, and Putin will worry and wonder what Americans were smoking on election day. 

The bolded part seems very, very untrue. The man loses his cool at the slightest hint of criticism.
3  Forum Community / Off-topic Board / Re: Winter is Coming (GoT is back) on: May 27, 2016, 02:10:56 pm
Apparently, a couple years ago, George RR Martin gave the details of the last 2 books to the showrunners so they could start planning the show, and there 3 were specific "holy sh**t" moments"
1. Stannis sacrificing Shireen
2. Hodor's origin story
3. TBA


If that's the case it confirms my suspicion that Stannis beats Ramsay in the books - since Shireen isn't with him in the books he can't lose and die against the Boltons if he is to later sacrifice her.
4  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: Trump blasts Warren for claiming Native heritage but lies about his own ..... on: May 27, 2016, 03:34:04 am
Seeing as how this worked out so well for Senator Scott Brown...

I guess the Trumplicans won't be making a concerted effort to get at least 5 percent of the Native American vote this November. 

Not to mention that Germans were Trump's worst white ancestry in the primary.  If there's more to this like "Of course I'm not German, they're all a bunch of Nazis!" style quotes, his Upper Midwest problem just got worse.

I don't think that's true?  I believe I saw a statistical analysis that Scandinavian ancestry had a strong negative association with Trump support.

That sounds likely. Also, Trump did exceptionally poorly in places like Minnesota and Wisconsin, right?
5  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: Clinton: "secret email accounts" are shredding the Constitution on: May 27, 2016, 03:09:56 am
That's nonsensical. A private email isn't secret.
6  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: Bernie says 'Game on' to debate with Trump. on: May 26, 2016, 09:22:22 am
Clinton (and her supporters) do not get to complain about this. If it happens (Trump is a lying coward, after all), it's her own fault:

"No presidential debate in California after Clinton breaks promise"
There will be no Democratic presidential debate in California, because Hillary Clinton’s campaign reneged Monday on its earlier promise to participate in one. In February, the campaigns of both Clinton and Sen. Bernie Sanders agreed to debate in California before the state’s June 7 primary.

But with Clinton comfortably ahead in both pledged delegates and superdelegates — plus her desire to pivot to her likely general election matchup against Republican Donald Trump — there was little political incentive for her campaign to participate.

I think it makes sense to not waste time on debates at a point when the race is over. Sanders should have dropped out by now, that he insists on still staying in isn't a reason for Clinton to humor his nonsense.
7  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: Clinton E-Mail Use Violated Rules, State Department Audit Finds on: May 25, 2016, 04:58:24 pm
So, essentially this "scandal" is confirmed as not really a big deal?
8  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: #NeverTrump GOP endorsements (Sasse,Whitman,Romney,Baker, Beck,Kristol,Ridge...) on: May 25, 2016, 10:47:43 am
Would it be possible to move this list to the first post of this or another thread so it's easier to update and follow it?
9  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: Poll: Clinton crushes Trump among Asians on: May 25, 2016, 08:28:59 am
I think there's probably a big difference in Koreans say in GA vs Koreans in CA...

I looked at early voting for the 2016 primary, it seems like 50-60% of Koreans voted in the D primary, whereas for California, it's probably more like 75%.

Exactly. It almost seems as if Asians take on the predominant philosophy of the states/communities in which they live. I dug into the party's voter file for some of the northern CDs in Georgia (14, 9, 11, 6) and the scoring models suggested that the Asian vote was anywhere from 60-70% Republican, depending on the congressional district. I'm not sure what specific nationalities exist from place to place, but outside of the metro/to the north, the most common Asians are Indians and Vietnamese, so it makes sense.

The untold story here really is the extent to which the Asian vote is shifting alongside the Latino vote. It has moved and appears to be moving just as much (if not more so) as the Latino vote over the past 8 years and in advance of this election.

Group200420082012Change '04-'12

It's anecdotal but I remember an Asian ex telling me that many Chinese in Sweden tended to vote Social Democrat out of a perception that you were "supposed to" (them being the dominant party). Not sure how generalizable that observation was but it would fit the pattern you're talking about.
10  Other Elections - Analysis and Discussion / International Elections / Re: Austrian Elections & Politics 2.0 (Presidential Election: April 24 & May 22) on: May 23, 2016, 08:58:19 am
So, is it officially done then?
11  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: Clinton Super PAC's "Does Trump speak for you?" ad earns "Pants on Fire" rating on: May 20, 2016, 05:12:50 am
The best part is of course that Trump, in attacking the ad, also lies about what he was referring to. If Trump doesn't know what his own comments are about, how can you expect a Clinton super-PAC to get it right?
12  Forum Community / Forum Community / Re: Have you ever specified what pronouns you prefer? on: May 18, 2016, 10:48:50 am
I have done so many, many times yes.

It's a recent trend in competitive debating that you state a pronoun preference before the start of a round. I'm personally skeptical of the policy but it doesn't really make much difference to me, so if it genuinely means something to trans people, why not.
13  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: Trump's very consistent 42% in the polls. on: May 11, 2016, 04:38:18 am
Looks like in blue collar states like WV more Bernie supporters would go for Trump than Clinton:


WV is not a great example since it's a state full of Republican voting Democrats. The D primary had significantly higher turnout in spite of the state being safely GOP for the general.
14  Forum Community / Off-topic Board / Re: Winter is Coming (GoT is back) on: May 09, 2016, 06:12:27 pm
I wouldn't go so far as to say that "nothing [not easily predicted] has happened," however. Sure, most of the major plot developments that we've seen have been the subject of theories and speculation for years, but there are also plenty of credible theories that either have not occurred or have been outright contradicted by events in the show.

Such as? I agree, btw, on the point of them not knowing where Martin is going. That is why I think they are afraid of deviating and are trying to buy time.

Take the North. If my guess is right and they're doing the book Stannis plot that's gonna be a couple more episodes at least. I expect that after Ramsay says "we need houses Umber, Karstark and Mandelay" and 2 of them have now joined him it's gonna be a thing about getting the Mandelays on board. Jon will make the same analysis and send his new right-hand man (no pun intended) Davos there. They will do the book plot of that. Rattlebone will go with some spearwives equivalent to Winterfell, with Rickon playing the part of Jeyne Poole. If that is the rough plan (and I strongly suspect it is) that sounds like it'd take several more episodes, which in turn suggests this season is gonna end with us knowing:

a) Stannis is out
b) Bolton is out
c) Jon Snow is alive and important
d) North rallies around the Starks

All of that is stuff we basically knew after the last book anyway. I feel the tactic is to get rid of the less important storylines, with the reasoning that since they are less important that can be done in whichever way anyway and not risk rocking the boat on the main plotlines.
15  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: #NeverTrump GOP endorsements (Sasse,Whitman,Romney,Baker, Beck,Kristol,Ridge...) on: May 09, 2016, 06:03:54 pm
The thing with Trump is that he crosses lines on a lot of issues that make it impossible for people to support him.
16  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: Rand Paul to endorse Trump? on: May 09, 2016, 05:54:38 pm
Republican Senator endorses Republican candidate for president. How shameful.

Didn't Rand Paul dedicate his life to stopping Trump?
17  Forum Community / Off-topic Board / Re: Winter is Coming (GoT is back) on: May 09, 2016, 11:25:02 am
It's really beginning to look like they're gonna run the book plot with Stannis v Bolton but with Jon Snow taking Stannis' place.

In the grand scheme of things this suggests to me that they're stalling the important plot lines, holding out hope for GRRM to finish the next book. I mean, 3 episodes in and what we're seeing is essentially resolving sideshow plots like Stannis and Dorne and essentially getting nowhere on the big stuff.

So far nothing has happened in the show this season that hasn't either already happened in the books or was very easily predicted after the last book (like the return of Snow).
18  Other Elections - Analysis and Discussion / International Elections / Re: Philippine General (Presidential, Congress and Local) Elections - May 9, 2016 on: May 09, 2016, 08:44:42 am
Well, that's kind of dark.
19  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: What % of the Asian American vote will Hillary receive? on: May 09, 2016, 05:09:09 am
Asians is a weird category. Muslim Asians won't like him but they probably didn't like Republicans much to begin with. Educated types might see some swing against him. It makes sense that upscale Asians might consider voting for a candidate like Romney but wouldn't like Trump. I could see some non-Muslim Asians maybe swing towards him though. The kind of Indians who liked Modi for example. That pro-rape presidential candidate who was doing well in the Phillippines also seemed pretty Trumpist.
20  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: FiveThirtyEight Demographic Calculator Revisited: Can you make Trump win? on: May 08, 2016, 07:27:11 am
I don't think Hispanic turnout is going to drop 8%.

But I appreciate muon2 putting together a potential Trump win.

Yeah, I don't see Hispanic turnout dropping at all from 2012, let alone 8%. That is just totally at odds with all of the available evidence.

These are the percentages of the voter eligible population that voted since 1980 according to Dr. Michael McDonalds US Elections Project:

1980   54.2      1982   42
1984   55.2      1986   38.1
1988   52.8      1990   38.4
1992   58.1      1994   41.1
1996   51.7      1998   38.1
2000   54.2      2002   39.5
2004   60.1      2006   40.4
2008   61.6      2010   41
2012   58.2      2014   35.9

The last three presidential elections have been historically high in the era since suffrage was lowered to 18. Swings of 5-6% up or down are not unusual. 1988 had uninspiring candidates after two terms of a highly motivating president. 1996 had a Dem president fighting off scandal charges vs an uninspiring Pub nominee. Neither of those cycles had any major economic or other crisis (eg 9/11 for 2004) to move voters to the polls, which is also true this cycle.

I used an 8% Hispanic drop as something between a 5% white drop and 10% black drop. If I drop the Hispanics only 4%, less than the population as a whole, Trump still wins on the calculator assuming he takes 70% of non-college educated whites.

You assume this is a temporary blip. But to me it looks more like increased polarization or whatever has created a permanently higher level of turnout. 2012 for example wasn't super inspiring and still saw massive turnout.
21  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: NO ONE Could've predicted this outcome TM (Gloating Thread) on: May 08, 2016, 06:32:06 am
It's hard to construct a counterfactual, but I still think Rubio would have had a decent shot had he not blown that pre-NH debate. In a scenario where he takes 2nd in NH I think the dynamic changes a lot. We'd get a 3-man race between Rubio, Cruz and Trump pretty quickly, maybe even before South Carolina. Rubio's flaw was not having a cornered support group in a crowded race, but his strength was simultaneously his broad appeal (until he fell apart, that is Tongue).
22  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: Donald Trump vs. Hillary Clinton and the White Vote on: May 05, 2016, 02:27:13 am
Just to reiterate what I said earlier here, I dragged up the numbers and posted them in one of the other threads where it was discussed. Polling suggests Trump is wildly unpopular with black voters, even more so than a typical Republican candidate. Clinton, on the other hand, as we have seen is quite popular with black voters and is running as Obama 2.0 with his support. She might not get quite the percentage+turnout a black candidate like Obama got but there is nothing to suggest she'd do worse than Kerry 2004 or so.

Thinking Clinton will win the white vote though sounds optimistic. I'd like to think the American electorate is sensible enough that Trump would lose in a landslide, but I wouldn't bet on it at this point.
23  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: Free Trade on: May 04, 2016, 02:04:38 pm
Ideally, Hillary Clinton would defend NAFTA and, in general, the fruits of trade while pledging to do her best to ensure that the gains from trade are equally distributed among the population, with a disproportionate share of these gains given to those who are adversely affected by trade. If she can't run to Trump's left on this issue, she might as well do her best to make a strong case for trade imo.

Agreed, but since when does politics work that nicely? Tongue
24  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: So the Lichtman Test so far on: May 04, 2016, 04:23:33 am
God, not this nonsense again.
25  General Politics / Economics / Re: Solve Income Inequality on: May 02, 2016, 10:24:53 pm
If someone asks about advice because they want to understand a field they are not familiar with I wouldn't sneer at them. But when someone takes a dogmatic ideological position that will make already impoverished people worse off because they couldn't bother to learn about the world I won't be particularly respectful because I find that attitude difficult to respect.

I don't think direct cash transfers or universal basic income are comparable to the concept that was being discussed. I agree there are interesting results there, though I'm personally ideologically biased in favour of cash transfers, so I try not to get too excited.

Your point that development economists often like to claim that development aid is good might well be true. People like to prop up their field. Now, I'm not saying there should be no aid. What I'm pointing out is that aid has not been an important factor in alleviating poverty. If it were, countries that received lots of it (like Ghana or Tanzania) would have been lifted out of poverty, not places like China or South Korea.

The impacts of other things, like stable property rights, functioning capital markets, rule of law, accountability in government, some basic level of social justice is much larger. At least, this is true to all the research I've seen on the subject (admittedly I haven't been looking much at this field in the last few years). If you have data backing the notion that transfers of capital of the sort advocated by MOP has huge impacts on economic growth, feel free to present them.

But again, the reason some countries are really poor and others really rich isn't primarily that someone gave the latter group a lot of money and is withholding that bunch of money from the former. That isn't negating the existence of historical injustices or even saying we shouldn't do something to redress those injustices. But it is intellectually lazy to make that the scapegoat for economic inequality in the world.

Getting people out of poverty in developing countries is really important. The very least moral obligation one can put on people with the relatively high level of power and Western citizen has is to educate oneself sufficiently on it so as to not argue for policies that will keep them poor. So, yeah, I might be snarky about that. I don't mind it if you get all madz about it, that's your prerogative. But I'd find it more interesting if you spent less time attacking my personal character and more engaging with the substance of the issue.

The tangent on trade seems a bit off-topic, to me, but I'll comment briefly. There are nuances to trade policy but I'm yet to see a convincing argument for deviations from free trade, especially when put in the real world that some economists avoid. Tongue
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