This blog is dedicated to the memory of David Weintraub, who took on insidious astroturfers and won.

Thursday, October 1, 2015

An Academic Approach

That wasn't easy to make. The mouse was acting up. Anyway, there you have it. Those are the three categories of people participating in the internet medium. Regular guys denotes anyone regardless of gender or race who holds dear to their hearts leftier than thou values. I can't wait for the debate. Twelve days to go.



socrates said...

We can do better than Nate Silver who is doing nothing, while Harry Enten wets his pants.

Let's look at the current numbers from two separate polls.

The numbers for the NBC/WSJ poll are on another thread. I know you saw it. I think you mentioned this poll. Bernie within seven to fifteen points depending on JoJo's decision.

Here is their disclaimer:

The NBC/WSJ poll was conducted Sept. 20-24 of 256 Democratic voters (which has a margin of error of plus-minus 6.1 percentage points) and 230 GOP primary voters (plus-minus 6.5 percentage points). The rest of the poll will be released Monday.

Okay, and here is medium conspiracy tool CNN with their new poll.

Oh wait, it's by Suffolk/USA Today. Wtf is Suffolk?

Hillary 41%
Bernie 23%
Biden 20%
Undecided 14%

That was from 430 Democrats. Hmmm.

Why didn't they ask for votes without Biden? I'm not seeing it.

It is a holding pattern until the debate. I know there is a new email batch with more embarrassing things, but I disagree with you that the debate will not have an impact. Let's call this 5-3 Hillary in the top of the fourth. Bernie's up. There are two men on with no outs.

socrates said...

How come that poll had so many undecideds while the NBC one had I think 4% undecided. I'm sensing polling shenanigans.

donkeytale said...

Correct, polls aren't consistent, that's why Silver's ability in 2008 - 2012 to synthesize all that noise into a correct prediction based on polling analysis is so impressive.

You tossed a fine word salad in the other thread against him but you didn't actually lay a glove on Silver.

Not to draw the sports analogies too far, because we all use them, including yourslef insome of your best and funniest moments precisely because it is the horse race aspect that fascinates John Q. Whiteysphere. Our culture drips sports and score keeping analogies. The business of sports has become as interesting as the games. Fantasy Football has become as big as the game. Fantasy football is to football what Rap is to rock n roll.

And this is also the essence of Silver's gig. Predicting results based on his analysis of the polling. Predicting final score. You will notice 538 are also big into sports analytics too. In fatc, I believe they are funded by ESPN if I recall.

In the latest chat I agree it is Enten playing up the Hillary is still strong based on past predictive factors such as party support, super delegate support and so on, while Silver himself isn't so sure this race will fall into line with prior cycles. He doesn't seem to have an opinion at this point could go either way but he definitely takes exception with Enten's spin of what the numbers mean. He believes that HRC is trending downward and isn't sure she can right the ship of public perception. She isn't liked.

His observations are extremely perceptive. Perhaps you didn't read them?

"micah: To close, Nate, answer the question that we started with: “How much damage has the e-mail controversy done to Hillary Clinton’s candidacy?”

natesilver: It’s hard to know. Very probably not as much as the media consensus holds, especially if you account for the fact that they’d undoubtedly find other negative Clinton stories to write about. The incentives to create a dramatic Democratic race are really high.

However, I don’t think Clinton is invincible."

In 2012 there was tons of noise regarding Romney winning and Silver (and apparently MAMZ too) had Obama pegged for the win and he won.

In 2016 the race hasn't even started so the need for the chatter on 538 is understandable (they must fill space) but not necessarily satisfying. I agree we fill the space better and one of our new focuses is on how Silver's polling based horse race analysis fares in the end. But you are making an apples/oranges argument here as a fan boi not an analyst. That's a great perspective to hold but I think your argument is more with Enten rather than Silver and it is more pundit based debate rather than poll testing so yes, basically boring and hot air filled noise until the race begins.

Enten was with the Graun as I recall and had nothing to do with Silver's NYT prescience in 2008-2012.

Also, Silver's poll testing will reflect a Bernie surge and then you will be saying he came to the bandwagon late, or wtf, but again missing the point that Silver is using his analytical take on the polling, which will reflect the trends if he is prescient again, so both of you can end up correct in fact.

That would be a favourable result.

And I note in the baseball score, I now have Bern tied 5-5 in the top of third inning, while I believe you still show bernie behind 5-3?

donkeytale said...

This is good:

"natesilver: So a few years ago, I developed a five-pronged “test” for whether a scandal would resonate:

Can the scandal be reduced to a one-sentence sound bite (but not easily refuted/denied with a one-sentence sound bite)?

Does the scandal cut against a core element of the candidate’s brand?

Does the scandal reify/reinforce/“prove” a core negative perception about the candidate, particularly one that had henceforth been difficult to articulate (but not one that has become so entrenched that little further damage can be done)?

Can the scandal readily be employed by the opposition, without their looking hypocritical/petty/politically incorrect, risking retribution, or giving life to a damaging narrative?

Is the media bored, and/or does the story have enough tabloid/shock value to crowd out all other stories?

natesilver: It’s not especially empirical — just a way to focus the discussion a bit.

The first question is whether the scandal can be explained in a one-sentence sound bite. And I don’t think the email scandal does particularly well by that test. “Clinton maintained a private email server” is not all that sexy unto itself.

“Clinton threatened national security and/or broke the law by maintaining a private email server” is better, but less self-evident.

That’s part of why I’ve been skeptical that the details of the scandal mattered all that much to voters. It doesn’t have much sex appeal.


Some of the other parts of the five-pronged test would argue for the scandal being important. In particular, No. 3: “Does the scandal reify/reinforce/‘prove’ a core negative perception about the candidate?” Also No. 2: “Does the scandal cut against a core element of the candidate’s brand?” It makes it harder for Clinton to talk about her time as secretary of state in a positive light, which could otherwise be a real strength for her."

donkeytale said...

"natesilver: Some of the risk to Clinton is if there IS another shoe to drop. Let’s say there’s some midlevel scandal that ordinarily wouldn’t have all that much resonance, but it’s enough to get five or six news cycles’ worth of negative headlines for Clinton. In the current environment, that might be enough to trigger some panic among Democratic elites.

hjenten-heynawl: Sure, I mean if another shoe drops. … But this has been the summer of bad news for Clinton, and she is still ahead. What’s going to be the next bad news cycle? It turns out that her dislike of the amount of calories in pumpkin spice lattes hasn’t made her stop drinking them after all?

faraic: I think some of the Democratic elites are annoyed, but panic is far from the emotional state.

natesilver: Maybe it’s not so linear though, Harry?

hjenten-heynawl: You think there’s a cliff? There could be — where it just becomes too much.

natesilver: The primary is a consensus-building process, and consensus-building processes are full of feedback loops and often nonlinear. (Wow. That was a geeky sentence.)"

socrates said...

Nate Silver is Steve Carlton winning 27 games on a bad team, while it remains a mystery how the rest of the starters are in professional baseball. With that being said, Silver is not invincible either.

"Mr. Overrated"

Are we seeing a repeat here, just substitute Hillary for Coakley and Bernie for Brown?

Yes, it is Enten who is the primary stain on the 538 website. I agree. Silver is the only all-star on that team. And we don't know if he is the old Kobe who can put up 35 points at will or if it's broken down, overrated, he's done Kobe Bryant.

And you are also correct that this election season thingie is only just starting. It's like how they say in playoff series, they don't really start until someone loses on their home court.

Hence, we see the current holding pattern.

This had to be the most wishy washy analysis Silver could have come up with:

It’s hard to know. Very probably not as much as the media consensus holds, especially if you account for the fact that they’d undoubtedly find other negative Clinton stories to write about. The incentives to create a dramatic Democratic race are really high.

Huh? Talk about blind spots. Where's his analysis of previous movements such as OWS and Bernie's possible harnessing of it? And talk about covering all bases thus giving not one whiff of a prognostication.

My paraphrasing: The media is creating a lot of this image that Hillary is in a tough battle. They love drama. TNT knows drama, that sort of thing. That was their tagline. We know drama. Or like the beef ad. We know beef. It's what's for dinner.

Then he chucks in the idea well, Hillary is not invincible. Thanks Captain Obvious! Could you autograph your book for me?

I think you overrate Nate Silver. The garbage being put out by the rest of his staff, while he seemingly waits for more data, is his responsibility, period.

If he's going to have his #1 starter Enten be a Hillary fanbot, don't you think it'd been a good idea to have a #2 starter with a propensity towards Bernie? Fair is fair. Or don't nobody be telling nobody about the 538 website and how it predicts things so well.

I was probably just trying to cajole more political commentary from you or to have you maybe think for yourself and wtfu to what Enten is doing to democracy.

You see, those guys including Silver have no stake in a better world. They couldn't care less or we would see them go beyond the shallow sports analogies.

I like the idea of a tie in the third inning. I go with 5-3 because both of the new polls put Hillary up from 7 to 18 points. Trajectory wise it appears tied or Bernie's ahead. Are you basing the tie on the trajectory?

We didn't link to it, but the article on 538 before that one was on how the topic of authenticity doesn't matter. Can't you see how that is playing by old rules? Sure, that was not Nate Silver, and Nate does leave room to escape the mess of a pro-Hillary analysis, but over the summer and even into the round table, he is still trying to have it both ways. So that no matter what happens, the Nate Silver brand will continue to grow.

How can authenticity not matter? It is at the heart of the Bernie surge and the Hillary death spiral.

socrates said...

5-3 Hillary might sound like bad odds, that I am Harry Enten lite. However, what if Bernie puts up four runs in the fourth inning? He's then winning 7-5 going into the middle innings. And I believe I deserve some blog carbon credits for not going all H. A. Goodman with my political prognosticating.

The drip drip is absolutely connecting for blows against Hillary's credibility. Everything, even non-scandals or let's call them truth staples labeled as smears by Hillary Super PACs are swelling up Hillary's political mug.

New tidbits I mentioned before:

Hillary had a conniption over pro-gay wording on passport applications. This should hurt her with the gay vote. Where is the 538 analysis of that?

Hillary told Blumenthal yay for diplomats lying. Oh, but according to 538 authenticity is overblown. Nothing to see there, move along to the coronation, according to 538.

"Is there another shoe to drop?"

Huh? Wut?

The other shoe has dropped. It's called Bernie Sanders.

socrates said...

I thank you for this. This is 538 in a nutshell:

Enten: "Sure, I mean if another shoe drops. … But this has been the summer of bad news for Clinton, and she is still ahead. What’s going to be the next bad news cycle? It turns out that her dislike of the amount of calories in pumpkin spice lattes hasn’t made her stop drinking them after all?"

Nate: "Maybe it’s not so linear though, Harry? ... The primary is a consensus-building process, and consensus-building processes are full of feedback loops and often nonlinear."

Maybe Nate is waking the f*** up.

socrates said...

From the above link:

I hope, though I doubt, that Nate Silver’s performance during the stretch drive of the Massachusetts special Senate election will finally lead to him being downgraded from “All-seeing HAL-9000-esque quantitative wizard” to “Just another guy with a computer”. Armed only with the traditional maxims of psephological interpretation, which teach that a late polling break away from the incumbent party is a very unfavourable omen, one could have figured out ten days ago that repulsive Democratic candidate Martha Coakley was in a heap of trouble. Silver, with his revolutionary disregard for everything but the polling numbers, was still arguing as late as Thursday afternoon that Coakley was the clear favourite; he changed his mind at midnight that evening and acknowledged that Scott Brown had a puncher’s chance.

socrates said...

I am scouring Wikipedia for dirt on Nate Silver.

"FiveThirtyHate?: Nate Silver Gets His Numbers Crossed in Charlotte"

"Of course, his read of the American political horizon is often hazy, to put it politely. In October of last year, he had Rick Perry as a 50-50 shot to beat Romney in the Republican primaries. (I guess there were no numbers in the Silver model for imbecilic goofiness and stupidity.)

Silver's commitment to a quantitative, value-free approach to the living, breathing universe--not only in politics, but in sports, entertainment, even dating--with an emphasis on numbers can be troubling, to the point of absurdity, when the answers have nothing to do with statistical equations."

socrates said...

You should read both those articles. You are falling into the fairleft trap of accepting as truth what under closer scrutiny exposes a shallow, self-promoting and irrelevant schtick.

socrates said...

"In a 2012 interview with Charlie Rose he stated, "I'd say I am somewhere in-between being a libertarian and a liberal. So if I were to vote it would be kind of a Gary Johnson versus Mitt Romney decision, I suppose."[182]"

Yet, you suggest Nate seems to be in the Bernie camp for actual voting?

"Nate Silver, Inspired by Ferguson, Tells Idiotic Arrest Story"

"The Nate Silver backlash"

In summation, Nate Silver is full of shite.

socrates said...

"Hillary death spiral" returns 196,000 results. You don't even have to use her last name.

socrates said...

I'm going to add a screenshot of our good friend Lou Dobbs to this minimalist masterpiece. It was just one of the results for "Hillary death spiral." :)

socrates said...

Bernie needs to smear Hillary in the debate like he did in this June CBS interview:

socrates said...

The elephant in the room are actual issues and social reality. Nate Silver misses this probably because he's busy rolling in his estimated two million dollars of wealth.

socrates said...

I just noticed that the Fox intern or wtf botched the grammar behind Louie.

socrates said...

David Brock runs Media Matters, man. That's part of the Netroots DINO Network. I told you it was rigged. Holland tried to warn people. Too bad My Left Wing is scrubbed. That was outstanding meta. Fairleft used to attack Francis. I suppose he is probably a racist. The name fairleft says it all. That is DINO talk. Fairleft is either some uneducated numbnut or a paid fake concern troll.

But go Jill Stein! You can do it!!!!

Chelsea Clinton is buddies with a Koch brother wife:

socrates said...

If you take a close look at any of the people supporting and working for Hillary, they are all scumbags. That is a big part of the death spiral.

The truth is a big part of the Hillary campaign death spiral. What's up with the Clinton Foundation? The Clintons make LeBron money. It sounds illegal somehow, but I am not a lawyer.

Bernie is going to nail her on issues, while the peanut gallery has no such restrictions in smearing Hitlary with the most robust of truth grenades.

socrates said...

I think I might have been the reincarnation of Edgar Allan Poe, but then who was I before becoming Lenny Bruce?

Poe 1809-1849
Bruce 1925-1966

Who was I from 1849 to 1925?

socrates said...

Maybe I was Valentino? ...

Ouch, He lasted until 1926.

socrates said...

Maybe I was someone from this list:

"Most Popular People With Date of Death in 1925"

socrates said...

Apparently I was Sun Yat-sen.

socrates said...

We are jolly old ancients of days.

socrates said...

Poe was a huge supertroll back in the day when he edited magazines. He socratised the fock out people. Just saying. First NBA game is Tuesday. Then a week from that is the big debate. There's always something to look forward to.

socrates said...

There are 450,000 results for "Hillary coronation." Just saying. I'll be Kevin Millar down 0-3 to the Yankees in '04. Just don't let us win the debate. Because then it's Pedro next game, Schilldog game six, then anything goes for who wins the election.

socrates said...

Poe's dad was some kind of pretentious, nasty bitch.

socrates said...

His step-dad. What a creep. I think I'm starting to remember some of that life.

socrates said...

Well, the good thing is we now know Poe and Bruce made it out o.k. into the present moment.

socrates said...

This must be Twitter withdrawal.

socrates said...

Twitter is like that photo of BubbleBoy in which he doesn't seem to have much space. That movie profoundly affected my life or somehow it is simply there. Like Gilligan's Island. Like the medium never finds one minute to say this truly sucks and is meaningless. The debate forces us into those moments. Mike Brown and Freddie Gray too. I see the first trial starts November 30th. That kid was murdered. I also see the cop lawyers are still playing dirty. I hope the cops get long prison terms. Best move for Bernie might have been absorbing the blows from all those BLM protests. I'm extremely interested in Black voting trends. Bernie hired Symone Sanders. He is solid on this issue compared to Hillary. She did not do well with the Boston people. It's not just about the emails. It's everything.

socrates said...

I predict Hillary is going to make a hard left turn to make it appear she is not the DINO neo-liberal with elephant in the room fat knuckles. She will go back to the original playbook of, "Bernie who?"

socrates said...

That's her only chance. And I have never seen Bernie in a debate, but I watched him do a filibuster and other senate/house speeches. The dude was made to be a British politician. Over there, they are allowed to trash talk when trying to hammer out debate.

Bernie is not going to call Hillary a corporate whore. He doesn't smear.

But he will most clearly confront Hillary in the same way BLM Boston did to Hillary. I hope so. Bernie needs to do that. It'd be a mistake not to show he can smear someone but it isn't smearing because it's the truth.

socrates said...

That would shut up Counterpunch. If Bernie says enough is enough and this is where myself and Hitlary have differed, then bravissimo. Bernie could run away with an easy Democratic Nomination victory. Amen.

socrates said...

Okay, no way in hell I was Poe. I retract that. He was in love and married his twelve year old cousin. That wasn't me. I don't operate that way. Yuck.

socrates said...

Robert Reich: The Washington Post's Pathetic Attempt to Attack Bernie Sanders
The newest hit-piece on Bernie Sanders doesn't hold up.
By Robert Reich

socrates said...

Reich would probably become Secretary of Labour.

socrates said...


"Washington Post Won’t Let Journalistic Integrity Stand in the Way of Scaring You Away From Sanders"

socrates said...

Bernie making inroads with Latinos:

socrates said...

Bernie's going to have a huge rally soon in Boston.

socrates said...

This is good. I think you can get five free Boston Globe articles per month.

Brookings fellow cuts ties after Warren letter

I wonder why Warren didn't run. Perhaps she has some blind spots, but then figures stuff out later. She actually seems to evolve unlike the ex-Goldwater Girl, Shrillary with fat knuckled grips. You said it when you said it.

socrates said...

Watch this. It's only a couple minutes. It's Bernie fighting for the Black man in the early 90's. It makes no sense for him not to get a huge bump from minorities at some point. 538 is missing the boat and hanging onto coronation assumptions.

Bernie Sanders on Crime, Punishment, and Poverty

BernieSoBlack people tried to make him out to be the lily-white Mitt Romney of the left. I'm telling you, this election will be a litmus test on the collective intelligence of the American people. I demand goosebumps. I demand Bernie wins.