Serious US Election Thread (read post #2014)

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To put things into terms familiar to everyone here, Hillary Clinton has more or less had control of the game after an excellent performance the first debate, and by the second debate it was looking like Trump's only chance of coming back, short of a massive choke, was to get a late-game Ice Beam freeze. However, things tightened up in the last few turns following the third debate. She still has a pretty good chance of winning, but now she has to land an Iron Tail to bring Trump down, instead of being able to coast to a safer victory.
 
Remember that fivethiryeight's model is also running on a model that the polls may be uncertain and thus tilts a bit more to Trump. Nate (or Harry?) said that if you assume the polls are like "normal" elections then Hillary would still be in the 90's. The electoral college is still very difficult for Trump to win because Hillary can just hold on to her "firewall" and only has to win PA and CO, it also looks like her early voting in Nevada matches Obama's and hispanics are notoriously underpolled in Nevada so that's looking like a win for her too which puts her at above 270 (Hell just PA and CO do but obviously the more state wins the more impressive)
 

Hogg

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Remember that fivethiryeight's model is also running on a model that the polls may be uncertain and thus tilts a bit more to Trump. Nate (or Harry?) said that if you assume the polls are like "normal" elections then Hillary would still be in the 90's. The electoral college is still very difficult for Trump to win because Hillary can just hold on to her "firewall" and only has to win PA and CO, it also looks like her early voting in Nevada matches Obama's and hispanics are notoriously underpolled in Nevada so that's looking like a win for her too which puts her at above 270 (Hell just PA and CO do but obviously the more state wins the more impressive)
I mean yeah, that's really the foundation of 538's approach: using data to figure out how historically accurate individual polls are, and giving them margins of error based on this. It's a pretty unique approach in general and I think it's a valid one, when you consider that even the most reliable polls typically have about a three to four point swing: http://fivethirtyeight.com/features/how-fivethirtyeight-calculates-pollster-ratings/ http://projects.fivethirtyeight.com/pollster-ratings/

There are other poll aggregators that put the likelihood of a Clinton victory significantly higher (the Princeton Election Consortium places her odds for victory at a whopping 99%), but overall I prefer 538's model, not only because of the math behind its approach but also because of the methodology behind how they rank their pollsters.
 

Imanalt

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fwiw the single biggest difference between the poll aggregation methods is how strong their priors are. 538 has much weaker priors than any other method, which leads to some oddities. The biggest I see offhand is having an almost 1% chance for new jersey to be the tipping point state. I really struggle to come up with a world in which a state that every other poll aggregate other than 538 has as >99% blue to be the tipping point state. ( http://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2016/upshot/presidential-polls-forecast.html?_r=0 if you scroll down on here you can see each aggregator's predictions for each state). You'll notice 538 expects traditionally blue states to be less blue, and (most) traditionally red states to be less red. All of these 80-85%s etc are one of the primary reasons 538 has been reporting the race as way more even. From a statistical standpoint it's pretty unclear whether stronger or weaker priors is better here, because the sample size of elections w/ anything close to modern polling to train models on is relatively small. However its worth noting that a lot of things 538 has done this election cycle have tended a lot towards clickbaity, horse race journalism (look at the existence of their nowcast). The weaker priors seem very likely to be an intentional attempt towards this, given they are so much weaker than every other aggregator, and they result in way more dramatic swings after current events, which nate silver himself has in the past very publicly criticized. I don't remember who I saw this from, but a quote of "I'd love to see 2008 nate silver debate 2016 nate silver" has really stuck w/ me regarding 538's coverage of this election.

tl;dr 538 has different methodology from everyone else, which is why they have way less certainty, and its probably in an attempt at clickbait
 

UncleSam

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fwiw the single biggest difference between the poll aggregation methods is how strong their priors are. 538 has much weaker priors than any other method, which leads to some oddities. The biggest I see offhand is having an almost 1% chance for new jersey to be the tipping point state. I really struggle to come up with a world in which a state that every other poll aggregate other than 538 has as >99% blue to be the tipping point state. ( http://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2016/upshot/presidential-polls-forecast.html?_r=0 if you scroll down on here you can see each aggregator's predictions for each state). You'll notice 538 expects traditionally blue states to be less blue, and (most) traditionally red states to be less red. All of these 80-85%s etc are one of the primary reasons 538 has been reporting the race as way more even. From a statistical standpoint it's pretty unclear whether stronger or weaker priors is better here, because the sample size of elections w/ anything close to modern polling to train models on is relatively small. However its worth noting that a lot of things 538 has done this election cycle have tended a lot towards clickbaity, horse race journalism (look at the existence of their nowcast). The weaker priors seem very likely to be an intentional attempt towards this, given they are so much weaker than every other aggregator, and they result in way more dramatic swings after current events, which nate silver himself has in the past very publicly criticized. I don't remember who I saw this from, but a quote of "I'd love to see 2008 nate silver debate 2016 nate silver" has really stuck w/ me regarding 538's coverage of this election.

tl;dr 538 has different methodology from everyone else, which is why they have way less certainty, and its probably in an attempt at clickbait
538 has a lot of problems for sure, though I think you might be selling it short here. There's a few 80-85% states that I would be astounded if they went red (such as Minnesota), but for the most part the only states that are < 90% Blue (or Red) are states that there is some chance an underdog could win in a wave election (so, Trump in Michigan/Wisconsin/Virginia, or Clinton in Georgia/Arizona/Texas). Keep in mind that these do not impact the overall assessment that much because they are all highly correlated - it's not as though a 20% chance of Michigan and a 20% chance of Wisconsin becomes a 40% chance of Trump breaking the Blue Firewall, it's more like a 21% chance. That doesn't seem that odd considering the trend in the recent polls and the fact the polls there are roughly +4 - +6 for Clinton (a much smaller lead than she had in the primaries in those states, which she lost).

Hillary is a clear favorite and she should win barring unlikely circumstances, but 25 - 30% seems quite reasonable odds to put on it as of today.

I do agree that 538 has some serious shortcomings though - most particularly in their estimates of vote returns as T-Distributions. In reality, voting is highly reliable if you know who is going to show up. Rather than predicting electorates and weighing early voting results, 538 relies entirely on the electorate assumptions made by the polling agencies they aggregate, and this can easily lead to poor estimates of the final result. If the polls predict a 2012 electorate and miss in one direction or the other then 538's methodologies will be useless, because they are assuming that the polls are representative as a weighted average rather than averaging out the electorate assumptions of each poll to a set of their own assumptions.

For what it's worth, early voting returns seem to indicate that Hillary has an advantage in early voting in North Carolina and Nevada while being at a disadvantage in Ohio and Iowa - pretty good news for her overall, since she can easily afford to drop the latter two states so long as she shores up her support elsewhere - a Nevada win would mean a surprise victory for Trump in Maine or New Hampshire would be offset in this scenario, while a North Carolina win would allow her to drop Pennsylvania, Michigan, or Wisconsin and still pull through. Basically if these trends hold she doesn't even need to hold her whole firewall to win. That said, I think the lategame plays being made by the Trump campaign are better than Clinton's - Clinton is spending lots of time and effort in Arizona (though she's been pulling out of it and sending the Obamas to much more important places, like North Carolina and Florida), a state she is only winning in a landslide election and is therefore useless to her in terms of securing a victory. Meanwhile Trump is focusing all his efforts on Pennsylvania/Michigan/Wisconsin/Colorado, aka the firewall states he has by far the best chance of flipping and thereby winning the election. Clinton is re-focusing onto the places she needs to hold to win, but she's a bit late to adjust and I don't think she accepted that there was a bit of a shift away from her (and away from any real aspirations of landslides into deep red territory) even before the FBI shenanigans or whatever Comey did last Friday. It seems like she's accepted it now though, and is refocusing on the states she needs to win rather than playing to run up the score.
 

Soul Fly

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It's actually very vital that people keep calling water wet, because we have normalized so much bs over the past year that very little about some of the most despicable things that happen on an everyday basis around Trump's rallies shocks us very little. To the point that many people feel that their stance is legitimate and mainstream.
 
posted this to facebook awhile ago summing my thoughts on the election. i got 92 likes and 7 shares which basically means i'm a big deal. crucify me~

This will be my first and last definitively political post of this election, and I am only doing so because the last few weeks or so have been particularly illuminating, particularly scary, and particularly frustrating. (Also, because internalizing this is distracting me from working on legal process.) These are the conclusions I have drawn; you might think differently, and that's fine.

I’ve seen a lot of discord between people dissatisfied with both candidates trying to justify their political preference as the lesser of two evils. Yeah, Donald Trump is a sexist, but at least he isn’t a criminal who threatened the lives of thousands of Americans in failed foreign policy endeavors. Yeah, Hillary Clinton might be an email deleter, but at least she isn’t a racist, misogynistic, sexist facilitator of violence. I’ve seen extreme apples to oranges comparisons of their faults, attempts to evaluate the comparative harm of murder and sexual violence, and any number of other ways trying to justify why their political preference is the morally absolute choice.

Here’s mine.

I cannot support the man who brings out the worst in Americans by verbalizing and providing justification for the internal biases that everyone has. Good people do not discriminate people on the basis of their skin color, gender identity, sexual orientation, religious preference, or what have you. But good people still suffer from internal biases, and strive to be better people by remaining cognizant of their biases and working towards eliminating them. When listening to Donald Trump’s rhetoric, a person with internal biases against people of color have their suspicions confirmed and stop trying to address those biases. A person with internalized biases against women continues to promote rape culture under the notion that “locker room talk” excuses sexual violence and objectification. A person with internalized biases against a religion they do not understand attributes their misconceptions to the followers of that religion. Donald Trump as President of the United States tells each citizen that being prejudiced is okay and that your words and feelings do not matter. At best, the country stagnates and at worst, it regresses, putting every marginalized American at risk.

I understand that Hillary Clinton has in fact demonstrated poor judgment in her career as a politician. I’m not with her because I agree with everything she has done, politically or personally, or everything she proposes to do. I’m with her because she represents an America where people are willing to change, like she has changed her opinions with time. People cite her comments about super-predators or previous positions as evidence that she is not to be trusted. I treat her evolving positions as a recognition that she is willing to combat her prejudices and move forward. I treat her policy changes as an acknowledgement of past mistakes and as a promise to do better and to keep fighting. I genuinely accept her apologies, and think she will take efforts not to make the same mistakes, whether it be with her treatment of classified documents or her involvement with foreign policy. I do not feel the same about Donald Trump.

I’m with her because I think an America with Hillary Clinton as President of the United States is one where people do not take their biases at face value but instead work together to collectively eliminate prejudice and accept their fellow citizens for who they are. This is why I will be voting for her on November 8th. (And with that, I am checking out of Facebook politics...unless something particularly ridiculous happens, of course.)
 

Soul Fly

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posted this to facebook awhile ago summing my thoughts on the election. i got 92 likes and 7 shares which basically means i'm a big deal. crucify me~

This will be my first and last definitively political post of this election, and I am only doing so because the last few weeks or so have been particularly illuminating, particularly scary, and particularly frustrating. (Also, because internalizing this is distracting me from working on legal process.) These are the conclusions I have drawn; you might think differently, and that's fine.

I’ve seen a lot of discord between people dissatisfied with both candidates trying to justify their political preference as the lesser of two evils. Yeah, Donald Trump is a sexist, but at least he isn’t a criminal who threatened the lives of thousands of Americans in failed foreign policy endeavors. Yeah, Hillary Clinton might be an email deleter, but at least she isn’t a racist, misogynistic, sexist facilitator of violence. I’ve seen extreme apples to oranges comparisons of their faults, attempts to evaluate the comparative harm of murder and sexual violence, and any number of other ways trying to justify why their political preference is the morally absolute choice.

Here’s mine.

I cannot support the man who brings out the worst in Americans by verbalizing and providing justification for the internal biases that everyone has. Good people do not discriminate people on the basis of their skin color, gender identity, sexual orientation, religious preference, or what have you. But good people still suffer from internal biases, and strive to be better people by remaining cognizant of their biases and working towards eliminating them. When listening to Donald Trump’s rhetoric, a person with internal biases against people of color have their suspicions confirmed and stop trying to address those biases. A person with internalized biases against women continues to promote rape culture under the notion that “locker room talk” excuses sexual violence and objectification. A person with internalized biases against a religion they do not understand attributes their misconceptions to the followers of that religion. Donald Trump as President of the United States tells each citizen that being prejudiced is okay and that your words and feelings do not matter. At best, the country stagnates and at worst, it regresses, putting every marginalized American at risk.

I understand that Hillary Clinton has in fact demonstrated poor judgment in her career as a politician. I’m not with her because I agree with everything she has done, politically or personally, or everything she proposes to do. I’m with her because she represents an America where people are willing to change, like she has changed her opinions with time. People cite her comments about super-predators or previous positions as evidence that she is not to be trusted. I treat her evolving positions as a recognition that she is willing to combat her prejudices and move forward. I treat her policy changes as an acknowledgement of past mistakes and as a promise to do better and to keep fighting. I genuinely accept her apologies, and think she will take efforts not to make the same mistakes, whether it be with her treatment of classified documents or her involvement with foreign policy. I do not feel the same about Donald Trump.

I’m with her because I think an America with Hillary Clinton as President of the United States is one where people do not take their biases at face value but instead work together to collectively eliminate prejudice and accept their fellow citizens for who they are. This is why I will be voting for her on November 8th. (And with that, I am checking out of Facebook politics...unless something particularly ridiculous happens, of course.)
if at least one person didn't strawman you and proceed with "what about" then facebook has very mercifully curated your social interaction in a comforting echo chamber.

(really nice post btw)
 

Expert Evan

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Please don't link infowars. It's the personal webpage for conspiracy theorist Alex Jones, who, among other things, has personally claimed that the US government directly committed,
  • The Oklahoma City Bombing
  • 9/11
  • Aurora Colorado shootings
  • Sandy Hook Shootings
  • A tornado in Oklahoma in 2013?

When a shooter by the name of Jared Lee Loughner killed many people and almost U.S. Rep. Gabrielle Gifford (the target) in Arizona, Alex Jones called it a false flag operation. It then was later revealed that Loughner claimed to have been heavily inspired by several Alex Jones documentaries, blaming the Government for 9/11.


The company that airs his network show makes most of their money off of him convincing his followers to buy gold coins and MRE's from them.
He makes shit up to scare people for a living.
First of all, Infowars is not the only source to report this as I will not make any further remarks here until after election day so you social justice warriors can be contempt in glee here for awhile. But if Trump loses traditional red states such as Georgia, Utah & Alaska, we'll know the first place to look.
 

Soul Fly

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First of all, Infowars is not the only source to report this as I will not make any further remarks here until after election day so you social justice warriors can be contempt in glee here for awhile. But if Trump loses traditional red states such as Georgia, Utah & Alaska, we'll know the first place to look.
That's exactly what's so hilarious about this. Trump losing traditionally red states cannot possibly because he's horrible fucking candidate. That people, even conservative moderates cannot make a reasonable moral choice across partisan divides, is extremely insulting to the american voter; the fact that you'll consider fraud as more legitimate than people using their own formulated opinion (gasp!) to caste a vote across the aisle.

Might as well lock down all the states and only have voting in swing states, no?

"The first place to look" would be the fact that the GOP is in complete tatters, the second place to look would be to restore voter confidence in the party, the third place to look would be this shitty logic that basically justifies a loser's whining.



edit: it's also pertinent to note that the only notable case of voter fraud that has emerged so far has been from a Trump supporter, who was scared by this very conspiracy theory. So ironically this crap actually encourages more voter fraud in order to "outdo the other camp". This is destabilization of democratic structure 101.

Please feel free to read the entire article, it contains legitimate proof why that entire theory is insidious bullshit - even Brietbart, the antithesis to logic and #1 pro-trump outlet couldn't prove it...
 
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TheMantyke

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But if Trump loses traditional red states such as Georgia, Utah & Alaska, we'll know the first place to look.
You see, here's what I hate most about this election. Why are we at the point that voter fraud is the first explanation anyone would have looking for the result of a red state turning blue for this election? Trump is among the most controversial presidential candidates ever. I'd jump at the "grabbed by the pussy" comment or one of the other countless statements he's made that are questionable at their most forgivable and pretty unappealing otherwise. I personally lean right on the basis of economics and I for sure won't be voting for Trump on election day. I still think Hilary's a politician with the same slime coating as the rest like I did in December when the field was wider, but I'll take that over the person eager to appoint a new Supreme Court Justice to overturn Roe v. Wade.

The "You SJWs" part of your post unsettles me as well. I'm not an SJW. But I don't think I can vote for Trump because the more moderate side of being a moderate conservative is winning out. A lot of the posters here I can't speak for directly, but I get that vibe from a few posts from here as well.

Edit: I got some heat for the last paragraph. Probably reduced safe spaces to a more cartoony idea of them. My bad.
 
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verbatim

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First of all, Infowars is not the only source to report this as I will not make any further remarks here until after election day so you social justice warriors can be contempt in glee here for awhile. But if Trump loses traditional red states such as Georgia, Utah & Alaska, we'll know the first place to look.
Could you post them instead please? Discrediting Inforwars for being shit isn't a "SJW" thing, it's widely regarded as being being untrustworthy by all reputable sources, including conservative pundits like Glenn Beck, to give an example.


As an aside, in the age of the filter bubble and increasing political polarization, I think that we should be doing our best to understand and not to isolate one another.
 
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Legitimate Username

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First of all, Infowars is not the only source to report this as I will not make any further remarks here until after election day so you social justice warriors can be contempt in glee here for awhile. But if Trump loses traditional red states such as Georgia, Utah & Alaska, we'll know the first place to look.
Trump is such a joke of a candidate that Evan McMullin has a legitimate (albeit unlikely) shot at taking Utah from him due to the huge number of conservatives who believe that Trump does not represent their values, especially Mormons. Other than that, Soul Fly said pretty much everything else that I wanted to say about this, so I won't bother. Don't go whining about voter fraud just because you're supporting a weak candidate who's literally incompetent enough to be losing his grip on states that should be a lock for him.
 
Quick question: Once this is over and done with, will either of the nominees take action on the Dakota pipeline? The shit going down has been horrendous and infuriates me.
Glad the see I'm not the only one aware of it! I was wish that someone had asked the candidates when they were answering questions. If Hillary would devote herself to supporting the Water Protectors, I think it would help get skeptics and millenials excited for her in the same way there is a lot of excitement for Jill Stein (well, the few who are voting for her).

so is julian assange a good guy or a bad guy
I think he is a good man who has done very stupid things. Same thing goes for Wikileaks. I don't think it should be shut down, so much as better moderated.

7 more days until election, looks like the only way Hillary is going to win this is through massive voting fraud.
http://www.infowars.com/biggest-ele...discovered-in-the-united-states-breaking-now/
I've seen some evidence that the government (or some rogue part of it) might have done 9/11, but the Oklahoma city bombing is news to me!

But any site that says the Lunar landings were fake automatically looses credibility. They were real, and they found a robot head on the moon, end of story!
 
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http://www.vox.com/2016/11/1/13480416/trump-supporters-sexism?

"Trump, in other words, isn’t just drawing from a base of people who have traditional views about women’s roles. He’s getting support from people who are hostile toward women’s economic and legal equality and who think feminism is making America worse."

in other news, water is wet.
Disagreeing with feminism isn't being hostile towards women. Out of the terrible propaganda I've seen so far in this election, that has got to be the most paranoid one.
 
That entirely depends on the particular definition of feminism you are working with.
The only one that should be considered is the original intent. The dictionary definition of the word is “the theory of the political, economic, and social equality of the sexes.” and while relatively few people actively identify as feminists a 2013 HuffPost/YouGov poll found that greater than 80% of americans agree with the core ideology that “men and women should be social, political, and economic equals” with only 9% actively opposed which was corroborated with similar results in 2015 by a poll from PerryUndem Research. Margin of error between 3-4%, likely CI of 95%.
 
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Pyritie

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The only one that should be considered is the original intent.
Not in threads like this where you're just going to end up with confusion and name-calling unless you specify.

The dictionary definition of the word is “the theory of the political, economic, and social equality of the sexes.” and while relatively few people actively identify as feminists a 2013 HuffPost/YouGove poll found that greater than 80% of americans agree with the core ideology that “men and women should be social, political, and economic equals” with only 9% actively opposed which was corroborated in 2015 by a similar poll from PerryUndem Research.
The percentage of americans is irrelevant when the vast majority of posters on this forum are far more aware of internet culture (and thus, of "alternative" definitions of feminism) than your average american.
 

verbatim

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http://www.vox.com/2016/11/1/13480416/trump-supporters-sexism?

"Trump, in other words, isn’t just drawing from a base of people who have traditional views about women’s roles. He’s getting support from people who are hostile toward women’s economic and legal equality and who think feminism is making America worse."

in other news, water is wet.
This is the important part, not how you describe the label. Feminism has more or less been redefined on the Internet to represent fringe groups that aren't representative of "equality for women" in the greater scheme of things. It'd be pretty weird if I said that all Christians hate black people (they overwhelmingly don't) because of a small portion of neo-nazi's that try to hide behind a book to justify their hate.

My reaction has generally been to stop using the word and start talking about the issue itself:

Many people that would normally vote Republican aren't voting for Trump this election cycle because of his incredible hostility towards women, ditto for race and religion.
 
no

"depends on which type of feminism" is just nonsense strawman disguising misogyny with concerns for semantic clarity

different strands of feminism have different interpretations towards reaching equality but the end goal is as such

you can be a feminist in different ways, but not being a feminist is simply sexist
This anti-intellectual and backwards line of thought is exactly why so many think that feminism is just a disguise for hate and facism, and why so many aren't willing to believe in that Vox article.
 
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