• to be clear:  I always have voted for a Democrat, in every office I've voted for.  And, I expect I always will.  I'm very much on the left wing of things.  I am just disgusted, frankly, that even the "democratic wing of the democratic party" tends to be awfully moderate.  Count me in Bernie Sanders' camp.

  • I was who I am now--slynch.  I moved from dkos during the primary, because I thought the tone there became very anti-Hillary/pro-Obama, and I wasn't convinced that Obama was the best candidate.  I voted for Obama, nonetheless, in the general, because, from my view, I will/have (almost) always vote(d) for a Democrat.  

    But, I've been thusfar troubled by Obama's performance.  I don't see him as progressive (nor did I see Hillary as progresive; I just disagreed with the ridiculous Obama-worship I saw at dkos that eventually trickled-down here).

    In my view, we're getting what we voted for.  It's unfortunate that the Democrats just can't seem to put forward a truly progressive candidate.  I don't think Hillary would've been that person either, but I certainly don't think it should come as a massive shock that Obama isn't that person.  He never professed to be a liberal.  Ironically, WE are "suffering" the same sort of buyer's remorse that the far right wing suffers every time they get behind a contender they think is going to represent their ridiculous right wing religious views.  It just doesn't happen.

  • I was here during the campaign.  Where were you?

  • comment on a post Health Care Reform Frauds and Fantasies over 4 years ago

    my comment above was a general one.  This diary I think is fine, because it isn't full of "I told you so" and "Clinton would be better" language.  So, I recommended it.  I think it's very important for people to be slapped in the face a little with the reality that Obama is a centrist and not a progressive.

  • comment on a post Health Care Reform Frauds and Fantasies over 4 years ago

    So, I've gone through and uprated some of your comments that I think have been downrated for no good reason.  I've also hiderated some comments against you that, frankly, violate the site rules by being personal attacks that don't contribute to discussion.  Not that I'm some arbiter, but in the interest of fairness, I think you deserve a little more credit.

    I'm glad you're publishing some "I told you so" diaries, because I think they (could potentially) foster some important debate here.  Obama certainly has, in my opinion, failed to live up to some expectations.  But, frankly, I think people had some unrealistic expectations about what he would be like.  I was on the fence between Obama and Clinton, in part because I thought they were both pretty moderate (not liberal enough for me).

    With that said, your tone is probably not the best for fostering legitimate debate about where progressives ought to place their (future) allegiances.  You can only speculate about what a Hillary presidency would look like, and it isn't very productive to speculate about a nonexistent counterfactual that will not and cannot now come about.  It would be better, I think, to limit your attacks just to where/how Obama has failed to live up to progressive expectations.

  • on a comment on Bill Clinton v. George W. Bush over 4 years ago

    Let's not forget that when the poverty numbers fell during Johnson's admin. it was because poverty fell among the OLD.  When the numbers fell under Clinton, it was among the YOUNG, because the rate among the old was already low.  There was a major shift in the age distribution of the poor between the two.  Clinton didn't succeed in stopping the avalanche of inequality, but he DID succeed in affecting the age-distribution of poverty.

  • on a comment on Obama Still Has His Job, Do You? over 4 years ago

    I think you mean "your."  Just trying to preserve the culture.

  • on a comment on Obama Still Has His Job, Do You? over 4 years ago

    you're too funny.  "Forensics," ha.  As if you know anything about the topic.  What, are you 12?  Maybe 14?  Maybe older, but on par with the average IQ of 100?

    Apparently, you haven't been around here very long (either that or you just don't pay much attention), because there are several instances, probably about 5 months ago, of bruh and me going head-to-head over his support for nate silver's view (versus mine) on the prop 8 issue.  Actually, see my one and only diary here about it and bruh's comments in it.  I'm not a big fan of bruh's--at least I wasn't (s/he's growing on me).  I still think s/he must be a lush, given the way the grammar in his comments deteriorates as the evening goes on, but I don't really judge comments on the basis of their grammar or mis-use of colloquialisms.  I evaluate comments based on the merits of their arguments.

    Aside from all this, you haven't addressed anything I said to you.  So, your comment is nothing more than "hand-waving," to use yet another vernacular expression to represent another logical problem with your commenting. (oh, and by the way, as a statistician, I certainly understand the "real" meaning of "hand-waving," so don't waste your time trying to explain to me the loss/protection of human culture)

    But, whatever.  You seem like you might be just another fellow on the blog looking for an argument outside the bounds of the real discussions waged here, as evidenced by your comment to bruh that elicited my response.  Good luck to you.  To be honest, I enjoy seeing your comments for the most part.  But, please, try to stay topical.

  • on a comment on Obama Still Has His Job, Do You? over 4 years ago

    apparently, you can't read.  The first clause "...descriptivists...are content to allow the misconception to fall into the vernacular..." is exactly what I said.  The fact that others disagree is irrelevant to the point that some accept its vernacular usage.

    Ironically, your own argument here is question-begging in its classic sense.  You presuppose that a descriptivist usage of the term "question-begging" is bad, without demonstrating any such thing.  Surely, if you're the expert on this logical fallacy, you should recognize your own error.

    In addition, the main reason I responded to you is that your initial comment to bruh was nothing but ad hominem.  I find it ironic that one who wants to play logic games finds it so necessary so often to commit such obvious fallacies.

  • on a comment on Obama Still Has His Job, Do You? over 4 years ago

    actually, bruh's usage is a common one, and it is accepted by linguists, even as your link points out.  It may make logicians cringe, but it's no different than what's happened to the use of the word "literally."

  • right--Benford's law says many natural phenomena have trailing digits that follow, essentially, an exponential decline in their frequency of occurrence (from 0 to 9).  So, 1 occurs quite frequently, followed by 2 a little less often, and so on.

    But, Benford's law doesn't apply to everything, including, potentially, polling percentages.  Clearly, the SV polling data doesn't follow this pattern--it's peak in trailing digits is around 7/8.  But 538's data doesn't follow Benford's law either.  Nate has an argument for why, but I thought it was somewhat ad hoc.  And, comparing the patterns of trailing digit frequency across the two sets of data, I sure wouldn't hang my hat on a fraud accusation that could end up as a lawsuit.

  • job creation, frankly, is a bogus metric.  First, the population increases continuously, so a reference to jobs created without a denominator to scale it is meaningless.  

    Second, the quality of the jobs created also matters.  Reaganomics ushered in the wholesale destruction of our manufacturing sector.  Most "new" jobs that have been created since have been lower paying, service sector jobs (and with fewer benefits).  A better economic metric is to see how real median wages have done.  Under Reagan, they fell.  Under Clinton, they were stagnant.  So, it doesn't matter what the job figure is.  Of course, you're apparently wrong on that as well, as others have pointed out.

  • get your facts straight.  Welfare reform didn't cut the poverty rolls, it just cut the welfare rolls.  Most families in poverty were worse off after the 96 reform (see any number of papers in the American Sociological Review starting in 2000).  And, a decade later, we have more poverty than we had prior to 1980.

    coming with the expansion of the economy in the 90s was a rapid increase in inequality.  Both Reagan's and Clinton's economic policies played a role, and neither were good.  And certainly, neither were centrist.  Reagan's were far right, and Clinton only barely pulled policy back to the left. Neither have been good for the long-run of the country.

  • comment on a post Has Strategic Vision been faking polls? over 4 years ago

    Nate's analysis is certainly interesting, but I'd be careful.  If the data are random, then the trailing digits follow a multinomial distribution of dimension 10 (0...9), with a parameter vector consisting of 10 values of .1 each and n=5544 (the size of the "sample" of trailing digits he shows).  I assume Nate made this assumption and did some simulation.

    I just did this 1 million times and found that the 95% "confidence interval" for ANY trailing digit to occur is [493,526].  The data that Nate presented had a minimum of 431 and a maximum of 676, so it lends credence to his falsification argument.  

    HOWEVER, if the multinomial parameters deviate from .1, i.e., some digits are simply more likely to occur than others because polling data aren't simply random, it wouldn't take much to make their data plausible.  

    An appropriate analysis would involve putting a Dirichlet prior over the multinomial parameter vector (perhaps using Nate's own data as a prior), incorporating the data, and examining the posterior distribution for the Dirichlet parameters.  Then, would could look at how much those parameters would have to deviate from .1 each to obtain the data.  If .1 were within the credible interval for each of the Dirichlet parameters, then the data could've happened via chance.  I'm guessing, given that Nate's own data are not uniform, such an analysis would show that their data are plausible. If I have time today, I'll write a diary on this, but, unfortunately, I have a test to write as well as an overdue book chapter!

  • I agree with Bruh--the comment is purely ideologically driven.  I'd like to hear exactly why they say the methodology is faulty--that's an easy comment to simply toss out.  

    To me, the only real fault with it is that their approach guarantees an underestimate, because they've controlled out the effects of intervening variables.  It's not clear to me why they would do this.  If lack of insurance leads to poor health (for example) and poor health leads to death, then the effect of poor health should not be factored out of the total effect of lack of insurance.  Yet, that's what they do.  That's the only problem I see.


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