Lion of the Blogosphere

Archive for January 2016

One day to caucus

Trump leads all polls. But will he win the caucus?

Theory 1: Trump will underperform because his supporters disproportionately never caucused before and that predicts they aren’t going to suddenly change their life-long habits. And also, they say his ground game sucks.

Theory 2: Trump will overperform because his supporters have a lot more passion and will be more willing to spend three hours on Monday evening at the caucus.

TheHill.com reports today:

Political insiders in Iowa have a warning: Don’t underestimate Donald Trump’s ground game.

Experts inside and outside the GOP tell The Hill it would be a mistake to think Trump’s organization is operating on a wing and a prayer when it comes to getting his supporters to caucus sites around Iowa on Monday night.

“I think his campaign is better organized than people give him credit for,” said David Yepsen, the director of the Paul Simon Public Policy Institute at Southern Illinois University, who covered the caucuses over several decades for The Des Moines Register.

“His campaign has got a couple of good leaders in it that have done this before.”

If sales of Trump merchandise predict likelihood to caucus, then Trump has this in the bag. As reported at the NY Times:

“I’ve worked Hillary, Bernie, Cruz and Rubio — Trump outsells them 10 to 1,” said Don Kriener, a vendor from Florida. “We quit doing everyone else a week ago. Sold all our stock to the people doing Hillary and Sanders.”

In UK betting markets, Trump is a strong odds-on favorite to win the Iowa Caucus, which shows an arbitrage opportunity because his odds for winning the nomination are somewhat less and I don’t see any path for any other candidate to win the nomination if Trump wins in Iowa.

Written by Lion of the Blogosphere

January 31, 2016 at 10:23 am

Posted in Politics

Not enough children of color in computer science?

Huffington Post headline reads Obama Wants More Girls And Kids Of Color To Learn Computer Science

A comment reads:

Not enough “kids of color” in computer science? Last I checked their were plenty of Asians and Indians in the computer science field.

Ha ha.

Here’s a more serious comment:

I feel like president Obama and the 9 out of 10 parents should first understand what computer science actually means before making statements like that. Saying that computer science is a fundamental skill to have, is like saying that particle physics is a fundamental skill to have. Troubleshooting computers and maintaining computer networks is not computer science, so is not programming. Just like a physicist, Computer Scientists are interested in understanding fundamental principles about the universe. We know that there is gravity but we certainly do not expect anyone to know about gravitational laws if they do not wish to know, why forcing them? I think what the president and the parents actually mean is practical computer skills such as programming, networking and troubleshooting.

I agree that more children, including white children, should be exposed to practical computer skills. Just as I had typing when I was in the sixth grade, it’s even more important for today’s children to have computer skills, and programming ought to be taught as a required subject for college-bound students.

We should also restrict immigration from India so that American young people can get jobs in IT.

Written by Lion of the Blogosphere

January 30, 2016 at 1:16 pm

Jimmy McMillan endorses Donald Trump

The Daily News (which hates Donald Trump) reluctantly reports that political activist and karate expert Jimmy McMillan endorses Donald Trump for president.

“He’s the only one who is supporting my brother veterans which is good enough for me,” McMillan told the Daily News on Friday.

“My main concern is helping my brother veterans get help,” he said. “America needs change.”

Jimmy McMillan is the founder of the New-York-based Rent Is Too Damn High Party.

While McMillan may seem like a frivolous sort of person to some, I think it demonstrates Trump’s appeal to blacks which I have already discussed.

Don’t remember Jimmy McMillan? The YouTube video below will perhaps refresh your memory:

Written by Lion of the Blogosphere

January 30, 2016 at 11:42 am

Posted in Politics

Making a Murderer – Brendan Dassey

I’m not 100% convinced either way on the guilt or innocence of Steven Avery (although the rule that criminals should be found guilty beyond reasonable doubt would say that you should find a defendant not guilty if you have a lot of uncertainty).

But it seems extremely unfair that Brendan Dassey, a semi-retarded kid, has to spend most of his life in prison when, at worst, an older authority figure (his uncle) coerced him into committing a crime he didn’t want to commit and, according to the prosecutors’ own story, was wracked with guilt over it. And there’s a good chance that he didn’t do anything but merely told investigators what they wanted him to say because he was subject to psychological manipulation by aggressive interrogators.

Written by Lion of the Blogosphere

January 30, 2016 at 10:40 am

Posted in Crime, Law, Television

Making a Murderer

Finished watching this very long documentary series. What do you want me to say about it?

Written by Lion of the Blogosphere

January 29, 2016 at 10:09 pm

Posted in Law, Technology

Megyn Kelly’s new hairdo

Written by Lion of the Blogosphere

January 29, 2016 at 2:20 pm

Posted in Politics

The Revenant review

My one paragraph take on the movie: great cinematography, great shots of the winter wilderness, savage Indian attacks, never has the world so realistically seen a man mauled by a bear (thanks to CGI), but did it have to be so damn long? Isn’t two hours of bearded men wandering around in wilderness enough?

They say that the Oscars are “too white”, however this movie, nominated for Best Picture, was directed by a Mexican, Alejandro González Iñárritu. He’s white-looking, tall, and distinguished. See photos at Google Images. He looks nothing like the Mexican guys at the Korean-owned bodega across the street who make me bacon egg and cheese sandwiches. (I have nothing against the Mexican guys at the bodega, they are always very pleasant, but I can’t imagine them directing a movie.)

Sorry, the rest of the review has spoilers.

Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Lion of the Blogosphere

January 29, 2016 at 11:29 am

Posted in Movies

The debate I didn’t watch

Based on this Washington Post summary, it seems like Donald Trump didn’t lose anything by not being there. Rubio and Cruz attacked each other on immigration, weakening both of them. And other candidates also attacked Cruz.

Drudge has a really sneaky poll question. Instead of asking who won the debate, like he has every other debate, this time he asks “WHO IS YOUR REPUBLICAN PICK FOR PRESIDENT?” And Trump wins with 52% of the vote (as of 12:22 AM on Friday morning).

* * *

I watched The Revenant as promised. Will write about it tomorrow.

Written by Lion of the Blogosphere

January 29, 2016 at 12:24 am

Posted in Politics

The new Bernie ad

Pretty awesome. Scott Adams, the creator of Dilbert, agrees.

* * *

Even though there are a few minorities shown, the ad leaves the impression of being very white. And Simon and Garfunkel is very white music.

Matthew Yglesias agrees, he complains that the ad is too white.

Written by Lion of the Blogosphere

January 27, 2016 at 10:09 pm

Posted in Politics

The Revenant

The Revenant was one of the early recommendations, and I like the idea of seeing some of the Best Picture nominees before the Academy Awards.

As explained in news articles, the Academy gives out DVDs of all of the nominated pictures and they have then been leaked to torrent sites.

I’m just pointing this out for informational purposes. I am not advising anyone to use torrent sites, because that could be an illegal violation of copyright law. You should assume that I will be watching it in the theater. However, if you do pirate the movie, make sure you do a hit and run to avoid attracting attention to your IP address.

Written by Lion of the Blogosphere

January 27, 2016 at 9:58 pm

Posted in Movies

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