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reggieandlee

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Member since: Wed Jul 20, 2016, 05:44 PM
Number of posts: 533

Journal Archives

BTRTN 2020 Vision: Will Biden's Campaign Die a Death of a Thousand Gaffes?

Born To Run The Numbers just posted the latest installment of its monthly "2020 Vision" feature, which provides an up-to-the minute snapshot of the Democratic Race:

http://www.borntorunthenumbers.com/2019/09/btrtn-2020-vision-will-bidens-campaign.html

Excerpts:
"The headlines...Joe Biden remains at the head of the field nationally, with slightly lower support levels than last month, while Elizabeth Warren continues to climb, and is now tied for second with Bernie Sanders..."
"The third Democratic debate featured only ten candidates... Joe Biden came out strong in the debate but faded into gaffe mode, raising questions once again about the long term sustainability of his campaign. But he scored early on both Warren and Sanders over their 'Medicare For All' plan, and came out on the sympathetic end of a clumsy Julian Castro attack on his age. But Beto O'Rourke's passionate plea to ban assault weapons was the most powerful moment of the night."
"If the debate had ended after an hour, Biden would have won it hands down. When Julian Castro staged an inartful attack on Biden’s age ('are you forgetting what you just said two minutes ago?'), Biden survived it easily (the audience gasped), but the contretemps allowed other candidates an entry point on the delicate issue of Biden’s competence, which took up a fair amount of post-debate oxygen. And, Biden’s 'record player' reference was certainly one of the most replayed moments of the night..."
"It seems unlikely that this debate will shake up the polls in any meaningful way...But there was a signal shift in the debate, and that was Biden on the offensive, and attacking Warren directly, a first thus far. And the overarching question remains… is Biden built to last, or will his campaign die a death of a thousand gaffes? He has a huge reservoir of goodwill, for sure. But that might not be enough..."

BTRTN: Dem Debate #3... The Elusive God of Momentum Takes the Night Off

Born To Run the Numbers provides its analysis of the third Democratic Debate:

http://www.borntorunthenumbers.com/2019/09/btrtn-dem-debate-3-elusive-god-of.html

Excerpts:
"With Elizabeth Warren finally on the same stage with Joe Biden for the first time, people expected that the two would go toe-to-toe, eyeball-to-eyeball, dancing geek-to-geek, and that the 2020 narrative might be decisively shaped. By Friday, morning, would the charismatic, articulate, and folksy Warren finally displace Biden, if not immediately in polls, then most certainly in the liberal media tabloid romances pages that track the affections of the great god of Momentum? Ah, fickle god Momentum. If last night had been a prize fight, it would have been one of those brutal fifteen rounders that ends in a draw, blood everywhere, and no real change in the rankings. Much sound and fury, signifying nothing more than that this is going to be a long haul..."

"In truth, Elizabeth Warren missed her opportunity to capitalize on the momentum she brought into the debate. She receded into the background as other candidates seemed much more engaged, much more present, and even much more capable of connecting with the audience. All of Booker, Buttigieg, O’Rourke, and Klobuchar were in the game last night, fighting for every yard. Warren warmed up toward the end of the evening, but by then all but the most wonkish of policy nerds had begun channel surfing...

"I hesitate to provide a scorecard on this evening, because the bottom line is that very little in the polling will likely change as a result of last night. But here goes..."

BTRTN: Rats, Mazes, and Sharpies...Why Trump Had to Alter The Portrait of Dorian's Way

Born To Run The Numbers provides its forensic analysis of why Donald Trump had no choice but to take a sharpie to a weather map:

http://www.borntorunthenumbers.com/2019/09/rats-mazes-and-sharpieswhy-trump-had-to.html

Excerpts:"Today, I chose to reflect on what would seem, at face value, to be the stupidest episode thus far in a Presidency so committed to charting the dark depths of stupid that it evokes an image of a tiny submarine on a four year mission to map every inch of the Marianas Trench of Stupid. There are still those who remain perpetually befuddled by the Trump Presidency, in turn shocked and surprised by each new mind-bending eruption of toddler-grade impulse control and relentless fact evasion emanating from this White House. Sadly, however, such people are missing the point. It is as if they were applying adult standards of behavior, assuming a normative 50-watt intellect, and ascribing societally acceptable motivations in trying to understand the behavior of a white rat racing through a maze to find the pellet in a Psych 101 B.F. Skinner experiment..."

"No, people, there is no overarching political vision guiding the decisions of the Trump administration. There is no belief system about what must happen in order to 'make America great again.' There is no plan, no vision, no philosophy... there is no nothing. There is only a rat, trapped in a maze, repeating over and over the turns he has learned to make in order to get the pellet. The pellet is that Donald Trump stays out of jail. Drawing the appendage on a weather map was Trump’s only choice. He has to keep the base in line. He has learned how to do that: by lying, triggering wars with the media, and hiring ethically barren henchmen to do his bidding. Yes, folks, Donald Trump drew a phony appendage on a weather map as just one more perfectly logical step in the life of a man twisting our country like a wet rag all for one purpose.So that he can stay out of prison..."

BTRTN: Rats, Mazes, and Sharpies...Why Trump Had to Alter The Portrait of Dorian's Way

Born To Run The Numbers provides its forensic analysis of why Donald Trump had no choice but to take a sharpie to a weather map:

http://www.borntorunthenumbers.com/2019/09/rats-mazes-and-sharpieswhy-trump-had-to.html

Excerpts:"Today, I chose to reflect on what would seem, at face value, to be the stupidest episode thus far in a Presidency so committed to charting the dark depths of stupid that it evokes an image of a tiny submarine on a four year mission to map every inch of the Marianas Trench of Stupid. There are still those who remain perpetually befuddled by the Trump Presidency, in turn shocked and surprised by each new mind-bending eruption of toddler-grade impulse control and relentless fact evasion emanating from this White House. Sadly, however, such people are missing the point. It is as if they were applying adult standards of behavior, assuming a normative 50-watt intellect, and ascribing societally acceptable motivations in trying to understand the behavior of a white rat racing through a maze to find the pellet in a Psych 101 B.F. Skinner experiment..."

"No, people, there is no overarching political vision guiding the decisions of the Trump administration. There is no belief system about what must happen in order to 'make America great again.' There is no plan, no vision, no philosophy... there is no nothing. There is only a rat, trapped in a maze, repeating over and over the turns he has learned to make in order to get the pellet. The pellet is that Donald Trump stays out of jail. Drawing the appendage on a weather map was Trump’s only choice. He has to keep the base in line. He has learned how to do that: by lying, triggering wars with the media, and hiring ethically barren henchmen to do his bidding. Yes, folks, Donald Trump drew a phony appendage on a weather map as just one more perfectly logical step in the life of a man twisting our country like a wet rag all for one purpose.So that he can stay out of prison..."

BTRTN August 2019 Month in Review: Trump's China Syndrome: Be-VIX'ED, Bothered and Bewildered

Born To Run The Numbers provides its monthly review for August, a month in which Trump baffled many with his gyrations on trade, guns, the G-7, hurricanes, and Greenland. Wow.

http://www.borntorunthenumbers.com/2019/09/btrtn-august-2019-month-in-review.html

Excerpt:
"It is not often that one concludes that Donald Trump is vexed. But it is hard to avoid that conclusion after an erratic August in which Trump flip-flopped like a fish on the two big issues of the month, China and gun violence. You may be familiar with the “VIX,” the Chicago Board Options Exchange’s measure of stock market’s expected volatility. If Trump had his own VIX index of personal volatility, it would have been off the charts. Despite attempts to position his confounding statements as “smart negotiating” to keep his foes “off-balance,” he has indeed appeared to be both bothered and bewildered about the best path forward, particularly on China.

It has never been quite clear what Trump has been up to in China, in terms of strategy. Obviously, China, the second largest economy in the world, has been a currency manipulator and technology thief, and deserving of a comeuppance of some sort. But of what sort has bedeviled U.S. presidents for some time. To the extent that Trump was choosing amongst strategies, which is highly unlikely, he has chosen a perilous one – the “trade war.” Why the first-term president, a re-election underdog, thought he could outlast a counterpart with a Job For Life, emanating from a culture famous for the “long play,” is beyond logic. Particularly since China, a foe on trade, is a potential ally that Trump needs in his battle to wrest nuclear capability from North Korea."
Posted by reggieandlee | Wed Sep 4, 2019, 07:39 AM (1 replies)

BTRTN August 2019 Month in Review: Trump's China Syndrome: Be-VIX'ED, Bothered and Bewildered

Born To Run The Numbers provides its monthly review for August, a month in which Trump baffled many with his gyrations on trade, guns, the G-7, hurricanes, and Greenland. Wow.

http://www.borntorunthenumbers.com/2019/09/btrtn-august-2019-month-in-review.html

Excerpt:
"It is not often that one concludes that Donald Trump is vexed. But it is hard to avoid that conclusion after an erratic August in which Trump flip-flopped like a fish on the two big issues of the month, China and gun violence. You may be familiar with the “VIX,” the Chicago Board Options Exchange’s measure of stock market’s expected volatility. If Trump had his own VIX index of personal volatility, it would have been off the charts. Despite attempts to position his confounding statements as “smart negotiating” to keep his foes “off-balance,” he has indeed appeared to be both bothered and bewildered about the best path forward, particularly on China.

It has never been quite clear what Trump has been up to in China, in terms of strategy. Obviously, China, the second largest economy in the world, has been a currency manipulator and technology thief, and deserving of a comeuppance of some sort. But of what sort has bedeviled U.S. presidents for some time. To the extent that Trump was choosing amongst strategies, which is highly unlikely, he has chosen a perilous one – the “trade war.” Why the first-term president, a re-election underdog, thought he could outlast a counterpart with a Job For Life, emanating from a culture famous for the “long play,” is beyond logic. Particularly since China, a foe on trade, is a potential ally that Trump needs in his battle to wrest nuclear capability from North Korea."



Posted by reggieandlee | Wed Sep 4, 2019, 07:38 AM (1 replies)

BTRTN: Suburban Snapshot...One Republican's Reason for Backing Trump Spells Trouble -- for Trump

Born To Run The Numbers reports on a sustained, civil, and wide-ranging conversation with an upscale Trump supporter... and sees real dangers -- for Donald Trump:

http://www.borntorunthenumbers.com/2019/08/btrtn-suburban-snapshotone-republicans.html

Excerpts: "As recently as 2012, a spirited discussion of politics was a fair way to pass time ...I miss such conversations, because I ache to understand why so many people who voted for Trump plan on doing so again in 2020. Finally, I had a real conversation..."
"It was with the exact cohort of Republican that I find to be troubling… the citizens in affluent suburban towns. These are not the people who seethe with angry victimhood about losing the family breadwinner’s manufacturing job, not people who dismiss climate science, not people who would stand silent if a local town official spoke crudely about or molested their daughters..."
"...her infirm grip on the social policy issues of the Trump presidency -- and her efforts to minimize or excuse his handling of each – could have all been simply because these issues were not what truly mattered to her. She was essentially admitting to being a single issue candidate on the issue of the economy. Her statement that 'if one of those progressives gets nominated, I will probably vote for Trump,' was specifically targeted at the economic proposals of those candidates: healthcare, tax policy, and -- in her view -- the intent of turning the United States into a more “socialist” state. If even a small chunk of Donald Trump’s base thinks the way this person does, it is bad news for Donald Trump. Because the lady we spoke with was essentially saying to Donald Trump that as long as the economy is good for her, she’s good with Donald Trump."
"Those economic Republicans – who believe in math, science, and inverted yield curves – may be feeling sucker-punched that Donald Trump’s erratic economic policies are contributing to global economic destabilization and triggering a downturn."

BTRTN: Suburban Snapshot...One Republican's Reason for Backing Trump Spells Trouble -- for Trump

Born To Run The Numbers reports on a sustained, civil, and wide-ranging conversation with an upscale Trump supporter... and sees real dangers -- for Donald Trump:

http://www.borntorunthenumbers.com/2019/08/btrtn-suburban-snapshotone-republicans.html

Excerpts: "As recently as 2012, a spirited discussion of politics was a fair way to pass time ...I miss such conversations, because I ache to understand why so many people who voted for Trump plan on doing so again in 2020. Finally, I had a real conversation..."
"It was with the exact cohort of Republican that I find to be troubling… the citizens in affluent suburban towns. These are not the people who seethe with angry victimhood about losing the family breadwinner’s manufacturing job, not people who dismiss climate science, not people who would stand silent if a local town official spoke crudely about or molested their daughters..."
"...her infirm grip on the social policy issues of the Trump presidency -- and her efforts to minimize or excuse his handling of each – could have all been simply because these issues were not what truly mattered to her. She was essentially admitting to being a single issue candidate on the issue of the economy. Her statement that 'if one of those progressives gets nominated, I will probably vote for Trump,' was specifically targeted at the economic proposals of those candidates: healthcare, tax policy, and -- in her view -- the intent of turning the United States into a more “socialist” state. If even a small chunk of Donald Trump’s base thinks the way this person does, it is bad news for Donald Trump. Because the lady we spoke with was essentially saying to Donald Trump that as long as the economy is good for her, she’s good with Donald Trump."
"Those economic Republicans – who believe in math, science, and inverted yield curves – may be feeling sucker-punched that Donald Trump’s erratic economic policies are contributing to global economic destabilization and triggering a downturn."

BTRTN 2020 Vision: Are We Headed Toward a Biden-Warren Showdown?

Born To Run the Numbers provides its monthly snapshot of the state of the Democratic campaign:

http://www.borntorunthenumbers.com/2019/08/btrtn-2020-vision-are-we-headed-toward.html

Excerpts: "The main headlines from the 2020 presidential campaign in the last month, since mid-July, are as follows: Joe Biden remains at the head of the field, nationally and in each of the four 'early' states (Iowa, New Hampshire, Nevada and South Carolina), and his support levels have stabilized. Elizabeth Warren continued her upward progress and pulled even with Bernie Sanders, while the momentum of Kamala Harris and Pete Buttigieg stalled. None of the remaining candidates surged into the 'top tier...'
"This race seems poised to follow a different pattern than either 2012 with its flavors or 2016 with Trump dominating. We could instead be very well be headed – ultimately -- for a one-on-one showdown between Joe Biden and Elizabeth Warren, a classic confrontation between the centrist and progressive wings of the party, more like Hillary versus Bernie in 2016. Biden seems to have solid support in the centrist wing of the party and there is no clear centrist alternative. While hardly an ideal candidate, Biden has a core 30% support level that has survived his slow-footedness during the debates and gaffes on the campaign trial. There is much to like about Biden: his centrist positioning; his deep experience; his authenticity and likeability; and his standing versus Trump, whom he routinely trounces in head-to-head polls... Warren seeming to be cruising by Sanders in the battle for the progressive wing in the party. No one else will emerge. Both Kamala Harris and Pete Buttigieg, the other two top tier contenders, are showing signs of being a bit past their peak..."
"There are four, and only four, potential candidates would could enter the race as late as December and immediately become a factor. Four candidates with the visibility and stature to offer a different, credible option. Can you name them? Read on..."

BTRTN: Trump, Send Me Back To The Country I Came From, Too

Born to Run the Numbers on two weeks in which our President’s racist and xenophobic rhetoric appears to be a contributing factor in another sickening wave of gun violence:

http://www.borntorunthenumbers.com/2019/08/btrtn-trump-send-me-back-to-country-i.html

Excerpts: "I, too, came from a different country, President Trump. It was far, far from where I live today in the United States of America. I miss the country I was born and raised in. It was better than the one I live in now. Go ahead. Tell me that if I am unhappy living in the United States, I should leave it and go home to where I came from. Yeah, I may be an English-speaking WASP dripping in privilege, but, hey – why not? Go ahead… I dare you. Tell me to go home, too...
"I’m not saying the country I came from was perfect. Far from. It had flaws. Big flaws. Inequities. Injustice. Discrimination. Biases. Factions. Anger. Even hate. But it woke up every day with a fierce determination to become better.
"Here's the essential difference between America then and America now: Back then, we had racial injustice, the bloodshed of a senseless war on the other side of the world, and a criminal in the White House. But we acted. We protested ferociously. We did something about each of these problems. Today, Republican leaders fan the flames of racial bigotry and discrimination, we have the bloodshed of ever-recurring gun madness in the town next door, and we have a criminal in the White House. And yet in the country I live in today, we do nothing..."
"Perhaps it is time that we all take a moment to look at the mass shooter in the mirror. No, nobody is saying that we pulled the trigger. No, we didn’t do that. We didn’t do anything. And that is the problem with the country I live in.We are not each pushing -- each in our own way, and each as hard as we can -- to bend the moral arc of the universe toward justice."
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