Benjamin Studebaker

Yet Another Attempt to Make the World a Better Place by Writing Things

Tag: Nate Silver

What Really Happened on Super Duper Tuesday

Bernie Sanders did not have a good night on Tuesday, losing all five contests in Florida, North Carolina, Ohio, Illinois, and even Missouri. The major networks are writing his political obituary–they chose not to broadcast his speech, instead choosing to stand by for more Donald Trump. So how bad is it really?

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What Really Happened on Super Tuesday

Unlike the British press, which openly acknowledges and parades its biases, many American news outlets like to maintain a pretense of objectivity. But this doesn’t mean that they’re objective, it just means that their biases are more insidious. Many media outlets clearly like Hillary Clinton and dislike Donald Trump, and these views have quietly colored their reporting on the presidential race. Last night Bernie Sanders won as many states as Donald Trump lost, but Clintonites will try to paint the democrats’ race as effectively over while anti-Trumpsters will look for excuses to say that the republicans’ race isn’t finished yet. These media narratives are used to give the press’ favorites “momentum”. If the public believes a race is over, it often is, regardless of whether or not the numbers really make it so. So by crowning a nominee (or refusing to crown one), media outlets exercise power to shape the races grounded in their biases. To understand what really happened last night, we have to look at whether candidates are meeting or exceeding their projected paths to their respective nominations.

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The TSA: Mass Murderers

I happened upon an old article by the sage of Brooklyn himself, Nate Silver, about what Silver calls the hidden costs of airport security. Silver references a study out of Cornell University that indicates that the there were significant consequences to the increase in airport security post-9/11 that went unreported and unnoticed. These consequences were not merely financial–people died.

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Misconceptions: “The Election is a Dead Heat”

I’m not one to get mired in election cycle coverage often, but then I saw “news” stories like this one claiming that the presidential election is actually close. This is not true. Barack Obama is almost certainly going to win this election, and his margin in the electoral college is probably going to be more than a couple of states large. Here’s why.

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