Home > Critical Thinking, Current Affairs, Links, Skepticism > Interesting Links: Nov 18, 2016

Interesting Links: Nov 18, 2016

Here are links to a few more recent articles by Michael Tracey on the factors underlying victory of Trump and defeat of HRC and her supposedly impressive political machine.

Link 1: How Hillary Lost North Carolina: Most People Disliked Her

As the 7:30pm deadline in North Carolina approached, there was not a soul waiting on line at one Fayetteville, NC voting location. Earlier in the day I had been told by an election judge to expect a late rush, but it never seemed to come. As of 3:00pm, the judge said that turnout had decreased by around 6% in one heavily black precinct. Working that same site was Justin Shumpert, 21, a young black man and aspiring rapper. (Also the claimed cousin of Cleveland Cavaliers defensive monster Iman Shumpert.) He’d been paid $100 to hand out Democratic Party literature in front of the polling site, but when queried as to his own beliefs, he said he wouldn’t vote. “She lied too many times,” he said, explaining why he couldn’t stand Hillary Clinton. Asked who he’d prefer between the two candidates if forced to choose, Shumpert said Trump. “At least he says what he’s going to do. She just hides it,” he said. He added that he would’ve gladly voted for a third term of Barack Obama.

Link 2: Trump Was Always The Republican Candidate Best Positioned To Defeat Hillary

Which leads us to the question: would any of the other 2016 GOP candidates have beaten Hillary? My inclination is to conclude that another GOP candidate could have ran up the votes in traditional GOP strongholds (such as Texas) where Trump won but atrophied support compared to the Republican norm. It’s not clear, however, that any other GOP candidate could have performed as well as Trump did in the electorally-crucial states. One or two of the other GOP candidates could have possibly still beaten Hillary — Rubio, Kasich — but they would’ve had to figure out another path to do so. I don’t think either of them could have replicated Trump’s path.

Link 3: How The Cult of “Fact-Checking” Helped Trump Win

If you want to find someone to blame for Trump, blame your local idiot journalist who spent 1.5 years in 24/7 anti-Trump meltdown mode, overwhelming the vast majority of news consumers with hysterical “FACT-CHECK!!!!!!!” pronouncements and forcing them to tune out most of the coverage, including anti-Trump coverage that was totally warranted, such as his history of stiffing small business owners. Why did the Hillary campaign focus on lunatic Russia conspiracy theories instead of Trump’s bilking of mom-and-pop cabinet-makers? You’ll have to ask them.

I imagine these fact-check cultists screaming “Fact check! Fact check!” in an obnoxious, nasally nerd voice, all in unison, as if they’re so convinced that they are the final arbiters of truth in the universe. They are so insulated, and cocky, and lack any capacity for self-criticism or self-awareness, that they don’t realize their “fact-checking” crusade is the product of ideology, not direct communion with universal divine wisdom.

This gets to the “fake news” craze now sweeping the punditocracy. Rather than reckon with their own profound failures, the pundit set wants to turn its attention to the abyss of the internet, and get rid of all news they deem “fake.” First amendment implications of the endeavor aside, “pivoting” to this effort gets them off the hook for failing every step of the way for 1.5 years straight. (“You had one job!!!!!!!!!”). How about instead of going to town on random internet content-makers, these elite content-makers grapple with their own failures? That should be step one.

What do you think? Comments?

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