Monday, December 28, 2015

Women want to heal, men want to build rockets

From Pew, heaven bless its naive honesty:


Choice! (and a mother's regret?)











This is blasphemy! Personal choice cannot--MUST NOT!--have anything to do with how contemporary Western women behave. The misogyny of the patriarchy explains why there are so relatively few women in the STEM fields!

Sunday, December 27, 2015

If words could kill

If Trump announcing his plan to restrict Muslim immigration into the US is an effective ISIS recruitment tool--as the establishment suggests it is (and Hillary Clinton claims it has been)--isn't that an argument in favor of Trump's plan? Trump should ask the rhetorical question--or just assert it, as is his style--whenever an interviewer brings it up.

"Islamic extremists" are not outliers, they're just at one end of a distribution. As Randall Parker explains:
Terrorists lie at the tail of a distribution of people with varying degrees of sympathy, shared values, shared beliefs, and willingness to help or ignore. If you can understand that then a bunch of liberal beliefs about terrorism look absurd.
And cuckservative beliefs, too.

Saturday, December 26, 2015

Blacks guarantee Sanders can't win the Democratic nomination

A couple of months ago, after having a rally shutdown by a couple of fat negresses, Bernie Sanders continued to prostrate himself in front of the country in the hopes of mollifying the BLM crowd:



If Sanders gets the VP spot on the Democrat side, Trump would be remiss in not leveraging the clip above into the ultimate Sailer Strategy Supplement:
The only long-term option for the Republicans, the de facto white party, is to rebrand the Democrats as the de facto black party.
Despite his pusillanimous capitulation to BLM bullying, black America has no use for a Jewish carpetbagging crank from lily white Vermont. The breakdown in support among black Democrats in the latest Ipsos/Reuters 5-day rolling tracking poll:


Through the month of December, Sanders' support among black Democrats has been even lower than it had been in previous months. From the summer, when I/R began daily tracking for the 2016 election, through December 24th, Hillary leads Sanders among black Democrats 72.9%-16.0%, an advantage approaching the advantage Democrat candidates have over Republicans in the general election, and strikingly similar to the black advantage Obama enjoyed over Hillary in 2008.

It's easy to forget that Hillary beat Obama handily among whites, 56%-44%, and among Hispanics, 64%-36%, in the 2008 Democrat primaries. But she was trounced among the most monolithic voting bloc in the US and that cost her the election. Blacks backed Obama, 85%-15%.

Hillary learned the hard way that there is no winning the Democrat nomination without dominating the black vote. White liberals are simply not going to vote en masse against a candidate that black Democrats support (that would be Racist!--it if did occur, it would signal an enormous fissure in the Fringe Coalition), and black Democrats all vote for the same person. So whoever that person is gets the nomination. In 2016, that person is Hillary.

Parenthetically, here's Trump on BLM.

Wednesday, December 23, 2015

¡Jabe!, not even a gnat

Took these screenshots at exactly the same time, when both were the most recent posts each guy had up.


As the most popular comments on ¡Jabe!'s post shows, Trump is even a bigger hit among people on ¡Jabe!'s facebook page than ¡Jabe! is.

To repeat, how stupid the GOP establishment must be to have ever put any stock in that buffoon.

Kwanzaa in the gloam

Ann Coulter has apparently started an annual tradition around Christmas of re-posting her skewering of the most risible holiday a certain segment of the population pretends real people actually celebrate.

Interest in Kwanzaa--primarily among elementary and middle school teachers obliged by public school curricula to mention it, I presume--has been steadily decreasing each winter and there is little reason to expect this trend to be interrupted. Just look at the holiday's official website. Yikes. Search frequencies on the term over the last ten years, via Google Trends:


With Christmas as a comparison:


Yes, Christmas is searched for far more frequently during June and July than Kwanzaa is during, well, Kwanzaa.

Scholars and authors gave up on it decades ago. The percentages of books published in the US, by year, containing "Kwanzaa" somewhere in the body of their texts:


So long, Kwanzaa. We hardly knew ye.

Monday, December 21, 2015

Rubio v Cruz, the battle for negligible non-white Republican vote share

Steve Sailer points to a NYT article on comparing the putative Hispanic authenticity of Marco Rubio and Ted Cruz.

Data on volunteered electoral preferences among Hispanic Republicans are scant. Reuters-Ipsos daily tracking consistently has a Republican/independent sample that is too small for Hispanics for the term to register as a identifiable category. I have been able to track down a couple of state polls in Georgia and Florida, both conducted in November, that have cross-tabs for candidate support and Hispanic ethnicity. Both consist of responses from "likely Republican primary voters".

In Georgia, Rubio gets 43% of the Hispanic support to Cruz's 23%. They get 8% and 12% of the state's total GOP support, respectively (keep in mind this was before Carson's precipitous decline began, back when Rubio and Cruz were a distant third and fourth). Yes, tribalism is everywhere--backing support among Hispanics out, we see that the two Hispanic candidates garner less than 20% of the state's overall Republican support, but 66% of its Hispanic Republican support.

In Florida, Rubio gets 23% of support from Hispanics of Cuban ancestry to Cruz's 9%. Among non-Cuban Hispanics, Rubio gets 9% and Cruz only 3%. Notably, Trump beats them both, getting 25% of Cuban support and 41% of non-Cuban Hispanic support in the state. Immigration from Mexico isn't a salient issue in Florida. Among all Republican Floridians, Rubio gets 16% to Cruz's 10%.

What do exist of the sparse data suggest that the ethnic pull is, at least currently, stronger with Rubio than it is with Cruz.

Saturday, December 19, 2015

Trump knows the nomination is his, polling shows he crushes establishment candidates head-to-head

Donald Trump's conception of his own campaign has entered its third distinct phase.

The first phase was about receiving publicity, allegedly in front of an investment deal. Say some things that resonate with a large number of people that aren't otherwise being said, give attention to what needs attending to while simultaneously raising the personal profile.

Trump entered the second phase sometime after the first Republican presidential debate in early August. He decided he was in it to win and made the requisite ground game acquisitions with celerity.

The fifth debate made clear that he has now entered a third phase, one characterized by his confidence that he is going to win the GOP nomination.

A major tell was his assurance to the GOP that he is committed to running as a Republican:



In standard Trumpian fashion, he's check-mated the GOP establishment. They didn't want him stealing votes as an independent when they naively believed he didn't stand a chance of getting the Republican nomination. Now that he's going to get it, they're desperate for him to run as an independent. It'd be a lot more difficult for him to win the general election that way, and many of the puppet masters would rather see Hillary Clinton elected than see Trump win. The party tried to ambush him, but Trump's ambuscade was already lying in wait for them. Once again he has outmaneuvered the entire party establishment.

Another sure sign is apparent in the way Trump is now extending his hand to potential allies, and not just Cruz (start at 3:39 in the video), but also others farther down the pecking order. He explicitly made it known that he watched the undercard debate (relevant video queued at the link). This isn't in keeping with his generally dismissive attitude towards the ankle biters bumping around at the bottom, but it was quite purposeful here. Trump is sending a clear message that he is watching, and those who are prudent enough to aid him as he consolidates support and wraps the nomination up quickly will find their loyalty rewarded. For those who aren't, well, it's off the dais for them.

Since I'm assuming the role of epigone (though let the record show a Trump/Cruz ticket was predicted here several months ago!), allow me to allay my own fears with the most recent polling data. In early August, when the Trump phenomenon was in its seminal stages, I wrote:
I don't think Trump's going to win the GOP nomination. If he manages to stand against the entire Establishment (really, all the opinion-making organs of society are against him--both political parties, the major media, big business, etc) through multiple debates where traps will continue to be set exclusively for him, what'll end up happening is that as the other ~16 GOP contenders drop out of the race one by one, they'll all start throwing their support behind one of the non-Trump candidates still in, so that it'll eventually just be Trump vs top Establishment candidate and most of the ~75% of Republican voters who are spread out across non-Trump candidates right now will come together against him.
Post-debate polling from PPP, I'm happy to report, suggests I had been excessively pessimistic*. The survey asked Republican primary participants how they'd vote in hypothetical head-to-head contests for the GOP nomination. In these sceanrios Trump crushes Bush 58%-34%, crushes Carson 57%-34%, and crushes Rubio 54%-38%. Only Cruz gives Trump a run for his money, with Trump leading the Texas senator by a single point, 45%-44%.

This is yet still more terrible news for the Republican establishment. A solid majority of Republican voters now say they would back Trump over any of the establishment-approved marionettes.

* Parenthetically, to put this thread in context, I was pointing to how successful Trump's early campaign had been up to that point and how I didn't think it was going away anytime soon in the face of a chorus of people who dismissed it as a circus that would be over as quickly as it had started.

The phrase "Trump phenomenon" really is a fitting one. It's easy to forget that mere months ago no one with a megaphone thought Trump had a shot in hell.

Thursday, December 17, 2015

Trump is king of social media


Trump spends less than anyone else in the field, yet he manages to dominate the virtual world just as thoroughly as he dominates the polls. That's leveraging.

Liking Carson is an easy way to attain cheap grace. We get it, you're not racist!

Rand Paul has been a major disappointment. His father took slings and arrows as he constructed a launching pad for Rand to climb into, but Rand insisted on making a bunch of modifications that severely comprised the effectiveness of that launching pad.

Everything about ¡Jabe!'s campaign is a disaster. How stupid the GOP establishment must be to have ever put any stock in that buffoon.

Parenthetically, I limited this to the nine Republican candidates who were allowed on stage for the primary event at the most recent debate.

Wednesday, December 16, 2015

Flight from White, part XLI

From a recent NBC/WSJ poll:


We see that 11% of the survey sample is from a Hispanic-speaking background. When the subsequent question about racial self-identification is asked, respondents are given four options to choose from: White, Black, Asian, or Other.

However, 6% refused to pick one of the four options provided and instead volunteered "Hispanic" as an answer. Most Hispanics consider the term to be more than just a linguistic or ethnic identifier, they also consider it to be a racial one.

Without being prompted to think of "Hispanic" in racial terms, more than half the Hispanics surveyed asserted that they were racially Hispanic. How many smug SWPLs who bray about how "'Hispanic' is not a race!" will call Hispanics out on their ignorance?

The putative privilege of whiteness is a cross no one wants to bear.

Tuesday, December 15, 2015

Fifth republican presidential debate

Liveblogging transcript from the fifth GOP debate follows.

***

Trump's perpetual extemporaneity is an impressive attribute, one that vanishingly few politicians are able to pull off. But there are times even he should commit 30 seconds or so to memory beforehand. His closing statements--which are always opportunities for people to freewheel without having to respond to a specific question or comment--aren't as polished as they could be.

***

Rand Paul makes the commonsense remark that military spending is, in fact, government spending. It's a huge reason our national debt is in the tens of trillions of dollars.

***

Trump stays on the "walls-works-just-ask-Israel" point. The neocons continue to squirm. Genius.

***

Rubio remains the Amnesty King. Apparently everyone he knows are immigrants, including his entire family and his wife's entire family, so I guess it's no surprise as to who he cares about most.

***

Trump to Bush: I'm at 42%, you're at 3%. You keep moving farther and farther out from the center. Before long you'll be off the stage altogether.

Can't happen soon enough.

***

Come on Wolf, make Christie explain why it is "reckless" to allow Russia to assert its interests in Crimea? What the hell does that have to do with the US?

***

Fiorina wants to reignite it, too. Ditto the snowball remark.

***

Kasich wants to reignite the Cold War. Good thing he doesn't have a snowball's chance in hell.

***

Sane foreign policy: Trump, Cruz, Paul, Carson

Insane foreign policy: Kasich, Bush, Fiorina, Rubio, Christie

***

John Kasich, who supported the Iraq War, says we need to topple Assad's Alawite regime so Iran doesn't become stronger.

Nothing has made Iran stronger than the US war in Iraq has.

To repeat, Kasich is a caricature of everything that is wrong with the contemporary Republican party.

***

Rubio wanted Qaddafi to fall. The blood of the European refugee crisis and the dispossession of the old continent is on his hands.

***

Cruz said that toppling Saddam, Qaddafi, and Mubarak were bad ideas?! How'd I miss that?

He needs to be Trump's VP.

***

Carson is an honorary Bush tonight: If we don't fight them there, we'll be fighting them here!

No, if we don't let them in here, we won't be fighting them here, period.

***

Paul and Trump are the only two who realize that Assad is, relatively speaking (very relatively speaking!), the good guy in the Syrian civil war.

***

Rand Paul, the constitution says nothing about how the US has to deal with declared enemies. He must've gotten it confused with the Geneva Conventions. The constitution should be taken seriously. The Geneva Conventions, on the other hand, are at most merely suggestive.

***

Asymmetrical warfare is the only way jihadis have a chance. Make it symmetrical and they are finished. Trump gets that, Bush wants more and more and more and more of the same.

***

Cruz is only partially right. No, the FBI won't pay attention to a self-identified jihadist from Saudi Arabia who was granted a visa to stay in the US a year ago, but it will pay extra attention to a self-reliant white guy who thinks the 2nd amendment is worth preserving.

***

Bush: Islam is a religion of peace.

Which Bush, you ask? All of them.

***

Chris Christie makes a reference to medieval scholasticism. Who says American politics are uniformly low-brow?

***

When Rand Paul is attacking you from the restrictionist side of the immigration debate, you know you are the amnesty king. Rubio is the worst

***

Cruz wants to restrict immigration and restrict the capabilities of the NSA to snoop on American's phone calls. Rubio wants open immigration and an all-powerful NSA. At least we see the contrast--open borders necessitates all kinds of Big Brother programs to monitor the problems those open borders create.

***

ISIS never comes into existence without the US-led regime changes in Iraq and Syria. Most of the Republican lineup is apparently incapable of learning anything from the past.

***

Rubio notes that one of the California shooters was an American citizen, second generation. That's exactly why immigration is so crucial to the National Question. Large numbers of people living in the US who are of non-European descent do not assimilate to liberal American norms, even several generations in. If it were only immigrants who caused problems, we wouldn't have near the immigration problem that we do. It runs so much deeper than the political class (sans Trump) is willing to acknowledge.

***

Bush: We can't invade the world unless we also invite the world. We have to let them come here while we fight them there. That's the only way they won't cause problems here.

Airtight logic. Bush wants to continue where his brother left off. Heaven help us.

Trump dominates rest of GOP among independents, third partiers

Trump's advantage over the rest of the Republican field among self-described independents and members of third parties is nearly twice as large as it is among self-described Republicans. Here are Ipsos-Reuters top five among Republicans as of December 15 (well past the latest campaign-finishing remarks about a moratorium on Muslims entering the US):


Among GOP voters, Trump's support is 230% that of Cruz, 282% of Carson, 347% of Rubio, and 358% of Bush. Among Republicans, then, Trump has a little more than twice the support of second place.

The top five Republicans among independents and third party members as of December 15:


Among independents and third party people, Trump's support is 376% that of Bush, 447% that of Carson, 533% that of Rubio, and 582% that of Paul. Among independents and third partiers, Trump has nearly four times the support second place enjoys.

Trump trumps the field among Republicans, but he outdoes himself among independents.

The reason this doesn't appear to mesh with hypothetical general election polls showing Trump faring worse against Clinton than other Republicans do is in part due to those polls including registered voters, rather than "likely voters", a more restrictive and informative category. Around 85% of the adult population believes itself to be registered to vote, but of course a significantly smaller percentage of the population actually participates in the electoral process (57.5% of eligible voters did so in 2012). 

Given Trump's salience, what is being picked up here with whoever-vs-Trump is a reflexive rejection of Trump among the types of people who know nothing at all about politics besides what they see in social media feeds ("Trump? No way, I'm not waaaacist!"). They instinctively choose the anti-Trump in a head-to-head match up, but that doesn't translate into support for any particular candidate when that "registered voter" is asked to choose from a list of people because they don't know who any of the people are and they won't be voting anyway.

Apple of my eye

Evelyn, a behemoth at 10 lbs 4 oz, has arrived!


Treading water, which would be enough if we asserted control of our borders.

Posting will be light for awhile.

Thursday, December 10, 2015

Person of the year

Time chose Angela Merkel. The award allegedly identifies the person who has the most effect on the year's news, not necessarily the most benevolent one, so being the destroyer of Germania does not mandate disqualification.

There were seven other finalists, including Islamic State leader Abu Bakr Al-Baghdadi, Black Lives Matter activists, Donald Trump, Caitlyn Jenner, Uber CEO Travis Kalanick, Russian President Vladimir Putin and Iranian President Hassan Rouhani. Bernie Sanders won the online readers' poll (which tells more about the readership of Time than it does about the salience of Sanders).

The following bar graph compares relative search interest for Merkel and the other eight listed above from January 1, 2015 through December 10, 2015. The higher the number, the greater the number of searches for the person or group worldwide. Google Trends generates the figures. It's not clear to me exactly what these numbers represent beyond relative search volumes:


Trump trumps the field, although he isn't dominating the global stage quite as convincingly as he is dominating the Republican presidential field. Among GOP candidates, he easily beats all of them combined. Garnering a 12 here, he falls just short of overcoming the combined search interest generated by the other eight people in contention, who together earn a 13.

Google Trends search variables: Donald Trump, Caitlyn Jenner, Vladimir Putin, Hassan Rouhani, Bernie Sanders, Angela Merkel, Al-Baghdadi, Black Lives Matter, Travis Kalanick.

Wednesday, December 09, 2015

Liberals nearly 5x as conservatives to self-identify as gay or bisexual

Blog tagline maintenance:

Liberals are nearly five times as likely (465%) to be gay or bisexual as conservatives are. While 7.9% of liberals (1,240) are intimately interested in members of the same sex, just 1.7% of conservatives (n = 2,161) are.

GSS variables used: SEXORNT(1-2), POLVIEWS(1-2)(5-6)

Tuesday, December 08, 2015

On preventing Muslim immigration

If instead of calling for a moratorium on Muslim immigration, Trump had called for a 30% reduction, what would the reactions have been? I suspect they would've been virtually indistinguishable from the apoplectic reactions what he called for set off. The idea of restricting immigration, in any degree, from a group that has put Europe's existential crisis in stark relief and that is at least 100 times as likely to commit fatal acts of terrorism in the US as non-Muslims are is--well, was!--off the table.

Would it be deemed acceptable to call for an end to Nazi immigration into the US? If so, the putative problem lies in the specifics, not in the question itself. So why are Muslims accorded privileged status, a status they make no effort to reciprocate?

You're comparing Muslims to Nazis?! Wow, just wow! Unbelievable! At the same time it is, of course, considered perfectly legitimate to compare Trump and his supporters to Nazis.

The US is one of the most xenophilic countries in the world. In absolute terms, it takes in more immigrants than any other nation on earth. It is one of a handful of countries with birthright citizenship. It has 21 different guest worker programs in operation.

Yet taking a step in the direction of the rest of the world is considered extremist, while pushing the xenophilic extreme even further is the mark of a moderate!

In the words of Red Phillips:
There is nothing more inherently conservative, in the most basic sense of the word, than restricting immigration. There is nothing more inherently transformative than mass immigration.
But that's not who we are!

Well, it's who we were by behavior from the settling of Jamestown through the 1920s (nearly 90% of immigrants came from Europe during this long period of time), and it is who we were explicitly from the 1920s through the 1960s (when national quotas were put in place to check significant immigration from outside of Europe). Perhaps the last half century--with plateauing high school graduation and poverty rates, increasing out-of-wedlock birth rates, skyrocketing divorce rates, rising inequality, cratering fertility, etc--has been America's golden age. Or perhaps it hasn't been.

Parenthetically, I would've tweaked the message to a "total and complete shutdown" of immigration from majority-Muslim countries. It would presumably be easier to execute in practice and it would draw attention to the fact that there are close to 50 Muslim countries in the world that putative refugees could potentially go to instead of settling in Western countries, where their customs and values are wildly at odds with those of their receiving populations.

But I've been fighting futilely for over a decade to expand the width of the Overton Window a few inches and then Donald Trump comes along and over the course of a few short months transforms it from a ground-level basement window into a 98-floor skyscraper. The man's results speak for themselves.

Sunday, December 06, 2015

David Brooks can go to hell

The contrasting crowd reactions here and here starkly illustrate what motivates people on the right and what doesn't. It's terrible news for the Cathedral. The dissident right is unquestionably on the ascent.

Speaking of the Cathedral, is this a Trumpian dog whistle to those dissident rightists?

Maybe not, as explicitness is Trump's style. "[You Jews are] not going to support me because I don't want your money" (source).

Our self-esteemed guest

In a recent podcast, Tom Woods interviewed Michael Edelstein on the negative consequences resulting from an ongoing societal effort to ubiquitously foster high levels of self-esteem in everyone. Woods asked when it all began. Edelstein guessed the sixties, but expressed uncertainty in his answer.

If it's a question of when some trend indicative of the rot Western civilization is experiencing began, the sixties is as good an initial working assumption as there is. The percentage of books published in the US containing the phrase "self-esteem" over time:


Usage has more than quadrupled since 1960.

Saturday, December 05, 2015

Among whites, conservative-liberal fertility difference twice as large as Democrat-Republican difference

Responding to Hail's comment at Steve's, I wrote the following:
Worth reading all of the posts Jayman links to. He has written on this extensively.

It is also worth considering how much the political orientation gap among white Republicans and white Democrats has widened over time. In the mid-seventies, white Republicans were only slightly more likely to self-identify as politically conservative than white Democrats were. That difference has trebled in the last four decades to the point that white Republicans are now far more likely to identify as conservative than white Democrats are.

Political orientation is probably more heritable than partisan affiliation. I'd guess the gap will appear wider on the liberal-moderate-conservative spectrum than on the Democrat-independent-Republican one.

Two variables that are stronger predictors of fertility than political orientation or party affiliation are educational attainment (inversely correlated, especially for women) and religiosity (positively correlated--to the extent that high IQ people who attend religious services regularly outbreed the irreligious at every level of intelligence, social class, race/ethnicity, etc.

Parenthetically, educational attainment looks to be the driving force, not intelligence. Fertility by wordsum score varies little once educational attainment is controlled for, but educational attainment is a strong predictor even after wordsum score is controlled for--put more clearly, educational attainment is 5x as strong a predictor of fertility as IQ is.

The strong inverse relationship between education and fertility shows up strongly on the international level as well.
Instead of guessing, I should do the requisite data delving to evaluate that assertion about political orientation being a stronger predictor of fertility than partisan affiliation for whites. The results, using parameters similar to Hail's*, are as follows (with % of white female population in parentheses):

Extremely liberal (2.5%) -- 1.61
Liberal (12.7%) -- 1.72
Slightly liberal (11.3%) -- 1.58
Moderate (39.9%) -- 2.14
Slightly conservative (15.6%) -- 2.03
Conservative (14.3%) -- 2.34
Extremely conservative (3.7%) -- 2.62

Indeed, the fertility gap appears wider on the liberal-conservative spectrum than it does on the Democrat-Republican one. Hail's results show a white Republican:white Democrat total fertility rate ratio of 2.07:1.76. The white conservative:white liberal total fertility rate ratio is twice as large, at 2.23:1.65.

GSS variables used: POLVIEWS(1-3)(4)(5-7), RACECEN1(1), SEX(2), COHORT(1944-1974), CHILDS, AGE(40-50)

* I used the COHORT variable to pull data from those born between 1944-1974 while being able to exclude survey results from 1994, 1996, and 1998 since in those years "white" includes Hispanic. From 2000 onward, non-Hispanic whites and Hispanics are separated into distinct categories. Consequently, his numbers include some Hispanics, while mine are only comprised of non-Hispanic whites. Also, what Hail terms "political orientation" I regularly describe as "partisan affiliation". I use the phrase "political orientation" to refer to the liberal-moderate-conservative spectrum rather than the Democrat-independent-Republican one.

Friday, December 04, 2015

It's still the immigration, stupid

From the latest CNN phone-based poll (the type of survey Trump tends to fare relatively poorly in compared to the internet-based variety) that has Trump in first at 36% and Cruz trailing at a distant second with 16%:
There's a sharp divide among Republican voters on these questions about deportation between those who back Trump and those who do not. Among Trump supporters, 67% say the government should attempt to deport all people living in the country illegally, while just 39% of Republican voters backing other candidates agree.
Trump's campaign is a dual referendum on an Israeli-style border wall and on an Operation Wetback-style deportation effort.

Wednesday, December 02, 2015

To every poll spin, spin, spin, no matter what it's a Trump win, win, win

The summary of what follows is the major media continue to present Trump's chances in the least favorable light possible, far past the point where any plausible deniability that an attempt is being made to present news on the Republican presidential nomination in an objective fashion can be seriously offered. So if the specifics are of little interest, don't waste your time. I get that to point out the mendacity of a media structure whose relevance is in a state of perpetual decline is to point out the obvious, but it is still worth doing from time to time if for no other reason than to remind those who don't follow the major media closely that things haven't changed much.

Headline: Trump falls 12 points in a week!

It comes from Reuters' daily tracking, which had Trump as high as 42.9% at one point during November, distantly trailed by a #2 at 13.6%. If you're following the Real Clear Politics average that has been used to determine the debate lineups that have occurred thus far, you'll immediately recognize how out-of-line the Reuters numbers are with the other polls that make up the RCP average. Even after appearing to fall over a cherry-picked five-day period to 31%, Reuters had Trump up on second place by over 15 points, a margin wider than any of those included in the RCP average. Parenthetically, over the subsequent five days, Trump has climbed back to 36% in the Reuters poll, more than 20 points ahead of #2.

From RCP's average, the astute observer will also notice a seemingly inexplicable two week period in the first half of November when no new data were incorporated into the rolling average:


Curiously, that two week period began immediately after a couple of recent polls had shown Carson neck-and-neck with Trump. The red dash on the left shows when the fortnight of silence began and the oval on the right shows the polls that were used to show the current RCP average during that two-week period. Polls since then have shown Trump leading significantly.

So we have a media complex that was mum on Reuters polling (which is internet-based) throughout the first several months of the campaign when it found Trump's lead to be even wider than the phone-based polls that RCP uses were showing. Then when Trump takes an apparent dive in that ongoing tracking poll that had until then remained hidden in plain sight, the headlines converge on the magnitude of the apparent drop.

Parenthetically, I don't use "apparent" flippantly here. The range of error on these tracking polls is around 5-7 points. For example, when Reuters had Trump at 31% a week ago, it also noted that this suggested his true support was somewhere in the 27%-37% range! To report putative climbs or drops from a single poll that are within the margin of error of what other recent polls have shown is irresponsible and also suggests innumeracy.

And we also have a media complex that sits on polling data when what has already been revealed makes it look like someone is closing the gap on Trump, the hope being that by artificially keeping the Trump-losing-ground narrative around for awhile, Trump's actual support will fade. As Trump's lead in the phone-based polling amalgamation is now, at 10 points, consistently larger than it has been at any point since September, that media tactic had to be shelved for the time being.

If you need a reminder of why Trump must be the candidate of the dissident right, here he is trashing two of the most prominent members of the neocon old guard from the Bush years. First, Bill Kristol:


And then, channeling Steve Sailer, he tears into Karl Rove.