30 September 2020

Base Less

The notion that ex-President AuH2O 2020 has, in reality, 40%+ of the electorate is hallucinatory. Always was. A few missives ago, it was pointed out that registered Republicans has dipped to about 25% of voters. Where is the extra 15%+ coming from? From nowhere. They don't exist. Polling consistently shows Dear Leader Yo! Semite of Thigh Land gets 26%-ish approval for his screwing the pooch with Covid-19. That's, of course, in line with the Republican slice of the pie. And, naturally, last night's debacle offers another data point: 28% for Batshit J. Moron and 60% for Biden. The whole point of dictatorship is for a minority to pillage the majority. That's what's at stake in a few weeks.

29 September 2020

Event Driven Data - part the second

Yet another serial. Events drive data, full stop. Most of the time, the data science cabal acts as if it's the other way around. In the realm of God's Rules, where the rules don't change (and we puny humans know them all; see long term weather forecasting with massive supercomputers), data, in particular time series, are the product of a stable process. Human driven processes aren't like that. The Super humans get to change the rules as they see profitable. And sometimes, not nearly as often, it's the Little People that drive the structural change. Covid-19 is one such instance. Now comes this analysis, courtesy of McKinsey, the Stasi of the management consulting sector.
But the [Covid-19] crisis has also revealed the technology's Achilles' heel. One of the most widely used advanced-analytics techniques—machine learning—relies on the principle that patterns and behaviors from the past will likely repeat in the future. [my emphasis]
The point is, war-gaming is what's needed to recalibrate
While analytics professionals will play an important role, successfully stabilizing critical models will depend equally on efforts from leadership to recalibrate business strategies for the changing landscape, forge new data partnerships, convene interdisciplinary teams with sufficient diversity, and more.
Machine learning is nice. Reading the NYT every day is too.

Dumb and Dumber - part the second

Today we find Bret Stephens ploughing the olde sod of the Secret Trump Voter. 'Cris' is one he cites, a woman whose 401(K), she says, has gone up substantially under ex-President AuH2O 2020. Those who bring in more than they can spend, almost always turn to assets as the place to place such excess funds. They always have. As the econ types say, "money is fully fungible" and "all placements of money are determined by opportunity cost". To the extent that the Movers and Shakers of finance take the Fed's index interest rate seriously (and, by and large, they do), other interest rates, public and private, follow the trend if not the exact value; risk arbitrage and all that. If those excess funds are in the hundreds of thousands or millions of dollars per household, in aggregate they make for a tsunami of moolah. Where it goes determines the public price of the widgets. If those widgets are merely electronic representations of paper stocks and bonds, well those 'virtual' prices bubble up. It would be better if pundits like Stephens didn't allow such numbskulls to spout off such stupidity with impunity. Batshit J. Moron has done nothing to boost anyone's 401(K) or any other asset class. The cause has been Jerome Powell, and before him Obama, Bernanke, and Yellen. Obama, by pushing for fiscal policy, and the other Fed Chaircritters for cratering index interest rates. The Fed's instance on a near zero rate through 2023 pretty much guarantees Mr. Market will stay nicely fat for some time. It's an easy choice: government fiduciaries at near 0, or take a ride with Mr. Market. It's a no brainer, and Mr. Market keeps getting fat. Dear Leader Yo! Semite of Thigh Land had nothing to do with it. Well, except to may be browbeat Powell into continuing with near 0 index rate. Could it be that ex-President AuH2O 2020 sees a nicely lower re-fi of the 421 million dollar deep sea anchor he's built for himself? Daddy's dead and gone and can't bail him out yet again. So, while 'Cris' is proud to be a lesbian, which is fine by me (I don't care one way or another, of course), she's also as dumb as a sack of hair. The archetypical Trumpster. God help us.

28 September 2020

Parallax View - part the twenty fifth

Another week's up, so here are today's numbers:
  >= 1,000 - 260
100 to 999 - 1,325 
(New) grand total of counties reads at 3,085. While I've not gotten into an argument with the Topo folks over this re-definition of 'affected' counties, it certainly looks like a move to bolster ex-President AuH2O 2020's perpetual lying. Well, the second tsunami appears to finally making it into the data. While the 1,000+ group seems inappropriately low, it is also true that the two 'orange' groups are growing. They'll make it to the top group in due time. The original expectation was that one could go from sea to shining sea only through the top two groups. Alas, southern counties in Texas and New Mexico don't appear to be generating cases. On the other hand, one can go from sea to shining sea through 25+ counties by many routes. And, given that much of the mountain west consists of low population counties, this is still quite an accomplishment. Masks? We don't need no stinkin masks!

24 September 2020

The Land of the Ghouls

While it was a trip at least a decade ago, I remain on e-mail list of Bermuda's "The Royal Gazette", mentioned a few times in the course of these musings. Islands, especially one that's a singularity, are odd ducks from an economics point of view. They have few natural resources, and in the case of Bermuda, not even terrestrial water. Australia is nearly as precarious. Today's issue had this headline in the e-mail tease: "Election 2020: 'control virus to rebuild economy'" Intrigued that teeny Bermuda understood the connection, which Batshit J. Moron clearly does not, off I went to the report. And there it was
First and foremost, contain the virus by any means necessary — recovery isn't possible without it.
All well and good. But then, later in the report comes this scavenger quote:
Perhaps our best recovery bet lies with the reinsurance sector. The pandemic could provide a spark like that created by the September 11, 2001 attacks or hurricanes Katrina, Rita and Wilma of 2005. The sector experienced double-digit growth following these catastrophes and the knock-on effect led to economic growth in excess of 3 per cent, a feat not seen since 2007.
Just the sort of thinking dear to the heart of ex-President AuH2O 2020: pillage the already devastated. All those bungalows with the white paint rain catching roofs and gaily painted walls hide the innards of predators. Another reason to cleave to Batshit J. Moron.

Populist? But Cleaves to The One Percent

Dear Leader Yo! Semite of Thigh Land's offer to the uneducated, discriminated against, poor White folk was that he'd push them up the wealth and income ladder in no time flat. Stop all this affirmative action and reparations nonsense from those greedy dark folks. And their White fellow travelers. But continue to stop unions and ramp up 'sub-contractor' designation of folks who really are just employees. And so forth. Let the rabble vote? Not on your life. He'll put a stop to that anarchy. Hell, they'd elect Democrats. Anyone with a functioning frontal lobe knew that Batshit J. Moron was lying, of course. Now some new data, much like the old data naturally, demonstrates what My Pappy used to drone whenever the subject came up, "the richer get richer and the poor have kids, as it always has been".
The United States ranked ahead of Switzerland and Singapore in per capita wealth, but it was dead last in Allianz's index of wealth inequality.

23 September 2020

Betting Line - part the third

This is from 29 January 2017
OK, so Kim Jong-Don has gone into blatant dictator mode, ignoring all agency heads in issuing the Muslim ban. So we're left with the over/under times to suspending the Constitution and declaring martial law (starting with Chicago, of course). 1 week 1 month 1 year Cast your vote. Vote early and often
So, today brings this from Batshit J. Moron
"(G)et rid of the ballots and you'll have a very ... there won't be a transfer, frankly. There'll be a continuation," he added, saying "the ballots are out of control."
And, I'll bet my left testicle that every one of dear readers considered that just too, too much hyperventilation. Do you think so now? And then there's this, from 'The Atlantic':
According to sources in the Republican Party at the state and national levels, the Trump campaign is discussing contingency plans to bypass election results and appoint loyal electors in battleground states where Republicans hold the legislative majority.
Welcome to the North American version of elected dictatorship. And all those rural redneck radical right wingnuts who've been convinced (thanks to little education, naturally) that ex-President AuH2O 2020 is really, really in their corner may finally figure out they're just fodder for his Darwinist buddies. It can't happen here.