Lots of smart people are anxiously sharing links to Nate Silver’s 2016 Election Forecast on their social media profiles, largely because, one assumes, they are beginning to realize the implications of the fact that there is an actual presidential election happening and Donald Trump is an actual presidential candidate.
Phew! Another April Fools’ Day come and gone. Did you make it through without falling for one of those hilarious pranks that brands, blogs, and businesses love to spring on us each year? Wait—don’t answer yet. Maybe you got punked without even knowing it! Here are some of today’s best practical jokes that you might have missed.
On Sunday night, New York Magazine published the accounts of 35 women who say Bill Cosby raped them. It’s a powerful, first-hand narrative coupled with striking portraits of the victims but you can’t read it, because a racist hacker who apparently hates New York City took the magazine’s website offline.
Election-Svengali Nate Silver will stop blogging if he believes that his election forecasts begin to actually affect elections. According to a report in Politico (a site Silver has a pretty hilarious feud with), Silver spoke to an audience at Washington University about the statistical pitfalls of accruing such a large following:
Out has named Nate Silver its Person of the Year, and the resulting profile by editor Aaron Hicklin is an endearing portrait of a dude who is doing well at life by being so right all the time. There's great stuff about the making of the man and his dealings with those who try to undo him. He says flattering things about Nick Denton ("He's willing to be kind of destructive and path-breaking, and to challenge the status quo; in some ways, it's kind of more my style"); Denton barely returns the favor ("He's not necessarily the best statistician, but he might be the best stats geek who can also write—and perform on television. His steadiness under pundit fire before the election was something to witness."). Heh.
One major way in which conservatives have been successful in changing policy in America over the last decade or so is by changing the way in which we talk about issues in the first place. The most obvious example is global warming, which slowly morphed into the much more cuddly "climate change" early in the Bush administration. Well, according to New York Times stat guru Nate Silver, one area where conservatives have been very successful in corrupting public conversation is gun control, where they've slowly shifted our vocabulary since the Clinton administration.
Did you know President Obama was going to win last night? If you read Nate Silver, the New York Times political blogger and statistical geek, you did. If you don't read Silver, though, you're probably wondering who the hell he is and why everyone is talking about him. Don't worry. We're here to help.
Nate Silver, the famed statistician behind the FiveThirtyEight election forecast blog at the New York Times, is wrong. And gay. At least according to the more virulent elements of right-wing media. That he's wrong is only confirmed by his gayness, just as surely as his gayness is the source of his wrongness. Nate Silver is a tautology of being queer as hell about everything.
Today, my fellow Americans, you get to choose between two superstar election pollsters. In one corner, we have Dean Chambers, the creator of the tin foil hat UnSkewed Polls and the laughing stock of the political media. In the other corner we have defending champion Nate Silver, the creator of the polling blog 538, which correctly predicted the popular vote split in the 2008 presidential election and was only four votes off of correctly predicting Barack Obama's number in the electoral college. Silver's track record may lead you to put your faith in him, but wait, Chambers has a compelling argument for his side: Have you ever noticed that Nate Silver is "thin and effeminate" (i.e. GAY)?
Nate Silver, whose confusing math blog became part of the New York Times web site last summer, recently signed up for a new webchat service that allows people to buy facetime with him for $1,000 an hour, only to back out as soon as people started asking, "Hey, why is the New York Times letting one of its bloggers sell webchats for $1,000 an hour? And, really, $1,000 an hour?"
Today's big story was Barack Obama's nomination of Sonia Sotomayor to fill the Supreme Court vacancy created by the retirement of David Souter. Predictably, America's punditry had plenty to say about this. We've sampled some of the prominent voices on the left and the right and compiled them for you.