okay, okay, ive made a decision, rest for the weary, since im not going to be able to finish HBOF by end of year and i really need a victory to close out the year on, im going to do another rewrite of rest for the weary
take it to higher ground, its going to embarrass me to go into it and see all the flaws any length of time away show
then think no wonder everybody is rejecting it, well they wont reject it now - same thing ive thought behind each draft
ohwell, dont worry about it rick, your only concern is project, making the work strong as it can be
just do your thing rick, lately drafts have taken about 2 weeks, but i want to dig deep this time, play profound
narrative games, we will see, 1st just read thru it with the redpen, think it out on the keyboard, then dig in
maintain the steadyroll of THBOF and schoolhouse obligations so i can fullcourtpress over xmas break
congratulations to boy obama, i tell you the boy got game
i kinda thought we were going to win it, but i decided its better to be nervous about it
to stay on the gun, im still amazed how much money i sent that boy, but i feel good about
doing my part, also good that he won in spite of me never quite making it to a call center
rootwork.com continues to embarass me, i just dont have time to maintain it, got to recalibrate, im going for a magazine type format, choose articles, stories, poems, etc, that i think are worth the time investment,
truly significant stuff, and do a little speculation on them, see if i can maintain that, ima roughly set it up now, fix
it later, this will be 1st article - reason i judged this forecasters article significant is that for us political prognosticators
it takes the speculation out, it changes everything - talked about the fact that new electoral statisticians called the election to the dime -the pop vote, the electoral college votes, the state votes, and how they
had been dismissed by the punditocracy, also it named the
blogs that called it, blogs i will be monitoring in the future
gotta keep up, gotta stay on the cutting edge, i consider myself a datalord - i might not have access to the
power, the datacollection infrastructure, or a mathmatical state of mind - but i can keep up with those that do
kinda like the time i put into this blog, and my efforts to make rootwork.com viable, for us literary players
the net changes everything, its very 21st century - and i like being on the cutting edge of my field
im stumbling and bumbling about but no matter what im gon be a player - patternmaster
this the last time ima put full texts here, in future i will park them on rootwork.com,
i got to fix up the graphics, etc - this morning my goal was just to get started again
when i fix it up ima make a listing of the new sites i
have to monitor - etc etc etc, gonna gonna gonna
im gone: got to get some HBOF work in, also ninas manuscript, time to dig in
congrats to brother obama: he got his work done, best i get back to mine
all my love - rdoc
Number Crunchers Were Right About Obama, Despite What Pundits Said
By Ken Bensinger, Los Angeles Times
November 8, 2012
President Obama triumphed on Tuesday. But the biggest winner may have been math.
After decades of relying on predictions from political pundits and wildly gyrating polls, Americans saw a small band of number crunchers redefine the business of election forecasting. Armed with computer simulations and confidence in cold hard data, these self-described geeks called the presidential race and a slew of smaller contests with stunning accuracy.
Their foresight proved astonishing and provided the political class endless talking points to debate in the weeks leadng up to election day. In the process, these statisticians may have fundamentally changed the way that political campaigns are watched and conducted in America. Think of it as Moneyball, which revolutionized baseball, applied to the most important pennant race of all.
The captain of the math brigade, Nate Silver, a former baseball statistician turned New York Times blogger, correctly called 50 of 50 states in the electoral college, assuming Florida remains blue. Sam Wang, a Princeton University neuroscientist who moonlights as an election forecaster, accurately predicted that Obama would capture 51.1% of all votes cast nationwide. Drew Linzer, a political science professor at Emory University, five months ago predicted that Obama would win 332 electoral votes, which will hold up if Florida goes to Obama.
All told, about a dozen math wizards entered the political fray this campaign cycle, championing statistical methods and advanced computing power over partisan bias and conventional wisdom.
"The principle behind this movement is that numbers aren't ideology," said Scott Elliott, a computer engineer in North Carolina who operates the site electionprojection.com.
A deeply religious Christian conservative, Elliott voted for Mitt Romney. But his computer model predicted months ago that Obama would easily win the electoral college. Elliott correctly called every state except Florida.
"The poll data don't come in wearing a blue shirt or a red shirt," he said. "They are what they are."
Like other quants in the blossoming field of election probability, Elliott depends heavily on data from the many hundreds of state and national polls taken throughout the course of the election. In simple terms, these forecasters aggregate data, average them and then use high-powered processors to run tens of thousands of simulated elections. Then they base their predictions on the most frequent outcomes of those simulations.
Each poll, conducted by groups including Gallup, Public Policy Polling and Rasmussen, might have a margin of error of 5 or more percentage points. By combining all of them, that error margin diminishes to near-invisibility, said Wang, the neuroscience professor. His simulations not only predicted Obama winning the electoral college handily, but they also nailed upsets like Heidi Heitkamp's winning a Senate seat in North Dakota.
It is a method predicated on the belief that the more data on hand, the more accurately outcomes can be predicted. Yet Wang and others of his ilk were roundly attacked before the election for allegedly slanting the results to match their political preferences.
"At the national level, pundits were taking brickbats at us because they felt we were in the tank for Obama, but in reality, we were in the tank for getting it right," Wang said.
Nobody caught more flak than Silver, whose FiveThirtyEight blog (named for the total number of electoral votes) became the online phenomenon of the year. Churning out new predictions and deep-dive analyses of polling methodologies on nearly a daily basis, his blog was followed religiously by political junkies.
Silver picked Obama to win from the start. Over the campaign's final weekend, he put the president's chances above 90%. That evoked yips of joy from Democrats, but furious cries from conservative commentators including Dick Morris who called Silver's work skewed and predicted a "reckoning" after the election. Silver was even taken to task by his own newspaper. The New York Times public editor criticized him last month for sparring with MSNBC host Joe Scarborough. Silver challenged Scarborough to a $1,000 bet that Obama would win, after the TV personality called him an ideologue and a joke.
Scarborough didn't take that bet. Perhaps he knew better than to challenge Silver, who stunned the baseball world in 2008 by accurately predicting that the last-place Tampa Bay Rays would turn it around and become one of the best teams in the American League. In fact, they went on to make the World Series.
"This probably does rebuke the pundits," said Dean Chambers, a conservative who also tried his hand at computer-aided poll analysis this year. "Nate Silver was right on the mark."
Chambers' own calculations showed Romney winning big. But the longtime commentator and consultant erred, he said, because he didn't take polls at face value, refusing to include some polls out of concern that they over-sampled Democrats. In other words, Chambers said, he threw out data that seemed to favor Obama too much.
"I think a lot of us should have a bit more faith in the accuracy of these polls after this," said Chambers, who lives in Duffield, Va.
Linzer, the Emory professor, acknowledges he's an Obama supporter. But he said that played no role in the numerous simulations he conducted this year that showed Obama winning handily. As a social scientist, he said, these kinds of models are useful for predicting a great range of outcomes based on available data.
By focusing on numbers, he said, it's possible to overlook momentary events that seem to have great import but in the end don't shape the election. For example, he said, Romney's notorious "47%" comment may have momentarily moved some polls, but had a negligible effect on the final result.
And none of that, he said, came as a surprise to the candidates.
"The most sophisticated quantitative work is not happening with people like me, but by those inside the campaigns themselves," Linzer said. He and other election quants said candidates employ high-powered math whizzes of their own to help predict outcomes and have far larger budgets than any college professor.
"Their work doesn't show up in a blog or newspaper, but it's their secret sauce," he said.
Linzer predicts that many more websites like his votamatic.org will emerge in coming election cycles, and wonders whether other news outlets will adopt such a sophisticated approach. He does worry, however, that the flood of useful data could ebb because of the expense involved in producing it. In 2008, for example, about 1,700 state polls were conducted. This year, there were only 1,200.
Others decry the injection of mathematics in something as personal and heated as presidential politics. Their fear is that computers, rather than well-spoken pundits, might not only take the fun out of the races, but also change the way they're conducted.
Wang, the Princeton professor, believes pundits and computer-aided analysts can coexist.
"It's possible to be Homer and write about the wine-dark sea," he said. "But sometimes you want the guy with the thermometer."
Copyright © 2012, Los Angeles Time
personally i think we're gonna win but ive been wrong before
but one of the things i love about brother bronco bama
about all the ex dem presidents, carter & clinton, is that he is positioning
himself, post presidency, to become a global humanitarian, an avatar of
humanity's ongoing quest to be better than we are
on that note PLEASE VOTE
feel like im wasting my time telling you, dear regulators, to vote
you wouldnt be here if you werent already, on some level, a player
a luta continua
i am averaging one movement a week, and thats with a full court press (schoolhouse version)
one movement a week - i think this means i got to settle in for the longhaul, but thats the way it
always goes, you come up w/a project, you timeline it, then it inevitably takes more
than you budgeted, inevitably, of everything, time, focus, opcosts, health, everything
i think ima move my deadline to the end of summer, thats probably more reasonable - big sigh here
but one good thing, im about to become a master of afroworld history on a level far beyond what i am now
and im already one of the most knowledgeable folk on the planet when it come to afroworld history
and its responsible for whatever power my contemporary observations have, so im really looking forward to the
level of knowledge/wisdom im about to amass, too bad im in the winter of my life, its like whats the point, art
eldership i guess, being able to give sage advice, guidance for the generations, whatever - and this
will go for all of the 9 books, ima be a master of arcane knowledges, for being a masters sake i guess
what would gandalf do
the obama one was good, laying out a convincing case for obamas greatness - already
but its the romney one that was kicking tush and taking names:
"And so the reality remains that a vote for Romney is a vote for his
party — a party that, by
almost universal acclimation, utterly failed when last entrusted with governing. . . ."
o what the hell, thats why i have a blog, so i can do what i want when i want (i love my blog), ima give you
the heart of the piece cause i dont trust you to follow the link, im just happy youve come this far w/me:
And so the reality remains that a vote for Romney is a vote for his party — a party that, by almost universal acclimation, utterly failed when last entrusted with governing. Romney may be brainier, more competent, and more mentally nimble than George W. Bush. But his party has, unbelievably, grown far more extreme in the years since Bush departed. Unbelievable though it may sound to those outside the conservative movement, conservative introspection into the Bush years has yielded the conclusion that the party erred only in its excessive compassion — it permitted too much social spending and, perhaps, cut taxes too much on the poor. Barely any points of contact remain between party doctrine and the consensus views of economists and other experts. The party has almost no capacity to respond to the conditions and problems that actually exist in the world.
Economists have coalesced around aggressive monetary easing in order to pump liquidity into a shocked market; Republicans have instead embraced the gold standard and warned incessantly of imminent inflation, undaunted by their total wrongness. In the face of a consensus for short-term fiscal stimulus, they have turned back to ancient Austrian doctrines and urged immediate spending cuts. In the face of rising global temperatures and a hardening scientific consensus on the role of carbon emissions, their energy plan is to dig up and burn every last molecule of coal and oil as rapidly as possible. Confronted by skyrocketing income inequality, they insist on cutting the top tax rate and slashing — to levels of around half — programs like Medicaid, food stamps, and children’s health insurance. They refuse to allow any tax increase to soften the depth of such cuts and the catastrophic social impact they would unleash.
The last element may be the most instructive and revealing. The most important intellectual pathology to afflict conservatism during the Obama era is its embrace of Ayn Rand’s moral philosophy of capitalism. Rand considered the free market a perfect arbiter of a person’s worth; their market earnings reflect their contribution to society, and their right to keep those earnings was absolute. Politics, as she saw it, was essentially a struggle of the market’s virtuous winners to protect their wealth from confiscation by the hordes of inferiors who could outnumber them.
Paul Ryan, a figure who (unlike Romney) commands vast personal and ideological loyalty from the party, is also its most famous Randian. He has repeatedly praised Rand as a visionary and cited her work as the touchstone of his entire political career. But the Randian toxin has spread throughout the party. It’s the basis of Ryan’s frequently proclaimed belief that society is divided between “makers” and “takers.” It also informed Romney’s infamous diatribe against the lazy, freeloading 47 percenters. It is a grotesque, cruel, and disqualifying ethical framework for governing.
Naturally, this circles us back to the irrepressible question of what Romney himself actually believes. The vast industry devoted to exploring the unknowable question of Romney’s true beliefs has largely ignored a simple and obvious possibility: That Romney has undergone the same political and/or psychological transformation that so many members of his class have since 2009. If there is one hard fact that American journalism has established since 2009, it is that many of America’s rich have gone flat-out bonkers under President Obama. Gabriel Sherman first documented this phenomenon in his fantastic 2009 profile in this magazine, “The Wail of the 1%,” which described how the financial elite had come to see themselves as persecuted, largely faultless targets of Obama and their greedy countrymen. Alec MacGillis and Chrystia Freeland have painted a similar picture.
The ranks of the panicked, angry rich include Democrats as well as Republicans and elites from various fields, but the most vociferous strains have occurred among the financial industry and among Republicans. All this is to say, had he retired from public life after 2008, super-wealthy Republican financier Mitt Romney is exactly the kind of person you’d expect to have lost his mind, the perfect socioeconomic profile of a man raging at Obama and his mob. Indeed, it would be strange if, at the very time his entire life had come to focus on the goal of unseating Obama, and he was ensconced among Obama’s most affluent and most implacable enemies, Romney was somehow immune to the psychological maladies sweeping through his class.
asked my nephew if he was going to vote and he started sprouting that doesnt matter because both sides corrupt nonsense and i had to give him a history lesson on the price that we paid in the delta for the right to vote, had to explain to him the nature of struggle in the 21st century - and ask him to explain to me again why he would he stab this brother in the back with that dont vote bullshit while he out there on the frontlines w/the enemy trying to cut him off at the knees - hoping and praying his folk gon be looking out for him, hoping he aint stepped out there on his own - please vote
i feel like the 4 year old say she is tired of bronco obama and mitt romney, its hard for me to believe that
repubs can be as afraid of an obama victory as i am of a romney victory but apparently they are
always got to be able to put yourself into the minds of your
opponents, freaky though it may be, got to understand them
spent all of yesterday revising my outline/text into new structure, got up this morning w/conviction
it needed to be as it was - so there goes most of today, sometime all you can do is laugh at yourself
well at least im working again, havent been crunching since i broke my tooth - (which, thank
god, will be capped monday) - so also this morning i was thinking what on earth possessed
me to try to write a holybook, and i can remember the exact moment that the idea came to me, it
was 1987 or so, babajohn had just died and i was on a grayhound bus to LA, fleeeing nyc, the
memory of belinda and a fondness for cocaine, totally broke and broken in spirit, when round about oklahoma, i
picked up some cheap reading material, a track by the watchtower folk on the bible, and as part of that track
they talked about what a good holybook does, what a good spiritual tradition does
and it asked a series of questions, does it generate illumination wealth health and prosperity
does it build strong communities, strong families, strong peoples, does it give
them miracle making power, spiritual strength,cultural grace, etc etc
a list of criteria for a good spiiritual system, all things the afrospiritual traditions were
failing on, thats when i deduce that a people can only be as strong as their spiritual traditions train
them to be, and that if we are a weak people its because our indigenous spiritual tradition is weak
hoodoo, a folkmagic curiosity instead of a viable spiritual guide
voodoo - what kind of spiritual guidance are they giving, if they were
doing their jobs haiti wouldnt be in the condition that its in
if the african traditions had been strong enough they would have been able to contend w/the inroads
of christanity and islam in africa, in the world - decided then that it was my job to make them strong
take them to higher ground
wasnt till later i was reading this book about prophecy in east africa say the diviner throws for self
and clients, while the diviner prophet also throws publically for god and community
i had already and long ago decided that the only way to get out of this trickbag we have found ourselves in is to change
the souls of blackfolk, a task that i speculate will take generations to enact - but i feel like we are so behind
right now, such a weak peasant people that no strategy has worked to change the concrete condition of
blackpeople as the worlds bottomfeeders - and that im going to have to work the tribal soul, ima have to
change their nature as a people, a daunting task but thats what the old spiritdoctor do - a good
holybook, a reformed and illuminated hoodoo tradition, thats my best shot at doing that -
(well actually its my novel but thats so esoteric an understanding i wont try to convince you of it - more folk would be
touched by a successful hoodoo holybook - infinitely fewer touched by a successful novel but deeper)
and being frank with myself, it doesnt matter which is stronger, it is my FA to do both, but its the novel i consider the greater challenge, they both deal w/the same material but the novel is straight up mythwork
far as im concerned a strong holybook is pedestrian beside what a great novel can do
the holybook is just another nonfiction project, you put the hours in you get the product
the novel, you put the hours in you may you may not get product, the novel is the only thing i fear failing at
but im satisfied w/rest for the weary - and i really look forward to doing another draft of that novel, each draft
i give it a little more narrative magic, make the passages less pedestrian more magical, more nommo - god i
love being a writer - sometimes the blues of it all gets thru, but even that is a price i dont mind paying
its the paperwork - that i resent but what can you do
reason i am a 'successful' writer is because ima bulldog when it come to getting my work done, i dont care
whats happening in my life ima write, and if im getting hammered thats just more material to work with
and i will always recall what imogunla told me so long ago
every dog gets its day, but its the bulldog get the weekend
im gone, i got to unrevise my manuscript, must have been my way of getting
back in the groove
if im not careful i will spend a couple of hours this morning cleaning up this post
who got time for that
i whined about that spiritwork presentation so much the organizer canceled it
i felt bad about that but its been liberating, part of why im back in the groove
yesterday got contracted to do two BHM presentations on struggle and the blues, something
i love doing & minimal prep for 4 times the money, real money, i gotta stay focused, just say no
all my love
not doing too hot, been a long time since i worked an early draft, had forgotten just how discouragingly
raw they can be, right now it doesnt feel like it will ever work, much less be luminous, be magical
right now it looks like it will take a decade or so of work to make it
real, which basically to me says this is my
last major project, is it worthy of my final days, my last hurrah, right now it doesnt look like it, ima have to
the vision in my head of what it can be is still clean and strong and full of mojo, i gotta have faith
when you decide to devote years to a project that may or may not work, that may or may not
sell - i gave 15 years of my life to rest for the weary, its been on the market for over a year
every once in awhile that bum me out, make me doubt myself, doubt my dreams
one is tempted to wonder why me lord, why have i been chosen to suffer
and still i am totally confident that it will sell, that it will be well received - eventually
that one day just perhaps the generations will value my contributionjust keep hitting it rick, just keep doing your thing, day after day, inch by inch, keep the faith
the literary life, whats not to love