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TagHillary Clinton

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Election Models: Predicting the Past is Easy — and Useless

You can seldom see where you are going by looking in a rear-view mirror

Shortly after the 2016 presidential election, I told my students that I had a model that predicted the popular vote for last ten presidential elections (1980–2016) perfectly. For example, my model’s prediction of Hillary Clinton’s share of the 2016 two-party vote was exactly equal to the actual 51.11% share she received. I didn’t look at the economy, the candidates’ personalities, or any of the other factors that you and my students might think are important. Instead, I used the high temperatures on election day in these nine cities: Bozeman, Montana; Broken Bow, Nebraska; Burlington, Vermont; Caribou, Maine; Cody, Wyoming; Dover, Delaware; Elkins, West Virginia; Fargo, North Dakota; and Pocatello, Idaho. How did I select these nine cities? They were in Read More ›

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Bingecast: Is Cheese Consumption Causing Deaths from Tangled Sheets?

Those dealing with data must always remember “If you torture data long enough, it will confess to anything.” The answers that computers give must themselves be questioned. Robert J. Marks and Gary Smith address artificial intelligence, spurious correlations, and data research on Mind Matters. Show Notes 01:34 | Introduction to Gary Smith, the Fletcher Jones Professor of Economics at Pomona Read More ›

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Prof: Google Must Not Choose the Next President

Robert Epstein, a Clinton supporter in 2016, thinks Big Tech meddling is a risk. And, he says, he isn’t planning on suicide

He doesn’t want Silicon Valley to use its near-monopoly power over search engines and social media to manipulate the information available to the lone voter in the booth.

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The US 2016 Election: Why Big Data Failed

Economics professor Gary Smith sheds light on the surprise result

Some of the stuff that made a difference, they couldn’t put in a computer. Some people say, if you can’t measure it, it doesn’t count but sometimes the things that count can’t be measured.

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