Super-duper Tuesday.

If you haven’t read the link MichaelG posted in comments yesterday, from Talking Points Memo and about Trump, you should read it, if not for the analysis then for this excellent metaphor about projects and doing things the right way vs. the wrong way. (I’ve done it both ways, so I feel like I know this from experience.)

When I read the Times article (about the GOP’s failing effort to stop Trump), observe recent weeks as they’ve fluttered by and think about how things got to this point, I come back again and again to conversations I have with our chief tech, Matt Wozniak. Matt uses the metaphor of debt to describe the inevitable trade off we face building and maintaining the software that runs TPM.

If we do a project in a rough and ready way, which is often what we can manage under the time and budget constraints we face, we will build up a “debt” we’ll eventually have to pay back. Basically, if we do it fast, we’ll later have to go back and rework or even replace the code to make it robust enough for the long haul, interoperate with other code that runs our site or simply be truly functional as opposed just barely doing what we need it to. There’s no right or wrong answer; it’s simply a management challenge to know when to lean one way or the other. But if you build up too much of this debt the problem can start to grow not in a linear but an exponential fashion, until the system begins to cave in on itself with internal decay, breakdowns of interoperability and emergent failures which grow from both.

So here we are, on yet another pivotal Tuesday, and who knows? In 36 hours we may know with near certainty it’s a Trump-Clinton ticket, come fall. And then the fun really begins. As this is a politics day, and I’m getting a late start on this, a few linky hors d’oeuvres for y’all:

Nothing about this analysis, about why Ted Cruz will not drop out to save his party, surprises me. Especially this part:

It’s very possible that, if he becomes the Republican nominee, Trump would get shellacked in November, setting off a period of anguished introspection for the party. Conservatives would vow never again to nominate a non-conservative for the highest office. “This is Ted Cruz’s ace card,” says Steele. “Going back to 1996, conservatives in the party have always felt that we’ve lost these presidential contests because we’ve not been true to the cause by nominating someone who will fight for the cause.”

For a large segment of the party, the savior would be obvious. And Cruz, having never wavered, would find himself right where he wanted to be, once he realized, in March 2016, that he wouldn’t be the 2016 Republican nominee: at the front of the pack to challenge Hillary Clinton in 2020.

I hear this over and over from Republicans — don’t move to the center, move further right! And as bad as a Trump-Clinton race would be, I can’t imagine how awful a Cruz-Clinton race might play out. I may have to emigrate for 2020.

Says Slate, “To save itself, the Republican Party must finally put the working class ahead of the donor class.” Like that’s gonna happen.

Finally, here’s a Storify of David Frum tweets on the collapse of the GOP — you know, the Canadian-born RINO from the Bush administration? I think he nails it, though.

Off to work.

Posted at 8:53 am in Current events, Uncategorized |

38 responses to “Super-duper Tuesday.”

  1. Connie said on March 1, 2016 at 9:23 am

    “Jerry Ford would be heartsick about what’s happened to his party,”

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  2. Julie Robinson said on March 1, 2016 at 10:09 am

    In the words of the immortal Mister Rogers:

    “I like to take my time
    I mean that when I want to do a thing
    I like to take my time and do it right.

    I mean I might just make mistakes
    If I should have to hurry up and so
    I like to take my time”

    Companies who only look at the next quarter’s profits instead of long-term health and growth often find it an unsustainable pattern. Health care systems who are all about processing the requisite number of patients every day rather than concern with the patients’ health. Politicians who are more concerned with reelection than with governing, so have no patience for working out hard problems with the other side of the aisle.

    Thus the state of our nation today. Now you kids get off my lawn.

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  3. brian stouder said on March 1, 2016 at 10:26 am

    What Julie said!

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  4. Icarus said on March 1, 2016 at 11:58 am

    Scalzi nails it again

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  5. Bob (not Greene) said on March 1, 2016 at 12:53 pm

    Gerald Ford would be aghast my ass:

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  6. Scout said on March 1, 2016 at 1:18 pm

    Just read the link from Icarus @4. GREAT read.

    “Beinart’s suggestion that liberals throw in with Rubio, who aside from his pandering antediluvian positions appears to dissolve into a stammering puddle of flop sweat when people are mean to him, which is a quality I know I always look for in a potential leader of the free world, is actively insulting. Hey, liberals! Save the GOP from Trump by supporting the establishment’s hand-picked empty suit, which it will use to shore up shaky senatorial races and then push and pass a political agenda massively antithetical to everything you believe in! Yeeeeah, thanks for the hot take, there, Pete. Let me know who you buy your weed from, because that’s clearly some primo shit you’re smoking.”

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  7. Peter said on March 1, 2016 at 1:54 pm

    Maybe it’s my inner political junkie talking, but what I wouldn’t give for the Republican convention to be deadlocked. That would be prime grade political must see TV. What if the only person every group could agree on was Snowzilla? THAT would be the all time acceptance speech doozy.

    Slate ran an article a while back on Drumpf that, unfortunately, hit the nail on the head. People compare Trump to Hitler, or Mussolini, but the person that The Donald is closest to is Rob Ford. Ford came from money, had a brash personality, and just laid on the bombast. Reasonable Canadians (that’s a redundancy) all thought that sooner or later, Rob would do himself in. However, his shit show brought people to the polls who hadn’t gone in years – vote totals went through the roof. That’s what’s happening with Donald – his racist rants are pulling in the yokels who haven’t voted in decades, and it isn’t pretty.

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  8. Mark P said on March 1, 2016 at 1:58 pm

    The commentariat have had trouble figuring out who the Republicans are since Goldwater ran. The base of the party knows who they are. They are happy to tell everyone about it, but no one else is willing to say it. A few of those wacko liberal say the Republicans are crazy, but the thing is, they actually are.

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  9. Sherri said on March 1, 2016 at 2:55 pm

    Those of you who regularly read James Fallows are familiar with Mike Lofgren, a Republican and former Congressional staffer. He attaches at least some of the blame for Trump to the War on Terror:

    There’s always been this group in America, whether they were John Birchers or Know-Nothings or even more civilized and polite versions like William F Buckley’s National Review sanctioning Jim Crow, that are paranoid and authoritarian, and fear the other. Add in many of the conservative evangelical churches, which have confused the gospel, capitalism, and patriotism into a mish-mash of nationalism* and religion with a persecution complex, and the ever present wound of our society, racism. Then stick them all in front of Fox News and Rush Limbaugh and stir well. It’s an ugly brew. Trump is the symptom of the Republicans trying to use an ugly coalition to outrun demographics.

    If the Republican establishment decides that embracing Trump is better than ceding the Presidency to the Democrats (and particularly to Hillary), which they may do, then our whole system of government is at risk, because one party has decided that power for its own sake is more important than anything else. My earlier guess that Trump might not be as dangerous as Rubio was based on Trump not being embraced by Republicans and not being competent enough at the tools of government to accomplish anything. But if the Republicans actually decide that Trump is the best way forward for their party, that’s horrible.

    We’ll see who jumps on board the Trump train after tonight’s primaries, which are likely to make it obvious that Trump will be the nominee.

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  10. Sherri said on March 1, 2016 at 3:03 pm

    Sorry, I forgot my asterisk for nationalism in regards to evangelical religion. When I was growing up Southern Baptist, it was taken pretty much as an article of faith that Armageddon was coming soon, and that it would involve the Soviets as Gog and Magog.

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  11. Heather said on March 1, 2016 at 3:40 pm

    My best friend is Muslim, and she just posted the most heartbreaking thing about her nine-year-old daughter. She (the daughter) is having a lot of anxiety about Trump possibly becoming president since he hates Muslims, and she wants him to meet her little cousin, who is so adorable and maybe that would show Trump that he doesn’t need to hate them . . . then all these other parents of all backgrounds started responding that their kids had also been expressing serious anxiety about a possible President Trump. I am not a “think of the children” type at all but this is really horrifying, that children are picking up on the poison and losing sleep over it.

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  12. Sherri said on March 1, 2016 at 4:17 pm

    Jon Chait on conservatives who are shocked!, shocked! to discover that there really is racism and bigotry in the conservative base:

    And from FBI director Comey’s testimony to Congress today:

    “What if Apple engineers get kidnapped?” Comey asked rhetorically.

    Nice little team of engineers you got there. Shame if something were to happen to them.

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  13. David C. said on March 1, 2016 at 6:26 pm

    I read 538 quite often just to see Nate Silver’s reassurances that Trump is extremely unpopular with the general public. I have to hope that holds.

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  14. Scout said on March 1, 2016 at 6:33 pm

    Since today is a good day for linkage, check this one out from Matt Taibbi. I laughed so hard, I cried. Or maybe I cried so hard, I laughed. Humor may be the only thing that gets me through the next 8 months. And if Drumpf manages to slither into the Presidency, I’m going to need to up my dosage.

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  15. Sherri said on March 1, 2016 at 7:50 pm

    You wonder why so many on the right see Obama as this ‘horn-sprouting antichrist who has “pushed the country so far to the left, I wonder if we can ever come back”’ as Nancy mentioned a while ago, William Saletan explains:

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  16. Suzanne said on March 1, 2016 at 9:31 pm

    What Julie said @ #2. I have switched jobs far to often in the past 10 years to believe it’s now typical to cut all costs that are not deemed profit making, including training and then wonder why things are always a hot mess. It’s always the lack of decent workers. Simple things like telling you to call the help desk but neglecting to give you the number, so you waste time trying to track it down. Or telling you to only order from approved vendors, but not bothering to have a list. Lots of wheel spinning.

    I heard Teddy C won in Texas. I guess at least they like him better than tRump.

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  17. Heather said on March 2, 2016 at 8:09 am

    Suzanne–so true. At my company it’s not even clear who to call at HR with a question, the benefits hotline takes weeks to respond, etc. Not to mention that they refuse to hire more writers even though we have tons of new business–I’m the only full-time copywriter, which is insane. Their solution? Tell the marketing managers to write the copy. Which I can tell you results in some pretty, er, ineffective messaging.

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  18. Deborah said on March 2, 2016 at 10:16 am

    I have a list of stuff to that’s a mile long but we found time to see the movie 45 Years yesterday afternoon. I love Charlotte Rampling, especially the movies she’s made in the last decade or so. Tom Courtney was terrific in the movie, maybe actually better than Rampling.

    Hard to believe what’s going on in the GOP right now, but fun to watch the implosion. I can’t remember if I mentioned that my right wing sister finally sent me an email saying she and her family are not for Drumpf and she can’t understand how any evangelicals can be for him. She lives in Minnesota and I see that Rubio won there, I’m guessing she voted for Rubio but she never said who she’s for so it’s merely a guess.

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  19. Connie said on March 2, 2016 at 12:50 pm

    UPS Guy told me they have stopped not turning left. Just sharing that odd fact.

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  20. Scout said on March 2, 2016 at 12:57 pm

    Where is everybody? Not Nancy, but all the commenters? I would have thought there’d be all kinds of commentary after S D Tuesday.

    Here’s a link to Charlie Pierce’s take away from the day:

    I’m a bit concerned that the GOP turnout has been higher than 2008, while the Democratic turn out has been lower. I’m wondering if it’s because Hillary is seen as inevitable or maybe that Dems are happy with either Bernie or Hillary, so they are not as motivated to primary. I sure hope so.

    On the other hand, the Independents I know are absolutely horrified by Tronald Dump, and while they may not be big Hillary fans, they say they will hold their noses and vote for her rather than let the vulgar talking yam win.

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  21. Jakash said on March 2, 2016 at 2:17 pm

    I don’t know where everybody else is, Scout, but, personally, I avoided coverage of yesterday’s Super-duper happenings like the plague. Knew I’d be finding out today, whether I wanted to or not, and Rump’s ascendancy is too depressing to dwell on. I’d love to believe that the country is not completely bonkers enough to elect him, but I never believed for a second that he’d get this far. Plus, the question of who will vote and who will stay home makes even what seems like an obvious outcome in the general election fraught with potential peril, especially with either Hillary, hated by half the country for 25 years, or a Socialist standing as the voice of reason. G. W. Bush getting reelected in 2004 via a campaign of “swift-boating” a guy with a Silver Star, Bronze Star and 3 Purple Hearts forever reformed me of assuming that the voters who show up to vote will end up doing the right thing. Just don’t want to think about it…

    That being said — on the humor front, which you referred to last night, there’s this, from John Oliver:

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  22. Jenine said on March 2, 2016 at 3:10 pm

    I am still surprised that DT was willing to put in the time and the work to get this far. Getting ready to vote Bernie in my state’s late-to-the-party Saturday caucus. Then I’ll be happy to vote Hillary in November.

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  23. Jolene said on March 2, 2016 at 3:43 pm

    Trump has put in (some) time, but it’s not evident that he’s put in much work. He is, it seems, incapable of giving a coherent, well-formed answer on pretty much any policy question. His speeches consist of telling audiences how great he is, how high his poll ratings are, and how tough he will be as president. That doesn’t require a whole lot of intellectual effort.

    To respond to Scout’s “Where is everybody?” question, despite usually having an almost endless appetite for political news and political analysis, I find myself wanting to bury my head under a pillow and make the world go away. So much has been said, but nothing that’s been said has made the situation any better.

    The prospect of a Trump vs. Clinton election is horrible. This morning, Joe Scarborough said that Trump would stop at nothing to defeat Hillary, including bringing Bill Clinton’s past mistresses onto the stage with him. What an edifying spectacle that will be. I can hardly wait.

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  24. Deborah said on March 2, 2016 at 3:53 pm

    I think I just read that Carson dropped out, but I was googling something else and that just flashed by so I might be wrong. I was googling what happens to leftover campaign cash when a candidate drops out. There seem to be limitations which seems proper. The candidate can give it to charity or other candidates, but the amount they can give to other candidates is limited. They can also give some of it back to the donors.

    I too was wondering where everyone is. I’ve been busy but find the time to take a break now and then. Demolition on our new place is happening on Friday, they say they can do it in one day which is surprising. Basically they will be smashing mirrors and taking down some walls. I wish I could help, it seems like fun but I’d get in their way and be a liability. I wish you guys could see this place with all the mirrors, it’s surreal. I’m still in the process of looking for colors and materials. We’re having some of our furniture refinished, reupholstered or replaced so I’ve been dealing with that too. We’re sending some of our furniture to New Mexico so I’ve been looking for movers who will ship a smallish batch rather than a whole houseful, that has not been fun. I wanted to rent a cargo van and do it myself but I can’t find anyplace that will rent for a one way interstate use. And I’m not about to rent a bigger truck, too scary to drive. My husband would drive a bigger truck but he can’t take the time off to do it.

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  25. Deni Menken said on March 2, 2016 at 3:55 pm

    Per the Today Show, the top Google Search in last night’s wee desperate hours was, “How do I move to Canada?”

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  26. susan said on March 2, 2016 at 3:58 pm

    I heard on the CBC this morning that after yesterday’s disturbing US primaries, there was an 1100% increase on the Google search “how can I move to Canada.” This is like the Bush II dark times. I actually looked north to Canada then…

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  27. susan said on March 2, 2016 at 3:59 pm

    Dani Mencken @25 pinkies! (almost)

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  28. Jakash said on March 2, 2016 at 5:16 pm

    Of course, it’s long been evident what an asshole Christie is. Even so, I’d not have thought him THIS much of an asshole.

    Anyway, in the “all you can do is laugh” vein — which music is better for this vine, “Psycho” or “Curb Your Enthusiasm?” (You need to enable the music at the bottom right of each if you want to judge, probably.) Both swell, but I gotta go with CYE…

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  29. Sherri said on March 2, 2016 at 5:41 pm

    Cheer up! All is not lost! RBG is still alive and kicking ass on the bench!

    (BTW, I just did a lot of research about colonoscopies. The short answer: opt for less invasive screening methods like FIT.)

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  30. Deborah said on March 2, 2016 at 6:01 pm

    Yay RBG!

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  31. alex said on March 2, 2016 at 6:17 pm

    Let’s hear your, uh, anal argument, Sherri. My doctor and my friends are on my case for not taking it up the butt yet. The prospect is causing me dread.

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  32. beb said on March 2, 2016 at 6:54 pm

    News sites are calling it a curious incident but it sounds like “suicide by car” to me.

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  33. David C. said on March 2, 2016 at 6:57 pm

    Samantha Bee landed a pretty square punch at the Texas abortion law too.
    She would have been so much better for the Daily Show that Trevor Noah.

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  34. Deborah said on March 2, 2016 at 7:53 pm

    Alex, it’s not that bad, I slept through the whole thing. Didn’t feel a thing. The worst part is the prep the night before, that’s really unpleasant.

    Suicide by car seems like the logical conclusion, Beb.

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  35. Dave said on March 2, 2016 at 9:34 pm

    Alex, I’ve done it three times and facing it again this year. You’ll never know a thing. Uh, other than the preparation, you are going to know all about that.

    Ryan surely didn’t have a “Come to Jesus” moment, did he? Is there ever a real point where these people realize, we’ve really lost control and it has gone too far?

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  36. alex said on March 2, 2016 at 11:12 pm

    If Trump wins, I can only imagine the 2020 GOP primary featuring Kaitlyn Jenner, Omarosa and Ted Nugent vying to take him out.

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  37. Sherri said on March 3, 2016 at 2:57 am

    Here’s my argument, alex.

    There’s a concept called “Number Needed to Screen” when it comes to medical screening: how many people do you need to screen to save a life? I looked at several studies, and for colonoscopy, the NNS ranged from ~700 to 1400. These were all studies of large populations over at least 25 years. So, what does that mean? Say we have 2000 people, and we give colonoscopies to 1000 of them and don’t give colonoscopies to the other 1000. Then, by the numbers from these studies, we’d expect one fewer death in the screened group than in the unscreened group.

    Okay, saving even one life is good, but here’s the rub: colonoscopy is not without risk. Colonoscopy is the riskiest routinely recommended screening procedure. The serious complication rate I found in medical papers was around .1%-.3%; that may sound low, but that means for every life saved in our group of 1000 above, 1-3 people suffered a serious complication requiring hospitalization within 30 days (the standard used in the papers I read.) So, for me, I decided I didn’t like the way the numbers worked out, and I discussed it with my doctor, and we went with the FIT test, which checks for blood in the stool. It’s not invasive, you do it at home and mail it in, and only if it is positive do you do a colonoscopy.

    I am not in a high risk category, I am not a doctor, and I would not presume to give you medical advice. All I’m trying to do is demystify the statistics in medical studies.

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  38. alex said on March 3, 2016 at 7:17 am

    Thanks Sherri. I was just looking for a way to weasel out of a colonoscopy that my doctor might find acceptable. I’ll see what she says next time.

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