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Ep 854[Ep 855] Filler Words [1:50:01]
Recorded: Sat, 2023-Oct-28 UTC
Published: Mon, 2023-Oct-30 13:45 UTC
Ep 856

This week on Curmudgeon's Corner, Ivan is out, and Sam goes wild! Uh, yeah. Well. Maybe not so much. In any case, we have discussion on the Trump Trials, the outcome of the Speaker race, Israel/Palestine, and an update on Election 2024 via Election Graphs! Enjoy!

  • (0:00:19-0:15:35) But First
    • Solo Show Again
    • Length Trimming
  • (0:16:35-0:57:07) But Second
    • Trump Trials
    • Speaker Race
  • (0:59:15-1:49:28) But Third
    • Election 2024
    • Israel/Palestine

Automated Transcript


Sam:
[0:19]
Welcome to Curmudgeon's Corner for Saturday, October 28th, 2023.

It is just after 21 UTC as I'm starting to record this.

And you may already notice from the time, this is much later than I usually start recording, and Ivanbo is not here.

And nobody else is either. So I'll be doing another solo show.

This is one of those things where once again, I sent out the mass email To all the people who have co-hosted on the show before, who have expressed interest in co-hosting the show, or just are on our curmudgeon's corner slack, except the last three people to co-host, which in this case would have been my son, Alex in August and Ed and Bruce in July.

And unfortunately those last three are the ones who always answer the call.

And I'm trying to do this in order to like get some more variety of who like co-hosts, but all of these other people, you know, nobody ever stands up.

Well, once again, I got two responses.

I got two people who basically said, maybe next time.

And so, Chad and Shelly, thank you for saying maybe next time, but nobody else answered at all this time, and so here I am by myself.

Now, I've said before, I should just give up on this last three, ignore the last three for variety, because I never get the variety.

I always get Ed or Bruce, or sometimes my son Alex.

Maybe I should just switch it to only exclude the last two.

In this case, that would have meant I would have invited Bruce as well.

And so, I don't know if you would have been able to do it this week or not, Bruce, sorry for not asking you, but you know, like I said, I'm just trying to shake it up and get some of these other people in here sometimes, but no, no, no.

Anyway, also because I'm doing it solo means I am starting later than I usually do.

I'm starting Saturday afternoon US time, and I'm going to record this intro and I'll be be completely honest, I am going to step away from the podcast after I record the intro and come back tomorrow to record more and just do other stuff.

Like, yeah, cause it was like, and so I'll, I'll just jump in.

I'll tell you the plan and then I'll do a little bit of bitty, little bitty, little bitty, little bit of, but first before moving on.

So, the intended agenda is I am going to do a little bit of butt first now, and then in the second segment, basically the Trump trials and the speaker race.

And in the third segment, I'm going to give a bit of an election graphs update.

I alluded to it last week and encouraged people to go look because Biden was doing badly. I will actually talk about it and do some...

Explanation, analysis, whatever I do when I talk about that stuff.

And then finally, a little bit about the Israel-Palestine situation, which is continuing to evolve even as I'm recording. That is the plan.

So I'll tell you, like, getting to the but first stuff.

First is just like, I mentioned I'm going to split it between days and let me explain like how Saturday has gone for me so far.

I was asleep and ready to stay asleep a bit longer when my son started waking me up and so you know Alex was basically just making it clear he was ready to be awake and we would be nice if I was too but he did that for a couple minutes and then went downstairs and I'm like okay good. He's gone. I'll go back to sleep.

I get up to like use the bathroom and stuff first. But then my wife texts me from downstairs saying that she feels like going to a local diner for breakfast.

I'm like cool I'll go but is it okay if I take a shower first because I am overdue and I really would like to take a shower.

And she doesn't respond for a little while so I start getting ready to get in the shower and I text her back and say well I'll take no answer as an implied yes, and I'll go ahead and start taking the shower as I'm getting ready to get in the shower.

She texts back and says, no, we're leaving.

Bye. And so it turns out that Alex had really liked the idea of sneaking out to go get breakfast without me.

He didn't want to check to see if I was awake. He didn't want to invite me.

He didn't want to do anything. And besides, I don't know if he knew this or not, but I had already. I was practically in the shower at that point.

So I'm like, fine, go without me. They went to.

So they went out, they had breakfast, I had my shower.

Eventually they got back and my wife was going to just drop him off and then go to a grocery store.

And I'm like, fine. But as soon as he got in the door, my son was wanting attention.

I was doing other stuff, but he was like upset that I wanted to do other stuff.

I'm like, fine, fine. I will come sit with you, whatever it turned out.

He just wanted to go back to sleep, but he wanted like me there too.

He wanted to like cuddle with me and go back to sleep. So I ended up back in bed with a kid half on top of me.

Who like was back asleep within like five minutes and I was pinned down, and like after a few minutes, I probably could have gotten away with like extracting myself and going on and going, getting back to working on the podcast.

Cause like the thing I was doing when I got back was the initial stages of preparing to record.

And, but instead what happens?

I fall asleep too. Cause like I hadn't really wanted to be getting up in the first place. So like, once he's like, I'm going back to sleep, I'm like, okay, I'll go back to sleep too.

And when was that? Like, let's see if I can, I can reconstruct from text messages when that was.

So they got back about 10 30.

A.m. from their breakfast and it is now 2 2 o'clock and I have only been awake again maybe half an hour and so so I had another few hours of nap myself clearly we could both use it he's still asleep at the moment maybe he'll wake up soon but anyway so that that's my story of yeah the day and this is why like frankly, like they ditched me for breakfast. So I'm hungry.

So probably the first thing I'm going to do as soon as I finished this segment is go off and get myself some food.

And frankly, because they were like all talking about breakfast, I'm in the mood for like an omelet. So I might go to a different diner.

Like the diner they went to is closing soon. It, it, it like closes in the early afternoon.

It's like 100% of breakfast place, but there's another one nearby that does all day breakfast. And I may, maybe it just opened a couple of weeks ago, actually.

Brianna's cafe. If you're in the mill Creek area, it's a brand new one.

Just opened a couple of weeks ago. It's it's, it's fine. It's I, I, this will, if I go today, this will be my third time going.

And yeah, so anyway, I'm hungry and want to do that.

And so like, as soon as I'm done with this first segment, I am out of here. I am getting food.

Maybe I'll do that. Maybe I'll do something else. I don't know.

I mean, I'll definitely get food, but I'm still up in the air exactly which food I'll get.

And where they went, by the way, was a place called Sawmill Cafe, which is really good. Like it as well. Blah, blah, blah. But basically, they do have some non-breakfast foods, but breakfast and lunch, you know, they don't do dinner and they close at like 3 p.m., so blah, blah, blah.

Anyway, that's my plan. Oh, I had one other thing to say as part of this, but first, before moving on.

For the last few weeks, I don't know if anybody has noticed.

Well, there are two, there are two things that we've, I use Riverside to record the shows, but then I edit in final cut pro do, do, do Sam from the future here, I was stupid.

Future Sam:
[9:12]
I do not edit the podcast and final cut pro that's for video.

This is an audio only podcast. I added in logic pro not that you really care. Do, do, do.

Sam:
[9:23]
And then I post-processed them using a thing called Alphonic, A-U-P-H-O-N-I-C, something like that.

And Alphonic, it does things like make sure that Yvonne and I have the same volume roughly and make sure that extraneous background noises are minimized in less, like I do something to say I wanna keep them, you know, that kind of thing.

They added two new features recently. One that I've been using for a few months now, which is to remove gaps.

Like if I take a long pause between talking, like if I pause, you know, I could stop for like four or five seconds or whatever.

It just automatically trims that down to a short, acceptable amount, like one or two seconds or whatever. So that there are no long pauses in the show.

I used to do that manually as part of my editing process. Like whenever I noticed a gap that was pretty long, I would, I would suck it in.

And I would use judgment calls. Like every once in a while, there was like a pause that felt meaningful in some ways, so I'd leave it in or whatever, but this just shortens all of those.

And I've been using that for a few months. I don't know if anybody's noticed, but it usually trims a few minutes off of every show in the end, like one or two minutes, at least off a two hour show.

But just recently, and I've only used this for last three episodes, I think, and this will be the fourth, or maybe this will be the third.

I think this will be the fourth. Well, I don't know.

But they added an additional thing.

To get rid of the so-called filler words. And I won't say them as examples because it'll get rid of them.

But you know, they're the U-M-M-M-M-M-M type of words.

They're the A-H-H-H-H kind of words.

It doesn't do like another kind of filler that happens often.

And I've noticed myself doing this quite a bit is sort of a little bit of stuttering.

It can't, it doesn't get rid of that. It doesn't get rid of likes because sometimes like, you know, like, like, like, like, like sometimes that is a real word that you're actually intending to use and sometimes not.

So anyway, for the last few weeks, it's gotten rid of those as well.

And those also get rid of a couple of minutes. So at this point, We're like trimming like five minutes off the damn show, just by getting rid of excessive pauses and filler words, but let me know if any of you have actually noticed or care or think it's not as good because, you know, especially with some of these, you know, and I had never, I had, I'd gotten rid of when I was manually editing.

I, and I'm still manually editing, but not these two things because now I've got automation on it.

I would usually leave ums and ahs and things in because to me, they actually felt like they added a little character.

I know some people get really bugged by them and I've seen people give feedback on other podcasts that there was so much of that they couldn't even stand listening.

I kind of like them a little bit, but I understand how they can be problematic.

But I would take out the worst ones. I would take out like, if there was a big, isolated, missing, and I've probably even used those filler words when I intended to actually refer to them in this last paragraph.

I'm just realizing paragraph. Do you talk in paragraphs?

Like you write in paragraphs, but do you talk in paragraph? Anyway, I used to, when I was manual editing, I would take out some of the worst offenders where there was one that was just clear and isolated and not overlapping anything.

But if there were ones that were sort of melded in with the words before or after, I wouldn't bother because it seemed like it would sound unnatural to me.

It seemed like it sounded unnatural when I tried to cut them out.

So I left a lot of those. So if you guys have not liked how things have been sound, If you guys have not liked the way things have sounded the last few weeks, let me know and I could turn off these two features and leave in some of the large gaps and filler words. I don't know.

So yeah, that's the, that's the deal. So let me know, let me know, do you want, do you want your filler words back?

Do you want your long gaps back?

Like I said, I used to get rid of most of the long gaps, but I used to leave most of the filler words in. So, maybe the second one is the one you noticed, I don't know.

My actual editing at this point mainly consists of sometimes when Ivan and I are saying things on top of each other, but they're both valuable, pulling them apart so you can hear both of them and or deciding which is valuable if the other isn't and removing the overlapping one that doesn't add value.

And so you can hear more clearly the one that is adding something useful to the conversation.

Cause often when there is overlap, it's one person is finishing a thought and another one is trying to break in and is so and is starting to say something over and over and over again.

And then they actually say it for real once the other person stops talking.

And so anyway, you guys don't care about that.

We have had feedback before that when I talked podcast production specific, No one cares.

So no one cares. So we will now take our first exciting break and I will go feed myself because I am hungry and then I will come back at some future time when it is convenient for me and talk about all the more serious things that I mentioned earlier.

So, okay, first break, what do we got? I wanted to, because I always roll dice, and here's another behind it, I always roll dice to pick which things I'm going to play out of the ten that I circulate and blah, blah, blah.

Anyway, the next one is one of the Alex ones. Here you go.

Break:
[15:37]
You're supposed to say doo, doo, doo. Doo, doo, doo. Alex Zemzilla!

Alex Zemzilla is awesome. videos are fun.

And today, once again, we have one of our most loyal subscribers here to tell you how awesome Alex Zemzala is.

I'd say on a rate from 1 to 10, Alex Zemzala is awesome at, I don't know, 37? 82? He's pretty radical. His videos are phenomenal. They're full of creativity.

And they're so funny and exciting to watch.

Wow, what happened to your voice then, Amy? Was that Dad pretending to be you because the audio was distorted when it really wasn't because I told him to?

Yes! Good job on remembering, Dad. Do do do!

Sam:
[16:36]
And I'm back. Yeah, it's the next day, like I said it would be.

Anyway, so it's time for Trump Trials and the Speaker Race.

So where to start, where to start, where to start?

Roughly in chronological order in the way that these things happened last week, let's start with the flip parade.

Okay, so we've started to have a parade of these guilty pleas where deals have been worked out with the prosecutors.

First, back in September, we had the Scott Hall guy, a minor player, apparently, he's the guy who's the, what, he was the bail bondsman, right?

And he was doing other stuff.

Anyway, but then the big guys happened just within a space of a few days, starting, well, Well, starting with Sidney Powell on October 19th, then Kenneth Chesebrough the day after, and then a few days later, Jenna Ellis.

So these are all people who were right smack in the middle of everything.

And the question, and they were all given basically slaps on the wrists, the monetary fines, a few years of probation, some community service, and writing a public apology to the state of Georgia. I love that one.

And of course, importantly, agreeing to testify truthfully in future trials.

There are a lot of people to roll up to here. I mean, we started out with 19 people.

We've had four guilty pleas now. So there are a lot still on the hook.

This got rid of the early trial thing completely because Sidney Powell and Kenneth Cheeseborough, Chazborough, sorry, Chazborough, both were doing the plea.

But now the question is, do we get more and what, what did these folks give?

I've heard that there's already a little bit of backtracking from, I think Jenna Ellis, but the problem is if she backtracks too much, then she loses her deal.

Like, the guilty plea remains, but what they would give her in exchange does not.

So, you know, she could end up with a much bigger punishment for the thing she pled guilty for.

Or maybe they can't, I should back up, I shouldn't say that.

They could charge her for the things that they agreed not to charge her for. Anyway.

Know, I don't, I don't have a lot more to say about this.

The I feel like this is a case where the pressure is going to continue to ramp as we get to the scheduled start of this trial, which I believe is may at the moment, I should check that.

I should check that currently scheduled for March, March 4th, which is, there There might be some conflicts with that DC case.

Wasn't that, timelines, timelines.

Check out the timelines.

Trump trial time lines. Let's see. Jesus. The fact that there are so many of them, right? Okay. Yeah, there is March 4th right now is the date for the DC trial.

March 20... I don't want to...

Okay, this is the deal.

The prosecutors asked for March, which would be right on top of the DC trial, but the judge has not yet set a trial for the Georgia case, so it's likely to be later.

Yes, okay, fine. Now I've recombobulated myself.

Anyway, the point on the flips is just, all of these folks are under increasing pressure.

Defenses cost money, lots of money. Lots of these defendants don't have any or don't have very much.

Certainly not enough. Even, and I'm saying don't have very much in relative terms, I mean, some of these folks are relatively wealthy people, but defense in a trial like this is super expensive.

And so they're, they're, they're under a lot of pressure and they know as well that the longer they wait, the worse a deal they're going to get and they have to have something good for it.

And so one of the questions for these first four is, did they actually give really good information that's helpful. You would presume so, otherwise they wouldn't have gotten a deal, but we don't know what it is yet.

So, going beyond these.

The next thing sort of in chronological order, I'm having trouble this morning, is stuff in the New York trial.

It's basically been a circus up there. We had Michael Cohen testimony.

We had Donald Trump violating his gag order.

So to bring folks up to speed, if you forget, in the New York case, Donald Trump had posted on social media about the judge's clerk, basically implying that they were in some sort of relationship with Senator Schumer, talking about how they were a democratic plant and how this was awful and unfair and partisan and blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah.

The judge, and doing this in a way that identified them clearly, so it's one of these, you know, sick your people on them kind of thing.

It's not just the comment itself, it's also that you, with a platform like Donald Trump's and the profile of his followers, it's like you're aiming the crowd at them.

And the judge is well aware of this. So the judge told Trump to cut it out and stop doing that and that he could not make these kinds of comments about the staff, the court staff.

Bit later, it turned out that one of the places where this was posted online, it did not get removed. Like the judge had ordered, remove this, take it all down.

And Trump took it down from a couple of places, but apparently they left it up one other place.

Specifically, I guess the Trump campaign's website had something where it sort of copies off whatever Trump does on Truth Social, and it got removed from Truth Social, but not from the website.

The The Trump campaign said, oops, sorry, our bad, completely unintentional.

We missed it. It was a tech problem. The judge was like, yeah, okay, what, right, whatever. Here's a $5,000 fine.

Take it down. Don't do it again.

Then during a break in the trial this week, Trump started talking about the partisan bias, blah, blah, blah of the person sitting next to the judge.

Not using the clerk's name this time, not identifying them specifically, but using the same kind of language that had been used about the clerk before.

The judge actually called Trump to the stand, said, are you talking about my clerk?

Trump said, no, I was talking about Michael Cohen.

The judge said, I don't believe you. Here's a $10,000 fine.

Don't do it again or it will be worse. And okay.

Donald Trump has been attending this New York trial when he doesn't have to attend a New York trial. It's a civil trial.

His attendance is not mandatory, but he's decided he likes to be up there a while.

In part, it seems like, because at every break, he goes on one of these little rants, and in front of, and gets at least some people covering it, gets the court's attention.

Like, most people aren't even covering Trump live when he does this, but occasionally he'll make some news out of it anyway, especially when he does stuff like this.

And then the judge slaps him for it.

And we see if he does it again.

Now, so far this judge has done more than any other judge to actually hold Trump responsible for these kinds of things.

But, I mean, obviously a $15,000 fine that was paid almost immediately by Trump's law firm, by the way.

Who knows if Trump reimbursed his law firm for it, but the law firm paid the $15,000 fine and that amount is clearly nothing to Donald Trump.

It's not about the money, but Donald Trump, just his, the way he's been reacting to this, his, he's been getting increasingly upset just because he's been put in these circumstances where he has to do what the judge says.

Someone is exercising authority over him, even in terms of like he was chastised for coming back into the courtroom late.

Like there was a 15 minute break and he took half an hour and there was delay because of it and the judge chastised him for it.

The judge has asked him to be quieter when talking to his lawyers during testimony because he's, it's noticeable and loud and interfering with the courtroom.

Trump doesn't like this kind of stuff. He is used to being unquestioned.

And yeah, but still, does it continue, and how does it escalate?

I mean, every time this has happened, the judge says things like, I could put you in jail for this. You need to behave.

But so far, the initial behavior happened, which caused the initial gaggle order, and he has now violated it twice.

Will there be a third time? And what does the judge escalate to?

Does he, like, he went from 5,000 to 10,000. Does he just double it every time? That would be fun.

You know, by the time, I joked on Mastodon, by the time he even gets to the end of this trial, which is how much money he owes for his fraud, you know, they've already determined the fraud happened.

That's, it's just about how much money. By the time he gets to the end of the trial, he may be broke anyway, just from the fines, if it doubles every time.

But, I suspect it won't just be monetary, but the, you know, and, and...

On the one hand, you feel like Donald Trump knows exactly what he's doing.

And he's trying to bait the judge into sending him to jail.

Like, because he feels like if the judge sends them to jail for a couple of days or something like that, they would only play into his hands.

His whole, all of his supporters would just be incensed and more motivated than ever, and they'd send him money and they'd be more excited about voting for him and all, and he'd get a boost in the polls because he's the victim.

He wants to be the victim. He wants to be portrayed as the victim here.

On the other hand, I don't think he really wants to go to jail. I mean, maybe he feels like he's willing to do it for a little while, but like, if the judge just you're in jail till the trial is over, which is expected to take months, I don't think he actually want that.

He'd be, uh, he's would of course appeal, blah, blah, blah.

But judges have a lot of discretion when it comes to things directly related to the trial.

And so I don't know how that would go, but as I've said many times before, like none of these judges, none of them. And we'll talk about the DC trial in a second where there's another gaggle order.

None of these judges want to be in the position of having to send Trump to jail or to do anything really like, like massive fines, even like a $10,000, 55, 10, those were nothing.

They don't want to be the one to do that. Like it's one thing at the end of the trial, once he's been convicted, assuming he's convicted at the sentencing phase, blah, blah, blah.

Once everything is played out, it's completely another thing to do things at this stage and specifically about restricting his speech.

There is nothing Trump wants more than to turn this whole thing into a debate about they are trying to shut me up.

Because that in turn he will spin into they are trying to shut you up, referring to all of his supporters.

And then it becomes not about the underlying crimes that he is on trial for or in the civil case, the fraud that he's found liable for, etc.

It stops being about his wrongdoing and starts being about, I am the victim, they are shutting me up, First Amendment, First Amendment, First Amendment.

And, and so none of these judges want to do this, but he's putting them in a position where eventually they're going to have no choice because these things are resulting in threats against the people involved in, in the court, in the prosecution, et cetera.

They can't ignore it.

And even despite the threat, even aside from the threats, there's also poisoning jury pools and all of that kind of stuff.

And this sort of takes us away from the New York trial to the DC trial.

Because the New York trial, the gag order, was very specifically, essentially, stop saying shit about my clerk.

It was pretty narrow. It's like, don't talk about the court staff.

In the D.C. case, it's still very narrowly tailored, but it's a little wider.

It's about certain court staff. It's about witnesses.

It expands it out a couple levels further than the New York case.

And after an initial request by the prosecution, the judge in D.C.

Had put out an order along this effect.

And by the way, the order very, very specifically said, Trump is still allowed to criticize the government, criticize the DOJ, say that he's innocent, say that these are trumped up charges, et cetera, et cetera, et cetera.

All of that kind of stuff was wide open.

They could even, you know, but, but, but, but, he could not be talking about the other witnesses in the case.

He could not be directly, you know, he could not do the kinds of stuff that is basically aimed at...

The mob towards people, intimidating the testimony of potential witnesses by saying, you know, you shouldn't say this, you should say that, anything like that.

And the judge put on that gag order. The Trump folks put in a notice to say they're appealing it and they would like it stayed during the appeal.

The judge said fine, it stayed during the appeal. And then this week, there's been some additional back and forth in court documents with the DOJ giving even more reasons why they think, well, why they should undo the stay at this point. That's a current matter of controversy.

And the Trump folks saying, no, no, no. And again, it's all about on the DOJ side.

It's like, hey, you stayed the order and he immediately started doing all the shit again.

But even worse, here's some more examples of it.

You can't trust them just not to do it in the absence of a stay.

And Trump folks saying, First Amendment, First Amendment, First Amendment, and various appeals due to that.

And there are a couple of things here. One, lots of people have made, looking at the legal folks talking about this, most of them say that the vast majority of the First Amendment things being brought up do not hold water under current precedent.

That because he is a defendant in a criminal proceeding, the judge can put on restrictions based on things that would influence the trial, whether it's the safety surrounding the trial or about.

Changing the testimony of witnesses or influencing the jury pool, all of this kind of stuff. The court can do that.

The fact that he is a candidate for office does not change that.

But I did say under current precedent, I mean, one of his clear hopes here is that one of these things, whether it's the gag order or he also, I was going to talk in a minute, he also put in a whole bunch of of motions to dismiss on various grounds, including the First Amendment ground and some other constitutional grounds.

He's hoping that one of these, one of these goes to SCOTUS and with the current makeup of the Supreme Court, they rule in his favor, regardless of what existing precedent has existed in the past. And by the way, some of this is uncharted, right?

Like, there has not been an ex-president and current presidential candidate with this kind of situation. It just has not happened before, ever.

So any precedents that may exist are, you know, they're imperfect precedents, right, in terms of what judges can or cannot do with gag orders, et cetera, et cetera.

Nothing aligns perfectly. So this has a good chance.

I'm not saying which of these particular things, but one of these various things, either his, his motions to dismiss or the appeal of the gag order or something like, there's a good shot that one of these makes it to SCOTUS.

Now there are a couple of.

One is just forget whatever SCOTUS decides in the end. Can you get an additional delay out of going to SCOTUS? Because SCOTUS is not usually fast.

You know, maybe in some cases, SCOTUS does emergency appeals and comes out with things even in a week or two.

That's been known to happen. But if it goes into sort of the normal calendar, it's like, yeah, we'll talk about this next year, you know?

And we'll hear your case next year sometime, and we'll give a verdict the year after that.

I'm exaggerating slightly. But it can take a while. So does he get a delay out of that?

And enough delay, it could become a moot question, depending on what's going on.

Or maybe the trial gets delayed. Like he's like, well, we obviously can't proceed with this trial until SCOTUS has had their say on this issue.

And so everything gets on pause for a while, or he just wins.

Yeah, you can't, you can't gag him, you know, or yeah, you should dismiss the case because of X, Y, Z.

You know, I, I kind of feel like Trump overestimates his support on the Supreme court, like even amongst the conservative justices, like, I mean, and maybe this is wishful thinking, but it feels like, you know, he thought this way about all of his, uh, things that he tried to get to SCOTUS in 2020 to dispute the election in the first place, and they did not go along with him.

And so I feel like the chances of them stepping in on one of these things to completely change the course of one of his trials is low, but not impossible.

And so we'll see that there's been a lot of legal motion in the last few weeks. And again, the...

Looking at it in terms of like what's his legal situation in the four trials.

Let's see, we got the New York civil trial, we got the Georgia state trial, and then we have the DC and Florida. Yeah, there we go, the four trials right now.

The news, and he has not had good news in any of this.

The closest you can come is is in the Florida trial, the one on the Mar-a-Lago documents.

The judge has been relatively willing to be really slow and allowed them lots of time.

That has not yet moved the official trial date for that, but the more delays there are getting to there, the more the chances are that it eventually gets delayed, the actual trial date gets delayed.

But everything else, it's just been bad news followed by bad news followed by bad news followed by bad news like if if we weren't concerned about donald trump as a presidential candidate and it was just these trials slowly making their way to their conclusion he's not looking good He's just not.

But the reality is, we do have that political component on top of it.

I'll talk about the election graph stuff in the next segment.

But Trump's bet on all of this is that the worse he does at trial, the better he does politically.

Because that's exactly what he needs to rile up his folks.

On that. I mean his whole deal, like numerous commentators have said, this is not unique to me by any means, that what everything Trump is doing legally in these trials, very little of it actually reads like an attempt to win.

It's like Like he keeps throwing things out that either have very little legal basis behind them, if any, or have been already denied by the judge and they're repeating it and just annoying the judge, or they are just wild flings of fantasy, or they're just like him pounding on the table about how it's politically motivated and blah, blah, blah, without actually addressing the charges themselves.

And all of this points to, he's not focused around the legal situation.

He is focused around the political implications of the legal situation.

I mean, I think we've said before, like, if you had, if this was anybody other than Donald First of all, he would be sitting in jail already for a bunch of this stuff. He wouldn't be out on his own recognizance.

But the rational thing to do for a person in Donald Trump's situation is go for the plea deal as soon as you can on all of this stuff.

You know, like. No. Well, I was about to say nobody.

None of the judges here, None of the high level people actually want to deal with the spectacle of putting an ex-president in jail.

Like if you, you know, we got the whole Spiro Agnew thing.

Take a plea where part of the plea is to exit public life, not run for anything anymore.

And, you know, maybe sometime like like confined to Mar-a-Lago or something, you know, and some community service, donate some money to some charities, I don't know, like take the goddamn plea, like a normal person, that would clearly be the advice.

Clearly, in every single one of these cases that we're talking about.

Donald Trump, his motivations are different. He wants to leverage all of the legal things against him to try to improve his chances for 2024.

Already are not bad. We'll talk about that in the next segment.

And then get himself into a position where all the federal stuff, he can either order the DOJ to drop it, or pardon himself, or whatever, depending on what stage in the process it is when we get there.

And the state stuff, if it hasn't come to a conclusion yet, their previous precedences, at the very least, he could probably get those paused until he's not president anymore.

Yeah. Yes. You do have some weird scenarios, like if he's already in jail in Georgia on inauguration day, what happens?

But I don't think anybody thinks that will actually happen that fast.

Anyway, so yeah, Trump is, Trump is playing to the politics, even when he's in court, he's not actually doing the stuff that has the best chance of success in court.

And I mean, part of that, I mean, I guess on, they've got him dead to rights on all this stuff.

I mean, the evidence is overwhelming. So they're looking for the delay, delay, the delay.

Looking for the one juror who is going to be a holdout and will cause a hung jury.

That that that's their strategy here.

Nothing to do with outright winning. I mean, and in, in the New York case, I mean, they're just arguing about how much money to take from him at this point. Really?

They've already found him guilty of, well, again, it's not criminal, blah, blah, blah. They found him, found that he has engaged in the fraud that they're talking about, you know, the, anyway.

And honestly, I think like that, that New York case is kind of the sleeper case of all of these that Trump may actually care more about in the short term than the criminal cases.

Cause I feel like the criminal stuff, the idea of going to jail is probably, he doesn't feel it's quite as real.

I mean, yeah, he was asking around about, well, I have to wear the orange jumpsuit, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah.

But I feel like that's somewhat less real to him. Whereas in the New York case, they're talking about his money. They can take his money.

And that is a a huge part of his self-identity. I mean, he could come out of this losing, he's not gonna lose everything.

You know, it's not like he's gonna be out living on the street somewhere.

That's not gonna happen.

But the money is a big deal for him. And I think that's one of the reasons he's up there sitting in that New York trial when he doesn't have to be.

He wants to look people like Michael Cohen in the face. He wants to look the judge in his face.

He wants, he's trying to do his little intimidation thing. It's not working, which is frustrating him more, but.

Okay, enough Trump stuff that the other thing is we have a speaker.

Mike Johnson is now speaker of the house. I will be perfectly honest.

If you had asked me a week ago, who the fuck Mike Johnson is, I would not have been able to tell you.

Which, you know, if you remember several weeks back when I listed the possible outcomes of this whole thing, One of them is they pick some unknown backbencher who hasn't yet made a lot of waves, and they just all get behind him. That's kind of what happened here.

Now Mike Johnson was not a complete unknown. Like I couldn't have told you who he was, but you know, you can look him up. You can see what he's done, blah, blah, blah.

He was heavily involved in the process of the Republican house members preparing to contest the results within the house and in a lawsuit a couple of weeks earlier that failed.

He's been doing various other things, but like, I mean, he wasn't a big deal.

He wasn't one of the top leadership. He wasn't somebody you've heard of and has been doing a bunch of stuff.

But this is, once again, a case of the quote unquote moderates, although that's not a really good term for them in the Republican side, there's no real moderates left in the House side anyway.

Them in previous rounds, like had been asking Jim Jordan to state unequivocally who won the 2020 election, like did Biden win fair and square, and were withholding their vote on that basis.

This guy is not saying that. In fact, he's on record saying Trump won.

But all those people folded.

And by all reports, they were just freaking tired of this.

They didn't see a way out. And so the moderates folded first.

And so we've got by all reports, as we're learning about this guy, he's one of these evangelical conservatives that, you know, he's, he's full on out all out. There should be a federal ban on abortion.

He thinks gay marriage is the worst thing ever.

He and his wife together have run some sort of counseling service about this stuff, dealing with gay people.

It's just all horrid, all horrid.

It's like your worst caricature of a Southern white conservative who has all the most extreme views on everything.

The more we find out about this, the more we get there.

I guess, sorry, Mike Johnson's wife runs the counseling service.

He is not in the counseling service. He does a podcast with his wife apparently though.

He's talked about a bunch of stuff. It's, you know, whatever we will see how this goes or, you know, he has said he is open to some sort of temporary thing for the, the government shutdown to resolve that, to like just kick the count, just kick the can down the road to January sometime.

Okay. Another couple months down the road, whatever.

They're going to have to hit that same place that the previous speakers had to deal with, that McCarthy was thrown out because of, that at a certain point, in order to keep the government open, you have to deal with the Democrats.

And that seems to be the, we won't go there thing for a lot of the.

Of people who was able to kick out McCarthy. Now, here's what I think.

And I'm gonna go out a little on a ledge here.

I think that even like the eight people who voted to throw out McCarthy realize it would not be in their interest to do it again so soon.

So I think that you actually will potentially have even those folks give Johnson a pass for doing the kick, kick the can down the road thing, move it from November to January. Okay.

And then we'll see. It's just sort of like, they sort of let McCarthy get away with it once with the debt ceiling, but then they weren't willing the second time. I have, maybe we get the same sort of like, we'll let them do it once.

Cause you want to put this in the rear view mirror a little bit.

I, I, I feel like they know this has hurt a little bit and they want to let it die down a little bit.

And also Johnson, by the way, like for the people like Matt gates, this whole thing has been a win McCarthy out Scalise out.

Even what's his name? The other guy. Oh God.

Jim Jordan. There we go. Jim Jordan. All out. Jim Jordan was the craziest of those three and even he wasn't good enough.

Now we got this guy who's potentially just as crazy as Jordan.

Maybe he's actually behind the scenes going to be a pawn of Jordan.

I don't know what happens there, but...

More aligned with the rebels that threw McCarthy out than some of these other guys in between who didn't make it.

And so they got, you know, Matt Gaetz has got to be happy with this outcome.

And we'll see. I feel like the internal pressures within the Republican Party are not gone.

They've They've somewhat papered them over for the moment to get a speaker because they realized that continuing to drag this out for more weeks was doing nothing but make them look like idiots.

But those, those divisions are still there. And it's just a question of which thing comes up that pushes them to the edge on that.

Is it the immediate budget crisis coming up in a few weeks? Like I said, I think they'll succeed in kicking that can down the road a couple of months.

They'll give him the pass to do it once.

I could be wrong. We'll see. Then we also have aid to Israel and Ukraine.

Johnson's in favor of aid to Israel, but not in favor of aid to Ukraine.

One of the things that had been being talked about was to bundle those two together to increase the chance of it all passing, and he's against that.

He can basically say, I'm not going to do it that way. And so we'll, we'll probably have two separate ones. So we'll see, we'll see.

You got some folks on the left who aren't going to be happy about aid to Israel.

You have some folks on the right that aren't going to be afraid, aren't going to want the aid to Ukraine.

And you probably have some left and right on both actually, but it's predominantly what I said.

You have more people on the left saying, saying we don't want to support Israel in this. You have more people on the right saying we don't want to report support Ukraine and this we'll see.

But one of one of these issues, I don't know which issue, but one of these issues will come to a head at some point in the future and they'll have to deal with it again. I don't know if they'll pull another motion to vacate the chair or not.

I predict he will last at least the end of this year.

I don't know about 2024, maybe I think I'll think about that for my prediction show for, for 2024.

I think he's got a better shot at surviving 24, 20 at surviving 2024 than McCarthy had of surviving 2023, but that's not necessarily saying a lot.

But anyway, we have a new speaker. We'll see how he does.

And with that, I am going to take another one of those breaks where it's going to be like a short time for you, but a long time for me.

I'm going to go do other things. I'm going to do some chores around the house.

Maybe I'll get some food, fun stuff like that. And then I will come back and record the last segment, which will be my election graphs update and a little on Israel and Palestine.

But in the meantime, this next break is for a featured wiki of the day.

It was the featured wiki of the day for October 28th, and I know you're going to be excited about this.

It's about the smooth toadfish. Enjoy!

Break:
[57:10]
Hello, this is Aditi Standard. I'm here to let you know about Sam the Camarjan's other podcasts, the Wiki of the Day podcasts.

Wiki of the Day comes in three varieties, popular, random, and featured.

Each highlights a new Wikipedia article each day, they just pick the articles differently.

This week on Featured Wiki of the Day, you would have heard this summary for Smooth Toadfish.

The smooth-toed fish, Tetractenos glauber, is a species of fish in the pufferfish family Tetrodontidae.

It is native to shallow coastal and estuarine waters of southeastern Australia, where it is widespread and abundant.

French naturalist Christophe Paulin de La Pavardée-Fremont will describe the species in 1813, though early records confused it with its close relative, the common toadfish, T.

Hamiltonii. The two are the only members of the genus Tetractenos after going through several taxonomic changes since discovery.

Up to 16 cm, 6 plus 1 quarter in, long with distinctive leopard-like dark markings on its dorsal side, the smooth-toed fish has a rounded front and tapers to a narrow tail at the back.

Unlike most of its relatives, it does not have prominent spines on its body.

Like other pufferfish, it can inflate itself with water or air.

It forages for its preferred foods, mollusks and crustaceans, in sand and mud of the bottom sediment.

Often an unwanted catch by fishermen, the smooth-toed fish contains a possibly fatal dose of tetrodotoxin and should never be consumed.

That's all there is to it.

See, fun, entertaining, educational, and short. Okay, now look for and subscribe to the Wiki of the Day family of podcasts on your podcast playing software of choice, or just go to wikioftheday.com to check out our archives.

Now back to Cummerjohn's Corner. Do do do.

Sam:
[59:16]
Okay, we are back and once again this is sort of a three-day recording going by UTC.

The first segment I started around 21 UTC on the 28th.

The second segment was about 1745 UTC on the 29th and now it's about three 30 UTC on the 30th.

So I got to wrap this sucker up and then get to editing it.

Which since it's just me, well, hopefully faster than it is when there are multiple people.

Anyway, we're going to get into the election graph stuff in just a second, But first, just an update.

Since I recorded the second segment, the judge in the DC case for Donald Trump has come back and reinstated the DC gag order.

So basically they had temporarily suspending it while evaluating whether to, to put a permanent stay on it while it was waiting to be appealed by Donald Trump, the judge has decided to not have it stayed pending appeal.

So Donald Trump is still going to appeal it.

But while he is appealing it, it is going to be in effect still, I guess, unless the court he's appealing to decides to override that.

Anyway, that's the status as of right now.

So time to talk election graphs. So now, you know, I do.

Posts on election graphs where I do all kinds of detailed, you know, here's roughly what's changed in the last month or so.

And I was, I was thinking about doing the next one when we are exactly one year out from the election, which is coming up pretty damn soon.

You know, we are, we are at that point, uh, it's a shifting from October to November and yeah, one year till the election.

I have not done that full analysis yet. When I do, I will post a blog post on election graphs and I'll probably mention it on the show.

So this is a little bit more off the cuff than that.

And just as a reminder, you can go to election graphs.com, and, and just look like the, where you are dropped.

Now, I changed this a couple of months ago. If you just go to election graphs.com, you don't go there to blog posts.

If you want to see those, click the blog button. The last one was at the beginning of October, but where you land is right now at the Biden versus Trump matchup and what everything looks like, the national summary.

And basically, I hinted at this last week on the show, but here's the pattern that we've had so far.

And going all the way back, you know, when we first, let me start, forget 2021, because 2021, like there were a handful of polls, but basically what you saw was on election graphs, I start, like right after the election, I start with an average of the last five presidential elections.

So there are no, like there are no 2024 polls. So we just start like, I default everything to, okay, let's just figure out which are the states that are pretty reliably read, which are the ones that have gone back and forth, et cetera.

And the way I do that is averaging out the last five elections.

So five elections is what? 20 years, five times four. Yeah. 20, 20 years, 20 years.

And so 20 years is a long freaking time. So you really have to get in, like, what are the real 2024 polls?

And basically, as they came in over the course of 2022, every.

To be better for Trump than the month before the sort of five election average had a pretty tied race, like it had with the Democrats having a very, very slight advantage.

Okay. But basically it showed a tied race.

And over the course of 2022, as each poll came in, the averages looked better and better for Donald Trump. And this lasted through just about the presidential midterms in November.

And then the tide reversed.

From November until June-ish, every month as new polls came in, it got better and better for Biden. I should say, at the peak, around the midterms, things looked really good for Donald Trump.

He was ahead on all my metrics by, you know, let me caveat this.

When I say it looked really good, Trump was ahead or whatever.

Some people will think, oh, like landslide territory, like Ronald Reagan in 1984 territory.

No. We do not live in that universe anymore.

Even when Donald Trump was way ahead by the metrics I look at, we were still only talking about a scenario where he was winning by 86 electoral votes, something like that, where The tipping point was him being ahead by one and a half, 1.6%, 1.7, maybe.

I'm trying to see if he ever hit 1.7. It was 1.6 at his peak back then.

So we're still talking a really close race. It's just, if you're really close, but you're ahead in a bunch of the key states, then that translates into pretty damn good odds, but not like a hundred percent odds.

And we'll talk and I will save for a second. Like now I have these two metrics of sort of, I do probabilities in two different ways based on how correlated you think the states are going to be, which I don't try to predict based on.

And all of this is based on on looking at the last three election cycles, well.

Since 2008, whatever, I lose track. The last few election cycles, where basically like, if the election graphs average at the end, at the end of November, right before the election, had you up by a certain percentage, what are the chances that you won that state?

You know, so like, I do a bunch of math and there was a blog post on the first of this year, if you wanna go back and look at it, it goes through the methodology.

But basically, I try to say, OK, if the Election Graph's poll average has the Republican ahead by 1%, what does that mean in terms of their odds of winning, et cetera?

And then I do some simulations and blah, blah, blah. Anyway, back at November, when Trump was at his high, his chances of winning were between 81% and 95%, depending on which of those methods you use. That's pretty damn good.

I mean, that's not like Biden doesn't have any chance, but it's certainly Biden is the underdog.

And since then, since November of 2022, from November to June, like I said, it seemed like every poll that came out made it look better for Biden, to the point where when you got to the middle to end of June, both of my models, in terms of percentages, had it a 50-50 race.

And the pure category, and by the way, I've said this before in the show, but for those of you who haven't heard it before, just looking at those last elections and producing the odds and blah, blah, blah, If the polls are tied, it's still, on average, over the last few elections, the polls have underestimated the Republicans.

So basically, the Democrats have to be ahead in a state by like 1.3% it was, I think, somewhere around there.

Don't quote me. It's in the blog post if you want to go look.

But in order to have an even chance of winning. So if you look straight up at who was ahead in my averages for every state around that June time period, Biden was ahead by a little bit, depending on when you were talking about, either by 34 or 14 electoral votes, maybe 36.

But if you looked at the probabilistic view, because it gives a little bit more to Trump, But both of my probabilistic models had it as pretty much a 50-50 tie around June.

Things started to go the other way.

But first there was a pop back up sort of just like from, from 50, 50 to 60, 40 with the advantage to, to Trump and the categorization and I call it the category, I call it the categorization view when it's just sort of like, Hey, take the polls at face value.

Don't try to do any of the probabilistic stuff.

That, that finally, that, that stayed a little steadier for a little while because states were moving around, but not changing categories, not flipping past the center line.

But really just in the last few weeks, let's say the month of October is just been devastating for Biden.

Basically, we are back to where things were a year ago.

We're back to having Trump have odds somewhere right now, as of the time I'm recording this, between 83% and 94, well, between 82.8% and 94.4% are my Trump odds.

And that doesn't count the tie scenario, which would probably go to Trump too.

So add another half percent to the second one.

So Biden's odds between 5.2 and 17.2%.

Right now by my probabilistic and the straight up poll values, you know, just trust the polls, trust the poll averages, have Trump winning by 54 electoral votes with Trump getting 296, Biden getting 242.

So and the tipping point, and I define the tipping point as sort of how far ahead or behind, well, how far ahead is the winning candidate in the state that puts them over the edge?

And right now, that's Pennsylvania. And right now, in the poll average, Trump is ahead by 1.9% in Pennsylvania.

And this gets you to the key point in terms of understanding what's going on with these polls. And I'll, and I'll, I'll get to like individual state polls in second, but here's the, here's the fundamental deal. What's happened in the last month.

It's Michigan, Pennsylvania, and Arizona have flipped from being just barely Biden to being just barely Trump. And.

That makes a difference when you have an electoral college system.

And so let's look at, I'll look at all these states individually, just like all the, all the ones around the tipping point.

And it fundamentally boils down to a series of bad polls for Biden.

Some of these are because they're starting to include Kennedy and West.

And despite the fact that you, you may have heard some reporting that Trump was worried that Kennedy was going to hurt Trump more than it hurt Clinton.

Clinton. Oh my God. That hurt Biden.

Uh, as far as I can tell from the polls, I've been looking at it at the state level, that is not true.

They've almost universally hurt Biden. There are a couple that went the other way, but they're in the distinct minority.

Overall, if you add Kennedy and West into this as third and fourth parties, it hurts Biden.

And that is part of it. Part of it, honestly...

Them really are outliers where it's like, oh my God, there was just this one poll that showed Biden way, way at Biden that showed Trump way, way ahead.

And all the rest show that it's a close race. And then this, this is this one way out here.

Now I don't do like explicit outlier removal.

I do averages. I don't even do like I've considered over the years, whether I should be doing a median instead of a mean in order to be less influenced by outliers, but I've always done a mean so I'm sticking to it and doing the mean.

And so you can get ones of those that really push it out and then what happens is that for however long it takes for that poll to fall off my average which things move in the direction of the outlier.

But I don't want to make a judgment as to like which things are outliers and which are not.

Like, I don't want to put my thumb on the scale and be like, oh, this is a bad poll. This is clearly a bad poll. You can go look at the graphs for the individual states and make some of those calls for yourself.

But I don't want to decide that. Like as new polls come in, they will either validate that outlier as, oh, that really is an outlier, it's the start of a new trend.

Or they will show, oh, yeah, I don't know what was going on with that.

That was a bullshit point.

So let me look at the tipping point right now is Pennsylvania, where Trump is ahead by 1.9.

So I'm going to talk about the two states on either side of that.

If you rank all the states in order from how Biden they are to how Trump they are at the moment, And so that'll be Nevada, Michigan, Pennsylvania, Arizona, and North Carolina.

I may mention a couple others like Georgia in a second, but those are the main ones I'll hit right now. So just looking at the individual state things. Nevada.

Is the one that seems to be trending actually in Biden's direction.

If you look in late 2020, you know, basically this one has not shown the same reversal.

There was one little bump up, but basically this one has continued to go in Biden's direction all the way since midterms and Biden is still ahead by 1.2% in Nevada.

Now people will tell you that Nevada has always been notoriously tricky to to poll, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah.

But if you look, the trend does seem to be towards Biden with an occasional outlier up or down, blah, blah, blah, but it's, it's, it's tending towards Biden right now.

So that's not really a big concern.

Michigan is the next one. And this is one that is definitely part of this trend.

Now, my average only has this, this is really super close right now.

And in fact, if you look at my summary right now, Michigan is the closest state I have at the moment.

Trump is leading Michigan by 0.6%. And the trend there's been some ups and downs and jiggles, but the trend in my average has been up since yes, about June.

And right now, here's like the five that are going on. Like, my polls are generally a five poll average.

So right now, that has polls going back to September for Michigan.

And I'll go through some of them, just so you get an idea of the variation here.

There was a PPP poll at the end of September that had Biden up by four.

There was an Emerson poll at the beginning of October, had Biden up by 1.6.

Then here's that sort of outlier effect I was talking about.

The next poll was by MRG, and MRG released two versions of the poll.

And when I have two versions, I include both of them, but average them together so that they're like each worth half.

So, one was looking at everybody.

Now, what's the right way to put it? They actually, they started, here it is if we just ask people their preferences without forcing them and including people who are leaning but aren't sure.

And in that one we had Trump up by 8.6 percent.

The leaners, you only had Trump up by 6.5, which means the people who were leaning towards, there were more people leaning towards Biden, you know.

And so, yeah, 6.5, 8.6, around 7.5. But this is way outside, like, you know, those others. Biden by 4, Biden by 1.6.

When we hit the others, we'll have a tie and a Trump by one.

This one has Trump up by seven, by seven.

And that's like, not even, like every other poll like there has it close.

This one has like, no, Trump's way ahead.

So if you took that one poll out and brought in like another poll from September to make up for it.

The next oldest poll had Biden up by three.

So you would actually still have Biden slightly up in Michigan if that one poll just went poof.

But, again, I'm not going to be like, MRG's full of shit. shit.

Maybe they're onto something that the others aren't.

So for the moment with MRG in the poll, in the poll average, Trump is very slightly ahead in Michigan.

And because of what I told you, that translates into a big change in the probabilities because having Trump up by a little bit gives him a significant advantage because again, what I do is I look at the last few election cycles and say, over the last few election cycles, on average, the polls have underestimated the Republican.

So we kind of assume that they will again.

Now, that may not happen.

Yvonne has talked about on this show before how there are certain signs that we may be underestimating the Democrats this time around, but we can't count on that.

And polls have, and they have gone either way, you know, in 2008, they were almost spot on in 2012.

They underestimated the Democrats, but then in.

And 2020, they underestimated the Republicans by a decent amount.

Not by a little bit, but by a decent amount.

And so when you average that together, you have them underestimating the Republicans by a little bit. But we really don't know what's going to happen this time.

But the point of this one is that it is sensitive to these specific polls.

Pools? Polls. So if MRG is wrong, if MRG is out of this picture, then okay, okay, Biden's still slightly ahead in Michigan, but slightly ahead, is still super close.

And Michigan is one of these critical states.

Like in order to feel comfortable about Biden being ahead, he shouldn't be like, You shouldn't be arguing about whether he's slightly ahead or slightly behind in Michigan.

He should be clearly ahead in Michigan. And he is not clearly ahead in Michigan.

Next up, Pennsylvania. And this is the tipping point state right now, as I mentioned, and it currently has Trump up by 1.9%, which translates, according to my probability math, into like an 83% chance of Trump winning.

And in Michigan, by the way, it had Trump having a 71% chance of winning versus in Nevada. I should have said this at the time.

It had Biden up by 1.2%. But I said, hey, you have to be at 1.3% for the Democrat to be at 50-50.

So this 1.2% lead, I translate into still having a slight advantage for Trump at a 51.2% chance of winning.

Now, again, that assumes that once again, the polls are going to underestimate the Republican slightly.

If the polls underestimate the Democrats slightly instead, then things look a decent bit better for Biden.

The problem with close races like this, as opposed to the Reagan landslide or something like that, is that tiny differences can make a big difference because the bottom line is it's close.

So if your poll.

Are, you know, if you're assuming the polls are underestimating the Republican by about 1.3%, you get one vision.

If you assume the polls are going to be spot on, you get another.

If you assume this time the polls are underestimating the Democrat by 1.3%, then you get an entirely different view.

So I give the assume all the polls are accurate, That's my sort of straight-up categorization view.

Anybody who leads the poll averages wherever.

And then the probabilistic view, I base it on the last four election cycles because that's the data I have. But we really don't know.

The best thing I can do is assume that the past is an indication of the future.

And it takes into account four election cycles, two of which underestimated the Republican, one of which underestimated the Democrat, and the other one which was spot on.

And when you average all that together, it's still a slight underestimation of the Republican.

But anyway, Pennsylvania is again, one of these ones where there's one big outlier.

So I'll read you all of them and then I'll give you the outlier.

We got a Quinnipiac with Trump by two.

We've got a Redfield and Wilson, Redfield and Wilton.

And this is another one that has two Straight up Trump-Biden has Biden by 1%.

If you add third parties in, it shows them tied. So average Biden by a half.

Then you have a morning consult with Trump by one and a Franklin and Marshall with Biden by two.

So all of it, you got a couple Trump ahead.

You got a couple Biden ahead. They're all very, very close, though.

And then you have an Emerson poll with Trump up by 8.9%.

So once again, Pennsylvania, a very important state, which probably the best view of this, like me using my head and saying, oh God, that's gotta be an outlier, is that Pennsylvania is super, super close.

But because we got this one point that shows Trump up by a lot, the average ends up being Trump up by 1.9%, which makes my model think, okay, Trump's...

Percent chance of winning Pennsylvania. Pennsylvania is a crucial state.

That's why all these overall odds, by the way, are at, what did I say, between Trump having an 82 percent and a 94 percent chance of winning because if the critical states, Wisconsin, Pennsylvania, etc..

Are all slightly Trump, that gives the overall advantage to Trump.

And again, you know, if this is just like an outlier, if it's just whatever, then this is going to roll off the polls off my poll average when we get a couple more polls in Pennsylvania and it'll look a lot better again.

So I'm not, you know, I'm very clear on this show. Like I try to do the election analysis straight up, but I'm, I'm clear on this show that, you know, I'm a Democrat. I think a Trump win would be horrible.

I still, these numbers look bad for Biden right now, but I wouldn't panic yet there.

There's lots of time to move these numbers and there's reason to believe that Trump is artificially high right now due to some outliers.

But still, oh my God, they were outliers in all the wrong places.

It's in every it's like every single one of the critical key states had like bad outliers that had like that favored Trump by quite a bit.

And the thing is, you expect outliers to balance off. But right now we don't we don't have that balancing off. We have several for Trump at the same time. Next up, Arizona.

This time, Arizona was... Let me back up.

Was one of those states that Biden pulled off a win in, in 2020.

He's only ever been ahead in my poll average in Arizona for a very short time in July.

Generally speaking, Arizona has been in the weak Trump range with, which means to me, Trump is ahead, but by less than 5%.

Percent, but right now with the latest polls that he's up by 3.2%, which I translate to almost a 93% chance of him winning.

But again, we have, well, this is harder to say.

I was going to say we have an outlier, but it was, it's, it's actually one of these half polls prime did two versions of their poll, the one that included a.

The unnamed no labels candidate had Trump up by a full 10%, but they did one with just Biden and Trump that was 4%, so I averaged that out to 7%.

But still, we've got a Trump up by 7, a Trump up by 5, a Trump up by 4, a Trump up by 1.3, or so and a Biden up by one and a half.

So this is, it's clearly Trump ahead.

I think like, you're not going to look at this and say Biden's ahead.

He's, he had a few good polls early in this year, but hasn't had any lately.

And so we'll see, you know, and, and it's close, but clearly a Trump ahead here.

And again, this is one of the things where last time around Biden got Arizona, Biden got Georgia.

He could have won without them, but then you need Michigan and Pennsylvania.

You can't do without them. Next up, North Carolina, and this is the last one I'll talk in this level of detail.

This is another one where Biden had a few good polls at the very beginning of the year, but everything recently has been moving in Trump's direction with most of the polls being a Trump lead between 0 and 5%.

And that's probably where North Carolina is. It's another one where Trump is ahead by a little bit.

Again, if the polls are once again underestimating the Republican, that means he's actually pretty safe in North Carolina.

If the polls are going the other way, then North Carolina might really be a possible pickup like Arizona and Georgia were last time.

And then I said that would be the last. I do want to mention Georgia.

Georgia is one that once again, Trump had some good polls early in the year and last year, but all of the recent polls have been Trump and Trump up by a decent amount and blah, blah, blah.

And again, where they've included third parties, it's generally speaking hurt Biden more.

And so it's actually, I, my average actually has Trump up by 5.8%.

That's a solid Trump, or I actually have, I call it strong. I save solid for when someone's over 10% in their lead. So, you know, hit it, hitting back to the national, and then I'll be done with this.

The other, the bottom line right now in the polls, Trump is ahead in Michigan.

Trump is ahead in Pennsylvania, Trump is ahead in Arizona, Trump is ahead in Georgia.

Those were all key parts of Biden's win in 2020.

He has to get back at least Michigan and Pennsylvania back solidly into his column to win this.

If he can pull back Arizona or Georgia or North Carolina or any of those, Those are exciting possible pickup states, but Georgia's looking bad right now.

North Carolina is not looking great right now.

And maybe you can still pull back Arizona. I mean, we've got a lot of time and we've got all of Trump's issues that we've talked about, like all the legal stuff that's going on. But here's the thing.

None of that has shown any sign whatsoever of hurting Donald Trump, and it has shown signs of helping him, not just in the Republican primary, but in the general too.

Or at the very least, if not helping him, not hurting him.

And the other thing that really gets me is because people will say, you know, hey, but we've got a long way till the election.

And don't, and fine. And polls this far out don't mean very much at all in terms of predicting the actual outcome of the election.

They are absolutely positively right.

In anything like this, so much will change between now and the election.

And we saw that we can have dramatic swings in the polls, even in the last two or three weeks before the election.

In 2016, there was a dramatic move in the last few weeks.

I'm looking at my chart of 2016 right now.

It was really the last 30 days that did Hillary Clinton in.

The last 30 days, kaboom. Things blew up.

And so, yeah, things can change. But the polls right now do tell you how much work people have to do and where they have to do that work.

And here's the thing.

Biden is doing consider still, I've said this on the show before, because I've noted this, like when we talked about it last time, whenever that was, but he is doing worse in the polls than he did in 2020 by a considerable amount at the same amount of time before the election.

And he's doing worse than Hillary Clinton was in 2016 by a decent amount.

In neither 2016 or 2020 was Donald Trump ever actually ahead in the polls.

He's ahead now.

He was ahead for a while at the beginning, you know, from the end of last year to the end of 2022, beginning of 2023, he was ahead.

Then Biden pulled ahead a little bit. Now Trump is ahead again, but he was never ahead in either of those two cycles. And in both of those two cycles, there was a consider, like there's a big gap.

I have a chart of this. If you scroll down on electiongraphs.com, you'll find it that compares 2026 to 2020 to 2024, either through the electoral vote margin or the tipping point in both of them.

Biden is way behind where the Democrat was in those last two cycles compared to himself four years ago today, the gap is immense.

And so what does that mean? I forgot I meant to talk about some of this stuff, but here are a few things I'm seeing.

There is a huge – there's still –, a lot of the people who voted for Biden because he wasn't Trump in 2020 at this point are like, well, what good did it do us?

We still haven't – there are two forms of those people.

There's the Republicans who are disillusioned with Trump.

They may not be excited about Trump right now, but they're certainly not excited about Biden. They may be thinking at this point, well, maybe Trump wasn't that bad.

And they are getting more defensive by the attacks on Trump.

And then you've got liberal progressive folks who never liked Joe Biden because he was too moderate and are upset that he's not delivering on a truly progressive agenda.

I'm going way long, but I'll briefly talk about Israel-Palestine in a second.

This is one of the things where I've heard so many people over the last few weeks be like, well, can't possibly support Joe Biden now because he's, he's supporting genocide in Palestine.

And, you know, and if they're both bad, then, you know, what, I'm going to stay home, I guess, I don't know what they're going to do. And you see a lot of.

I mean, you see all these polls on both sides, both the Republicans and Democrats, on the whole, when you ask them in polls, wish we had other candidates.

Democrats wish we had somebody besides Biden. Republicans wish we had somebody besides Trump, but they're not good with any of the people actually running as Republicans, I guess.

And look, you know, I could say that too. I mean, I didn't want Biden the first time around either.

You know, I feel like we really do need to move to a new generation, et cetera, et cetera, et cetera. But he's what we got.

And like I I've got on my website, you can click through to like, you know, what, what would it look like if it was Harris versus Trump or whatever?

But the honest thing is there hasn't been enough polling on anybody other than Biden as the Democrat to say anything meaningful at all.

And on the Republican side, the only Republican with enough polling to even try to say something is DeSantis.

And really, the data quality there is not that great either.

So really, we've only got good, good data on Biden versus Trump.

And what that shows right now is Biden has a hell of a lot of work to do.

Because even if you give him back Michigan and Pennsylvania, say, oh, okay, those are just outliers.

Give him back Michigan and Pennsylvania, assume they'll be blue again.

That still has him barely hanging on to a win by the skin of his teeth.

It needs to be better than that.

Without sort of the wishful thinking that this time the polls are underestimating the Democrats.

Maybe they are underestimating the Democrats, but you can't go hanging your hat on that and saying, Oh, we'll actually be fine because the polls are underestimating Democrats this time. And and so don't worry about it.

About it. We've got at best right now, if you assume the polls are underestimating the Democrats a bit, a super, super close tight race.

And if the polls are accurate or the polls as usual are underestimating the Republicans a little bit, Donald Trump's ahead right now.

And, you know, got a little bit more than a year to fix that it's a long time, a lot of things that are going to happen. We got Trump trials.

We got, whatever's going to happen in the economy. We got all kinds of stuff going on, but like I said, the there's work to do.

There's work to do. Okay. I've gone way too long, but I will briefly mention, cause I promised it, the Israel-Palestine situation, which has just, you know, over the weekend, Israel has started their on-the-ground offensive inside Gaza.

It's unclear. We got fog of war everywhere.

Very little information coming out directly out of Gaza. Communications were shut down for a while. I guess there's a trickle coming back out again now.

But, and we've got all kinds of posturing going on, like Turkey apparently was saying, like they might consider coming into the war against Israel in this case.

You've got, Iran has already been posturing, you know, so there's all kinds of room for escalation.

But even if there is no escalation, we know the death toll is mounting.

Now we've got all kinds of warnings from people saying you You can't trust numbers coming out of Gaza cause they're coming from Hamas and you can't trust Hamas.

And so they're going to, they're going to inflate the number of civilians, dad, et cetera.

Well, Hamas is saying it's around 7,000 right now. So assume they're lying completely.

There's still plenty of evidence that it's in the thousands.

Maybe it's only 3000 instead of 7,000, maybe it's 4,000.

Either way, that's a shitload of people.

And that's just the outright killed.

There are many more wounded, displaced, et cetera.

Things are breaking down just because everything's shut down and it, you know, people keep saying Israel has the right to defend themselves and yes, they do.

They, it is not a license to just do whatever they, have.

And I, I, I know there problems with it, but I keep coming back to like old fashioned utilitarian, like a life is a life and you shouldn't look at this as.

Cause I get upset whenever like their comparisons and it's like, the number The number of Palestinians is being killed in this and not just in this, but going back like a decade or more is considerably more than a number of Israelis who are dying and It makes it feel like in a lot of these conversations That Israeli lives count more than Palestinian lives, and I'm not okay with that You know they all matter Oh God, I'm sounding like an all lives matter person here, but in this context, yeah.

I mean, the fact that Hamas committed war crimes does not give license to, to commit war crimes in response.

And I have no solutions here. It's a freaking mess.

Like the solution you would want is everybody throwing up their hands and singing Kumbaya and coming together and in peace and having, and, and, you know, everybody's happy, no more conflict, but things don't like magically just snap and go away like that.

But having said that, apparently Israel itself, let alone the sort of Jewish diaspora around the world, but within Israel itself, apparently the last polling I saw a report of just from the last couple of days, the country split pretty much half and half in terms of what they should be doing here in terms of.

Whether there really should be a fully aggressive thing here.

And part of that is, what's the end game? And there was reporting this week about what the administration's concerns were and what they've been pushing the Israeli government on.

And a big part of that was, what's the end game?

How are you actually going to, first of all, your goal is to eradicate Hamas, how are you actually going to do that? Do you actually have a way to achieve that?

Can you in the process actually effectively protect civilians?

But then even if you win, then what? You know, how, how is the territory going to be managed? Who's going to be there? Like what kind of government is going to be set up and with who running it.

And a lot of those are big unknowns and I don't think they're answers to.

And cause what you want is like, if you're going to go in and do something like this and have it be anything other than sort of raw revenge, then the question has to be, be, how does this lead to a better outcome in the end?

And I feel strongly that when you say better outcome in the end, it has to be for everybody involved.

How do you get to a scenario that is better for the Palestinians as well as the Israelis, not just better for the Israelis.

And again, I don't see anybody even pretending to think like that.

I don't know. I mean, it feels like the Biden administration has been trying to put some breaks on the Israelis and try to make them think about some of these things, but I'm not sure how a.

Offensive has started. We'll see how it goes. But I am very, very worried that this is a scenario that just as bad for everyone, Israelis and Palestinians alike, but probably worse for the Palestinians just because of the asymmetries involved in this.

And, and if the conflict expands further, if we do actually get Hezbollah coming in from the north, or the Iranians getting involved, or other regional governments getting pressured into jumping in because their own populations are unhappy, this just has the potential for getting very bad very fast.

There were reports today of a mob attacking an aircraft in Southern Russia because there were people from Israel on it.

And there have been anti-Israel protests all over the world.

It's just a mess. It's just a mess.

And just, you got to be careful at all of this. Just like, you got to remember two things.

All Palestinians are not Hamas and all Israelis are not Netanyahu nutbags either.

You know, there's lots of dissension within Israel on what to do.

And most of the Palestinians hate Hamas as well, and it's just a disaster for everybody.

And on that bright note, I think I'll wrap it up.

You guys know the...

Election graphs.com. No, no, that's wrong.

I did go a long time on that. Didn't I? Anyway, it is what it is.

Curmudgeon's hyphen corner.com. Go there. Find the ways to contact us.

Find the archives of our show on all the most recent episodes.

There are transcripts, lots of fun there. You can also find our Patreon where you can donate money at different levels, get a postcard, a mug, other things.

And very importantly at $2 a month or more on the Patreon, or if you ask nicely.

Or even rudely, we'll probably invite you to our convergence corner Slack where Yvonne and I and others are chatting throughout the week, sharing links and all that kind of stuff.

I won't do the highlight of something shared on the convergence corner Slack.

Cause this show is way too long already. How do I do this when I'm by myself?

I mean, you'd think when I was by myself, it would be short.

Cause it's only half the people talking, but no, I just keep talking, but I'll stop now. Thanks everybody for tuning in.

Hopefully Yvonne will be back with us as normal next week.

Everybody stay safe. Have a good week and we'll talk to you next time. Good bye.

We need the outro please. And that be that.

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