No Election Surprise

November, 2016

Lincoln -- For anyone who read my post of two months ago, predicting a Trump victory, you'll know I am not surprised by yesterday's election in the least. Clinton needed a bold stroke to give people a reason to support her but she did not think so, relying instead on identity politics, demographics, and talking down her opponent as the elements of her campaign.

Both political parties should convene summits quickly among party leaders to see where they now need to go, to put this terrible election behind us and start thinking about the overall good of the country.

Many of those surprised by the election are guilty of losing touch with the country's working classes and of putting too much faith in purported experts. I have never lost touch (being domiciled in the Nebraska countryside helps) and my skepticism of experts has been reinforced by works such as Liaquat Amamed's magisterial Lords of Finance: The Bankers Who Broke the World, and any number of incisive analyses (for example, The Big Short) of the failures of Wall Street insiders to understand their own industry.

Also, any good researcher and statistician knows that political polling as currently practiced includes all kinds of assumptions that may be influenced by biases. It should be an embarrassment to polling experts that the simplistic approach of AU professor Allan Lichtman predicted that if Clinton won, it would be an upset. That was my guess, too. She needed a bold stroke to win, but didn't deliver one.