Quick hits (part II)

1) I think there are some bad dudes in the border patrol and they’re out of control under Trump.

2) Betsy DeVos on how college faculty are indoctrinating:

“The faculty, from adjunct professors to deans, tell you what to do, what to say, and more ominously, what to think. They say that if you voted for Donald Trump, you’re a threat to the university community,” read the remarks. “But the real threat is silencing the First Amendment rights of people with whom you disagree.”

3) On efforts to build a better battery.  Hopefully, one of these approaches will work, because the slow pace of battery development is holding us back.

4) Men who exercise a ton have worse sex lives.  Too obsessed with exercise?

5) I love playing with fire and would happily teach my kids to do so, but they’re too afraid.

6) Jedidiah Purdy on North Carolina’s lessons for the anti-Trump resistance.

7) Politico story on how Trump’s staff has to make sure he seems plenty of praise in the media.  We have a toddler for a president.

8) Love the operation to fill the CPAC convention with Russian “Trump” flags.

9) Not that we’ll actually do this, but, yeah, it probably would be a great idea to teach school kids about the realities of death.

10) Raise your hand if you want to be treated by a doctor that’s been awake for more than a day.  Well, we may be going back to it:

The Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education — the professional body charged with overseeing the nation’s physician training programs is poised to eliminate the 16-hour limit on work shifts for first-year resident physicians (referred to as interns) that it implemented in 2011. It proposes allowing interns to return to working extreme shifts of 28 hours — twice each week…

Despite these flaws, those within the medical community opposing work-hour limits have latched onto this study and have pressured the ACGME to again allow the 28-hour shifts. They argue that handoffs of care between doctors at change of shift are unsafe and that shortening shifts — which results in more handoffs — could counterbalance any benefit of reducing fatigue. However, studies lookingdirectly at this issue have found the 16-hour shift system to be much safer overall. While botched handoffs are an important source of medical error, the solution to poor handoffs is not to avoid them, but to improve them.

11) Meanwhile, bad hospital design makes us sicker.  Naturally, Europeans do this better.

12) Liberals amok?  Bestsy DeVos has a lot she wants to do as Secretary of Education.  I don’t agree with it, but that’s a reality.  Does the New Yorker’s Rebecca Mead expect her to resign a week into her term over the issue of transgender kids in school bathrooms?

13) This is fun– totally unbiased survey on the failing mainstream media.

14) My colleague and friend, Richard Clerkin, on the foolishness of repealing that Johnson amendment that prevents non-profits from making political endorsements.

15) I thought I had blogged about Yglesias‘ excellent take on Achen and Bartels’ Democracy for Realists back when Yglesias wrote, “This is the best book to help you understand the wild 2016 campaign” back in October.  But, maybe I forgot to.  Or maybe DJC forgot that I did, because he just sent me an email with a link to it.  Either way… big oversight if I didn’t share before, and if I did, it’s worth recommending again, because it’s really, really good.

16) And, while we’re at it, DJC also strongly recommends “How statistics lost their power – and why we should fear what comes next.”  Two less quick hits for him to read on Sunday.

The declining authority of statistics – and the experts who analyse them – is at the heart of the crisis that has become known as “post-truth” politics. And in this uncertain new world, attitudes towards quantitative expertise have become increasingly divided. From one perspective, grounding politics in statistics is elitist, undemocratic and oblivious to people’s emotional investments in their community and nation. It is just one more way that privileged people in London, Washington DC or Brussels seek to impose their worldview on everybody else. From the opposite perspective, statistics are quite the opposite of elitist. They enable journalists, citizens and politicians to discuss society as a whole, not on the basis of anecdote, sentiment or prejudice, but in ways that can be validated. The alternative to quantitative expertise is less likely to be democracy than an unleashing of tabloid editors and demagogues to provide their own “truth” of what is going on across society.

You know me, give me data, or give me death.

17) Rob Christensen on how NC Republicans have so ruined the NC brand (and been so much dumber than Republicans in neighboring states):

But neighboring Republican governors, while more circumspect in their language, have run as fast as they can away from job-killing legislation similar to HB2.

Georgia Gov. Nathan Deal last year vetoed a bill that critics said would have curtailed the rights of Georgia’s LGBT community. “I do not think we have to discriminate against anyone to protect the faith-based community in Georgia, of which I and my family have been part of for all of our lives,” Deal said.

Nikki Haley, then South Carolina’s governor and now U.N. ambassador, last year said a bathroom bill was not needed.

“I don’t believe it’s necessary,” Haley said. “There’s not one instance that I’m aware of. When we look at our situation, we’re not hearing of anybody’s religious liberties that are being violated, and we’re again not hearing any citizens that are being violated in terms of freedom. Like it or not, South Carolina is doing really well when it comes to respect and when it comes to kindness and when it comes to acceptance. For people to imply it’s not, I beg to differ.”

Tennessee Gov. Bill Haslam helped defeat legislation last year that would bar transgender students in public schools from using bathrooms that correspond with their gender identity rather than their birth certificate.

“Personally, I am not hearing about problems out in the districts,” Haslam said. “I’m hearing that our school boards have figured out to how to adjust to each situation that arises, and to date, I’m not hearing parents say we have a problem in our schools today.”

In most of these Southern states it was the political clout of the business community and the sports world – the political mainstream – that defeated efforts of conservative evangelicals, talk radio/social media and others aligned with the political right who have used scare tactics to paint false pictures of hulking men invading women’s bathrooms and lockers.

Yep.  It’s not like the business community doesn’t have clout in NC.  I still don’t quite get how they were dumb enough to get totally rolled by the hayseed social conservatives.

18) Ezra Klein on how Trump is especially dangerous when he’s losing.

19) Good David Brooks column on the anti-immigration stupidity of the GOP.

20) When it comes to immigration enforcement, I’m increasingly of the opinion that there’s a lot of power-trip types who have self-selected into these agencies and who know feel totally emboldened thanks to Trump.  A couple examples.

21) Motivated reasoning is so strong.  Fun and depressing take at what happens when you confront conservative activists with the fact that Trump is spending way more on travel than Obama did.

22) Ted Lowi was a hell of a political scientist.  And super charming and personable when I got to hang out with him at a reception about 10 years ago.

About Steve Greene
Professor of Political Science at NC State http://faculty.chass.ncsu.edu/shgreene

6 Responses to Quick hits (part II)

  1. Damon Circosta says:

    Double mentions in quick hits. A first!

    Damon Circosta

    Likely dictated to Siri. Typos are her fault.


  2. R. Jenrette says:

    #2 DeVos

    DeVos was educated at the Holland Christian High School, a private school located in her home town of Holland, Michigan.[20] She graduated from Calvin College in Grand Rapids, Michigan, where she earned a Bachelor of Arts degree,[21] and was “involved with campus politics,” according to Philanthropy magazine.[22] Thanks, Wikipedia.

    What do you bet that, in her case, the teachers did tell her what to think?

  3. Mika says:

    #15 I thought that I had commented on your post about Achen and Bartels but I hadn’t but you had blogged:


    #21 Missing link.

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