Nate Silver’s current opinion of Donald Trump’s odds, from Business Insider today:
The way I characterize the situation is that Trump brought a flamethrower to a stick fight. What’s the track record for sticks beating flamethrowers? Hard to say, but a stick won all the other stick fights. We know that much.
To keep things fun, I predict that Ted Cruz will have a prominent cabinet position in a Trump administration. Maybe Secretary of State… or Defense. Or both. This prediction is NOT based on the Master Persuader filter. This one is based on the hypothesis that we are software beings, created by a programmer who reuses code to fill out the universe. To us, that would look as if the same patterns are popping up in unrelated realms. In 2004 I wrote a book (fiction) called The Religion War in which a hardcore leader named Cruz rises to power in the U.S. to lead the fight against an Islamic Caliphate. I called it “The Religion War.” Ted Cruz is calling it a “War on faith.”
If you read my book as a set of predictions – and it was written to be that – then it might seem weirdly accurate already. But if you imagine we are software creations, where programming code is often reused, all that is happening here is that my imagination and the observed reality used the same code snippets.
For new readers of this blog, I don’t believe everything I say here. Nor am I endorsing Trump for president. My view is that the human brain is not designed to understand its reality, and I am no exception. But some filters on the world might have better predictive power than others. That’s why I try to focus on prediction. This is for entertainment only.
I wrote a book that is less weird than any of this. People seem to like it.
Relevant to nothing, this is me in 1979, in Windham NY. I had just graduated college and traded my rusty, old car for a one-way ticket to California. The cheap suit was a graduation gift from my parents. I never owned a suit before that week and I didn’t know how to pack it without getting it wrinkled, so I wore it on the plane. (And to be honest, I thought all adults dressed that way to fly. I had never been on an airplane at this point.)
This picture is taken before I went to the airport, as I prepare to take a big bite out of an unsuspecting world. As the photo suggests, I was both clueless and cocky, a combination that often breeds success. (It helps to not know what can’t be done.)