- The Guardian has a fun little article today on Euro 2016, helping Americans choose what team they should root for by finding the closest analogy to a local squad. Ireland was compared to the Buffalo Bills which is…not ideal. Northern Ireland got the Raptors, which is too boring to even be tragic. The analogy for the Cubs was Poland, and I am sure there is a joke there somewhere, but we daren’t touch it. The best description was for Spain, who is your team if you like the Red Sox. “Years without success for one of the sport’s big teams? Check! A resurgence with titles galore at the start of the 21st century? Double check! A nagging feeling that their very best years may be behind them? Check! Check and triple check!” Left out: you’re probably an asshole.
- Speaking of the Cubs, as a White Sox fan, let me assure you that, the post at the beginning of the year notwithstanding, we’re never going to speak of baseball again. Bitterly shouting “Big Game James!” every 5th day might be the only joy left in my life.
- Programming note for next week: we’re going to have a lot of posts on the Waukesha Diversion, which will have a final decision by the end of the month (and it looks like a go). This is a complicated issue, which is key for how we’ll use water in the coming dry years, and really hinges on the role the geography and geology play in our lives. Hope you like Great Lakes stuff!
- Jim Newell has a smart piece on how Donald Trump might actually bankrupt the GOP by running in places like New Jersey and California. Key line: “There is something about Trump’s personality that makes him believe he needs a marquee media-centric state like California. He probably doesn’t see the typical Republican strategy of cleaning up in the South and the Plains as “flashy” enough for his brand.” This is, I think, correct, and wish Newell had gone a little further with it. The entire idea of Donald Trump, as businessman, is using flash to cover up enormous deficits and kicking the can down the road. Most of us call it lying, but Trump has always known there are a lot of people dumb enough to believe something, and then fail to check on it later (remember his claims that his birth certificate investigators couldn’t believe what they’ve been finding? That’s no different than saying “Everyone says this casino is going to be a huge success!) That’s been the key to his campaign as well. Promises, based on his name and “success”, that everything is going to be good, just believe me. It’s why he keeps saying that he’ll be so Presidential you’ll vomit in terror, ok? The sell, the con, is to say something is going to be great to hypnotize the gulls and hope they give you money, and then never follow through. The point isn’t to change, but to convince people that you will, and then keep doing it, over and over. He relies on the sunk cost fallacy. People have invested so much that they hope, this time, he means it, and that it’ll pay off. That has worked for him, weirdly, in business. He always flees before the bills come due, usually literally. I’m not particularly optimistic, but I think that there’s a chance a lifetime of fraudulence could blow up in his face, and the entire image could come shattering down. At the very least, isn’t it pretty to think so?