Linky Friday #52

Will Truman

Will Truman is the Editor-in-Chief of Ordinary Times. He is also on Twitter.

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95 Responses

  1. NewDealer says:

    Good Round Up!

    P3: I want the audio guide to have an Austrian-Jewish accent.

    P4: They want you to answer a question before reading. Blah….

    E3: I agree as someone who is largely a very recovering member of fandom and hence a bit of a heretic from my former self. I still like Star Trek and Doctor Who, and will see some superhero movies but I have sold all my anime and am looking to unload my comics and artbooks at good price. Some boardgames are really fun but the current geek renaissance has gone on for too long and the internet seems to keep everyone in a nostalgia trap where tastes don’t seem to change beyond the 12 year old self very much. What happened to it being cool for young adults to discover art house directors like Truffaut, Goddard, Bergman, Kurosawa, Ozu, Antonini, and many more and Boris Vian novels? Or develop interests in classical music and jazz? Now it is a constant wash of just watching Labryinth and the Princess Bride again and again and again.

    E3: There is a documentary about this movie coming out.Report

  2. Glyph says:

    [P2] I’m not arguing *for* ESP, but saying that that study debunks ESP is a stretch. All it does is prove people notice subliminal visual cues without being able to articulate those cues. Which is not new information.

    [W3] – I seem to recall reading about a pol whose opponents hired a paralegal or something to “seduce” the guy in a bar, make sure he got good and drunk, then ask him to “follow her to her place” – at which point she called the cops to report a drunk driver behind her. So I imagine this sort of thing is pretty common, it would be easy to pull off and fairly hard to prove.Report

    • Jonathan McLeod in reply to Glyph says:

      [P2] It would be fair to argue that the study actually explains ESP, which would kind of mean that it exists, just that we didn’t understand it.Report

      • Glyph in reply to Jonathan McLeod says:

        Well, no. I’d argue that it has nothing to do with what we think of as ESP, really (or at best, it explains one subset of so-called ESP experiences – the “something feels different, but I can’t say what” cases). All it shows is the same phenomena utilized in subliminal advertising. It has nothing to do with those “I felt it the exact instant my grandma died at 12:09 in Albuquerque” cases or whatever.Report

    • Chris in reply to Glyph says:

      Re: [P2], I knew you were going to say that.Report

  3. Chris says:

    H3 (The link is to something else, but I assume you meant to link to Saul’s recent claims): The last decade or so has seen a variety of claims that ADHD doesn’t exist, while empirical evidence on the nature and causes of ADHD continues to accumulate. There’s a guy at Harvard, for example, who thinks that ADHD is actually bipolar disorder (granted, that dude thinks everything is bipolar disorder), for example, and Saul is hardly the first psychologist/psychiatrist/neuroscientists to come out and say that ADHD is really a bunch of other, less serious things. They just don’t have the data to back up their claims; their arguments are almost always anecdotal.

    This is not to say that ADHD isn’t overdiagnosed. It could be.Report

    • Will Truman in reply to Chris says:

      Link fixed, thanks for the heads up. And thanks for chiming in.

      As someone that has “attention issues” I am, as much as anything, less worried about what we call it than whether the various treatments (ahem, none of which I have pursued… other than a lifetime of self-medication through stimulants) would be effective. Obviously, correct diagnosis is important here, though the “sleep deprivation” thing that Saul points to could be effective even if it is ADHD, I would think. I mean, I would bet that ADHD is exacerbated by sleep deprivation and the like and that getting more sleep might make things a lot better even if they don’t fix the underlying problem. Which is to say that if with sleep deprivation they have an ADHD level of 10 (I know they don’t actually come in numbers) but without it they have it in 3… well after having been used to level 10, they probably think it’s gone at 3, so it gets dismissed as sleep deprivation. On the other hand, if they take the medication but don’t address the sleep issues, they would go from 10 to something less than 10, so it becomes about ADHD and not the sleep deprivation.

      I also tend towards thinking that we talk about ADD as a thing, when it strikes me as more a point on a spectrum and a combination of factors including and apart from chemistry.

      All of this could be hopelessly ignorant, but it’s sort of how I view things.

      Anyway, I believe in ADHD as its own thing – whether I personally pursue treatment for it or not – and am very wary of claims that it doesn’t exist. In part because I see such arguments get used by other people to argue that ADHD is an excuse for the lazy.Report

      • Glyph in reply to Will Truman says:

        My youngest brother was diagnosed with ADHD back when it was sort of the trendy thing; at the time I thought it BS, though medication did improve his school performance.

        Now, at my advanced age, I am considering seeing a doctor for an evaluation for adult ADHD, as online quizzes (I know, I know) usually score me with it pretty conclusively. Which in and of itself I wouldn’t care about, but I have reached a point in my life and career where it could really start to hurt me. In school and thus far at work, I’ve been able to skate by on the basis of (not to brag) fair intelligence and quick reaction time.

        But you reach a point where good planning and attentive focus largely trumps any innate smarts or quick reflexes, and I worry that sooner or later the wheels could come off on something important.Report

      • My wife is getting increasingly frustrated with me about things, to the point that I may pursue treatment for her sake as much as anything. I arguably have a history of self-medicated (ephedra helped get me through college, then it got banned and maybe-not-coincidentally I started smoking shortly thereafter).

        I’ve mostly I get used to certain things, but it’s harder for her to. It’s become a bigger issue lately with the baby, which is partly why my previous comment focused on the combination of ADHD and sleep deprivation. 🙂Report

      • Morat20 in reply to Will Truman says:

        A lot of addictions — everything from booze to caffiene to pot to cocaine — aren’t so much ‘addictions’ as ‘self medicating neurological issues” — adhd, ocd, depression, etc.

        It’s fun to watch my wife. When she’s on her ADHD meds, her caffeine intake drops 90%. Not dieting, not watching caffeine, she just…suddenly stops drinking it.

        Admittedly, if you’re gonna self-medicate, pot and caffeine seem a lot better than booze and crack, but I’m pretty sure it’s more a matter of ‘what works’.

        Pity this country has such a huge stigma about mental health. Even people who should KNOW better still respond to things like clinical depression like it’s a failure of will power.Report

    • Kazzy in reply to Chris says:


      Isn’t ADHD understood to be an issue with dopamine receptors or something? Is that “old” science now? I’ve heard claims that it is overdiagnosed* but never heard anyone seriously argue it doesn’t exist.

      * My anecdotal experience tells me that it is indeed overdiagnosed in the aggregate, with boys highly overdiagnosed and girls underdiagnosed. I think too much is made of the hyperactivity component and that it is no coincidence that the uptick in diagnoses corresponds more or less with an emphasis on standardized testing and teaching methods that demand extended periods of rapt attention. Not every four-year-old who’d rather play than sit has ADHD. But we should probably pay attention to the exceptionally bright but quiet girl who can’t move from point A to point B without stopping seven times along the way and being unable to transition away from whatever caught her attention. Squeaky wheels and whatnot.Report

      • Chris in reply to Kazzy says:

        The underlying neurochemical causes/manifestations are still being explored, empirically, though it does appear that both dopamine and serotonin play a role, not just dopamine, and there is still debate about where the dopamine issue is, and if it is a result or secondary to other neuroanatomical differences between adults/children with ADHD and people without it (e.g., this study from late last year). I imagine we’re a ways away from a full causal model of ADHD, far enough away that it’s too early to say for certain what, exactly, dopamine’s role is in the thing.Report

  4. LeeEsq says:

    L2- Good for Idaho. The justice system, especially when it comes to criminal matters from policing to punishment, should not be in private hands whether it be individuals or a corporation. The chances for abuse ranging from using prisoners as slave labor to lynch mobs and other miscarriages of justice are too great. The state isn’t perfect but formal, official justice has a better track record than private justice.

    U3-Only if they agree to build a proper mass transit system rather than create another autodependent Mid-Western city. The new capital should also be suitably impressive from an architecture and design standpoint rather than a slap together job. No expenses spared.Report

    • Will Truman in reply to LeeEsq says:

      U3, I actually agree. I am somewhat skeptical of master-planning of the sort I would actually support for our Nebraska capital. Grand architecture, planned density, and planned massive use of public transportation.Report

      • Dan Miller in reply to Will Truman says:

        If only there was an existing capital that already had grand architecture, density and massive use of public transportation! Seriously, if we have to move the capital to a more central location, Chicago is a much better choice than Nebraska. At least people actually live around the Great Lakes. Hell, as much as I shudder to think of it, Dallas-Fort Worth would be a better choice.Report

      • There are already millions of people in each of those cities, and both of those cities already have robust industries surrounding them. Part of my desire by moving the capital would be to establish a place (more scalable than DC) where you could start from scratch and build something with very high growth in mind.

        I could be convinced that we could retrofit St. Louis, which has a population below 50% of its peak, but I suspect that would be harder.Report

      • LeeEsq in reply to Will Truman says:

        A capital should look the part if possible, especially if your building it from scratch and your a wealthy country.Report

      • How do you define looking the part?Report

      • Glyph in reply to Will Truman says:

        Detroit has cheap real estate and a comparable murder rate!Report

      • Kim in reply to Will Truman says:

        At least Detroit isn’t Cleveland.Report

      • Mike Schilling in reply to Will Truman says:

        And the Ethnic Slurs are only allowed to move to the new capital if they change their names.Report

      • LeeEsq in reply to Will Truman says:

        By looking the part, I think that the capitol should look majectic, grand, and bright rather than gritty and dark. There should be broad tree lined avenues that connect plazas and parks and the monuments and government offices should surroudn this plazas and parks along with fashionable residences. The government buildings and monuments should be things of beauty done in appropriate architectural styles.Report

      • Brandon Berg in reply to Will Truman says:

        I’m with Lee. Nothing says “government” like spending huge sums of money to put a respectable facade on a den of thieves.Report

  5. Mike Schilling says:

    E4: I’m a Continental Op guy, myself.

    Though, to me, classics like Hammett or Chandler or the Sherlock Holmes stories aren’t dated or hokey. They take you to another time.Report

  6. Pinky says:

    A2 – I hate to always be the guy defending North Korea (j/k), but that Ryugyong Hotel picture is at best old, at worse fake.Report

  7. greginak says:

    H2- That isn’t really the entire story. OR has made changes in how they handle medicaid pts which have sharply reduced ER visits. Changing HC was never ever going to be simple. And it isn’t but the states that are trying to work at it, are finding solutions. On a pissy note there has been shockingly little national coverage of the 5 million or so people who could have received HC if their Repub gov’s had decided to use the Medicaid expansion. Hell it was hardly even a blip here when our R gov told 60000 or so uninsured Alaskans to go spork themselves by refusing the Medi expansion. In any case here is linky goodness to a piece by Ezra Klein talking about the Rest Of The Story that Slate didn’t print.

    • Kim in reply to greginak says:

      Yeah, it’s not like we figured fixing healthcare would be easy.
      Also: how many of those ER visits are readmissions?
      From surgeries the folks wouldn’t have gotten in the first place?

      We are working RIGHT NOW on fixing readmissions. TONS of money at stake.Report

    • Will Truman in reply to greginak says:

      So, on the one hand, a 40% increase. On the other, a 9% decrease. My primary concern – from a strictly cost perspective – is that the number of people who went to the ER because they couldn’t afford to go to a clinic was outstripped by the number of people who stayed away from both. If true (I’d read an article making that case prior to Obamacare and Romneycare and found it convincing), I’m not sure what lawmakers can do about it.

      I’m glad Oregon is trying to address the issue. The downside to our system is that it’s hard to make systemic improvements because it’s not really “a system.” The upside is that Oregon can try its thing, Texas can try another, and California can try another (if we let them).Report

      • greginak in reply to Will Truman says:

        One interesting point is that many primary care docs often send their patients to the ER so that is something that maybe should be addressed in some way. Ummm Texas is dealing with it in their own way, by not expanding Medicaid so more people can’t get insured leaving unpaid ER visits the most likely option aside from just not getting care.Report

      • Kim in reply to Will Truman says:

        UrgiCares seem to do a decent job of being “middle of the road” between 9-5 M-F and ER.Report

      • Rod in reply to Will Truman says:

        I would imagine that most of those new medicaid patients simply don’t have a family PCP. It’s a cultural thing, really. Healthcare is something you go to this building to get and the ER has been their only way in that building. That and free clinics.

        I think a lot of the savings and improvements in care are assumed to flow from a more stable doctor/patient relationship. No relationship, no progress. Providers may have to take the lead on this.Report

      • I would imagine that most of those new medicaid patients simply don’t have a family PCP.

        You also have to wonder about availability. Many of the newly-Medicaid-eligible are going to live in places where doctors and urgent-care clinics are not exactly thick on the ground.Report

  8. Kim says:

    Also: Braddock is a suburb. When folks talk about everyone wanting to move out to the suburbs, this might be why I give a bit of pushback on the concept (more on logistical reasons).Report

  9. LeeEsq says:

    E2- This isn’t really true anymore because there isn’t much of a general audience for tv or any other form of entertainment. When you were limited to a few networks, appealing to as many people as possible was important because more people were up for grabs. Thanks to cable and the internet, people have many more options available to them and can find shows that really appeal to them rather than having to live with what they can get. This makes the fans much more important.Report

  10. ScarletNumbers says:


    The reason I wanted you to use this link was that in high school I had to watch the movie Children of Chernobyl every year in science class. In this movie there was a very creepy abandoned amusement park.

    For those who live in the NYC DMA, some very cool abandonded buildings are located on Ellis Island. Yes there is an immigration museum there, but that is only a very small part of the island. The rest of the buildings on the island are pretty much untouched since 1954.

    Obviously these buildings have “No Tresspassing” signs, but these are no match for the enterprising urban explorer. On a high school field trip I walked around inside the abandoned buildings because they were more interesting to me. As an adult I wouldn’t dare risk the tresspassing conviction.Report

  11. Burt Likko says:

    [L1] The number might look a little bit light to some — but it isn’t, and it has the benefit of coming quickly in the process.

    [W5] I’m thinking Aaron Eckhardt as Sepp Gangl, and maybe Timothy Olyphant as Jack Lee?Report

  12. Stillwater says:

    [P]1: The study reveals that “understanding that although things are fine right now, they might get worse” seems to have “a positive effect” on their quality of life.

    That’s because what they’ve defined is realism. Pessimism is the view that things willget worse. Jeebers.Report

  13. Stillwater says:

    All the [A]s are awesome. I’m hugely attracted to old structures from bygone times, especially when there’s a hint of abandonment involved.

    And [U]1: Christie being the frontrunner for the GOP nom.: I don’t know whether to laugh, or cry, or shake my head in disbelief. A once proud party… What the hell?Report

    • Second-term governor of the 11th most populous state. A Republican governor in a heavily-blue state, (up to now) popular with the electorate there. Current chair of the Republican Governors Association (who outnumber Dem governors 29-21), for whom he can do a lot of favors over the next two years. Well set up to try to repeat the Romney strategy (win almost all the urban delegates and let the other candidates for the nomination split the rural vote).

      On paper, that’s pretty damned good.Report

      • Stillwater in reply to Michael Cain says:

        That’s all water under the bridge. It’s a bridge too far. He has to bridge the gap between the past and the future. That sort of thing.Report

      • Mike Schilling in reply to Michael Cain says:

        Three no-trump.

        Anyway, I agree with the other Mike. Maybe if this had happened mid-campaign, but it’s way too early to affect 2016.

        Though this is awesome (and YouTube is forever.)


      • The timing for this blowup is almost perfect. He just got re-elected and he has plenty of time to rehabilitate his image. The only way this does long-term damage to his prospects is if it does a lasting injury to his approval ratings. It’s too early to tell if that’s going to happen. He needs to stay reasonably popular in New Jersey. Not enough to carry it for the GOP (which is pretty unlikely), but keep his head above water at least. so the question is… how much will this prevent him from doing so?Report

      • Stillwater in reply to Michael Cain says:

        The scandal is on the upswing, it seems to me. And it already looks pretty bad. I think it’s gonna end up looking quite a bit worse.

        The fact that the GOP currently and will continue to support him despite the scandal is precisely what my criticism was directed at, tho. He’s the best they can do.Report

      • It hinges, in large part, on whether or not it does indeed get worse. Until it does, and as long as his approval ratings are as high as they are, no reason for his supporters to talk course-change. Then if it does get worse: course-change.

        If the scandal goes the way you think it will, he won’t be the frontrunner for long. It’ll shift to someone else.Report

      • Stillwater in reply to Michael Cain says:

        This is from TPM:

        Mayor Says Team Christie tied Sandy Relief to Real Estate Project

        TPM is also reporting that Wildstein is willing to talk if he’s granted immunity.

        In the words of River Tamm: it’s gonna get much worse.Report

      • Kolohe in reply to Michael Cain says:

        “The fact that the GOP currently and will continue to support him”

        It depends on what you mean by ‘the GOP’. For every Ed Gillespie that’s supporting Christie you got a Rick Santorum to (politely) excoriate Christie. Talk radio is besides themselves with glee, because they get the two-fer of attacking Christie *and* attacking the librul media for making a bigger deal out of Bridgegazi than any notional Obama scandal.Report

      • Rod in reply to Michael Cain says:

        I think what’s gonna kill him is that it’s all eminently believable. It fits right in with the image he’s projected, even cultivated.

        That weird noise you heard a few days ago that you couldn’t place? That was the sound of millions of eyes rolling in unison as he pled that he wasn’t a bully.Report

      • Stillwater in reply to Michael Cain says:

        Agreed to all that. The GOP support I was referring to was whatever was included in [U]1, which I think was a poll of Republican voters. The bigger point I was trying to make – one that I cannot defend since its a prediction based on past behavior! – is that a scandal-ridden Christie is the best the GOP can do right now and into the future.

        Who else is waiting in the wings to Take Back the Presidency? Ted Cruz? Jindal? Santorum?

        I think the likelihood of Rand declaring increases exponentially as this scandal grows. Especially given the texture. It’s a bunch of stuff that can distinguish Rand from business-as-usual type of governance that he (at least rhetorically) opposes.Report

      • Kolohe in reply to Michael Cain says:

        Well U1 poll was just of NJ, and direction is more important than level for polling. Like Michael Cain said, a somewhat popular and moderately successful governor has won the presidency each time such a person has been nominated for over 50 years – unless that governorship was in Massachusetts.

        Who else is waiting in the wings to Take Back the Presidency? Ted Cruz? Jindal? Santorum?

        Don’t forget Rubio and Jeb Bush (seriously!). Rand Paul is definitely helped most by Christie’s decline, as they are what financial types would call negatively correlated asset classes. Plus, it helps that Paul has become the de facto go to guy in all media for counterpoints on Obama on NSA type things (as opposed to going to say, Patrick Leahy)Report

      • As I said, it the story gets worse and/or goes the way you think it will, then Christie won’t remain the frontrunner or anybody’s first choice. It’s pretty straightforward, I think.Report

      • Stillwater in reply to Michael Cain says:

        If Rubio, Paul and (shiver) Jeb all run in the primary, I’ll happily* eat my words. Each of those guys strike me as better candidates than all of the 2012 guys and having debates between them – as opposed to the wingjobs we had last time – would prove me wrong.

        *Even tho I really enjoy the spectacle of yahoos coming outa the woodwork to get in on the primary-campaign grift like cockroaches scurrying to the garbage when the lights go out, the after-image is pretty unpleasant.Report

      • Stillwater in reply to Michael Cain says:

        Actually, what I said isn’t accurate. At first, I did think Romney was a “serious candidate”. But then he hit a roadblock which changed my mind: the primary.Report

      • My current pet theory about Presidential candidates and regions is that no one whose home base is in the Boston-to-DC urban corridor can win the national election. I think that’s Ms. Clinton’s biggest drawback as a candidate: Bill was a former governor from Arkansas, but Hillary is a former Senator from New York and continues to live there. “Everybody hates Texas” is a popular meme, but IMO there is no area of the country as disliked by those living outside of it as Boston-to-DC.

        If you believe in the power of being a well-regarded (at least by other governors) Southern or Western governor, Colorado’s Hickenlooper would have to be a dark horse possibility. Assuming he wins reelection this year, he’d be a two-term governor who is at present chair of the Western Governors Association, vice-chair of the Democratic Governors Association, and vice-chair of the National Governors Association. Hick doesn’t seem likely to put himself through that kind of misery, but stranger things have happened.Report

      • Stillwater in reply to Michael Cain says:

        As I said, it the story gets worse and/or goes the way you think it will, then Christie won’t remain the frontrunner or anybody’s first choice.

        Yes, as a statement of fact, that’s correct: either Christie will or wont remain the frontrunner. I find nothing to disagree about in that sentence.Report

      • Stillwater in reply to Michael Cain says:

        I agree with you about Hick. He has an uncanny ability to be liked by liberals, conservatives, businesses, non-profits, minorities, whites, women, men. Even ranchers.Report

      • Still, my comment is not that he will or won’t remain the frontrunner. I mean you’re scoffing at his frontrunner status on the basis of how you (credibly!) think things are going to turn out for him with regard to the bridge. I’m saying that if things turn out that way, he won’t be the frontrunner as soon your predictions come to fruition. So his status as the frontrunner doesn’t really incorporate tomorrow, the story necessarily getting worse, and isn’t totally indicative of how utterly terrible the ’16 Republican field is.

        Which I don’t disagree, about, the Republican field in 2016 isn’t particulary strong. I think if Christie does go down, it’ll help Rubio a lot (and help convince Rubio to run). I suspect Paul will run. Jeb probably won’t if Rubio does, and vice-versa. I’d also look at Kasich to make another run and/or Walker to jump in if the field is weak, if they’re each re-elected. Jindal may run, but he forgot who his people are so I wouldn’t expect him to get very far. Huckabee will probably also consider it, with his financial situation being different in 2016 as it was in 2012.

        Not strong, but could be much worse.Report

      • Stillwater in reply to Michael Cain says:

        I mean you’re scoffing at his frontrunner status on the basis of how you (credibly!) think things are going to turn out for him with regard to the bridge.

        Actually, I was scoffing at his status given the level of the scandal as it is right now, and projecting that even if it gets worse he will still be deemed the front runner, which is purely speculative, of course, but the substance of my criticism. It’s that the bar is set so low for conservatives wrt what constitutes a good candidate that someone embroiled in what should be (because it is!) a politically devastating scandal is still highly regarded and defended.

        Not by you, of course. You’re just describing things.Report

      • Michael Drew in reply to Michael Cain says:

        He needs to stay reasonably popular in New Jersey

        That seems to me like among the least imperative things for preserving and advancing his prospects for the nomination to me.Report

      • Michael Drew in reply to Michael Cain says:

        …Maybe “reasonably” is the key word, though. It would probably hurt him to fall into the 30s or low 40s. Short of that, though, factors other than his NJ ratings will determine whether he can get the nomination.Report

      • Kolohe in reply to Michael Cain says:

        I disagree. He needs to stay reasonably popular in New Jersey because that’s where the money is.Report

      • Kolohe in reply to Michael Cain says:

        To clarify, that’s where the smart money is, which as often as not gives to agreeable enough Democrats these days.Report

      • I think it needs to stay above 50% or approval/disapproval needs to stay above water.

        His supporters support him precisely because he is successful. If he stops being successful, he ceases being the guy that people believe can advance the party. His popularity in hostile territory is among his chief assets in a way that it isn’t for Rick Perry or Scott Walker. Without it, he has no base of support.Report

      • Michael Drew in reply to Michael Cain says:

        I think his political success is established with his reelection, like Scott walker with the recall, within, as you say, reasonable ongoing poll numbers. They both won, and won again, in what are seen as hostile states (hime even mores than Walker). If he’s looking successful in pursuing the nomination nationally (i.e. if he survives the scandal with his national reputation intact, which I think looks doubtful), then declining poll numbers in NJ can (totally illegitimately but successfully) be spun as artifacts of Fort Lee derangement syndrome and incumbent fatigue. But if not, then obviously he won’t get the nomination for that reason (still not because his NJ numbers have collapsed). The nation (including GOP nominating actors) don’t look to the people of New Jersey to decide how to feel about someone just because he’s from there. They make their own determinations about electability, ideology, etc.Report

      • Michael, I think that applies to Walker, but I don’t think it applies as much to Christie. The rationale of Walker’s candidacy is that he stared down the liberals and the unions and won. Christie’s rationale lies much more in his popularity within hostile territory. If he can’t claim that, the people who have been propping him up are going to look elsewhere.Report

      • Michael Drew in reply to Michael Cain says:

        The people who are propping him up are NYC establishment/media “conservatives” who like him, are attached based on regional affiliation, and are looking to reform the party via moderation on social issues & immigration, maintain corporatist economics that they can dress up as free-market Reaganism, and revive strong-defense conservatism and defend it against the Paulites. Rudy Giuliani’s constituency, IOW. What better option are they really going to find?

        –more later–Report

      • About the worst thing that can happen for that contingent of the Republican Party is a Christie nomination and significant loss.

        My views are being colored somewhat by having recently audioread Double Down. If I’m right about where the bulk of Christie’s support is coming from – views based in part on that book – it’s coming from the same people who were desperately trying to recruit a non-Romney candidate. The people who were trying like hell to get a Daniels or Ryan into the race. My guess is that their support would end up going to Rubio, Kasich (if he is re-elected and if he runs), Ryan (if he runs), Jeb (if he runs and the others don’t). Whichever candidate of that sort they think has the best chance of winning.

        And I think the perception of Christie’s chance of winning relies on him being popular in New Jersey.Report

      • I admit I’m looking forward to the race for Republican nominee for governor in Colorado this year. 2010 set a pretty high bar in terms of incompetence that probably can’t be matched. I’m terrible at predictions, but anticipate a bloody fight with El Paso and Douglas Counties leading the suburban counties on one side, and the rural parts of the state on the other. The rural side wins and nominates a candidate whose position is basically “rural interests take precedence.” Hickenlooper in a cakewalk.Report

      • “…leading the suburban counties…” should be “leading the other suburban county Republicans”.Report

  14. Will Truman says:

    even if it gets worse he will still be deemed the front runner

    Ahh, there is a chief disagreement, then. As you say, though, we’re speculating. I think a whole lot of the support he has among Republicans is based on the perception that he can win. As soon as it looks like he can’t, I expect support to drop rather quickly.

    It’s that the bar is set so low for conservatives wrt what constitutes a good candidate

    Except that Christie isn’t generally the favorite of the conservative wing of the party. He’s the RINO, as far as they are concerned. They still haven’t forgiven him for his past transgressions. A lot of them have actually been gloating about this.Report

    • Stillwater in reply to Will Truman says:

      If I had to put a finer point on it, the criticism would be this: instead of reading the writing on the wall, plenty of conservatives are willing to overlook/rationalize/attempt-to-quash what for all practical purposes is a devastating scandal because they think he has a chance to win the general election. Which is pretty damn backwards-ass, incoherent, dredge the bottom of the barrel thinking, no?Report

      • Will Truman in reply to Stillwater says:

        Whether this is a devestating scandal remains to be seen. Right now, he’s still polling around 60% in New Jersey, so it doesn’t look very devastating (yet).Report

      • Will Truman in reply to Stillwater says:

        My own sense is that if more isn’t found, this will have passed by 2016 and will be “old news.” Which is Schilling’s take as well. That changes if this becomes something bigger (Christie is personally implicated, associated scandals, it’s determined that Christie knew about it, etc.) and/or his statewide popularity falls considerably.

        If I were laying odds, I don’t know if I would place him as the frontrunner at this point in time, but I’d still probably put him in the top tier until we know more about how this unfolds.Report

      • Stillwater in reply to Stillwater says:

        Whether this is a devestating scandal remains to be seen.

        The view that whether or not this scandal is devastating remains an open question is what I’m criticizing!Report

      • Will Truman in reply to Stillwater says:

        That’s why his 59% approval rating is so significant. It keeps the book open, in my view.Report

      • Michael Drew in reply to Stillwater says:

        So… why are you right, SW? It seems pretty unresolved to me, even if I agree with you that it looks likely to be devastating.Report

      • Stillwater in reply to Stillwater says:

        Which is my point. That the bar is set so low for conservatives that he’s still – and in my view, will continue to be for some time – being defended and supported and viewed as a Contendah. Why? Well, because he has a chance to win, of course.Report

      • Will Truman in reply to Stillwater says:

        I’m still unclear on how a scandal can be devastating if it leaves the target with an approval rating well above 50%. Before Republicans and conservatives* can be convinced, New Jerseyans need to be, I think.

        * – And I repeat: Chris Christie is not the candidate of conservatives. He’s the candidate who still has to sell himself to conservatives.Report

      • Stillwater in reply to Stillwater says:


        My only claim here is that [U]1 is evidence that the bar is set so low for conservative presidential hopefuls that a person embroiled in a scandal that cuts to the heart of either his abilities (if he was ignorant) or practices (if he wasn’t) as governor has no bearing on whether they [conservatives] will continue to support him. They’re support (insofar as U1 is evidence of that support, tho I think the odds-makers link is insightful) is based on some other set of criteria than Christie’s actual record as a governor.

        Like, for example: well, he can win!Report

      • Stillwater in reply to Stillwater says:

        Chris Christie is not the candidate of conservatives. He’s the candidate who still has to sell himself to conservatives.

        That may be true, but the link you provided has him the odds on favorite to win the primary, despite the current scandal.

        Which says something about either conservatives, it seems to me. Or the odds maker, of course.Report

      • Will Truman in reply to Stillwater says:

        Says something about Republicans, for sure (or the oddsmaker’s perception of them). This is one area where I don’t consider the two to be interchangeable, since a whole lot of Christie’s support, and the enthusiasm for Christie, is coming from the least conservative factions of the party.Report

      • Stillwater in reply to Stillwater says:

        I’m still unclear on how a scandal can be devastating if it leaves the target with an approval rating well above 50%.

        The issue I’m talking about is what people view as a scandal, or scandalous actions, and how that relates to supporting a candidate.

        You’re looking at the continued support as evidence that the scandal isn’t devastating. I’m looking at the fact that the scandal hasn’t changed Christie’s approval as evidence that the bar for obtaining support from conservatives is really low.Report

      • Will Truman in reply to Stillwater says:

        Christie’s approval as evidence that the bar for obtaining support from conservatives is really low.

        That will carry more weight from me when he loses support among New Jerseyans. If his poll numbers hold steady, it won’t just be because of conservatives and their low standards.Report

      • J@m3z Aitch in reply to Stillwater says:

        It could be that plenty of people see this scandal as a “scandal,” at least until further information comes out. The NJ public’s response may be less about a low bar for GOP candidates than it is about reserving judgment.

        “Otherwise devastating” may be making assumptions not everyone’s so eager to make.Report

      • Rod in reply to Stillwater says:

        Perhaps given their history, Jersey is a bit like Illinois and their standards for what constitutes a real scandal are a bit higher than elsewhere.Report

      • Mike Schilling in reply to Stillwater says:

        Until bodies start turning up under building foundations, it’s just a minor gaffe.Report

  15. Michael Drew says:

    If he’s looking strong for the GOP nomination based on the factors that determine that, which are mostly separate from how people respond to polls in NJ, then the NY-NJ money will be there. If not, it will dry up.Report