Bill's Blog

Biden takes commanding lead

Posted: 10/12/2020 8:13 AM PDT

The presidential race has shifted hard in Biden's favor over the past two weeks, according to the polling average.

As of this morning, Biden's lead is up to 10.6 percent, 52.4 to 41.8. This is an historic lead for a presidential challenger at this point in the election cycle, and it suggests we could be, hopefully, heading toward a massive Democratic victory 22 days from now.

The race appeared to tighten in the weeks following the Republican National Convention, with Biden's lead ranging from 7.7 points down to 6.6 points on Sept. 20. But since that time, Biden's lead has gradually grown, and it has expanded rapidly in the 10 days since the world learned that Trump contracted COVID-19.

Last month, I said I'd be ecstatic if Biden could widen the lead to 10-plus points, and indeed I am. I will be even more so if he is ahead by this much three weeks from now. My hunch is that the race will tighten a little bit between now and Election Day, as the shock of Trump's coronavirus diagnosis and his erratic behavior during that time fades.

But the fact remains that Biden has been at or over 50 percent since mid-June, and Trump has remained under 44 percent the entire time. Trump's support in this country has remained remarkably stable ever since he took office, with about three out of every seven people supporting him. If it holds true for the next three weeks that Biden's floor is 50 percent and Trump's ceiling is, generously, 44 percent, then Nov. 3 will mark the beginning of the end of our long national nightmare.

Categories: Politics

Trump has COVID-19

Posted: 10/2/2020 8:27 AM PDT

The president who has spent the past year lying to downplay the seriousness of the COVID-19 pandemic has become infected with the virus:

He has made every effort to hide the truth about the danger the virus poses to the health of every American, because he fears that the truth about the virus poses a threat to his hold on power. Well, the very stable polls of the presidential race show him losing by 8 points, and news of his illness guarantees that his abysmal mismanagement of the pandemic will remain the campaign's No. 1 issue for its duration.

I feel a tiny bit guilty over the satisfaction I feel knowing that Trump has COVID. But I feel much stronger this evil fraud of a president face justice for all of the cruelty, dishonesty, corruption, lawlessness, bigotry and division that have defined his presidency. As a result, I hope he recovers from this virus in time to fully take in the beat-down he's going to suffer on Nov. 3. And I hope he is convicted of every single crime he has committed, from tax fraud to loan fraud to sexual assault to abusing the presidency to enrich himself, and spends the rest of his life in prison.

Categories: Politics

Updates on the Biden-Trump horse race

Posted: 9/3/2020 9:18 PM PDT

So glad I didn't jinx anything with my post from a couple weeks ago. Sure enough, since that post on Aug. 17, Biden ran his lead up to 9.3 percent on Aug. 23 and 24, but then, right after the Republican Convention, the lead finally dropped below its recent 7.6-percent floor, down to 7.1 on Aug. 31 and down a click to 7.0 on Sept. 1. Tonight it's sitting at 7.3 percent.

I found it interesting to look back at the fabulous chart on to note the last time the lead has been below certain benchmarks. Biden's lead has been at or above:

  • 7 percent since June 6.
  • 6 percent since June 4.
  • 5 percent since April 19.
  • 4 percent since April 14.

Perhaps more important, Trump hasn't topped 43.2 percent in the polling average for three months and counting, and he hasn't topped 45 since early March, when Biden took control of the race for the Democratic nomination. He's also never dropped below 41 percent in the two-way race. Meanwhile, Biden has been at or above 50 percent for all but about five days since June 10 - and never above 51.4 percent. An oddly, extremely stable race for the most part. Still, I'd feel better if we got back to a 9.6-percent margin of about 51 to 41.4. And I'd feel ecstatic if Biden can run the spread up to 10-plus points ... hopefully in the first two or three days of November.

Categories: Politics

Key levels of Biden's lead over Trump

Posted: 8/17/2020 8:31 AM PDT Updated: 8/17/2020 8:36 AM PDT

I've found myself checking a lot lately hoping to see Biden's lead over Trump expand to 10-plus points. Alas, not yet, but I've noticed certain highs and lows over the past several months to keep an eye on:

  • 3.4% on April 13: the lowest since the beginning of March.
  • 7.5% on June 9: the last time it dropped below 7.6%.
  • 9.6% on July 12: the highest since the beginning of March.
  • 7.6% on Aug. 5 and 6: the lowest since June 9.
  • 8.4% on Aug. 17: where we stand today.

So, for the past two months and counting, the lead has stood between 7.6 and 9.6 percent, and today it's right about in the middle of that range. It will be interesting to see if the daily spread in this race breaks through either of these levels over the next 77 days.

Categories: Politics

COVID-19 is a trip

Posted: 3/25/2020 9:48 AM PDT

This will lead to better stuff long term. Really.

Categories: Science

Republicans upset Trump got caught

Posted: 11/19/2019 8:14 PM PST

"My Republican colleagues, all they seem to be upset about with this is not that the president sought an investigation of his political rival, not that he withheld a White House meeting and $400 million in aid we all passed in a bipartisan basis to pressure Ukraine to do those investigations. Their objection is that he got caught. Their objection is that someone blew the whistle, and they would like this whistleblower identified, and the president wants this whistleblower punished. That’s their objection. Not that the president engaged in this conduct, but that he got caught." - Adam Schiff

Adam Schiff's closing remarks

Categories: Politics

Sports is back, baby

Posted: 3/20/2019 8:13 AM PDT

As a sports fan and a human being, I can't think of a worse time of the year than early February to mid-March. Football season is over. (Disturbingly, that was the title of Hunter S. Thompson's suicide note in February 2005. He suffered from chronic pain and apparently some level of mental illness and/or seasonal affective disorder.) Baseball season has not yet begun. Regular season basketball just doesn't do it for me. The nights are long, the days are too cold (February this year in Oregon was especially nasty). And similar to a dementor attack, sometimes it feels as if all the hope has gone out of the world.

But it starts to turn today. Major league baseball officially kicks off with its Japan Series today and tomorrow, and then all teams begin play in eight days. Tomorrow is the first round of the NCAA March Madness basketball tournament. If you're a golf fan (which I am, marginally, such that I only really pay attention to the majors), the Masters starts in three weeks - right about the time it'll become obvious that my baseball team "just doesn't have it this year." Let the good times roll! Starting ... now.

Categories: Sports

Disturbing traits to see in anyone, horrifying to see in a President

Posted: 3/20/2019 7:44 AM PDT Updated: 3/20/2019 7:51 AM PDT

I honestly cannot understand how otherwise sensible conservatives can support someone who acts so clearly deranged. Peter Wehner sums up what they're standing for:

  • Narcissism
  • Lack of empathy
  • Vindictiveness
  • Pathological lying
  • Impulsive behavior
  • Callousness
  • Rejection of norms
  • Shamelessness

Conservatives, how can you support someone like this? Would you be proud if your children grew up to act like this? This is the person who represents your country to the rest of the world, and who has more power than anyone else to affect the lives of those who live here.

Decent people would never tolerate this without being fed a steady diet of lies from right-wing media outlets. I can only hope that someday the nation wakes up.

Categories: Politics

Beginning of the end of Trump's presidency?

Posted: 4/14/2018 4:56 PM PDT

Oh, that it could only be true. Please let it be true! Adam Davidson of the New Yorker says that the events of the past week have marked a turning point in this nightmare we politely refer to as "the Trump presidency."

I feel the same way. The feds, most of whom are probably Republicans but are legitimate law enforcement officials more than sycophants like your average Republican these days, have gotten their hands on EVERYTHING that lying sack of feces has been up to. Just imagine what someone who lies and profiteers so shamelessly in public might be up to when he thinks nobody's looking.

Categories: Politics

An insider's take on how poisonous the right-wing media flagship has become

Posted: 3/30/2018 11:21 PM PDT

A former Fox News regular sums it up nicely: "Today’s Fox prime-time lineup preaches paranoia, attacking processes and institutions vital to our republic and challenging the rule of law."
Categories: Politics

What happens when people get their news from poisonous sources

Posted: 3/30/2018 11:15 PM PDT

Seems that a certain segment of American society lives in a bizarro world, which probably suits their lying, thieving leader just fine:
Categories: Politics

Aug. 21, 2017, eclipse details

Posted: 7/7/2017 6:10 PM PDT Updated: 7/8/2017 11:48 PM PDT

Stumbled across this today while trying to figure out if my "eclipse glasses" are worth the paper they're made out of (verdict: TBD). NASA has produced a wonderful interactive map with begin and end times for the Aug. 21, 2017, eclipse wherever you click on the map:

NASA Interactive Eclipse Map

How cool is that?!

Our family will be in Salem. (We think. We're spending the night just outside the north edge of the path of totality, and expecting to drive south the morning of the Big Day. Traffic may be ... a challenge. We'll see.) Looks like we should be in the dark about 10:17 a.m. (and 29 seconds) PDT, then the roosters will crow (or so I've heard) one minute and 53 seconds later.

Can't wait!

Categories: Science

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