A couple of post-election thoughts

  1. The left has not learned the right lesson.
  2. What the hell is up with Predictit?

Trump was the perfect Madisonian teachable moment. A horrifying figure who I wouldn’t trust to watch my drink while I got up to hang my coat. The lesson should have been clear: scale back the power in the Oval Office. But now that the pendulum has swung the other way, they “are urging him to follow President Trump’s example”. This is why we can’t have nice things.

Meanwhile, in a world where people are putting their own money on the line, people are still holding out hope that Trump will win the election he just lost. The market for predicting the winner of the presidential election has 10’s of thousands of transactions and places the probability that Trump or Biden wins at 103%. As an economist I find it disconcerting that I can still buy contracts of “Biden to win” at 88 cents. The lesson I’m taking away is that (at least when Trump is involved) there’s a wide margin of error on how accurate the prediction market estimate is.


  1. Election day Rick
  2. Your vote is your voice–but actions speak louder than words Kevin
  3. Offensive advantage and the vanity of ethics Kevin
  4. A short non-political note Brandon

A short non-political note

I have not been paying attention to the election news cycle. I have dropped out of that system. I am lucky that I was born in the United States. I marvel at the underpinnings of the American constitutional order (an internationalist order). I understand that self-government and elections go hand-in-hand (if only we were all enlightened anarchists).

But I don’t pay attention to the horse race for the presidency. It makes a mockery of all the good things the republic stands for.

I have been taking advantage of the Covid pseudo-lockdown. (Thanks to Nick for the Zoom lesson in opportunity costs.) I wrote one scholarly essay and six short stories. I submitted them to journals. The scholarly essay was accepted for publication in The Independent Review after going through an unusually thorough peer review process. The short stories were all rejected. I am disheartened because I have been trying (slowly) to leave behind scholarship in favor of literary pursuits. I cannot practice my writing craft because the scholarly article (ungated rough draft here) is also the focus of a Special Issue in an open source academic journal (which also happens to be one of my favorite journals: Cosmos + Taxis).

So, I have another 16 months of challenging scholarly work ahead of me. I love this blog. It’s been good to me. I don’t know if the literary journals rejected me because of my style or my substance. I felt like I was tackling difficult topics, but I also know my writing style is a bit old school. I think maybe the rejections were a combination of old school style and old school substance, both of which are not exactly what literary journals are looking for these days.