Steven L. Taylor
Thursday, January 20, 2022
About Steven L. Taylor
Steven L. Taylor is a Professor of Political Science and a College of Arts and Sciences Dean. His main areas of expertise include parties, elections, and the institutional design of democracies. His most recent book is the co-authored A Different Democracy: American Government in a 31-Country Perspective.
He earned his Ph.D. from the University of Texas and his BA from the University of California, Irvine. He has been blogging since 2003 (originally at the now defunct Poliblog).
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I think we can see where he’s coming from, but I love the tone of the lead…
Bwa ha hahahaha hahahahahaha
@Flat Earth Luddite: He has zero redeeming qualities. Calling him a cockroach is an insult to cockroaches everywhere.
Pro-Life my ass.
Overheard yesterday at the Outdoor Supply store in Sullivan:
“So and so was having trouble getting health insurance so he went on that.. you know that website… Obamacare! Yeah, and you know what? He got the best health insurance ever! You should try them too.”
I didn’t hear his reply, I was so stunned by her full throated endorsement of “Obamacare”.
This is interesting:
The ice pictures I took with the drone are up. I was disappointed that the drone camera couldn’t see through that clear ice as well as a human eyeball can, but the reflections of the puffy clouds on the ice were pretty cool. The second group of pictures is from November, when our own reservoir froze clear.
Is Old Music Killing New Music?
It seems that this panic has come up before. Those of us that are aging baby boomers can remember how Classic Rock maintained a choke hold on FM radio in the 80’s and 90’s and it seemed that having grey hair, bald or being dead was a prerequisite for getting on the play list. But despite being locked out, musicians found avenues to find listeners and fans. The 90’s Indy and Alt rock bands found outlets in college radio stations. Today’s musicians have the internet and build followings through YouTube, FaceBook, Vimeo and others.
For decades, musical sub genres have existed and the musicians playing that music found audiences. While few got rich, many made decent livings from performing and record sales, though the constant touring would drive many from the biz.
At the end the writer finally admits that record companies, radio stations and streaming services are lagging indicators and that new music finds an audience.
How does this sound:
Chicken milanesas with breadcrumbs wrapped around a turkey hot dog (or a slice of ham) and a slice of gouda, covered with red mole. White rice with sweet corn on the side.
@Sleeping Dog: So basically now that just about every song ever recorded is available at the press of a button, the hot new hits make up only a small percentage of streams. How is that not perfectly logical? If your only way to hear music is the radio, then, sure, you’re going to be hearing the new stuff. But if it takes exactly the same amount of effort to listen to the new number one single and, say, a deep album cut from Jules and the Polar Bears’ second album, why is the music industry surprised that the hot hits aren’t all anyone wants to hear?
@wr: Shorter: If you give people infinite choices, why are you surprised when they don’t simply choose the one thing you want them to?
@wr: Also starting to run into the effects of Sturgeon’s law: “90% of anything is crud.” We’re starting to see the winnowing effect.
The algorithms that the streaming services use favor songs that have been requested in the past and show up on the subscribers playlists. When looking at new songs the algorithms look at does this song sound like the hits of others. If you were a young female artist that wanted to have a hit, you would tailor your music, arrangements and lyrics similar to Taylor Swift (pun intended).
This isn’t anything new, when the Beatles hit there were a plethora of look-alike bands, Dave Clark Five, I’m thinking of you. There were Elvis clones. Sinatra clones, some of which were good.
One of the problems with playing the ‘suggested for you’ offerings from streaming and video services is that it perpetuates the process and the offerings to you become narrower and narrower.
Time Cube and the 1-Day Marshmallow.
(No, it’s not a punk band. It’s worse.)
That sounds completely delicious.
Last night my wife and I watched the first two Netflix installments of “Heavenly Bites: Mexico” (La Divina Gula in the original Spanish) and were floored by the existence of micheladas. Beer with Clamato and carne seca? Beer with fruit and shrimp? It’s like a whole meal! There’s a restaurant here in Fairfax where we got a mangonada which was delicious, but I had no idea about the great variety of micheladas. Now I want to travel to Mexico and try all of them.
And what can be done with a simple bag of Tostitos tortilla chips…amazing.
I already knew Mexico has an amazing food culture that goes way beyond what we get in the States, but wow, it looks even more incredible than I thought.
The January 6 Committee has requested the pleasure of Ivanka Trump’s company.
I wonder, if you transported these streamers and their algorithms back to say, 1969, would a large percentage of the songs streamed be Nat King Cole and Duke Ellington?
A couple of days ago we talked a lot about independent voters. NYT has started a series of focus groups organized by Frank Luntz. Today it’s “independents”, defined as having voted both for Obama and Trump, so not an entirely representative sample of “independents” generally. Luntz describes them as “resigned rejecters”. If there’s a common theme, it’s probably pessimism. Knowledgeable and incisive weren’t words that came to my mind. There seems to be a feeling that Biden’s not getting things done and Manchin’s a hero.
@Mu Yixiao: Guy looks like he’d be @gVOR08: an independent voter.
@Mu Yixiao:..Time Cube and the 1-Day Marshmallow.
More Libertarian claptrap.
I ate a box of Girl Scout S’mores. The box that they came in was not a cube. It took less than 4 days and now I am in harmonic convergence with my navel.
So this guy is dead. where do I collect my $1000?
I’d guess he’d be a LaRouche voter. 😀
Buzz Aldrin is 92 years old today. He looks great.
One problem I have with Luntz’s focus groups, putting aside his own conservative leanings for the moment, is that they’re anecdotal. I’m not saying they’re worthless; I sometimes find them rather interesting to listen to. But they shouldn’t be confused with scientific polling.
And yes, it is a mistake to conflate “independents” with Obama-Trump voters. I’m sure there are some indies who voted for both Obama and Trump. But there are also Republicans and Democrats who did, and independents who didn’t (in fact I’d make the educated guess that the vast majority of indies aren’t Obama-Trump voters).
I also think when people examine swing voters more generally, they overlook how realignments occur gradually over long periods of time; it isn’t just disinterested people sitting on their hands. For instance, it’s true that Hillary and Biden did significantly worse among working-class whites than Obama. But Obama also seriously underperformed among this group relative to previous Democrats. In fact he was probably the first Democrat ever to win the presidency while losing this group nationally (though he did win the group in several crucial states in the Rust Belt).
So I don’t think it’s necessarily accurate to say Obama held intrinsic appeal to these voters in a way that Hillary and Biden didn’t. This group had been leaving the Democratic Party over the course of several decades, and of the ones who stuck with Obama, probably for many of them they were simply ancestrally Democratic voters who decided to stay with the party in that cycle due to force of habit or the Great Recession, but it was kind of a last straw for them. This is especially noticeable when you remember that during the 2008 primaries, Obama was seen as weak among these voters in relative contrast to Hillary, and it was a big factor in why he chose Biden as his running mate–both Biden and Hillary were seen as holding more appeal to these voters. Maybe that was a misjudgment on the part of politicos at the time. But I actually think the fact that Obama in 2008 (and 2012) did better among these voters than Hillary in 2016 or Biden in 2020 is more a reflection of the years than the specific candidates.
Supreme court rejects Trump bid to shield documents from January 6 panel
I don’t drink beer*, so I’ve no idea what’s popular in bars these days (I don’t go to bars, either).
I faintly recall people pouring beer in mugs with lime juice and rimmed with salt, who called it a michelada. That was a few years ago.
*I drive past the Modelo brewery on occasion, and it always smells amazingly good, but not like beer at all.
Trump’s handpicked justices stabbed him in the back. Only Clarence Thomas dissented.
According to TPM, the committee already has some of the documents.
@OzarkHillbilly: @CSK: To me at least, this was not in the least bit surprising. The right-wing justices have nothing to gain trying to protect Trump when they know he isn’t going to face any serious legal consequences anyway. So they’re free to use the opportunity to bolster their “nonpartisan judges impartially interpreting the law” cred with very little cost.
@Kathy: Yes, I was going to warn the original poster that michelada can sometimes mean lime juice, even in Mexico. I’m not sure why one definition hasn’t been settled on.
I personally don’t care for the “clam” part of clamato, but bloody mary mix isn’t bad with light beers. Give me a good IPA or stout, though. (In Mexico, they’re still hard to find.)
So why did Thomas side with Trump? Apparently it’s not true that his wife Ginni Thomas was one of the organizers of January 6.
I think it’s clear by now he cares less about his reputation among the respectable class than the Trump appointees do. In fact I’ve believed for a while that he and Alito are still the most nakedly partisan members of the Court.
OAN host asks for “dirt” on AT&T head.
Yo, Mitch! Your Freudian slip is showing.
@Kathy: It brings to mind the OED retaining one of the historical definitions of American as “native of America of European descent.”
A musician once explained it to me so:
Western music has experienced sea-changing revolutions. First came the invention of the piano, and along came Bach who figured out the best way to tune it…along with refinements in musical notation, and it was off to the races. There happened to be a small collection of geniuses about who pretty much ran the table. Today orchestras are mainly 18th-19th century cover bands.
Then came recorded music, and a generation of musicians who learned music by ear and not notation, along with a new batch of instruments…and again…it was off to the races. A few guys pretty much ran the table again, so today the music of the middle of the 20th century is hard to beat. A genre only has just so much room in it.
The Fulton Co., Georgia, district attorney has requested a special grand jury to help with the investigation into Trump’s election shenanigans.
The Fulton Co., Georgia, district attorney has requested a special grand jury to help with the investigation into Trump’s election shenanigans. Apparently a significant number of witnesses won’t cooperate without a subpoena.
Weird edit function. It duplicates.
@dazedandconfused: If anyone is interested, there are a bunch of early music nerds on YouTube who have gone to the trouble of retuning their harpsichords to different “classic” (but non-equal) temperaments so you can hear exactly what the whole fuss was and how different the same piece will sound in different temperaments. (And exactly how dissonant the “wolf interval” sounds.)
(Also look for the second episode of H.G’s “Big Bangs in Music” if you want an entertaining introduction to music theory and what the dreaded Pythagorean comma is all about.)
@Kylopod: Generally agree. I’d add that Obama seemed to catch GOP messaging a bit flat footed. They had trouble dogwhistling without the racism showing. The GOP character assassination machine had been working overtime on Hillary for years.
But mostly it’s fundamentals. Since FDR/Truman a party has only held the White House for three terms once. Even without W’s screw ups McCain was up against it. As was Hillary.
I’m not so sure el Cheeto won’t face any legal consequences.
Odds are high the DOJ won’t charge him with anything, but there are many state attorneys general who’d like nothing better than to put him inside the best prison cell ever.
How many “Obama-Trump voters” are really Romney-Trump voters or Nobody-Trump voters (or even Nobody-Nobody voters) who lie?
New York certainly seems determined to do that.
@Mu Yixiao: People who live in glass houses should not throw stones.
@Sleeping Dog: Along these lines, I have to give a shout out to my favorite new obsession, the podcast A History of Rock Music in 500 songs. So erudite, so filled with real musical history (with just a touch of gossip). Starts with Benny Goodman and Big Joe Turner (episodes one and two) and is currently in the middle 1960s, with episode 140 being River Deep Mountain High. Just brilliant and fascinating stuff.
@Michael Reynolds: “I wonder, if you transported these streamers and their algorithms back to say, 1969, would a large percentage of the songs streamed be Nat King Cole and Duke Ellington?”
Depends who was streaming. Probably a lot of Motown and Vanilla Fudge.
In my opinion, this country is broken.
With that opinion in mind, I’ve taken the first step towards leaving the US permanently. Today, I received a passport from another country, with which I’ll have dual citizenship. Soon, I will have a third passport, just in case. My new passport allows me to purchase real estate in that country, so my wife and I have started the purchas a lovely two bedroom condo on the beach in said foreign country, and will rent it out for the next year while I continue to work in the US. Once Covid is actually over, we will start spending more time there between gigs, until it’s time to move there full time.
I will watch the minority rule takeover of the USA from a distance, because that’s what’s coming. The Electorial College, coupled with gerrymandering, coupled with a corrupt, partisan, and illegitimate Supreme Court will guarantee that the GOP wins pretty much every single legal/political battle to keep them in power.
I’m tired of it. And, fortunately, I have the means to escape it. I’ll still hold on to my homes in LA and Florida, but they’ll be for strictly funding my retirement, not housing options.
That can’t be discounted, but it’s not just polls that indicate the shift–a large number of counties that voted for Obama both times flipped to Trump in 2016, and in many cases stayed with Trump in 2020.
I had a Jewish friend of Ukrainian descent in College and we had several discussions about how her family always had a bag packed ready to flee at a moment’s notice. I was, in hindsight, too dismissive of her.
I’ve started trying to figure out a landing spot that might be safe in eventuality that we’ll have to flee.
@Beth: My mother, the daughter of Holocaust survivors, has been bugging me to renew my passport.
CNN is reporting that “Trump campaign officials, led by Rudy Giuliani, oversaw efforts in December 2020 to put forward illegitimate electors from seven states that Trump lost…”
Yes, but if you go look a lot of those counties, most of the shift was not frump Trump getting more votes than Romney, but rather Clinton getting less votes than Obama.
There was also one particular study I remember that looked at the identities of who voted in 2016 and 2020 (while who you voted for is secret, that you voted at all is public record in most places) and showed that large shifts for Trump correlated with large turnover in who voted, suggesting that it was less voters switching from Obama to Trump, but rather Obama voters staying home and being replaced by a completely different set of Trump voters who had not voted previously.
As always the case in demographics, it’s important to remember that the change in the average is not the average change.
@EddieInCA: Just out of curiosity, if I may ask, where?
@EddieInCA: I certainly can’t blame you, only envy you, but just keep voting! For as long as there is an option.
San Jacinto, Ecuador, A small town an hour north of Manta (where there is a commercial airport). The only downside is that travel to and from entails two stops each way, not just one.
@EddieinCA: Beautiful, and looks just as warm and welcoming as the rest of Latin America. I always wanted to get down there (and Colombia and Peru and Patagonia and….). Maybe in my next life.
We may not be far behind you. I think at this point I know every site with overseas homes, know all the golden visa deals, and we’ve watched every Househunters International with a plausible target location.
We’ll do Europe if anyplace. The ideal would be an apartment in London, probably Marylebone area, and a place in Lisbon or Valencia. Fly back and forth seasonally, like the Brits do. Unless Britain also loses the plot entirely, which seems increasingly possible.
But we’d sell the house. I don’t mind (well…) paying California taxes when I live here, but I’m not taking a 13% hit if I’m living in Europe. I’ll be paying their VAT.
We thought long and hard about England and Spain/Portugal. Ultimately, we don’t want to deal with the British weather. They get about five good months a year, based on my times living there. But Lisbon, Porto (Portugal), Barcelona and Vido (Spain) were very, very enticing. For us, we’d probably do Spain before Portugal just due to Spanish being spoken instead of Portuguese.
I think if you end up in Lisbon, you’ll probably go to Madrid and Paris much more often than London. Just my guess.
Come be my neighbor. $115K. Oceanfront. 2/2, Total monthly costs less than $700/mo including mortgage. Taxes are $100 per year. 45 mins from the Airport.
Oh. Did I mention Oceanfront?
@Kathy: Seems too busy to me. And I would think it might be difficult to wrap the cutlet around something else. On the other hand, what you just described, minus the mole, is Chicken Cordon Bleu.
@Just nutha ignint cracker:
Fusion! Chicken Cordon Rouge 😉
I’ve some red mole I don’t know what to do with, taking up space in the freezer. I don’t want to boil chicken to shred it, nor buy pre-shredded chicken. I also have some turkey hot dogs left over, and plenty of milanesas in the freezer.
Wrapping milanesas around something is easy. You just need longer toothpicks to keep them wrapped. I’ve done chicken cordon bleu, by itself and with a little tomato sauce on top.
@Mikey: Why ruin perfectly good tomato juice by putting beer in it? [shudder]
@Michael Reynolds: In many markets, the second largest demographic was a format marketed as “the music of your life” targeted at the parents of boomers and featuring swing era, ballads, 101 Strings, and so forth. So yeah, Duke Ellington and Nat King Cole would probably be a thing.
@Just nutha ignint cracker: You should see the michelada with gummy bears…
@Just nutha ignint cracker:
Perfectly good tomato juice requires a little lime, Worcestershire, pepper, and a dash of Tabasco sauce.
Homer: Do you have any of that beer with candy in it? Skittlebrau?
Apu: There’s no such product, sir. You must have dreamt it.
Homer: Oh, then just give me a six pack…. and a bag of Skittles.
@EddieInCA: I’m gonna laugh if we end up with an entire OTB enclave in Ecuador! Thanks for the link! 😛
@grumpy realist: Damn, I thought I was the only temperament geek on this board.
(I had a great long chat with the piano tuner about this, the last time my in-laws had their Steinway tuned…)
That actually sounds good.
As far as new music vs old music, I would ask what the cutoff for new music is, and then say that kids these days listen to noise anyway.
Streaming services tend to push cheap music more than anything, so part of this might just be dialing down the amount of latest releases for cheaper back catalog, and spreading the (very little) money around more.