Yes, Trumpism Is Fear of & Loaþing for Minorities; + BRIEFLY NOTED: For 2021-08-27 Fr

Things that went whizzing by that I want to remember:


Lilliana Mason: 'The people who really like Trump in 2018 are the same ones who really disliked Blacks, Muslims, LGBT+, and Hispanics in 2011. It's NOT THE SAME for the GOP in general, or even for Ryan or McConnell. Trump is drawing on this particular group of people to a unique degree <>. He is also doing this ACROSS PARTIES. The new MAGA/anti-MAGA conflict is not an entirely partisan one. It's about white Christian supremacy versus a fully multi-racial democracy. The Trump effect occurs most powerfully at the most hateful end of the spectrum (above 0.5 on the animus scale). And it's not happening for anyone on the Democratic side. Hating Christians and White people doesn't predict favorability toward any Democratic figures or the Democratic Party. So it isn't "anti-White racism" (whatever that means) motivating the left. It's not "both sides." This means that there is a faction in American politics that has moved from party to party, can be recruited from either party, and responds especially well to hatred of marginalized groups. They're not just Republicans or Democrats, they're a third faction that targets parties. THIS is the faction we, as Americans, should be worried about. "Bipartisanship" is not the answer to the problem. We need to confront this particular faction of Americans who have been uniquely visible and anti-democratic since before the Civil War (when they were Democrats)…

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Share Brad DeLong's Grasping Reality

Very Briefly Noted:

  • Anne Helen PetersenThe Problems Solved by Debutantes 

Culture Study
The Problems Solved by Debutantes
This is the weekend edition of Culture Study — the newsletter from Anne Helen Petersen, which you can read about here. If you like it and want more like it in your inbox, consider subscribing. I’ve thought of a lot of ways to introduce this Q&A, but the best is the most straightforward: Kristen Rich……
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Frank WilczekInterview with Joe Walker: ‘There’s a very profound statement by Dirac… who said, ‘I feel I understand an equation when I can predict its consequences without actually solving it.’ So, there’s this level you get to where you can work in concepts, and develop intuition about how things will behave, without actually having to go step- by-step through the derivations. That typically only comes after working a lot of examples…. The ability to do it fluently and integrate a lot of information in real time, that’s different… 

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Timothy B. LeeNIMBYs in SF Demanded a Smaller Building—The Developer Made It Bigger: ‘“DM Development went in the opposite direction, increasing the proposed 80-foot building to 120 feet, and raising the original 290 units to 450 units,” the San Francisco Chronicle’s J.K. Dineen writes. DM Development CEO Mark MacDonald said he submitted the bigger plan after “it was abundantly clear to us the neighbors were not supportive of the lower scale project.” He added that “if we had gotten support for the original plan we would have kept going down that path.” Some residents were furious. “What has gone terribly wrong with 300 DeHaro has been the lack of response to community input,” one told the Chronicle. “I have yet to meet a neighbor who thinks this is a good idea. The language I’m hearing is ‘monstrosity.’”… The people who live right near a proposed development care a lot about it, and more often than not they oppose projects that increase housing density. And because every project in a modern city is located near somebody, almost every effort to increase housing supply attracts opposition…. In the last decade, pro-development advocates have found ways to effectively organize for more housing. A big part of the solution was to give activists a shared enemy: the NIMBY… 

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Ashley Fowlkes & al.Effectiveness of COVID–19 Vaccines in Preventing SARS-CoV–2 Infection Among Frontline Workers Before and During B.1.617.2 (Delta) Variant Predominance — Eight U.S. Locations, December 2020–August 2021: ’These interim findings suggest a moderate reduction in the effectiveness of COVID–19 vaccines in preventing infection, [but] the sustain-d two thirds reduction in infection risk underscores the continued importance and benefits of COVID–19 vaccination… 

LINK: <>

Josh MarshallYou Wouldn’t Know It From the US News Coverage, But…: ‘Key leaders of the US backed government over the last two decades are relaxedly meeting with the political leadership of the Taliban in Kabul about the formation of the new government…. Ashraf Ghani, the Afghan President whose precipitous flight hastened the rapid collapse of the government last weekend says he supports these negotiations and is in the process of negotiating his own return to the country…. Ghani’s brother, Hashmat Ghani, pledged loyalty to the Taliban and has encouraged all Afghans to do the same. I have no idea if that is in line with these negotiations or something different….. Does all this mean that our US-backed leaders are scurrilous turncoats jumping to secure their power and wealth under the new regime? Or do they possibly not see the whole turnover in the cataclysmic terms we seem to? I suspect it’s some of both. But I don’t know enough about the country to tell. Whichever it is seems highly relevant to how we got here and where this is going…. It is remarkable to me that you can immerse yourself in the current US media coverage and as far as I can tell see very, very little discussion of this at all. I only noticed it and started digging around because I noticed Abdullah’s tweet and did some digging… 

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Atif Mian: ‘The Afghan economy stalled in 2012 after foreign aid started receding from a high of about 50% of GDP. The big injection of foreign money did not translate into sustainable growth. Why? @AtifRMian Because foreign money artificially raised domestic spending power—artificial in the sense that it was not associated with increased domestic productivity…. The spending boom is actually harmful when it is artificial, because it hurts exports via real exchange rate appreciation and other misallocations…. Despite aid reaching as high as 50% of GDP, the fraction of people living below poverty rose from 34% to 55%… 


Zeynep TufekciOpen Thread 8/22, The Booster Edition: ‘Last week, the United States announced, via press release, that the policy would be to offer boosters to all Americans sometime in September, when they were about eight months out from their vaccination…. The press release came ahead of an FDA/CDC review (even though there is a throwaway sentence that says it will happen) or any data presented. I don’t understand how this is not undue pressure on the agencies to approve the booster, as stated. Second, where’s the data? Yes, the current administration has inherited the lack of data, but it’s mid-August. This policy by press release is confusing and undermines confidence because people on Twitter are now trying to reverse-engineer box plots from screenshots of other countries press releases (also without papers). Third, so we are going to give a third Moderna shot to immunocompetent young adults in the United States while we haven’t even vaccinated all the healthcare workers in the rest of the world, let alone high-risk populations?… 


Open Thread 8/22, The Booster Edition
Last week, the United States announced, via press release, that the policy would be to offer boosters to all Americans sometime in September, when they were about eight months out from their vaccination. I have to say, if this had happened under Trump administration, it would cause a huge outcry…
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Matthew YglesiasIs Cuban Healthcare Actually Good?: ‘Better than average for such a poor country, but hardly a huge success story…. The core claims to fame of the Cuban healthcare system are the linked facts that the country has a low infant mortality rate (4.1 per 1,000, which is below the high-income country average of 5 per 1,000)…. Roberto Gonzalez shows that the flip side of Cuba’s abnormally low neo-natal fatality rate is an unusually high late-fetal death rate…. The most likely is that they are simply misclassifying the early-life deaths of premature infants as lost pregnancies. The other possible explanations would reflect even worse on the Cuban healthcare system…. If you look at late-fetal and early-neonatal deaths as a combined phenomenon, Cuba’s performance drops to well below that of rich countries as well as Chile and Costa Rica, though still good relative to Latin America as a whole… 


Slow Boring
Is Cuban healthcare actually good?
The New York Times recently ran a story about Covid-19 overwhelming the hospital infrastructure in Cuba, as it has whenever it’s hit lower-income countries who simply have fewer resources to dedicate to this kind of thing. The headline describes this as “Overwhelmed by Coronavirus, Cuba’s Vaunted Health System Is Reeling……
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Scott Imberman’This seems like the most comprehensive and best study yet. Random sample, followed over time, regular asymptomatic testing. What do they find? <> I’ll focus the Pfizer (BNT162b2) vaccines since that is what was most used in the US. Vaccines just as effective against Delta infection as Alpha (about 80%). Somewhat less effective on symptomatic infection but still very strong (84%). Prior infection also quite good. Pfizer shows some evidence of waning immunity over 3 months. If trend continues, I can see why Biden admin is worried and pushing for boosters. AZ shows little waning immunity-good news for J&J folks! Dosing interval doesn’t seem to matter, though above/below 9 week cutoff may not be that informative for the 3 week dosing schedule used in US. Final point-this is exactly the kind of study CDC and NIH should be doing and it’s a travesty they have not. But while the best time to start was yesterday, the second best time is today. Fin… 


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