Just Saying

Donald Trump, speaking at the United States Coast Guard Academy commencement  on May 17, 2017: “Look at the way I’ve been treated lately, especially by the media. No politician in history — and I say this with great surety — has been treated worse or more unfairly.”

Uhhhmmmmmm… Nelson Mandela, amongst many others, might just have a case otherwise.  Just saying. 

The next US President will be … ?

This is quite a long shot, but it is a remote possibility. Timing would be critical.

Imagine this:

  1. Republicans continue to avoid doing anything substantial regarding Trump’s actions and behavior.
  2. Largely because of Trump and Republican inaction, the 2018 elections become a stunning reversal of fortune in Congress.
  3. Pence becomes ensnared in his own conduct issues, related to supporting Trump.
  4. Articles of Impeachment are brought against both Trump and Pence by the House. Either through conviction and/or resignation, both leave office prior a new Vice-President being named and approved by the Senate.
  5. The new Speaker of the House is next in the line of Presidential succession. That likely means Nancy Pelosi becomes 46.

New Netflix Ratings Suck

A couple of months ago, Netflix changed its user ratings system, simplifying it and attempting to increase participation. Instead of a five star system, you simply rate it up or down/ like or don’t like. In addition, the only rating result available is percent match, apparently an algorithm that compares past viewing habits with similar movies to predict likelihood of liking another movie.

I discovered this tonight as I went looking for a movie to watch. In theory, I have nothing against a binary vs. a five way rating system.  But my first experience with the new Netflix ratings are highly negative. It sucks and it’s useless.

  1. The ratio of up vs. down is not reported at all.  You get nothing that objectively shows how others felt about a particular movie.
  2. Many movies have nothing – no percent match – at all. In these cases, Netflix provides zero rating information.
  3. The percent match, when shown, appears to have little resemblance to whether I would like a movie.

To get a sense for percent match, I looked at a couple of genres – action/ adventure and romantic comedy.  In both cases, on a highly selective basis, I enjoy a few (guessing roughly no more than 10 percent) movies in each genre. What I found, when a percent match was reported, were scores in the 90th percentile for almost all movies in that genre, including the overwhelming majority I would not waste my time watching. Netflix provides no useful rating information in these cases.

In addition, I sampled movies – both liked and disliked – in a variety of genres. Two I very much enjoyed – African Queen (56%) and Paper Chase (60%) – got low percent match score. Two I don’t like – Magic Mike (95%) and Blue Bloods (96%) – got high scores. Two more I liked  – Mona Lisa Smile and Philomenia – had no information at all.

Overall, I’d say Netflix should simply report no rating information at all over what they are doing today. If they did, at least they’d be consistent.

Trump: The Curtain Drops

A few years ago, I set up a blog entitled Tangents.  Back then, I said I’d start writing when the spirit moved me.  Until now, that was just an empty statement.

The name Tangents was intended to suggest wide ranging comments on a variety of topics, only tangentially connected.  Put another way, it’s a stream of consciousness blog meandering all over the place.

About 10 days after the 2016 elections, I shared this idea with two journalists.  That’s all it was, a notion suggested.  Since then, while it rattled around in the back recesses of my mind, its likelihood has only increased in my estimation

Well, world – or more likely, the 5 or 6 people who will see this initially – here goes my first post…

I don’t see Trump finishing his term.  He will:
  1. Die of /  be incapacitated by heart attack (70, fat, no exercise, poor diet, holds grudges/ no stress relief for what is likely the most stressful job on earth),
  2. Resign, either fed up or a la Nixon (pretty self explanatory), or
  3. Be impeached and convicted (Imagine that, by his own party.).
Conflicts of interests, lack of understanding, mediocre business skills, unwillingness to prepare, and constant mendacity will gradually and collectively become his fatal albatross.

Which of the three will happen?  I have no idea, as my sense is different every day. None of this will be good for the USA or the world. But then again, Trump isn’t good for the US or the world.  In some respects, Pence will be worse.
I’ll give Trump credit for capitalizing on a deep vein of discontent amongst his core supporters, but little else.  However, I just don’t get why he wasn’t disqualified as utterly unfit for office for any of several dozen reasons, any one of which would be sufficient to disqualify anyone else. Better late than never, he will be disqualified.