17 February 2017

Office Space and Creativity - What Makes the Perfect Office

Fascinating post about how office space affects creativity and productivity. by Tim Harford


The bottom line is that there is no evidence that fancy architecture and design help. What does helo is letting people have control over their environment.

25 January 2017

Scott Adams' Take on Post-inauguration Trump

As you may be aware, Scott Adams of Dilbert predicted a Trump victory in August 2015, well before he won the Republican primary. His basis was that Trump is the best persuader he has ever seen. He did many blog posts about his thought process and Trump's progress and strategies. I tracked all his posts at this link.

He stuck to his guns all the way through, even in the last two weeks before the vote when all the serious polls were predicting a Clinton victory.

He admonished the readers of his blog to adopt a different mindset, a different way of thinking about persuasion and election campaign tactics and strategy.

Perhaps he was just lucky, but I don't think that's the case. I believe that Scott saw something that was opaque to almost everyone else.

The other post got too long and was dealing with how Trump got elected. I am going to continue tracking Scott's posts post-inauguration in this post. This time they will be in reverse chronological order - newest first.

April 2017
President Trump’s First 100 Days, Apr 25
How a Systems-Thinking President Can Settle the Climate Science Debate, Apr 21
Big Red Flag for Cognitive Dissonance, Apr 21, Not Trump, but good intro for the next post. Climate scientists probably believe they have convinced about half of the public to their side using their graphs and logic and facts. That’s not the case. They convinced half the public by using fear persuasion disguised as facts and logic. And it probably worked best with the people who have the least knowledge of how often complicated prediction models have failed in the past.
The Air Comes Out of the Anti-Trump Balloon, Apr 18
How to Structure a Deal With North Korea, Apr 17
U.S. and Russian Relationship at a Low?, Apr 13
The North Korea Reframe, Apr 12
Trusting Your Government in a Time of War, Apr 10
The Syrian Air Base Attack, Apr 7
The Syrian Gas Attack Persuasion, Apr 6
How a Hypnotist Sees a Verbal Slip, Apr 5

March 2017March 2017
The Systems President, Mar 29, You can look at the house healthcare efforts as a failure or as a step towards an ultimately successful health care effort.
Trump and Healthcare, Mar 25, Not really about healthcare, but rather Trump gets promoted from perception of Hitler to merely incompetent
My Take on Wiretapping, Trump, and Comey, Mar 20
How to Leak Like a Master Persuader, Mar 16
Tracking My Persuasion, Mar 14, Another Not Trump article, more an ad for his book.
Two More Movies on One Screen, Mar 13 Not about Trump, but definitely about persuasion.
Could Cognitive Scientists Eliminate ISIS?, Mar 9
Income Inequality, Mar 9
Wiretapping Word-Thinking, Mar 7
Am I Predicting or Influencing?, Mar 5
Dopamine Puppets, Mar 2
I Talk about President Trump’s Speech on YouTube, Mar 1
President Trump’s Speech Last Night, Mar 1, Scott things Trump killed the SOTU


February 2017
Persuasion Advice for African-Americans, Feb 21
De-hypnotizing a Climate Science Zombie, Feb 20
Trump and Sweden, Feb 20, Link to this youtube. Is Trump the crazy one, or are his critics?
Imaginary News, Feb 17
How to Evaluate a President, Feb 17
How to Persuade the Other Party, Feb 15
Good Example of Our Two-Movie Reality, Feb 12
About the 97% of Climate Scientists, Feb 10
Sam Harris Induces Cognitive Dissonance in Ben Affleck, Feb 5
A Thought Experiment About Republicans, Feb 5
The Social Media Hive Mind, Feb 4
The Persuasion Advantage and Climate Science, Feb 4
Berkeley and Hitler, Feb 3
President Trump and the Other Countries, Feb 2, You can't tell the difference between rudeness and good negotiation based on limited information
Introducing the Chaos Drinking Game, Feb 1
Hypnotists Flips Pro-Choicers to Pro-Life in Seconds (I explain how), Feb 1
The Odds of Being Killed by an Immigrant, Feb 1

January 2017
Is President Trump Doing Management Wrong?, Jan 31
The Persuasion Filter Looks at Torture. Does it Work?, Jan 30
The Canadian Option, Jan 29
Be Careful What You Wish For (especially if it is Hitler), Jan 29
The Persuasion Filter and Immigration, Jan 27, Muslim ban is a negotiating tactic
Outrage Dilution, Jan 26 "And when Trump has created a hundred reasons to complain, do you know what impression will be left with the public? He sure got a lot done." Like it or not.
Battle of the Hats, Jan 24 (Comparing MAGA hats to Pussy hats from a persuasion perspective)

01 August 2016

21 December 2015

Scott Adams' Series on Donald Trump (Master Wizard Persuasion)

This is the pre-inauguration page.
If you are looking for the post-inauguration page, go to this link.

Scott Adams of Dilbert fame (Scott Adams' Amazon Page) has been doing a series of posts about Donald Trump since August of 2015. He is not endorsing Trump as President, but rather pointing out a different perspective on his hi-jinx. Edit: on Oct. 24, 2016, Scott endorsed Trump finally.

Scott's final post before the inaugurations links to this link, which is generated using WhenHub his new startup.

Please note: I will continue to update this post until the inauguration. At that point, I will start a new one. This time, I will put the newer posts at the top though. I think that works better.


I can't tell you if Adams is right about Trump's style and choices, but it is fascinating reading. So I decided to document and keep a running page with the Trump Persuasion series. You can also click on the hashtags on his blog, but I like to have this list.

For the record, I am not in any way endorsing Trump, or anyone else either. So what follows is a compilation of all of Scott's posts on Trump and his presidential run starting in July 2015.

Postscript: Scott got it right. Last August, he said that Trump had persuasion skills seldom seen. He said that Trump would win by a landslide. Not just the Republican primaries, but the general election. HE stuck to that all the way through and asked his readers to keep an open mind and look at the world through a different lens. That lens has resulted in perhaps the only correct forecast in the World of this election. He did not hit every intermediate point perfectly, and the general election was not a landslide, but the perspective resulted in a correct prediction well before anybody saw it coming. He focused on the system and positioning that Trump used throughout.

Now moving forward what happens? More later.

July 2015
Outragists Attack Trump and Win, July 2, 2015 (It's possible that there are earlier posts, but this is as far as I went.

August 2015
How Trump Becomes President, Aug 5, 2015
Trump's Plan to Put a Ring Around Isis,  Aug 10, 2015
Clown Genius, Aug 13, 2015. Scott says this is the most important post.
Can We Call a Trump Puppet a Trumpet?, August 14, 2015
Wizard Wars, August 17, 2015. This is the post where Adams really lays out his hypothesis.
Political Reporters Cover a Business Candidate, August 19, 2015. Bonus Thought 4 - Trump will select the next President
Anchors Away, Aug 20, 2105
Trump VS Bush: Persuasion Wars, Aug 24, 2015
Trump Makes Univision Do The Perp Walk, Aug 25
The Third Way on Immigration (Sort of a Trump Post), August 26
Trump Persuasion Alert: Bible Dodge, Aug 26
Trump Persuasion Alert: The Bush-slayer Comment, Aug 27
Nate Silver Gives Trump 2% Chance of Getting Nominated, Aug 28
Trump and Godwin’s Law, Aug 28
Trump Engineers a Clinton Linguistic Kill Shot, Aug 31
Robots Read News - about Celebrity Apprentice, Aug 31

September 2015
Identifying the Smart Voters, Sep 1, 2015. All about Cognitive Dissonance
Trump: The “Bad System” Linguistic Bayonette, Sep 1
The Tells (for cognitive dissonance), Sep 3
Then You Own the Bank (part of my Trump Persuasion Series), Sep 3
The Time of Kings, Sep 4. Not about Trump specifically, but clever
“Nice Guy” - Part of my Trump Persuasion Series, Sep 5
Cognitive Dissonance: You be the Judge, Sep 5
How to Spot a Wizard, Sep 6
The “Outsider” Explanation - Part of my Trump Persuasion Series, Sep 7
Obama the Stealth Wizard, Sep 7
The Time of Kings - Explained, Sep 8. A follow-up to Time of Kings above.
A Demonstration of Persuasion - Part of my Trump Series, Sep 9
Unknown Wizard Delivers Linguistic Kill Shot via Twitter, Sep 9
Trump Engineers a Linguistic Kill Shot for Fiorina, Sep 10
Who is Smarter - the Smart People or the Dumb People? - Part of My Trump Persuasion Series, Sep 11
Odds of a Kanye West Presidency: 90%, Sep 12
The Trump Versus Sanders Match-up: Part of the Trump Persuasion Series, Sep 14
The Daily Beast Reports on My Trump Posts, Sep 14. Link to the Beast Article.
2-D Chess Players Take on a 3-D Chess Master (Part of my Trump Persuasion Series), Sep 15
Why Trump Insults People - Part of my Trump Persuasion Series, Sep 16
Wizard Attacks Wizard - The Trump Persuasion Series, Sep 17
Carly Fiorina and the Wizard Filter, Sep 17
When Wives Attack - Trump Persuasion Series, Sep 18
People Who Don’t Know How Business Works - Trump Persuasion Series. Sep 18
Trump Linguistic Kill Shot Alert!, Sep 18
Running Against a Branding Wizard - Trump Series, Sep 19
Thinking Past the Sale - Trump Persuasion Series, Sep 19
Checking My Gender Bias - Master Wizard Hypothesis, Sep 19
Calling Jimmy from the Third Dimension, Sep 20
Who is the Better Business Person - Trump or Fiorina?, Sep 21
Obama Vs. Iran - Who is the Wizard?, Sep 21
A Clarification, Sep 21
The “Reason” for Trump’s Success, Sep 23
The Persuasion Reading List, Sep 24, Scott's list of books about persuasion
Opinion Vs. Stupidity, Sep 25. Not about Trump, but interesting.
Violating the Wizard Prime Directive, Sep 27
History’s First Quadruple-Wizard, Sep 29

October 2016
One-on-One Match-ups - Trump Persuasion Series, Oct 1
Robots Read News Endorses Candidate, Oct 1
The American Gun Problem - And How a Master Wizard of Persuasion Could Fix it., Oct 4
Robots Read News - About Humans in Metal Cages, Oct 5
The Trump Confidence Thing, Oct 6. Here's the Politico link.
President Obama: Wizard or Failure?, Oct 6
My Explanation of Trump’s Persuasion Skills for Reason.com, Oct 6. Reason.com video clip
Tells for Cognitive Dissonance (with some Trump flavoring), Oct 9
Narcissistic Accuser Syndrome, Oct 10
Does Trump Linguistically Engineer His Insults?, Oct 11
Who Will Bill Clinton Vote for?, Oct 12
Master Wizard Filter on the Democratic Debate, Oct 14
Tony Robbins Explains How to Beat Trump, Oct 16
Trump’s Persuasiveness - per the Washington Post, Oct 18
Trump’s Third Act (Part of the Trump Persuasion Series), Oct 20
Master Wizard Filter Scorecard, Oct 20
Robots Read News - about Trump and Jeb, Oct 21
The Alpha in the Room, Oct 22
Master Wizard Filter - Netanyahu?, Oct 22, Link to referenced article.
The Case for a Trump Landslide (Part 1), Oct 23
How Persuasion Hides, Oct 24
Talking Like a Fourth-Grader (Part of my Trump Persuasion Series), Oct 25
How a Hypnotist Would Solve ISIS, Oct 26. Not Trump, but related.
Trump’s Town Hall Performance - Give Him a Grade, Oct 26
Economics and Expectations (with a Trump point), Oct 30
Trump’s Selfish Motives (Please explain them to me), Oct 31

November 2015
Why Donald Trump will Ruin the World, Nov 2
The Cage Fight President, Nov 5
The Upside of Ben Carson, Nov 6
Election Notes (Trump and Stuff), Nov 12
Trump on Carson, Nov 13
Cognitive Dissonance Update 1, Nov 16
Trump’s Current Odds, Nov 19
Trump Trouble Report, Nov 26
How Trump Can Solve Immigration, Nov 29

December 2015
Trump’s Favorability - (part of my Trump Persuasion series), Dec 2
My Prediction about My Predictions (Trump Persuasion Series), Dec 3
What the Heck is Fascism?, Dec 4
How to Stop that Hitler-like Deportation You Fear, Dec 7
Risk Management - (Trump Persuasion Series), Dec 8
My Offer to Stop Donald Trump, Dec 9
The Trump Immigration Surprise - the Trap is Half-Sprung, Dec 10
Master Persuader Update (Part of My Trump Series), Dec 11
Calling the Clinton Top (Trump Persuasion Series), Dec 13
Immigration Without the Hate Part (Trump-related), Dec 14
A Voter’s Guide to Thinking, Dec 14
An Unusual Argument for Electing Hillary Clinton, Dec 15
Master Persuader Update - Slip of the Tongue (Trump series), Dec 15
The Lucky Hitler Hypothesis (Trump Persuasion Series), Dec 16
The Master Persuader Filter on Michael Moore, Dec 18
Robots Read News about the Sanders Campaign Accessing Clinton Voter Data, Dec 18
Robots Read News - About Hitler’s Testicles, Dec 21 (Trump Humor)
And Then This Happened (Trump Persuasion Series), Dec 21. Link to Salon article.
A Deeply Unscientific Test of Your Political Bias (Trump Persuasion Series), Dec 22
Target Practice for Robots, Dec 23
The Master Persuader Filter and Trump’s Schlong, Dec 24
Master Persuader Scorecard Update - Clinton Top?, Dec 25
Is Iowa a Caucus or a Mental Health Problem? (Trump Master Persuader Series), Dec 27
The Time I Got Promoted to Nobody, Dec 29
Ranking the Best Political Pundits of 2015, Dec 30
Trump’s Language Skills Analyzed, Dec 30


January 2016
Master Persuader Scorecard Update: 10-out-of-10 Coming?, Jan 2, 2016
Master Persuasion Hypothesis - (Try this one at home), Jan 3
Persuasion or Coincidence?, Jan 4
Trump’s First Ad (Master Persuader Filter), Jan 4
Master Persuader Scorecard (Update Jan 4), Jan 4
Comparing the Candidates (Using the Master Persuader Filter), Jan 5
Making Mexico Pay for the Wall, Jan 5
The Amazon Gift Predictor (Trump Master Persuader Series), Jan 5
The Canadian Gambit (Trump Persuasion Series), Jan 6
Trump and Climate Science (Master Persuader Series), Jan 7
The Thought Police Did Not Like it When I Said Something Like This, Jan 7
Working on the White Guy Brand, Jan 8
Why I Should Win the Nobel Prize (and other things I learned from Trump), Jan 8
Politico Tries to Trump Me on “The Turn”, Jan 9
Why Would a Man Vote for Hillary Clinton?, Jan 9
The Laugh Tell (Trump Master Persuader Series), Jan 9
The Iowa Reframing, Jan 11
The Oddest Thing About Trump, Jan 11
Today I Help You See the Future, Jan 11
Men: Confess Your Support for Hillary Clinton, Jan 12
Charisma Vs. Danger (Master Persuader Series), Jan 13
The Candidate Supporter Stereotypes (Master Persuader Series), Jan 14
Master Persuader Scorecard for the GOP Debate, Jan 15
Robots Read News about Trump’s Offer to…(no spoilers!), Jan 15
The Biggest Trump Story That You Missed (Master Persuasion Series), Jan 15
Trump Master Persuader Quiz: What Would YOU Do?, Jan 17
The Matriarchy - Patriarchy Continuum, Jan 18
Robots Read News about British Politicians and Trump, Jan 19
Trump’s Dog Problem, Jan 19
The Palin Endorsement (Master Persuader Series), Jan 19
The Gender Card Top, Jan 20
Boycott Valentines Day?, Jan 20
Master Persuader Scorecard - Iran Update, Jan 21
Trump’s Talent Stack: Systems versus Goals, Jan 21
Bernie Sanders Turns on the Iowa Afterburners, Jan 21
Updating the Persuasion Stack (National Review’s Trump Cover), Jan 22
The Second American Revolution - What Then?, Jan 25
Trump, FOX News, and Megyn Kelly Explained (Master Persuader Series), Jan 26
The Fake “Because”, Jan 27
Master Persuader Scorecard on the Trumpless Debate, Jan 29
Persuader Fingerprints, Jan 30


February 2016
Fire the Government (And Why Obamacare is Great!), Feb 1
Can a Master Persuader Reverse Hate?, Feb 1
The Cruz Prophesy, Feb 1. This is the book he references.
News Flash: Cartoonist Gets One Wrong!, Feb 2
New Hampshire Prediction (Master Persuader Series), Feb 3
Scoring My Iowa Fraud Call, Feb 4
Spooky Alert! Spooky Alert!, Feb 4
The Pledge of Allegiance, Feb 4
Friday Trump Joke, Feb 5
The GOP Debate Scorecard (Master Persuader Series), Feb 7
New Hampshire Election Fraud Prediction, Feb 8
The Thinking Filters, Feb 9
The Movie Persuasion Filter, Feb 9
My New Hampshire Prediction Scorecard, Feb 10
Why Does Trump Terrify People?, Feb 11
Policies and Name Recognition (Trump Persuasion Series), Feb 12
Scalia and the Pillow, Feb 16
The Trump Master Persuader Index and Reading List, Feb 18 - Scott replicates this list and includes a link to his persuasion reading list from Sept 24, 2015
The Pope Versus Donald Trump, Feb 18
Solving for Scary (Trump Persuasion Series), Feb 22
My CNN Interview About Trump, Feb 22
Some Respect for Hillary Clinton, Feb 23
How to Spot a Narcissist (Trump Persuasion Series), Feb 24
The Choke Artist Versus the Watch Salesman (Trump Persuasion Series), Feb 26
Disavowing Trump, Feb 28
Movie Persuasion Recommendations, Feb 29
Trump’s VP Options (Master Persuader Filter), Feb 29

March 2016
Strategic Ambiguity (Master Persuasion Series), Mar 1
Super Tuesday (Master Persuader Series), Mar 2
A Letter to Donald Trump (from a voter, not me), Mar 2
Naming Romney’s Upcoming Anti-Trump Speech, Mar 3
Republican Debate (March 3) Scorecard (Master Persuader Series), Mar 4
The Power of Ideas, Mar 4
Scott Adams on Fox and Friends (clip), Mar 6. and here's the link to the interview
The Conservative Con (Master Persuader Series), Mar 7
Another Way to Make Mexico Pay for The Wall (Trump Persuasion Series), Mar 8
Resort USA, Mar 8
Who Trump Offends with His Salty Language, Mar 9
Let’s Talk About Hitler, Mar 10
GOP Debate Scorecard - March 10 (Master Persuader Series), Mar 11
The Trump Riots That are Mostly My Fault, Mar 13
Donald Trump - Con Man, Mar 15
Clinton Versus Trump, Mar 16
Real Donald Trump Quotes about Women, Mar 16
Stamina - Trump’s Lingistic Kill Shot for Clinton (Master Persuader Series), Mar 17
How to Know Trump is in Your Head, Mar 17
Bumper Sticker Thinking, Mar 19
Social Media is the New Government, Mar 20
The Belgium Analogy, Mar 21
Sleeper Persuasion with a Trigger, Mar 22
Who’s Afraid of Donald Trump?, Mar 24
Trump and Abortion, Mar 31

April 2016
The Trump Chess Board, Apr 18
The Value of Not Voting, Apr 19
Trump Dominates the Empire State, Apr 20
How Powerful is Persuasion?, Apr 21
Cyberbombs and ISIS, Apr 25
The Unfavorability Illusion, Apr 26
And Then There Were Two, Apr 27
Can Trump Change the Frame on His Perceived Sexism?, Apr 28
The Health Tell, Apr 29

May 2016
Say Goodbye to Your Mind, May 1
Clinton Versus Trump - Persuasion Scores, May 3
How to Do Persuasion Wrong, May 4
How Not to Make a Campaign Ad, May 5
The Apology Gambit, May 9
About Those Trump Policy Details, May 11
Power, Persuasion, and Attractiveness, May 13
The Mother of All Campaign Errors, May 13
The John Miller Thing, May 15
Reframing Our Problems, May 16
Trump’s VP Pick Prediction, May 17
Impossible To Ignore, May 17
“Excuse me”, May 18
Evaluating the Political Chess Board, May 19
Being Memorable, May 20
My Podcast with Thor (About Trump’s Persuasion), May 20
Battle of the Campaign Slogans, May 23
The Mark Cuban Factor, May 24
Citizen Government, May 25
The Sanders Debate Gambit, May 26
When Art Directors Take Sides, May 27
How to Hypnotize Bill Maher, May 30
Climate Change and Trump, May 30

June 2016
The Risks of a Trump Presidency, Jun 2
Now It’s a Fair Fight, Jun 3
My Endorsement for President of the United States, Jun 5 Scott Endorses HRH for Self-protection
The Robot Judge, Jun 7
Trump: Man of Science?, Jun 9
The Orlando Trigger, Jun 13
Some of My Tweets, Jun 13
Trump’s Muslim Immigration Proposal (Update), Jun 14
Persuasion Think-ahead, Jun 15
Where’s That Trump Third Act?, Jun 16
How to Un-Hypnotize a Rabid Anti-Trumper, Jun 19
Some Thoughts about Lewandowski, Campaign Funding, and Safety, Jun 21
Why Gun Control Can’t Be Solved in the USA, Jun 22
The Humiliation of the American Male in 2016, Jun 23
Persuasion Update: Clinton Vs. Trump, Jun 28
Hypnotizing My Dog, Snickers, Jun 30
The Time I Accidentally Plunged Europe into Economic Uncertainty, Jun 30

July 2016
The Crook Versus the Racist, Jul 5
The FBI, Credibility, and Government, Jul 7
The Persuasion Diet, Jul 11
When Persuasion Turns Deadly, Jul 11
Trump’s Glide Path, Jul 12
Cop Killers Versus Racists, Jul 14
Gingrich, Pence, and Monitoring Mosques, Jul 16
How Persuaders See the World, Jul 18
Rocking the Vote – for Snoopy?, Jul 20
Newt’s Plan to Defeat ISIS, Jul 20
The Trump Kids Effect, Jul 21
My Opinion of Trump’s Convention Speech, Jul 22
Clinton’s VP Pick, Jul 23 Will Kaine drive away the male vote?
Martial Law Coming?, Jul 24
Clinton Uses “Dark” Magic, Jul 24 Scott thinks Clinton has a weapons grade persuader on her team
The Dark and Rotten Election, Jul 26 Godzilla vs King Kong
Selling Past the Close, Jul 27 Don't! A woman can be president, we get it. Now capture the male vote.
Experience is Overrated, Jul 29
The Inexperienced Voter, Jul 30
Sunday Persuasion Reading, Jul 31

August 2016
Clinton Takes the Persuasion Lead, Aug 3
Drug Testing Presidential Candidates, Aug 7
Several Interesting Things, Aug 18
Trump’s Regrets, Aug 19
The Direct Democracy President, Aug 22 Scott imagines how Trump would really be if he were president
Making Mexico Pay for the Wall, Aug 22
Clinton Dodges the Health Question on Kimmel, Aug 23
Con Man or Hitler?, Aug 24
On a Positive Note…, Aug 24
Clinton and Trump Switch Brands, Aug 25
Finding the Political Bottom, Aug 26
The Face of Persuasion, Aug 27
The Mental Vote, Aug 27
The Most Biased Poll Ever, Aug 28
Be Useful (A Post About Colin Kaepernick), Aug 30
Deportation and Deals, Aug 31 plus powerful hypnotic words

September 2016
See Me on The Rubin Report, Sep 1
Watch Me: Rubin Report (part 2), InfoWars, CNN, Sep 2
Why Trump Doesn’t Scare Me, Sep 5
Godzilla!!!, Sep 6. Scott Says to buy Cialdini's book Pre-Suasion: A Revolutionary Way to Influence and Persuade
The Time I Took Sides with Black Lives Matter. And Colin Kaepernick., Sep 8
Measuring the Shy Trump Supporters, Sep 9
Check Out my Sulley Prediction from 2009, Sep 10
The Race for President is (Probably) Over, Sep 11
Checking My Predictions About Clinton’s Health, Sep 11
Deplorable Pneumonia, Sep 12
When Reality Turned Inside Out, Sep 15 Has Trump successfully pivoted? Who's the crazy one now?
Trump and Birtherism - update, Sep 17
Assessing the Risk of Trump, Sep 18
Checking My Spooky Predictions, Sep 19
How to Know an Election is Over, Sep 22
Blowing Your Mind – as Promised, Sep 23
Why I Switched My Endorsement from Clinton to Trump, Sep 25, Scott Endorses Trump!
How’s My Timing?, Sep 26
Trump’s African-American Reframing, Sep 26
I Score the First Debate, Sep 27, I think Scott may have succumbed to confirmation bias on this one. His claim that Trump won by losing and therefore looking less scary seems really thin to me. I still remain open to the possibility that Scott's Persuasion filter is the best lens at which to look at this election, but as I write this (12-Oct), it is looking increasingly unlikely.
The Wall Around ISIS, Sep 28

October 2016
Presidential Temperament, Oct 3
The Week I Became a Target, Oct 3
Why Does This Happen on My Vacation? (The Trump Tapes), Oct 8
Why I Endorse Gary Johnson (this week), Oct 9
Quick Debate Reactions from Switzerland, Oct 10
Hear Me Tonight on BBC News Hour, Oct 11
Scandal Poker - Trump Vs. Clinton, Oct 12 (Very thin analysis IMHO)
The Era of Women, Oct 13, "Everything that goes wrong with the country from this point forward is women’s fault" Riiiiiiight...
Assume Half of What You Hear About the Candidates is True, Oct 14
Lie Detection and Scandals, Oct 17
Is Twitter Shadowbanning me?, Oct 18
I Wake You Up for the Presidential Debate, Oct 19, Anti-Trumpers are suffering from confirmation bias. He forgets to mention that anti-Clintons are too. HE makes the point that the fear people feel for either candidate is an illusion. He ends it with "...vote for whoever has the policies you like."
I Score the Third Debate, Oct 20, Scott gives Clinton a narrow win.
The Crook Versus the Monster, Oct 21, Scott says that if Trump is elected and turns out to be a Hitler wannabe, he will use all his skills to have him assassinated. He closes with  an admonishment to look beyond the caricatures of the politicians--they're wrong. Vote for whoever has the policies that you like.
How to Insult Me on Twitter, Oct 21
Twitter and Periscope Shadowban Update. Oct 23
How to Legally Vote More Than Once, Oct 23, How to convince the other side not to vote
The Bully Party, Oct 25, Scott wholeheartedly endorses Trump
Watch the Persuasion Battle, Oct 26, I do not like Scott's direction. Some things he says have truth, OTOH, Trump is on camera as bullying and making fun of other American citizens. Scott seems to be denying this...
A Lesson in Cognitive Dissonance, Oct 27
About Leadership, Oct 28
James Comey - As seen through the Persuasion Filter, Oct 31, What is Comey up to? Is there a way to view his actions as consistent?
Candidate Risk Assessment, Oct 31, Hilary is bad because she drinks alcohol. Scott makes up numbers to measure riskiness of candidates. Guess who Scott thinks is less risky. Lol




November 2016
The Persuasion Scorecard Update - One Week Out, Nov 2, Still predicting Trump in a landslide. Fear of Hilary being the dominant emotion against her while Trump only has the Ick factor.
Same Candidates, Different Worlds, Nov 3
Unhypnotizing a Clinton Supporter, Nov 4
Trump the Closer, Nov 4
The Dehypnotizing has Begun, Nov 5
Vote with a Friend (for safety), Nov 6
I Don’t Want a Government Job, Nov 6, "The fight ends Tuesday. After that, let’s try to be useful. No matter what happens."
Thank You for The Best Year Ever, Nov 7, Scott predicts that the Dem forces will br committing election fraud. Two days ago he was still predicting a Trump landslide. Perhaps he is giving himself an out. I have to say that Scott has stuck to his guns. If he is right and Trump wins, I will have to give him serious kudos. If Hillary loses, he has still had a remarkable run.
The Last Confirmation Bias Test of This Election, Nov 8
I Answer Your Questions About Predicting President Trump, Nov 9
The De-Hitlerization of Your Brain. Nov 10
Persuasion or Coincidence?, Nov 10
While You Were Looking in the Wrong Direction, Nov 11
The Cognitive Dissonance Cluster Bomb, Nov 12
How to Break an Illusion, Nov 13
The Thought Experiment that Broke Your Brain, Nov 15
The Hypnosis Lawyer, Nov 16
Working for the Machines, Nov 17
Reprogram an Anti-Trumper with This Article, Nov 17
Generating Cognitive Dissonance for Fun, Nov 20
Persuasion Versus Populism, Nov 21
A Lesson in Cognitive Dissonance, Nov 23
The Trump Talent Stack, Nov 28
About #Pizzagate, Nov 30
The Idea You are Least Likely to Believe, Nov 30

December 2016
The New CEO’s First Moves (and Trump), Dec 1
Trump and the Taiwan Call, Dec 3
The Non-Expert Problem and Climate Change Science, Dec 5
Trump and the Secretary of State “Brand” Decision, Dec 6
How the Trump Administration Can Lower Healthcare Costs, Dec 7
Watching Trump Create Money from Nothing, Dec 9
The Time That Reality Forked Right in Front of You, Dec 10
Fake News Versus Misleading News, Dec 11
More Start-Ups That Could Lower Healthcare Costs, Dec 12
Remind Me Why Russia is Our Adversary?, Dec 13
The Campaign Hallucinations Are Lifting, Dec 14
Persuasion and ISIS, Dec 16
Watching the Climate Science Bubbles from the Outside, Dec 19
The Wikileaks Persuasion You Missed, Dec 19
Called It, Dec 19
How Many Trump Votes Did I Cause?, Dec 20
How to Be Unpersuasive, Dec 21
The Mustache Prediction, Dec 21
Can the Government Deduce Your Religion Without Asking?, Dec 22
The Trump Economic Bump, Dec 22
The Kristina Talent Stack, Dec 27
The Climate Science Challenge, Dec 28
The Illusion of Knowledge, Dec 29
Best Arguments For and Against Climate Model Credibility, Dec 29

January 2017
The Master Persuader Filter and Bernie’s Ad, Jan 1
What if Climate Change Causes more CO2?, Jan 2 (not Trump related, but elements of persuasion)
Creating Economic Assets out of Nothing, Jan 4
How About an American Expense-lowering Investment Fund?,  Jan 5
Is The Onion Advising Democrats Now?, Jan 5
Is Meryl Streep Persuasive?, Jan 9
The Master Persuader Scrambles the Frame, Jan 11
A Look Back at My Trump Predictions, Jan 20, 10:58 am

I'll keep this page up to date as he posts more.

Scott has a lot of interesting views about psychology and free will as well. His latest book lays out his thoughts on this, There's a lot of wisdom there.





22 April 2015

The Mathematics of Love

I missed this when it first came out, but for anyone who reads Emotions for Engineers, well the title speaks for itself.

Ted Talks - The Mathematics of Love - Hannah Fry

16 August 2014

Sub Optimizing Your Health

Those of you who have read my personal blog know that I am interested in planning and real asset portfolio management. When I say portfolio, it is about understanding how assets interact or correlate and how they affect the whole enterprise. For example, if a company is doing a large project, there is a system cost in doing the project that is seldom considered--when you put people or capital into a large project, there are other projects that do not get done or get delayed.

This work has caused me recently to think about a couple of things.

Maximizing the Health of an Individual at the Expense of Society

Years ago, I had a conversation with my dad who was a doctor. I was feeling pretty smug because I had read about how over-prescription of antibiotics was giving rise to the super-bugs. So I asked him what he does when a patient comes in with flu-like symptoms, but nothing definitive (or some such scenario). He said he would prescribe an antibiotic. Aha I said, you are contributing to the rise of superbugs.

His response was a little startling to me. He said that he didn't know about super-bugs, but he did know that he had a responsibility to his patient and that would be the best course of action for her.

I wrote about the super-bugs and this conversation here as well.

In essence his responsibility was to maximize the health of his patient without regard for overall public health.

Maximizing the Health of an Individual Organ at the Expense of the Body

There is a parallel in the medical specialties. Dermatologists recommend people to minimize sun and use high SPF sun block. When people do this, it minimizes the chances of getting skin cancer, especially carcinoma, the most common form of skin cancer. Their focus is on skin health. It makes sense that they would make these recommendations. In our litigious society, we all need to protect ourselves.

But, in avoiding sun, we reduce the production of vitamin D in our bodies. Vitamin D is important for immune function, and there is evidence that adequate levels of vitamin D can help prevent colds, flu, many other types of cancer, including possibly melanoma--the more deadly form of skin cancer.

So your skin might be in better shape if you minimize sun exposure, but you get the flu or something worse. Important: I do not recommend getting sunburned. Sunburn especially for those under 18 does cause damage to the skin without giving any extra vitamin D benefit. People with light complexions need to be especially careful.

The point of this is that like my father who was focused on his patient at the expense of society at large, medical specialists focus on their organ specialty at the expense of the rest of the body. Drugs work the same way. They focus on doing some very specific thing, e.g. lowering LDL in the blood, then create systemic effects. Remember side-effects are effects.

An Important Role of Government

Who then watches over the whole body and the whole of society. Well for society in the US, we have, in theory, the government. Government entities like the EPA ensure that companies and individuals do not, while pursuing their own enrichment, exact cost on the rest of society. I believe that guarding our shared resources to prevent Tragedy of the Commons is an important role of government. We have seen that with previous systems in place, industry poisoned the environment. Was it because of lack of regulation, protection of the culprits through the anonymity of incorporation, government protections such as limitation of liability, greed, or all of the above? I don't know, but it didn't work. EPA seems to be working better.

A Bad Role of Government

When it comes to the whole body though, remember that it is your body. Nobody has a greater stake than you in ensuring that your body's system is in good health and working well. You are responsible and accountable for what goes into your mouth.

The USDA (department of agriculture) is a great example of what government agencies should not be doing. Their main goal historically has been to support the agricultural sector of the US economy. I don't know the rationale for having a department with a cabinet secretary to do that, but whatever. In 1894 they got into the personal nutrition business publishing nutrition guidelines.  Until 1956, grains were just one of 7 food groups given equal weighting. In 1992 the first food guide pyramid came out emphasizing grains. Separately the United States Senate Select Committee on Nutrition and Human Needs, aka the McGovern commission, in 1974, changed the focus of our diet towards carbohydrates and away from fats. The health of our nation has been in decline ever since. Food manufacturers bear blame as well.

Don't even get me started on the FDA.

Conclusions


  1. Systems thinking is important; a holistic perspective can give important insights.
  2. Listening only to experts with a very narrow perspective can lead to sub-optimization
  3. Government tries, with mixed results, to look after the systemic good of our nation.
  4. Some of the agencies in the US government seem very closely aligned with industry to the detriment of individuals.
  5. Ultimately you are responsible for yourself. Consider the source, not just their degrees, but also their incentives in providing advice or guidance.