The mystery of The New York Times’ anonymous op-ed: a ROAM analysis

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The New York Times posted an op-ed from an unnamed “senior official” who is managing the chaos in the Trump Administration. To truly understand what’s going on here, you need to look at the writer’s motivation. ROAM is the perfect way to do that — but in this case, it only deepens the mystery. The … Continued

New Yorker editor David Remnick justifies his about-face on Steve Bannon

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David Remnick, editor of The New Yorker, agreed to interview former Breitbart leader and Trump advisor Steve Bannon on stage at The New Yorker Festival. Then, on second thought, he decided not to. Changing your mind is hard; justifying it is even harder. The challenge here is that Bannon is the self-acknowledged leader of the … Continued

Did Brianna Wu get shafted by the Globe’s choice of photos?

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Brianna Wu may be the most tech-savvy candidate running for Congress in Massachusetts this year. But would you vote for her or her opponents on Tuesday, based on this set of photos that appeared in the The Boston Globe’s guide to the primary election? The guy on the left is incumbent Stephen Lynch, campaigning. The … Continued

Truegle: Building a Google clone that lives up to Trump’s ideals

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Donald Trump has accused Google of bias, saying that 96% of Trump News searches result in media with a left-wing bias. His economic advisor Larry Kudlow has said the government will look into regulating sites like Google. To determine the validity of Trump’s complaint, let’s invent a new Google search called “Truegle” that would live … Continued

The Milo Yiannopoulos whine is the endpoint of a troll’s lifecycle

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Milo Yiannopolous is a provocateur. A British national stirring up American politics, a gay icon of the alt-right, he takes hateful positions on race and politics that have earned him wrath and protests wherever he appears. He advocated for sex with 13-year-olds. He cheered on Gamergate’s harassment of women. As a result, now, his life … Continued

Why does everyone admire John McCain? Because he was a leader who knew how to argue.

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I have been struck by the overwhelmingly positive and admiring comments about John McCain from people at all points on the political spectrum, including not just Republicans but the likes of Bernie Sanders, Bill and Hillary Clinton, and Barack Obama.There’s a lesson here in leadership for today’s politicians, on how to argue on principle. You … Continued

Paul Manafort, Michael Cohen, and the risks of analytical optimism

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True analysts cannot afford optimism. To make an accurate prediction, you cannot let what you want to happen color what is likely to happen. But that’s exactly what I’ve seen in the wake of the conviction of Trump’s former campaign chairman Paul Manafort and the guilty plea from his former lawyer Michael Cohen. Trump-haters are … Continued

Pope Francis is passively sorry about priests abusing children

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In the wake of the grand jury report on Catholic priests abusing over a thousand children in Pennsylvania, the Pope sent a message to his flock. His passive language is emblematic of how you write to escape responsibility. The words “I’m sorry” and “It was my/our fault” are incompatible with being the infallible leader of … Continued