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will the texas primary stop the #bern?

The Obama strategy in 2008 had a plan A and a plan B. Plan A was to knock out Hillary with big victories in Iowa and New Hampshire. Didn’t work. Plan B was to pad the delegate lead by exploiting small state caucuses and minimizing the damage in Hillary friendly places like New York. That […]

Is Age a Social Cleavage?

As we grow older, we become more conservative - so goes the adage. And observations of politics tend to bear this out. The average age of a Conservative was 68, as of 2013. Compare this with Labour, which presently stands at 42. Gatherings of UKIP find an over preponderance of the middle-aged to the elderly. Show More Summary

Love is Sociological

By Peter Kaufman When I was a kid, my parents had a book that I used to flip through called Love Is Walking Hand in Hand. The book was written by Peanuts illustrator Charles Schulz, and each page had a...

Fairway Farewell?

February 10, 2016 Posted by Jay Livingston Update: Three months ago, I blogged (here) about Fairway, a New York food market. Things had not been going well for Fairway since its buyout by a private equity firm, and especially since the IPO in 2013. Show More Summary

From Our Archives: Valentine’s Day

Cultural and Historical Variation “Vinegar Valentines”: Happy Valentine’s Day, I Hate You Love, Business, and Valentine’s Day in Pakistan Valentine’s Day in Japan Before Love: Puritan Beliefs about Sex and Marriage Valentine’s Day as...Show More Summary

Auteur, Schmauteur

February 10, 2016 Posted by Jay Livingston Despite the maxim about familiarity breeding contempt, we usually like what’s familiar. With music for example, familiarity breeds hits in the short run and nostalgia in the long run. The trouble is that it’s tempting to attribute our liking to the inherent quality of the thing rather than its familiarity. Show More Summary

does piketty replicate?

Ever since the publication of Piketty’s Capital in the 21st Century, there’s been a lot of debate about the theory and empirical work. One strand of the discussion focuses on how Piketty handles the data. A number of critics have argued that the main results are sensitive to choices made in the data analysis (e.g., […]

From Our Archives: Mardi Gras

In New Orleans, it’s Mardi Gras! Everywhere else, it’s Tuesday. If you’re not in the middle of the revelry, enjoy these Mardi Gras posts from previous years: Why are there so many Mardi Gras parades? The baby dolls of Mardi Gras The flambeaux: A history of race, gender, and fire on Mardi Gras The Order of […]

hate peer review? look in the mirror

Over at Statistical Modelling, Andrew Gelman makes a very sensible point about peer review: it is as only as good as your peers. Why do psychologists worship p-values? Because they approve it in peer review. A few choice quotes: In short, if an entire group of peers has a misconception, peer review can simply perpetuate […]

Hillary Clinton: It's the Politics, Stupid

Time bullshit was called on Hillary Clinton's cheerleaders. You know what I'm talking about, the avalanche of comment saying that she must win the Democrat nomination for presidency, regardless of her record and views. And to a piece those defences are, at best, willfully clueless, and, at worst, bad faith. Show More Summary

Higher Education Widens Global Inequality

By Audrey P. Scott Dartmouth College freshman, guest blogger American colleges and universities are becoming increasingly more like multi-national corporations. Their products? Students trained to further market growth through wide ranges of advanced skills— a prospect that may seem positive...

Before Daybreak, Mardi Gras: The Skull & Bones Gang

On Mardi Gras mornings before dawn, members of the North Side Skull and Bones Gang prowl the streets. It’s a 200 year old tradition belonging to African American residents of the city. They first prowled in 1819. Photographs by David Grunfeld for nola.com. Members of the gang dress up like ominous skeletons. At nola.com, Sharon Litwin writes: […]

What Are the Odds?

February 7, 2016 Posted by Jay Livingston I’d just picked this book from off the shelf – the “New Books” shelf, though I could see it was a paperback so not entirely new. The Improbability Principle: Why Coincidences, Miracles, and Rare Events Happen Every Day by David J. Show More Summary

the cuban victory in the republican party

A number of writers noticed that we overlooked an important bit of news last week during the Iowa caucus – two Latinos and a Black man took 60% of the Iowa GOP caucus. At the very least, this is newsworthy and merits explanation. Here’s how we should understand the rise of Rubio and Cruz. The […]

New Blogs January/February 2016

It's the first Sunday of the month, so time for a new left blog round up. A View from the Attic (Labour) (Twitter) Bad Tempered Brummie Bitch (Labour) (Twitter) Disclaimer Magazine (Unaligned) (Twitter) Electable Labour (Labour) (Twitter)...Show More Summary

Will there be a Snap Election in 2016?

Toby Perkins caught the punditocracy unawares last night by floating the possibility of a snap election later on this year. Now hold on a minute, doesn't the Fixed Term Parliaments Act prevent an election from being called at the Prime Minister's convenience? Yes, that's right. Show More Summary

Cruz-Jews News

February 6, 2016 Posted by Jay Livingston When Ted Cruz says “New York,” does he really mean “Jewish”?In a Republican debate in Iowa, Maria Bartiromo asked Ted Cruz what he meant when he referred to Donald Trump’s “New York Values.”Show More Summary

jeanne lee, mal waldron, soul eyes

50+ chapters of grad skool advice goodness: Grad Skool Rulz ($2!!!!)/From Black Power/Party in the Street 

Twitter Doesn't Have to Die

If you're someone who sinks endless hours into Twitter, you couldn't have failed to spot #RIPTwitter trending overnight and for a good portion of the day. It has been suggested that the company wishes to introduce a fundamental change to the service. Show More Summary

The Dead White Guys of Theory?

By Jonathan Wynn When teaching sociology—particularly theory—we'll often hear about how most of the classic readings we assign are written by "dead white guys." And when you look through the canon it is, indeed, very pale and very male. Few...

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