Biden Wins!

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Submitted by svelte on November 7, 2020 - 10:10am

Long time coming, but we are finally there.

Congratulations to President-Elect Biden and our first female Vice-President-Elect Harris.

The people have spoken.

Submitted by sdduuuude on November 7, 2020 - 10:34am.

Probably more than one recount will happen, but yes - we will be getting kicked in the left nut instead of the right nut for a few years.

Submitted by svelte on November 7, 2020 - 10:58am.

I'm OK with most presidents.

The one who is just wrapping up his term was so so so terrible that anything at all will be better than what we have. Horrendous.

Submitted by Coronita on November 7, 2020 - 11:35am.

until trump, I've never voted across party lines at the national level. But I've been waiting 4 years to be able to say 3 simple words to Mr. Trump.

Mr. Trump,

YOU'RE FIRED, ASSHOLE!

Submitted by sdduuuude on November 7, 2020 - 11:48am.

I suspect his inability to lose gracefully is going to end up being worse than anything he has said or done in the past. Although - check out my next post on Benford's law. Maybe some fraud is going on.

And Biden going to borrow trillions from our children to "save" the country from Covid.

Maybe conservatives are smart to vote for him. It seems he has been set up to fail - handed an economy that can't possibly stay afloat.

CNN and MSNBC aren't going to have anything to cover for the next 4 years. I hope their revenue goes in the shitter. They deserve it. FOX, too.

Submitted by sdduuuude on November 7, 2020 - 12:27pm.

I thought this was very interesting.

The percentage of blacks, latinos and women voting for trump all increased from 2016 to 2020.

The percentage of white males voting for trump went down.

See the "by gender and race" section:

https://www.cnn.com/interactive/2020/11/...

Submitted by svelte on November 7, 2020 - 12:44pm.

sdduuuude wrote:
I suspect his inability to lose gracefully is going to end up being worse than anything he has said or done in the past. Although - check out my next post on Benford's law. Maybe some fraud is going on.
.

So your theory is what - that a Democrat gave a false total as the result from each precinct and that's why it doesn't conform to "Benford's Law"? Because, you'd think that if they had fed fake ballots through the system, that would have conformed to Benford's Law and ended up with a 1 in the first digit most of the time.

Not buying it.

Also kinda looks like someone handpicked a small set of precincts to show.

Submitted by sdduuuude on November 7, 2020 - 12:58pm.

I'm a numbers guy. I'm not saying the Dems did anything. Maybe the republicans somehow shed votes for Biden. Whoever made these charts brought data - and it is quite compelling.

I agree, I would like to see all of them. If all of them do conform to BL and these are the only outliers, then it makes it even more suspect. If they are all over the board, then maybe less. If always for the same candidate, maybe more.

Still, the fact that all the other candidates tallies follow the law and one doesn't is very very odd.

Submitted by sdduuuude on November 7, 2020 - 1:06pm.

I replied to your "fake ballots" comment in the other thread.

https://www.piggington.com/benfords_law_...

Submitted by Rich Toscano on November 7, 2020 - 3:04pm.

I'm shutting down this Benford's Law nonsense right now, as described here: https://www.piggington.com/benfords_law_...

Submitted by sdduuuude on November 7, 2020 - 6:11pm.

And if you look even further, you would see that there is a rebuke to that article by Walter Mebane, at the University of Michigan.

https://electionupdates.caltech.edu/2011...

"“Benford’s Law and the Detection of Election Fraud” raises doubts about whether a test based on the mean of the second significant digit of vote counts equals 4.187 is useful as a test for the occurrence of election fraud. The paper mistakenly associates such a test with Benford’s Law, considers a simulation exercise that has no apparent relevance for any actual election, applies the test to inappropriate levels of aggregation, and ignores existing analysis of recent elections in Russia. If tests based on the second significant digit of precinct-level vote counts are diagnostic of election fraud, the tests need to use expectations that take into account the features of ordinary elections, such as strategic actions. Whether the tests are useful for detecting fraud remains an open question, but approaching this question requires an approach more nuanced and tied to careful analysis of real election data than one sees in the discussed paper."

I agree with your "luinatic" edit, though.

Since the Michigan guy says it is an "open question" I'll change my statement from "proof positive" to "worth looking at."

It's data. Someone brought data. I don't think it should be ignored and I don't think you should have closed the thread.

Submitted by TeCKis300 on November 7, 2020 - 6:12pm.

Trumps actions in the last week epitomizes why he is unworthy and a failure.

No matter if I believed in any of his policies.

Lies, deceit, treachery. Qualities unbecoming of any leader let alone a sitting President. It's been a sad time for the people of this nation, particularly the children, to witness such behavior. Even worse with many reflecting it in their own conduct.

Good riddance.

Submitted by sdduuuude on November 7, 2020 - 6:29pm.

Rich Toscano wrote:
I'm shutting down this Benford's Law nonsense right now, as described here: https://www.piggington.com/benfords_law_and_voter_fraud#comment-292046

It isn't "Benford's Theory."
It is "Benford's Law"
Dismissing it outright as a conspiracy theory is not right.

By the way, here is a syllabus to mebane's class at Michigan:

http://www-personal.umich.edu/~wmebane/p...

And that includes references to several studies, papers and lectures regarding the application of Benford's Law to elections. Admittedly, I haven't read them all, but they are every much academic papers as the one you cited:

Pericchi, Luis Raúl and David Torres. 2011. “Quick Anomaly Detection by the Newcomb-Benford Law, with Applications to Electoral Processes Data from the USA, Puerto Rico and Venezuela.” Statistical Science 26 (Nov, 4): 502-516. (in file STS0703-006R4A0.pdf).

Mebane, Walter R., Jr. 2014. “Can Votes Counts' Digits and Benford's Law Diagnose Elections?” In Steven J. Miller, The Theory and Applications of Benford's Law, Princeton UP, 206-216. (in file miller13.pdf).

Mebane, Walter R., Jr. 2013. Election Forensics, chapters 9, 10 and 12. (in files Chapter9.pdf, Chapter10.pdf and Chapter12.pdf).

Mebane. 2007. “Election Forensics: Statistics, Recounts and Fraud,” Presented at the 2007 Annual Meeting of the Midwest Political Science Association, Chicago, IL, April 12-16. http://www.umich.edu/~wmebane/mw07.pdf

Wendy K. Tam Cho and Brian J. Gaines. 2007. “Breaking the (Benford) Law: Statistical Fraud Detection in Campaign Finance.” The American Statistician, 61 (August): 218-223.

Mebane. 2008. “Election Forensics: The Second-digit Benford's Law Test and Recent American Presidential Elections.” In R. Michael Alvarez, Thad E. Hall and Susan D. Hyde, eds., Election Fraud: Detecting and Deterring Electoral Manipulation. Washington, DC: Brookings Press, 2008, pp. 162-181.
http://www.umich.edu/~wmebane/fraud06.pdf

Mebane. 2006. “Election Forensics: Vote Counts and Benford's Law,” Presented at at the 2006 Summer Meeting of the Political Methodology Society, UC-Davis, July 20-22.
http://www.umich.edu/~wmebane/pm06.pdf

Submitted by sunny88 on November 7, 2020 - 7:44pm.

Both parties are corrupt and Biden is not better than Trump. We need more parties so that the power is more balanced by forming coalitions. Most people are are somewhere in between and not being represented.

Submitted by TeCKis300 on November 7, 2020 - 9:26pm.

I agree. We need a functional government. The parties are self serving rather than having the better interest of the country.

That point is distinct and different however - there is a better man between the two. My vote was strictly on character this time as it has to start with that. Before we can address anything else.

Submitted by Rich Toscano on November 7, 2020 - 10:00pm.

Haha, I know it's Benford's Law (not Theory). I'm not denying the mathematical law. I was denying that proves voter fraud in a way that somehow eluded election experts, but was only noticed by a guy with an unhinged Trump-worshipping propaganda site.

I quickly founding a paper questioning the premise, and you have found counters to that. Fair enough. But the fact remains that people who actually have expertise in how elections work are not concerned. I think it's important not to draw strong conclusions in an area that's not your area of specialty, when those who do specialize in it say something different.

Meanwhile, there are hyper-partisan propaganda outlets, along with our soon to be ex president, spreading verifiable lies about voter fraud. This is dangerous and harmful and honestly makes me pretty upset. I don't want anything even adjacent to that on this site.... and this conversation was adjacent enough that I just didn't want it here. Thanks for taking it in stride.

Submitted by sdduuuude on November 7, 2020 - 11:43pm.

Rich Toscano wrote:
Haha, I know it's Benford's Law (not Theory). I'm not denying the mathematical law. I was denying that proves voter fraud in a way that somehow eluded election experts.

I thought it would provoke interesting mathematical discussions. My biggest concern would be - did he use the right data or just make it up - which would be voter fraud fraud.

It's all pretty damn interesting to me. After browsing through some of those papers, it seems that 2BL is a much better test- that is, checking the distributions of the 2nd digit because you get better distribution of the 2nd digit across data that is not spread across multiple orders of magnitude.

I almost didn't post the conservative commentary link. Shouldn't have. Should have just posted the data because it is really fascinating.

It doesn't really prove fraud, but it certainly suggests an anomaly.

Submitted by svelte on November 7, 2020 - 11:44pm.

Thank you Rich.

I'm honestly quite confused. How did we get here as a society, where we have a significant part of our society buying into conspiracy theories? Do they honestly believe that multiple states were infiltrated? My god, how much damage has this president done?

Can you imagine the pandemonium in this country if the courts invalidated the voters in five states to award the presidency to Trump? Citizens would come unglued. There could possibly be no more United States. There has been no point in my lifetime where I felt I had to stand up and risk all for what is right. If the courts overrule voters on this election - that would be my moment.

Submitted by SDNative2 on November 7, 2020 - 11:46pm.

Wow, I thought TDS would subside now that Biden appears to have it in the can.

BTW and FWIW, the media does not declare a president. It's a constitutional, statutory process completed in December.

Al Gore litigated for 37 days in 2020.

Biden hasn't won yet.

Censored in 3...2...

Submitted by spdrun on November 8, 2020 - 12:06am.

I shouldn't be arguing with an asshat blathering being "TDS", but I'm bored and here goes:

There isn't one close state that would flip the election like in 2000. Do you really think that multiple (3-4) states threw their elections as to favor Biden, while no fraud occurred to favor Trump?

If this election is handed to Trump, despite the will of the American people that it be otherwise, I hope that it will result in the American people taking matters into their own hands.

Thank God for COVID -- it makes developing respiratory symptoms and staying home until a test comes back (in many states it takes 7+ days) very easy. Now imagine this beautiful fact being used to organize a nationwide strike or sickout! You can't be fired for being too careful, know what I mean?

This should be the first step. If the next step involves the US tearing itself to pieces, so be it. If this country is handed to a scumbag with Fascist tendencies, it's better off breaking up.

Submitted by sdduuuude on November 7, 2020 - 11:58pm.

svelte wrote:
Thank you Rich.

I'm honestly quite confused. How did we get here as a society, where we have a significant part of our society buying into conspiracy theories?

You mean - how did we get to a point where data and mathematical laws are mistaken for conspiracy theories ? I can't imagine - but you and Rich need to show more of an interest in math (that's supposed to be funny and lighten the mood).

I can't imagine the courts hold up any of Trump's lawsuits but I can't imagine he goes away quietly either.

Even Chris Christie gave him a face-palm on his election night speech.

Submitted by spdrun on November 8, 2020 - 12:01am.

Benford's Law depends on the initial data set. Let's say we have a set of states with 6,000,000 voters that tend to vote close to 50/50. Would their results follow Benford's Law, or would 2 and 3 be the most common (likely only) first digits, without fraud?

Submitted by sdduuuude on November 8, 2020 - 12:07am.

spdrun wrote:
There isn't one close state that would flip the election like in 2000. Do you really think that multiple (3-4) states threw their elections as to favor Biden, while no fraud occurred to favor Trump?

Certainly not. And I don't think I presented the information in a way that suggests it.

I put the probability that there is zero material (i.e. changes the outcome) election fraud in the US at 0 and I wouldn't suggest either party to be more likely the cause of it than the other.

Submitted by spdrun on November 8, 2020 - 12:14am.

I was replying to "SDNative2", not you, unless you have a sockpuppet account.

Anyway, we have WI, PA, NV, AZ, and GA, all of which have much larger margins of votes than Florida did in 2000 ... a recount only changed Florida by about 1200 votes! The chances of Trump flipping 3-4 states are basically nil, unless the courts engage in outright manipulation -- in which case, "by any means necessary" becomes the order of the day.

Submitted by sdduuuude on November 8, 2020 - 12:12am.

spdrun wrote:
Benford's Law depends on the initial data set. Let's say we have a set of states with 6,000,000 voters that tend to vote close to 50/50. Would their results follow Benford's Law, or would 2 and 3 be the most common (likely only) first digits, without fraud?

Yes, but you don't have that. The data seemed to come in low level within a county. And, as presented, Trump and the third and fourth and even fifth place followed Benford's Law.

So the race was close and Trump's numbers followed Benford's law but Biden's didn't, in the data I saw.

After some reading, it seems that using the second digit avoids the problem you mention.

See - it is interesting, ya ?

Submitted by spdrun on November 8, 2020 - 12:20am.

This explains it better than I can ... basically, it's an extension of the size issue that I mentioned previously:

https://skeptics.stackexchange.com/quest...

Looking at the actual Chicago data at https://www.chicagoelections.gov/en/elec... by precinct as of late November 7, the charts for Chicago look credible but the assumption that Benford's law should apply do not, at least for Biden/Harris or the minor candidates.

Of the 2069 precincts (most of which are of broadly similar size), Biden/Harris won fewer than 100 votes in 12 precincts, and more than 999 votes in 4 precincts. All the rest (more than 99%) had three digits for their votes, violating the requirement that natural data satisfying Benford's law should span several orders of magnitude. More than half the precincts (1100) gave Biden/Harris from 300 through to 499 votes, making 3 and 4 the most common first digits (the chart reflects this and is close to showing the actual frequencies by hudreds of votes, so 300-399 was the most common).

For Trump/Pence, votes were more widely dispersed: 99 precincts with 1-9 votes, 1339 precincts with 10-99, and 633 precincts with 100 or more votes. This dispersion over orders of magnitude allowed a greater chance of coming closer to matching Benford's law.

For the minor candidates, they only reached double digits in a very small number of precincts (and got 0 votes in hundreds of precincts - not shown on the charts) so the charts are close to showing their actual vote distribution with censoring of 0 and 10+; again you would not expect Benford's law to apply.

Chicago was an odd choice to investigate for suspected cheating in 2020 where the gap in Illinois was 12 percentage points (1960 when it was 0.2 percentage points might have been more interesting). I suspect it was chosen simply because the data is publicly available and the distortions caused by similar precinct size led to this non-Benford law result. You will see this elsewhere for similar reasons: in 2019 very few British MPs won a number of votes starting with 5-9, as their constituencies are of broadly similar sizes and the winners usually got in the range from 10,000 to 49,999 votes, again failing the spanning several orders of magnitude requirement.

Submitted by sdduuuude on November 8, 2020 - 12:19am.

spdrun wrote:
I was replying to "SDNative2", not you, unless you have a sockpuppet account.

I had to look that up. No, I don't.

Submitted by sdduuuude on November 8, 2020 - 12:31am.

spdrun wrote:
This explains it better than I can ... basically, it's an extension of the size issue that I mentioned previously ...

Very good, spdrun. Very good.

See, now if Rich had just posted that in the Benford's Law thread I started specifically to discuss that set of data instead of closing the thread down we wouldn't have to have all these posts in the Biden Wins thread.

I'd love to see the 2nd digit analysis on these numbers. I bet they clean right up.

Submitted by svelte on November 8, 2020 - 12:25am.

sdduuuude wrote:

Yes, but you don't have that. The data seemed to come in low level within a county. And, as presented, Trump and the third and fourth and even fifth place followed Benford's Law.

So the race was close and Trump's numbers followed Benford's law but Biden's didn't, in the data I saw.

After some reading, it seems that using the second digit avoids the problem you mention.

See - it is interesting, ya ?

You're cruisin' for a bannin'.

As I said, this is my moment. This is where I choose to make a stand.

If the lifted 4x4 crowd decides to overrule the American people, we'll take it to the limit. You lost. Put on your big boy pants.

Submitted by spdrun on November 8, 2020 - 12:30am.

For what it's worth, SDNative2 was the one who posted the troll about TDS yip-yap-yip-yap, not sdduuuude. sdduuuude appears ready to listen to reason -- why Benford's Law is useless in this instance.

Submitted by sdduuuude on November 8, 2020 - 12:32am.

spdrun wrote:
For what it's worth, SDNative2 was the one who posted the troll about TDS yip-yap-yip-yap, not sdduuuude. sdduuuude appears ready to listen to reason -- why Benford's Law is useless in this instance.

The link you posted shows a 2nd digit analysis that fails and 2nd digit analysis doesn't require multiple orders of magnitude.

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