What the 2016 Trump vs. Clinton U.S. Election will come down to

Yes, Trump has had his post-convention bounce... But I think most Bernie supporters will still get in line behind Clinton. Michelle Obama's speech at the DNC was extraordinary. I think it will do more to unite the Democrats than Bernie's warm-tepid-warm endorsement of Hillary.

In the end, Clinton will get her own post-convention bounce (which is not guaranteed, mind you, and especially in this age where attention is so fragmented) and top Trump in the near-term polling. At the time of writing Trump was ahead in the polls-- CNN/ORC had him up by 3 points. 

My prediction: if there is a major terrorist attack on U.S. soil leading up to election night Trump will win; if not, Hillary will win. I think that's what it will come down to.

Identity is Fluid, Yes. But Amidst a Broken Multicultural Dream Only Fluid-ish

All it took was one manslaughter case and all hell has broken lose in the "Asian-American community."

What I think is really going on here is Chinese, no matter where, I'm convinced are programmed to think of themselves as rarefied and singular even. To think of yourself as Chinese is to think of yourself as distinct. The "younger, often non-Chinese Asian Americans" as Jenn Fang describes them, seem to imagine a "fellow suffering" with other minorities, namely Blacks and Latinos. The starkest dividing line--the dividing principle, if you will, between these "younger, often non-Chinese Asian Americans" and the more Chinese-identifying American citizens/residents who have come to the defense of Peter Liang can be summed up rather neatly:

Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere. (MLK Jr.)

This quotation is the DMZ. You are either on-side. Or you are off-side.

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What's the difference between India and China?

Speaking of India and having spent the last few days in New Delhi myself, I can't help but feel a great amount of optimism for India's future. In International Affairs India is slowly taking a more and more magnanimous stand towards Pakistan, for example taking steps to ease the enemy property act of 1968 (just this month), resuming bilateral talks (as of two months ago). It will grow 6% this year. It has an educated, youthful, English-speaking workforce. India is tangibly pulsing with energy, which means with simple knowledge transfer in the years to come huge population/ over time = inevitable earnings growth. And better late than never: infrastructure spend/financing/priorities are finally starting to come together.

Similarly, we could talk about the considerable wealth that Chinese companies have amassed, we could talk about the surge in number of scientific articles Chinese scientists have published, we could talk about the real innovation Chinese companies have made just in the last five or six years, whether in design or in delivery of services[iii]. To me, what makes China distinctive is China believes it should be great. 

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Commentary on NYT Article: "Choose Your Own Identity"

Nice piece in the NYT today by Bonnie Tsui.

Using the latest Pew research on being multiracial in America (more to come on that) as a springboard, Bonnie Tsui talks about her Chinese-Western "Hapa"  5-year-old son in the SF Bay Area.

3 key takeaways:

  1. "Hapa" seems to be gaining popularity with mixed people with no Asian descent
  2. Mixed White/Asian people in America are almost twice as likely to identify as "White" than as "Asian" (60% to 33%)
  3. The ability for kids in the Bay Area to choose: 1) one or the other race 2) simply "other" 3) neither 4) both, is increasingly markedly. Seems the social space is actually keeping pace with the rapid demographic changes (i.e. 1% births in the U.S. in 1970 were mixed race, whilst 10% [and rising] of births today are mixed race), which is actually quite remarkable and a testament to what an open society America is.
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Bothness Through the Lens of Ukraine

On the other hand, the West pushed too far. The Crimean Peninsula is a historically Russian enclave; indeed, a place that even the best-known Soviet dissident, Alexander Solzhenitsyn, argued shouldn’t have been cleaved from Russia when Khrushchev did so in 1954. Ukraine is the Slavic breadbasket. It is the home of Kievan Rus for god sakes! No Russian leader could ever survive another day in office if he did not act as if Ukraine was the reddest of redlines. 

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