Blue vs Red America

It’s 2:10 AM and I couldn’t sleep. I was thinking: How many Americans live in blue states vs red states according to Nate Silver’s Who will win the presidency? map?

There were other things flowing through my head that had nothing to do with the 2016 election, but when I decided to get up and attempt to wear myself out so I could go back to sleep, this is what I decided to do: tally the populations of the blue vs. red states.

I’m sure there will be Trump supporters, if they can read above 3rd grade level (the grade level for this post is 8.2 and it will take 2.29 minutes to read this post according to readablity-score.com), who will disagree with Nate Silver’s 2016 Election Forecasts, and that’s okay. They probably don’t know that Nate Silver’s track record for calling elections is close to 100%.  In addition, Nate Silver says that the further out from an election we are, the higher the odds are that his forecasts could be wrong. In addition, Silver doesn’t rely on just one reputable poll, he looks at all of them from regional to state to national and runs those numbers through an algorithm 20,000x each time (for Trump’s supporters: computers crunch numbers much faster than humans using their fingers and toes) to come up with forecasts that can change several times a day.

Anyway, after counting the populations of the 28 blue states on Silver’s forecast map, the total was about 211 million (66.3 percent of the population) with 107 million (33.6 percent) living in red states.

I know that there will be Trump supporters in every state, but that doesn’t matter. What counts is the 538 Electoral College votes (hover your curser over Silver’s map to discover how many Electoral Votes each state has), and if the majority of voters in a state go for one candidate most or all of the Electoral College votes go to that candidate.

I suspect that this is where Trump, if he were reading this post, would pull one of his ignorant Trumpism lies and Tweet out that it was corrupt and unconstitutional for 538 people to decide who the next president was going to be, because he and most of his supporters probably have no idea that this is what the American Founding Fathers wrote in the U.S. Constitution back in the 18th century when they were deciding what type of government we’d have.

Then there is the fact that Georgia and Arizona are clearly battle ground states and Hillary could lose them by the time November rolls around.  But those two states only have about 16.6 million people, and that still leaves the blue states with about 61 percent of the U.S. population.

Nate Silver is probably biased in favor of Hillary Clinton, but that doesn’t change the numbers unless he’s manipulating them.  And he wasn’t manipulating the numbers when the Forecast, soon after the GOP convention, favored Trump to win by a small margin.

That was something that changed after the Democratic convention and Trump’s attack on the parents of a fallen American Muslim hero who sacrificed his life for his troops in Iraq back in 2004 when G. W. Bush was president. Did you know that Trump’s campaign blamed the death of Army Captain Humayun Khan on the policies of President Obama and Hillary Clinton? Obama was elected president four years after the captain’s death.

_______________________

Lloyd Lofthouse is a former U.S. Marine and Vietnam Veteran, with a BA in journalism and an MFA in writing, who taught in the public schools for thirty years (1975 – 2005).

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What reading level should you write for?

When I was earning my BA in journalism back in the 1970s, we were told to write at a 5th grade vocabulary/literacy level.

You might ask why? Well, if you write for PhD’s, how much of an audience will you reach? The answer is about 2.5 million Americans have a PhD, and that’s less than one percent of all Americans.

In addition, The Institute of Education Sciences reported in 2008 that roughly 15% of the population reads at a university undergraduate level, but the average American reads at a 7th or 8th grade level according to the Clear Language Group.com.

Because most fiction (I’m not talking about literature) is written for the most people, the average reader is not exposed to higher literacy level writing, and they do not improve beyond the level they are reading.

It has been estimated that there are more than 62.4 million avid readers in the U.S., according to Book Business Magazine, and 63 percent are women. I think it’s safe to say that PhD’s are a minority among avid readers, and discovering what women read is more important than using multi-syllable words to impress an insignificant number of over-educated people.

In fact, “We shouldn’t discount simple writing, but instead embrace it. People freak out that teenagers are reading 5th-grade-level books, but it turns out that’s not a bad sign. Of course, we want to teach teens to comprehend higher reading levels than Harry Potter, but just because we can doesn’t mean we should be forced to waste time slogging through Ph.D.-level papers when the Ph.D.’s could write more fluently. …

“The other lesson from this study is that we should aim to reduce complexity in our writing as much as possible. We won’t lose credibility by doing so. Our readers will comprehend and retain our ideas more reliably. And we’ll have a higher likelihood of reaching more people.” – Contently.com

On that note, did you know that Pulitzer and Nobel Prize winning author Ernest Hemmingway’s The Old Man and the Sea has a 4th grade reading level – think about it?  And Donald Trump talks like a Third-Grader explaining how he won the Republican primary. Trump’s competition scored above the average literacy level.

LR for Cover for Book One on August 12 - 2016_edited-4

If you are a writer (author, journalist, writer, blogger, etc.) and you want to know what literacy level you write at, do what I just did and use Measure Text Readability through Readability Score.com.  For instance, I ran the first chapter – with 1,409 words – of my next novel, “Becoming Human” in the Last Sorcerer Series, and came up with an average reading grade level of 7.0. Not Hemingway, for sure, but also not above the reading level of the average American. Don’t forget, most readers don’t read books they can’t understand.

_______________________

Lloyd Lofthouse is a former U.S. Marine and Vietnam Veteran, with a BA in journalism and an MFA in writing, who taught in the public schools for thirty years (1975 – 2005).

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The Donald Trump Campaign’s Latest Stupidity Explodes on Twitter

The Soulful Veteran's Blog

Donald Trump’s spokeswoman, Katrina Pierson, who is as ignorant as the Donald is and probably has the same narcissist ego, took to Twitter and blamed President Obama and Hillary Clinton for the death of Captain Humayun Khan, who Trump insulted when he insulted the hero’s parents when the mother did not talk at the DNC.

But Captain Khan sacrificed his life to save his men from a suicide bomber in 2004 when G. W. Bush was President, four years before Obama was elected president.

Of course it isn’t Katrina’s fault if Trump ordered her to do it. From what I’ve read of his business history based on the experience of people who once worked for him, the Donald is an extreme micromanager and no one does anything without him knowing and approving.

In addition, this is what I’ve been thinking. Captain Khan deliberately risked and then lost his life to…

View original post 449 more words

The Ignorance of Donald Trump on Display with another Foolish Twitter Rant as he insults a U.S. Marine

The Soulful Veteran's Blog

Donald J. Trump went on another Twitter rampage after the Democratic National Convention ended, and in one Tweet he said, “General John Allen, who I never met but spoke against me last night, failed badly in his fight against ISIS. His record = BAD #Never Hillary”.

This is another example of how ignorant and foolish Donald Trump is.

How could General John Allen (click link to discover Allen’s accomplishments) fail badly in a fight he never fought? Although he served in Iraq, he never had command of the Multi-National Forces West, and he retired from active duty more than a year before the Islamic State of ISIS and/or ISIL was established.

Who is General John Allen? CNN reported, “Allen graduated with honors from the U.S. Naval Academy in 1976, and has racked up a long and distinguished list of accomplishments both on the battlefields of Afghanistan and Iraq as well…

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Don’t let your emotions decide who you will vote for in the 2016 Presidential Election

There is a question that every open-minded Hillary Clinton Hater should ask. How guilty is she of wrongdoing? To answer that I’m going to turn to a few fact check sites, but I’ve discovered that whenever a fact check site reports what someone doesn’t want to believe, they often publicly discredit that fact check site dismissing it as a valid source.

So, how accurate are fact check sites and are they really biased? If you have an open mind, here’s a site that checks the fact finders: So Who’s checking the fact-finders? We are

Of course, it goes without saying that liars and the fools that believe them, are going to hate these fact check sites so they will cast doubt if the rest of us let them get away with it.

On Snopes, I counted 32 allegations about the Clintons that were fact checked.

  • 20 of the Clinton allegations of wronging were labeled FALSE
  • 2 were marked as LEGENDS, a popular story regarded as historical but unauthenticated. This means there is no proof that it happened.
  • 3 of the allegations were UNDETERMINED, and that means undecided as in our lawsuit is still undetermined.
  • 3 were labeled TRUE (click the next link and discover what Snopes found was actually true)
  • 4 were MIXED, meaning they were partially true but have been exaggerated over time.

Then there’s the Politifact files on Clinton and Trump’s lies during the campaign.

Politifact found that Trump lies 86 percent of the time, and 55 percent of his statements were rated False and Pants on Fire. That rating came from 203 statements Trump has made. Clinton’s rating was based on 226 of her statements, and 50 percent were rated half true or worse. Only 14 percent were rated False and Pants on Fire.

In fact, I think every voter should judge Hillary Clinton/Tim Kaine versus Donald Trump/Mike Pence not based on myths, lies, rumors, anger, emotion, hate and misinformation, but on their records (what they actually say, write and do) through Vote Smart.com, and then pick the team that most closely represents their political beliefs.

Hillary Clinton

Tim Kaine

Donald Trump

Mike Pence

Vote Smart, using all the actual information on each candidate, and not any myths and/or allegations, makes it simple with Vote Easy (click link) to discover where each candidate stands based on what’s actually known about them. There is a Vote Easy for presidential candidates and for both Houses of Congress.  All you have to do is click on the tabs at the top of the screen — once you are on the Vote Smart page — to discover where each candidate stands on issues starting with Abortion to Social Security.

For instance, just for Abortion, Hillary is pro-choice, Gary Johnson is pro-choice, Jill Stein is pro-choice, and Donald Trump is Pro-Life. If voters followed what they think, then, according to Pew Research.org,  56 percent of U.S. adults should vote for a pro-choice candidate, but where a candidate stands on abortion shouldn’t be the only issue, because there is a lot more than just abortion to consider. There is also: the budget, crime, the economy, education, the environment, guns, health care, immigration, marriage, national security, and social security.

Since there is little or no political history for Donald Trump, I suggest reading these two sources about him to discover the real Donald Trump and not just what he says about how big his thing is and hands are, how great he is, how popular he is, and how smart his brain is.

First: The Mind of Donald Trump

“As a businessman, Donald Trump gained fame as a gambling czar rivaling his renown as a developer. But a close examination of his record in gaming reveals that while Trump profited richly, his stock and bondholders could hardly have fared worse … from its beginning as a public company, Trump Hotels struggled under a heavy debt load, which started at $494 million, and rose to $1.8 billion as Trump piled on more and more debt consolidating his empire under the public company. In the end, it was the excessive borrowings that proved the company’s undoing. Nonetheless, it never seemed to diminish Trump’s annual paycheck.”

Second: How Donald Trump Made Millions Off His biggest Business Failure

In addition, back in 2008, this piece ran about Hillary Clinton in Psychology Today:  Hillary Clinton: “Deranged Narcissist?” Labels as name-calling

“Narcissists do not listen. Hillary does, as many on the campaign trail have commented on.

“Narcissists lack empathy. Hillary does not. She spent her adult life, as she has said repeatedly, toiling on behalf of the working poor, on things like universal health care for those who lack the money to find coverage on their own. Let’s face it: narcissists are not big on public service. They serve themselves, they don’t serve others.

“Narcissists are supersensitive to criticism and prone to ‘narcissistic injury.’ Clinton’s the polar opposite. She gets up, brushes off, and moves on.”

Then there is this Character study of HRC out of Saint John’s University in Minnesota that offers a different perspective. You will have to decide if is biased or not.

It also helps to compare Hillary Clinton’s top 10 campaign promises to Donald Trump’s top 10.

The odds are that Hillary Clinton or Donald Trump will be the next president of the United States. Don’t allow your emotions to decide who you vote for or if you don’t vote at all.

_______________________

Lloyd Lofthouse is a former U.S. Marine and Vietnam Veteran,
who taught in the public schools for thirty years (1975 – 2005).

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Lofthouse’s first novel was the award winning historical fiction My Splendid Concubine [3rd edition]. His second novel was the award winning thriller Running with the Enemy followed by his award winning memoir Crazy is Normal.

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A brief history of America’s climb out of the slime, and its return to the muck

Starting with Lincoln, the U.S. rid itself of slavery, but not racism and segregation.

The next move out of the slime of suffering caused by corruption and greed for most of the people was when VP Teddy Roosevelt became president in 1901 after the assassination of President William McKinley. He broke the monopoly trusts of Standard Oil, the coal industry and the railroads, etc. through 40 lawsuits, and he launched the conservation of natural resources in addition to setting aside 125 million acres as national forests. He later added 85 million more acres in Alaska and the Pacific Northwest. When the labor unions were threatened with extermination through legislation and corporate pressure, Teddy supported the existence of the organized, democratic labor movement.

In 1900, 40 percent of Americans lived in poverty; the average lifespan was 46.3 for men and 48.3 for women, 7 percent of 17/18 year olds graduated from high school and only 3 percent went to college. Last year more than 80 percent of 17/18 years olds graduated from high school on time and the U.S. is the 4th ranked, most educated country on the planet with almost 3 college grads for every job that requires a college degree. With the publicly funded privatization of public education for the growth of profits and wealth and the use of high stakes tests to rank both teachers and children and then punish them both when the scores are low, the golden era of public education is about to end.

With FDR we got Social Security, won World War II, and started the climb out of the Great Depression with his public works projects to put Americans back to work.

In 1920, American women got the vote after struggling for more than a century.

The Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938, which for the first time set national minimum wage and maximum hour standards for workers in interstate commerce, also placed limitations on child labor. In effect, the employment of children less than sixteen years of age was prohibited in manufacturing and mining.

Union membership peeked in 1945 with 33.4 percent of the workforce and fluttered on life support until 1956 at 33.2 percent when it started its long decline to where it is today representing 11.2 percent of the workforce.

The share of national income was divided up more equitably between the top 10 percent and the other 90 percent between 1942 – 1985 when that ended during the Reagan presidency. Today the wealthiest 10 percent have almost half of the nation’s income.

We can blame Eisenhower for the birth of the military industrial complex that sucks more than $600 billion annually from taxes that adds the most to the national debt without really benefiting many Americans from the working class.

President Kennedy signed executive orders prohibiting racial discrimination and laid the groundwork for the Civil Rights Act of 1964. For that, he was assassinated. Then LBJ led the war against racism, segregation and poverty in the United States.

The evil has always been there, and President Ronald Reagan is responsible for successfully turning America back to the slime of corruption and greed that comes with corporate capitalism, and it was launched with his trickle-down economic policy known as Reaganomics where the wealthiest Americans piss on the rest of us whenever they felt like sharing a snippet of their hoarded and sheltered wealth.

A President Trump will finish the job and do his best to return America to where it was before Abraham Lincoln freed the African American slaves and Teddy Roosevelt became president followed by FDR and LBJ. That’s what Trump means by making ‘America Great Again’.

The Golden Age of the United States as a republic without slavery or servitude and with a participatory democracy for men and women lasted for about 43 years give or take a few years depending on individual perceptions.

The final nails in the coffin were Citizens United and the rise of Trumpism.

Without Hillary Clinton (HRC) making it to the White House and appointing the next Supreme Court Justice, the Golden Age will be dead and buried. Long live the Golden Age of America. Regardless of what anyone thinks of HRC, she has a long record of working hard to improve women’s rights and the quality of life for children. Donald Trump has done nothing but cheat others, lie and bully anyone that gets in his way. There is no way anyone can deny this, because Trump’s own history in business is littered with the evidence of his corruption, bankruptcies, narcissism, bragging, and greed. And anyone with ears and eyes knows that Trump is a misogynist when it comes to women. Can anyone find anything of significance that Donald Trump has done to help others, and if he did anything, how many benefited and for how long?

Politico.com reports what HRC has accomplished during her political career, something few know because of all the negative, hate-media propaganda focused on Hillary 24/7:

  1. Her China speech on women.
  2. Her role in killing Osama bin Laden.
  3. Management of the State Department during which time we saw a 50 percent increase in exports to China, aggressive work on climate (particularly at Copenhagen), and the effort to create and implement the toughest sanctions ever on Iran—helping to lead us to the agreement currently on the table.
  4. Nearly every foreign policy victory of President Obama’s second term has Secretary Clinton’s fingerprints on it. America’s foreign policy was stronger when Hillary Clinton left the State Department than when she arrived.
  5. Her accomplishments extend to health care, as well. As First Lady, she helped create and guide through Congress Children’s Health Insurance Program, a key program that brought health care coverage to millions of children. As Senator, she worked across the aisle to provide full military health benefits to reservists and National Guard members.
  6. Secretary Clinton was also an outspoken champion for women around the world.
  7. She was also the author of the Pediatric Research Equity Act. This law required drug companies to study their products in children. The Act is responsible for changing the drug labeling of hundreds of drugs with important information about safety and dosing of drugs for children.

No wonder Russian’s Putin and North Korea’s Kim Jong-un have endorsed Donald Trump for President and added to the mudslinging, lies and misinformation about Hillary Clinton.

_______________________

Lloyd Lofthouse is a former U.S. Marine and Vietnam Veteran,
who taught in the public schools for thirty years (1975 – 2005).

Crazy is Normal FREE Promotion July 2016

Where to Buy

Lofthouse’s first novel was the award winning historical fiction My Splendid Concubine [3rd edition]. His second novel was the award winning thriller Running with the Enemy followed by his award winning memoir Crazy is Normal.

To follow this Blog via E-mail see upper left-hand column and click on “FOLLOW!”