Weekend Digest: The bringing back LincolnLogs, Clinton slipping and Hell freezes over edition

by Larry Brannan ([email protected]) 147 views 


On this week’s TV edition of Talk Business & Politics, which airs Sundays at 9:30 a.m. on KATV Channel 7 in Central Arkansas and in Northeast Arkansas on KAIT-NBC, Sundays at 10 a.m.:

Electoral Math
The Electoral College map. Who is in game shape to win the Presidency on Tuesday? Will Democrats take the Senate? We’ll run through scenarios with number cruncher and pollster analyst extraordinaire Steven Shepard with Politico who joins us for a final review. Plus, two Clinton School of Public Service students share their Electoral College predictions.

Medical Marijuana
The most controversial issue on the Arkansas ballot: Medical marijuana. The polls show it’s a tight race. Supporter David Couch and opponent Arkansas Surgeon General Dr. Greg Bledsoe square off for a final debate.

Jobs, jobs, jobs
And, in the latest jobs numbers, which sectors are hot, which ones are not? We’ll run through the data and analyze the results.

Tune in to Talk Business & Politics in Central Arkansas on KATV Channel 7, Sundays at 9:30 a.m. and in Northeast Arkansas on KAIT-NBC, Sundays at 10 a.m. Coming in January 2017, Talk Business & Politics will air in Northwest Arkansas on KFSM Channel 5 at 10:30 a.m. following “Face the Nation.”

“After five films, director Jeff Nichols (of Little Rock) and cinematographer Adam Stone have become adept at capturing a sparse, unconventional vision of life sparked by the bonds that keep people together,” says Indie Wire.

And in “Loving,” the historical drama about the landmark 1967 Supreme Court case that legalized the interracial marriage of Richard (Joel Edgerton) and Mildred Loving (Ruth Negga) in Virginia, the filmmaking duo take their vision to another level.

Nichols and Stone emphasize love as an inalienable right for this simple, rural couple that changed the history of race relations in this country. More on this remarkable film and how it was made at this link.

Marketplace posts, “If you want to know what it takes to bring a manufacturing job back to the United States, the best place to start is with someone who’s done it.”

Like many manufacturers, the makers of TinkerToys and LincolnLogs shifted a lot of production to China in the late 90’s.

“The savings were dramatic,” recalls Michael Araten, CEO of K’NEX. “In the range of 40 to 70 percent in some cases. Primarily it was labor costs but it was also the supply chain – China in particular subsidized the factories, subsidized the trucks to get things back and forth.”

But in 2009, K’NEX did exactly what the presidential candidates want companies to do, it brought 90 percent of its production back to the U.S.

Why? Because all those pluses in China had started to fade away.

“In a world where manufacturing jobs are fewer and higher tech, bringing them back requires a different workforce than in the past,” the article says.

Click on this link for more on this story.

“Many alarms have sounded on the potential for artificial intelligence (AI) technologies to upend the workforce, especially for easy-to-automate jobs. But managers at all levels will have to adapt to the world of smart machines,” reports Harvard Business Review.

The fact is, artificial intelligence will soon be able to do the administrative tasks that consume much of managers’ time faster, better, and at a lower cost.

“How can managers — from the front lines to the C-suite — thrive in the age of AI? To find out, we surveyed 1,770 managers from 14 countries and interviewed 37 executives in charge of digital transformation at their organizations. Using this data, we identified five practices that successful managers will need to master.”

Get more here.

Forbes posts, “As of early this morning, after the Chicago Cubs won their first World Series in 108 years by defeating the Cleveland Indians 8-7 in game seven at Progressive Field, I don’t think you could buy the team for less than $2.5 billion.”

Like the New York Yankees, Los Angeles Dodgers, and Boston Red Sox, the Cubs are a national brand–a rare commodity in baseball. Therefore, while most baseball teams are valued somewhere around four times revenue, the aforementioned teams are valued around six times revenue. A $300 million value increase for the Cubs is conservative in that it estimates only an additional $50 million in revenue because of the World Series.

My rough estimate of the championship adding at least $300 million to the value of the Cubs is based on the incremental marketing, ticket and television money the team will generate thanks to the World Series. The $2.5 billion valuation (which included the assumption that the team’s local TV rights would increase in the future) is almost three times more than the Ricketts family paid for the Cubs, Wrigley Field and a 25% stake in CSN Chicago, a regional sports network, in 2009.

Complete story at this link.

“With just days left in the 2016 presidential election, Americans are wondering if polling is accurate or if we’ll see a Brexit-style shock,” writes Jim Messina, top campaign pollster for President Obama, in The New York Times.

It’s not just voters who ask these types of questions. On the eve of Election Day in 2012, as the campaign manager for President Obama’s re-election, I was asked to meet him at a rally in Milwaukee.

“Gallup has me down by three points, and other polls have me trailing, tied or with a slight lead,” the president said. “Your models have this race basically over. Why are we right and they are wrong?”

“The best campaigns don’t bother with national polls — I’ve come to hate public polling, period. In the 2012 race we focused on a “golden report,” which included 62,000 simulations to determine Mr. Obama’s chances of winning battleground states. It included state tracking polls and nightly calls from volunteers, but no national tracking polls.”

In Milwaukee, I assured the president that the golden report was predicting a victory, with 332 electoral votes. On Election Day, that was the exact number of electoral votes the president won.

“Today, campaigns can target voters so well that they can personalize conversations. That is the only way, when any candidate asks about the state of the race, to offer a true assessment.”

Go to this link for more on this inside story on “The Election Polls That Matter.”

“There are more signs of erosion, but her floodgates appear to be holding,” says University of Virginia Center for Politics.

Hillary Clinton has picked an awful time to hit one of the rough patches that has plagued her throughout the campaign. Now with just days to go until Election Day, there’s added uncertainty about the outcome. But while she may not be on the brink of an Electoral College win the size of Barack Obama’s in 2008 or even 2012, her position as the clear frontrunner in this race endures.

“Now, granted, some of this is, for her, bad luck and poor timing out of her control: The “Comey Effect,” referring to FBI Director James Comey’s controversial decision to inform Congress of new emails potentially related to the bureau’s investigation of Clinton’s use of a private email server, has put a dent in Clinton in the final stages of the race, although the contest was tightening in some ways before the news. The campaign’s actions also tell us that there must be at least a little bit of alarm in Brooklyn: It is putting some advertising money (not huge amounts but very noticeable) into some states that the campaign has largely ignored in recent months, like Colorado, Michigan, New Mexico, Virginia, and Wisconsin. Trump has also campaigned in these states recently and has said he is advertising in those states.”

“The good thing for Clinton is that there are few signs that her leads in these states are evaporating. Recent polls of all of these states show Clinton retaining a lead, and not just by a couple of points.”

More on this story plus analysis, here.

“The Wall Street Journal’s report that, for over a year, the FBI has been investigating the Clinton Foundation for potential financial crimes and influence peddling is, as Rich Lowry said Monday, a blockbuster,” says National Review.

As I argued over the weekend, the manner in which the State Department was put in the service of the Foundation during Hillary Clinton’s tenure as secretary is shocking. It is suggestive of a pattern of pay-to-play bribery, the monetizing of political influence, fraud, and obstruction of justice that the Justice Department should be investigating as a possible RICO conspiracy under the federal anti-racketeering laws.

“Readers are unlikely to know that the Eastern District of New York in Brooklyn is not just any United States attorney’s office. It is the office that was headed by Attorney General Loretta Lynch until President Obama elevated her to attorney general less than two years ago.”

It was in the EDNY that Ms. Lynch first came to national prominence in 1999, when she was appointed U.S. attorney by President Bill Clinton — the husband of the main subject of the FBI’s investigations with whom Lynch furtively met in the back of a plane parked on an Arizona tarmac days before the announcement that Mrs. Clinton would not be indicted. Obama reappointed Lynch as the EDNY’s U.S. attorney in 2010. She was thus in charge of staffing that office for nearly six years before coming to Main Justice in Washington. That means the EDNY is full of attorneys Lynch hired and supervised.

Click here for the entire story.

Mashable posts, “After a seemingly insurmountable 108-year championship drought, the Chicago Cubs are World Series champions and their devoted fans are amazed.”

Mike Caplan, a weatherman on Fox 32 Chicago and steadfast Cubs fan, reported a comical forecast following the team’s unlikely victory that included the temperature listing for hell.

Then what happened? Check it out at this link.

Yikes, what are we talking about here?

Space launches and “Secret Space Escapes.” A former astronaut describes the feeling of sitting on a launch pad waiting for liftoff and the terror that flows through your veins in the process.

To view, go to this link from the Science Channel.

“What they came up with touches on the media frenzy, police brutality, and the loss of basic civility,” says Co.Design.

It’s been quite the year. From the FBI’s Clinton email bombshell to Trump’s bragging about sexual assault, this election has been unlike any other in memory. It’s also been full of visual emblems, from red Make America Great Again hats to the near-constant stream of memes both campaigns churn out. Yet there hasn’t been a single image that truly encapsulates the mania of 2016: Where is this election’s Hope poster?

“In response to this question, Co.Design asked three graphic designers—Natasha Jen of Pentagram, Carly Ayres of HAWRAF, and Bobby C. Martin of Original Champions of Design—to create an image that they believe gets at the heart of this election cycle. Today at Fast Company’s Innovation Festival, all three discussed the images they created in response to our brief.”

Take a look here.