Archive for November, 2016


“Chekhov’s gun” – 72,700 search results on Google
“Chekhov’s rifle” – 346 search results
“Chekhov’s shotgun” – 66 search results
“Chekhov’s cannon” – 36 search results
“Chekhov’s bazooka” – 23 search results
“Chekhov’s machine gun” – 21 search results
“Chekhov’s revolver” – 19 search results
“Chekhov’s flare gun” – 16 search results
“Chekhov’s stun gun” – 10 search results
“Chekhov’s howitzer” – 8 search results
“Chekhov’s nerf gun” – 8 search results
“Chekhov’s slingshot” – 7 search results
“Chekhov’s musket” – 6 search results
“Chekhov’s blaster” – 2 search results
“Chekhov’s carbine” – 2 search results
“Chekhov’s railgun” – 2 search results
“Chekhov’s BB gun” – 1 search result
“Chekhov’s dart gun” – 1 search result
“Chekhov’s derringer” – 1 search result
“Chekhov’s tranquilizer gun” – 1 search result
“Chekhov’s arquebus” – no search results

I took a sleeping pill on the election day. At 1:15am on November 9th, I woke up to a strange world, vastly different from the one I had left behind.

We had it wrong. We had it all wrong. The conventional wisdom, the time-tested rules of politics, the elaborate polling models. All for naught.

In the age where celebrities are trusted more than scientists, where statisticians like Nate Silver are treated as oracles, where complacency supersedes commitment, our hubris humiliated us.

The Obama coalition fell apart. The white vote and the minority vote were different – vastly different – from what had been expected. The leading factors, to mangle Rumsfeld’s words, were known unknowns. We just hadn’t cared enough to know them.

My degree is in political science. I am a financial analyst by trade. The aftermath makes me want to reconsider ever mentioning my degree, ever again working as an analyst.

On the off chance you’re reading this simple blog in the future,  perhaps while researching the year that brought you Rodrigo Duterte and Brexit and Trump, know this: there was opposition. There was hubris. There was a fundamental miscalculation of who we really are.

We were arrogant. We are shaken. We shall learn.