ZipDialog Roundup for Friday, September 15

Articles chosen with care. Your comments welcomed.
Linked articles in bold purple

◆ Let us now praise a great baseball record: Cleveland Indians win 22 straight games 

How hard is that? Well, one indication is that no one has ever done it before.

Another is to look at the law of averages.

If you are playing .600 ball (as the Indians are, roughly), then the chances you don’t lose any game out of 5 are a little less than 8% (1 in 12).

The chances you don’t lose any game out of 10 are .006 (about 1/2 of 1%)

The chances that, as a ,600 ball club, you don’t lose 1 game out of 22 are .000013 (that’s 4 zeroes, or 1 chance in 100,000).

That number turns out to be remarkably close to what the law of averages suggest.

In 140 years of major league ball, there have been about 210k games. Roughly half the teams are above .500, and maybe 30% are above .600.  That would mean .600 ball clubs played about 70,000 major league games. And this is the first team to go 22 straight, not far off from 1 in 100,000.

Comment: Does someone want to check my calculations here and make sure I have it right?

North Korea responds to sanctions by launching another missile over Japan, its longest missile flight yet (Japan Times)

It was the longest demonstrated flight test of a ballistic missile ever conducted by North Korea and the second instance of the country overflying Japan with a system designed to deliver nuclear warheads. …

According to data released by the South Korean military, the missile flew to a range of approximately 3,700 kilometers while reaching an apogee of 770 kilometers over a flight time of 17 minutes. Japan warned civilians on Hokkaido of a missile overflight, activating sirens and issuing electronic alerts. –Japan Times

Comment: The Trump Administration will almost certainly respond with more sanctions and perhaps begin shooting down North Korean missiles or firing missiles over North Korea, just as it has fired them over Japan.

Since both China and Russia voted for the latest round of UN sanctions, this test has to be a finger aimed at them, too.

More anti-Semitism from the Keith Ellison camp (Washington Free Beacon) 

Rep. Ellison (D-MN) is the #2 person in the Democratic National Committee.

His press secretary, Isaiah Breen, said that a prominent Jewish reporter looks like “an anti-Semitic caricature” and then doubled down on his vile language. He was not fired, at least not yet; he merely joked about it. (That is an update, thanks to a question from Zakary Taylor and some followup.)

The flack later said he had not been fired because of his noxious Tweets.

Comment: The problem goes beyond Ellison and Breen. It has become pervasive on the far left.

New Yorker interview with HRC: “Hillary Clinton Looks Back in Anger” (David Remnick interviewer)

Comment: Her grating, hectoring tone reminds voters why of her problems, not her strengths.

Her time in the limelight is also a distraction for her party, which wants to move on.

Oliver Cromwell’s speech dissolving the Rump Parliament in 1653 catches the mood:

Harvard honors Chelsea Manning by inviting her to be a Fellow of the Institute of Politics. Rescinds offer after blowback.

For some odd reason, the rest of the country is grouchy with the decision to honor someone who leaked massive amounts of secret documents.

Harvard’s Kennedy School dean then rescinds the offer, but asks Manning to speak. (New York Post)

The views at Harvard were more mixed (Harvard Crimson)

Noah R. Wagner ’18, a member of the Harvard Trans Task Force, speaking in a personal capacity, praised the IOP for appointing Manning.

“Whistleblowers like Chelsea Manning are exactly the people that we need, shedding light on the atrocities and injustices for which the U.S. military is responsible, and for which there is rarely transparency or accountability. She’s also a personal hero of mine and a hero for many members of the trans community,” Wagner said. –Harvard Crimson 

Comment: Manning, then known as Private Bradley Manning, was court martialed and convicted under the Espionage Act for leaking 750k sensitive or classified documents to Wikileaks.  She changed gender identities in prison, where she served 7 years before Pres. Obama commuted her sentence.


Hat Tip to

◆ Linda Killian for Oliver Cromwell

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