Notes 2 Oct 2017

Trump approval rating declining and now stable.

7 Rules for reading Trump’s numbers

On historians talking about Trump ,100 years in the future, the apocryphal statement from Zhou Enlai about the significance of the French Revolution “It’s too soon to say”

Stats on Medical costs (including projections).

Cancer survival rates:  (from here)

In the UK, more than 330,000 cases of cancer were diagnosed in 2011. That compares favorably with the rate of cancer in the US—396 per 100,000 people in the UK vs. 451 per 100,000 in the US.

But even though people in England, where the UK’s largest population is, are less likely to get cancer, five years after diagnosis, only 56% of English cancer patients survive, compared to 65% of American patients.


However, if American healthcare was indeed better than Britain’s National Health Service, then the number of deaths from cancers should be fewer in the US than in England and Wales. This can be explained and measured by another statistic—the cancer mortality rate—and it turns out that they aren’t very different for the two countries.

Topic for 2 October: What were US political and economic expectations at the end of the cold war? Have those expectations been met?

Many politicians, and some economists and historians, claimed that the US had “won” the cold war when the Soviet Union collapsed at the end of 1991, and that the result would be “end of history” (i.e., world-wide adoption of US-style democracy and capitalism) and a “peace dividend” resulting from the anticipated fall in US defense spending. Were there other US expectations at that time as the result of the end of the cold war? What were they?

Have those US expectations been met? If not, how has reality differed from those expectations, and why?

One aspect of reality vs. post-cold war expectations is described in an article in the Business Section of The New York Times for Sunday, 24 September (

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