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Economy

Trump’s Victory, Despite Not Winning Majority Of Votes, Explained

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Donald Trump 3 by Gage Skidmore via flickr

Chris Terry, a Research Officer for the Electoral Reform Society explains how Trump won the election even if though he did not win the most votes:

So that sure was an election. Whatever happened in the US presidential election it was always going to be a historic moment. Yesterday we pointed out that Trump could win the Presidency even if he did not win the most votes.

At the time of writing Trump has decisively won the electoral college, and therefore the Presidency. But Clinton currently leads the popular vote by nearly 200,000 votes (0.2%) and this is likely to keep increasing. The New York Times currently projects that Clinton will win the popular vote by 0.5% overall as most as yet uncounted votes are in Democratic-leaning areas.


How did this happen?

It’s because the winner of the Presidency is the winner of the electoral college, where ‘electoral votes’ are awarded by states on the basis of who wins the most votes in that state (so if a state has 6 electoral votes and a candidate wins 48% and their opponent wins 47% in that state the first candidate gets all 6 electoral votes). Much like with our First Past the Post electoral system, the best strategy for Presidential candidates is to ‘win small, lose big’ in individual states – as if you lose by 1% you get nothing, but if you win by 1% you get all the electoral votes.

In key battleground states Trump won small victories – 3% in North Carolina, 1% in Pennsylvania, Florida and Wisconsin while Clinton has stacked up huge margins in safe Democratic states – a 29% lead in California, 21% in New York, 28% in Massachusetts, 32% in Hawaii, 28% in Washington. Meanwhile in states traditionally considered to be strongly Republican she has won numbers of votes that would otherwise be unusually strong. Trump only won Georgia by 6%, Texas by 9%. In Utah (a unique case) the Republicans lost thirty percentage points. There are states where Trump won big blow-out victories, for instance Oklahoma where he led by 36% victory, but these states are typically less populous and hence the overall map advantages Trump.

This is because the distribution of voters is not uniform. Fox News exit poll suggests that 65% of Hispanic voters voted for Clinton and turnout amongst this group also seems to be slightly up from 2012. But while Florida has a large Hispanic population and went for Trump and the battleground of Nevada went for Clinton due to a sizeable Hispanic turnout, many of the other battleground states have lower than average Latino populations. Instead many live in safely Democratic California or safely Republican Texas where they stacked up large numbers of votes for Clinton which were wasted in America’s electoral college system.


There’s been a lot of talk the past few years of an America that is becoming deeply polarised. An electoral system which has just delivered one side victory without winning the most votes can only entrench divisions and drive Americans further apart due to the sense among some voters that the winner lacks legitimacy. This is dangerous for America and a product of an electoral system that is sorely out of date and in need of modernisation. Margins may be small; a difference of one or two percentage points, but the principle matters. The solution? States agreeing to guarantee the presidency goes to the candidate who wins the most popular votes in all 50 States and the District of Columbia.

It isn’t much to ask that the candidate with majority support should be president – not the runner up.

Economy

A Good Look At How Homes Will Become More Energy Efficient Soon

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energy efficient homes

Everyone always talks about ways they can save energy at home, but the tactics are old school. They’re only tweaking the way they do things at the moment. Sealing holes in your home isn’t exactly the next scientific breakthrough we’ve been waiting for.

There is some good news because technology is progressing quickly. Some tactics might not be brand new, but they’re becoming more popular. Here are a few things you should expect to see in homes all around the country within a few years.


1. The Rise Of Smart Windows

When you look at a window right now it’s just a pane of glass. In the future they’ll be controlled by microprocessors and sensors. They’ll change depending on the specific weather conditions directly outside.

If the sun disappears the shade will automatically adjust to let in more light. The exact opposite will happen when it’s sunny. These energy efficient windows will save everyone a huge amount of money.

2. A Better Way To Cool Roofs

If you wanted to cool a roof down today you would coat it with a material full of specialized pigments. This would allow roofs to deflect the sun and they’d absorb less heat in the process too.

Soon we’ll see the same thing being done, but it will be four times more effective. Roofs will never get too hot again. Anyone with a large roof is going to see a sharp decrease in their energy bills.


3. Low-E Windows Taking Over

It’s a mystery why these aren’t already extremely popular, but things are starting to change. Read low-E window replacement reviews and you’ll see everyone loves them because they’re extremely effective.

They’ll keep heat outside in summer or inside in winter. People don’t even have to buy new windows to enjoy the technology. All they’ll need is a low-E film to place over their current ones.

4. Magnets Will Cool Fridges

Refrigerators haven’t changed much in a very long time. They’re still using a vapor compression process that wastes energy while harming the environment. It won’t be long until they’ll be cooled using magnets instead.

The magnetocaloric effect is going to revolutionize cold food storage. The fluid these fridges are going to use will be water-based, which means the environment can rest easy and energy bills will drop.

5. Improving Our Current LEDs

Everyone who spent a lot of money on energy must have been very happy when LEDs became mainstream. Incandescent light bulbs belong in museums today because the new tech cut costs by up to 85 percent.

That doesn’t mean someone isn’t always trying to improve on an already great invention. The amount of lumens LEDs produce per watt isn’t great, but we’ve already found a way to increase it by 25 percent.

Maybe Homes Will Look Different Too

Do you think we’ll come up with new styles of homes that will take off? Surely it’s not out of the question. Everything inside homes seems to be changing for the better with each passing year. It’s going to continue doing so thanks to amazing inventors.

ShutterStock – Stock photo ID: 613912244

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Economy

IEMA Urge Government’s Industrial Strategy Skills Overhaul To Adopt A “Long View Approach”

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IEMA, in response to the launch of the Government’s Industrial Strategy Green Paper, have welcomed the focus on technical skills and education to boost “competence and capability” of tomorrow’s workforce.

Policy experts at the world’s leading professional association of Environment and Sustainability professionals has today welcomed Prime Minister Teresa May’s confirmation that an overhaul of technical education and skills will form a central part of the Plan for Britain – but warns the strategy must be one for the long term.

Martin Baxter, Chief Policy Advisor at IEMA said this morning that the approach and predicted investment in building a stronger technical skills portfolio to boost the UK’s productivity and economic resilience is positive, and presents an opportunity to drive the UK’s skills profile and commitment to sustainability outside of the EU.


Commenting on the launch of the Government’s Industrial Strategy Green Paper, Baxter said today:

“Government must use the Industrial Strategy as an opportunity to accelerate the UK’s transition to a low-carbon, resource efficient economy – one that is flexible and agile and which gives a progressive outlook for the UK’s future outside the EU.

We welcome the focus on skills and education, as it is vital that tomorrow’s workforce has the competence and capability to innovate and compete globally in high-value manufacturing and leading technology.

There is a real opportunity with the Industrial Strategy, and forthcoming 25 year Environment Plan and Carbon Emissions Reduction Plan, to set long-term economic and environmental outcomes which set the conditions to unlock investment, enhance natural capital and provide employment and export opportunities for UK business.


We will ensure that the Environment and Sustainability profession makes a positive contribution in responding to the Green Paper.”

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