Interesting observation: Uncertainty is a predictable outcome, too

As our read­ers may recall, we had expressed our­selves con­fi­dent to be able to pre­dict the out­come of the 2020 US pres­i­den­tial elec­tion with a high degree of con­fi­dence based on finan­cial mar­ket behav­ior. As our read­ers will also be aware, we have good rea­son to be con­fi­dent to be able to “read” mar­ket behav­ior for the pur­pose of mak­ing prof­itable pre­dic­tions of sub­se­quent such behav­ior.1

This time around, no mat­ter how many dif­fer­ent data points and series we ana­lyzed, both in their com­plex inter­play as well as in iso­la­tion, the result­ing fore­cast was “max­i­mal uncer­tain­ty”. During the first part of the trad­ing day of November 3, which, to be sure, end­ed before the polls closed, every­thing point­ed to a win by the Republican pres­i­den­tial can­di­date. During the lat­ter half, this advan­tage was com­plete­ly equal­ized. Just as in 2016 we were one hun­dred per­cent cer­tain of the even­tu­al out­come that quick­ly became a com­mon­ly accept­ed cer­tain­ty already dur­ing elec­tion night, this time the over­whelm­ing impres­sion of max­i­mal uncer­tain­ty kept us from writ­ing any­thing here as we thought say­ing that we had no clue might sound as if we were sim­ply duck­ing out.

Yet the max­i­mal­ly uncer­tain out­come of the elec­tion that will by all like­li­hood be even­tu­al­ly decid­ed in a series of fierce­ly fought court bat­tles between the two cam­paigns over appar­ent­ly at least to some extent sub­stan­ti­at­ed claims of vot­ing irreg­u­lar­i­ties (on the face of it, to name one exam­ple we have read about, it would indeed seem close to a sta­tis­ti­cal impos­si­bil­i­ty that a batch of more than 23,000 at-once report­ed votes would con­tain only votes for one of the two can­di­dates and not a sin­gle vote for the oth­er) has opened my eyes to the notion that uncer­tain­ty can be a pre­dictable out­come, too. Uncertainty of future hap­pen­ings is what enables what we per­ceive as our free will. So the out­come, as it cur­rent­ly stands, con­cep­tu­al­ly reminds us of the part of our exis­tence that is char­ac­ter­ized by indi­vid­ual free­dom, by indi­vid­u­al­i­ty itself. Which, in turn, is a defin­ing ele­ment of what makes humans human.

A high­ly human elec­tion out­come, thus.

_____
  1. A promi­nent exam­ple being our “coro­na crash bot­tom call” of March 24, 2020: https://loico.com/why-we-have-likely-seen-the-bottom-of-the-corona-crash-in-the-us-stock-market/[]
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Logic is all about relating individual pieces of information in a consistent way. “Consistent” means non-contradictory. An apparent tendency of two pieces of information to appear inconsistent calls for express differentiating clarification, with the logically required depth of differentiating discussion depending on the extent to which both pieces of information appear similar.
An Egyptian man takes a hostage at knifepoint in the Milan cathedral, threatening to slit his victim’s throat. A once reputable Italian paper tells its readers that police “convinced him to lay down his weapon and release the hostage”, when in fact, for everyone to see on video, police had to forcefully overwhelm him. The full and unredacted video, in turn, explodes on social media.

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Logic is all about relating individual pieces of information in a consistent way. “Consistent” means non-contradictory. An apparent tendency of two pieces of information to appear inconsistent calls for express differentiating clarification, with the logically required depth of differentiating discussion depending on the extent to which both pieces of information appear similar.
We had expressed ourselves confident to be able to predict the outcome of the 2020 US presidential election with a high degree of confidence based on financial market behavior. What we figured out – with the highest degree of confidence – was that we were maximally uncertain about the outcome (keeping us in silent consternation). Which in hindsight would appear exactly as the correct assessment to have been made.
An Egyptian man takes a hostage at knifepoint in the Milan cathedral, threatening to slit his victim’s throat. A once reputable Italian paper tells its readers that police “convinced him to lay down his weapon and release the hostage”, when in fact, for everyone to see on video, police had to forcefully overwhelm him. The full and unredacted video, in turn, explodes on social media.