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« 11th Debate (Fox) Review: Could just give everybody a B grade, nothing changed | Main | Sequel to James Bond SPECTRE is TRUMP - 007 Man With the Golden Hair »

March 06, 2016



About Trump's VP choice. A person like Powell or Rice would have to expect a serious backlash from the black community. His or her political future would be in severe danger.

Also, by picking a black or even Latino VP, Trump would alienate a large fraction of his core nativist supporters. That loss would have to be made up very well by new voters to be worth it.

Then I would think even Megyn Kelly would be a more likely choice. ;-)

Tomi T Ahonen


I deleted your comment because it was redundant and suggested you had not read the blog. I made that explicit point in the blog about Hillary personality having 'as many problems as Trump'. Feel free to read the blog article fully and submit comments that reflect you actually read what I wrote :-)

Tomi Ahonen :-)


With a 60-40 forecast, Clinton will have trouble gettin a good voter turnout. That might harm the senate and house outcomes.



With such a disastrous outcome we can predict whom will be blamed by the GOP masses: Hillary Clinton.

I expect a deluge of conspiracy theories claiming Drumpf was a Clinton plant aimed to destroy the Republican party. There might even be calls for an armed uprising against the stolen elections.

Obviously, nothing will be learned from this epic loss. As you predict.


I should cut back on posting here. Just one last item. I can stop any time, you know.

Nothing really new, just nicely written down for posterity:

Column: Donald Trump's orgy of irresponsibility

Other candidates fudge, exaggerate and mislead, but they operate within accepted limits on dishonesty. Trump denies truth and embraces falsehood. He can't be proved wrong because he and his followers deny the authority of facts. He encourages his audiences to trust what they feel — and nothing else.


That was before a new parade of fictions — saying the United States is the "highest taxed country in the world," claiming he vocally opposed the invasion of Iraq before it happened and accusing Ted Cruz of having a "double passport." Making stuff up is at the core of his campaign.

Wayne Borean


Well written. I'd like to add a bit:

1) Assuming things don't change, I rate Hillary's chances at a filibuster proof Senate at 75%.

2) If Cruz does run in 2020, it could make the Republicans pine for the good old days of Donald Trump.

3) The U.S. is already incredibly paranoid. This election will drive that paranoia to a far higher pitch. We'll see far more Bundys.

4) Ah, yes, our older relatives. My dad used to curse Jews, because, "They killed Christ!" until he became friends with an Jewish guy who had a concentration camp tattoo. Never heard him use the work 'kike' ever again. He used to curse 'niggers' until my cousin married a black guy. Never heard him use the N word, ever again. But lots of people in his generation were not capable of learning, Dad was unusual that way. Damn, I miss him.


Is this the real Donald Trump. I've seen a lot of footage of him. If you exclude Wrestlemania, The Apprentice, and the political stuff since he first started to float the idea of a presidential run, you see a totally different Donald.

So is the 'normal' Donald the real Donald, is the 'political' Donald the real Donald, or is there another Donald we haven't seen? Whichever Donald shows up could make a big difference.

I strongly doubt ANY of the Donalds can win, at least not as a Republican. The Republican Party has been poisoning its own well for years. McCain and Romney both had to live with the damage, and couldn't. Trump isn't as good a politician as either of them. But he is a smart guy, he hates loosing, so what does he see that I don't?

Yeah, send me some Fazer.

Wayne Borean

Why vote for the lesser of two evils?

Cthulhu for President!

Wayne Borean

Ah, got side tracked and forgot one thing. Voter suppression.

There's evidence that the various 'Voter ID' laws have suppressed turnout in the Democratic Primaries. How this will impact the General Election we do not know.

It could, if enough voters are unable to vote, swing the election fairly far right.

steve epstein

Getting the Senate to be Dem, is very much within reach.
The gerrymandering of the House for the R's is very severe. The prediction for winning back the House is strongly argued and logical.
But the R's are willing to spend enormous amounts of cash to write off Trump and keep the House down ballots in red and purple states flush with ad and canvasing cash.
But the greater than 10% blowout is very likely.

Especially when all of the Trump University fraud stories are TV aired...
They will be run with Willie Horton verocity.

Tomi T Ahonen

Hi winter, Wayne & steve

Hey, winter, we need to organize an intervention for you. You're becoming nearly as obsessed with this topic as that fool Tomi Ahonen :-)

Wayne - the 'which Trump' was (and still is) the biggest wild card to me, which had me thinking about that analysis and had me postponing the blog severeral times (requiring numerous rewrites not because of Trump giving any clues but just as the primary season was moving on). Me too, I have seen Trump many many times on TV for DECADES usually sounding like a rich, quite arrogant, but smart New Yorker. Often with very reasonable practical sounding answers when the topic went to politics (often of course earlier on Trump was on relating more to business overall, on various business networks and shows)

I am totally certain that the pre-season Trump we saw and this early primary Trump is not the real Trump. This is an act, but.. I think this is probably a (mild) variation of the real Trump, because his spontaneous reactions, responses, debate behavior etc - he is not Leonardo DiCaprio deeply prepped and engulfed into a different persona. He is only an amateur actor who channels some angle of the Trump persona and this politician-Trump is not far from the Boss-Trump out of Apprentice. A variation. And I think this current variation is a fiction but not far, so Trump really is enjoying this part as he plays it. It comes very naturally to him. But its not the real Trump.

If he became President that is when he'd be truest to the real Trump (for good and for bad). Like Obama who secretly hated the 'Yes We Can' chants, that 'simplistic' audience-chant leader of basic over-simplified messages, that is totally not Obama - obviously. He is one of the most complex and multi-dimensional Presidents we've seen and likely the smartest. But that was quite a contrast both compared to W Bush (remember the first Obama press conferences and we were just amazed that gosh, this is what a thinking President sounded like yes, compared to W). But also obviously, for many who loved the clear simple upbeat positive messages from the candidate Obama, then when he started to govern, he was constantly negative, warning it was a long road, nothing was ever won or finished or ready, everything was a long haul and small incremental improvement and he seemed always like a Debbie Downer. Obama was being honest with the public and the world was in an even worse mess than we were led to believe in the last months of the Bush-Cheney administration.

But yes. Which Trump shows up - and WHEN. The Trump we now see on TV is not the real Trump and this Trump will be discarded before the general election. But when can he do that, and what will emerge to face Hillary? Trump will probably run an Mitt Romney-esque 'Etch-a-sketch' clear-the-board reset, but we might see it at an EPIC truly Trumpian scale. One other wild card constantly on my mind is the VP choice. Its not going to be Chris Christie, Trump is not that obvious, predictable and thinking that low. Its going to be a stunning surprise who will make a big splash. Again, imagine Florida Gov Charlie Crist. A former Republican, Independent and Democrat (sound exactly like Trump?), well liked in Florida. If Crist was willing to do it, he'd be far stronger for Trump than Marco Rubio to win Florida.

But yeah, whoever the VP is - THAT might be the pivot moment for Trump. Imagine Trump appoints another 'Independent' really really moderate guy barely a Republican at best or could even be former Democrat, as his VP (assumes Trump has won honest majority of delegates not just plurality, obviously) - THAT vice presidential candidate could be the vehicle to introduce Trump's pivot. Imagine the convention, lets say Trump finished with 54% of the delegates and the first day they attack Obama and Hillary and try to unify the party. Then the second day is the Vice President's day, and say its Charlie Crist (or Joe Scarborough or General Colin Powell or whoever, someone moderate) who speaks with great respect of a long-serving member of the party but one of known moderate views. And then have that VP guy - not Trump - the VP says the party has drifted too far to the edges. Also that the DEMs have drifted to THEIR edge (pulled by Bernie). And the VP guy/gal says hey, Republicans, the opportunity lies here in the middle. We have to become a moderate party now, a Republican, conservative party but embrace a clear moderate populist tone for this cycle, put some of the religious fanatical arguments on the back burner, and then rattle off a series of populist - but acceptable to Republicans - and libertarian - again acceptable to Republicans - views. And set up Trump for a massive pivot not just to the center, but in many ways - to flank Hillary on her left.

So in some ways the popular and trusted VP would be a kind of 'trial balloon' sending out a series of proposals in the nationally-televised speech the night before Trump speaks. Then overnight, Trump can 'tone down' some of 'the excess' from the night before, but speak 'honestly' to the Convention that actually many of the ideas are good and we'll embrace part of them, we will argue a part of them to see if it sticks and a few I think, are not our message and I reject. This would be a typical 'used car salesman' trick, the initial negotiation position is floated by the flunkie, the junior salesman, who 'doesn't have the right to negotiate that far' to go for the final deal. But when you push the flunkie, he then says, hey, I gotta go talk to my manager (and goes have a coffee in the manager's office for 10 minutes). Then he comes back with almost what was asked for but not quite, and saying thats the best the boss is willing to do...

Its so basic negotiation, its the Art of the Deal, its kind of blatantly obviously coming down the pike from Trump, but WHAT is that new Trump we will NEXT see (who is still an act, and is not the final real Trump who would emerge as the President). And WHAT will be his play, and WHEN will be pivot. He has obviously started to tone down some of his strongest statements as they have served his purpose.

The Ku Klux Klan flap is perfect example. Trump needed to sound racist white-supremacist when the most racists Deep South states had the SEC Primary, where Ted Cruz was supposed to do so well with the very religious and very conservative voters. But now those states are mostly done. So the stories of quoting Mussolini and fumbling really badly a repeated series of questions about the KKK - that was by design. Trump was speaking very CLEARLY to the racists of the South that hey, I am a racist white guy, trust me, I won't be appointing any black judges to mess up your lives for some political correctness and inclusiveness-bullshit, trust me. And the message went out, he got his response. Then the moment the votes were counted, Trump has loudly and repeatedly, clearly condemned the KKK and all white supremacists. He doesn't want them, he doesn't need them anymore. He is smart enough to know, from this point onwards, it will serve to hurt him (in the general election) by driving up enthusiasm of his opponents.

He is the ultimate opportunist (spoken as a life-long career opportunist). He sees an opening and he seizes it, utterly without any remorse or any conviction or any moral compass or any ethical considerations. If it serves Trump at this moment, he will pursue it, if it no longer serves Trump's purpose, he will abandon it, never with a moment of regret or loyalty or commitment. Bankruptcy bankruptcy bankruptcy, lawsuit lawsuit lawsuit, settle settle settle. But maintain an utterly fake illusion of loyalty and integrity and honesty - he is really REALLY a master con artist.

Now.. THE element(s) of the wild card(s). They CAN reshuffle the pack and can do so quite dramatically. While Trump would be angering his base - what else is new. He is already headed to an incredibly divided and messy convention. But a really moderate, truly Independent candidate not just politically independent but also untangled from the corruptive effect of campaign cash - so ridiculously rich he can fund the race with his own cash - that candidate (think if instead of Trump it was Michael Bloomberg) could make Hillary's race a living hell this Autumn. But Trump is such a flawed vehicle, he does yes appeal to his cult followers but the rest, they see right through him - or will do, when the next eight months of attack adds have finished airing. Trump has probably 90% of the secret sauce magic that could beat Hillary in this wild year of the female voter surge and the Hispanic voter surge but then his last 10% is so poisonous, he will go down to epic loss.

That being said, a 'second act' is coming and we really have no idea what it will be or how it will be played or even when it will be announced. But the convention and the VP - that sounds like one that a master negotiator would use - he does need Republicans to come out and vote for him haha (and not organize a protest candidate to run a suicide mission against Trump haha).

(steve I'll post the above and respond to you next)

Tomi Ahonen :-)

Tomi T Ahonen

Hi steve

So yeah, agree the gerrymandered House is the big test now. That is where the Koch brothers money is now being shifted, they want to buy the politicians at the lower level and prop them up. It will be a big fight. But now consider the coat-tails of the Hillary machine. In 2000 Al Gore didn't bring Bill Clinton to the road. He wasn't used in a big way in 2004 either. Obama obviously didn't use Hillary's husband in 2008, only in 2012 did his Secretary of State's husband finally be given a role in the general election where Bill really enjoyed himself doing campaign events for and sometimes with Obama.

Hillary learned that Al Gore lesson and will hug both her husband and Obama closely and will use both extensively in the 2016 general election. Now. what about CONGRESS. The House members and Senators running in the 2014 mid-terms were shying away from Obama - because his popularity was 5 points below water. They feared Obama would hurt the race. Now Obama is about even, he will be up 3 maybe even 5 points by September.

Then Democratic House, Senate (and local Governor and local government candidates) will this time love to invite Hillary with her HUGE polling lead, and then to invite sitting President Obama to visit and then to invite former President Bill Clinton to visit. And if they're in a congressional district with Hispanic voters, they'd love either of the Castro brothers to show up, preferrably of course VP candidate Julian, but possibly get both to visit at separate times. All will deliver a clearly unified message all of course demonizing Trump and praising Hillary (and praising Obama). Then will Daddy Bush show up. No, he is now in a wheel chair. Will W Bush show up? He'd love to but he won't do any Trump events and which Republican incumbent would dare to try the W gambit in 2016 after how badly Jeb fell. And then Trump? Many incumbents will refuse to be seen near Trump so no pictures can be taken of them being in the same shot.

If it does turn out that Hillary is up by double-digits after the conventions (so at John McCain 2008 summer level of despair on the Republican side) then she should also be able to refocus some of her campaign efforts from ensuring she wins by landslide (she has a huge ego and will want that of course, she's waited forever for it and she wants her victory to be bigger than Obama's to try to escape his shadow). Hillary has worked every Democratic politician in the past two decades to bring her visibility and organization to those other politicians to help them get elected, but Hillary did this to buy favors for the future. She will now be in a truly exceptional position of handing out her gratitude in the Autumn of 2016 of who gets a visit by Bill, or the rare visit by Obama. Who gets a visit by one or both of the Castros, who gets a visit by Chelsea; and who is lucky enough to get a visit from effectively the President-in-waiting. Every sitting woman Democrat will want the campaign photo where Hillary participated in her re-election campaign. And note, obviously, that some who have not supported Hillary enthusiastically, might only rate a visit by Joe Biden haha.

But Hillary probably has a larger TV ad budget than Trump (I'll post about that next, I have meant to share that thinking) so she can also afford to bleed some of that money - and more importantly, some seconds of air time in given ads - to support some candidates in tight races. This will then be used with the expanded Big Data operation now in more than just the 9 states that Obama built in 2012, so at least theoretically, Hillary should be able to pin-point which candidates really CAN be helped (and who are lost causes) and more importantly - by which METHOD. Do they need a surrogate to visit that race a couple of times or do they need TV ads help or do they need some national TV visibility to join the Hillary campaign airplane for a week or how to do that help. The Koch brothers don't have this power, they have to just do the shotgun approach, send their money to willing Republican incumbents who are ok to then be associated with the various polluting industries that the Kochs manage or support.

But its gonna be a wild race and tough race. I can't wait to see RCP's Senate and Congressional polling services for 2016 to start to monitor that side of the race as that is where the big battle will actually occur this cycle.

Tomi Ahonen :-)

Tomi T Ahonen

Hi all

Also I wanted to dig a bit deeper into the money side, but this is mere speculation so I wanted to suggest it to you guys and see what you think. Technically, Trump is the richest guy ever to have run (wealthiest to be more precise) but Bloomberg would be even richer if he were to jump in. But lets think a bit more about the Trump money

So first we know he claims to be really really rich. And he always exaggerates on absolutely everything, so obviously he is not worth 10 Billion dollars, maybe half that, maybe far less. He's been quite stingy in giving to his campaign so far ($250,000 in total) and has lent it another 17 million dollars. He has attracted 7.5 million dollars in donations. He says he didn't have to spend money much early on - but that he had expected to, and was happy his campaign was under his budgeted spend. That is no doubt true.

But how far is Trump willing to go to spend his OWN money for the general election side of it? Thats when its really expensive. What if he again just borrows and lends and makes various shady deals for it - then if it goes bad, he just intends to leave everybody else holding the bag while Trump declares some bankruptcies to his campaign and won't pay up, and as he's lended to his own campaign - if and when any money IS recovered, Trump gets paid BACK some of the money that was 'lost'..

Now with Trump's background, when will his lenders come up with 'No more'. Is it possible that he runs his campaign on a negative cash flow in heavy cash-burn stage in say September and then those who are lending him money just say - sorry Donald, this is now beyond my ability to extend more credit to you, no more money. He could suddenly be selling his airplane and travelling by bus..

Its a scam he is playing and he has a payoff planned. What if his fellow investors in this scheme figure out that wait, this is not going to succeed - but they are being played so that Trump gets away scot-free. Could see nasty campaign turmoil related to that.

But its all speculation. Now. The big picture part. Scenario 1. Trump is all in, he throws many hundreds of millions of his own money into the campaign. The Republican party throws in its money and the Republican donors actually like the new Trump from the Convention and also fund it happily. He has over a Billion dollars on par - possibly well above what Hillary has.

Scenario 2, Trump is in but isn't that rich, can't liquidate most of his assets, can't borrow that much against them, and only can afford to fund the campaign from his side at say 100 million dollar level from his side. The Koch Brothers are out, Sheldon Adelson is out, most of the other rich Billionaires had their picks in Presidential Poker who were crushed by Trump, he isn't exactly their favorite - plus, most won't trust him. Or others who know they can't trust their INVESTMENT in Trump is worth the money, because he can bite the hand that feeds him. Trump is going to run a tight ship campaign of very limited spending but now Hillary outspends him easily by 2 to 1 or more.

Scenario 3, Trump isn't that rich and isn't willing to put anything near 100 million into this risky venture. Even by lending it money, he'll cap it at say 50 million. The party is split and very reluctant to support Trump financially (while obligated to do so at a minimum). His core supporters who have been funding him feel betrayed by the blatant flip-flops and his sudden begging for money - what happened Donald, you were supposed to be so very very rich. Are you actually on the brink of bankruptcy? Now Trump in the general election turns out to be one of the weakest-funded campaigns in history, who has to pinch every penny and play to the narrowest possible game, limiting travel, limiting TV ads, limiting hotel stays, traveling by bus and truly struggling.

With all that. HOW does a rich 'self made' man spend his money? He often makes outlandish grand wasteful spending moments when it serves him or gives him exposure - but his campaign? Its been run very cheaply. He doesn't have a big organization. He doesn't make big ad buys. He doesn't have big staff. He doesn't have the Big Data operation to properly guide a modern Presidential election run. So Trump may be 'cutting corners' on the 'behind the scenes' side. That would mean he is more of a paper tiger than he even seems. We have had zero evidence of this changing, after 23 election contests so far. He spends his money very carefully, never to overwhelm and carpet-bomb with cash (like how Romney destroyed Newt Gingrich in 2012). This may change, Trump didn't NEED to do that. But so far, to me, this sounds like the behavior of the stingy man who pretends to be richer than he is. He seems to be avoiding as much of any spending as he can, and he spends as little as needed, when he does spend.

Like I said, Trump is the very strong favorite to win the nomination, so this method isn't doomed. But this speaks quite a lot about the general election. With the way Trump has been fighting against all normal Republican sources of funding - the normally filthy-rich Republican campaign-funding machine is likely to be very modest in its ability to support Trump. Note, the vast majority of that Republican machine is of Bush family legacy, the rest is largely Romney's power and most of whats left is McCain's power - all three allied to defeat Trump.

If Trump's 2016 actual war chest turns out to be 2 Billion dollars (and say Hillary at 1.5B), he will be able to counter with money in many areas where Hillary has other campaign strengths. If Trump really was worth 10 Billion, and this is his last hurrah, this is his lifelong dream that is now in his grasp - and he is a gambler, who would throw very much into the game - he could put 1 Billion dollars of his own money. And if so, then he could find a second Billion out of his supporters, rich friends, the Republican party, and the Republican voters/donors. In the early Autumn, I thought this was the plan. Now I am not sure. Not sure at all. If Trump is only worth 500 million dollars plus his name, and can't liquidate that rapidly to anywhere near that amount of money, and isn't willing to even put a LOAN of 100 million of his own money to this campaign, and the Republican party and donors and frustrated voters would only pony up say half a Billion in total - then Hillary could be outspending Trump by gosh 3 to 1 (and this is before the Big Data targeting power). The money question is a question. A big if. He could make it a fight if he really went all in and was able to dump a Billion dollars of his own money (even if, as a loan) into the race but that does not seem to be the case.

What do you think?

Tomi Ahonen :-)

Tomi T Ahonen

Hi everybody

You all are regulars here, so you know me and my forecasts. I always come back to monitor how they are progressing and review how close I happened to come on any given guess into the future, once the final numbers are in.

So on the big full-season forecast I did in January before any votes. It has two milestones that have passed, I just went and revisited the blog to update on the reality vs the forecast. Here summary for you:

February voting. I predicted delegate count to be Trump 51%, Cruz 22%, Rubio 12%. Reality was 63%, 13%, 13%.

SEC Primary March 1 votes. I predicted delegate count after March 1 to be Trump 50%, Cruz 33%, Rubio 9%. Reality was 47%, 33%, 16%. Thats a pretty solid forecast one month out, five days of voting out and 15 elections out, where a third of the states had no valid or recent polling even to give guidance of how it would go. But yeah, that full-season forecast said Trump clinches on 7 June. I am off 3% from the specific top-line Trump number, that forecast is still very very solidly on track.

Tomi Ahonen :-)


"What do you think?"

As you ask (I'll keep it short).

The site linked below gives a record of Trump's wealth over the decades. It contrasts what he said he owned with independent evaluations. The conclusion, Trump's real wealth has been much, much less than what he claims. And if you look only at the estimates of people who have really dug into the plusses and minusses, his real net worth probably is way below $1B.

Maybe, just maybe, like the Trump One airplane, this campaign is only a gimmick to pretend wealth. A means to shore up his brand value. And note, as a president he is largely immune to creditors. Think Berlusconi, who only went in to politics to avoid jail.

Two things in particular jump out in Trump’s “Summary of Net Worth” document: First, his single most valuable asset is apparently the Trump brand and the licensing deals it brings in. He values Just Being Donald Trump at more than $3.3 billion. According to Forbes, his brand is only worth $125 million, plus “another $128 million in management fees for Trump-branded hotels.”

Second, in his list of liabilities, he counts loans and mortgages only on real estate owned 100 percent by him—and, as we’ve seen, much of what says “Trump” on it isn’t wholly owned by The Donald himself.

“Typically Mr. Trump, having once lost his shirt, risks little money but earns a profit—paid only after lenders and partners get their money back—by acting as developer and promoter,” the Wall Street Journal noted in 2000.



> First, his single most valuable asset is apparently the Trump brand and the licensing deals it brings in. ...

If Trump loses the presidential race (and 99.99% is that he will) then "Trump brand" will be badly damaged in business world. It looks like Trump has only to lose by getting into politics and getting his name/brand trashed/damaged unless there is something else in for him which is not very obvious.
The only thing which comes into my mind is that in case Trump loses the presidential race (and he will) then Trump could easily start his own party (by splitting the R party). Trump, by having his own party (even if it would be hovering around 5% of votes), would bring him enough influence in politics in order to grow his businesses and personal wealth even more.

Wayne Borean

Rubio has won Puerto Rico, and Sanders appears of have won Maine.

The Puerto Rico win keeps Rubio alive. He won over 50% of the vote, taking all of Puerto Rico's delegates.

As of 6:20 AM Puerto Rico time they don't appear to have finished the count. Apparently they had a massive turnout. The Democratic Party had to change the rules to handle the influx of voters, which may be why they are still counting.


Is this a blog about mobile telephony, or just about anything that captures Tomi's attention? By the way, Congress is the Senate plus the House of Representatives. It makes no sense to say that the Democrats could capture both the Senate and Congress.

Tomi T Ahonen

Hi everybody in this thread

I just had a great idea via Gates McFadden's tweet. I started to write the plot of the sequel to 007 SPECTRE. What could be more sinister than SPECTRE the Special Executive for Counter-Intelligence, Terrorism, Revenge and Extortion, than TRUMP. So its 007 Man With the Golden Hair, obviously. Pls join me in co-authoring the crowd-sourced satire script of the next Bond movie. Because the GOP was about to take over the US government until the mysterious golden haired man with small hands and his henchman called simply Chrischristie flew in on a plane with TRUMP written on its side...

Tomi Ahonen :-)

Millard Filmore

An interesting breakdown of Trump support:

The last sentence in the article is: "Understanding why this part of America is so unhappy — why some white people are literally dying faster — may help explain how Trump became such a powerful force in this election."


Hillary is an even bigger criminal than Richard Nixon. She is an unqualified disaster and I don't know why Tomi is such a big supporter. She should never be allowed anywhere near the White House ever again, and we'd literally be better off with Trump than Clinton. He's less dangerous because people see him for what he is. Clinton has the stupid majority thinking she's a kind, intelligent person. She's either as dumb as a box of rocks or she's evil. There are no other possibilities. Take your pick.

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