Chart of the Day: We Can All Just Skip the College Football Season

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Via David Wharton of the LA Times, I learn today that preseason college football polls are better predictors of eventual bowl game winners than the final polls of the season. Here is Ed Feng of Power Rank:

In other words, after three months, thousands of games, and seemingly millions of words of commentary and analysis, we’re worse at predicting bowl game winners than we were before a single game had been played. There’s some kind of Isaiah Berlin joke to be made here, or perhaps an observation about forests and trees, or maybe just an acknowledgement that this basically describes the human condition.

Of course, this isn’t a sports blog, it’s a politics blog. So you may be wondering whether this result is also true of presidential elections. Well, via Pollster, here’s the Clinton-Trump head-to-head polling for one year before Election Day:

Hillary Clinton wins by about three points! In a couple of months we’ll know whether this ends up being more accurate than the polls done a week before Election Day.

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THE BIG PICTURE

You expect the big picture, and it's our job at Mother Jones to give it to you. And right now, so many of the troubles we face are the making not of a virus, but of the quest for profit, political or economic (and not just from the man in the White House who could have offered leadership and comfort but instead gave us bleach).

In "News Is Just Like Waste Management," we unpack what the coronavirus crisis has meant for journalism, including Mother Jones’, and how we can rise to the challenge. If you're able to, this is a critical moment to support our nonprofit journalism with a donation: We've scoured our budget and made the cuts we can without impairing our mission, and we hope to raise $400,000 from our community of online readers to help keep our big reporting projects going because this extraordinary pandemic-plus-election year is no time to pull back.

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