What will happen in the future? Is there any way to find out?
There is, maybe.
One technique that predicts the future better than any other is prediction markets.
The stock market is one thing. It allows people to bet on the prospects of companies. The market often gets its predictions wrong, but a rising share price is a better indicator of a company’s success than 100 executives or 10,000 politicians. Falling stocks are also a good predictor.
Prediction markets succeed because The wisdom of the crowdwhich is also the title of James Surowiecki’s book.
Crowds? That seems strange. Crowds can be like…mobs! Stupid and out of control. “But if the crowd is big enough and diverse enough,” says Surowiecki, you simply have access to a lot more knowledge than if you ask an expert or even a team of experts.
We saw that on an old TV program Who wants to be a millionaire? The contestant could call an expert or poll the audience. “Experts” could be geniuses. TV viewers were definitely not experts, but they got correct answers more often than “experts”.
Defense Department officials once wanted to use the same principle to open a market that could predict where a terrorist attack might occur. But then some ignorant senators called the idea “grotesque.” The Ministry of Defense gave up on that idea.
Today, politicians are killing another good idea: PredictIt.org. It’s a website that allows Americans to bet on elections, like a political futures market.
As I write, PredictIt’s bookmakers say Joe Biden has a 27 percent chance of being our next president; Ron DeSantis has a 21 percent chance; Donald Trump has a 20 percent chance.
That is useful information. But the American bureaucrats working at the dreary agency called the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) want it shut down.
Why? Has PredictIt stolen user funds? Not. Did they lie to people? Not. Harm someone? Not!
In fact, his chances are reported by the media around the world. My site, ElectionBettingOdds.com, averages odds from PredictIt and foreign betting sites.
Over time, PredictIt’s odds have tended to be more accurate than pollsters and experts.
In 2020, bookies correctly predicted a Biden victory and correctly called almost every state.
The shutdown is “grossly unfair,” says Brandi Travis, PredictIt’s chief marketing officer, in my new video. “Heartbreaking.”
Why can’t Americans bet on anything we want? People bet on sports, cards, horses, etc. The stock market is a form of gambling! We are consenting adults! Leave me alone!
The arrogant CFTC bureaucrats don’t want to answer a single question about why they are killing a useful website.
But maybe that’s because of partnership capitalism!
A larger, rival betting site, Kalshi, which takes bets on things like inflation rates and petrol prices, is now also looking to take bets on elections. Kalsi sought permission from the CFTC. At the time, company officials met with the CFTC dozens of times. They even hired a former CFTC commissioner, hoping that would help (I really hate Washington).
In their application, they complained that PredictIt (their only potential rival in election betting) operates “without complying with a series of… regulations”.
The result? For now, the regulators are going for a ban both Kalshi and Predictit.
Your government, busy at work, destroys innovative competition.
That’s scary for most of you.
The CFTC allows it very rich people to bet at a place called the American Civics Exchange. But to be eligible to bet, the government says you have to have $10 million in assets.
Ordinary Americans are out of luck, unless PredictIt finds luck in court, where it’s fighting for its life.
Once again, American bureaucrats are killing something good.
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