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USG: The No Judgement Zone ๐Ÿ”— 1617225417  

I have been wondering for the last month or so about the nature of the new order, as described so well in Rollo Tomassi's 4th work, The Rational Male: Religion. A good interview of Anna Khachiyan crystallized this for me (though this should be abundantly obvious from Rollo's existing body of work in retrospect):

What weโ€™re really talking about here is a shift in governance styles: from the โ€œprohibitiveโ€ paternal superego which sets the parameters in advance and punishes you in kind if you defy or violate them, to the outwardly โ€œpermissiveโ€ but latently punitive maternal superego, which enforces no terms or boundaries ahead of time but retaliates arbitrarily and disproportionately after the fact โ€” in part because it doesnโ€™t know what it wants until all is said and done. Roughly speaking, this describes any number of events that can be filed under the #MeToo movement and/or โ€œcancel culture.
The consequences of this societal shift to a Maternal governing ethic over the last century has had far-reaching consequences; religious changes are but one aspect of this transformation in our society.

The important questions left to me are:

  1. Is our government's change into a faceless, unaccountable bureaucracy a cause or effect of this shift to maternalism?
  2. Can Market Anarchy (or any other alternative to our oligarchy) address the system's hysteric karen-ism which prevents good governance?
For anyone who has seen familial dynamics at work, this becomes quickly clear. It's just a side-effect of our society's transformation. If Breitbart was right about anything, it's that politics is always downstream of culture.

In our world "As below, so above" eventually becomes the rule. Like our families are now, the government is largely rudderless and on autopilot due to lack of strong male leadership. It's not for a lack of trying, but mostly because of Threat Point at the individual level. Similarly, we see restrained to non-existent male frame at the macro level out of fear they'll be cancelled or worse.

As such it should shock nobody that our government has become faceless, unaccountable and beyond incompetent (acephalous, really). When it's not brainlessly applying edicts coming from long dead politicians like the vacuum from Idiocracy, it's hysterically overreacting and thirst trapping congress (notice my program senpai uwu). Imagine an ahegao face mask covering the face of humanity forever.

It really makes sense why .gov is so relentlessly hostile to "family values" when you understand the dynamic of how it works in practice. The bureaucracy are subs to the 365DNI gangster trigger pullers at the pointy end of the state. You end up with a spectrum from BTK government when evil has to get done (as that's the most gorilla pimp response demanded by the hysterical) to ineffectual Karenism when it's time to do "good"; scolding to win favor with their peer clutch (but not do much else).

In short, hurry up and burn them babies at Waco, days of our lives is on.

You may have noticed that neither approach is good governance. Nevertheless, most current phenomena make a lot of sense under this framework.

  • Of course you can get a jury to indict a ham sandwich and send it to the chair. "High-Tech Lynching" by Impossibly hungry judges is the norm in the courts.
  • Of course we got the most hysterical and useless response possible to a virus with a 99%+ survival rate for the healthy.
  • Of course we are diplomatically insulting most nations of the world with "not accepting yes for an answer" as a sort of shit-test writ large.
  • Of course we are flipping out over white nationalism that has killed less than a handful in living memory, while the power elite are sitting atop pyramids of brown skulls right now.
There are many more examples practically anyone can think of off the top of their head. We should expect non-stop hysterical overreaction to anything that provokes fear or outrage, and total neglect of anything that doesn't fire up the hamster wheel (such as anything which actually materially improves our lives, as that's boring shit). He talks like a fag too, your honor.

Can we fix it?

The betas who built our civilization certainly can't. They are fucked so long as they have more to lose than gain by doing the unpopular and boring work of improving our lives in the face of opposition. Their future is either become John Galt or Sisyphus.

The only path out left is internalizing game; Pimp or Be Pimped. The government would not hysterically overreact if it had a strong leader providing the rock of stability it needs. Instead, they would actually fall into said leader's frame, and get validation from accomplishing his mission of good governance. Rather than being mindless, purposeless and nihilist bureaucrats whose only thrill comes from corruption, they could actually do something good for once in their pathetic lives.

Which leads inexorably to Moldbug's (and my 90 year old Grandma's who lived through FDR's reign) conclusion. Regardless of what you call it, the only way to make the current system actually achieve good governance is with a dictatorship. I of course think this is limited thinking; why do we need to preserve the system at all? Beyond keeping the peace I can't think of a great reason.

So the questions then become: Will this system degenerate to the point where market (or other?) alternatives can just gradually replace the system peacefully? Will that system actually correct the underlying issue preventing said paternal governing ethics from taking root?

Given lack of strong male leadership, the former can be taken as a given. Practically everyone capable of righting the ship at this point is so disgusted with the system's pervasive bias against them they would rather pop a cold one than lift a finger in its' defense. At this point, vengeance is reason enough.

So, will market anarchy result in both paternal and maternal governance organizations? This is obviously the case; many paternalistic organizations persist to this day despite the overwhelming trend in corporate. What really matters is which will the market choose? This is where I am pessimistic.

A single look at the freely chosen preferences which our search algorithms (e.g. big tech) reflect back upon us show outrage bait and hysterical nonsense gets the best engagement even from men. Granted, much of this is thanks to public schools teaching our boys to be defective women (and vice versa. Egalitarianism, yay!) However, this means that the new dispensation will likely backslide faster than your head can spin.

At the end of the day, I don't actually see an answer other than the one offered by the various "Masculine Empowerment Networks" out there in the red-pilled world. None of this gets better until men get game, and impose frame in their lives comprehensively. That's actually a hard problem, so don't expect it to get solved unless there is literally no other way to get laid. ...Which to be fair is essentially how things are working out by and large.

There's your white pill for the day. Your Welcome (TM)


The entirely reasonable collapse of the Empire ๐Ÿ”— 1617194060  

One of the more impactful books I've read over the years is Charles Adams' For good and evil: The impact of taxes on the course of Civilization [Free podcast covering much of the same at mises.org]

All empires eventually succumb to collapse, and the story is universally the same. Bad fiscal policy leads to worse tax policy, which leads to mass flight by productive capital when it can no longer be employed profitably.

Most Americans are not alarmed by this (as I have been for over a decade) as they don't understand both how truly extreme the level of flight from the USA has become and how American "Allies" are doing everything they can to gain from our loss. They also do not realize that the American bureaucratic regime is blindly blundering into the exact same traps which doomed their predecessors.

I see plenty of people talking about the signs and aspects of this de-industrialization (which, given all of our societies are industrial means this is actually collapse). Some are mad at the places that offshoring benefits. Few put together that there has to be a compelling reason why the nation with the most productive workers in the world wouldn't also have the most production in the world. There has to be a pretty high level of mitigating factors that make it not worth the trouble.

The hottest topic for this last decade has been Base Erosion and Profit Sharing (BEPS for short). The ability of US multinationals in particular to avoid taxation via clever and lawful use of small NATO satellite states (whom are also OECD and WTO members) has lead to great consternation among our elites, but only because of it's first-level effects (lowering of the US Government's revenue).

The reality is that the second level effects are far, far more dangerous. The mitigation efforts applied to combat BEPS have all had the unintended? consequence of offshoring the actual productive capital to a third jurisdiction, which has essentially created a (near) perpetual stalemate in this tax cold war.

Both the haven and the 3rd Jurisdiction (usually with cheap labor) profit from this and will frustrate all efforts at stopping it save measures they would regard as more profitable. Unlike the majority of concerns with "globalism" this requires no shadowy cabal, just a bunch of people acting in their own self interest.

There are only two options from here for the US Government.

  1. Lower expenditures, so that existing taxes even with avoidance is acceptable (or lower them such that avoidance is mostly unnecessary)
  2. Impose a global financial panopticon, bribing and cracking skulls the whole way
I'll give you one guess which one they're gonna go for. The crisis point will most likely be losing a war due to the supply chain breaking down thanks to this distortion in where capital is employed thanks to bad tax policy. It sounds like the "Mothership" over at the CFR and all the pentagram types are all busy working on getting into a war with China sooner rather than later, so this might come within a decade or so.

In Adams' book, he described my second option as essentially being what the Romans imposed. Diocletian went so far as to outlaw paying taxes in cash, and insisting in being paid in kind (as it could not be debased, and was infinitely harder to smuggle than coinage). One can hardly see the "global tax cooperation" measures done by the OECD (where all bank account activity of signatories' subjects are 100% available to all other members) and the idea of outlawing cash as being little more than a high-tech Diocletianism.

This will simply accelerate the existing capital flight, as no sane person wishes to live in a cashless society. The possibility of having your funds easily seized to prevent you from funding your legal defense is quite simply a non-starter. This is why FATCA resulted in such a huge uptick in citizenship revocations (but which has fallen off now that we have this OECD global FATCA). Things like Operation Choke Point have not soothed fears in this department; instead it has made it clear the threat to capital is very real and serious.

If you really want to get down to it, this is the Bear case for the US Dollar, and the Bull case for crypto. However, this will play out over a far longer timeframe than anyone can remain solvent. This is essentially going to result in a century of crisis at the least for America. Personally, I'm laughing (all the way to the bank) because it's so obvious. Hedge accordingly.

PS
Yeah, I know it's worse than just tax policy. Regulatory policy is an equal (if not worse in many market sectors) reason for offshoring. People can want manufacturers to build in things the market won't bear all they want; it won't change the fact they'll have to drop some other features to accomplish that at the market clearing price. "Made in the USA" is the primary feature that was dropped.

Regulatory was also an important factor in many other Imperial collapses, including the Romans. This was because all regulation is essentially a minimum-price control. As you might imagine, outlawing production of non-substitute goods at the market clearing price is real smart. The 100% failure rate of wage and price controls continues.


The Bull Case for The US Dollar ๐Ÿ”— 1614271154  

The bull case for bitcoin (and other crypto variants) goes essentially like so: Monetization is going to happen, and the Gresham's Law saver pile-in will make it go "to da moon".

For those of you like myself who have paid attention since the 07-08 GFC, this is all sounding real familiar. Despite a spectacular run up, the best hype in the world, lunatic money printing and thousands of years of precedent gold still couldn't kill the dollar.

Much of this is because there is a category error in this thinking. Both crypto and USD are currencies and not money. They are mere vouchers for...something else (money). The precise nature of that something else is actually what matters.

As such, Gold being a money can't beat something it's not even in a race against. The bullion banks on the other hands were trounced handily because of both network effects and the intrinsic value disparities involved with the backing money.

Now you might be asking "hold on, the USD isn't backed by a dang thing!" That is unfortunately quite mistaken. In fact, in the case of everything but stablecoins (which are themselves bizarre backing themselves against other currencies and not monies), it is actually crypto which is backed by little more than hot air.

This is not to say there aren't strengths inherent to crypto, just that they are far from unique or non-transferable to other currencies. In fact, many of the fiat currencies out there are already experimenting with their own take on distributed ledgers.

The point here is simple; the future is crypto, yes. But not in the way those of us who wish for freedom want it. It's gonna be either a USD backed stablecoin or a directly FED issued shitcoin. The precedent already exists considering USD (which are *also* just ledger entries in a payment network you pay fees to use) to property, so this will be extended to crypto despite it being clear nonsense as pointed out by Vin Armani and others, regardless of the outcome of Bozo Craig Wright's lolsuit.

The reason for this is incredibly simple. It's the riddle of steel. Gold is strong, but H-Bombs are stronger.

Not only are ICBMs the most rare and expensive things humanity have ever produced; they also give one the power to never take no for an answer. It should come as no shock that they have all been driven out of circulation. They are more jealously hoarded than dragons do gold.

To be quite clear, the US Dollar is the empire. This is why despite an incredible speculative mania and it's many technical strengths against fiat currency, Crypto will still be a god that failed. Eventually the US Empire will too; but this vortex of corruption powered by satanic weaponry (despite it's feet of clay) have much longer legs than our current bull market.

This also sort of alludes to the core weakness in the dream of crypto. Sure, they can't seize your account without your consent. They can on the other hand hold you in contempt of court indefinitely and ensure you never enjoy the fruits of your labor, which is actually a worse outcome than if they had in fact seized it. Turns out Osama had the right idea to kill the dollar after all.

There will never be an escape from the power dimension of money. This is because freedom of action is the most valuable thing a person can have. And why governments invent nightmare weapons like MIRVed H-Bombs on ICBMs; so they can accumulate even more freedom of action.

There's a reason the ring of power was a gold ring. Like the Ring of Gyges, it's a platonic ideal of authority unburdened by responsibility. And what organization (and it's money!) on earth more fully embodies that ethos? You can take it to the bank!

POSTSCRIPT

On a serious note, we're about to get some truly incredible inflation thanks to record levels of capital destruction, margin debt and low interest rates. This is gonna send bond yields to "da moon"...unless the FED decides to sop up all this dough in an accumulator (which is what IOER did with the GFC) and spread it out over a number of years to conceal massive deflation due to malinvestments liquidating.

In short, they're gonna try and kick the can down the road yet again. The difference this time is the massive iceberg of capital destruction nobody yet fully grips the extent of thanks to lockdown. As such, they're guaranteed to fumble this one, and badly. It's unclear whether it will be in the direction of inflation or deflation. The only thing which is clear is that either the savers & producers or the wall street casino will get run over. My money's on the former.

If we think our market is a bizarro world with 0 connection to reality, I think we ain't seen nothin' yet. This might finally be Mises' crack-up boom. The incredible social upheval over the last year and the Cathedral's total incorrigible dementia pushing us towards civil unrest won't make this any better.


The political grift ๐Ÿ”— 1610414523  

Taibbi's piece We need a New Media System and the general realization that we are in essentially an era of upheaval similar to that of the introduction of the printing press and the reformation brought me to a realization.

Namely, that politics is just one more way that people differentiate their product. Since basically anyone with the determination and requisite intelligence can acquire mastery these days thanks to the internet smashing the monopoly of the elite institutions.

In retrospect, this should shock nobody; after all the elites themselves have already fully embraced this institution. Faux News and MSLSD are pretty much patient 0 in that regard. What's new is that pretty much everybody is having to choose one side or another not for sincere ideological reasons, but because it works to build your audience. Alex Jones' Infowars has built what may be the best produced media organization on the planet on the backs of "Pay-triots" who buy political vitamins. An entire ecosystem of service providers and vendors has erupted around this, and the left is beginning to catch up with a shamelessly grifting set of influencers as well.

This is fundamentally what is behind the rise in LARP fake radicalization, where everybody is competing for how hard they can beat their chest for their tribe. Eventually this is leading to real radicalization as the inevitable happens when idiots take the grift seriously instead of seeing it as glow-in-the-dark horse manure. Like with the FBI terror provocateurs in the GWOT, people will catch on eventually but this is cold comfort to those caught up in the crossfire until then.

As always, it's a sort of pendulum of history much like the tug-of-war between centralization and de-centralization. Too much emphasis on mastery and a saturated labor market means politics is your best bet for differentiation.

That said, mean reversion is looming. Worldwide birthrate collapse due largely to these same digital tools enabling the optimization of hypergamy worldwide shall cure this problem as surely as birthrate collapses shall also be self-correcting.

The value of the common worker will rise, making them become far more viable reproductive partners. Similarly, ability will command even more of a premium, making luxury branding elements such as political alignment once again less meaningful. The major destabilizing forces confronting the world will fix themselves given time, as the old adage "the cure for high prices is high prices" always holds true. One can be forgiven for seeing a divine hand in such long-term stability engendered by our own human nature.

It is grim to consider that perhaps Stalin realized that in the long term the best way to raise the power of the worker was to liquidate astonishing quantities of them. This of course failed due to a globalized labor market which wasn't going along with the program, and so the Russian worker suffered and gained nothing. Today there is no escape from the demographic collapse; the genie is out of the bottle and cannot be put back inside. We have but to ride out the results until new equilibrium is reached.


Ride the Snake ๐Ÿ”— 1605293612  

I read an interesting article this morning called Ouroboros Theory. The initial point is that the right operates from the perspective of a lower level of satisfaction of needs. E.G. "Yeah, justice is great and all, but can we please have some bread? I don't care how you got it."

This explains the phenomenon of the peasantry being reliably reactionary. Meanwhile the left cares how we got the bread, as they already have plenty of it. This also is in line with my earlier essay No market for liberty. Libertarianism, "Conservatisim" and progressivism are all essentially the same, just arguing over who gets "justice" first.

This is what there is a market for. Not liberty, but Justice for allโ„ข. However, having read Clarence Darrow's excellent Resist Not Evil, I realized the core problem with Justice. This is why this snake eats itself.

Justice can't exist.
Only vengeance is achievable.

This was a disturbing discovery at the time, and I've gradually come to two more realizations in this vein.
  1. This is true because entropy can only increase
  2. This is actually good, "Justice" should not exist.

Amor Fati

The concept of justice is notoriously hard to pin down thanks to people being highly emotional about the subject. I believe that I have nonetheless observed the true meaning in others' behavior around the subject. Justice is not being hurt by other people's externalities.

This does indeed sound good in theory; however it cannot work in practice for reasons of entropy the author of the piece actually touches upon. Externalities are not optional. Entropy can only increase, and it's gotta go somewhere.

The only reason it appears we have progressed at all is due to externalizing most of our entropy on the natural world rather than each other. This is the root of the environmentalist movement. They fail to understand that there will always be enough people for whom this tradeoff is their livelihood and they will kill rather than forgo it. Which the author also touches upon; this endless hectoring by the right about tradeoffs.

The trouble is that the right is correct here. A world where we do not externalize our entropy is nasty, brutish and short. Cannibalism and Suicide (to literally be an ouroboros!) is the most effective way to internalize our entropy. As such the left cannot win this argument, entropy is real and externalities have to go somewhere.

Injustice is not optional if we are to live lives which are worth living. If justice were ever to come about, it would be necessary to abolish it.

Which brings us to what actually is optional, as revealed by Darrow. Vengeance. The reactionaries would argue that we should not pursue vengeance, as hormesis, mutually beneficial exchange and creative destruction is real. This synergistic belief is actually optimistic, in contrast to the theory of the right laid out in "Ouroboros Theory".

Meanwhile the left embraces a "science" which tells us everything is finite and entropy only goes up. There is no room for synergy in this world view; the pie is a fixed size. You must fight for the gods' amusement over the scraps from their table. It is amusing that this is also the biblical worldview, but this should come as no shock given progressivism's roots as dour calvinism.

This probably explains the embrace of nihilism by the philosophers in the past century. In that world the only hope that remains is vicious and brutal. That vengeance is reason enough.

Let's drop the moral posturing shall we? We both know there is no altruism in this pursuit, your reckless indignation brought you here; I counted on it! There's no shame in it Raziel, revenge is motivation enough; at least it's honest. Hate me, but do it honestly.

Feels versus Reals: The true ouroboros

Note that both world views in the end embrace a mystical emotional narrative. This is not a coincidence. It is the grift that is politics in a nutshell. Welcome to the attention economy, where indignation (and the attendant desire for vengeance) is the coin of the realm.

The only reconciliation or escape is to do one of two things, which is where the new ideological divide is actually shaping up among the radicals. You can totally withdraw from the game and focus on improving your individual life. This is the thrust of both the agorists and the neoreactionaries; it is in fact populated by "red-pilled" liberals, of which I freely admit to being.

On the other side, aesthetics is quickly attracting the reactionaries. It is the most emotional possible world view (a build-your-own open-source hyperreality, in fact), and unapologetically so. It is the most postmodern philosophy possible; a negation of the reactionaries' former self. It will by definition will dominate politics totally in the coming years.

This is a good thing. It's essentially society doing what it does best and allowing the emotional ninnies to encyst themselves in the nonproductive pursuits such as politics and clout chasing (I repeat myself). Meanwhile the productive just get on with their lives, (mostly) free of these fools. As it always has been. The only difference is fewer people drinking the kool-aid of their illusions thanks to the internet liberating knowledge from the elite institutions.

In the end, it never mattered that there wasn't a market for liberty; self-actualization was never for sale. To get there you have to "be the bad guy" in something's story thanks to externalizing your entropy. The way forward for both sides is to just stop caring about it. Embrace mortality.

BONUS: You might have noticed this is basically epicureans versus stoics. There is nothing new under the sun.


Secession ๐Ÿ”— 1599768135  

Michael Malice mentioned a good post he made on secession 4 years ago to dunk on David French.

This brings to mind an important point which occurred to me over the last few years. If I can live my life with essentially no contact of any meaningful kind with people living in the same city I live in, what business of mine is it that they:

  • Get Fair Trials
  • Don't live in squalor
  • Live in Peace
  • Share my cultural or ideological or religious values
This might seem heartless for people not but 10 miles away (I live in a big city), but if I never ever meet them (and statistically, I won't)... How are they different to my life from people in say, Congo who most certainly don't have any of said things. Should I want the bureaucratic systems which have the power of life and death over me to have anything to do with them? Or would a more sane social order to have an arms-length relationship with them as is common of international relations?

The answer should be self evident. Cities like I live in are simply too large to even pretend anyone has (or should have!) a say in the systems which have power over such huge masses. The same is true of the state it resides in and the nation said state is subordinated to. No amount of voting can change the fact that the dilution of stake disenfranchises as effectivelly as any other type of tyranny.

The only meaningful solution in the end is fragmentation to the point that people have something remotely resembling a meaningful stake in the outcome of politics. Even a 1/250,000 stake such as in the case of most large cities is so small as to guarantee some other means of influence must become dominant for the outcome to be anything but cacophony. In practice this means "political parties", which in reality is just centralization; pledging your votes by proxy to people who you do not know and will never meet. This is little different from having a king, nobility or warlords, aside from it actually being made less effective due to "design by committe".

This insight makes one realize the only meaningful question in politics is one of organization; are we to be:

  • Centralized - Top-Down: This is what the monarchies of the west spent generations making happen, until they caught the virus of "democracy" from the french.
  • Decentralized - Multipolar: This is what resisted the monarchs, but was smashed. It was this network of small polities, the church and the nobility that kept the monster of total war chained for a long time.
  • Distributed - Bottom-Up: This is the actual "Liberal" program; e.g. Subsidiarity. Only the Swiss are even close to this.
So where does secession fit in?

All it does is de-centralize which paints a big fat target on your back to get thumped on by Big Daddy Centralizer. It is more effective to simply sieze local control over enough things the state cares little about influencing until it's too late. This is probably why Agorism has turned out to be the most effective strategy. Just start doing what accomplishes your goals by hook or by crook. The laws, formal relationships and all that are all nonsense anyways. This is actually how the church in the early days actually achieved the influence (and international freedom!) it had.

Enjoy the decline. It is in crisis that the major institutions actually fail to grasp opportunity. Which is where "the meek" (better translation: those who kept their powder dry) finally get their chance at the brass ring.


Bless My Grift ๐Ÿ”— 1599673477  

As you might have guessed given the introduction to the last post here, our journey to enlightenment has not been a quick one. However it seems that it's all starting to fit together in a way that comprehensively makes sense thanks to one of the core "Red Pilled" insights about human nature. Which is somewhat ironic, as that's sort of how our journey into heterodox thinking started -- getting rather brutally exposed to the darker sides of human nature that society downplays during our parents' contentious divorce right as we came into adulthood.

In any case, it's the conception of "mental models", "covert contracts" and ego investment / aspirational self image that ends up explaining most of why the words and actions in all realms don't add up, and when they do add up why that is so. It is quite well trod ground around here as to what the situation actually is -- you live in anarchy and the rules are all made up and ignored for the most part. Rian Stone likes to compare dating to "calvinball", and I've realized that essentially everything is this way. We are all just a mob of individuals making it up as we go along. The reason we make up the rules that we do and then barely follow them is immensely interesting as it completes the praxeological science.

I can write a book's worth of content on this subject, so I suppose I'm gonna be a professional blogger for a while. This means I'll also finally get around to finishing tCMS and making all the features of a CMS that nobody else does because programmers don't generally blog. It seems that solving the "getting de-platformed" problem is still something of an open question without a centralized solution for content creators as well, so maybe there's some opportunity there. In any case, it means big things are coming for this site after 14 years of doing this. Here's to another 14.

Civilization: Beta as Fuck ๐Ÿ”— 1596346426  

I haven't written a proper blog entry here in nearly five years. Strange things have been happening in my life; some tragic, some wonderful. Nonetheless, I've realized that my urge to shitpost in a longer form seems to be coming back, which is lucky for you. Now, I say shitpost, as rarely has anything I have written here been anything I consider particularly novel or insightful. More perhaps clever or more concise explanations of things that have been rolling around in my mind for some time.

That said, this one's gonna be somewhat more of the latter, as this idea has been rolling around long enough to be more akin to a boulder Sisyphus would favor when working his glutes. Though a trite cliche, there's been memes going around based off the (paraphrased) quotation that:

Good times make weak men
Weak men make bad times
Bad times make strong men
Strong men make good times
What is interesting here is that this quotation (which is often bandied about by "tradcons") actually gets it significantly wrong, as it requires one to completely redefine strength to mean the ability to generate comfort in the long term, even if it requires sacrifice in the short term.

Question: Does this sound like a traditionally "Alpha Male" behavior to you when viewing other species where the alpha/beta socio-sexual dynamic exists?

Anyone who has studied any of this sort of thing would likely say categorically this is false. The strength of the alpha allows them to simply take what they want right now and sacrifice nothing. Indeed, alphas typically have others make sacrifices to please them (most particularly by the opposite sex adopting an attitude of submission). So, why exactly would a strong alpha male who already gets what he wants right now and generally is unconcerned with the comfort of others seek to build something like civilization? There's literally no incentive.

Of course, the common objection would be that there is no such thing as alpha/beta dynamic in humans. They are wrong, but it is a common objection. While humanity does posess the capability to "rewire" their brains to exhibit more of one behavior or the other, the "mental firmware" from the apes we are presumably descended from still exists in there. Generally it takes the driver's seat when a human has had no reason to override this behavior (mostly due to needing to cope with trauma).

As such, who exactly are these "strong men who build good times"? Weak men, in fact. A Christian might even call them "the meek". Y'know... Beta males. Why? Their primary sexual strategy, of course! They seek to provide comfort to others, as they cannot simply take what they want with strength. As such they beg for scraps from the altar of the feminine while seeking to comfort them enough that they might someday, somehow give em a little peice of the action mostly as payment for the provided comfort.

Next Question: OK, so betas seek to provide comfort. What type of system could possibly provide this?

Gee, I don't know, maybe civilization and all the wondrous things that accompany it and make life extremely comfortable? I for one highly enjoy modern comforts and conveniences versus having to go out daily to hunt and kill my next meal. In fact, life has gotten so comfortable nowadays that it seems almost everyone seems to have forgotten the impulse which provided it in the first place -- "loser" males wanting a peice of the action but who aren't strong enough to simply take it.

Why do I say forgotten? This is merely a consequence of women entering the workplace and being compensated well. This devalues the comfort most beta males can provide to utter worthlessness. As such, for the most part, the beta male lives a pitiable life which I would actually consider torture, as their sexual frequency is trending towards inceldom within this century. Similarly it should come as no surprise that the most successful males in this market are those whose' personal branding tends to look like a commercial for luxury goods.

Ultimately, the consequences for society as "secret kings" (tradcon) and "male feminists" (lefty) slowly go extinct is that society will have more people who are more or less OK with taking what they want right the hell now either due to already being an alpha male who never cared about rules OR in desperation because "gamers rise up" or some other silly justification to found Rome again, as those Sabine women are looking nice and rapeable. It should go without saying that this will lead to a general reduction in the standard of living until either:

  • The betas win and the patriarchy is re-established.
    Women mostly acquiese, as their previous safety was mostly based on men not realizing they could more or less treat them however they felt so long as the majority of men banded together to enforce their will like that. Following this they calm down and start rebuilding civilization. Needless to say, the women resent this state of affairs. Soon the old comfort providing behaviors reemerge to try to get some poon again and the cycle restarts.

    Yay civilization?
  • We enter a new dark age.
    Betas finally become valuable again due to shit sucking hard. As such, women reestablish the patriarchy because they'll take care of em.

Well that's just great. We're doomed to either regress civilizationally or repeat this cycle endlessly. Also sprach Zarathustra? The great irony is that on some level, humanity is both aware of its' own nature yet rebellious against it. Unsurprisingly we see most elites always obsessed with bloodlines or eugenics as some sort of way to solve a percieved flaw in humanity that must be "bred out". All the while, this merely feeds into our original nature, which is to create stronger, more viable offspring. As such, efforts such as Planned Parenthood, etc. which originally sought to exterminate the "mongrel races" have in fact led instead to favoring humanity's "mental firmware" regarding reproductive choices even harder. As such, the mongrel races are still kickin', though mostly only if they are "Chad".

If you are someone who worries about "the fate of the west" or "society", this likely has provoked a strong emotional response from you. Likewise if you are living out the life script of a beta male currently. I can tell you why, as I've been there, done that. In fact, I was a "blackpilled doomer" long before it was cool (or society even had a name for it). This attitude in me (at least in part) even persists to this day. The only change I have had is in regard to "well, how should I react to this".

Previously I decided to simply go "monk mode" and mostly drift along aimlessly, as the time in life which I came to this realization (the early 2000s) was also a time which would have been difficult for me had I not made the decision to completely suppress my feelings. This cope/mask/whatever you want to call it wasn't perfect, but it was effective enough to also have a rather pernicious side effect -- I had no desire or motivation to do much other than whatever job made me enough to live comfortably.

In retrospect, I consider myself fairly lucky for a guy who was effectively "dead inside". I somehow managed to be (though not a fabulously wealthy man) in the top 10% of males (earnings wise) with no debt and a house, etc. Still, I was missing that important part of Maslow's hierarchy -- you know, some form of meaningful intimacy with other humans. 17 or so years of that tends to wear on you eventually, even if you are (apparently) as stubborn in persisting with unnecessary mental models as I was.

Now? My plan is to enjoy the decline in whatever form that may bring, as it has become clear that the path to happiness lies in embracing humanity's self-destructive nature instead of fighting it. Considering the amount of anti-FED writing here, the "poetic justice" of this is not lost upon me, as "you don't fight the FED" either.

In summary, nothing I have said here is novel. Others have tread this ground well. Look for Rollo Tomassi or any of the "Rule Zero" crew Rollo hangs with on youtube if you want to hear more things in this vein (but in perhaps a more positive light than I'd cast it here). In any event, it's off my chest.


No Market for Liberty ๐Ÿ”— 1546576355  

The true concerns of the great intellectual and political movements are quite straightforward to discern when judging actions. In general, political movements are straightforward to figure out; their ideology is little more than "say and do anything to gain power". They do like to disguise themselves with one intellectual movement or the other, which generally is leftist or reactionary (the right).

Frankly, when one speaks of intellectual movements in the last century, there really isn't one aside from leftism to speak of until quite recently. While the varieties of leftist moderate to revolutionary thought have many disagreements, there is a shared tone upon which the difference is simply in intensity. This fundamentally is all tied up in the emotional need for external validation.

All forms of collectivization, democracy, concern about "alienation" and other forms of consensus decisionmaking are from a practical point of view neither necessary or desirable. Ipso facto, the aggregate result of all individual actions, if free of coercive modification will tend towards satisfying the ends of as many of the individuals as possible. However, the best average individual outcomes does not necessarily mean general approval of the actions of any given individual; indeed many successful individuals would in fact be more or less generally disliked, as they are now.

This is further complicated by market success to some extent actually requiring a degree of consensus. Many times commercial projects fail not because the project fails to meet the needs of said consumer, but because they simply did not feel their concerns were listened to. Much of the art of succesful projects is convincing stakeholders that good ideas from the team actually were the stakeholder's idea. Buy-In is very important to people; unfortunately more so than rational evaluation as to the given utility of the goods and services in which they partake.

This, I think explains the popularity of the "mixed economy", as people are rational in wildly varying levels about various subjects. Most irrationally desire unnecessary validation, but only so much. Validation is, after all, at a higher tier of Maslow's hierarchy -- starving people don't give a damn about what you think of them. This would also explain why revolutionary agitation happens not at the low point of penury, but when things turn south for rising bourgouise.

This leads me to the recent developments in reactionary intellectual tradidition; previously there wasn't much of one other than "don't kill the goose that laid the golden egg". E.G. concerns from a lower level of economic coordination and maslow's hierarchy. This is why much of the support for reactionary dictatorship tends to be populist, as the poorest classes get their opinions where they get their corn pone. Similarly, the concerns of long-term wealth is mostly tied up in capital preservation, making elite alliances with the forces of reaction the obvious choice.

In any case, Libertarianism and the "dark enlightenment" (AKA the "alt-right") is the recent development I speak of. Both have their detractors on the reactionary right as these philosophies are a sort of synthesis born of liberal ideas. Nevertheless, they are both rooted in a more rational approach to the subject rather than the fundamentally emotional need for validation dominating leftism.

This in large part explains the demographic split amongst the various factions now:

  • The peasants have no ideology beyond getting today's corn pone. They can be counted upon siding with whatever pays best.
  • The irrational middle class consider themselves socialists or "liberal" of one stripe or another.
  • The rational middle class overwhelmingly are radicalized into either outright authoritarianism or anarchism. Mostly of the leftist flavor.
  • Old money can be counted upon to care for little beyond capital preservation. Like the poor, their primary aim is not being poor, and tend reactionary.
  • New Money can be counted upon to care for little beyond capital accumulation. They are opportunistic backers of authoritarianism and the attendant cronyism.
The middle class in particular is of the most concern. In particular the irrational are self-defeating; their quest for acceptance almost always leads to economic over-extension (pursuit of veblen goods). This tendency aggravates their susceptibility to revolutionary sentiment when times get tough. The same impatience to rise above their station leads to willingness to use violence as a shortcut (Revolution).

Unfortunately, the rational ones among them are little better. Rationality does not imply being well-informed. As such, self-defeating consensus philosophy tends to take root, as it has wide appeal amongst their less rational peers. This infection of design by committe, while quite validating, produces substandard outcomes. As such "True Leftism/Socialism/Communism" as advocated by these types is unerringly defeated by authoritarians of one stripe or another when push comes to shove.

Right and left authoritarians don't seem to have any particular advantage over each other when opposed. The amount of men and material able to be secured for war seems to be the deciding factor in which wins. That said, neither type are likely to emerge as a significant force unless conditions are bad enough for either a revolution and attendant counterrevolution in the first place.

Which brings me back to the mixed economy. It tends to keep the irrational just happy enough to not revolt, and conditions are not so bad that the rational, while radicalized, are cowed by the power afforded the authorities by the support of the irrational. This reminds me of the Saxon law code, which concerned itself not with justice, but minimization of conflict.

It is entirely possible that despite a libertarian social order being in fact the best way to improve material standards of living, it is doomed to create conflict due to the irrational ninnies out there. Civil conflict is a far worse problem to have than the deadweight loss inherent in the mixed economy. Like Ben Stone said repeatedly, there isn't a market for liberty. I think this is why that's true for both the left and right.

Most of the uninformed arguments (thought terminating cliches really) by the middle class against libertarian (and other) anarchy are in this vein of conflict. The traditional counter-arguments here don't exactly help defuse their concerns either:

  1. Wouldn't warlords take over??? (Like that isn't the case right now -- they just kill foriegners, not you yet)
  2. Without theft how would Y good or service be provisioned??? (Maybe it shouldn't be provisioned to that extent)
  3. Yeah, but who ultimately decides a conflict??? (As if it isn't one of the two combatants now, though intermediated by gowned clowns)
In each response we focus on the wrong thing. Emphasizing how our way both validates and minimizes conflict better than consensus (tragedy of the commons) approaches would be more persuasive to the irrationally inclined.

Ultimately, this is the root of the split between left and right libertarians. Unfortunately, the leftist libertarians have yet to have figured out how to spread their message as effectively as the right. I suspect this is due to the ideological vacuum on the reactionary right making grounds ripe. By comparison, the left is already chock full of nuts; at best they will simply further splinter an already hopelessly fractured left.


Taleb and the one law ๐Ÿ”— 1546560005  

For those not aware, I'm a large proponent of the Stoic insights. One of the primary ones I promote is that virtue is not only it's own reward but it's only reward. The other half of this coin, which many do not discover, is that this is a good thing. When altruism is to be rewarded, it is all to easy to fake, with attendant and catastrophic costs to society.

One of the most prominent such failures in our modern society is what is popularly called "Virtue Signaling"; a term which once was simply referred to as "putting on a show". Politics is infested with this, as its practitioners overcompensate for their lack of real virtue with an abundance of such fake virtue.

In any case, it is heartening to realize that this is fundamentally what Nicholas Taleb has been groping for all these years. His Intellectual yet Idiot concept is an expression of this; however that is merely a generalization of his core inisght. Namely, that people are applying the wrong model entirely when it comes to dealing with uncertain events.

As explored here previously, people try a variety of schemes to curve-fit us into Procrustes' Iron Bed; the most popular of these are called "laws". In reality, a far simpler model works: "Do as thou wilt, but be prepared for the consequences". I have come to realize more and more that it's the latter half of that statement that nearly all of civilization's distortions are built to try and avoid.

Taleb's SITG (Skin In The Game) is a powerful argument for why not attempting to expand past that one rule is desirable; the further we insulate ourselves from consequence, the more foolish we necessarily become, until survival itself is threatened. He is pilloried by his detractors for "not providing answers", but they simply do not listen when he advises that rather than worry about the fact consequences happen (X), we instead concern ourselves with how our response effects ourselves and the system as a whole (f(x)) -- being prepared for consequences.

That core insight returns right back to stoicism. The wise stoic concerns himself not with the affairs of the world which are not under his control. He instead concerns himself with what he can control; e.g. the reaction to said events (f(x)).

As such it is unsurprising Taleb has drifted increasingly into the Austrian Economist camp. They are the most closely aligned with these particular insights; indeed his discussion of fat tail risk is quite a damning explanation of nearly all extant centralized economic planning's failure. As an apriori theory as to why information theory and risk must necessarily behave so, Praxeology is in perfect harmony.

The one law is simply a necessary lemma of the core praxeological axiom: "Man Acts on limited information and other means to achieve specific ends". This necessarily implies that circumstances may align such that practically anything may be seen as virtuous or licentious at the time, depending on the context understood to the actors involved.

As such, the wisdom of "live and let live" an "Love thy Neighbor" becomes ever clearer -- as one man's virtue may be another man's vice, all attempts to centrally plan and impose a return curve on the necessarily transactional relationships between humans are doomed to failure. All we can do therefore is simply gird ourselves against the reality of the situation in pursuance of our own ends.


Overvalued and undervalued ๐Ÿ”— 1458221460  

Simon Black has an interesting article about whether the Singapore market is relatively "cheap" at roughly 1/1 Market cap/GDP. While this seems superficially like a decent measure, it falls down upon closer analysis.
  1. GDP is a flawed yardstick; you should subtract rather than add government spending. Use Mark Skousen's Gross Output measure where you can.
  2. Single indices do not necessarily reflect the total output of a country, but neither do aggregate measures like GDP/GO. A more thorough analysis would divide up the gross output by that covered by the relevant market sector(s) represented by the index you look at.
  3. Using indices, while good from a hedging against Macro trends POV, is never gonna net you the large gains you can get from value investing in individual firms. To use this approach with individual firms, you would need to further subdivide your analysis into 'how much of a share of output does this firm represent versus their market cap?' Doing so you can actually make a pretty good spreadsheet and sort from top to bottom as to "who are the winners and losers" in the overvalued/undervalued game.
Real investing takes careful planning and thought, not buying indexes and wishing. But doing the homework isn't really that hard if you know what statistics to look for. Like in Moneyball, the game can be won if you look at the right parameters. For value investors, overvalued/undervalued is the most important parameter.

Of course, other relevant statistics exist; nobody would buy a heavily undervalued buggy whip maker in 1912 (except to strip the assets and liquidate it). Earning potential and more traditional measures like P/E should influence your winnowing past 'undervalued or overvalued'.

Libertarian Paradise ๐Ÿ”— 1453783014  

or, one weird trick to get libertarian eyeballs

So, Robert Wenzel decided to shake the hornets' nest to pump up his SEO, and cover for his lack? of praxeological understanding. This time, he decided to discuss "punishment in a libertarian society". In particular, he has managed to get a vocal critic (matt@occidentalism.org), who himself is either fuzzy-headed, playing dumb (I hope), or simply unaware of the answers to his questions. I believe these comments to be instrumental to understanding this issue, so let us examine them in detail.

The authority of the property owner, you say, is total.

Wenzel's critic is making a valid point here; no person's authority over anything is total at any time. The Native Americans and Palestinians can tell you all about that. Your authority over what occurs on your property (and others property) is equivalent to your ability to defend it against reprisal or aggression (or to overcome others' defenses). This is one place where David Friedman has an edge over some libertarians; considering authority over property absolute is as ridiculous as Keynesian econometric modelling. Truly easement free property exists only in fantasy, just like neoclassical models.

Mind you authority is not "rights"; though when one thinks of "rights" you realize the perfect rebuttal to Wenzel's position; the rebuttal comes from Mr. Libertarian himself, Walter Block, in his 'evictionism' argument about abortion. If it is possible to eject trespassing fetuses and so forth nonviolently, then it is illegitimate to do so violently. In the case of the dying mother, it is not possible, so abortion is legitimate. In the case of the profligate mother and the inconvenient baby, it is illegitimate, as nonviolent alternatives exist (wait some months).

Apply this to the 'Murder Tresspasser/Thief' argument. It is not legitimate to murder a child who is taking your apple and obviously is defenceless against your reposession of the apple, etc. It is legitimate to slay the child if he shot at you when discovered pilfering, and you could not reasonably disarm/capture him to effect it's immediate cessation. The deliberate de-escalation of situations is one of the key pillars of libertarian theory, but an unstated one by many.

My personal conception of libertarianism is as such:

  1. Private Property, like locks in a software system, are the only way to sanely share resources over time without corrupting the underlying resource into uselesness.
  2. The Non-Aggression Principle - Do not initiate force against others' property, unless yours has already been aggressed upon by said other.
  3. The Non-Escalation Principle - When aggressed upon, never use more force upon the aggressor than is warranted to prevent future aggression.
Mind you, I consider this to be the letter and spirit of the new covenant, which is why I am a Christian. I am not sure that I have heard the 'non-escalation principle' stated formally anywhere, but this should be an obvious axiom to the vast majority of libertarians. It should also be obvious from a Praxeological point of view that de-escalation would tend to result in more prosperity, as less labor and capital would be destroyed than otherwise. Similarly, not acting to prevent future aggression will mean more labor and captial destruction than otherwise, so self defense is clearly beneficial to society.

It is fair to say that a Private Property Society won't protect you against terrorism and crime, or guarantee you charity or healthcare either.

This is the whole of the discussion right here, as I believe this is the root of Wenzel's misunderstanding. Lack of a formal state can be better, the same as, or worse than a state-run environment. Belief that the "system" men live under is even mutable is a common fallacy amongst newly minted libertarians. No, it is like Doug Casey has noted; there are only two rules: "do as thou wilt, but be prepared for the consequences". This is the only reality.

You live in anarchy right now; the state is simply another affectation much like private mafiosi call themselves "legitimate businessmen".

Now, will people be less apt to get shammed by mafiosi were these legitimacy myths not floating about? Likely, and this would probably lead to a better society, regardless of what we call it (Private Property Society, etc).

However, we will always be plagued by some particular ignorances and superstition; this is an inescapable part of the human condition. Busybodies with wrong ideas will always be dangerous. So are the Jerks and Parasites staffing the state and filling the ranks of the 'urban primitives'. This will always be so.

The true state of society is what traction good ideas have versus foolishness; and by that measure, for all it's warts, the USA is still on top. We don't have more NAP advocates and Misesians here than elsewhere for no reason at all. It's because of the intellectual captial and traditions established by the hard work of our ancestors.

Given time, this too shall change. The real fight is to make sure we do not regress into foolishness, wherever and however that might occur. As many Misesians note, the Whig view of intellectual history is false. Our intellectual climate can and does regress frequently. Our capital conditions and standards of living would be soon to follow.

I challenged you [Robert Wenzel] previously to admit that under your idea of libertarian punishment it would be permissible to molest children as a libertarian punishment, but you dodged it by saying child molestation would not happen in a Private Property Society. It is obvious why you would not concede this point - because upon concession any non-degenerate person would reject your idea of a Private Property Society. Time to go back to the drawing board.

Going "back to the drawing board" with regard to punishment in a libertarian society would consist of this: Realizing that punishment is merely another praxeological action. It is done not for any non-existent superstition such as justice, the rule of law, or even vengeance. It is done because they preferred to act in such a fashion at the time and with the information at hand; e.g. "I could get away with it." Crazies under anarchy or the state will engage in such foolishness at an undiminished rate, until the situation dissuades them from such. If a criminal organization such as the state can suppress such behavior, it is not a stretch to assume a private organization would be as capable (or incapable) as well.

Punishment as a concept is useless; Darrow's "resist not evil" should have convinced most Libertarians of that long ago. Look to the myriad legal codes of history; you will find a striving to reduce conflict, justice be damned. At the end of the day, a bad peace is better than the best war. This is why libertarians still pay protection money to the empire, despite decrying it as evil.

To arrive at a consistent worldview, one must simplify. Doing so you will realize concepts such as punishment, justice, "rule of law", and vengeance are of little use. Figuring out what concepts, ideas and actions do and do not escalate aggression is more useful to followers of the "nonaggression principle" as a path to a better future. To Wenzel's credit, this is a point he touches on; staying away from the aggressive and thereby not needing court services and restitution in the first place is always better. The battle not fought is the greatest victory.

So, the path to personal freedom is clear, and do-able right now through wisdom and intelligence (Harry Browne was big on this -- see "living free in an unfree world"). However, "freedom for the masses" is much more likely to come simply by technology; this should come as no surprise, considering that capital accumulation has been the only thing capable of lifting the masses out of privation in the first place. Similarly, the path out of privation in the past was always available to the wise and intelligent (create capital), much like the path to freedom is available now.

Suppose we came up with either of the three following innovations, and they were cheap and widely available:

  1. Uninterceptable, undecipherable to 3rdparty communications, such as would be effected by quantum entanglement + encryption. This dovetails into teleportation, as information = energy = matter.
  2. Effective invisibility devices, and shields against waves and particles of varying forms (invisibility is a 'special case' of force fields).
  3. Man-portable open-source armaments capable of smashing most offensive military equipment, including ICBMs. This is the closest to reality; note what the Afghanis have pulled off in the last 15 years with clones of Soviet Junk. Rapid Fabrication tech is also rapidly making arms control for such things impossible. Just wait until you see the first open source heat seeking missile or railgun.
Many of the state's scams seem close to impossible in such an environment. Everyone could be as free as they wanted to be. You'll note that much of the clever strategies used to secure liberty right now focus on the same; concealing things from the state, or becoming a (relatively) unappetizing meal.

Even with the masses freed by technology bad ideas, busybodies, lackwits and reprobates will still exist. We will not have a perfect world, just a better one; one where foolishness is much, much harder to get away with. To Wenzel's credit, I think this is more-or-less what he was trying to get across about a free society.

Note that this is the magic of voulntary cooperation summed up; free competition in goods and ideas winnows out the bad and exalts the good. Ideas and products evolve like the organisms that make them. Whether they go in the direction that empowers and frees humanity or warps us into one of the many other failures haunting our planet is entirely up to us. Fighting this natural evolution with the 'unnatural selection' of coercion simply results in ideas, products, services and people that are inbred or deformed at worst and stagnant at best.

This is why the market is called "The invisible hand". It truly is "god's law", in that it is the final court to which there is no appeal. All attempts to frustrate it is merely Canute screaming at the waves. This is also why I do not advocate activism; evil/stupid is self-liquidating. The structure of reality guarantees that -- the only question is when and whether you get wiped out by said liquidation (or go short bad ideas, and ride to the top).

It is worth noting that even in an environment where unnatural selection is the norm, hybrid vigor *still* creates hardier creatures than otherwise. So, even if you are surrounded by Authoritarian busybodies or corrupt parasites, do not succumb to the urge to believe in the prevailing foolishness. Recognizing the truth will always make you stronger and freer than the rest; and without your example the others will never know better.

UPDATE

Bionic has responded more or less how I expected; by calling Wenzel out for his fuzzy headedness. Wenzel responds with more Fuzzy-Headedness.

UPDATE II

Wenzel is beginning to come around. It is possible he's been 'playing dumb' the entire time, which would be consistent with his drama-generating SEO tactics so far. That said, he's still not articulating things as clearly as will be necessary to dismiss his critics.


Thoughts on Ian Murdock's Death ๐Ÿ”— 1451578028  

The tinfoil side of me notes that ianmurdock.com redirected to google.com last night. I saw some archived/pastebin stuff supposedly captured from his twitter about blogging his repeated harrasment, extortion and beatings received at the hands of police thuggery on twitter shortly before his demise (see news for this day), but his twitter was already deactivated/deleted by then, so who knows if even that stuff is legit. Most news I've seen posted on his death seems rather mum about that stuff, but commenters brought it up on reddit, slashdot, etc.

In any event, it is likely yet another example of a man driven to desperation by the crime gangs that call themselves the government. I suppose the government has been lucky so far that the people they've ruined in tech so far have usually chosen suicide (like Aaron Swartz) or been incompetent at striking back (like Joe Stack).

If history is any guide, the script the government is writing for itself eventually creates monsters like Zawahiri and Bin Laden out of educated men with resources. This time, of course, it will be on the homefront, and it will no doubt be used as an excuse to further accelerate police state measures. Indeed, the FBI, etc. all now say their greatest threat they are watching for is "domestic extremists", as if they know that the tyranny they rub in our faces 24/7 is bound to piss *somebody* off.

Living in the USSA is like watching a slow motion train wreck daily for me.


Praxis ๐Ÿ”— 1441026460  

I've noticed recently a tendency by some to attribute all that goes right or wrong with their life to chemical interactions within the brain, as if your hormones are your destiny. If you are a mindful or educated individual, you may realize some problems with that line of thinking right off the bat, but I can understand the allure of this idea for explaining away certain things in one's life that are painful to reflect upon.

Just as with all ideas seeking to refute the concept of praxis, it is self-contradictory in the barest logical sense - the very notion that you can believe that choice doesn't really exist implies a choice in and of itself. The only escape from this logical conundrum requires a type of nihilism that, if true, creates a reductio ad absurdum where any action on your part is wholly unneeded, as whether or not brain chemistry leads to 'destined' action or not is meaningless anyhow. This creates a sort of self-fulfilling prophecy of mindlessness, where you become controlled by your emotions (chemical interactions that influence preferences for acting in one way or another) as you see no benefit to using your mental faculties to restrain or embrace those impulses, leading to more or less choosing your actions by 'default' instead of with purpose.

The consequences of this strategy should be apparent, yet again, to anyone paying attention. If one has not even considered the ends they wish to achieve, how can they evaluate whether or not any given means is suitable to achieving it? This kind of existence will instead produce privation for the most part, as any action that might bring someone out of privation under this mental model will be purely accidental.

I bring this up mostly as a reflection on not only my contemporaries, but also from recently reading an interesting, if flawed account of the mindsets common to the most impoverished citizens of Great Britain. In Dalrymple's accounts, he constantly speaks of a failure in many in the "underclass" to take responsibility for any of their actions, as if Khorne suddenly possessed them before they beat the snot out of their girlfriend. Dalrymple rightly scoffs at this supposition, as those possessed of this rage seem perfectly able to control it when heavily armed police surround them. This implies, of course, that this behavior is not due to understanding and internalizing an idea I have criticized above, but rather using it as an excuse for their own failure to choose proper means for coexisting with their fellow human beings.

Of course, where Dalrymple goes off the rails is when he advocates basically jailing and beating this behavior out of them (an impulse shared by those on both the authoritarian left and right), which though a common response, has been empirically disproven as a viable method for combating behaviors one person or group views as undesirable in society. It is, however, good at murdering a large segment of the population and increasing privation in general (just as with pretty much all violence, as less hands make for heavier lifting). No, instead he should have concluded the book in a manner logically consistent with what he was seeing (and indeed advocating to his patients when he would converse with them). The recent changes in mindset for people brought about by what the Daily Bell calls the "Internet Reformation" is a far more indicitive model for what works to combat these ills in society. In fact, this line of argumentation is precisely the one Ron Paul makes in his most recent book advocating for an end to war.

With all that above in mind, I suppose what I'm really attempting to say here to all those who think that all their life is just chemical interactions on the wall of Plato's Cave is that this idea is self-contradictory and, if truly false, will actually lead you to material harm. Still not convinced? Let's make use of Pascal's wager: What is the downside to believing you can have praxis and acting accordingly, even if what you consider to be conscious action is really just an illusion? I can answer that question for you, as the answer is none.

In addition, you are likely deluding yourself if you believe your actions are caused purely as a reaction to stimulus. I see girls I'd like to bone on a daily basis, but that doesn't mean I go out and rape them, because I know that doing so wouldn't actually benefit me. Damn, how could my brain chemistry had failed to move me so! It's as if my thoughts just 'took a hold' of me and allowed me to control myself, despite what chemical signaling was telling me to do!

If there's any chemistry that is in the brain responsible for anything, it is at least that which enables you to choose to embrace or reject the chemical signals you are receiving instinctively. It is literally the key to the conceptualization of consciousness... at least the non-spiritual ones.


Emigration From Consistency ๐Ÿ”— 1440954626  

TL;DR - If you think that libertarians should be pursuing second best solutions, expect controversial, preference laced conclusions.

Anyways...

I'd like to comment upon a recent article I came across thanks to the Bad Quaker and the Freedom Feens. Here is the article in question; it regards Hoppe's controversial take on Immigration being a form of "Forced Integration".

From my reading of Hoppe, I'd say Nico is actually in violent agreement with him, except as it regards Nico's personal preference. I've noticed many get the impression Nico did here from reading Hoppe, so I can't say I'm really surprised to see this. Really, to me that sounds like it needs explanation from Murphy in 'plain' english for most to understand Hoppe's writing. The same thing has been said at various points about Mises, especially as it regards Human Action.

Hoppe's position to me seemed to be that:
Given societies with welfare states, free immigration doesn't increase the freedom of people in that nation, just as having 'squatters' on your land doesn't increase the property owner's freedom. Taxpayers in welfare states understand why this is so, though immigration is not the root cause (as the 'tea party' might posit), the welfare state is. Furthermore, in a free society, if you didn't want people on your property it is your right to exclude them from it. Nowhere in Hoppe's writing does he say you should bar them from your property -- indeed, as Nico suggests, some property owners would likely build roads and allow free passage, as it would benefit them to do so. Hoppe, of course, would also advocate for the abolition of the welfare state. Indeed, without one, free immigration wouldn't even be a problem as there isn't any 'free riders' (something Hoppe lists as an unassailable argument in the beginning of his article).

This, however, is not the context in which Hoppe is speaking about what the 'libertarian' position should be on immigration. Instead, in the insane world of modern democracies, basically the choice is between unconditionally raising taxes in response to free immigration in order to pay for immigrants who wish to partake of the welfare state (to not trample as much on the 'right' to travel) OR restrict immigration so that the poor taxpayers aren't raped as badly by the taxman (to not trample as much on the slaves' 'right' to property). Note here that I say as much, as in all welfare states, there's inevitably going to be ostensibly 'public' places where the public is not actually allowed to go, and because the taxpayer is always screwed, the only question is "to what degree?"

Thus, Hoppe comes down on the side of the taxpayer, as any 'right' to travel on anything other than your own property implies the violation of others' property rights, which is what the NAP stems from -- I own me (and thus the fruits of my labor), right? Still, I can't say I'm surprised Nico doesn't get this, as in another article I find him defending intellectual property thusly:

Since intellectual property always needs a medium, the intellectual property owner effectively has the right to control to some degree how people use their physical property.
Say what? Wishing for people to employ ideas how you wish them is an unrealistic assumption at best. Indeed, he even defeats himself by repeating the idea that "the Medium is the Message;" this implies that your intellectual property wasn't the property at all -- it was the medium. Much better libertarian defences of intellectual property exist, some even note the consequences of scarcity (or lack thereof) on this property.

In any event, just as with all 'second best' solutions under the state, any 'solutions' to the immigration 'problem' stomp on somebody's liberty. The actual flip side of Hoppe's argument is that it would require a police state to restrict immigration in a Welfare state, as many will predictably want to partake when someone is giving out free goodies. Your personal preference then determines what the 'libertarian' position should be. That is pretty much the central catch 22 for all liberty 'activists' in the USA, which is why I am not one. Sure, I'll advocate for abandoning the execution of actions which lead to increased privation all day, but I am not everybody. I hold out no hope for liberty in anyone's lifetime other than that which they make happen for themselves. Whether or not they do it at the expense of others is their choice, and a choice the stoics know all too well the rewards of.

There's nothing logically inconsistent with that, other than perhaps not acknowledging, ultimately, that there is no good solution under certain systems, so personal preference is the best you'll get there. Hoppe's essay is suffused with acknowledgement of this, though he is likely wrong regarding assignment of this preference to society at large, as is noted in Nico's commentary regarding whether most would prefer Hoppe's imperfect solution. The fact that there is so much controversy still in the USA regarding immigration suggests there is no real consensus on the issue, though I understand Hoppe standing on the side of the taxpayer in a welfare state.

Really, this is just another manifestation of the 'thick' versus 'thin' libertarian debate, though most self-described 'thin' libertarians probably aren't actually very 'thin' in their personal preferences, whether it be Hoppe, "Robert Wenzel", "Bionic Mosquito", Chris Cantwell or Ben Stone. I know I'm not. Hoppe is merely willing to state his preferences openly in his works, which is why Hoppe has been consistently good at providing trolling material for use either to attack or defend anarcho-capitalism.


Price Controls Come To The Internet ๐Ÿ”— 1439057948  

So it looks like we are going to get net neutrality.

This should be opposed for the same reason all other price controls are, namely because they are not capable of accomplishing their stated objectives (stimulating supply or demand for products of a given quality).

The notion that all packets should not be interfered with by those who own the private property that said packets travel about on is a price control; namely it is a price floor. Not filtering anything (and ergo maximizing the traffic on your infrastructure) implies a higher cost of doing business with said infrastructure than can be achieved with filtering, tiered pricing, etc. This in turn creates a minimum price for all firms on the market, namely how cheaply can I lay cable or make a wireless network.

Guess who has the easiest time doing that? Large firms that get volume discounts, and can cajole local authorities into coercing easements on peopleโ€™s property, be it through brand clout or straight up bribes. So itโ€™s fundamentally going to do what price floors always do โ€” enlarge monopolies, impede small business and create a shortage of consumers (the people who would have bought the lower priced service which they are now prohibited from doing).

Price floors always create shortages of consumers, while price ceilings create shortages of producers. This is a law of economics that has been known for hundreds of years.

In summary, if you prefer to lock the poor out of a market completely rather than allowing them to get some utility out of an inferior good, impose a price floor. The effects of the minimum wage upon structural unemployment (it increases it) is the classical example of this phenomenon.

If you want a good to never be produced above the quality threshold implied by the price ceiling (and ergo deny those who can afford it a higher standard of living), then impose a price ceiling. In extreme cases, when the ceiling is lower than the cost of the factors of production for even the shoddiest quality of some good, shortages occur and famines result.

All law is fundamentally price controls. Consider that every time you are advocating one policy or another โ€” It is socially desirable to have a shortage of murders, so I advocate making itโ€™s cost prohibitively high (a price floor). This is imposed implicitly by our courts system's overhead and so forth. Similarly, society wants a shortage of hit-men, so a price ceiling of $0 is imposed (outlawed).

Do I want a shortage of internet service providers, or conversely to limit access to the internet for our poor brothers? no. So, I donโ€™t advocate regulation on the internet. Stimulation of supply via force always encourages lower demand, which defeats the purpose of higher output. Stimulation of demand via force always encourages lower supply, which defeats the purpose of higher demand. As such, these controls make sense only in cases where both demanding and supplying a good or service is considered universally undesirable.

Thatโ€™s the classically liberal perspective โ€” lassiez faire, lassiez passer.

For the moral perspective, itโ€™s a clear violation of โ€œLove thy neighbor as you love thyselfโ€. It is not loving behavior to interfere in the behavior of two individuals/organizations that are interacting at arms-length (a contract), and harming no third party with their actions. Interference is only moral if coercion is involved โ€” one of the parties does not consent to the deal, or a third party is harmed.

Nobody is explicitly harmed by traffic prioritization supposing this is laid out in the contract as the nature of the agreement, which is is in most ISP service contracts. Regrettably, few actually read said contracts, much less anything at all. So they naturally become upset when they realize the marketing material they read that convinced them to purchase was not a full disclosure, like the contract is. While that is indeed a shortcoming of the firm in serving their customers adequately, it is not a legal harm, as the customer had every opportunity to understand the nature of the relationship, had they read the contract.

So these customers get upset and rail against these companies, and advocate government force to change the relationship into what they believe the relationship should be. Basically, shoving guns into business owners' faces to cover for their customers inadequacies (insufficient care/reading comprehension). Much of government action is this at work โ€” violence to cover up more mundane sins. This underlines the old adage that "The government breaks your legs and then hands you crutches".

It is a pity they are not more bold as sinners. Simply mugging people would more quickly remove from society those who wish to maintain or improve their standard of living through violence.

So who's next on the chopping block? My guess is the shared hosting industry. The same logic used to justify "net neutrality" can be used to mandate equal shares of resources on shared hosts, which would annihilate the profit margins of many of our largest customers. Shared hosting relies on under-delivering and over-delivering to customers based on traffic; if a specific amount of traffic is mandated, you may as well head over to any dedicated server firm with your website.

This does result in the occasional case of overloaded servers and site downtimes; but let's face it -- these bargain basement programs offered by various shared hosting firms aren't exactly advertising themselves as top-quality products either.

As a marginal firm, I would prefer to have a low quality vendor that works 80% of the time rather than one I can't afford which results in no online presence whatsoever.

This is why $1/month hosting exists. Cutting corners and making a shoddy product is often the only way to serve marginal consumers. As such, don't advocate for levelling -- pay more for quality products and live in peace with your less fortunate neighbors.

I guess the final injustice coming soon to my professional field is going to be licensure of techs and programmers, as the old guard will quickly be upset by downward wage pressure. This will be due to people flocking to the tech field in droves, as it's one of the few "freedom zones" left in professional America. Maybe the political class will throw in some hyperventilation about cyberattacks too.


Season's Beatings ๐Ÿ”— 1439057947  

The Christmas Police State Song

The Bill of Rights roasting on an open fire,
Jack Boots standing on your neck,
Welfare carols being sung by a black,
And cops dressed up like SS-kimoes.

Everybody knows a ticket from some angered po,
Flash Bangs make the season bright.
Tiny tots in the ICU from hard blows,
Will find it hard to sleep tonight.

They know the SWAT Team's on its way;
They've locked and loaded goodies with which to slay.
And every mother's child is going to cry,
To see if pigs really know how to fly.

And so I'm offering this simple phrase,
To kids from one to ninety-two,
Although its been said many times, many ways,
Stop Resisting... F**k you


Don't Dry Gulch me, Bro! ๐Ÿ”— 1439057946  

As is often the case, reading an article online has provoked some long form thought from me today. This time, it's the continuing saga of GGC, which seems to be causing many to rethink the notion of what it means to expatriate.

The optimistic part of me wonders if people are starting to get that it's not the locale of tyranny that you need to escape - it's what the Freedom Feens call 'Horizontal Enforcement' - the tyranny of the mindset that needs to be escaped more than anything. Most importantly, it means more fully internalizing the libertarian philosophy that many folks understand and agree with on a logical level. Moving to a community of "like minded freedom lovers" sounds like asking for trouble if even one of them hasn't fully embraced the implications of liberty within a world of limited knowledge.

It should not be lost on the reader that the most successful "expatriation for liberty" project, despite it's flaws, still appears to be the Free State Project in New Hampshire, of all places. Why? Note the age of the movers and shakers there. This is part of what Ernest Hancock calls "Generation Next," the wave of people who were young enough when the love-o-lution came about to be able to actually throw off their indoctrination - the mental plasticity is just so much greater when young.

Now, sure, you may be saying, the real blame here lies with those who haven't internalized what it means to be a free, beautiful human being, as Ken Johnson has been accused of. Still, the tired truism that it "Takes Two to Tango" appears apt to me here, as unfortunately, years of indoctrination and propagandizing have left so many scars on even the most "hardcore" among libertarians. If this wasn't true, then how could insights from people like Doug Casey, Anthony Wile, Bill Bonner, etc. learned "the hard way," and repeated ad nauseum to their contemporaries still seem to bounce off the libertarian community in general? Oddly poetic that in a society supposedly plagued with narcissism, reflection is the hardest thing to do. One hopes Ovid is laughing in Elysium.


A possible future for cryptocurrency ๐Ÿ”— 1439057945  

Zerocoin is the best hope I've seen so far for getting true anonymity in a bitcoin-like digital cash. It accomplishes this with Zero Knowledge Proofs.

Zero Knowledge Proofs for the Layman is here.

Regrettably, it appears development on this project has more-or-less stalled. ShadowCoin claims to have cribbed a bit of the work, but I see no evidence of it being used to obscure transaction amounts, etc.

Zerocoin has one weakness, though. The issuer must be trusted. This works out if you are the one creating your private coins from previously public ones; however that is probably enough to get you put on the 'naughty list' in certain regulatory climes.

That said, I believe a Homomorphic Encryption Scheme could be used to overcome this difficulty. This sort of scheme allows for modifications to some block of ciphertext (say, a blockchain?) without actually having to know the contents. As such, you could have a blockchain that is fully obscured to it's users.

The only weakness there would be the original setup of the blockchain itself. This could be overcome by witnessed/notarized creation of the private key, and it's subsequent destruction (as it would not be needed to read/write new transactions).

Effectively the blockchain becomes a large binary blob that is written to via a homomorphic encryption scheme, and that can only be read by inference through a zero-knowledge proof scheme. And then only enough to know the amount of coins in your account has changed (did I come out from the $50 or $100 branch, as in the Ali-Baba example).

So the mathematics are finally ready to be put together to create Eris' golden apple. I pray somebody gets the time to put it together soon.


PHD Secrets to Elite Thinking ๐Ÿ”— 1439057944  

A Book Review of the War Commentaries by Julius Caesar

Recently I've had the opportunity to read through Caesar's war commentaries, which have undoubtably had quite the impression on many people throughout history. His writing style certainly helped this "Great Man" to become highly aggrandized both in his time and even now. This prospect was obviously not lost upon the man himself, as his writing is unashamedly good at advancing his own positions. As such, this stands out as probably one of the finest works of propaganda documented from the ancient world. Still, as with any good propaganda, there were many lessons and truths to be found there for one reading between the lines (or, of course, to ensare one with partial truths).

The largest thing that stood out to me was the laser like focus he had on attaining his ends and the clear thinking he had on using suitable means to obtain his ends. Though not stated in his book, if you do some searching, you can see that he was aspiring to be his generation's Alexander the Great. Supposedly his realization at the age when Alexander had the world prostrate before him filled him with a great sense of shame for not having achieved the same greatness yet (which pretty much guaranteed megalomania with that as your desired end). Despite what many would consider having a literally insane goal (as many elites thorought history do), he showed remarkable sanity in the pursuit of this goal, actually choosing things to do that would ensure he achieved this goal.

Immediately upon deciding his goal, he did as much as possible to win glory and fame among the people and politicians who wielded the most power. For him, this meant becoming a great general on the military side and a consul on the civilian end of the political spectrum. Both of these goals, like his primary goal, were pursued logically and effectivley. Two examples show this acumen quite clearly.

First, in combat he preferred using the size, ability and technology of the troops he had at his disposal hardly ever for purposes of more than skirmishing, unless conditions favored him winning a "pitched battle" involving the main body of both forces (due to favorable terrain, etc.). Instead, this force was used, much as the Security Services of the Modern State is used today, to induce surrender via hunger and/or terror in his foes before even striking the first blow (note here how I specifically talk here about the Security Services and not the modern conventional armies, which have comported themselves most incompetently for the greater part of the last century continuing to the present day). While there is nothing new here in the theory of warfighting (see Lao Tzu, etc.), it is still an instructive example of what to do in War (and what not to do in Pompey or the Gauls' case).

In regard to becoming a consul, though not touched on terribly much, he was certainly keen enough to ally with those who were from rival factions where their interests intersected, evidenced by the "First Trirumvirate" and mentions of his former bond of marriage to Pompey's relative. This of course, was supplemented by the usual politician stuff, such as liberally spreading favors about to ensure loyalty to him. Later, after crossing the Rubicon, his positioning and constant delagations of peace towards Pompey's faction, though really a cynical ploy preying upon Pompey's hubris, did much to make him look like the "good guy" among both people already inclined towards him and those loyal to Pompey (once they had Caesar's army breathing down their necks). All these things cast the die in favor of him.

Basically the man really knew how power "worked" in society and acted accordingly, to spectacular results. The only hole in his whole plan was inherent to the goal itself, as the only means suitable to achieve his ends were guaranteed to make him powerful enemies and generate blowback for him once his goal was achieved. Indeed, once he achieved his goal (a topic he couldn't write about thanks to Marcus Brutus), he really didn't seem to be able to do anything constructive with it (just like pretty much everyone else whose goal is simply to gain the power, not to use power as a means to some other end).

It should go without saying that the above insights go well with some of the meditations Marcus Aurelius had upon power, as he was in a similar position but had the benefit of time and age to be able to reflect on what brought him success and failure once in a position of power.

Other than the above, there were a few other things of note here, specifically more on how the practices of the time for gaining and maintaining power really haven't changed materially from then to now. The US Empire still demands hostages to blackmail conquered nations into doing our bidding, though it is now done via the security services and the financial sector. If you want to see this in action, then consider the ongoing NSA and CIA spying, coup generation, etc. from basically the foundation of those groups. Also note that pretty much every subservient nation to the US has to keep their gold on deposit with the New York Federal Reserve, which promptly re-hypothecates the gold into Corzine Vapor.

Similarly, his impressions of the Gauls and the nature of man stand out quite clearly, as the Gaulish thirst for freedom was not criticized by Caesar, but instead taken as a given, as men would naturally prefer living according to their own conscience as opposed to Roman slavery (which was frequently the rallying call of the Gauls). At least then the elites were quite open about their aims to enslave the populaces they were invading, which today has to be grotesquely evaded with neologisms like "Humanitarian Intervention" since we now pretend not to be a racist and sexist society of primitive tribalists (except on game day).


Adequate Remedy under the Law: My journey to Anarchy ๐Ÿ”— 1439057943  

Tom Woods recently had a guest on his podcast who destroyed the last objection to Anarchy I had with this brilliant article from 1995. (Obviously I read this several years ago). It is ironic to think how old such an argument is now, considering his proposed solution to the problem of the arbitrariness of the law is much like a phrase I frequently used at the time; namely that "There is adequate remedy under the law". The common law definition of Crimes and Torts already covers 100% of all the stuff that "there oughtta be a law" for.

As such, everything else is just "I rule you" BS by some dedicated satanists, but mostly misguided do-gooders. It's trivially obvious to me as a mathematician; No proposition (law) can ever mean the same thing when it's axiomatic underpinning (assumptions) change. In the context of the Law, no two people have the same assumptions. With Friendly "Public Service" like this, you don't need enemies.

Which brings me to another influence that brought me to anarchy; it is this same differences in assumptions that lead to the infinite variance in ordinal preferences of market actors. When reading the first few chapters of Mises' Human Action (which I was amazed to find most people actually skip reading), the reason centralized planning (and ergo all the "I rule you" BS) fails became crystal clear. Much like Prof. Hasnas' notes in the podcast, a system of rigid rules -- cardinalizations of ordinal preferences (justice in his case, production in Mises') can only produce tyranny and privation. Nobody is comfortable laying in Procrustes' Iron Bed. Yet all too many are eager to stuff others into it.

The reason for all this, of course, is a legitimization myth (as the professor notes), which is currently the "Rule of Law", and it's resultant lemma of the "Nuremburg Defense" and other similar "Horizontal Enforecment" schemes. Speaking of such legitimization myths, leads me back to both the most profound book I recently read and the book that turned me on to liberty in the first place. Larken Rose's The Most Dangerous Superstition takes a core myth of the statists, and stakes it as effectively as the Professor kills the "Rule of Law". The collectivist argument of the 'greatest good for the greatest number' rests on the idea that some groups and individuals empowered thereby somehow transubstantiate and are allowed authority that is not granted to any single individual in said group. This argument basically falls on it's face without taking the axiom of synergy in groups (sum(parts) > sum(parts)) on faith.

Yet I realized that despite the stark clarity of Larken's message it was really the same thing that Bastiat tried to say in The Law. When one really asks "What is Justice" like Bastiat did, you realize that the collective notion of providing social justice can not be legitimate, nor can it produce society or justice. All it can do is exalt some at the expense of others, leading to shouts of "...but what about MY pillage???" until the situation degenerates into "everybody robs everyone", when true justice means "Nobody robs." Meanwhile, society collapses due to no rational expectation that deferred gratification will pay off. Every city is renamed Barter Town, because everyone was too busy playing Master Blaster to realize that they should have been trying to escape from thunderdome.

I think I'll leave with a passage from Professor Hasnas' The obviousness of Anarchy:

...if people were ever to seriously question whether government is really productive of order, popular support for government would almost instantly collapse.
It certainly did for me, and it will for you too, if you seek the truth earnestly. One need but look around like the professor suggests. I will add one thing to his essay on "National Defense" -- Look Around. Washington's centralized army lost almost every battle whilst the militia pushed the British off of the colonies.


Six Reasons Libertarians should ridicule those who abandon the NAP ๐Ÿ”— 1439057942  

Lately there's been a controversy in the liberty mission over infiltrators trying to dilute the message (oh wait, that's been going on forever). Here's the latest tripe. Emotional Language? Check. Koch Funding? Check.
Specific responses:
  1. The NAP "Prohibits All Pollution".
    The Koch be with you! They act as if pollution is a good thing. The author has obviously never heard of easements, as private property owners allow pollution on their property as they wish, so long as it doesn't effect others.

    The only way people think this disallows cars and other fossil fuel based life have been bamboozled by the notion that carbon dioxide is a pollutant.

  2. The NAP doesn't allow me to do evil that good may come!
    Somebody hasn't read Mises. Or the Bible. Evil means are unsuited to achieving good ends. This is a feature, not a bug.

  3. All or nothing attitude toward risk!
    This guy doesn't understand reality, much less the NAP. Of course all risks are allowed -- you say this as if they aren't now! All action has a chance of failure.

    It's up to the individual to know best what they can handle, not nanny-staters like the author and their central-planning ilk.

  4. No prohibition of fraud??!
    Wrong. The NAP implicitly prohibits fraud, because it damages property. The only reason the NAP makes sense is because of self-ownership (which should be self-evident). Murder is just theft of your self-ownership shortly followed by destruction of said property.

    Similarly, willful lying to appropriate someone else's property is fraud, be it their person or estate, as it is not a fully consensual "arm's length" transaction. That's kind of what constitutes aggression in the context of property.

  5. The NAP doesn't imply private property ownership!
    This is pretty hilarious, considering the NAP is simply a corollary of self-ownership. Non-aggression is the enforcement of property rights.

  6. What About the Children???
    Does this really need a response considering the heading? Kids own themselves too. People don't like to face this, but it's still at many levels a voluntary relationship. Kids run away from bad parents and inadequate parents regularly abandon children. There's nothing special from a rights point of view -- they're just clumsy, small incompetent people.

    It works well most of the time, because usually the decision to make them was not malicious. Both sides know the deal instinctively, unless overpowered by adverse circumstances (usually due to outside aggression).
Overall, an emotional and inconsistent show. The fellow should consider lurking more.

Mutiny on The Bounty ๐Ÿ”— 1439057941  

Not long ago, I watched Mutiny on the Bounty for the first time. For those unfamiliar with the story, a bunch of press-ganged sailors put their authoritarian Capitan overboard in a dinghy and decided to live in Tahiti rather than put up with further abuse.

Said Capitan made it back to England, a truly remarkable feat, and a British ship, the HMS Pandora was sent to exact vengeance for the crown. How dare those uppity slaves! Anyways, the mutineers took the Bounty and headed to one of the most remote places on earth: Pitcairn Island. After sinking the ship to make it harder to find them, they started a town that has endured to this day.

As a libertarian living under the Yoke of an oppressive empire, I can certainly identify with the urge to mutiny and find myself a "leave me alone zone". So, considering the origin of the place, it would not be unreasonable to think that people willing to sacrifice a bit of convenience for a whole lot of freedom might just be welcome there.

So, when I found that google maps had created "street view" of Adamstown, I was amazed! I could actually see this place and learn a bit more about what it's like today. Then I found out that they would like to have about 30 people settle there in the next five years or so, and I realized that this might just be the place for a bunch of radical libertarians. I doubt anyone would stop such a group from using honest money, practicing independent living and not harming others. In particular, I suspect our community's extensive knowledge of survival, preparedness and off-grid living would be much appreciated.

When I began to think on it, I realized that it wouldn't take much to significantly improve the lives of the other islanders. I'll bet the prosperity a person with even relatively meager international income streams could bring to there would be truly incredible. In particular, establishing an airport, solar thermal plant (or geothermal plant, it is on a long dormant volcano, after all) and perhaps even a solar drone cargo ship/plane would really enhance the place. Heck, a proper harbor crane would help immensely. And I have a suspicion that you would likely have plenty of time on your hands to make such improvements a reality.

In the worst case, one could also be comfortable in the fact that it's probably even further down the nuclear missile target list than antarctic bases. The fact that there are no taxes alone makes me want to board the next boat! So perhaps it's time to go on a fact-finding mission for liberty; if only to plant the works of Rothbard and Mises inside of their library.

The Deep State ๐Ÿ”— 1439057940  

WE HAVE TO GO DERPER

I had a feeling the "Deep State" essay of the other day was a bit of a limited hangout. Thankfully, Peter Dale Scott comes out with the antidote:

...the current threat to constitutional rights does not derive from the deep state alone. As I have written elsewhere, the problem is a global dominance mindset that prevails not only inside the Washington Beltway but also in the mainstream media and even in the universities, one which has come to accept recent inroads on constitutional liberties, and stigmatizes, or at least responds with silence to, those who are alarmed by them. Just as acceptance of bureaucratic groupthink is a necessary condition for advancement within the state, so acceptance of this mindsetโ€™s notions of decorum has increasingly become a condition for participation in mainstream public life.

As I have known for some time, it's not a conspiracy that sharks swim towards blood. The only way to get away with this sort of evil is to make the system evil so that the removal of any member (shark's teeth) does not harm its operation.

Ironically, you can't centrally plan an empire; it has to come about because a de-centralized network of criminal organizations (like political parties) all see it as the best way to aggrandize themselves. As such, the only true solution is to abolish the government, or at least the Standing army, police and security apparatuses. If you don't go all the way, they'll just come back though.

Perhaps the most important takeaway is that the vast blackmail apparatus that is a part of the deep state is largely unneeded to control the elected organs of the state. A system that can produce such a thing is already so evil that anyone who could win office would prefer participation to resisting evil.


Tragedy and Hopium ๐Ÿ”— 1439057939  

MACHO MAN RANDY SAVAGE DID WTC A book review of Tradgedy and Hope by Carroll Quigley.

This was a profound book to read, but one of the most difficult I have ever read. I've been working on getting this 1300+ page monstrosity under my belt since March of this year. This is not due to the difficulty of the subject material covered or being a weak reader. Heck, I was able to blaze through and grok Human Action within a two day read when I first picked it up. My inability to read this book quickly is due to the Tragedy playing out within Quigley's mindset. This man is a perfect example of what Mises correctly recognized as what went wrong with Western civilization as a whole - the irony of which cannot be lost on a reader enlightened by Misesian insights. It was difficult to bring myself to continue to reading when the fundamental flaws in Quigley's worldview became evident at certain points in the book.

This is not to say that Quigley is just another unintelligent propagandist for the regime, though I suspect in many ways this will be his unintended legacy. This is a passionate, reasoned piece of "revisionist" history written by an obvious scholar. Where Quigley, as most modern day "liberals" go wrong is with a misunderstanding of Economics, specifically the suitibility of the means selected to achieve societal ends. What makes it tragic is that Quigley obviously was smart enough to have grasped this insight fully himself, if only he could see it. Indeed, his evaluation of the provocations of the Round Table types that led to the Boer War is that, even though he saw their ends as agreeable ultimately, their means (violent agression that would rightly be called terrorism today) prevented them from ever achieving anything other than alienating both the native population and the nearby Dutch colony. As usual, the "Do-Gooders" made the mistake that most make, namely that forcing the issue (whatever it may be) will somehow produce something other than animosity and privation for all concerned.

Otherwise, this book is valuable if only for some of the inside dope on the "Anglo American Establishment" (a topic Quigley seemed infatuated with - I suspect it was his stumbling block to gaining real awareness). Moreso for the exposition of how the elite of today view the world. This history definitely sounds like just the pretext our more sociopathic elites would need to justify their own actions. This also would work for some of the lower level or non-crazed commisars, as it provides a compelling arguement for those not used to questioning the axioms they base their reasoning on. They really just need to stop drinking their own Kool-Ade.

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