Monday, August 31, 2020

Still Think The “Two Doors” Scenario Is Implausible?

     Wait until this makes the rounds:

     A video was uploaded to photo-sharing app Instagram Monday showing a black man in Baltimore randomly attacking a white man with a brick....

     A white man is seen walking across a crosswalk when a black man sneaks up behind him and hits him in the head with a brick, knocking the man to the ground.

     The person taking the video was laughing as the man dropped to the ground.

     Matt Walsh provides the video:

     Situational Awareness and Tactical Readiness, Gentle Reader:

  • Know who is within 20 feet of you at all times.
  • “Before all else, be armed.” – Niccolo de Macchiavelli
  • Leave no live enemy behind you; if you must strike, stab, or shoot, do it to kill.

     Black lives do not matter as much as yours does. Ignore anyone who tries to tell you otherwise.

The Pressure Must Be Irresistible

     There are days...sometimes one after another...oh Good Lord, how many days there are!...when my storyteller side cringes in despair. The way writers buckle to trends! The way they praise their own work! The way they bandwagon! But I suppose I should be more specific.

     You’ve heard me rant and rave about the prevalence of the unending series several times before this. You’ve heard me petition the heavens for a few decently plotted, characterized, and written novels that don’t have twenty-three sequels (with more in the offing). You’ve heard me fulminate when I’ve reached the end of a novel whose promo blurb gave no warning about being the first volume in a series...only to discover that that was what it was. So I shan’t assault your eyes with further harangues of that sort.

     When I go shopping for fresh reading material – a daily event here at the Fortress – I have my antennae fully extended for all the known warning signs. It takes a strong sense of the original, unique, and exemplary to get me to start reading a series, when I know that that’s what lies before me. Even then, the odds tick upward only slightly – perhaps slightly more if the first volume is a freebie.

     But what do I find this morning?

     The book has as its kinda-sorta subtitle:

(A Standalone Sci-Fi Thriller)

     Glory be to God! Someone out there is thinking of us poor, series-addled readers who want a few stories that actually end! Though I’d never heard of author Jasper T. Scott, I figured I’d give it a try. I’ll let you know if it’s any good.

     Yet there is irony in store, Gentle Reader. For the book has a kinda-sorta sub-sub-title:

(Scott Standalones Book 1)

     So Mr. Scott has grouped his standalone novels into a kinda-sorta series!

     Oh! The pain, the pain...

Ultra-Quickies: Maybe NYC Deserves What It’s Getting

     At least, one might conclude thus from this episode.

     Manhattan, whose “official” name is New York County, was once known as “the place so nice you have to say it twice.” And for a brief time – the Giuliani and Bloomberg years – it lived up to that designation. No longer.

     Have I mentioned that I favor making rape a capital offense? Well, I do. Time was, it was a hanging crime just about everywhere in the West. But don’t expect the black racialist mouthpieces to cotton to the idea – and they have more influence over the de Blasio Administration than anyone else in the Big Apple.

Sunday, August 30, 2020

Fantasies And Duplicities

     I glommed this image from AoSHQ:

     If you’re old enough to remember the Ford Administration, you might remember President Gerald Ford’s ludicrous “anti-inflation” campaign. To be fair, he’d been left with a considerable problem after Richard Nixon resigned the presidency. By “closing the gold window” against European holders of American dollars, Nixon triggered the first of what would be a long series of crashing waves against the world’s “reserve currency.” But then, as Americans were still forbidden to own gold except in the form of jewelry, most people had no idea what Nixon’s fateful August 15, 1971 declaration would mean to them.

     The inflation, you see, had already happened some time ago. It was made inevitable by the 1944 Bretton Woods Agreement, at which the major industrial and commercial powers agreed to use the American dollar as the world’s “reserve currency,” implicitly abandoning all commodity standards (e.g., gold or silver). Washington then proceeded to inflate – i.e., to expand the supply of currency and credit – at an unprecedented rate, impelled by the great expense of the Vietnam War and the maintenance of America’s NATO forces in Europe. What faced President Ford was a wave of price increases fueled by that inflation: foreign holders of dollars, aware that the Federal Reserve had flooded the world with newly made dollars that could no longer be exchanged for gold, scrambled to get some value for them in the form of American-made goods. That caused the first great surge of price increases of the Seventies, including the infamous 1973-74 quadrupling of oil and gasoline prices that stung American homeowners and drivers.

     President Ford was helpless before the torrent of dollars “coming home.” He could do nothing meaningful about the price increases they propelled. But as politicians from time immemorial have said to themselves – especially when they’ve faced a tough re-election campaign – he muttered “I’ve got to be seen doing something about it.” –

     President Ford couldn’t admit that the government itself was responsible for those price increases, now could he? It would have made him look bad. And as for admitting that there was literally nothing anyone could do about the matter, that would have been even worse: fodder for Jimmy Carter’s campaign. And so began the farcical “Whip Inflation Now” campaign festooned with lapel buttons, baseball bats, and absurd “public service pitches” exhorting private citizens to economize, though ordinary Americans had had no role in creating the problem.

     At no point did Washington cease to inflate and spend recklessly. And so the first of America’s great inflations was upon us. Remember 13.5% mortgage rates and 20% personal loan rates? I do; I was trying to buy a house at the time.

     The price of gold shot skyward as foreign holders of dollars sought to protect some of their holdings in the most reliable of all monetary commodities:

     Note how the price of gold has moved in response to changes in federal spending, especially on wars. The Reagan Administration, though it was a “big spending” era, moderated the value of the dollar with low-tax, pro-growth economic policies. The price of gold remained (relatively) stable by matching the explosion in the supply of currency and credit with an explosion of American productivity: the supply of goods and services rose roughly in tandem with the supply of money. However, the Nineties and Oughts saw the end of that progression, along with sharp increases in federal spending, especially on the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq. Gentle Readers with an interest in money and currency will be aware that gold prices have exploded still higher since 2015. An ounce of gold currently sells for $1965.00 – if you can find someone willing to sell one to you.

     This year will see the largest federal deficit, and therefore the largest annual creation of new currency and credit, in American history. It’s currently projected to pass $4 trillion. If you haven’t yet bought any precious metals – and can find someone willing to sell some – I’d advise you not to wait. Those “Whip Inflation Now” buttons won’t do you any more good than they did in the Seventies.

"Follow the Money!"

 To quote the so-called Deep Throat (Mark Felt, who was destabilizing government to soothe his butthurt that he hadn't been chosen for FBI Director).

But, it's a fair idea. The Revolution doesn't run on Unicorn Farts. You need money - LOTS of it to:

  • Transport the 'protesters' into the stages for riots. Not the people looting - they can be found in any city, for the price of the opportunity to get some stuff. But, the organizers, who coordinate the action through use of walkie-talkie type communications (can also be done peer-to-peer on cell phones, without involving the FCC-involved networks), provide the convenient gasoline for arson, sticks/baseball bats for attacking anyone walking by, bricks/rocks/skateboards to bash in innocent bystanders, lasers to blind the police, and cash money to entice locals to cooperate.
  • Bail out those arrested. Focus on the people who have been brought in for the action. The hell with the locals, who know little, and are disposable.
  • Pay off the local government to order the police to stand down. Those guys can be paid off cheaply.
  • Provide money for spokespeople. Those are "the face" of that sector of the movement. Pick someone with a shady background - their choices for other employment are slim, so they will be anxious to keep their masters happy. Bonus: if you pick one minority/alleged minority, with a whole lot of White People surrounding her/him, you both insulate that person against criticism, but also buffer her/him with acolytes who will say ANYTHING to keep their tenuous position as a 'revolutionary' leader.
Why is Soros doing this? Well, aside from enjoying seeing the system go down, there is also the fact that he is quite experienced in making a profit from the chaos.


The duplicitous Wayback Machine.

The Wayback Machine (WBM) would have you believe it's a faithful repository of web content. It's the go-to site to which one can confidently turn to find copies of articles and videos originally (1) appearing on sites that have gone defunct or (2) offered by extant sources whose controllers have come to regret their original postings or have become instantly allergic to the content of others deemed to be ______.

Fill in that blank with what distresses the likes of the masters of YouTube, Twitter, Facebook, Google, or Amazon. "Hate speech" works in 95% of the cases but then I lead a sheltered existence.[1]

But I've notice twice now that the Wayback Machine itself can accidentally fail to capture something even though a certain page of supposed captures show multiple alleged captures. What?

For example, the WBM page for this post (Peter Ford, ex-ambassadeur UK en Syrie) posted by algerie news reports 40 "captures" in the five-month period from April 8, 2017 to September 7, 2017:

The WBM was able to capture other data such as the usual below-the-video on YouTube:

But not the actual video:

An insuperable task! I rather doubt that only three years ago, the WBM did not have the technical capability to capture the actual video or "index" it on a quite routine and automatic basis. However, a limited sampling of five captures in the five-month period shows that the WBM had the exact same failure to archive or "index" the video. Is there no H-1B visa holder who can help the WBM?

Sometime between May 25, 2017 and August 10, 2017, the actual source account of algerie news was terminated on YouTube to protect us from North African crazy talk such as that the Syrian Arab Government was not responsible for the killings in Ghouta, Syria, in 2013. And if there's anyone who needs help in deciding what to think about something it is I. (Pedants take note.)

Call me crazy but my working hypothesis is that the YouTube termination somehow cascaded over into the WBM server farm. THEN the WBM encountered "difficulty" archiving or indexing the content. Retroactively.

As for what might be touchy about former Ambassador Ford's views, I see that the description of the video captured, in English, is:

In reality, we never learn. Iraq's (alleged) chemical weapons, do you remember? We were bludgeoned (to force us to intervene). In Aleppo, we were told that a holocaust was happening, massacres ... But nothing like that happened. Independent reporters have been there[.]"
On its face the essence of what he said is something you can find plenty of places on the web, so maybe it's the high-level source that lifts the thoughts out of the Buzzosphere. According to the Veterans Today editors, the BBC (Bullshit Broadcasting Corporation) "has been [sic] ordered Peter Ford’s interview off their servers."[2] About all I can say about that, if true, is that if the BBC or YouTube want something disappeared it's almost certainly for a corrupt purpose. A conclusive presumption, get down to it. (For additional light on this, see "this BBC interview with Marine Le Pen and her elegant shafting of the interviewer with an agenda. What they don't disappear they certainly sneer at. No agenda here, worthless scum.)

And now we can add the WBM to that partial list (BBC, YouTube, Twitter, Facebook, Google, or Amazon). All the stuff that's fit to publish/archive . . . unless it suits our purposes to add it to our Index Librorum Prohibitorum.

Not a blast from the past but a blast back to the past. Not exactly what I'd call progress.

[1] "Kill whitey!" is definitely not hate speech and I sincerely apologize in advance if what I've said even hints at the absurd notion that it is.
[2] "Trump Lied: Fmr. Ambassador Peter Ford Busts False Flag Gas Attack." By Veterans Today Editors, Veterans Today, 4/7/17.

Saturday, August 29, 2020

A Word Of Advice

     If you happen to have a five-month-old Newfoundland Puppy:

     ...and you also have a Hot Tub: not attempt to enjoy the two simultaneously! A five-month-old Newfoundland Puppy can extract approximately twice her body weight in water from your Hot Tub, while simultaneously leaving enough hair in what water remains to clog all its filters and necessitate a complete change thereof.

     This has been a Public Service Announcement from your friendly Curmudgeon Emeritus.

The Fat Blob Posted This!

 MIchael - Freakin' - Moore!

Posted, on Twitter, a video that makes Biden look like an idiot shows the level of cognition that Biden has left - meaning, about as much as your breakfast cereal.

Yeah. It's that bad. See it for yourself. 

If you are good at downloading video on Twitter without a direct link to YouTube, do so - this may be 'disappeared' in the near future. If enough people see this, the election may be OVER.

The Left, in their sneaky way, may have engineered this - 'ginned up' in Obama's favorite phrase.

Who leaked this video? Pick one or more:

  • Disgruntled staffers, genuinely concerned about the possibility of this guy with access to the nuclear football
  • Harris supporters, a little too eager to knock off Biden, who jumped the gun early
  • Clinton supporters, because, just because
  • Obama's guys - perhaps he wanted to have the party bring him back, perhaps he just wanted Harris's slot given to one of HIS choices - Rice, Jarret, who knows?
  • My favorite (I just LOVE a good razzle-dazzle fake play!) - an undercover, Deep Fake, Trump supporter
Make your own guess in the comments.

Civil War 2: Where We Stand

     A few years ago, I wrote a set of foreboding pieces about what I deemed the opening salvoes of a race war:

     Those pieces were founded on a great fund of well-confirmed evidence. It seems to me that they’ve been buttressed by recent events. A sample follows:

     The ongoing riots and vandalism in several American cities are – laughably – being rationalized as “protests” against “police brutality toward blacks.” The majority of the participants in those riots are white. Moreover, their actions make it plain that they’re not protesting anything. They’re committing violence, looting, and wanton destruction for their own sake. “Police brutality toward blacks” is merely a cover fiction.

     The steady accumulation of evidence that black racial hostility toward whites is the real “racism problem” goes almost unaddressed in the media. It’s scarcely mentioned in major public fora. And of course, the Left, which needs “the racism problem” as an excuse for its campaign to disrupt American society, likes it that way.

     David L. Burkhead asks a question that’s surely on many minds:

Do they Want a Civil War?
A Blast from the Past

     He answers his own question:

     It’s looking very much like we’re in the early stages of that right now.

     Burkhead first posted the cited piece in 2018. I contend that what he called “mostly just talk” at the time was already well confirmed by events. Today the confirmations are innumerable. Indeed, Burkhead delineated its inception:

     In a post a few days ago, I described how I thought a future civil war would start. There would be no equivalent to “Lexington” or “Fort Sumter” but it would rather simply start as an increase of politically motivated violence without any distinct starting event. It would only be in retrospect that we’d look back and see that we are in a civil war and had been for some time.

     And “police brutality toward blacks” is the supposed rationale.

     Three years ago, our own Linda Fox wrote an insightful piece about the “traditional” white response to “protests.” The gut punch:

     PC has made authentic expression of thinking unacceptable. So, Whites generally keep their mouths shut in public.

     And, act in private - to remove themselves from the conflict.

     In many large cities, when the crime, urban decay, mismanagement of the city, and poor schools reached a certain level, White people left. Except for a few places (Southie, Boston), they didn't go to the streets in protest. They just left.

     And did not return.

     That’s a workable response only so long as there are places to which white families can flee. In the usual case, such communities defend themselves via:

  • Zoning laws that forbid or restrict multi-family dwellings;
  • High property prices, affordable only by middle-class earners;
  • High property taxes, similarly affordable only by middle-class earners.

     As my Gentle Readers are probably aware, one of the Obamunist initiatives, the “Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing” (AFFH) initiative, was intended to eliminate such white redoubts, by forcing them to loosen the zoning laws that exclude multi-family dwellings (i.e., “projects”). That would make it possible for developers to put apartment blocks and towers like unto the sort subsidized through Section 8 of the 1937 Housing Act and operated by the New York City Housing Authority into Westchester, southern Connecticut, and eastern Long Island. Districts in which such “projects” have been established have quickly turned majority-black and crime-ridden. The suburban, majority-white locales targeted by the Obama Administration resisted vigorously, for reasons too obvious to require extended analysis.

     In 2015, Secretary of Housing and Urban Development Dr. Ben Carson rescinded the AFFH initiative. That was met by an outcry from the Left, which saw AFFH as a way of compelling majority-white suburbs – the very places whites fled to, despite considerable inconvenience and expense – to “integrate.” An increase in racial tensions as black families infiltrated white suburbs was an intended consequence. The Left needs racial tensions as fodder for its public campaigns. Without them, it’s difficult for the Left’s propagandists to impose unearned guilt on whites who only want their homes and families to be safe.

     American Negroes have long been cudgels the Left has used to bludgeon the white majority. The Left’s many attempts to force “integration” on white neighborhoods, including many which formed exclusively from “white flight,” contrasted with its complete unconcern about black-on-black crime rates – dare to call attention to them and you’re a “racist” or a “white supremacist” – make it plain that improving the lot of the black American was not one of their objectives.

     Civil War 2 isn’t a race war, as I once thought and wrote. It’s a political war in which race is the battering ram the Left is wielding against the Right. The steadily rising violence in a number of Democrat-run cities is the entering wedge. If the Left succeeds in “exporting” the riots from its urban redoubts into the majority-white suburbs, war in its fullest dimensions will be upon us.

     Suburban whites will resist. We have plenty of firearms with which to do so. Yet the Left seems to believe that it can win such a contest. I’m inclined to think otherwise. As has been said by others, when blacks “act up,” neighborhoods burn, but when whites “act up,” continents burn. A conclusion such as this one would be mild compared to some of the alternatives.

     But the first salvoes have already been fired. As matters escalate, the prospects for a return to peace, however uneasy, will dwindle toward zero. If we want to avert a full-scale war with all it implies, the time to act is upon us.

Reality intrudes.

There is NOTHING that government can do to help the economy other than remove barriers to wealth creation and preservation that it itself created and allow the people the freedom to pursue their own ends. Since government creates nothing itself, all interventions interfere with what the people themselves desire and are nothing more than transfers of wealth for the benefit of some and the destruction of wealth for all.[1]
Helicopter money certainly does help people in the very near term. But for the long term it's start evidence for the truth of the proposition that government poses as the solution for the problems it creates.

Central banks around the world are in pure panic mode, stupidly reacting to problems with monetary gimmickry when sooner or later they and we know that the repo man will come knocking because productive activity is as scare as a non-racist white man and monetary excess has jacked up inflation and the debt service burden.

The road back to economic sanity is to give up our century-long infatuation with funny money and leftist fairy tales. Politicians think they can game markets. The banksters think wealth is a matter of dollars in the back pocket. And marxists, AKA progressives, think they have a lock on wisdom and common decency. However, Jethro, Juanita, Guiseppe, Hans, and Svetlana know its about offering products and services that customers will pay if only the government will take its hand out of their pockets and get out of the way.

It's proving to be tragic that in the U.S., one of the most economically productive countries in the world at one time, the understanding of capitalism as being a shiny, powerful engine subject to appropriate state regulation of hucksterism, monopoly, and contractual relations has faded. No, capitalism IS the selling of swamp land in Florida and the off-shoring of tens and thousands of American factories.

It's as though a cardiologist lost sight of what a healthy heart is and came to see it only in its various diseased manifestations -- hearts with infarctions, hearts with arrhythmias, hearts with embolisms, hearts with valve disease. The favored locution of the hour appears to be "neo-liberalism," the heartless return to the worship of profits and child labor free of all compassionate ameliorations so helpfully and generously offered by the left.

Whatever the descriptor, it's intended to devour or hide the fact that there is a healthy, functioning version of economic relationships that works -- with necessary and appropriate regulation -- wonderfully.[2]

[1] "Bad Monetary Theory Enables Disastrous Government Policies." By Patrick Barron, ZeroHedge, 8/27/20.
[2] "Crony capitalism" and "monopoly capitalism" are actually useful terms to describe a deformed capitalism. The first describes the deformation effected by wealthy people being able to purchase special favors from the ostensibly neutral government overseers and thus buy a departure from market realities defined by economic actors with skin in the game and constantly assessing cost, risk, and reward. The second the situation where government abdicates its oversight role and allows especially successful businesses to acquire overwhelming market dominance that damages and hinders smaller enterprises.

We have both these phenomena in spades at this very moment and the descriptors are useful because they hint at the cause of the deformation. But, of course, the disease is sold as the natural result of "capitalism" and leftists would rather set their hair on fire than admit that there is a way to organize any economy that is compatible with wealth creation for everybody and liberty. As we know, that is because what they are selling is something radically different, unsustainable, incompatible with liberty, and dishonest -- socialism.

Central banks don't even have such a 50-cent term to justify their actions. They have always acted to enrich the bankster class and now are just in pure panic mode to justify their existence. And it's unraveling.

Friday, August 28, 2020

Socialist And Communist Achievements

     Relax, relax! I’m not talking about actual, tangible economic achievments. A collectivist economy can’t produce anything but poverty and misery. No, what I have in mind is political achievements.

     Way back when we were all still living in the trees – the dark, dank year of 1987 – I attended a lecture by the great Milton Friedman in which he told his audience some startling things. The one that stuck most firmly in my memory is this: Measured in terms of platform planks actuated in law, the most successful American political party of the Twentieth Century was the Socialist Party.

     Surprised? I was, too. But you don’t have to take my word for it. Here are the economic and fiscal planks of the 1928 Socialist Party platform:

  • "Nationalization of our natural resources, beginning with the coal mines and water sites, particularly at Boulder Dam and Muscle Shoals."
  • "A publicly owned giant power system under which the federal government shall cooperate with the states and municipalities in the distribution of electrical energy to the people at cost."
  • "National ownership and democratic management of railroads and other means of transportation and communication."
  • "An adequate national program for flood control, flood relief, reforestation, irrigation, and reclamation."
  • "Immediate government relief of the unemployed by the extension of all public works and a program of long range planning of public works …"
  • "All persons thus employed to be engaged at hours and wages fixed by bona-fide labor unions."
  • "Loans to states and municipalities without interest for the purpose of carrying on public works and the taking of such other measures as will lessen widespread misery."
  • "A system of unemployment insurance."
  • "The nation-wide extension of public employment agencies in cooperation with city federations of labor."
  • "A system of health and accident insurance and of old age pensions as well as unemployment insurance."
  • "Shortening the workday" and "Securing to every worker a rest period of no less than two days in each week."
  • "Enacting of an adequate federal anti-child labor amendment."
  • "Abolition of the brutal exploitation of convicts under the contract system and substitution of a cooperative organization of industries in penitentiaries and workshops for the benefit of convicts and their dependents."
  • "Increase of taxation on high income levels, of corporation taxes and inheritance taxes, the proceeds to be used for old age pensions and other forms of social insurance."
  • "Appropriation by taxation of the annual rental value of all land held for speculation. "

     A larger fraction of that platform has become law in these United States than could be said of either of the “major” parties’ platforms, whether from 1932 or from any subsequent campaign year. Many of them became components of the New Deal.

     Note that the success of the Socialists’ platform was not due to the party’s electoral success; it had none. Rather, starting with the New Deal, the Democrat Party adopted piece after piece of the Socialist agenda and made them its own.

     But let’s not stop there. Have a look at what the Communists have achieved:

     On January 10, 1963, Congressman Albert Herlong entered a list of 45 communist goals (derived from The Naked Communist) into the Congressional Record. Most of those 45 goals have been accomplished. Let’s review some of the most disturbing goals and how they relate to current circumstances.

     Communist Goal 15: Capture one or both of the political parties in the United States. DONE. Among other things, the democratic party (including Joe Biden) has adopted avowed socialist Bernie Sanders’ agenda into its platform. It has also incorporated socialist AOC’s plans, including the Green New Deal.

     Communist Goal 17: Get control of the schools. Use them to transmit socialist propaganda. Get control of teachers’ associations. Put the party line in textbooks. This goal is mostly DONE.

     Communist Goals 20 and 21: Infiltrate and gain control of the press and media. Mostly DONE. Over 85% of the press leans to the left.

     Communist Goals 25 and 26: Break down cultural standards of morality by promoting pornography and obscenity in books, magazines, motion pictures, and TV. Present homosexuality, degeneracy, and promiscuity as “normal, natural, healthy.” DONE.

     Communist Goals 29 and 30: Discredit the Constitution and founding fathers as being inadequate, old-fashioned, out of step with modern needs, [and racist]. DONE.

     Communist Goal 31: Belittle all forms of American culture and discourage the teaching of American history. DONE.

     Communist Goals 33 and 38: Eliminate laws and law enforcement procedures transferring police power to social agencies (i.e. defund the police, etc.). In process.

     Communist Goals 40 and 41: Discredit the family as an institution and emphasize the need to raise children away from the negative influence of parents. In process.

     Communist Goal 42: Create the impression that violence and insurrection are legitimate means of solving economic, political, or social problems. DONE, as verified by democratic support of Antifa and Black Lives Matter.

     The above lists might not be revelations to you. But ask yourself, Gentle Reader: How did propositions that in 1928 struck the overwhelmingly greater part of Americans as noxious and anti-American become the laws of the land? Do you have an answer? And how, starting from before Cleon Skousen’s 1958 book, did the Left manage to suborn so many institutions critical to Americans’ moral and intellectual well-being?

     That should be enough to keep you awake tonight.

Just for Fun - Here's a Link to Brighten Up Your Day

 It Ain't Holy Water.

A sample below (lots more at link):

Currency destruction.

Nothing to worry about though.
If we look at the gold price in US dollars since Nixon abandoned the gold backing of the dollar in 1971, the dollar has lost a staggering 98%.

Only in this century, the dollar has lost 85% against real money or gold. There is no better proof of the total failure of the policies of the Fed and other CBs [central banks] than the destruction of the currencies.


The world has now entered the final phase or the end of the end of this economic era which started in 1913 with the creation of the Fed. The beginning of the end was 1971 with Nixon’s fatal decision. The very final phase started in August 2019 when the ECB and the Fed told the world that the financial system is bankrupt. They didn’t quite use those words but their semi-veiled language and especially actions were crystal clear for once.

Trouble in the financial system meant that the Fed and the ECB would do whatever it takes and this is what they have done for the last 6 1/2 months. Total asset of primarily the Fed and the ECB have gone up by $6t since Aug 2019.

But this is just the mere beginning. With first a bankrupt financial system, an extremely weak world economy and a pandemic on top of that, the Fed and the ECB are totally lost.

"Von Greyerz: Major Central Banks 'Have Totally Lost Control.'" By Egon von Greyerz, By Tyler Durden, ZeroHedge, 8/26/20 (some emphasis removed, some added, underline is original author's).

Thursday, August 27, 2020

It’s On Record

     The Democrats are afraid to have their candidate debate President Trump:

     They’ll offer all sorts of explanations other than Biden’s obvious dementia, but the facts are as they are: they’re desperate to avert having Joe Biden face off against Donald Trump, no matter who might moderate the encounters.

     Could it be any clearer that the Dems intend to use Biden as a Trojan Horse, to smuggle their Leftist ideologues and theoreticians into power, that they might impose socialism upon these United States?

     Make it go viral, Gentle Reader.


     [It’s been a while since my last short story, and something about the title word stirred a few molecules at the back of my brain. It’s a sort of counterpoint to the story told in Deliverance. Tell me what you think. – FWP]

     “Hard livin’s my pleasure,
     “My money’s my own,
     “And them that don’t like me,
     “Can leave me alone.”

     “Why do you keep singing that inane song?” Lyle Worthing grumped.
     Jason Horrocks grinned. “It’s my song, champ.”
     Lyle shook his head, returned his attention to the grill, and flipped the chicken breasts over. He made to do the same for the sirloin steak he’d purchased for Jason when the mercenary said “Don’t bother. I’ll take it as it is.”
     “But it’s still—”
     Jason chuckled. “I know.”
     Lyle shrugged, forked up the unusually rare steak, and plopped it onto the serving platter.
     I could probably serve it to him raw, and he’d smack his lips over it.
     How much of this is just posturing? The soldier for hire reminding us over-civilized types how tough he is?
     Gemma Worthing shouldered the screen door aside and stepped out onto the deck. She set a large platter loaded with sautéed vegetables and a large bowl of teriyaki rice at the center of their glass and wicker dining table, smiled fleetingly at Jason, and returned to the house to fetch the beverages. Jason awarded her backside his customary leer. Lyle strove to restrain his temper.
     “Can’t figure how you bagged a woman that fine, buddy.”
     Lyle grinned. “Just lucky, I guess.”
     “Had to be.” Jason continued to leer toward the screen door as it shut behind Lyle’s wife. “‘Course, in Venezuela—”
     “Yeah, I know,” Lyle said. “They grow ‘em in bunches.”
     “Damn right, buddy. You can pick your own off a tree.” The mercenary settled back in his lawn chair and set his folded hands on his belly.
     So where’s yours?
     Lyle judged the chicken cooked through and loaded it onto a serving platter as Gemma returned with three stemmed glasses, a bottle of Dry Riesling, and Jason’s six-pack of beer.
     Lyle set the platter of meat next to the one with the vegetables. “Dinner is served.” The Worthings seated themselves at their places, steepled their hands, and bowed their heads in prayer.
     Jason groaned mockingly, clambered to his feet with exaggerated difficulty, and joined them.

     Gemma frowned at the receding shape of Jason’s four-by-four.
     “What on Earth moved you to invite him to dinner?”
     Lyle grimaced. “I didn’t. He just...showed up.”
     Gemma’s eyes widened. “Seriously?”
     “He’s been doing it since we were in school.”
     And nobody ever shoos him away.
     “That takes a lot of brass.”
     “He’s got a lot. Always has.”
     “Do you think the stories he was telling—”
     “Are true?” Lyle shrugged. “Probably. It’s what mercenary soldiers do. Some of them anyway, if there’s anything to the accounts I’ve read. And it’s the sort of thing he’d be proud of.”
     I’m just glad you didn’t catch him ogling you.
     She grunted her disapproval. “He certainly kept us up late enough with them.”
     “Are we cleaned up, sweetie?” he said.
     “The dishes are done. Have you covered the grill?”
     “Uh, no. I’ll do that now. And then?”
     “Then,” she said as she encircled his waist with an arm, “I think it will be time for bed.”
     He smiled. “What a good idea.”

     “Fall back!”
     Jason didn’t wait for the lieutenant to repeat himself. The Chavista armor was approaching fast, and his platoon had expended the last of its anti-armor munitions hours before. He scrambled to his feet, slung his rifle across his back, and hightailed it for the relative safety of the jungle. The rest of the unit was close behind him. They kept moving fast until there was a solid quarter mile of densely spaced trees and heavy brush between them and the road command had tasked them to hold.
     That was too fucking close.
     We’re likely to catch a ton of shit from upper...if there’s any upper left after that column hits it. It was headed straight for the main base, and I don’t think that was by chance.
     Maybe we’ll be de-mobed now. No point in hanging around if the folks who sign the paychecks are all dead. Hell, we haven’t seen a penny for more than a year, anyway.
     It wasn’t long before the lieutenant announced that command had been overrun, the rebellion had been quenched, and Jason’s wish had come true. Presently the unit was up and headed to their exfil point and the river craft that awaited them. There were no long faces to be seen among them.      At least I didn’t catch a bullet. Would have been for nothing.

     The pounding on the front door had a familiar quality. Gemma squeezed Lyle’s hand, laid it gently beside him, and went to answer the knock. She opened the door and frowned at the presence of Jason Horrocks.
     The mercenary grinned insolently. “Good to see you, babe. I’m just back from—”
     “From Venezuela?” she murmured. “I understand the rebellion has been crushed and its political figures are all in prison.”
     He grimaced. “Yeah. Won’t be going back there any time soon. Is hubby gonna be grilling tonight?”
     She looked him full in the eyes. The half step backward he took nearly toppled him off the landing.
     “I’m afraid not, Jason. He hasn’t done any grilling for four months.” She produced her coldest smile. “Would you like to see why?”
     Jason’s face clouded. “Well, sure, lead the way.”
     She ushered him in with a wave and led him to the master bedroom. His eyes went wide when his gaze landed on Lyle’s unconscious form and the intravenous lines and monitoring devices attached to it.
     “What the—is he sick?”
     She shook her head. “Not in the usual sense, Jason. He was badly hurt in fighting off a pair of carjackers. Multiple fractures, including one to his skull. The surgeons had to remove his spleen and one of his kidneys, as well.”
     Jason paled. “Holy—but why? Why didn’t he just back away and let them have the car? It’s a piece of shit!”
     “Because,” she murmured, “they wanted what was in the car.”
     “Huh? What was in the car?”
     “Me, Jason. His wife.”
     The mercenary was struck dumb. Gemma noted his stupefaction and nodded.
     “He killed one of them, Jason,” she said pleasantly. “He managed to rip the brute’s throat open with his car keys. But the second one beat him half to death with a length of pipe before he fled.”
     She seated herself next to the bed and took Lyle’s hand in hers again.
     “His fractures have mostly healed, but his coma has persisted. The surgeons don’t know if he’ll ever regain consciousness. They’ve told me not to...hope for too much. All the same, I’m not going to let him go. ‘In sickness and in health,’ you know?”
     She caressed her husband’s hand. “So no, I don’t think we’ll be grilling tonight, the way we used to on Fridays. He gets his nutrition intravenously, and I prefer to bring my dinner in here and sit with him while I eat. Perhaps in a year or so—or do you expect you’ll have gone off to some other war by then?”
     “We go where the action is,” he croaked. “It’s what mercenaries do.”
     She nodded again. “He told me about the ways of your chosen trade. Well, Jason, he did what husbands do. The good ones, anyway. If he ever comes to, I’ll tell him you stopped by, but for now, I think you know the way out.”


     Copyright © 2020 Francis W. Porretto. All Rights Reserved Worldwide.

Your Last Wake-Up Call, America

     Yes, yes, I know it’s early in the morning. I know that if you’re up at this hour, you’re scurrying around, getting ready to head to work. Still, have a little video:

     That’s from Kenosha, Wisconsin. The young man who defended himself, Kyle Rittenhouse, has already been arrested and charged with first-degree murder. Apparently that’s the penalty for defending your own life against a rampaging mob. Oh, and for lagniappe, have a little commentary – very little; it’s a “tweet” – from a lawyer:

     “Threatens” the rule of law? THREATENS?

     The rule of law died when prosecutors, mayors, and governors started siding with the rioters and against peaceable citizens going about their lawful business.

     Quoth Mike Hendrix:

     With the rioters enjoying the full endorsement and support of Democrat-Socialist officialdom nationwide, and the police kept on a tight leash by those same criminal authorities, ordinary citizens have stepped up to do what they must....

     We are at war, with a violent Left-wing revolutionary enemy actively seeking to overthrow and destroy this nation. We sat idly back as they assaulted, beat, stabbed, shot, and ran over numerous innocent people with impunity, going at least as far back as the shooting of Steve Scalise and others by a deranged Bernie Sanders employee.

     Quite simply, the ordinary rules and standards no longer apply.

     Indeed. It cannot be put any more clearly than that. If you don’t get it even now – if you think, for whatever reason, that it could never encroach upon you and yours – you’re living in a dream.

     The hell with the useless facial diapers, Gentle Reader. They’re about as relevant to your “protection” as a screen door in a submarine. Go armed at all times. And – need I say it? – be ready to use your weapons, whatever they may be. (When I leave my home, this is my preference; its conspicuousness speaks for itself.)

     There is no law any longer in Kenosha, Seattle, Portland, and several other places; there is only power. Unless it’s opposed – not merely in word, but in forethought, preparation, and deed – from this moment forward, it will reach every smallest corner of these United States. If we want the law back, We the People must assert it and stand ready to defend it. In all candor, that responsibility has never belonged to anyone else.

     UPDATE: This incident originally got past me. However, it's a perfect illustration of what Americans who want their country as it was must do if we're to get it back. Any readers with other illustrative events at hand: please send them to me, and I'll append them here.

     FURTHER UPDATE: Courtesy of our favorite Bookworm:

     Any Questions??

Trust us. It's misinformation.

Remember this from the Columbia Journalism Review next time some MSM outfit wants to tell you what is and what is not worthwhile speech. Of course, they want to be helpful and not have you tax yourself trying to sort through conflicting or complex facts:
During the pandemic, news outlets have widely looked to Bill Gates as a public health expert on covid—even though Gates has no medical training and is not a public official. PolitiFact and USA Today (run by the Poynter Institute and Gannett, respectively—both of which have received funds from the Gates Foundation) have even used their fact-checking platforms to defend Gates from “false conspiracy theories” and “misinformation,” like the idea that the foundation has financial investments in companies developing covid vaccines and therapies. In fact, the foundation’s website and most recent tax forms clearly show investments in such companies, including Gilead and CureVac.[1]
The article is interesting for what light it shines on how much The Gates Foundation has spread its contributions around among the media. I doubt it's because Bill cares about a strong, vibrant, free press. Rather, I'm reasonably certain that he wants kid gloves treatment for his various benevolent activities.

[1] "Columbia Journalism Review Explains How The Gates Foundation Manipulates The Media Narrative." By Tyler Durden, ZeroHedge, 8/26/20 (emphasis added).

Wednesday, August 26, 2020

Catholic Priorities

 Sometimes, it seems as though the only issues discussed are:

  • Abortion
  • Death Penalty
But, a column I read today on Front Page brought another issue - one that is, perhaps, even more important, as it affects so many.

Look. I get it. Many of us are not all that touchy-feely. Many of us are introverts by nature, and have been less affected by the lockdowns.

But, even the introverts are getting cabin fever. Can you imagine just how dreadful these restrictions on interaction must be for the extroverts?

As a Catholic, it is my duty to do all that I can to preserve human life. Off the top of my head, I can name at least 1/2 dozen people I am well acquainted with who may be suffering the emotional/mental effects of the Black Hole of Human Interaction. You can probably do the same.

Well, then - MAKE that list. Structure it so you manage to reach out, by phone or video-chat, with every one of them. Use that contact to gauge just how hungry they are for these interactions, and schedule some follow-up to that contact.

Text won't do. The ones most affected have a HUMAN-hunger. They need the old-fashioned (or the best we have) ways of communicating - voice/video-chat. The technologies are there:
  • Zoom - for individual, 1-to-1 contacts, it's perfect. It even allows you to share websites, videos, and other online links, in active, real-time use.  It's easy to use, even for the less tech-y types. Mastery takes a few tries, but still has potential. Works on a number of platforms, and is super-easy to use on tablets and phones.
  • Google Duo - it replaced Google Hangouts. I've used it, it does have a learning curve, you need a Google account, but you can call those who do not. You can make video calls, phone calls, or even message. Works on computers, tablets, and mobile phones.
  • Facetime - Apple-only devices, but super easy to use, and capitalizes on the ease of use on the iPad/iPhone. Like most Mac apps, it is seamless to use, so may be better for Mac users to begin exploring the technology of videoconferencing.
  • Skype - this was one of the early videochat apps (all platforms, home and mobile). Zoom capitalized on the COVID crisis, but many have experience with this app, and may be already on their mobile device.
  • See here for other alternatives.
Do it. Today.

For some people, this can change their life. Or, save it.

A Teaser

     [Apologies, Gentle Reader. The outrages have overwhelmed me. I simply can’t bear to write about politics or current events just now. For the present, I’ll leave that chore to others of stouter constitutions. Instead, have a snippet from my novel-under-construction, to be titled Love in the Time of Capitalism. If you’ve read this short story, you already know a bit about two of the Marquee characters. — FWP]

     They say that hope is the most fragile of reeds, the slenderest of threads. That it’s not something you could rely on when hanging off the edge of a cliff. But to one who’s been parted from the only thing that matters to him, hope can seem unbreakable.
     I wasn’t yet at the pinnacle of entertainment journalism, but I was considered a rising star. I could get to see most entertainers I might take an interest in. The really big ones might resist, but the open secret of their industry, if you can call it that, is that there’s no such thing as bad publicity. Anyone who can get them a little more popular attention is an asset—and even when I was a stripling with nothing but a steno pad and a brassy attitude, I was able to get them more than a little.
     Still, I expected an entertainer who’s also a partner in a major venture capital firm to be a different breed of creature. I expected her to decline, especially given recent events. That she didn’t was only a prelude to the surprises that awaited me.
     I didn’t expect her to answer the door herself, but she did. I didn’t expect her to delay her breakfast for me, or to invite me to join her, but she did. I certainly didn’t expect her to make and serve me eggs Benedict with candied yams, but she did. There were no servants anywhere. She seemed light years off the norm for an owner of a multibillion-dollar firm. Not that I’d known any others. I certainly couldn’t name any others who were also fashion-magazine-cover subjects and widely admired musicians.
     “Nice breakfast,” I said as I unfolded my napkin.
     She smiled. “Nice to have company to eat it with. Besides, I’m trying to keep my hand in. Coffee?”
     “Of course.”
     She poured for us both. I was about to pick up my fork and dig in when I noticed that she’d bowed her head over her folded hands. I immediately did the same.
     “Father, bless this repast,” she intoned, “and sustain us in our faith and our love, that our trust in You and our hope of Your mercy might never falter. In Christ our Lord, Amen.”
     “Amen,” I said. I looked up and found her regarding me with a hint of curiosity.
     “Which denomination?” she said.
     “I was raised Catholic.”
     “Ah. Mine as well.”
     “I know.”
     We set to our breakfasts.
     “I was surprised you agreed to be interviewed,” I said between bites.
     “I wasn’t sure I would,” she said. “Things are a little strange at the moment.”
     I snorted. “Now there’s an understatement. But haven’t they been strange for some time now?”
     “You could say so.” She sipped at her coffee. “The escape of the most famous political prisoner in history, the president publicly vowing vengeance against the owner of Mankind’s first space habitat—”
     “Which your company helped to fund.”
     She nodded. “The first war to be fought in orbit, and of course the death of the president under the most mysterious imaginable circumstances. ‘Strange’ might not quite cover it.”
     “A lot of people think your firm was involved,” I said.
     “I know.” She forked up the last of her eggs.
     “Well? Were you?”
     Her gaze was gently sardonic.
     “If we were, do you really think I’d admit it?”
     I shrugged. “Sorry. I did have to ask.”
     She chuckled. “No you didn’t. But I knew you would.”
     We finished our breakfasts in silence. She took the dishes to the sink, rinsed them, and gestured to me with the coffee carafe. I shook my head and fished my recorder out of my purse. She noted it and smiled.
     “Those must be a great blessing in your trade.”
     “No argument. It’s worth ten times its price for the time-stamping and security features alone.” I unwrapped and thumb-printed a fresh memory cartridge and inserted it into the recorder. “Shall we get started?”
     She nodded, and I pressed the Start key.
     “The question I’ve most wanted to ask since this all started probably isn’t the one you expect me to lead off with,” I said. “But it’s the one that’s uppermost in my mind. Do you think you’ll ever see him again?”
     She nodded. “I’m sure of it.”

Tuesday, August 25, 2020

Laager Or Attack?

     No other choices are available.

     By now my Gentle Readers are aware of what happened in Kenosha, Wisconsin last night. Perhaps you’re also aware that various “leaders” on the Left are calling for more riots, more looting, more violence, and in more places around America. And you simply must be aware that Nancy Pelosi has called President Trump and the Republicans in Congress “domestic enemies” and “enemies of the state.”

     Americans who still love this country and want to see it defended have been waiting for a federal response. There hasn’t been one yet. There are no indications that there will be one any time soon. President Trump appears to have decided to give the afflicted states’ governments a chance to put down the rioters and reassert public order – which those governments have declined to do. Meanwhile, cities are being destroyed by AntiFa acting under the banner of “Black Lives Matter.”

     How long will the president wait?

     These aren’t “civil rights demonstrations.” They’re not “peaceful protests” about “police misconduct.” They’re insurrections. Unless they’re treated as such, they’ll continue to spread. Without a federal response, either AntiFa will own the country de facto, or armed civilians will eliminate it down to the last masked, black-garbed cur, without bothering to secure approval from “the authority of the law.”

     In either case, justice as a formal process based on written laws and codified judicial procedures – i.e., justice as Americans have understood it for two centuries – will be dead.

     There are already some signs that the public understanding of these events is maturing toward armed confrontation. Consider the McCloskeys, whom endless media outlets have defamed as “pointing guns at peaceful protesters.” Seldom does such a story mention that the “peaceful protesters” destroyed a gate that closes off a private street into a private, proprietary community. Even less often does such a story mention that the “peaceful protesters” shouted threats to the McCloskeys’ lives and property...nor that they returned in hopes of actualizing those threats, only to be deterred by a well armed security force.

     In recognition that the disease is spreading, private citizens and neighborhoods are quietly forming “laagers:” zones whose householders are armed, and whose outskirts are discreetly monitored against the possibility of incursion. My neighborhood is one such: heavily armed and uneasily braced for whatever might come to us. Should trouble come to call, we won’t fire warning shots; ammo’s gotten too damned expensive.

     I don’t want that. I doubt that you do. But it’s the sort of attitude civilians must take: civilians are not organized enough to go on the offensive. (Besides, our wives would never permit it.)

     Still, we have a federal government that commands a large, well armed and organized army. That army is capable of more than post-hurricane disaster relief and ousting Middle Eastern tyrants – and We the People pay for its upkeep. We need it to march. Why does it sit idle?

     The United States shall guarantee to every state in this union a republican form of government, and shall protect each of them against invasion; and on application of the legislature, or of the executive (when the legislature cannot be convened) against domestic violence. [Constitution of the United States, Article IV, Section 4)

     What good is that “guarantee” if the federal government should refuse to act against the AntiFa / Black Bloc / Black Lives Matter insurrectionists?

     AntiFa is already advancing into quiet, entirely residential areas as depicted here. To what end, when there’s nothing there to loot? David Thompson provides an analysis:

     This is what happens when malevolent narcissists don’t get slapped and thrown to the ground. The kind of psychology we’re seeing, over and over again, overwhelmingly from the left, is an exercise in bad faith, a fundamental dishonesty....

     This isn’t politics. This is recreational sociopathy.

     The Mao-lings who obstruct and intimidate random motorists, or who harass random restaurant customers, scaring their children, or who scream amplified profanities at random people trying to sleep, while shining lights into their bedrooms - they don’t do these things because they care about civil rights, or policing, or whatever this week’s Issue Of Great Concern happens to be. They do it because menacing other people - and spoiling someone’s day, or night, arbitrarily - is gratifying. If, that is, you’re a certain kind of person. They are, as it were, pleasuring themselves.

     Let’s close with a brief video from England:

     And Rudyard Kipling’s apocalyptic poem:

The Wrath Of The Awakened Saxon

It was not part of their blood,
It came to them very late,
With long arrears to make good,
When the Saxon began to hate.

They were not easily moved,
They were icy — willing to wait
Till every count should be proved,
Ere the Saxon began to hate.

Their voices were even and low.
Their eyes were level and straight.
There was neither sign nor show
When the Saxon began to hate.

It was not preached to the crowd.
It was not taught by the state.
No man spoke it aloud
When the Saxon began to hate.

It was not suddently bred.
It will not swiftly abate.
Through the chilled years ahead,
When Time shall count from the date
That the Saxon began to hate.

     If the English are already at the tipping point, how far from it are we? Dare we draw any nearer to it?

     Buy ammo. And pray.

2020's Logo

 Stolen from A View From the Porch:

Monday, August 24, 2020

They're on Drugs! It's the Only Explanation Possible

 'Ya gotta read this - go on, I swear you will NOT believe it.

They are lunatics - certifiably crazy. Absolutely NO understanding of how Normal People think.

And, they are in charge of the state government.

Be afraid. Be VERY afraid.

USA Today's Article on Safety in Parking Garages

 The article mostly focuses on employee parking garages, the ones found in hospital settings. Many of them are at a greater distance from work than the visitor garages (which can be poorly lit and scary enough).

Poorly lit facilities cause the most problems. I do understand why the hospitals might not want to spend the money to light up a place that is empty most of the time. However, it wouldn't take much to put the lights on a timer, or a motion sensor that would light up nearby areas very brightly. That, alone, would do a lot to make the structure safer.

There is a standard for lighting, which, in many parking garages, is not being met throughout the building. Dark corners where criminals can lurk are a common feature. The OSHA inspectors seldom check.

Other problems include lack of restrictions on access, poor security monitoring, and broken or missing cameras. All of those have been linked to attacks.

It's a long, but informative and fascinating article. After you read it, take a look into the situation of your local hospital, and see if it measures up to a high level of preparation.

Hegemony And Dissonance

     When you see a man acting in a fashion that contradicts his stated positions, you are witnessing a variety of cognitive dissonance. BizPac Review has cited a number of such occasions on the part of the “forces” asserting hegemony over the streets of various American cities. A snippet:

     A hodgepodge of conservative groups had reportedly been scheduled to rally in downtown Portland this Saturday in support of the city’s beleaguered police officers.

     The event was titled “Mother of All Back The Blue Rallies”....

     But according to renowned journalist Andy Ngo, the otherwise peaceful pro-police rally wound up being hijacked by virulently anti-police left-wing extremists.

     “Numerous conservative groups held a pro-police rally but it was crashed by #antifa, who threw eggs, rocks, feces & urine,” he reported via Twitter.

     What ensued was a tremendous deal of violence, the majority of it (but not necessarily all of it) seemingly instigated by the left-wing extremists.

     Apparently, the AntiFa types didn’t expect that the pro-police demonstrators would fight back:

     It seems left-wing extremists hijacked a peaceful pro-police rally, threw “eggs, rocks, feces & urine” at the rallygoers, and then cried foul the moment one of the otherwise peaceful pro-police protesters had enough and decided to fight back.

     Please read the whole article. It’s replete with links and tweets from the intrepid Andy Ngo, who’s specialized in covering these events at considerable personal risk.

     There’s an enormous message embedded in these events. The leftists who have been asserting hegemony over the streets of Portland and elsewhere are hollow. They have no real substance. They crumble before any meaningful opposition. What could be more revealing – indeed, more pathetic — than whining for protection from the very forces you claim to oppose?

     He was seeing the enormity of the smallness of the enemy who was destroying the world. He felt as if, after a journey of years through a landscape of devastation, past the ruins of great factories, the wrecks of powerful engines, the bodies of invincible men, he had come upon the despoiler, expecting to find a giant—and had found a rat eager to scurry for cover at the first sound of a human step. If this is what has beaten us, he thought, the guilt is ours. [Ayn Rand, Atlas Shrugged]

     If we want to keep this country, we must be willing to fight.

Opiate of the masses.

Biden’s handlers are telling him to campaign on [idiotic and tyrannical lock downs] because they are trying to hold together The State, the religion of the Left, as the final arbiter of truth and societal best practices while it fails right in front of our eyes.

And I believe this is why they are trying so hard to hold onto these narratives so tightly. No one wants to watch their belief system wither and die on the vine.

No one is comfortable with having their fundamental premises which form their worldview be revealed as inadequate to the task. But that is exactly what is happening to progressives and socialists of all stripes.[1]

A prime example of this panic is the willingness of the entire Democratic Party to fervently acclaim and support a candidate for president who's an ardent hair sniffer and who exhibits unmistakable signs of serious dementia. Unmistakable. Serious. Dementia. Nothing is too absurd to embrace as long as the leftist dream can live on.

An interesting corollary of Mr. Luongo's point is that the state has only one option -- it must DO something. Just letting nature, an unstoppable virus, a freely-chosen course of conduct, or an idea play out is just crazy. Your garden-variety drug counselor understands the concept of tough love for the addict committed to his drug but to the leftist political "thinker" constant control is the only option.

That works with driving a car but even where there are quadrillions of variables the leftist is sure that he can pick out the key ones to move us all down the road to social and economic bliss.

"Climate" is a simple matter. It involves just about every conceivable physical and chemical force on the planet but the left knows beyond all doubt that man's (minuscule) contribution of "carbon" to the atmosphere is THE CULPRIT. What else could cause climate but "carbon"?

Shorter work week, higher minimum wages, unions, abortion, mail order sexual identity, foo' stam', censorship, whitey's subjugation and demise, importation of Muslim hordes, tolerance, "good" discrimination, safe spaces, supercharged pronouns, an end to greed, squaring the circle on matters of race, free money, free college, free medical care, free food, and female parachute infantry all figure prominently on the leftist dream sheet.

But recall the recurring, unsuppressable image constantly crashing into the consciousness of the main character in the movie "The Pawnbroker." The image of bliss destroyed and forever denied was unbearable to the main character. So does the leftist now glimpse the unspeakable truths of reason, justice, order, and the realities of human nature. Some small number even dimly grasp the looming catastrophe of debt service, inflation, our national Ponzi scheme, crowding out, free trade, and malinvestment and know that something yet more innovative and powerful -- and dishonest -- must be devised. Hence, modern monetary theory (MMT) which is an elegant, Harvard-blessed exercise in harnessing economic cold fusion, namely, pursuing something for nothing.

In the political, cultural and social realm it's the same. The notion that foreign cultures are inferior to our own is too threatening and must be replaced with the comforting -- but asinine -- notion that all cultures are equal and must be welcomed without limitation.

So too are all races equal but that recurring flashes of true knowledge first drive the biens pensants to seek out "good schools" in the suburbs, as it just so happens, and then drive them to panic when the "inner city" comes to find them. What then?

Now the realities of what "the civil rights revolution" got us are stark, and nothing but, as we watch our cities burn, stores looted, and cultural icons pulled down and defiled. The hatred and moral debasement of major segments of our cherished minority -- and its leftist allies -- couldn't be clearer.

[1] "Luongo Exposes Dems' Strategy: Use COVID To Destroy Everything, Blame Trump." By Tom Luongo, ZeroHedge, 8/24/20 (emphasis removed).

Sunday, August 23, 2020

The Altucher Article

     James Altucher’s piece about the death of New York City seems to me to be largely on target. Yet there are cities that aren’t suffering a comparable exodus, which “should” prompt the question: What makes the Big Apple so vulnerable? Why is Manhattan emptying out, possibly never to be refilled, when other cities are holding steady?

     The question made me reflect awhile on New York’s unique economic structure. That NYC is the densest and most populous of our cities, everyone is aware. But the city’s singular economic pyramid is something non-New Yorkers might not have pondered.

     Altucher is correct in fingering the expansion of Internet bandwidth as a key factor in the exodus. Without that expansion, the exodus would not be nearly the size it has attained. But other cities have enjoyed the same increase in bandwidth. What makes New York different?

     It “should” be “obvious” that the effect of radically increased bandwidth is to make the transmission of information of all kinds faster and easier. NYC is no longer the manufacturing hub of the Nineteenth and early Twentieth Centuries. The pinnacle of its economy is informational: finance, data processing, publishing, entertainment, communications, promotion. Information, in this context, includes such things as real-time images and sound: the stuff of the typical meeting.

     When information is the only thing being moved from person to person and place to place, physical proximity is unnecessary. Bandwidth is all that matters. So the quarter-million to half-million New Yorkers whose occupations are information-based have no need to gather in one dense, expensive, difficult-to-reach place.

     But that’s not the whole story. “Obviously,” those hundreds of thousands of information-only workers are a small minority of the eight million persons who reside in NYC. What about the others: the ones who still work with physical objects that can’t be transmitted over the Internet? Why are so many of them fleeing the Big Apple?

     In many cases, their trades are made economically viable by the people and businesses that pay their salaries and fees: the extremely profitable information-only industries and their well-compensated employees. In that regard, NYC differs from nearly every other American city. The vitality of the information-only sector, rather than being a cherry atop the economic sundae, is what sustains a great part – possibly the greater part – of the livelihoods of other city-dwellers.

     Most of those non-information workers could still make a living without the patronage of the information-only sector, but for many it would not be comfortable at NYC’s level of expense. The loss of the information sector thus induces a degree of flight among the non-information workers as a second-order consequence.

     New York City won’t die completely. It retains assets that Internet bandwidth can’t replace: in particular, a magnificent harbor and a transportation nexus that serves the whole Atlantic Seaboard. But present trends continuing – always a risky assumption, but what else do we have to go on? – it will diminish substantially and will remain diminished for a long time to come. Yes, the Wuhan virus and the media-promoted fear of it acted as triggers. Still, in an era in which ever fewer persons must interact physically with material objects to earn their livings, something with this effect was likely to happen along sooner or later.

Give that man a cigar.

"Blame the reckless central bankers."

No, blame the politicians. Blaming the banks is like blaming welfare recipients for the national debt. If you're going to stand on a corner handing out free money then it's you're fault when you end up broke not those who took the money. The politicians who created the bank were obviously rotten to the core but that isn't what prevented every politician since from righting the wrong. Politicians love the unlimited deficit spending the central bank offers so it is the greed of politicians that keeps it going not the greed of the banks. That's not to say the banks are not greedy just that their greed is not what keeps the banks alive. Politicians could shut the bank down just like they could shut welfare down, illegal immigration down, corruption down, monopolies down, nation building down and a whole host of other things that are detrimental to the future of the nation for main street. The politicians simply won't because they are the greediest, most immoral and corrupt dirt bags of them all.[1]

The Chinese have a great expression: "Open the door and look at the mountain." Stuff about "our values," "our Constitution," "racism," "white privilege," "globalism," "multiculturalism," and "U.S. exceptionalism," among other things, is properly seen as pure garbage if we follow that advice. The American variant might be "What the hell are you talking about?" Do those who speak of "the Constitution" mean the document whose every comma and preposition are interpreted to augment the power of the central state?

Our politicians never stop with their garbage about the Russians undermining "our democracy" but turn a blind eye to (1) the wholesale evisceration of the electoral system by the importation of millions of illegals -- with their mysterious propensity to vote in our elections -- and (2) the obvious leftist contempt for electoral procedures as evidenced by the attack on the Trump presidency, fouling of the voter rolls, and fiddling with mail-in ballots and "early" voting. "Early" as in "frequent."

They countenance vote fraud, racial hatred directed at whites, impoverishment of the American people, ultra-left street thuggery, disastrous foreign military adventure, and lunatic deficit spending, debt, and psychopathic central bank excess but, brethern, those fisking Russians are doing us wrong.

Politicians intend the natural consequences of their acts. If I eat too much, I intend to get fat and have health problems. Whatever I say to the contrary is BS. Our present troubles were foreseeable and avoidable and the Romneys, Bushes, Ryans, McConnells, Boehners, McCains, Pelosis, Bloombergs, Ocasios, Clintons, and Newsoms drove the nation straight at the Great Dismal Swamp of strife, decay, bankruptcy, treason, depravity, and one giant "constitutional" joke. Because that is what with all their heart they wanted.

[1] Comment by dustinwind on "What Now?" By Tuomas Malinen, ZeroHedge, 8/21/20.