logo Welcome, Guest. Please Login or Register.
2019-05-19 22:54:58 CoV Wiki
Learn more about the Church of Virus
Home Help Search Login Register
News: Read the first edition of the Ideohazard

  Church of Virus BBS
  General
  Society & Culture

  The Red Pill
« previous next »
Pages: 1 2 3 4 [5] 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 Reply Notify of replies Send the topic Print 
   Author  Topic: The Red Pill  (Read 27968 times)
David Lucifer
Archon
*****

Posts: 2626
Reputation: 8.98
Rate David Lucifer



Enlighten me.

View Profile WWW E-Mail
Re:The Red Pill
« Reply #60 on: 2015-11-17 13:29:05 »
Reply with quote

http://cafehayek.com/2015/11/quotation-of-the-day-1530.html

Quotation of the Day…

… is from pages 162-163 of Hayek’s brilliant 1952 volume The Counter-Revolution of Science, as reprinted in Studies On the Abuse & Decline of Reason (Bruce Caldwell, ed.; 2010), which is volume 13 of the Collected Works of F.A. Hayek (footnotes excluded):


Quote:
The problem of securing an efficient use of our resources is thus very largely one of how that knowledge of the particular circumstances of the moment can be most effectively utilised; and the task which faces the designer of a rational order of society is to find a method whereby this widely dispersed knowledge may best be drawn upon.  It is begging the question to describe this task, as is usually done, as one of effectively using the ‘available’ resources to satisfy ‘existing’ needs.  Neither ‘available’ resources nor the ‘existing’ needs are objective facts in the sense of those which the engineer deals in his limited field: they can never be directly known in all relevant detail to as single planning body.  Resources and needs exist for practical purposes only through somebody knowing about them, and there will always be infinitely more known to all the people together than can be known to the most competent authority.  A successful solution can therefore not be based on the authority dealing directly with the objective facts, but must be based on a method of utilising the knowledge dispersed among all members of society, knowledge of which in any particular instance the central authority will usually know neither who possesses it nor whether it exists at all.

The nature of the economic problem as described here by Hayek requires that prices be set by processes of voluntary exchanges between owners of private property.  It is these market-determined prices that prompt millions of individuals each to act as if he or she (1) possesses all of the information and knowledge that is spread out across and divided among those millions of different minds, and (2) intends to coordinate his or her actions with millions of strangers in ways that result in a productive and orderly economy.

Those who would use government to control prices and wages would use government to mute what is by far the most effective communications system available to ensure that markets continue to function as smoothly and as productively as possible.
Report to moderator   Logged
David Lucifer
Archon
*****

Posts: 2626
Reputation: 8.98
Rate David Lucifer



Enlighten me.

View Profile WWW E-Mail
Re:The Red Pill
« Reply #61 on: 2015-11-17 13:30:37 »
Reply with quote


Quote from: David Lucifer on 2015-11-17 13:29:05   

Those who would use government to control prices and wages would use government to mute what is by far the most effective communications system available to ensure that markets continue to function as smoothly and as productively as possible.

In other words, prices are signals. To interfere with prices by legislation is as stupid as fighting against climate change by making it illegal to record higher temperatures.
Report to moderator   Logged
Fritz
Archon
*****

Gender: Male
Posts: 1720
Reputation: 8.94
Rate Fritz





View Profile WWW E-Mail
Re:The Red Pill
« Reply #62 on: 2015-11-17 13:40:02 »
Reply with quote


Quote from: David Lucifer on 2015-11-16 16:33:49   


Quote from: Fritz on 2015-11-16 11:43:50   

Seems the top 1% in 2007 have a much larger share of the pie then lower classes compared to 1979, by these congressional numbers.
https://www.cbo.gov/publication/42729?index=12485

October 15, 2015
Senator Sanders and the Fixed Pie Fallacy
By Chelsea German

http://humanprogress.org/blog/senator-sanders-fixed-pie-fallacy

“The rich are getting richer and the poor are getting poorer.” Senator Bernie Sanders first said those words in 1974 and has been repeating them ever since. Senator Sanders is not alone in his belief. Three out of four Americans agree with the statement, “Today it’s really true that the rich just get richer while the poor get poorer.”

Senator Sanders is half right: the rich are getting richer. However, his assertion that the poor are becoming poorer is incorrect. The poor are becoming richer as well.
<snip>

http://www.thestreet.com/story/11480568/1/us-standard-of-living-has-fallen-more-than-50-opinion.html

<snip>
There are no "tricks" here. Indeed, all of the tricks are used by our governments. The green line shows average wages, discounted by inflation calculated with the same methodology for all 40 years. Obviously that is the only way in which we can compare any data over time: through applying identical parameters to it each year.

Then we have the blue line: showing wage data discounted with our "official" inflation rate. The problem? The methodology used by our governments to calculate inflation in 1975 was different from the method they used in 1985, which was different than the method they used in 1995, which was different than the method they used in 2005.

Two obvious points flow from this observation. First, it is tautological that the only way in which data can be compared meaningfully is to use a consistent methodology. If the government thinks it has improved upon its inflation methodology, then all it had to do was take all of its old data and re-calculate it with their "improved" methodology. Since 1970 there is this invention called "computers" which makes such calculations rather simple.

This brings us to the second point: the refusal of our governments to adopt a consistent methodology in reporting inflation statistics can only imply a deliberate attempt to deceive, since it is 100% logically/statistically invalid to simply string together disconnected series of data -- and present it as if it represents a consistent picture. More specifically, we can see precisely what lie our government was attempting to get us to believe.
<snip>
Report to moderator   Logged

Where there is the necessary technical skill to move mountains, there is no need for the faith that moves mountains -anon-
Fritz
Archon
*****

Gender: Male
Posts: 1720
Reputation: 8.94
Rate Fritz





View Profile WWW E-Mail
Re:The Red Pill
« Reply #63 on: 2015-11-17 14:01:08 »
Reply with quote


Quote from: David Lucifer on 2015-11-17 13:30:37   


Quote from: David Lucifer on 2015-11-17 13:29:05   

Those who would use government to control prices and wages would use government to mute what is by far the most effective communications system available to ensure that markets continue to function as smoothly and as productively as possible.

In other words, prices are signals. To interfere with prices by legislation is as stupid as fighting against climate change by making it illegal to record higher temperatures.


My view of history suggest Money and Power aggregates and once beyond a critical mass becomes an immutable force. Whether power and money is co-opted by; a governing body, an oligarchy, or theistic order or an AI, with out some socially agreed on checks and balances it will, based on the past, will go pear shaped for the hungry proletariat. Conversely maybe humans were never meant to have nice things because we don't seem to be able to look after them; with an apparent attention span limited to at most 30 years; beyond that we seems to repeat our mistakes, albeit at an ever faster pace.

Cheers

Fritz


Fiat Currency: Using the Past to See into the Future

Source: Daily Reckoning
Author:  Nick Jones
Date: na

[img][/img]

The history of fiat money, to put it kindly, has been one of failure. In fact, EVERY fiat currency since the Romans first began the practice in the first century has ended in devaluation and eventual collapse, of not only the currency, but of the economy that housed the fiat currency as well.

Why would it be different here in the U.S.? Well, in actuality, it hasn’t been. In fact, in our short history, we’ve already had several failed attempts at using paper currency, and it is my opinion that today’s dollars are no different than the continentals issued during the Revolutionary War. But I will get into that in a moment. In the meantime, I will show you that fiat currencies have not been successful, and the only aspect of fiat currencies that have stood the test of time is the inability of political systems to prevent the devaluation and debasement of this toilet paper money by letting the printing presses run wild.

Fiat Money –Rome — The Denarius

Although Rome didn’t actually have paper money, it provided one of the first examples of true debasement of a currency. The denarius, Rome’s coinage of the time, was, essentially, pure silver at the beginning of the first century A.D. By A.D. 54, Emperor Nero had entered the scene, and the denarius was approximately 94% silver. By around A.D.100, the denarius’ silver content was down to 85%.

Emperors that succeeded Nero liked the idea of devaluing their currency in order to pay the bills and increase their own wealth. By 218, the denarius was down to 43% silver, and in 244, Emperor Philip the Arab had the silver content dropped to 0.05%. Around the time of Rome’s collapse, the denarius contained only 0.02% silver and virtually nobody accepted it as a medium of exchange or a store of value.

Fiat Money -China — Flying Money

When the Chinese first started using paper money, they called it “flying money,” because it could just fly from your hands. The reason for the issuance of paper money is simple. There was a copper shortage, so banks had switched to the use of iron coinage. These iron coins became overissued and fell in value.

In the 11th century, a bank in the Szechuan province of China issued paper money in exchange for the iron coins. Initially, this was fine, because the paper money was exchangeable for gold, silver, or silk. Eventually, inflation began to take hold, as China was funding an ongoing war with the Mongols, which it eventually lost.

Genghis Khan won this war, but the Mongols didn’t assume immediate control over China as they pushed westward to conquer more lands. Genghis Khan’s grandson Kublai Khan united China and assumed the emperorship. After running into some setbacks with paper currency, Kublai eventually had some success with fiat money. In fact, Marco Polo said of Kublai Khan and the use of paper currency:

“You might say that [Kublai] has the secret of alchemy in perfection…the Khan causes every year to be made such a vast quantity of this money, which costs him nothing, that it must equal in amount all the treasure of the world.”

Even Helicopter Ben would be impressed. Marco Polo went on to say:

“This was the most brilliant period in the history of China. Kublai Khan, after subduing and uniting the whole country and adding Burma, Cochin China, and Tonkin to the empire, entered upon a series of internal improvements and civil reforms, which raised the country he had conquered to the highest rank of civilization, power, and progress.”

Wait a second, I thought we were bashing fiat currencies here…Can anyone say crackup boom? Since Marco Polo experienced this firsthand, and has been very helpful to us thus far, I think I will allow him to finish his analysis of China’s paper money experiment.

“Population and trade had greatly increased, but the emissions of paper notes were suffered to largely outrun both…All the beneficial effects of a currency that is allowed to expand with a growth of population and trade were now turned into those evil effects that flow from a currency emitted in excess of such growth. These effects were not slow to develop themselves…The best families in the empire were ruined, a new set of men came into the control of public affairs, and the country became the scene of internecine warfare and confusion.”

I wonder if Keynes read Marco Polo’s experiences with Chinese fiat currencies when he said that the U.S. government should just bury bottles full of money in old mine shafts to spur economic growth.

Fiat Money -France — Livres, Assignats, and Francs

The French have been particularly unsuccessful in their attempts with fiat money.

John Law was the first man to introduce paper money to France. The notion of paper money was greatly helped along by the passing of Louis XIV and the 3 billion livres of debt that he left.

When Louis XV was old enough to make his own mistakes, he required that all taxes be paid in paper money. The currency was backed by coinage…until people actually wanted coins.

The theme of the day…the new paper currency rapidly became oversupplied until nobody wished to own the worthless junk anymore and demanded coinage for their currency.

Oops. It looks like Law didn’t think that anyone would actually want coins ever again. After making it illegal to export any gold or silver, and the failed attempts by the locals to exchange their paper currency for something of actual value, the currency collapsed.

John Law became the most hated man in France and was forced to flee to Italy.

In the latter part of the 18th century, the French government again tried to give paper money another go. This time, the pieces of garbage they issued were called assignats. By 1795, inflation of assignats was running at approximately 13,000%. Oops.Then Napoleon stepped on the scene and brought with him the gold franc. One of the good things that Napoleon realized is that gold is the way of a stable currency, and that’s what pretty much ensued during his reign.

After Waterloo had come and gone, the French gave it another go in the 1930s, this time with the paper franc. It took only 12 years for them to inflate their currency until it lost 99% of its value. History has proven a couple things about the French: 1) They are quick to surrender and 2) They are very talented at making worthless currency.

Weimar Germany — Mark
Post-World War I Weimar Germany was one of the greatest periods of hyperinflation that ever existed. The Treaty of Versailles was essentially a financial punishment placed on Germany to make reparations.

The sums of money to be paid by Germany were enormous, and the only way it could make repayment was by running the printing press. (Huge unpayable debt — that sounds familiar. I wonder what the solution in the U.S. will be.)

Inflation got so bad in this period that German citizens were literally using stacks of marks to heat their furnaces. Here is a brief timeline of the marks per one U.S. dollar exchange rate:

April 1919: 12 marks

November 1921: 263 marks

January 1923: 17,000 marks

August 1923: 4.621 million marks

October 1923: 25.26 billion marks

December 1923: 4.2 trillion marks.

Fiat Money -More Recent Times

In recent times, fiat failures have become more common occurrences. For the sake of time, I won’t go into extensive details of all these examples of paper money failures, because there are SO many. But here you have it:

In 1932, Argentina had the eighth largest economy in the world before its currency collapsed. In 1992, Finland, Italy, and Norway had currency shocks that spread through Europe.

In 1994, Mexico went through the infamous “Tequila Hangover,” which sent the peso tumbling and spread economic hardships throughout Latin America.

In 1997, the Thai baht fell through the floor and the effects spread to Malaysia, the Philippines, Indonesia, Hong Kong, and South Korea.

The Russian ruble was not the currency you wanted your investments denominated in in 1998, after its devaluation brought on economic recession. In the early 21st century, we have seen the Turkish lira experience strokes of hyperinflation similar to that of the mark of Weimar Germany.

In present times, we have Zimbabwe, which was once considered the breadbasket of Africa and was one of the wealthiest countries on the continent. Now Mugabe’s attempts at price controls, combined with hyperinflation, have the nation unable to supply the most basic essentials such as bread and clean water.

Fiat Money -Lessons to Be Learned

Here in the U.S., I should say the lessons were not learned. There are many consistencies from the above-mentioned stories that led up to the eventual collapse of the currencies.

The scary thing is that the U.S. has some of these above-mentioned characteristics, the ones that lead to toilet paper money becoming just that. More on that in just a second. I would first like to give a brief look at the U.S. attempts with paper money in our short history.

The first attempt with paper money came in 1690 with the issuance of Colonial notes. The first Colonial notes were issued in Massachusetts and were redeemable for gold, silver, corn, cattle and other commodities.

The other Colonies quickly jumped on the toilet paper money bandwagon and began issuing their own paper currencies. Like a broken record, the money quickly became overissued. The lessons of John Law and others were definitely not learned. It is not good enough just to say that a currency is backed by commodities. It actually HAS to be backed by commodities. Essentially, it was still a fiat money, and in a short period of time, Colonials became as good as toilet paper.

The next experiment came during the Revolutionary War. Big surprise — the issuance of paper money was used to finance the war efforts. This time, the currency was called a continental.

The crash of the continental was spectacular, and the phrase “not worth a continental” was coined. This brought on a large distrust for paper currency, and until 1913, toilet paper money in the U.S. wasn’t used. Enter the infamous Federal Reserve and its monopoly on money and interest rates. Now we have the greenback.

Although the money was “officially” backed by a gold standard until 1971, it wasn’t a true gold standard. When the government found it inconvenient to have a gold standard, it just made it illegal for U.S. citizens to hold gold or exchange dollars for gold.

As reported on Strike-the-root.com:

“Under the infallible leadership of President Franklin Roosevelt, it was made illegal to own gold. On March 11, 1933, he issued an order forbidding banks to make gold payments. On April 5, Roosevelt ordered all citizens to surrender their gold — no person could hold more than $100 in gold coins, except for collector’s coins. He also made it unlawful to export gold for payment abroad, unless done through the Treasury. The penalty for defying Roosevelt was 10 years in prison and a $250,000 fine.”

But the official demise of the dollar was locked into place in 1971 when “Tricky Dick” Nixon completely severed all ties between the dollar and the gold standard. During the decade that followed, the U.S. experienced some of the worst inflation in its history, only matched by today’s U.S. monetary and fiscal irresponsibility.

The U.S. of A. has all the characteristics set in place that have led to the collapse of every other fiat currency money in history.

We are currently at war, and the financing of this war is extremely inflationary. In fact, if you look back at our history, since 1914, the U.S has engaged in 16 military conflicts. We have been involved in some form of violent international accord in 44 of the past 93 years. The overwhelming majority of military conflicts result in monetary inflation.

The U.S. has a debt similar to that of Weimar Germany. All though the reasons for the debt are completely different, it appears thatthis Mount Everest of IOUs is going to be impossible to pay back. I guess the U.S. could just print 10 trillion dollar bills and hand them out, but the implications of such actions are obvious.
We are currently increasing the supply of dollars at a rate of 13% per annum. This overissuance of a currency has been the leading indicator of a currency on the brink.

So what’s in the future for the dollar?

Some, myself included, might say that the dollar has already failed. It has lost over 92% of its value since its initial issuance in 1913. After the revaluation in 1934, the dollar dropped another 41%. In my opinion, it already is toilet paper money, but for the above-mentioned characteristics, which are alarmingly similar to the circumstances that led up to the eventual collapse of the dollar’s toilet paper predecessors, I believe that we have seen only the tip of the iceberg of the dollar’s inevitable path toward becoming toilet paper money.

Until Next Time,
Nick Jones
Report to moderator   Logged

Where there is the necessary technical skill to move mountains, there is no need for the faith that moves mountains -anon-
David Lucifer
Archon
*****

Posts: 2626
Reputation: 8.98
Rate David Lucifer



Enlighten me.

View Profile WWW E-Mail
Re:The Red Pill
« Reply #64 on: 2015-11-17 16:33:46 »
Reply with quote


Quote from: Fritz on 2015-11-17 13:40:02   



http://www.thestreet.com/story/11480568/1/us-standard-of-living-has-fallen-more-than-50-opinion.html


Is this intended to show that US standard of living peaked in the 70s? Without taking into account any product improvements or innovation?
Report to moderator   Logged
David Lucifer
Archon
*****

Posts: 2626
Reputation: 8.98
Rate David Lucifer



Enlighten me.

View Profile WWW E-Mail
Re:The Red Pill
« Reply #65 on: 2015-11-18 19:44:07 »
Reply with quote

Police Civil Asset Forfeitures Exceed All Burglaries in 2014

http://www.armstrongeconomics.com/archives/39102

Between 1989 and 2010, U.S. attorneys seized an estimated $12.6 billion in asset forfeiture cases. The growth rate during that time averaged +19.4% annually. In 2010 alone, the value of assets seized grew by +52.8% from 2009 and was six times greater than the total for 1989. Then by 2014, that number had ballooned to roughly $4.5 billion for the year, making this 35% of the entire number of assets collected from 1989 to 2010 in a single year. According to the FBI, the total amount of goods stolen by criminals in 2014 burglary offenses suffered an estimated $3.9 billion in property losses. This means that the police are now taking more assets than the criminals.

The police have been violating the laws to confiscate assets all over the country. A scathing report on California warns of pervasive abuse by police to rob the people without proving that any crime occurred. Even Eric Holder came out in January suggesting reform because of the widespread abuse of the civil asset forfeiture laws by police.

Bloomberg News has reported now that Stop-and-Seize authority is turning the Police Into Self-Funding Gangs. They are simply confiscating money all under the abuse of this civil asset forfeiture where they do not have to prove you did anything. Prosecutors are now instructing police on how to confiscate money within the grey area of the law.

A class action lawsuit was filed against Washington DC where police were robbing people for as little as having $100 in their pocket.  This is getting really out of hand and it has indeed converted police into legal criminals or “gangs” as Bloomberg News calls them.
Report to moderator   Logged
David Lucifer
Archon
*****

Posts: 2626
Reputation: 8.98
Rate David Lucifer



Enlighten me.

View Profile WWW E-Mail
Re:The Red Pill
« Reply #66 on: 2015-11-19 13:30:40 »
Reply with quote

Quotation of the Day…
by DON BOUDREAUX on NOVEMBER 19, 2015

http://cafehayek.com/2015/11/quotation-of-the-day-1536.html

… is from page 11 of Robert Higgs’s excellent 1971 book, The Transformation of the American Economy: 1865-1914:

"Economic growth does not just happen, however.  Its gains are the product of deliberate human efforts."

Bob’s observation here might at first appear to be trivially true.  But it isn’t.  The reason is that far too many people regard the total amount of wealth on the globe as being some store of stuff the existence of which is largely independent of human creativity, risk-taking, and effort.  No other plausible conclusion about people’s understanding of wealth is possible given the content and tenor of many discussions of public policy.  Income and wealth are to be “redistributed” from the allegedly less-deserving to the allegedly more-deserving through government policies such as hikes in minimum wages, caps on CEO pay, export subsidies, import tariffs, high marginal tax rates on “the rich,” and schemes to increase the unionization of workers.  Only people who regard wealth as either existing independently of human activity or (what is pretty much the same thing) produced in total quantities that are largely invariant to economic institutions and incentives speak as if the “distribution” of wealth in market economies is a problem that warrants serious attention.
Report to moderator   Logged
David Lucifer
Archon
*****

Posts: 2626
Reputation: 8.98
Rate David Lucifer



Enlighten me.

View Profile WWW E-Mail
Re:The Red Pill
« Reply #67 on: 2015-11-22 15:36:03 »
Reply with quote

Blowback – The Washington War Party’s Folly Comes Home To Roost

https://rickrule.liberty.me/blowback-the-washington-war-partys-folly-comes-home-to-roost/

Written by David Stockman

Twenty-six years ago this month, peace was breaking out in a manner that the world had not experienced since June 1914. The Berlin Wall — the symbol of state tyranny, mass warfare and the nuclear sword of Damocles that hung over the planet — came tumbling down on Nov. 9, 1989.

It was only a matter of time before the bankrupt Soviet regime would die off and the world’s vast arsenal of weapons and nuclear bombs could be dismantled. The Soviet Union officially ended on Christmas Day, 1991.

Ronald Reagan had called the dying Soviet Union an evil empire. But it was actually a passing freak of history. It had arisen by a fluke 72 years earlier — almost to the day of the Berlin Wall’s fall — only because Imperial Russia had been reduced to anarchy by the carnage of the Great War. That enabled Lenin to install his own special Bolshevik brand of hell on Earth.

The demise of the Soviet Union in 1991 meant the world could have reverted to a normalcy of peace, liberal commerce and a minimum of armaments that had prevailed in the late 19th century. The 20th-century curse of militarism, totalitarianism and global warfare was over.

So with its “mission accomplished,” there was no logical reason why NATO shouldn’t have been disbanded along with the Warsaw Pact. And for an obvious and overpowering reason: There were no longer any material military threats from Soviet aggression. But not only did NATO continue — it expanded.

According to former Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev, President George H.W. Bush promised that NATO would not expand by “as much as a thumb’s width further to the East” if the Russians acquiesced to the reunification of Germany. That promise was broken. Not only did NATO advance a thumb’s width further eastward — it advanced all the way to within 100 miles of St. Petersburg. Former Soviet republics are now members of NATO. It’s an accident waiting to happen.

The Soviet Union’s gone, but a major threat to peace is still lurking on the Potomac. The great general and president Dwight Eisenhower called it the “military-industrial complex” in his farewell address. But that memorable phrase had been abbreviated by his speechwriters, who deleted the word “congressional” in a friendly gesture to the legislative branch.

But if you restore Ike’s deleted reference, the circle is complete. Congress, supported by armies of lobbyists, kept the entire national security apparatus in business. This “congressional-military-industrial complex” constituted the most awesome machine of warfare and imperial hegemony since the Roman legions controlled most of the civilized world.

The real threat to peace circa 1990 was that Pax Americana would not go away quietly in the night.

Needless to say, the sudden end to 20th-century history posed an existential threat to Imperial Washington. A trillion-dollar complex of weapons suppliers, warfare state bureaucracies, intelligence and security contractors, arms exporters, think tanks and much more were all suddenly without an enemy or a purpose. That wasn’t good for business.

And as it has happened, Imperial Washington did find its necessary enemy in the rise of so-called “global terrorism.”

But the everlasting truth is that the relative handful of suicidal jihadi who have perpetrated murderous episodes of terror like 9/11 and this weekend’s carnage in Paris did not exist in November 1989. Further, they would not be marauding the West today were it not for the unrelenting arrogance, stupidity, duplicity and lying of Imperial Washington.

The gates of hell have been opened by Washington’s senseless destruction of regimes in Libya, Syria, Iraq, Yemen, Somalia, Afghanistan and elsewhere that refused to do its bidding. But none of these backwaters of economic and military insignificance posed any threat whatsoever to the safety of American citizens in Lincoln, Nebraska, or in Manchester, New Hampshire.

The Middle East and the Arab/Islamic world is now a burned-out zone of failed states and an incubator of barbaric fanaticism because Imperial Washington made it that way.

What has metastasized from the ruins left by American intervention is not an organized military threat or a tide of state-sponsored attacks on the civilian life of the West.

It is blowback from the same jaws of hell that Washington so foolishly opened.

Neoconservatives in the Bush White House argued that “regime change” in the tyrannies of the Middle East was in America’s national interest.

But the neocon doctrine of regime change actually fostered the Frankenstein that became ISIS. In fact, the only real terrorists in the world that threaten normal civilian life in the West are the products of Imperial Washington’s post-1990 mischief in the Middle East.

The CIA-trained and armed Mujahideen mutated into al-Qaeda not because Bin Laden suddenly had a religious epiphany that his Washington benefactors were actually the Great Satan because of America’s freedom and liberty.

His murderous crusade was inspired by the Wahhabi fundamentalism loose in Saudi Arabia. That religious fanaticism became agitated to a fever pitch by Imperial Washington’s violent plunge into Persian Gulf political and religious quarrels. The U.S. stationed troops in Saudi Arabia. It also enacted a decade-long barrage of sanctions, embargoes, no fly zones, covert actions and open hostility against the Sunni regime in Baghdad after 1991.

Yes, Bin Laden would have amputated Saddam’s secularist head if Washington hadn’t done it first. But that’s just the point. The attempt at regime change in March 2003 was one of the most foolish acts of state in American history.

The younger Bush’s neocon advisers had no clue about the sectarian animosities and historical grievances that Hussein had bottled up. He did that by passing around the oil loot and keeping everyone in line under the banner of Baathist nationalism. But “shock and awe” blew the lid and Bush’s de-baathification campaign unleashed chaos.

No sooner had George Bush pranced around on the deck of the Abraham Lincoln declaring “mission accomplished” than Abu Musab al-Zarqawi emerged as a flamboyant agitator in the now disposed Sunni heartland. Zarqawi was a CIA recruit to the Afghan war a decade earlier and small-time specialist in hostage-taking and poisons.

The founder of ISIS succeeded in Fallujah and Anbar province just like the long list of other terrorist leaders Washington claims to have exterminated. That is, Zarqawi gained his following and notoriety among the region’s population of deprived, brutalized and humiliated young men by being more brutal than their occupiers.

The point is, regime change and nation building can never be accomplished by the lethal violence of 21st century armed forces. Especially in a land seething with 13 century-old religious divisions and hatreds.

In fact, the wobbly, artificial state of Iraq was doomed the minute Cheney and his gang decided to liberate it from the brutal, but serviceable and secular tyranny of Saddam. That’s because the process of elections and majority rule necessarily imposed by Washington was guaranteed to elect a government beholden to Iraq’s Shiite majority.

After decades of mistreatment and Saddam’s brutal suppression of their 1991 uprising, the Shiite population had revenge on its mind. And the Kurds in northern Iraq had dreams of an independent Kurdistan that had been denied their 30-million strong tribe way back at Versailles.

So the $25 billion spent on training and equipping the armed forces of post-liberation Iraq was bound to end up in the hands of sectarian militias, not a national army.

In fact, when the Shiite commanders fled Sunni-dominated Mosul in June 2014, they transformed the ISIS uprising against the government in Baghdad into a vicious fledgling state in one fell swoop. Its instruments of terror and occupation were the best weapons that the American taxpayers could buy. That included 2,300 Humvees and tens of thousands of automatic weapons, as well as vast stores of ammunition, trucks, rockets, artillery pieces; even tanks and helicopters.

And that wasn’t the half of it. The newly proclaimed Islamic State also filled the power vacuum in Syria created by that country’s so-called civil war. But in truth the Syrian civil war was another exercise in Washington-inspired and financed regime change undertaken with the assistance of Qatar and Saudi Arabia.

These Sunni-dominated states were surely not interested in expelling the tyranny next door. They’re tyrannies themselves. Instead, the rebellion was about removing Iran’s Alawite/Shiite ally in Damascus and laying gas pipelines to Europe across the upper Euphrates Valley.

In any event, ISIS soon had troves of additional American weapons. Some of them were supplied to Sunni radicals by way of Qatar and Saudi Arabia. More came up the so-called “ratline” from Gaddafi’s former arsenals in Libya through Turkey. And still more came through Jordan from the “moderate” opposition trained there by the CIA. These “moderates” more often than not sold the weapons or defected to the other side.

That the Islamic State was Washington’s Frankenstein monster became evident from the moment it rushed upon the scene 18 months ago. But even then the Washington war party could not resist adding fuel to the fire. It pressured the Obama White House into a futile bombing campaign for the third time in a quarter century.

But if bombing really worked, the Islamic State would be sand and gravel by now. Indeed, it really is not much more than that anyway.

The dusty, broken, impoverished towns and villages along the margins of the Euphrates River and in the bombed-out precincts of Anbar province do not attract thousands of wannabe jihadists from the failed states of the Middle East and the alienated Muslim townships of Europe because ISIS offers prosperity or salvation. It doesn’t offer any future at all.

What recruits them is outrage at the bombs and drones being dropped on Sunni communities by the U.S. Air Force. And by the cruise missiles launched from American ships in the Mediterranean. These missiles rip apart homes, shops, offices and mosques that contain as many innocent civilians as ISIS terrorists.

The truth is, the Islamic State was destined for a short half-life anyway. It was contained by the Kurds in the north and east. It was also contained by Turkey with NATO’s second largest army and air force in the northwest. And it was surrounded by the Shiite crescent in the populated, economically viable regions of lower Syria and Iraq.

So, absent Washington’s misbegotten campaign to unseat Assad in Damascus and demonize his Iranian ally, there would have been nowhere for the murderous fanatics to go. They would have quickly run out of money, recruits, momentum and public toleration of their horrific rule.

But the U.S. Air Force has been functioning as their recruiting arm. And France’s anti-Assad foreign policy helped generate a final spasm of anarchy in Syria. So the gates of hell have been opened wide. What’s come out of those gates is not an organized war on Western civilization as French president Francois Hollande so hysterically proclaimed in response to the mayhem of last weekend.

It was just blowback carried out by a small group of mentally deformed young men who can be persuaded to strap on a suicide belt.

Needless to say, bombing won’t stop them. It will just make more of them.

Ironically, what can stop them is the Assad government and its Iranian allies. It’s time to let them settle an ancient quarrel that has never been any of America’s business anyway.

But Imperial Washington is so caught up in its myths, lies and hegemonic stupidity that it cannot see the obvious.

And that is why a quarter century after the cold war ended peace still hasn’t been given a chance. It’s also why horrific events like last week’s barbarism in Paris still keep happening.

Report to moderator   Logged
David Lucifer
Archon
*****

Posts: 2626
Reputation: 8.98
Rate David Lucifer



Enlighten me.

View Profile WWW E-Mail
Re:The Red Pill
« Reply #68 on: 2015-11-22 17:24:15 »
Reply with quote

Matt Ridley: ‘We still think the way to success is to order other people about’

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/globe-debate/munk-debates/matt-ridley-we-still-think-the-way-to-success-is-to-order-other-people-about/article27147543/

Why do you think the laws of evolution can help us understand how human culture develops?

Well, my argument is essentially that human society evolves in just the same way that biological entities evolve – it changes incrementally, it changes gradually, it changes by dissent with modification. It’s inexorable. It’s internally driven. It comes from ordinary people interacting among themselves and not by brilliant people doing remarkable things. In sum, human society changes by a sort of undirected trial and error, and we don’t appreciate enough just how bottom-up rather than top-down this process in fact is.

Give us some specific examples of this process action …

The Internet is a beautiful example of something that’s emerged spontaneously, has great sophistication and complexity, but didn’t actually need anybody to direct it. In fact, it has no central committee. It has no general in charge of it. It is one of many examples of things changing in human society gradually and toward complex order but without anybody envisaging the end goal. There is a nice phrase by Scottish philosopher Adam Ferguson, who said there are things which are the product of human action, but not of human design. I think that’s true of an awful lot of human society – we don’t really have a phrase for these entities and yet they’re all around us.

What about Gates and Einstein?

If you examine the history of technology, the history of inventors and the history of science, you find that most of the great men or great women are actually dispensable, in the sense that, if they didn’t exist, the idea would still have come into existence.

It was inevitable that the light bulb would be invented when it was. Similarly, we know of six different inventors of the thermometer, three of the hypodermic needle, four of vaccination, four of decimal fractions. This simultaneous invention implies we’re wrong to give too much credit to whoever happens to register a new patent or win a Nobel Prize. Innovation is much more an inevitable, bottom-up phenomenon than we usually recognize.

What does this suggest about encouraging innovation today?

We should do our best to encourage people to meet, exchange ideas, to have the freedom to explore things – and then new products, new technologies, new ideas will emerge from that process, rather than government trying to plan the outcome. We’re terrible at planning outcomes. When we try to pick winners, we usually end up picking losers. Instead, we need to be ready for serendipity. We need to be ready for the unexpected. And we need to not be too prescriptive. You just have to look at North Korea to see a society that doesn’t function well when somebody’s trying to ordain every outcome.

Is it the case then that certain political systems are better at harnessing this evolutionary engine as it applies to human affairs?

It’s certainly true that there’s a parallel between an evolutionary view of the world and a sort of free-enterprise, free-market, free-speech view of the world because, essentially, both are talking about the idea of spontaneous order.

If so, why isn’t the planet populated with more free and open nations?

We don’t really believe in this evolution of society. It took a long time to realize that biological evolution wasn’t a top-down phenomenon, and we’re taking a long time to realize that social evolution isn’t a top-down phenomenon. We still think the way to success is to order other people about and to get into positions of power yourself. In sum, the evolution of free societies runs up against the problem of people still having instincts of control and power themselves. And, yes, there has been a hesitant and partially successful liberation, particularly in the West over the last two or three centuries.

But it had a terrible setback in the early 20th century with the rise of totalitarian regimes and the disappearance of the liberal tradition in all but a few countries. It’s now on the march again, and there are more countries with democratic governments in place and more countries which are free in economic terms, as well.

Is what holds us back from thinking in evolutionary terms the extent to which it suggests individuals don’t matter?

The theory of cultural evolution can be seen as disempowering, that people are just corks bobbing around on waves of social change. I don’t think that’s the whole story, however. Just because innovations emerge doesn’t mean you or I can’t be the cork that bobs to the top. There’s plenty of room for human ambition and endeavour in an evolving society.

This interview has been edited and condensed.
Report to moderator   Logged
David Lucifer
Archon
*****

Posts: 2626
Reputation: 8.98
Rate David Lucifer



Enlighten me.

View Profile WWW E-Mail
Re:The Red Pill
« Reply #69 on: 2015-11-22 17:25:46 »
Reply with quote


Quote from: David Lucifer on 2015-11-22 17:24:15   

Well, my argument is essentially that human society evolves in just the same way that biological entities evolve – it changes incrementally, it changes gradually, it changes by dissent with modification.

I think this was an accidentally punny transcription error, "dissent with modification".
Report to moderator   Logged
David Lucifer
Archon
*****

Posts: 2626
Reputation: 8.98
Rate David Lucifer



Enlighten me.

View Profile WWW E-Mail
Re:The Red Pill
« Reply #70 on: 2015-11-25 19:43:01 »
Reply with quote

Recognizing the State for What It Is
by Aaron Ross Powell

http://www.libertarianism.org/blog/recognizing-state-what-it-is


We should never forget that the state is an institution for compelling people to act against their will.

Though I shouldn’t, I still find it surprising that so many people claim to be motivated by love and beneficence and then express enthusiasm for the federal government. I don’t mean enthusiasm for the daily workings of Washington—its corruption, infighting, and general incompetence—but rather enthusiasm for the concept of the federal government as the solution to America’s problems, if only it could be made to work properly.

This love affair with the idea of the state is what baffles me most about non-libertarians. Arguments about data I understand. Disputes about whether free markets or heavy regulations produce better results I can get. But at some deep level, I simply don’t see how someone can look at one group of people telling another group of people what to do—and backing it up with threats of force—and say, “Therein lies utopia.”

Libertarians draw on a wealth of arguments for liberty or against state action. We have moral arguments grounded in natural rights, consequentialism, and virtue. We have economic arguments about the efficiency of markets. But for me, prior to those is an attitude about government. I mean “prior to” not in the sense of “having higher value.” The moral arguments in favor of libertarianism are both crucial and compelling. No, what I mean by attitude being prior to philosophy is that my general disposition—finding something in my gut wrong with the claim by some of a right to rule—informs and influences my thinking. It would be dishonest of me to claim otherwise. To borrow a phrase from critical theory, my distaste for exercises of power is “always already” present in my philosophy.

That’s why I’m deeply troubled by the willingness I see from so many on both the left and the right to embrace the state as an agent for social change. Like them, I believe strongly that beneficence is a virtue, one we ought to behave in accord with. Yet from that antecedent, libertarians and non-libertarians arrive at rather different views of the state’s proper role.

In my experience, the non-libertarian’s thinking process goes something like this: “I am a person motivated by beneficence to improve the lives of my fellow human beings. While this means I ought to behave kindly to those I know in my day to day life and help them when I am able, such personal acts remain terribly limited in scope. Doing good means doing good not just for my family and friends, but for humanity. As but one person, I’m incapable of such grand effect. Therefore, I should work with others in order to amplify my efforts. And if we really want to make large scale positive changes, and have those changes stick, we need to work through the government. The private sector simply isn’t up to the task.”

I can get behind all of that, but for the last two sentences. Large-scale, long-term positive change happens all the time without guidance by states. Markets enormously improve the lives of those with access to them, and especially improve the lives of the poorest and least powerful.

Those last two sentences also reflect the disturbing belief that government is the apotheosis of “people working together.” In reality, governments are precisely the opposite. Rather than working together through the state, we work against each other. If everyone agrees we ought to pay for support of the arts, for example, then there will be no need for a government program paying for the arts. Private actors—who, after all, agree the arts need support—will provide that support themselves, and do so voluntarily. (And, as my colleague David Boaz points out, we do voluntarily support the arts to an enormous degree.) We only “need” the when not everyone agrees, and when some people feel they have a right to force compliance from those who disagree.

One reason the state looks like such an appealing avenue for such action—as opposed to, say, one-on-one intimidation—is that using the state to coerce others costs the voters so little. If you don’t do what I want you to do, and I vote for a law to make you, enforcement of that law gets done by someone else. I don’t have to risk my own safety or take up my own time compelling you.

But perhaps more important, using the state as the means of coercing others removes moral costs. We don’t see the coercion our votes lead to, and so the weight of moral responsibility for the state’s actions feels less. There’s safety in numbers and safety in distance. It’s not me breaking up families over immigration rules or locking people away for minor offenses. No, it’s the state—it’s us—and I’m just going along with it.

At The Atlantic yesterday, Conor Friedersdorf told the story of John Horner, a 46-year old father of three who, with no history of criminal behavior, is now spending 25 years in prison for selling $1,800 worth of prescription pain pills. Reading about Horner and thinking about his children breaks your heart. No virtuous person would ever do what the state of Florida did to John Horner.

To put it more bluntly, what’s been done to Horner and his kids by the state is evil. Claims about just obeying the letter of the law don’t make it any less evil. There’s no excuse for this monstrous behavior, and yet people—including those who could directly make a difference—go along with it because that’s what the state does.

The libertarian attitude—seeing the state not as some special kind of institution outside of the normal moral framework but as just another group of people—exposes the error in thinking acts become less immoral the further we are from their consequences. By reframing the state, libertarians can do considerable good, even if our particular policy preferences are rarely or never adopted.

The state is not “us.” Rather, it’s a group of us, acting (sometimes) on the orders of a larger group of us, and using force to compel another group of us to do things they don’t want to do. We need a state because there are some people who would do awful things if given the opportunity, and because when awful things are done, the perpetrators need to be coerced into compensating the victims. But we should never lose sight of what the state is, and never let utopian thinking about “government as ‘us’” cloud our moral standards to such a degree that we shrug at—or, worse, encourage—outright evils.

Beneficence means we should strive, individually and together, to make the world a better place. But beneficence does its best work—and is, in fact, only truly beneficence—when it happens outside of a framework of coercion, violence, and force.
Report to moderator   Logged
David Lucifer
Archon
*****

Posts: 2626
Reputation: 8.98
Rate David Lucifer



Enlighten me.

View Profile WWW E-Mail
Re:The Red Pill
« Reply #71 on: 2015-11-28 09:39:31 »
Reply with quote

Sometimes public schools don't even both trying to hide that they are institutes of state indoctrination ...

Report to moderator   Logged
David Lucifer
Archon
*****

Posts: 2626
Reputation: 8.98
Rate David Lucifer



Enlighten me.

View Profile WWW E-Mail
Re:The Red Pill
« Reply #72 on: 2015-11-28 09:43:26 »
Reply with quote

authoritarian logic

Report to moderator   Logged
David Lucifer
Archon
*****

Posts: 2626
Reputation: 8.98
Rate David Lucifer



Enlighten me.

View Profile WWW E-Mail
Re:The Red Pill
« Reply #73 on: 2015-11-28 17:05:01 »
Reply with quote

“Nation-states do not exist, simply because the so-called 'nations'' or 'peoples' of which the nationalists dream do not exist. There are no, or hardly any, homogeneous ethnic groups long settled in countries with natural borders. Ethnic and linguistic groups (dialects often amount to linguistic barriers) are closely intermingled everywhere. Masaryk's Czechoslovakia was founded upon the principle of national self-determination. But as soon as it was founded, the Slovaks demanded, in the name of this principle, to be free from Czech domination; and ultimately it was destroyed by its German minority, in the name of the same principle. Similar situations have arisen in practically every case in which the principle of national self-determination has been applied to fixing the borders of a new state: in Ireland, in India, in Israel, in Yugoslavia. There are ethnic minorities everywhere. The proper aim cannot be to 'liberate' all of them; rather, it must be to protect all of them. The oppression of national groups is a great evil; but national self-determination is not a feasible remedy. Moreover, Britain, the United States, Canada, and Switzerland, are four obvious examples of states which in many ways violate the nationality principle. Instead of having its borders determined by one settled group, each of them has managed to unite a variety of ethnic groups. So the problem does not seem insoluble.

Yet, in the face of all these obvious facts, the principle of national self-determination continues to be widely accepted as an article of our moral faith; and it is rarely challenged outright. A Cypriot appealed recently, in a letter to The Times, to this principle. He described it as a universally accepted principle of morality. The defenders of this principle, he proudly claimed, were defending the sacred human values and the natural rights of man (apparently even when terrorizing their own dissenting countrymen). The fact that this letter did not mention the ethnic minority of Cyprus; the fact that it was printed; and the fact that its moral doctrines remained completely unanswered in a long sequence of letters on this subject, all go a long way towards proving my first thesis. Indeed, it seems to me certain that more people are killed out of righteous stupidity than out of wickedness.”

Karl Popper, 'The History of Our Time: An Optimist's View' (1956), can be found in 'Conjectures and Refutations'.

« Last Edit: 2015-11-28 17:06:55 by David Lucifer » Report to moderator   Logged
David Lucifer
Archon
*****

Posts: 2626
Reputation: 8.98
Rate David Lucifer



Enlighten me.

View Profile WWW E-Mail
Re:The Red Pill
« Reply #74 on: 2015-11-29 13:59:00 »
Reply with quote

[ed. I suggest that anyone that proudly pays US taxes is necessarily complicit.]

Former Drone Operators Say They Were "Horrified" By Cruelty Of Assassination Program

Murtaza Hussain
Nov. 19 2015, 2:31 p.m.

U.S. DRONE OPERATORS are inflicting heavy civilian casualties and have developed an institutional culture callous to the death of children and other innocents, four former operators said at a press briefing today in New York.

The killings, part of the Obama administration’s targeted assassination program, are aiding terrorist recruitment and thus undermining the program’s goal of eliminating such fighters, the veterans added. Drone operators refer to children as “fun-size terrorists” and liken killing them to “cutting the grass before it grows too long,” said one of the operators, Michael Haas, a former senior airman in the Air Force. Haas also described widespread drug and alcohol abuse, further stating that some operators had flown missions while impaired.

In addition to Haas, the operators are former Air Force Staff Sgt. Brandon Bryant along with former senior airmen Cian Westmoreland and Stephen Lewis. The men have conducted kill missions in many of the major theaters of the post-9/11 war on terror, including Iraq, Afghanistan and Pakistan.

“We have seen the abuse firsthand,” said Bryant, “and we are horrified.”

An Air Force spokesperson did not address the specific allegations but wrote in an email that “the demands placed on the [drone] force are tremendous. A great deal of effort is being taken to bring about relief, stabilize the force, and sustain a vital warfighter capability. … Airmen are expected to adhere to established standards of behavior. Behavior found to be inconsistent with Air Force core values is appropriately looked into and if warranted, disciplinary action is taken.”

Beyond the press conference, the group also denounced the program yesterday in an interview with The Guardian and in an open letter addressed to President Obama.

press-conference Former drone operators Brandon Bryant, Michael Haas and Cian Westmoreland. Photo: Joe FiondaAt the press conference, Bryant said the killing of civilians by drone is exacerbating the problem of terrorism. “We kill four and create 10 [militants],” Bryant said. “If you kill someone’s father, uncle or brother who had nothing to do with anything, their families are going to want revenge.”
The Obama administration has gone to great lengths to keep details of the drone program secret, but in their statements today the former operators opened up about the culture that has developed among those responsible for carrying it out. Haas said operators become acculturated to denying the humanity of the people on their targeting screens. “There was a much more detached outlook about who these people were we were monitoring,” he said. “Shooting was something to be lauded and something we should strive for.”

The deaths of children and other non-combatants in strikes was rationalized by many drone operators, Haas said. As a flight instructor, Haas claimed to have been non-judicially reprimanded by his superiors for failing a student who had expressed “bloodlust,” an overwhelming eagerness to kill.

Haas also described widespread alcohol and drug abuse among drone pilots. Drone operators, he said, would frequently get intoxicated using bath salts and synthetic marijuana to avoid possible drug testing and in an effort to “bend that reality and try to picture yourself not being there.” Haas said that he knew at least a half-dozen people in his unit who were using bath salts and that drug use had “impaired” them during missions.

The Obama administration’s assassination program has come under increasing scrutiny in recent months. This October, The Intercept published a cache of classified documents leaked by a government whistleblower that showed how the program killed people based on unreliable intelligence, that the vast majority of people killed in a multi-year Afghanistan campaign were not the intended targets, and that the military by default labeled non-targets killed in the campaign as enemies rather than civilians.

The operators said that they felt increasing urgency to speak out in the wake of the deadly terrorist attacks in Paris last week; they believe drone assassinations have fed the rise of the extremist group the Islamic State, which has claimed responsibility for the attacks.

Westmoreland said of drones: “In the short term they’re good at killing people, but in the long term they’re not effective. There are 15-year-olds growing up who have not lived a day without drones overhead, but you also have expats who are watching what’s going on in their home countries and seeing regularly the violations that are happening there, and that is something that could radicalize them.”

In their open letter to Obama, the former drone pilots made a similar point, writing that during their service they “came to the realization that the innocent civilians we were killing only fueled the feelings of hatred that ignited terrorism and groups like ISIS,” going on to describe the program as “one of the most devastating driving forces for terrorism and destabilization around the world.”

At the press conference today, the pilots echoed these sentiments. “It seems like our actions of late have only made the problems worse. … The drones are good at killing people, just not the right ones,” Bryant said. “Have we forgotten our humanity in the pursuit of vengeance and security?”
« Last Edit: 2015-11-29 14:03:23 by David Lucifer » Report to moderator   Logged
Pages: 1 2 3 4 [5] 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 Reply Notify of replies Send the topic Print 
Jump to:


Powered by MySQL Powered by PHP Church of Virus BBS | Powered by YaBB SE
© 2001-2002, YaBB SE Dev Team. All Rights Reserved.

Please support the CoV.
Valid HTML 4.01! Valid CSS! RSS feed