April 1, 2023

Saturday Learning Series: Jordan Peterson's Biblical series VI

A further continuation of a brief revisit to the Saturday Learning Series, as Jordan Peterson continues his Biblical series. 

March 31, 2023

Canada amps up it's censorship laws

Canada's conservative party leader, Pierre Poilievre talks about the law Justin Trudeau just passed in Canada's House of Commons.


Remember, Canada's prime minister is the same guy who thinks that the idea of a flat earth is a new idea: 


Sorry, that's a dumbass. I know it's an ad hominem attack, but he is a dumbass. YouTube felt it necessary to post a warning below the above video stating:
Flat Earth is an archaic and scientifically disproven conception of the Earth's shape as a plane or disk. Many ancient cultures subscribed to a flat-Earth cosmography. The idea of a spherical Earth appeared in ancient Greek philosophy with Pythagoras. However, most pre-Socratics retained the flat-Earth model.

[emphasis added]

When you are way more wrong than even Wikipedia - dumbass. 

So many Trump indictments, they don't mean anything anymore

Voters: "Another attempt to frame president Trump on bogus charges? Surely you can't be serious."

Democrats: "We are serious, and don't call us Shirley, it's they/them."

We've lost interest in your shenanigans. Apparently so has...CNN?



March 30, 2023

Joe Manchin: duper gets duped

Joe Manchin has convinced voters he's not a typical Democrat even though he eventually cedes to Democrat positions on most everything - even the stuff he rails against.  Now he's complaining he was duped by Let's Go Brandon and the Democrats.  Joe Manchin is either a liar or an idiot.  We all knew this would happen, why didn't he?

Nashville Shooter a Trans Martyr

Okay, most trans people likely do not endorse this position, but the Nashville shooter was clearly a troubled individual and needed mental health.

Mr. Beast vs. Justin Bieber

Two different paths on God, one journeying towards God and one, sadly, the other direction.

Mr. Beast became an agnostic:


Justin Bieber became born again:


As an addendum, here's Awaken with JP (sorry, I don't know his real name) on his recent change of heart:

Bible quotes = Twitter suspension now?

The Bible gets you banned from Twitter?  Check the algorithm Elon. Michael Knowles did nothing wrong, and neither did God. 

March 27, 2023

The state of Trump vs De Santis for the 2024 nomination

The Trump lead over De Santis in the race for the Republican nomination for president in 2024, seems to be widening to the level of unassailable. It's early, it's very early. But this margin is not insignificant.


I think a lot of conservative (Republican) voters would be happy to see four more years of president Trump  followed by eight years of De Santis as president.  That would be my preferred option simply because America needs four years of house cleaning (at a minimum) followed by 8 years of strategic rebuilding.  I'm more inclined to believe that Trump would be willing to tear down the bloated, self-serving institutions that went after him than De Santis who would be a great leader but less invested in cleaning up a truly messy and dysfunctional federal beaurocracy. That's not to say De Santis wouldn't do it, but his motivation would not be as strong as president Trump's would be.

March 26, 2023

March 25, 2023

Saturday Learning Series: Jordan Peterson's Biblical series V

A further continuation of a brief revisit to the Saturday Learning Series, as Jordan Peterson continues his Biblical series. 

March 24, 2023

President Trump arrest update

 Evidence indicates this is more failed witch hunting.  Via Tim Pool.

Wise thoughts from Plato

 So many of these will always ring true.

March 22, 2023

President Trump arrest primer

At some point I'll have to discuss my thoughts on the implications of the impending Trump arrest in New York.  I believe there's a lot to discuss about it; motivations, implications and to a lesser extent the technical aspects and likely outcome from a legal perspective.

For now, here are Black Conservative Perspective's take and Tim Pool's take, as they both make some interesting points as well as providing some useful context. 



This is an interesting exchange

Jim Jordan questions FBI director Christopher Wray:


It's followed by Eric Swalwell, the communist dupe, with a less relevant but still telling (in a different way) exchange. 

Meanwhile in the Netherlands, winning

Last week in the Netherlands, there was a big win for farmers who have been fighting back against oppressive fertilizer regulations that would fundamentally gut the industry.  The Netherlands is one of the world's largest agricultural exporters.  They have achieved what the Canadian trucker protests known as the Freedom Convoy could not do.

A brand new party, known as the BBB for short have won the most seats in the recent parliamentary elections.

March 21, 2023

Too good to pass up today

 Meme The Left, on fire:

Newt Gingrich explains the impending Trump arrest

 As well as anti-ESG legislation. Handy explainers.

March 19, 2023

March 18, 2023

Is this even real anymore?

I mean come on, do they expect us to believe this stuff?  It's getting harder and harder to fathom that this is not some sort of insider joke on the public.  Or have we just reached the outer edge of reality's bell curve?

Saturday Learning Series: Jordan Peterson's Biblical series IV

A further continuation of a brief revisit to the Saturday Learning Series, as Jordan Peterson continues his Biblical series.

March 17, 2023

What did he just say???

Is it idiocy or pathological liars at the top levels of our overlordship?

March 15, 2023

Keynesians keep trying to kill it all

Keynesian dopamine dopes flooded world economies over the last several years with cash through both fiscal and monetary policies that were rash and drastically ill-conceived. We may be reaching the painful payment point now for that stupidity.  Maybe not.  But there is pain that inevitably has to be felt at some point when the hangover from loose money kicks in.  This could be the start of it.  Again, not necessarily, but at some point it WILL happen. That's true if what we are seeing happening in banking right now is not the main event.


Via: Seeking Alpha*

*Link here.

Via Breitbart:

There is a clear through line from the spendthrift Biden administration policies to the current crisis. The $1.9 trillion American Rescue Plan overstimulated the economy, pushing inflation up to the fastest pace in four decades. Excess savings flooded the banking system, pumping banks like Silicon Valley Bank (SVB) full of what we now see are flight-prone supersized deposits.
...A research paper from the New York Fed recently found that increased demand accounts for two-thirds of inflation—and fiscal stimulus was responsible for half or more of the increase in demand.
The Fed accommodated the Biden administration’s reckless fiscal policy by holding interest rates near zero even after the economy had begun to recover from the pandemic and lockdowns. Massive quantitative easing held down bond yields not just for Treasuries but for mortgage-backed securities as well.

My firm belief is that they keep downplaying monetary policy impacts; they are far stronger than fiscal policy impacts by a magnitude. Regardless, both were completely wrong-headed and share the blame.  The takeaway: Keynesian economists are wrong, they have always been wrong; their economic model is wrong and they keep trying to kill the economy with their boneheaded solutions - that ARE THE PROBLEM.

Joe Rogan gets it

An intelligent man, exposed to some intelligent arguments, is eventually able to share his knowledge with others. Joe Rogan is a perfect example; here he explains the brilliance of the American system of government to Bert Kreischer.

March 14, 2023

Inflation returning? Probably.

With inflation creeping back (the downturn was honestly too fast to be real and sustainable for a number of reasons), the Fed may revert to rate hikes.

(Bloomberg) -- Underlying US consumer prices rose in February by the most in five months, forcing a tough choice for Federal Reserve officials weighing still-rapid inflation against banking turmoil in their next interest-rate decision.
The consumer price index, excluding food and energy, increased 0.5% last month and 5.5% from a year earlier, according to Bureau of Labor Statistics data out Tuesday. Economists see the gauge — known as the core CPI — as a better indicator of underlying inflation than the headline measure.

This likely means a rate hike if not this month, then soon. 

Let's Go (to China) Brandon

 Let's Go Brandon's China kickback scam is slowly being uncovered:

March 13, 2023

Is the end nigh?

Two years ago, and one year ago, I was predicting terrible stagflation.  Not world ending stagflation but certainly an economic malaise.  Lately I've been starting to think we've weathered the worst and maybe managed a bumpy landing (for now at least).  I don't think the problems have gone away but maybe we've managed to postpone them for a while.

According to economist Nouriel Roubini, maybe not:

March 12, 2023

March 11, 2023

Saturday Learning Series: Jordan Peterson's Biblical series III

A further continuation of a brief revisit to the Saturday Learning Series, as Jordan Peterson continues his Biblical series.

March 9, 2023

March 8, 2023

Mitch McConnell is part of the problem

I'd say Mitch McConnell is a dweeb but that's minimizing the issue.  Mitch McConnell is a status quo establishment guy. That's worse.

Jan 6th liars are being exposed

The raw footage they don't want you to see over the January 6th "insurrection" is pretty telling; the Democrats and accomplices like Liz Cheney were lying to you all along.  I mean, we all knew it but the proof is finally coming out.  I listened to a closed-ear leftist (who still calls it an insurrection) on Breitbart News Daily on Sirius XM satellite radio this morning. He was arguing that the thousands of hours of footage should not be released.  Why?  He didn't want to see the truth, and that's worse than the liars. 

March 7, 2023

Socialists will be socialists

Meanwhile in Canada, China's election interference is about to be swept under the rug because the controlling leftist coalition can't afford people knowing the truth.

Bernie Sanders gets toasted by...Bill Maher?

Bernie Sanders, stumped:

March 6, 2023

Adam Smith still matters

Is Adam Smith still changing minds about capitalism?  Apparently so:


More detailed analysis in this series:

President Trump at CPAC

President Trump spoke at CPAC.  Afterwards, and right on schedule,  the media tried to turn it into either a nothingburger or a wildly inaccurate and misleading speech.  Whether you like Trump as the 2024 Republican nominee or not, he's far more correct than the mainstream media.

March 5, 2023

March 4, 2023

Saturday Learning Series: Jordan Peterson's Biblical series II

Continuing the brief revival of the Saturday Learning Series that started last week, with Jordan Peterson's Biblical series (part 2).

March 3, 2023

Canadians taking 2 divergent paths on drugs

More from Canada today - two different provinces are taking two different approaches to dealing with drug addiction.


Over at the libertarian Reason magazine (and others) advocating for legalizing all drugs is positioned as freedom.  But really drug addiction is slavery. No society works where there is unfettered access to the tools for self-destructive behavior.  I've flirted with the idea that legalization makes sense on some level but I cannot get behind it.  In the end it's not only enabling addiction, it's societal Darwinism in the extreme.  The notion that if someone can't handle it, that's their problem.  That's cold.  If society is judged on how it treats its most vulnerable, the idea of drug legalization is very telling about those who espouse it.  It's also a recipe for societal decay along the way.  Addiction will grow. Guaranteed.

The one Canadian example of handing out free drugs is really the government as a death merchant.  Thank God, Alberta is taking a more real and humane approach.  Alberta is not likely to solve the problem but it is trying to help people beat their addiction rather than just servicing the problem. That's definitely more noble.

China interfering in Canadian elections

 And it bothers everyone except Justin Castro Trudeau.

March 2, 2023

The opportunity of a century lies before you!

Jack Chapple has an interesting take on demographics in the 21st century, arguing that only one country will be able to emerge from a global downturn in population [SPOILER ALERT: If you want to skip over the details behind his predicted winner, it's Egypt].  Here's his argument, before I move on the my own premise which is markedly different.


A lot of what he points out is simply factual.Developed countries have a serious demographic challenge that no one has really every overcome to this point.  Global population is expected to start to decline at some point in this century (or perhaps the next).  As Chapple points out, this creates economic challenges on a global scale.  Not to mention, it may create demographic challenges that are even more catastrophic than economic ones.  

Peter Zeihan sees the same demographic trends, which seems undeniable.  He sees different winners emerging than does Chapple:


Regardless of who might win globally, and I do think that the United States will be fine, there is the opportunity of a century for conservatives in the United States, and really the entirety of Western civilization that may pass us by if we do not seize it right now and begin building ahead for it.

I'm speaking of what I have argued in favor of doing before, what Jeff Deist has also argued before.  De-urbanization. I'll argue for it again now with an additional flavor added because it serves two purposes with one effort. 

Technology has finally enabled de-urbanization.  You do not need to live close to a major city to be able to commute to your job (in large part, manufacturing and some other industries remain aside).  That means you can live in a small town, or some other remote rural location and work from home. This obviates the need for office space, for commuter trains, for massively expanded super highways in urbanized locations, for subways, for as many bank machines, and coffee shops etc.  Most of those things do not go away, they morph and disperse into a more diffused set of locations.   Small towns grow, big megalopolis sized cities shrink.  Why?  Housing costs, crime stats, quality of life differences, among other reasons.

This requires a lot of transition.  Much as the United States and much of the Western world are transitioning production away from China (finally), with the adjunct pains of transition, transition to a more rural or at least less urban nation will be painful in the short term.  New fiber optic cabling spanning tens of thousands of miles must be laid. That's a primary requirement.  But so too will be water, sewage handling, fuel pipelines, medical facilities, police services, and everything necessary to support smaller local communities that are spread further apart.  These things do not happen overnight and they certainly do not happen without a concerted political effort to make the option to de-urbanize possible.  That's what needs to be happening right now.

There are certainly benefits for conservatives if this geographic shift occurs.  Urban centers tend to be far more liberal and rural areas and smaller towns tend to be far more conservative.  This is an environment that offers home field advantage as it were, in terms of political momentum.  Smaller communities tend to be more religious, more friendly, and cleaner.  They also may help level the playing field between mega-corporations and mom and pop shops. It could help regrow the entrepreneurial spirit that made America a great economic power . 

Here's the added benefit that not only benefits conservative demographics, it argues against the inevitability of population decline and global economic stagnation: rural populations have higher birth rates than urban populations.  It's easier to raise children in an environment that is safer, that has more room for them to play, that does not require tens of thousands of extra dollars spent on car payments and mortgages and commutes and enhanced security etc. With less distraction there's more opportunity to procreate. There's more time to spend with family.  That benefits conservatives.  It benefits America, and it benefits America's contribution to global population.  It's a win win win.

Lastly, here's a bonus thought on this; it would be easier to co-opt the environmental movement to get the political effort started because you can argue it will result in a significantly lower carbon footprint without the need for such a massive volume of commuters. As conservatives, we just need to get out in front of this because this opportunity of a century will not remain available forever.  States should probably start this effort on a localized basis.  If you live in Kansas for example, this is something that can be started in a more localized effort, which makes it easier and the chances that you can succeed that much higher.

March 1, 2023

So president Trump was right on the lab leak too?

It's all over the internet now; it turns out that the conspiracy theorists were right.  The COVID virus was probably created in a Chinese lab. President Trump was right.

February 28, 2023

Yoda: 2009-2023

 Our Papillon, Yoda, passed today. You will be missed Yoda.



Is Pete Buttigieg toast?

 Bill O'Reilly and Glenn Beck discuss the non-future of Pete Buttigieg:

February 27, 2023

How you know he's not serious about stopping Russia

Let's Go Brandon has sent what, $120 billion dollars to the Ukraine to fight off the Russia invasion.  But he won't send fighter jets and worse still, Poland wanted to send fighter jets and he vetoed the idea.  During the Trump presidency, we knew there was a problem with Europe pulling it's own weight in NATO and if ever there was a need for them to do so, it's now that Russia has brought war to the NATO European's doorstep. 

Why would Let's Go Brandon nix the sharing of fighter jets to Ukraine? Poland has Russia MiGs, it's not like the Russians could capture advanced NATO technology by downing a Ukrainian pilot and capturing the wreckage of the plane; it's their own technology.  It's been speculated that the 'brain trust' behind Let's Go Brandon's 'strategy' in dealing with the Ukraine invasion are worried that if Ukrainian pilots go past the Russian border and bomb inside of Russia it could cause Putin to declare this is a war of aggression by NATO. Twisted, illogical, but from Putin it's likely.

It causes more problems; the will of the Russian people are not strongly behind this invasion.  An incursion into Russian territory could easily change that to a more nationalistic mood.  That combined with Putin's vague nuclear threats brings up the possibility of a tactical nuclear engagement.

There's an argument to be made that these factors make sense of the decision to disallow fighter jets to be dispensed by any NATO ally to the Ukraine.  Here's the problem; if you believe that is the case why are you sending billions of dollars into a war where eventually, you are going to be on the losing side? You are sinking A LOT of money into an engagement that becomes a no-win scenario. A LOT of money. All this while simultaneously ignoring a man-made disaster at home.

Let me play "Brandon's advocate" again for a minute. Russia is a geopolitical adversary. They have been so since at least 1946 and arguably earlier. If the war is unwinnable and even if there is no strategic value to NATO and the West for the country (arguably there is), the invasion presents an opportunity to significantly weaken a geopolitical adversary and ensure their victory is at best a pyrrhic victory. If it costs Russia lives and far too much treasure to emerge with Ukraine or vast stretches of Ukraine in Russia's pocket, it could dramatically weaken the imperialist nation, removing them for at least decades as a existential threat to America, allowing the United States to focus on China.  With Russian demographics not on their side, it could accelerate the end of the Russian empire, relegating them to a far more local sphere of influence.

Okay, the Let's Go Brandon establishment case has been stated.  We know he's not serious about ensuring Ukraine wins; you don't fight an enemy with one hand tied behind your back (Vietnam is a prime example), but he (or rather the Pentagon) may have a case in weakening Russia.  Again, there's a problem.  Russia has other weapons at it's disposal besides its clearly lackluster army.  It has its own air force and it won't hesitate to use it: 

 

While the above assessment doesn't hold out much hope of Russian air power turning the tide of war, but what if it's wrong? Then what?  If Ukraine had been able to step up defensively in the air war, then Russia would be further stymied. But thanks to Let's Go Brandon, that's likely not going to be the case and they may be caught off guard when Russia brings its own air force to bear.  Or what if it goes badly and Russia panics into indiscriminate use of tactical nukes? What would NATO's answer be?

Again, what are the objectives for America/NATO here?  It's hard to tell if the strategy and tactics align with the objectives unless the objectives are just to drain Russia as much as possible before it eventually succeeds in taking Ukraine.  That in itself is a good geopolitical objective but it's being dishonest with the Ukrainian people.  Dishonesty however, is Let's Go Brandon's stock in trade.

Is India the next China?

 First, Peter Zeihan's take on it:


He seems to predict a mixed bag but positive future for India.  The have labor in abundance, they have less land than appears on the surface due to the mountainous nature of much of the country.  They are not capital rich.  Those are the 3 classical factors of production.  The 4th, more modern component of production is entrepreneurship.  The latter factor boils down to the notion of maximizing what you do with the other 3 factors.  Because India still has one foot in the Soviet era Russia camp, their is less of an entrepreneurship than there could be.

Much of what vaulted China into its current economic zenith was Western investment.  A naive West pumped a lot into China in the mistaken notion that China would liberalize and a whole massive new market would be created and available for a new source of demand.  Now that this particular illusion is evaporating, India is one of the countries in a position to benefit.  For the United State the cheap labor option is clearly Mexico.  But there's Europe and Japan who will still need a low to middle range tech production option.  India is in a position to take advantage of this.  But so is Turkey, which does have a geographic locality advantage for Europe. There's also Vietnam as a potential competitor in that regard.  And Bangladesh for the really low tech industries like textiles.

I'm not sure India won't benefit from the new paradigm.  In fact I believe they will, but I don't know that they will benefit as much as they could potentially.  They are not a point politically where they  are seizing the opportunity and availing themselves to situation.  It's always hard to predict the future because things change, political decision impact the landscape, be they internal or external.  Nevertheless India has an opportunity, whether it does its best to seize that opportunity is the real unknown.

Let's Go Brandon's Business Ties To CCP-Linked Individuals

Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-IA) detailed his and Sen. Ron Johnson's (R-WI) reports on the Let's Go Brandon family.

February 26, 2023

February 25, 2023

Bill Whittle on James O'Keefe vs. Project Veritas

 Bill Whittle discusses the ouster of the brains and force behind Project Veritas, James O'Keefe.

Saturday Learning Series: Jordan Peterson's Biblical series I

I haven't done a Saturday Learning Series post in a long time.  In fact I'd abandoned it some time ago. In fact I'd started on Jordan Peterson's Biblical series shortly before I stopped.  I wanted to revisit and finish that series now because it's a good series on the Bible as part of society and more importantly it's part of Jordan Peterson's personal journey towards Christianity, and that's inspiring to see.

Here's part 1 (again):

February 22, 2023

Putin's START Treaty withdrawal

Peter Zeihan's take on Putin's decision to withdrawal Russia from the START Treaty.  Have we actually already slow-rolled into WWIII?

February 21, 2023

Woke Latino racists versus truth and logic

In this reaction video, HistoryLegends points out what we are dealing with intellectually when we are talking about woke racism. The reactor has a wonderful knowledge of history and his smart interpretive look at the potential reasons for some of the DNA infusion results, using logic and his knowledge of history (and DNA tests for that matter).

February 20, 2023

Happy Presidents' Day America

 Boy, you sure could use a real one now.


February 19, 2023

February 17, 2023

Evidence the GOP may be catching on

A special election victory for Republicans in Pennsylvania might be an indicator that the GOP is starting to get it on how to fight elections using the same tactics as Democrats.  Either that or Republicans simply won a safe district and they haven't really adjusted.  You decide.

February 16, 2023

The fallacy of the logic and facts approach


You have to talk to people in terms that they will understand.  I don't mean intellectually understand, I mean in a way that resonates with them.  The problem with conservatives is we believe in facts and we believe in logic. Facts and logic can bring you to the truth, but that in itself is not a universal truth because many people operate illogically.  That's a fact conservatives often overlook.  The logic and facts approach is pure fallacy in many situations.

When talking to a woke liberal, we often forget that facts don't matter to everyone.  What resonates with people are things that affect them emotionally.  Take for example the notion that inflation has recently been at historical highs. Telling someone that fact has far less emotional impact than saying simply "I can't afford eggs anymore."  Implicit in that latter statement are a couple of fundamental notions that all revolve around empathy;

  • it is likely they are in the same boat, or a similar one and have similar complaints
  • complaining sounds whiney and woke liberals love that (snarky but not untrue)
  • they can sympathize and feel bad for you (woke SJWs have to have an underdog to protect)
You have not only started a discussion with something that they can empathize with and also get behind trying to solve.  It's the start of a more pliable conversation instead of a debate.  You have started on what is probably common ground or at least at a place of empathy or sympathy.  The way forward at least exists from that point.  Hammering someone with facts will more have the opposite effect; entrenchment.

We don't do enough as conservatives to understand our audience and with each generation that happens it gets harder and harder to do because each generation has been Overton windowed further away from the fundamental truths of life.  I'm not talking just religion here, I'm talking about even the fundamental basics of common sense (e.g. 2 genders).

We have to understand that we are currently on the losing side of the culture war.  We have not lost but we are losing.  That means we have to work both harder and smarter.  I'm not suggesting I have all the answers as to who.  But I think one of the key notions is that we need better understanding.  We need to understand how to connect, but in order to do that we need to understand the map, the lay of the land as it currently exists.  We cannot change beliefs for the better without having both a starting point and an end point.

Here, as an example of trying to get to that understanding, Ken Ham discusses the state of Gen Z as it pertains to (lack of) religious belief.  It's a specific but excellent example of how to change the direction of society from a massive leftward drift to back on course.

February 15, 2023

Ohio train derailment blame

Buttigieg’s department ‘screwed up’ in Ohio train derailment according to Sen. Vance:

February 14, 2023

Objects threaten North American airspace

Canada's CBC news reports on some of the latest details:

A few points to consider:

  • This is an existential threat to North American airspace.  Colonel Let's Go Brandon is clearly ill-equipped to handle it effectively. 
  • The U.S. doesn't need spy balloons, it has satellites - the Chinese counter-accusations are ridiculous and defensive in nature.
  • As a reminder, no one in the Trump White House was told about Chinese balloons, because it wasn't realized until after he left office (via CNN):
The Biden administration official now says the incidents were not discovered until after the Trump administration had already left. But the official did not say how those incidents were discovered or when.

As details continue to emerge a threat assessment will likely come together.  It's too soon to speculate on that. 

DeSantis or Trump in 2024?

My position on the 2024 presidential election has always been that Florida Governor Ron DeSantis should cede the nomination to Trump, but now that's wavering.  My rationale has been that if Trump wins then we could follow that with 2 consecutive DeSantis presidential terms, giving America 12 consecutive years of Republican rule.  Think of what could be accomplished!  But now I wonder if a Trump 2024 victory is a sure thing.  I thought 2020 would be but some how Let's Go Brandon got 81 million votes. I won't rehash how that was even possible here; the net effect was it happened.

DeSantis I think could demolish any opponent. But right now it's still early, I'm reserving judgement and opinion on who the better candidate for 2024 might be.  If it ends up being DeSantis, we still owe president Trump a debt of gratitude for moving the ball down the field in the right direction. He woke up the conservative voters and some of the Republican party.  He made Americans aware of the fact that America first is not a bad thing.  He showed everyone that the status quo is not immutable. That's huge.

Here, Dave Rubin discusses Bill Maher's advice to Ron DeSantis.  It's an interesting take on both parts.

Meanwhile in Italy

Is Italy actually moving to the right? It seems so, but hopefully this small update is not just part of a temporary blip.

February 13, 2023

A critical eye on Peter Zeihan

From time to time I have shared videos from geopolitical analyst Peter Zeihan because he's right about a lot of stuff.  But I'm no zombie.  Unlike a mindless horde of woke leftists, I like to validate my beliefs and part of that comes from applying a critical eye towards what I believe in.  Question your beliefs.  Yaron Brook, whom I also like, spent a long form monologue critiquing Zeihan's analyses.  While he also appreciates Zeihan's assessments, he also raises some valid points about where he believes Zeihan was not correct, or not completely correct.

As I said, the critical eye towards your own accepted views is one of the best tools a person has to check if he or she is on the right path. That's what critical thinking is all about.

February 12, 2023

February 10, 2023

Democrats have weaponized your government against you

The FBI is just one part of this, but you have to hear this and then no longer stand for it.  Where are Democratic voters on this?  Why are they silent?  Is it ignorance, tacit approval or is it fear?  In an case, if they do love America, they need to stand up.  In the past the "silent majority" of Muslims who said nothing about extremist terrorism were chastised for that.  Democrat voters  are in that same position now.

They are the ones who need to stand up.

February 9, 2023

I just can't today

I have no energy today to combat rampant, stupid leftism so instead of an essay, I'll take the day off and you can enjoy more mockery of the deserving left.

February 8, 2023

Clown show all around

There's not much point in speaking to the SOTU addresses clown shows these days, so let's just enjoy this mockery:

February 7, 2023

U.S., Mexico, drugs, trade and the future

This morning on Breitbart News Daily on SiriusXM, I was listening to senator Joni Earnst talk about the border with Mexico and the issues in Mexico in broader.   She was making the point about the flow of drugs such as fentanyl into the United States, but also equally important is the flow of guns from the United States into Mexico particularly the fact that most of those were flowing to the drug cartels.

The United States and Mexico have mutual problems, but equally important is that the two countries have a mutual opportunity. It's readily apparent that Mexico wants to stop the inbound flow of weapons as much as the U.S. wants to stop the inbound flow of drugs.  The Mexican government cannot fight an increasingly armed and impervious ring of cartels without a co-operative effort within the United States, and the same is true for America with respect to the drug flow.  The inertia that prevents doing something about both of these issues (spawned by Democrats' desire for more illegal voters to pad their vote totals) really mostly benefits the drug cartels at the expense of the people of both countries. 

Aside from the obvious notion that a wall would benefit both countries (thank you president Trump for pushing for that), it's less obvious but still true that there is a potential for mutual economic benefit.  

The Background

As Peter Zeihan points out, there is a massive onshoring of manufacturing coming to North America in this decade. The below video provides a good summary of his reasoning as to why it's happening. 


Specifically here, he expounds on the Texas-Mexico manufacturing landscape:


Because of demographics, this cannot be an entirely American effort.  Mexico has the demographics to assist.  Canada doesn't reallyMexico is also changing it's tune on dealing with the drug cartels. It has to do so and despite the current relations blip, it will inevitably require increased cooperation between the two countries.

Assuming Peter Zeihan is even only partly right (and I believe he's more than just a little bit right), the economic integration of the United States and Mexico is inevitable.  Mutual interest means that co-operation in the short term will aid economic synergy in the medium to longer term.

The Future

With both countries needing to industrialize or re-industrialize rapidly, the need to begin several things in earnest is strong.  Economic and security cooperation must not only start right away, they need to start hand in hand.  They are interlinked and inseparable;  Mexico not be considered a secure place for lower end industrialization if it is overrun with cartels. For its part, the United States, with an emphasis on higher end industrialization and not the best demographic situation, cannot do lower end manufacturing internally, at least not all of it.  It's in both nations' best interest to make Mexico safer and the border more secure so that rapid industrialization and mutual beneficial trade can occur.  For the United States this also helps significantly (though not completely) neuter China economically. Its a win win win.

How this happens depends on a lot of things.  To me the obvious way forward is to not parcel the pieces together and deal with each issue independently. 

(1) Work with Mexico to build the wall as a mutually beneficial exercise as part of a broader effort.

Focus on it as part of holistic plan for controlling the flow of drugs, guns and illegal immigrants; it needs to be more than just a wall.  It requires proper documentation of all travelers (yes sneaking drugs and people and guns is going to be more than just at proper ports of entry), hence the wall. But it will also require enhanced enforcement and surveillance of delivery systems (e.g. FedEx, postal systems, shipping).  This will require additional people (maybe those 86,000 newly hired and armed IRS agents could be appropriated to more serviceable roles). It will require a new and innovative way to allow express trade but still monitor for the illegal transfers.

The slowing of the illegal guns to Mexico as Earnest pointed out this morning will weaken the cartels and help Mexico combat them.  The benefit to the United States from that is that weakened cartels will decrease their ability to smuggle drugs into America AND weaken their ability to impinge on future manufacturing zones thus helping trade.

(2) Work with Mexico to develop a high speed trade corridor.

A high speed trade corridor, dedicated to shipments and not human traffic will expedite not only trade but the mutually beneficial trade.  I would not expect the exports to flow entirely one way.  Firstly as a subcomponent of this, it would b good to establish spheres of specialization among the two countries to enhance trade relations.  Peter Zeihan touched on this. Left out however was the idea that American trade goods need to flow into Mexico as well.  The balance of payments cannot be one-sided.  Replacing a massive trade deficit with China to that of one with Mexico only weakens China; it does not strengthen America except in relative terms with China.  Therefore American goods need to flow into Mexico as well.

With manufacturing jobs developing in Mexico and increased Mexican security against the cartels (hopefully in a snowball effect), Mexicans should have more disposable income and thus be able to purchase more American goods.  A growing and more stable GDP in Mexico should allow Mexico more tax revenue to purchase military equipment and police force equipment as well, to help fight the cartels while at the same time mitigating the potential trade imbalance.

In conjunction with this, both countries could improve trade (particularly exports) with the soon to be struggling European countries.  This would be a further boon to both nations' economies.

Improved domestic economic conditions could also significantly reduce illegal immigration to the United States with more jobs and security becoming available within Mexico. There is a language and cultural advantage for Hispanics to remain in a Hispanic and Spanish-speaking country. Ironically, this may eventually shift the illegal immigration problem to Mexico's southern border. 

(3) Plan for the next stage.

It's possible that as this shift occurs, Mexican birth rates inevitably decline as the nation becomes wealthier.   This has been the inevitable fate of industrialized nations.  To sustain it's economic growth Mexico may be forced to allow increased immigration into its southern border to fill the need.  Alternately it could lead to a further southward migration of low tech manufacturing as Mexico itself upgrades to higher tech industrial manufacturing and outsources the lower end of the scale to Central America, while the United States does the same into ultra-high tech.  This in effect would expand prosperity ever southward.  That of course is only one possible outcome but possible nonetheless.

All of this is hypothetical of course, but the current paradigm offers a massive opportunity for both nations, far greater than allowing the status quo to continue.  For its part the United States should push these ideas where it can but not in such a way as to demand specific actions by Mexico.  Pointing out the mutual benefit (using the carrot) will yield far more than threats (the stick) ever will.

February 6, 2023

Fake news on Chinese spy balloon during Trump administration

The Let's Go Brandon administration is trying to deflect and claim that Chinese spy balloons existed during the Trump administration.  Well than why was there no plan to deal with it during this administration? Probably because they are lying.  Just as they're lying about Let's Go Brandon demanding they shoot it down a few days before it actually happened.  No.  There was plenty of opportunity to shoot it down over land rather than let it spy across the entire continental United States (and part of Canada) before shooting it down over the Atlantic Ocean and not capturing it to determine what it contained.  That didn't happen.  This administration is full of ships. 

Watch the whole clip below for details.

February 5, 2023

February 3, 2023

A Chinese spy balloon?

 This is further proof China is spying on the U.S. outside of using Eric Swalwell.  However, it's also proof that China's spy satellite program is a little lacking.  A spy balloon?  That's great espionage technology for 1885.  Nevertheless, it may have provided them with valuable intel prior to being dealt with.

February 1, 2023

Coverup!

Tim Pool spends time summing up the latest raid today on Let's Go Brandon's home by the FBI as well as the depth and span of the coverup across media and across time.

Carl Jung's explanation of neurosis in our time

What Carl Jung had to say in the 20th century, explains so much of Western society in the 21st century.  Here's a great explanation of it.

January 31, 2023

It's not that she's an idiot

Paul Joseph Watson points out that Whoopi Goldberg is an idiot.  That's not really the problem.  The real problem is that some people still believe her when she spouts stupidity.  That's the real problem. Despite her blinkered reality, she still has a platform to spout her garbage. Remember her insane views on the holocaust?  Garbage.  She still has a platform.  That's the real problem (a different one than previously mentioned).

January 30, 2023

Ilhan Omar is vile

What we have here is a failure to divest Ilhan Omar from any sort of governmental role.  

January 29, 2023

January 28, 2023

Milton Friedman spitting facts

Milton Friedman was an economic savant.  This video was one of many times he was spitting facts.  A good video to watch on a Saturday morning, or any morning. Or any time. 

January 27, 2023

The pitfalls of capitalism

I am an avowed believer in and supporter of capitalism. I wholeheartedly support the concept of the free market. My initial foray into the political sphere, as a young teenager mind you, was from that trajectory.  I was first a fiscal conservative before discovering my social conservatism a decade later.  The benefits of capitalism over socialism, communism, fascism, monarchies, dictatorships or any other form of governance are spectacular and incontrovertible.  Capitalism supports the Biblical principle of the work ethic. Capitalism supports the notion of individual liberty as well as individual responsibility.  Capitalism supports the idea of a meritocracy.  The other forms of government do not. In many regards they even reject or overtly oppose much of those ideas.

The pitfalls of capitalism I am about to discuss are not meant as an indictment of it, rather a warning that we cannot allow it's few but obvious weaknesses to derail it from succeeding.  To appropriate some William Shakespeare's Mark Anthony, I come to praise capitalism, not to bury it. Nevertheless, I come to gird capitalism by pointing out where it has failed.  Or rather, more aptly, those who profess to practice it, have failed.

Let me preface the below by saying that while I am talking about capitalism, which is an economic system, it is inherently entwined with democracy.  You cannot have a free market without a free people.  Other economic systems are more often than not a political and economic model combined. My commentary below reflects this mix of the economic side of freedom (capitalism) with the political side of freedom (democracy, a representative republic or similar means of governance).  My critiques of capitalism stem primarily from the shortcomings of governance rather than capitalism itself.

Capitalism has never existed in an unfettered state.  If it were so it would be seen to be more brutal than how we observe it. If indeed we existed in a truly laissez faire capitalist society, taxation would be for the creation of roads, the common defense and provide laws that protect commerce and individuals from unjustness (theft, fraud, murder for example).  But capitalism is managed by humans, and where it is practiced, it does more.  

There is a social safety net to help the most unfortunate and weakest among us in every capitalist nation.  When done properly this is a boon to individuals as well as to the system.  When done improperly it can result in bloat (too many recipients, including those not truly in need), or shortfall (not supportive enough or corruption leaching funds from those in need by government bureaucrats).  It should be pointed out that these are not pitfalls of capitalism, they are the pitfalls of improperly executed capitalism, or warping of it by those who seek to gain from unwarranted opportunity. 

But there are pitfalls nonetheless.  Perhaps the most egregious of these is the advent of a kleptocracy by both government and the techo-industrial elite.

In a kleptocracy, corrupt politicians enrich themselves secretly outside the rule of law, through kickbacks, bribes, and special favors from lobbyists and corporations, or they simply direct state funds to themselves and their associates.

This is not a the flaw of capitalism, this is a distortion of capitalism.  Capitalism's flaw, is to lend itself to such distortion.  A free market system, with insufficient guard rails put in place can easily be corrupted by those with the money and power to do so.  Therein lies capitalism's greatest weakness; the inability to sufficiently protect itself from deliberate disruption by the lazy-greedy.  This extends to deliberate disruption by the unwise. Government in seeking to prevent disruption of the economy often inadvertently distorts the economy it creates bubbles.  The proper way to handle a recession is to endure it, not print money and artificially avoid it until the next election cycle.  This creates bubbles, and it creates incentive to expand the bubble and avoid the pain.  This makes the inevitable bubble-burst far worse.  Capitalism does not provide a way to prevent that.

The solution, good government, is not mandated by capitalism.  The smarter way to prepare for inevitable occasional economic weakness is to provide a sufficient safety net in those times and even more critically, provide the incentive and enable the populace the opportunity to prepare for it themselves. Does anyone save for a rainy day anymore?  Why bother when the government does not set the example and instead is willing to throw trillions of dollars they don't really have at the problem?  This is what is often referred to as generational theft.  The government borrows money that following generations will have to pay back. Lazy-greedy in a different way.

In defense of capitalism, no other form of government protects from this any better.  In fact they all serve a concentration of power that enables fewer and fewer to decide more and more and ultimately that power not only serves their corruption and enables it, it encourages it.  The imperfection of capitalism in this regard is far worse in other forms of system but capitalism is nonetheless not excused.

Capitalism requires a higher bar of protection against these weaknesses.  Not just legal protections are needed, as those can be rewritten or avoided through loopholes government has proven itself all-too-willing to use.   It requires a belief, strongly-held among the people, that government is a servant of the people and must be held to account for every action and decision.  This is a lot to ask of a population in terms of time and effort and even awareness.  The problem is that the awareness has been deliberately eroded over generations and even good intentions fail when awareness prevents their use. 

Coupled with the lazy-greedy issue, is the developed sense of entitlement.  Modern Caligulas across government and the wealthy elite and even the famous, feel entitled to their wealth and do not concern themselves that it comes at the expense of the middle class and poorer classes.  They are entitled after all.  They have lived it and been told it all their lives. They Marie Antoinette their way through life unconcerned that the price of eggs has dramatically increased and life has become significantly more straining on everyone else.

This oligopoly of wealth and power make decisions on governance outside of the purview of everyday citizens but in a way that affects everyday citizens (most often negatively).  Think COVID mask mandates "for thee but not for me" as one example. Think Jeffery Epstein's private island for a more direct and dramatic use of people as objects for another example.  All the while they tell you what you observe isn't real.  Inflation isn't bad, it's just you.  

This concentration of power and wealth builds upon itself.  Those inside the inner circle grow bigger and bigger feeding of the rest of society, and make rules to ensure competition to their aristocracy is fettered and hobbled and can never truly get to the top.  Again this is not capitalism, it is a distortion of capitalism.  But capitalism here is not snow-white and sin free.

Capitalism's inherent risk here, comes from it's strength.  one of the underpinning concepts of capitalism is competition. If there is a need going unfilled, capitalism rewards those who seek to fill that need by providing them with a growth in their wealth.  But competition inevitably means there will be more than one person or business entity that tries to fill that need with a solution.   Not all will do equally well and the best (based quality, price and other factors) will slowly grow market share at the expense of the less ideal solutions.  In a truly free market there is a potential that the one best idea ends up becoming the only idea, obtaining 100% market share (or perhaps 90% say). The competition has destroyed itself.  Capitalism has led to a market monopoly.  Perhaps this is inevitable in efficient capitalism.  But the strength of the best winning out, doing the best for consumers in the end, sews the seeds for its own demise.  Monopolies are not healthy in capitalism.  Maybe in the short term they are fine, but extended monopolies become like government.  They seek to exist for their own existence.  They serve themselves and only themselves. People be damned. This is a further recipe for corruption and perhaps collusion with government; you protect my market from other players and I donate to your election campaign. It doesn't matter if a newer and better option has been devised, it must be destroyed before it can grow and replace my monopoly.

It's a sick twisting of capitalism but capitalism itself has done nothing to prevent this twisting from occurring.  Or rather we have not done anything to prevent capitalism from being perverted. Again, laws exist to prevent these distortions but they happen anyway, because people are corrupt. Not just the elite, people in general look out for their own interests.  It's human nature, or in fact, just nature. What capitalism requires is an institutional way of preventing the corruption.  It requires it at a foundational level and it does not have it. More important than laws are two things; awareness and transparency.

Those unfortunately require complete openness about financial transactions at those levels (and in the interest of fairness the, at every level), and media coverage of anything that has been flagged as suspicious transactions. Yikes. While we are probably at a point where that may be technically possible, there are three things that are wrong with that solution.

  1. The obvious one we rail over already as conservatives; the media is large enough and corrupt enough to become part of the problem already.  They will have no interest in exposing the problems.
  2. There is no appetite to create a financially fully open society; not at the top level, not at any level.  Do you want everyone having the option to know or see everywhere you spend your money? Probably not. Very probably not.
  3. This does not cover every possible transaction because not all transactions are financial. "Write a negative story about x, and I will make sure you have free access to y." That will still go undetected.

Capitalism also demands equality of opportunity (NOT outcome - I will never play basketball well enough to deserve an NBA level salary at the job. I do not have the physical traits such as height, to compete at that level).  Democracy as it has existed so far, does not ensure this is the case.  This requires equality of education, equality of access to opportunities, and a removal of unjust barriers to entry.

All is not lost for capitalism.  These problems also exist in every other form of government in some form or another, despite what utopian socialists or communist would have you believe. The strength of capitalism is invention and reinvention.  If those who believe in capitalism can come to grips with it's pitfalls, they can work more diligently to expunge them.  That can not be said to be true of most other systems of governance. Capitalism is redeemable but it requires constant vigilance and it does not have that, which is our own fault. 

January 26, 2023

Is ChatGPT woke?

ChatGPT is a model-based chatbot cum search engine that does a remarkable job of mimicking human style communication in answering questions posed to it.  Here's the link if you haven't seen it yet. If fed properly posed questions it can provide remarkably well made answers.  Whether ChatGPT and AI (artificial intelligence) are a good idea for humanity is a broader debate, for another time.  There are some specific problems with how the model has been trained and I'll point out one example below regarding climate change.  It appears that the model (or engine or ChatGPT) is woke, at least on this subject.

This, by the way, is not ground-breaking.  Others like Ben Shapiro have already tested it's wokeness on issues and come away at least concerned about it. 

Of course the model is not the issue.  It learns it's responses from the data made available to it.  Garbage in - garbage out.  That's not to say everything it was fed was garbage, but enough of it, on certain subjects, clearly was garbage.  Observe my 'conversation':

Me

Write an article explaining why global warming is not a man-made phenomenon using specific scientific facts.

ChatGPT

 It is a widely accepted scientific fact that the Earth's climate is warming, and that human activity, particularly the burning of fossil fuels, is a major contributor to this warming. However, some argue that global warming is not a man-made phenomenon and that natural factors, such as solar radiation and volcanic activity, play a larger role in the Earth's climate.

One argument is that variations in solar radiation, such as changes in the sun's output of energy, have a greater impact on the Earth's climate than human activity. However, studies have shown that while the sun's radiation does play a role in the Earth's climate, the warming observed in recent decades cannot be explained solely by changes in solar radiation.

Another argument is that volcanic activity is a significant contributor to global warming. Volcanoes release large amounts of greenhouse gases, such as carbon dioxide and methane, into the atmosphere. However, the amount of greenhouse gases released by volcanoes is significantly less than the amount released by human activity. Additionally, volcanic activity has been shown to have a cooling effect on the Earth's climate in the short term, due to the release of aerosols that reflect sunlight back into space.

It is also true that the Earth's climate has undergone significant changes in the past, long before human activity became a significant factor. However, the rate of warming in recent decades is much faster than any observed in the past, and the overwhelming majority of scientists agree that human activity is the primary cause of this accelerated warming.

In conclusion, while natural factors such as solar radiation and volcanic activity do play a role in the Earth's climate, the evidence overwhelmingly shows that human activity, particularly the burning of fossil fuels, is the primary cause of global warming. It is important to note that scientific facts are supported by scientific evidence and research, and that global warming is a complex issue with various factors influencing it.

Me

Make a counter-argument to your article.

ChatGPT

One counter-argument to the idea that human activity is the primary cause of global warming is that the Earth's climate is constantly changing and that the current warming trend is simply part of a natural cycle. Proponents of this viewpoint argue that the Earth has gone through periods of warming and cooling in the past and that the current warming trend is not unusual or unprecedented. They may also point to the fact that the Earth's temperature has been relatively stable for the last 9000 years and that the current warming trend is not as severe as some of the warming trends that occurred in the past.

Another counter-argument is that the models used to predict future warming are not reliable and that the warming may not be as severe as projected. Some argue that the models used to predict future warming are based on a limited amount of data and are not accurate enough to make definitive predictions about the future climate. They may also argue that the models do not take into account all of the natural factors that influence the Earth's climate, such as changes in solar radiation and volcanic activity.

Additionally, some argue that even if human activity is contributing to global warming, the potential negative impacts of reducing greenhouse gas emissions, such as economic downturns, would outweigh the potential benefits. They may argue that alternative solutions, such as adaptation or geoengineering, should be pursued instead of reducing emissions.

It is important to note that while these counter-arguments do present valid points, the scientific consensus is that human activity is the primary cause of global warming and that immediate action is needed to reduce emissions and mitigate the potential negative impacts of climate change. It is also important to consider that scientific research and facts are constantly evolving and that there are different perspectives on the issue of global warming.

[Emphasis added]

Two tries and ChatGPT tried to steer me towards global warming being a real threat; despite my ask to counter-argue it.

This does not represent a robust line of questioning, and ChatGPT does make errors and recognizes them when you point it out to it's credit (I have witnessed it in an unrelated sports chat I had).  Here's the general issue I have with the woke climate change answers as a specific issue and as a broader generalization.  People will come to ChatGPT for answers, perhaps eventually in greater numbers than Google as a search engine. But they will be unaware of potential garbage-in garbage-out issues and take ChatGPT answers as gospel truth.  This will result in a reinforcing of woke culture, just as woke culture is being pushed back for the first time.

More broadly, existing biases and misinformation will become the new common sense or the "new normal" view with an over-reliance on the tool.  Think Wikipedia issues, but on a much bigger scale.

This is not to say that I am at odds with models and improving what AI can do. I believe that improving predictive modeling, even what has been done with ChatGPT can be very useful. However, it must be done extremely diligently with a lot of forethought.  I have built statistical models during my career. When done properly, it is extremely time consuming to ensure the right data is included to avoid biases, the right type of model is used, the model must be thoroughly tested etc.  There is a lot of work involved. Every model I built required a very large amount of documentation, so it could be reviewed the in future for accuracy and robustness.

ChatGPT is not woke.  It's a model built on web data up to 2021.  If 90% of the web says global warming is real, then ChatGPT will provide answers based on that set of inputs. It is not really artificial intelligence, and neither are any models. They are statistical predictive tools at this point, nothing more.  They will likely advance beyond that at some point, but we are nowhere near that point now.  The real danger is that people may believe we are, and accept erroneous or dubious outputs from the tool as gospel truth, and make decisions accordingly.

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...

Share This