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2023-09-13 07:00 by Karl Denninger
in Editorial , 292 references
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.... who believe in, and will actually live to and enforce The US Constitution?

Article IV, Section 4:

The United States shall guarantee to every State in this Union a Republican Form of Government, and shall protect each of them against Invasion; and on Application of the Legislature, or of the Executive (when the Legislature cannot be convened) against domestic Violence.

This is not "migration"; it is an invasion and even the largest and best-endowed, holding all of Wall Street, cannot afford it.

New York City will be cutting overtime pay for its police officers in an effort to pay for the city's ongoing migrant crisis despite police complaints that they are already understaffed.

Mayor Eric Adams' administration has informed the city's police, fire, corrections and sanitation departments that they must submit an overtime pay reduction plan and begin tracking progress each month, City Hall confirmed to Fox News Digital. Police unions say the plan will reduce the number of cops on patrol and make the city more dangerous.

New York cannot afford this.

Its not just New York.  Chicago alone will spend $255 million on this and they don't have it either.

CHICAGO - Chicago’s burgeoning migrant crisis will have cost taxpayers more than a quarter of a billion dollars by Dec. 31, Mayor Brandon Johnson told City Council members Friday.

But this is a complete lie:

Ald. Ray Lopez (15th) later issued a statement saying he’s "cautiously optimistic" about Johnson’s proposal, but that it’s "simply unacceptable that Chicago is forced to shoulder the burden for asylum-seekers" because the federal government won’t "address this crisis decades in the making."

The Federal Government -- both sides of the aisle, and every Administration back to at least Reagan's, has refused to act on this as an invasion which it is.

Reagan essentially granted amnesty in 1986 under the statement and claim that it was a one-time deal and all illegal immigration would be stopped.

Neither his administration or any other has actually stopped it since.

OK, if the Federal Government will not because they both are buying votes from various constituencies then it is the duty of the Governors to do so, and they have their State Guard with which to do so.  Call them up and post them on the border, deputizing as many citizens as you need to and will volunteer (that'll be "lots") in support for observation, communications and, with their own weapons and ammunition, as provided for as the unorganized militia, to buttress said forces of The Guard.

Attempt to enter illegally and you will be denied entry.
Attempt to force your way in anyway and you will get shot.

"Oh, they'll go get an injunction!" many say.  Of course they will.

So what?

Sack up and tell them the options are either deploy the US Military and stop the entries, all of them OR YOU, AS GOVERNOR, WILL DO SO as the Constitution DEMANDS, letters on paper be damned.

May I remind you of Norton .v. Shelby County?

An unconstitutional act is not a law; it confers no rights; it imposes no duties; it affords no protection; it creates no office; it is in legal contemplation as inoperative as though it had never been passed. 

It says an unconstitutional act.  It does not limit this to the legislature.

Any such injunction is invalid as it is clearly a violation of the Constitution which requires the Federal Government to stop all invasive acts.

The Constitution does not say "except if some group of people profit from it"; the requirement is absolute.

While many States and localities could make an entirely-reasonable argument in court about financial matters (e.g. SNAP/EBT, Medicaid and similar) onto which citizens are forced as a direct and indirect result of this invasion and the taking from the state, local and citizens that come from it, along with the additional crime, this is not a court proceeding, it has no requirement for standing and it is not a complaint for equitable relief.

You do not sue to enforce that which has been sued over and ignored for forty years by every Administration on both sides of the aisle when the subject matter is a black-letter Constitutional requirement that is intentionally, willfully and maliciously being ignored.

YOU SACK UP AND TELL THEM IT ENDS RIGHT HERE, RIGHT NOW and you do it under the CLEAR authority of the US Constitution as a State Governor who has both a State Police force and a State Guard -- that is, a State-authorized and armed militia and if fulfillment of that duty by the Federal Government does not come right here and now, on a permanent basis, you will use it along with the unorganized militia consisting of your entire adult population.

That is why the States have a Guard; there are times the Federal Government either can't or won't comply with the requirement to defend the nation against invasion, and should such occur there are other forces who both can and under the Constitution must do so.

Enough with the bullshit Governors.

PS: Don't tell me you can't as we all know that's a lie -- one of your own did at Martha's Vineyard, didn't you?

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2023-09-06 07:00 by Karl Denninger
in Editorial , 407 references
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Witness the article yesterday on Casper, Wyoming that has seen a wild-eyed increase in homeless people burgling various structures (the apologists call it "squatting" -- which is true but preceded by burglary, which is a felony) and crapping on the streets and in other public places which wildly raises the risk of serious (indeed, what were all the leading causes of death pre-sanitation systems!) disease.

Do you believe homelessness is new?  Of course it isn't.  In the 1990s I used to make a practice during the Christmas season of buying loaves of bread, peanut butter and jelly along with some cheap plastic sandwich bags, making up some sandwiches, and then attempting to give them to the bums on Lower Wacker Drive.  Once I was threatened with arrest by one of Chicago's "finest" for doing it (I wasn't a "licensed food vendor" you see, although I was giving away said food.)  I told him to go ahead and cuff me if he really wanted to, but I had a suspicion that my mug on the evening news wasn't going to reflect well on the department.   He left me alone.

But what went along with that is that I got more refusals than takes. Ditto if a bum accosted me coming out of a restaurant asking for money. I frequently had a "doggie bag" and, being that I wasn't exactly broke, it usually had something pretty good in it too -- often a part of a steak or similar.  Never once did said bum want the food -- not once.  Always money -- and why?  Because they were going to buy booze or drugs with it.  It wasn't hard to figure out even then.

But they didn't crap on the streets.  Why not?  Because they all knew that if they did they'd get arrested and while a night in jail meant a meal it also meant no drugs or alcohol and the same dynamic played out there that did with the doggie bag -- they had no interest in being "housed", even just overnight in the lockup, if it meant no booze or drugs -- and it did.  So they didn't crap on the streets and didn't throw their needles around on the street either, and you know damn well most of them were using and everyone has to take a dump once a day or so.

Let's pivot a bit.  This article, from 2015:

So yeah, bring on the automation.  But let's cut the crap about "safety benefits" until I can climb in the back seat and punch in a destination, leaving as my only remaining manual task refueling when the tank gets low.

Do remember that in 2016 a Tesla drove under an 18-wheeler trailer that was making a left turn onto a state highway in Florida at speed, decapitating the driver.  It is alleged that a portable DVD player was found in the vehicle (well, what was left of it) positioned such that it was likely it was in use and running a movie.  The so-called "autopilot" was reported to have been in use.  I wrote about it at the time.

What I originally posted on this topic was eight years ago.  Today we are no closer to actual "self-driving" vehicles on an open road, unconnected basis than we were then.  Oh sure, people claim otherwise but the facts are that exactly zero such vehicles have been delivered to customers.  I cannot buy one no matter how much money I have; they don't exist.

How many people have bought a "feature" that allegedly, in the future, will deliver this capacity?  I don't know, but I do know that touts are all over the Internet claiming that it'll happen -- and Elon Musk, who controls Tesla, is one of the loudest leaders of a fanboy cult on this matter, with the latest being an alleged video he posted of him tooling around a California area without his hands on the wheel.  Oh, and said touting is all over his platform "X" too -- big shock, right?

But do note about that latest "demonstration" -- he was in the driver seat the entire time; he did not climb in the back with a six pack of beer, drunk well beyond legal limits and thus risking his driver license and a criminal DUI conviction if in fact his vehicle wasn't "fully self-driving."

Which it wasn't and isn't.

Now tell me why eight years later from "autopilot" being sold to the public Elon hasn't had to either put up a working implementation that actually delivers on the claims or refund all the money taken, with interest and penalties for making a claim that thus far, there is no evidence can or will be delivered?  Indeed how many of those vehicles have been destroyed (by fire, collision, theft, mechanical failure, etc.) yet the funds were collected for a thing never delivered -- and never will be as the vehicle no longer exists as a road-worthy means of transportation?

Let's be clear: There is no such thing as "full self-driving" or anything called an "autopilot" for a car until you can get into the back seat of the vehicle while intoxicated or in possession of open intoxicating beverages, designate the destination for the vehicle to travel to, and have zero capacity to physically control or be responsible for the vehicle and the damage it might cause to persons or property along with no liability for being intoxicated as you are not in control of said vehicle and, in fact, you're not even "intoxicated in public" because you are entirely enclosed within your private property.  That is, you have no liability insurance premium to pay when the vehicle is used in such a mode and you can go somewhere while literally blind-drunk without a care in the world; the company that sells said vehicle is liable for the vehicle's operation in its entirety because you're not driving -- the computer it sold you is.

Speaking of which if you have to pay a subscription fee on a recurring basis you weren't sold said computer that is capable of that alleged "full self-driving" either and any representation you were, either explicitly or by implication, is a lie as well.  A thing I buy is mine -- the money has changed hands, so have the goods, and that's the end of it.

If you are sold something that is not what it was claimed to be whether by inference or direct representation that's against the law and doing that is supposed to result in criminal prosecution and restitution for everyone who paid and didn't get what they bought.

Has there even been a hint of prosecution for any of this -- or even a "stop sell" order?  No.  Why not?

How about "driving assistance" generally?  Blind-spot monitoring is great, right?  Perhaps it might be -- right up until it doesn't work as expected.  What happens then?  How long is it before you've trained every driver on the road, effectively, that they no longer need to turn their head and look before changing lanes?  Human factors -- including laziness and learned dependence -- are real and disclaimers in owner's manuals don't change them.  At least said "assistance" features are honestly marketed as what they truly are: Assistants -- much like your coffee maker "assists" you in heating water and pouring it through coffee you placed in a filter.

But let's not kid ourselves -- if you're selling something that damages driving capacity generally why are not you, as the manufacturer, liable for that?  You should be -- right?  You would be if there was a 50 gallon container of vodka and a straw delivered inside each new vehicle that the driver could suck on any time he wants, so why aren't you when you create dependence on a thing that is expensive, not universal, and habituates someone in a way that when it is withdrawn or absent their driving skill is damaged.

Remember the "Great Financial Crisis"?  What caused it?  People being enticed to take out fraudulent loans to buy real estate which every single state and local government loved as it drove property tax collections higher along with all the "GDP" from building said homes, selling said homes, running title work on said homes, collecting transfer tax stamps on the deeds, commissions collected by Realtors and then spent in the economy and similar.

How many people who suborned or made knowingly-false statements on those loans went to prison?  Zero.

How many bankers who, I remind you, on multiple occasions were caught on tape or in emails stating that the securities they were selling as "good credit" were in their opinion vomit went to prison?  Zero.

But for those bogus claims that these were "money good" securities how many would have been sold?  Probably pretty damn close to zero if not zero.  The "excuse" that the buyers were "skilled market participants" is irrelevant to whether the representations made were knowingly or recklessly false.  They were.

It is now floating around that one of the hedge funds that was in the center of assembling and peddling this garbage in the run-up to 2008 is at it again, this time in the AI space.  Is what they're doing now illegal whether "in name only" or otherwise?  I have no idea; at present these are (best as I can determine) correlations and claims, not known facts.  Of course if it all blows up in the everyone's face and whacks your stock portfolio by half or more again, as it did the last time, do you think anyone will be investigated and go to jail for their part in it?

Why would you ever believe that given the relatively-recent -- oh, last 20 or so years -- of history?

How about illegal immigration?  How many millions of people have flowed across our southern border even though they know it is against the law, and why have they done so?

That's simple: Nobody goes to jail for doing it, being involved in it, promoting it or even directly assisting it unless you stuff said people into a trailer and a truck and then said people come rolling through a regular entry point.  Then people get arrested.

But if the same people cross outside of a regular border entry point, even with assistance, nobody goes to jail.

Ever.

Not the people doing it nor the people employing those who come here illegally and those who assist them.

Indeed we even stick said people into what were high-class hotels in places like NYC which they then trash as they have no reason not to: They have no respect for the property of others -- which they demonstrated by entering illegally in the first place -- and no expectation they'll be held accountable for destroying said property and thus that's exactly what they do just like the people crapping on the street and destroying property in Casper!

How about the purveyors of various nostrums that prove worthless and worse, the people making them gamed the trials and that is later very clear?  Who remembers "you won't get the virus if you take this" claims?  Who made the claims and why were they not prosecuted when it was proved the claims were false?  Remember that Dr. Birx herself admitted on the record that her claims were "aspirational"; that is, she had no evidence and she knew it at the time but she hoped it would be true.  Yet off she walked into the sunset with all of her money and property, as did Fauci, and in fact so have thus far all the pharmaceutical makers.  That's not their first rodeo in this regard either and all of it stems from the same root cause!

Is this the only such instance?  Nope.  How much has Pfizer and other pharmaceutical firms paid in fines over the last couple of decades?  Some of those are criminal -- yet have those fines deterred behavior?  Obviously not if further similar conduct happened again, right?  It doesn't take much looking around to realize that the conduct certainly did not stop in 2012, as evidenced by the continuing stream of fines and penalties.

What do you think Burisma and related items was about?  Money.  Nobody gave a damn about the people in Ukraine and they still don't.  The defense contractors all love the money, the evidence is that millions went to the Biden family directly, during Joe's time as Vice-President we deliberately and willfully interfered in and helped foment Maidan, an actual shooting-included overthrow of the government, which led directly to the now-current war and thus our nation, including both parties in Congress and our current Administration not only were involved in it eight years ago they still are to this day.

Essentially everything wrong with our society today comes down to the same point: Laws are meaningless unless enforced, and the reason we have laws is that there is a decent percentage of the population that will use every possible advantage, fair or foul, to get ahead defined as taking money from other people.  If the means are fair then voluntary exchange it is and that's all to the good -- but if they're foul then the law is supposed to be evenly enforced against all, no matter the size of the scam or the power of the people running it, both putting a stop to it and imprisoning those doing it.

Without the law to constrain said people that is actually enforced those who care only for money will take everything they can get and do not care if they ruin your life, property or even kill you outright in their pursuit.

It is not that they're trying to kill you it is that they simply do not care if you live, die, are impoverished, or are sold something that is defective, never delivered at all or have your life and/or property destroyed as a result of their actions.

They care for one thing and one thing only: Personal benefit for themselves, everything else be damned.

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2023-08-31 08:25 by Karl Denninger
in Editorial , 386 references
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He didn't mean to, of course.

But he did.

Tweetdeck was restricted to paying customers only recently, and more-seriously the old version that I actually found had some value was forcibly removed, and the new one from my point of view sucks.  I therefore won't pay (since there's no value to me in the new one) and so I'm now back on the "ordinary web page/app" experience.

And let me tell you, boy is it enlightening.

You see, there's a "For You" tab which is Twitter's view of what you want to see.  Except... no it isn't, not really.

Its more what Musk wants to shove down your throat and, I suspect, in short order it will wind up being even more-polarizing in the general public and not only harden positions but become basically worthless from an "advertiser" or "subscriber" perspective in that those paying to get into that list will find no ROI.

No return on investment, you stop investing eventually.  It takes a while, but you will.

Except for those things with no return on investment because they're public-policy or "captive" and thus have no real cost.

So what am I seeing?

A crazy over-representation of two groups of people:

  • Those arguing that Tesla's "new" and fabulous "AI-driven" allegedly "full self-driving" is all there is when it comes to this technology.  It is about to be actually capable of its name, it will destroy everyone else in the space, nobody will be able to compete, they'll all have to license it and thus Musk will win all the marbles and everyone else will lose.

  • Those arguing that we are in a "Climate Emergency" -- whatever their catastrophizing is today.  This term, by the way, is straight out of the UN and directly inures to the benefit of Tesla (which Musk owns a huge part of, I remind you) because Tesla sells electric cars.

That's basically it.

Are there others?  Sure.  I occasionally see WaPo headlines, for example.  A few spams from various pharma concerns.  And some from people I do follow, which is expected.  And, amusingly, now I'm seeing a stream of them from people promoting eating carnivore, which is idiotic and has no value to me because I already do (can't sell someone on something they already do.)

But the lack of diversity of opinion is exactly the point -- and the problem.  Yes, you can try to use this for "psychological programming" but it doesn't really work very well because preaching to the converted is a waste of time and effort -- and preaching incessantly to non-believers won't get them to convert.  In fact if you get annoying enough in real life with that crap you might stare down a double-barreled shotgun with four simple words associated with same: Get off my lawn.  In the social media paradigm what this means is you get blocked or people walk away from the platform entirely in disgust.

But what there isn't is value in any sort of "advertising" against this.  The converted don't care and everyone else is disgusted. 

Those who are disgusted rarely buy whatever you're selling.

This is the basic problem with "algorithm suggestions" and the idea of "targeted" advertising on social media: If you target based on affiliation you reinforce a "hive mind" mentality and if you allow or even enforce (for whatever political reasons you might employ) anti-affiliation you are guaranteed to generate negative advertising returns because the person who sees the ads associates the product or service with people they believe are assholes.

The same applies to the entire grievance industry when it comes to race, "fat acceptance", "trans this or that" or anything else.  You can't win a shaming game and you won't change anyone's mind by trying it either.  What you will do is further entrench whatever opinion was already there.  As I've often said when it comes to men (and having a decent perspective on it because I am one) you can't shoot pool with a rope so trying to "shame" men into liking fat women, for example, is futile.  Yes, some men prefer their women larger but many men do not, particularly those who aren't fat themselves.  The same applies to women; what a woman likes, she likes.  Some women simply don't want to sleep with a man that has a roll of fat on his belly and exactly how much results in being turned off varies from person to person.  There's no getting around that; if you're not attracted then trying to shame someone is idiotic; you won't win and you will reinforce whatever negative opinion was entirely physical with a new dynamic: Now that characteristic gets tagged "psychologically ugly" as well as physically ugly so calling someone a "bigot" is not going to make them like you.  Ever.  Again, do that in person and you might stare down a 12ga barrel.  We've cheapened the price of insults, particularly in the last 20 or so years as social media has spread and made them very easy to launch at someone -- but that doesn't change anything in terms of how the insulted person sees it.

If your intent is to piss off the target (e.g. someone wearing a mask) then have at it.  But when it comes to actual human relationships if you have any intention of trying to change someone's mind you better adopt a different tactic.  After all everyone is a package -- both physical and psychological -- so if you don't have the physical side and refuse to do anything about it or claim you can't (which when it comes obesity is a lie) then you'd better make a maximum effort on the psychological because that's the only card you have left to play.

Or not, if you think that will sate your fury.

Have at it sister and brother; that's a lost war.

And that, perhaps, is the lesson from these so-called "social media" dynamics and the poison they in fact are within in our society.  They incentivize this sort of behavior -- that is, call the other guy a bigot rather than look inward because he can't immediately punch you in the nose or blow your head off when you hide behind a computer or phone screen.  Its all so easy, for example, to blame the forest fires this year on "climate change" when in fact more than eight in ten forest fires, across time, are caused by humans.  Not all intentionally, of course but about 20% of them are in fact arson.  I don't think you can make much of an argument that "climate change causes arson" unless, of course, you're arguing that a political position excuses deliberately setting fires.

Take climate-alarmism generally.  Even if you could prove that humans are causing it you can't stop it or materially mitigate it. This is a math problem, not a "carbon consumption" one and if you have an IQ bigger than your shoe size a bit of thought will make that perfectly clear so attempting to run that crap is proof that you either have no worthwhile intelligence or you're an asshole trying to exploit people for fame, political power, money or all of the above.

There about 8 billion people in the world today.  The United States is 330 million.  Europe is another 447 million and Japan 124 million, roughly; the rest of "western" nations (e.g. Australia, etc.) do not matter numerically.  That's under a billion out of the whole, or 1/8th.

Africa numbers 1.4 billion with most of them in undeveloped nations and 40% of those people are under 15 years old.  India is another 1.4 billion and most of India is also not industrialized as we are in the West, with their median age being roughly 28.  Go outside major cities and many people in India literally still shit in the street, so spare me any garbage about how you think they will never aspire to and expect better.  China is another 1.4 billion and much of their nation is undeveloped compared with the West as well.

That's more than half of the total and none of those folks will accept not accept not having air conditioners, working and reliable electric lights and heat, nor will they accept never having personal transportation.  All of these can only be reasonably provided in a developing economy through the exploitation of carbon.  We could not subsidize their avoidance of that path to prosperity at 4x our per-capita weight even if we wanted to (it would quite-literally bankrupt the entire western world to try), and on top of that if we stop using carbon-based fuels and fertilizers at least 20% of the population of the planet would literally starve to death because without those fuels and fertilizers crop yields would decrease enough that the people in those nations could not be fed.  We can feed the planet's people, in short, only because we exploit carbon-based energy sources.

I don't believe we could interrupt the change in climate irrespective of our actions because I don't believe we caused it.  But even if I'm wrong and we are responsible it doesn't matter because more than half of the population of this planet will NOT (nor should they) accept living in Quonset huts for all eternity, we achieved what we have by exploiting carbon and have no right to tell others they can't and they will not accept 40% or more of them starving to death if we stop using carbon and try to force them to as well.  It is literally proof that you're a genocidal maniac worse than Hitler, Stalin and Pol Pot combined to insist or permit a course of action to take place that will lead to that outcome.  We can't subsidize their lifestyle and replace what would otherwise be their carbon emissions as there are too many of them, too few of us and to make it worse we have squandered our economic surplus over the last 50+ years by giving it away to people who literally blew it on booze, lottery tickets, Doritos, screwing and now bong hits rather than using it to further scientific and other discoveries.  As just one example we could have undertaken thorium fission using coal as a base stock for our domestic energy needs -- we knew how in the 1960s -- and by now we'd be 100% energy independent and have reduced (but not eliminated) our carbon emissions at the same time.

We both cannot turn back the clock and the developed world is not a sufficient percentage of the whole to change the outcome even if we are ultimately proved responsible, never mind that those who currently have almost no carbon footprint will not accept living in relative squalor forever which they would have to willingly accept for said "plan" to succeed.

Those advancing this position in political power know all of this which means they're not doing it to "save the planet."  They are doing it to screw you for their own personal profit and possibly even with the intent of starving to death 2 billion or more humans on purpose.  Whether they're doing that with intent or merely malicious indifference is irrelevant to what should be done to them.  Some people such as Greta are almost-certainly not possessed of sufficient intellectual firepower to recognize this but those driving the agenda, including Kerry, Gore, leaders of many other nations, the entire WEF and others, certainly do possess said intellectual firepower and in a sane world they'd all be facing immediate public execution for trying it because there is no possible way to do what they intend without slaughtering people at a level of scale wildly beyond ALL historical genocides put together, most of them by literal starvation.

Whether they desire to kill those they consider "lesser" or simply do not care how many of them they kill provided they get richer and steal from you is immaterial.  Either way the just punishment for such acts is the same.

These are all facts and there's no argument to be made against any of them simply because the numbers of people in nations at varying stages of economic and technological development are what they are and they will cancel by 400% or more all of our carbon emission reductions even if we were to cut them to zero unless we literally slaughter a quarter or more of the population of the planet by means of starvation -- and that is likely a CONSERVATIVE estimate.

Finally, to the point I started with, social media along with Musk personally, by permitting this to be advanced on his "platform" (never mind Zuckerpig and the others) is not only proving the point he's also proving he's one of the people who doesn't give a wet crap about any of it so long as he makes money and if he can get a bunch of sycophants to run their mouths in support of it so much the better.

Perhaps some of those fine folks in Sub-Saharan Africa should acquire a nuclear weapon or two and use it on the people who are, quite-clearly, either are trying to kill them or don't' care if they kill them in pursuit of profit.  And if you think that's tin-foil crack-potted tin-foil hat bullshit may I refer you to the last three years and a wee little virus that was used as an excuse to literally rain billions of dollars of profit on certain chosen people and companies while your Grandmother was told to go home and eat chicken soup until she choked to death.

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2023-08-30 07:00 by Karl Denninger
in Editorial , 273 references
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Trade, autarky .vs. interdependence.

You might not like the facts, but you can't change them.  Through history, and not just recent history either, trade has been a cudgel when pursued with anyone who isn't of reasonably-equal stature in terms of technology, laws and culture.

Examples?  How many would you like?

The opium wars anyone?  China lost the first one and wound up having to cede Hong Kong to the British.  That started as trade (Britain was rather into tea, you see, as we know from our colonial days) but Britain rather quickly discovered that China didn't want much of what they could export.  India had plenty of both cotton and opium, so a three way trade arrangement was brokered ("East India Tea Company" was not just a thing in the Pirates of The Caribbean movies, you see.)

This rapidly turned into dependence as you might expect with a component being opium.  China began to run a huge financial trade deficit and attempted to ban opium, which led to smuggling, and then they cracked down on that.  Britain's response was to send warships.  How nice of them and, by the way, about that trope that "if we trade with them it will deter war" -- how did that turn out?  Oh by the way, the Opium Wars also included western nations (Britain and France, along with the US and believe it or not Russia) tampering with Chinese political process.  Why where have we seen that in the last 50 years when "trade" becomes "not enough" or someone tries to renegotiate the deal?  A better question would be "where have we not?"

NAFTA.  It was sold to the American people as an act that would lead to Mexican wages and living conditions rising rapidly to near-parity with the United States and Canada; the premise that said rising wages would wildly expand the market for American and Canadian goods, especially expensive ones like cars.  It did no such thing and there was no evidence it ever would.  Was it revoked when it was clear that all it really did was asset-strip good paying jobs out of both nations and send them to Mexico?  No.  And no, the so-called "renegotiation" when Trump was in office didn't fix any of it.  Oh, and about that "trading partner"; should you have "free trade" with an entity that suborns and supports a literal invasion of millions of unskilled foreigners into your nation or would it be smarter to tell them to piss off and post your military on said border with orders to shoot those who attempt said invasion?

How about the entire solar and battery-powered "thing" game?  We have lithium ore in the United States, but we refuse to mine and refine it because there's no reasonably ecologically sound way to do it.  We also don't have much cobalt, but you need it for lithium chemistry batteries.  The DRC has plenty of cobalt and uses slavery, almost-literally in that children are compelled to mine it to get enough food to eat, and of course we're ok with this.  We have entire industries, including the entire "EV car" industry, that is utterly dependent on that.  In other words, to be blunt, we actually enforce slavery "over there" of black kids so we can claim to be virtuous by driving a battery-powered car!  Elon, of course, caring only about money, is perfectly ok with this.

It doesn't end there, however, when it comes to lithium chemistry batteries.  Oh no.  See, we won't put up with the ecological damage to mine and refine it but China doesn't give a crap about either, and thus they mine and refine all they want.  So in addition to slavery our "virtue signaling" actively poisons the earth over in China.  And here you thought you were being "green" driving a Tesla eh?

If that's not bad enough there is no economically sane way to recycle the used batteries either -- unlike the one in your gas-powered car that is easily and economically recycled, and thus that's exactly what happens.  The lead, which is most of what's in there that's dangerous (the acid is easily neutralized) is trivially separable from the rest of the battery and re-refined into a new one, which is much cheaper than digging up more ore and separating out new lead.  Nobody cares about the non-recyclability of lithium cells yet because most of them are still in service.  But batteries always wear out because, well, they're batteries.  Will we ship the dead ones back to poison the earth over in China on top of the poisoning done when the lithium is separated out in huge open-air leach pools, or will we accept the destruction of our own environment.

My, how virtuous you are buying that EV and/or Powerwall in the first place..... NOT!

Think this is limited to lithium?  Nope.  Solar cells require high-quality refined silicon plus a bunch of rare earth metals for doping the junctions, all of which are toxic and, being rare earths, require extremely large amounts of dirt to be mined to get them.  Further, separating those out is neither easy or environmentally-friendly -- which means doing it in a sound manner ecologically is very expensive.  So guess where that happens as a result?  Uh huh.  Would we tolerate all that right here at home in America, at scale?  No, we would not and we would not pay what it costs to do it in an ecologically sound manner either.  So again, if I see solar panels on your roof I know you're an asshole because you are the reason that land was poisoned!  No demand, no supply.  Simple.

Why do the Chinese accept this?  Good question -- I guess they didn't learn all that much about being addicted to opium eh?

Contrast this with autarky, the principle that one must be able to provide for oneself right here at home, in our own land.  With that as a principle nobody does a thing that they can't live with the consequences of in their own nation.  If its unacceptable to poison the earth with lithium mining and disposal, and it is less-damaging to use gasoline or diesel, you will.  By the way -- it is.  Further we have a 500 year supply of coal which can be turned into diesel and gas and there's thorium in it which we don't want to be there as that is the reason burning coal causes lung cancer.  Fortunately being a heavy element we can trivially extracted it from said coal and its fertile, so we can also use it as a nuclear fuel!  Heh, look, a choice that actually works and while it is not entirely environmentally-friendly its far less damaging than the alternative we're pursuing now by hiding the harm somewhere else.

Would we use solar at scale when in the winter months, where the highest electrical demand comes at night when the sun is not shining, they're worthless -- and thus they can't be an all-year reliable energy source?  No.  We would build nuclear, we'd close the fuel cycle back off as originally intended when Rickover was part of the dual-use paradigm for naval propulsion, and we'd exploit thorium as described in my link just up above because the coal can be turned into diesel and gasoline by said process, we get electrical power out of at the same time and we remove and sequester for useful purpose -- making said power -- the part of coal that causes lung cancer when it is burned.

Would some things cost more if we cut this crap out?  Of course.  We wouldn't be able to exploit slave labor so yes, labor would cost more.  But the funds paid for that labor would be in the United States and be spent in the United States, so that's an actual net positive because right now those funds leave the United States never to return!  Would we make different choices when solar and lithium batteries were more expensive?  You bet; many of those choices make no sense if you can't use slaves and poison someone else's land.

Would we be forced to stop the fraudulent "green virtue signaling"?

Yes.

That's good for the planet so what's your problem with it?

Would we have less of a reason to try to infiltrate other governments (such as our wild-eyed tampering at Maidan in Ukraine, done in the open) which has now led to ruinous war?  Yes.  Please explain why not stoking and causing ruinous wars is bad in the comments, if you dare try.

Are we going to do any of the above?

Probably not, but if you run virtue signaling about any of it what you deserve is to have anyone with more than two IQ points to rub together spit in your face because you are both cheering on ecological destruction of the planet and literal slavery so you can wave some green or blue and yellow flag around and every bit of it is a fraud drenched in blood.

By the way, I'm not voting for anyone who won't do this -- any politician who thinks environmental despoilation "over there" is green or that slavery is acceptable no matter where, when undertaken for the profit of us right here in America can blow me if they think I will support them.  They ought to be tried, convicted, drawn and quartered for this crap and I will NOT support it.

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2023-08-28 07:00 by Karl Denninger
in Editorial , 340 references
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The previous article was about tourist areas and how our government basically destroyed summer employment, on purpose, effectively ruining a huge part of the local economy (said funds stay local when paid to people who live in the US) and bring in effective slaves.  Oh yeah, they don't call them that of course.

But if you read that article again you'll recognize that its not so simple as saying "no more H2bs!"  Nope, you have to unwind the entire enterprise that was built around it, including the hot-rack flop shacks for the slaves and then you have to do something about the people who would work those jobs so the funds are meaningful -- which means fixing the college tuition and fee issue.  That means destroying the one trillion dollar student loan farce, gender studies for all despite the fact that there's no market for that other than as a professor of same (thus its hardly worth $20k/year to learn it) and more.

Let's take on a huge part of the medical system: Cancer.

Look what just popped up at the WSJ:

The results were surprising. Expert pathologists agreed with the diagnoses of local doctors only 80% of the time. That means 1 in 5 patients may have been told that they had cancer when they didn’t, that they had a different cancer from the one growing in their bone marrow, or that they were cancer-free when they weren’t.

Wait a second..... one in five?

It gets worse -- another study I saw recently concluded that two thirds of cancer drugs reviewed -- 15 out of 22 -- are factually worthless.  That is, they neither extend life or improve the quality of the person's remaining life.  Yet all of them were approved, weren't they?

Its worse: How much money was stolen from the people in question who were rendered these false diagnoses, and how much more money was stolen via the "recommended" purchase of factually worthless but very expensive drugs?  How do you, on top of that, put a value on the harm done to someone both psychologically when they're told they have a potentially fatal disease they do not have and physically when they are given drugs that are either inappropriate or are factually worthless?  I remind you that there is no such thing as a drug that has no harms associated with it so if you're sold something that is factually worthless but does harm you then you were both robbed and assaulted!

This isn't an "isolated" incident when one diagnosis in five is wrong and the majority -- two thirds -- of the drugs are factually worthless, even if the diagnosis is correct.  In fact this strongly suggests that the majority of the money spent on this area is stolen as it is either based on incorrect diagnosis or a worthless therapy.

What's worse if that if you look at this chart you'll find the top category of spending in the medical system is called "ill-defined conditions."  In other words we don't know what the hell is going on but we'll charge you a crap-ton of money -- in fact, this is the largest category of all even though we can't tell you what's wrong!  Perhaps you can explain to me why this situation should exist -- that is, an insane amount of expenditure without a result?  I know people who have gone through that -- repeatedly -- and not gotten an answer.  If there's no answer how do you justify all this expense and in addition how much harm are you doing to these people when you prescribe this and that for them without knowing what's wrong?  No drug or procedure is entirely safe so by definition a decent percentage of these people are actively screwed by being "treated", and not just out of money -- they get screwed further out of their health besides.

I have frequently raised hell about the billions made prescribing statins as just one example for which, even after all these years, there is no solid scientific evidence that they actually improve lives or prevent death.  Oh they do lower cholesterol without question but when it comes to death, which is the alleged bad (duh!) that it is claimed comes from having too much cholesterol in the blood there is no solid scientific evidence they work; the science simply doesn't support the claim for the most-frequently prescribed drug in the United States!  Roughly one working-age person in five in the United States is on these on a daily basis yet the best case study I've found shows that perhaps they may result in a 10% reduction in all-cause mortality. Note that this is relative risk; the absolute reduction of risk is closer to 1% and that's charitable as there are other studies that state there was no improvement at all or even harm.  Indeed this entire class of drugs is known to increase the risk of Type II diabetes; that's admitted in print by the CDC itself!

Type II diabetes, of course, comes with even more medical spending -- and more drugs.  And, if it progresses (and it will if you continue on the path that leads to it and promotes it) that path includes ever-more-expensive drugs, possible insulin dependence (much more money and now you get to inject yourself never mind all the finger-sticks to monitor glucose levels) eventual neuropathy, possible amputations, blindness, kidney failure and then dialysis and death, and its not a pleasant way to die either.  Meanwhile even more money will be extracted from you.

Chief among the problems in the medical system is trial gaming and fraud.  No trial conducted by a party with a financial interest in finding a positive result can be reasonably trusted because they have every reason to game it.  You could try to control that by imposing criminal penalties for doing so but nobody does in any part of the world and, as we've seen, drug companies get fined all the time for various transgressions yet the behavior has not been deterred.  In addition a drug can be ruled "effective" if its better than taking nothing instead of requiring that it be at least one of more effective, safer or cheaper than the existing alternatives -- an outright fraud formally put into the trial structure by our alleged "regulators."  In many cases so-called "placebo-controlled" trials really aren't; vaccines are a primary contender here but hardly the only offenders in this regard -- it is not uncommon at all in a vaccine trial, for example, to inject the "placebo" arm with everything except the single active ingredient -- including all the excipients and adjuvants.  This means that if those elements cause harm they will not be detected as a negative result since they were given to both groups.

Leaving aside the wildly-extractive nature of modern western medicine, especially in the United States, how do you solve this problem when the system itself has put together mechanisms to get paid for worthless therapies and even incorrect diagnosis that at minimum scare the hell out of the person in question?  The so-called "profession" has failed to correct any of this on its own and in fact the most-prescribed drug in the entire list has little to no evidence that it actually works to improve the quality of life or outcomes for persons who are told to take it.

We are decades into this and zero corrective action has come out of the profession itself or the regulatory and criminal apparatus in our government.

Why?

Because everyone's making a hell of a lot of money, that's why, and if you actually forced people to stop charging people money for worthless or even harmful things, or even (quite-justifiably) treated such events as extortion, intentional infliction of emotional distress, assault or even manslaughter when people die they wouldn't make the money.  Never mind that if looked at objectively setting up a structure that systemically fleeces people out of hundreds of billions a year, never mind scaring the hell out of people under false pretense, should get everyone involved summarily executed.

Contemplate that if the Federal Government had only paid bonuses for success when the pandemic hit Hydroxyurea would have been used in every critical patient within months -- as soon as the North Carolina hospital discovered it worked.  Budesonide would have been used as a front-line attempt in anyone who had breathing problems and lung involvement.  Both are extremely cheap and the former, in particular, on the evidence would have prevented eighty percent of the deaths; who knows how many budesonide would have prevented deteriorating to the point hospitalization was required in the first place.  Both were tried and had apparent positive results within the first few months of the pandemic yet neither was registered as a formal clinical trial.  Dozens of other things would have been tried as well; many would have failed but successes would have spread like wildfire because they were financially rewarded.  Remdesivir would have been shitcanned within weeks as it was clear it didn't work.  That wasn't done, intentionally, and exactly nobody in the medical establishment argued for or even demanded it. I pointed this out repeatedly and nobody cared.  Not on the left or the right.  Not in Congress (even among the so-called "doctors" like Sir Dickhead Rand Paul) nor either of the two Presidents.  Nor did one single Governor do so, red state or blue; every single one of them instead got on their knees and gave blowjobs to the pharmaceutical whores, hospital administrators and TikTok dancing nurses.  Oh, by the way, said hospitals according to Axios and in direct contradiction to the American Hospital Association's repeated cries of poverty, posted record operating margins during the pandemic despite handing out toe tags like boarding passes at an airport.

Now tell me how you're going to fix this if you expect me to vote for you, because this scam is an inherent part of one dollar in five spent in the United States as a whole, one dollar in three spent by the Federal Government and that latter component is in fact the size of the entire federal deficit, so if you put a stop to it and the economic harm it does to people and their ability to produce you'd like have no deficit at all, or a much, much smaller -- and more-easily dealt with -- deficit.

In other words quite-arguably the entire economic mess this nation is in today, and all of the inflation, rests there.

Its THAT bad and during the pandemic killed a huge percentage of the one million who died yet nobody in the political system wants to take it on.

Nobody.

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