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2017-06-26 14:03 by Karl Denninger
in Technology , 293 references
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If you do and you have not verified that your vendor has patched this through a BIOS microcode update (you would have had to load said update) go into the BIOS and turn off hyperthreading immediately.

Yes, this will cost you some performance.

If you don't you are running a small but real risk of likely random but possibly malicious data corruption/destruction.

The problem will only occur under certain heavy-load situations but you cannot predict those and if you get bit by it the results are undefined -- which means possible random data destruction that then gets written to your disk(s).

I'm unaware of a realistic means of using this to break into your machine but crafting a malicious executable that attempts to run the instructions that cause the problem in a tight loop would not be all that difficult and the possible consequences include a system crash or, much worse, silent corruption of data that winds up being written back to disk.

This is not a joke folks -- it's a serious microcode bug, arguably far more serious than the infamous Pentium "floating point" problem in that it can impact anyone, at any time, in any workload whenever the CPU gets busy.  In addition since it cannot be accurately predicted or mitigated by user code (e.g. an operating system, etc) there is no fix other than to shut off the hyperthreading capability until your system vendor provides a microcode fix.

You've been warned.

BTW, these are the latest two revisions of Intel chips so if you have a new(ish) machine you are probably at risk.

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2017-06-26 09:39 by Karl Denninger
in Corruption , 451 references
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You'll have to look to find it, and the articles are behind paywalls.

They're not being trumpeted all over financial media -- but they should be.

What article?  That Unilever is threatening to pull online ad campaigns stating that they believe half or more of the "clicks" are fraud. It was in the UK media -- quietly -- this weekend.

In other words, robots click them -- not humans, who actually watch the ads.

This story ought to be front-page news.  It's not, and the financial media will not cover it the way it should.

Here's why it should be:

1. This is not new.  These issues have been known and talked about for more than a year.  It was news last year, and then it quietly "went away."  Gee, you don't think Zuckerpig laid into the financial media, do you?  Naw, nobody would ever to do that when if their little ad game blew up in their face the stock price of Facepig would be zero.  Consider that if half of the online advertising revenue is false then the actual value of said platforms is nil since their cost of operation exceeds the true human-generated revenue.  That makes all of these so-called "businesses" worthless.

2. Nobody has an incentive on a platform like Facebook, where posters do not get a cut of the revenue, to stick an army of robots out there and click the ads, except for Facebook itself.  This is decidedly not true for Google's "Adsense" platform of course, or Youtubes, or whoever else where publishers get a piece of pie.  There, if your traffic is high enough, there's an economic incentive to cheat.  For someone like me it's not because the amount of money involved is too small, but for someone with a site that's garnering tens or hundreds of thousands a month in payouts you can easily cover the cost of a robot or three (hundred) to generate some false traffic.

The problem of course is that there aren't that many people with a big enough take to be worth employing robots, other than those who deliberately set up sites to do this and have no organic traffic at all.  Those people ought to be easily identified and shut down within days, making such a strategy worthless since you won't get paid, if the sites in question cared to do so.

The problem is that all the incentives run the wrong way for the so-called "online advertising industry", unless they get caught and all of their businesses are destroyed.  Otherwise the incentive is to cheat or at least look the other way on purpose while others cheat especially if, as is being alleged and has been alleged for over a year the "cheats" are half or more of all of the clicks.

In that case the incentive to cheat is not just clear it's an imperative because without the "false" clicks none of these firms have a viable business at all, except for possibly Google, and even Google is selling at 3x any sort of rational valuation.

The others, if there's any truth to this, are literal zeros.

ALL OF THEM.

Ask your friends -- how many "real" ads do they view and click on any of these sites?  Can you find one person among your friends who actually does so and finds value in these ads?  Tell me folks -- isn't it true that essentially all of the ads you see are for things you already bought and thus don't need again?

"Machine learning" my ass.

You know what the truth is, but by God the "industry" and media will do their level damndest best to hide it, especially given the bubble valuations of everyone in this "business."

Before you say "oh, you can't be right about this; it would never go on that long" let me remind you about the late 1990s.  In 1997 multiple "DSL" providers were leasing "dry loops" from the telcos, putting in DSLAMs, and pulling backhauls from there to enable DSL to companies and homes.  Every single one of them wanted to "partner" with us, of course, with my company getting a cut of the revenue and providing the Internet service.  They all came in and made their pitches and I threw every one of them out after examining the numbers.  Why?  Because every single one of them had no prayer in Hell of ever making a profit and when they blew up it was going to blow back on my company since the customer would associate their loss of service with us, not them.  Every one of them, a few years later, blew up.  Every. Single. One.  It was instantly obvious on any sort of analysis of their businesses and cash flow that it was impossible for them to make a profit.  Yet not one was called out in the financial media or anywhere else and all were "strong buys" in the stock market.

And gee, look at the "online ad revenue based" stocks this morning -- all up, as is the market.  Isn't that fancy..... I wonder how they'd be doing this morning if CentralNevertruthBullCrap was to run a quick pencil-and-whiteboard analysis on the fact that if you cancel half the ad revenue all these so-called "ad revenue driven businesses" have negative operating cash flow and thus are zeros?

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2017-06-26 07:00 by Karl Denninger
in Editorial , 238 references
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C'mon Marc, cut the crap.

Over the past decade, health care delivery has deteriorated – under the watchful eye of insurers and legislators – to the point where it can no longer be managed effectively or efficiently without enormous staffs who spend their days negotiating on behalf of patients while working for doctors and hospitals. Insurance premiums have skyrocketed while reimbursements to doctors have decreased.

Well, gee, let's think about this for a minute.

Who has cheered this on and allowed it?

Doctors.

Who has told people for decades to eat less saturated fat, which means to obtain caloric balance you must eat more carbs?  That would be doctors.  And what did medical science know 30 years ago, 20 years ago, 10 years ago and in fact every farmer has known it for ages?  Carbs (especially grains) make that which eats them fat.

What comes with being fat?  More medical expense.

Diabetes.  Joint damage.  All sorts of other medical problems (back issues, hip replacements, heart attacks, etc.)

What does a farmer feed a cow -- or a pig -- to fatten it up?  Grains, in other words carbohydrates, which is exactly what all those doctors told people to eat.

How about nearly 1 in 4 Medicaid recipients being on opiates?  Those can't be bought over the counter, so who wrote the prescriptions?  Doctors.

Remember, though health insurance is falsely promoted and sold to you as though it is actual health care, it still relies on a business model which makes a greater profit by turning down your requests rather than approving them. I’m reminded of Franz Kafka’s The Castle, where paper pushing bureaucrats sit at desks in endless offices and spent their time keeping you from ever getting to your goal (The Castle) rather than enabling your passage there.

And where is your physician in all of this? These days you can probably find her squinting at a computer screen as she robotically documents your visit.

Voluntarily, you forgot to add.

What prevents a doctor from refusing to do that and instead telling the customer exactly what he or she will charge for the 5 minutes of time you get in the "average physical" with same, negotiating that in cash?  Do you really think it would be unaffordable -- if you fired all the paper pushers and then wanted to make, oh, what -- $200/hour?  Let's see, 5 minutes per patient and 5 more to "recover" from the incredible stress of seeing each one and you'd have to charge..... $33.33 each.

Unaffordable eh?  I think not.  Oh, and you could actually give everyone 10 minutes that way, if your incredibly-fragile psyche could handle going from one room to the next without a (smoke?) break.

Don’t get me wrong, we doctors continue to do our best to commit to the Hippocratic Oath – “Do no Harm” – as well as the more evocative Oath of Maimonides, the 12th century physician, philosopher and Torah scholar.

You're lying and so are the rest of your ilk.

You enable the sort of nonsense that goes on today.  You have an office full of paper pushers by choice, not force.  You've been willing and intentional co-conspirators in driving up the cost of medical care by 10 times what it should be here in the United States.  You prescribe opiods at a rate that kills 20,000 people a year through "accidental" overdoses, virtually all of which are traceable to one of your prescription pads.  You kill over 250,000 more people in the United States every year via "medical errors", the third leading cause of death in the country, exceeded only by heart disease (much of which you caused through your "recommendations" as well!) and cancer.

I certainly understand why you want to defect attention from this, since nearly 300,000 dead bodies properly charged to your so-called "profession" wouldn't look so good.  When you add in the human misery and disease that has come from the explosion of obesity and diabetes much of which is directly traceable to the  "recommendations" your profession makes along with the pill-pushing (statins, for example, which among otherwise-healthy people with elevated cholesterol are now known to double the risk of diabetes without any cardiac benefit) the true toll of the segment called "doctor" in our economy would rival that of Pol Pot or that old (and very dead) chap Adolf.  Whether you kill with a gun, knife, shovel or pill bottle dead is still dead and the financial asset-stripping the medical profession engages in today arguably exceeds that of the Nazis!

When this outrage detonates our nations finances (it's already starting and is going to get a lot worse) one has to wonder whether OpEds like this will be sufficient to keep the public from figuring out not only the toll in lives but in money as well.  It's not like the data isn't out there for anyone who cares to look.

We got outraged about 10,000 alcohol-related car crash deaths and made DUI a serious matter.

Maybe we should consider what we ought to do about a "profession" that through negligence and knowing bad advice kills 300,000 people a year -- every year -- or 30 times as many Americans, never mind ripping them off to the tune of over $3 trillion annually at the same time.

That's a debate you'd rather we not have, isn't it Marc?

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2017-06-25 07:00 by Karl Denninger
in Technology , 366 references
[Comments enabled]  

What won't stop?

Out-of-scope data collection, correlation and sales.

In other words forced divulging of data from you, or about you, for other than the purpose you reasonably both expected and agreed to.

Let's take Android.  You turn on maps, which is a Google-provided program to get you from "X" to "Y".  That Google would use your location during that time to provide you not only that service but also possibly ads related to where you are is reasonably-foreseeable and something that makes sense you'd agree to in order to get the requested service.

But now let's look at the other side.  You have a weather application on your phone.  That application has ads.  The ads are context sensitive so (for example) knowing that you're near a sub shop it might show you an ad for that.  Fine, thus far.

But not so fine when Google pops up a prompt to review that sub shop should you set foot inside when you didn't use Maps, or any other Google software that could have reasonably known that.

Oh, and you can't turn that off either -- that is, you're forced to allow one company to have access in order for anyone else to.  Google ensures this by not allowing you to "gate" applications so they only have access an can run when in the foreground (e.g. visible on the screen) -- but they sure will gate their Youtube app so you can't listen to the audio associated with a video being played unless you are physically watching it (and thus can see their ads!)

Now that particular example (which is really common) is just annoying, never mind costing you money (since the traffic to do that on the network you pay for yet you get nothing in return.)

But what happens when that data, which Google and dozens of other firms now have, is sold to a data broker who in turn uses it to set a risk profile for your health insurance and thus what you pay for it?

What about when it goes into your car insurance or homeowner's insurance pricing?

Or, that you did not go past a Best Buy means that Amazon charges you a higher price for something that you could have bought at Best Buy -- and might have, had you gone by there.

Think all of this is theoretical?

It's not.

It's happening.  All of it.  Right now, in real time.

And utterly none of that is something you reasonably expected to happen when you "gave consent" nor would you likely give consent if you knew in advance.

I'll give you an example.  My Android phone is idle right now.  I deliberately closed all of the apps, and force-closed everything in the app drawer.  Of course some of them immediately started back up.  I also blocked a lot of Google's stuff.

Nonetheless, look at this which is a tiny snippet of what goes on all the damn time:

09:32:34.368602 IP D5.Denninger.Net.47430 > a104-92-14-243.deploy.static.akamaitechnologies.com.https: Flags [P.], seq 1:518, ack 1, win 343, options [nop,nop,TS val 175172 ecr 359567624], length 517
09:32:34.395562 IP a104-92-14-243.deploy.static.akamaitechnologies.com.https > D5.Denninger.Net.47430: Flags [S.], seq 3364819207, ack 4270951170, win 28960, options [mss 1460,sackOK,TS val 359567660 ecr 175168,nop,wscale 5], length 0
09:32:34.400981 IP a104-92-14-243.deploy.static.akamaitechnologies.com.https > D5.Denninger.Net.47430: Flags [.], ack 518, win 939, options [nop,nop,TS val 359567665 ecr 175172], length 0
09:32:34.401909 IP a104-92-14-243.deploy.static.akamaitechnologies.com.https > D5.Denninger.Net.47430: Flags [P.], seq 1:153, ack 518, win 939, options [nop,nop,TS val 359567666 ecr 175172], length 152
09:32:34.402726 IP D5.Denninger.Net.47430 > a104-92-14-243.deploy.static.akamaitechnologies.com.https: Flags [.], ack 1, win 343, options [nop,nop,TS val 175175 ecr 359567624], length 0
09:32:34.405302 IP D5.Denninger.Net.47430 > a104-92-14-243.deploy.static.akamaitechnologies.com.https: Flags [.], ack 153, win 343, options [nop,nop,TS val 175175 ecr 359567666], length 0
09:32:34.407235 IP D5.Denninger.Net.47430 > a104-92-14-243.deploy.static.akamaitechnologies.com.https: Flags [P.], seq 518:569, ack 153, win 343, options [nop,nop,TS val 175176 ecr 359567666], length 51

The traffic out of the WiFi interface (if it's on) is continuous and it's all encrypted.  I have no way to know what the **** is being sent or who the actual target is; being encrypted I can't see what is in the data payloads.  Akamai is a common "cloud" data aggregation and delivery system but the point remains -- what's being sent, to whom, and by what?  I have no way to know and no way, other than shutting off both cellular and WiFi, to stop it.

Then there's "markmonitor" -- which is the target of some of the traffic on le100.net.  When did I consent to my device sending something encrypted to them?  Their claimed "business model" is "brand protection."  What are they snooping for and in which app did that get into my device?  This one I have been able to track down -- Google's apps are sending to them.  Why is Google snooping around in my device and what are they sending to a "brand protection" company?

10:08:34.540999 IP6 2600:8807:8600:ea1:c978:9379:2f6c:c861.41337 > atl14s78-in-x0a.1e100.net.https: Flags [.], ack 1, win 395, options [nop,nop,TS val 345828 ecr 3390397241], length 0

There are dozens -- if not hundreds -- of others.  Some are from apps, but that belies the problem as well: Is not Google responsible for that which is in their app store?  Is not Apple responsible for that which is in theirs?  They create the "ecosystem", they profit from the "ecosystem" they should be responsible for what the apps in said ecosystem do.

Some of the traffic is identifiable as legitimate and expected.  Transmissions going to and from "googleusercontent", for example, or the IPSEC communications necessary for WiFi calling to work.  If I actually use an app then obviously it may have to go get something from the network and that's legitimate too.

But this traffic is all happening on a device that is sitting idle and yet it is continually collecting and exchanging data with a lot of "someones" unknown and unnamed, for unknown purposes.

What's worse is that all of these companies -- Facebook, Google, Apple, Snap, etc -- do this sort of thing and yet claim that they "deidentify" you.  This is nonsense; anyone with more than a few bits of these data pieces from multiple sources can with a very high degree of certainty attach your name to said "anonymous" advertising numbers, and poof -- you are known with certainty and forever, personally.

Oh, and incidentally it's just a matter of time before some nefarious jihadi type group buys up and correlates some of this data and then uses it to target people they want to kill by group.  It would be utterly trivial, for example, to identify active-duty military personnel in this fashion -- or cops, firefighters, etc.

How do we know they haven't already done this and are simply deciding when to use said data?

We don't, but it's incredibly naive to believe they haven't thought of it or won't do it.  They both have and will, and when it happens it will be our fault for allowing this crap to go on for as long as it has.  It will be our willful and intentional blindness to ridiculous exploitation and abuse served up on the American population daily that will be directly responsible for these deaths, and they will number in the thousands "all at once", making 9/11 look like a Girl Scout convention.

Let me point out once again that I did not consent to some unknown thing sending data on me all the time on a literal second-by-second basis -- and not just once, but dozens of times which nearly all appear to be wildly "out of scope" to what I did consent to.

Not only does all of this trash my battery and cost me money it also costs me anything that might be considered "privacy" too, and there is no way for me to know what that data is, who it's being sent to or why.

There are a number of relatively simple mandates that could take care of a big part of this problem.  Not all of it -- but a large part of it.  Specifically, the law could require that:

  • "Bundling" of application permissions is barred as a matter of law.  In other words it is explicitly prohibited for a manufacturer of an operating system, phone or other device to "whitelist" their apps and force you to take them and their demands to be able to see and transmit data as a group.  The impact of this today is that it is functionally impossible for me to have a weather application able to "see" the GPS or network location data (to know where I am) without Google's apps also being able to see the same thing.

  • Permissions must be able to be set separately for "with focus" and "in background", defined as when not in focus on a granular, per-application basis. Objecting to a mapping application being able to see your location while you're actively looking at it is stupid -- obviously, it can't work without that capability.  The same capability when the app is not visible is another matter, and what's worse is apps that stick pieces of themselves in the background and run without your knowledge, often at startup and on a permanent, persistent basis.  The current "model" of permissions where you can "deny" location, for example, to a mapping program is one that Google (and Apple) knows is worthless.  Denying location to a map application makes it worth nothing, of course, but denying it location when not in the foreground would make it impossible for it to grab your location when not being actively used and send it to "whoever."

  • Denying the ability of an application to run in the background must be one of the supplied permissions.  Maybe you wish to let Facebook run in the background, and perhaps you do not.  Some things (like a message app) might require that ability in order to be useful but a whole host of apps are perfectly useful without this ability and yet they frequently register and use background components.  All of the benefit of that is for the app developer (and whoever he sells data to) and none of that benefit is for you.  The inability to prevent this is outrageous.

  • Permissions must include access to the network.  If an app cannot obtain location information, cannot scan data on the device and cannot transmit or receive information when it is not in the foreground then a huge amount of the current data mining becomes instantly impossible.

  • Users must be able to change (1) the resolvers used for DNS lookups and (2) firewall and host mapping tables.  My device, my decision on what it can talk to and under what conditions.  Right now both Google and Apple deny access to these parts of the system although both are present.  Both Linux and the base IOS kernel have packet filtering available and both also trivially use a file called "resolv.conf" to determine where name resolution takes place.  These must be under user control so that I can, for example, block all traffic to and from one of those above-identified places should I choose to do so.  This is my piece of hardware, I own it and I have the right to control how it operates.  Period.

  • System services (e.g. Google's internal "play" services, etc) must not be able to circumvent these constraints.  Right now they both can and do.  The background "services" (those things that run "headless") must inherit the permission of the requesting application or program.  In other words Google's "Play Services" may not obtain your location unless the requesting caller has permission to obtain it in the current context (e.g. background or foreground) nor may it on its own collect and transmit said data independently.

  • App developers, including device vendors, must be compelled to disclose what they collect and why they collect it before you consent to loading such an application or, in the case of a pre-loaded app, before or at first use but before any collection and transmission occurs.  They must be barred under criminal and civil penalty, from sale of such data "out of scope" to anyone and any sort of "blanket permission" must be barred. In other words if you collect data "to provide better advertising" to me then you can't sell it to anyone who does not have as the sole and only purpose of its use providing said better advertising.  If you, for example, sell it to someone who is using as part of producing a "Credit risk score" you get shut down, your executives go to prison and you're financially ruined.  The use of such language as "or any other legitimate business purpose" must be explicitly unlawful.

  • This must be applied to all consumer devices, not just phones.  If your television is running an app platform (all the new ones are) this must be applied there too, with the same granularity.  Your "smart speaker"?  Same.  Refrigerator?  Same.  Washing machine?  Same.  Cellphones are just the most-obvious and pervasive example of this problem so far, but are far from the only one.  As another example I have already had to block a crazy number of IP addresses and ports from being able to be hit from a couple of webcams I have here.  They're nice and inexpensive but by default try to send a hell of a lot of data to god-knows-who for god-knows-why.  Good thing I control the device between them and the Internet and thus can interdict and stop all of that traffic, right?  You can't do it with a phone because (1) it has WiFi in it and while you control your home WiFi you don't control it anywhere else and (2) you don't control any of the cellular infrastructure.  Thus, the capacity for user control and interdiction for a cellphone must be at the device level (the above bullet point.)

  • These changes must be retroactive and a duty to destroy all existing data collected and stored without said consent must be imposed.  None of what has gone on so far has been legitimate or with consent.  The only difference between******and sex is consent folks.

If these changes are not made now then these firms -- including all the big ones -- need to be shut down and criminally prosecuted right here, right now.

All of them, without exception.

Why?  Because all of them are grabbing data from you with no real consent as to what they're taking and the "big data" paradigm today means that they are using it beyond the scope of anything you did -- or could have -- reasonably consented to and understood.

If we don't demand and enforce this we will wake up one morning to find that a large swath of people have been targeted using these "technologies" and killed, or worse it will be used to map critical infrastructure and movement of people related to same, resulting in the death of millions all at once.

You've been fairly warned.

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2017-06-24 11:32 by Karl Denninger
in Editorial , 425 references
[Comments enabled]  

There's a relatively-common view among certain people, exposed in public by a person who recently registered on my system, claimed to be a retired MD, and promptly got banned.

He was commenting on my 100 Million Dead article -- where I laid out the utter impossibility of what the so-called "health system" has been doing on a fiscal basis for the last 30+ years, and what it proposes to continue to do backed by the people in Congress and the President -- screw Americans to the wall with an ever-increasing piece of the total economic picture.

Why did he get banned?  It started here:

I'm a retired MD and can tell you the current system is a criminal enterprise.

In other words he admits that the current system is a criminal enterprise to which he was a part.

It gets better (as if self-stating that his own profession is a criminal enterprise isn't enough), and that got him banned:

Tickerguy your timeline on the meltdown is not clear. Why not health care become 30-40% of the economy. We have squandered money on a far worse "noble lie"ie The Cold War.
Why not the Fed take their balance sheet to $20 trillion. I can see the farse going longer than you imagine. I realize we may need to decide if titanium is going into joint replacement or weapon systems but it seems the charade may be far from over.

Thus emerged the fabled "MMT" nonsense, which is propounded upon by people who have advanced degrees but either failed middle-school math (where you learned exponents) or, much worse, they're intentional peddlers of a fraud just as is anyone running a ponzi scheme.

You see, it's easy to print money, especially when you can do it with a mouse-click.

But you can't print value, and since "money" is simply a divisor when you print money you devalue all existing stock of same at the exactly moment you do so by the exact percentage you emit.

That's arithmetic, and arithmetic is, like all physical laws, not subject to suggestion.

You see, the "justification" he tried to run is that despite admitting it's a criminal enterprise he then wants another criminal enterprise (fraud) to cover it up -- and what's worse he thinks it will work.

Well, no.  It won't.

And the disaster is here, in your face, now.

I know, I know, you don't believe my numbers.  Many of you don't believe the MTS either -- the canonical statement of the US Treasury, released monthly, that tells you exactly what is taken in and spent, where, and when.  You can't really argue with the MTS, so instead politicians and people on the street alike stick their fingers in their ears and scream "na na na na na na na na" when you bring it up, exactly as does a 2-year old being told it is bedtime.

I understand that people look at me -- just a guy who ran a multi-million dollar corporation and thus saw all sides of the balance sheet as I had to write the checks, along with matching them with my expectations from my original business plan, as "not credible."  That's ok -- I don't have a bunch of letters after my name for what I believe are perfectly good reasons and many of them have names matching those running these claims in the media on "MMT" and its derivatives right here and now, or even worse, are sitting in places like the Eccles Building in Washington DC.

But then you have an article like this, published by Bloomberg:

Take a good stare at that folks.

If you just retired at 65 your medical expense is projected to be $280,000.

If you're 55 right now and a male (you die earlier) your expected health care costs from 65 to death total a half million dollars.

If you're 45 it's nearly $800 large.

If you're female it's far worse, since women live longer.  About 2-3 years longer, to be exact.  If you're female the total is anywhere from 30-42% higher.

Are you understanding the problem of escalation -- that is, exponents -- here?  10 years previous that total was about $150k.  10 years prior to that -- if you retired in 1997 - it was under $75,000 total, or about $3,750 a year.  That many people could pay but right now most of those people are in the process of dying, and in another 5-10 years they will all be dead.

This article was written to scare people into the stock market, among other things.  I'm sure of it.  But what it ought to do is have the exact opposite effect: It should result in a revolt, right here, right now, today.

There is not one person in ten who can pay the amount of money demanded today, say much less of those who will retire 10 or 20 years from now.  As a single person you can easily eat quite well on $300 a month, or $3,600 a year.  A couple can do so on about 50% more; it's simply how the economics of scale work when it comes to food at home.  Yes, there's inflation in food, but over 20 years @ the Fed's 2% "target" it will add about 50% to those costs before you die.

We can therefore simply extrapolate (and skip the spreadsheet or 20 calculator operations, adding them up.)  The man in this instance will consume approximately $100,000 in food over that retirement lifetime.

Bloomberg projects that he will consume anywhere from roughly three times that much (retiring today) to eight times as much if he's 45 today.

If you're in the 0.1%, you can pay this.

If you're not, you can't.

Period.

You can't pay that amount of money over the next 20 years if you retire today and you sure as hell can't pay it if you are 55 or 45.  While you might be able to amass that amount in retirement funds if you spend it on health care you'll have nothing for food and shelter -- and will be in the street, starving to death.

That's a fact for 95% or more of the population. It's math and the simple reality that most people do not make enough to cover that bill.  They don't now and they never will; that amount of money is so wildly beyond the median earnings power less expenses (that is, what someone can save and invest) that fully 9 out of 10 -- or more -- Americans cannot pay it.

It's IMPOSSIBLE.

It also can't be shifted to the "taxpayer"; if you attempt to do so the federal government instantly collapses.

Illinois is already in the throes of this. Michigan and their cops are not far behind. Virtually all states will be in this situation 10 years from now.

This, more than anything else, is why I came to the conclusion more than five years ago that I had to get rid of the extra weight I was carrying and keep it off.  It wasn't a choice -- yes, I have some money but even with my level of wealth this sort of escalation threatened to screw me and if there was a catastrophic problem on top of it even in my personal situation I'd be in the street.

Look folks, you have one thing you must do right now, and that is get any metabolic disease issues solved on a permanent basis, right here, right now, today.  This means you cannot be fat.

This is not a "fat shaming" thing it's a matter of literal economic and physical suicide if you don't do it today.

If you are overweight or obese today then there is exactly one means that has solid scientific evidence that supports it working on a permanent basis (yo-yo dieting does you no good and might hurt you even more than just remaining fat): Get the damn carbs out of what you eat.  Simply put you not only have to get rid of the extra weight you must keep it off indefinitely.

The above, however, ought to sink into everyone who is a politician, a law enforcement agency that is currently ignoring the rampant violations of both consumer protection and federal anti-trust law, a doctor or surgeon who currently willingly participates in these schemes, a hospital administrator who knowingly and willingly is a part of it, a pharmaceutical business employee who is part of the scheme to charge people in the US 5, 10 or 100x what others in the rest of the world pay for the same thing and more.

You are all responsible for this.  You are either responsible for causing this situation or refusing to act under 100+ year old law to put a stop to it.

Every one of you.

We could start with this bill -- a one-sentence bill -- and then go from there to the link at the bottom of that page.  It's obscene that such a one-sentence bill hasn't been introduced and passed years, even a decade or more ago.

We can still do it now, and we must, because the alternative is going to destroy this nation.  That's not speculation it's a certainty -- whether you wish to admit it or not.

When, not if, there are millions of older people who cannot pay these amounts the entire group of the above people are going to have a very large problem.

If you're lucky that problem comes at the ballot box and in the pew on Sunday, when you get spat on.  It comes when your car breaks down and the tow truck driver demands $10,000 -- 100x more than he demands of someone who isn't in these fields just as you ****ed his father who needed medical care out of 100x as much money as he should have paid.  It comes when there's a hurricane or tornado, your roof gets damaged, and the roofer looks at you and says you go last because you screwed his mother out of 50x what she should have paid for a drug -- and then it rains in your house for the next six months and destroys everything in it.  It comes with indictments, asset stripping and even prison sentences for virtually everyone in the medical and pharmaceutical industry.  And yes, even the latter is if you're lucky.

See, if you're unlucky then some small percentage of those tens of millions of older people decide they can't get justice at the ballot box or by mere social shaming.  You might even pass some more laws to call such shaming "discrimination", perhaps.  These older people recognize they're going to die soon enough anyway, and decide that they're going to live to the postulate that you can only execute a man once, and test the premise that there is in fact no Hell.

That small percentage, a very small percentage of the people who you have ****ed relentlessly for decades, and who you have all laughed at for the last 30 years and continue to laugh at, will decide to go hunting.

For trophy, not food.

That's the end of the civil society folks, and it will happen if this horsecrap medical-system wide isn't stopped now.

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