Mr. President, Do Anatomically Impossible Things
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2019-01-12 07:00 by Karl Denninger
in Education , 255 references Ignore this thread
Mr. President, Do Anatomically Impossible Things
[Comments enabled]

This is utterly outrageous.

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - President Donald Trump said on Friday he is planning changes including a possible pathway to U.S. citizenship to foreigners holding H-1B visas, issued temporarily to highly educated immigrants who work in specialty occupations such as technology or medicine.

There goes what is left of the US middle class and the complete destruction of the value of college education.

College has traditionally been about two things: Teaching you how to think critically and providing very specific, career-oriented training.

The former has quite a bit of value -- provided it actually gets imparted to you.  Colleges have destroyed that over the previous 30 or 40 years; fields like "women's studies" and similar make a flat-out mockery of the precept of critical thinking, as has "affirmative action" which inevitably leads to taking the critical part out of the game because those who are "less advantaged" cannot possibly compete at anything approaching an appropriate level, and thus aren't required to.

But our college systems have ramped in cost to an insane degree as well, destroying the value equation for most students.  When I was of that age you could spin pizzas or flip burgers and not only pay for college pay for all your living expenses too.  It wasn't easy but it was possible.  Today it is flat-out not possible to work a part-time job and go to school.

Therefore the only options for most young people are either to have their parents cover it or to go into massive amounts of debt.  Very few parents have a hundred large or more laying around and further, the marginal value of that "education" is questionable at best unless you are interested in one of a few fields, so they'd be nuts to pay for it.  To say "yes" would be to coddle narcissism to an extraordinary degree, much like the so-called "parent" who buys his or her teen driver a brand-new $50,000 BMW and then is shocked when they wreck it.

The problem with H1b visas is that virtually all of those who come into the country using them are not burdened with that debt and further, they come from nations where their expectations and cost of living are a tiny fraction of ours.

The computer programmer coming in on an H1b from India, for example, will take a job programming for $30,000 a year.  To him or her that's decent money and they don't mind living six to an apartment.  As a US graduate today with $50,000 in debt you cannot survive on that salary but he can because he got his education with no debt and in many cases via a subsidized system abroad!

The H1b system is supposed to prevent this by insisting that said people are paid the US "prevailing wage or better."  The premise is that no company would intentionally overpay for workers, so they'll only use H1b employees if they can't find very high skilled US citizens who thus get high wages.  Therefore, the story goes, it doesn't harm US workers at all but does help US employers find the people they need.

That claim is a lie.

The requirements are never enforced.  Worse, many of those jobs are in very high cost areas yet the "prevailing wage" doesn't adjust for that, and as a result what appears to be a decent salary isn't.  Tell me how you make it on $60,000 a year in San Jose, CA?  You couldn't do that in the early 1990s and today you'd literally be living under a freeway overpass.

The H1b program has been riven through with fraud for the last 20+ years.  It has laid waste all but the very best in the US STEM fields in terms of actual salaries and advancement.  US "industry" has strongly resisted any reform, such as requiring they pay double the standard prevailing wage.

Such a requirement sounds crazy but it isn't -- if your intent is to use these people only in places where you need extraordinary capability.  In other words if the "average" programmer makes $50,000 a year to require that an H1b holder in that field be paid at least $100,000 would restrict their use to those who are truly extraordinary -- and unavailable in the United States.  Such a change would instantly stop nearly all of the abuse.

Should there be a path to citizenship for such people?  Maybe.  But only after we resolve all of the poaching and salary-deprecating "features" of the current system and see who still is here on one of these visas when they truly are extraordinary, and not simply being used as a means for US firms to drive down wages and trash the US middle class.

Until then the President go **** himself with this proposal, sans lube.

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Flappingeagle
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As a person who works at a university I can tell you that without a doubt cost is very important to us. Putting that aside, what interests me is how we got to this point.

I am thinking that two things are the biggest contributors: country-club mentality, and affirmative action. The country-club mentality is that students often looked for the college with the most fun oriented facilities. If your college had a smaller pool, did not have a rock-climbing wall,..., you lost out on enrollment.

Affirmative action was perverted from giving everyone with ability a chance to hold the hand of everyone that shows up and make sure they graduate. So, not only are people graduating what really are not college material, you have a tremendous amount of hand-holding going on for kids with any and every kind of problem you can imagine. There are therapists, counselors, tutors, comfort dogs, you freaking name it and colleges are spending money on it.

Of course, a lot of this came about thanks to regualations. Between the Feds, the state, and the accrediting bodies, the requirements are endless and growing. It is insane the number of hoops that we have to jump through on a daily basis and the number of hoops only grows. I cannot overstate this problem. Every faculty member now spends hours each week on assessment plans for their class, gathering data, someone has to crunch it and track it over time and then of course, write up a report. It is very easy for a faculty member to spend more time on required items than in the classroom. This is especially true if your college is hiring a lot of temps to keep costs down leaving few tenured/tenure track faculty available to do jobs that need to be done by full-time employees.

Flap

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S&P 500 at 320, DOW at 2200, Gold $300/oz, and Corn $2/bu.
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Bodhi
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Case in point is 2016 when Disney fired 250 IT workers in Orlando and forced them to train their lower paid Indian replacements by holding their severance pay hostage. Business as usual. smiley
Quik49
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It's akin to the medical industry....a lot of administrators or drones doing nothing that actually affect the end result. I have sat in far to many design meetings in both of these worlds where you have both of these types....and money is no object to them. College student services buildings and dormitories that look more like a high end resort. Athletic facilities that you would think were for the NFL, NBA and such...and these are state colleges. The ruse is they get a bit of private money then stick the majority of these projects onto the taxpayers. The very high up administrators want to leave their mark and to me it's not the one we need. Now on the flip side I've sat in those same meetings on the private side and seen exactly the opposite, especially in the k-12 world. To see these "campus planning" types in action is like watching the cash furnace getting filled.

my 2 cents


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Long Vaseline....

Aztrader
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Sounds like the corporate pigs got his ear. They probably are claiming that they can't find qualified people in this country to do the jobs. That may be entirely possible with the way these schools have fried these kids brains and taught them very little. I can't believe in a country with over 300 million people, that they can't find qualified workers.
I completely agree with Karl on how colleges have become more money mills then educational institutions. All this online BS at $500 a credit hour is a complete joke. I know of several people that are going into debt to sit down at their computer and take college classes. No one will hire them because they never learn the communication skills that are necessary with most jobs. They are given top grades no matter how smart or skilled they are. After paying thousands of dollars in tuition, they can easily obtain a degree that is basically worthless. What stops the student from having someone else do their homework or assignments? The whole system is a fraud and billions are being stolen from students in order to keep the school system flush. We have illegals obtaining federally guarantee loans that will never be paid back. How many of these HB1 people were given their degree by the university. I now that ASU here in Arizona hands out millions in scholarships to foreign students while charging Americans $500 a credit hour to******them financially.

I don't know what is on Trumps mind in regards to this, but am sick and tire of these immigrants coming here and imposing their culture in our government. Just look and what happened in Michigan and Minn. The US is in decline and I am afraid that 2020 will be the cliff. Just saw this article on ZH that kind of spins this.
https://www.zerohedge.com/news/2019-01-1....


Click
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Offshoring high-paying jobs and importing massive amounts of foreign labor has, indeed, decimated the job market in America. Walmart, Amazon and other retail giants have crushed mom & pop stores and little-hometown mainstreet establishments. But it's more than just that.

F.A. Hayek predicted back in 1960 in his book "The Constitution of Liberty" that the family farm would be put out of business by larger and more efficient farms. I lived in New York State and one by one all of the family farms went out of business all across the Catskill Mountains. By 1983 I had sold the last of my herd, and my stepdad sold the family farm and retired. Fortunately for me, I had duel skills. So I could either survive as a country boy or a city boy. But I've noticed some really big changes along the way.

Indeed, F.A. Hayek was correct when he predicted larger and more efficient outfits would outcompete smaller and less politically connected ones. And that's what the game has been all about ever since I can remember, i.e., replace the little guy or at least reduce his wages and benefits. "Consolidated Capitalism" is what I call it. And it's much different than free-market capitalism.

More job losses and wage deflation are coming --- and more consolidation.

Driverless cars and trucks shall replace millions of human workers. Robotic assembly lines will totally end human jobs in factories all across the world. Even waiters, barteners and cooks will be out of a job. And that human doctor of yours just might not be so human in as little as twenty years from now.

"The times they are a-changin'" --- Bob Dylan.

Going shopping is also going to be a whole different experience. I remember a time when there were no self-service gas stations anywhere. Now I can't find a full service station anywhere. It'll be the same with shopping. You will check yourself in and check yourself out --- or you'll just get it delivered like you do a pizza. But your delivery boy won't really be a boy or human.

Yeah, that's the way we are headed --- either that or a total collapse and a subsequent Dark Age...




Whitehat
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to add insult to injury a lot of the h-1bs also take part in the welfare system by living with family who somehow qualify for benefits. another stunt is not legally marrying their spouses who do receive welfare as single mothers for themselves and their children since they are legally without a husband/father. this is exactly what happens in the black and Hispanic communities going on for decades where not direct relations also live in the same housing unit as the welfare recipient.

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Bds3151
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Couldn't agree more Karl. In 2010, I was at a major financial firm in the IT department and we were converting single cubicles to fit double the amount of programmer 401b visa holders from India. This was right after the 2008-9 layoffs of programmers (US Citizens). Very bad idea indeed.
Tickerguy
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Yeah **** that **********. I'm tired of the bull**** and the rah-rah crap from the so-called "MAGA" people while Trump ****s hard-working Americans up the ass.

I pray every night for an asteroid strike, and the diameter of said asteroid request to the cosmos keeps going up by the day.

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Winding it down.
Erroldo
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I work in the stem field for one of the biggest semiconductor company around.
I would say 60+% of my immediate team is from India with MOST having H1B unto green card/citizenship and most new hires have this makeup.
I myself is an immigrant and is well compensated based on percentile of tax filings. My is us born and is studing EE but will be competing with a lot from india/orient for enigineering jobs when he graduates. I advice him to get at least an MSEE before going to work as all of the indians we hire has a masters to start. Fortunately, I am in a position to pay for his degree, but a lot of other don't have that luxury and will be saddled with debt.
This latest move as Carl pointed out is just going to make it tougher for these upcoming kids from poorer background to get ahead, EVEN with the means that WAS supposed to provide upward economic mobility as it did for me. I think we are going backwards to a group of super-rich and the rest of poor. No middle class. Just like the environment I ran from 30+ yrs ago.
Mangymutt
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Not to long ago there was an article on Market Ticker about the new law requiring medicinal prices to be posted up front and how the whole thing was a smoke screen. In it Karl wrote about how people will not only continue being stolen from, they will cheer it on as if the state came up with a great innovation. After reading that ticker it struck me Trump WILL get his wall, I will bet money on this, and nothing will actually change except our perception, and(America) will continue to be stolen from and the people will cheer it on like it is great innovation. But we will have that wall, just like we now can see (some) of the medical prices.

American parents have not only cheered their financial loss in the ever increasing cost of degrees that have become more and more worthless, they are actually singing praises to those who are enslaving their children with unplayable debt. H1-b's seem like are next in line (They already are) to take jobs "American's don't want" so even our own sons and daughters with STEM type degrees will lose the advantage of a college education. But hey, Trump is the man, because he got that wall.

H1-b's are able to work cheaper than Americans for the same reason illegals can, because they know in order to move up you need to make sacrifices. Gone are the days when American's could work while getting a degree, so too are the day's Americans had to decide is "This" sacrifices worth it for me? They now get to live the life while in school, but get out of school with 10's of thousands in debt and they expect (STEM or not) to get a job that pay's 50k+.....Well good luck with that. But the kick to the head comes along in Whitehat's above post "to add insult to injury a lot of the h-1bs also take part in the welfare system ".

When this happens the H1-b is making 50k+ per year, it's just you and I are paying for it. Just like when illegals break into our country and our states GIVE them OUR money for getting in. Oh course they can work for minimum wage and still make it. And this has caused many American's to view college as a way to succeed. Not so much anymore, but at least we WILL have a wall
Wa9jml
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One of my former classmates was from South Korea. He came over here on a Fulbright Scholarship to get his PhD. After a while he got lonely, and tried to get his wife over here, too. The State Department flat out refused to give her a visa. One of his professors was a personal friend of then Illinois Senator Adlai Stevenson III, and he got the senator to intercede on behalf of my friend's wife. A State Department bureaucrat tried to intervene, and was stopped by Senator Stevenson. So, my friend's wife got her visa, but they had to leave their son in South Korea as a hostage. Last I heard, my friend was the Political Science Department Chairman in the University of South Korea in Seoul.

Contrast that with what several of my friends encountered when they lived in an apartment complex in a suburb of Indianapolis. First a bunch of young men from India and Pakistan would show up, and rent an apartment. Shortly, they were joined by young women who became pregnant almost instantly. The men were H1b visa holders working at a local office of Sallie Mae, the student loan organization. Then, they all relocated to a low income housing project in the area, and proceeded to bring as many relatives as they could over here through chain migration.

Trump was largely elected to end this immigration fraud, but he has apparently forgotten that. I fully expect him to cave on his Wall, too. Even if he declares a state of emergency to build it, that will be immediately challenged in the 9th federal circuit. He has truly been a great disappointment!
Mangymutt
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FlappingEagle - "Affirmative action was perverted from giving everyone with ability a chance to hold the hand of everyone that shows up and make sure they graduate." Yup the whole concept of what actual affirmative action should be about has not only moved the bar to the bottom rung, they actually threw the damn bar away. Why set standards when people will pay for the product anyway?

Not everyone with athletic ability has been given the opportunity to hone their skills as a child. "The Blind Side" is just one of many movies that portray this. Not everyone with intellectual capability has been given the opportunity to hone their skills as a child. But not everyone with athletic, intellectual or both ability has the aptitude to succeed. That comes from within, and there is no amount of training that teaches that.

It is my belief that affirmative action would/will work with people who no matter what their life's circumstances were/are have this desire. But they have to have the desire to succeed burning within them, and they are willing to make the sacrifices necessary to move forward.

In my opinion this moves the bar up for those who also have the ability and were given the opportunity to hone their skills. If THIS person can make it, then I need to try harder.

Sadly affirmative action is based off of skin color and culture. Beyond a certain level sports teams no longer want the person with sub-par skills, no matter how much money mommy and daddy throw at them. No matter how much money society throws at educating kids, some will NEVER make it.

I can only imagine what the NBA would look like if they used the same standards our schools are.

Affirmative action could be a good thing, if the bar was set high and remained there.
Tickerguy
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Quote:
Affirmative action could be a good thing, if the bar was set high and remained there.

Sorry, those two things do not go together.

Affirmative action is by definition lowering the bar. Why? Because on a purely merit based system, where the bar continually ratchets higher until the cut-off meets the supply of at the top of the heap of capability, skin color and similar matters not.

As soon as you say "but X must go so Y can't" then you have intentionally lowered the bar -- or refused to raise it.

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Winding it down.
Twainfan2
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I havent cared from day 1 if they impeach this moron. The vast majority of people are just too stupid to be allowed to vote or have any say in society. That meteor cant come soon enough since peaceful secession simply wont ever happen.

Ill keep to my Ancap views, this political mess will never get fixed.
Mangymutt
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"Affirmative action is by definition lowering the bar." HAA!!

I agree.

It is oil and water and even with the correct emulsion the two will never be one, BUT they can be together.

It is not the schools or governments job to combine two unlike things. That is akin to picking who wins, when the winner is picked, a loser is also chosen and in the end people who want to and know how to succeed stop playing a rigged game.

But it is societies job, society as in you and I and perhaps small groups of like minded people.

Your daughter is about the same age as my youngest son, I am certain she has friends that you have come to care for. I do with my son. Other than the things you have chosen to share on your Tickers I do not know you, I do however know people with your spirit and mind set. I would come this ".." close to betting actual money that you have given of your time, your money or your resources to help at least one of her friends out. And never let them know where the assistance has come from, but your continued assistance is based off what they do with your out reach. Maybe that person finds success, maybe they do not, but you saw/realized they needed just a little something extra that they for whatever reason lacked and you were in a position to provide that little extra.

Maybe you are such a cold hearted bastard that you would never do that, but like I said above, I have read enuff of your Ticker to believe you have.

If you have then you know as long as they show appreciation for it, it is your job (As it is mine) to give assistance to those who need it, regardless of their skin color. That type of affirmative action can never and will never work once it gets past the level of the community.

So with the correct emulsion I believe affirmative action can work.

Maynard
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I may be wrong Mangy, but it sounds like you are confusing charity with affirmative action.
Emupaul
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<i>Affirmative action is by definition lowering the bar.</i>

When it started, from what I could see, it was to make it possible for "the darkies" to get a foot in the door.

Granted, I was in 7th grade in Mobile, Alabama in 1970'ish. Just being colored shut you out of a lot of opportunities. It started with good intentions.

The bad part is that now "minorities" are suspect of having their job for their skin color or surname with nothing to do with being competent.


Tickerguy
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The three most competent employees I had at my company were black. None of them needed affirmative anything they were just plain at old-fashioned good at their job.

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Winding it down.

Pancake
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The Luddites claimed innovation in cloth production with machines would make cloth unaffordable for the middle class, as post-machine no middle class worker would have sufficiently-productive labor to make something worth trading to the machine owners. But that is not the outcome we observe. Instead, the opposite happened, and cloth clothing is now cheap enough that starving children in Africa can afford it.

the complete destruction of the value of college education

If the H-1B visa holders are able to do the specialty occupations without the American college degrees, then the degrees are revealed to be merely protectionist rents to trade guilds. There is no way to hide, in the long term, from economic competition with all 7 billion humans. Set up an iron curtain and your country falls behind the rest of the world. The USSR, East Germany, North Korea, etc. demonstrated this. There is no middle ground in which a little bit of iron curtain and central planning are a net win.

It is wrong that H-1B visa holders have less legal rights than ordinary citizen employees, because that makes them closer to indentured servants. This oppresses the visa holders, and lowers wages for their competing citizens who aren't indentured. But keeping workers from competing on price isn't a success in the long term, either. If your competitors' taxpayers are subsidizing their products, say thank you and buy their cheaper stuff. Then go compete in some other area.

Click writes: diverless cars and trucks shall replace millions of human workers. Robotic assembly lines will totally end human jobs in factories all across the world. Even waiters, barteners and cooks will be out of a job. And that human doctor of yours just might not be so human in as little as twenty years from now.

Hooray! More labor-saving devices save more humans from more drudgery. Do you agree that indoor plumbing with a sink, drain, fresh water, sewer, and water heater is a good thing? But if you go one step further and get a water filter or hot beverage water heater, you're claiming this increase in tool use reduces net human wealth? The Luddite theory claims if somebody invents the Star Trek food replicator, then instead of eliminating world hunger, all the humans will starve. How does that work, again? The humans whose skills only rise to cleaning toilets will be completely displaced from the labor force. But they can go farm for a living, grow food and eat it themselves.

People who have not paid sufficient taxes in should not receive benefits paid for by taxes. Nothing above claims otherwise.
Pancake
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Cotton spinning has returned to Britain, but with German equipment, American cotton, good lighting, and proper regard for safety. This is not a 'satanic mill' work environment mostly due to innovation in production. In the blog of the build-out I saw a women working in the mill -- wearing jeans, boots, ponytail, and a tool pouch. Looked like a telco worker.

https://www.bbc.com/news/business-424529....
https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-england-manc....
Tickerguy
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Someone fails to appreciate wage and environmental parity issues... for starters.

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Winding it down.
Mangymutt
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Maynard - yes the way I am using the term affirmative action is incorrect, but like all social programs once the government takes charge, we are allowing the government to chose the winners and losers. And once people realize how to pay off the politicians the system goes down hill real quickly.

I honestly do not know what the correct answer is, but if we look at this from a backward angle and use Karl as an example. We know he is above average intelligence, we know that he has successfully run his own business, we know he is a well respected member of financial insight forums. But most importantly we know he is driven.

It is his drive that makes him want to achieve....However, he knows under the current system, the more he achieves the more is stole from him. (We are also victims to the same type of theft.) The pain of the theft has become so great he refuses to be motivated by his drive and without access to self motivation, the rest of his skills are not put to the best of there use.

You cannot take a person with that type of drive and sideline them through individual effort, as they will find away around it. However when the entire system conspires against that type of drive and motivation, people will find better things to spend their resources on. But the person with drive can gain motivation through individual effort.

The point I was trying to make is it is OUR job as individuals to assist those around us. It is not my job to tell anyone how they should or should not do that. It is not our job to be taken advantage of or give from what we do not have, but if you can buy a ratchet set for a mechanically inclined person who doesn't have means to getting a set on their own. We should. And what that person does with them is not ours to lay claim to, only move in accordance with their actions.

**** the government and their stupid social programs. Affirmative action is a political construct to a (state) manufactured problem, the state "attempts" to assist people by manipulating the entire system. It is a poison that robs those with drive, marginalizes those with ability and gives false rewards to the most unworthy.
Emg
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"There is no way to hide, in the long term, from economic competition with all 7 billion humans."

If the H1B workers were so wonderful, they'd be able to start their own companies in their own nations, and compete with the rest of the world. They wouldn't have to move to America to work for American companies.

A tremendous amount of this is driven by pure nepotism, as US companies hire foreigners from low-trust societies who then do everything they can to hire their friends and relatives. They're not being hired because they're the best for the job, they're being hired because the foreigner took over a company that Americans built and is now going to suck all the wealth out of it to give to their own family and friends.

And why do you think Big Tech in Silicon Valley is so anti-American? Because the H1B visa has allowed them to fill the companies with foreigners.
Click
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PanCake,

You sound a lot like Ben Shapiro. My son listens to Ben all of the time, and from time to time he asks me for my thoughts on Ben's views; and we have some great discussions. I always tell my son Murray Rothbard was an intellectual giant; and Ben will never make it to the top of Murray's shoulders to see any farther than Murray did. Ben has an Ivy League education and an interesting personal story, so I'm always glad to listen to Ben's thoughts as he develops into a new voice of Conservatism.

Recently, Ben and Tucker Carlson had a debate about the points you raised above. Ben made the identical argument that you do. On the other hand, Tucker pointed out how "innovation" caused major dislocation(s) in the job market during the turn of the century; and how that might have contributed to the Great Depression. Tucker then went on to point out that over five million trucking jobs alone ---along with tens of millions of other jobs--- could be obsoleted by "innovation"; perhaps causing such a major economic dislocation that civil unrest and an economic crash like the 1930s could be the result.

Here's my position: I lean close to Rothbard, Ludwig von Mises, Ayn Rand and other like-minded thinkers. I believe in free-market capitalism. So I reject the Luddites. I didn't lobby the government to subsidize family farmers when our farm went out of business. I realized that family farming as a business model was finished. But I also reject companies who use government to protect them from competition. I especially reject transnational companies who game the system in order to profit from government corruption. And I reject entire countries like China who are our communist enemies. Back in the 70s and 80s Milton Friedman made the argument that America should open up trade with China even if China imposed tariffs greater than ours. It sounded like a good move at the time; however, what we really opened up was a very big can of worms. China is now our most powerful enemy. And guess what? We did it to ourselves.

Regarding advancement: America must advance; we must innovate; we must obsolete any and all inefficiencies including but not limited to human truck drivers, waiters, doormen, cooks, maids, and just about every other menial job. Yes. We must. We can't be Luddites. But I got news for you: This ain't going to be like ****ing Star Trek where food replicators end world hunger. I've heard that flowery crap all of my life on how technology is going to end hunger, provide unlimited energy and free utilities etc., etc.,.... I say bull****. What's coming is going to feel more like the fall of an empire and the end of Western Civilization as we know it.

The dislocations that are just over the horizon are going to ****ing rock the middle class into obsolescence. The white race is going to crash into the lowest point it has ever experienced in hundreds of years. Utopia isn't in our future. Dystopia is.

What's the answer? At this point I really don't think there is an answer that'll work in the real world. There are answers that work on paper, but they'll be used for toilet paper when the SHTF... There's going to be a crash and burn. It may be a year from now, a decade or longer, but the **** is going to hit the fan. And I only hope the cycle of empires doesn't end in a Dark Age...



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