ronmaimon (Ron Maimon)

Done! (3191 results) ✔


2019-03-24 on thedailywire

There is no local solution to a global problem. The US has to lead, not China.


2019-03-24 on thedailywire

No, in 2028 the arctic will be ice-free, most of the coral will be dead, the ocean plankton will be reduced by 80%, and fish stocks will collapse. We’ll still have farming, but there will be famines here and there. It’s just that we won’t be able to do anything to avert the catastrophe in 2050, and the worse catastrophe in 2080, and the calamity in 2100, and the apocalypse in 2200. That’s why you need to act early.


2019-03-24 on thedailywire

Marxism was purged from the US educational system in the 70s and 80s. The purge was complete in the 90s. There is no more Marxism in schools and media. AOC isn’t pushing government takeover of the economy, she is pushing a green new deal. It’s not the same thing.


2019-03-24 on thedailywire

The golden goose that made Americans prosperous was the new deal, and it’s already been destroyed. AOC is proposing to reinstate it.


2019-03-24 on thedailywire

I am not politically pandering. I am 45, and I have a child, and I understand the climate very well, as I am a physicist by my professional training. The climate is driven by one parameter, CO2, and we just passed a serious threshhold, and we can’t pass any more without irrevesible terrible damage. I can tell you are not a college professor in a science, or in mathematics, or in climate, or in anything else techical, or else you would be saying the same thing.

AOC isn’t experienced, nor is she the most well-studied. She makes a grammar error once in a while, she sometimes uses a word out of context. But, to complement this, she has a SENSE OF URGENCY regarding our problems, an EAR to the ground, hearing her constituents, and and an INSTINCT for putting together the right coalition to pressure for change. That’s far more important. The rest, she will learn quickly. Her vision, that can’t be taught, and it is easy to lose through the blindness that comes with holding political office too long.

In this case, it is a coalition between those who want a jobs program to help poor Americans who can’t find a job, and those who want to avert catastrophe. This is a good political call, it is an act of vision. it should be supported, even by Republicans, because it is an act of vision

In this time, we need all the people to join together, and not call each other names. I don’t really care what you are, just help avert climate catastrophe, and help get this jobs program passed. It will help the economy, really. Like the first new deal did.


2019-03-24 on thedailywire

I am not oblivious to markets, I just live in a place where Amazon is kept out using taxes, and private businesses still exist. For now. Amazon is a monopoly, and those were declared illegal 100 years ago. Under Teddy Roosevelt. Not quite a free market there, comrade.


2019-03-24 on thedailywire

Oh you fool. Can’t you see that Amazon is BIG BROTHER? New York can have a Thousand thriving PRIVATE businesses with one coordinated website! That’s not quite socialism yet, comrade.


2019-03-24 on thedailywire

You will never belong in the US with a name like Goldman. Sorry to break it to ya. Try changing your name to Thornberry or Wexmoreland. You are trying to pass, but you’re failing.


2019-03-24 on thedailywire

The way to “take it up” is to discuss it seriously, propose amendments, think about it, not mock it and reject it out of hand. There is language in there that is no good, and must be fixed, there are proposals that are too broad. It needs to be fixed and passed, and quickly, because we don’t have time to wait. Grow up,please, we don’t get two chances to save our future, we’ve already screwed up the first chance, in 1989, don’t throw away this one. Each chance you throw away makes the problem infinitely and qualitatively worse.


2019-03-24 on thedailywire

If you want it passed, get it through committee, get input from senators and congressmen, don’t hold a political vote. That’s playing games with your children’s life.


2019-03-24 on thedailywire

What?? The world as we know it is already ended. The question is only how bad it will get. The longer you wait, the worse it will be.


2019-03-24 on thedailywire

Okay, then, go through the procedures to turn it into actual legislation, by holding a hearing in a committee, by getting input from the senators, including McConnell. They must take this seriously, it’s not a joke. This is the kind of thing that is needed to reconfigure US industry for the threat of warming.


2019-03-24 on thedailywire

This is not a personal issue, it can only be solved by working together. My grandfather didn’t fight WWII by finding and killing a random German.


2019-03-24 on thedailywire

I believe one should declare war. This is an existential threat to the united states. Our allies should be every other nation. Our enemy is CO2 emmission. We win when the world is reducing the CO2 in the air. Private industry will be compensated, just as it was in WWII. WWII didn’t end private industry.


2019-03-24 on thedailywire

In 12 years, you don’t get another chance to avert the release of methane from the arctic, and the death of coral. That’s what the 12 years means, and that’s what she said. And it wasn’t AOC who said that first, the scientists did, and they are right, and so is she.

If you wait too long, more than a decade or so, the warming will not be controlled. It will release methane, it will kill the coral, the arctic will become dark and warm, and there will be a mass extinction and mass migration for sure.

If you act now, there is a chance to halt it and reverse it, through carbon capture, over the next century. It’s really tough, even if we act on a massive scale, it’s no sure thing.


2019-03-24 on thedailywire

AOC is on the side of working people in the US, except for those named “Goldman”, who obviously don’t belong in the US. Go back to Poland, Goldman.


2019-03-24 on thedailywire

If you want to vote on it, send it to committee, get comments, get negotiators to work through the ideas, and put together a real new deal. It’s not going to happen with McConnell in charge, that’s for sure. The green new deal is too important to play political games with, it’s the future of your children. But you probably don’t care, being a drug-addled godless conservative.


2019-03-24 on thedailywire

That’s not how you pass legislation. This how you kill proposals. Mitch McConnell looks like the kind of zombie that cocaine produces, he obviously has no religion, or responsibility, or ability to think. But I think he achieved this state using other drugs, or perhaps just through coordinated evil.


2019-03-24 on thedailywire

Rushed means you hold serious committee hearings, get input and suggestions, have everyone consider the various ideas, and propose additions, not hold an idiotic vote with no meaning. It’s not like we have 12 years, we’re already going to have a catastrophe under any circumstance, just based on what we didn’t do thirty years ago. The 12 years is to avoid an apocalypse from feedbacks and uncontrolled warming which will lead to sterile oceans, no more insects, and maybe no more people.


2019-03-24 on thedailywire

New York would be better off opening a clone website called “New York-AZON”, and forbidding Amazon from doing business in the state entirely, through punitive sales taxes. That would be vastly healthier for New York businesses than inviting this monstrosity into the city. It is madness to allow one man to own all the retail in a country! Have all of you gone mad?


2019-03-24 on thedailywire

You don’t vote on a bill until it gets through a serious committee process which makes it into a serious proposal. Voting on an initial proposal is a stunt, and doing politics like that with your children’s lives is the kind of irresponsibility I would expect from drug addled reckless boomers with no conscience or ethical core, or faith in God. i.e. Republicans.


2019-03-24 on thedailywire

It’s not funny, illiterate baboon. Every degree of further warming is death and dislocation on a massive scale.


2019-03-24 on thedailywire

That’s not how you pass legislation. You go through committee, you add amendments, you get input from all members, that’s how you hold a serious vote. A vote like this is a stunt, to be able to do politics with. First rule of Congress-club should be: don’t play political games with your children’s lives


2019-03-24 on thedailywire

.. (delete me) ..


2019-03-24 on thedailywire

There aren’t many jobs, one of the jobs is rat-catcher, for your rat stew. It’s not kool-aid, this is the road Trump is taking you down. There really is no future if you keep dumping CO2 into the air.


2019-03-24 on thedailywire

The Green New Deal wants to make sure people in the US have jobs, and that those jobs make the US carbon neutral as quickly as possible. The Chinese are already thinking about things like this, although their deployment and R&D isn’t as advanced, they can do a green new deal, and it looks like they might do it first.


2019-03-24 on thedailywire

This bill is not a joke. It is spending comparable to the level of WWII. How did we pay for WWII? The answer is, we didn’t. We just inflated away the debt over the following decades. The Green New Deal does not violate the constitution any more than war-spending does, it respects private property rights, it compensates people for lost property or opportunity, it tries to make sure that the economy is healthy and growing, it is good for American industry, and it seriously is, by far, the most important initiative that the US has ever seen, this is not hyperbole, it’s more important than the original new deal. There is no future without a sensible path to zero emissions, and that requires enormous amount of coordinated reconfiguration of industry, a lot of research and development, a lot of deployment, and international treaties to make sure all other nations are on board. It’s not possible to continue living as normal without this proposal, or something equivalent, the drying out of the midwest alone will lead to food shortages, let alone the refugees from India and the Middle East. This is not a joke, you really can’t survive without this, and you can survive indefinitely with it.


2019-03-24 on thedailywire

Because I don’t want my children to be jobless in a post-apocalyptic wasteland, that’s why.


2019-03-24 on thedailywire

AOC is the only representative fully on the side of the working people of the US. She is not being groomed for anything, but she should be as powerful as possible, because she is the only hope for a real future.


2019-03-24 on thedailywire

You don’t “pass it into law” by holding a political vote, you pass it into law by debating it seriously, getting people on board, proposing amendments, talking to international treaty negotiators, getting input from unions, and so on, over a period of months and years, to allow the proposal to accurately reflect the best path forward. This is the most important legislation of this era, it isn’t something you frivolously go “yea” or “nea” on, you need a legislative process, like every other serious bill.


2019-03-24 on thedailywire

The Green New Deal is the most important legislative proposal of our time, but you don’t hold a serious vote without committee hearings, amendments, debate, alternatives, culling ideas, and so on, especially when Republicans think of it as a joke. This is not a joke, it is only this kind of investment that can confront the threat of climate change and allow a sustainable future with a healthy economy. It also requires international coordination, to make sure Russians and Chinese meet their targets. It’s extremely important, it’s not something you hold a political vote over, that is selling your children down the river.


2018-12-21 on strangenotions

Of course morality is older than religion. But it’s WRONG MORALITY, it’s just a “sustainer of schemes of social cooperation” between the clique of people who form the ruling elite. It doesn’t have the presumption of producing a unified ethics for all of humanity which treats all members as equally valuable, including those outside the tribe.

The WHOLE POINT of monotheistic religion, the kind people talk about, the kind whose archetype is Christianity, is that in order to make ethical judgements, you consider the actions which are morally right to be the will of a unified entity, whose opinions are self-consistent, and who treats every individual as a part of the whole. This idea means that the master/slave dichotemy becomes unsustainable, and this is the main effect of monotheistic ethics, to remove institutional slavery. That’s what the Jewish reforms did, making slavery temporary 7-year debt-bondage, that what Christianity did when it forbade Christians from owning Christian slaves in the 7th century.

The pre-monotheistic ethical systems made judgements similar to the Nazi moral code– if it’s good for the social order, it’s good, if it’s bad for the social order, it’s bad. That is the kind of thing that leads to crucifixions and murder-entertainment in the colloseum. It can be argued that both are justified for “greater good” and “stability” arguments.

The idea of monotheism is that there is a unified universal ethical system suitable for everyone, in which nobody is counted out as irrelevant. All have a part to play. This is the idea of “The Body of Christ” central to Christian doctrine. Everyone has a part to play, and the least significant members, the ones with the least social standing and power, are the most important, if only simply because there are more of them (but it’s not only that).

The monotheistic morality is simply the correct notion, and it displaced the older notions of morality, because they are garbage. That’s why there was a monotheistic revolution starting from the 1st century in Rome, to the 20th century, as universal social-justice morality, this time under the guise of Marxism rather than Christianity, spread the idea to China, Vietnam, and Japan, places that Christianity wasn’t able to penetrate.


2018-06-27 on thenewamericanmagazine

There’s a difference between understanding Marx’s objective predictions and following his “ism”. Marx wasn’t a Marxist, as he said himself. The writings of Marx are foundational to economics, sociology, colonial and ethnic/gender studies, and power relations. Marxism is something like the first secular religion, sort of like a Christianity 2.0. It isn’t too good for making a theocracy, because any theocracy of any sort is stupid, even when the religion is true (especially when the religion is true!). But Marxism is good as a personal source of economic, social, and critical ideas about the humanities, because Marx’s ideas are by and large true, and extend older ideas nontrivially.


2018-06-25 on thenewamericanmagazine

What are you talking about? Marx is popular in academia because he made a nontrivial prediction in economics, regarding the dynamics of wages and profits during recessions (he didn’t say it this way, but the mechanism is the same). The predictions of classical/neo-classical market equilibrium models was totally wrong, and Marx discovered the correct “formula” for wages in unregulated economies, and for profits, and the division of wealth. He demonstrated that his laws held in England using numbers for weekly wages of various industrial workers, which he painstakingly gathered in an era where such statistics were not commonly used for economic analysis.

In doing this, he revolutionized economics and founded modern sociology. His ideas were foundational for all the following innovations in the humanities: first feminism, then racial justice, then gay justice, etc, all the various seeds of the modern ethnic/gender studies come from Marx.

His thinking allowed one to consider for the first time MATERIAL CIRCUMSTANCE in analyzing the works of authors, and considering which authors are allowed to survive. For example, Dickens was born a working class fellow, but was extremely bourgeois in attitude, and this is important for understanding his writing (e.g., the Cheerables in Nicholas Nickleby). The 20th century was defined by a self-conscious attempt to avoid falling into the Dickensian pattern of celebrating economic success.

There has been absolutely no one promoting Marx in academia. He succeeded despite attempts to bury him, which started while he was still alive and writing. His work is simply the foundation of all the modern humanities, and of modern economics. It was ripped off by Keynes to create modern macroeconomics. Keynes took the “falling demand” part, made up nonsense non-Marxist reasons for accepting it (his reasons are bullshit), and then created all the non-trivial counterintuitive predictions of modern macroeconomics, using Marx as a tool. Marx, of course, didn’t do that, because he wanted to end the system, not fix it. But he understood all the Keynesian effects.

For example, before Marx, using supply/demand, you would predict that raising minimum wage gradually, over, say, a few months, to a million dollars an hour, would lead to 100% unemployment. After Marx, you find that it just leads to inflation (assuming a printed currency) and destruction of monetary wealth. Raising minimum wage never produces unemployment, it first stimulates the economy, then it leads to inflation. This is something you understand from Marx’s ideas, as stolen and elaborated on by Keynes.

Marx is revered in academia because he was the greatest genius the humanities ever produced. It is not the academics fault that various dictators pretend to follow his writings and take over entire economies with their political parties, that’s not what he was writing about. He was analyzing capitalism, and class structure.


2018-06-24 on thenewamericanmagazine

One is puppet to the devil, the other is puppet to God. The one that is puppet to the devil is the one that keeps talking about God. The left is not the Democratic party, by the way. It’s the LEFT. The Marxist left.


2018-06-23 on thenewamericanmagazine

I know, I know. But it isn’t about phonics or first grade reading. It’s about fifth grade, when you learn to read complex materials! This article is pretending that the problem is in first grade, when it isn’t. When first grade teaching is abysmal, the parents take over and teach the child to read themselves (as I have seen a parent or two in Harlem do, and as my grandmother did to my mother).


2018-06-23 on thenewamericanmagazine

Thomas Sowell is a sell out tool, part of the Reagan baby-boom disgusting pigsty of a generation, that got rid of the postwar values of socialism, science and shared growth. He doesn’t understand the first thing about Keynesian economics, he says the stupidest things about the relation of minimum wage and unemployment (raising minimum wage to a million dollars an hour doesn’t cause unemployment to go up, it cause massive inflation which obliterates all cash reserves). He sold his intellectual independence for cheap respect and cheap money, because he joined the conservative idiots that prop him up, as their token black guy. He’s the worst sort of imbecile, the kind that doesn’t care that he’s dishonest.


2018-04-27 on pj-media

Israel itself can’t coordinate military drills, and Cheney isn’t Israeli, or Jewish, although he shares interest with the assholes here. Maybe the operatives who set up explosives were Israeli? But they wouldn’t know the whole thing is a fraud, they couldn’t coordinate airspace nonsense. I don’t know man. I would have guessed “none” before living in the right-wing hellhole that Israel has become in the last decade. Now, I’m not so sure. Just please don’t call these human vermin that run Israel “Jews”, because these assholes are just circumcized Nazis.


2018-04-22 on pj-media

I don’t minimize anything. The 2 million people who starved in 1932 are a crime against humanity, the ~600,000 executions in 1932, and the roughly equal number in 1938 are crimes against humanity. The ~500,000 German nationals killed at the end of WWII are a crime against humanity. These are the Soviet crimes against humanity.

I just give you the right academically justifiable numbers, and don’t make up absurd nonsense out of thin air and then proceed to repeat them like Goebbels.


2018-03-05 on sabotagetime

The Beatles were really great, really really great, until they each pickled their brain with drugs. The path downward was interesting, and that’s what made them enormous. It’s interesting to watch 4 people kill themselves slowly over 6 years.


2018-02-27 on pj-media

It was hundreds of thousands, 52 hundred thousand to be precise, you dumb Nazi.


2018-01-20 on strangenotions

I don’t need my God to turn into matter to be relevant.


2018-01-20 on godlessindixie

These people who disagree with Carrier are simply stupid.


2018-01-13 on strangenotions

I wrote a detailed description in my answer here: https://www.quora.com/Whats… . It was easily recognizable to me as what St. Paul went through, or the figure writing Lamentations, or the experience in Jewish Psalms. It felt like talking to a figure.


2018-01-13 on strangenotions

I was an atheist, and remained an atheist throughout the whole process of experiencing God directly. Afterwards, I had to understand the experience rationally, and nothing about my rational world view changed, except I got a better idea of what God means, and what religious texts are talking about. It was extremely weird, to be an atheist going through a religious experience, but I can assure you that it wasn’t culture specific, much the opposite, it was entirely universal and personal at the same time, like learning how to prove pi is irrational, or some other mathematical proof. it’s just that each culture has their own mythology and stories attached to this sort-of universal experience.


2018-01-07 on acapitalwasteland

He is not coercing consent, although if YOU did the same thing in real life, you might. It’s a very subtle scene that talks about rape’s existence, without being a rape scene. It needs to to introduce the standard human psychological elements to this very new situation. It has nothing to do with coercing sex in real life, it really doesn’t, although it purposefully and deliberately references it, and also references back to actual coercive sexual encounters in older films. It just does so in a different context, where it isn’t coercion, although you don’t see it. In the older films, for instance, the Maltese Falcon, it is coercion.


2018-01-07 on pj-media

Religion is social reconciliation of previously accumulated self-projections as God. You’re expected to know how to do this by St. Paul, and you’re expected to know how to do this by Karl Marx. Since it’s 2000 years old, you should know how to do it too.


2018-01-07 on pj-media

Yes, that’s important. Remind me about this again in a million years.


2017-12-11 on technologyreview

But each position is evaluated with a full monte-carlo search until the end to determine its value. The comparison is misleading.


2017-12-08 on thediamondback

The accusations against Al Franken are mentally damaged made up bullcrap. If the left can’t see through this, it will be in trouble.


2017-12-08 on abcnewsdotcom

He was doing what politicians always do, which is false-flirtation and false-intimacy. It’s obviously paid garbage, and you need to wake up to the fact that there is a class war, and people will pay to destroy those on the left, because it is profitable for them.


2017-12-08 on abcnewsdotcom

He shouldn’t have apologized. He should sue. This is the left’s weakness in confronting bullcrap accusations from the right, They need to fight tooth and nail, like Tito in the woods, there is a class war against them.


2017-12-08 on abcnewsdotcom

Those women need to be sued for garbage harassment claims. None of these claims constitute sexual harassment, there is not an iota of sex or power about them.


2017-10-17 on acapitalwasteland

That’s not Blade Runner’s problem, it’s theirs.


2017-10-16 on acapitalwasteland

That scene is extremely powerful, it jolts a person, because it is so violent for a brief second, and then so controlling, dominating. But it is not a rape scene, it is a scene which is appropriate with a replicant who is unable to trust her own humanity. It’s like a crash-course in human sexuality for a month-old adult, with all the domination aspects, and the consent aspects, and then a demand for a free decision, not coerced. It’s a very difficult scene, because in real life, it would easily be coercive rape. In the film, it just isn’t. And to see that, you need to see the whole film, and understand the emotions of all the characters.


2017-10-16 on acapitalwasteland

Yes, a lot of older scenes are correctly realized as rape. Just not this one, which is not.


2017-10-16 on acapitalwasteland

“Dangerous territory”? Good films are not educational material for 10th graders on how to behave! They are designed to be revealing about the human condition. In the context of this film, Dekkard is not raping her, he is forcing a decision, showing how to give consent, because she doesn’t know anything about sex, and then demanding her to give free consent, because he will not force her. It’s a very human scene, made more graphic using the non-human characters. The situation is informed by the fictional parts of the scene, the subtext of her implanted memories. The fact that it resembles rape in real life does not detract from the scene, rather it gives it much more emotional weight, and makes it more revealing, and better. It’s not only replicants weighed down by implanted instincts in their DNA, not of their own choosing.


2017-10-16 on acapitalwasteland

And he stops her from being scared by showing her he isn’t going to hurt her, or force her to do anything. He asks her to assert her own will.


2017-10-16 on acapitalwasteland

The scene is not “hot”. It’s not meant to be “hot”, it’s revealing about the characters. It’s not about sex, it’s about love. About asserting your own feelings, despite pre-programmed instincts you don’t control.


2017-10-16 on acapitalwasteland

And it can always be reasserted too, which is what she is doing, after he forces her to make an independent human decision for a change, without doubting her nature. Human beings are complicated, and rape is not a set of rules. If you came in that room and broke them apart, she wouldn’t thank you.


2017-10-16 on acapitalwasteland

Whether it’s rape or not depends on whether the consent is real or coerced. Her consent is obviously real in the film, and you must accept that it is not coerced, even though in real life, a similar situation can coerce consent.


2017-10-15 on pj-media

Solzhenitsyn didn’t support Hitler in 1941, he supported Hitler in 1975, meaning, by then he “understood” how justified Hitler was in opposing communism, he “understood” that Jews were behind the evil of communism, and therefore how much worse communism was than fascism. To justify his absurd position, numerically illiterate Solzhenitsyn inflated the Soviet death toll to tens of millions, and began anti-semitic conspiracy in post-war Russia. He died a full-fledged fascist, and embarassed several hosts in the US with his delusional raving when they invited him after the wall fell.

All the executions in the USSR were documented and recorded. Births were recorded, people were documented, family histories are known, and the analysis of the archive show a million executions during Stalin’s era. I am not going to argue it with you, it’s true, all you need to do is look.

Any further deaths you have to attribute to famine from mismanagement, which gets recorded as death by disease. The big famine was 1932. I will not continue this discussion, as I have explained the figures several times, and you continue to say stupid things. Please learn some math.


2017-10-15 on pj-media

You are unfortunately numerically illiterate. Let’s say you have a Katyn and a half, 50,000 murders, every year, for 50 years. That’s 2.5 million people. Remember that people are claiming 10 million, which is 4 times as much, 20 million, 8 times as much, 40 million, 16 times as much. I don’t think you understand order of magnitude. It’s ABSURD numbers. They are pathetically made up. You would need to have massacres every year to do it.

The original intent was to make “Stalin was worse than Hitler” memes, that was Solzhenitsyn, who supported Hitler. The rest follow him to justify 90s propaganda which followed him. It’s all bullshit.

There was only ONE Katyn size massacre, which was Katyn. It’s negligible in the total, like everything else, except for the ONE massive famine, the Ukraine famine, which claimed demographically 6 million from extrapolated population figures using normal birth rates, which amounts in real life to about 2 million dead during the actual famine (the rest being postponed births, dislocations, etc). There was only ONE great purge, which was the great purge, which claimed an exact known number of victims (all their names were recorded), of about 300,000. I add to that the executions in 1932, which are another 500,000 or so, perhaps double-counting the demographic drop, which includes their execution and lost births.

That total, 1932+1937 is Stalin’s total death toll, give or take 10%. Everything else is NEGLIGIBLE. It’s INSIGNIFICANT IN COMPARISON. The only other event is the mass deportation of Germans postwar, which claimed about 500,000 people from starvation and illness. You could add that, but then please remove the double-counted Ukraine victims. It’s a wash in the end. The end result is about 3 million, 2 million famine, 1 million executions.

These other fictitious tens of millions of victims simply don’t exist. Conservative brainless numerically illiterate liars like you just made them up, and justify them using anecdotal stories of this massacre or that massacre, which are negligible compared to the main story. The main story, for total numbers, is 1932 and 1937.

Any murders past 1953 (really, past 1941, when Stalin’s power was diffused by WWII) are negligible compared to what came before. You don’t understand “negligible”, and you don’t know how to do numerical estimation.

The numbers I gave for the Nazis are accurate, because they are immediate postwar figures. This is what was used in the Nuremberg trials, when it was seriously investigated. Later writers are simply doing propaganda, and inflating numbers. It is not acceptable to say “6 million”, because it is not accurate.

About 5 million Jews were murdered, 2 million Soviet POWs, and about a million Gypsies and others. The total is 8 million, and no further. That stays true no matter who your sources are and how much you trust them. It’s DAMN HARD WORK to kill a million people, as I tried to show you.

That’s why it’s so fucking INSUFFERABLY ignorant and INSUFFERABLY insulting when people throw these humungous numbers around like they don’t mean anything. A MILLION people is US traffic fatalities over 20 years, it’s US uninsured deaths over the same period of time, it’s US homelessness deaths over several centuries, it’s US police shooting deaths over 500 years. It’s comparable in the postwar USSR, you would need to wait many tens of thousands of years to get millions of political murders in the postwar USSR. The order of magnitude is wrong

The lack of numerical competency in you is hopefully not mirrored in other readers of this posting.


2017-10-15 on pj-media

There were not 6 million Jews killed by Hitler. There were 5.2 million Jews killed by Hitler, that’s the postwar estimate, that’s the “five million” claimed by Eichmann, that’s the population data, them’s the facts. The number of Gypsies, Homosexuals, disabled, and Soviet POWs murdered might add to these to give 8 million total deaths, but considering that Jews were by far the main ones systematically exterminated, it’s not going to add up to 11 million, archives unseen. The estimate of Jews murdered might be high by 500,000, because its demographic, Jews in the Ukraine might have died as Partisans or from dislocation, but it doesn’t suffer from the “deferred birth” problem, because the death toll is more than half the pre-war population, and the results are pure subtraction, not subtraction after extrapolating using natural birth rate.

All these numbers, including the Nazi ones, suffer systematic inflation in modern sources, I am giving you the original figures from the late 1940s, which are most accurate. 21 million is absurd anti-Nazi propaganda, and while I agree with most anti-Nazi propaganda, this numbers game must be rejected outright. I would say 5 million Jews, 2 million POWs, that’s about right, and less than a million other, meaning Roma, Homosexuals, Disabled, adding to between 7 and 8 million murder victims is about right for the third Reich. That’s a fair estimate.

There is no significant difference between a collective of talking humans and a collective of talking neurons, they operate much the same, the bandwidth/internal-computation ratio is similar.

The deaths of the Winter War are less than the 1932 famine by order of magnitude, and are not crimes against humanity exactly. The deaths from all other Soviet events are swamped by the 1932 famine and revolt, and the 1937 great purge. Those two events together account for 90% of victims at least, and they amount, at best estimate to 3 million.

Any attempt to inflate the numbers is dishonest, and evil, and you should go to your room and be ashamed.

Regarding the superstition justifying the teleology, it’s the exact opposite. Once you recognize superrational decision making is the right way to make decisions, the teleology comes first, and the superstition is just a barbaric tool to get stupid people to follow along based on threats and lies.


2017-10-15 on pj-media

You have some misconceptions here. I am not dependent on any Judeo-Christian tradition, it is ancient and much of it is ridiculous. One needs to reformulate the ancient tradition to a modern person, who has a logical positivist naturalistic philosophy, and doesn’t believe in superstition, like such and so getting up from the dead. The concepts of religion are not really superstitious, they are primitive folk-tales made to explain the teleology of ethical behavior, that the notion of right and wrong is defined by allegiance to a larger mind than any one individual.

The way in which such larger minds form is much like the way your mind forms from the activity of neurons. Like all the neurons in your head make up your brain, and their collective activity is your consciousness, likewise, the individuals making up a social group make up a god-brain, and their collective activity forms the god-consciousness.

These gods are local and mortal, they are born and they die. The monotheistic notion of God is a God of gods, meaning the infinite mind formed in the teleological limit of infinitely large and infinitely ancient cooperating gods in the infinite future. This is Hegel’s evolutionary view of the 19th century, explained more concisely here, without Hegel’s upper-class bullshit. Removing the upper-class bullshit was done by Marx, who played the role of Jesus to Hegel’s formal, musty, obsolete, old-testament.

Marx took this teleology and made it a practical agent of change. First, he identified the main social dialectic, the conflict in society, as a class conflict— people who control vs those whom they control. Then he delved into mathematical economics, and explained why the system of control in capitalism leads to economic inefficiency. Every dollar of profit that a capitalist makes individually (as opposed to getting distributed broadly in stock) is a market-equilibrium distorting inefficiency, and when added up over all the wealthy folks, it creates unemployment and recession, the boom-and-bust cycles which were inexplicable before Marx.

The economics described in Marx is simply objectively correct. That is independent of the teleology or religion. The prescriptions you adopt, however, depend on your religious teleology— whether you are willing to forgo a ruling capitalist class, or not.

To see which method is appropriate, it is now instructive to take a look at Christianity. In the Roman empire, slave owners played the role of large industrialists, owners, while the mass of people worked as slaves. The main point of Christianity, ignoring positivistically meaningless superstitious nonsense, was to force the slave-owning master and the slave to share an equal social standing in the Church. Under those circumstances, the Epistle to Philemon explains, you are forced to recognize the evil of slavery, and free your slave. The Epistle to Philemon both explains Christianity’s success, and how it differs from Judaism. In Judaism, freeing the slave was also accomplished, but by a process of law, that took 7 years. The Christians eventually abolished slavery outright, by the 7th century, in Europe.

The teleology of the Bible is that God demands that people do what God says. That is a circular definition, so people read the Bible and think that helps them know God. The teleology is what defines God, and to understand a teleology is the most difficult thing in the world. You can’t get it by reading books, especially not old books. You need to inspect the situation, and construct the best approximation to a future social contract which is optimal compared to the one we have today.

You are not doing that, instead, you are simply doing propaganda.

The reason I don’t include Katyn or whatever else, is because it doesn’t change anything. The simple objective fact is that I, without citing any sources and without giving you any social reason to trust me, am giving you the correct numbers, as a simple google check will show. Stalin’s 1932 famine claimed about 2 million victims, Stalin’s purges and trials claimed about a million victims, a bit less. The rest is negligible in comparison. Your sources are lies, and propaganda lies, designed to minimize Hitler’s crimes against humanity by making up large impossible numbers for other people.

The only larger number than Hitler is in America, in the genocide of the American natives.

And as for damnation, that is the Christian word for choosing the wrong teleology. It is worse than physical death, because once the proper teleology appears, it is eternal.


2017-10-06 on pj-media

You don’t seem to get this— the Bible doesn’t help you in knowing what God expects of you. The only way to do that is to “talk to God”, which means, having an informed, and reasoned, ethical conversation, without words, with the Jesus that appears in your head, after consulting all the history and science you can get your hands on, and recognizing that your introspection is limited and fallible even when it feels otherwise.

This process is not “I’m doing what I think it best”, because it explicitly networks with other people’s wishes and desires, and aims for a universal brotherhood.

The role of St. Paul was to explain how to make such a community of universal brotherhood, among 1st century illiterate Roman slaves. Without Paul, they would have gone to Judaism, because it gave them hope.

The purpose of Paul was to make heirarchical relations between people impossible, because they are forced to be brothers.

When Paul says to Philemon “charge the debt to my account”, he isn’t claiming to have money, nor that Onesimus stole anything. The debt is slave-debt, people sold to slavery owed their value to their owner. The account that Paul has isn’t money, it’s the soul-value of redeeming you into the community of Christ, and that redemption is priceless. He didn’t pay Philemon any money, Philemon frees Onesimus anyway, because it’s required ethically.

It’s very hard to do what is right, and reading law doesn’t help you, except by the example of showing you what it means to do the right thing. So when you look at what was going on in 1969, at the Stonewall Inn, you know that God is out there with the homosexuals and transvestites, rooting for their cause, and not with the goddamned corrupted police shaking them down. Even though the bible says the opposite.

Similarly, the corruption of money heirarchies requires remedy. And if that remedy requires violating the 10th commandment, it must supersede it, because that, and not the tenth commandment, is what God demands.


2017-10-06 on pj-media

Your comments are brain damaged nonsense. The key thing for population density is agriculture. If a society is nomadic, it has a low population, because the resources are thin. An agricultural society has 10 or 100 times the population density, because it can support it. Most of the disease deaths from smallpox came in the 17th century, and the Native populations generally rebounded by the 18th century, as people acquired immunity. Genocide of agricultural people is much, much worse than genocide of hunter-gatherers, because it is an intensive robbery of land, and massacre of people by starvation and resource war. Genocide of hunter-gatherers can be understood as displacement of hunter-gathering traditions by more advanced agricultural practices, and it can incorporate the few hunter-gatherers organically into a growing population. With agricultural people, there is no space. You must kill to take the land.

Native Americans had extremely advanced Native agriculture throughout the continent. Tomatoes, potatoes, squash, beans, thousands of varieties of maize, domesticated llamas and turkeys, all this stuff we have today, show you that it was a centuries old tradition, because it takes centuries to invent such breeds, they aren’t magically created by nature. About half of the modern world’s crops were developed by Native American pre-European agriculture, it was the most developed plant-breeding program in the world, only exceeded by the USSR of the 1940s, 1950s, and 1960s. The reason? They had fewer domesticable animals, so their plant breeding needed to produce a full protein diet from strictly vegetarian sources.

The Native agriculture was copied by new settlers in the 17th century, which was the only thing that allowed them to get a foothold in the New World. During this time, they raided villages for crops when their own crops failed, murdering Natives village by village, taking slaves and massacring women, children, infants. They displaced and destroyed the Native agricultural communities, village by village, all along the East coast, until finally, the remaining people were herded into camps, and then, in the 1830s, those remainders were driven to Oklahoma.

This process was at its peak at the moment of establishment of the US. Your second amendment is not a protection against tyranny, it is a protection of the right of settlers to murder natives, who the government did not protect with anti-murder laws.

The practice of genocide is explicitly promoted by George Washington, who spent his life committing such genocide. It is given a scientific patina by Benjamin Franklin, who argues that Europeans have an obligation, as the superiors, to take over the land of the inferiors. It is the central supremacist myth of the founders, even more so than slavery. The split with the British was partly because the British wished to protect indigenous rights, and refused to allow the genocide to spread West.

The result is that the entire population of the 17th century East Coast, which is certainly as dense as any other agricultural society, it’s millions of people, and the nomadic central regions, was reduced to a few hundred thousand by 1900. The remaining Natives were herded into camps to erase their culture.

I am sorry if you are ignorant of your own history. I suppose you should read some accounts from the era.

And while the practitioners of such genocide talked about how justified it was, by quoting the biblical mythological genocide of the Canaanites, and justified their own nation as the New Jerusalem, I assure you that George Washington is turning over to complain to Benjamin Franklin today, in the pits of hell.


2017-09-30 on pj-media

The authority to be found is by considering what is right, not by considering what is written down. Redistribution of investment income is absolutely required for economies to function, and the elimination of slavery and power-relations is the central purpose of the teaching of St. Paul, i.e. the historical Jesus.


2017-09-30 on pj-media

The 10 million farmers lived on the East Coast. You can’t count them because they were so thoroughly exterminated. They were killed and their property taken, village by village. They were driven out of the east to Oklahoma in the trail of tears. The genocide you acknowledge in the West is the tail end of a worse one on the East coast. That’s why none of you Americans look at all like native Americans, while everyone else on the continent does. In Canada, your story is roughly correct, as there were very few natives relatively.


2017-09-30 on pj-media

I am also a native speaker of Hebrew, idiot. I am writing this from Israel. Wives are referred to as a class of property identical to slaves in Exodus, Leviticus, and the entire Bible. The ownership of people is objectively a sin, and the gradual recognition of the evil is why slavery is limited to 7 years in Exodus, but only for Jewish slaves. In the Epistle to Philemon, we find out that St. Paul doesn’t accept any slavery at all. He expects all people to free their slaves, whether the law requires or not. Just because of their soul-debt to Christ. This is now the universal position of all religions, because it’s the right thing to do.

The Bible is NOT the source of the teaching of Jesus, the source of the teachings of Jesus, as St. Paul explained is TALKING TO JESUS. By hallucination. Jesus is a hallucination that informs you about ethics. The way to do what God wants is not to read and re-read the Bible, but to use your ethical antenna to figure out what the right thing to do is, and then to do it. The Bible won’t help you, rich man.

I am referring to the content of that hallucination, the real Jesus, the one that talks to you in your head, not to the garbage written in ancient books, or to the made-up magic Jew man. The Bible is a story book about God, it’s not a good set of laws, it’s only an incremental improvement over previous more barbaric codes.


2017-09-30 on pj-media

Karl Marx is the second coming of Jesus Christ. Your reading of Hebrew is stupid, and yes, when Exodus was written, wives were property, like slaves. It wasn’t “coveting your neighbor’s property” to free your neighbor’s slaves, although it did deprive your poor neighbor of property. Actually, perhaps it could be construed as coveting, freeing his slaves, in which case the 10th commandment is criminal, and you are a goddamned criminal for following it.


2017-09-30 on pj-media

God isn’t found in the Bible, idiot. God is abstract. The Bible is a quaint little fiction book about God, like “The Gulag Archipelago” is quaint little fiction book about what would have happened had Stalinism expanded. God, on the other hand, is a real thing, a concept which is understood much better today than back then. There is no authority to be found in the Bible.


2017-09-29 on pj-media

I speak modern and ancient Hebrew fluently, idiot. The structure which grants contracts is the state, and what the state grants it can also restructure.


2017-09-29 on pj-media

No Marxist is out to take away your stupid rolex or Mercedes Benz. That’s PERSONAL PROPERTY, it’s not PRIVATE PROPERTY. A Marxist is interested in private property: a billionaire’s network of factories, in an industrialist who owns 20 large newspapers and 4 TV networks, in a billionaire who owns a sports team. It’s the power associated with private ownership of means of production that the problem and the target, it’s not coveting of STUFF. Nobody wants your shitty stuff.

This is why moderately wealthy people can’t understand Marxism. It’s not about YOU. It’s about people with investment and power which you can’t even imagine.

It has no relation to “coveting” because the property is simply a state-awarded contract with no intrinsic meaning, aside from the social convention. When you say “I own a sports team”, what you mean is you own a piece of paper that allows you to take money out of other people’s labor from the ticket prices. It’s the society itself that grants you that paper, and unlike stuff, that contract is not beneficial to anyone, and should not be respected by the state.

The structure of economics is entirely determined by which contracts are enforced and which are ignored. The Marxist approach is to redesign the contract structure so that labor ends up in the owning position, not some ridiculous idiot who happened to get his paws on the property deed. There is nothing to covet in a property deed, it’s like a feudal lord. You don’t need to covet their position, they shouldn’t exist, and you must revolt against the very concept.

I know it’s difficult for you man, you’ve been brought up to reify the idea of property so that Koch owning 500 oil-wells and deriving profit from them strikes you as being as natural as water being wet. There’s nothing natural about it.
He who does not work, neither should he eat. That’s talking about Koch.


2017-09-29 on pj-media

I don’t have ignorance. The order of magnitude is correct, and you need to learn to add.


2017-09-29 on pj-media

Numbers do add up, but they unfortunately add up to more after 1991 than during the entire Soviet period.


2017-09-29 on pj-media

You simply don’t understand Marxists. I don’t COVET your house and pool, I don’t give a crap! I don’t envy your lifestyle, I’ve lived with and around rich people, I went to fancy schools. Your lives are miserable, and you wallow in brain-damage and sin.

What a Marxist is afraid of is that Bill Gates’s control of stocks and bond stifle the computer industry, and that Linux is a better idea for free development. It’s not a matter of taking away your money or house, not from a moderately successful person who works. It’s a matter of restructuring large industrial ownership so that industries don’t end up controlled by 3 people, destroying whole sectors of the economy. It requires that people who work at a factory should eventually end up owning the factory. That’s the basic principle.

If rich people who work actually understood what Marxism is about, they wouldn’t be opposed to it. It’s not designed to make rich workers poorer, just the opposite. It’s designed to free up business from consolidation and monopolization, thereby making everyone richer.

The USSR decided that it meant “The state takes over everything”. The reason to study that experiment, as un-Marxist as it ultimately is, is to see what happens when a state takes over everything! Given the atrocious concentration of power, the incredibly bad idea of doing that, the interesting thing are not where it failed, but where it succeeded.


2017-09-29 on pj-media

I do not covet that which the wealthy have, I pity them for having it. I wouldn’t want to be Jeffrey Dahmer, no matter how tasty human flesh is.

The reason Marx identifies duopoly or triopoly as indistinguishable from monopoly is that people in the owning class of the big firms can come together and act in concert, as if they were one person. It’s something that religion says is a good thing— cooperation. But it ruins the economic equilbrium assumptions. In modern capitalist economies, all large business leads to ridiculously out-of-equilibrium compensation. It’s theoretically very easy to see, because in theoretical equilibrium people all make a Soviet-style wage, determined entirely by supply and demand. That looks nothing like a Western economy, because investment profits are not in equilbrium, but concentrated at the top.

This concentration of investment wealth does not make me covet, it makes me unhappy. Because it destroys the investment potential in an economy. It distorts the industries that get funded, and it distorts the political system. To get rid of it, you need to ensure that investment ownership is distributed about as broadly as small business ownership is, at least. That is, at least 50% of the workers should own the company they work at. That was not only a goal of Marx, but it was a goal of Reagan and Thatcher. You forget.

The book to read is “Capital”, which is not going to be found on Marxists.org (although a lot of that stuff is interesting). Marx’s work is easier understood if you get a good background in standard economic ideas of equilibrium.


2017-09-29 on pj-media

You can continue to blather, but all those incidents, the Winter War, Katyn, etc, don’t change the numbers for Stalin— 2 million famine deaths, one million executed. They also don’t change the fact that the post-Stalin USSR didn’t have any comparable death toll. That’s the end of your propaganda.


2017-09-29 on pj-media

You need to read Marx, instead of speaking for God. Those of most faith are those that are destroyed first. It’s not a punishment from God, it’s the wages of faith. That’s what Christianity is all about.


2017-09-29 on pj-media

The USSR did go to vietnam and produce petroleum by simply digging deep enough. The reason people don’t do this is that surface oil is cheaper. It’s not EVERYWHERE that the Soviet method works, but it’s sufficiently likely in any region of the world that you’ll be able to do it in any country willing to invest the resources.

The practical consequences don’t change the facts. You’re falling into the Lysenkoist trap again.

There was no Gulag Archipelago. There was a small contingent of a few thousand political prisoners post-Stalin, and general terror. People were NOT taken out to the woods and shot. People were NOT summarily executed. They were put in prison, sometimes dying of bad conditions.

That’s not to justify the totalitarianism, just to explain the figures.

The complement to that is that in the USSR, as in Sweden, Mexico, Canada, China, Cuba, Denmark, Finland, England, Israel, Spain, South Africa, Australia, nobody dies of preventable disease. Further, in most of the third world, food is not processed and commercialized to the point that 50% of people suffer from obesity due paradoxically to malnutrition. The food distributed to poor folks in the US is so nutrient poor, you need to overeat to get a reasonable dose of nutrients. In other countries, poor people have good nutrition. This was also true in the US in the 1950s, before the food industry replaced the legumes and grains with processed stuff.

Your system is responsible for killing thousands of people every single year, from poverty. You imposed it on the USSR in 1991, and it killed millions from poverty. The only proper comparison of the 1990s is with Stalin’s time, the 90s was arguably worse, just from death toll.

So in the 90s, to disguise this, you simply increased Stalin’s death toll. First by a factor of 10, then by 20, then by 30. Keep doing that, perhaps you’ll sleep better at night. Stalin’s gone, his deaths are over. Your deaths still go on.


2017-09-29 on pj-media

God is a Marxist, and an atheist.


2017-09-29 on pj-media

I am not a supported of Soviet Communism. I agree it was totalitarian from the beginning until a few years before the end, when it was finally free.There were political prisoners, and repression until the mid-80s, and people were everywhere afraid to speak out until the mid-80s. It’s just that the NUMBER of political murders was extremely small past Stalin’s time, and the NUMBER of political prisoners was relatively small, and doesn’t contribute to the total death toll, simply because it is negligibly small compared to Stalin’s time. I am contesting the absurd numbers in the black book of communism, and pointing out that the total death toll is 2 million famine deaths, and 1 million political executions, all under Stalin, and all later deaths are negligible in comparison. That 2 million famine deaths, 1 million political executions is still intolerable. It’s just not the absurd numbers of 20 million, 40 million, 60 million, 100 million Solzhenitsyn makes up from year to year, and your right wing buddies repeat. These absurd numbers expose the abominable Western propaganda system. Isn’t a million executions bad enough? That’s what actually happened.

I don’t know and I don’t care about Kolyma. Soviet citizens didn’t die of treatable illnesses, and neither do Italians, Czechs, Swedes, Danes, British, Mexicans, Iranians, or Chinese. That’s a problem unique to the United States. It costs on the order of 10s of thousands of lives every year, and it continues until this day.

I witnessed people dying on the street daily in New York City. I can’t live in that kind of society, sorry. You can have your hell, and lie in it, but don’t blind yourself to your own damnation.


2017-09-29 on pj-media

I never heard of Kolyma, and, before you explain, I don’t need you to explain. My goal was not to defend the USSR system. I don’t support even the low level of arbitrary arrest and imprisonment post-Stalin. I am not a totalitarian, and I recognize the brutal repression of speech and writing in the USSR postwar. I know the chilling effect it had on speech, and I can see the consequence in the state of the humanities departments in the Eastern block, which unlike the science, was atrocious. Precisely because academics were not free to speak.

All I am saying is that the claims of right wingers that millions of people were in slave labor is a LIE. The claim that thousands of people were rounded up and shot is a LIE. The dissidents were abused and persecuted, and it’s terrible, but it simply wasn’t thousands of murders, and it doesn’t show up in population growth charts.

The end of the Soviet Union, however, DOES show up in population charts, as a catstrophic decline for two decades. That’s because people suddenly were unemployed, empoverished, without health-care, drug-addicted, prostituted, and generally miserable. It happens in the US too, it’s the steady drip-drip of death of the underinsured, the street-people, the drug-addicts.

That steady drip-drip is worse than anything that happened post-Stalin in the USSR, it is in fact, what is happening today in the former USSR. It doesn’t happen in sane social Democracies, let alone socialist states.

The health care in Soviet prison camps under Stalin was atrocious. We’re not talking about that. The only goal I have here is to correct your WRONG NUMBERS about the death toll of communism, and to correct your WRONG NUMBERS about the deaths from poverty in post-USSR Russia.

I have not looked at a single reference work in doing this, I have not looked at a single book, or web page, or literature source. I won’t do it either. Because it’s not a point you can sanely contest. I simply assert the true death toll, and repeat.


2017-09-29 on pj-media

You really don’t understand God or damnation. God exists, and is a Marxist.


2017-09-29 on pj-media

The USSR death toll post-Stalin simply does not exist. It wasn’t 10,000 people a year (like those dying of lack of health care today in the US), or 40,000 people a year (like those dying of health care before Obama), or 1,000 a year (dying of homelessness), or 10,000 a year from bad nutrition (obesity), or 1,000 a year shot by cops. It was 10 a year imprisoned for being dissidents.

I would not be imprisoned for anything as I do not live in America. But if I were too persuasive, I might get murdered by drone.

The USSR’s innovation in petroleum was immensely deep boreholes, which allows them to extract petroleum ANYWHERE. They could go to any country in the world, and find petroleum using their method. It’s because they had the right theory.


2017-09-29 on pj-media

I left the US Jan 20th 2017, idiot. My daughter’s mother is a Trump supporter, and a worse idiot than you. The numbers for those who die of preventable diseases is 40K annually before ACA, and I knew such people personally when I lived in the US. The USSR didn’t execute thousands of people at any point post-Stalin. They didn’t even arrest thousands of people. There were about 1,000 dissidents, each a celebrity in the West, and the imprisonment rate was one of the lowest in the world. The reason was just that there was no property crime, because, no property.


2017-09-29 on pj-media

There were an average of 1-10 political murders a year post-Stalin. There were an average of 1000 political prisoners postwar. In the 80s, there were zero, the USSR was a free country in 1985-1991, like Yugoslavia.

The Stalinist era dominates, and the numbers I give are accurate.

The figures of 10s of thousands of deaths in the US come simply from those who die from lack of medical care, That’s tens of thousands under the ACA, it was 40,000 annually in the 50s,60s,70s,80s,90s,2000s. That’s 2.8 million people dead, more than Stalin. Add to that the thousand of homeless deaths annually, the thousand deaths from obesity and poor nutrition, from suicide and drug abuse, then you get an idea of the toll of American capitalism. This toll is a comparative zero in Europe.

That stuff is not a fabrication, because I personally know several people who were dying of treatable illness due to lack of health care, i.e. poverty. There was no such death in the USSR until 1991.


2017-09-29 on pj-media

I love how you accept Soviet sources only when they are making a show-trial talking about hundreds of rapes by a public official, precisely when we know Soviet sources are LEAST reliable.

Officials don’t like to commit rape. They like to commit seduction, they commit sex. Like John F. Kennedy. Consensual random sex. It can be easily turned into rape accusations after the fact, so long as women don’t testify about rape. There was no testimony from victims, so I don’t accept the accusation.

Anothony Weiner’s crime is literally imaginary, he was having sex in his imagination. He didn’t actually have sex with anyone except his wife. The remaining people in Congress are the exact opposite. His trial was used to demonstrate the moral degeneracy of Jews, much as Marion Barry’s occasional drug was used to kill his career and demonstrate the degeneracy of Blacks. Get this through your head: other people’s sex lives or drug use are none of your goddamn business.

The reason I can’t get my daughter out is that her mother supports Trump. I know many people in my circles who supported Trump, I cut off all contact with those degenerates.

Americans don’t need to confiscate anything, I enjoy watching America turn into a third world country. The advice for confiscation is for the rest of the nations of the world.


2017-09-29 on pj-media

Marxism rejects the concept of damnation, but God doesn’t. I genuinely am sorry, nobody deserves to be damned.


2017-09-29 on pj-media

Sorry, the rape accusations against Beria are not believable, they are like the baby-smashing propaganda from the Yugoslav war. Let’s put it this way, unlike 1945 rapes in Berlin, for instance, I never saw interviews with victims. I am more inclined to believe that Richard Branson raped someone than I can believe that sexless Beria did. He was a torturer, so his victims made up sexual deviancy, as is common in victims of atrocity. People made up sexual deviancy stories for puritanical Hitler too.

Lysenkoism didn’t lead to crop failures. It was a way of introducing seed diversity. It worked in practice for miniscule gains, it was just junk in theory. The USSR breeding program was the model of the world, it produced the seeds of the agricultural revolution which saved the world. Fritz Haber wasn’t responsible for anything but nerve gas. The Soviets created the fertilizer/seed combination that saved the world from starvation.

The perks of the USSR high command were not material luxury. They were equivalent to a company car, a summer house, and being able to afford a fancy suit. This is equivalent to a high four-figure salary in the West. An elite precision machinist could match the salary and perks with assiduous saving.

There was no class system in the USSR, the leadership didn’t get into it for material gains. If they wanted that, they could just defect. Defectors like Korchnoi were showered with money and favors. They did it because they were true believers. The system collapsed when they stopped believing.

Your claims about the USSR are simply propaganda. The claims about the US are blind. The states with no paper trail are the ones with the exit poll disparities, and there is no possible way the elections are not distorted, as the exit poll discrepancies are one-sided, always favoring Republicans, in exactly those areas where one cannot verify. That’s not a conspiracy of voters to mislead pollsters, it’s systematic election rigging, now made worse by purging voter rolls and instituting mandatory unverifiable electronic voting. This is possible in any state with a Republican controlled election commission, and if you took out the election commissions of those states and beat them with sticks, I don’t know if that would be unjustified. They should certainly be jailed.

I have a daughter in the US, so I maintain my citizenship until I get her out. The US is no longer free, it is a police state worse than Tito’s Yugoslavia. To give you an example, Anthony Weiner was just sent to jail for imaginary sex-crimes. He was forced to tearfully recant in court, and the whole show-trial was tinged with atrocious anti-semitism.

The communist and the fascists were both fighting for what you would call the “White working-class voter”, the difference being that the fascists instituted a dictatorship of the bourgeoisie, what they called “class cooperation”, which means industrialists tell everyone else what to do. Communists took out all the rich people and shot them.

If I was forced to choose between American capitalism and taking out all the rich people and shooting them, I would have to choose the latter. But of course, we now know how to confiscate their wealth, peacefully, and put the rich folks in their proper place.


2017-09-29 on pj-media

The victims were not clustered, you are a liar. This is the type of self-serving fantasy right-wingers tell themselves. It’s anti-scientific, like flat Eartherism. The political victims were randomly scattered, the famine victims were regional, and like all famines, claimed elderly and children.

The number of people who died from Stalinism was about 3 million. The number of people who died in post-Soviet Russia was around 10 million. You are complicit, as you are involved, and I’m sorry, but it seems you are damned.


2017-09-29 on pj-media

You are a stupid American Republican, you have no idea about Stalin’s policies. The USSR didn’t do the insane stupid things China did, and the USSR warned China not to push with Maoist policies. Instead of listening to their comrades, the Chinese nearly started a war.

The supply of industrial tractors and new seeds in 1930s made the agricultural revolution possible. In addition, the “green revolution” of the 1950s and 1960s, which has been credited with saving billions of lives, this was largely a Soviet project. The Americans pretend they contributed.

The Cambodians were not communist in the Soviet sense, they were agrarian anti-technologists, following a splinter group of a splinter group of Maoists. The Soviet communists were Vietnam.

I am tired of repeating the same things again and again. Your mistakes are deep, and of principle, and you push propaganda against my corrections. I have explained to you what happened, it is up to you to say “Sorry for the idiocy, we goofed, we were making up millions of victims to make propapaganda”.

It’s really insulting to the millions of Jewish and Native American victims of actual holocausts to make up millions of victims. It is also insulting to the millions of people who died of capitalism in 1990s Russia. You are shameful people, with bankrupt ethics. American turd.


2017-09-29 on pj-media

Katyn is negligible in your figures. I explained to you that all your figures are propaganda. Your literature claims that dozens of millions died in the USSR from repression, two dozen million before 1945, and another dozens of millions after! This is outrageous fabrication.

As was pointed out, the demographic methods used in the USSR show that Hoover and Roosevelt killed 10 million Americans in the early 1930s. Hard times lead to deferred births, although a million Americans did die in the great depression, and a million die today, of opiod addiction, or lack of medical care, i.e. from poverty.

Khruschev didn’t admit the Katyn massacre was Soviet, but he did a fair internal review of the 1932 famine and of Stalin’s cult of personality, and the attendant executions in the party. This is sufficient to include 98% of all the murders, the figures don’t change by a factor of 10 or 100 because of it.

I said it once, I’ll explain it again. 2 million people died of starvation in 1932. Half a million people were executed in 1932, and another half a million in 1937. That’s the end of the significant mass murder in the USSR. The rest is fabrication by propagandists.

I knew you were an American from the beginning. I only maintain my American citizenship because I have a daughter in the US, and I intend to stay an American until I get her out.


2017-09-29 on pj-media

The cause of death in post 1991 USSR was POVERTY. The same cause of death for tens of thousands of Americans every year. Death by poverty was nonexistent in the postwar USSR.

The deaths under Stalin were 2 million famine deaths, half a million shot in 1932 and another half-million in 1937. Every other death is negligible in number compared to these catastrophes. They showed up in the 1937 census, and that’s why it was scrubbed.

The little black book is a fabrication, and if you don’t acknowledge the numbers I gave as roughly accurate, you are a propagandist and a liar.


2017-09-29 on pj-media

30,000 (Katyn) is much much less than 500,000 (1937 executions) or 300,000 (1932 executions), or 2 million (1932 famine deaths). The death toll of Soviet communism is 2 million famine deaths and a million people shot, all in Stalin’s time, with all other eras negligible. The death toll is nothing like the 1990s, which was an actual holocaust in Russia, with millions of people dying from poverty. These are the correct numbers. I said it, I will repeat it. You have no counterargument, because you have no other mass deaths except in your imagination. All your millions of victims are imaginary.

The achievement of the USSR is that it created jobs for everyone at a fair wage. It industrialized and matched the science and research and technology of the West, for the most part. It was more advanced in materials, but less advanced in microfabrication (although it was catching up). It was more advanced in petroleum (by light years), but less advanced in pollution controls.

But the reason there was any competition at all is because the West immediately adopted socialist methods alongside the USSR, in 1932 for the economic wealth distribution, and in 1957 for science funding. All the major problems of concentration of power in the USSR appeared in the West as well.


2017-09-29 on pj-media

Post 1991 was “my day”, I wasn’t an undergraduate until 1991. I studied the USSR from my US high school, for history projects. Every era was better than my day, which was objectively the worst.

Einstein was a “Marxist” in the sense of following Marx. He wasn’t a Leninist, he was a Marxist like modern Marxists, like myself.

There were no millions of deaths in the USSR, this is your FANTASY. There were about 2 million deaths in 1932, and half a million shootings in 1932 and 1937. That’s Stalin’s death toll, and it SWAMPS the rest.

I say it, without sources, I repeat it, without authority, and I stay right. All your citations, all your authority can’t change it, because these are objective facts about objective numbers.

There is no point in academics in the US, there are Republican idiots who took it over. In some sense, it’s a relief, because the US was becoming too powerful acedemically, as it poached former Soviet universities.


2017-09-28 on pj-media

Western Academia is generally useless until Einstein and Dirac, the radical Marxist socialists, took it over. I am a physicist by training, and my standards for academics is that they be at least aware of Marx, Einstein, Turing, and follow Mach positivism.

The academic work from the 19th century is dated and worthless, and post 1991, American leftists were purged, so most of the new humanities stuff is worthless as well. The feminists were gone, the solid economists were replaced by Chicago school fantasists. The Marxists historians like DuBois and Foner were out, replaced by a new generation of fascist story-tellers. It’s all garbage.

There is no sound academic work without Marxists around to at least advise you. American academics tolerated the bourgeois clowns, so these eventually took over and drove out the serious people.


2017-09-28 on pj-media

The 1937 census was scrubbed because it showed the 1932 famine. That’s the only serious demographic drop in the USSR from the repression. It is swamped by the 1990s catastrophe, from capitalism. I am telling you the truth about the death tolls. The worst death toll by far was 1991-2000.


2017-09-28 on pj-media

When I say “I don’t know” I mean “I don’t know”. I don’t mean “I am trying to propagandize for Stalin” I mean “I didn’t read about it, and I only have vague secondhand crap to go by”. I could believe Stalin signed the order, it’s totally in line with what happened in 1944 in Eastern-Europe. I can also believe that the Germans did it. I didn’t look into it, because I was only interested in Soviet economics and culture, not in the war. I accept your research is accurate. It doesn’t change anything regarding death tolls, because all these war murders are swamped by the famine deaths in 1932.


2017-09-28 on pj-media

Lysenkoism was NOT an “utter dead end”! You have no idea how complicated biology is. Lysenkoist THEORY is wrong, but Lysenkoist METHODS worked to produce winter-ready seeds. Nobody knows to this day how it works in detail, or how well it works. But it did produce winter-hardy seeds by exposing plants to cold! That’s the problem— it was crap theory, but it worked in practice for limited gains. That’s why it took forever to get discredited. It’s also why Stalin just sided with the guy who got results over the people who knew theory. Lysenko actually produced winter seeds, the theorists who opposed him just knew that his theory was wrong. It’s a difficult situation. Some went to jail over this, others lost jobs, I don’t believe anyone was executed (not justifying the repression, of course), it didn’t rise to the level of an execution crime.

If you actually knew chemistry, you wouldn’t fall for the nonsense you read. There is Kerogen, which has Nitrogen and Oxygen (like all living things), and there is Tar-sands oil which is just long C-H chains. They don’t look alike chemically. Tar-sands “kerogen” (it’s not kerogen, but your idiot pseudo-scientists call it that) is just dehydrogenated petroleum. Real Kerogen is biological residue. There is no link between them, and all petroleum is C-H chains without Nitrogen or Oxygen, and can’t come from living things.

Further, Petroleum is produced in the USSR from boreholes which go down 30 km, where living things have never been buried. That’s one smoking gun. In addition, these deposits are contaminated with HELIUM, which is produced from alpha-decay. All commercial Helium is produced as a byproduct of petroleum extraction. Alpha decay is Uranium, Thorium, the stuff in the MANTLE, not the stuff in the crust.

There is absolutely no shred of evidence for the biological theory, this was understood in the USSR in the 60s. The oil companies are not engaged in conspiracy, they simply continue with their bullshit by inertia and based on who the successful people were in finding oil that’s easy to exploit. That is, just like Lysenkoism. It’s structural corruption.

The USSR was equally and arguably more advanced than the US in nuclear physics. Nuclear physics is usually a mess, but if you are a physicist (that’s my field), the Soviet contribution is obviously the greatest of any country. Physics was the Soviet science par-excellence.

I am sorry, but you simply made up the millions of victims. They don’t exist. There were famine victims in 1932, and about a million people shot in 1932 and 1937. The rest was usual state blundering. You don’t know the USSR, and you listen to propagandists.

String theory is partly Soviet, and wholly leftist. It was started in the USSR as S-matrix theory, and in Berkeley as “New Age Leftist physics”. It was suppressed because of it’s Soviet and leftist origins. Likewise for inflation theory, which is Soviet, Lasers (Soviet), Liquid He research (Soviet), Dispersion relations (Soviet), Conformal Field theory (Soviet), Chaos theory (Soviet), Computational Complexity Theory (Soviet), I could go on all day. Scientific progress in the hard-sciences mostly depended on the USSR for inspiration. The end of the USSR coincided with a dearth of inspiration.

Jesus is pushing Platonic philosophy of afterlife into Jewish religion. It’s a Jewish-Greek hybrid.


2017-09-28 on pj-media

I don’t need any sources at all! If 20 million people died, I would be able to see it by polling about 5 Russians and Ukrainian acquaintances and hearing about their starving and murdered relatives and acquaintances. 20 million people is a limited nuclear war. It’s a catastrophe. It’s what you see in post-Soviet Russia in the 90s, where every Russian knows someone who died of alcoholism, suicide, or drug-overdose. Every single one has multiple victims in their network. Because it actually was a holocaust.

You see, I did this poll, with dozens of Russians and Ukrainians (I make a point of asking them about family history in the 1930s every time I meet one), and I know the order of magnitude of the death quite precisely. It’s of the order of “I knew someone whose coworker disappeared”, and “I heard about hungry people here and there.” Using no sources at all! Of course, it matches the 1980s figures compiled by responsible people, and not the stupid propaganda in that little black book. The figures I give are accurate. No matter how many books and sources you cite, they remain accurate.


2017-09-28 on pj-media

Listen, you dipstick, I am not a communist, I am being honest, not trying to push the system. Yugoslavia’s elections past the first one (which was certified by the UN as fair) were NOT fair, as the opposition had no access to media, and Tito instituted one-party rule. He JAILED Djilas for many years, he resisted nationalist leaders and shut down free-speech in the 1970s. But the economy was worker owned, industry was owned by worker unions, plant by plant, and central planning was abandoned in favor of decentralized Marxist socialism. This system led Yugoslavia to be the second best performing economy of the 1960s (after Japan), and the economy was the star of the East. This is why Dubcek wanted to copy it in Prague, and why the Hungarians introduced Gulash communism int he 70s (and also broke free of the growth constraints of central planning). Gorbachev was doing the same in the USSR in the 80s. The liberalism is compared to other communist countries. Yugoslavia in the 60s, 70s, and 80s, was approximately as free as today’s US, although not as free as the 1970s US, or Britain, or Italy.

The elections in Italy and Greece were shut down by the US and British because the communists were poised to take a majority. I would not vote for them, but they were popular in 1946, because the Nazis showed the endpoint of capitalism, much as Trump does today.

The claims you are making about rigged elections are absurd in a communist election— you can’t have a free election when the opposition doesn’t have access to media. It’s always going to be 90/10.

Regarding American elections, your elections have been distorted since 2001, when exit-polls and results first diverged significantly (in Florida). By 2004, the exit poll discrepancy spread to Ohio, and by 2012, it affected a half-dozen states (although it didnt change the outcome). Today, the exit poll discrepancies are so regular, that they changed the formula for the exit polls.

There is no “Shy Tory” effect, exit polls are anonymous. This is a fabrication to disguise election tampering.

It is extremely difficult to hold fair elections in a communist country, because of the ability of capitalists to finance people who wish to dismantle the system. An example of such an attempt was Ortega in the 80s, when American advertizers ran a campaign based on his Rolex, not based upon his policy. Free elections work best when there is no individual able to buy them out, foreign or domestic.

So I am sympathetic to the difficulties of elections in socialist states. But it is possible, barely. You need to institute careful controls of spending and money sources, and you need to instill a deep awareness of the importance of socialism in the population. Then you can avoid the attacks from outside.

But in addition to these attacks from outside, there is the usual mismanagment and cronyism that accompanies socialist rule.

The leaders of the USSR were not wealthy in any material sense. Including all the perks of office, they made the equivalent of a high four-figure salary in the west. It was the resentment of their relative low pay and perks that were a major motivation to switch to capitalism in the 80s. Stalin wasn’t wealthy, and neither was Khruschev, Brezhnev, or Politburo members.

Tito, on the other hand, was wealthy. This distinction was not lost on the Soviets, who saw Yugoslavian worker-ownership as a way to sneak in a capitalism for the ruling class.


2017-09-28 on pj-media

It wasn’t a “manmade” famine exactly, it’s a collectivization famine. When I say “Westerners”, I mean “Bourgeois”, I don’t care if they are ethnically Russian, the Russian bourgeoisie is just as stupid as the American one. The 1932 famine was the shortest collectivization famine, it only lasted one year, which means it took about 2 million lives, which is a terrible estimate. I get it from demographic data. It could be 4 million, it could be a hundred thousand, it’s extremely hard to tell, because demographic data is terrible to source and very hard to convert to famine effects.

The stuff you find in post-Soviet Russia is stupid. The Katyn massacre is weird, who knows what happened. I genuinely don’t know who killed those poles. The transfer of Germans postwar killed half a million Germans, as was acknowledged in Khruschev’s time.


2017-09-28 on pj-media

Regarding the “Black Book”, the number of starvation victims in 1932 is about 2 million, let’s say 4 million (just to be on the safe side), the number of victims in the great leap forward is 30 million (let’s say 40 million, just to be safe), and these swamp everything else by an order of magnitude. That’s the end of the Black Book.


2017-09-28 on pj-media

Lysenkoism was opposed by many prominent Soviet geneticists (obviously) and by 1970 was entirely discredited, as the USSR began serious genetic work. They never caught up with the West in this field.

Oil never comes from living things. This was proposed in the USSR in the 1950s, during the All-Union push for petrochemical sources, the Stalin version of the Manhattan project, it was tested and debated throughout the 1960s, and it become dogma by 1970, as deep boreholes proved the theory correct beyond the level required for scientific certainty.

Although the Soviets weren’t keen for stupid Westerners to catch up, some people did try to publish these findings in the West. They were universally heckled and derided. It is still dogma to this day that there is a biological source for petroleum. This is a pure lie. Petroleum is formed in the mantle, from methane, whose source is the same as the methane of Titan, it’s primordial. It is more correct to say life is a petroleum product than to say that petroleum is produced by living things. The chain of formation only goes one way.

But because oil science is not public, it is nearly all in the hands of a heirarchical oil industry, this is impossible to say.

Similar Capitalist stupidity in the West is “Global Warming denial”, “IQ”, “String Theory is Bullshit”, and all the other flat-Earth level denials of Soviet scientific advances. Reading Soviet science is like reading Hellenistic science in the Roman Empire— it’s a lost world that makes you weep for the civilization that has just been lost forever.

Like the Greeks had Jesus to spread the philosophy to the world, albeit in mutated form, the Soviets will need their Jesus.


2017-09-28 on pj-media

you are using wrong figures. Stalin’s murder was not visible in population statistics, only the 1932 registers. Barely. Because it was only one year. You listen to propaganda, instead of demographers.


2017-09-28 on pj-media

The elections in Yugoslavia were certified as fair by observers, and the level of popular support for Tito’s rule was at 70% from opinion polling, mostly because the opposition were the fascists, who were just defeated. Tito maintained popularity by breaking with Stalin and instituting massive economic reform, created by radical leftists Djilas and Kardelj, who are the two heroes among communist leaders. Those guys actually implemented the only true Marxist government anywhere in the world.

Tito’s steps toward liberalization were only possible because the economic growth and trust in the system meant the citizens were not on the verge of rebellion. Yugoslavia remained a model socialist state until it’s dissilusion in 1990 into that genocidal civil war.

VIetnam’s government was not as liberal as Yugoslavia.

Regarding fair elections, it is difficult for me to accept accusations of vote-rigging from a country where exit polling regularly diverges from official results in ways that always favor Republicans (or, in the case of the recent Democratic primary, Hillary Clinton). The elections in Yugoslavia and Vietnam reflected popular will.

Vietnam’s government has governed relatively responsibly, including liberalizing it’s economy, and allowing for investment and growth. I would prefer if it were more socialist, but it is very difficult to organize large-scale economic projects without billionaires pulling the strings.

The entire USSR infrastructure was a miracle, as it was constructed without a single billionaire getting involved, all by technocrats. The issue of lack of competition, stifling bureaucracy, lack of innovation, should have been fixed by the Kosygin reform. But since it was a decentralizing reform, it wasn’t taken until Gorbachev’s time, by which time the bourgeoisie reformed and overthrew the whole government.


2017-09-28 on pj-media

Ho Chi Minh wasn’t using terror to rig the vote, the Vietnamese generally preferred Ho Chi Minh to the West. It’s like Tito in Yugoslavia, who won 70% of the vote. Nobody wanted Western puppets anymore.


2017-09-28 on pj-media

Oh dear me! What would I do in the US? If I wanted it to succeed, I would probably first put Dick Cheney in prison for murder, censure Obama for like, reduce military spending to zero, raise upper-bracket taxes to very high level, institute laws to regulate equity sharing in hiring and rent, so that all renters eventually became owners. I would institute a progressive corporate income tax (big corporations pay a hell of a lot more tax than small ones), progressive personal income tax, medicare for all, universal public education. I would go on a draconian anti-trust spree, breaking up Walmart, Comcast, Verizon, into competing firms. I would institute mandatory union laws, to require unionization at all large workplaces, I would forbid ownership of stock by those who work in a publicly traded company, I would subsidize and encourage worker-owned co-ops (using the equity sharing regulations, worker co-op private corporations, not publicly traded ones), and I would generally make sure any imports to the US must be made with employees paid at least half US minimum wage.

But I don’t want the US to succeed, so I would just vote Republican and ensure pure capitalism.


2017-09-28 on pj-media

I support pure capitalism for the US. Those who live by the sword deserve to die by the sword.


2017-09-28 on pj-media

The black book of communism is a fabrication. This is not contestable by any serious researcher. The analog of Lysenkoism in the West is your belief that oil comes from living things. The difference is that Lysenkoism ended in the USSR as science self-corrected after Stalin’s death, while in the West, the science never self-corrects, due to the influence of capitalists.


2017-09-28 on pj-media

I am not a Stalinist either. I am just an honest student, correcting you propagandized American nonsense. If I were to vote, I would vote against a communist party, and for a European socialist party.


2017-09-28 on pj-media

I know you are an American, I can always identify them by the level of stupid. I also hold American citizenship, to my shame, and I lived and studied in your country for 30 years before it disintegrated, so I know the pathetic level of your academic discourse.

Ethnic minorities in the USSR were universally treated better than they are in America. There was formal equality on paper, with some discrimination against Jews (but not, say, against Uzbeckis). The “liquidation of the autonamous Jewish Oblast” was a failed experiment that was shut down, not a murder project. There were no significant camps after Stalin died, and at no point were the camps a significant contributor to Russia’s labor pool. The main labor was all free labor, seduced for this project or that, using money incentives.

The way you can figure out how many people died in 1932 is by reviewing statistics for how many people starved and were shot. Quoting you “… the population was still breeding at replacement rate or well above, so you don’t get a good sense of the death tolls simply by subtracting one headcount from year to year to another…” That’s exactly how Ukrainian mortality in 1932 was estimated, by subtraction. It assumed all internal migration was a death, that every lost birth was a death.

The USSR had no significant population losses outside of 1932, nothing to compare to 1990s Russia, which actually suffered a holocaust. You invented the figures, you made them up and manipulated them, and now you repeat them, with propagandistic intent.

I am not a true believer in totalitarianism, but I am a true believer in academic honesty. You lack it.


2017-09-28 on pj-media

What you mean is “I wish honest people were censored”. You’ll likely get your wish.


2017-09-28 on pj-media

The retard is all from the right. You are apologists for capitalist lies.


2017-09-28 on pj-media

How many times do I need to say it? I am not a communist! I am a socialist, just like Orwell. Orwell hated Capitalists more than he hated Stalinists, something you forget.


2017-09-28 on pj-media

Reading “The Gulag Archipelago” as historical is like reading Atwood’s “The Handmaid’s Tale” and using it to infer how women lived in mid-80s New England. It’s a dystopia, written by a man who became a fascist, it had nothing to do with Soviet reality. I haven’t read anything published since 1991, and I don’t intend to read anything further. The objective information which became available in the late 80s has been polluted by the bourgeois idiot takeover of Western academia. Almost everything you read past 1991 is pure propaganda.


2017-09-28 on pj-media

I lived in the US, and there was a systematic project, still ongoing, to remove all the leftists. You don’t see it, because you’re part of it. The leftists are the only good researchers, because Marx founded the modern humanities. Removing leftists from humanities departments is like removing Newtonians from physics departments, and putting back Aristotelians.


2017-09-28 on pj-media

That is not true. They acknowledged all his murders. It is Westerners with property who made up millions of deaths by counting every person whose property was confiscated as a death.


2017-09-27 on pj-media

Mao didn’t starve 20 million people to death. Mao starved 30 million people to death. Not with his “five year plan”, that’s industry, but with his collectivization during the “great leap forward”. I get the figure from demographic data, 60 million people are gone, which is usually half deferred births, half deaths, so I divide by two (that’s also what I do with Ukraine famine). I also can confirm the widespread death from conversations with Chinese relatives, who witness whole villages starving to death in this era. It was the worst famine since the Capitalist Indian famine, or the Irish Potato Famine.

One reason is that Mao was far more incompetent at industrial planning than Stalin, Stalin’s infrastructure supplied factory farming tools to the Kolkhoz’s to remediate the famine, and they had a good harvest in 1933 (thank God). So the USSR collectivization famine only lasted one year, and that was the last famine. Mao’s famine lasted three years straight. That’s how you get such huge mass deaths.

No communist country adopted collectivization after the experience in China and the USSR. Instead, they prefer to divide property among peasants in individually owned plots. This has the advantage of being more efficient for farming, but the disadvantage is that it doesn’t free up a huge labor force for industrial projects. The point of Stalin’s collectivization was to free up labor.

Mao’s famine is the worst crime of communist regimes. Mao was stupid enough to have no idea why it was happening.


2017-09-27 on pj-media

Your claims are a hodgepodge of truth and Western fiction. First, most of the claims you make are reasonable, and supportable, so I have nothing against you most of the time. The one exception is “dozens of millions”. There are no dozens of millions as a quick survey of Russians and Ukrainians can show you. There were on the order of a million famine deaths in 1932, and half a million executions in 1932 and another half-million executions in 1937, and THAT’S IT. That’s bad enough.

The Soviet Union formed in 1921 or 1922, pre-USSR the population did decline. The Leninist government in the immediate post-war years was fighting a civil war, and confiscated grain and property. The famine was a result of mismanagment during “War communism”, but “War communism” was not a coherent econmic policy. Once the USSR formed, Lenin stabilized the currency by issuing gold backed bills, and stabilized the economy by legalizing capitalism.

The famine during 1921 was a result of war, and was acknowledged and remediated. The famine in 1932 was a result of confiscation of lands, and the revolt was in response to the confiscation of land, not in response to famine. Stalin redirected food away from revolting areas, so as to subdue them. But the famine was widespread, it affected many areas.

The “work camps” of the USSR post Stalin were negligible, and had nothing to do with the productivity of the USSR economy. You have to understand that Americans are SO STUPID, they believe that the USSR was run by slave labor in Kulak farms. They have no idea how people found jobs or got paid in USSR, how the labor assignments worked, how pricing worked, they don’t know anything. So they imagine a gigantic slave labor system. It’s into this mythical nonsense in the Westerner’s mind that the Gulag Archipelago plugs in.

Your claims about Lenin’s famine are reasonable, but I believe they are wrong. My goal here is not to debate the finer points of pre-Soviet history, just to remove the obvious propaganda from the comments here.

The claims I made about Soviet population growth can be easily supported. There was a decline in 1932, due to famine, the obvious war-causalties in WWII, and that’s it for obvious demographic drops. The post-Soviet declines are also easily seen in a chart of post-Soviet population of every Soviet province, and most ex-communist Eastern European states.


2017-09-27 on pj-media

Stalin was a criminal. Just not in the way described in the Western propaganda. In the way described by Khrushev and Gorbachev.


2017-09-27 on pj-media

Because I agree with Djilas, Dubcek, Kosygin, and other communist dissidents. The socialist figures I admire are not Leninists, but socialists like Atlee, people who didn’t impose their ideas by dictatorship, but by persuasion.

The New York Times is not leftist, it is writing about communism because it is trying to preserve historical memory. It is doing so badly, from a bourgeois point of view.

The thing to remember about communism is that the science, education, health care, and wage-compensation system were much much better than what you have in the west. The rest was terrible.


2017-09-27 on pj-media

Kulaks were not killed, they were “exterminated as a class”, meaning their property was confiscated and they went to a city and got a job, or to a factory farm. The Kulaks that were killed were the ones who decided to protect their farm from confiscation with rifles. There were a few hundred thousand of these, this is the Ukrainian revolt. They refused to have their property confiscated.


2017-09-27 on pj-media

You have no actual leftist teachers in the US. They were all purged.


2017-09-27 on pj-media

He said it, but he didn’t mean it was a good thing. Stalin wasn’t out to kill millions, he genuinely thought he was building socialism, like Mao. He also studied very hard. The monstrosity of his rule was basically the same as any other brutal dictatorship, it wasn’t unique. The thing that was unique was the management ideas, which didn’t come from Stalin, but from millions of Soviet citizens desperately trying to industrialize, win a war, and build consumer goods. Those ideas weren’t terrible, some were copied in the West.


2017-09-27 on pj-media

I didn’t study the archives directly, of course. I just read the academic stuff coming out, and whatever Soviet press I could get my hands on. I am not a primary researcher. But the literature was polluted with propaganda starting in the mid 1990s, with the “Black Book of Communism” and similar fabrications.

I believe that there is such a thing as facts, and that one must be honest, even when you don’t like a system. Soviet communism was very interesting— it ran a huge economy top down as if it were a single corporation. It had a labor system which was in some sense an efficient free market (prices floated to attract the right number of people), the science was excellent, better than the West in most areas, and the general progressive idea was infectious. It was a very interesting country, and definitely what came after 1991 in Russia was a step backward.


2017-09-27 on pj-media

I was criticizing the Vietnamese government for insufficient respect for diversity. This was a problem in the USSR sometimes too, but less so.


2017-09-27 on pj-media

They were exterminated like the Jews in Europe, ten million farmers in 1800 were turned into 300,000 nomads in 1900.


2017-09-27 on pj-media

In a colonial situation, it’s easy to see who the collaborators are— they’re the ones receiving tons of money from France and USA for services rendered. In a colonial war of independence, those people are executed. It’s what you did to Benedict Arnold. British sympathizers weren’t treated too well in 1790. I don’t support the death penalty, and if Arnold was sent to a re-education camp (i.e. prison), it would have been more humane.


2017-09-27 on pj-media

I am not a communist, you dick. I am just correcting propaganda.


2017-09-27 on pj-media

Those were collaborators, and sorry, they deserved punishment, although I don’t support the death penalty. Ten years of prison sounds fair.


2017-09-27 on pj-media

I didn’t say they never hurt anyone, I just dispute your claim that they engaged in Stalinist type crimes. Vietnam, like Cuba, and most post-Stalin communist states avoided the worst of Stalinism. All except China, which had Mao, who repeated Stalinism over a bigger popultion.


2017-09-27 on pj-media

The Gulag Archielago is pure fiction, it has no relation to reality. I skimmed it. The good book by Solzhenitsyn was “A Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich”, which is an accurate portrayal of Stalinist prison, and which was admired by Khruschev for that reason. Read that book, it’s worth it.

The Gulag Archipelago was propaganda for Westerners. It was hated in the USSR, because the author stopped being a truthteller and was only interesed in revenge against the state which imprisoned him, like Ivan Denisovich. Sozhenitsyn was destroyed by hate and Naziism.


2017-09-27 on pj-media

Your claims are absurd. It’s like claiming that all the Spanish speaking Mexicans in the territory conquered in the Mexican American war were slaughtered and destroyed, because they all speak English now and are American citizens. They just assimilated to the majority culture.

It’s not like the Native Americans, who actually were exterminated, by being herded onto lands which could not support their numbers, and removing the Buffalo.

This thing you are pointing out in Vietnam is a cultural domination problem, not genocide exactly, but cultural imposition, and it has nothing to do with extermination of people, and everything to do with government monoculture and lack of diversity.


2017-09-27 on pj-media

Then why do you get everything wrong? I mean, it’s not hard to be level-headed about communist history. It wasn’t great even without the embellishments and propaganda.


2017-09-27 on pj-media

They collaborated with the French. And I wouldn’t call it extermination.


2017-09-27 on pj-media

No, I have not been, as I was too young. Of course it caused a shudder! Those “few” deaths were millions of people! It led to the collapse of the government, and the deaths of many more millions of people.


2017-09-27 on pj-media

I support the punishment of collaborators. That happened in Yugoslavia too. Anyone who worked with the Americans in Vietnam deserved to be jailed, of course. Like those who collaborated with the Nazis in Yugoslavia.


2017-09-27 on pj-media

The famine under Lenin was not “forced”, nobody suggests that. The famine that people say was “forced” was the 1932 famine, during the revolt against collectivization, under Stalin, during the first five-year plan. Get your history straight.

Also, in 1921, the Soviet Union was not yet socialist. It teetered between different economic systems, first hyperinflation and “war communism”, then NEP (capitalism). The Soviet Union became a socialist state in 1930, with the end of NEP and the start of the first five year plan.

I am not a Stalinist. I just know my history. I actually studied it, in the 80s, in school. When the archives opened up under Gorbachev, and everyone got excited.


2017-09-27 on pj-media

There was a famine in 1932 in Ukraine and the wider USSR, due to collectivization, but it wasn’t accompanied by widespread cannibalism. The pictures you are showing are from the earlier 1921 famine. This was used in the Hearst yellow press in 1932 as anti-Soviet propaganda. The famine was real however, and it’s effects were analyzed in the Gorbachev era. The number of victims is extremely hard to determine, because the victims of famine are generally children and the elderly, which are hard to disentangle from natural deaths and postponed births, which also happen during the same period. I would guess 2 million victims is accurate, half the demographic drop (which includes postponed births).


2017-09-27 on pj-media

Vietnam didn’t have any cleansing, and it was Vietnam who saved Cambodia by invading it when the crimes of the Khmer Rouge became intolerable.


2017-09-27 on pj-media

Sorry, I was ignoring them. But USSR population grew after, there was a baby boom there too.


2017-09-27 on pj-media

That’s not the main reason for the population decline. It’s only a few million people. The main reason is early mortality, due to alcoholism and despair. Life expectancy in Russia in the 90s dropped to the mid-50s.


2017-09-27 on pj-media

I just know the history, man. I studied it in the late 80s, when the archives were opened up. All the nonsense you believe is Western propaganda.


2017-09-27 on pj-media

The Gulag of your imagination is a Western myth. The prison system in Stalin’s time wasn’t used for labor, it was used as prison. There was no real gulag after Stalin, the crimes of the state were firing people unfairly from jobs, blacklisting them, imprisoning people in mental institutions and rarely forcibly drugging them.


2017-09-27 on pj-media

No, people in communist Russia generally believed in progress. Deaths from alcoholism and suicide or general despair were extremely rare, as the country was visibly improving every year.

The communist state was not a system of slavery. You were free to choose your job, and applications for going to different places were generally not that hard to get. It was just overbearing and relatively empoverished, not slave-like.


2017-09-27 on pj-media

No, it was real communism. I am not a communist exactly, just explaining the figures.

The 1921 famine was the cannibal one. The 1932 one was much more limited, it was the response to collectivization and a revolt against land-seizure in Ukraine. The goal of this was to get people to come to cities to build industry, and it worked. The 1933 harvest was good, and the famine ended.

As I said, I am not an apologist for communism, I think I have a rather fair view of it as my family lived under it. I am just explaining the figures and history, because the media is full of ridiculous propaganda.


2017-09-27 on pj-media

No it didn’t. The gulags and purges consumed about half a million people in 1932 (Ukrainian revolt) and another half-million in 1937 (great purge), but that was nothing like the end of communism, where literally tens of millions of people died, and Russia’s population declined drastically. The Ukrainian famine claimed an indeterminate number of victims, perhaps 2 million, but the population growth after the end of the first five-year plan disguised this.


2017-09-26 on pj-media

Communist USSR grew in population every year except the famine year of 1932. It was post-communist Russia that lost tens of millions of people from premature death, to alcoholism, suicide, general despair.


2017-09-24 on misesinstitute

Stop with the apocalyptic bullshit and start working for progressive change.


2017-09-22 on misesinstitute

I am not afraid of divine retribution. Fundamentalist damnation is something that God reserves for the fundamentalist religious.

Religion and faith requires much more careful reasoning than anything else, because you are working in a domain where exact proof is difficult. It is not good enough to follow the past, because all past ideas are imperfect, as all of them are man made. When people say texts are “divinely inspired”, they don’t mean that they are omniscient or perfect, simply that they contain within them a spark of an immortal idea, like a work of Shakespeare is immortal, and so contains a spark of God.

The nature of God is difficult to understand, except if you are a fundamentalist, in which case you got it all wrong. God is not a magician with a magic wand, as the current Pope has explained. God is a very abstract idea.

The proper view is of a limiting structure, a sort of super-entity, a super-smart brain which tells everyone what to do, so as to act perfectly morally.

Such an entity emerges when entities play games with one another, and strive to make their collective decisions coherently with mutual recognition that they need to work together. This monotheism, the idea of everyone ultimately working together, means that they are supposed to make their decisions as if an infinitely wise agent who knows everything about everyone is telling everyone what to do.

To make this idea precise, you should explore the concept of superrationality in game theory. When you believe that all decisions in all games must be made superrationally, and universally so, so monotheistically superrationally, then you realize that people are to act in accordance with the will of a super-agent who doesn’t play any games, but stands on top of everything, defining absolute goodness.

This entity is mathemtically consistent, but it is a limiting idea. So the only way we acquire knowledge of God is through debate. Hegel defined the notion of progressive debate, where ideas fight it out, and the best ideas survive, while the worst ideas are lost, and theses and antitheses merge together to produce progress. The progress defines a limiting idea of God in the infinite future.

Marx’s religious idea was to take Hegel’s teleology and apply it to society. He imminentized the eschaton, he made heaven a future time, where people would act in accordance with God’s will. Except, since this is not the supernatural view of God, he didn’t even call it God, he just called it “communism”. This idea of striving toward a harmonious society, was Marx’s starting point.

He then criticized capitalism by pointing out that capital accumulation is incompatible with ideas of economic equilibrium, and eventually leads to deep and permanent depression, where workers get paid less and less, and all capital is concetrated in a small owner class. He identified the struggle between the owner and worker class as the fundamental Hegelian battle of his time, and of ours.

His progressive idea is that the workers must win this battle. He didn’t say that this is historically necessary exactly, he said it is possible that the capitalists will triumph. Marx just explained that in this case, the result is calamitous ruination for everyone, worker and capitalist both.

The identification of God within the Marxist scheme was begun by Lunacharsky. These ideas were suppressed by Lenin, and only gradually revived after Stalin’s death. The USSR was more horrible to sincere progressive Marxists as it was to former capitalists, who mostly were able to maneuver themselves into positions of power in the party, at least after Stalin’s time.


2017-09-16 on misesinstitute

The Black Book of Communism is stupid, I read it. I gave you the correct numbers — about 35 million famine deaths, and about 2.5 million people shot. There is no reasonable dispute about these numbers, except to within 40%, and your sources are not scholarly.

“Jesus” or “Yesus” (his name appears in Greek, not Hebrew) is a figure associated with the Epistle to Philemon, which eliminated ancient slavery.

You are right that every belief system does not have equal measure. Marxism is the one ordained by God.


2017-09-12 on misesinstitute

The “100 million people” is made-up nonsense. 30 million people died in Mao’s collectivization famine, maybe 2-5 million in Stalin’s collectivization famine, it’s hard to be sure because famines are hard to estimate, because there are also deferred births in addition to deaths. But the numbers I give are accurate to best reconstruction. These are the biggest death tolls. The number executed under Stalin is about 750,000, including Kulaks and other “enemies”, and that’s terrible enough. Mao didn’t execute people so much, he “re-educated” them, so the terror was a different kind. The rest of the nonsense is made up figures by irresposible and stupid people. Cambodia wasn’t communist, it was invaded by the Vietnamese, who were. A serious account would say “2.5 million executed, about 35 million starved”, which is roughly the death toll for capitalism in the Indian famines, or the Irish potato famine. I am not justifying either evil.

I believe in Marxism in a religion, it’s MY religion, but I also believe in separation of church and state. I don’t believe in theocracy, and the USSR was a theocracy, with the communist party taking up the role of church. That’s exactly how it operated.

The reference to Jesus being a manifestation of God is from Richard Carrier’s marvelous new work “On the Historicity of Jesus”, which explains what Jesus is, and why he is God.

God gave the world Karl Marx, what Lenin, Stalin and Mao did is an abomination. On the other hand, there were Lunacharsky, Kosygin, Kardelj, Dubcek, and other real leftists in communist states, and I prefer to side with them over the abominable and the strong.

Because I LISTEN to Jesus, and side with the weak and the powerless against the strong. I suggest you do the same. You can do better than an atheist, can’t you?


2017-09-12 on misesinstitute

Marxism is religion made material, and that is not a criticism, it is a sign that it comes from God. God will now allow only atheists into heaven.


2017-09-12 on misesinstitute

Jesus wasn’t an earthly man, he was a manifestation of God. Peter and Paul both left writings. The most powerful instruction bequeathed by God to mankind is Marxism,


2017-07-15 on cinema-crazed

“Sausage Party” is a concise and precise summary of all that the United States of America stands for. It should be required before citizenship, it is a precise summary of what the USA is all about.


2017-07-15 on visualcapitalist

Abiotic oil is not really a theory anymore, it was demonstrated to be correct in the 1960s USSR, and it became dogma there (correctly). There is no such thing as biological petroleum, all of it is abiotic, none of it comes from ancient life.


2017-06-14 on spectator-new-blogs

Your argument IS more persuasive. It is also objectively wrong. Being wrong doesn’t stop it from being persuasive, like all untruths which come with the pedigree of an elite class.


2017-06-14 on spectator-new-blogs

On the contrary, you can’t read Dr. Faustus, Edward II, or Jew of Malta, and not see they were written by the same author as Richard III, Henry VI parts I, II, III, Titus Andronicus, Merchant of Venice, or Taming of A Shew. Even Julius Caesar and Macbeth are still in a similar enough style, although, as Shakespeare, Marlowe advances as fast as he did as a youth. The Early Shakespeare works are completely continuous in style and substance with Marlowe. They are also talking about the same themes, have the same types of characters, and identical staging ideas. More importantly, the mathematical markers are continuous between the two in ways that are not reasonably plausible to admit if there are two separate authors involved.

I am not a literature student, I never studied literature, as I usually don’t care about it. I only read the full body of work of Marlowe and Shakespeare (in order of composition date) after understanding that they are the same author. I am a physicist by training, and my evaluation of evidence is only by numbers, not by listening to humanities people. My main interest in this began when I reviewed the stylometric evidence compiled by Peter Farey and noticed that the stylometric data was strong enough to overwhelm any historical argument. This judgement has only been reinforced as new stylometric studies have come out, and the “Shakespeare Guide to Italy” provides the final straw, as it shows you Marlowe spend the years immediately past 1593 in Italy.

You can’t shock and awe me, dude. I read Marlowe, I read Shakespeare. It’s the same author. You need to read someone else, like Jonson or Middleton.

The echoes from Faustus are all over the Shakespeare canon, including repeated lines and sentiments, similar characters, and most obviously, “The Tempest”, which can be thought of as a sort-of sequel. If you can’t see it, I think you should stop directing theatre, as you have a tin ear for it. I hope you refund the theatre tickets to your audience, and let a competent reader direct the next play.


2017-06-13 on spectator-new-blogs

There is no plagiarism. Shakespeare repeats Marlowe constantly, but only in the same way that Joyce repeats himself. It’s the same person.


2017-06-13 on spectator-new-blogs

You’ve obviously never read them. Just read them in order of date of composition, and you will see there is absolutely no difference between the two. I have done so, and it stood out even before I was a Marlovian.


2017-06-13 on spectator-new-blogs

The argument is that mathematical analysis of Marlowe and Shakespeare fail to find a good separator between their styles, despite much effort. This is unprecedented for two separate authors, it is overwhelming evidence that Marlowe wrote the work. Together with the Sonnets and the Shakespeare Guide to Italy, this tells you that the work is written by an exiled Marlowe. Shakespeare wasn’t a writer, he was a paid front.

The “collaboration” argument is a false compromise with currently accepted history, sort of like Tycho Brahe’s compromise, that Mercury and Venus go around the sun and the rest of the planets around the Earth. Brahe was wrong, there is no compromise. Marlowe wrote everything.


2017-06-12 on somewhatreasonable

The phenomenon Marx is describing is well known and true. It is remediated by Keynesian measures in all modern economies, but these were cribbing his work.


2017-06-12 on beinglibertarian

What Marx is talking about is a “general glut”, i.e. when you have too low pay for people to buy the industrial production. This is what is known in Keynesian economics as a “demand slump”, and it is corrected by extra government spending. The effect is real, and it was Marx who described it precisely for the first time. You are getting a mangled version from the socialist website, the version in Capital is correct and modern.


2017-06-12 on swarajyamag

Einstein was describing the common-wisdom of turn-of-the-century German socialists. They advocated centralized ownership of the means of production, in practice, nationalizing everything, and then offering everyone a job at a more-or-less egalitarian wage. This was more or less implemented in the USSR during the first five year plan, roughly 1930-1935, so you can see what was happening with this model.

Did incentives disappear? HELL NO. In the USSR during the Stalin era, your total pay was determined by how much you produced. If you worked double time, you got double pay. If you worked at a job which was demanding, where there was too few workers, your pay was much higher than others. to give people incentive to switch jobs. The allocation of wages was by a pure bureaucratic version of supply and demand, and it was pretty effective. The highest paying jobs were precision machinist, good applied mathematician, technical engineer, and the like. Pure managerial positions were lower paid, but you would get incentive bonuses for recruiting more people. Recruiting people became very hard, because unemployment vanished very quickly, as unemployed people were snatched up by recruiters, motivated to increase their pay.

The result was favorable to heavy industry— steel production soared, tractors were produced, agriculture became factory farming, dams were built, and so on. By the end of the second five year plan, the heavy industry was sufficient to win WWII against a traditionally capitalist German enemy that controlled more factories. So the socialist model initially works for heavy goods, and continues to work for such things when it has been tried elsewhere. But there’s a catch.

The centralized production method put all small business out of business, including small producers of agriculture and small producers of heavy goods, This led to a complete collapse of farming in 1932, leading to a terrible famine, and even though factory-farm production caught up in 1933, even then, it led to a catastrophic decline in all consumer good production. If you were talking about umbrellas, balloons, toys, paper-towels, everyday light items, the production was always terrible. The goods were produced at one central office, the results were of inferior quality and very uniform, and the products were chronically underproduced, so that shortages developed, and they were always stagnant— they hardly got better.

These phenomena are due to the nature of government centralization, and Einstein was aware of the issue even in 1949. He, however, is unsure if this is not a product of the OTHER property of the USSR, namely mass-murder, overwhelming bureaucracy, and lack of democracy. By the 1970s, other societies had experimented with government ownership of various industries, most prominently England, and the results made it obvious that the problem was in the state-ownership itself. In nations with nationalized phone industry, you would have to wait months, sometimes years, for a phone line. In nations with private phones, you wouldn’t. It wasn’t just phones. Nationalized cars, nationalized anything, produced serious problems with service and efficiency that didn’t happen in private firms.

The origin of these terrible inefficiencies is in the lack of ability of the government offices to restructure and advance, due to complete lack of accountability or competition. New ideas require a certain displacement of old ones, a “creative destruction”, and in cases where an office is in charge of, say, phones, the new ideas will be resisted by the higher-ups, who cannot abide losing their positions of power due to an influx of new ideas. Under capitalism, you just start a competing company, so you can’t stay still to survive.

The same effect meant that the Soviet heavy industry, brand new in 1940, was an out-of-date creaking monstrosity by 1975, and started falling behind the West for the first time. Advances like transistors, which were developed in the USSR science also, moved into industrial applications at a GLACIAL pace there. The whole innovation cycle of product development was lost, and Soviet industry was entirely reduced to copying the West, even, most damningly, in cases where the USSR was the first to develop the science. Lasers were first created in the USSR, but commercial lasers only appeared in the West. The USSR just studied Western fasion, and didn’t produce anything original. Likewise in music trends, despite the ideas often emerging in the USSR, the widespread commercialization was always in the West.

The reason for such phenomena is that you need to be able to split and compete. The role of these operations is to produce economic efficiency, by trying out all options until you learn which is best. There is no substitute for this process.

But that’s it! That’s the only modification one needs to Einstein’s essay from the last 70 years. The ownership of ventures does not need to be concentrated in capitalists, it can be broadly owned by all the workers. That doesn’t stop competition, it doesn’t reduce incentive. The firm might even be totally publicly owned, so long as you can split the venture and compete. An example in the US is Charter Schools, which are split and compete, but are publically financed and owned. There is no justification for capitalists, but there is a justification for market competition. The competition is something that it is hard to convince a government to do.

Socialists by and large came to understand this in the 1970s and 1980s, and advocated a system of worker ownership, rather than centralized ownership. In an ideal world, where you can actually have government bureaucracies split and compete, maybe Einstein’s thing would be ok. But in the world so far, it seems you need to have worker-managed non-monopolized industries. This is still socialism, as Marx would understand it, because it doesn’t have classes of capitalists, and the essential problem of chronic unemployment and boom-and-bust cycles caused by dropping demand disappears.


2017-06-07 on rollingstone

The UK knows that the citizens are being cut up by people sent by folks who want Theresa May to win. Terrorism is never a serious problem, even in Israel, where it’s a monthly occurence. What’s dangerous about terrorism is the political power it gives an unethical scumbag to make people vote for the lunatic right.


2017-06-07 on rollingstone

I am telling you the truth. They would wait around hoping to sleep with a Beatle. That’s what they were. It’s ok. At least we agree on politics.


2017-06-07 on rollingstone

It was a great presidency, but attacked by the folks who wanted tax cuts. You don’t need to explain, I vaguely remember.


2017-06-07 on rollingstone

the Apple Scruffs were a collection of Beatles groupies, all girls. It’s been a little white-washed in the telling on google.


2017-06-07 on rollingstone

Everything you say is true, but you’re named after a bunch of teenage girls who slept with George Harrison, so it’s hard to take you seriously.


2017-06-07 on rollingstone

It’s true. He brought the 1979 peace deal between Israel and Egypt, he began to address the Greenhouse Effect (nowadays called global warming), he tied foreign policy to human rights, he pardoned Vietnam draft escapees, he implemented tough austerity to stop inflation, he deregulated the airlines, he fought union over-extension to prevent locking wages to price index (this can cause hyperinflation), he basically did everything that Reagan would later claim credit for. Carter’s austerity cost him his job. but it ended inflation. Carter is the “sensible right wing” of the US. The Republican party just added absurd tax cuts and religious extremism.

I am not as far right as Carter, but I recognize that his policies were necessary at the time.


2017-06-07 on rollingstone

Carter was the greatest postwar president of the US.


2017-06-07 on rollingstone

Not only should he resign, anyone who voted for him should be permanently stripped of the right to vote.


2017-06-05 on theatlantic

Because the laser is replenished thousands of times in the time it takes for one oscillation of the arms. The gravitational wave oscillates over a time about a hundredth of a second, while light crosses the arms in a vastly tinier time of a microsecond, so the mushing of the light wave is negligible when considering the measurement of the distance of the arms.


2017-06-04 on politeiamagazine

The right believes in a society that penalizes those who make the right decisions in life, and rewards those who behave most unethically. When you grow up, you will understand that.


2017-06-03 on spectator-new-blogs

Homelessness is legalized murder. As is war. As are cigarettes and drug abuse more generally. Still, I think cigarettes should stay legal, because, although I never take any, I think propaganda (like those awful pictures on cigarette packages) is more effective than prohibition in preventing harm. The act of dissolving the USSR killed millions of Russians and Ukrainians, as many or more than all who died in the horror of Stalin’s rule, look at a plot of Russia’s population. Does that mean that it was wrong to remove the communists? I don’t think so.

Regarding American politics, in the 1880s, hard as it is to believe, the Republican party was a Marxist party (by that I mean that Karl Marx supported the Republicans, and members corresponded with him and with the European worker’s movement). The Democrats were a right-wing pro-slavery party back then. The Republicans and Democrats switched sides in the 1920s and 1930s, and the switch wasn’t complete until 1964 and the civil rights act, and the Republicans only went completely crazy in the 1980s.

Abortion happens before consciousness begins (as does infanticide, incidentally). It is similar in that sense to assisted suicide, which sometimes occurs after consciousness ends. The question of ethics is difficult in such cases, especially in cases of rape, severe genetic deformaties, danger to the life or health of the mother, incest, and even when there is no ability to raise the child properly. That doesn’t make it right, but it does make it difficult to legislate. Propaganda is very effective in such cases, much as in the case of cigarettes and drugs. While in Israel, I saw a bus ad with a picture of a depressed looking extremely young women, with superposed text saying “Abortion isn’t child’s play, you will be left with permanent regrets”. Such propaganda is effective, perhaps as in the case of drugs, more so than legislation.

The best policies of the progressive left were distorted in the 1970s due to the pressure for totalitarian state solutions coming from the USSR and Leninists. Nobody believes in top-down state solutions anymore, the Corbynites believe in worker owned industry, in prevention of monopoly, in selective nationalization in industries where competition has already failed, and in careful adjustment of market regulation to avoid concentrations of capital in the good markets that remain. To a certain extent, these competitive ideals were shared by Reagan and Thatcher as well, deplorable as I find those two.

But the right is structurally unable to make progressive change, simply because it is the right. They don’t imagine new things, they copy the past, in this case, the 19th century. There is nothing to copy in Britain regarding worker ownership, it wasn’t Atlee’s idea, it must be built from scratch, and quickly. It happened in Yugoslavia and Scandinavia, with great success, and to a much lesser extent in modern Germany, so you aren’t totally in the dark regarding what to do.

The economic problems of the 1970s were largely offset by the social gains, and in my opinion, Britain lost more than it gained on net in the 1980s. Perhaps I am only comparing 1970s King Crimson to 1980s King Crimson. The resultant change in the British left, if you are not familiar with it, it is documented in novels by Doris Lessing, was very healthy for the left, it makes it impossible to fall into the totalitarian statist trap again in the future. At the moment, the main problem we are facing isn’t totalitarian leftists, it is incipient fascism from corporate rule. The US is already likely past the point of no return, don’t let Britain destroy itself as well.


2017-06-02 on spectator-new-blogs

I am speaking from that perspective. If you lived in a society where infanticide was legal, your first priority should not be to vote for the party which tries to make it illegal against stiff odds, rather, you should talk to the people doing it and tell them that they should stop, until you get 99% consensus. This is what happened regarding infanticide in the past, it used to be a common practice until the majority of people came to see it as a crime. Your vote should go to labour, and your preaching should go to those who do wrong things, especially in cases where they don’t know they are doing wrong, and it is hard to be certain.

There are lots of things wrong in society, which lead people to needlessly die by the thousands. You are living in a society in which it is considered ok for a bunch of homeless people to die, and in the US, not only is this true, but it is considered ok for thousands of people to die of lack of access to health care as well. In both societies, it is considered ok to roll around places carrying several tons of steel around you, despite tens of thousands of people dying from smashing these devices. Isn’t 40,000 traffic deaths the most absurd preventable tragedy? Still, I’m not going to vote for the “abolish private automobiles” party. I would vote labour, and use my power as a private citizen to talk to people about only using transit which is driven by professionals. I don’t expect to succeed, by the way, so these deaths will continue into the indefinite future. But I personally won’t own a car.

You need to vote about the things governments are supposed to do, and are realistically able to deliver. The Tory “wedge issues” are copied from American Republicans, and allow people to fall into the trap of voting for the worst possible economic outcome, all the while feeling morally righteous, despite their actions being collectively the worst possible.


2017-06-02 on spectator-new-blogs

Corbyn is always right. On everything.


2017-06-02 on spectator-new-blogs

It is not valid, nor is it ethical. Labour is simply leaving the choice to the woman, you can easily persuade them not to do it, by using concerted anti-abortion propaganda. This can reduce abortion more than anything the government does.


2017-06-02 on spectator-new-blogs

If you don’t like abortion, convince women not to have them. The main job of government is not convincing or coercing people to avoid abortions, it is to regulate the economy. The only thing you should consider is the main course, the conflict over the appetizer and dessert are distractions. And the Tories exploit these stupid distractions, not because they are such ethical people, but simply for personal financial gain. You can prevent an abortion by not having one. No individual can successfully oppose gigantic industrial businesses alone. Only labour can restore Britain to sanity, and prevent the capitalist apocalypse the US has already endured.


2017-05-29 on spectator-new-blogs

If you want to put an end to terrorism, stop electing people who benefit from it politically. It’s not like they organize the attacks themselves, but when you have a low-tax party which benefits from terror, the people who are likely to get taxed will pay to organize whatever atrocity is required to see their tax rates go down. Without asking Theresa May.


2017-05-29 on anotherangryvoice

Obviously it wasn’t the Tories themselves who did it. Some rich people who don’t want to see Corbyn win did it. If you want to stop terrorism, don’t elect the people who benefit politically from more of it.


2017-05-29 on breitbartproduction

If you want to stop terrorist attacks, vote for the party that doesn’t benefit politically from them. They are more likely to stop them than the other guys.


2017-05-28 on kissmanga

This is a subtle class marker.


2017-05-26 on kissmanga

or you download gogui and pay nothing. Go is a game made for computer screens.


2017-02-26 on bloggingshakespeare

He’s not a NAZI, you imbecile, he just blindly believes what everyone else does. Like Eichmann. Except not evil. Just stupid.

This is not about “cultural subversion”, it is about “academic incompetence”. Like Phlogiston, or the early days of relativity. What the great majority of academics say is factually and provably WRONG, and they must have their noses pressed against their own feces until they learn to stop defecating in the literature.

The ludicrous hysterical language is just how you point out obvious things on the internet. It doesn’t change the content of the argument. The cultural subversion is from the internet, not from Shakespeare being a front. That’s actually one of the LEAST subversive false facts out there, I mean, Marlowe was even more bourgeoise than Shakespeare.


2017-02-21 on business-desk

When you say “no one else”, you ignore the totality of all modern economists outside the US, and more than half the economists within the US. The only ones who deny Keynesian facts are right wing idiots who make completely crazy predictions. Nobody in the world proposes such garbage since the 1930s, except the Republican party starting with Reagan. Even then, in the Reagan and Bush administration, they only pretended not to understand economics for propaganda purposes. Now they are sincere, as a new generation has forgotten that the anti-Keynesian posturing was simply an idiotic crackpot lie.

I am not talking about opinions, I am talking about measurable facts. When you inject a sum of money equal to twice the total current money supply into banks through the central bank, pre-Keynesian predictions, modern Chicago school predictions, are that prices would (quickly) triple and stay there at triple level forever. Keynesian predictions say that this only happens at peak capacity, and in a recession, there is no significant increase in prices. Nothing happens. This is a clear difference you can test.

We did the experiment in 2009. The money supply tripled. Inflation that year was around 4%, a little bit higher, but in the ballpark of every other year. It was the same the next year and the next. The classical prediction for prices was “~200% increase”, the Keynsian prediction was “~0% increase”. Which is more accurate? This is not a matter of opinion, this is a clear test. Keynesian theory, by the way, does not have a prediction about asset prices. The main thing it DOES talk about is the response of prices to money injections, and the response of the economy to wage regulations. I’ll get to that in a second.

When Galileo dropped balls in the 16th century, the Aristotle prediction was that a ball 10 times as heavy would fall 10 times as fast. When the balls were dropped, the ball which was 10 times as heavy hit the ground “a few fingerwidths” ahead of the light ball. The Aristotelians saw in those few fingerwidths confirmation of their theory, because they did not go by observation. You are repeating this stupidity with hard data.

The second prediction the classical school makes is that when you raise minimum wage (or institute any form of wage regulations), unemployment can only go up. This is a hard prediction. If you keep raising minimum wage, unemployment keeps going up.

The Keynesian prediction is that unemployment goes DOWN as you raise minimum wage, until you raise it so much that every increase in minimum wage just produces commensurate inflation. So that if you double minimum wage again and again, at first, prices less-than-double (because people buy and spend more, increasing economic activity), and then after doubling again (once you are at peak capacity), then prices just double and all you have done is halved rich people’s capital. The thing to look at regarding minimum wage is ALWAYS the inflation rate, it is NEVER the unemployment. There is NO positive unemployment response to minimum wage increase EVER, it NEVER goes up! All unemployment can do when you raise minimum wage is go DOWN, due to stimulus induced growth.

This is an INCREDIBLY counterintuitive prediction. It is saying that wages are COMPLETELY out of equilibrium! It is the exact OPPOSITE of the classical prediction. Yet, this behavior is not only observed, it is taken for granted by now in every nation on Earth. To explain this to you, when I first arrived in Israel, I debated a right-wing uncle of mine. We disagreed on everything, in much the same way that a typical Republicans and Democrats in the US would disagree (he, like most Israelis today, is further right than Republicans and I, like most Israelis of 40 years ago, am much further left than Democrats). But when I explained to him the Republican position about minimum wage, to my surprise, we agreed completely. Outside the US, even the far right has not forgotten the basic principles of 100 year old economics.

And it shows in policy. Australia’s minimum wage is $15/hr American, for example. Israel’s is comparable to America’s despite the per-capita GDP difference between the two countries. Every country on Earth uses inflation to gauge minimum wage, not unemployment. For a reason. Because you aren’t paying people in gold, but in money that is distributed to businesses through banks. If they can’t make payroll, they just borrow for that month, and raise prices. If the volume of sales goes up, they don’t even raise prices, you just get economic growth for nothing. That’s Keynesian stimulus, and it works until you are at peak capacity, at which point, minimum wage hikes just produce inflation.

The “catastrophe” of ignoring Keynesian economics already happened and will continue— it consists of degradations of standard of living, concentrations of wealth, monopolization of industry, and horrific crashes. These things are not solved by easing government power, or by removing interference in the economy, because they are a product of the market itself.

The theory that markets are efficient in the absence of regulation and government interference is based on a MODEL, a mathematical model. This model predicts that wages are roughly equal, that unemployment does not and cannot exist, and that capital and money are interchangable. It predicts that injections of capital (like in 2009) are the same as injections of money (like raising minimum wage), it predicts that artificially raising wages must always reduce employment. These predictions are categorically false, and verified to be false hundreds of times since the 1930s. These ideas were understood by both Republicans and Democrats in the 1950s, 1960s, 1970s, and even most Republicans in the 1980s. The Republican party lost it’s mind now, and practices what can only be called economic fraud.

The fundamental reason that markets don’t come to equilbrium the way that they should is simply that capital and money are largely separate. The people who invest are not the same people as those who work and spend and buy. There is no competition for capital positions, they are filled by an old-boys network. This situation in the US has been intolerable for a long time, and it will only get worse.

I don’t need to be God to predict the outcome of anti-Keynesian policies, they have been tried with HORRIFIC results in South America, in parts of Africa, and recently in parts of Europe (Greece, Spain), usually due to American imposition of “austerity”. In the case of Greece and Spain, it is due to the unified currency preventing local currency injections, and the lack of an all-Europe mechnism for redistributing income. So they end up redistributing PEOPLE, by migration, with horrific consequences.

Anti-Keynesian ideas are disingenuous claptrap which are designed to protect individuals who hold capital from inflation. They destroy the economy, predictably, every time, in every nation. They have destroyed the US to a large extent.

If you want a policy which will help restore your ability to be an entrepreneur, you should push for rigorous anti-trust enforcement, differential taxes to tax large corporations more than small ones, and local blocks of WalMart, Cosco and every other national chain by regional boycotts and local zoning boards. You also need a heavy, heavy income tax to redistribute capital, and a stiff inheritance tax. These policies were constructed for a reason, they are the only way to get a market to effectively treat money and capital alike. Your business will benefit, large corporations will not.

I am sorry to lecture you, but I already left the US, I had enough. Americans cannot evaluate ideas on their merit, they believe whatever rich people believe. It always helps an individual to believe this voodoo you believe, it is just empirically false. This is why Republicans cannot be trusted with an economy.


2017-02-17 on business-desk

I don’t understand your mentally damaged response. I have explained to you that your Republican party believes total economic bullcrap, and explained in detail what the mechanism is that makes them bullcrap. I am writing this from a border-town in Israel, where I have returned after 30 years in the US. In Israel, these basic facts about economics are accepted without comment by every educated person, and are applied by all political parties, on the far left and on the far right. I assure you that these economic basics are likewise accepted in every other country in the world, by every party on every side, with the possible exception of North Korea (not Cuba or China).

The economic stupidity of your country’s Republican party is a catastrophe which threatens the entire world. It no longer directly threatens me personally, and I suggest to you to adjust your life so that it no longer threatens you.


2017-02-17 on business-desk

The things you say are believed by many in the American upper classes. They are what destroy the American economy. They have been known to be false in the entire world for the past 100 years. You are living in a fantasyland of stupidity and economic illiteracy, and people such as yourself must never be in charge of any economic policy.

The mechanism by which raising the minimum wage decreases unemployment is by CAUSING economic growth. Without the minimum wage increase, a modern economy will collapse. You can see this by successively raising and lowering the minimum wage, and seeing the unemployment go down when minimum wage is higher, and go up when minimum wage is lowered. When minimum wage is removed entirely, the entire economy collapses, and people move into slums.

This Keynesian prediction is completely OPPOSITE of the classical economic prediction, it is COUNTERINTUITIVE and SURPRISING, and nevertheless it is ALWAYS CORRECT, as verified in 100 years of minimum wage increases in hundreds of countries (and occasional minimum wage reductions through inflation, and occasional minimum wage elimination during periods of hyperinflation). There is no way to see this if you believe the nonsense you are spewing.

The reason the naive prediction you gave doesn’t work is relatively complicated, but it can be summarized simply as follows— in the economy, wages are not in economic equilibrium. They are NEVER in economic equilibrium, because wages are separate from capital, and never equilibrate with it. This is why increasing the amount of capital threefold, as happened in 2009, does not increase prices threefold (or, for that matter, hardly at all). Capital and wages are completely decoupled, they are independent. This can’t be understood classically.

The fundamental reason is that the people who use capital are completely separate from the people who work for wages, and the two classes hardly intersect. The separation between money wages and capital means that wages are driven to zero by competition with unemployed. This means that an increase in minimum wage brings you CLOSER to classical equilibrium, despite it being an intervention. It immediately leads to greater spending and greater economic growth, because it is FIXING A MARKET FAILURE. The failure is that wages and capital never come to equilibrium, because owners and managers never compete for their position with people who submit resumes and take a wage.

It is impossible to run an economy when these ancient facts, long established, are denied by a major political party. This is why it is best to leave the US when the Republican party takes power. I have already done so, and I suggest you do the same.


2017-02-15 on spectator-new-blogs

Shakespeare didn’t write any of it, it was all written by Marlowe. It takes a real tin-ear to not see that the Marlowe works and the Shakespeare works are written by the same person, if you do what hardly anyone does, and read them.


2017-01-29 on thenewamericanmagazine

Whether you believe in “communism”, “freedom” or “slavery” not is not the question. The question is: when you raise the minimum wage, does unemployment go UP or DOWN. This is a question about facts and numbers, not about personal beliefs.

The classical economic prediction is that when you raise minimum wage unemployment can’t do anything except go UP. It’s supply and demand. If you find that this is not true, then there is something seriously wrong with your economic beliefs. Classical economics predicts that the more you raise the minimum wage, the more unemployment goes UP.

The Keynesian/socialist/Marxist prediction (they coincide) is that as you raise the minimum wage, unemployment goes DOWN. Then as you reach a certain level, unemployment stops going down and inflation goes up. Keynesian economics predicts that at no point does the unemployment go up.

Which prediction is correct? Now this is a matter of experiment. The experiment verifies that the classical prediction is busted.

One reason the classical prediction is wrong is because wage is not paid in gold, but in printed money, and in a modern economy, the extra money to support a higher wage can always be produced in a central bank, and distributed through lower banks.

But even this is not enough to explain what is going on. The classical prediction says that, even with new money, intervening with an artificial price must always produce more unemployment, simply because it prevents positions from being filled at the economic equlibrium wage.

The reason this prediction is wrong is because YOU AREN’T AT THE ECONOMIC EQUILIBRIUM WAGE. This wage is the wage at zero unemployment, where employers have to beg to find employees. At this point, it is hard to hire anyone, and wages go through the roof, and profits reduce to zero. This is the situation where a minimum wage would be “harmful”. I put “harmful” in quotes only because the minimum wage in such a situation of full employment is unnecessary, as all wages are sky-high and approximately equal, as threats of walkouts make it impossible to pay anyone significantly more than anyone else (aside from extremely specialized skills, sporadic work, high-risk, etc).

The failure of classical economics is made obvious every time you raise the minimum wage and unemployment fails to go up. The claim that classical economics is wrong about this is not about philosophy or freedom, it is about facts. You are wrong on the facts, and therefore deplorably stupid.

Your mentally retarded opinion is shared by most of your educated countrymen, which is why I no longer live in the US.


2017-01-28 on thenewamericanmagazine

Minimum wage never produces unemployment. Minimum wage (counterintuitively) DECREASES unemployment until it produces pure inflation. This is Keynes 101.

Even when minimum wage is increase to $1000/hr, $100,000/hr, any ridiculous amount you like, all that happens is that there is simultaneous inflation to reduce the value to the market equilibrium. The reason is that the businesses get loans to cover the monthly bill, and they raise prices to ensure profitability, and the system settles down to an effective sensible real wage. They aren’t paying in gold, and the central bank makes enough money to cover the increase.

Due to unemployment, wages in an economy are systematically and chronically too low to buy the entire industrial output. This is the main disease in capitalist economies. When you raise the minimum wage, you are partially correcting this market failure, and so decrease unemployment due to the increased economic activity. It’s counterintuitive, but it’s true, and you can’t understand this phenomenon without understanding macroeconomics. This is the main prediction of Keynesian economics, it is why macroeconomics exists as a field.

The main question to answer from a policy standpoint is at what level does increasing minimum wage produce accelerating inflation. It never produces unemployment.

There is a second question, of whether high inflation is in itself a bad thing. When inflation is left unchecked for long enough, personal investment become more difficult, because individual cash holdings are wiped out. Institutional investors like banks and businesses with solid capital are not affected as severely by inflation. So inflation shifts power from individuals to institutions, and reduces the influence of the wealthy, by partially inflating away their wealth.


2017-01-28 on thenewamericanmagazine

When the minimum wage is raised to $15/hr, these restaurants might turn a profit again.


2017-01-28 on thenewamericanmagazine

That’s because you didn’t take macroeconomics.


2017-01-28 on business-desk

You have to raise the minimum wage everywhere, otherwise jobs will move to places where it is lower. When you raise it everywhere, unemployment goes DOWN, not up. This is the central counterintuitive prediction of Keynesian economics verified by countless experiments over the entire world.


2017-01-28 on business-desk

Minimum wage increases cause job gains. I say it, and I repeat it. It is standard Keynesian economics that it is true, and it is idiotic to deny it today.


2017-01-28 on business-desk

Keynesian economics 101 explains that wages are too low in economies, and when you raise minimum wage, this brings you closer to economic equilibrium (where there is no unemployment). In a modern economy, where there is no gold standard, raising minimum wage DECREASES unemployment, until it produces pure inflation. This is both theory and experience.


2017-01-28 on business-desk

It’s not “zero job loss”, it’s job GAIN. The macroeconomic effects of raising the minimum wage are always positive. It can only be negative in the sense of causing inflation. The inflation signals are what people look at when assessing minimum wage hikes, not unemployment. To look at unemployment is ridiculous quackery. At no point in the process of raising minimum wage to infinity do you expect larger unemployment, because the central bank always produces enough money to cover the temporary expenses to business, until the higher prices make up for the hike.


2017-01-28 on business-desk

The minimum wage does not produce unemployment even if you set it at $100 an hour. At no point does increasing minimum wage cost jobs. If you raise minimum wage to $100 an hour, you get nearly instantaneous inflation the next day to produce an effective minimum wage of (maybe) $25/hr, and simultaneous contraction of 75% of all the money capital. This is basic Keynesian economics. Unless you pay your employees in actual gold nuggets, raising minimum wage to infinity never has a negative effect on employment, it only (eventually) has an inflationary effect on capital. This is counterintuitive, and it is true, and it is why macroeconomics exists as a field.

If you economic education doesn’t include the basics of macroeconomics, you have no business pontificating on minimum wage.


2017-01-18 on bloombergview

In a nominal curency enviroment (like every modern nation), the effect of raising the minimum wage to $25,000 an hour (and enforcing it) is NOT skyrocketing unemployment, rather it is instantaneous inflation. The businesses simply raise prices by a factor of 1000, so that the wage is effectively about $25 an hour, all bank savings are wiped out, and the effect is to destroy capital, not jobs. The negative effects of minimum wage increase are purely on capital, not on employment, and raising wages in this way is a method of ensuring hyperinflation, assuming there is sufficient money produced by the central bank to pay the government employees the new minimum wage, and sufficient injections of capital into banks to allow businessowners to take out loans for the first months to cover their suddenly higher expenses. After the first weeks, the higher prices and wages come to a new equilibrium at a thousandfold higher price range, but all money-savings are wiped out.

The effect of minimum wage is paradoxical, because it is macroeconomic. The microeconomic response is higher unemployment, so if you try it out locally, for example, raising minimum wage in a state or a city, jobs shift out of the state or city to other locations, increasing local unemployment somewhat. The paradox is that if you do it everywhere, globally, raising minimum wage DECREASES unemployment! This completely paradoxical and true prediction is the main result of Keynesian economics, it is a unique counterintuitive prediction, it is Keynes’s parahelion precession of Mercury.

If you keep raising the minimum wage forever, there is a crossover point where it stops reducing unemployment and starts producing pure inflation. This crossover point is at full employment (relative to minimum wage perturbation), and this is the maximum efficiency point for a minimum-wage intervention.

This effect is completely opposite microeconomic predictions, because the economy is not near equilibrium. When you raise minimum wage, you partially fix the main market failure, which is that low-wage job wages are not determined in competitive conditions of near-zero unemployment. When you increase the wages past the point where this failure is fixed, meaning when there is already full employment, you produce inflation.

This was worked out in the 1930s, and that there is a debate about this TODAY shows that the field of economics is bankrupt.


2016-12-15 on technologyreview

It’s Bach that discovered the algorithm, the machine is only describing it precisely. A machine can verify the proof of Fermat’s last theorem, it’s not the same as generating it.


2016-12-09 on mm-fa

He’s not a truther, I am. Truthers don’t believe Saudi Al Qaeda members infiltrated our government, they believe our government infiltrated Al Qaeda.


2016-12-09 on mm-fa

Alex Jones is not insincere— he sent people to Newtown and you can bet all your money that were he able to find janitors and cafeteria workers he would have changed the conspiracy theory from “hoax” to “inside job” (as would I).

In the past, he was not purposefully dishonest, aside from things related to commercial activity, although this election cycle saw an amount of dishonesty from him that is troubling. During 2014, he was meticulously honest, though borderline insane as always.

I have relatives that live in a neighbouring town in CT, and when I visited I asked around. They know some people linked there, and they don’t have an indirect link to anyone whose friends were affected, or who worked on the periphery. The news media weren’t able to find anyone who know the killer to interview, no friends. If they found janitors and cafeteria people, it was obviously their day off, because none of them were interviewed. Journalists stopped doing their job.

It really does look like a hoax, which is why otherwise sane people claim it is a hoax. Unlike Columbine, you don’t see interviews with people on the periphery, only documents talking about dead children, no photos, and the same set of three fake-ass looking distraught parents each time.

Next time I am in CT, I will go to Newtown and try to find a school worker unaffected by the shooting, a parent whose child attended the school. I haven’t done this directly yet, but you can be sure Alex Jones has, and he failed. I am sure I will fail too, like all the journalists and Alex Jones, but I will try for real.


2016-12-07 on mm-fa

Maybe he’s an Alex Jones Breitbart hating gun-despising alt-right smashing nra-rejecting fear-denying anti-fascist Bernie loving climate-change zealot, and you’re the brainwashed bigot.


2016-12-07 on mm-fa

Just because it’s on the internet doesn’t mean it’s false either. There is no network of people around that school, there is just a set of grieving parents. There are no janitors, no cafeteria workers, no parents of friends of these children, nothing but a set of grieving parents trotted out on TV whenever there is a debate on gun control legislation. It looks like a hoax, and it is plausibly a hoax, because propaganda is legal in America now. That doesn’t mean it’s a hoax, but the reporters need to do their job and interview all the janitors and cafeteria workers, not the same set of parents twenty times.


2016-12-07 on mm-fa

He doesn’t believe the lying lie one, not the truthy truth one.


2016-12-05 on thehill-v4

SnakeTrapper simply means that the carbon fuels are not from fossilized anything, like Stalin, he subscribes to the Soviet abiotic petroleum origin theory. This theory is correct, but it doesn’t change the fact that CO2 warms up the planet, and human CO2 will warm up the planet catastrophically.

Any hypothetical “fudging of data” is irrelevant— it’s a 1-parameter system with solid theory, solid historical data and solid experimental data (the past 40 years). An extra unit of CO2 produces such-and-such warming, and we’ve done the experiment and we see that it’s about 1 degree of warming for the industrial output until now. The amount of warming is verified from polar ice-core data, which can’t be fudged, and reforestation won’t help you, because it’s the oceans that do most of the CO2 recycling, and deforestation is happening simultaneously with greenhouse gas emissions.

The best immediate solution is pure nuclear power, with LFTR or other breeders, such a system can eliminate all climate concerns, replacing them with more manageable proliferation and waste management concerns. Using a good breeder, the waste is completely recycled. This research is underfunded, and both left and right wing refuse to move forward on a transition to next-generation nuclear power, because it conflicts with vested interests, and because older nuclear power has been unsafe. This needs to change quickly. Making nuclear power safe and waste-free is much easier than cooling down a planet warmed by 3 degrees.


2016-12-02 on nfocom

I dispute such studies, please show them. You would have to be mentally ill to register as an illegal. If the Democrats tried to register illegals they would have a scandal a mile wide. Each illegal would be a potential witness, so if 3 million voted, one of the 3 million could sell their story of how they were registered by some pushy party operative to the NYT for $100,000, and that’s that for the illegal registration drive. It’s a stupid allegation. Even permanent residents don’t register, let alone illegals. It’s not worth the risk of being caught in Federal election fraud, just for the right to cast one stupid vote.

Regarding the “victory speech”, if Donald Trump was ACTUALLY a 9/11 Truther, and a constitutionalist who defended freedom for all citizens, I would have voted for him, despite his crazy economics. But he’s a bigoted muslim-baiter who thinks we should be MORE surveilled, and that drone attacks should be taking out relatives and families. These are Nazi policies. His victory contradicted exit polls showing that he was losing, and the discrepancy was greatest where we cannot check or recount, because the data is proprietary. This administration has a potential for outright fascist rule by actual neo-nazis. I wish I were exaggerating, but I am not, so I am getting out, and trying to get my family out. I hope to God he’s an actual Jones guy, with actual healthy skepticism and an independent mind, but I am certain that he is not. He is just a fascist.


2016-12-01 on nfocom

It’s simply not worth it— you can only get a single vote. There is no organized conspiracy to register illegals, it is much easier to register legal black voters, and transients, and it doesn’t carry a risk of getting exposed. This idea is pure fantasy— every registration form requires you to swear to your citizenship status, and there is no gain from voting. The ID is idiotic, you don’t need ID to vote, your neighbors are there and recognize you. The people smashing up windows in front of law enforcement do not vote, and are not protesters. You are mentally retarded, or else a propagandist, please shut up.


2016-12-01 on mm-fa

I have a child already, and I am not sure what happened. I am frightened of living in a society where I can’t trust the media. I go not far from Sandy Hook, and Alex Jones is right, it is like “Children of the Corn” when you try to get personal connections to it. I am not a troll, I am sincere.


2016-12-01 on nfocom

It’s POSSIBLE, it’s just incredibly stupid, and nobody would ever do it. It’s a risk of arrest for Federal crime for a chance to negligibly influence an election with a single vote. The number of illegals who voted is most likely in the single digits.


2016-12-01 on mm-fa

I hope Trump has an interview with the janitors and cafeteria workers at Sandy Hook, and with parents whose children were not killed. Just to make sure there are such people, because I have never seen them.


2016-12-01 on mm-fa

If you disagree with the truthers about 9/11, you simply are not rational.


2016-12-01 on mm-fa

Alex Jones was talking about an inside job against New York and Washington DC in JULY of 2001. He is the first truther, almost by default, because he was talking about it before it happened. But the real intellectual father to the 9/11 truther movement is certainly Webster Tarpley, who explained most of the logistics of the inside job. I think he is spot on, but I am sure he is overstating the size of the conspiracy— I think it involved basically one person, perhaps a few low-level friends as well, so that technically it doesn’t look like a conspiracy at all. Just a plan.


2016-11-30 on mm-fa

The trick to 9/11 is that it was done using military drills simulating the events. That means that thousands of people are involved, but all that these people know is that they were doing a drill which suspiciously matched the event at the same time. This could be a coincidence, they rationalize, so they aren’t sure they are involved. In this way, you can pull off any attack without a large conspiracy. In the most extreme case, you could do it completely alone, as an individual in charge of secret drills.

Since the drills are secret, talking about them puts your job at risk. Still, despite this, brave people leaked the drills of 9/11 in 2002, to the consternation of Bush officials, so that we have a relatively complete picture of how the attack was carried out from the inside. It is pretty certain that George W. Bush did not know what was going on, and it is certain that Obama wouldn’t find anything suspicious by reviewing the secret documents that survive. The only person in the administration which needed to be involved is the person in charge of the military drills. All of them were under the authority of the vice-president.

Most of the drills leaked in 2002, other drills dripped out here and there. Once you know that drills simulating multiple hijacking and crashing airplanes into buildings were going on that morning, it really takes willful self-deception to deny it is an inside job.

I did not vote for Donald Trump, partly (but not mostly) because I do not believe he is a truther (mostly because I believe he is a fascist). Alex Jones was an early Truther, but he is also conspiratorial minded and believes other things that are nonsense. Webster Tarpley is the main academic person who cracked the mystery, and catalogued every single drill going on on that day, or around that day, which is relevant. Unlike Jones, he comes from the left, and unlike Jones, he doesn’t support other stuff which is more dubious.


2016-11-29 on mm-fa

I am sincere.


2016-11-29 on mm-fa

My family lives in Connecticut, about 20 miles from Newtown. I don’t want to talk to those who claimed they lost children. I want to talk to the JANITORS at the school, the cafeteria workers. The kids who weren’t shot, and their parents. The parents of kids who were friends of those children that were shot. There should be a network of people around the massacre, and I haven’t found anyone, except for policemen who say they were called in on that day. Not that I tried too hard, mind you.

The only people you see are the same set of three distraught parents. I am not interested in those people, I want an interview with all 80 people who worked on the periphery. There is no such interview, not with one janitor, so I don’t believe this nonsense, and neither should you.


2016-11-29 on mm-fa

You saw nothing. You are lying.


2016-11-29 on mm-fa

That’s just Nazi-like propaganda. There are no pedophile rings, this is fantasy straight out of 1930s der Sturmer, who accused Jews in Germany of “white slavery” (human trafficking), pedophilia and child murder. These Nazi tactics are why I couldn’t understand why anyone voted for Trump. There is no excuse for making such slander against a Pizza place, no matter what “incriminating photos” you think you find (they are all obviously innocent).


2016-11-29 on mm-fa

Jones doesn’t want a dictatorship, he’s a strict constitutionalist. I am afraid he has been following a pied piper in Donald Trump, who is probably neither a truther or a believer in constitutional government. I suppose we’ll find out. If he investigates Sandy Hook, repeals the 2012 propaganda law, investigates the Boston Bombing and pardons that patsy, investigates 9/11, investigates Oklahoma City, and begins to dismantle the surveillance state (despite his promises to do the opposite) then I just might come back to the US. On the other hand, if he intimidates the press and stages his own false flags, I’ll stay out of the country. I think 4-6 months should be enough to know.


2016-11-29 on mm-fa

Because it was a false flag.


2016-11-29 on mm-fa

I will go and join them gladly in that hell, to keep away from liars like you.


2016-11-29 on mm-fa

There are no dead children there. You’re a fantasist, tugging on the heartstrings of Americans. I don’t care about your fantasy dead children.


2016-11-29 on mm-fa

I’m a Trump hater, and I deny that anyone died at Sandy Hook. It’s fake, whether you’re left or right.


2016-11-27 on thedailycaller

Tunisia is a democracy, and Rojava is free.


2016-11-27 on thedailycaller

The problem is that secret documents are not peer reviewed, and do not contain the whole story. They are full of unsupported groupthink and assumptions, because they are not public. Further, those with a security clearence think they know so much more, when the extra information is unvetted. There is no secret document saying anything different about 9/11 than what we were told, they are just as clueless in secret as they are in public.



2016-11-27 on thedailycaller

Get rid of the Bush Republicans. It’s enough for two peace prizes. Unfortunatly, the fascists are back.


2016-11-23 on charismanews

Ask your friends to prepare for an assault on civil liberties, to find ways of communicating off the grid. Hitler was also supported enthusiastically by the Church in 1933, because the opposition was atheist communists. The Catholics only lost faith in Hitler in 1942. In the US, there are no communists to speak of, there are no socialists in numbers, there is no historical awareness of the methods of fascism, there is no organized defense against totalitarianism, and the militias in the South and South West are often racists on Trump’s side, although I pray they believe their own statements about commitment to liberty.

It is imperative to elect people to election boards across the country who are not corrupt, and who will install paper voting systems which are verifiable. Fascists manipulate the vote, Hitler held a manipulated election a year or two after he took power, where the Nazi party swept the whole thing. If the midterms are corrupted by venal officials who refuse to count votes correctly, DC will be all Trumpists in 2018. Don’t look to Washington, look to your State Capital, ask your governor to watch out for DC, to monitor all Federal activities, and most importantly, if there is a terrorist attack, to BLAME WASHINGTON DC, not Muslims. The terror attacks will not come from Muslims, they have no incentive.

You are probably living under a criminal regime, at least for the next 4 years. The criminals will take over by infiltration, and after 4 years of propaganda, the majority of people will believe the craziest lunatic nonsense, Breitbart will be their news source. They will believe there is a Muslim conspiracy against Trump, A Jewish conspiracy against America, that African Americans are “naturally Muslim” and have a bloodlust for whites, that blacks and Jews are planning to destroy white culture. You will see fewer and fewer brown faces on TV, and the ones that are left will be the most craven and paid-off collaborators. You will find Jewish and Asian quotas at universities and government agencies, and eventually, it can turn into the worst catastrophe any nation ever has to face. It can also be a world catastrophe, if Trump changes his mind and decides to invade other nations.

I don’t expect him to leave the country’s borders, because he is a complete nationalist and isolationist. But this was also true of Stalin, who believed the USSR was large enough to be self-sufficient, and didn’t need to trade. Stalin used methods nearly identical to Hitler, and the consequences for Russia were catastrophic. Even if he is merely Putin, this is the end of democracy.

Please, start working NOW, please, I beg you. You need to work to alert people to the danger, to the methods, to buy weapons, and learn to shoot them, just in case (I don’t know how to shoot and have never owned a weapon). You need to ask governors to stand firm in the face of illegal orders, and threaten mutiny to the point of outright secession, threatening to withhold taxes. You need to be suspicious of all media stories, it is a terrible time to be an American. I wish I could temper this with moderation, but I can’t. Don’t wait and see. If you resist, he might just be an administrative incompetent, with one term who is forced to follow the law by mass vigilance. If you don’t resist, his appointees will poison this country with a racism so virulent, you will wish you were out of this country, or never born.

I am speaking with historical memory, as I am Jewish, and my grandparents were in Europe. My grandfather was enslaved in 1940-41, and they only survived because they were in Rumania, which was Axis aligned. If they had been in their ethnic homeland of Hungary, chances were 3 out of 4 they would have been deported to Auschwitz in 1944.


2016-11-23 on charismanews

Trump ran Hitler’s campaign, if Hitler was alive today, he would sue for royalties. Trump plagiarized Hitler for the most memorable lines: “On the night of the reichstag fire, there was dancing in the Jewish quarter”, “On 9/11 Mulsims in NJ were dancing in the streets”, “we need an end to Jewish immigration”, “we need an end to Muslim immigration”, “make Germany great again”, “we will put germany back to work on infrastructure”, etc, etc. The Hitler was evident to anyone who has ever read Hitler, which is why so many people made the comparison.

Practically every theme was stolen from Hitler, either indirectly, by funneling through the alt-right, or because he read Hitler and successfully used him as a role model for a campaign. The biggest difference is that Trump is much stupider and less eloquent than Hitler was, and repeats himself a lot. Globalist replaced Jewish/Bolshevik, as usual in the alt-right, but the idea was the same: we are different and we need to be apart. Deportations of Mexicans replaced deportations of Jews, but the idea was the same: they are corrupting our pure culture. The white supremacist streak was completely unchanged, except I would rather say it more precisely: in Trump it wasn’t exacly racial, the racism was automatic and incidental to the mentality, the main theme was the wealth-supremacy, the idea that rich people know best. Hitler used less of that, because he wasn’t running in a culture that celebrated wealth. But it’s the natural translation to America.

The theme of the campaign was disunity, the hatred of others and their exclusion. He advocated police-state surveillance, violence against protesters, and he projected POWER, power over the weak. His intended image was that of a charismatic superman, and his claim was that once you give him power, he will fix all the problems. He said this without giving details, and the few details he did give were absurd. This is also Hitler. The parallels were so exact that I couldn’t understand why ANYONE would even CONSIDER voting for him. Then I realized as election day neared, nobody else remembers Hitler anymore.

After getting elected, he immediately calmed the country down by dropping all the racist rhetoric, and talking about unity. He put forward economic stimulus packages to let the economy recover. He asked extremists to stop harassing minorities, all the while making sure that the domestic appointments were made by rabid white supremacists. Again, exactly what Hitler did in 1933.

Then he invited members of the press to a private meeting, where he told them that they were spreading lies, and needed to control themselves. Then by intimidation and power, he gets them to write fawning pieces about him, making it out that he is not so radical, that this is just like any other administration. So far, exactly following Hitler.

The next stage of the Hitler game-plan is to install cronies in every newspaper, and shut down those that won’t do it, in Trump’s case, via abuse of anti-trust power and lawsuits. That silences all media critics permanently. In Trump’s case, that would need a repeal of net-neutrality as well, to silence online voices which are unfriendly. The next step is to install friendly generals, local governors, and friendly administration bureaucrats, over about 6 years. Hitler went after socialist labor leaders, Trump will go after Mexicans and Democrats, removing them from power.

Kristallnach came in 1938, and the concentration camps for Jews. The mass murder started in 1940, and the gassings in 1942. That’s a long time, nearly a decade.

Of course I don’t predict gassings and mass murders, that’s unique even for fascists, but I can easily foresee deportations even of Muslim citizens, after a few staged terror attacks. The adminstration can attack it’s own people, and blame others for it. This was a favorite tactic of Hitler, it was used to attack Poland in 1939. If Trump decides to deport Muslim citizens, that’s a deportation to nowhere. Deportation to nowhere is the recipe for mass murder— when a bureaucracy has people it can’t place, it will just make them disappear as cheaply as possible. And nobody knows about it, because nobody is talking. People just go away.

You won’t see anything except consolidation of power for the first few years. If he succeeds, there is no Democratic party anymore, the leaders are in jail for corruption, and he is reelected with something like 70% of the vote. That’s what Putin did, and that’s terrible enough. It’s the end of American democracy.

Since he promised to run the government like a business, and since businesses are run exactly in such an autocratic way, I expect him to consolidate power. I don’t expect him to get impeached for it, because the party in power doesn’t care. I just expect him to succeed. What he does with the power, who knows. That depends on his hidden formula for making America great. But it certainly has something to do with making the white people strong, because his policies are about social darwinism with the implicit expectation that the ones who survive the culling are the most deserving, and usually, although not always, have pale skin. This is the Trump way, it is the exact opposite of Christianity, it is also the opposite of good morals, and it is simply evil. Evil in the most base and repugnant sense of the word.

The comparisons to Hitler are there because the comparisons are exact. If you don’t see it, you simply don’t know Hitler’s history.


2016-11-23 on alternet

What? No. I meant Bannon would hire people to do false-flags in homeland security. They wouldn’t be random skinheads, and you would never know. It doesn’t matter, as I have talked to Americans who are not online, who watch TV, and they aren’t outraged, they are just taking their lumps and believing all the horseshit they hear, and regurgitating it. So it’s hopeless. I tried, I’m outie.


2016-11-23 on alternet

Yes, I will. There is no outrage, this country is not growing up, it will need to learn the hard way.


2016-11-22 on alternet

On the contrary, someone who is sane does not put white supremacists with no history in government and a stated preference for ethnic cleansing in charge of weapons of mass destruction. They have a propaganda apparatus capable of blaming Muslims for any atrocity that they choose do. A nuclear bomb in DC is extreme, but it does kill a lot of people who didn’t vote for them. Perhaps it will be a Sarin attack, or just weekly bombings. Either way, Bannon will be responsible, and Muslims will be blamed, until you have martial law, and internment camps. It’s not certain this will happen, of course, Bannon might be incompetent at staging such things, he might be happy with legal methods of making people’s lives hell, but I don’t think he will be. The point is, you have no protection except your state assembly and governor’s office, and they don’t have the power right now to oversee federal activity, nor do they have the armed militia, under their supervision, to implement separation should crimes begin to happen. If they did, I would not worry about the crimes happening.


2016-11-22 on alternet

The national guard is state level, and there is no way state level government is going to be corrupt enough to fight their own constituents. You need to petition your state capital to institute a draft for the state guard, and to monitor all Federal activities for noncompliance with the constitution. I wrote a letter requesting this, it is in comments I wrote elsewhere on disqus, it can be bipartisan, it doesn’t require violating the constitution, simply a state by state draft and vigilance.


2016-11-21 on alternet

Stop impersonating someone who knows me. I am perfectly sane, and perfectly safe. I am concerned about the future of my country, and my daughter. We can’t have people operating outside of constitutional norms without an armed drafted militia in all 50 states, patrolling, and auditing every Federal office. This is a catastrophe in the Federal government, and it must be resisted by the states.


2016-11-21 on alternet

I see. Don’t bother with proving fraud, it won’t change anything. Just please try to get rebellion noises from states which are willing, and make sure nobody can pull off a false-flag in your state, and make sure to blame BANNON not Muslims for any mass-casualty attack which isn’t some nutcase shooting people.


2016-11-21 on alternet

I am not going to chill, I am going to leave the country on Jan 19th. I am petitioning my state for audit of Federal activities, with threat of secession if there is any mass-casualty attack within their border.

Do not have faith— Bannon is no more ethical than Goebbels or Goering. The presidential administration, unlike actual terrorists, has access to nuclear and chemical weapons. The last time around, it was Cheney running around claiming nuclear attack was imminent, he was running the drills and exercizes around 9/11, and Cheney, unlike Bannon, had no ethic cleansing goals in mind— he just wanted the US to control Middle East during what he considered to be “peak oil”. Bannon says “ethnic cleansing does not have to be so terrible”, if he wanted to attack black America, rounding up and deporting Muslims (and their relatives) would do it, as millions of American Muslims are native born blacks.

When you “deport” the native born, you are deporting them to nowhere, you understand. You are insane to chase after foreign threats and then install the worst possible domestic threat into office.

I do not trust these people, they have never held public office, and they have shown only disdain toward the constitution of the United States. They need to be AUDITED from the only power above them, which are the 50 states. The states have leeway to ban Federal exercises in their borders, to audit all Federal activities, and to arm their citizens in a militia. They better do it, or else you will leave yourself open to Bannon terror. If the audits go well, and 4 years pass, maybe you can relax your guard. But in NY state, you would be crazy to admit anything from Homeland Security without complete inspection.

These are not conspiracy theories, as they do not require any conspiracy. An appointee of Bannon could pull off a Sarin attack essentially alone, and Bannon himself could manufacture Muslim suspects out of nothing, he can put whatever he wants into the classified intelligence network. I am not telling you false-flag attacks are going to come, I see it as 50/50. But, quoting, I don’t want the smoking gun to be a mushroom cloud.


2016-11-21 on alternet

I didn’t know about the governor, but the election board in Pennsylvania is certainly controlled by Republicans, because they just instituted the new paperless voting machines, with private corporations controlling the data, they now have no audit (they used to) and they now have a discrepancy. I am positive that the PA election board is Republican, without checking. If it is not, the Democratic election board is new, and didn’t bother changing the system back. The results were fraudulent, Diego, it’s been happening for a decade. It doesn’t matter anyway, because states are allowed to do it.

The election board is not always run by the same party as the governor, it depends on how it is put in place, by election, or appointment, and how long the term lasts. Likewise in Minnesota (MI is Minnesota not Missouri)


2016-11-21 on alternet

You need to vet the people at homeland security, because the next terror attack will come from BANNON, not from Muslims. He will just blame it on Muslims. This is straight out of Hitler’s playbook, as was everything else in this campaign and transition.


2016-11-21 on alternet

Bannon could do a homeland security exercize, explode an atomic bomb in DC, blame it on Muslims, convince that piece of shit president to put them in detention camps, and then round up Sanders and Warren and accuse them of material collaboration with terrorists like the ACLU, who are trying to get the Muslims out, and who harbor them. You are crazy to elect someone who doesn’t operate under constitutional constraints, and you need state level action to bring the Federal government to heel. Now. Before Jan 20th. The first terror attack could come on Jan 21, for all you know Bannon is setting it up right now with two of his buddies appointed homeland security. You must get state legislation getting all homeland security out of your state, and audited.


2016-11-21 on alternet

You might not have a Democratic party in the future. He could win with 80% of the vote in 2020, after the terror attacks and voting laws the congress will pass. This is not an administration constrained by constitutional norms.


2016-11-21 on alternet

When you give power to someone outside of the constitutional norms, you can end up without a press and without a Democratic party in 4 years. He will sue the press to become his propaganda outlet, and he will sic the Federal law enforcement on Democratic officials until he has a one-party state. Without Obama’s net-neutrality, the internet presence of the left will be decimated, because they will have to pay to stream. His genocidal power-hungry lackey, Bannon, will stage terror attack after terror attack, maybe an atomic bomb in DC? Maybe Sarin gas in Portland? Anything with mass casualties, and so acquire absolute power. Like his hero Cheney. Bannon will convince him that the attacks are not self-inflicted, but that Muslims are in a plot against the government, and that’s concentration camps and “deportations”. Deportations to nowhere, you understand, like the Jews were deported to Poland. You have to raise arms state by state, and audit all Federal activities, because you have no idea whether your government is constrained by constitutional norms. Hillary Clinton was terrible, but anything is better than this, including a temporary collapse of the Federal government, just until we can figure out what is going on.


2016-11-21 on alternet

Who gives a damn! Stop with the high-minded debates and talk. This is not a normal election, this is an adminstration which clearly does not care for 200 year old democratic norms.


2016-11-21 on alternet

There will BE NO ELECTION, the press will be silenced by lawsuits which have already started, the protesters will be arrested for sedition as has already been promised, Democracy for America and Bernie Sanders’ organization will be broken up by Federal investigations into God knows what, probably “racketeering”, prominent Democrats will be arrested for Federal corruption charges, then they will hold the election. The candidates you run will be no-names without a platform, and too timid to speak about fundamental change, and you will lose by 80% in 2020. You must fight now. There is no future if you let this administration get power without resistance at the state level, draconian and unprecedented state oversight over all Federal activities, a local state draft in each state, and a threat of separation if there are violations of constitutional norms. Remember, Bannon can stage as many terror attacks as he needs to institute martial law and intern all my Black American Muslim neighbors. He has the ideology to do it, and his role models are Dick Cheney, Satan, and the unspoken one. Adolph Hitler.


2016-11-21 on alternet

Please don’t rebel individually, it is up to the people in individual states to rebel as a unit, and not immediately, you need to hope for the best, and a peaceful end to the crisis. But simply the threat of rebellion is enough to keep fascism at bay. I wrote this letter to my state representative yesterday, if I am alone, it will be ignored. But please, if your state is red or blue, it doesn’t matter, you need to put the thumb screws on the Federal administration to respect the constitution, and you need state auditing of all Federal activity for the duration of this presidency, with threat of secession and armed conflict in case there are violations. Here is the letter, please use it. If nothing gets done by Jan 20 in NY state, if there is no ARMED militia in the state ready to enforce NY state’s will, I will cut and run:

Dear Mr. O’Donnell,

I am a registered Democratic voter in your district, and I am contacting you as a last ditch effort to try to avert what I believe to be a constitutional catastrophe, and severe crisis in the state of New York, and a threat to our democratic traditions.

I am sure that you are as concerned as your constituents about the results of the Federal Presidential election. My concerns are not simply about outcome, but about process, as the exit polls in the states of Pennsylvia, North Carolina, and Wisconsin disagreed with the official results in a way that is not reasonable to attribute to chance. The election was, with some statistical certainty, not conducted honestly, and it is impossible for New York State to allow itself to be swallowed up by darkness through the election boards of other states without some measure of resistance.

I am asking you to act at the state level. I will ask my mayor to act at the municipal level as well, but a city is more limited. I would like to impress upon you the urgency. We have very little time. It is possible, perhaps likely, that the incoming Federal administration will lack the scruples of previous administrations, and will use their position to commit illegal acts, atrocities, or mass casualty terror, and violations of human rights not seen in America since Jackson and the trail of tears. I do not wish to point out the parallels with Europe in the 1930s (and the US in the 1820s), but I feel I must. This is what it looks like when a constitutional republic ends.

I am asking you if you could ask your fellow Democratic and Republican Assemblymen and Assemblywomen to hear the voice of protest of the citizens of the state of NY. and pass a risky measure. I hope you agree with me that doing nothing is not an option. This constitutes a best last chance to spare NY from authoritarianism. Please consider that in Trump’s America, the press will be silenced by lawsuits and all Democrats will be intimidated out of office.

I would hope that New York can declare an emergency session of the Assembly, and announce an extraordinary circumstance, in which it finds itself unable to find full faith that the Federal government will continue to fulfil its Constitutional obligations to the state of New York. New York asserts its compliance with all Federal obligations, but requests, during this extraordinary period, full verification over Federal activities taking place in the state, or over its airspace and coastal regions.

Under these circumstances, the state will set aside funds for the following extraordinary measures, to be implemented by the governor.

1. Monitoring of Federal activity in NY state: the governor shall appoint independent inspectors for each FBI, ATF, IRS, and Homeland security offices, with overlapping scope and mutual oversight, to monitor each and every Federal agency and Federal employee in NY state. No communications from outside New York to the employees of these agencies shall be admitted which is not viewed by the inspectors, in full, declassified form. The inspectors shall be granted the required security clearance, and if the background check fails, they shall be replaced, but repeated undue denials of security clearance over any period of time longer than two days, or for more than five appointed inspectors for a given position, by the Federal government, will be considered non-compliance with NY state law. The inspectors will monitor all activities in the agency, and report directly to the governor. They will be given access to all work-related documents and communications with the Federal agencies, and shall be informed of the whereabouts of all Federal employees when they are tasked with doing their duties, at all times that they are on duty in New York state.

2. A suspension of all extraordinary activities by the department of homeland security in NY, including: a. drills or exercises simulating any mass casualty terror attacks or response to such, b. interception of any NY state communications which do not leave the state without a state-review of the Federal warrant process and evidence, c. Federal search and investigation not explicitly authorized by the governor’s office after review.

3. An amendment to NY defamation law: any defamation lawsuit coming from a Federal official regarding any potentially defamatory article in the New York press, or any medium distributed in the state of New York, will be considered a grave violation of constitutional norms, and shall be null and void in the state of NY. Suits brought up in other states will be considered a violation of constitutional obligations by the state of NY, and will trigger
provision 6. The party bringing up the lawsuit shall be responsible for damages and legal fees, to the extent determined by the court.

4. A quarantine of Federal power to detain and deport within the state of NY, without approval from the Governor. The facts of the matter regarding each detention shall be presented to the governor, who will make a determination of the validity of the evidence. Any classified material shall be presented in non-redacted form. No New Yorker shall disappear into a Federal prison without Habeus Corpus protection, or assassinated, and if it is suspected that a New Yorker’s rights have been violated by the governor, a 2/3 vote of the assembly will trigger measure 6. Any arrest of political officeholders by the Federal government will have to be approved by the state of NY. During the period in question, an attempt to replace the governor of New York by Federal arrest will, with 2/3 vote of the assembly, trigger provision 6.

5. The state shall institute a temporary part-time draft on all military age males and females, by lottery, to allow state milita to patrol the state, for the duration of the emergency period. The state officers will be appointed by the governor, and draftees shall be compensated for their time, amounting to one hour a week. In the event of an escalation of emergencies, draftees might be called to full time active duty. In the event of such an emergency, NY residents in the armed forces overseas will be called to return.

6. If the state determines that the obligations of the Federal government have not been met, if there is a mass casualty event which the governor of New York is unsure of provenance, if there is any use of US military forces or lethal drones within the borders of New York State, or in the event of gross constitutional violations in other states, at the discretion of the governor and with 2/3 vote of the State assembly, the governor shall be authorized to quarantine of US mail, and individual citizens and corporations registered within the state of NY will no longer provide tax payments to the Federal government. The movement across the borders of the state of NY shall be temporarily suspended, and the militia shall enforce this provision with force of arms, for the continued duration of the state of emergency, or until the restoration of constitutional norms.

7. A future Federal election for president, conducted with verified voting in all 50 states, with hand counted paper ballots and with fair access to all voters, between any future candidates put up for election, and conducted according to past accepted constitutional norms, will permanently end the emergency period, and void all these provisions.

8. The Governor of New York State is authorized with these powers. Any legislation, executive order, or lawsuit by the Federal government regarding these provisions in Federal court shall be considered noncompliance with state law, and provide sufficient cause to trigger article 6.

I beg you to consider that your constituents are helpless in the face of what amounts to a fascist coup. I do not believe this government is above doing the unthinkable, including arbitrary arrest, arbitrary assassination, and staging mass-casualty terror attacks in order to seize absolute power. If NY is brave, and declares tough measures which threaten, but do not yet amount to, separation, it is possible that a minority or majority of our 50 states will follow suit, and the continual monitoring and threat of repercussions might be sufficient to insulate our fellow New Yorkers from catastrophic violations of democratic norms. It is too late to pass such measures after your members have been arrested and replaced, or, God forbid, disappeared. This has happened in other nations with national governments which do not make a good faith effort to assiduously follow constitutional norms.

State monitoring of Federal activity is not currently forbidden by the Federal government, so it is a right explicitly granted to the states by the US constitution. It can be a bipartisan issue, as Republicans have no more reason to trust this administration than Democrats do, shopkeepers, academics, and a majority of US voters, including those that voted for the Republican candidate, are united in mistrust of the Federal government under the incoming administration. The fear of totalitarianism is nearly universal, it is everyone save those who have been appointed by the incoming President. The expense of the measures will be mitigated by the security you will grant your residents during this extraordinary period, and you will earn their gratitude and their vote. If you are first to introduce the measure, you will personally benefit from national exposure.

Please make sure we are not led like sheep to the slaughter. Remember that we have suffered already one mass casualty attack not too long ago, and we can ill afford and administration who not only doesn’t seek to avoid such attacks, but potentially looks forward to more of them, for an excuse to implement ethnic cleansing. Remember that the US has deported millions of people before, in the 1820s, and millions of people died.

I am not optimistic I will be heard, but I must make an effort. I beg you, do not wait and say “it will pass”, because all of history shows it will not pass. Please do not attempt to work with DC, the power structure of fascism makes it impossible to work with DC without corrupting your oath to the citizens of NY. Please hear me when I say that the evil of fascism must be resisted, at its birth, because the longer it is allowed to grow, the harder it is to resist. I ask you to pass this measure before Jan 20th. If such a measure or similar is not passed, I shall no longer feel it is safe to remain in NY state, or in the United States of America and I will emigrate, along with many of our more fortunate residents. I fear for the safety and future of my fellow residents who are not so fortunate to have friends and relatives overseas.


2016-11-20 on washtimes

I agree with you regarding Waco, Oklahoma City, and all of the Patcon fiasco (including Ruby Ridge), and I voted for Clinton ANYWAY, because Trump threatens far worse. I mean 1930s Germany level worse.


2016-11-20 on washtimes

The incoming administration will do this, which is why we need to resist.


2016-11-20 on washtimes

Clinton also won the electoral college, but for irregularities in Pennsylvania, North Carolina, Wisconsin, and possibly Florida.


2016-11-20 on washtimes

We are opposed to this president, because he is the known path from electoral democracy to totalitarian one-party government. We are also suspicious of the exit poll disparities that suggest that the vote in Pennsylvania, North Carolina, and Wisconsin was not tallied correctly. This is an unprecendented assault on our rights as citizens, and New Yorkers can’t wait, but must immediately vote oversight over the Federal presence in their state for the duration. There is nothing needed at the Federal level beyond compliance with the constitution, a request that the incoming administration has shown no inclination of honoring.


2016-11-20 on washtimes

Letter to a State Assembly representative:

I am contacting you, with a prayer in my heart, as a last ditch effort to try to avert what I believe to be a constitutional catastrophe, and severe crisis in the state of New York, and a threat to our democratic traditions.

I am sure that you are as concerned as your constituents are about the results of the Federal Presidential election. My concerns are not simply about outcome, but about process, as the exit polls in the states of Pennsylvia, North Carolina, and Wisconsin disagreed with the official results in a way that is not reasonable to attribute to chance. The election was, with some statistical certainty, not conducted honestly, and it is impossible for New York State to allow itself to be swallowed up by darkness by following other states’ certifications blindly, without some measure of resistance.

I am aware that you are not operating at the Federal level, I am asking you to act at the state level. I will ask my mayor to act at the municipal level as well, but a city is more limited than a state. I would like to impress upon you the urgency. We have very little time.

It is possible, perhaps likely, that the incoming Federal administration will lack the scruples of previous administrations, and will use their position to commit illegal acts, atrocities, or mass casualty terror, and violations of human rights not seen in America since the trail of tears. I do not wish to point out the parallels with Europe in the 1930s (and the US in the 1820s), but I feel I must. This is what it looks like when a constitutional republic is threatened.

I am asking you if you could ask your fellow Democratic and Republican Assemblymen and Assemblywomen to hear the voice of protest of the citizens of the state of NY. It will be a risk, but I hope you agree with me that doing nothing is not an option. I believe measures such as the ones suggested below constitute a best last chance to spare NY from the consequences of authoritarianism. Please consider how democracy died in Germany a long time ago and in Russia, recently. Don’t let it happen to our beloved New York.

I would hope that New York can declare an emergency session of the Assembly, and announce an extraordinary circumstance, in which it finds itself unable to find full faith that the Federal government shall continue to fulfil its Constitutional obligations to the state of New York. New York asserts its compliance with all Federal obligations, but requests, during this extraordinary period, full verification over Federal activities taking place in the state, or over its airspace and coastal regions.

Under these circumstances, please, if you could, raise the question of setting aside funds for the following extraordinary measures, to be implemented by the governor.

1. Monitoring of Federal activity in NY state: the governor shall appoint independent inspectors for each FBI, ATF, IRS, and Homeland security offices, with overlapping scope, to monitor each Federal agency in NY state. No communications from outside New York to the employees of these agencies shall be admitted which is not viewed by the inspectors, in full, classified form. The inspectors shall be granted the required security clearance, and if the background check fails, they shall be replaced, but repeated undue denials of security clearance over any period of time longer than two days, or for more than five appointed inspectors for a given position, by the Federal government, will be considered non-compliance with NY state law. The inspectors will monitor all activities in the agency, and report directly to the governor. They will be given access to all work-related documents and communications with the Federal agencies, and shall be informed of the whereabouts of all Federal employees when they are tasked with doing their duties, at all times that they are on duty in New York state.

2. A suspension of all extraordinary activities by any Federal agency, including the department of homeland security in NY, including: a. drills or exercises simulating any mass casualty terror attacks or response to such, b. interception of any NY state communications which do not leave the state without a state-review of the Federal warrant process and evidence, c. Federal search and investigation not explicitly authorized by the governor after review. d. fly-over of unauthorized aircraft.

3. An amendment to NY defamation law: any defamation lawsuit coming from a Federal official regarding any potentially defamatory article in the New York press, or any medium distributed in the state of New York, will be considered a grave violation of constitutional norms, and will be null and void in the state of NY. Suits brought up in other states will be considered a violation of constitutional obligations by the state of NY, and will trigger provision 6. The party bringing up the lawsuit shall be responsible for damages and legal fees, to the extent determined by the court. Any such usage of a federal defamation law will be treated similarly.

4. A quarantine of Federal power to detain and deport within the state of NY, without approval from the Governor. The facts of the matter regarding each detention shall be presented to the governor’s appointed representatives, who will make a determination of the validity of the evidence. Any classified material shall be presented in non-redacted form. No New Yorker shall disappear into a Federal prison without Habeus Corpus protection, or assassinated, and if it is determined ny the governor that a New Yorker’s rights have been violated, a 2/3 vote of the assembly will trigger measure 6. Any arrest of political officeholders by the Federal government will have to be approved by the state of NY. During the period in question, an attempt to replace the governor of New York by Federal arrest will, with 2/3 vote of the assembly, trigger provision 6.

5. The state shall call for volunteers and institute a temporary part-time draft on all military age males, by lottery, to allow state milita to patrol the state, for the duration of the emergency period. The state officers will be appointed by the governor, and draftees shall be compensated for their time, amounting to one hour a week. In the event of an escalation of emergencies, draftees might be called to greater hours, or full time active duty. In the event of such an emergency, NY residents in the armed forces overseas will be called to return.

6. If the state determines that the obligations of the Federal government have not been met, if there is a mass casualty event which the governor of New York is unsure of provenance, if there is any use of US military forces or lethal drones within the borders of New York State, or in the event of a determination of gross deliberate constitutional violations in other states, at the discretion of the governor and with 2/3 vote of the State assembly, the governor shall be authorized to quarantine of US mail, and individual citizens and corporations registered within the state of NY will no longer provide tax payments to the Federal government. The movement across the borders of the state of NY shall be temporarily suspended, at the governor’s discretion, and the militia shall enforce this provision with force of arms, for the continued duration of the state of emergency, or until the restoration of constitutional norms.

7. A future Federal election for president, conducted with verified and audited voting in all 50 states, with hand counted paper ballots and with fair access without undue lines and delays to all registered voters, between any candidates put up for election, and conducted according to past accepted constitutional norms, shall permanently end the emergency period, and void all these provisions.

8. The Governor of New York State is authorized with these powers. Any legislation, executive order, or lawsuit by the Federal government regarding these provisions in Federal court shall be considered noncompliance with the provisions of this act, and due to the unfortunate breakdown of trust between Federal and State government, it will provide sufficient cause to trigger article 6.

I beg you to consider that your constituents are helpless in the face of what amounts to a fascist coup. I do not believe this government is above doing the unthinkable, including arbitrary arrest, arbitrary assassination, and staging mass-casualty terror attacks. If NY stands tall, and declares tough security measures, it is possible that a minority or majority of our 50 states will follow suit, and the continual monitoring and threat of repercussions might be sufficient to insulate our fellow New Yorkers from catastrophic violations of democratic norms. It is too late to pass such measures after your members have been arrested and replaced, or, God forbid, disappeared. This has happened in other nations with national governments which do not make a good faith effort to assiduously follow constitutional norms.

State monitoring of Federal activity is not currently forbidden by the Federal government, so it is a right explicitly granted to the states by the US constitution. It can be a bipartisan issue, as Republicans have no more reason to trust this administration than Democrats do. The fear of totalitarianism is nearly universal in the US, it is nearly everyone save those who have been appointed by the incoming Federal administration. The expense of the measures will be mitigated by the security you will grant your residents during this extraordinary period, and you will earn their gratitude and their vote. If you are first to introduce the measure, you will personally benefit from national exposure.

Please make sure we are not led like sheep to the slaughter. Remember that we have suffered already one mass casualty attack not too long ago, and we can ill afford an administration who not only does not seek to avoid such attacks, but potentially looks forward to them. I beg you to listen.

I am not optimistic I will be heard, but I must try. I implore you, do not wait and say “it will pass”, because all our history shows it will not pass. Please do not attempt to work with DC, the power structure of fascism makes it impossible to work with DC without corrupting your oath to the citizens of NY. Please hear me when I say that the evil of fascism must be resisted, at its birth, because the longer it is allowed to grow, the harder it is to resist. I ask you to pass this measure before Jan 20th. If such a measure or similar is not passed, I shall no longer feel it is safe to remain in NY state, or in the United States of America and I will emigrate, along with many of our more fortunate residents. I fear for the safety and future of my fellow residents who are not so fortunate to have friends and relatives overseas.

I am aware that a negative outcome is possible, that such a measure would spark national attention, and would be risky to yourself and your fellow Assemblymen and Assemblywomen. I am also aware that Federal colleagues of yours in your party in the House and Senate might advise you to wait and see. Please do not wait and see, please declare these measures. The monitoring and threat (not execution) of separation will be enough to force constitutional behavior from those in office, even if these people are determined to violate the law, as Bannon and our incoming president have all but assured the press they are.


2016-11-20 on washtimes

Talk is never treason, unless you are revealing state secrets.


2016-11-20 on alternet

Because the STATES have to fight this! You live in a Federation, which only grants the Federal government authority through the states. If the states’ trust is shattered, you can take back a large measure of power for 4 years, and prevent the Federal government from doing anything, by state non-cooperation.


2016-11-20 on alternet

Not irony. Apocalypse.


2016-11-20 on alternet

There is an upper limit to election fraud before it becomes obvious and leads to revolution, and Trump’s election is right on the border. It is impossible to skew elections by more than 5 percent without people noticing the discrepancy, so your work is not useless. It’s just that it’s not Democracy the way it was traditionally practiced, it forces total polarization, because the consensus point of 50/50 split in support is not the same as the breaking point for the election. It’s like a broken thermostat, and it leads to instability.


2016-11-20 on alternet

The military doesn’t operate inside the US, it is unconstitutional. The national guard is like the state militia. If there is an armed national guard presence, the army would have to come back and choose sides. Each individual soldier will presumably side with their home state, not with the Federal government. That doesn’t mean Trump won’t use the military inside the US, but if Trump understood and gave two shits about constitutional provisions, all this would be senseless panic. But he doesn’t.

If he decided to oppose state laws and use Federal law enforcement against the states it would cost politically, as it would require making it obvious that there is a police state. An audit of the Feds by the state is neutral and bipartisan, it doesn’t contradict any Federal law (yet). They would need to make it illegal to have state level audits of Federal activities, and this would lead to an outcry, and perhaps outright seccession.

I think Republicans want Federal audits by their own states too, and it could pass all 50 states but I think it is politically impossible. But so was Trump winning, so I will try until Jan 20th, and then I’ll cut and run.


2016-11-19 on alternet

STOP BLAMING RUSSIANS. This is domestic, the Republicans have been rigging elections in their favor since 2004, it is an explicit strategy favored by Karl Rove— take over the election offices, state by state. You can’t rely on the results at all, and it is best to ensure your state is protected from the Federal government by layers of oversight and h threat of armed secession.


2016-11-19 on alternet

It makes no difference what the democrats did. You are facing a fascist coup in your country! You need to fight until it takes power, and if it takes power, you need to run.


2016-11-19 on alternet

That’s funny, until you find yourself living in a fascist dictatorship, with ash on your face from incinerated muslims.


2016-11-19 on alternet

We HAD fair elections until 2004, I swear to you. I am old enough to remember. You would “just know” who was going to win on election day, and it would always come out the way that you knew. The 2000 election was a tossup, the elections from 2004 onward were fraudulently skewed conservative.


2016-11-19 on alternet

You need to THREATEN seccession to bring these Nazis to heel. You need to mean it, and you need to carry it out if they don’t back off. But those spineless wealthy fascists will not want to break the union, they’ll just throw Bannon under a bus, agree to state supervision of all Federal communication, and agree to voting reform and fair counting of paper ballot elections.


2016-11-19 on alternet

You won’t be fighting an army, if people are getting arrest warrants, the military support for trump will be shallow. The point is to have the infrastructure to resist in place, along with totalitarian state oversightover everything the Federal government is writing and doing, to tell us when the rights violations start. The weapon is for your own protection, you might never have to use it. The state national guard, the state militia, will need to be expanded using local state taxes.


2016-11-19 on alternet

It is not illegal to pay people to protest, you numbskull. But as a New York resident who is going to protests, you can rest assured that any “paid protester” is outnumbered 1000 to 1 by unpaid protesters. This is not the tea party, I am going to protest to save my state and city of NY. I have no interest in the rest of the country, as my state was the biggest victim last time you put fascists in power.

The only way to prevent a hundred new 9/11 style attacks, all blamed on non-existent terrorists, is to quarantine Federal agents in NY with state-appointed folks who will read all their communications with DC, and exercize a veto over any decision to hold a drill, to eavesdrop on communications, or intern or arrest anyone. The state officials must be appointed by my governor, and they must recieve the same security clearance as those they audit. Nothing the Federal government does in New York can be assumed to be safe.

If the Federal government protests, New York state will withhold all Federal tax dollars and use the surplus between the expenditures and payments to institute a state militia draft and arm the state national guard. It would also be good to print a local currency for the state, just in case there is some Federal pushback. This is the only reasonable step, it should be constitutional, as the constitution guarantees all rights not enumerated to the Federal government to the states. Printing a currency certainly is OK.

I don’t want to see a single FBI, ATF, CIA, or Homeland Security office in my state without a swarm of state agents peering over everyone’s shoulder, looking at every order from DC, and every document. I don’t want a single drill, a single Federal arrest in NY which is not authorized by the state, a single deportation not authorized by the state.

NY must threaten civil war in order to get safety for it’s citizens. As for the rest of you, you can pass similar measures in your own states, or go fuck yourselves, I don’t give a shit. You dumped this horror on us after what we suffered under Bush, I don’t think you are particularly deserving of our pity.


2016-11-19 on alternet

Nonsense. The same 10% that loved the goose-step in Germany love the goose step in America. The question is about power and self-interest. Once there is arbitrary arrests, you won’t find anyone protesting.

The only solution is to threaten Trump with civil war, by arming militias state by state, and temporarily “quarantining” Federal agencies in each state. If the Federal government tries to stop you, you threaten to withhold taxes. The threat of civil war is the only way to get anything at all out of this group, and I am not sure it will be an empty threat. In any case, you need a weapon at home.


2016-11-19 on alternet

I agree with you, I worded my post poorly. When I said “the discrepancies favored Sanders”, I meant that the exit poll results consistently showed a larger Sanders percentage, and by margins which are far beyond the margines of error of the poll.


2016-11-19 on alternet

You are not taking the proper point of view. The DP is not going to help you now, you need to talk to your state representatives to try to audit Federal activities. Every state law which is not directly contradicting a Federal law is constitutional. You need to make sure every Federal office in your state has a state officer reviewing all communications with Washington, with the same security clearance. You also need to ensure that homeland security activities are monitored and controlled inside each state, and issue a state-level statement of a moratorium on Federal presence if the audit is not complied with. You need to forbid homeland security from conducting exercizes of any sort in your state, to prevent false-flag attacks. You also need to arm the state national guard, and raise emergency taxes to pay for it in each state, because the Feds aren’t going to pay anymore. I am not optimistic any of these measures will pass anywhere, but they must get done before Jan 20, you need to know EVERYTHING the Federal government is doing at the state and municipal level, down to the last detail. This is a non-partisan proposal, it makes the Federal government more accountable to local officials, and it allows you to know when it is time to stop sending tax reciepts to Washington and focus on protecting your own citizens.


2016-11-19 on alternet

The parallels are exact, and your ridiculous rationalizations are insincere and unhelpful.


2016-11-19 on alternet

The different human circumstances are insignificant. The campaign was run by Bannon, not by Trump, and Bannon supplies all the personel and ideas. Bannon is not a billionaire, and shares Hitler’s philosophy. Trump himself could be substituted with any mega-star, or a blue cartoon character, as in the British television series “Black Mirror”.

The substance of the campaign was identical to Hitler’s, down to the last detail. Hitler won a 44% plurality before a fake terror attack allowed him to take absolute power, Trump won a roughly 44% plurality (adjusted by Republican controlled election offices to his margin of victory in various states). The opposition doesn’t matter anymore, this is a fascist coup, they will be silenced and ignored.


2016-11-19 on alternet

This is not foreign propaganda, it’s home grown. Know your enemy.


2016-11-19 on alternet

The charge that the protesters are paid is a terribly frightening omen of things to come. The charge allows you to imprison leftists for “material support of terrorism” because they donated to Democracy for America. Tea party protesters were paid indirectly, by Koch brothers financing the organizations so involved, and when Obama audited these organizations finances, he was accused of using the IRS for political payback. Trump is not threatening to audit the protesters, he is threatening to put them away.

It’s not illegal to pay people to protest, but none of the people protesting Trump are paid a dime. This wave of propaganda is the first attempt to control the opposition and set up a police state, and nothing like this kind of accusation has ever been floated before in American history.


2016-11-19 on alternet

Except this is not misuse. The Trump campaign was nearly identical to the Hitler campaign, down to the last detail.


2016-11-19 on alternet

Hitler had no problem with individual Jews, he had a Jewish doctor. He had a problem with what he considered the infestation of Western civilization with Jewish influence. Trump is the same regarding Muslims. The only possible resistance is at the state level, to audit any Federal government activities, and threaten withholding Federal tax reciepts if state-level audits of all Federal activities are resisted in any way. One must also invest in arming the state national guard, and preparing for possible strife. Only the threat of insurrection can work as a deterrant, otherwise there will be weekly terror attacks blamed on “Muslim terrorists” until there are no more civil liberties. This election was conducted fraudulently, you must examine the exit polls to see this, Trump got no more votes than Hitler did (44%), and one cannot submit.


2016-11-19 on alternet

Hitler didn’t blame Jews for Jesus’s death. He blamed them for Jesus. He considered universal ethics “sentimental” and “weakening”, it was to be replaced by a Neitzschian “triumph of the will”. The philosophy is similar to Ayn Rand, except more collectivist. The same philosophy, more or less, is shared by Bannon and the white supremacists.


2016-11-18 on alternet

It didn’t favor Hillary. All the discrepencies in the primary favored Bernie, by sometimes ridiculous margins, as in NY, where Bernie lost by 4 points in the exit poll and by some astronomical amount in the official count. Some Southern states reported official margins of 90/10 or 80/20, when the exit polls had 70/30 or better.


2016-11-18 on alternet

The discrepencies favored Bernie in all instances except Brooklyn, where the Clinton campaign mistakenly thought that Brooklyn would go for the senator, and suppressed the vote to shoot themselves in the foot. The tampering most likely cost Sanders the primary, but not certainly, it was nearly evenly split in reality, although the elections were so skewed (especially in the South) that it made it look like a Clinton landslide.


2016-11-17 on alternet

Listen, you gullible fool, I know Trump’s VOTERS are by and large not explicit racists! I know Trump himself is not explicitly racist (he is only too stupid to understand bigotry well enough to avoid unconscious spontaneous bigotry), but his CAMPAIGN MANAGER and MINISTER OF PROPAGANDA Bannon is a white supremacist, and he dictates the tone. He also can control the policy through staff choices, and he can implement a white supremacist agenda very easily.

Bannon is mostly anti-goodness, and anti-monotheism. Like Hitler, his hatred is not exactly of Jews as a race, but of the “weakening” philosophy of inclusion, loving your fellow man, and unity. He is a separatist, and believes there is a separate God for white people.

The small number of minority voters who voted for him assumed he is attacking SOME OTHER MINORITY, not them, and think that only THEIR OWN PERSONAL BIGOTRY is being supported. Hispanics think “Oh, he’s attacking illegals and terrorists.” Blacks think “Oh, he is attacking Jews”. Jews think “Oh, he is attacking Muslims”. Every group is blind to the hatred toward themselves, because they don’t hear their own dog-whistles. The only ones who see through the crap are moderately educated people or nearly all black people of any education level.

There is no mistake here, this pestilence of Bannon has to be removed immediately, and it’s practically impossible, because Bannon delivered. The impossible win was delivered by fraud, but you still score points for that.

Your link is stupid regarding exit polls. The election was closer than 2012, but the anomalies are only consistent with fraud, not with any trend or systematic error in polling. Also, you are an apologist for the fascist, and you have to stop. You have three months to do something, before you’re toast.


2016-11-17 on alternet

Sorry, Democratic voters outnumber Republicans for at least a decade now. The closest we were to 50/50 is in 2000. Democrats, including myself, REALLY hated Clinton. I only voted for her to keep THIS from happening. But I did so without hesitation.


2016-11-17 on alternet

The MSM knows that reporting election fraud is the road to destabilization and riots. It has led to revolution in several countries. So by a “gentlemen’s agreement”, they simply don’t write about it. The only way to fix Democratic party primary fraud is to get the leadership ousted, which we did. Then to put progressive leaders in, which we are doing now. There’s no recourse from the government.

But Federal election fraud makes a country unliveable. Kerry would have been able to reverse Bush era measures more than Obama has. I don’t like this guy’s silence during the primary, but that’s not the issue at present. The issue at present is that there are two months left until you get Giuliani doing whatever he wants with homeland security, and staging whatever number of Reichstags he needs to get a one-party state.


2016-11-17 on alternet

I accept that isolated polls can make a mistake with new parties, because they don’t know who or where to ask. I accept that there was a margin of error in each state. But ALL the discrepancies for 16 years have favored Republicans, and they are largest in states with no paper trail. The results of this election suggest tampering at the 5% level, as cumulatively, the one-way shift in votes is too improbable to occur by chance.

Generally, exit polls in the US are pretty thorough and well tested for systematics, because the methodology is steady over decades, and the party situation is extremely stable. The media polls were used for decades with no problem, because they know the statistical adjustments. Despite the horror of both candidates (Trump was only about ten times as horrible as Clinton— she has also supported police state measures, including limits on internet speech, surveillance, homeland security, and used Gestapo tactics against Republicans in PATCON) Still, in terms of results, this was a relatively standard Democrat/Republican election.

The only window of opportunity for grassroots movement is when people aren’t being terrorized and deported left and right. I was around in 1999, and 2000. I had a friend who protested this, protested that. She asked me to protest, and I said “I’m not that dissatisfied at present”. In 2001, after 9/11, the Iraq war, detentions, etc, I asked her where to protest. She didn’t know, because there were no protests left. Everyone had been intimidated into silence. There were no protests again until Obama allowed freedom.

This is what happened in Nazi Germany as well. There was no protests, there were partisans in the woods.


2016-11-17 on alternet

The reason is that constitutionally, it is up to the states to certify elections, and it is within each state that the challenges have to happen. The red states have been Republican so long, and this tactic so enshrined, it was legalized by the 2002 “help American vote” act, and the 2013 rejection of the Civil-Rights era voting rights act. This means that elections are state-level again, and it is basically impossible to audit and demonstrate fraud nationally, aside from looking at exit polls. Hence the Republican Jim-Crow tactics and simultaneous attack on exit polling (and polling in general). The Democrats have very little presence in these states, they can’t do anything to fix this, you basically have to trust the Republicans. This was Karl Rove’s strategy—take over one state election board at a time, until you produce a permanent Republican majority.

One must not trust Republicans anymore. Not since they gave Kathleen Harris a job after her work in 2000. Not on this, not on anything. I should add that Democrats did similar fraud in an earlier era.

It simply means that you can’t have a meaningful Democratic governance in a union including these states. Until such a time when you can trust their election boards, they will impose their one-party system on the rest of us, and with candidates increasingly more atrocious.


2016-11-17 on alternet

The “power” to do this is not in Republican power brokers. This is done by individual Republican state election officers, armed with a memory stick and a text editor. They are responsible for tabulating and certifying the election, and also for doing the audit. They have no Federal oversight, or any oversight at all. These are rank-and-file Republicans, and they have been adjusting the tabulation in their favor for a decade now, regardless of candidate, as can be seen by the gradual divergence of exit-polls and results over the decade, only in Republican controlled states.

The effect is much more corrosive, as people vote to make the vote come close, in the case when both candidates are hated, as in this case. This election must not be accepted if you don’t wish to live in a police state. Not that Trump wants a police state, mind you, he’s just too stupid to see through whatever his underlings will tell him is happening. With 3 or 4 terrorist attacks, his underlings can get him to shut up the entire press. With a simple repeal of net-neutrality, he can guarantee that only big-business can stream internet content to you, and slow-down any opposition content to the point that it disappears. With sufficient surveillance, he can arrest almost anybody, for example, for tax evasion regarding non-reporting of a $100 birthday gift as income. These are the tactics used in authoritarian states, and these tactics were his public campaign positions during the campaign.

You can’t trust the Republican party to punish election fraud, it rewards it. It also spreads idiotic stories in the media about nonexistent kinds of election fraud, like voting twice, dead-people voting, etc. Ballot stuffing used to happen in the 1960s, but it is a much smaller effect, and can only tilt close elections. This election was not all that close, the discrepancies were enormous.


2016-11-17 on alternet

Only the Democratic party can fix Democratic party elections, they are a private organization. Tampering with Federal elections, however, is a catastrophe, because there is no recourse. He wasn’t silent about it anyway, he mentions the exit poll discrepancies in the primary, which are inexcusable.


2016-11-17 on alternet

If you love American democracy, you better not use mealy-mouthed hedged statements. Do some research, come to sound conclusions, within the best of your ability, and sum it up in up in a punchy soundbite, which is accurate. Your propaganda skills are required, as your opponents are making punchy propaganda up without doing any research at all.

I don’t know which state you live in, but you have three months to petition your state to do something about federal presence, to assure the safety of their citizens. I think it is reasonable to ask for a temporary NY quarantine of all FBI offices, all Homeland Security, all drone-fly-overs, all internal espionage, so that if it takes place in NY, a New York appointed official will be involved at all stages, and the public will be informed of all the internal documents, with any sensitive or private information redacted. Just temporarily, to guarantee the safety of New Yorkers.

It would also be a good idea to require security clearance for state officials so involved, so that no excuse of classification will be used to prevent people from seeing the charges against people.

Further, I think it would be good for New York State to issue a statement of non-compliance with Federal arrest of its local and state government officials. The state can also guarantee habeus corpus protection which have been gutted at the Federal level. Any Federal FBI or terrorism case should be cleared with a state office before being allowed to proceed, and all arrested people must be subject to a state controlled trial before being handed over to a Federal agency.

We were one step away from fascism with Bush II, all it would take is one massive terror attack in DC, following a homeland security drill, for Trump to have an excuse to arrest all his political opponents and enshrine a permanent Republican majority, by simply inventing some more imaginary terrorists. I don’t give a shit about terrorists, I am afraid of Trump, not of foreign terrorists.

These state measures can be relaxed at such a time when the Federal government is sane again, but I think they are good to keep around permanently, just in case. New York can’t rely on DC to protect it’s citizens, it needs to do it’s job by itself. Our state representatives are not beholden to anyone except their voters, and you can meet with them and ask them for help. Please do so before Jan 20.


2016-11-16 on alternet

“Power” is not the one rigging the elections. Republican controlled states are. The discrepancies are all in states where the election is run by Republicans. The state of Virginia is the single exception in the south, and also the island of blue. There is no chance that the election is counted fairly, it is impossible by any reasonable standard of statistical certainty.

That antichrist is not my president, and I expect New York State to build a fortress wall to keep those God damned voters in red states from ever crossing over into ours.


2016-11-16 on alternet

I am not unhappy, I am terrified. I do not believe the results, not because of my feelings, but because they are not consistent with exit polls. I will never except a result inconsistent with exit polls outside the margin of error of the poll, unless the election is paper and audited. It is unprecedented, and this is the standard used by the US to evaluate foreign elections.


2016-11-16 on alternet

Not most! ALL of the discrepancies have occured after electronic voting and compiling have come into use, and they came into use right after 9/11. Further, the discrepancies occur only in states with Republican control of the state election office, and always favor Republicans.


2016-11-16 on alternet

That’s what firms do today, because elections have been coming out wrong since 2004. There were no problems in exit polls in any previous years they were conducted. In 1976, 1980, 1984, 1988, 1992, 1996, and 2000, the networks would simply call the election the moment the last polling place closed using the exit polls, and they never had to correct any announced result in any state, that is, except for Florida in 2000. You know the story in Florida, Kathleen Harris purged voters and threw out tens of thousands of votes, gave Bush a tiny win, and was rewarded with a congressional seat.

You do have to adjust for total turnout, and the populations that turned out, but that’s an easy adjustment for any pollster, and you can do without official results, just using your samples, and turnout figures for districts (without having to adjust using official counts). The polls in the US no longer serve the purpose of checking the election, and this is simply because the elections are fraudulent.

It’s not a conspiracy, it’s done by individual party members in individual districts, and Republicans either simply turn a blind eye, or reward someone who does it with a post. They reward fraud with positions of power, especially large roll-purges of black voters. I’ve had it with a party that doesn’t give a shit about Democracy.

The press does not like to report on this stuff, and it is dangerous and destabilizing to talk about it, but the fraud is more blatant this year, and the candidate that won is more dangerous and destabilizing than any uncomfortable truths.


2016-11-16 on alternet

The electoral college is a sweetener for small states so that their farmers and ranchers won’t be ignored. It’s not a real problem, it worked fine in all the cases before the systematic election fraud started in 2004. This was something that needed to get fixed in Obama’s adminstration, but he wouldn’t be able to do it after Lieberman’s defection, he only had 2 months.


2016-11-16 on alternet

You need to audit the Spanish election, then, unless the exit poll was informal. This “exit poll failure” phenomenon is entirely ridiculous, and the excuses for it are absurd. The exit poll difference has favored the Republicans in every election, in every district where there is a discrepancy. It’s not statistical error, or “shy voters” (as if that makes any sense with anonymous polls). They trotted this bullshit out in 2004, when Bush won Ohio after losing definitively in the poll, that election was less divided, and my own feeling from pre-election polls was that Democrats had it in the bag. In my own experience with American elections (before electronic voting was forcibly introduced by post-9/11 Republicans in 2002-2003) and Israeli elections, but also recent elections in Iraq, Ukraine, wherever, exit polls NEVER fail by any significant amount, and in any election with a margin of 1% or more, they are definitive. Their samples are approximately 100,000 voters, their accuracy is of the order of .1%. It’s the easiest circumstance to poll, and a discrepancy of even 1% is enough to check again.

This is a fascist coup, America has fallen. My suspicion is that in three months, ostensibly to protest the election of Trump, weekly “terrorist attacks” will begin. ISIS is already “threatening Trump” in the press. Then the Muslims will get their ID badge, a few Democrats will protest and get arrested for “material support of terrorism”, the rest will get in line. The protesters and the Muslims will get “temporarily” interned (there are many black Muslims in America, so this will help to solve the “black problem” as well as the “muslim problem”), then “criminals” will be given show trials and summary executions, the immigrants will be deported, and those that harbor them arrested. It’s a 1933 style nightmare, the rhetoric is identical, and the surveillance network is much better. Except in this case Trump doesn’t make his ideology himself, his right-hand man is Bannon, and Bannon does the ideology. Bannon is a run-of-the-mill white supremacist.

The press will do nothing, because newspapers will be sued by the president, using new libel laws, he has promised to do this, he can do this, and he has started by threatening to sue a Senator who opposed him. All the things I am saying are actual promises from Trump’s campaign. He was supposed to lose by a few votes, the votes for him were protest against Clinton (who deserved it). But when a party can change the counts by 6%, as it seems was the result in Pennsylvania, North Carolina, etc (the blue states Trump won), it is impossible to hold a fair election, as any legitimate protest by voters is converted to a win. Remember that in 1933, Hitler only won 40% of the German vote, he converted the plurality to a dictatorship using the “emergency” of the Reichstag fire, and arrested all the communists.

Even if we get lucky, and none of this happens, Trump has appointed a white supremacist to office, and this guy is leading the Trump selection of people. He will turn the cities into wastelands, and his economic platform is batshit insane. There is nothing to do. Trump will get 80% margins in 2020, because there will be no opposition, they will all be sued or in prison.


2016-11-16 on alternet

No, it was the case then too. And in 2008.


2016-11-16 on alternet

Off by 5 percent. The Colorado election needs to be audited again.


2016-11-16 on alternet

Exit polls are anonymous, you place the paper revealing your vote in a box, along with thousands of other papers.


2016-11-16 on alternet

Nice try, but exit polls are anonymous, and all you have to do is repeat what you did in the voting booth. It’s ridiculous to make such theories, exit polls are accurate in much more strongly contested elections in Iraq, Afganistan, Venezuela, and Israel.


2016-11-16 on alternet

He complained about the primary too. But it is impossible to make a Federal mandate for a private election. You can mandate paper ballots in Federal elections, and a quota of polling places per registered voter in each district, fairly spaced.


2016-11-16 on alternet

Ridiculous. The electoral college is fine. You just need audited elections with paper ballots in all 50 states. This should be a march on Washington, to demand a Federal requirement that Federal elections be paper and verifiable. Then you won’t get this nonsense. We also need a new voting rights act, to ensure that the lines on election day in poorer districts are not interminable.


2016-11-16 on alternet

Don’t “suspect”. The exit polls are enough evidence for dead certainty.


2016-11-16 on alternet

Sorry, it is the elections that are discredited. The pollsters are pretty good. The discrepancies in Pennsylvania are particularly statistically impossible, but those in NC are also outside the boundary of reason, and the rest. The vote in red states is not counted correctly, with statistical certainty. This is a growing effort that started with a serendipitous event with Kathleen Harris in Florida, who was rewarded for her fraud with a congressional seat in a safe Republican district. It continued into 2004, and hasn’t stopped since. Obama was popular enough to overcome it, but this is unusual.


2016-11-16 on alternet

Sorry, but the experience of all nations around the world is that exit polling is always, 100% SPOT ON, with accuracy about .1%. Except, that is, for American states with Republican legislatures and governors.


2016-11-16 on alternet

It’s not done by trump, it’s done by unscrupulous vote tabulators hired by the Republican statehouses.


2016-11-16 on alternet

No. Wherever counts and exit polls don’t match, this is overwhelming evidence of fraud. This is the standard used worldwide, You need paper ballots and hand counting, like every other modern state,


2016-11-16 on alternet

Sorry, the divergence of exit polls and results started in 2004 and never stopped. It happens in states where republicans count the vote, and there is no paper trail.


2016-11-16 on alternet

exit polls were used to call every state in every election the instant the polls closed in 1980 ,1984, 1988, 1992, 1996, and after working perfectly, suddenly failed in ONE state in 2000. Then in Ohio in 2004, with the introduction of electronic machines, Now they fail all the time. The reason i massive systemic fraud, by Republicans, who no longer are capable of winning a national election fairly.



2016-11-02 on oxtest

I didn’t claim that the twin towers were destroyed by traditional demolition methods, only WTC 7 fell that way. The most plausible explanation for WTC 1 and 2 is that the steel at the towers center was melted at the joints using thermite, and the buildings just came down by themselves once there was no significant support left. That explains NIST’s model results for the time of collapse, which I did reproduce (in a few minutes) by calculating the time for fall starting at the location of the impact and slowed down only by the inertia of picking up new stationary floors. To have that weird kind of collapse like you see in the towers, you need to get rid of the stress in the central steel structure and do nothing else. That’s weird, because this collapse starts at the point of impact, not at the base.

Building 7 is different, because it collapses at the base, and simultaneously, and at EXACTLY free fall, without even the inertial lag business. That means the supports are all cut at the same time, and that requires a traditional demolition. It’s a much easier case to analyse than the towers, and this is why truthers focus on it.


2016-11-02 on oxtest

You really aren’t answering fire with fire. You are producing a superficially convincing, but fundamentally incorrect, analysis, by copying the NIST report.


2016-11-02 on oxtest

The distance is illusion. The same internet that reveals uncomfortable truths about Shakespeare (where there is no political impact) also reveals uncomfortable truths about 9/11. It is a question about whether the un-peer-reviewed publicly generated information you find on random web-pages can be MORE reliable in some case than the stuff you read in official reports. In both cases of Marlowe/Shakespeare and for 9/11, the answer is a surprising yes.

In both cases, the science supports the unpopular view, and in neither case is it much of a conspiracy. In the case of 9/11, the drills allow the drill-coordinator to pull of the sham without any significant conspirators, and in the case of Shakespeare, only Shakespeare and Marlowe and their patrons are guilty of using a front for a disgraced and exiled author. Neither requires suspension of disbelief in the laws of human organization.


2016-11-02 on oxtest

It’s not that I didn’t understand your gibberish, it’s that there’s no point to a detailed analysis of the foundations or the beams. It doesn’t matter how the beams were attached to each other, or to the foundation. The whole facade came straight down, at free-fall.

The way to see that this is not a natural collapse is simply to observe that the supports “on the facade” at the left of the building collapsed at the same time as the supports “on the facade” at the right end, as I can see with my own eyes. If you examine cases of natural collapse, e.g. the delft building:

https://www.youtube.com/wat…

a column fails, a part collapses, the rest of the building stays standing, and the collapse is asymmetrical and incomplete. In the case of the video, the left of the Delft buidling collapsed, the rest stayed up, as expected from localized failure.

That’s always the case when buildings have natural collapse, a column fails here, another there, and they fail at different times, and some don’t fail at all. The building becomes a hollowed out wreck, similar to what you see in postwar pictures of Germany.

The heat expansion coefficient of steel is such that even for heating of the entire span of steel to 700 degrees (which is absurd, it’s like placing the whole building in a furnace), the steel would expand by some centimeters, or tens of centimeters. This leads to a noticible “sagging” of beams, as you can see in the steel-framed high-rise fire, because a few centimeters of extra length translates to some meters of bend in the beam.

Your claim is that the thermal expansion pushed one column out of it’s seat, and then, like a domino, this column magically collapsed the next columns, from the inside out, until it reached the outer columns at PRECISELY AND EXACTLY THE SAME TIME to produce a completely symmetrical collapse. That’s preposterous, it would require a miracle of coincidence, and I don’t believe in miracles. This building was engineered to collapse.

I believe there was a real danger of a natural collapse, and to prevent the problems of a natural collapse, people triggered whatever demolition system they installed years or months earlier. If there would have been a natural collapse, it probably would have happened the way NIST says. But then only the area around the weak column would collapse, leaving a building with a hole in it, or else a section would collapse, or else a part would topple outward, or else the left half would collapse 2 seconds before the right, so that it would tilt. None of these are observed.

I see you like to impress people with engineering terms. That’s very nice. You are not explaining the collapse, you are simply regurgitating horseshit. It is not reasonable for you to claim a natural collapse from the invisible inside out, when I see a symmetrical simultaneous collapse from the bottom up.

NIST stopped the computer simulation after the failure of the first beam, so there is nothing to be gained from reading their report. If you would like to point to a simulation of the collapse of the building from a failure of the column, one which shows a magic domino effect where you get failure of the outer columns at exactly the same time, I will be glad to look at it, run it on my computer, and laugh at it. Until you have such a model (you never will), I will continue to scorn your nonsense.

I am not a truther because of this demolition, as I said, I don’t think it matters much one way or another. But because I think I know something about structures, I don’t accept your facile just-so-story. I want to know how the building collapsed for real, not in your fantasies, or those of NIST.


2016-10-31 on oxtest

The part about thermal expansion due to long-span floors is gibberish, thermal expansion is negligible stress compared to structural weakening, it just causes beam deformation. But, let’s suppose, just for argument’s sake, that the thermal expansion can stress a column somewhat, and suppose one of the support columns collapses, let’s imagine. It still requires a miraculous coincidence for two columns to fail at once, and an even more miraculous coincidence for three to fail, as they are not linked by the same beam. In building 7, all the supports gave way at once, ALL OF THEM.

Likewise point 5 is gibberish, about the colums going through the station. It doesn’t matter where they were placed. There is no need to give fake abstruse comments about engineering, you clearly don’t understand the first thing about it.

The only thing you need to know about the collapse is that it was simultaneous, meaning that the failure of the columns at the far left side of the building happened within a fraction of a second of the columns at the far right. That’s all the columns, however many there were, 12, 15, 17, I don’t know and I DON’T CARE. When all the columns fail at the same time, this is an engineered collapse. In natural collapses, the columns fail one by one, or, sometimes, rarely, when there is a coincidence, in groups of two. They don’t fail all at the same time, everywhere.

Your previous points are therefore also gibberish. The firefighting efforts are unimportant, as is the fire itself. The sounds the building made was unimportant. The damage from debris was unimportant. When the collapse happened, all the supports gave way at the same time, and this means it was explosively demolished. With timers. It’s not easy to get a building to collapse like that.

The natural collapse that day was building 6. I suggest you take a look at that, to see what a natural collapse looks like. Your methods of propaganda are obvious and worthless. You should give it up, and start doing propaganda for the good guys.


2016-10-30 on oxtest

Whatever you say. The building collapsed by demolition, as is obvious. It is also obvious that WTC 1 and 2 collapsed by demolition, but there, it is less obvious, because the supports were gradually disconnected by thermite, so the building collapsed from the weak spot down, not as WTC 7 collapsed, from the bottom.

Neither of these collapses are the strongest case for an inside job, since demolition by itself does not require that the whole thing was a sham. Maybe dangerous highrises are all secretly rigged to go down in emergency? I don’t know. Considering what happened at WTC in 1994, it wouldn’t be a huge surprise, and it would just be criminal negligence to bring them down on 9/11, not a false flag.

No. The real smoking-gun evidence for an inside job is the simultaneous drills which were occuring on the morning of 9/11. These drills simulated hijackings, messed with air-traffic control computers, and pretended to fly airplanes into buildings. Regardless of demolition, these drills demonstrate that this was an inside job. The demolition itself happened as I said.

Your use of technical words is gibberish. The collapse of WTC 7 was simultaneous, therefore all the columns had to collapse simultaneously. That can’t happen by fire, it requires explosives. Nothing at all can happen to that building by fire, and structural weakness leads to a collapse that looks like WTC 6. But this as I said is not the “strongest case”, as demolitions are not the main proof. The drills are.


2016-10-24 on oxtest

That’s not evidence, that’s propaganda. WTC-7 collapsed by demolition.


2016-10-13 on theatlantic

I just celebrated my 43rd birthday a week ago. The picture is from 10 years ago. You can tell that I am not young, because I know something about the USSR. All the information about that country was dumped into the memory hole in 1991.


2016-10-13 on theatlantic

Solzhenitsyn is a stupid propagandist. The “gulags” closed under Khruschev. The later Soviet Union’s human rights violations were placing dissidents in mental institutions and drugging them, preventing mobility, censoring media, and so on. But there were no real camps anymore. Khruschev was a fan of “A Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich”, as was I, but this was the last time Solzhenitsyn told anything resembling the truth.

I am not a communist, dude, I am just a person who followed the literature, unlike you.


2016-09-02 on strangenotions

Yeah, that’s about right. The notion of God here is an abstract disembodied “desire” which is constructed from the self-consistency of the universal ethics. This God is “one”, because the ethics is universal. This God is “omniscient” by definition, because in order to construct a universal system of perfect ethical decision-making, you need to know every nitpicky detail about everybody. The omniscience is not necessarily omniscience of future events, by the way, it could be or not without changing the ethics, because God’s knowledge of the future doesn’t change the ethical decisions WE must make, when WE are ignorant of this future. So aren’t required to say “God knows the future”, but you could say that if you wanted to, as some Protestants do, it doesn’t change anything practical. The two positions are only superficially different, they are equivalent in logical positivism. God is “omnipotent” in the sense that whatever God wants will get done when people get around to doing what they should, which they will eventually get around to doing (and they better hurry up!). That’s about it, all the rest is exegesis with fanciful storytelling. This concept is found in Hinduism also, in the Brahma idea and monotheistic ethics, which is likely either originally Hindu, or an offshoot of Hinduism (Hinduism is still ethically monotheistic, despite the superficial polytheism of many manifestations and visual representations— this is a point made by many religious Hindus who get annoyed with Muslims or Christians claiming the religion is less sophisticated than theirs).

The way one recieves “revelations” is by your head extrapolating the will of God using your own experiences and intuitions, in an attempt to put them together into a consistent universal ethics. Your brain does this automatically, but it doesn’t always do it right. If you tune in to this system with self-awareness, it can sound like a person “talking” to you from outside, about ethics. You can receive what appear to you to be revelations about immoral things because, unlike God, you are NOT omniscient, and have imperfect knowledge of absolute ethics, even in cases where your intuition is firm.

The Muslim slavery codes are absurd, of course, like the Jewish slavery codes, but both were written at a time when much worse practices existed, which might explain why it is that otherwise kind and inspired people were led to consider them ethically superior. That’s not to justify them, but to explain that the Koran was doing ethical reform the same way the Christians and Jews did earlier. You can argue that the Muslims didn’t go as far as the rest in 600AD, but the argument is really stupid now that we are out of the middle ages and we have advanced so far over all these systems. The modern “Jihadist” nonsense is not Islamic in any modern sense of the religion, it is barbaric nonsense resurrected by secular people to gain power and money from foreign donors, and you can’t say it belongs to religion really, it belongs to pure secular politics.

The way to know that God is NOT ok with stuff like that is just the same way you come to understand that this stuff is immoral, as “being immoral” and “being against the will of God” is tautologically the same thing.

One reason people reject religion is because it comes with a lot of nonsense anti-science stuff. I also reject this aspect. But the main idea is valid, and needs to be preserved. This is just the statement that the perfect ethics can and must be identified with the disembodied will of a unified perfectly omniscient being. You can’t construct this abstract will perfectly in your meditation and cogitation, or having intuitive flashes (revelations), but you can do better with time, individually and collectively, and achieve a certain confidence that some things, like sexual slavery, or the caste-system, are absolutely completely unethical, while other things, like Hindu drawings of Ganesh, or Krishna Bhajans, are holy and beautiful. Most of the time, like regarding bigamy or weird sex, you just have no clear idea, and you have to not be so dogmatic, because we’re all muddling through fog.


2016-08-23 on strangenotions

What could you possibly mean about no advancement regarding slavery? Slavery in Christendom was abolished in the 7th century, reintroduced in the 11th century, became widespread in the colonial era, and reabolished in the 19th century, in large part due to the contributions of religious Christians. It was reintroduced by the Nazis, and you know how that turned out.

Your examples are not the most brutal in Leviticus, I could show you much worse. In Leviticus 27, you can see that slaves could be pawned to the priesthood as collateral for a loan, and could be killed if the loan was not repayed. This is not obvious in most translations, the text is opaque in Hebrew. I did a translation myself found here: https://en.wikisource.org/w…

Paul DOES ask Philemon to consider Onesimus’s debts as charged to him in full. That’s the point. There is no money changing hands, he is saying the slave debt is as nothing compared to the soul-debt. That’s the point of the epistle, and it is 10 thousand times more clear about the goal of ending slavery than any Jewish law, which, in my opinion, is why Christianity is more popular than Judaism today.

Regarding Paul’s finances, he is recieving payments from the Church, probably like a salary. The Church had finances, and provided finacial relief and aid to members who were struggling. There are some verses which are mystifying regarding finances which become clearer when one understands this, like Jesus saying “He who shall not work, neither shall he eat”, and a sentiment along the lines of “it is better to give your last penny to the church than to use it to buy bread”.

I know that Christians would disagree with me about the point of Christianity. I think Karl Marx would agree, but I am not sure, I have not read this in Marx. This is a hypothesis regarding the social forces that drove the acceptance of Christianity (and also Judaism to a lesser extent) in Rome. These religions had injunctions which prevented stratification of society along socio-economic lines.

I am not saying this to argue that the Bible is written by supernatural forces, or that it is inerrant. I am trying to explain that there is a certain transcendent truth which it is trying to explain, that I think is more easily explained using modern game theoretic ideas, like superrational decision making.


2016-08-23 on strangenotions

Wow!!! Thanks for finding it! I did learn it in grade 7 or so, and forgot the exact passage. I think that the most parsimonious assumption is to take it at face value, that it is not remarkable that the boy can read. That’s consistent with the historical evidence of the literacy of otherwise random Jews, like Josephus, or Paul, or Peter (these didn’t start off as high-up people). The same unremarkable literacy is assumed when you hear about random citizen Jews nitpicking over the meanings of obscure verses. This is not the case for random citizen Christians. The early Christian Church is underdocumented, because it is a largely illiterate society, and this is one of Carrier’s major points regarding the fidelity of the Gospel narratives to history.

I don’t know the standard consensus among historians regarding ancient Hebrew literacy, but I think I am stating a mainstream position when I say it was universal. But again, I didn’t read secondary sources for this.


2016-08-23 on strangenotions

I don’t think Biblical slavery is a good thing, it’s terrible. I don’t think the Bible is inerrant or infallible. I am trying to explain the main point of the text.

I don’t use secondary sources. Everything I write is 100% original, although in this case, I am sure that I am not the first to say these things. I read parts of the OT in Hebrew (I had to, in grade school), and the entire NT in English translation on my own time. For 6th and 7th century abolition of Christian slavery, I just did some googling around, the edicts are well known. The “7 years” is just a rough number, I don’t care about the minutiae of Biblical law. The reference for universal literacy is in Kings somewhere (I learned it in grade school, I don’t remember specifically), where a peasant boy is offhand asked to take down a message to some character or other. The implicit presumption is that the peasant boy can read and write. The reciting of the law is not a substitute for literacy, it is a formalized way of ensuring it, by requiring reading of a standard text as a process of socialization. It is clear that Peter and Paul are literate, as are poor essenes in the desert, etc, while by contrast almost all the gentile members of the early church are illiterate. The high rate of Jewish literacy is tied to the injunction to learn to read the texts, although, of course, today universal literacy is not something unusual.

The Biblical injunctions on slavery are the start of a very slow process of reform, whose extremely long-term goal to get rid of the institution step by step. The observation that ancient Hebrews didn’t have chattel slaves follows from the structure of the law, I didn’t read it in a book, I noticed myself after reading Exodus. The law only recognizes slavery as a manner of paying off debts for a limited time, or else a voluntary submission, or for an enslaved person who has married a member of the household. While I don’t know anyone who mentions it specifically in the literature other than me just now (although I am sure I am not the first to notice), under these limitations, you can’t have a stable hereditary slave caste, everyone is effectively free, aside from those who voluntarily choose it. This does not apply to women, who were treated as property.

Slavery is a very difficult thing to get rid of, as it is self-reinforcing, evolutionarily stable, and is viewed as a positive good by slave-owners and it embeds itself in the very foundations of society, much the same way that people today view capitalism as a positive good. Imagine, for an analogy, trying to get rid of the capitalists in modern society. That’s what it means to get rid of slaveowners. In the ancient world. Common wisdom held that slavery was essential for society. The Christian reforms gradually got rid of slavery, and it wasn’t all rosy, a lot of industries simply vanished as they couldn’t exist without slaves. The whole ancient way of life vanished.

Philemon didn’t die without heirs, Onesimus becomes Bishop because he is freed by Philemon. You are misunderstanding Paul when he says “Charge the debts to my account.” This is not a bank account he is talking about, nor is he talking about paying literal money for literal debts (not like Paul could pay any debts anyway, he wasn’t so wealthy). He is talking about paying down Onesimus’s slave debt with purely spiritual currency, the value of which is Philemon’s soul.

The Onesimus who was Bishop of Antioch (or whatever city) is certainly the same runaway slave fellow, in tradition, and in plain understanding. You don’t understand the Epistle, because you don’t understand the point of Christianity. It is creating a new society in which slavery becomes impossible. Much like Marxists try to create a society in which wage-labor becomes impossible.


2016-08-22 on strangenotions

You are confusing the form of the Jewish laws with their intended effect. If you read the text of the law, it is stupid and barbaric, obviously, as all written ancient laws are. But the point of the Jewish law is that it is not fixed secular law, but religious law, which means that it was designed to be interpreted by people with a teleological goal which is something like a communist utopia. Like modern Marxism-Leninism, it came with a lot of restrictions on individual liberty.

The family exception was not a way to avoid releasing slaves, it wouldn’t work anyway, as the slave would simply refuse to marry until the seven years were up. The point of this is to keep families which are dependent on the owner for subsistence together. The Jewish children of such unions would be free. The point of this “temporary regulated slavery” business is that it has the EFFECT of eliminating generational slavery, replacing it with a system of 7-year periods of indentured labor, where you pay off a debt, and then do something else. This release from debt over seven years is preserved in modern law in the periodic writing off of debt in all modern countries. Using these roundabout methods, the Jews successfully rid their society of the pestilence of ancient slavery, and the Christians did the exact same thing. The Jews also achieved universal literacy in ancient times, as attested by certain passages which don’t make sense unless it was expected that everyone could read and write.

The Christians had a debate regarding the elimination of slavery in the 3rd-6th, and there were several proposals during this period. One of them was to copy the Jews and have temporary slavery, and this was rejected. Instead it became an outright ban sometime in the 6th or 7th century, which is much better (by that point, of course, Jews also did not own slaves). This is the main social transformation from ancient economics to medieval economics, and it’s why Christmas is celebrated all over Europe like a Juneteenth.

Your misreading of the Epistle to Philemon is the usual one for both ancient and modern slaveholders. The Epistle is grappling with a serious problem— a Christian slave has run away from a Christian slaveowner. The letter is extraordinary, because it says to Philemon’s slave, Onesimus, “Go back to your master”. It says to Philemon, the master, “accept him back, but you are no longer to view him as a slave, but as an equal.” Then Paul says that Philemon must consider the debt of Onesimus in relation to the debt of Philemon to Paul, for saving his soul. Paul asks him to consider the relation of these debts, and asks him to do the right thing.

Philemon accepts Onesimus back, and at some point, releases him from slavery. The free Onesimus becomes a Bishop of some large city (I think Antioch). This was the Paul method of dealing with slavery— assert that it is wrong, assert that it is the law, demand that you obey the law as a slave, but demand that the Christian master recognize the evil and release the slave.

The hewing to the letter of the law made Christianity less subversive than Spartacus. But the insistence on moral truth made it both more subversive and more successful. Modern anti-slavery movements point to the Epistle to Philemon as a emancipatory document (which it is), but it is a work of genius, in that it is written in such a way that a non-religious person will see it as justifying slavery. It is a remarkable document, the only one of its kind. It is doubly remarkable that it was canonized at a time when slavery was still around.


2016-08-22 on strangenotions

You are missing the main point of monotheistic religions. The monotheistic religions introduce a notion of morality which goes BEYOND the simple requirement of producing a social order which is stable and self-propagating. The requirement of stability is the endpoint of the Roman Empire. They had ethics, for sure, but it wasn’t monotheistic ethics, so it was wrong from the point of view of any future time, especially so from our point of view two thousand years later, when the monotheistic idea is so deeply embedded.

In the Roman empire, you had a strict caste system, with slaves, landowners, free-merchants, powerful imperial appointees, senators, military folks, and so on. Each caste was rigidly determined and nearly strictly hereditary. There was nothing wrong with this from a social or evolutionary perspective, but from a monotheistic perspective it was abominable.

What it meant was that you had people tortured in arenas for entertainment, women sold and raped, other slaves who were forced into a life of illiteracy and drudgery and thrown to fend for themselves when their productive labor period was over, slaves who toiled in mines and fields, and others who lived off the labor of these slaves. This ancient economic system was extremely stable, it was evolutionarily productive, the Roman economy was growing until Christianity arose, and very self-reinforcing. The point of monotheistic ethics is to shatter these stable but abhorrent fixed points and move to a better equilibrium, and to do so, you can’t rely on logic or evolution, you must be guided by a transcendent idea of what it means to be “better”. This is what monotheism is all about. Notice that I never said anything about omnipotent beings.

In the case of Judaism, this was achieved by a series of accumulating gradual reforms, which on their own seem arbitrary and unrelated but together transform ancient society to something much different. There was a law that required you to circumcise all foreign slaves, another law that required Jewish slaves to be manumitted every seven years, another law which required property to be restored to its original owners every 49 or 50 years (the way the Jubilee worked is debated). There was a labor law requiring a day of rest, strictly enforced, a law requiring the sharing of the Passover lamb with strangers and wanderers (meaning non-Jews). There was a requirement of reading and writing to be able to read and understand these laws, there was abolition of temple prostitution, and the introduction of a slave-narrative of the exodus, which required all Jews to picture themselves as slaves. Taken together, these laws essentially ended chattel slavery in Judea, gradually, as slaves converted to Judaism (it was easy as they are circumcized), and were manumitted.

The Christian transformation is based on personal revelation, through Jesus, and takes this idea further, into an open-ended project of continual transformation, based on the insights one gains through the holy spirit (this is also true in Judaism, but it is disguised, as when you change something, you are supposed to pretend it was always this way in the holy book, leading to more and more tortured interpretation of the texts over time).

In the Christian method, you don’t demand manumittence every seven years, rather there is an even stricter expectation, which is not enforced by any law: you just expect the Christian slaveholder to release their slaves voluntarily! On their own schedule, but to do it. This is explained in the Epistle to Philemon. There is a marked transformation of the Roman economy in the Christianization period, which is likely a serious economic decline, and I personally believe this is caused by the gradual end of slavery. Does this decline mean that Europe was going backwards? Not exactly. Sure, it was harder to run the mines and make those sculptures. But you didn’t have to be a slave anymore. Only the monotheistic ethics allows you to make such a tradeoff calculation, and do it right.

The sixth century European edicts made this an explicit— you were not allowed as a Christian to own Christian slaves at all. Jews also abolished slavery, so the reintroduction of slavery in the late middle ages was through captured Muslims.

The point of the revelation is to get you to understand that there is a large unique mind which tells you what is right and what is wrong, that you can access this mind both personally and through collective religious discussion and congregation, and that while your knowledge is never perfect, the ideal ethics is NOT something that the social order will naturally converge on without a lot of hard work convincing people to accept the transcendent insights. This is why people make up fairy-tales about impossible events and force people to repeat them, to make sure that they are forced to accept the NON fairy-tale of the actual process of producing better ethics. It should be possible to do this without this kind of lying when people are universally literate and have an internet.


2016-08-22 on strangenotions

Akin’s arguments simply show that he didn’t read Carrier’s book. The emergence of Christianity is completely explained through revelation. The “brother of Christ” is simply a term for non-apostolic Christians, while the relation of Peter to Jesus is similar to that of Paul. The founding human figure of Christianity is Peter, and the “untimely born” one is Paul, who received the revelation late. The mythicist position is consistent with the evidence, while the standard story is not.


2016-08-21 on strangenotions

Personally, I think that I am a full believer, except perhaps not in the exact same way you are, as I don’t believe any scientifically impossible material events ever happened, nor do I think anyone needs to believe such things to fully understand religion. In fact, I think such a belief in supernatural nonsense is detrimental. Perhaps if you could read my mind, you would conclude I am still an atheist because of this, I don’t know, but I do know you’d be wrong. Experience of spiritual communication with Jesus is simply not sufficient evidence for changing anyone’s beliefs about what happens in the material world. It is, however, a good start to changing your beliefs about the structure of the Platonic world of ideas, especially ethics.

Partly due to a personal experience, partly due to reasoning about its interpretation, I ended up accepting that Christian theology is a true religious system (appropriately interpreted, and there are other true religious systems also). But at no point did this experience suddenly compel me (or even suggest to me) to believe in materially impossible events. At one point during this revelation, I did ask myself “is it reasonable to lie about material events to get people to understand this revelation better?”, but introspection said “heck no!” At least for me, the constant claims of impossible material events were the main barrier for me to understand this revelation business, and since there is no requirement to believe in nonsense that comes from this experience, why would I make it harder for other people who are scientific literate? Knowing science doesn’t change the spiritual message one bit, one way or the other. It just gets you to be less obtuse about the stories you tell people to get them to understand it also.

As a matter of fact, because I found it so easy to do, as I said, at no point was I even TEMPTED to change anything about my understanding of the material world, I don’t believe that anyone could possibly have any difficulty either. There was nothing in the experience of communicating with Jesus which demands that I believe that a material human body rose from the dead. The communication only was about ethical and aesthetic things, relations of people and ideas, it was not about history or cosmology, or anything like that. In fact, whenever I tried to reason about history and cosmology or mathematics, the experience of communicating with God just went away, and I found myself alone again.


2016-08-21 on strangenotions

These are valid or not according to whether they are ethically compatible with other revelations. It’s a limiting self-consistency in the infinite future. There is no limit on the different types or numbers of mutually compatible revelations, only that they reveal a convergent system of superrational ethics eventually, which is essentially unique. There is no serious contradiction between, say, Buddhist revelation and Christian revelation if you are careful to stay logically-positivist about the meaning of the revelations and not interpret these things in historical or material terms. That’s why spiritual resurrection is just better theology than material resurrection.

The ethical compatibility is essential, as it is the distinction between the gods people reject today and those that survive. Hinduism is compatible with monotheistic ethics (it was probably the original source of monotheism historically), so it continues. Other religions, like those that demanded child sacrifice or widow-burning, were deprecated and died, or else evolved to remove the parts which were ethically shown to be false by other insights and experiences, like (some) Christianity jettisoned its anti-gay and anti-women teachings recently.

The point of Carrier’s view of the resurrection is that it is completely compatible with the one other monotheistic faith in the region around at the time, which was Judaism. In standard Christianity, Jesus being both a historical human and a spiritual deity makes for a serious incompatibility with Judaism, which leads Jews to see Christianity as a completely impossible belief system and completely unrelated to Judaism, which it really isn’t and wasn’t.


2016-08-02 on firstthingsmag

The concept of “freedom of contract” is ridiculous. The government enforces the contract, not you, so the government sets the terms. For example, I can’t sell myself into slavery. Freedom of contract is really the freedom to ensure that the government will enforce your long term trade agreements, and the government can do that without simultaneously enforcing the absurd legislation-as-contract that businesses today impose on consumers and labor.

Freedom of exchange only leads to concentrations of money if you choose to not construct the tax system to naturally distribute capital broadly. That’s a social choice. If you structure the tax system to distribute power broadly, for example, by taxing business at a rate determined by the degree of distributed ownership, you will produce widespread distribution of power, as businesses restructure to maximize profits. If a company is taxed more when ownership is concentrated in a few than when it is distributed to many, it will choose to distribute ownership spontaneously. There is nothing immutable about the social relations produced by free exchange, they are determined by the decisions made about the taxation structure and the social structure. They seem immutable to a conservative, because a conservative is only concerned with preserving currently existing power structures, because of their position in the heirarchy and their limited brain.


2016-08-01 on whowhatwhy

There was an engine that fell on Murray St, and it matches the model used in military aircraft. It is false to claim no plain wreckage at WTC. There was also wreckage in Pennsylvania, scattered over many square kilometers, consistent with a plane blown up at 30,000 ft by a missile, not with a crash. This is also consistent with witness testimony.


2016-08-01 on whowhatwhy

America can certainly handle it. In NYC, it almost goes without saying that it was an inside job. The transition was rather sudden, and recent.


2016-08-01 on whowhatwhy

The US doesn’t imprison holocaust deniers, they are fully protected by the first amendment. They are just incorrect on the facts of the matter. The 9/11 truthers, on the other hand, are correct on the facts.


2016-08-01 on whowhatwhy

Actually, you can get a good picture when you have at least two competing narratives, like during the entire cold war. There was always the Russian and American view, and they rarely agreed on anything. You need multiple competing narratives to tease out the historical facts, but it is possible. In the case of 9/11, there is only the government nonsense, but it is still possible to tease out more or less what happened by reviewing the drills, and looking at the information presented on truther sites, especially Architects and Engineers for 9/11 Truth, Pilots for 9/11 Truth, and Scientists for 9/11 Truth and Justice.

The government story is a lie substantiated by unprecedented journalist intimidation. This is the worst perversion of American media in the history of the country. The parallels in the Clinton and Obama administrations are minor by comparison.


2016-08-01 on whowhatwhy

None of the Pentagon videos have been released, and nothing is consistent with the hoax government story.



2016-07-08 on breitbartproduction

You mean that poor people pay less for the products made by low-wage labor? Sure, it’s true. But better yet is for the products to be more expensive, and people to get paid more. In free-market equilibrium, there are no wealthy people.


2016-06-15 on middleeasteye

The risk of death is sufficiently high, it is approximately equally likely for a YPG fighter to die as to live, that it is impossible for a volunteer to not be committed at the moment.


2016-06-14 on breitbartproduction

He is probably too incompetent at Kurdish or Arabic to be anything but a nuisance as a front-line fighter.


2016-05-20 on godlessindixie

I agree with nearly all of what you say, except that what you describe Paul believing in is simply not what the term “historical Jesus” means. A historical Jesus is not just a Jesus that becomes embodied in flesh and lives as a man and gets crucified, that’s universal to Christianity. A historical Jesus means that Jesus is a very specific man, whose life and history in some way roughly matches the historical sounding parts of the gospels.

This is what Paul never claims in any authentic surviving text. What he tells you is that Jesus is a celestial figure who acquired a body of Davidian stock, suffered and was crucified while inhabiting this body, and returned from the dead to spread the gospel. But Paul is not specific that this embodied Jesus was a personal friend of Peter’s, nor that he had a brother named James, nor that he had a mother named Mary. He doesn’t claim to have met any person who knew Jesus in any unambiguous way. Most significantly, he doesn’t base any of the theology on claims of firsthand experience with the historical person. Jesus’s embodied experience is an abstraction, a source of theological inspiration, not a memory of a historical event.

There simply is no historical person there. The embodiment of Jesus is not in a specific person, nor does it have to be. It is sufficient for Christianity that the embodiment took place, when and where is not so important. It could have been on Earth, it could have been in “outer space” (as Carrier claims), it could have been anonymous, and Jesus did not need to be a famous preacher, he could have been any innocent person crucified by Romans. The details simply don’t matter, they are added later as the dogmatic story become solidified around the core theological points.


2016-05-02 on theatlantic

You’re missing the point of single-payer— it isn’t imposing anything much on you, it simply reshuffles the payment system. It needs to be universal, but there are no barriers to a libertarian buying private additional insurance, or paying out of pocket for a doctor, although it would be silly. This system is used all over the world for a reason, the health care industry is not regulated well by patient choice, and produces ridiculous profit at zero innovation, as the patient chooses the treatment, and the insurance company pays for it.

If the US did what you said, in a few years, nearly everyone would be a registered Democrat.


2016-04-30 on mediaite

I like Sonny Shotz “Neon Hooligans”, Keny Arkana “Planquez Vous”, non-traditional stuff like that. I’ll check out Doom, thanks!


2016-04-30 on mediaite

I like stuff like Sonny Shotz “Neon Hooligans” or Keny Arkana “Planquez Vous”, I’ll check out Doom, thanks!


2016-04-26 on godlessindixie

They left a documentary record— the epistles of Paul and perhaps Peter I, if it is authentic (I think it is). These are consistent with the writings of this gang. The later writings are a different gang, who create a literal-headed historical story to justify the beliefs of the original gang, by stages. The process is described well in Carrier’s book, and it is, despite superficial impressions, much more parsimonious than the standard story, and is almost surely correct.


2016-04-15 on gothamist

Plenty of Jews IN ISRAEL have the same quarrel with their own government. It’s no more anti-semitic than the anti-apartheid movement was anti-Dutch.


2016-04-14 on nationalinterest

Um, I call “not real”.


2016-04-10 on cnbc

I was late to that party. Not much original from me on that.


2016-04-07 on cnbc

How you break up the banks depends strongly on the range of interpretation of Dodd Frank and the Sherman act, both of which are nebulous. It’s all best left vague until you start to do it, and then if there is a lawsuit, you let the SC rule on it, and try something else if you fail. It’s impossible to fail if you really try. The big banks are effectively public as they get free money from the Fed, except they misuse that power to transfer wealth to their executives, rather than improve the economy.


2016-04-06 on spinmedia

Real blues is not pentatonic. It’s just that old classical music theory can’t classify it, so they said “pentatonic”.


2016-04-05 on godlessindixie

Paul believed Jesus was born of woman, as an embodiment of a celestial figure, from the seed of David, whose role was to get crucified to end temple sacrifice. Being flesh-and-blood, born of woman, is what allows him to be both celestial and messiah at the same time.

Paul simply doesn’t associate Jesus with any specific historical person. He only knows the celestial Jesus, and the only purpose of the flesh incarnation is to provide messiah and atonement sacrifice. As far as Paul is concerned, even JESUS wouldn’t have to know who he was on Earth so as to make the theology work. He wouldn’t have to be named Jesus. He could be some random crucified person. Just as long as after the crucifiction, the celestial Jesus resurrects and announces the good news to the apostles, the theology is complete. There is no historical narrative attached to the theology.

The comparison to John Frum is appropriate, because the early Church was an illiterate society. Only the Jews were literate, as universal literacy is an essential part of Jewish religion. Other than Paul, there were extremely few literate members of the Roman Church, only Paul, and some much later converts, which is why we have so few documents from the era.

The synoptic gospels are allegories of the incarnation, passion, and resurrection of Christ. This process is abstract at first, and it is revealed to apostles by visions of the resurrected Christ, much as happens to modern-day Christians.

The historization process places a human Jesus wherever they feel like, and include a somewhat consistent historical background. It’s no more consistent than any other fiction.

I am not really an atheist. I am a mythicist because it is historically more likely to be accurate. I believe that the visions of the mythical Jesus were authentic, and I am fine with it when people accept the mythical Jesus as a personal savior, I am just not willing to lie about history to get them to do so, unlike the later gospel writers. In their defence, it is not 100% clear they knew they were lying.


2016-04-05 on godlessindixie

Carrier is a skeptic, and when you’re a skeptic, you get some right and some wrong. There is no shame in getting something wrong, you just recognize it eventually and move on. It is a worthless argument to say “this person got this point wrong, therefore this completely unrelated point is also wrong”. Einstein made similar mistakes, for instance, his completely bogus superconductivity paper in 1917, or “black holes can’t form” from 1938. Einstein also wrongly thought that quantum effects can emerge from GR. He didn’t get everything right. Research requires bold ideas and patient review, and that demands the acceptance that you will be wrong sometimes, but also demands that you don’t give up until your opponents demonstrate it conclusively. The ego is good, it allows you to continue when the political consensus is against you.

The experts of the 1950s agreed with Carrier that the Big Bang was probably wrong, and some form of steady state was right, for essentially similar anti-theological reasons. This, despite the overwhelming evidence from Big Bang Nucleosynthesis in Gamow’s papers from the 1940s. Sometimes the consensus of experts is totally busted, and there is no recipe to tell you when. You need to do a painstaking review.

Unlike the Big Bang, where we have nuclear abundance data and microwave background, regarding the Jerusalem church, there is no evidence. There are NO DOCUMENTS! Nothing. It’s all gone. There’s nothing I can see which support the claim that they viewed Jesus as a human first. I would appreciate it if you could list the original sources that Vermes uses to support his assertion, I didn’t read his book.

There is simply no evidence from the Jerusalem church. We don’t know what they thought, and the stuff in the NT which describes their doctrine, and the stuff in the Talmud, are both strongly compatible with Carrier’s position.

The “argument from personal incredulity” only goes so far— it is possible that the Jerusalem church was following the more ancient human Jesus from the 1st century BC, and Paul introduced the divine-figure Jesus, but then, how did they reconcile their theology? How is it consistent with the reports of the mass visions of the risen Christ in the pentacost? These things are consistent with Carrier’s version.

These historical reviews require judgement. I don’t think this debate has any relevance to the atheism debate— it’s not about atheism at all. This is about scholarly bunk. There are cases where you have a gigantic field founded entirely on bunk, like Freudian psychoanalysis or Phlogiston theory, or Aristotelian physics. It seems that “Historical Jesus research” is the same sort of thing.

I think I have seen every single original document in this case, and in my own judgement, Carrier’s position is the most logically sound position. You can make more speculative scenarios with a historical Jesus figure, but they would be pure speculation, and the historical figure would have no relation at all to the stories in the Gospels, which would have to get composed as Carrier explains they were.


2016-04-05 on godlessindixie

Paul considered Jesus a person, but a sort of celestial person, who was crucified to end temple sacrifice, not as a specific historical figure. The earliest Church figures thought of Jesus the same way, and didn’t specify who he was historically, but after Paul died, when the Gospel of Mark came out to proselyze, in around 70AD or so, the historical interpretation started becoming dominant.

Mark was most likely written as pure allegory, but it could marginally be read as history, it has a structure like the passion plays of Romulus common in Rome. You could even act it out and stage it to get converts.

It’s a success, so then the competing Gospels got written, first Matthew, to give a more Jewish character to the gospel, and to write a better allegory (and fix the ending of Mark). Then, due to the growth of the Church, most new members just accepted it as a history, by taking it too literally.

By the time the Gospels of Luke and John were composed some decades later, the idea that Jesus was a historical person was firmly a majority opinion, and since it does no harm to the essential theological points, it doesn’t matter to the Church leaders what people believe about history. For all they know, the stories are authentic, the authenticity is not a driver of the narrative, just it’s efficacy in gaining converts.

The same process happened again with Cargo Cults, as Carrier documents extensively, where a fictitious person was turned into a historical character with a consistent narrative over one generation of worship. It’s not only possible, it’s by far the most likely origin story for the gospels.


2016-04-05 on godlessindixie

James is not the “brother of Jesus”. This is another old saw that Carrier puts to rest for good. There is no solid evidence that James is a flesh-and-blood relative of a historical Jesus, the references to “brother of Christ” is just as easily read as a reference to a “brother in Christ”, as Carrier does. James is just the most notable of the early non-apostle Christians. It is also not clear to me that he ever led the Church, he was just martyred at some point, that’s all I know, but perhaps he did lead the Jerusalem Church at one time, I don’t know. It’s not that important I think.

Your fundamental postulate is that the divine status of Jesus was actually resisted by the Jerusalem branch. This is problematic, it is almost certainly not true, as we know that Paul’s view of Jesus is as a divine figure, perhaps not co-equal to God, but certainly like a high angel. This is ALSO the point of view expressed in Peter I, and it is a severe stretch of the documents to believe that the Jerusalem Church and the Rome Church could disagree on something so fundamental and still call themselves member of the same religion. They disagreed on the role of Jewish dietary laws, on Jewish law in general, and on the relative weight one should place on the teachings of Jesus vs. the OT, but that’s expected. They can’t reasonably disagree fundamentally on what Jesus is.

One of the nice things about Carrier is that after accepting his position, you can view Peter I as authentic, as Church history suggests, and only Peter II as inauthentic, as textual analysis reveals. This is not something Carrier says explicitly (he mentions Peter I a lot, and I’m sure he knows this, he just doesn’t emphasize this as a selling point), but it is something I noticed after reading his book and rereading Peter I. I believe now that Peter I is probably authentic.

The problem with this hypothesis is that it is a claim based on pure speculation, just to resolve the theological mystery in the rise of Christianity. There are no sources which can support your claim, the only possibly authentic document we have from the Jerusalem church is the first Epistle of Peter, the rest is hearsay or reported via Paul, and in the stuff reported by Paul, there is no dispute regarding the role of Jesus or the figure of Jesus in the path to salvation, or the divine status of Jesus (although not necessarily co-equal with God, as Jesus is later).

The doctrine of the Jerusalem Church is also independently attested to in the Talmud, extremely indirectly, where it is mentioned that there is a sect of Jews who worship Jesus with a different historical figure attached than the usual one. These Christians follow Jewish law, and are very likely the last 3rd or 4th century remnants of the now extinct Jerusalem church, and this attestation is pretty much the only purely independent evidence for the very existence of the Jerusalem Church! So you should take what the Talmud says seriously, you have no other source. They do not seem to differ much from other Christians regarding the role of Jesus, they seem to consider themselves Christians just as much as Pauline Christians.

The postulate that Carrier gives, that Jesus was constructed from textual interpretation, without a clear historical precedent, is further muddied by the fact that later historical figures can add their say to the Gospels, but in a composite manner. So there is a martyrdom of James recorded somewhere, where James says “forgive them, for they know not what they do” while being stoned, and this ends up being placed in Jesus’ mouth. LIkewise for teachings of John the Baptist, and perhaps the legends of other documented figure, like the crazy guy who cut some cloth in the temple right before the destruction, saying “The end is nigh!” which is reported in Josephus.

The creation of a false historical narrative is something that is easier to spot than it looks, you just keep looking at the sources, and trying to figure out what is myth, and what is history. In the case of Jesus, the end tally is 100% myth, with a little bit of composite history of various figures.

In that case, the figure of Jesus is divine right from the start, although not initially coequal with God, as the trinity makes it out to be. It is possible for the Jerusalem church to oppose making Jesus a co-equal figure with God, but I do not accept that it is possible for them to reject the divine nature of Jesus and be Christians, or be compatible with the known theology of Paul. I would have to see the evidence. I did not read “Christian Beginnings”, but such works are usually marred by following traditional scholarly assumptions, and producing the weighted average of various opinions. I prefer someone like Carrier who goes back to the original sources, and does a rigorous analysis of what we can know and what we can’t.


2016-04-04 on godlessindixie

It is relevant to everyone because it is a case where a scholarly consensus is unjustified by the evidence. This means it needs to be attacked until the consensus is broken.


2016-04-04 on godlessindixie

The rise of Christianity is not well explained by a historical Jesus. It is theologically next to impossible to imagine Jews deifying a real person, it is contrary to all Jewish teaching. On the other hand, it is very sensible to have Jews historcizing a celestial figure. The proper history links the two religions together in a continuous line of evolution, and is much more plausible than the standard story, which frankly is bizarre.


2016-04-04 on godlessindixie

The problem with this hypothesis is that there is a much more plausible explanation for the rise of Christianity which is simpler and more consistent with the data: some Jews decided to end temple sacrifice because the temple was corrupt. Now, all Jews decided to do this after the destruction of the temple, but THESE Jews had foresight, and decided to do this before. The only way to end temple sacrifice is by an uber-sacrifice which makes sacrificial redemption unnecessary, and therefore they are looking around in scripture for what that could be. A proper reading of Isiah 53 provides the suffering servant, and the Psalms describe something like a crucifiction, so they decide that a heavenly Jesus, the heavenly high priest, incarnated in the flesh, got himself crucified, and then resurrected to let everyone know the good news, that the end times have arrived, and temple sacrifice is no longer necessary. The historical story got tacked on later, when the destruction of the temple showed that the Christians were actually prescient.


2016-04-04 on godlessindixie

In my opinion, you would be a better Christian if you didn’t believe in a historical Jesus.


2016-04-04 on godlessindixie

Carrier’s argument is based on the fact that Paul never references Jesus as a person that anyone knows, but as a figure whose sacrifice ends temple sacrifice. He makes no mention of a historical Jesus, and this is the original observation on which mythicism is based. It is sufficient evidence by itself to give the hypothesis a fair hearing.

Paul simply doesn’t speak about Jesus as a historical person. He speaks about Jesus as a figure in the celestial realm who was incarnated in a body and sacrificed. This doesn’t mean that Paul knew anyone who knew the embodied Jesus, it doesn’t mean that Paul is reporting historical events, his main thesis is that one must communicate with the RISEN Jesus to understand Christianity. This is what people did, and then the rest follows, including the unintentional fabrication of historical records to place Jesus in history. The reason I say unintentional is because the earliest gospel, Mark, does not only have a historicist reading, but it can be read as allegory, which Carrier notes, and only by the time of the latest gospels, Luke and John, do we have historicism established as dogma as opposed to allegory.


2016-04-04 on godlessindixie

This is not about “there is a god” or “there is no god”, it is about history of religion. Unfortunately the scholarship in this field is exceedingly biased by groupthink and delusion, and one must counter it by redoing everything from scratch, as Carrier did, thankfully.


2016-04-04 on godlessindixie

The “brother of Jesus” is a “brother of Christ”, which is really “brother in Christ”, as Carrier explains, and simply means that James was a non-apostle Christian. That’s all. It was later reinterpreted to mean that he was literally the brother of Jesus, which is not historically accurate. Carrier’s reading is more defensible in context.


2016-04-03 on godlessindixie

I agree with your statements, but not the conclusion. The point of the Targum is not that the folks who wrote it were Christians, and expected the messiah to suffer, it is simply that the figure in Isaiah 53 was interpreted as the messiah. That makes it completely reasonable to find Jews who interpreted Isiah 53 more straightforwardly than the Targum’s torturous rereading, and just went ahead and considered it a straightforward prophecy of Jesus.

This is a very weak piece of evidence by itself— Carrier isn’t saying “The Targum proves that Jews expected the messiah to suffer”, what he is saying is that the Targum makes it clear that Isaiah 53 is talking about the messiah, and given that, the probability that Jews would consider a suffering messiah is not small, so the argument that it is impossible to have a suffering messiah is neutralized. It is not at all impossible, it is in fact likely that some Jews read Isaiah 53 that way. How likely, you can quibble, but I think it’s likely enough to not affect Carrier’s conclusion.

The point is that the probability-talk makes it clear why he is bringing up the Targum. It’s a glancing blow against the argument “no Jews would come up with a suffering messiah unless they actually knew a messiah person who suffered”. That argument is not right, as a simple reading of Isaiah 53, and the context of the figure being the messiah (from the Targum) shows. That the Targum doesn’t go that way doesn’t change the probabilities all that much, it still leaves it pretty likely that there were very likely some Jews back then who read it the way modern Christians read it today.

Regarding Paul, I agree with your statements about Paul’s philosophy, and I suspect Carrier agrees with your statements also. I just don’t see why they are relevant to historicity— all that Paul needed to believe is that Jesus, the divine celestial high-priest angel-like figure, decended from heaven to get a body of flesh that was then crucified, so as to restore God, etc, etc, he didn’t need Jesus to be a particular historical person, nor did he need that person to be a friend of his colleague Peter. The less historicity the better.

Carrier further insists, with some specificity, that the crucifiction happened in the lower heavens (“outer space”), but I don’t see that as absolutely necessary, although it is supported by his evidence. I agree with him, it’s just that the evidence is not as strong for this hypothesis.

The figure of Jesus in Paul doesn’t have to be a historical person attached to Paul’s circles, it is just a figure that can end Temple sacrifice and bring personal revelation to the practice of Jewish religion. That’s it. There’s nothing about actual historicity, just about flesh-incarnation, which is an extremely important part of the Carrier mythicist position. The flesh incarnation is what makes the blood sacrifice redeeming, and allows temple sacrifice to end.


2016-04-03 on godlessindixie

Which readings are indefensible specifically? For the Jewish texts, he uses an ancient Targum to justify that the references in Isiah 53 to the suffering servant were originally interpreted (by some) as referring to the messiah. I don’t remember anything about midrash, but my memory is fading.


2016-03-28 on thehill-v4

Life would be so much easier if what you are saying were true. But it’s not.


2016-03-26 on thehill-v4

It was used to fabricate a narrative to support a fictitious government story with otherwise nonexistent evidence. On the other hand, if you had waterboarded Bush and Cheney, you might have gotten some actual actionable intelligence.


2016-03-26 on thehill-v4

We didn’t make it. It was made for us.


2016-03-26 on thehill-v4

Theft is paying $50/month for internet, when French folks get it for 1/3 the price and 3 times the speed. The point of socialism is fixing the failure of markets, when corporations consolidate, and fixing the failure of markets in shunting incomes to a small population of moochers at the top.


2016-03-26 on thehill-v4

Ending concentration of media ownership in large companies, supporting small and medium size business, reducing the bureaucracy for health-care and college loans. All of his policies are secretly libertarian friendly, that is not by accident, it’s by design. It’s why he attracts independents as well as leftists.


2016-03-26 on thehill-v4

The sign is not so much from the event itself, as from the interpretation of the onlookers, which is conditioned by past experience. The sign reveals itself when all your attempts to discredit it turn into senseless rationalizations. The only question is what the event immediately conjures up, before the rationalizations, and why.


2016-03-26 on thehill-v4

You don’t need to believe God exists to believe in His signs.


2016-03-26 on thehill-v4

It doesn’t need to be made. It just is.


2016-03-26 on thehill-v4

Bernie wants less concentrated ownership, not more. That makes him a left libertarian, what used to be called an “anarchist”, before that became pejorative.


2016-03-26 on thehill-v4

What’s the issue with the English? I can’t find any errors.


2016-03-26 on thehill-v4

The difference is that I read the Communist Manifesto (and Capital), I would suggest you do the same. They are not about Marxism, it wasn’t developed yet.


2016-03-26 on thehill-v4

The Communist Manifesto does not advocate communism, it advocates standard policies (nowadays) like progressive taxation, regulation of industry, and minimum wage and maximum working hours. The creator of 20th century communism was Lenin.


2016-03-26 on thehill-v4

What Lenin calls “socialism” is what everyone else calls “communism”. What Lenin calls “communism” is post-scarcity utopia.


2016-03-26 on thehill-v4

Karl Max didn’t create communism, he wrote about Capitalism. He didn’t die for our sins, but Bernie might, he’s taking a real chance running a campaign so transformative. The death tolls you cite for communism are bad numbers, by the way.


2016-03-26 on thehill-v4

Karl Marx was also a figure of Jesus. Jesus is an archetype for social transformation through individual transcendence, martyrdom, and community. In the Roman empire, that meant eliminating a heirarchical slave economy over 600 years. Sanders is more like Jesus than Marx was, as I sense the potential for a passion.


2016-03-26 on thehill-v4

It’s the symbolism, whether you like it or not. I would suggest to you that if you are religious in the superstitious sense, although I am not, you would be prudent to heed the signs.


2016-03-26 on thehill-v4

Close enough for everyone to get it, including us Jews.


2016-03-26 on thehill-v4

The symbolism is the baptism of Jesus.


2016-03-21 on fp-mag

That criticism is brain-damaged. The first claim is that JP Morgan didn’t recieve $390 billion, as Sanders says it did, because, the fellow argues, the bank repaid the loan so quickly, that the effective value of such a short loan is only worth $31 billion.

Nonsense! This criticism is a blood-boiling lie. There were two components to the bank bailout, the TARP, where the government publicly bailed them out, and the monetary part, where the Fed pumped new free money into them. The less publicly visible part was this second monetary trick. You should think of it as the Fed creating money from nothing, and then handing it out to a bunch of large banks. The actual mechanism was a sort of complicated bond sell-resell trick, which gave the banks a no-work automatically profitable transaction loop. The point of this monetary process was to reinflate the deflated balloon, to pump capital into the banks so they would lend again.

The short terms of the TARP loan, the only reason they were paid back so quickly (or at all), is simply because the Fed did this. The banks also knew it was going to do this. So once JP Morgan got this new-money infusion, it could “pay back” the loans, and then award its CEO and board lavish bonuses. This is an absurd situation, as the board did nothing at all except receive a free Fed stimulus. This type of fraud not only makes leftists angry, it also made conservatives extremely angry, consider the “End the Fed” movement.

Creating money and then distributing it doesn’t change the situation regarding the size of the bailout, it actually makes it larger. Except there is an invisible component, which is the Fed bailout, which is not responsive to the public.

Sanders proposes to change this by making the Fed operations transparent, with addition of labor representatives. The idea that these people are “unqualified” to handle something so ridiculously simple as monetary policy is laughable. If you explain it properly, a person who took high-school algebra would be able to do it.

The real issue is that the Fed is a power-center which is not really responsible to the government. It’s independence has been taken over to produce wealth for the few, keep that wealth stable from inflation, and forget its mandate to reduce unemployment. I would prefer hyperinflation to that.


2016-03-16 on fp-mag

It’s not that vague, Cheney was in charge of all the drills on that day. It can’t be many more than one person, because such a conspiracy isn’t stable, the jig is pretty much up if significantly more than one person knows about it. So I tend to think it was Cheney acting alone, maybe with a handful of advisors.


2016-03-16 on fp-mag

The most important similarity is the spontaneous violence toward protesters at the rallies. The SS was the organization Hitler set up to quell protests at rallies using violence. In addition, the scapegoating and marginalization of ethnic minorities and immigrants, and also the intense obsession with the phallus and sexual authority. Fascism is like an S&M game in politics, except this is not a game, this is the worst catastrophe for any country.

The other similarities are shared with “normal” Republicans: the complete disregard for civil liberties, like the 1st and 4th amendment, invading other countries on trumped up excuses, and the support for torture of political opponents.

Shared with Republicans and Democrats both is summary executions of political opponents overseas, and inviting large business leaders to craft policy cooperatively within the government, excluding from the policy table workers and consumers both. This is the original definition of fascism, created by Mussolini and adopted by Hitler, Franco and all the rest: substituting “class cooperation” for “class struggle”. What that means is that elite business leaders and government officials would sit down together and tell everyone else what to do. Excluding Sanders, that’s both political parties in the US in a nutshell.

I usually throw around the word “fascist” for partial fascism, as Bush II was already about halfway there, and the Clintons were 30% there in the 90s. In case you don’t remember, in the 90s, right-wing people were targeted by the IRS and ATF for harassment, by selling them guns and then arresting them for illegal posession, this was the procedure at Ruby Ridge and Waco. This PATCON operation culminated in the catastrophic Oklahoma City bombing, which was the harbinger of 9/11. But Trump has deliberately gone all the way to full throated fascism. Whether it’s pretend or not doesn’t matter, it’s unforgivable.

I can’t vote for Clinton with a clean conscience, but Trump is a horror beyond anything else that has ever been nominated. Here’s a more eloquent article: http://www.salon.com/2016/0…


2016-03-16 on fp-mag

I thought that too, at one point, about Trump, that he’s just out to wreck the Republicans, he doesn’t believe his own nonsense. But now, I don’t care. When you pretend to be a fascist for long enough, it stops being pretend.


2016-03-13 on fp-mag

Sanders is firmly in the libertarian left, in case you haven’t noticed. He just hasn’t make as big a deal about it during the primaries, because his gun stance hurts him, as do some of his policies that contradict targeted subsidies that Democrats traditionally support. His fair-play language is criticized by some black leaders as ignoring racism, which it isn’t, but there’s little he can do to change the perceptions, because traditionally fair-play policies have deliberately excluded blacks, for example by targeting capital growth to suburban housing and neglecting cities. I am 100% positive this is not the case with Sanders’ policies, but it is very hard to persuade black voters of this, because they have experience with GI bill discrimination, mortgage subsidy discrimination, and public works discrimination under previous Democrats.

He wasn’t “praising Marxist dictatorship”, he was comparing them to the alternative then, which was fascist dictatorship. Castro governed better than Somoza, and Ortega was marginally better than what’s-his-name in Nicaragua. The US was committed to destabilizing any leftist governments, Marxist or not (remember that Castro wasn’t even a declared Marxist before the US interventions pushed him to seek help from Russia), and replacing the leftists with horrific governments like the one recently in Argentina, that destroy the economy, and allow foreign multinationals and gigantic agribusiness to control the whole economy.

Sanders is very committed to healthy American business, but he is fair about it, he doesn’t want subsidies, and he certainly doesn’t seek to impose governments on other countries, which is as it should be. He always governed as a libertarian socialist, which is more or less what he is, or as close as you can come in a messy real world and get elected.


2016-03-13 on fp-mag

Data is not a commodity, because unlike other real commodities it is not scarce. This is what makes the treatment of it as a commodity completely problematic.

You have to find another way to “monetize” the creation of data, and scientists have gotten really good at that in the past 100 years. Scientists don’t starve, but they don’t get rich when they have a “hit” paper either, they just get a more comfortable position with tenure.


2016-03-13 on fp-mag

Computers are not made by “capitalism”, they are made by markets, free trade. In the case of my computer and OS, I made sure when buying it, to the best of my ability, that it was provided by independent small business, right down to the microprocessor. Of course I had no choice in paying for the copy of Windows on the machine that was there before the company I bought from deleted it and replaced it with Linux, but that corporate imposition is next to impossible to avoid.

Capitalism is a power structure of tradable property deeds imposed on top of markets, free trade and small business which allow a handful of people to take over those markets so as to prevent free-trade and swallow up the small business. That’s what people oppose, not the fair frictionless market equilibrium that would happen in the presence of markets and free trade.


2016-03-13 on fp-mag

This is “history” that you and your friends made up in your warped heads. It never happened. There was no such policy. It didn’t exist. You made it up, and you’re stupid.

There were lots of entirely Jewish partisan units in Belarus and all over the occupied territory. Stalin did not perform genocide on Jews, his anti-semitism consisted of the doctor’s plot, and purging Jews from the party.


2016-03-12 on fp-mag

That’s insane. Ponomarenkoto was the head of the Belarus Partisans, who had a ton of Jewish units. The Jewish Partisans were a large fraction of the total number all over the German occupied territory, they had the most to lose, and fought the hardest. Even the somewhat anti-Semitic Stalin recognized the Jewish issues in 1948, voting to establish Israel in light of the genocide. You should stop reading right-wing propaganda, and start learning some history.


2016-03-12 on fp-mag

You can’t restrict access to data inside a general purpose programmable computer system, you need to prevent the computer from being programmable by the user in order to do that, because a coder will write a code to extract the data when it is displayed. This is a large part of why modern machines are moving backwards, becoming less generally programmable, with various barriers to users and developers. This tendency is a massive regression in freedom and an unacceptable regression in technology— an iPad is less programmable than a laptop, a laptop with Windows is less programmable than a laptop with LInux. A TV box is not programmable at all. The loss of general programming ability is a destruction of technology so as to reproduce corporate control of data in an era when it is clear that this is no longer possible or desirable.

I explained to you that there is no natural right of property to data you create. You still can’t get this through your skull. Data is not property, it doesn’t have any of the traits of the things you naturally call property. Copyright is just a government contract that restricts others ability to help others. You can’t lend data, you can’t take it back. There is nothing you can do to express a property right regarding data, it’s not property. It’s something else.

Everybody wants to get paid. There is no reasonable way of tying payments to the act of copying and distribution, because it has become decentralized with universal computers. It is also not clear that this process of restricted monopoly was ever the right way to pay authors.


2016-03-12 on fp-mag

There are no benefits to capitalism. There are benefits to markets, free trade, and independent small business.


2016-03-12 on fp-mag

The type of revolution Sanders talks about does not involve imposing state power on individuals, it has already happened to a certain extent in Burlington, without infringing on anyone’s business rights. It is about a change in voting patterns which makes people aware of the ties of big-business and government, and reduces the ability of business and government to collude to exclude consideration of the best interest of the public in the deliberations of Congress.

The rhetoric of revolution is appropriate, it is like the “Gingrich revolution” or the “Reagan revolution”, a shift in composition and attitude in those holding public office, a shift which allows much wider ranging policy changes than what usually gets through the gridlock. The revolution is enforced by activism and mobilization by citizens, as opposed to corporate interests, in favor of not-so-radical policies which benefit the public as a whole, although they come with no coporate sponsors. These are election law reform, universal health-care, and subsidized college, policies which are standard in Northern Europe and Australia.

Your paranoia is due to some delusion that the left is out to impose an agenda which restricts the rights of individuals. Sanders has been mayor in Burlington, a Congressman, and Senator, and has no secret agenda. His agenda is his public agenda, and that’s more than you can say for anyone else running for president, or for Congress for that matter.


2016-03-11 on fp-mag

Only someone clueless would lecture anybody on the benefits of capitalism.


2016-03-11 on fp-mag

The most successful are the Northern European social democracies and Australia, these are the model for Sanders. I am much further left than Sanders, and I look to Linux, which mirrors the anarchist experience in Spain in 1936-1938, and in modern day Kurdish Rojava.


2016-03-11 on fp-mag

Data transfer makes it yours. You can’t “lend” data, the concept does not make sense, you can’t erase the copy in my brain. If you don’t want people to have your data, keep it to yourself.

If the data is a specific industrial process, or a significant government secret, make each individual sign a specific non-disclosure agreement you negotiated specifically with that individual, and that you can sue the individual for violating. Even this secrecy negotiation is rife for abuse, as the government classifies half its documents, to protect itself internally from embarassment, while the secrecy surrounding many industrial processes just prevents economic growth.

You can’t distribute a work to everyone in the world and expect them all to abide by a universal non-disclosure agreement. There is no property right there, there is no social utility in that, there is no natural right there, and it requires a police state to enforce. Even before the DMCA, just enforcing old-style copyright became impossible without looking at everyone’s computer, as it is very easy for me to capture a stream you send me by just taking screenshots and recording the sound-card output, then sending a copy to all my friends on a memory stick. Nobody would normally know about this without an intrusive state, as everyone benefits from this process locally, including, by the way, the original artist, who gets a wider viewership.

It is absurd to imagine property rights for old mathematical papers, because you can’t stop someone from using a mathematical theorem you developed 40 years ago, or distributing the original paper you wrote, no matter what you think of the theorem today. Groethendieck does not have a right to get rid of his old papers. He has a social right to be given credit for the result, but that’s not the same thing as getting paid, except indirectly, and you don’t need a government to enforce that, it’s enforced by mathematician conventions of the guild of mathematicians for citing results. It’s not enforced by ANY law, the mathematicians will just look at you funny if you claim that you proved the Grothendieck Riemann Roch theorem. They’ll say “no you didn’t. Groethendieck did that”, and then send you a copy of his paper.

You are not making a principled individual rights argument, you are making an unprincipled justification for a police-state using a nonexistent individual right to control everyone else who has a copy of data they created.

All individual credit for scientific results are determined by scientific consensus, and are NEVER enforced by government decree or law. There is no law preventing me from claiming I invented universal gravitation. It’s just that I didn’t, and the scientific community by consensus credits Isaac Newton. There is a plausible claim for Hooke to the same result, and how to weight the two claims for originality, that’s a complicated process that never involves the law or government, and is done entirely informally by the scientific guild.

I explained one such credit dispute with Starobinsky and Mukhanov. Why do they deserve credit for inflation theory? If you read their papers from 1980, you see that they do not have an inflaton like later inflation papers, they imagine the effective cosmological constant is created by a fourth order term in the gravitational Lagrangian. The modern mechanism was by Guth, and it uses a scalar field as the inflaton. Is that really different? Is it different enough to be a new idea? Does it mean that Guth created inflation?

By guild conventions, the scalar inflaton IS different enough to be considered a new additional idea, which is why Guth gets some credit, but the actual physical RESULT of a fourth order term is roughly the same sort of inflation as a scalar inflaton, and the predictions of inflation were worked out by Mukhanov simultaneously with Guth’s original paper, and quite a while after Starobinsky. Guth’s idea also doesn’t work, due to inhomogeneities from a first order phase transition, and Linde also adjusted Guth’s model so that there would be no phase transition, and inflation would end smoothly. That’s another new idea. So when people distribute scientific prizes, they end up crediting Starobinsky, Mukhanov, Guth, and Linde, and not, for instance, Stephen Hawking, who was instrumental in popularizing the result throughout the 80s.

The scientific guild determines originality by consensus, by discussions. I expect similar artistic guild decisions are made regarding authorship style, and production of new novels, as they were in the science fiction community in the 60s and 70s. These decisions are non-binding regarding distribution of publishing profits at the moment. I expect that just as grants interact and are advised with the scientific community, grants for publishing will interact with the authorship community, and that the community of authors will make complicated internal decisions regarding originality and credit for novels and poems without any legal mechanism controlling them, and without gigantic publishing houses using monopoly generated money to lobby regarding the results. That’s essentially how old literature is evaluated, the stuff that is out of copyright already.

The process of granting monopoly rights simply does not credit original authors. If science operated by “copyright” regarding scientific papers, and money distributed by paying people according to the distribution count of the number of copies of copyrighted works, then Hawking would have gotten rich off of inflation, as the original results of the 1983 Inflation Workshop roughly reproducing and checking Mukhanov’s results (which Hawking took part in) would have made Hawking rich, and Guth, let alone Starobinsky and Mukhanov, would have been ignored and not gotten a penny.

Even in terms of guild credit, Starobinsky and Mukhanov were unjustly ignored for a long time. But that’s just the usual nonsense for scientists from the USSR, people in the East were ignored and stepped on by people in the West. That part fixed itself last decade, as people reviewed the history.


2016-03-11 on fp-mag

The “give” in the case of a copyright work is transferring the data to their hard-drive, at this point it can no longer be said to be “yours” in any sense except artistic originality. This is made obvious by the degree of state intrusion required to enforce the alleged property right. You don’t need a police state to know when someone steals a chair, the person who lost the chair will tell you. You need a de-facto police state to enforce copyright, as you can see around you today. Police state intrusion into everyone’s data devices just can’t be justified under any circumstances, and that’s what it means to enforce an imaginary right to an abstract pattern on someone else’s physical property.

The social utility justification has historically been the only one people used for copyright, from the right and left. There simply never was any basic property justification.

I would believe in “IP anarchy” if the GPL didn’t exist. Since we desperately need the GPL, and it’s piggybacking on copyright law, I hope that copyright on GPL works lasts until the sun burns out. Since software becomes obsolete so quickly, the current copyright term is infinite enough.

If I were dictator of the universe, I would replace the copyright law entirely, by a very complicated system of citations and grants, with decentralized user-measured approval, distributed internally to creators by weighted voting on originality and usability, similar to the voting model used on physicsoverflow.org. It’s extremely complicated, and it requires criteria for citation, which are enforced in a guild-like manner by the organization which recieves grants. The grants I envision as matching-funds (or 5x matching funds) for user contributions, but internally redistributed according to the citation pattern the authorial guild settles on. It may sound extremely elaborate, but it’s basically how science works internally. I don’t have any experience with non-scientific publishing, so I am not a good person to design a system, obviously.


2016-03-10 on fp-mag

You can’t restrict someone from using anything else “you made”, if you give someone a chair, they can sit on it, and if you repossess it, you are breaking the law. Once you elect to distribute your data, it just isn’t yours anymore in any sense of property.

The “work” is not limited to a piece of paper, the notion of property regarding the work is limited to the piece of paper.

The OTHER notion of “property” regarding works is copyright, which is a promise of government action to restrict others from copying data in their possession. To sic the government on people requires a justification, and the justification for copyright in the print era was that publishers incurred a cost in soliciting new original work, and they needed a fixed period to recoup the costs, the length of the period being adjustible by Congress to balance the need for protecting the public domain and free speech with the need of publishers to remain viable. It’s pretty much the same as the justification for patent protection— you give the industry a fixed period of monopoly to recoup the costs of invention. It’s not the best way to reward invention, because monopoly is a very indirect way of recouping costs.

Recouping the invention or creation costs is the only justification for any sort of monopoly, there is no other purpose. Nobody on the left or on the right has ever claimed that authors have some sort of abstract “right” to their own work, not once copyright lapses, not even before. This is not a conservative position or a leftist position. It’s just a nonsensical position I have never heard anyone advocate except you here.

There is no philosophical justification, no “just rights” argument regarding this stuff, there is no “property” notion here, there is nothing except the government preventing others from copying a work for a fixed period.

Further, you are completely deluded if you think the copyright culture is built to reward creators. It only does so indirectly, and it doesn’t work to reward original creators at all. What it is designed to do is maintain a publishing industry with reasonable reward to publishing houses that solicit and distribute original work, as opposed to publishing houses that simply republish old material. That’s it. It’s a protection for industry, not for individuals.

The US has a terrible history with the artistic creators themselves, the most original “creators” in the US often labor under extreme poverty, authors like Philip K. Dick and Charles Bukowski, mathematicians like Yitang Zhang or Grigory Perelman. There is no functioning market mechanism for actually rewarding “creators”, the mechanism rewards capitalists who mass-market publications, and the most highly original creations are not usually best-sellers immediately, they take a long time to build a market, usually after a string of far more successful rip-offs that go halfway. The next-in-line rip-offs sell better than the originals, so that the incentive for original work is quite skewed, you’re always better off in a market being second in line with a watered down idea than being an Einstein who is first with a radical idea.

To counteract this tendency to reward second-in-line authors, academics make a strict honor-code regarding citations, and enforce it by ostracism and penalties. The popular review article or textbook authors are not given credit for the results, rather original authors are, despite the fact that 99% of people don’t read the original papers in science either, they also read the more popular second-in-line less radical folks.

Copyrights serve to enrich non-creator corporations, and those who can siphon off control over the product. There is no actual mechanism of significant reward to creators under the corporate system in the US, which is why all the creation happens by people who are young and naive, or else hopelessly poor.


2016-03-09 on fp-mag

You have no intrinsic right to restrict people from doing whatever they want with data in the first place, except if the government is out there preventing them from doing so using police state measures .That’s why copyright is a difficult law, and why it requires special provisions in the constitution. It’s a serious violation of free speech.

Information is not a chair, it can be copied endlessly at next to no cost. “Creators” can’t pull their own work, because it’s not “theirs” in any sense except owning the original manuscript. There is no natural concept of property rights regarding information, that’s a delusion you have created in your head.

Kafka could only destroy his work when it was in his physical possession. It’s not up to you what people do with published work, you have no right to infringe on the freedom of others.

If you want to pay people, pay people by grants. If you want decentralized decision making, have a usage count determine the grants. Paying people by ads produces awful work


2016-03-09 on fp-mag

TV tax plus grants. That’s Monty Python and Dr. Who.


2016-03-09 on fp-mag

Freud didn’t rely on Judaism, he was just a cocaine addled fraud. Marx didn’t rely on Judaism, he relied on Ricardo and Adam Smith, plus mathematics.


2016-03-09 on fp-mag

Einstein didn’t say that. Marx predicted the failure of Say’s law and the possibility of a “general glut” (great depression). He was the first to do this, and his observations about aggregate demand are the (actual, not stated) foundation of Keynesianism.


2016-03-09 on fp-mag

I know some of the Russian party elite had fancy houses. They sometimes had fancy cars too. They sometimes had access fancy Western stuff also. They just didn’t live all that well compared to Western politicians or business leaders, because their salary was abysmally low and they couldn’t accumulate property. That wasn’t so in Yugoslavia, for instance.

The Russian party members started to live much better once they privatized the state industries into their own control and became oligarchs. That’s not a justification for either communism or oligarchy, it’s just the facts of Russian history.


2016-03-09 on fp-mag

I am not explaining Marx’s choice of slogans. I explained why labor is underpaid in excruciating detail. This observation is originally due to Marx, but is now standard economics. It is due to unemployment driving wages below their equilibrium value.

Einstein didn’t make that quote. Trying something over and over again and expecting a different result is called “research”. I have no patience for a person who refuses to read.


2016-03-09 on fp-mag

My surname indicates nothing, except that some Jew a long time ago read some Aristotle. I don’t have brilliant ancestry, I do my own thinking.


2016-03-09 on fp-mag

It’s not logical or factual, it’s made up nonsense.


2016-03-09 on fp-mag

I can’t judge, and I don’t care. It’s not my field, and I don’t have any interest in the topic.


2016-03-08 on fp-mag

Diversity training is not imposed by government, it’s private decisions by private entities. The paper on glaciers is about the effect of ice on culture, it’s none of your business, you’ve never studied the effect of ice on culture. Conservatives don’t read academic work, they are not clever enough to understand any of it, so they parody it when the title strikes them as funny.


2016-03-08 on fp-mag

The primary cause of tyranny is not the property rights of individuals, it is misdesigned property rights which do not approach economic equilibrium. Property is justified by a mathematical model of economic competition leading to equilibrium, and if you don’t see an equilibrium, you aren’t doing it right.

Property is constructed for a reason, and you need to know the reason to know how to design the property contracts. The design needs to lead toward economic equilbirium, not away.


2016-03-08 on fp-mag

Copyright is not an example of personal property, it is an extremely intrusive state measure which prevents others from duplicating your data. This kind of draconian law is constitutionally limited for a reason, it violates the principle that anyone should be free to compete with you by duplicating what you are doing. This kind of restriction on competition is only useful to the extent it encourages innovation.

The lapse of copyright is an example of how to design property rights so that they encourage innovation. It worked ok in the period 1790-1990, it stopped working when the internet made publishing essentially free, and then copyright became a hindrance rather than a help.

I agree that copyright should not be sellable, rather rented to a publisher for the exact period that the publisher is publishing the works exclusively. But that’s not who controls the power it the society. The publishers could change the laws, not the authors. In the past, authors were forced to sell or give away the copyright to a publisher to get published. This is how publishing worked. After publication, the rights were traded like a commodity, despite these being artificial government enforced constructions, and nowadays, useless ones.

It is not sufficient to restore copyright to the original author, as authors die, and authors sometimes disown their own work and seek to destroy all copies, as for example George Lucas did with the 1977 versions of Star Wars (see the “Star Wars Despecialized Editions”), or more significantly, Grothendieck seeking to destroy all his old mathematical papers. Grothendieck does not have a right to un-write his old papers, because their existence prevented their results from getting discovered by others, which means he doesn’t get to go around and stop them from being disseminated and read. But this is what he tried to do in the 2000s, until he thankfully died. Likewise, the estate of Christopher Marlowe can’t suddenly decide that “The Jew of Malta” makes their ancestor look bad, and get rid of all copies, like Disney tries to do with “Song of the South”. Material that is historical needs to be preserved free of restrictions.

The publishing model needs to be redone in a way that encourages artists to make a living in the new media era. We don’t have such a model. The old model does not work, and nobody is making a replacement. I personally like the old British Television model, since I think British socialized television was the only good thing in the whole history of that rotten medium.


2016-03-08 on fp-mag

I don’t need to ask anyone, much of my family and associates grew up in communist Romania. Bernie Sanders is not advocating communism, he is a western leftists, and nobody on the Western left advocates communism. I know what the USSR was like, although that video is ridiculously bad.


2016-03-07 on fp-mag

That’s complete nonsense. ALL the serious cases of intentional plagiarism were scientists in the West plagiarizing those the East. There are a thousand examples of outrageous deliberate plagiarism by Western scientists, and these were invariably rewarded by recognition and rewards (before the internet made the plagiarism obvious). It is always clear which way the plagiarism goes, because the original work is always better and more complete, while plagiarized work always adds some wrong nonsense.

For two obvious examples: Sharkovskii’s theorem was deliberately stolen to write the nonsensical paper “period 3 implies chaos”. It’s clearly stolen, because “period 3” doesn’t imply “Chaos”. The only real result in that paper is just Sharkovskii’s theorem. The other example is the Soviet theory of Abiotic oil, which was deliberately stolen in Gold’s “Deep Hot Biosphere”, including stealing pressure anvil results and passing them off as his own. Gold read Russian fluently, he has no excuse. Unlike “Period 3”, Gold didn’t add nonsense, his own additions were valuable and correct, and in this case I think it was an independent rediscovery, but that’s no excuse.

Soviet science didn’t steal anything as a matter of policy, the scientists in the East were more diligent in citing sources than scientists in the West. There were rare cases of individual scientists engaging in what could be construed as plagiarism in the East, for instance, Bogoliubov and Shirkov reworking Gell-Mann and Low, but these cases were certainly unintentional, and the B&S cite GM&L properly.

“Diversity training” and “challenging people on their mistakes” are THE OPPOSITE of contradictory! The people who ignore and marginalize black women scientists when they speak are never leftist activists. They are all conservatives without diversity training, who just ignore anyone who isn’t a white male, because, in their stupid mind, this person lacks authority. The people with diversity training just say “you made a mistake”, or “I see, you’re right”, ignoring authority structures and paying attention to the content.

The diversity training is just there to make sure that you become aware of authority structures, so that you learn to ignore them. The authority structures are imposed unconsciously on you, from the bias you picked up from the society, and you need to actively fight against authority, by LISTENING to the people who have little authority, engaging in honest debate, and checking the arguments on their merits, without authority blinding you. The default for conservatives is to go by whoever has authority, and you need to fix that with diversity training, so that you stop following the big men. Big men say dumb things.

You must never go around “treating people equally”, because authority is real, and people have different amounts of it. If you “treat people equally”, that means, “listen to those with authority”. You have to treat people equally AFTER SUBTRACTING THEIR STUPID AUTHORITY. You learn to do that in technical fields, because in technical fields authority counts for nothing. A ten year old kid can beat you at chess.

Campuses have a lot of what to you look like “lefties”, because universities are reliant on government. The radical left used to get hired, back in the 70s and early 80s, because that’s where all the new good ideas are, but that’s only a few people, and they were all purged later. What you think of as “the left” on modern campuses is just a bunch of dumb conservative people who vote Democrat. That’s not the real left, that’s a bunch of conservatives who delude themselves. The left on campus is nonexistent, you just have a warped view of what constitutes the left.


2016-03-07 on fp-mag

Copyright, as conservatives emphasize, is an artificial government granted monopoly, and constitutes one of the few exceptions to free speech. It is granted in the Constitution with the express intent that it is limited to a fixed term. Its purpose is to allow publishers to make a differential profit based on their unique material, and this used to incidentally also allow for authors to make a living. The original terms were 20-25 years, and that made a certain amount of sense at the time. Now there is an internet, and the publishing model is entirely broken.

The purpose of restricting freedom using copyright is to encourage innovation. But various industries, especially Disney, have lobbied the government to extend copyright, so that now the terms are the life of the author plus seventy years. Even in the print era this made no sense. The creation and maintenance of the public domain is an essential part of the preservation of works which are old enough that they are harmed by copyright rather than helped, as their dissemination is no longer profitable, so they rely on public institutions and historically minded individuals for preservation.

For scientific publishing, copyright stopped making sense the moment the internet switched on, as in this case, the author is not making money, the author is paying the publisher, and with electronic distribution, the publisher does nothing except collate the work and manage the scientific review process, it doesn’t even pay the scientific reviewers. This is why physicists revolted from copyright publishing in 1991 (and even before, if you consider the informal university samizdat preprint network of the 80s), and set up Arxiv. Now they are seriously considering suing publishing houses like Elsevier out of existence. Elsevier charges libraries upward of $10,000 per journal per year, it does absolutely nothing except manage unpaid authors and referees, print out papers and collate them. It is actively stifling the progress of science by sitting on a hoard of old papers from the 60s, 70s and 80s, which, frankly, should be confiscated, as it never should have belonged to them in the first place. These belong to their authors, whose only interest is public dissemination.

The model of copyright doesn’t work anymore, it’s only useful purpose now is to protect free-software in subverting the copyright act against itself. The terms of copyright needed to shrink to 5-10 years, and a different method of paying authors more directly needs to be considered. The publishing industry is on its last legs, and the music publishing industry has already collapsed.


2016-03-07 on fp-mag

That strongly depends on whether it’s the police doing the shooting, or crazy powerless people with no community support. Anti-semitism, like any racist power structure, consists of policies that keep Jews out of boardrooms, out of professorships, out of power. That stuff is ancient history in the US by now. Nowadays, pretty much the only anti-semitism in the US is the actions of individual psychopaths, and that’s about as much as you can ask from a society, short of utopia. Of course, I live in New York City, where anti-semitism makes about as much sense as being anti-Irish in Boston, so I might have a skewed picture of the deep south.


2016-03-07 on fp-mag

The current tyranny you have is dictated by property rights, which are government enforced deeds. I don’t see you railing against the government forcing people to pay exorbitant rents under pain of forced eviction, or the government forcing people to take down websites due to copyright claims, or the government preventing people from reading and distributing scientific papers, or software.

Fixing society is a matter of redesign of property rights for efficiency, so that they work for the improvement of society, not for the enrichment of a minority. We already know what the target is— it’s described by free-efficient market theory. That target is not even approximately realized. If it were, people would not be making enormous amounts of money, as the competition would drive their wages to the mean.


2016-03-06 on fp-mag

Only ex-post-facto, a few months after he was arrested. It was a repost of “How I cooked an arm”, which looked originally like extremely lame gross-out junk-writing, but in retrospect was a horrific true life account. Nobody saved most of his stuff, because it was really awful writing. But the druggies were writing even more disturbed stuff, minus the real life murder of course.


2016-03-06 on abcnewsdotcom

It makes a lot of sense when there are 12 candidates, as it allows people to switch allegiance when their candidate is not viable, and get persuaded at the caucus room. A switch to instant runoff voting would allow caucuses to become obsolete, but this is resisted in the US so far, perhaps because it would make third parties instantly viable.


2016-03-06 on abcnewsdotcom

Wait to see whether her lead evaporates when the voting leaves the South.


2016-03-06 on motherjones

Clinton also has well-informed professional staff commenting here, as opposed to Sanders, who relies on independent individuals unaffiliated with the campaign, who make honest mistakes. She only “touches” the part of me that revolts against covert government operations, like the Oklahoma City bombing or Sandy Hook.


2016-03-06 on fp-mag

He’s not talking about genocide, foolish person, he’s talking about criminal trials for people who broke the law.


2016-03-06 on fp-mag

I have nothing to think about. I see asinine arrogance as a virtue, as it is the cure to asinine stupidity, by asinine arrogant education.


2016-03-06 on fp-mag

That’s nonsense. The point of socialism is that in market equilibrium there are no rich people, because if someone else is making more money, you just go and do what that person is doing, and then you compete and reduce their income. The reason that doesn’t work in the real world is because there are class barriers to competing with people. There is no point to rich people, they are a waste of money.

The “handful of party bosses” didn’t live so much better in the USSR, you are thinking of North Korea. The goal of modern socialism is mostly to fix the problems in capitalism, not to produce total state control as in the USSR. What you are saying is nonsense propaganda.


2016-03-06 on fp-mag

You’re still at liberty after diversity training. You just probably will choose to act like less of a pig. Or not. it’s up to you.


2016-03-06 on fp-mag

On Usenet, people were actually crazy. Sometimes on strong amphetamines, sometimes on LSD, sometimes schitzophrenic, and a few times, it was Jeffrey Dahmer, who was a homicidally insane gay-cannibal. That was a trial by fire for sanity, this stuff is just tame. It’s hard to be brief, it takes editing.


2016-03-06 on fp-mag

The race is front-loaded for Hillary because she wins the south. The pledged delegates don’t count, and if Bernie continues to win the non-Southern vote with the margins he is showing in Colorado, he can pull it off. The Southern vote is demoralizing, but not insurmountable.

I spend plenty of time with my daughter, this internet stuff takes me a few minutes to do. Impact does not require time.


2016-03-06 on fp-mag

It doesn’t have a salutary effect on human nature. It gets people to stop acting like pigs in public, and it intimidates people who want to act like pigs, because they are cowards and they know that what they do is wrong.


2016-03-06 on fp-mag

Asinine arrogance is not the problem in the world. Stupidity is the problem.


2016-03-06 on fp-mag

I don’t “feel” that David Horowitz sold out for money, I can see the evidence in his stupid conservative writing. I don’t “feel” that Sowell doesn’t understand economics, I listened to him pontificate for over an hour without understanding that Say’s law is false. I don’t need to “feel” that the left was purged from academia, I MET the purged leftists, including friends I personally know who couldn’t find a job.

The safe spaces are from leftists, but they are stupid and harmless. Berndardine Dohrn and Bill Ayers were great hires, but they were hired in 1980, they would never get hired today. The reason universities hired leftists is because that’s where all the new ideas are. When universities are infiltrated by political right-wing people like you, the new ideas stop coming.

I don’t “feel” that you don’t read, you explained yourself that you don’t know anything when you said that anarchism isn’t of the left.

The reason Republicans have lost their right to exist as a party is because they staged 9/11. Their response to it is to nominate a fascist. It is not clear that the Democrats haven’t also lost their right to exist, as they staged the Oklahoma City bombing, and Waco, and Sandy Hook nonsense.

When I dislike something, I just explain why it is dumb. The barriers to free speech today come from large corporations and their rudeness codes, not from governments or the left.

The way the anarchist left prroposed to decrease business power is by STOPPING the government from enforcing property rights. This means people take over their own houses and factories, the ones they live and work in, as absentee landlords and owners are no longer able to enforce their authority.

I personally don’t think that’s a great idea. I prefer a government that enforces property rights, but also enforces graduated tax and ownership policies that have the effect of distributing ownership widely, for instance by making payment of rent or salary contingent on regulated equity gains. I’m not quite as radical as the anarchists. I see the value in enforcing property rights, because it allows a stable development of new authority and business centers, which are not terrible as long as they are competitive or temporary. Then again, maybe the anarchists would have developed in this way, if they had been allowed to survive.


2016-03-06 on fp-mag

The reason labor is entitled to surplus value is because in economic equilibrium, wages rise so that there is no profit. In economic equilbrium, wages are negotiated at zero unemployment, so that you are forced as an employer to pay the highest possible wage to keep workers from leaving to your competitor. Under these conditions, the workers make just enough to purchase the total output at peak production. This is called “Say’s law”.

What Marx noted (in Capital I) is that “Say’s law” is completely wrong! The workers are NOT making anywhere near their equilibrium wage, because they are competing in the presence of unemployment. When unemployment is at 0%, then Say’s law would become true (Marx doesn’t say this, but it is clear he knows this). That’s because when unemployment is at 0%, then workers wages start to rise very quickly due to the strong bargaining position of workers, and wages rise cutting into profits until profits are only as far above zero as is required to justify capital expansion and paying corporate bonds and dividends. This situation actually started to happen in the late 90s when unemployment dipped below 4%, it happens every time unemployment is very low, it’s the ideal that Keynesians aim for.

The failure of Says law in an economy with unemployment means that there is too little demand in a capitalist economy, because workers are chronically underpaid, due to competition with the unemployed. In Marx’s time, that meant a 14 hour day at subsistence wages, there were no regulations back then. Without a policy that takes unemployment to zero, if you want an industrial economy to not decend into depression, that means you are forced to prop up demand by massive state spending, by minimum wage laws, and by negative income taxes (like the EITC). These policies help the situation, but Say’s law still fails even with these measures, and it is failing today.

You can tell that Say’s law is failing through the effect of minimum wage rises, or stimulus spending. If Say’s law were really true, then any minimum wage rise would be immediately offset by inflation, and any stimulus spending would decrease private production, as production would be near peak. In real life, it’s the opposite— raising minimum wage has no effect on inflation until the minimum wage gets absurdly high (it never got there yet), and government stimulus spending does not produce inflation or decrease private production, it just reduces unemployment and gets the economy going.

The evidence for Marx’s observations that Say’s law is entirely false has been overwhelming and incontrovertible since the 1930s, it is the foundation of Keynesian economics. Due to political pressure, Keynesians can’t say “Marx”. But their theory is founded on Marx’s critique.

What “being a Jew” means to me is respect and preservation of certain Jewish writing, and being respectful of its offshoots, like Christianity. I only realized how Jewish Christianity is when I read Carriers “On the Historicity of Jesus”, before that, I had a totally wrong view. I also suspect I agree with Sanders that you can’t be a real Jew and support Babylon at the same time.


2016-03-06 on fp-mag

Nonsense. American Jews do not experience significant anti-Semitism anymore, as all the anti-semites are powerless now. Their self-image is perfectly fine, and we are usually happy to be Jewish. Some of us can’t stand Israel’s policy, that’s all.


2016-03-06 on fp-mag

The Israelis are only responsible for setting up a collaborator system and a collaborationist government, but that’s bad enough, it’s like Vichy France (as explained by the architects of the policy in “The Gatekeepers”).

Hamas is not a collaborationist government, they are actual representatives. They are oppressive in other ways, similar to the horrible things that the ANC did under apartheid, or the partisans did in the second world war. When you have a network of paid collaborators, they are going to get executed eventually, and sometimes innocent people will get executed too, as in South Africa. The solution to that is for Israel not to have networks of paid collaborators, but that’s not going to happen, so best to boycott, divest, sanctions, and so on, like in South Africa, until Israel comes to its senses, retreats to 67 borders, pays reparations to displaced persons, and makes reasonable treaties for water rights.


2016-03-06 on fp-mag

Quoting you: “Since leftism (increasing governmental control) and anarchy (no government) are diametrically opposed, you evidence absolutely no grasp of anything political.”

This statement is so ignorant, that it justifies the claim that you are illiterate. If you were to read anything at all, you would see that the anarchists were an offshoot from Marx, led by Bakunin. They were as left as left can get, they were further left than the Marxists were.

Leftism is NOT about increasing government control, it is about DECREASING big-business control. You don’t have to do that by increasing government control, you can decrease both business and government control at the same time. It’s just tricky to do. Anarchists are not exactly “no government”, they are “no authority”, and it is possible to reduce the degree of authority in society by using laws uniformly applied, by a (*gasp*) anarchist government!

Regarding “highly educated”, I am self taught. Regarding “not being challenged”, I’m here, aren’t I? It’s impossible to not be challenged online. I agree that you are capable of reading online comments. I disagree that you have read anything else of substance.


2016-03-06 on fp-mag

Leftists are marginalized in technical field for NON-obvious reasons, you probably don’t even know who the marginalized leftists are. Most of the great Soviet research was ignored for political reasons, inflation theory is Soviet, it is due to Starobinsky and Mukhanov, lasers are originally Soviet, conformal field theory is largely Soviet. The theory of quarks was spun off from the “Sakata model”, and the reason you never heard of Sakata, unlike Gell-Mann and Zweig, is largely because he was a Japanese Marxist.

Even completely non-Marxist leftist physics work, like the S-matrix theory of the 60s and early 70s, what eventually became string theory, was so deeply marginalized, from 1974 to 1984, that all the theorists were driven out of academia, or literally driven mad, or driven to suicide. I never learned about “Regge trajectories”, “The Pomeron”, “Unitarity cuts”, despite this stuff being required to reproduce high-energy (and low energy) near-beam QCD scattering. The Pomeron hypothesis was spectacularly confirmed in 1996 when P-P and P-Pbar cross sections became equal, as Pomeranchuk predicted (in the USSR, in 1960), but nobody said anything about it, except noting it at the accelerator.

When string theory was taken up again, it was by a politically dominant class of right-wingers, who avoided crediting the radicals that made the theory in the 60s and 70s. That only changed when the internet came along, and people could review the original references.

Having been in technical field, I not only witnessed the marginalization of the best work by leftists, I also personally witnessed a certain amount of racism and sexism. It’s hardly ever intentional, although with sexism it sometimes is (the intention with sexism is not usually to oppress anyone, the intention is to get laid). Most of the time it’s usually just a subtle dismissal of people.

The sexism has been a deep problem for decades, it’s why Choquet Bruhat took so long to get recognition for GR initial value problem, that’s also why the wavelet revolution took so long, wavelets are “female mathematics” (as nonsensical as it sounds, but wavelets have a mother, not a father). Racism was less of a problem, but only because technical fields were not at all diverse until last decade, I mean ethnically diverse. Hardly anybody from a poor or marginalized background would go into a field like mathematics where you can’t make money despite working 100 times harder than any CEO. But they are diverse now, as you can’t really stop people from learning math.

Regarding racism, I do remember a materials science seminar by the person who was, at the time, the only black female student in the department. It had a few new ideas, but there were mistakes too, I thought, and the mistakes made it overall mediocre or bad in my opinion. Now a white dude delivering the same material would have been harassed mercilessly, allowing him to defend himself and fix his mistakes. But the black girl was left alone, no questions, despite having made what I thought were obvious mistakes.

This type of kid-glove treatment is NOT being nice, it is preventing the type of challenges that improve your ideas. I was a student too. So at the end of the seminar, when nobody else challenged the nonsense, I got up and savagely tore apart what I saw as the wrong stuff. Some were actual mistakes. Sometimes I misunderstood something, or she had different conventions, as always. But because my tone was hostile, as always, everyone at the seminar room looked at me like I was George Wallace or something. She came up to me afterwards, and thanked me for the tough questions, so it’s not like black students want special treatment. They just get it anyway.

Part of racism is ignoring people instead of challenging their technical mistakes. I don’t think mandatory diversity training would hurt anyone, I certainly could have used it.


2016-03-06 on fp-mag

Wow. You really are a theorist! Sure, I think you’re totally right about everything, but it’s a really academic way of saying it, and online, this type of speech is time-consuming to read through, and is less effective as propaganda, no matter how accurate and insightful. I think that’s partly due to your insistence on using neutral words, and avoiding “loaded words”, that’s the foundation of academic conventions, and it’s also the first thing the early internet got rid of. There was no point in avoiding propaganda when anyone is free to respond with counterpropaganda, it’s just a waste of time in that context , as propaganda becomes useless when there is no power structure dictating who gets to speak. That frees it up to be useful as a rhetorical flourish, instead of a power-reinforcement device.

Personally, I think that it’s proper to use loaded propaganda words so long as you use them in a way that isn’t boring. With a surprising twist, so that they subvert the authority they are intended to support, instead of supporting it by silent consensus. Words don’t dictate meaning by themselves, the author can use them to create the opposite meaning. This is how the word “Queer” was repurposed. You can do it with just about anything.

I call Linus “rude”, not because I’m asking him to stop. I’m asking you to be rude also. The same with “notable” on Wikipedia, that stuff started in 2008, it destroyed the encyclopedia, as all the most comitted contributors (including myself) were driven away or blocked by 2011. Wikipedia is extremely easy to fork, anyone can set up “Forkipedia”, taking all the pages to another site, but they don’t, because it’s a hassle. If it were a true political fork, with a different political structure than the one at Wikipedia, I think it has a good chance of replacing Wikipedia. The current “forks” aren’t forks, but new projects with incompatible goals.


2016-03-06 on fp-mag

His campaign is based on policies that are all standard in Australia, which ranks higher than the US on the Heritage Foundation’s list of countries by degree of economic liberty. The main parts are Medicare-for-all single payer, tuition-free public college and universities, and $15/hr minimum wage. That’s Australia in a nutshell.


2016-03-06 on fp-mag

What he writes is typical of the degeneration of academic history in the East after the collapse. The ridiculous nonsense started in the mid 90s, as former Soviet officials scrambled over themselves to curry favor with their new oligarch overlords. There is nothing reliable in anything post-Soviet from Eastern Europe or from Russia, all of you are compromised by justified but useless anti-communist sentiments into fabricating absurd counterfactual histories.


2016-03-06 on fp-mag

OOPS! Fixed, thanks.


2016-03-06 on fp-mag

Yeah yeah, you think what you want. But the libertarian and anarchist philosophies developed on the far left, in the late 19th and early 20th century, as a reaction to Marxism. The spit among communists was along the lines of Marx/Bakunin, with Marx and Engels advocating total state control, and eventually this turned into Lenin’s “dictatorship of the proletariat”, while Bakunin was advocating for a distributed power structure with independent organizations coming together to form a communitarian society.

The anarchist faction was dominant in 1936 Spain, while the communists won in Russia, and suppressed and executed the anarchists.

The anarchist philosophy has transmuted in the intervening time to a sort of libertarian left, which advocates worker control of industry, and distributed ownership. American libertarians just took the “little government power” aspects of classical left-libertarianism, and removed the “little business power” aspects to make their nonsensical inconsistent philosphy. American libertarians don’t notice that their version of “liberty” devolves into fascism with gigantic corporations taking over the world. Rather, they do notice, but they like it, because they are paid by the heads of those corporations.

You are brought up in total ignorance, because you only read American libertarians. So you don’t know jack sh*t. Your suspicions will always be confirmed because you are illiterate.


2016-03-05 on fp-mag

Oh, he’s just a modern day physicist who asks rude questions at seminars when people say wrong things. It’s the same with York, Tye, Susskind, Banks. You can look at Motl’s blog to see a right-wing version of these people. It’s not significant to read the individual comments, they’re mostly of the nature of “The ghost field gives a contribution which cancels out too many of the polarization modes to make your theory physical, it must be adjusted with scalars…” and other stuff like that which won’t help the uninitiated.


2016-03-05 on fp-mag

I am totally sane. When I actually had a paranoid attack for a week or so about 10 years ago, I couldn’t do math. I just read Nik Weaver’s “Forcing for Mathematicians” the last few days both to keep me sane, and because it’s amazing. I’d recommend that for everyone, as it’s the math book of the decade.


2016-03-05 on fp-mag

I am mentally and emotionally frozen at age 15 because it is impossible to go any further within the social order, that’s largely what happens to socialists it is true. Thankfully, there are technical fields, like physics and mathematics, where being emotionally 15 doesn’t stop you from contributing to humanity.

I don’t spread any lies. My family happened to be visiting a West Bank town a month or two before the 1987 intifada, and a car went by spreading leaflets. My father can read arabic, but he wouldn’t translate the leaflets, he just said “time for us to get out of here”. I have to use my imagination to reproduce what the leaflet was saying, but it was clearly a call to organize and strike against the occupation.

The first months of 1987, like the years of the Lebanon war, did more to alert Israelis that their government was no longer representing the best-interest of the people than all the protest and theory in the world.

When I was 15, I wanted to join the intifada, and lob stones at the occupation. The “missiles” are a joke, and perhaps even a false flag— the “Hamas rockets” are completely absurd, they are meter-long pipes filled with fuel. I don’t believe they are significant, and I believe the proper response to these things is “hey, look! You built a toy rocket.”

The Palestinian people is a legitimate group, they are just as real as “Israeli Jews”, who had never been a people before 1948 either. The anger and hatred is justified, as the Jews refuse to pay reparations, go back to 68 borders, open the borders, and live in peace with their neighbors.

Some of the Israelis want to slaughter the Palestinians, they are in small minority parties. They are not significant, they are only there like the racist Dixiecrats were there, to say “Hey, look, things could be worse”.

I will not grow up, I will martyr myself first. I will die at peace with myself, unlike you.


2016-03-05 on fp-mag

My mommy was an extreme anti-socialist and my daddy was a Lt. Colonel in the Israeli army. They moved to the US because they love capitalism, not because I was saying I wouldn’t serve in the military. My parents didn’t take me seriously when I said I wouldn’t serve, they laughed and said I would change my mind when all my friends were drafted. Of course I did not change my mind, and those people who were drafted are no longer my friends.

I was not afraid of the IDF, I was against the IDF, and at the time, I was the only one in my family and in my school and in my community, there are many more today. I will continue to speak out, because the Israeli blindness to Palestinian suffering is comparable only to the German blindness to Jewish suffering in the second world war, or to South African blindness to native Black suffering in the 80s, when Israel and South Africa were jointly developing atomic bombs.


2016-03-05 on fp-mag

It’s not a lie, what’s going on in Israel. There a ton of Jews in Israel who refuse to serve in the occupied territory, it is now a standard unwritten checkbox for the Israeli draft whether you are willing to enforce the occupation, and the leftist Jews are reassigned to other duties, far from any Palestinians. There are those who will not serve at all, and they are now quietly given a release form instead of being put in prison. There are those who actively protest, and those people are marginalized and discriminated against. I am not in Israel anymore. I would never serve. I realized this in 1987, when the first Intifada broke out, and I was 14. Thankfully my family took me back to the US before I was 15, so my draft status never became an issue.


2016-03-05 on fp-mag

If Sanders had dropped acid, or even smoked marijuana, he would not be functioning mentally at the age of 74.


2016-03-05 on fp-mag

Sowell fails to understand economics. Horowitz just sold out for money. The left is about correcting market failures, because the economic model of capitalism simply concentrates power to an oligarchy. That’s undeniable today, just as it was undeniable in the 1930s.

The disillusionment with Marxism and the New Left is largely justified. The only proper leftist philosophy is anarchist and libertarian, and has the same distaste for the kind of elitist power concentrations that drove Sowell and Horowitz away from the left.


2016-03-05 on fp-mag

You mean “Linus is rude”. Yes he is! I am too. He’s a product of internet culture of the 90s, and the internet is rude. It’s not his face-to-face personality, it’s how he communicated with the world. He blames it on being Finnish, just as I blamed it on being Israeli, but the truth is, it has nothing to do with any of that, it’s just because we grew up on Usenet with real free speech.

I read the email discussions, they are useful for explaining the culture. The same rude culture can be found in physicist’s discussions from the 1950s, see Wolfgang Pauli’s comments and personality, or more recently David Gross’s. It was also found to a certain extent in technical fields in the USSR.


2016-03-05 on fp-mag

I like BDS. I think “safe zones” are stupid, but colleges do stupid things, and this one doesn’t hurt anyone.


2016-03-05 on fp-mag

“They marched like cattle to their doom”— the vast majority of the people were extremely hungry and listless, they were cold and sick, they had clog shoes that hurt their feet, they were taking care of small starving children, and they had absolutely no power, even in groups. The situation of a typical Jew in a camp was that of a homeless person on the street, and I don’t see you going around distributing AK-47s to the homeless, or asking why they don’t rise up in revolt.

The communist Partisans took individual Jews, they liked Jews as they could be certain Jews were not double agents, they just couldn’t take families with elderly and small children, and most of the victims were family units, not young individuals capable of fighting. There were also sporadic resistance movements set up by zionist Jews in their 20s, who were trying to save their family. They could tunnel out of ghettos and steal food and get a few handguns from the communist resistance, but most individuals were trying to get their families out to safety in any way possible.

The elite in Germany provided Zyklon to the camps to be used as an insecticide, it was diverted in relatively small quantities to kill people, most of the Zyklon was used to kill lice, you only need a little bit of Zyklon to kill a million people, and Zyklon was only used at Auschwitz. Treblinka used carbon monoxide, and the Jew-exterminators on the Russian front used bullets. The people providing Zyklon averted their eyes from the genocide, the same way nobody talks about the homeless in the US, or nobody talks about Native Americans. The elite in the US was extremely Protestant and extremely anti-Semitic in the 1940s, and they dismissed the reports of genocide as propaganda until 1945, despite the mounting evidence. I agree with your sentiments, but I think you are insensitive to the issues of power, and Jews in the 1940s had none, despite the propaganda from Germany blaming them for all the world’s troubles.


2016-03-05 on theatlantic

It’s not an incorrect argument. There were “hundreds” of political prisoners in the late USSR, you could probably find an approximately equal number of political prisoners in the US in the 1970s. The Gulag prison system was not even that big in Stalin’s time, it had about a million people back then at any one time. It was always a negligible part of Soviet labor.

The people who could choose their jobs were ordinary citizens, not prisoners. The wages for the jobs were set by administrators by pure supply and demand. Nobody will tell you that, not the communists, because they don’t want to admit it, and not the capitalists, because they don’t know anything about the USSR labor system.

I am not a communist, I am just telling you the proper history. There is no point in listening to anyone in Russia, or to anyone other than me, personally, I mean myself, because everyone except me is either ignorant about this stuff, or lies about it. I am unfortunately the only reliable person in the whole world.

*sigh*. What a burden.


2016-03-05 on fp-mag

Committed by Cheney using his military drills.


2016-03-05 on fp-mag

No one pays the left. There is no funding source. I pay Bernie Sanders.


2016-03-04 on abcnewsdotcom

“everyone had a job” wasn’t the only thing that happened in the USSR. It was pretty much the only good thing. The only people that think Reagan was a good president were those that didn’t have to suffer under his rule.

You used to receive reasonably good education, under communism, except you didn’t learn anything about economics, politics, or social movements, because communism suppressed all this stuff. Now you receive terrible education, and your lack of education in economics, politics, or the history of social movements is showing.


2016-03-04 on fp-mag

You don’t know anything about other systems. You only know about one other system.


2016-03-04 on fp-mag

Capitalism worke better when there are no rich people. The people running the USSR were not wealthy, their salary was below average. The only thing they had was some access to Western goods on occasion, which is a perk, but not that much of one.


2016-03-04 on fp-mag

No Jews supported Hitler.


2016-03-04 on fp-mag

It’s not about genetics. It requires a serious brain-disorder for a Jew to be anti-semitic, as this requires disowning their own family. An example of a true Jewish anti-semite is Bobby Fisher, you have to be that level of disturbed. Sanders is simply not an anti-semite, and neither am I. I am to the left of him on Israel, as I was born there.


2016-03-04 on fp-mag

Marxism is a philosophy of helping the oppressed, in that, there is some overlap with Jewish philosophy, although there is more overlap with Catholicism. Actual Marxists could become Catholics without changing a whole lot, for example Ortega.

Sanders is not a Marxist. He’s more of a Keynesian. If by Marxist, you mean “read and agree with Marx”, then I am more of a Marxist, as I read and understand Marx’s critique of capitalism. I am also a Jew. But I think it is best to call a person who supports the legal property-rights structure of Capitalism a “Keynesian”, so I call myself a Keynesian. The names are not important, only the policies matter.


2016-03-04 on fp-mag

Of course I mean them. But not exactly them primarily, as they are more powerful than the average Palestinian in a relocation camp. There are those in the PA who got their villa and their volvo and their Israeli money, and now shut up about oppression.


2016-03-04 on fp-mag

That’s nonsense. He hasn’t even judged Clinton on her server, and he paid his family what looks like less than minimum wage. If I were Jane, I would have sued him for exploitation.


2016-03-04 on fp-mag

I am not a good person. Sanders is.


2016-03-04 on fp-mag

I’m calling you a wicked child because you are opposed to Sanders.


2016-03-04 on fp-mag

The “rearranged and given another meaning” part is what makes it original. The Haggadah is very nice, but it isn’t a rewrite of the Torah. It includes a lot of later commentary, very nice and wise, but having no origin in the Torah specifically.


2016-03-04 on fp-mag

It says that, but I read the Torah. In Hebrew. It’s not there.


2016-03-04 on fp-mag

I only need to read the first paragraphs of the summary to know that this book is spouting ignorant nonsense. I read Stalin when I was a kid. Stalin made himself famous by the slogan “socialism in one country”, which meant Russia needed to build up everything for herself, without reliance on any imports or exports. Unlike Lenin, who wanted heavy industry in Germany and Hungary to support the USSR, Stalin didn’t want or need a worldwide socialist revolution, because if there were a revolution in Western Europe, Russia would be marginalized by other socialist countries. All his efforts were to make sure Russia would be completely self-sufficient for all raw materials and oil, and in all basic industry. He also wanted to make sure that all the other Marxist countries would be dependent on Russian steel and Russian oil. That’s what he did in 4 five year plans. By 1960, Russia was entirely self-sufficient, and had the industrial base for development. This part of communist development was largely economically successful, in terms of production quotas met or exceeded, and in comparison with the West. That’s not much of a surprise, because the Soviet and Western large firms were largely the same in structure and planning.

The development of consumer goods and general plenty, this part was what failed, as unlike heavy industry, successful light-goods and consumer goods production requires independent small businesses and independent decisionmaking. This was already clear by 1965 to mathematically oriented planners inside the USSR, like Kosygin, but they didn’t succeed in freeing up the system, because by then it was a dictatorship of the nomenklatura. The freeing didn’t start until 1985, by which time the population was so sick of the repression that the whole system was dismantled.

Whenever there was an independent socialist revolution, Stalin squelched it by force and infiltration, whether in Spain or in Greece, or in Yugoslavia. He was happier for the fascists to take over Spain that independent non-Leninist labor unions take over. He allowed partisans to be killed by the Nazis in Poland, rather than send the Red Army to help, because then there wouldn’t be an independent leadership. He threatened to execute Tito in 1950, but failed, because Tito’s was actually an independent revolution.

Stalin was not interested in any revolution not under his direct control. In that, he was different than Khruschev or Brezhnev, who actually supported truly independent Marxists all over the world.

My view of history doesn’t come from my family, I am just telling you that part because it is interesting. Most of my mother’s side of the family did not survive, of course (we are Jews). One of the only really good source for concentration camps is Primo Levi’s account written right after the war concluded.


2016-03-04 on fp-mag

Obama probably never even read Marx, he’s not an economist. He’s more of an Alinsky Democrat. Alinsky wasn’t a Marxist either, by the way. Obama passed Republican policy from the 90s as compromise toward Democratic positions from the 90s, he’s not even pushed hard for a public option in his health care law. That makes him a right-leaning centrist, or a Rockefeller Republican, not even a JFK or Carter Democrat, let alone an FDR one.


2016-03-04 on fp-mag

9/11 is a war crime.


2016-03-04 on fp-mag

On trial for what?


2016-03-04 on fp-mag

Keep telling yourself that 2008 was caused by Marxism, and you will sleep better at night.


2016-03-04 on fp-mag

That’s complete nonsense. The leftists are suppressed and marginalized even in technical fields like physics and engineering. The ones who are pumped full of money support capitalism. The folks actually being purged are 9/11 truthers, leftists who oppose “The War on Terror”, and academics who dare to oppose American foreign policy.

The campus protests and unrest comes entirely from the students. They are not so easily fooled as those in power.


2016-03-04 on mediaite

You are deluded if you think Trump is like Nixon. He’s more like Andrew Jackson. Bigoted, nativist, and populist. He’s also got some Mussolini in him. It is Clinton who is like Nixon. If it comes down to Mussolini vs. Nixon, your’e giving people a hell of a choice. Vote Sanders, so we have a proper choice.


2016-03-04 on motherjones

I agree with what you wrote, but there is a subtle sense in which Clinton is a Southern Baptist, and therefore “one of us”, while Sanders is a Jew, and therefore “one of them”, and this subtle feeling of otherness is 90% of what anti-Jewish sentiment is all about. It’s just a vague feeling that “that guy is not one of us, and won’t support us” among those who are deeply Christian. I hope that it is clear that this is nonsense, but I am not sure that this is so, considering how hopeless all of Sanders real outreach to black communities down south has been so far.


2016-03-04 on motherjones

Thanks! But I suspect that I would be a terrible politician, I am a scientist by training. Sanders is a good politician, Tulsi Gabbard also, and I think they deserve your vote more. There are lots of people who agree, and if any of us come to office without baggage, there’s no barrier to good governance. This stuff is not rocket science, you just need to get sensible people to the proper positions without getting corrupted in shaking the money tree.


2016-03-04 on fp-mag

Obama is not a socialist, he is a moderate right-leaning Democrat. That’s what he ran as, that’s what people voted for. It was as far as people could go in 2008. If he were an actual socialist, Cheney would be on trial for war crimes today.


2016-03-04 on fp-mag

That might be true, I am sure there were at least a few among them who personally dreamed of owning a pastry shop after the war, but one of their jobs was distributing anti-fascist communist propaganda. When an organization is run by Moscow, I think it can be safely called a communist organization.


2016-03-04 on fp-mag

One way to do that is to judge others less, especially those like Sanders who are actively trying to help weaker parties survive.


2016-03-04 on fp-mag

There was no mention of socialist resistance, because the socialists were executed quickly. The ones who survived were partisans in the woods, like Tito, and they survived through raids on farms, stealing food, asking for help from various people in the countryside, and so on. The ones who were caught were shot. The ones who sympathized in the camps stopped working and were also shot. The Jews were also executed at random times and for no reason, as there was no recognition of Jews as human among the guards.


2016-03-04 on fp-mag

Calling Sanders anti-semitic is as absurd as calling Obama an anti-black racist. It shows that you have no ability to criticize Israel’s policy now that it is the strong party, not the weak. Judaism is about respect for the weak and oppressed, not the strong and oppressive, regardless of ethnicity. In that, Sanders is quite a bit better Jew than most of you folks.


2016-03-04 on fp-mag

That’s easy to say from the comfort of your computer, but my grandfather was breaking rocks at a landslide on a railroad, and one point of pride when he spoke about it (he hardly ever did) is that they never finished the work before the war ended, the railroad never functioned. The partisans were not only all communists, they were taking orders from the USSR, who organized the brigades in a loose intelligence collective with orders coming from Moscow. This continued until the end of the war, when the Yugoslav partisans split from Moscow in an acrimonious rift, due to the insistence that Yugoslavia and Bulgaria be joined to keep Tito out of power.


2016-03-04 on fp-mag

The new-left was purged from universities and institutions in the 1980s and 1990s, the purge was entirely completed by the mid 2000s, helped along by 9/11. There is no left anymore in any US institutions, which is a pity, because it means there are no more serious scientists or serious humanities academics.

The handful that remain are either very old, like Chomsky, or very isolated, like Cornel West. They need to make do by using media to get an audience outside of academia, because the academics have been taken over by right wing think tanks. It’s worst in economics, where the purge of leftists means that all the Keynesians were eliminated in most institutions of economics. Since only the Keynesians understood inflation, unemployment, and monetary policy, it meant that there was no one left in 2008 who knew what to do regarding the financial crisis. This catastrophe has had to slowly be reversed, and there are a few leftists in some institutions again, the ones that came to their senses in 2008.

I don’t point to Scandinavia today, because Scandinavia today is highly capitalist, after the right-wing governments of the 2000s reversed many of the pro-employment and distributed ownership measures that were tried earlier. The development of Scandinavia is very complicated, and many of the successes have nothing to do with the welfare state. But the universal health-care, subsidized family leave, and free college are no-brainers, these are implemented in the most capitalist states also, and this is what Sanders is pointing too.

The “new man” of communism is very different from the “new man” of the left, although they are both an attempt at changing political consciousness. The communists wanted a good worker who fit into a slot, the new left wanted a long-haired pot-smoking individualist who could make revolution. Neither vision is particularly radical today, it is not clear either vision was ever radical.

The political theorists on the left in the late 1960s were responding to the failure of collectivist visions in producing actual radical social movements. The role of collectivist movements is complicated, there is some role for such collectives in pressing for better wages through unions, but the general idea that collectives manage better is, I believe, completely false. The left is not about collectives, it is about sane economics, which doesn’t concentrate power and capital to the top.

The proper leftist theory is simply to encourage decentralized ownership, by having and protecting small business, encouraging distributed ownership of workplaces, and decentralizing decisionmaking as far as possible. This model was developed successfully in Scandinavia. Not by the government. By a student at a subsidized university in Helsinki, by Linus Torvalds. The decentralized model is what gave you the Linux operating system.


2016-03-04 on fp-mag

They will probably fare better than you will.


2016-03-04 on fp-mag

It doesn’t change anything. The only survivors were complicit, it was impossible to survive without helping the regime, that’s why all the survivors felt guilty. They knew that there were partisans out there who were able to survive without collaborating, somewhere in the woods, but these people were all communists, and nobody usually knew how the heck they did it.


2016-03-04 on fp-mag

It’s not ridiculous, it is true. The socialists often protested within the camps, and were taken out and shot. At least, that was what my grandfather explained to me happened in the labor camp he was assigned to. The best people were killed, the survivors lived under crushing guilt of having been forced to collaborate.


2016-03-04 on abcnewsdotcom

Reagan visited the USSR about a year after his “honeymoon”, Bernie Sanders is always first. Sanders, as mayor of Burlington, had an independent foreign policy which was set up as a critique of Reagan’s idiotic one. Unlike Reagan, he didn’t support the fascist movements, and he criticized the communists based on the fact that their system didn’t work, not based on ideological paranoia that they were taking over the world. Everyone on the left knew that the communists were not taking over the world.

“Everyone can find a job” was implemented in the USSR in the 1930s— if you went to an active shipyard, or to a construction site, chances were always good that they had work that was unfinished, and you would be put to work immediately. This was in the interest of the managers, who were paid to recruit. The only people who couldn’t find a job in this situation are seriously ill, and the official unemployment of 0% was roughly accurate. There were, in later years, a few people who collected unemployment checks because they couldn’t find work in their own field, but this was due to the later generous unemployment packages, which didn’t exist earlier. There are no unemployable people, sorry.

There was no real unemployment past the 1930s in the USSR, the last unemployment offices closed in the mid 1930s, because there was nobody out looking for work. This wasn’t government propaganda. It was a product of the effective free labor market set up in the USSR. The problems of communism are serious, but unemployment was not one of these, solving that problem was the most notable and nearly only success.

the problems were in capital allocation for new business, in centralized decision-making that prevented people from implementing independent ideas, in lack of ability to hire construction firms for independent expansion, because top-down projects were taking all the people, in lack of ability to resell “government property” independently without getting arrested, in the lack of a floating price for consumer goods and tradable commodities, in the lack of floating currencies, in the top-down planning of international industries, in all the problems that the dissident progressives inside the East were noticing and complaining about, and getting arrested and marginalized over.

The one success of the communists was that anyone who wanted a job could easily find one. This was reproduced in the West without dismantling capitalism, whenever there was a jobs program for eliminating unemployment, or sufficient stimulus to absorb nearly all unemployment, as in the US in the 1950s, or in England in the 30s and 40s and 50s, or in Germany in the 30s, 40s, 50s, and 60s, or in France, or anywhere else. The production of unemployment is the major structural defect in the functioning of capital markets, and it is completely unnecessary. Temporary jobs for those looking for work can allow full employment even when people are looking for a suitable job, an unemployed graphic designer in the East could work construction or cleaning for months, or even in bookkeeping, while looking for a position. It was always easy to find a job even in communist Romania, unless you were a political dissident.


2016-03-04 on abcnewsdotcom

Republican Spain was a relative economic success compared to either the USSR or Franco, the economic parts that were free Spain were ok, the worker cooperatives were relatively productive compared to either capitalism or communism. Free spain was only problematic in that it still didn’t have independent small business and capital allocation independent of large collectives, in that case labor unions. The capital allocation structure wasn’t structured entrepreneurially as in developed capitalism, it was structured according to political union decisions. But the system didn’t stick around long enough to see what the unions would do with capital allocation.

The USSR was left wing in foreign policy only. The internal policy repressed the left wing, which as I told you consisted of dissidents. The Soviet left was Dilas and Dubcek, and to some extent Kosygin, at least in the 60s, and Gorbachev, in the 80s. The Soviet left was marginalized.

I am happy you credit the “theory” to me, but it is the universal idea of the anti-communist left. That’s pretty much the whole of the Western left, and anyone from the East both knows nothing about it, and thinks they know everything, because they assume it has a relation to what they experienced as the communist left. The communist left is dead, get used to it.


2016-03-04 on abcnewsdotcom

I know where all these people were, thanks. These people were the closest things to progressives within the Soviet block. They were aiming to reduce state control and create a real decentralized economy. They all failed, except for Tito. Tito’s socialism was very far from Soviet communism, at least past 1950, because he experienced the total economic collapse caused by Soviet policies in 1948, and he didn’t want to continue this. He reprivatized farming in 1949, after only a few months of collectivization, and he introduced private industry, and formed the nonaligned block. That’s as progressive as you get for the communists.

Capitalism is not “imperfect”, it’s even more horrible than communism if it isn’t mitigated by Keynesian measures. The West knows this, and implements minimum wage and enormous amounts of expenditures in R&D, military, and roads, to keep consumer demand from collapsing. This is the extent of the West’s ability to manage capitalism so that it doesn’t decend into a permanent depression.

The point is that this is not enough. The idealized situation in an economy is self-directed enterprises, which reinvest their profitability in their own expansion, and where workers have a say. The only way to achieve this is to encourage small business, worker owned business, and decentralized ownership of stock in publicly traded companies, with strong bargaining power for employees. Any other option is terribly destructive, you can’t see it, because you have no idea what the struggles against concentrations of capital in the West were, you only know the completely unrelated struggles against concentration of state power in the East. You need to know what happened in the West’s struggles too, to get a picture of why so many people were fooled into thinking the USSR represented some sort of left-wing. The Soviets were like a monarch butterfly, mimicking the socialist left without doing anything useful to help.


2016-03-04 on abcnewsdotcom

It’s systemic policy to reduce unemployment, so that everyone can find a job, together with policies to ensure that people have social insurance. It’s a form of Keynesian economic policy with the further goal of reducing concentrations of power in big business.

Sanders visited the USSR at the same time Reagan did, during the Gorbachev era, as part of the sister-city program. He wasn’t an advocate of Marxism-Leninism at any point in his career.


2016-03-04 on fp-mag

Everyone who survived engaged in such work, or similar, it all benefited the regime. If you protested, you were shot. The protesters were the socialists, and Sanders would have been shot.


2016-03-04 on fp-mag

That’s not from the Torah, it’s from the Haggadah. The wicked child, by the way, is you.


2016-03-04 on fp-mag

We refer to him as “Mr. President” at our Seder.


2016-03-04 on fp-mag

If you’re from the former USSR, you are the one who is brainwashed. You have the mistaken impression that leftists are out to take over the economy using the government. That is not what the left was about anywhere except the USSR and it’s Marxist-Leninist sphere of influence.

The reaction of those from formerly communist countries to the left is the same as a former cult-member encountering religion. The fact that you were brutalized by a terrible system doesn’t make you an expert on the problems of the left, or on the problems of capitalism. It makes you an expert on the problems of communism, and that’s useless to you, because nobody on the American left is advocating communism.


2016-03-04 on motherjones

I see Fred Hampton as a slightly more radical counterpart to Martin Luther King. I don’t believe King would have been shot had he been a simple anti-segregationist, the opposition to the war is what made him a pariah, and his socialism made him a “communist” to Hoover and therefore a menace. But it’s much the same, the past is past, and your position is reasonable also.

What I think is unarguable, however, is that King’s economic prescriptions were based on a full employment policy, this is the holy-grail of the left. Once you have full employment, labor becomes strong enough to win better wages, and better conditions. This is what Sanders is making in his platform, through stimulus, education subsidy, and increases in minimum wage. Those all decrease unemployment. In addition, Medicare-for-all makes health care portable, allowing workers to switch jobs.

Jesse Jackson continued MLK’s economic legacy, and Sanders supported him in ’84 and ’88. Now it is only Sanders himself who is continuing the legacy on the national stage. The details of the assassination, we can disagree about, I don’t know for sure what is right. But on the question of Sanders’ economic prescriptions mostly agreeing with King’s (although somewhat less radical, as they don’t guarantee full employment), I don’t think you can reasonably disagree with that.


2016-03-04 on abcnewsdotcom

What you experienced as “socialism” meant government control of all business, the inability to do anything independently without okaying it with a party member, the inability to buy cloth, make clothing, and resell your excess to others, the loss of your job if you dared criticize the government or apply for a visa, the lack of independent venture capital from anyone other than the state, the lack of political independence from Moscow, and a trade system based on the decisions in Moscow of what your country will be made to manufacture.

This system is a totalitarian monstrosity, and it only pays lip-service to the ideas of socialism, for propaganda purposes. It differs very little from the Western system of large firms dominating industry, because in this case, the only firm is the government, and this is run like one gigantic business. It is no more extreme socialism than the US is extreme capitalism. It is extreme governmental control.

Actual socialists, the ones outside the USSR, advocated for preventing the consolidation of capital in businesses by distributing ownership widely. Only a small minority of these people wanted to structure the whole society as a single corporation, those were the Marxist Leninists, and these were the worst of the bunch. These folks could never win elections, so they took over governments by force.

The goal of socialism is preventing the problems of capitalism. The people in the Eastern block don’t know the problems of capitalism, they only know the problems of communism, at least, that’s what it was like 20 years ago, now some of them have experience with the problems of capitalism.

The point of socialism is to fix the problems of capitalism, and the goal of socialists is not to reproduce the Marxist Leninist state, but to make sure ownership and decision making are decentralized. Centralizing all power to the Soviets makes about as little sense as centralizing all power to Lockheed Martin, or Halliburton.

Even within the East, there were those who knew this, but they were outside of Romania. The progressive Soviets were Kosygin and Dubcek, and also to a lesser extent Tito and Kardelj, and more pointedly Dilas, they knew that the system could not persist as a top-down planned economy, that capital allocation needed to be decentralized, and corporations needed to be free to expand through local purchasing, and hire, fire, and redesign without top-down constraints. These ideas were suppressed within the Eastern block as ruthlessly as any other deviation from orthodoxy.


2016-03-04 on motherjones

I don’t believe that guy who wrote that is even black. This is a white person or a sellout pretending to be “real”.

Sanders support for the black movement didn’t end in the 60s, he was a great supporter of Jesse Jackson in 1984 and 1988, and delivered Vermont for him. Sanders has opposed the policies that marginalize America’s cities, and has stood against the Clintons when they were race-baiting. The Clinton’s race-baiting was a calculating move to win elections, but some of it they really mean.

I agree with the author that black voters are not so liberal on social issues, especially down south. That’s as far as I agree with that nonsense. I don’t even think it was written by a black person.


2016-03-04 on abcnewsdotcom

I know how those fools think, my mother escaped from Romanian communism in the 1960s. People from former communist countries have no ability to reason objectively, they are too traumatized by communism to understand the value of the left.


2016-03-04 on abcnewsdotcom

They’re not brainwashed by communist propaganda, they’re brainwashed by anti-communist propaganda! They are fooled by thinking that opposing communism means opposing the left.

Communism is a terrible system, that poisons you against the left, because you think you recognize communist tendencies in the sensible non-communist left. Communism to the left is like a cult compared to a normal religion.

The Western left is nothing like the communists, but neither the communists or the anti-communists understand that, as they have their own groupthink. The communists executed all the leftists and anarchists first.


2016-03-03 on abcnewsdotcom

They aren’t easily offended, they are formerly communist, and they are now dominated by obnoxious anti-socialists that are knee-jerk pro-capitalism and don’t recongize the economic problems that democratic socialists solve. You can’t listen to people from the East, they are brainwashed against socialism by dictatorial communism, it’s like listening to a former cult-member’s opinion of religion.


2016-03-03 on abcnewsdotcom

The statement is obviously true. Romanians, French, everyone has better internet service, because US service is monopolized by incompetent big business, Comcast and Time-Warner.


2016-03-03 on motherjones

I know the violence of the era very well, I’m not that young. When MLK was leading the Montgomery Bus Boycott and preaching non-violent resistance to segregation, he was applauded by the press, and he was a media darling. Then he won the Nobel Peace prize, and he became a part of the controlled opposition, and he was a hero to both the right and the left, as he is today. You must remember that the Republicans back then opposed segregation, starting in 1954, segregation was terrible for business, nobody wants to have to deal with segregated hotels and restaurants, it drives away black customers and anti-racist white customers both. Eisenhower led black troops too, and American racism reminded people at home of Hitler. There was no love of it anywhere except among ignorant southerners.

MLK stopped being a darling and became a controversial figure when he expanded his critique from segregation to economic power and the war in Vietnam. This made him a real radical, and from this point on, he began to be attacked as a communist. He was assassinated by the CIA in 1968, because his voice was inspiring a new generation of anti-capitalist black voices. Many of those folks were assassinated too, some in their beds as they slept.

The economic program MLK was proposing was based on a zero unemployment policy, through a permanent stimulus jobs program. This was a staple of American democratic socialist thinking. The Democrats preferred to cut people checks rather than provide jobs, as welfare is a mechanism of control rather than empowerment. MLK aligned himself with various international movements that supported anti-colonialism and indigenous rights, and was on the real socialist left, not in any controlled opposition. That’s what makes him great, and that’s what makes his modern whitewashing into a bourgeoise anti-segregationist so revolting.

Cornel West would not be assassinated because he is not a leader of a movement. God forbid, Sanders might be, he is taking a chance. So please vote for him, as he is really the proper continuation of MLK’s economic and political policy, as West would tell you, and anyone else who is deep into the civil rights movement, like Harry Belafonte.


2016-03-03 on theatlantic

I understand the danger, and I hope I’m not underestimating it, but nothing ever happens the exact same way twice, and analogies are tricky. The US has already had it’s Hitler regime, and it’s not Trump, it was Cheney. Trump has come out strongly against the previous fascists, that’s 99% of his appeal. The rest of his campaign is racist pandering and stupidity. I’m not voting for him, but I don’t agree that you can tar him by his backers. The US communist party supports Sanders, that doesn’t imply that Sanders will have show trials and gulags. Likewise, Duke supports Trump does not imply that Trump supports Duke.


2016-03-03 on theatlantic

Of course I’m subhuman to Duke, I’m a jew. He has Jews dead-center on his paranoid target. But Trump isn’t Duke, he just got endorsed by Duke, and Trump’s racism has so-far mostly been the ridiculous law-and-order Nixonian pandering type. It isn’t even clear he knows what he is talking about when he says it, it’s all stream of consciousness campaigning, with the aim of “looking alpha”. That’s his big schtick, look like a powerful insulting domineering big man with a big stick, and this is the Hitler electioneering method. It’s the same Hitlerian domination business with his violence. Of course it scares me, it’s straight out of the fascist playbook, but I still can’t take his fascism seriously, maybe that’s a mistake.

He’s a New Yorker, and I just can’t imagine how he could possibly be as racist and ignorant as he pretends to be, he must have grown up with experience of diversity all his life. Anyway, I don’t think he has any chance against Sanders, and only a little tiny chance against Clinton, depending on the indictment situation, but even an indicted Clinton can beat him, I think, so I try to think about him very little.

As I said, the only thing he said which I think justifies his Republican support is blaming Bush for 9/11. That’s a big deal. If he leads the Republican party, that’s the end of the Bushes as a political force forever, and that’s something. That’s why I want him to win the nomination and lose in November. But God help us all if he wins the election. It’s a terrible risk.


2016-03-03 on motherjones

What nonsense. The photographer confirmed it is Sanders in the picture, and you can find pictures of him getting arrested online. This is a level of corrupt lying campaigning that would even give the Republicans pause.


2016-03-03 on motherjones

Clinton’s major reform was the EITC expansion. This impacted poorer communities more than anything else. That was attached to welfare reform. But the real problem is the inability to build up capital inside cities. All the capital goes into suburban housing, and cities are dominated by sleazy landlords. Clinton doesn’t propose anything to fix this, there is no mechanism to provide capital to city-dwellers. Sanders pioneered community owned housing in Burlington, and I trust he knows what he is doing with regard to urban policy.


2016-03-03 on motherjones

There is nothing racist in Dickmaster’s comments. I pointed this out before, got 15 upvotes, and then my comment was removed. Probably because I told you to “grow up”. I will now also tell the moderators to do the same.


2016-03-03 on motherjones

He’s not a very typical Jew, but anti-semites don’t care how typical a Jew you are, any more than racists care that Obama was brought up by whites.


2016-03-03 on motherjones

First, I am a registered Democrat, and I have never voted for a Republican and never will. The fellow named “Billy Dale” was charged with embezzlement and acquited after a record short deliberation time. The charges were preposterous, and the cronies installed in the travel office were just being rewarded with jobs for political support. It was a patronage operation, you have no clue about how politics works.

It’s not the worst thing that Clinton did, but it’s indicative of the type of operation that they have.


2016-03-03 on theatlantic

Land redistribution is a non-communist leftist policy in response to feudal land-distribution. It was implemented in Japan by Douglas MacArthur. The construction of cooperatives subsidized by the state is something that other leftist governments do, for example, Israel and the kibbutsim, it’s not a communist policy exactly. The limited nationalizations are consistent with a mixed economy and private business, 30% is not 100%, which is what communists advocate, it is more like France or England.

The nationalization policy was probably necessary, as those economies are dominated by enormous landholders, who keep the population in serfdom, although I don’t know anything about the situation in Nicaragua in the 1970s. Communist policy is top-down planning and heavy industry, and this is not the type of policy that was implemented. I know that in the US every leftist government is automatically “communist”, but the Sandanistas just don’t qualify. A true communist would have been disappointed.

I don’t know why you place me at Vassar, I’m a dude, dude. It’s also been 20 years since I went to college.


2016-03-02 on motherjones

Let me be blunter with the innuendo. It’s not about “good” or “bad”, it looks like it’s more about “Baptist” and “Jew”.


2016-03-02 on motherjones

I admired the sensible strategic voting in the black community down south, and I figured the people in the community know the path going forward, so in the past, I personally always voted whichever way they voted.

Southern black voters used to vote for the most progressive realistic candidate. This time, they chose not to. This, despite Sanders clear progressive voice, despite his strong chances with independents and Republicans. That’s anti-strategic voting, and that’s a total surprise.

I expected Bernie to lose the black vote to some small extent due to Clinton’s history in the south, but not by 80 points! Not with a candidate who was a civil rights activist, not by the only candidate who addresses structural racism with real policy. Not when his opponent is a race-baiting triangulator.

The only reason I can see for his failure to connect in the south is the his non-Christian background. That’s not sensible voting, sorry. That’s just bigotry.


2016-03-02 on motherjones

MLK was a democratic socialist, and his top priority was targeting unemployment to zero, with a jobs stimulus, and targeting lack of educational opportunities, to attack the structural inequality in many disenfranchised communities with emphasis on the black community he was a part of. This vocal socialism was the reason that he was villified by the media when he was alive. His post-death sainthood among the bourgeoisie airbrushes away his democratic socialism, and makes him sound like a 1960s version of Al Sharpton, an opportunist riding to power on racial issues. That’s not what MLK was, he was a great thinker in the American democratic socialist tradition, like W.E.B DuBois or Cornel West, or Bernie Sanders.


2016-03-02 on motherjones

It’s not his superPAC, it’s a union supporting him that he can’t control, whose PAC money comes from members.


2016-03-02 on motherjones

What black voters down South think they “know” has to be challenged, much as what I know has been challenged. I agree that there is a space for polite disagreement. The fact that there is a tremendous amount of structural racism and discrimination does not mean that you need to base a campaign solely around this fact, because the policies required are not a simple function of helping out people who are discriminated against. Helping those discriminated against is a band-aid, it doesn’t make sure that the structural empoverishment ends. Sanders policies take a first step to actually doing that. This is why MLK tied race to economics so strongly by the end of the 60s.

He hasn’t disowned his son, his son is working on his campaign. The “catering” of his message is aimed at winning votes, his message appeals to all demographics, because it is true. His policies are stronger in their benefit to the Black community, and he also targets institutional racism directly, while Clinton panders to it. I can’t understand the voting pattern, except in a very cynical way, which to put it bluntly says “A Jew won’t win”.


2016-03-02 on motherjones

It’s not racism, it’s insulting people who disagree with him. Racism is a power structure, not insults.


2016-03-02 on motherjones

I’m only half European, silly, although I usually pass as white. You don’t know anything about MLK’s economic policy— full employment, single payer, subsidized education. It’s 100% Sanders, whose economic views were formed in the civil rights era. The message is not being sold with traditional Democratic factional politics, this is true, but this is a plus for getting elected, not a minus.


2016-03-02 on cnbc

These things are standard all over the world, and standard for a reason.


2016-03-02 on motherjones

It’s a matter of degree. Bernie Sanders is as truthful as a politician can get. His “superPAC” money is a nurse’s union, which derives its money from members. If you can’t see the difference between that and a Goldman Sachs funded PAC, that’s your problem, not Sanders’.


2016-03-02 on motherjones

You are forced to do business with a company you hate when that company acquires monopoly position. I am forced to buy internet from Time-Warner. There is no other choice, they drove everyone else out of the market. If I lived in certain communities, I would be forced to buy at WalMart. I cannot shop for clothes at small providers anymore because they have been suppressed by the Gap, Urban Outfitters and so on.

I already fled to New York, because it was pretty much the last place in the US you could go to and still avoid the large businesses. Now it is going too, the last decade has been terrible for New York business. Rents have been driven up by chains and national retailers in order to bankrupt the small businesses on the same block. Now huge chunks of Broadway and Columbus Avenues are gone to the dark side, and I can no longer shop there.

There are real market failures, the most obvious of which are the people sleeping on the streets of my city, people whose labor is useful, and who can contribute in thousands of ways, but their labor is superfluous. The reason is simply that the economy has concentrated wealth, and does not generate demand sufficient to employ everyone.

There is a further market failure in monopolistic business, the kind that delivers internet in the US. France gets twice the speed at a third the cost, as do other nations with a sensible telecommunications competition policy. The US pioneered this in 1996, it was part of the telecom act to have competitive carriers. But Bush allowed it to get remonopolized. The infrastructure and services must be split up, and the service companies must be able to rent the infrastructure at an equal rate.

The same policies apply to retail. I don’t care if you choose not to shop at a store, but if you shop at eBay or Amazon, you are supporting even more monstrous monopolies than anything you see in your neighborhood.

I refuse to support monopolistic business, it is a matter of religious injunction for me. That means I actually will be forced to leave the US when New York falls, all my previous hometowns have already fallen to the chain cancer. There is no place left to flee in the US, except maybe Vermont.


2016-03-02 on motherjones

He got great results with all demographics except Southerners. He’ll have to press on without the South. With the margins he is getting in the states that he won, it is still possible for him to win, but just barely. It will be a hard slog.


2016-03-02 on motherjones

He’s not against black people, or Hispanic people. He’s against people voting for corporate candidates against their self-interest. It’s hard to criticise someone else without sounding like a condescending prick, but how can you understand or sympathize with Southern liberals voting against a modern-day version of 1968 MLK? Give him a break.


2016-03-02 on motherjones

He’s getting his message out fine. It just isn’t appealing to black folks down South. It’s ok, it is possible to win without their support, although it is exceedingly difficult, but for the life of me, I don’t understand it. Sanders is the closest thing to MLK himself running that the US will ever see.


2016-03-02 on motherjones

The voting was remarkably pro-Sanders, except for the black vote in the deep south. It’s a big hit to lose the South, but it’s not insurmountable.


2016-03-02 on motherjones

You are only right if he loses, and the delegate count is not yet hopeless. There is still a path going forward, especially considering his extremely strong and surprising showings in Minnesota, Oklahoma, and especially surprising Colorado. He won those states at levels that approach or exceed his New Hampshire win, Colorado by 20 points, Minnesota by 22 points, after close polling, and with extremely strong turnout.

Sanders will not win the southern black vote, this is becoming clear, for whatever reason, I won’t speculate. But it is clear that he can win big with everyone else, including Hispanics out West, black voters outside the South, and that’s a lot of people altogether. So if he wins the rest of the country by the margins he showed he can get in Minnesota and Colorado, he wins the whole thing.

It’s much harder without the support of black folks down south, this is true, but there seems to be a real roadblock there that can’t be overcome. Perhaps it is due to the Clinton’s long history in the region, perhaps it is due to the Christian fundamentalism that poisons the whole region. I don’t know, but it is possible to win still, so one must fight on.


2016-03-02 on motherjones

There is more than one road to tyranny, and the one that America is most in danger of doesn’t lead down the path of total government control. It ends with enormous corporations running the entire economy, and controlling the form and type of government through their financial dealings. This is just as dangerous a tyranny, it is the fascist type.

The George W. Bush years were the worst for fascist measures, you had surveillance and state repression, the fourth amendment was ignored, dissidents were actively recorded and spied on, and 9/11 truthers were threatened with charges of supporting terrorism (it wasn’t so long ago, please try to remember). The government itself became a servant to Halliburton, and awarded multimillion dollar contracts for Iraqi bases with showers that didn’t work, and for mercenaries that committed atrocities on the battlefield.

Socialism is just a method of identifying and correcting market failures, because those failures are real. The failures are due to concentration of ownership, and the charging of rent, leading to an economy which is stagnant, because nobody can get financing for a new idea, nor can anyone get an education or own a house, because they are forced into low wage jobs and debt peonage.

The path to correcting these failures can be the state-path, where the state confiscates all property, and then you end up with monstrous states that control the entire economic production and are even more inefficient than what they replaced. But it can also follow the libertarian path, what used to be called “anarchism”, before that meant purple hair and a safety-pin in your nose. The type of socialism that American socialists talk about involves workers owning more capital, small farmers and small manufacturers independently working and supporting one another, industries being less dependent on special government contracts, and the social ideal of a market that doesn’t concentrate wealth at the top. This is not easy to make happen, the natural state is an oligarchy with a handful of Morgans and Rockefellers and Rothchilds ruling over everyone else.

Bernie Sanders isn’t even talking about socialism, just social democracy. His politics also aim to save small business from monopolistic competition. If you don’t want every store in your neighborhood to be a McDonald’s a Denny’s or a Walmart, you should be voting for him.


2016-03-02 on motherjones

Nonsense. The Travel agent was there for Carter, and Ford too. The Clintons just wanted to place their own people there. They did not drop the bogus charges, the guy had to go to court to clear his name. He won with a record short jury deliberation time, because the accusation was absurd. He didn’t steal anything, he didn’t commingle anything, he was just politically attacked because the Clinton’s wanted to give their friends a job. Not illegal. But immoral.


2016-03-02 on theatlantic

No they weren’t. The Sandanistas didn’t nationalize anything, and they didn’t issue 5 year plans. They were somewhat authoritarian leftists. Ortega was reelected again, this time as a Christian, not a Marxist, and he wouldn’t have won the second time if he had been a communist the first time, as communists are not popular when in office. The claim that Nicaragua was communist was nonsense in the 1980s American press, nonsense which Sanders called out. Not that Nicaragua was a picnic in 85, but it wasn’t anything like the USSR in economic policy.


2016-03-02 on theatlantic

Oh boy. I don’t know. I hope to God he isn’t serious about the racist crap he says on the campaign trail, but I think he would be a bigoted son-of-a-bitch anyway, and he wouldn’t know what a civil-liberties violation looked like if it smacked him on the head. The only positive thing I can say about him is that he is the first to squarely blame Bush for 9/11 (although not in the usual way, he is not a truther, but he associates with them sometimes), so it follows that there is a chance that he might investigate Bush administration officials for war crimes. He might not. I think it’s 50/50. But I think that’s as good a chance as you have with Sanders. That’s the only point of sanity I can see in his otherwise repulsive campaign, but it’s a biggie. I believe voters in the US are sick of being manipulated by absurd lies.


2016-03-02 on cnbc

They are not united in Australia, they just have a cleaner legislature. All of Sanders’ policies are poll-tested with ordinary Americans, and they all have a majority. Health care is the least universally popular, at 52%, but it’s still a majority. You are too used to a Congress that doesn’t listen.

Clinton tried to pass universal care, it’s true. So did Truman and Nixon. But the experience with Obamacare has made it clear that nothing else will work, and, paraphrasing Churchill, Americans only do the right thing after trying everything else first.

Sanders’ money-raising power scares the bejeesus out of Congressional candidates (disclosure: I am responsible for .0004% of his campaign) . With the ability to raise 40 million in 1 month, he can steamroller any individual opponent out of Congress or the Senate in any election, by simply pumping money into the race. If you think this is not a motivator, I will point you to the success record of the NRA.


2016-03-02 on cnbc

It doesn’t have to be illegal to disqualify you from winning a Presidential race. Having your own private server is a sure sign of corruption. It’s mostly legal (except for classified stuff, but let’s presume she can wriggle out of that), but it’s no good. The same about pressing charges against the White House travel staff. It’s legal. It’s just incredibly corrupt, and should be disqualifying. The same about blaming the Benghazi attack on a video. Legal. But atrocious. You can go on for quite a while with that lady.


2016-03-02 on cnbc

His plans are on his website. College is cheap, and is covered by a transaction tax, which is required to end microtrading anyway. Health care is expensive, but your taxes will be less than the sum of your and your employer’s health care bill, at least if you are not a millionaire. Both plans are implemented in Australia which outranks the US in the Heritage Foundation’s measures of economic freedom (Australia comes in at no 5).


2016-03-02 on cnbc

Yeah, subtract out the superdelegates, and you get the proper picture. Sanders can win, but it won’t be easy.


2016-03-02 on cnbc

Zero percent of his money is from Republicans. He will defeat any Republican, he runs strong with Independents, because of his own history as an independent. I mean, even the right-leaning Ventura supports him strongly.


2016-03-02 on cnbc

I will vote in the NY primary, it’s late. I am not a sir, more of a “dude”.


2016-03-02 on cnbc

If he wins, it probably won’t be a squeaker. Even if he wins by a squeaker and the superdelegates don’t flip, he will be justified in running as an independent, and his supporters will not go to Clinton. She needs to win fair and square. So far, the fraud in Nevada’s caucus is not a good sign for party unity. I was considering voting for Trump for a day after the NV fraud, even though I think Trump is the worst candidate I have ever seen.


2016-03-02 on cnbc

She can’t realistically do that. If Sanders wins the elected delegates, he will be the nominee. It’s as simple as that. Everything else is fear mongering to keep people from voting their conscience.


2016-03-02 on cnbc

If your taxes go up under Sanders, your health care bill, or that of your employer, just disappeared. In net, your take-home pay will go up. It’s ridiculous to complain about this.


2016-03-02 on cnbc

The tax increases are contingent on a health plan that will save you money.


2016-03-02 on cnbc

I’m sorry to inform you, but it’s not the government. The reason college costs have gone up is that colleges charge rent on high-paying jobs, and they can do that because there is a 10 year window for repaying student loans.

In other countries, costs are kept down by competition with public universities, which are free. That’s the model Sanders proposes to import.


2016-03-02 on cnbc

Guantanamo is a terror tactic, there is no guarantee that citizens will not suffer. It violates international conventions for treatment of POWs too. Sanders is similar to Rand Paul, except his vision is to aim monetary policy at zeroing out unemployment. Unlike Paul, he is a Keynesian, meaning he understands economics. Paul is not a Keynesian, so he doesn’t understand economics.

There is no serious expansion of government in Sanders plan, the health care is a payment reshuffling that reduces bureaucracy, while the transaction tax on Wall St. is required to halt microtrading (which is really a form of computerized fraud). The college stuff is about payment to state and city universities, it doesn’t require picking winners and losers.

Sanders is very strong on all the points of liberty, despite the knee-jerk reaction you might have to someone on the left. The far left were the original libertarians, the American version is a perversion that removes the provisions that liberty requires reducing large corporate power, as well as government power.


2016-03-02 on cnbc

I meant that there is still a lot of anti-Semitism in the South.


2016-03-02 on cnbc

Sanders is a better constitutionalist than Cruz, as he does not support government privacy violations, or Guantanamo, nor is he complicit in murdering American citizens with drones, or noncitizens either, nor does he support targeted tax breaks.

He isn’t promising anything that isn’t standard in Australia, and he isn’t about gimmies. He’s about reducing unemployment through Keynesian economics, something only the US has forgotten about.


2016-03-02 on cnbc

It’s not about food stamps. Voters in the South don’t share Sanders’ “New York Values”, if you get my drift (taps hooked nose).


2016-03-02 on cnbc

Because you don’t want another Oklahoma City bombing, another Waco, another “I killed Bin Laden” moment, or another “I invaded a country in the Middle East” moment either. Trump is insane on policy, but I can see why people vote for him. He has all but promised that he will prosecute the Bush administration for war crimes.

I will vote for Hillary (sigh) if she is the nominee, but I understand the attraction. If she would promise to prosecute Cheney, great, but she won’t, because she would be next in the docket.


2016-03-02 on cnbc

All his stuff was accomplished in Australia. Are they better at politics than us? It just requires a bit of imagination, and a movement with money, and Sanders is building that. The NRA has only 4 million members, and they can get anything they want, because they are willing to dump money on House and Senate races. Bernie is aiming to build a movement as big as the NRA, and with deeper pockets.


2016-03-02 on cnbc

Ok, so Bernie is outraising all the candidates of 2106, but it’s not a fair comparison, because the 2106 race is Senate and House only.


2016-03-01 on theatlantic

It’s not that active anymore, it just has a few decrepit state businesses. All the development is private, and this started in the free enterprise zones in 1980, and they never looked back. The state has 5 year plans, but they are mostly in purchasing high speed rail, things like this, normal Keynesian spending like in the US.


2016-03-01 on theatlantic

It’s not different from the US, except the government is slightly more authoritarian.


2016-03-01 on theatlantic

The American mentality must change, and these is no way to change it without a serious challenge. Reagan faced a similar problem in selling his John Birch brand of Goldwater conservatism, and he succeeded. The American public is not as brainwashed as it looks, at least, not anymore. Clinton is a corporate candidate, and it is difficult to see her doing anything useful.


2016-03-01 on theatlantic

The USSR didn’t have any real gulags after 1955, there were a few political prisoners, but mostly the dissidents were kept quiet by losing their job, or by the intimidation that they might lose their job.

The Soviet labor system was not slave labor, people could choose their jobs, the salary was set by administrators using heavy incentives to draw the right number of people in to difficult positions. Actually, the labor system was a hidden pure free market, as the planners were operating by supply and demand (although nobody in the USSR would admit it). This labor system was set up in the mid 1930s, and under this system, unemployment went to zero, and never came back. That was the one of the only successes.

The labor system was not amenable to foreign investment, but the USSR did all the heavy industry themselves, oil, steel, natural resources, nuclear, etc, so the only investment they desperately needed was small business. This was not possible within the Soviet system, and it hampered independent devlopment, and destroyed consumer goods. Yugoslavia did much better in this regard.


2016-03-01 on theatlantic

Nicaragua wasn’t communist in 1985.


2016-03-01 on motherjones

You don’t need a link for travelgate— she filed charges and the fellow went to court to get his name cleared, and won. Likewise you don’t need a link to know that she blamed the Benghazi attack on a video on YouTube and then called for internet censroship— that wasn’t so long ago that you would have forgotten. You also don’t need a link to know that she set up her own server, she admitted that she did this. This is already a sign of corruption. But if you demand a link, look at Elizabeth Warren’s characterization of her vote on bankruptcy reform. Clinton is corrupt, there are no two ways about it, and if you want Nixon IV for president, God help you.


2016-03-01 on japantimes

You are impossibly dense then, if you don’t recognize the recursive structure in natural language. I learned generative grammar as a small child, from specifications of computer languages. It’s dead easy to specify natural language grammars using it, for toy languages. For real languages, one needs an extension of BNF, which is something I made up as an adult— the commutative context free grammar (another person in Poland made it up at the same time for other reasons, and he called it “partially commutative context free grammar”, and didn’t apply it to natural language, just studied it theoretically).

The point is that generative grammar is here to stay, if only for the structure description of artificial languages. But in the “partially commutative” form, it describes natural language to a tee. This is something you are too stupid to get, whatever education you have, or don’t have.

Chomsky is dead on accurate on Israel. I am a Jew born in Israel, I have experience. There is no double standard, Israel has behaved badly since 1967, they weren’t atrocious before then, despite the horrible ethnic cleansing, since they were forced to balance the needs of millions of Jewish refugees with that of native people, but they weren’t great in 1948 either. But since 1980, when the Likud took over and decided to treat the occupied land as permanently occupied, they have been committing war crime after war crime, and since 1987, I believe it is impossible to serve in the Israeli military without selling your soul to the devil.


2016-03-01 on alternet

Global warming will still be a problem even with 2bn people and reliance on carbon fuel, even with a transportation overhall and compact communities, and I am sure you are not advocating genocide. Good nuclear, like LFTR or fast-neutron breeders is sustainable indefinitely, despite the propaganda one hears. I emphasize this, because this is a blind spot on the left.


2016-02-29 on washtimes

Grayson does not sincerely support Sanders, he cynically wants sanders supporters to support him with donations. He is trying to reproduce Bernie’s list of donors, by using an online poll, and then scams the donors for money by impersonating DFA and Sanders campaign emails. He is under investigation for ethics violations, his conduct shows that these accusations aren’t baseless, and he doesn’t deserve a nickel. Tulsi Gabbard would be the one that does, and if Sanders doesn’t get the nomination, it is heartening to note that she will be available for many years.


2016-02-29 on washtimes

Grayson is not a socialist progressive, he’s an unethical Democrat. He is simply scamming the Sanders people to send him money. He wants Bernie’s email list, so he fishes for emails with a poll, then he spams the Sanders people with calls for money. I would recommend donating to Tulsi Gabbard instead, she is a principled Democrat. Grayson is being investigated for ethics violations for running some sort of investment scam while in Congress.


2016-02-29 on channel-oneconomicpolicy

Economic growth is not something you can localize. When you raise wages in Minnesota, and not in Idaho, business which can relocate will relocate, and those that can’t will pay the higher wage. This reduces tax reciepts and employment in Minnesota. This is why minimum wage needs to be national.

Competition only forces corporations to pay higher wages when there is no unemployment. When the alternative is destitution, they will pay minimum wage. This is “kindergarten obvious”, which is why this discussion is pointless.

You need to read and understand Marx. Marx is the only economist worth reading, the rest are only writing in their self interest. You can reproduce all 20th century economics from Marx’s writings for yourself, it just requires translating to modern mathematical economics language. Then you find you are a Keynesian.

You are not a Keynesian, or anything else. You are just an idiot. I don’t approve of your comments getting deleted, but I don’t want to listen to you gibberish anymore. I explained to you what to read, Capital I, it’s online, it’s free, it’s out of copyright, it’s up to you to read it and understand it.


2016-02-29 on mediaite

>>> “Oil is abiotic” what? Nobody takes that Soviet crap seriously anymore…

You are right! Western scientists are stupid about this still. This is a demonstration of the corruption of Western science. Oil is abiotic, that’s a fact of nature, and it is demonstrated by oil in deep boreholes 10km down, in the USSR and in Vietnam, by He dissolved in oil (the He is produced from alpha decay in the mantle), by the chemistry of formation demonstrated in pressure anvil experiments first performed in the USSR (methane is unstable to form hydrocarbon chains in the mantle) and reproduced in the West by Thomas Gold in the 1990s, again in the 2000s, and again last year. Each of these by themselves is conclusive evidence. The Soviets were right about this, which is why the Russians and Ukrainians are the only ones still who know anything about oil formation.

The two points of evidence in favor of biology are extremely weak: there are trace biological markers in oil, a few proteins, these are due to deep Earth bacteria and archaea, and there is carbon isotope segregation in oil, which is not due to biological origin, but due to percolation a long distance through narrow channels (this was an isotope separation method at Los Alamos incidentally). These are the only two pieces of evidence which support biogenic theory, and they are both extremely weak. There is no chemical path from living chemistry to oil, the historical path goes the other way— life is originated in petrochemical hydrocarbons in contact with atmospherically generated amino-acid chains in the early Earth.

WalMart reduces prices by bad contracts. The wages at small stores include the owners profits, you don’t know what you are talking about, and you are repeating yourself without learning anything. I don’t have patience for propaganda from simpletons.

When employees get together to purchase a business, as for example in United Airlines, the government stages a false flag to bankrupt them. Nevertheless the employees will do so anyway, it is required to have a sustainable future.


2016-02-29 on mediaite

Of course he supports the first amendment, you conservative fool, he opposes unlimited money going to election organizations affiliated with candidates. Corporations are not people, and money to candidates or affiliated superPACs is not speech, it is bribery. This had been established law for decades before Citizens United.

He has never interfered with universities’ decisions, but universities should never set up “Milton Friedman” institutes, of their own free will, the same as their shouldn’t be setting up “Bernie Madoff” institutes. Friedman is a quack and a fraud.


2016-02-29 on japantimes

‘Tis a pity you are too stupid to understand Chomsky’s sentence structure. Generative grammar is what you use to construct the “C” programming language, and every other programming language on Earth, and the recursive structure of modern written language is undisputable, except by the irremediably uneducable.

Chomsky has not championed anti-Semitism, he just doesn’t like Israel’s colonial policies. The only person who should be ashamed of himself is staring you in the mirror.


2016-02-28 on newser

He’s too far left for the moderate Democrats. He is not too far left for the Republicans. The thing you don’t understand is that the Republicans are not hostile to “the left”, they are hostile to political cronyism. Sanders is not about political cronyism, his policy is sincere, and he can easily win a significant number of non-ideologue Republicans.


2016-02-28 on newser

Poor whites, yes. Blacks, no. This is the first time. Historically, black voters have always supported the most progressive realistic candidate. Until now.


2016-02-28 on alternet

Thanks, I did enjoy it. I want to add that the revolution will require nuclear power.


2016-02-27 on alternet

Sanders won NV except for the widespread fraud. Remember that you only need a well informed 5% to sway others, but it requires social interaction, and young people who are online working to persuade ignorant older people who aren’t.


2016-02-27 on alternet

Infinite growth is possible because labor is not just about producing material things, it is also about producing software, film, music, books, designs, pictures, and other commodities whose resource requirements are relatively negligible. There is also growth in applying recycling techniques, and extracting energy from nuclear sources, which are unused by nature.

The same institutions that have no ethical system are driven purely by profit, and can be controlled by profit using economical prods set up by law. It is not sensible to argue that profit is an unethical motive, it is simply a motive of economic efficiency without consideration for those aspects which must be imposed externally as a system of costs and constraints, to prevent environmental destruction and to prevent concentration of ownership.

These measures are not being implemented today, I believe this is because there is no consensus on what measures need to be implemented. I think that must change quickly, so that we can concentrate on passing the measures which ensure sustainable growth. The problems of environmental destruction are not solved by a socialist revolution, as the leaders of a socialist state are no less motivated by considerations of increased production over externalities of pollution.


2016-02-27 on truthdig

You mean Ilya Prigogine. The theory of strange attractors, bifurcations, and chaotic dynamical systems is not very useful for economics or sociology, except as a source of loose analogy, because societies are complex computational systems, not simple dynamical systems. Within economic behavior, there are dynamical systems which can be analyzed this way, but they are better analyzed in terms of “we do this, and then this happens” marginal analysis rather than in terms of cycles and response, because they are either simple responses or unanalyzable complex human systems.

I don’t believe in 60 year cycles, or cycles of any sort. Schumpeter is writing a long time ago, before the random walk and Levy flight aspects of markets were introduced (that was the late 60s, by Mandelbrot and others). The idea of cycles is problematic, although there are certain cyclical things, they are better modelled as stochastic bubble-bust (which is not a cycle, although it is a predictable collapse). The idea of “cycle” implies inertia, like a mass on a spring, and I don’t see any inertia in markets at all. I would like to see the data regarding the 60 year business, even as a link, I don’t believe it exists.

I don’t believe in grand theories. I believe in fixing the problems that appear. I don’t think there is anything wrong with the economic doctrine of market equilibrium, and it will never be replaced as long as humans have economies, because it is just an allocation prescription. It doesn’t dictate that the few must control the many, it actually shows you the opposite.


2016-02-27 on truthdig

That’s an theory regarding political systems. I don’t have an opinion or a theory regarding political systems, they are too complicated for me to claim to understand, and I don’t think Wallerstein understands them so well either, there is very little you can do to test these theories, unlike in economics, where you can measure inflation and growth, and unemployment. I trust quantitative predictions more than vague social ones, although I understand that vague social things are necessary too. I just don’t care about that stuff. I care about predicting numbers accurately.

I read two of the three articles already, they are interesting, and I have nothing against Wallerstein. I am trying to propose practical solutions to pressing immediate problems, that I think need to be implemented right now, as reforms, regardless of what else we choose to do in the future.


2016-02-26 on truthdig

Should have been “normative”, typo.

The theoretical model of market equilibrium is a real mathematical thing, it’s as real as any other mathematical construction. It can be analyzed independent of power structures, because it is objective and mathematical. You can make up computerized fake simulated economies and study how they respond to perturbations. It has merit, because it tells you how much resources to allocate to any one industry independent of political considerations, just from the demand generated, and the price per unit in equilibrium, and the profitability at equilibrium. It’s just that markets in real life are always terribly far from the idealized equilibrium due to the ownership structure.

The idea of using market equilibrium for organizing the planned (non-market) economy is something that was advocated by Alexei Kosygin and Alexander Dubcek, and implemented by Tito and Kardelj. Planning by profitability and local decisionmaking was the goal of the failed 1965 economic reform in the USSR and of the collapse-inducing 1985 reforms. It is next to impossible to produce this reform within communist party rule, because it requires independent decision making and purchases at the local level, and this conflicts with the power of the nomenklatura to direct overall economic planning. The failure of these reforms, and all other attempts, are what led to widespread justified belief that a communist party revolution cannot end at an efficiently self-directed economy and political liberty.

The 1965 reforms were difficult to implement because the state directors kept skimming enterprise profits for big projects, while even the enterprises that got to keep enough capital that should have had capital for expansion weren’t able to get construction or machinery for their expansions justified by their profitability, because they were not embedded in an economy of small independent businesses that could fill their orders. But even with the supply limitations induced by the lousy economy they were embedded in, the enterprise growth under the half-hearted reforms was still better than the top-down planned monstrosity that existed in the USSR pre 1965 and in 1970-1985, when the reforms were reversed.

I don’t have patience for philosophy or theorizing. The problems of the left are problems of economic efficiency and innovation, problems which are largely solved in capitalism, at least when it isn’t dominated by large monopolistic firms. The problems of capitalism is in concentrating ownership to a few, producing monopolistic firms, which end up paying unfair wages far below productivity, and overall demand drops from the low wages. The band-aid for this failure is Keynesian spending. The real fix is employee ownership and systemic anti-trust policy in a graduated corporate tax.

It is not reasonable to ignore the successes of capitalist theory, Marx certainly didn’t. He used idealized competitive capitalist equilibrium to organize his critique.


2016-02-26 on alternet

Capitalism works as intended when workers are not kept in line, but demand higher wages and reduced profits to the top.


2016-02-26 on alternet

One step at a time. There are ways to ensure capital is distributed more broadly too, just we aren’t ready for this until Sanders’ plan is implemented.


2016-02-26 on alternet

That’s what “liberal” means in academic discussions outside the view of the general public.


2016-02-26 on alternet

He means “liberals” in the classic definition— laissez faire marketeers, not in the twisted US definition, where it means someone pretending to be on the left.


2016-02-26 on alternet

What you are missing is that something can be a gross violation of ethics without being illegal. Her private server is not illegal probably, but it is a violation of ethics— it is what Nixon would use to send email to his plumbers. Her Travelgate indictment, the pressing of bogus charges against the White House travel agent, that was not illegal. But it was extremely unethical. She wasn’t responsible for the Benghazi attack, but she was responsible for blaming it on a video on YouTube, a video that had nothing to do with the attack, as everyone inside the administration knew, it was for a prisoner swap. This was leaked by Petraeus’s girlfriend. She then went on to call for censorship of YouTube because of this. That does not add up to an honest politician, it is impossible to support her and support clean government.


2016-02-26 on alternet

Except that’s not how economics works. The nations just harvests more timber. The economic policies in the US have not aimed at maximizing growth since the 1960s.


2016-02-26 on alternet

No country in the world is doing as badly at income distribution as the US. Fixing this produces immense growth, and this is not fantasy. The reason the growth projections are so high is because the US economy is so broken.


2016-02-26 on alternet

This is simply not correct. The economics Friedman does is accurate, the economics critics do is not. This can be tested by simply doing Sanders’ policies and noting the resulting growth, and hopefully it will be, because it will go as Friedman predicts.


2016-02-26 on mediaite

You already explained to me about Chavez, I got it the first time. I was just saying that he had more of a claim to being a Marxist Leninist than Ortega, because he nationaized the oil industry, and had planning of development. He’s not a communist either, just more so than Ortega, who wasn’t a communist at all.


2016-02-25 on mediaite

It also matters how persuasive Sanders is. His moderate gun stance, his unwavering support of civil liberties, and his strong support of small business from monopolistic competition, these given him enormous credibility with moderates and Republicans. The negatives come from sloganeering and smears, which can be less effective if you counter them point by point, but it takes effort.


2016-02-25 on mediaite

Relax, this is a preview of the main election arguments against Sanders. It isn’t even 100% clear Noesis1 is a Republican, he probably is, but if he isn’t, he is simply testing the propaganda the Republicans will use. I could have written his side just as well as he did, he is doing a good job going through the points Sanders will need to counter.


2016-02-25 on mediaite

I didn’t forget anything.

The reason Sanders compares college loans to secured loans is because college loans are guaranteed by the Federal government for years, and represent no risk to the lender. They are secured by the Federal government. The interest rates, however, have not gone down to reflect this fact. That means you need to step in and make sure that it happens anyway.

Loans for credit cards and college are being given at usurious rates, due to consolidation in banking and credit. There is no competition for lending rates since the 90s, when all the banks raised their credit-card rates in tandem to 20%. Credit cards used to be competitive, they aren’t any longer. Payday lending is not a competitive industry, and it is charging outrageous rates to those that can least afford to be paying them. This is why postal banking is important, and why Sanders has proposed to introduce this in the US.

I am adding the employer contribution and yours together, and comparing to the current cost you pay in copays and deductibles (and for drugs), and your employer pays for insurance. Together, you end up paying 30-50% less with single payer, because there are lots of negotiators who are no longer necessary in single payer.

The decrease in transactions in the Wall St. tax is taken into account. Part of the reason for the tax is to eliminate the fraud of microtrading, where a broker sets up a server a few microseconds closer to the trading floor, and intercepts requests for purchase early, and pre-empts them by a purchase and resell at a few pennies more. This process is one of the worst frauds in markets, and it is eliminated entirely by even the tiniest tax on transactions. The income from the transaction tax is estimated at between $100 bn and $200bn depending on which transactions survive, it is far bigger than $200bn if you assume nothing changes, but nobody does that. The public college thing costs $70bn, there would be money left over under any reasonable estimate of the effects.

You are simply repeating the nonsense talking points Republicans say, without thinking about them to see if they make sense.


2016-02-25 on washtimes

He was right to listen to the BLM protesters, he protested the same way when he was younger. The measure of a politician is not how well he fights the powerless who raise their voice, it is how well he fights the powerful interests that get in the way of change. Sanders is the strongest politician there is.

Minimum wage is not about cost of living, it is about closing the gap between productivity and wages. It cannot be addressed locally, because corporations flee from a region with higher minimum wage to a region with a lower minimum wage. This is why we have a Federal minimum wage, and this is why it should be increased to at least Australian levels of $17/hr. The productivity per worker in Australia is lower, and yet their median income is higher.

Sanders policies are duplicating those existing in Australia, which ranks higher than the US in the Heritage Foundation’s list of countries ranked by economic liberty.


2016-02-25 on mediaite

The TRUE “wage productivity gap” arises from innovation in industries with potential for growth. That true gap is allocated to growth in the industry until the innovation is spread around to the entire sector. The FALSE “wage productivity gap” is due to crummy wages, and this is the margin of the wealthiest people in America, the Walton family. There is nothing innovative about WalMart, it is the opposite of innovation. There is nothing innovative in traditional oil and natural gas, they are innovation killers, they don’t even accept that oil is abiotic. The companies with the largest profits are in old industry today, or in monopolized communication, or in banking with ties to central banking, not in innovative new industry.

Marx’s observation is that the violation of Say’s law comes from competition with the unemployed, and it is true whenever you have unemployment. The unemployement means that employees cannot negotiate a wage equal to productivity, because they are afraid of getting fired and replaced by someone desperate, and that means that Say’s law is a complete fantasy in any real economy. That’s why Keynesian measures are needed.

There is no innovation explanation for the productivity gap, there is no equilibrium explanation for the gap, it is purely due to the fact that ownership is concentrated, profits are extracted at the top, and there is no bargaining power for employees at the bottom to negotiate a fair wage, because of threats of firing individual workers who negotiate, and nowadays threats to worker collectives of shutting down plants and moving overseas.

Marx agreed with you that corporate profits would fall to zero, because he also understood equilibrium economics. This is a mistake you both made. Marx couldn’t foresee that governments would step in to shore up aggregate demand with spending and redistribution, and at the same time maintain the skewed distribution of corporate income to the top of a heirarchy. He was writing in 1867.

Profits only go to zero in worker owned industries, where workers decide to split the profits after allocating capital for investment. Then the workers have the power to negotiate wages equal to productivity. Profits going to zero can also happen in publicly owned companies with strong unions and strong stockholders organizations, because of pressure from the public stock owners to redistribute profits to the stockholding public through stock buybacks and/or dividends. But this shareholder power is negated by the ability of managers to issue new stock or low-cost options to themselves, which is really something that should be illegal, as it is a form of fraud by devaluation.

We have never seen a market where Say’s law is true, and this is the reason Keynesian measures are used. With a transition to employee ownership and a competitive management recruited by resume and paid in salary, you would have the type of market you are thinking about. But this market resembles voluntary libertarian anarchic socialism, with worker ownership and distribution of profits, in conjunction with public corporations with diffuse ownership and public distribution of profits, more than any previously existing capitalism. That’s what economic equilibrium looks like.

There is no chance of Say’s law ever becoming true in any other kind of ownership structure. The violations of Say’s law are mainstream economics, and as I said, it requires willful suspension of disbelief, and ignoring a mountain of quantitative data, to blind yourself like this. I don’t want to have a conversation with someone who chooses to blind himself, so I’ll bid you a good day.


2016-02-25 on motherjones

Ok, I’ll help you: observer.com/2016/02/harry-… and usuncut.com/politics/the-ne…

There were hundreds or perhaps a thousand or two of unregistered caucusgoers for Hillary, that’s the surest sign of election fraud there is in a caucus, you can’t rig a caucus any other way, the people in the room serve as an automatic audit. You can see these unregistered Clinton people appear in videos, this stuff was all over social media on the caucus day, and has been reported in several newspapers.

The way the fraud was done is that the unions supporting Clinton arranged for paid time off to caucus, the Sanders supporters had to arrange for time off themselves. They then got everyone to the location regardless of qualification for voting in Nevada, the folks included illegals and out-of-staters for all we know, they were unregistered, and they made sure they all supported Clinton. These people were placed in the caucus room to skew the result, and amounted to a large fraction of the caucusgoers, more than enough to reverse the official results.This was combined with the usual nonsense of long lines for Sanders people, deliberate push-registering for Clinton,miscounts, etc.

I was never anti-union before that caucus. I guess I am now. Unions are not set up to act as a mechanism for election fraud, they are for collective bargaining.


2016-02-25 on abcnewsdotcom

Nonsense. In 2008, the Democratic nomination was the only contest period. A lot of independents were out voting in the open Democratic primaries and caucuses, now they are split between Trump voters going to the Republicans and Sanders supporters going to the Democrats. The turnout was exceedingly high outside of Nevada, where it was deliberately suppressed and the counting skewed. Trump supporters are flaky celebrity-chasers, so you don’t know what they’ll do.


2016-02-25 on mediaite

Not really. The health care taxes are probably less than what you are paying in premiums. The college is coming from a transaction tax which is necessary for other reasons, and the jobs program is coming from corporate taxes, it’s really a redirect of corporate welfare to jobs. Sanders is very careful about not overtaxing people. He is really determined to reduce bureaucracy. I mean it when I say he’s a libertarian. He’s just a left-libertarian.


2016-02-25 on mediaite

There hasn’t been a capitalism functioning without Keynesian stimulus since the 1930s. The Keynesian interventions are really based on a theory of “aggregate demand” which is really straight out of Marx. I mean, not that Keynesianism is Marxism, but the concept of aggregate demand stimulus is derived from the observation of Marx that worker wages don’t generate sufficient demand for the products they produce.


2016-02-25 on mediaite

Single payer health care makes health-care cheaper, and subsidized tuition at public universities makes universities cheaper. That’s from the experience of Australia, which is ranked higher than the US on the Heritage Foundation’s list of countries with economic liberty. Their minimum wage is also $17. I didn’t see any other “free stuff” in Sanders’ platform.

His platform is not about “free stuff”, it is about reducing unemployment, and introducing sane Keynesian economic policy.


2016-02-25 on mediaite

He was a transformative president, that’s true. But Sanders platform is a counter-revolution in that regard, and is meant to undo the damage that the supply-side economics caused. If people still believe in that voodoo, then Sanders has no chance, but then again, the US has no chance either, because that stuff doesn’t work.

Reagan was sane on science, unlike Bush II, he preserved civil liberties more or less, unlike Bush II, and he wasn’t completely owned by corporations, unlike Bush II. But his policies were only benefiting large entities, not small business. I don’t think Reagan was a catastrophe, because the US needed investment, but I think his legacy is problematic, as his economic doctrine is simply false, and it has become dogma in the Republican party.


2016-02-25 on mediaite

If you revere him as one of the greatest presidents, I don’t think you’re going to be voting for Sanders no matter what the ad.


2016-02-25 on mediaite

I didn’t claim it was a right wing think tank. The Universities are not great on this stuff either. You need to read dedicated historians and people writing at the time, and even they are not very good. The Russians are especially terrible, as they are structurally more biased to distort the events of the late 80s, because they all hate communism (with reason). But it doesn’t help to have ideological historians, even if their ideology comes with justification, as they are talking about a system that made their lives miserable for 70 years.


2016-02-25 on mediaite

He denied it by not implementing communist policy. That sort of makes him “not a communist” by definition. Chavez has a better claim to be a communist than Ortega does.


2016-02-25 on mediaite

What’s the point of the link? I am telling you the truth, as best as I remember it. I was following it closely at the time.


2016-02-25 on mediaite

It’s not flailing. They are simply not communists, and never were. Sanders pointed this out in 1986 or so, in an interview about the role of the press. The statement that Ortega is a communist was denied by Ortega, and if he had been, he wouldn’t have been re-elected.


2016-02-25 on mediaite

Yes I do. The increases in budget were relatively small compared to the US arms buildup. The budget wouldn’t have helped had it been all thrown into agriculture— Soviet agriculture was crappy because it was state managed top-down, the same reason Soviet everything was crappy, except science and big industry, which are top-down in the West as well.

Gorbachev didn’t bother throwing money at the problem, he just introduced market reforms. That was recognized as necessary by top planners since the mid 1960s, see https://en.wikipedia.org/wi… . The “Gorbachev” in 1965 was Alexei Kosygin, who wanted to make profitability tagets for state enterprises, to mimic capitalism completely. That was only introduced by Gorbachev.


2016-02-25 on mediaite

Russia was producing missiles at the same stupid plodding pace it always did, until the START treaties. Nothing changed in spending with Reagan, the only thing that changed is that the Soviets became incredibly paranoid that Reagan was planning a first strike.


2016-02-25 on mediaite

Don’t trust the New York Times. They didn’t nationalize anything, and they didn’t make 5 year plans.


2016-02-25 on mediaite

He did very little to change Russian spending on anything, that’s a conservative myth, which began propagating in the mid 90s. You people never read internal Soviet documents, I did, in the late 80s, when they were current (I think I was the only one, actually, they’re very boring). The USSR was restructured in 1986 or so to allow market oriented profit-based self-allocations in state industries. This immediately led to shortages, because the industries were all monopolies, so they would just jack up the price to meet profit quotas. This led to grumbling, and further reform, and the system was so unstable from the decades of repression, that it collapsed by itself. Reagan happened to be the guy in charge when it happened, or more accurately, Bush I.

The Soviet system could not sustain itself because it was grossly inefficient. Gorbachev knew this because he was in charge of Ukraine farming in the politburo, and he was aware of the productivity gap between the factory farms in the USSR and Western agriculture. He was introducing market reforms to close the gap. Those reforms were originally suggested in 1965, but people didn’t listen inside the USSR, because they were worred that the system would collapse. They were right. The moment there were free-markets, there were folks like Yeltsin who supported the free-marketeers, and they dismantled the system and privatized the state industries at the first chance they got, creating the Russian oligarchy practically overnight in 1991.

The collapse of the Soviet Union was not a well managed transition to Capitalism, unlike Poland, or Hungary, or Czechoslovakia.


2016-02-25 on mediaite

They paid a ton of taxes, although there were loopholes. The biggest loophole was simply not taking a high salary, and gaining property instead. This is still the preferred way to amass a personal fortune.


2016-02-25 on mediaite

Nicaragua wasn’t communist in the 80s, any more than it is communist now. Ortega was more authoritarian in the 80s, but the opposition was a bunch of US funded Contras, and Pinochet style fascists that enjoyed pulling leftist’s fingernails out.

The Iran Contra affair justified Bernie Sanders’ position completely. Reagan’s administration was using dirty money not authorized by Congress to finance the Contras without congressional approval. It’s the same covert nonsense that gave you all the other atrocities in US history, from the Iran coup in 1956 to the recent coups in Honduras or Ukraine.


2016-02-25 on mediaite

Reagan was right about what? Pershing IIs in Europe? He himself reversed course in 1985, and agreed to pull out intermediate range missiles. He was nothing but a reckless madman in 1983 and 1984. He changed when he saw “The Day After”.


2016-02-25 on mediaite

The nuclear freeze movement was trying to prevent the Reagan administration from placing missiles in Europe that could reach Moscow in about seven minutes. The existence of Pershing II missiles in Europe nearly made me lose my mind, at age 10, 11, 12, 13, from constant terror of accidental war, until Reagan and Gorbachev got rid of them. Haing a five-minute retaliation time was Reagan taking a tremendous and monumentally stupid risk of the end of the world for next to no gain for anyone. That’s something else that’s clearer in hindsight.

In 1980 a million people marched in New York City, in the largest demonstration in US history, against the nuclear arms race, and Reagan’s beligerant attitude toward the USSR. In Europe, 4 million nuclear freeze activists were marching at one point. They were the only light at the end of the tunnel regarding the awful inexcusable cold war tensions of the 80s, which unlike the tensions of the 60s, were simply caused by a single irresponsible person— Reagan. I would recommend you take a look at the made for TV film “Threads” to get a sense of my nightly childhood dreams (it’s a bit milder than the horrors that a 10 year old subconscious produced in 1983, but it’s the general ballpark).

It was impossible to be a leftist in the 80s without meeting Marxists. It was impossible actually to avoid meeting Marxists in any capacity, they were everywhere. The difference in the left is that they didn’t have the illusion that the communists had some sort of special secret sauce, or were going to take over the world. The left and the communists parted ways largely in 1956, with the Hungarian revolution.

Sanders was never a Marxist-Leninist, and he was always supportive of small business and small farmers, as the left in the US always has. The US left is very libertarian, and Sanders is a great example.


2016-02-25 on mediaite

Anyone who reviews what Reagan and his government was doing with the Contras can see that he was right about this. He was not a Marxist Leninist, but he respected the right of self-determination in Nicaragua. Ortega was reelected president recently, as a moderate Christian, rather than as a Marxist. Ortega disputed that he was a Marxist Leninist even back in the 80s, that was just the label the media in the US stuck on him.


2016-02-25 on mediaite

I agree the attacks will happen. I disagree that they will work.


2016-02-25 on mediaite

That’s nonsense. Reducing income inequality increases economic growth, that’s why the high taxes of the 1950s were adopted in the first place. The reason to tax very high incomes is because there are no high incomes in economic equilibrium, the kind you read about in textbooks on economics.

But despite this, his proposed top rates are nothing like Eisenhower’s, they are 50-ish, the same as after the first round of Reagan tax cuts.

The comments on underarm deoderant are making a statement about priorities. There is a lot of nonsense corporate attention to diversifying products that are essentially the same product in different cases (look at the ingredients in ostensibly different deoderant products), at the same time as major social issues are ignored sytematically. It’s a statement about the priorities of society, not about economic efficiency.


2016-02-25 on abcnewsdotcom

Sorry, I was totally out of line. I just meant his supporters need to work on this stuff. As a candidate, it is not great for him to do. It came out weird.

I don’t think it is possible to say with definitive confidence that Bernie Sanders knows any more than the public about Hillary Clinton’s past. I am not sure that Hillary Clinton is a criminal exactly, she just does shady things. I know the type of shady things, filing bogus charges against the White House travel fellow in the 90s, PATCON, the covert things in Ukraine and Libya, claiming that a video was responsible for the Benghazi attack, and then asking for YouTube censorship because of this bogus claim. Are these things illegal? Not really. But they certainly are not good things, and they don’t make one confident in voting for a candidate.

Her secrecy penchant, like the secret server, is troubling, because it can be used for illicit deals that nobody knows about, especially not Sanders.


2016-02-25 on abcnewsdotcom

It’s not that catastrophic, the same forces that lead them to sell out can force them to toe the line with a Sanders presidency. Just look out for the next wave of candidates in 2 years.


2016-02-25 on abcnewsdotcom

You have google. Use it: observer dot com/2016/02/harry-reid-rushed-home-to-nevada-to-help-rig-caucus-results-for-clinton/ and usuncut dot com/politics/the-nevada-caucus-is-a-complete-fiasco/ and many others (replace “dot” with “.”, links hold up comment).


2016-02-25 on abcnewsdotcom

It produces economic growth and reduces unemployment. Counterintuitive but true, and verified by repeated experiments in this country and abroad. The Australian minimum wage is slightly past $15/hr, and they have a lower GDP/capita and a higher median income.


2016-02-25 on abcnewsdotcom

AFL-CIO did not endorse, but a lot of other unions did. Sanders has a great chance, just vote for him.


2016-02-25 on abcnewsdotcom

The turnout is not low at all, just lower than in 2008, when there was no Republican contest worth discussing. These are open primaries, and the independent turnout is split with the Donald. Sanders has been getting excellent turnout, except in Nevada, where the voting was marred by massive fraud: large numbers of unregistered Clinton caucusers, Clinton union on paid leave, long lines at Sanders supporting locations. Sanders has his turnout, and more.


2016-02-25 on mediaite

Sanders << Clinton ~= Trump < Bush II << Cheney


2016-02-25 on mediaite

There is nothing to dig up, or make up. This type of attack doesn’t hold water, it’s a false avenue, and they will waste a lot of effort doing this nonsense, when any voter can easily be assured by seeing Sanders’ long record of supporting small business and independent farmers in Vermont, and opposing intrusive big brother in Washington.


2016-02-25 on mediaite

The numbers that take the fraudulent caucus data, and try to split it up into Latino districts. The caucus was skewed by unregistered caucusgoers, and union-members who were given paid leave to caucus for HIllary. The exit pollsters were sampling actual registered Democratic voters. It was the most serious case of primary election fraud I have ever seen.


2016-02-25 on abcnewsdotcom

She also needed fraud to win NV, and even with the paid-leave for union workers, and the enormous numbers of unregistered Hillary caucus-goers, she was only able to secure a small win.


2016-02-25 on abcnewsdotcom

A real stimulus hasn’t happened since the 1950s either. Sanders probably won Nevada, by the way, he won the Hispanic vote. He lost the unregistered caucusgoer vote, that all went to Hillary. That caucus was fraudulent.


2016-02-25 on abcnewsdotcom

He doesn’t need to be more aggressive. His supporters do. We should write about it, he shouldn’t need to do it. He’s not an attack dog, he’s a serious candidate.


2016-02-25 on abcnewsdotcom

They used to import cocaine and distribute LSD for much the same effect.


2016-02-25 on abcnewsdotcom

By stuffing unregistered Hillary voters into Nevada caucusrooms. The amount of fraud in that caucus was unbelievable, and it was probably decisive in swinging the state her way. Sanders won the Latino vote, at least the Latino vote that went out to talk to exit pollsters.


2016-02-25 on washtimes

That’s nonsense. Tort reform has negligible impact on medicine, that old saw was last used in the 90s, when tort was the same as now, and costs were significantly lower. The risk is not bogus lawsuits, it is that there is no entity which can negotiate with providers from a position of strength.

The causes of high college education is that it is a way to levy rent on entering high-paying occupations. The cost is ballooning because the cost is borne by future earnings. There is no similar rise in other countries, and the education system in the US suffers from the outrageous costs. Private universities can charge whatever they like, but it is outrageous that public universities are not low cost. The competition with low-cost public universities holds down the cost of college, ensuring that people can pay, this is the experience in other nations.


2016-02-25 on washtimes

Eisenhower maintained political independence as a general, and only declared as a Republican when he was nominated for President in 1952. Bernie says he is a Democrat in the exact same way Trump says he’s a Republican. Trump has less of a pedigree with his respective party than Sanders does.


2016-02-25 on washtimes

FDR did not prolong the depression, that’s an insane right wing lie. The Keynesian policies FDR introduced were done more fully and completely in England, in Italy, in Germany, and they ended the depression immediately wherever they were implemented with zeal. In the US, it took a decade for the Republicans to stop obstructing these measures, and only the war allowed Roosevelt to implement full employment through armaments productions (lend-lease helped). The war spending was a stimulus also, except it was passed by necessity. The same Keynesian policies were used in the 1950s, the 1960s, the 1970s, and in part in the 1990s, and were used overseas in every modern economy. There is no sense in denying the efficacy of Keynesian measures, it is a denial of economic fact. As Eisenhower said, “there are a few people who deny these things, but their numbers are small, and they are stupid”. Unfotunately, their numbers have grown since Eisenhowers’ time, and they now control one of the two major political parties.


2016-02-25 on washtimes

This is incorrect. Increasing minimum wage increases hiring and spending. The process must be tied in with foreign trade negotiations which raise wages overseas, to allow an expanding market for domestic goods which are exported, and this Sanders also promised to fight for. There is no substitute for this, otherwise the economy is distorted forever.


2016-02-25 on washtimes

That’s nonsense. He isn’t proposing to raise taxes beyond 1984 levels, that was already rather low, as it was after the first round of Reagan tax cuts. The flattening of the tax beyond that point has been counterproductive, and even the original flattening is not useful anymore, as we have plenty of investment capital, just very few opportunities to find new demand.

The rich folks will definitely pay more, this is why they are so busy doing propaganda against Sanders.


2016-02-25 on washtimes

Gitmo should never have been opened in the first place. There is no real terrorism, just crazy individuals and organizations which are fighting for various powers. The last real terrorism was the Red Brigades, Basque separatists and the IRA. This modern stuff is made up covert nonsense, like the Contras, except now ISIS is self-financing.

Regarding the economy, Sanders is aware of the bad shape we are in, and will take larger steps than Obama has taken. Republicans are incapable of doing anything about it, because they don’t understand the fundamental laws of economics.

Surveys can be taken, you can find public opinion, but it’s really not telling you what policy people will favor. The Sandors policies are the best in 40 years, and you would be missing an opportunity of a lifetime to let them pass you by.


2016-02-25 on abcnewsdotcom

Or worse. Covert operations, a repeat of PATCON, who knows what else.


2016-02-25 on motherjones

Google is your friend. For Nevada, google “election fraud unregistered caucus nevada”, here is a random link of dozens or hundreds: http://www.addictinginfo.or… . This nonsense was happening all over the state. It turned out (from an article) that union backers of Clinton were given paid leave to caucus, and they showed up en masse, without registering, whoever they were, out of state, illegal, whatever. These were not isolated events. There were long lines in Sanders districts, there were too few registration forms, there were organized union supporters packed in, and STILL Hillary only won by the slimmest of margins. Most of this is Harry Reid’s fault, but in any case, it shows you that the establishment must be defeated.


2016-02-24 on washtimes

It’s no more of a pretense than Eisenhower running as a Republican, or even Trump running as a Republican today. His independent past is part of why I respect him, and likewise Eisenhower. Eisenhower’s policies departed from Republican dogma where it mattered— he financed highway spending and stimulus. Sanders departs from Democratic party dogma on surveillance and intrusions on privacy, and on fine-tuned targeted tax breaks. His policies are best-possible because of the independence. His party affiliation, however, is clearly appropriate, just as Eisenhower’s was, and Trump’s is.


2016-02-24 on washtimes

First, Saul Alinsky was not a communist either. He was a “New Left” guy who was organizing to produce political power for leftist politicians. This type of nanny-leftism, with it’s pet causes and constituencies, led people to lose sight of the fundamental economic insights of the left, which is Keynesianism and loss of economic equilibrium.

Sanders is a hard-headed Keynesian, and he is not running on an Alinsky platform. The closest to an Alinsky Democrat is probably Obama actually.

Hillary Clinton was only schmoozing around with Alinsky and leftists because she sensed that this is the key to getting into power. Her actual policies have not been particularly on the left at any point. She supports or opposes corporate policies depending only on who is giving her money, and whether other people are paying attention or not, see bankruptcy reform.

All the stuff you linked is hysterical propaganda that misses that Clinton has never been on the real left. It is not clear that Alinsky was either. The place to go for real left stuff is Chomsky, who is the furthest left American commentator, and is respected for it worldwide.


2016-02-24 on washtimes

I will vote for Bernie in the NY primary, and I will probably vote for the Democrat in the election, unless the stuff you are saying actually happens, in which case, I’ll cross that bridge when I come to it. There is no alternative for moderate reformists in a system like in the US, that’s the way it works. Parliamentary systems are a little better, but not by much, and there are problems in those systems too, due to the outsize influence of small coalition members preventing decisive action by the plurality party. There is no perfect system, I know that. But the current economic situation is an emergency. There has not been a healthy growth in small business since the late 90s.


2016-02-24 on washtimes

I believe that Sanders’ policies ensure that the politicians won’t control the economy, as they are uniform, and he is not beholden to corporate backers to pass special tax-breaks and incentives. This is what leads to the corruption.

I understand you point about long-term unemployed, and I include them as “unemployed”. Sanders does this too. He is aware that the growth in jobs of the last years is in low-paying corporate retail jobs, which pay $26,000. This is why you need strong policy to fix the concentration of retail business, the concentration of banking, the concentration of communications, and Sanders is really your only hope for this.

Sanders is not proposing any squeeze of the middle tax. His only tax on the middle class is contingent on a health care plan that ends up saving you money.
If the plan doesn’t pass, nothing happens to your taxes. He is a serious candidate, and his policies are serious policies. Please read them, and think about their effect on unemployment.


2016-02-24 on washtimes

I’m 42, and I’ll tell you that if the superdelegates decide this the wrong way, after the voters decide Sanders’ way, then Sanders would be justified in running as Independent, and under that circumstance, he will have the legitimate backing of the majority of Democratic voters. This type of split is why the superdelegates never vote against the public, they don’t want a Bull Moose on the loose.


2016-02-24 on washtimes

The US health care system is terrible, as anyone who has ever been treated outside the US knows. I got better treatment in Hong Kong. The reason is that doctors here have a perverse incentive to over-prescribe and over test, and they get paid for it by a third party whose hands are tied. The only reasonable part of the US system is cash-practice, but this is hardly affected by a shift to single payer. Single payer is just to ensure that you aren’t held hostage to a hospital which decides what they will do to you, and then bills your insurance as much as they want. This is a disgraceful situation. My daughter went to the hospital with croup when she was 2 (a very common condition), and she was subjected to a battery of tests, one every 15 minutes, until I finally stepped in to say “no more”. This type of behavior is disgraceful, and it is what the US system is all about. It’s simply a way to soak insurance companies and the public.


2016-02-24 on washtimes

That all depends on whether Black voters can trust him. I hope his arrest photos from 1963 will help in this regard, that was an incredibly fortuitous find.


2016-02-24 on washtimes

His policies have never been passed in the US. They are tried outside the US, in every other modernized nation, and they work everywhere they are tried. The Australian minimum wage is $17, in Finland, college is not just free, they pay you to go to college, and that’s how Finland produced Linux. Public health care is standard around the world except for the US, and the US has the worst system of any modern nation by far. These policies are long overdue, and if you avoid them now, it is doubtful that the US can stay competitive in the future.


2016-02-24 on washtimes

No, it’s a stab in the dark. It might require simultaneous negotiations for better wages overseas, and Sanders supports this also. The best I can say is that Australia has a $17/hr minimum wage without adverse effects, aside from a higher median income than the US, despite GDP per capita lower.


2016-02-24 on washtimes

While some of the nonsense about Hillary is coming from right-wing sources, some of it is not. The “travelgate” scandal is an example of a real problem— she had bogus charges pressed against the White House travel staff in the 90s. That’s not illegal, but it’s not good either, and I don’t want to vote for her. That’s not made up, the travel guy went to court to prove his innocence and succeeded. She is not responsible for the Benghazi attack, but she did blame the attack on a video on YouTube, and then called for internet censorship. That’s not illegal either, but it’s unethical, considering that everyone in the administration knew the attack was for a prisoner swap, as leaked by Petraeus’s girlfriend. She was responsible for Ukraine meddling which supported a far-right neo-Nazi coup, which preceded the Russian invasian and led to it, she supported a coup in Honduras, her policy in Libya was destabilizing and no good. Sanders is a clean candidate, Hillary simply isn’t, no matter how much the far-right embellishes her misdeeds.


2016-02-24 on washtimes

Health care reform is about reducing costs of health care by at least 50%, to bring it in line with spending in other countries, like Norway and Australia, which beat the US in economic freedom according to the Heritage Foundation, hardly a liberal mouthpeice. There is no excuse for the lousy US health care system, a public minimum insurance, plus private supplemental insurance, gets you all the beneifts of both public and private systems without any cost, it’s cheaper than what we have now.

As far as “Libertarian”, on the Fed, on foreign policy, on campaign contributions, on Guantanamo and surveillance and on “the war on terror” in general, Sanders and Ron Paul are in near perfect agreement. The only difference is that Ron Paul wants a zero inflation target for the Fed, while Sanders wants a zero unemployment target, which is more sensible if you understand Keynesian economcs, which Paul refuses to do.


2016-02-24 on washtimes

The mainstream media is extremely biased against Sanders.


2016-02-24 on washtimes

I know Bernie Sanders’ politics very well, having followed him vaguely since the late 80s. He is not about state-takeovers of the economy, nor is he about handouts. He is very good for independent small business, for small farmers, and for restoring competition to industries that are monopolized. He has no handouts as part of his policy, he is not a handouts kind of guy. He is about reducing unemployment through sensibly designed policy that mimics that in Australia, which ranks higher than the US in the Heritage Foundation’s economic freedoms index. He intends on refocusing the economy away from enormous monopolies, and renegotiating trade agreements so that they improve wages overseas, and protect employees in the US. These are essential reforms, they needed to happen in the 90s, not today.


2016-02-24 on washtimes

He’s living a reality of having been elected as an independent. It’s not about courage, he can’t flip his party designation as a Senator— the people of Vermont, the ones who voted for him as Senator, voted for an independent, not a Democrat. The people backing him as a presidential candidate back him as a Democrat. If he doesn’t get the nomination, I expect him to go right back to being an independent Senator.


2016-02-24 on washtimes

Polls are not a joke. The superdelegates are not important, as I explained. This is the same as for Obama, where the superdelegates were forced to flip once all the counting was done. You are talking out of your rear end, deliberately so as to shift a percent or two Hillary’s way. The superdelegates are just a stupid party trick, they don’t matter, they vote with the voters in the end, they always have, and they always will.


2016-02-24 on washtimes

You’re checking on his Senator’s page, where he was elected as an independent last time he ran. The proper place to check is with his presidential campaign. But you already know that, you’re just talking nonsense.


2016-02-24 on washtimes

Venezuela’s socialists are Marxists, and they wanted the state to take over their economy. This drives away business, and it is not good for anyone. The only good thing they did, which is done in Alaska too, is redistribute profits from the oil industry. There are now serious problems of corruption in Venezuela.

Bernie Sanders is not a state-takeover guy. There are hardly any socialists like that in the US, even on the far left. He is less meddlesome than most Democrats and Republicans, as he does not have special interest money pulling his strings for special tax exemptions and subsidies. His record with small farmers and businesses in Vermont is very strong, and he has protected important businesses from political shutdown, even when it came from his friends on the left.

His politics are about supporting the middle class from predations of large power structures, and preserving the rights of small business to compete in an environment free of monopoly power, as explained by Franklin Delano Roosevelt. This type of FDR Democrat is not seen anymore, Sanders is one of the handful left.


2016-02-24 on washtimes

Then, considering he no longer calls himself an independent, but a Democrat, he’s a Democrat. Eisenhower was an independent until the Republicans nominated him, and Sanders is the Democrat’s Eisenhower.


2016-02-24 on washtimes

Not yet. I’m looking forward.


2016-02-24 on washtimes

It’s not exactly propaganda. It’s something you have to hold your nose over to vote for Hillary Clinton. There is no reason, as Sanders is a better candidate.


2016-02-24 on mediaite

Keynesianism explains unemployment as a result of misallocation of what should be wages at equilibrium to corporate profits. When wages are not sufficient, demand is too low, and unemployment happens. Keynes wasn’t allowed to say that, because that’s straight out of Marx’s mouth. So only “post-keynesians” say that. But Kenyes (and everybody else in 1934) knew that, because they all knew their Marx.

Your interpretation of what I said is confused nonsense. Please read a book. “Naive self interest” is the exact same thing as “rational self interest”. It is naive, because a uniform minimum wage helps all businesses through economic growth. But given a choice between a low-wage location and a high-wage location, any individual busienss will choose the low wage location.

The market did NOT decide anything about the allocation of positions of CEO. The decision was made entirely by other CEOs and other directors of the board. It is never a market decision.

If you took CEOs by lowest competent bid, there would be a bidding war so hard, their salaries might even become negative.


2016-02-24 on washtimes

That’s the exact opposite of the truth. Keynesian economics is just “macroeconomics”, it’s what every successful prediction of economic numbers is founded on.

The failed predictions are from the Chicago school. They predict rising unemployment in response to rising minimum wage. The opposite is seen. They predicted tripling of prices in 2008, nothing happened aside from business-as-usual inflation of a few percent. These predictions are as wrong as Aristotle’s predictions for falling bodies.

The Chicago school quacks also willfully misinterpret Keynesianism to add “Philips curve” and “NAIRU” voodoo to it, so they can attack it. Economics must stop being a poiticized field. It’s a quantitative predictive endeavor, and those who predict numbers correctly must be listened to, and those who predict wrong numbers must be ignored.


2016-02-24 on washtimes

Yup. Bernie is a Democrat the moment he declared. He has run with Democratic blessing and without Democratic opposition since 1994, and has voted and caucused with the Democrats since. His independent streak is why, like Eisenhower, he is so strong in the general. He is a true moderate, who understands libertarian concerns with government overreach. This is why he is so popular with independents and moderate Republicans.


2016-02-24 on washtimes

You haven’t read Marx, you are quoting Lenin, wrongly. The Quora answer is doing the same.

To understand Leninspeak— what Lenin calls “socialism” is what everyone else calls “communism”. What Lenin calls “communism” is what everyone else calls “utopia”. Lenin said “the goal of Socialism is Communism”, meaning, in Lenin-speak, “The goal of Communism is utopia”.

Lenin called “democratic socialism” by the name “Capitalism”, as he didn’t discriminate between any two non-communists any more than you discriminate between people on the left.

Bernie Sanders is a reformer, and reformers have no relation to revolutionary socialists, and are detested by them. This is a problem in revolutionaries, they do not believe in reform of anything, they believe in destruction and revolutionary committees. There’s nothing you can do to talk to them. Sanders is not that kind of revolutionary, he is making a Democratic electoral revolution, where people vote in moderates, instead of bought out corporate lackeys.


2016-02-24 on washtimes

I read “Dreams from my Father”, and Obama’s views are nothing like any socialist’s of any kind. He’s basically a moderate centrist Democrat, working with Democrats who are fundamentally moderate Republicans in their views. The view of Federal mandates was worse under Bush, who started intrusive surveillance and imprisonment policies, and move to a police state. Obama has simply moved to try to implement stimulus, and was prevented from doing so by congress, in a cynical attempt to “make the American economy scream”, so as to produce consensus against Democrats. This type of action against the national interest is inconcievable in a major political party, and means they don’t deserve anyone’s vote.


2016-02-24 on washtimes

There’s some fraud, but the public opinion polls and exit polls keep it from departing from public consensus too much. I know this, because there is a long history of voting in these primaries, and the superdelegates are simply a tool to demoralize voters in intermediate stages. They are unable to do anything significant in the end, because they are beholden to the same voters, and the same voters revolt if the superdelegates vote against the popular will.


2016-02-24 on washtimes

Sanders never praised Venezuela. You are confusing Venezuela with Nicaragua. Sanders never praised Nicaragua too much either, he just decried US meddling in their internal affairs.


2016-02-24 on washtimes

Bernie is one of the last two true Democrats, along with Warren.


2016-02-24 on washtimes

That’s why Sanders doesn’t call for welfare, but reductions in unemployment.


2016-02-24 on washtimes

That’s “popular economics”, it has no relation to real economics. The fact is that without Keynesianism, Capitalism exerts a downward force on everybody. The economies of the postwar consensus produced a lot of wealthy people, and the economies of Reaganomics only produce concentrations of industry and monopolies.


2016-02-24 on washtimes

The superdelegates have never voted against the electorate, and never will. That will split the party and guarantee a third party run. Everyone knows that. The only people who mention superdelegates as a problem are party hacks shilling for Hillary.


2016-02-24 on mediaite

OF COURSE minimum wage is against the naive interest of both small and large business! They would like to pay as little as possible. When there is a state with a $15 minimum wage and another state with a $10 minimum wage, they will relocate whenever they can!

The reason that minimum wage works ANYWAY is because the wage structure is not in economic equilibrium. In equilibrium, the worker is supposed to be negotiating a wage equal to his or her productivity, no matter what the position! The reason that this works is because in equilibrium, there is no unemployment, so anyone paying too little can’t find anyone to work for them.

That doesn’t happen in real markets, because there is no real competition for ownership positions. These are divided at a higher level, nobody asks for resumes to fill the position of CEO of GM,let alone do they take lowest competent bid. Nobody competes with Facebook, or Google in any meaningful way, reducing their profits.

This means that the equilibrium is broken, there are non-competitive compensations. That means conversely that there is less demand in the labor market than there would be in equilibrium, and therefore unemployment. This stuff is very hard for you, because you are unable to understand that global equilibrium is VERY FAR AWAY from what you see around you, even though each small-scale local economic transaction looks like a local negotiation at supply and demand intersection. That’s not true for the economy as a whole, because it is not really true for owners, and it is certainly not true when a worker has to demand wage at nonzero unemployment.

At nonzero unemployment, without minimum wage, the lowest wages collapse to subsistence, and all the demand from those workers essentially vanishes. This is why minimum wage brings you closer to equilibrium, because in equilibrium, nobody is forced to work for below their productivity, which in reality is always far far beyond minimum wage.

One way to ensure that all employees are getting an equilibrium wage is to take all the corporate profits and divide them among all the employees according to their decision on what to keep, and what to invest in growing the company, leaving the management with a salary negotiated by bid and competition. That’s what happens in a worker-owned business, and in an economy with worker owned business, you can imagine an actual economic equilibrium without any government intervention. The reason is that economic equilibrium does not allow for serious inequality, beyond some small amount related to personal hours invested and personal productivity. This is why the equilibrium mathematical model does not have anything much to do with real markets.

I am sick of repeating these things. Read a book about macroeconomics. The best is the first, and that’s “Capital I”, although you need to translate the concepts to modern mathematical language.


2016-02-24 on washtimes

Clinton is not in any way a socialist, she is what one would call a “moderate Republican” in the Nixon sense. Unfortunately, her kinship with Nixon is a little closer than it should be.

Sanders is an actual FDR Democrat, which is what people would call a social democrat today, or “Democratic socialist”, as he says it.


2016-02-24 on washtimes

Rigged or not, it simply requires a majority of voters for Sanders. He can get many more than that, if people are not demoralized by your nonsense defeatism.


2016-02-24 on washtimes

Not 33% less than “usual”, 33% less than 2008. All the attention in 2008 was on the Democrats, and independents went to the Democratic primary then. Now there are a lot of independents drawn to the Republican race, who are voting for Trump. The turnout Sanders gets is very good, except in Nevada, where it was suppressed deliberately by long lines, and the voting was marred by fraud (unregistered Clinton caucusgoers). This type of election fraud is very worrying, as it was not small and incidental, as in Iowa, but it seems to have been organized by the Clinton-supporting unions, in conjunction with Harry Reid.


2016-02-24 on washtimes

Yes, that one.


2016-02-24 on washtimes

The type of “socialism” Sanders advocates is purely “more freedom”. He and Ron Paul see eye to eye on the Patriot act and the constitution. His economic policies are not interventionist in the sense of picking winners and losers, or subsidizing big business, like Obamacare does. He simply has the government reduce bureaucracy as much as possible. Universal health care increases freedom, as it removes a layer of corporate bureaucracy in private insurance, and allows you to switch jobs without worrying about taking your care with you. It is not anti-market, because you can always get supplemental insurance. It does not pick winners and losers, because the government is simply acting as a billing agency.

Sanders’ Keynsian policies are pro-growth and are the minimal intrusions to restore wage growth. The candidate himself does not take corporate contributions. He is the Libertarian’s best candidate, as he will not favor big businesses, as all the other candidates are bound to do by contributions.

Libertarianism, despite what you read about in America, was originally developed as an anti-Marxist offshoot of socialism. The goal was to minimize both state and large corporate power at the same time. This is very tricky, and Sanders policies are the best possible in this direction. They are aimed at concentrations of private power without unduly increasing state power in such a way as to favor this or that private party. It is difficult for a person indoctrinated with Republicanism to understand this, so I’ll just defer to his strong record on constitutional protections, auditing the Fed, avoiding foreign entanglements, and all the other areas of overlap with Ron Paul.


2016-02-24 on washtimes

You don’t understand what “socialism” is academically and historically, in economics. The starting idea is that there is a failure in markets to reach market equilibrium, due to unemployment reducing wages below what they would be in the theoretical ideal free market. This observation is simply true, it means that there is less “aggregate demand” in the market than what would be the case in a perfect competitive market, where nobody is too rich. This observation was first made by Marx in “Capital I”, but nobody gives him credit for it. The reason nobody wants to cite him for this idea is that he wanted the state to seize all industries, and that is not a good idea.

Nevertheless, the observation that aggregate demand is depressed in markets is simply true, and it is now standard economic lore, at least since Keynes took up the theory, and made it axiomatic that governments need to prop up aggregate demand (Keynes made up nonsense explanations for this, because Marx is taboo in economics). The result is that people were able to get out of the depression, by simply hiring people in government jobs, or spending government money, to restore economic equilibrium. All economists understand this since the 1930s.

This observation is the cornerstone of macroeconomics, and it is fundamentally “socialist” or “Keynesian”, or whatever term you want to use for it. It is a statement that markets are not self-correcting in this respect, when aggregate demand is low. The prediction that this theory makes is that when you increase minimum wage (or otherwise stimulate the economy), the unemployment goes DOWN, not up, as you would naively predict, until the minimum wage becomes high enough that any further raise produces inflation. There is no way to predict this observed behavior from microeconomics alone.

The point is that there is a serious market failure, which is not due to monopoly exactly, or externalities, just due to labor having to compete with unemployed people, when ownership is concentrated. The Keynesians (FDR, Atlee, DeGaulle, Mussolini, Eisenhower, Hitler, Nixon, etc, everyone except Reagan and Bush II) advocate fixing this by reducing unemployment and increasing aggregate demand.

Bernie Sanders proposes policies which decrease unemployment. The stimulus jobs program decreases unemployment directly, the subsidize college reduces unemployment indirectly, because students don’t compete with the employed, and the $15/hr minimum wage reduces unemployment by stimulus (remember the behavior of unemployment and minimum wage in real Keynesian life). In this, he is proposing policies that have been disallowed by the political consensus in the US since Reagan decided that Keynesianism is something he doesn’t like.

Sanders is a Keynesian, like all sane economists. There are no other types of economists who are able to predict anything quantitative with any accuracy.

The picture was taken when I was in my early thirties, I’m 42 now.


2016-02-24 on abcnewsdotcom

Nevada’s caucus was marred by significant fraud, that probably flipped the outcome and more. The only thing it did is ensure that Sanders voters will not jump on Hillary’s bandwagon should she take the nomination.


2016-02-24 on washtimes

That is entirely false, or else the vote fraud in Nevada wouldn’t have been necessary. He will take the nomination if he gets the majority of the popular delegates, and there is nothing anyone can do to stop him short of further fraud. The Nevada fraud by itself is enough to ensure that his hardcore supporters will not break for Clinton, so it’s Sanders or bust from here on in. You should join, it’s nicer on the other side.


2016-02-24 on washtimes

Bernie hasn’t been put up, he’s been put down. And he’s smashing through the barriers anyway.


2016-02-24 on washtimes

The vote turnout is extremely good by any historical standards. The independents split for Trump this year, and among Democrats, there is little enthusiasm for Hillary. This is why Sanders numbers are super strong, as he is drawing independents and youth in good fraction. There is a surfeit of excitement for his candidacy, although it is not reflected in the opinions of the media elite, for obvious reasons.


2016-02-24 on washtimes

I’m 42, and I know more history than you ever will, silly.


2016-02-24 on washtimes

Marc Cuban doesn’t know what he is talking about, nor do you know your history.


2016-02-23 on washtimes

He’s more of an FDR Democrat, like JFK.


2016-02-23 on washtimes

Bernie Sanders is that moderate, and he is going to be swept into office.


2016-02-23 on washtimes

Except we’ve been through this before in 2008, and no they won’t. If they do, they will face a mutiny.


2016-02-23 on washtimes

They will never do that, they just threaten that to demoralize you. Obama won the nomination process, so the superdelegates flipped, the same will happen with Sanders.


2016-02-23 on washtimes

Sanders will capture the Libertarian vote, and he understands Keynesian economics. That in itself is a slam dunk.


2016-02-23 on washtimes

Jim Webb had his shot, so did Martin O’Malley. Sanders is the only candidate worth our time, or yours.


2016-02-23 on washtimes

Bernie Sanders is the best the Democrats or Republicans have ever nominated. He is pretty much the last principled politician in America, and the only one who understands economics.


2016-02-23 on washtimes

I’m voting for Bernie, and you should be too.


2016-02-23 on mediaite

You simply don’t understand macroeconomics. When you employ everyone, you bring demand up to what it would be in competitive equilibrium, because people can demand higher wages. We are not in competitive equilibrium right now, because there are unemployed people, driving down wages for everyone except those who have an inside position with owners of capital.

Raising minimum wage must be done at the Federal level, to avoid companies running away across state borders. Now it must be done in conjunction with trade deals, to avoid companies running away across international borders.

The internet does not work, at least the parts run by large corporations. These horrific sites are an example. The only good stuff is done by small independent folks, as always.

The claim you make about “running at a loss” is known to be false for infrastructure. It is very hard for companies to produce public infrastructure, because it is difficult to recoup the benefit by charging tolls. This is why you can have a public works project that brings tremendous benefit which the private sector theoretically should do, but realistically won’t. Whenever a private company owns infrastructure, it is simply for the purpose of making a monopoly. For example, the building of wireless towers is designed to produce a monopoly for Verizon. If you want a competitive market, you need to separate the infrastructure from the service, and find a way to pay for the infrastructures companies share either by contract or by taxes. That’s what the telecom deregulation act of 1996 did, and it’s what the airline deregulation act of 1979 did. There is no substitute for this.


2016-02-23 on truthdig

Regarding market equilibrium, exactly! It is a state of “perfect competition”, and this idealized state must be held up as the normative ideal, and produced, even in situations when it is difficult to do so. The USSR produced this perfect competitive market as far as labor in concerned, and this was their most notable and nearly only success.

The sale of labor at perfect competition is not to an owner, because at perfect competition, there is no owner! Everyone is equally laboring. The predictions of perfect market theory is that if person X owns more than you, you just go and do what that person is doing, until you own the same amount, and the competition between you and the previous owner drives your competition stake to equality, more or less.

The way this is produced in real life is by strong ownership negotiations at point of hire, where you sell your labor to a small company in exchange for a small but growing stake. The ownership becomes widely diffuse, and there is no capitalist to exploit you.

The aggregation of capital is then only in the businesses themselves, and this is controlled (in the system I described) by the graduated corporate tax, which forces a split in companies for profitability above a certain size where maintaining the size is costlier than splitting. Even the smallest graduated tax will produce splits, because companies are perfectly profit-seeking, and have no other consideration.

The rest of what I was talking about was contract reform to prevent false-splits, and to prevent concentration of ownership in individuals, and labor reform to prevent unemployment, so that employees are negotiating from a position of strength.

The “government deed” and “one time exchange” refers to the fact that ownership comes from a government enforcing it, and the exchange that produces a monopoly like Google or Facebook is a one-time IPO, and there are no competitors after that one-time act. The capital is granted to Facebook, they become a monopoly, and at no point do they ever face competition. I realized it was poorly worded, and rearranged it.

Regarding doing science, I know how to do research, thanks. It requires isolation. As Einstein said, “The best job for a theoretical physicist is a lighthouse keeper”. It requires social collaboration also, but not the “dialectic” kind, where you talk to people, but the reading and thinking kind, which is best done by individuals reviewing literature and attending seminars.

I did review some Marxist and non-Marxist literature, but nothing serious. I don’t think there is too much out there that is serious, because the Marxists don’t understand competitive equilibrium (except Marx), while the capitalists don’t understand it any better.


2016-02-23 on washtimes

The only failure of education is for economics professors, who have yet to learn that aggregate demand is not a myth, and that markets are nowhere near equilibrium in real life, as wages are not roughly equal and unemployment is not 0%.


2016-02-23 on alternet

They have free healthcare, the minimum wage is $15/hr American equivalent, the median wage is $60,000, 50% higher than American, and the GDP per capita is lower than in the US. I don’t know the cost of college (ok, later I found an article talking about college in Australia, and it’s free at point of entry for students), but it can’t be anywhere near as expensive as ours, the US is off the charts. Australia might as well be Sanders’ model.


2016-02-23 on alternet

And $15 minimum wage.


2016-02-23 on abcnewsdotcom

She is entirely a product of her donations. Her bankruptcy reform bill is an obvious example, but so is her foreign policy in Honduras and Ukraine, her support of TPP and private prisons, her support for welfare reform, everything. Donations are insidious, because they come to candidates who are susceptible to malleability vote by vote, not to principled candidates who can’t be bought. That drives the principled candidates out, gradually, election by election.


2016-02-23 on abcnewsdotcom

The Republicans are sometimes sincere, and I believe that all Republicans would rather see a principled and unbought Sanders rather than a crooked Clinton, even if this leads to more policy that they disagree with. It’s not like Republicans are attacking Hillary because they want a Republican, they are attacking Hillary because they don’t want a corrupt president. I am not a Republican, and I don’t want a corrupt president either. If this was Sanders vs. O’Malley, it wouldn’t be an issue, but it’s not.


2016-02-23 on truthdig

>>> “It’s simply the fact that the competitive stage of capitalism, which seems like a dynamic equilibrium to bourgeois economists, is not stable. It has nothing to do with the “economic equilibrium” resembling “idealized anarchic socialism” – that is a utopian vision of society “as it should be” according to you.”

All of this is false except the statement about instability. There is a dynamic equilibrium in price markets for commodities, as you can see if you sit down and try to sell anything in a market. If you try and raise the price above that of others around you, nobody buys your stuff. If you lower your price, you don’t make enough to justify your time. You have a price imposed on you by the surrounding structure, a price which, in equilibrium, more or less exactly compensates you for your labor in acquiring the commodity and finding the buyer.

This situation is what defines the microeconomc equilibrium, and it is only unstable to concentrations of capital and power forming. This instability is real, and it is what Marx wrote about. When capitalists aggregate ownership into large industries, they can siphon off profits into their pockets, and this is a breaking of equilibrium, and it naturally induces unemployment, and the unemployment induces a collapse of wages for the workers in the same industry, who cannot negotiate the equilibrium wage, to subsistence. This is what the 19th century industrial economy looked like, and what every capitalist economy looks like until you adopt Keynesian measures.

The breaking of equilibrium is due to the ownership structure, which is not determined by free economic competition exactly, as the compensation of the owner is through the roof. If you ask someone “what salary would you take to run Google”, the competent bids would be far less than that of the owners or top managers. In equilibrium, that means that they should be replaced by those with a lower bid.

But of course this never happens, the owner’s income is derived from capital infusion and the structure of ownership, from sitting on top of a gigantic power structure created by capital ownership, and there is no competition for top wages. This power structure is derived from the infusion of capital which creates the industry or resource in the first place, it goes to the few who have the potential for a monopoly, and the regulation of public corporations is not sufficiently strong to induce competition of wages at all levels.

The capital exchange markets do not produce equilibrium structures of power, they produce oligarchical structures. This trading process can only be kept safe from competition by producing enormous firms which are immune to competition, because they either undercut it in price to drive it out of business, or else acquire it. Without this you get bodegas, or small industries, which are completely competitive, and where ownership only produces a modest rise in income. The essential competitive fairness of cottage industry was noted by Marx, who contrasted it with industrial production.

The nature of competitive equilbrium is not determined by me idealistically from prior principles. I didn’t have any prior principles. It is determined by asking what the actual predictions are for wages and prices in a true free market equilibrium would be. You could write a computer program to determine this, it’s something that is not adjustible except by fanciful thinking and distortion. That’s unfortunately what bourgeoise economics does, because it is largely a product of the elite class.

The structure of the ownership in equilibrium is also more or less determined from the model, because in equilibrium, no one individual can make more than another, except to the extent that they invest more hours, or acquire a special skill. I didn’t make that up, that’s a famous failed prediction from economics textbooks, except in the textbooks, they ignore the fact that it fails.

The structure of the society that you want to attain is found by taking the mathematical model seriously. When that model conflicted with my own preferences, I changed my preferences, and I will continue to change my preferences to match the real predictions of equilibrium, and advocate changing policy until the economy looks like an equilibrium, and not like a Marxian catastrophe.

>>> That’s … a problem (meaning ignoring Marxists)

No! The exact opposite. Not doing this is the problem. Groups of people are not able to formulate new ideas, they are simply doing propaganda to promote old ideas already formulated by some individual a long time ago. Political organizations are lousy at understanding ideas or fairly promoting them, and the reason is the “philosophical parts of Marx”, the parts you claim I don’t understand.

The ideas people promote come from their economic class, and their class-interest gets in the way of dispassionate evaluation. That’s true of members of powerless classes also, it is just less true, because the philosophy of the powerless doesn’t give them power. But certain parts of Marxist philosophy can potentially give you power, the Marxist-Leninist philosophy of a vanguard. Because the revolution transfers power to the vanguard, so being part of the vanguard is a decision with a power-interest component.

To evaluate things which have objective answers requires a period of isolated study, and ignoring the teams. I don’t have any team on my side, and even if such a team emerges, I would still be powerless.

I understand the philosophical parts of Marx, that was what kept me sane all my college years. I could sit and repeat “these people are thinking and acting this way because of the power structure”, so that I could continue to function in a bourgeoise environment, shifting more and more to the right after the failure of the USSR. I rejected traditional Marxist philosophy mostly I guess in response to the internet, which showed that it is possible to organize systems organically and efficiently in a decentralized manner, that’s the example of the design of the Linux kernel. Marxist ideology has reached the limit of its usefulness for prescriptive change, because it demands “all power to the Soviets”, which doesn’t help anyone at all, except those on top of the Soviets.

The mathematical side of Marx, however, the consolidation of capital in a few hands, remains true, and can’t ever become obsolete. Part of this theory is subsumed into Keynesianism, except Keynes couldn’t touch the ownership structure. I am trying to fix this oversight. The point of Keynes is to only regulate the wages and monetary policy to work around the ownership structure, not to fundamentally decentralize the ownership. In my opinion, it is important to advocate for decentralized ownership right now.


2016-02-23 on truthdig

>>> … secular trends which prevent the system from returning to equilibrium…

Those secular trends require political power, which is derived from economic centralization and the emergence of separate classes. The mechanisms I gave for splitting up capital are financial incentives, and they should work on any profit-making entity to split up power among several entities, which are never so large as to influence such trends individually.

There is no substitute for the mathematical theory of capitalist equilibrium, which right now is only being used and misused by capitalists who have no idea what kind of equilibrium it actually predicts. Marx was using it to form his critique, but he detested the language because it was used to justify atrocities, like the 80 hour workweek and subsistence wages.

Any attempt to approach an economic equilibrium is difficult, but there is a mathematical theory to guide you, so you always know where the problem is, and when your policy is fixing it or making it worse. That’s what gives it so much weight, and you cannot surrender this tool to the right. But when you are on the left, it is rare that you see someone take the time to study the mathematical ideas, because these mathematical ideas are learned by elites, and the elites are structurally biased to always advocate for their own privilege. Marx took the time to learn the mathematical theory, and this is what made him so powerful as a commentator.

It is very simple to judge when someone is overpaid from equilibrium considerations— would someone else who is equally competent be willing to submit a bid to work the same position at 30% less salary? If the answer is yes, the only way that person maintains the high pay is because there must be political class barriers or barriers of monopoly set up around the position. This is true not only of business owners, it is true of media stars, of high-level managers at publicly traded corporations, and of some government contractors and appointees. It is not true of most small business owners, as they labor under competition. This demarcation is for me the line between the “bourgeoisie” and the “proletariat”, and unlike in Marx’s time, there are many small owners who do not go past the threshold, who are your natural allies.

This principle, competitive vs. monopolist wage, to my mind subsumes and replaces the Marxist social class division. The predictions for what to do about it are substantially the same in any formulation, but when you are guided by economic equilibrium, people who are on the right listen very attentively, and you don’t get suckered by policies that give power to a separate bureaucratic elite, as the Soviets did.

I read your links. They’re long. Ok, the first one is about epistemology, and I don’t see the point, sorry. Quantitative predictions about prices, wages, and production are the fundamental epistemology for economic systems, and the ontology you have is only interesting to the extent that it predicts economic numbers, and their change in response to policy.

The theory of economic equilibrium just tells you what everything should be priced (supply/demand at equilibrium), what everyone should be paid (the wage of the next competent bidder in line at zero unemployment). How ownership should be distributed (eventually to the workers), how business should be structured (in as small units as possible), and how decisions should be made (by democratic consensus of those that they affect). The reason is that when any of these conditions are broken, there are disgruntled employees, and new people will enter or leave, at equilibrium, until these conditions are met. When these conditions are violated systemically, as in the current centralized ownership structure in existing capitalism, you get furious oppressed majorities. The only way to violate these conditions is to have a punitive system in place of unemployment and homelessness, which allows you to force people to work for a heirarchy in workplaces which are unresponsive.

Regarding the second link, I don’t accept “60 year cycles”, as there isn’t enough economic data to find any of these. I don’t accept cycle theory at all, because economic ups and downs don’t go according to cycles. They go like a random walk, with some growth and periodic crashes. Any cycle theory requires inertia, which isn’t there in any obvious sense.


2016-02-23 on mediaite

Chicago school economics is an academic fraud. It is based on a concept of equilibrium which is fundamentally not there is markets as a whole. The concept of “voluntary” and “involuntary” only work in economic equilibrium.

When a state or municipality raises minimum wage, there is a possibility for producers to flee to another state, or out of the municipality. This is much more difficult when the raise is nationwide. This is why to test the microeconomic predictions, you need to look at national raises of the Federal minimum wage. The rising Federal wage decreases unemployment, and that is a sign that the unemployment was NOT voluntary, it was simply a function of lack of equilibrium.

The issue today is that there is no such thing as an international minimum wage, and trade policies lead to similar effects between nations, exploiting the lack of equilibrium internationally, which is much worse that the lack of equilibrium within each nation. There is no solution to this except fair-trade negotiations, which tie imports to higher wages overseas, and better working conditions. Without this, you reproduce the macroeconomic problems of a single nation worldwide, where there is no government that can ever save you.


2016-02-23 on abcnewsdotcom

That type of sloganeering doesn’t work, and the superdelegates are incapable of overruling the voters in the primary. There is nothing to this “superdelegate” count, it is simply a propaganda point by hacks and shills for the Democratic party. Sanders and Clinton are tied in elected Delegates, despite the significant and probably decisive voter fraud in the Nevada caucus. The fraud itself is enough to push me to not vote for Clinton in the general.


2016-02-23 on jewish-daily-forward

The principles of governance that Bernie Sanders provides are not those of socialism, but of Keynesianism and social democracy, which are not at all related to the Kibbutz experience, and are tested in economies of any size.


2016-02-23 on abcnewsdotcom

Some of them believe this, some of them don’t. But in any case, they are wrong. The “socialist” label is simply a false avenue of attack, it bounces off, because Sanders is simply not into taking over industry by the government, and he is more libertarian than Clinton is, and Republican voters can smell a libertarian a mile away.


2016-02-23 on abcnewsdotcom

There’s a reason more independents support Sanders, and that is that his philosophy is really more supportive of liberty than nearly any Democrat. He gets many Republicans to support him, especially the libertarians, the Ron Paul voters. The election with Clinton will not be a sure thing, even long-time Democrats are a wary of her corruption.


2016-02-23 on abcnewsdotcom

That stuff simply doesn’t work with Sanders, it was tried all the time against him before, and the election season is long. It is very easy to repel a “socialist” attack, because he is really just an FDR Democrat, and the attack looks as silly as the “socialist” attacks against Obama did.


2016-02-23 on abcnewsdotcom

These were not exactly private servers in their basement, they were just outside the government. The question with Hillary’s server is why she would put a server in her basement? It’s something Nixon would do to communicate with his plumbers. There is no excuse for this sort of thing, it is a sure sign of terrible corruption.


2016-02-23 on abcnewsdotcom

Hillary Clinton decided to blame the Benghazi attack on a video on Youtube, then she called for censorship on YouTube. The video had nothing to do with the attack, it was for a prisoner swap, this was leaked by Petraeus’s girlfriend. It’s not illegal to do, she won’t be prosecuted. It was just unethical, and completely unacceptable. In the 90s, she decided to press bogus charges against the White House travel staff. These charges led to a trial, and exoneration in record time. It wasn’t illegal to press those charges. It was just immoral, and unacceptable.

Her flip on bankruptcy reform was unacceptable. Her foreign policy in Ukraine was supporting a fascist coup, and led to the Russian invasion. Her foreign policy in Honduras involved supporting a coup against a Democratically elected leader, and is also unacceptable. Her interventionalist foreign policy led to collapses in Libya, in Syria, everything there is poison. I will be voting for Sanders in the primary, and I am not sure if I can support such a person in the general. I am not alone on this, and if you want to win the general safely, Sanders is really your only bet.


2016-02-23 on truthdig

It’s worse for the undergrads. It’s hard to resist even when you know your Marx and cling to it like a bible.


2016-02-23 on truthdig

Yes, this is partly true. But there was a third reason for the adoption of abstract art by the CIA and bourgoisie. The third reason is that the USSR put in all the initial revolutionary time and effort to develop this art, and then stupidly suppressed it by government bureaucracy. Like all other socialist innovations, like space and modern physics, the bourgeoisie saw that it was the best thing evar and decided to steal it, and the groupthink of the Stalin led party let them do it. The only really significant thing the USSR did in art after that was Tarkovsky.

Picasso was a traditional European communist, and the modernists who followed, the actual artists, were by and large socialists of one type or other. It’s just that their style was not welcome in the USSR.


2016-02-23 on truthdig

Right. Now you got it. Just please don’t call it “Maimonism”, I don’t want to get shot.


2016-02-23 on truthdig

First, I made a mistake, due to having forgotten what “use value” meant in Marxist economic. It’s not equal to “exchange value”, it’s something else. In bourgeoise economics, it’s called the “monopolist’s price”.

The identity of the labor and nonlabor theory of value is just philosophy. In what bourgeoise economists call “economic equilibrium”, the two are the same. It’s just that bourgeoise economists are under the conceit that economic equilibrium somehow resembles real existing capitalism, rather than an idealized anarchic socialism. They are wrong about this, and the model itself tells you.

I’m not young anymore, I’m 42, and I came up with most of this stuff after a long solitary struggle with Marxism and Capitalism about 10 years ago, talking to exactly zero people, and reading only Marx (the bourgeoise side is just mathematics, and I could figure it out without reading anyone). I only come at if from Marx, but I use the language of bourgeoise economics, because the ideas are invariant to language, and it helps to translate Marx to bourgeoise language, because then you find that you are approximately a “post-Keynesian”.

“You think that some “genius” new idea or approach or “prescriptions” could change stuff? You think all those people who came before you didn’t even try similar approaches?”

Yup. I don’t think my own ideas are some particular genius. I think ALL THE OTHER PEOPLE who thought about this stuff are morons

It’s not their fault, they were working before an internet, and they needed propaganda structures to spread their ideas, so the ideas needed to be standardized. With an internet and a few hours, I can explain the whole thing, and then just wait for you to catch up. The same is true of capitalists, by the way, who have no idea that economic equilibrium looks just like socialism until you tell them. They are also stupid.


2016-02-23 on truthdig

I do not claim to be well read. I worked this stuff out myself. When I said “the stage of monopolized production is nearly equally bad to the stage of state control under communist party rule”, I mean “bad” as in “inefficient” and “non-innovative”.

My ideas live or die on their merits. They certainly don’t have any pedigree, like Marx’s or anyone else’s. All they are doing is translating Marx’s obervations to the mathematical language of modern economics, and noting that they are all amounting to “we are not in capitalist equilibrium”. Therefore, a transition to capitalist equilibrium is tantamount to a transition to socialism.

This was appreciated to a certain extent by some Keynesians, but I don’t read anything, so I don’t know who said it first. I know the policy proposals I gave are 100% original, so it’s best if you respond to them without prejudice, because some of them really are new, in particular the graduated corporate tax, which unlike a tax on individuals encourages splits naturally, without oversight.


2016-02-22 on truthdig

I’m not a nice person, sorry. Try to ignore that.

The only two serious economic works I read cover to cover are “The Communist Manifesto” (when I was 15) and “Capital I” (when I was 30). I understood what they were saying. I also read some Soviet planning documents when it was current, and a bunch of Maxist essays, some Chomsky, a little bit of this and that.

I worked out standard bourgeoise economics for myself, although it is clear Marx understood it. The points I am making are not incompatible with Marx’s mechanisms, but they are not travelling along the path of development of Marxist philosophy, because I consider philosophy a total waste of time. In this, I don’t think I am out of the mainstream.


2016-02-22 on truthdig

I’m an asshole, not a nice person, sorry. Try to ignore that.

The only two serious economic works I read cover to cover are “The Communist Manifesto” (when I was 15) and “Capital I” (when I was 30). I understood what they were saying. I also read some Soviet planning documents when it was current, and a bunch of Maxist essays, some Chomsky, a little bit of this and that.

I worked out standard bourgeoise economics for myself, although it is clear Marx understood it. The points I am making are not incompatible with Marx’s mechanisms, but they are not travelling along the path of development of Marxist philosophy, because I consider philosophy a total waste of time. In this, I don’t think I am out of the mainstream for people living in real existing Marxist Leninist societies.


2016-02-22 on motherjones

I meant “honest” in the sense of “not bought”, not “honest” in the sense of “doesn’t lie”. He’s a continuous stream of unreliable crap, it is not clear he even knows what is true and what is not. It’s just obvious that nobody is pulling his strings, because of the stream of consciousness campaigning (also, the repulsive consciousness in the stream).

If I am honest with what I will do in a voting booth, and I am not sure that I am, given my outrage at this moment, I guess I am only reliably reporting more on what other voters will do given the situation rather than myself.

I consider not voting or voting Green an effective half-vote for Trump. If I really couldn’t vote for Clinton, most likely I will vote for Stein. But many more will go more than halfway and vote for Trump.

I thought you were in Spain, sorry!


2016-02-22 on motherjones

Yes. It’s sitting under the rock of “there’s no demand for it”.


2016-02-22 on motherjones

That’s what millions of voters are going to do come election day if you don’t wise up and nominate Sanders.


2016-02-22 on motherjones

I don’t believe his racism is sincere, he’s a New Yorker. He is simply spouting off nonsense, without a brain, so as to appeal to the stupidest Republicans. I am not sure he is even a Republican, he was a friend of Clintons, he supports universal health care, he is a complete mystery.

Of course his racist statements are completely unacceptable. But what else is there to do? One has to make a decision regarding this sort of thing, it can’t come without consequence. Bernie can’t run for president as independent, that guarantees a loss both for him and the Democrat, and it guarantees he also loses his Senate seat. It’s not easy to determine the lesser evil from public statements, unfortunately, no matter how clear it seems to you in Europe. Trump is not Le Pen, he isn’t articulating a consistent racist position for years, he is simply saying whatever he wants that he thinks will get people to vote for him.


2016-02-22 on motherjones

It’s not speculation. Unregistered caucusgoers is the surest sign of fraud there is, it’s pretty much the only way to make fraud in a caucus, where the caucusgoers can audit the process in real time. A union can get a lot of unregisted people to bias the delegate count by several percentage points in each district. I really don’t know who had more support, given the statewide irregularities. In Iowa, the irregularities were localized, and the final count is certainly correct to within .01%, so the results are clearly accurate.

Regarding “Hillary was behind it herself”, that’s a nonsense question. Was Bush behind the vote-fraud in Florida? Of course not. But Kathleen Harris got a congressional seat for a term for organizing some of it. Fraud happens when a political organization tolerates or rewards it, and unlike the Clinton campaign, the Sanders organization has been very strict in controlling any suspicious behavior from supporters once it is brought up.

What do I need to seek help for? Is Trump not a dunce? Is Trump not spouting brain-damaged nonsense every day? I can’t stand his positions, I can’t stand his brand of politics, but it isn’t controlled by money, and it isn’t controlled by the Republican party. He is an independent lunatic.


2016-02-22 on motherjones

Google is your friend: http://usuncut.com/politics… (see also this for Harry Reid’s role: http://www.theblaze.com/con… ). This stuff was all over social media on the caucus day, it was reported by caucus goers all over the state. It seems to have been organized by members of unions who have sided with Hillary.

Policy matters, of course. But this level of corruption trumps policy. I don’t want another Oklahoma City, or 9/11, or voter fraud, or covert international operations. Trump is a dunce, but he is an honest dunce.


2016-02-22 on motherjones

Oh, I see. I don’t have figures for what full employment looks like in terms of the real potential labor pool, but of course you’re correct. Come to think of it, this is I suppose the point of Sanders talking about real unemployment in the US, as opposed to official unemployment, that’s a main concern in his stump speech.

Sanders is also progressive on trade, and I believe he is willing to let the dollar weaken somewhat, and negotiate from strength about trade issues, help local small or medium sized business that is export ready, and in general do anything possible to help.

It should be possible to make international trade a lot more “adiabatic”, as moving products between regions with different mean wage is analogous to moving heat between sources at different temperature, just touching the two together is not a good idea. When it is done by transnationals, they just pocket the difference in wage. It is best if you do trade with a heat pump, so that it is closer to equal in either location, in this way you still build up industry overseas, but you introduce as little inefficiency as possible in intermediate stages in the form of outrageous profits and depressed wages.

Not all that much is made in Bangla-Desh, or else their wage wouldn’t be 50c/hr anymore. A lot of things are made in China. But it’s not everything, and the US still maintains industrial knowledge and some infrastructure for it.


2016-02-22 on motherjones

The recent massive election fraud in the Nevada caucuses has confirmed to me that Clinton must never get near the White House. She possibly could have won that one fairly, but she chose not to.

I am a democratic socialist. I have never yet voted Republican in my life, and I thought I never will. But with Clinton, I’m so aghast that I’m telling you that I will have to ponder between staying home or actively voting for Trump, as impossible as it is for me to believe, simply against the fraud and covert operations bundle that is Clinton.

And I think Trump is the worst candidate in my lifetime.


2016-02-22 on motherjones

You’re assuming a fantasy economy where everything is in equilibrium. In a real economy, the “median” is sort of meaningless, the median wage might equal productivity (to pick an extreme example) because the unemployment is 49% and the median employed person happens to be employed at a wage equal to the GDP/population, which is really half the GDP per productive worker, because the actual population is double the working population. That situation is terrible, and in a closed economy, a stimulus could employ everybody. What you say would be right assuming a closed economy (no imports/exports), enough capacity to more than employ everybody, and all capital divorced completely from income. But that never happens in real life, it’s always complicated by extra stuff, so I think you just have to do it gradually, and look out for signs of inflation.

In a real economy, it is a mistake to say you’re only at full capacity when unemployment is 0%, that’s the false prediction that right wing Keynsians made (they aren’t real Keynesians), and it is disproved by “stagflation”. You can have stimulus produce pure inflation at 8% unemployment or 10% unemployment if there aren’t enough industries to employ everyone. Then you need new investment, and this is not produced by increasing wages, but by increasing investment capital, like what Reagan did with the tax cuts to the wealthy. Unfortunately, this type of business growth is at the end of large business consolidating and getting larger, it’s not like the Clinton growth of small business forming ab-initio. So it’s not like the Reagan nonsense did anything except produce lots of “Woolworth”s and “KMart”s, and large chains. It wasn’t like real imaginative economic growth, like in the 90s.

There’s also the serious problem of international production, and lack of international monetary coordination. For another extreme example, suppose all your production of consumer goods is in China using cheap labor, and this production is totally maxed out due to demand from Europe or somewhere. Now suppose you make a stimulus that goes to workers in the US. Then any rise in US demand can only be met with a rise in price of the Chinese goods in dollars (by the fall of relative value of the dollar), because the Chinese factories are already making as much as they can. Eventually, the inflation weakened dollar, makes it more productive to have the business form in the US, but at that point, the wage of workers has declined to Chinese levels in terms of the weakened dollar. This is why international trade without international monetary policy or international wage policy is problematic for wealthy nations, and why you need fair trade agreements which raise wages overseas, and ensure that the capital gains of international trade is not being pocketed by wealthy individuals at the top of transnationals. But there are still lots of US industries, they’re just weak, not everything is produced overseas. There’s local energy now, and local food, and local manufacturing to a certain small extent, so I don’t worry about it.

The $25/hr is not mine, it was Sanders. It’s just taking the minimum wage at 1979, considering it’s relation to average productivity, and updating it for inflation and productivity rise in the US since 1979. The inflation producing minimum wage should not be less than this. There is a problem with international production and stimulus, as I said, so it is best to err on the safe side and that’s a $15/hr minimum wage. That’s the Australian minimum wage, and it can’t be that Australia is more protectionist.


2016-02-22 on motherjones

There is no purely money-based metric which you can use to predict “full capacity” ahead of time, because it’s not a monetary call— it’s a question of whether you can make more real actual stuff, or whether people are already producing as much as possible. The only pure-money based metric you can use is AFTER you pass a stimulus, and then you can ask “How much of the rise in wages was negated by extra inflation?” And if the answer is “nearly all of it”, then you’re at full capacity, and it’s pointless to stimulate more. That kind of inflation hasn’t happened in the US since the mid 1970s.

But that money-metric doesn’t help you predict anything ahead of time. So you need to look at the actual production in detail. You need to survey companies, and look for potential backlogs in production, where companies are stressed to deliver goods and services. An example of the kind of thing you look at: are warehouses full or empty? Are service providers working full-time or part-time? Are factories working 24/7 and struggling to fill a backlog or working 10% of the time and laying people off? The US tries to gather these types of statistics. Right now, the justified consensus is that it is safe to say that stimulus won’t produce inflation.

The main problem with trying to make such predictions using existing factory stocks and so on, is that when unemployment is low, and labor becomes mobile with public health insurance, you have no idea what new businesses will form, how quickly they will form. Maybe they will form very fast, as there is a potential vast empty uncharted space still for internet business. If new businesses form quickly, then you can produce a lot of potential new services and products, and prevent inflation even when the old measures of capacity are closer to fully loaded. It’s too complicated to answer in any glib way, and the way I think about it is “when you see inflation, then complain”. It also depends on foreign demand, and all sorts of things you don’t control directly.

There is a strong political resistance to stimulus, because it increases workers’ negotiating power, and decreases the influence of old industry. In the late 90s, the main stimulus was the EITC expansion under Clinton, which was a stealth stimulus, in conjunction with the Clinton tax increase, which balanced the budget (it was supposed to pay for health care that never came). At the same time, internet private ISPs appeared, and workers had rising incomes for years, because unemployment was low.

Internet business valuations eclipsed those of old established business, due to the projections of complete transition to online services. This was a product of a deliberate policy to expand small online business, and people call it now “the 90s tech bubble”, as if it were purely speculative rise in asset prices. It wasn’t speculative like that, it was pumping money to new internet ventures that tried hard to innovate with delivery of services. You can see it wasn’t a bubble, because the same types of businesses are being created today, ten times slower.

The collapse of the internet economy in 2000, I believe, was largely a matter of politics. After Bush won the election, it was clear there would be no protection for the new industries from the old, and their entire valuation collapsed instantly in a gigantic crash. All the new companies were either out of business in the bust, or consolidated into large monopolies by the middle of the decade. At the same time, government expenditures were backing large military contractors and enormous businesses, and cable monopolized ISPs, while wireless remonopolized communications. It was just the 90s in reverse, deliberately, thanks to Bush.


2016-02-22 on motherjones

Debbie Wasserman Schultz must have slid right by the Senate committee. I am talking about the party, not just the government.


2016-02-22 on motherjones

Nobody is voting for Clinton out of passion. It’s strategic voting, with a misplaced corporate strategy. If she is nominated, It will be a hard choice between her and Trump, despite Trump’s insanity.


2016-02-22 on motherjones

There’s something called “appointments” which allow you to delegate power.

The President elect is not just a leader of the nation, he is also the leader of the party, and can appoint members to positions, and push in a certain direction. The influence can be rather large, depending on the ability to influence elections.

In order to have a consistent message for transformation, the internal party appointments have to be made without corporate control. This has not been possible for Obama, due to the constraints of having to appease corporate contributors for various races, so you get nominees who are weak, even for nominations to public positions, like FDA chair.


2016-02-22 on motherjones

That group of people for Clinton is wealthy donors, who are rattled by the populism. It’s a small fraction of the population, and their votes are insignificant. It’s their money that talks.


2016-02-22 on motherjones

It’s not fun, and it’s not about purity. It’s about policy by policy change, with an organized opposition. The first election past Sanders’ election will simply be about minimum wage, or stimulus, and it will be about money to target ten or twenty house seats of any members who vote “no” with ads and a get-out-the-vote program in 2018.

The reason Obama couldn’t mobilize people is that he simply didn’t want to. His policies were corporate compromises from the start, and could not get public support behind them. The last years involved many of the same sort of covert nonsense operations and interventions that characterized Bush.


2016-02-22 on motherjones

I don’t, no. I have never made an economic projection in my life. But I do know what happened to economies at low unemployment, and it’s all good stuff. It is next to impossible to project what kind of growth you will see with an unemployment of 3% or 2% or 1%,, since we haven’t been there since WWII. People have been scared of trying due to NAIRU and Philips curve voodoo. The experience of the 90s with the first tech boom showed that inflation is far away even at very low unemployment. Keynesian theory is moribund, and ignorant of its own foundations. I welcome any estimate that says “I don’t know for sure, but I know it’s a heck of a lot of growth”. because, given the knowledge we have, it’s a heck of a lot better prediction than “I don’t know, but it’s a heck of a lot of inflation”. The effect of stimulus is always one or the other, and given that most new jobs in the US pay $25000 a year, and all the productivity gain is going to empty capital return for the wealthy without real new investment, it’s more accurate to project growth in response to rising wages than inflation.


2016-02-21 on motherjones

They are not modelled on European countries— there is no real social welfare in Sanders plan. The Health-care is just shifting existing spending around and removing bureaucracy, the college program is removing students from the labor pool, and the infrastructure program is getting rid of unemployment, in the Eisenhower way.

The projection is conservative. It’s not “nefarious forces” that prevent stimulus, it is the structural rejection of Keynesian economics of the past 40 years. The reason you can’t pass stimulus anymore is that Republicans rejected Keynesian measures due to the 1970s stagflation. They didn’t understand how inflation works, they followed some “Philips curve” mumbo-jumbo, and believed that stimulus always drives unemployment to zero, even without a jobs program, and without investment. The stagflation showed you needed new investment, a jobs program is a stopgap until that investment shows up.

The programs need to get enacted, and the projections of growth in Friendman’s model are not surprising, considering the anemic rate of growth in the last decade and a half. Sanders’ policies are better than those in Europe, they are better than any Keynesian measures enacted since the 1950s, because they really target unemployment. There is no reason to lie about the growth potential of such measures.

If it feels “too good to be true”, then just pretend it isn’t.


2016-02-21 on peoplecom

He was against Dimona, so what. Lots of Israelis were against Dimona too. The assassination of RFK is understood much better than the assassination of JFK, as I explained, we know who was at the hotel now. The folks behind it were the same folks sending exploding cigars to Castro. The US has a large covert operations division which has it’s own money, is completely unaudited and untracked, and does whatever it wants. For example, Oliver North. Israel is a small country, and it would be insane to assassinate any American, the US is its biggest ally. Please try to be more rational, because we have real problems in the US that are not caused by any Jews.


2016-02-21 on peoplecom

If the health plan is a fantasy, so are the taxes.


2016-02-21 on peoplecom

The cost of college has gone up tenfold, for no reason other than capturing rent at the door to higher income.


2016-02-21 on peoplecom

If you ever see a Sanders increase, you just got universal health care, and you’re saving a lot of money on insurance. No health care, no tax increase.


2016-02-21 on peoplecom

Free college is not that expensive compared to health care, it is about double the Pell program, and it is paid by a small tax on trading. That helps to remove microtrading, which is used to levy an effective rent on stock and commodity transaction by the brokerages which can put their servers a few microseconds closer to the stock exchange, and capture requests early, and pre-empt them. This is one of the worst forms of fraud, and it starts losing money with even the smallest transaction tax.

He hasn’t promised any other “goodies”. He promised a policy to remove unemployment from the economy, so that wages equalize.


2016-02-21 on peoplecom

You aren’t going to make him anything, because you aren’t going to win.


2016-02-21 on peoplecom

The likely RFK shooters were recently identified milling around the hotel in old footage of the incident. They have nothing to do with Israel, and a lot to do with CIA and MKULTRA. They are certainly not “zionists” as both rank and file Israelis and the Israeli government were happy with the Kennedys. The US in the 1960s was still significantly anti-semitic, and Jews could not be too powerful in any capacity.

Your view of Jewish conspiracy is annoying, because it places blame for corruption on a religious minority which is not powerful enough to do any of the sort of things you want to blame them for. Zionists can’t make the air-defences stand down, nor can they order military drills. Only non-Zionist protestant administration members could do that.


2016-02-21 on peoplecom

Dan is neither racist or ageist. He is a Clinton propagandist, cynically attempting to divide the voters.


2016-02-21 on peoplecom

Sanders doesn’t claim that all issues of inequality are economic. He believes that the economic issues are fundamentally the ones that are most important to fix, so they should be the top priority. Once you address the economic component, and produce access to capital for all groups in the US, it becomes so much easier to address the other components. In this view, he is following Martin Luther King Jr.

When a group of people have equitable wealth and equitable power, the remaining racism against them becomes socially unsanctioned, and becomes viewed as an abberant mental disorder. There were Jewish quotas in the US 60 years ago, and most powerful business leaders and top academics were causually anti-semitic. But when the wealthy folks had to deal with Jewish colleagues, that became difficult to continue.

But Sanders also proposes strong criminal justice reform and strong policing reform, because we can’t wait on those things when people are dying in jail and in the custody of police. He is the strongest candidate on racial justice.


2016-02-21 on peoplecom

Secretary Clinton does not share his values. Her HHS secretary will find ways to expand WalMart and Uber in 50 states, until every employee in the US is a low paid wage laborer.


2016-02-21 on peoplecom

The only tax increase that Sanders proposed is contingent on a universal health care plan which will save you and me and nearly everyone else lots of money. The stimulus plan is a redirect of corporate subsidies to infrastructure workers.


2016-02-21 on peoplecom

He not only got the Ron Paul vote, and a large chunk of everyone else’s vote, he also got the Ron Paul treatment. Given the outrageous behavior of Clinton’s union supporters in Nevada’s caucus, it is clear that Clinton should suspend her campaign, as it looks more and more certain that Sanders’ supporters will not unite around her, and she will divide the party.

The arrest photo and film show you viscerally that he is not a pretend protester. He meant it then, and he is the only candidate deserving of your vote now.


2016-02-21 on motherjones

There’s nothing vague here. The purpose of Sanders’ plan is to remove unemployment. US capacity is not maximized right now, there is a significant amount of unemployment and underemployment, and wages are catastrophically depressed. The economy is restructuring around large firms that employ large numbers of people at minimum wage, as opposed to smaller businesses with fair wages. This only helps the individual large corporation’s bottom line, it reduces spending.

If the platform is enacted, a conservative estimate is that the economy will be producing at the last peak level. There is nothing wacky about Friedman’s growth estimates, he is probably understating the growth.


2016-02-21 on motherjones

What?? Are you even serious? NO!

Friedman is CONSERVATIVELY assuming that a stimulus program will maximize production quickly. That’s standard economics for nearly 100 years. It is certainly true.

The rate of growth he gets is high because the stimulus is large. It is probably an UNDERESTIMATE, as Sanders policies are targeted at unemployment, and produce as low an unemployment rate as the infrastructure funding and political will allows.

At zero unemployment or close, wages rise. Right now, the American economy is lumbering along is a half-depressed state due to lack of purchasing power. The precise numbers are not predictable, but Friedman did as good a job as possible.


2016-02-21 on motherjones

He is not assuming real productivity growth will be stellar in the sense of producing new industries, he tells you that the 5-6% growth is mostly due to redistribution and better purchasing power, and maximizing existing capacity. This growth must necessarily peter out after a few years, when production is maximum and people are getting paid reasonably. His predictions are due to share of income going to the workers who spend the money, as opposed to the investors who drive down the wages.

At the end of the 90s, when unemployment dipped below 4%, wages begin going up steadily at that point for all workers, and entrepreneurship became more easy and common when workers were not concerned about employment. This growth in small decentralized business was reversed by conscious decision to invest in large defense industry after 9/11, by Bush and co, and this is the real tragedy of the 21st century economy. I don’t know the exact productivity growth in 1999, but it was very strong.


2016-02-21 on peoplecom

Right. As for the label, he’s stuck with it, as he has maintained the same label and same principles for the past 30 years. He is trying to remove the stigma from a whole sector of philosophical thought that has been tarnished by association with terrible totalitarian regimes. The real socialists are George Orwell and Albert Einstein, not Lenin and Chavez. He is also a Liberty party candidate, and has strongly supported the independence of small business and small farmers. There is no tradition more thoroughly American than his unique brand of social democracy.


2016-02-21 on peoplecom

That’s not how it works. The economy is complicated, and wages at the low end are depressed by unemployment. You need to have a strong minimum wage and a strong anti-unemployment policy to have an economy where workers can negotiate for better wages. Without this, there is no economy, it is permanent depression. This has been understood since the 1930s, but willfully denied by the anti-Keynesian party.


2016-02-21 on peoplecom

Bernie Sanders plan does not call for a massive federal government in the sense of government intrusion into private decisions, the policies are not designed to meddle in individual business or personal decisions. There are designed to remove unemployment, help students in college, and get rid of health care worries for small businesses. These are pro-growth policies. He is surprisingly the most libertarian Democratic candidate, as he does not support intrusive government surveillance, he is not about crony contracts, and he does not get money from large donors. The main Republican point is that government is corrupt, and this won’t be fixed until we elect a non-corrupt person to office.


2016-02-21 on peoplecom

Go Dem now and help him win it.


2016-02-21 on motherjones

The point of fair trade is that it is conditional on working conditions improving in the other country. It’s not all that restrictive, and it is good both for foreign and domestic growth. It also slows the loss of industry.

There are a bunch of factors, but there are general principles which you need to be aware of, and one of these is the relation of unemployment to wage growth.

Bernie Sanders does not propose to cut military spending in such a way as to remove it’s stimulus effect, he proposes to redirect it toward more productive avenues. Away from nuclear weapons, for instance, and away from large weapons projects. There is a lot of discretion in military budgets, and the internet and LFTR were both designed on military money.

The goal of Sanders is to produce low unemployment. There is no surprise that this induces the maximum possible growth, as fundamentally, unemployment and underemployment are the original source of economic underperformance.


2016-02-21 on motherjones

Except that the mechanism of “Verdoom’s law” is understood— the loss of purchasing power due to unemployment driving down wages is a mainstay of economics for nearly 100 year. The projection is overly conservative, when you drive down unemployment by offering jobs, there is a lot of pressure on wages in industries where you don’t do anything, simply because workers are more empowered to demand better wages.


2016-02-20 on motherjones

Increasing minimum wage DECREASES unemployment until the point where the minimum wage is so high (like $30/hr) that it starts to produce inflation instead. This only superficially looks like a paradox, it is a fundamental principle of macroeconomics. It is the “perihelion precession of Mercury” for depressed aggregate demand— a counterintuitive prediction that is uniformly correct that you simply can’t make with pre-1930 economics. Pre Keynesian economics predicts the opposite, and fails.

The reason is that lowest wages are always not anything close to their equilibrium value, they are depressed by competition with the unemployed. This prediction is the clearest demonstration.

The jobs program is the infrastructure program.

Sanders doesn’t advocate eliminating free trade, rather he advocates fair-trade policies that raise wages in the other country. This creates a better competitive trading field, and creates consumers for American goods, which are produced by a more specialized workforce.


2016-02-20 on motherjones

The basic principle in projection of policy impact on growth is what the effect is on unemployment. Sanders’ policies have an impact on unemployment in three ways: there is a jobs program which directly reduces unemployment, there is a college program which indirectly reduces unemployment by increasing the number of students and qualified applicants, and there is a minimum wage increase which produces stimulus by incresing demand. Under these conditions, it is not difficult to forecast best-possible growth, these are the best-possible growth inducers, as they reduce unemployment by the most possible. You can’t know what the detailed numbers are going to be precisely, but Friedman’s analysis is conservative and CBO based, and is likely as close to accurate as you can get.

The criticism of Friedman is based on the fact that there are right-wing economists who make up Keynsian multipliers for tax-cuts, which is crazy because money to wealthy people does not increase demand significantly, rather it can increase investment. That type of economic fraud is what gives multipliers a bad name. But with Sanders policies, the multipliers are both theoretically and empirically justified. You can’t let bad economists crowd out the good ones using politics. You need to look at quantitative data to decide which analysis is correct.


2016-02-20 on theatlantic

Sanders is 74, and just missed the cocaine orgy that created Reagan.


2016-02-20 on mediaite

“If they were willing to work for any wage, they would’ve gotten a job already!”

That statement shows you don’t understand macroeconomics. It is possible for people to not find a job because there isn’t enough demand, not because they aren’t willing to work for any wage. Reducing minimum wage, or removing it, makes unemployment go UP not DOWN. This is essential to understand, because it is one of the simplest way to see that marginal equilibrium analysis is entirely bogus for the economy as a whole, and it is a prediction verified with decades of data. This has been understood for 80 years, and I don’t understand how you can continue to pretend microeconomic predictions for unemployment and minimum wage work.

The number of places where the private sector is deficient is effectively as infinite as the number of possible private sector jobs. Anything where the benefit is public and cannot be recouped except with a tollbooth is a good target for infrastructure projects. The essential point is that once you absorb excess labor, workers can negotiate pay equal to productivity, and once this happens, macroeconomics doesn’t exist anymore, the labor market goes to equilibrium, and you can use marginal analysis. The existence of unemployment wrecks equilibrium by reducing wages and undercutting demand. This is the foundational observation of macroeconomics.


2016-02-20 on truthdig

I am not ‘looking inward’ or denying the distance between real existing capitalism and perfect competitive equilibrium. I am simply using competitive equilibrium as a normative ideal, as Marx implicitly did in crafting the policies in the “Manifesto”. The use of competitive equilibrium as normative is standard in economics, even in Marxist economics, and it was also implicitly used in the allocation programs internal to planned Marxist-Leninist economies. The most progressive planners, like Alexei Kosygin, advocated for the use of market equilibrium norms, as did other mathematically oriented planners.

I do not use any “dialectic”, because I don’t think talking to other people is useful in coming up with ideas, especially not sterile Hegelian dialectic type discussion, which is just a mind-numbing intellectual onanism. I believe in engineering practical solutions to practical problems, not in discussions with a bunch of philosophers. That was also the consensus that emerged among the rank and file, non-ruling-party non-elite in the USSR since the 1930s. They didn’t bother with questions of dialectic, they bothered with “how can we make more steel”.

“Your socialism manages to address only the problem of labour as a commodity and only tangentially at that because your ideal workplaces are embedded in a larger profit system.”

Only! That’s Capital I. That’s the intractable problem. Marx tells you that it is impossible to address this problem. He knows how to address all the other problems. I am showing you that it is not impossible to address the central intractable problem too, it is just monumentally difficult. I am not dealing with the other problems because other people are thinking about them, and they can be solved within standard bourgeoise thinking.

Regarding the return of rentier behavior, there is no barrier to bourgeoise economists solving that problem, as they partially did in the past, because rentiers act against bourgeoise interest as well as everyone else’s interest. That they haven’t done so yet, allowing rentiers to dominate, is due to the economic quacks who seek to protect capitalist profits, which are secretly rentier profits, where the rents are extracted from capital stock. There was a time not so long ago when any American could go to college and own a house, so this problem is not unsolvable for standard thinking. There was never a time where worker owned business became normative in the US, and the few Union owned companies like United Airlines never became the majority. United Airlines was one of the targets of the 9/11 attack, it was bankrupted by the attack, and the employee ownership was destroyed. American Airlines likewise stopped worker profit-sharing, from 2002 until 2014, when it was partially restored.

The real problem is in preventing the concentration of capital stock, and thereby solving the labor/owner relation, as this requires a concerted effort.

I don’t deal with the other problems, because I didn’t think about them. I take my problems one at a time.


2016-02-20 on mediaite

Nobody will give them a loan, as it is not clear they will be able to pay back the principal, let alone the interest. Negative income tax creates a dependent underclass, it wastes people’s potential labor, and keep people depressed and on drugs. When someone’s labor is not used by anyone at present, you need to find a way to use it, or else you are wasting the most important resource— a human being. There’s no argument that this is good for growth, no matter how marginally useful the product of the labor, because the person would have been doing NOTHING otherwise.

Infrastructure jobs absorb unemployment for useful labor, the government jobs can be construction, software, laying down high-speed lines, fundamental research, highways, windmills and solar power, nuclear plants, anything at all which requires labor that is unused. Absorbing all excess unused labor pushes you to a free frictionless labor market immediately among those not employed at a state job.


2016-02-20 on truthdig

The reason I don’t is because use value is equal to exchange value in economic equilibrium, as is the “labor value price” and the “exchange value price”. Any discussion of the difference can be subsumed into the more general question “What does equilibrium look like, and how do we get to it?”

I’m not a Keynesian or a post-Keynesian. I read MARX, not Keynes, and I reproduced Keynes from Marx for myself, because it is trivial to do, and for sure this is how Keynes originally did it. Except of course, I didn’t come up with the “sticky prices” nonsense Keynes made up, or anything like that. I just used class segregation and capital aggregation, like Marx explained, as post-Keynesians sometimes do.

The Keynesians are not socialists, and their reforms do not aim to produce a socialist society, with equalized roughly uniform ownership of capital, up to a factor of 10 or so related to personal productivity, and workplaces owned by employees devoid of alienated labor. They are ok with a small class of people owning all the capital and directing workplaces from above, as they must be to be hired as bourgeoise economists in the first place.

I am not ok with that, because it for sure is not so in perfectly competitive economic equilibrium, it just is true in the real world. Economic equilbrium is something that is not hard to reproduce, with appropriate policies, because it is the outcome of competition without concentrations of power.

Much as housing reform led many Americans to land and home ownership, and to a large extent eliminated rentier behavior, workplace reforms can lead to workplace ownership and eliminate capitalist behavior. The latter is much harder, because it really does dismantle the source of power of the bourgeoisie, and eliminates them entirely as a class.

No bourgeoise economist would ever propose such a thing, but no revolutionary Marxist can propose it either, because it maintains the legal structure of capitalism. This is why I feel I have to do it, because there are political barriers to this position from either side.

I didn’t know who Hudson was until you asked, but now that I googled him, I guess the reforms Hudson advocates put a mild tax on rent seeking, and does not aim to radically alter capitalism’s structure. The things I am suggesting I believe really can radically alter capitalism’s structure, in that it will reproduce the undisputed success of real existing Marxist-Leninist economies— zero unemployment and fair wages for everyone, along with the undisputed success of the anarcho-syndicalist societies: non-alienated labor and self-management.


2016-02-20 on motherjones

There is nothing to question. All his numbers are dead on accurate. That is a first for a presidential campaign from any side in pretty much all of human history.


2016-02-20 on motherjones

He didn’t change anything, he and Paul see eye to eye on the Fed, except Paul wants a zero inflation policy, while Sanders wants a zero unemployment policy. Sanders is right on the zero unemployment thing, Paul is wrong. Sanders turned Paul’s proposal from a recurring audit that would never pass into a one-time audit that passed, and made a permanent audit of the Fed a major plank of his platform.


2016-02-20 on motherjones

Come on, you are talking about a tax scheme for 2017 and worrying about future reductions of income inequality that will take at least a decade. Incomes don’t just go down just like that, it’s not confiscation or a salary cap. You just have CEOs and top managers paying more taxes.

If Sanders’ policies do lead incomes do become roughly equalized, that means the US had the most terrific growth you could ever imagine, because that’s the only way income equality ever happens under these sorts of reforms, it’s roughly what happened in the 40s, 50s, and 60s.


2016-02-20 on motherjones

Bernie Sanders has recieved first a complete blackout, then, as it was clear he would be competitive despite the blackout, a wave of ridiculous attacks. There is noting positive about the media coverage. The positive coverage is in the online discussions from regular people, not from big media.

There is nothing to question in what he says. It’s honest and sensible stuff.


2016-02-20 on motherjones

In this case, there is experience with single payer in every other country on Earth, and it is certain that it does work out like that. The taxes Sanders is proposing are actually more progressive than the health taxes in other countries, which are often a regressive VAT. So workers in Sanders’ plan pay genuinely less, the payroll and income tax for them amounts to far less than even the reduced cost of single payer, let alone the higher costs of current private insurance, because a significant fraction is born by general income taxes on the wealthier folks. This is the best designed single-payer system I could have hoped for from a candidate.


2016-02-20 on motherjones

Low income workers and unemployed workers are supporting him in large numbers, and that’s an oppressed and marginalized group that you are blind to.


2016-02-20 on motherjones

But the tax is contingent on getting health care. A tax contingent on a system that saves you money is not the same as a pure tax increase, because you are saving money in net. If the program doesn’t pass, nothing happens to your taxes. That’s the only real tax increase in the platform.


2016-02-20 on motherjones

Sanders is not just a progressive, he is also a strong liberty candidate. This is why he is so strong in the general election, many libertarians also find a lot to support in his platform, and they know where he stands even on the parts they disagree with, because he is straightforwardly honest about it. That is what every politician should be like, but unfortunately, today, it’s just him.


2016-02-20 on motherjones

I didn’t, thank you.


2016-02-19 on truthdig

Of course! That’s the whole point of Marx. But I’m not going to go around arguing about philosophy with Republicans, just go about changing the material conditions.


2016-02-19 on truthdig

That’s unfortunately philosophy. While I agree with Marx’s philosophy, it is hard to design policy around this. The change in consciousness is through discussion, deliberation, consensus forming, and choices about the future. It helps the discussion if people are social equals, and nobody is sitting on a mountain of capital. I don’t know what more to do with public policy beyond ensuring that this is so.


2016-02-19 on motherjones

With a true progressive, the opposite happens.


2016-02-19 on motherjones

Donations don’t work by quid-pro-quo. They work by silencing those who would be predisposed to vote against you, by an implicit threat of withdrawn funding.


2016-02-19 on motherjones

And gold is heavier than lead, and bananas are yellow. It’s still a ridiculous system.


2016-02-19 on motherjones

Those Democrats should be ashamed of themselves. They just know that Sanders is not vindictive, and Hillary is, so they don’t have the guts to stand up and express a proper opinion.


2016-02-19 on motherjones

Why not point to it? It’s a good analysis, although slightly too conservative regarding growth. It’s not his fault that his policy leads to best-possible economic growth. Wait. Actually, yes, it is.


2016-02-19 on motherjones

The “jobs” growth is in entry level corporate positions paying about $26,000 annually. This is what Sanders’ policy is addressing. $26,000 is better than sleeping on the streets, but only marginally.


2016-02-19 on motherjones

I don’t care what he said. Anyone who had access to secret internal documents knew that it was for a prisoner swap,as leaked by Petraeus’s girlfriend. Saying it was about a video, and then asking for internet censorship, when you KNOW that the video is just a ruse, that’s not acceptable. It’s totally legal. It’s just unacceptable.


2016-02-19 on motherjones

That’s because half the stuff was justified, and the rest was overreaching to try to get a conviction regarding awful unethical stuff that wasn’t technically illegal. She should have endured worse.


2016-02-19 on motherjones

I don’t know whether they had him murdered or not, and I don’t care. The stuff I DO know they did is shady enough that I don’t want to be forced to vote for her.


2016-02-19 on motherjones

It doesn’t require conspiracy to pull of a hoax anymore. That’s why they happen.


2016-02-19 on motherjones

The people “trashing” Hillary are simply pointing out a record of corruption. An example is travelgate. Now, it was perfectly legal for her to bring up those bogus charges against the white house travel staff. It was just incredibly scummy and I don’t want to vote for her. Likewise, it was probably legally ok for her to set up her own secret server for emails, but why in heck would she do that? That’s what Nixon would do to send email to his plumbers. Her policies in Ukraine were atrocious, her policies in Libya were terrible, and while I don’t blame her for the Benghazi attack, I do blame her for lying about that stupid video on YouTube. That video had nothing to do with the attack.


2016-02-19 on motherjones

Because of the Sandy Hook hoax and the Boston Bombing. I don’t vote for hoaxes.


2016-02-19 on motherjones

They aren’t opposing it either. If you ask them, they will probably support it, as it reduces unemployment, and all economists know that this is the most important thing to do.


2016-02-19 on motherjones

Nobody is going to make a revolution for a new Democrat, sorry. I voted in 2010, but I stayed home in 2014. I will not only vote in 2018, but I will donate money to races in other states, and there will be millions like me, because the policy is seriously progressive.


2016-02-19 on motherjones

Friedman’s analysis is too conservative. He is using CBO numbers and conservative multipliers. The effect on unemployment alone should increase wages by a ton, not just through spending, but through actual competitive wage increases, and he doesn’t take that into account. If anything, he is understating the growth Sanders’ policies will lead to.


2016-02-19 on motherjones

He’s not against the policies, I don’t need to try. I know Krugman’s writings. He believes in progressive taxes, universal health care, subsidized college, and employment stimulus. What he doesn’t believe is that there is political will to win the election.

He doesn’t like using multipliers for economic predictions because Republicans misuse them for false predictions of economic growth from tax cuts for the wealthy. But the fact that quack economists misuse a tool doesn’t mean that you need to discount a person who is using the tool properly.

Keynesian stimulus doesn’t give a multiplier when the money goes to the wealthy. Everyone knows that already, and there’s no reason to continue along with an academic fraud just because some prominent quack economists are paid to believe it.


2016-02-19 on motherjones

Down compared to what? There were independents out voting for Trump too, all the attention was on the Republican side, and still the turnout was great on the Dem side, and Sanders turnout was better than the pre-election polling predicted.

The midterms are where you need the revolution, and it doesn’t require all that high turnout, just more turnout than the Republicans get. It’s not like the Republican turnout in midterms is all that stellar.

The goal of the revolution is money and turnout for midterms, and both primary challenges to bought Democrats and getting Sanders supporters elected, wherever they come from politically. There are libertarians who support his platform too, believe it or not.

The strategy is the same as the NRA, and the NRA is unstoppable in the US, with only 4 million paying members. Sanders has better money, and by the time he gets elected, he will have more people.


2016-02-19 on motherjones

Paul Krugman doesn’t oppose the policies. He just opposes the politics. He knows these policies lead to growth.


2016-02-19 on motherjones

With Bernie Sanders platform, you have real committment to getting it passed, and that means real donation and real mobilization in midterms. This type of mobilization and committment is not possible with milquetoast policies like what Obama tried to get. Obama’s policies were better than the Republican nonsense, but not better by enough to get people organized and mobilized around.


2016-02-19 on motherjones

Economists are not really on both sides of this. Any serious economist who isn’t 80 years out of date is on Bernie Sanders’ side.


2016-02-19 on motherjones

Bernie Sanders doesn’t have optimistic growth estimates. The person who made 5-6% growth estimates is an independent economist in Massachussetts. That economist is probably actually underestimating the growth that would result from Sanders’ policies.

The growth estimates are not so important in checking Bernie’s numbers, because his proposals are internally balanced between taxes and spending. The resulting growth is just an (intentional) side effect.


2016-02-19 on motherjones

It couldn’t be, because I looked at the numbers and they are 100% sound. That’s a first for any candidate in history. Numbers are something that every person can independently check.


2016-02-19 on truthdig

I am not taking anyone anywhere, I am not a politician or even a serious activist (wish I were more active). I am simply describing the problems I see with the dominant revolutionary idea among the Marxist fraction in the left, and urging the Marxists to please consider the development of Marxist theory throughout the 20th century as it occured outside of Marxist states, developments shared with some dissident libertarians inside Marxist states like Dilas or Dubcek. It’s alternative ideas for discussion that I think achieve what I consider superior outcomes within a legal framework which is not fundamentally radically changed from the one that we find around us, but where the ownership structure of capital is radically changed anyway.

I also support Bernie Sanders, because I think this is a step forward. But I am positive Sanders doesn’t agree with all the ideas I’m throwing out on this page. I support him because he is most clear on the need to zero out unemployment, or at least, to get as close as possible.


2016-02-19 on truthdig

At the moment, that is true. You need consensus against imperialism to emerge among the entire population, and this takes time. We don’t have the time right now, please support Sanders, flawed as he is regarding this issue, because all the other candidates are worse.

I am hamfisted because I am not subtle. I am engaging in petty bourgeoise moralizing because I don’t know how else to ask for your support. You are free to do as you like, as always, consider this undignified begging.


2016-02-19 on truthdig

Marx invented macroeconomics, and in doing so created the theoretical foundation for Keynesian economic theory, and he never gets academic credit for it. That doesn’t mean he was a Keynesian, he wasn’t. He was a revolutionary. It just means he understood the theory behind Keynesian economics, because he was responsible for nearly all of it.

The way to transition from Marxism to Keynesianism is simply to say “Ok, Marx is right. There is a problem in capitalism due to unemployment driving down labor wages. What is the minimum policy you can adjust to fix this problem and fix nothing else?” If you ask this question, you are immediately led to minimum wage reform, maximum working hours, and stimulus spending to reduce unemployment including unemployment insurance. That’s it. That’s how Keynesianism was really born.

Marx was much more far reaching in his vision of what to do, but the Keynesians were reacting to the realities of both the great depression and the USSR. By the 1930s, the depression made it clear that Marx’s analysis was spot on. It was possible to have overproduction and a general glut. It was possible for unemployment to go sky high while capacity was underused, it was possible for wages to drop to subsistence even when productivity intrinsically stayed the same.

But it was also clear that a Marxist revolution along the lines of the USSR leads to political difficulty in allocating resources and power internally. In 1932, the USSR had a collectivization famine. The first five year plan worked, but it was entirely managed by bureaus, and there was terrible repression, show trials, and complete loss of civil liberties under Stalin.

So Keynes ripped of Marx’s analysis, did not give him credit, hired Marxist associates to advise him, and put out policy prescriptions which essentially borrowed all the economic points Marx made, with nonsense justifications from Capitalist marginal analysis, justifications which were not coherent, because they ignored the class segregation and capital aggregation which are central to Marxist theory. But the prescriptions work anyway, more or less, despite Keynes justifications being full of holes, because Marx had the analysis right.

Every serious Keynesian knows this, by the way, they are just not allowed to say it, because Marx is taboo in mainstream economics to this day. This despite the fact that all modern mainstream economics (at least in the dominant Keynesian tradition) is built on Marx’s analysis, in obfuscated form, with a lot of nonsense added too.

I refuse to go along with this academic charade. Whatever Marx would have thought of Keynesian policies, he is the intellectual father of macroeconomics, and not Keynes, and he deserves the academic credit. As far as I know, I am the only one saying this. Politically, Marx followers don’t want credit for Keynes stuff, and Keynes followers don’t want to be associated with Marx.


2016-02-19 on truthdig

That’s what Sanders election is all about. Introducing a candidate who is openly hostile to some of the interests of the capitalist class, and getting him elected. Each election needs to introduce progressively more reform, but only when there is public consensus, and this is extremely difficult. This is why people ask for your support, instead of complaints that the platform is not sufficiently progressive at present.


2016-02-19 on truthdig

This is not utopian socialism! It is a legal framework for transition to worker owned industry which is PRACTICAL and LEGALLY ACHIEVABLE in every modern industrial economy, with the existing legal system. Each measure can be supported and passed by a legislative body individually, and collectively it produces no more barriers than the New Deal measures, or Medicare.

The issue of discrimination between “utopian” and “scientific” socialism was of whether there was an economic analysis of the mechanism of consolidation of capital, and of the production of class structure, and the influence of the class structure on politics. The only “scientific” contribution of Marx was in the analysis of consolidation of capital, and in this respect, he created Keynesian economic theory.

The remainder of Marxist theory is an extrapolation of future development to a state where all production is monopolized, and the empoverished workers overthrow the owners, and control the monopolized industry using revolutionary committees. Both the monopolized state of production AND the revolutionary state of communist party ownership of the monopolized production are NEARLY EQUALLY TERRIBLE, and must be avoided at all cost.
The only solution is to avoid the monopolization and concentration of capital in the first place. The same scientific principles that Marx identified that show you how it happens can also be used to engineer a system where it doesn’t happen, and where it happens in reverse, distributing capital more broadly rather than more narrowly.


2016-02-18 on truthdig

The French system is more expensive, but I am not sure that the government part is the expense— I believe the cost includes the private component as well, which doesn’t require government spending.

Jobs programs are expensive, but not that expensive, because they ultimately are stimulus programs— they are only required when the economy is depressed, and the number of workers looking for state jobs is relatively small when private business is hiring. They can be paid for by existing taxes or even by bank taxes (printing money), and if there is inflation, by shifting to corporate taxes or income taxes. Inflation is controllable today. Jobs programs have been done before, the US does it with it’s highway and military budget continuously since the 1950s, just never before with an explicit goal of zero unemployment. Zero unemployment gives a ton of negotiating power to employees, this is the key.

The taxes to pay for health care are income and payroll in Sanders plan, and they are a little easier than in Europe, because the US is net wealthier. The tuition free universities is paid for by a transaction tax on trades, which makes sense because of microtrading and speculative trading. A little bit of friction is ok with many conservative economists. The net tax effect is easier, because there is no welfare component to the plan.


2016-02-18 on truthdig

“return on investment” is predicated on growth potential, not just on stealing from the workers. If the capital return is in a worker-owned business, it isn’t stealing from anyone, it is equitably shared, and the workers either reinvest it themselves, or hire someone to do so at a fair professional salary, and that person is not exploited either, nor do they make an obscene return by siphoning capital into their pockets.

I am not advocating for the preservation of capitalism. If you read my edited comment (I edited while you were responding), I am trying to build the socialism through worker ownership within the legal structure of capitalism, and without a revolution.

This is important to do, because it is possible. It is also difficult to do, because of resistance from the owners, and also because of resistance from leftists. But it is essential to advocate because of this, and this is why I do it.

The idea that you will reclaim the stolen wealth by revolution is problematic, because the revolution simply confiscates the wealth, and then has the problem of distribution and future production, which reintroduces the problem of division of power, except now with only revolutionary political mechanisms for distributing power. The mechanisms for distributing power in govenrnment or revolutionary bodies do not exist, and if they did, they would amount to worker owned cooperatives distributing capital to themselves, and for expansion.

This is not sellout stuff I am talking about, it is real Marxist thinking, except working within the legal framework of division of power by division of capital. The place it differs from Marx is in the degree to which centralization is desirable in intermediate stages. The correct answer is “none at all”.


2016-02-18 on truthdig

The oil is not a big deal, except for the warming. If the west wasn’t as stupid as it was, it would have done what the USSR did and just dug deep boreholes, the US figured that out now, although it is doing somewhat more damaging fracking instead of deep boreholes. Either way, warming means it all needs to stop.

Raw materials are not that hard to find, it’s just an issue of relative cost. The quest for cheap labor hurts the developed economies and to a certain extent helps the targets of imperialism, as they acquire manufacturing expertise, which can be used to spin off local firms. It only helps individual firms outsourcing, not the West’s overall economy. The quest for “additional markets” is silly, that’s just people buying stuff, it’s no longer the mercantile era where the manufacturing is all done in Britain. The whole trade system is a mixed bag. The real problem is the concentrations of power in multinational firms. With a decentralized approach, globalization can just mean local development with independent local firms, and “raw materials” can just mean selling Lithium on an open market, without multinationals or governments going to war over it.

The real problems are the invasions and impositions of fascist governments, and covert operations. These are delusional actions by a psychopathic minority in powerful positions, and this stuff needed to stop 60 years ago.


2016-02-18 on truthdig

If you actually read Marx, you see he had a very nuanced view of the role of Capitalism. For Marx, the role of Capitalism was to end at centralization, and then the role of socialists was to seize the centralized production and redirect it to the common good. It’s all very easy, because consolidation and centralization of power is the inevitable outcome of the mechanisms, and then seizing centralized things is just a matter of a large number of people replacing a small number of owners.

The central problem that Marx identifies is the mechanism of consolidation. The cycle of capitalist production produces large amounts of capital in the hands of a few, and loss of capital for the many. This leads to centralization of capital in a few hands, and the oppression of many by the few. His fix is to seize the concentrated capital.

This fix doesn’t work, because the concentration of power is already bad for production long before it is seized. Marx simply assumed it would be more efficient to have these enormous companies, but it just isn’t. These concentrations of power are themselves destructive to economies, with or without a revolution putting them in the hands of a communist party. The political structure doesn’t matter all that much. You need to break the power structure up, to have decentralized production, whatever the structure of the government.

To reverse the consolidation in capitalism, you need explicit policy that makes incentives for capital to be distributed broadly, and policy to prevent it concentrating unduly. This means capital must be managed professionally, not by wealthy individuals owning it, and its profits widely distributed, by public stock or collective ownership, where appropriate.

There is no law of capitalism that says that this is impossible, it’s just never been done successfully, although some parts are attempted now and again. I am trying to explain how to do it more fully. It requires conscious effort toward the goal, and rejection of revolution in favor of the much harder problem of designing uniform fair policy which pushes in this direction.

An apropos physics analogy is a phase transition. The laws of water molecules aren’t all that different at 0 degrees C as at 1 degree C, but the behavior of the water is different. Marx noticed that capitalism is at 0 degrees, it is unstable to freezing, so you get blocks of ice, the large firms, inside the water of normal people with normal amounts of money doing free trade. The Marxist-Leninist method freezes the whole economy, and puts a small number of water molecules at the top to move the gigantic ice cube this way or that. It’s worse than the disease. The solution I am proposing is to increase the temperature, so that the ice never forms in the first place. This is more difficult, but it is the only permanent solution.

It requires very little government force, because everyone wants the ownership of capital to be more equitably distributed, including a majority of capitalists.


2016-02-18 on truthdig

The government is not a weaker power, it can tax and therefore it can destroy. I don’t support the idea of an extra-governmental vanguard agency, like the communist party, being given revolutionary power through Soviets to influence and direct the activities of government, because the vanguard and its Soviets are a greater concentration of power than the businesses it is regulating.

Reversing the problems Marx identified is a matter of sensibly designing new conditions where the laws of consolidation and accumulation work in reverse, toward greater distributed ownership, and decentralized business. This is not impossible, it’s just much much harder than staging a revolution. The revolution can’t produce this effect, because a decentralizing policy reduces the power of the revolutionary vanguard as well, and is opposed by the vanguard.

To see this, consider the extreme difficulty of passing even moderate decentralization measures that Tito and Kardelj faced, or Dubcek, or Gorbachev. Only Tito had moderate success, and only Tito had a relatively productive economy. But Tito also suppressed more radical voices for decentralization, like Dilas. Once you produce a revolutionary vanguard, the vanguard sits there opposing decentralization worse than the capitalists do.


2016-02-18 on truthdig

The top graduated tax rate can be lower than that in other countries, the “graduated” part is the important part, the fact that the top rate is growing as the number of non-owning emloyees grows, not the value of the top rate. Whatever the top rate is, it just needs to give the companies sufficient financial incentive to split, in whatever way that split makes sense economically.

You can also make the lowest rate negative, so that it becomes a uniform subsidy for small companies. The goal is to give companies financial incentive to either decentralize or maximize employee ownership, or both, it’s goal is not to raise revenue. The tax, if there is a negative component at smaller business side, might end up costing money in the end. I imagine it as revenue neutral.

I also agree with Sanders that trade deals need to be negotiated with the view of raising employee wages in the trading partner to be comparable to those in the wealthier countries. This is something that requires a whole lot of knowledge that I don’t have, so I defer to Sanders, and other people who thought about fair-trade policies.


2016-02-18 on truthdig

I believe that you can get political consensus for these measures both from Marxists and from Libertarians, as they are minimal fixes to the central problems Marx identifies. That means election after election, where you try to get each plank enacted, step by step. Obama’s election for me was halting the implementation of the opposite platform, the Koch bros. John Birch platform. Sanders will work to get point 1, reduced unemployment, with target zero unemployment. Perhaps he or his successor will work for point 2, graduated corporate income tax. Contract reform might have to be state by state, but if there is consensus among lawyers, it might happen. Contract law is very technocratic, and usually supervised by lawyers, not the public. The previous reform was the “Uniform Commercial Code” of the 1950s, which gave guidelines to states for contract law, and these guidelines are updated technocratically, and states usually pass them by rubber stamp, because nobody pays any attention to this. No insider equity is something I saw mainstream people advocating, as the failure of the equity incentives for managers have become obvious.

The transition to worker ownership I see as happening company by company, through unionization drives where appropriate (importantly, unionization not with the goal of joining a national union, but with the goal of eventual acquisition of the place of work)— this is appropriate for bookstores, movie theaters, independent retail outlets. It is easier when there is a jobs program and effectively zero unemployment, because the threat of getting fired carries less of a bite. For larger organizations, you might need to use threats of consumer boycott where appropriate, local zoning decisions to prevent new stores until the management of old stores is independent, and so on. For enormous state level enterprises, some will have to be broken up, many will break up just for tax purposes with a graduated tax, and others will have to be converted to more reasonable managment by worker action. It is much easier to ask for more power when you can find a job somewhere else. Workers are very powerful at zero unemployment, this is why full employment policies are always resisted, even though everyone knows they are good for growth.


2016-02-18 on truthdig

Re “splitting the vote to get Sanders elected”, it’s not real. They won’t actually split the vote, they just say so for political advantage right now. If Sanders doesn’t get the nomination, I will vote for Clinton (and take a stiff drink, boy do I not want that to happen).

I think you are too pessimistic. You can probably get instant runoff in Vermont right now. You can possibly make a deal with Democrats to introduce instant runoff in districts where the vote is sometimes close, and where they will benefit from the runoff Green vote, and you can also get instant runoff in places where Republicans believe they will benefit from the Libertarian vote runoff. There is an interest to the major parties in this too, as they believe they will still win with instant runoff, and won’t have to worry about vote-splits anymore. In the short term, they are right, in the long term, not. but politicians think short term.

The Australians already passed it nationally, see what they did.


2016-02-18 on truthdig

I already know all of that, with one exception regarding your statement about abstract art at the end. Their behavior is indeed that of “effective Marxists”, I just wanted to explain the actual thinking there (if you can call it thinking), to make sure it was clear.

It is also really the behavior of “effective statist Marxists”, or “effective Marxist-Leninists”. It is not the thinking of “effective libertarian Marxists” or “effective anarchists”. Interestingly, this makes libertarian conservatives, in part, enemies of the bourgeoise elite, because their anti-elitist and anti-collectivist streak means that they oppose part of the bourgeoise structure, the social part which puts an enlightened minority in charge, while at the same time leaving alone the economic part which is in reality the fundamental reason this social structure is erected in the first place.

I didn’t know the irrationalist tendency was analyzed already, I just noticed it myself, I didn’t read enough Marxists (although it’s not so hard to reproduce Marxist thought if you know Marx). I agree it is obvious. I agree with everything you say about the bourgeoise mentality, but I disagree that it is hopeless to reach out to individuals. Conservative libertarians don’t usually believe in their own special magic, they already agree on the problem, at least in its social aspect. Once they see a practical economic solution that does not depend on statism or a vanguard, or tyranny of the vanguard, putting a new elitist class in charge of even more state power, they often switch and support the economic policies, at least in sufficient numbers to win elections.

There is one exception to our agreement: abstract art. Abstract art is NOT “un-art” (at least if you are talking about Pollock and Schoenberg and not Rothko and Cage, although even Rothko and Cage have their merits as un-art), it is a Western co-option and extension of the socialist avante-garde which was begun in the USSR in the 1920s, with the explicit goal of producing something totally new, something you’ve never seen before. It succeeded in that. The earliest pieces in the MoMA are the Soviet “Suprematist” paintings, which introduced the modernist vocabulary and philosphy, and really form a radical revolutionary break with previous art.

The USSR stupidly suppressed the avante-garde in the 1930s and 1940s by loss of funding, when the government made large bureaus to produce mass art, entertaining the public became the priority, and the decisions were made by non-artist party members, by the “artistic vanguard”, which was neither. It was a bunch of party hacks with a lot of political power and absolutely no taste. Then the “Socialist realism” took over, and it was largely awful. “Socialist realism” meant musicals, spectacles, realistic painting, and large productions. It destroyed the Soviet avante-garde. The German fascists had the same reaction to the new avante-guard, except they called it “Jewish-Negro art” (they meant “muggle art”), and were even worse in suppressing it.

Even the second-rate “Soviet realism” kitch and its descendants, the Soviet musicals of the 1940s and Soviet space operas of the 1950s and 1960s, were co-opted by Western commercial artists (like Norman Rockwell, who was the premier American Soviet Realist) and Hollywood (Star Wars should have been a Soviet production, nearly all of it was prefigured in Sputnik era space fiction. It was done instead by new little producers in California), while the Soviet avante-garde was co-opted by the bourgoise elite. This was done by purchasing the work of Western socialists reproducing and extending Soviet forms which were killed by the bumbling Soviet state, and kept alive by socialists outside the USSR. You don’t appreciate how terrible the USSR was for the socialist movement outside.

It is a terrible shame that the bourgoisie preserved these socialist originated art forms better than the Marxists-Leninists. You really eat your own.

I think that you are totally wrong about the degree to which education can remove the magical thinking, and alert people to power structures. I think you can win election after election, by going step by step on that which you have consensus between the socialists who read Marx, and the Libertarians who read Bukharin and Chomsky.


2016-02-18 on truthdig

Please, don’t presume I am anti-scientific. Sometimes people tell you something which is both simultaneously in their interests, and also true.

I would support the exact same thing even if LNT were true, it just probably isn’t. The reason I believe the hormetic model is because I studied cancer biology at some point, and the 1950s LNT people didn’t know about checkpoints and apoptosis. These give an immediate mechanism for hormesis, or threshold, and I suspected LNT was wrong at low doses before I saw data. 1950s biology was extremely simplistic.

The traditional nuclear power plants are not great, I admit, but they aren’t that bad either, they are only somewhat unsafe because they are pressurized, and usually need to be built next to a water source for cooling. Nuclear done right is really “too cheap to meter”, you just have enormous bureaucracies and too few engineering decisions made right.

As I said, the sun is already used to near maximum by life on Earth. It is possible to extract sunlight from additional areas, but it is environmentally costly, and per kilowatt, it is much cheaper to research and deploy the new nuclear solutions. Keep an open mind, because putting all your eggs in one basket means you’re going to end up with warming.


2016-02-18 on truthdig

The class struggle is a struggle of classes, not of individuals. The individuals in the controlling class do not have to be conscious of their class role in the Marxist sense to do their work. In fact, it is very difficult for them to become Marxists and maintain their position. They are certainly NOT secret Marxists, they are something else, which is difficult to describe to a Marxist, because it is so childish and silly, you will laugh, you won’t believe me. I’ll call it “Harry Potter syndrome”.

The basic idea of Harry Potter syndrome is that there are certain individuals, a small group, who are specially magically sensitive. They can predict political and social trends, they have fine-tuned special senses, and they can influence other people by simply the power of thought and wishful thinking. These special magic people are given this magical skill at birth, by random chance. It’s more or less genetic. They do not need to analyze to know, they just KNOW. This “power of intuition” is emphasized in Fascist and right-wing thought, in Nietsche, in Heidegger, and especially in Ayn Rand, where the magical power is attached to sexual power, and to domineering authority. This magic power is the fundamental conceit of the bourgeoisie.

These people call themselves the “natural Aristocracy”, and many of them are born to a bunch of ordinary saps, who don’t have this magic power, who I will call “muggles” (in line with the Harry Potter theme— Harry Potter is actually a perfect introduction to the thinking of the Bourgoisie). The point of the American social structure is to let the magic minority rise to power by getting the government out of their way.

The power structure filters out people who interpret class issues in this childish way, and places them in positions of power. The reason is that others simply don’t have the stomach to do the immoral things required to rise through the heirarchy, because they don’t have the delusion that they are special, and deserve to be on top. You need that delusion to step on 99 others to make it to the 1%.

Not all of the people who believe they are magic succeed, of course, just a relative few. But ALL the people who rise are magical people, not muggles. They demonstrate this by various gestures and symbols of power, which are not particularly obvious, but you know what they are— it’s how you identify the bourgoise aspirant among the working class.

Some of these sell-outs do more than social gestures, they actually have various magic incantations and rituals, for instance, look at Oprah’s “The Secret”, the popularity of occult rituals (despite their ridiculous stupidity), and the prominent role of sex-magic gurus, like the Orgone fellow in the 1950s.

The role of these incantations is to bring you the magic power, influencing wealth to come to you. Once you have wealth, success reinforces the belief.

Needless to say, the vast majority of people with this belief structure are never going to get any wealth, as magic doesn’t work. These people either come to believe they are “muggles”, their magic is defective, or else reject the belief entirely, and realize that there is no magic. The magic people are then by self-selection the majority among the bourgoisie, and in their mind, they are in the minority position of KNOWING that there actually IS magic, but having to hide it from the muggles, so the muggles won’t feel inadequate, pretending that people are equal in public, and they are only able to speak about this fundamental inequality of magic-people and muggles among each other.

Of course, a Marxist is immune to any such superstition, and it is difficult to even explain that there are grown adults who think this way. Drugs like cocaine help in this delusion, also LSD, as they damage the analytical faculty at the same time as giving false insight and isolation. But the simplest way to acquire this philosophy is simply to be born wealthy, which gives you a sense of specialness and unique purpose.

While I am not in a position of power, I was an academic scientist by training. So I went to a rather elite school, and I was surrounded by the elite bourgeoise . The mentality of elites regarding class is opposite to the Marxist view, where class is an emergent structure of the economic transactions, and has very little relation to the individual in question. For the elites, class is purely a product of individual magic power, and selects out the individuals with most magic to wealth.

Once you understand this, the manfacturing of consent takes on a completely different tone. The need to manipulate the public is not a conspiracy to prevent them from revolt— nor is it even against the interests of the masses. It is noblesse oblige to keep the muggles from finding out about the magic world, and feeling bad about their own lack of magic. It also prevents Marxism, which is evil because it sets up barriers to power, which prevents the magic people from using their special magic to protect all the rest of the society.

This is really how the bourgoisie thinks. They blame the collapse of the USSR on the lack of magic people in top positions, not on economic problems caused by centralization, or on extrenal factors. It’s just that the Marxists were foolish enough to think people are basically equal, and there isn’t a minority with special magic powers that can use their magic to help everyone else.

It really helps to reread all the internal documents with this point of view if you are a Marxist, no matter how stupid it may seem to you, because it will reveal how non-evil people can do things like this without conspiracy. They just feel the need to both protect you, and help you, using their specialness. That’s how they think, get used to it. No amount of education can change it, it’s a self-reinforcing belief. The belief leads one to view the class structure as benevolent.


2016-02-18 on truthdig

The early stage startup can do whatever it likes, distributed equity, whatever the employees agree on, it’s private. This stage is usually very equitable to all involved.

Once a company has an IPO, once it is publically traded, it gets a huge infusion of capital, and the public interest needs protection. After IPO, equity packages don’t go to the employees, but to top executives, who are in a position of power now. These options package are simply used to transfer a small but significant fraction of corporate profits to the board of directors and top managers.

This distortion doesn’t directly affect corporate profits all that much, but it produces an enormous pay gap between top managers and regular employees or midlevel managers, and is responsible for social inequality. It is not competitively earned income, and so it produces a race to the top which is not justified by a skill on a resume. This produces perverse incentives.

If the board wants to pay itself, it can decide on a salary. The stock-option deals are both the main source of insider trading allegations, it is next to impossible to avoid insider trading when the top managers own stock and options, and it is also the main source of the pay imbalance. Salaries of top managers are usually not as exhorbitant as the options, which effectively steal from shareholders at amounts relatively too minute to complain about.

With a full employment policy, and with salary payments, it is reasonable to imagine that the management of publically traded corporations becomes less political and more technocratic, as there is no longer the lavish pay and class separation that comes with the high position. It becomes a professional job like any other, perhaps a bit more demanding than most.

With a technocratic management, the step to worker control is modest, because all the workers managers are more or less social equals, and there is no negative class mobility in moving to greater worker control. This is not imposed, I assume that workers will prefer to work under worker control, so you don’t need to mandate it, just create the conditions where it naturally emerges.


2016-02-18 on truthdig

I got into a long discussion about it below with Atomsk, and here’s a link ( https://www.quora.com/What-… ) . The outline is 1. Zero unemployment (via open-ended jobs program at an effective min. wage) 2. Progressive corporate income tax (rate according to no of hired employees) 3. transparent competitive contracting reform (open published contracts, no special deals) 4. no insider equity (stock in public corporation can only be owned by non-employees) 5. transition to worker owned industry 6. deregulation of the worker owned industry.

This is very different from traditional shifts to worker control, as it is entirely voluntary, and requires no revolutionary break at any point. It is compatible with the legal system of capitalism, although the intended endpoint is a sort of market socialism. The only mechanisms introduced to induce worker ownership are gentle pushes through the tax code.


2016-02-18 on mediaite

To have capitalism, the government enforce property rights through a system of contracts and deeds, and you trade the contracts and deeds to others for payments, with the goal of producing more value after the trade. The justification for free trade is efficiency and competition, which in theory produces a capitalist equilibrium where everyone’s needs are met, and people get compensated according to their productivity, more or less.

When this trading produces monopolies and unemployment, you don’t get anywhere near the theoretical equilibrium, and the economy is depressed. The role of socialism, as far as I am concerned, is to produce uniform deed and contract policy which encourages decentralization. The process by which you do this, from my point of view, is by introducing a system of taxes which encourages decentralization, and only enforcing contracts which allow free fair competition.

Marxists-Leninists believe that trade must be restricted altogether, or power allocated through government bureaus. Like nearly all socialists since 1956, I think this is a failure, as the concentrations of power in government are even worse than the concentrations of power in the most awful busineses.


2016-02-18 on truthdig

“There is no safe dose of radiation.” This is not at all clear. We are exposed to radiation all the time in nature, from bricks, cosmic rays, dust, coal, and so on. The model people used for radiation damage is the “Linear no-threshold model” (LNT), which is based on the observation that DNA damage is proportional to the number of ionizing particles travelling through your body (which is true), and that the response to DNA mutation is sometimes cancer.

The projection in the model is that the cancer response is roughly linear in the damage. This is true for large-dose sporadic exposure, like an occasional burst of radon in mines, Hiroshima bomb, or big doses on lab animals, and there the LNT model works. For small chronic doses, comparable to natural radiation, the model is very controversial today, and seems to fail entirely.

The (presumably) proper model is most probably the “hormetic model”, which says that radiation damage in doses less than or equal to natural radiation does not produce additional cancers, but paradoxically produces fewer cancers. The reason is not pretty, it’s because your body’s immune system just gets a little better at weeding out mutant cells, or mutant cells are urged to self-destruct. This radiation hormesis thing not completely clear scientifically, the data at low doses is not conclusive, and people are working on it now. The French model is the “threshold model”, which says that doses comparable to natural radiation are negligible for calculating cancer risk, and that’s probably a safe assumption. There are additional unknown effects of small doses of radiation, like RNA breaks in neurons, which are also inconclusive. But since a person living in a brick house or at high altitudes gets something like 3 times the radiation exposure that a person living in a wood house at sea level gets, I think you shouldn’t worry about small exposures at all.

The effect of extremely low-dose radiation is very difficult to study, but I believe the emerging view that it is not at all harmful.

I don’t believe the new reactors are decades away. I think that you could roll out a generation of LFTRs in 5 years or less, with a fully funded research project. Technically, it is much simpler than existing designs. The point of LFTR is that it reuses the waste, it can be rolled out in conjunction with traditional plants, and the old plants can be phased out eventually. France has already transitioned to fully nuclear electricity, using the old designs.

The sun is being used already. The Earth uses a non-negligible fraction of the photons that hit the Earth for plant bacteria and plankton growth. Conversion and storage are much more problematic, and nuclear is vastly cheaper and in LFTR, completely practically inexhaustible.


2016-02-18 on truthdig

It gets at the root of your problem as a party. It has nothing to do with the social problems.


2016-02-18 on truthdig

What you are missing is that the critics are not willfully trying to protect their power (although this is what their actions amount to), they actually believe their own propaganda, and that propaganda is structurally dominant not because people are willfully ignoring the problem, it’s because they are sure that you don’t have a solution.

Your experience regarding pushing change comes with pushing a flawed proposal. When you push a flawed proposal and meet resistance, it isn’t because the resistance is evil or irrational, it is because your proposal is incorrect. You have to fix the proposal first, and be sure that it works, before going around claiming that others are sabotaging it out of self-interest.

The amount of state power required is, I believe, a graduated corporate tax, a transparent competitive contract reform, guaranteed employment, and no-insider-equity. These, along with the existing systemic moderate inflation, inheritance taxes, and progressive personal taxes, remove the concentrations of wealth in individuals, and protect against capital accumulation in monopolistic business, by giving natural incentives to split.

I cannot support any scheme for reversing private concentrations of power in capitalism which grants even more power to the ostensibly public entity doing the reversing. Then the solution is worse than the disease. This is the criticism of real existing Marxism that people give, the obnoxious superpowers of the public representatives, and it is a cogent criticism. If the concentration of power you introduce places a bureau in charge of all businesses, then I would rather have the businesses than the bureau.

Capitalism, by the way, is only the second largest concentration of power in history. The biggest would have to be the Roman slaveholding aristocracy. That was transformed by persuasion, in that case, conversion to Christianity, and it took too long.


2016-02-17 on truthdig

Regarding worthwhile conversations, I agree. Usually I am trying to explain it to people on the other side, who haven’t read “Capital”.

I know the flaws in real existing capitalism, I am engineering a solution. I believe the filters you find which prevent progressive change are not just due to intrinsic power structures and self-interest, although that is the obvious mechanism by which these filters always work. They are fundamentally due to current real lack of engineering solution to the problem of the design of a real, stable, actual socialism.

The trends in capitalism are obvious. My claim is that they are structural, they are due to the “M-C-M'” cycle, as you and Marx put it, and the only sensible fix to this is to separate the C and M so that people who manage capital are making money, not making capital. This is systematically attempted in public corporations, in professional investment banking, and so on. It is difficult, because the structures are never very good, and a uniform legal system doesn’t stop concentrations of capital from forming anyway.

I am proposing to do it, and I believe you are dogmatic in your refusal to acknowledge that it can be done. Once you understand it theoretically, you can start doing politics to implement it step by step by usual means, and persuade critics that it actually does work.

The revolutionary method produces problems because the division of revolutionary power is no more easy than the division of capital.


2016-02-17 on truthdig

LOL! No… not desirable! I meant “it doesn’t exist”. The feeling of cyberbullying is what people feel when they are first exposed to true free speech. I got over it in 1992, on Usenet.

It’s not bullying because there’s nothing you can do to anyone realistically online, except jawbone at them.


2016-02-17 on truthdig

You don’t need to impose something by force that everyone already wants, you just need to gently nudge, and people can do the rest without top-down imposition. The less you impose from on-high, the more naturally the structure will emerge. You don’t want an official “worker coop bureau” in the government deciding what counts as a coop, because that will end with them certifying that WalMart is a worker coop because the workers can vote on the location of the water cooler, and all the “legal preference” will go to WalMart, and not to real coops. Look what happened with “organic” and “certified organic”.


2016-02-17 on truthdig

Nothing has ever worked in the past, until it is done right. I am trying to look to the future.


2016-02-17 on truthdig

The gist is “FIRST fight hard to get instant runoff, and THEN ask for Green votes, where you have instant runoff”. Until you do this, people will fight you tooth and nail, because you can’t split the vote.


2016-02-17 on truthdig

Except you can’t pursue power online. There’s no power to be had. You can only debate and persuade.


2016-02-17 on truthdig

If you find the vast sprawl under the current system acceptable, I don’t know what to say. I want sprawl reduced to nothing, and compact communities. The area for solar gathering would be enormous, calculate it, and it comes at the expense of plants. Wind is not perfect either, as it blights areas, and has environmental impact on birds. Nuclear is tiny, and as I explained, with good engineering, it is a complete solution.


2016-02-17 on truthdig

That depends crucially on the size of the company, and the voting structure of the board of directors. The goal is first to minimize the size of companies that don’t need to be big. There is no reason for retailers to be big, that’s just wasteful and pointless consolidation, and it can be reversed with high minimum wage, fair competition contract policy, Sherman act enforcement, and consumer boycotts. You can kill WalMart very quickly.

The type of nonvoting profit-sharing stock is largely meaningless in terms of directing work at a day-to-day level, and I believe such stock and options on such stock must only be traded by the public, and NEVER be owned by employees, as it is a form of insider trading. The reason corporate compensation is so off the charts is that the board of directors is issuing stock options to itself to sponge off the corporate profits, at the expense of millions of independent stock holders. This is a form of fraud, and “no insider equity” is a simple way to prevent it.

A company can still be worker managed even when all the profit-sharing stock is owned by others. The pressures for the workers to expand the business now comes from outside, as stock-owners agitate for best policies, but the employees can still manage day-to-day decisions.


2016-02-17 on truthdig

To be clear: I am not “designing a new system as if I had control over it”, I don’t presume to be able to that, and I don’t consider it “easy”. It is not “easy”, it is “impossible”. Anyone who pretends to do it is deluding themselves or lying. I can’t design a better system, any more than I could write a new OS from scratch by myself.

What I am telling you are a series of serious PRACTICAL steps which can produce a transition to socialism, without any sort of revolutionary transformation at any point. This smooth path of transition is required, because the division of power negotiations under revolutionary socialist planning reproduces precisely the struggles of contract law under capitalism, and from all revolutionary precedents, it produced an even more lopsided division of power, because there was no court system nominally independent of the communist party to decide the contractual obligations of parties.

This is why capitalism, outside of fascist states, and as atrociously corporate and centralized as it is, ended up with a more decentralized business authority structure than Marxist Leninist regimes. This is why China spent the last 30 years writing and debating contract law. If you want to fix capitalism to turn it into socialism, look at contract law, and set taxes to encourage decentralization and small business.


2016-02-17 on truthdig

My claim is that there are many centers of authority in the society. There is the fellow who owns his own farm, there is the woman who acts as an independent contractor, with a secretary who works for her and two other businesses, and there is a corporation with 10,000 employees making minimum wage.

If you wish to remove authoritarian power structures, you can’t do this by imposition, because the same state power that attacks the corporate heirarchy also attacks the independent people in the society, who are the most important component, and who carry local authority due to their competence and the respect earned by their immdiate peers.

“No. This is a general(ly meaningless) statement. You “get rid of” structures of power by revolution”

Ok, if you want to define it that way. But to get rid of a corporation, which is a power structure, you just have to drive it out of business. Woolworth is gone, that didn’t require a government revolution. You can get rid of WalMart without a government revolution, you just have to reduce its profits sufficiently that it is no longer has the upper hand over local business. It’s margins are large only because of low minimum wage, and preferential contracts.

“The “mechanism granting the power” cannot be completely separate from and external to the power structure itself, it is never “engineered” by some otherworldly and completely “independent” outside actor.”

That is 100% true, and this is why I propose global fixes rather than local fixes. The only things I philosophically admitted to needed a top-down control are tax rates, monetary policy, uniform things that don’t require a separate decision in this instance or that instance. The corruption of government appears when you make specific decisions about a specific firm or organization.

The global control of tax rates is technocratic, and requires only macro data. The global control of unemployment by monetary policy and stimulus requires only macro data. Philosophically, adjusting macro policy to macro data doesn’t admit influence from power structure necessarily, because this is a small enough basket of numbers that the public can be aware of all of them and vote to fix them when they don’t work properly.

It is not at all easy, but there is no revolutionary solution that ends at this policy.

“What the hell does this mean?” (regarding contract law and separation of power)

If you look at capitalist contract law, there is a lot of effort expended to determine when you are an “independent contractor”, and when you are an “employee”. The key differentiator is the degree of independence of your day-to-day work decisions.

There is a lot of effort expended in knowing when you are a “subsidiery”, a “division”, a “franchise”, or a “competitor”. Again, the key issue is control.

The fine-grained distribution of control is the central issue that capitalist legal system obsesses over. It is nearly the entire body of law under capitalism.

This haggling is important, because what it is determining is which power structures will be admitted as legitimate, and which are going to be destroyed by government force, or implicitly destroyed by simply the government refusing the respect your contractual decisions. For example, Uber was forced to declare it’s “independed contractors” employees, because it was telling them what to do.

This legal system is full of precedents about power distribution, in detail, with numbers, with precedents, and it is something socialist theory usually ignores. This stuff is what China was forced to deal with in the late 1990s, when they wrote their corporate law. It is why the USSR was struggling with fine-division of authority.

The policies I suggested work within this framework to nudge the society toward a socialist endpoint. It is much more difficult to do this than to stage a revolution, but the division of power within a revolution reproduce the legal struggles in the contract-law courts which have been worked out over hundreds of years. You need to look at these precedents to understand the details of power-sharing under capitalism.

Of course “capitalism” exploited and degraded hip hop, IF by capitalism you mean “large corporations” and “monopolized power structures”. “Capitalism” in the sense of free trade and small corporations created hip-hop. You need to distinguish between the two, because free trade does not necessary lead to concentration of power, at least, if you succeed in engineering a system which reverses Marx’s law.

For some more current examples, here are two:

https://www.youtube.com/wat…

https://www.youtube.com/wat…


2016-02-17 on truthdig

Those things are a weighted average of past and current bets, and are a little behind the times. His current odds are best estimated at 50/50.


2016-02-17 on truthdig

There is no “center”, or at least, it isn’t at the point of the average opinion of Congress. You are presuming that individual Republicans resemble their representatives. It is no more true than that you are like the Democratic party. Republicans consider their representatives guilty of war crimes, like you think of the Democrats.

The fundamental overriding principle of the modern Republicans is maximizing liberty of individuals, and minimizing state intrusion. Their “true philosophy” is closest to Ron Paul, and if you look at Ron Paul and Bernie Sanders, they agree on a lot of points, especially regarding constitutional protection and foreign policy, where they might as well be the same candidate. They also agree on Fed audits, except Paul calls for zero inflation, and Sanders calls for zero unemployment. This is why Sanders can win an election, he is not oblivious to the overriding concerns of another huge fraction of the electorate.

There is no fundamental conflict between the principles of liberty and socialism, because socialism seeks to maximize liberty also. But both are in conflict with entrenched systems of power. You have to look at all people as potential supporters to win an election, which is much more difficult than just picking one point of view and going as far as possible within this point of view.

The Republican party itself is corrupt enough that it might be past the point of no return for a political party. It might disappear in the next few elections. If so, the Libertarians are going to form a new party, perhaps along with the Greens. If not, the Republicans will need to represent a different constituency than the two Koch brothers and the John Birch society.


2016-02-17 on truthdig

It’s not minor. It’s why you lose. It’s also the ONLY reason you lose, as if you change this, and change nothing else, you will start to win.


2016-02-17 on truthdig

It is not nonsense, it is very, very difficult because of entrenched power. But this is the “Keynesian dream”, the “Socialist dream” and the “Republican dream” all rolled up into one, and it is achievable step by step without a state any stronger than it is now. That means you can get a consensus for it, step by step, among all sectors of society except those of immense wealth, by elections.

Elections means you can’t go further than what the public has consensus on. That’s what gradual change is about, and there is no alternative.

You don’t need to show me American propaganda, I grew up in the 1980s with worse.


2016-02-17 on truthdig

There are Republican businesspeople who support single-payer, because it removes health-care headaches from their business. There are Republican who support a higher minimum wage. There are Republicans who think the cost of college is outrageous, and there are Republican stock-traders who believe that a little bit of friction in stock-trades will stop them from getting ripped off by microtraders. There are Republicans who support anti-trust, and there are Republicans who support worker cooperatives.

But there are no ELECTED Republicans who support any of these positions, because their donors don’t like it.

That means, with pressure, it is easy to find a Republican to support any one, or all of these measures, and otherwise be a Republican. Then you can vote this person in, by encouraging Sanders folks to register as Republicans and vote in the primary, or else vote for this Republican in the election over the Democrat that does not support Sanders’ platform.

Republicans aren’t sick in the head, they have a point of view that all power comes from government fundamentally, because it is the monopolist on violence. It’s a perspective, but not the most useful perspective. The elected Republicans are crazy because the party is entirely bought.


2016-02-17 on truthdig

Pass instant runoff in local municipalities, and you’ll start to win elections.


2016-02-17 on truthdig

Your response is a non-sequitor.


2016-02-17 on truthdig

Definitely as an alternative to overthrowing capitalism. It is the way to implement socialism from within capitalism, gradually, without any top-down authority imposing change, except through gentle tax incentives.


2016-02-17 on truthdig

Coops are already legal, and relatively common. Just offer preference to a coop in bidding, and all the construction businesses in town will switch.


2016-02-17 on truthdig

Sanders is breaking the circle.


2016-02-17 on truthdig

It’s so not disgusting considering the alternative.


2016-02-17 on truthdig

No they weren’t, they were just welcomed by the ruling class. They were engineered by the failure of the statist left, which created top-down power worse than any corporation or capitalist heirarchy.


2016-02-17 on truthdig

Instant runoff will immediately open up the system to third parties. You can institute that locally with some effort, then talk about voting Green, when it makes sense. It makes no sense under one-preference voting.


2016-02-17 on truthdig

Exposure to what? Radon? You have the same problem in coal mining too. Uranium is not all that radioactive naturally. The “waste pits” are relatively small in volume, and are simply not dangerous to anyone at the moment, and won’t be once you have a good deployment of breeder plants (which are absolutely necessary). Nuclear fuel is very energy dense, and you can store all the waste for its entire lifetime if you do it right.

The main problem is that you are using only the .007 naturally fissile component of Uranium, and not doing breeding. That leaves behind 200 times more waste than theoretically necessary, which is also much longer lived— it is radioactive for 10,000 years, rather than 300 years. The two solutions to this are Fermi’s fast-neutron plutonium breeders, which use U238-> Pu, and LFTR, which uses Thorium->U233, but also can use U238 in addition, and process the waste to pure fission products. These are only radioactive for 300 years, which is entirely feasable to store safely in large concrete warehouses for the entire time it is radioactive.

But we don’t have either reactor online today. Fast neutron breeders were never economical, they suffered from cost overruns. LFTR was just shelved for political reasons, because it was entirely different technology. Only one reactor was ever tested. It is now being reexamined, but unfortunately outside the US.

Nukes, when done right, have no externalities compared with anything else. Even with the current accident rate (which is atrocious) they are better than the alternatives. With a LFTR, there is not much potential for accidents, as there is no pressurized vessel to rupture. A spill per century is better than warming, but I doubt the accident rate will stay high with LFTR, it’s just a better design. That’s not just my opinion, it was the opinion of the fellow who designed the light-water reactor people use in the US today, also many others.

There is no better carbon neutral fuel than nuclear. I am sorry to say it, but it is true. The reaction to nuclear power were a byproduct of the awful nuclear arms industry, which is now best put behind us along with the cold war.


2016-02-17 on truthdig

My my, you say it like it’s a bad thing. “Loners incapable of forming real interpersonal relationships”, you just described 90% of scientists and mathematicians. The psychologists believe human connection is good. I believe the internet is better.


2016-02-17 on truthdig

The difference is power. We have none. That lack of power is what makes cyberbullying a fantasy.


2016-02-17 on truthdig

It showed up high on google news, that’s why. I google Sanders daily and look for comments, I’m sure there are ten thousand doing the same.


2016-02-17 on truthdig

We don’t really have the technology. Storage for solar and wind is spotty, and if you think it’s a good idea to blight the kind of enormous areas with wind-farms and solar plants, I think you are doing more damage to the environment than you need to do.

Nuclear is really the only good way, and I shouldn’t say good. It’s great. The problem is that the plants that fission the entire fuel are politically difficult, so people end up storing “waste” that’s 99.5% fuel, and waiting for the next generation of plants for 40 years.


2016-02-17 on truthdig

That’s because there’s a million donors looking through the feed for articles about him. Hillary has to use sockpuppets.


2016-02-17 on truthdig

We insult the scumbags and war criminals so he doesn’t have to. It’s a tough job, but he needs to look presidential.


2016-02-17 on truthdig

The Christian revolution was successful, but it took 600 years, and brought about a lot of pain too. I think the best book is “On The Historicty of Jesus” by Carrier.


2016-02-17 on truthdig

The only way to get rid of independent power structures is to create a totalitarian state. There is nothing wrong with independent power structures, as long as the mechanism granting the power is carefully designed to distribute power broadly. This is extremely difficult, which is why Capitalists put so much thought into structuring contracts and deciding when incorporated entities are independent. The struggle between centralization and decentralization was fought out on both sides of the iron curtain, it’s not a pure socialist theory, there was progress on the other side too. I put some thought into the prescriptions, and you can certainly argue that they aren’t enough. But they are a start. You might need gradual depreciation of property contracts in lieu of taxes to produce gradual ownership distribution, but taxes are probably sufficient.

Regarding hip hop, there is still a ton of great independent stuff which has no contact with corporate fluff.


2016-02-16 on truthdig

It’s not a pipe dream, although I admit there are no real historical precedents in traditional capitalist economies. The best historical precedent is actually the USSR, strange as it seems, because the internal wage system was an effective free market, and construction jobs were always available on an open-door policy. This meant that you could see what the wage structure a capitalist economy looks like at zero unemployment, something that people don’t talk about, because the communists don’t admit it was an effective market, and the capitalists don’t know anything about the USSR.

The wage structure in the USSR was based on mobile labor making choices, and administrators setting wages so as to draw the right number of people to the jobs. It’s a form of supply and demand, except through planners acting as intermediates. The availability of jobs ensured always zero unemployment, and the wage incentives were just sufficient to draw the right number of people. At zero unemployment (meaning full on-demand construction job availability or other infrastructure job), you must reproduce the exact same wage structure under capitalism, because the USSR was really not all that different from capitalism in its internal structures, except for the parts that sucked (the new venture allocation and the state monopolies). The wage structure in the USSR paid factory labor a bit more than administration, and paid hard jobs much more than easy ones that required training. Your wage was roughly your productivity.


2016-02-16 on truthdig

Maybe not, but Bernie Sanders is in effect starting an independent sub-party within the Democratic party, and it is definitely possible from this sub-party. The sub-party is necessary to recreate a real two party system, in a context where one of the major parties is so bought out, it is no longer sane. The conservative-liberal fight is now entirely internal to the Democratic party, as it was in 2008, and Hillary Clinton is the more conservative candidate, while, unlike Obama, Bernie Sanders is a true moderate leftist.


2016-02-16 on truthdig

Yes, the assassination program is a catastrophe. It must be reversed. But you can’t run on it as a candidate, unfortunately. It might be possible to sue in the Supreme Court regarding this.

But the “war on terror” was ended with the “I killed Bin Laden” hoax. I don’t like covert operations,and ridiculous Bush Cheney nonsense, but that was one I could see the point of. Not that I approve of any of this, mind you, but it’s better than pretending to chase Al Qaeda around forever. Now there are real horrors in the middle east.


2016-02-16 on truthdig

You keep going to absorb all excess labor, if not in construction, in other things, until people’s wages go up enough that they can spend their own money to keep the economy going. It’s not just construction, it’s also subsidized college and who knows what other infrastructure projects. Programming can be thought of infrastructure too, you know. Research. New power stations, etc. It’s real Keynesian stimulus.


2016-02-16 on truthdig

People got a very few changes. The torture program is over, the NSA spying is exposed, there is no more preexisting conditions, police brutality on black citizens has been exposed, the war on terror is a joke, and stimulus money went into banks. Now they need real progress on wages and unemployment to get that money out of banks and into people’s pockets.


2016-02-16 on truthdig

I take my change one step at a time. You have to drag 300 million people along, and you’re not always right. At least half the time, the 300 million are right.


2016-02-16 on truthdig

It is extremely useful to unbiased third parties like you. I am not writing for them.


2016-02-16 on truthdig

I seek both Sanders and meaningful change. They are not in conflict.


2016-02-16 on truthdig

Sanders has a 50/50 chance of winning the nomination, and if he does, he is a shoo in for the presidency. It’s a lot like 2008, the primary is the real election.


2016-02-16 on truthdig

Yes I did. You only need enough people capable of working construction to absorb the excess unemployed. Construction absorbed unemployment when it was done as a policy, in the US and in Germany, and to a lesser extent in England, where it was housing construction.


2016-02-16 on truthdig

I dont know you or your opinions, so how can I tell you anything? All I can say is that there are enough people without you, but there’s no reason for you not to join, unless you disagree with the goals in the Sanders platform. Sanders is, superficially, much further to the right than I am, but I know his platform is a step in the right direction, although an incremental one.


2016-02-16 on truthdig

The nonsensical claim I was refuting is that “not everyone can work construction, so construction doesn’t solve unemployment”.


2016-02-16 on truthdig

How am I supposed to do that if you don’t contribute? The point of contributing is to do exactly that. At some point, you have to trust other people are on more or less the same page as you regarding certain issues.


2016-02-16 on truthdig

Because elections are impossible to win openly and honestly, because every candidate, even your favorite, will take positions you strongly oppose, and the opposition candidate who is vaguer will push ads on those issues you disagree with. That’s why you need to take a strong stand on a few issues, and leave the rest to the imagination. That’s how electoral politics works, and there’s no solution. You just have to vote of the best candidate based on the stuff they are firmly committed to, which will always be a small fraction of all the stuff.

Sanders lies a lot less than others, because he tends to repeat himself on the stuff he is sure is ok to say instead of lying or going off book. That’s called “staying on message”.


2016-02-16 on truthdig

The strategy is post-election, but a mass movement can’t be organized around ordinary Democratic party talking points. The organzing principle is Sanders’ platform, not the Democratic party’s. The movement doesn’t have to do much beyond contribute $40 a month toward ads and make phone calls during midterms, it’s what the NRA does. Nobody can touch a 4 million organization willing to do that, because midterms are so low turnout. It’s continual pressure. But it requires two elections, Sanders, and the first midterm.

Regarding Obama, these are not excuses. It’s what you get with an in-party guy. He needs to work with his dirty colleagues. Obama is slightly further left than the rest of his cabinet, although still a mainstream Democrat. Sanders is not a mainstream Democrat, he has his own people.


2016-02-16 on truthdig

I support Sanders lying, because he’s a candidate. I don’t lie, because I am not.


2016-02-16 on truthdig

What do I have to do? I don’t remember promising anything.


2016-02-16 on truthdig

Worker owned business falls under the canopy of voluntary socialism, although, as I said, Republicans like it too. See. Consensus for socialism. You thought it was impossibe.


2016-02-16 on truthdig

I know that because that’s the main platform Sanders is running on, negotiating from strength using the donor base. You don’t understand it unless you are part of it, because it really has the ability to shift elections. That’s what internet organizing is about.

Obama as a person didn’t lie more than usual for a Democrat, I was only seriously let down by the loss of public option, which was Lieberman’s doing, by the drone program, which is Biden’s baby, by the gun-control fabrications which is probably Clinton’s, and by the Kerry-Clinton foreign policy meddling which was corporate imperialist nonsense as usual.


2016-02-16 on truthdig

He supports incentives for coops, small business, and other worker owned business. That’s a mild mild form of socialism which Republicans also support, but it justifies his self-adopted title.


2016-02-16 on truthdig

That’s for sure not bullsh*t, because he doesn’t need congress or a revolution to do this.


2016-02-16 on truthdig

If you contribute, you will see I am not lying.


2016-02-16 on truthdig

Obama shut them down, as he negotiated with Republicans from a position a mass movement couldn’t get behind. Sanders won’t do that. It’s as simple as that. Also, this is the third iteration, people know better how to organize online. Obama was similarly better than Dean, who was the first.


2016-02-16 on truthdig

It’s not arm-waving. As president, he will unilaterally break up the big banks, and redirect research funding to solutions for global warming. Personally, I am hoping for LFTR research and deployment, but he hasn’t said anything specific about it, and I don’t want him to, because pro or con, it will hurt him politically.


2016-02-16 on truthdig

Obama wasn’t bad, considering the predecessor, Sanders is better.


2016-02-16 on truthdig

I am 42. The only “magic” part is that it doesn’t have to be Democrats. We can deal with Republicans too, because we can accept them wholeheartedly if they support the platform.


2016-02-16 on truthdig

The organization base is the same as the donor base, and it’s at 1.3 million right now. If you chip in, it will be 1,300,001.


2016-02-16 on truthdig

And I believe he will continue the drone program as a political ruse, fly drones to take pictures of nude beaches, and then shut it down because “money is tight”. I believe his meddling will consist of sending money to Rojava and telling Turkey to back off the socialist Kurds. But I don’t know that, and neither do you, so I just ignore foreign policy, while knowing he’ll be better than Clinton and for sure better than any Republican with the possible exception of Paul.


2016-02-16 on truthdig

It’s not magic, it’s been done before. The NRA and corporate lobbyists are two examples of people doing the exact same thing.


2016-02-16 on truthdig

It’s a good plan, and it can succeed. The NRA has used it for years, and corporate donors do the same. The internet allows ordinary citizens to get in the game (the NRA is ordinary citizens too, but I mean leftist citizens).


2016-02-16 on truthdig

His statements are mostly irrelevant. Presidents never tell you their foreign policy in advance, usually because they don’t know what it will be. You just have to trust their judgement. Protest after you see the policy, not in advance.


2016-02-16 on truthdig

It can’t be a ruse, because I am not going to stop even if he tells me to, which he won’t.


2016-02-16 on truthdig

No. It’s the best plan for change in your lifetime.


2016-02-16 on truthdig

Of course it is. Except not just any Democrats, Democrats willing to pass the program he endorses. If they don’t, they will get primaried. It doesn’t even have to be Democrats, that’s the magic of it. It can be Republicans too, if they support the specific programs, they will get ads backing them, and no challengers.

The Democratic party already did these things in the 40s, and the Republican party did them in the 50s, 60s, and 70s. We stopped doing these things in the 80s, because people forgot the laws of economics, as Marxist regimes collapsed.


2016-02-16 on truthdig

It’s not impossible, it requires mobilization for the election and the first midterms, and about 4 million people willing to contribute to both causes, of which I am one.


2016-02-16 on truthdig

That’s not how it works. You hire companies to do construction, they find employees, and this reduces pressure on unemployment, as fewer workers are in the job rotation pool. This is standard since the 1950s, it works to reduce unemployment, it is uncontroversial.


2016-02-16 on truthdig

He can do that when he has 4 million supporters willing to donate and mobilize in midterms. I am one of 1.3 million, and I expect 4 million before the election is over. That’s the same strength as the NRA, which nobody in Congress can safely oppose.


2016-02-16 on truthdig

That’s nonsense. It has grown worse because the president can’t pass a minimum wage increase, or pass stimulus to workers in a jobs program. You need to increase the pay of working people to get improvements, and an infrastructure program is not something Republicans can support, because they stopped being Keynesian when their donors asked them to.


2016-02-16 on truthdig

In other words, foreign policy is almost always idiotic pandering which can cost you an election, and doesn’t indicate presidential policy at all, as the president can act unilaterally. Bush ran as an isolationist, Nixon ran on peace, and Kennedy ran on missile gap. There’s no point in looking at foreign policy platforms, beyond examining the past judgements, and checking if they are marginally better than that of others, a test which Sanders passes.

Breaking up the big banks is something the president can do both under Dodd Frank, and more generally under the Sherman act, if he can find a reason to consider the consolidation anti-competitive. Presidents are granted a lot of leeway in anti-trust, and the last presidents have all been lax.


2016-02-16 on truthdig

He plans to raise minimum wage to $15, spend $1000bn on infrastructure to reduce unemployment directly, and tax trading to finance public college, which reduces unemployment indirectly. He wants to break up the largest banks in 100 days, and introduce public single-payer health care, which reduces the costs of both health care and of doing business as well as providing for those without. He intends to introduce true progressive taxes again. These push the economy toward equilibrium, meaning wages become more equal, and production increases. Read his platform, it’s specific.

He wants to renegotiate trade pacts to tie imports to increased wages abroad, and he supports worker cooperative incentives very broadly and vaguely, which I would suppose means that infrastructure projects would give preferences to worker owned business, and there would be more protection of small farmers and small business.


2016-02-16 on truthdig

Sanders isn’t running on foreign policy, although it is probable, although not certain, that his foreign policy would be an advance, considering his positions in the past. His domestic policy isn’t vague, it’s a solid advance on meaningfully reducing unemployment, redirecting stimulus to workers, and providing health care and education.


2016-02-16 on truthdig

It’s not all that different from 2008, it’s just going several steps further, for the first time in the direction of actual leftist change. In 2008, we had worse to deal with, and a corporate Democrat was the best thing you could realistically elect. Now Sanders is the best you can elect. Next time, it will be more progressive, if Sanders wins.


2016-02-16 on truthdig

I didn’t give an emotional response, I gave a curt response, because your post was long and mostly vacuous. Before becoming disappointed in Sanders, you should vote him in. Become disappointed when he lets you down, not in advance. Then find a candidate that goes further on those issues where you were let down, and persuade others to continue the progress.

Now that I read it, I like the one idea you have in the middle somewhere: a virtual election and a virtual platform online for a political movement. That’s nice, but such an election isn’t for leaders of anything, and it’s just in your head right now. It’s not like you are electing a labor representative. You would be forming a minor party online. That’s something to do.

If you want to do something real with such a party, you can get two dozen volunteers, take some signs, and picket WalMart. Not employees, customers. Demand they pay more money. Tell people not to shop there. They can’t blame the employees for a customer picket line, because the employees didn’t do it.


2016-02-16 on mediaite

The Kremlin is just a reflection of the Russian oligarchy. RT is Russian corporate crap instead of US corporate crap.


2016-02-16 on truthdig

It does if you don’t understand what instant runoff means, and that we don’t have that system in the US.


2016-02-16 on truthdig

Of course nuclear plants are needed. That Republican-style science-denial is why I will not vote Green. Nuclear power, when engineered correctly, is the greatest thing in the world. You just don’t know anything about it, because you are used to crummy bureaucratically engineered waste-producing light-water reactors.


2016-02-16 on truthdig

That’s your propaganda. The presidential choice is the head of the Dem party, and can reorganize it, especially with a decisive victory. Democrats want FDR style full employment policies, they just don’t know how to pass them.


2016-02-16 on truthdig

There is sense in the wariness. Traditionally, FDR redistributionary socialists instituted even more racially discriminatory allocation of resources than the free market. The GI bill discriminated against black GIs, highway funding and mortgage subsidies favored rural and suburban whites as opposed to urban blacks, and the suburban subsidies pumped capital and people out of cities. These things were explained in the recent appearance Sanders made, where Black and Native voters challenged him.

The voters are simply testing to see whether Sanders is serious about targeting high unemployment urban areas. He is assuring them that he is, and he is, so I think he will win over a large percentage of Black vote, perhaps the majority. Perhaps not. Voters also need to believe he can win.


2016-02-16 on truthdig

It’s a completely compelling rationale. You can’t split the vote, it is immoral. The split between communists and socialists led Hitler to power. Ralph Nader was running to punish the Democrats for their corporate streak. He chose to run against the least corporate new Democrat, Gore. For his trouble, Bush II nearly drove the US to outright fascism. This wasn’t an accident, this is what Nader intended. He was “heightening the contradictions” at the expense of people’s lives and livelihoods.

It was legal for him to do it, but that doesn’t make it right.That destroyed the Green party for me, and for a lot of other potential voters. Your party has no ethics.


2016-02-16 on truthdig

This is not a parliamentary system, you don’t get to vote for second-choice, so the only way you can have a third party is if one of the parties is weak in a region. There are regions where this is so, where one party is basically non-existent.

If you want a third party, institute instant run-off elections, but they go against the tradition in the US. Otherwise, you need to destroy a party to form a third. The best target is the Republicans, who are weak now.


2016-02-16 on truthdig

Of course he has a foreign policy, and it’s probably a good lefty one. He’s not running on it because it’s not worth his time to make up campaign nonsense to pander. Common political wisdom says voters don’t vote based on foreign policy. They just vote if they feel terrorized, and then they vote Republican. So the less he says the better.


2016-02-16 on mediaite

You seem really dimwitted. The American left, and especially Bernie Sanders, support independent farms, small business, worker owned business, and are opposed to big government measures like the Patriot act, and the NSA.

Venezuela’s socialists are just Marxists.


2016-02-16 on truthdig

I didn’t give a reference— the best Western reference is Thomas Gold “The Deep Hot Biosphere”, but the theory was originally Soviet, it was due to Kudryavtsev, and it was well established in Russia and Ukraine for 40 years already, due to pressure anvil tests, radioisotope tests, Helium contamination, and all the other stuff you will find in Gold’s book. If you look in English, and online, you will just see mockery of the idea by so-called petroleum experts.

The idea that we’re about to run out of oil is the Western version of Lysenkoism, it’s nonsense pushed for political reasons. The oil won’t run out, we need to make the transition before we raise temperatures by 5-10 degrees, we should have done it 20 years ago. LFTR is the best option, in my firm opinion, but you won’t find many leftists who agree, because of knee-jerk anti-nuclear. LFTR not only solves energy, it produces 100 times less waste at 300 years of radioactivity, which is completely reasonable to store for the entire lifetime at current storage capacities, or maybe double that.


2016-02-16 on truthdig

He doesn’t say, I am not sure. If you are open to nuclear options like LFTR, it can be done in a period of 10-20 years. If you aren’t, I’m afraid we’re all going to be cooking in our own emissions. But if you come out and say “I support nuclear plants”, you are causing political trouble, so I don’t know. I don’t even know if he supports old nuclear or LFTR, or any of it, and I’d rather not know, because it will hurt him either way.


2016-02-16 on truthdig

The question is “rule over WHAT?” Are you asking people to vote on how to design a nuclear power plant? On where to buy food? On zoning?

Most of the impositions of power in our lives are through business decisions, not government decisions. You need to decentralize ownership of business, so people have a real choice where to shop, and to make business employee owned, so that workers have a say in their conditions, and share the profits.

That’s already a massive amount of democracy. If the workers then say “we trust Bill, he’s a good manager, we’ll let him make the decisions”, then that’s up to them. They don’t need to keep up with Bill’s decisions, unless Bill starts to cheat them of their wages and profits.

That’s democratic enough. If you vote on every sneeze, nothing ever gets done, because everyone has to be taught the details of everything, and that’s impossible.


2016-02-16 on truthdig

What nonsense. We are just vehemently disagreeing with him. He is wrong, and so are you.


2016-02-16 on truthdig

“So…are you saying that we need to take control of the state and use its power to restructure the economy?”

Yes, of course, it’s still the left. It’s just that I don’t expect to take over individual industry, or regulate the economy very strongly, just restructure the nature of contracts, and modify the tax system to change the conditions away from monopolization.

“I suspect we’d have a lot of disagreements on the details”

I wrote the details here: https://www.quora.com/What-…

The main new points are 1. Guaranteed Jobs 2. Graduated Corporate Income Tax 3. Opt in transparent contracting 4. No insider equity 5. Gradual voluntary transition to worker ownership 6. Deregulation.

“I don’t know what a “professional” investment system is”

When you need to allocate capital to new business, this is sometimes done by a wealthy person who invests in a company (an angel investor), for the purpose of increasing their own personal wealth, and sometimes by a professional— a banker or VC (venture capitalist) who is paid a professional salary. The individual investor is usually not very good at this, and sometimes hires a professional to do the investing.

In a real perfectly competitive capitalist equilibrium, nobody is wealthy enough to individually finanace very large ventures, so you need to rely on bankers and successful VC professionals, the ones with a proven track record, who have done a good job with investments in the past.

Then if you want to start a business, you bring your proposal to the VC, and if you get one of them to invest in your company, you can build it up, with worker ownership along with your friends, until it is generating some millions in revenue. You hire workers, first at a wage, then they build up equity over time, like a mortgage. If you are successful, the VC recoups the investment for the firm, as usual, and you get to share the profits, with taxes being paid. The VC is paid a professional salary, and the profits have nothing to do with it, except that if the professional VC is doing a bad job with investment, they are likely to lose their job, and go do something else.

As your firm gets larger, with more paid employees and fewer owners, the progressive taxes get bigger, so at some point, you will want to split, either horizontally or vertically into independent firms, with new owners and fewer employees. In this way, you keep the economy decentralized at all times.

In the USSR or Hungary, new investment was done by a GOSPLAN bureau, and if you did something radical or new, and it outcompeted with existing industry, unlike a VC, you would be destroyed politically, and you would lose your job. Not always. But often enough that it killed all innovation. This is why VC needs to be decentralized, not politically controlled from the top down.

“There were other issues beside the inefficiencies (which, btw, still can’t really compete with the inefficiencies of capitalism – just not hidden nearly as well)”

This is entirely false, capitalist production was in every way vastly more efficient than Soviet production, despite its inherent inefficiencies. You simply need to look at the record of Soviet production to see that there was no comparison between Soviet firms and Western firms in the case where Western firms were small and competitive, and even in the case where they were big and competitive. The Soviet industry never changed anything, they were still using vacuum tubes in the 80s. You couldn’t change anything, because you couldn’t go to an independent VC, you needed to go talk to the local party boss, who would say “transistors? Why do we need transistors. Vacuum tubes worked for 20 years.”

The same inertia happens in large firms. It doesn’t happen in small firms. The example of Yugoslavia (and Hungary) is illustrative. The Hungarian and Yugoslav economies were more competitive, because they left small business alone.

“the very real competition with imperialist capitalism, which was always a violent threat, from its birth.”

Blah blah blah. I am speaking about the USSR in 1980, not in 1930. By the end, you got to see what happens to large state industries. The West is not so dependent on “imperialism” as you put it, except for oil and raw materials. The USSR found plenty of oil, because they understood oil better than the West. The production in the West is outsourced now, but it wasn’t in the 60s and 70s. There was no real threat in 1980, except for the threat of nuclear war, and nuclear bombs are relatively cheap compared to the destruction they caused.

I mean, the USSR could have led on nuclear power plant design, but they didn’t. They could have led a LFTR program, or a PACER project, but these were done by the West. The USSR was a world leader in research, and it had the best education in the world. It was the power structure of business which was screwed up. You couldn’t do anything independently. This is why socialism must be decentralized.

You are blinding yourself to the failures of the USSR, which are repeated in other nationalized industries everywhere they are tried, and ALSO repeated in Western private monopolies, to a lesser extent. If you want efficient business, make sure it is a network of small competitive business, so that employees brains are used to their full potential.

“I’m not sure that (beyond the formal freedoms) a poor inner city black person has a better chance to innovate and create something new than a worker had during Communism”

Look at hip hop. The Black American experience has always been highly entrepreneurial, I have neighbors who sell meals, sell toys, sell everything, although their efforts are always hampered by lack of access to capital. In cases where Black entrepreneurs were locally successful, like in Rosewood, they were destroyed by lynch mobs.

I didn’t bother with the points we agree on, which is most of them. The only point of disagreement is the central control. If you introduce central control, you destroy evolvability, because central control is incompatible with change.


2016-02-16 on truthdig

Right. But without the ACA we wouldn’t be ready today for single payer. Americans only do the right thing after trying out everything else first.


2016-02-16 on truthdig

The supply of oil isn’t short on any reasonable time scale. You need to learn the Soviet theory of oil formation.


2016-02-16 on truthdig

So you want NY excise taxes on NJ windsheild wipers? It’s nuts. The system of interstate free trade does good. It just means you need Federal social insurance, that’s all. Social insurance is just money transfers, it isn’t really meddling.


2016-02-16 on truthdig

Because foreign policy promises are uniformly completely unreliable. Kennedy ran on missile gap. Nixon ran on peace. Bush II ran on isolationism.


2016-02-16 on truthdig

Local is more important for third party activism. Global is important for presidential and Congressional elections. The Global effort also provides financing and networking for local efforts, so they best work together.


2016-02-16 on truthdig

If you are telling the truth, which I doubt, you are hanging out with the incurably naive.


2016-02-16 on truthdig

Let the employees decide, not you.


2016-02-16 on truthdig

Local safety nets are destroyed by corporations running away to the lowest taxed state. They can only be Federal, unless states start preventing interstate commerce, which violates the constitution.

That’s partly why single payer failed in Vermont.


2016-02-16 on truthdig

The same is also true of business. That’s why you need trustbusting and a graduated corporate income tax. Generally, any imposition of power on a far-away group of people should be taxed, including franchises and chains. If you want local decision making, the target should be big business.

One problem with decentralizing government is that it often comes with centralization of business. As long as there is a strong incentive for decentralized business, government can do that same, because local issues are best determined by local populations.


2016-02-16 on truthdig

We can win despite the gerrymandering. Voter turnout is low in midterms on the Republican side too, and ads are ads, so money talks. Gerrymandering generally only produces weak majorities for Republicans.


2016-02-16 on truthdig

Yes. In the midterms is the real test.


2016-02-16 on truthdig

Not exactly comfortable, just able to be heard. It equalizes the power of propaganda, so that people can do propaganda with efficacy equal to corporations. But propaganda is not enough, you also need policy, and you need leaders. The internet organization tools of Dean and Obama turned internet organizing into votes for a presidential candidate. Sanders is taking it to the next level, in my opinion, by turning it into a popular movement that can influence Congress directly, by money and turn-out-the-vote. It’s gradual. The next iteration will be even more powerful.


2016-02-16 on truthdig

It’s a phony imperfection, it probably isn’t true. He isn’t running on a foreign policy platform.


2016-02-16 on truthdig

Yeah, but we need to work even harder. Social media is only a tool.


2016-02-16 on truthdig

Oh yeah, I took my baby daughter there a few times. It was very nice as a protest, but it wasn’t anything like the well organized civil rights movement. They worked like dogs with a determined leadership, and they sent out folks like Rosa Parks and MLK to do specific actions to get visibility. They weren’t making a human megaphone and brainstorming in large crowds.

I am suspicious of masses of people. I accept mass movements when the people choose leaders they trust and hold them accountable, not when they try to run things by direct democracy. Direct democracy is very erratic, and doesn’t produce good policy, or even coherent policy, and it is determined by the person who sets the poll.


2016-02-16 on truthdig

But Hedges really is one man.


2016-02-16 on truthdig

It wasn’t 1 man. MLK was a leader of a movement started in the 1940s by WWII veterans, and there was DuBois and the NAACP before that.


2016-02-16 on paste-magazine

Travelgate. Not illegal, but oh so corrupt.


2016-02-16 on truthdig

A heirarchy managed from below is not a problem. An example is professors appointing a Dean for their department. This is not tyranny. the Dean doesn’t control the professors, the professors bound the actions of the Dean. The issue of tyranny arises when the far away owner appoints managers over distant employees. It’s not a real heirarchy of power, it’s division of labor into management and other duties.


2016-02-16 on truthdig

The problem with secession is unified monetary policy. The Fed and Congress can pump money from NY to Mississippi, and without this, Mississippi and most red states would turn into Greece. Aside from monetary union, and protecting civil rights of minorities, decentralization is ok. Europe has issues with minority civil rights now, France banned the headscarf at school.


2016-02-16 on truthdig

When the workers own the business, they can choose to appoint managers, or not, they can vote on an equitable salary for management positions, and they can vote to let them go if they aren’t doing a good job. They share in the profits of their own labor, and they can choose to set aside capital for future expansion, in order to increase their production. They can also delegate the setting aside of capital to hired managers, who don’t get to keep more than a fair salary for their capital management function. It’s not the same as current capitalism.


2016-02-16 on truthdig

People aren’t “too stupid”, they have incoherent opinions in a mass! You can’t make a popular average of opinion polls and come up with a coherent policy. For example, if you ask “Should we get rid of Obamacare?” you’ll get majority “yes”. If you ask “Should we repeal the affordable care act?” you’ll get majority no. That’s why politics isn’t easy, people don’t come together to make an organized “mass opinion” in any simple way. Whenever someone is claiming that they are representing “the people”, what they mean is that they are representing a faction with a coherent ideology that aims to replace the individual decision making power of all the citizens.

That’s why decentralization is important. You need to make sure that different people can use their own judgement to better their own environment. It’s also why power is important. You have to make sure the people can change anything that affects their lives. It’s the Newton’s third law of politics— no effect without influence. “No taxation without representation” in the language of the country’s founders.

I don’t want Oligarchy. I want Democracy. But that’s not the same thing as holding a popular vote on how much toilet paper I am allowed to use to wipe my butt this morning. Maybe I had a problem which is none of your business. Maybe not.

Democracy involves decentralizing decision making so that small groups of individuals are in charge of their local environment, and larger groups are in charge of their larger environment, by selecting leaders, and debate, and discussion, and responsive leaders. That’s what socialism means— that workers can control their place of work, and share in the profits of their labor equitably.

If you say “the people rule”, what you do is that you select leaders in a movement, the movement purges dissenting opinions, and the leaders decide for everyone. That’s not Democracy, it’s not socialism, it’s what happens under Leninism.


2016-02-16 on truthdig

Obama didn’t wreck the country. He took the first steps. The next step is Bernie.


2016-02-16 on truthdig

He decided that foreign policy voters are 5% of the electorate, and are not worth losing political capital over, that’s all. It’s a sensible choice, and you should recognize it as such.


2016-02-16 on truthdig

There is NOW, there wasn’t a hundred and fifty years ago. That’s why libertarians are strong in the US. They remember anarchy as an existing state. In Europe, it’s the future. In America, it’s the wild west. It is possible to reproduce these conditions with policies that decentralize ownership, and this is the key to progress.


2016-02-16 on truthdig

Sanders does propose that. You need LFTR to solve global warming, and Jill Stein will be politically constrained by her party away from any nuclear component to a solution.


2016-02-16 on truthdig

“The people” can’t rule, because “the people” don’t have an opinion. You mean “the people’s representatives”, which means a vanguard, which means destruction and slavery to a bunch of leftists with guns. Sorry, no way.


2016-02-16 on truthdig

They are unable to support an attack on the electoral system, designed to marginalize the left. The left was already destroyed using violent revolutionary movements once, in the early 1970s. By the end of the decade, you had a bunch of drugged out revolutionaries killing a Brinks armored car guard. The situation regarding revolution is only worse today, when revolutionary movements can’t communicate without being spied on. It’s simply a trick to remove electoral power from the left.

Further, even when far-left movements like the Bolsheviks took power, the results were infinitely WORSE than with traditional Bourgeoise politics, both in terms of economic progress and in terms of civil rights. So no thanks, I will vote for Sanders, and I will do counter-propaganda against any sort of protest movement which is unable to congeal around a viable electoral candidate or candidates.


2016-02-16 on truthdig

Politicians have a lot of tricks to stop evil. Carter gave amnesty to Vietnam war draft dodgers, remember. A simple prosecution for torture, which can be done without anything except a good president, will reverse the slide on civil liberties. Redirecting highway funds to small cooperative businesses can be a shot in the arm to the coop movement. It’s all possible, you just need to organize, contribute, and vote.


2016-02-16 on truthdig

I’m voting for the smallest pile of shit. When parties become majority parties they inevitably have a bunch of stuff you don’t like. It is a mistake to vote for a minority party unless you live in a parliametary system.


2016-02-16 on truthdig

Ok, it’s your prerogative, I am not demanding anything. I am sending money, so he will win.


2016-02-16 on truthdig

“You can’t fight concentrated power without power” ….

yes, you are right. But the existing degree of state power is sufficient to bust up the power in monopolies. It is sufficient for encouraging distributed ownership, and it is sufficient to make a real professional investment system independent of a parasitic class of capitalists.

“Large companies are extremely efficient at concentrating power”

Yes, they are efficient at concentrating power in a few hands. But they are extremely inefficient at the business of companies, which is producing products and services at the lowest possible labor. That’s why the USSR went bankrupt, because they immitated the power structure of capitalism, and ended up with horrible oligarchic concentrations of power and an inefficient economy.

“Marx described actually existing historical and economic processes and the forces behind them, you know. Just saying that these processes should somehow go in the opposite direction shows you don’t even understand the analysis …”

I understand the analysis perfectly well! It is correct— when you trade property deeds, they concentrate in a few hands, leading to unemployment and subsistence wages for wage labor. The result is a concentration of all business into gigantic state level monopolies.

The point is that it can be reversed with systematic policy, because those deeds granting property rights are constructed by government, and corporations only follow money. That means that if you encourage splits with financial incentives, you will get splits. If you encourage transparent contracts and competition, you reverse the bias to big business. If you make incentives for broad worker ownership, you get broad worker ownership. In net, you reverse Marx’s law, by creating those conditions where the law works in reverse.

“Lies about Marxist-Leninist states make those claims, not the experience”

It is not a lie to claim that the USSR couldn’t produce a decent home computer, or a decent refrigerator that didn’t weigh a thousand pounds. Or a decent camera that didn’t fall apart. Or glossy books and magazines, or new fasions that didn’t immitate the West, or new toys. Their music was derivative, their art was boring and censored. When they had innovation, like the Rubik’s cube, or Tetris, it was through small people who were suppressed by the bureaucracy, and prevented from bringing the product to the masses.

None of this is lies. It is due to the concentration of power in government. This is why people oppose Marxism-Leninism. If it weren’t for this, the world-wide revolution was on its way to completion by 1930, except people looked at the USSR and said “NO THANKS”.

“It is not a “solution” because between an existing concentration of power and a non-existing one, the one that actually exists will win in the end.”

That’s simply false. There was no Linux in 1992, it didn’t exist. It fought against corporate machines as big as the biggest ones in any economy. It was able to build up from nothing to full power in two decades. The rest of the transformation should follow this lead.


2016-02-16 on truthdig

As the ownership gets distributed, the system becomes less capitalist, and more egalitarian. That’s what Americans know that Europeans don’t, since ownership of land was widely distributed in the 19th century. Europe had concentrated land and business ownership since ancient times.


2016-02-16 on truthdig

You CAN’T tolerate evil, you need to elect politicians that will stop it. But at the moment, some 40% of Americans are ignorant of the evil, and vote actively to support it. The other 60% need to unite and vote it out. That’s the only prescription for change that won’t make the problem worse.


2016-02-16 on truthdig

I watched him in Minneapolis, and he did a great job in a difficult situation. I hope you change your mind, as Hillary Clinton did not even show up to listen.


2016-02-16 on truthdig

The contribution shows you are serious, and the organization will need money to get rid of obstructionist Republicans, not just to elect Sanders. I do not represent his campaign, they sure as heck wouldn’t want me as a spokesperson, I am WAY too far left. I am just a contributor.


2016-02-16 on truthdig

I am a contributor of $100/mo to Sanders campaign, I also went to a meetup once. I am not paid by Sanders, I am a supporter. Having money invested makes you more committed. This is why corporate campaign donations are such an important problem.


2016-02-16 on truthdig

That peaceful resistance will be met by a violent repression that will put the 1960s to shame. In eras of violence, people vote conservative, then all the leftists will lose for another generation.


2016-02-16 on mediaite

The crunch in supply is unavoidable, because catastrophic medical care is expensive no matter how you cut it, and it is provided at random times by a very powerful provider. Cash practice and deregulation are good, in conjunction with basic single payer.


2016-02-16 on truthdig

Venezuela was a wreck when Chavez was elected— they had 60% poverty and 25% deep poverty (people living in garbage dumps). Chavez cut deep poverty by more than half, and poverty by half, and doubled Venzuela’s GDP. That’s why people voted for him and his party. Now they are very corrupt, and people vote for the opposition.

Chavez had completely different policy from Sanders. He wasn’t a libertarian, he was authoritarian. Chavez was a classic anti-business Marxist and he destroyed small business. Sanders supports business strongly. Chavez’s main economically positive move was to nationalize the oil industry and spend on the poor, but that counts for a lot in Venezuela. It counts for nothing in the US, which is why the US will never elect someone like Chavez.

Sanders is an FDR Democrat who is supportive of small business. Corporate power is not good for an economy, healthy small business is good for an economy. It has a further plus that small business is usually significantly worker owned. Americans remember when people owned their own business, and they want that for the future. This is a form of socialism, except we didn’t know enough to call it that.


2016-02-16 on truthdig

Yes of course I subscribe to that idea. I also subscribe to the idea that it is sometimes necessary to vote for a Republican candidate, although it hasn’t happened yet in my lifetime. Right now, the Republican party can be eliminated, and a new center left party can form, with the Democrats center-right.


2016-02-16 on truthdig

I not only VOTED for Obama, I organized and got contributions for him on the streets. I supported him, knowing that his rhetoric is empty, and that he is a Democrat and not a real leftist.

I am not as disappointed in Obama as others, considering the situation before. He stopped the slide into Reagan/Bush madness, and was the middle-step the transformation toward internet organization that gave you Sanders. His existence also made racism more visible, and allows the confrontation that lies at the bottom of American resistance to the left to crystalize.


2016-02-16 on truthdig

Not the way he’s doing it. He’s changing the Democratic party.


2016-02-16 on truthdig

Because one of Sanders “incremental improvements” should and probably will be solving the carbon crisis. There is enough technology out there for a carbon neutral energy economy.


2016-02-16 on truthdig

If it’s worker owned, the workers can set up whatever heirarchy they want that is most efficient and serves them best. The authority doesn’t control them, they control the authority.


2016-02-16 on truthdig

He does support worker-owned industry, but not by the state taking over existing industry, but by building it up from scratch, and by workers gradually buying their own industry when they have more wealth, as they would at zero unemployment.


2016-02-16 on truthdig

You don’t need to REQUIRE something that everyone already wants. You just need to encourage it and protect it, until it is the new norm. Socialism is NOT about government force, despite what you read, and despite Marxist-Leninist thinking. Socialism means “workers have a say in controlling their place of work”. You don’t need or want a “dictatorship of the proletariat” for that to happen, in fact, a dictatorship of the proletariat is pretty much the only way to guarantee that it will never happen. You need Democracy, good ownership laws, and a gradual transfer of ownership to many.


2016-02-16 on mediaite

I didn’t say anything that contradicted what you said. The Kremlin isn’t on the left anymore.


2016-02-15 on truthdig

If you are not a 9/11 truther, you should google “9/11 drills” or “9/11 drills + my name” and you will be after a few hours. Most people have already gone through this. It’s not a conspiracy theory exactly, it’s pretty much “Cheney acted alone”.

Regarding illegal invasions, there were only 2 in recent years— Iraq and Afghanistan. Sanders only supported one of them. It’s very easy to spin invasions so that they look legitimate. He opposed the first Gulf war, and the Vietnam war.


2016-02-15 on truthdig

Whatever you say. You have no idea how easy it is to talk the talk and how hard it is to walk the walk in Congress. Sanders does it.


2016-02-15 on truthdig

To who? To a war-mongering right-wing Israel hugger like Clinton? To a Republican? You always vote with the best choice at the moment, not the perfect choice.


2016-02-15 on truthdig

He was tough on the last Obama FDA appointment, for the stance on medicine imports. It’s hard to compromise, learn how to do it. Not everyone in the world thinks like you, nor should they.


2016-02-15 on truthdig

These votes are meaningless. He is strong where it counts, which is opposing the bloodthirsty murder when it happens. When he is president, I am sure his policies will be tougher than anyone else’s. He can possibly get away with it, because he’s a Jew who’s been to Israel.


2016-02-15 on truthdig

It was a surrender on the part of Obama. Sanders did what he had to do, and he did the right thing. The ACA is an improvement on what came before.


2016-02-15 on truthdig

It is only troubling to a person who doesn’t understand what it means to be elected to public office.


2016-02-15 on truthdig

Of course the trend is away from worker ownership! That’s why you need to reverse the trend. That’s the whole point of libertarian socialism, and what makes it the opposite of Marxism-Leninism. Those large corporations are inefficient monstrosities, and need to be split up.

I am not an anti-Marxist pseudo left. I read Marx, and I read Lenin. I DISAGREE with the idea that large concentrations of power are inevitable, and the way to prevent them is to bust up the power structure with structural remedy.

The reason it goes the other way is that power naturally concentrates. To break it up, you need a graduated corporate income tax, as a supplement to anti-trust law, and transparent contracting reform, to prevent false splits. You need distributed ownership encouraged, by gradually transferring equity to employees, and if it’s a publically traded corporation, you need to prevent employees from owning equity in the corporation.

This is fixing Marx’s problem of consolidation not by taking it over by the state, but by actually reversing the consolidation.

The experience of Marxist-Leninist states shows that state monopolies are no better than private monopolies. The only solution is no monopolies at all.


2016-02-15 on truthdig

Everyone is a 9/11 truther today except you. There is no maneuvering, foreign policy is at the discretion of the president, and you can’t know what it will be from the promises, because these are always pandering, as the public is clueless.

My position on war is not right wing, and I don’t accept any illegal invasions.


2016-02-15 on truthdig

Shut up about guns, nobody is going to shoot anybody. We’re just going to vote in a new president.


2016-02-15 on truthdig

You do realize that it’s political suicide to oppose Israel in the US right? You have no sense of the politics of others. I can’t believe you really want the left to win.


2016-02-15 on truthdig

I am not lying. I believe he is lying. Good. I want him to lie as much as possible about foreign policy, if it helps him get elected.


2016-02-15 on truthdig

Of course it was a compromise. It was a compromise with Lieberman and other conservative Dems, and with Obama. Lieberman was the fillibuster breaking vote, and he demanded no public option. There’s no way to do anything in the Senate without compromise with some enormous egos.


2016-02-15 on truthdig

All you have to do to build a bridge is donate $10 to Sanders. You will be automatically contacted by representatives of the campaign. But if you want him to win, best make it $100 monthly.


2016-02-15 on truthdig

You can’t tell the difference between a compromise and a lie, that’s not my problem.

His stance as an independent is due to his libertarian streak, and it is justified. He caucuses with the Democrats because he is sane.


2016-02-15 on truthdig

Elvis insulted the Beatles.


2016-02-15 on truthdig

The other party lies worse. All politicians lie. Bernie just does it much much less than any of the others.


2016-02-15 on truthdig

He doesn’t push on foreign policy because he used up all his political capital on domestic policy. You have no idea what he will do with drones, and my guess is that he will end the drone program on the first day in office. But I’m not sure about that. What I do know is that if he had ever SAID that, Biden would be running now, as the drone program is his baby.


2016-02-15 on truthdig

This is completely false. Like Obama and Dean, I could have told you most of the platform in advance. The only surprise is how well Sanders filled in the details (also, the free college thing is his idea alone, but it’s good). Any good politician is responding to the public desire.

On the right, the closes thing was Ron Paul. But he had the gold standard, which is a deal breaker.


2016-02-15 on truthdig

I never said he was “honest and trustworthy”, he’s just trustworthy enough not to engage in an Oklahoma City Bombing or pander about UFOs, to repeal police state measures, and to enact the platform he promised, or at least try hard to do so.


2016-02-15 on truthdig

Of course they are. They are the only possible socialism.


2016-02-15 on truthdig

He’ll support Clinton in the election, and continue the revolution into the midterms, and Warren’s election in 2020 or 2024.


2016-02-15 on truthdig

They are not based on the personality, they are based on the platform the online community decides on in advance is just progressive enough to just barely win.


2016-02-15 on truthdig

Because he has a 25 year voting history, and he kept all his campaign promises, including ones that were very tough to keep, like releasing details of his tax plan and single-payer plan before the Iowa caucuses.


2016-02-15 on truthdig

It’s not a restoration of anything. It’s progress.


2016-02-15 on truthdig

I support CANDIDATES lying to people’s faces (as little as necessary), but I don’t support lying in online comments, mostly because it doesn’t work. The internet is a sincerity engine, comments run on it. I tell the truth online, but I will never run for office.

Sanders is as honest as possible for a politician, maybe a little too honest to win.


2016-02-15 on truthdig

It’s not a cult of personality. Sanders can be swapped out for Warren, like Dean was swapped out for Obama. It’s a movement that grows organically online.


2016-02-15 on truthdig

That’s false. As president, he gets to set the bidding for construction projects, and he can give priority to worker coops.


2016-02-15 on truthdig

No, you should. You are spamming. This is for discussion, not noise. You are not even a leftist, just a Republican here to gum up the discussion.


2016-02-15 on truthdig

I told Marxist-Leninists to grow up. I like Marxists who aren’t Leninists.

I supported Obama as an interim measure, to halt the catastrophe of Bush. I didn’t support him as an end goal.


2016-02-15 on truthdig

It’s not funny, it’s true. Workers owning their own workplace is small farms, family owned restaurants, worker coops, stock-sharing corporations wiht a professional board, union owned factories and businesses, friends who start a business, and basically every successful part of the American economy supported by both the left and the right since the country was founded.


2016-02-15 on truthdig

You just wait and see. It’s not a cult of personality.


2016-02-15 on truthdig

You should be blocked on this page, dude. Stop it.


2016-02-15 on truthdig

WHAT???? I CAN’T HEAR YOU WITH ALL THIS NOISE!!


2016-02-15 on truthdig

AT LEAST I DON’T SHOUT IT. I am quite a bit further left than Sanders.


2016-02-15 on truthdig

They are not desperate. They should start with municipal elections in NYC, and other liberal cities. Then build up from there. They shouldn’t even field a presidential candidate until they have a Senator. To build up a new party takes about 10 years.


2016-02-15 on truthdig

I meant “running as a Democrat”, edited. Splitting the vote is evil of the worst sort.


2016-02-15 on truthdig

Because she’s not running as a Democrat, and you can’t split the vote. That’s how Hitler came to power, and Bush.


2016-02-15 on truthdig

The problem with the right is that whenever they see power, they assume it has roots in government. They can’t understand non-governmental power. But that goes away with self-education, which happens naturally online. Then the Trump supporters become Sanders supporters.


2016-02-15 on truthdig

The USSR was basically a theocracy.


2016-02-15 on truthdig

Sanders doesn’t believe THE GOVERNMENT should own the means of production, but he believes THE EMPLOYEES should own their own workplace, at least eventually. That’s real left, and more progressive than Marxist-Leninists ever were. This is also supported by many right wing libertarians, believe it or not.

Sanders foreign policy positions are worthless posturing, like the foreign policy posturing of all previous candidates. He is significantly less military than anyone else.


2016-02-15 on truthdig

Sanders supports worker-owned cooperatives, and wants to encourage these forming. That’s the only part of his platform which is actual socialism, although it is a modest first step. This step is also supported by the RIGHT, believe it or not, and has passed with a moderate conservative government in the UK already. Don’t kid yourself, workers owning small companies is real socialism, and it’s real libertarianism, and everyone can support it, except the Marxist-Leninists, who really should grow up.


2016-02-15 on truthdig

It’s not shallow. It’s how you must think to effect change.


2016-02-15 on truthdig

Sanders is moving exactly as fast as possible. The internet campaign pretty much determines his platform, and they take into consideration all voices including yours and that of the far right, to detemine exactly how much truth is acceptable.

You can’t win an election on truth. Can I say that 9/11 was an inside job and win? I can’t. Even though it is true, and even though most people know it is true. That’s politics.


2016-02-15 on truthdig

Dean is exactly the same as Obama in positions and policies. They weren’t real left, but they were real internet candidates.

The point of those candidates was to cut our teeth, so to speak, on internet fundraising and advocacy, with mainstream Democratic candidates. Now that this has been accomplished, the internet folks are going for a real leftist, but still within the mainstream. That’s Sanders.

Nothing happens all at once. Sanders is internet 3.0.


2016-02-15 on truthdig

Elections change stuff, don’t delude yourself. You just aren’t the only side with a voice, and your knowlege is not widespread enough to be in the majority yet.


2016-02-15 on truthdig

No, I’m a libertarian socialist. A lot of the right wing platform was stolen from the anarchists. The overlap is why Sanders is so popular with Libertarians and Republicans, as well as left-independents.

The competitive wage structure at zero unemployment is basically the wage structure of the USSR, more or less. It’s not obvious, but the compensation system under the planners was indirectly implementing free market wages.


2016-02-15 on truthdig

What they dislike are corporate liberals, who push leftist measures which are just sufficient to appease workers with a modest sense of comfort, without giving up any power to mass movements, instead retaining it in corporate boardrooms.

Boy is that NOT Sanders. Which is why I am shocked that any part of the left would oppose him. I can understand if they hate Hillary Clinton.


2016-02-15 on truthdig

I agree, which is why I supported Obama as the best possible choice in 2008. Now that’s Sanders. It’s a gradual movement, like all others before.


2016-02-15 on truthdig

Debbie can’t do anything with exit polls on her ass.


2016-02-15 on truthdig

That was true in 2000 and 2004. It was attempted in 2012 in Florida, but no dice. It’s harder now, the Democratic party is on it.


2016-02-15 on truthdig

Oh yeah. True. I never thought of that as a real revolution before. I thought of it as a bunch of cocaine-addled suckers voting for nuclear war.


2016-02-15 on truthdig

Counter to what?


2016-02-15 on truthdig

The Revolution in the age of the internet takes place at the ballot box, through mobilization and advertising, led by individuals. It’s better than the usual revolution, because, well, Napoleon.


2016-02-15 on truthdig

No amount of water can stop the Bern.


2016-02-15 on truthdig

Except the internet kills that kind of thing dead, as it will destroy the movement by police infiltration and surveillance before it starts breaking any windows. Thankfully, the internet also provides an alternative means of organizing and effecting change, which is what Sanders is doing.


2016-02-15 on truthdig

You should be fair to Obama, this is building up gradually on the more vacuous rhetoric and modest movement toward real money, real change, and a real movement. But Dean and Obama are the two predecessors, they pioneered internet organizing.


2016-02-15 on truthdig

You need better tricks, as most corporations in the US today are monolithic monstrosities.


2016-02-15 on truthdig

I am not a moderate in that sense. To address inequality you need to make sure investment comes from banks, not individuals, and that individual income is progressively taxed. Then you need zero unemployment. The rest takes care of itself.

I know you don’t believe me, because you are so used to inequality, but a free market competition does reduce inequality when you remove leverages of power.


2016-02-15 on truthdig

To make the greens viable, you first have to remove the Republicans from consideration, as the Whigs disappeared. This isn’t parliamentary Democracy, it’s a two party state. That means you need to make blue states blue/green states, and red states red/blue states, until all the states are blue/green.


2016-02-15 on truthdig

Yes, they are compromises. There are often greater war crimes and slaughters which they prevent, including the war crimes of Repubicans when they get elected.

Being in power means compromising on people’s lives. It’s unavoidable. Sanders made just about the best choices he could under the circumstances. I certainly couldn’t have done better if I was in his shoes.


2016-02-15 on truthdig

That’s not utopia. A measure to support employee coops was just passed by a moderate conservative government in the UK. This is what is necessary for worker say in their workplace, not some fantasy of unions taking over a society, as if the leaders represent the rank-and-file, and as if the leadership structure of mass organizations is any more responsive than the leadership of a gigantic corporation.

I want people to control their own destiny, not be tied up in gigantic mass movements who hold a vote before they decide to sneeze.


2016-02-15 on truthdig

It’s not a case against. It’s a case for. I want him to win, dude, not run for protest. He can win, because he is a compromiser, and he understands the libertarian right better than any other Democrat.

He compromises most on foreign policy, because that’s what he can do least about, as a Senator. As President, we’ll have to wait and see.


2016-02-15 on truthdig

It’s not lying, it’s being pragmatic. I want a politician that wins, thanks.


2016-02-15 on truthdig

You have no idea what kind of measures can be implemented from the moderate left, when they get their act together and decide to eliminate unemployment and inequality. They can shift companies to employee ownership by various tricks, they can forbid insider ownership as insider trading, they can break up monopolies. They can reduce unemployment to zero by jobs programs, and raise wages for everybody. These are a road to a better society by other means than top-down imposition.

The idea that there is a magic road to employee control is probably an illusion. You need to do it by building cooperatives, and supporting them, and not buying things at places which are run top-down. There’s no easy path using pure state power, as the state is corrupt by nature.


2016-02-15 on truthdig

It’s a record of a politician who survives. There is no more compromise in there than what is necessary, and sometimes significantly less, as he was taking a risk of getting destroyed.


2016-02-15 on truthdig

So he would do that to himself? That decision is made unilaterally by the President, you know. That’s another thing that will end when he is President. And quickly.

Actually, I hope he declares Cheney an enemy combatant first, and puts him in front of a tribunal. At least that would be a deserving victim. That should lead the GOP to quickly vote away that designation.


2016-02-15 on truthdig

It’s not just a repackaging, it’s also an extension of the internet component from pure fundraising and canvassing to a real mass movement that can effect electoral change.


2016-02-15 on truthdig

No, you’re right, and I believe you. I googled him now, and I see his books. He’s not a plant, but the way he’s writing, he might as well be. You can’t give up on electoral politics.


2016-02-15 on truthdig

I don’t think they were good, especially not Clinton, but they were better than the alternative, that’s for sure.


2016-02-15 on truthdig

The communists did that to “heighten the contradictions”, now that they are gone, not so much. Usually this only happens when they deserve it. Sanders certainly doesn’t.


2016-02-15 on truthdig

I don’t know Hedges too well, but I was always shocked when leftist words came out of his mouth. I reserve judgement, but this is a grossly irresponsible article for the entire left, and I can’t believe he would say this stuff. I mean, even Chomsky tells you “think Green, and if you live in a swing state, vote Democrat”.


2016-02-15 on truthdig

He supports it to the minimum degree possible consistent with getting elected. That’s less support than any other candidate, and much less than Clinton, who is willing to poison relations with Iran when Netanyahu asks.


2016-02-15 on truthdig

This is a sign that Hedges is not a sincere leftist, but some sort of right wing plant, trying to discourage the left from voting sensibly. (ok, a right wing plant who has pretended so well, he has dozen books)


2016-02-15 on truthdig

That’s incorrect. Carter halted the Kissinger, COINTELPRO nonsense and introduced some human rights considerations into foreign policy. Clinton introduced expanded EITC, and led anti-trust against Microsoft. Obama reversed torture policies and several authoritarian measures, although he kept too many.

Sanders will reverse ALL the authoritarian measures with 100% certainty, including the warrantless wiretapping and Patriot/Freedom acts. That’s a guarantee.

I am not an idealist. I support Sanders because I am a realist, and one can’t live with the Nixonian state of the Democratic party, and the insanity state of the Republican party. I believe Sanders can allow the Republican party to finally die, as he appropriated all their sensible libertarianism into his own platform.


2016-02-15 on truthdig

You don’t understand politics at all, do you. Yes, I am comparing Cynthia McKinney to Sanders, and in the comparison, I put Sanders even higher, because he had a real serious impact. Cynthia McKinney protested, and let herself be destroyed. That makes her a martyr, not a direct agent of change. She might become an agent of change in the future, and a martyr is something to be also.

You must never do politics from your own perspective alone, no matter how justified. You do politics from every perspective, including those which are on the right, because those people have little bits and pieces of truth also, no matter how small. This is simply ridiculous. You seem to be trying to get voters to not vote for Sanders, when he’s clearly the best choice in two lifetimes.


2016-02-15 on truthdig

That’s nonsense. Every Democratic administration brings incremental progress. The Sanders administration promises the most in several generations. I am 42.


2016-02-15 on truthdig

He doesn’t need to send anyone. His contributors seek out the story and comment independently. This is a libertarian movement, not top down.


2016-02-15 on truthdig

Be conscious of the political reality. Sanders has challenged foreign policy to the utmost limit possible for a Senator, and even a little beyond, as the Iraq vote and leading the opposition set him up to be turned into Cynthia McKinney. She was only a little more opposed than Sanders, and she was completely destroyed (I’d like to see her reelected). Sanders did about as much as possible while staying in the system.


2016-02-15 on truthdig

The funding power of internet organizations can be used to unseat any individual member of Congress. This is enough to force change, bill by bill, when there is a credible threat. You can’t give up on Democratic processes, no matter how flawed, because the alternative is imposition of opinion without checks, using a gun. That never works out fine for the good guys.

Civil disobedience doesn’t hurt, of course, but how are you going to mobilize millions of people to picket WalMart? It would be nice if they could be put out of business, bu they have a propaganda budget.


2016-02-15 on truthdig

Foreign policy is impossible to challenge unless you are already president. Nobody knows what foreign policy a President will enact, except going on general principles that the candidate espouses. So I would say you should be optimistic regarding Bernie Sanders foreign policy, even in cases where his voting record seems to disagree with you so far. Remember that Kennedy ran on “missile gap” and Nixon ran on “peace”. Foreign policy is usually a bunch of pandering lies, which might be why Sanders talks about it so little.


2016-02-15 on truthdig

Change can’t be dependent on big men. It needs to be organic, so that the person reflects the movement, not the other way around. Then assassination is meaningless, and largely pointless.


2016-02-15 on truthdig

Stop talking nonsense. I was born in a country where it already happened a long time ago. This Sanders business is simple stuff compared to what we need to do in the future.


2016-02-15 on truthdig

This article is not about meat. Please stay on topic.


2016-02-15 on truthdig

Although I agree with most of this, at least the parts not bashing Sanders, Sanders politcal movement is not a phantom. It’s similar to the Bull Moose party that formed around Teddy Roosevelt, except it’s entirely within the Democratic party. The goal of the movement is internet fundraising and organization to unseat Congressional members who are standing in opposition to reform. It can be successful because voter turnout is low in midterm election, even on the Republican side, and even a modest mobilization and get-out-the-vote effort can unseat an incumbent. That’s why the NRA has such power, because they show that they can pour money into local elections when they are displeased. The Sanders movement has membership comparable to the NRA, or will by the time he is elected, they have better fundraising than the NRA, and will therefore have comparable power to modify the tone in Congress. This is not a joke. It is very difficult for people to stand up to the NRA, so they don’t bother. Why would they stand up to Sanders, when he has mobilized support?


2016-02-15 on channel-oneconomicpolicy

Boy is it not nonsense. You’ve never lived through hyperinflation. I have. You go to the store, and prices are higher every day. They are higher at the end of the day than at the beginning of the day. You have to spend your money in the morning when you get paid and buy all the stuff you need for the rest of the month. Quickly. Before everyone else buys everything out. People’s decisions cause this problem, and people’s decisions stop it. This problem is understood today, and can be controlled, the procedure to remove accelerating inflation was worked out in the 1980s.

Economics makes predictions for numbers. Unemployment, price inflation, production, labor, consumption. These predictions are based on laws, and these laws are difficult to work out, more difficult than physics, because you can’t really do controlled experiments very easily. That means you need to extract the predictions from uncontrolled messy experiments.

There is a further problem that the field is politicized, so that the best insights are not admitted into academic discussions for political reasons. The most important insights are microeconomic equilibrium and response theory, this is due to Adam Smith and Ricardo and other early 19th century people, macroeconomic failures due to Marx in the mid 19th century, and macroeconomic fixes of these failures, due to Keynes, in the early 20th century. There are other minor contributions, but that’s pretty much the whole story of capitalist economics.

The political problem is that Marx is completely taboo, so you aren’t allowed to mention him. Keynes wasn’t allowed to mention him either. So Marx is ignored by everyone, except those that ONLY read Marx, and ignore the other two pillars. That’s not a good situation.

There is a way out of the impasse regarding controlled experiments, but nobody does it. They are all afraid for political reasons of what they will find. But it is essential to know. What I said on this page is mainstream Keynesian thinking, except without disguising the Marx portion, as is traditional.


2016-02-15 on mediaite

Socialism is not about giving and getting money. It’s about correcting market failures.


2016-02-15 on mediaite

The Kremlin is very hard right today, it does try to make “The West” look bad sometimes, but it has no serious ideological difference with the USA. All the good stuff on RT is just independent internet people who are rebroadcast because they are critical of something or other. Pravda had a consistent, although humorously antiquated, ideology.


2016-02-15 on mediaite

When I say “employ everybody”, I don’t mean pay an exhorbitantly high wage so that literally every person is employed. I mean offer construction jobs at a livable minimum wage near enough to every community so that there is no realistic possibility of destitution. There will still be a certain small number of people between jobs.

This is all that a full employment policy requires— a good infrastructure program that absorbs any excess labor, so that nobody is out there driving down everyone else’s wages by not being able to find any job at all.

The reason the unemployed don’t come together to start a cooperative is because it is impossible, as they lack capital. They will huddle together in a homeless camp, building structures out of cardboard, and begging for money. These activities pay far less than minimum wage, and involve more suffering and labor than construction.


2016-02-15 on channel-oneconomicpolicy

Regarding the second part of your comment, about Keynesian spending and the competition between public and private jobs.

The model you have is the classic “Phillips curve” idea that when you provide jobs, you need to increase the wage to draw more people.

This is not really what is going on, as the unemployed in the society are people actively seeking a job to protect them from destitution. They will usually take a job at practically any wage. Those who won’t are not part of the unemployment problem, they are normal job seekers who are between jobs and have a good resume.

The people who hold down wages for everyone are the people who can’t get jobs because there aren’t any jobs to get. The point of Keynesian road construction, public works, is to employ all those people, so that there aren’t any of them left.

These public works projects are not exactly a loss-making corporation, they are just public projects, so that their value is determined by the labor sunk into them, since they are government paid. The point of “0% unemployment” is to have an open door policy on such projects, so that anyone who is broke and needs a job can always go to the construction office and get a reasonable job at a wage that becomes the effective minimum wage. It’s their choice.

Because it’s their choice, the wage, as long as it is below the inflationary minimum wage, will cause no inflation at all. You CAN get inflation if the wage for these jobs is very high, as in the case of Nixon paying high wages for military production, without employing construction workers. But this is the exception not the rule.

The point of Eisenhower and Nixon was to get rid of unemployment. Eisenhower did it the same way Hitler did, with road construction and miltary spending. Nixon doubled down on military spending.

The Clinton way to do something similar was the EITC, which increased tremendously in the 90s. Martin Luther King Jr. favored the plan I just said— an always available low-paid (but still living wage) public sector option for employment. This can replace minimum wage regulation, the wage for the job is always the effective minimum wage.

Because the wage is relatively low, it doesn’t take out anyone who can find a better paying job in the private sector. Instead, just like a minimum wage hike, it raises the minimum that an employer must offer to get an employee. This does not harm the economy, as I explained before.

This policy makes unemployment moot, because you can always find a construction job. That’s the way to drive unemployment to 0%, it is historically effective, there is no unemployment in societies with open construction projects where people can willingly sign up.


2016-02-15 on channel-oneconomicpolicy

Whoa, this discussion finally gets somewhere! Thanks for the original points.

Regarding socialized medicine, remember that it is a baseline insurance. It covers catastrophic care, basic regular checkups, basic sickness, basic dental, and there is still space for a market on top, since this is a basic plan.

The point of covering basic care is that the patient is held hostage to the hospital in many cases of basic care, and cannot negotiate from a position of strength or from any position at all. The doctor both prescribes the treatment and then doles it out, and then bills a third party as much as he/she wants. The third party is then in a bind, because if it doesn’t pay, the doctor can accuse the company of killing the patient, and lawsuits would put it out of business.

When you have single-payer socialized medicine, the baseline care is taken care of by a government that refuses to pay more than a certain amount for the lifesaving care, and also makes difficult choices regarding which care is actually lifesaving, and which care is just an extraneous boondoggle. The government is the only entity that can make a call like that without getting sued.

This puts the hospitals and providers in a situation where they are not able to use the coercive aspects of their business to charge outrageous rates, as the government is stingy, and reimburses them their costs plus a reasonable rate of depreciation on their capital, and no more. Private insurance then is free to negotiate above the baseline.

This type of negotiation is vital for health care, because it is a situation where there are expensive options that are only marginally better for the patient— like a cancer drug that extends life by a month or two, without much benefit. The government plan does not have to reasonably provide this benefit.

Now a private plan can still provide additional coverage for such things, and they will charge market rates. There will still be market insurance, it will just be supplemental, after the coercive parts are taken care of.

The situation is analogous to a famine. In a famine, government regulates the food supply, so that people don’t gouge the consumer, and the distribution is equitable. Any surplus food is left up to the market to allocate. The same holds for essential basic care, vs. additional care. Health care is more coercive than other industries, and forms an exception. That’s why basic care is governmental in all modern societies except the US.

That’s all I have to say about government medical insurance. It increase economic freedom, because people are not tied to a job anymore, and employers don’t have the headache of insurance. All the countries which score highest on economic freedom provide state medical insurance to all their citizens, and that’s a plus for economic freedom, not a minus.


2016-02-15 on mediaite

Price inflation has no relation to money supply inflation. That’s a consequence of Keynesianism. There was not a three-fold increase in prices in 2008 and 2009, the rate of price increase was a few percent, as always. This is another catastrophically failed prediction of the Chicago school.

Keynesian economics is the same as Marxist economics, except without the prescriptive part, where the government take over all the big business. The fault Marx identified in capital markets is that unemployment causes wages to plummet. To fix this problem, Keynes suggested zeroing out unemployment. That’s all there is to it.

It’s obfuscated, because normal economics academics are not allowed to mention Marx for political reasons.


2016-02-15 on mediaite

That’s what you’ve been taught, but it’s not true. Socialism simply depends on workers owning their own business, like small business, and libertarianism means the government doesn’t tell that business what to do through regulation.

The only major role for government in the economy is to break up concentrations of power that stop this natural state from existing. That’s it. It can be done with gentle nudges, like progressive corporate income tax, and incentives for gradual worker co-ownership, like profit sharing, and regulation on publically traded corporations, to prevent powerful executives from sucking profits into their own pockets..


2016-02-15 on mediaite

Cause or effect? They’ve had Sanders for 30 years. We’ve only had Sanders on the national stage for one.


2016-02-15 on mediaite

Vermont is rural, more conservative than you think, and he gets 85% support, including nearly all independents, and 25% of Republicans. That’s a miracle, and it’s due to his “get government off your back and onto the back of enormous businesses trying to put you out of business” philosophy, half of which is Republican, the other half libertarian socialist.


2016-02-15 on mediaite

I know how governments are run. Single payer is not very bureaucratic, it’s a simple reimbursement scheme. Insurance is very bureaucratic, because there is negotiation for each procedure, and conflict on what is necessary and what is not, which usually happens after the procedure is already done.


2016-02-15 on mediaite

I am not a fan of planners. That’s why I am voting for Sanders. His policies will help your small business, as you will no longer need to worry about health care, and you will be protected from monopolistic competition dumping on your efforts.


2016-02-15 on mediaite

I am not asking government to invest, or do much of anything really. I don’t believe in a planned economy. How many times do I need to repeat it? I’m a libertarian socialist, not a Marxist-Leninist.

The point of single payer is to hold down costs when there is a market failure. The way to know the costs is by providing reimbursements at diminishing rates, until the supply starts to fall and private insurers step in to fill the gap. That’s why you need a mixed public/private system.


2016-02-15 on mediaite

Keynesian economics was attacked politically during stagflation, because non-Keynesian people didn’t understand how inflation worked. Conservatives also used a voodoo version of Keynes based on the “Phillips curve” instead of reading Marx.

Keynesian economics is not disproved by anything. It’s just a fact of life. Stagflation means you need more investment, that’s all, and a jobs program in the meanwhile, because your economy can’t employ everyone as it stands.


2016-02-15 on mediaite

Why are you repeating yourself? I explained economic calculation below. It’s only relevant for a planned economy, which neither me nor Bernie Sanders is advocating.

Keynes can’t be proven wrong, at least in the sense of wages being depressed due to unemployment, because it’s been verified for nearly a century.


2016-02-15 on mediaite

College is pretty much free compared to the US everywhere. In Germany I heard it’s free, in Finland, they even pay you a stipend to go to college, as long as your grades are good. I believe that’s how Linux was written, by a superannuated Linus Torvalds. It really helps get a good academic scene. All industrialized countries have government healthcare, only the US doesn’t.


2016-02-15 on mediaite

I’ve known about this for 30 years. I studied the USSR as a child in the 80s.


2016-02-15 on mediaite

It’s easy because you’re sincere, not a troll like everyone else.


2016-02-15 on mediaite

You think I don’t know that? You need to look at how the central planners were acting. They were acting as market intermediates in this case of wages in the USSR. This is not how investment or innovation was done there, that was pure planning. But the wages were essentially pure market, despite the planners. Nobody said that internal to the USSR, by the way, that they were using markets. They couldn’t on ideological grounds. I noticed that.

In 1965, they wanted to move to pure market planning for all industries, based on profit. This plan was shelved. It was reintroduced in Gorbachev’s time, in 1985. Thestate industries were supposed to operate at a profit now, as opposed to by quota.

Because they were all enormous state monopolies, the easiest way to raise money was to choke the supply, to hold off on orders. This meant that as soon as market reforms were implemented, shortages began, and they just got worse as the USSR became more market oriented. Then it collapsed, and the industries were privatized, producing an oligarchy overnight.

The failure was the centralization and monopolization. The “calculation problem” was not serious. This is something you don’t understand until you look at the USSR deeply, not just read Mises, who never studied the planned economy deeply.


2016-02-15 on mediaite

It doesn’t have to come from savings. It just has to come when it’s needed.

Banks creating money out of nothing is just a way to produce investment capital for new industries that doesn’t rely on inequality and a bunch of rich people telling others what to do. There’s no need for angel investors if you’ve got a good VC and a good bank. The money doesn’t go to individuals, it goes to build up businesses, whose profits are distributed to employees through their labor, and to pay back the interest on the initial loan.


2016-02-15 on mediaite

The planners acted like robots— if they had a shortage, they raised the wage, if they had a surplus, they lowered the wage. It’s no different from a market. They didn’t tell people where to work, they needed flexible labor. This system was set up in the mid 1930s for the first five-year plan, it was codified in the second Soviet constitution (the Stalin constitution). I looked into this, because I had no idea how the heck they could regulate an entire economy top down. It was mystifying.


2016-02-15 on mediaite

Under Reagan, it came from a bunch of rich people. Under a free frictionless market, it comes from bank loans.


2016-02-15 on mediaite

The point is that the salary the planner set was equal to what it would be in an ideal frictionless market, because if there were too few people in a given job, they would raise the wage for it, until they got just enough qualified applicants. When there were too many they would lower the wage. That made wages differ by a factor of 4-10 throughout the USSR, it was not an equal-wage society by any means.

It’s not a market, but the mechanism is exactly the same. Actually, if you want to see what free-market wages would look like at zero unemployment, I think the USSR is your only example. There is no other economy that operated at zero unemployment with this type of wage system.


2016-02-15 on mediaite

Stagflation happens when there is not enough existing infrastructure to employ everybody, and you stimulate the economy to the point of hyperinflation. Then you get inflation at a rate of unemployment determined by the amount of industry you still need to build to employ everyone.

To get rid of stagflation you need new investment. But when there is inflation, it inflates away the investment capital. So you need to pump money into banks, but that has the effect of making the inflation worse.

So the plan is to first get rid of inflation, by austerity, which is what Carter did with Volker, then to reduce taxes on investment capital, to allow new industries to form. That’s more or less what Reagan did. Except he did it with an orgy of tax cuts and consolidations that didn’t help anyone at all. Carter and Volker were the wise minds here, not Reagan.


2016-02-15 on mediaite

Look, I know how the USSR worked. They had internal prices, which rose and fell according to supply and demand. They weren’t stupid. Their labor allocation was nearly an ideal free market. Everyone could switch jobs, and the planners set the salary to draw the appropriate number of people in, providing rather large incentives for tough jobs.

The prediction Mises made was presuming that the planners would be too stupid to mimic a market. They weren’t in the USSR, but conservatives don’t know anything about the USSR. The price signals in the USSR functioned as a signal of scarcity just as it does in a market.

The failure of the USSR was in bureaucratic inertia, and lack of innovation, and it happens in market systems as well in enormous firms. You are just blind to it when it’s MicroSoft releasing the same crappy version of Windows year after year, or if it’s an IPad still not working with flash. Those are enormous concentration of power making horrible decisions, and that’s what you had in the USSR, on steroids, because it was all government monopolies.


2016-02-15 on mediaite

It’s like saying “statics is at odd with dynamics”.Microeconomic theory is based on an equilbrium state, so that you can predict responses to perturbation. The dynamics of actual industrialized markets drive it away from the equilibrium state, when ownership concentrates and unemployment appears. That’s just the facts of life, and it is quantitatively demonstrated by the response of unemployment to minimum wage which goes in the exact opposite direction you would predict.


2016-02-15 on mediaite

Sort of. It’s approximately true for new industries as they are developing, not for old ones, and it’s not even true for all new industries. That’s Mises schtick. It has nothing to do with the failure of Marxist-Leninist economies. The failure is one of centralization, not economic calculation.


2016-02-15 on mediaite

They are both libertarians, at opposite ends, right vs. left.


2016-02-15 on mediaite

It’s not that it’s essential, it’s that it’s coerced by the hospital at point of provision. If you are in a famine, food becomes the same, and in every famine the government steps in to regulate food distribution and hold down prices.


2016-02-15 on mediaite

Those “poles” also say he is wildly popular with independents, can bring out Democrats in droves, and even catches some Republicans, especially libertarian Ron Paul supporters.


2016-02-15 on mediaite

As I said, nobody is forcing anyone else. The government provides a minimum payment, and if you want more, pay for more. It’s not force, it’s a public insurance policy.


2016-02-15 on mediaite

Oh I get it! You are saying because unemployment is the sum of individuals looking for work, there’s no possibility of a conflict between micro and macro, because a drop in unemployment is due to some individuals finding work in their micro environment.

Well, that’s true in a vacuous sense.

The correct way of saying “macro and micro conflict” is the statement that the macro response to a change is not equal to the sum of the obvious micro-responses, due to nonobvious feedbacks due to spending changes, which you can’t predict without knowing the features of general economic equilibrium, and how close or far you are from it.

The reason that the micro changes can all seem to go one way, while the actual macro change goes the other way is that the market is not anywhere close to economic equilibrium. The response theory of microeconomics presumes that you are at equilibrium. The failure of the theory shows that you are not. It’s as simple as that. Conservatives deny that this is true, but economic equilibrium makes precise predictions that fail. One of them is that unemployment must go up in response to an increase in minimum wage.

The main cause for not being close to equilibrium is that the wages in industrial economies are depressed due to unemployment from their equilibrium value. When you fix this depression, by a jobs program, by minimum wage, or by whatever means are required to remove the unemployed from the picture, wages rise to productivity, and equilibrium is restored.

The lack of equilibrium is the most important feature of real markets, and you are blind to it.


2016-02-15 on mediaite

The promises are easy to fund, and they are done in poorer countries than ours. But please continue in your delusions, the Sanders supporters appreciate your help.


2016-02-15 on mediaite

They don’t, but municipalities do.


2016-02-15 on mediaite

Of COURSE they are at odds, or there wouldn’t have been any need for a field called “macroeconomics” to exist. Conservatives pretend it doesn’t exist, but that doesn’t stop it from existing.


2016-02-15 on mediaite

Bernie Sanders is not easy to beat, or else he would already have been beaten in Vermont. But I’m glad you think that. Please run more superPAC ads attacking Hillary.


2016-02-15 on mediaite

I don’t know what a “macro measurement” means. Macro and micro are theories of responses, not theories of measurement. The UE is measured by unemployment benefits, I presume. I don’t care how it’s measured, so long as it’s accurate.


2016-02-15 on mediaite

Yes they are at odds. A rise in minimum wage should increase unemployment and reduce total consumption according to every micro reasoning, yet in real life, whenever it has been done, it does the opposite. That’s entirely due to macro reasoning. You raise minimum wage, and unemployment goes down. There’s no micro explanation for this, no matter how hard you try to spin it.

You are unfortunately the economic illiterate. You only understand micro, which means you are missing out on the last 80 years of economic thought. I’m sorry, but you need to learn the basic laws of macroeconomics, and you can’t learn them unless you start by reading Marx. That’s not going to be possible for you, on ideological grounds, so, you’re just “fukked” as you put it.


2016-02-15 on mediaite

Have you ever heard of “aggregate demand”? This is the real reason. The reasons you say are economic quackery.


2016-02-15 on mediaite

The only ones “taking my vote” are Republicans trying to disenfranchise with voter roll purges and voter ID laws.


2016-02-15 on mediaite

Do you understand that there is something called “macroeconomics” whose laws are at odds with the laws of “microeconomics”?


2016-02-15 on mediaite

This isn’t microeconomics, it’s macroeconomics. The two are at odds with regard to monetary policy, and if you don’t believe in macro, you have the false impression that leftist goverment is doing the opposite of the correct thing. Sorry, but you need to go to read some Keynes.


2016-02-15 on mediaite

It’s not only the younger generation. It’s the older generation that rejects economic quacks like you and Thomas Sowell.

The Fed was not the impetus for the housing bubble, the banks were, when someone realized how to defraud buyers of bundled securities with a false rating. There was no failure of government, the failure was entirely in the private sector.

The reason interest rates are low is simply to encourage people to borrow money at low interest and hire people. It’s not happening, because there are no more consumers, and small business is squeezed out. The benefit to investors is a side effect. It what happens when you try to do stimulus but don’t have the political will to invest directly in a jobs program.


2016-02-15 on mediaite

There is nothing utopian about a mixed public/private system. It’s the default in France.


2016-02-15 on mediaite

This is complete nonsense. The housing bubble had nothing to do with homeowner support regulation, or any such thing. It had to do with the mortgage bundlers realizing they could make a fraudulent AAA rating for the bundled securities, by a false assumption that the defaults were statistically independent. This meant that they could make money from a credit default swap, which would be underpriced.

The demand for more mortgages came from the bundlers, who were selling them off to banks like Goldman Sachs, would would pass them off after insuring them. The banks then went crazy giving home loans, because they were essentially being paid to produce subprime mortgages.

The whole failure was entirely in the free-market part of the system. None of it had to do with government. I know this is impossible for you to believe, because of your philosophy, but it is true. This is why your philosophy is bankrupt.


2016-02-15 on mediaite

The failure of the public option has nothing to do with the country’s voters, it has to do with the country’s donors. The voters supported the public option in big majorities, which is why the failure to pass it demoralized Obama supporters. Sanders won’t repeat this mistake.

NHS monopolized British health, and I believe it is too restrictive in comparison to other national plans. It is one of the earliest plans, it was designed at a time when the importance of competition wasn’t appreciated as well as it is today. We have more experience now, and public/private mixes are best.

If you want care that is not provided, it is essential that you can freely buy it, so that the doctors are able to sell their services beyond what the state is willing to pay. That’s what normal non-NHS health systems look like. In such a system, there can be no compaint of rationing, because you can supplement the state insurance with whatever private insurance you wish to buy, just as you do today.

There is no reasonable claim of rationing in a public/private mixed system as in France, whatever you can pay for, you can get. It’s just that the government provides a floor on essential care, and prevents prices from skyrocketing in those cases where the hospitals are in a position to extort the patient.


2016-02-14 on mediaite

The thing that makes reasonable negotiation impossible is that the care is essential, and choice is out the window. It’s a very precise standard: can the patient say “no” and be ok?


2016-02-14 on mediaite

If by “rationing” you mean paying $100 for an MRI rather than $800, paying $10 for a pill rather than $190, and disallowing frivolous overtesting when young children are in a hospital, you are right. If by rationing you mean that people won’t get essential care, you are wrong.

If you feel that you are being rationed out of care you want, just pay for it. The government doesn’t need to pay for everything you want, just the minimum consensus for what will keep you alive, at prices that allow the hospital to operate and recoup costs.


2016-02-14 on mediaite

RT is corporate, it has a few left voices, but they’re mostly gathered from the internet.


2016-02-14 on mediaite

Watch this movie: https://vimeo.com/18781528 , and you’ll get a glimpse of what Ronald Reagan did to my 10 year old subconscious in 1983. There’s no amount of ******* that can outdo that.


2016-02-14 on mediaite

LOL! Sorry, my bad. You’re right. Feelin’ the Bern too much, I guess.


2016-02-14 on mediaite

Sanders told you what it would be, and you’re already paying more in insurance premiums, that go to cover the homeless people freezing to death tonight.


2016-02-14 on mediaite

You can also get additional essential care, by paying out of pocket, or by using pure private insurance. That’s why France is more market than England, and also twice as expensive.


2016-02-14 on mediaite

It’s not what you call it that makes a difference. It’s whether the patient can reasonably negotiate regarding the location, price and type of care that is the issue. In both pregnancies and road accidents, the negotiating power of the patient is nil. So the hospitals can do whatever they want, and bill the insurance company after the fact, and the insurers can’t say no.


2016-02-14 on mediaite

Stimulus and real spending aren’t the same.


2016-02-14 on mediaite

He should have said 20% goes into negotiators and bureaucrats which are eliminated in a single-payer system. That would be more accurate. Only a small amount goes into the pockets of executives, but that would be eliminated too.


2016-02-14 on mediaite

Fox News is “White people, have more babies!” racist. It’s about as racist as it can be and stay on TV.


2016-02-14 on mediaite

Then why is it that McGovern’s negative income tax was such a negative for his campaign? There is no free lunch, voters are not supporting Sanders because his policies are easy or convenient politically. They are supporting him because his policies are necessary.


2016-02-14 on mediaite

This is not true, see France. A lot of workers get supplementals, to cover dental, I guess, and other stuff, like viagra.


2016-02-14 on mediaite

You really aren’t getting that the government provided care is a floor, not a ceiling. Congress is responsible for setting the floor, not the ceiling. You can buy as much additional care as you want as a private citizen.

It is not difficult to set the floor, within budget.


2016-02-14 on mediaite

That’s not true. Voters are extremely skeptical of government spending, especially in the US. They know that if it gets too big, it comes at the expense of private sector growth. The thing about health care is that you are improving small business, because they no longer have to worry about employees getting covered. That’s what some Republicans support national health, and even Donald Trump spoke out in favor. He knows his hotels and casinos won’t have to worry about health care anymore.


2016-02-14 on mediaite

They can do that, and if you want to pay for the stuff where they disagree with the government, go ahead. That’s what supplemental insurance is for.


2016-02-14 on mediaite

All pregnancies are potentially life-threatening.


2016-02-14 on mediaite

There is a law of diminishing returns, you can’t save more lives after a certain limit, no matter how much money you throw at it. The war on cancer is an example— the breakthroughs didn’t come until the biology research was sufficiently advanced, no matter how much money you threw at it in the 80s.

A national health system just means that the government negotiates the maximum possible lifesaving care within its medical budget, while the public buys the supplemental care if they aren’t happy with what they are getting. That’s the only way to keep the lifesaving care from driving up the costs of everything else.


2016-02-14 on mediaite

I know you imagine this is so, but I assure you as someone who lived a significant fraction of his life outside the US that it is not so. The poor in the US are miserable.


2016-02-14 on mediaite

That’s nonsense. Vermont has issues due to being a single state, businesses would leave, and sick people would come. It’s not something you can do on the state level, unlike Romney care.


2016-02-14 on mediaite

I have seen government programs that come in on budget, for example LIGO. Health care is easy, it is just a payment office for doctors to bill.


2016-02-14 on mediaite

The basic care package is negotiated by the government to save as many lives as possible within budget, the extra care is determined by what the public is willing to pay for. That’s what people do everywhere else in the world. I’m sorry you don’t like it, but it seems there is no other way that works.


2016-02-14 on mediaite

I read Pravda little when I was a kid, and it covered US poverty and race issues better than the US media did. It was awful regarding internal Soviet issues. Pravda is dead now, you can’t read it. It’s turned into the “Weekly World News” of Russia.


2016-02-14 on mediaite

Megyn Kelly was hard on Trump because the Fox corporate owners don’t like Trump. It says nothing about her objectivity, it just shows she follows the money better than others.


2016-02-14 on mediaite

The basic level is determined politically. If you don’t like it, get supplemental insurance, and pay for more care.


2016-02-14 on mediaite

Why is maternity care nonessential? Can you have a baby purely at home without risking death? It’s all the stuff you can’t negotiate properly in the market with. The market negotiates fine on sex-changes, flu-shots and Z-packs.


2016-02-14 on mediaite

You didn’t get the printed money to workers, it just sat in banks. There is nothing to do, you need to double down.


2016-02-14 on mediaite

Try what? I advocate a 90% top income tax rate. Sanders doesn’t. I’m not trying anything.


2016-02-14 on mediaite

Not exactly, but it happened anyway. The peasants weren’t killed for stealing from the state, they were killed when they put up an armed resistance to having their land confiscated, which was completely sensible, I mean, I would too. The people were sent to Siberia for stealing from the state, but usually most stealing in the 1940s was false over-reporting of labor “pieces” by including shoddy or broken pieces.


2016-02-14 on mediaite

That’s usually what governments provide. The optional stuff is not governmental in France, I don’t know about England. Basic dental is in Bernie’s plan, but usually excluded by most governments.


2016-02-14 on mediaite

The level of bureaucracy needed for government payment is far smaller than that required for private insurance. The reason is that the government sets a uniform payment rate for the esential care, determined politically. The issues of maximizing copays and denying care is taken off the table, and private insurance can focus on optional drugs like viagra, or on hair-implants or something. Nonessential stuff.

The number of bureaucrats in toto is reduced, which is why it saves money. It’s also why I support it, and I suspect why Sanders supports it. He is not a friend of bureaucrats.


2016-02-14 on mediaite

It is a good idea when you don’t have an economy working at full employment. You need to learn Keynesian economics. I’m 42, by the way.


2016-02-14 on mediaite

Artificially raising the cost of labor creates real value, because that cost is depressed by a non-market mechanism, by the creating of unemployment and the prevention of competitive wages. This is not controversial anymore, it is the reason economies don’t operate at 100%. This is Keynes 101.


2016-02-14 on mediaite

It is sensible, because only the government can negotiate on lifesaving care with any power. The insurance company would get sued for “killing patients”. The government can negotiate with strength.

That’s what makes lifesaving care so difficult to provide, you can’t hold down costs in the market. The supplemental insurance and optional care is different, and for these a market is good. That’s what they do in France, and much of the rest of the world.

But in all countries, the government is responsible for lifesaving care. That’s an extortionist situation, and it is a rare case where markets just don’t work.


2016-02-14 on mediaite

Right. But the single-payer takes out all the middlemen, and leaves only the doctor and a stingy government for essential care. This holds down the costs on essential care, and sets the baseline for nonessential and supplementary care provided by a market on top of the basic care. It saves a ton of money. The French system is at least 30% cheaper than the US system.


2016-02-14 on mediaite

That’s the Republican philosophy, it is only sometimes true. In the case of medicine and college, the free market creates the overruns, not any subsidies.


2016-02-14 on mediaite

He funded it correctly, and the reason it only hurts a little is that there is a large progressive tax component to it, although the bulk is from general taxes and payroll tax. It’s a mix, and it’s a sensibly designed mix.


2016-02-14 on mediaite

He isn’t getting it from the top 2-3%, that money is just to supplement the overall 2% income and 6% payroll that finances the bulk of the plan. It’s really correct on the numbers, you need to read it in detail.


2016-02-14 on mediaite

The great issue of our time is the fact that Americans are getting paid the same when their productivity quadrupled.


2016-02-14 on mediaite

Things are better in South America. People don’t really want to come to the US right now. If you don’t kill South America with bad policy, it will grow, and people will stay put. It’s nice in South America, it’s nice in Mexico, if not for the corruption. Sanders has always been rather stingy on new immigration, he just doesn’t want a shadow economy with underpaid people, because that’s a de-facto guest-worker program, something he opposed, because it drives down wages.


2016-02-14 on mediaite

You can’t have cash practice when costs are skyrocketing, and 10% of people will need $300K cancer treatment and 1% of people will need $1M emergency treatment.

Once you have basic health single payer for the cancer and emergency, so that the enormous things are taken care of, then the rest is a normal market, and supplemental treatment and optional things can be cash practice, and helped out with supplemental insurance, as in France. That’s better than the British system anyway, and less governmental.


2016-02-14 on mediaite

The health care tax is not flat because the other component of this is to reduce income inequality. The Sanders proposals are interwoven and deliberate. In Europe it’s usually a regressive VAT.


2016-02-14 on mediaite

It’s never going to be a moot point if drug cartels run Mexico and Columbia. The US needs to get its drug demand to zero, and stop subsidizing horrible government in the rest of the continent. Whether that’s by treatment or by providing drugs to wean addicts off of cocaine, I don’t know. Sanders hasn’t come out with a position on this.


2016-02-14 on mediaite

I don’t know, and I don’t care. When the immigration issue is solved, that won’t be an issue.


2016-02-14 on mediaite

He is saying Sanders’ numbers don’t add up, not that people won’t benefit with the published numbers.


2016-02-14 on mediaite

It also has an income tax component. The numbers add up. The US is wealthier than Europe, and single payer is actually easier for us. People forget that the Clinton tax hike that ended up balancing the budget was originally passed to finance Clintoncare. Balancing the budget is just what Clinton’s tax increase ended up doing when the health-care initiative failed.


2016-02-14 on mediaite

Those people need to become citizens, to keep them from driving down wages for everyone else. How can you expect a person to make a living picking fruit or working in a restaurant if there are illegals getting paid peanuts to do it?


2016-02-14 on mediaite

No. But I bet he would support policies that reduce drug crime in South and Central America, which are destroying life in those countries and pushing refugees to the US. You don’t appreciate how much of the illegal immigration crisis is due to US influence, both in subsidizing drug cartels, and overthrowing responsible governments in South and Central America.


2016-02-14 on mediaite

No, he isn’t.


2016-02-14 on mediaite

The things Bernie are making “free” have a value that is already created, by health-care providers and hospitals. The only question is whether the payer is getting their money’s worth. In both these cases, the answer is no, as in the case of health care the spending is through the roof due to limited information for the consumer, and in the case of college, the spending is through the roof, because college is a ticket to a high paying profession, so you can charge the difference in wage.

Both of these cost overruns are anti-competitive, which is why it makes sense to subsidize college, and have a base of government care which takes care of lifesaving medicine. That’s why other nations do it.


2016-02-14 on mediaite

The reason it doesn’t raise rates is because investment right now is terrible, people aren’t opening up businesses. The reason is that consumers don’t have enough income. That’s what you need Sanders for, to reduce unemployment and drive up wages.


2016-02-14 on mediaite

And I repeat it. The government could have zero deficits tommorrow if it directed the Fed to print money and then taxed this money as it entered banks. That’s not a good thing to do, because it encourages irresponsible government spending and that can lead to hyperinflation. This is why the Fed is independent, and why government finances itself through taxes, not through printing money.

Bernie Sanders has proposed an extremely responsible and moderate tax plan, and all his numbers add up. That’s better than any candidate running, or even in history.


2016-02-14 on mediaite

Money is just a lubricant for people doing work and taking things from stores. The flow of money is supposed to reward people for their productivity, to encourage more innovation and more labor. Right now, it is rewarding people for sitting at the top of enormous corporations doing destructive things, not for innovation or labor.

If you don’t have money in government, you tax it or make it. The issue with overspending is inflation, not the degree to which services are subsidized.


2016-02-14 on mediaite

I have never seen left bias in corporate owned media, only corporate bias. To see left bias, I had to read state-owned newspapers in the communist block.


2016-02-14 on mediaite

That’s not exactly accurate, in the USSR it meant confiscating the peasant’s land, and putting them on collective farms. But it was catastrophic anyway, it led to a disasterous famine in 1932, and an even worse famine when it was done in China in the 1960s.


2016-02-14 on mediaite

You don’t understand taxes, or monetary policy.


2016-02-14 on mediaite

There is no 90% tax in Sanders’ plan. A 90% tax on individuals doesn’t do anything to control an oil company, or a computer maker, it is just confiscating income earned by sitting at the top of a board of directors’ seat. I wish Sanders advocated these kinds of taxes. Eisenhower did, but Sanders doesn’t.


2016-02-14 on mediaite

You’re repeating yourself. Elizabeth Warren is no more of a communist than Bernie Sanders. They believe in protecting small business from the predations of big business, not in the government taking over.

While Chavez reduced deep poverty and poverty, he was not a small business president, and the small business in Venzuela always hated him. There is no comparison between the American left and other country’s left, the American left is much more libertarian, and believes in distributed private ownership, and in getting government out of your life.


2016-02-14 on abcnewsdotcom

That’s what Republicans THINK they will do. It presents a narrow avenue of attack. But Sanders knows what he is doing. Do you think that Vermont voters liked communism in 1981? In 1990s? In 2004? It’s an attack that doesn’t work, because Bernie Sanders doesn’t believe in government control of industry. That means the Republicans will not be busy making a positive message, and that means they will lose, and they will be mystified when they lose.


2016-02-14 on mediaite

The nation didn’t prosper under Reagan. Unemployment was relatively high, there was a crash in 1987 you forgot about, and there was a deep recession in 1991. Only he wealthy prospered under Reagan, as the low-inflation climate allowed investments to grow. The low inflation was engineered by Volker in 1978-1982, and he was a Carter appointee. Unfortunately, the wealthy voices are the only ones you hear on TV, so wealthy people doing phenomenally well looks like “everybody is doing great” before the internet.

The nation did prosper under Clinton, and that was largely due to Gore managing a tech revolution. But even then taxes went up, and a tenfold rise in EITC was introduced to redistribute wealth. The internet boom was managed so that it would produce thousands of small companies, rather than Reagan style large monopolies. Bush ended all that, and started the consolidation wave that destroyed the internet economy. It is not clear to me that if the trust-busting Gore was elected that the internet economy would have ever crashed in 2001. It crashed as investors realized those small companies wouldn’t be protected from monopolization.

Like Reagan, Bush cut taxes, monopolized industry, and entered and left with a gigantic recession. Except Bush also shredded the constitution, engaged in covert activities both inside the US and abroad, and left a deeper mess than Reagan ever could have, due to Republican Congressional majorities and a bought out Democratic opposition.


2016-02-14 on mediaite

And he’s right when he says that. His health care policy numbers add up, which is a completely unprecedented level of honesty in a presidential candidate. You’ve never seen that before.


2016-02-14 on mediaite

THe USSR went down because all its firms were large top-down monopolies. They needed small business, and they didn’t have it. When it was introduced, people revolted against 70 years of dictatorship and poverty caused by one party rule and gigantic industry.

US industry, where it is large corporations, resembles the USSR very closely. It is also top-down, and it is not much more efficient than USSR state industry. The only place the USSR wasn’t able to compete was in small business, and this is what is disappearing the US today.


2016-02-14 on mediaite

The date was around 2000, when the falling advertizing revenue due to internet competition led them to close investigative reporting divisions. This is what allowed catastrophes like the Iraq war and 9/11. Now the internet has taken over the investigative aspects.


2016-02-14 on mediaite

The “previous” group of socialists murdered the libertarians, and much of the Reagan revolution was coopting the libertarian socialist platform, and removing the “socialism” language. The left has not supported national control of the economy since 1956, it became a right-wing thing. The socialists who inspire the modern left were those in Spain in 1936, who were murdered by Stalin and Franco.

But Sanders is not a Libertarian socialist, that’s more Chomsky, Orwell, Dilas and Bookchin. Bernie Sanders just is an FDR Democrat, and Eisnehower Keynesian, and a Teddy Roosevelt trustbuster, with a Ron Paul style Libertarian streak.


2016-02-14 on mediaite

It’s not “political correctness”, there is no “second world” anymore— the communists are gone.


2016-02-14 on mediaite

Yes, but CBS, ABC, NBC, and CNN used to be real news agencies, who broke important stories between the propaganda.MSNBC and those give their journalists editorial space to learn and grow, without kicking them out when their politics change.


2016-02-14 on mediaite

There is no bias from the left in any media owned by a large corporation.


2016-02-14 on mediaite

“The South”. It’s not the third world since the communist block collapsed. Besides, it’s not even that poor anymore.


2016-02-14 on mediaite

Same company, different policies. MSNBC is the part where they pretend to be on the left. There are no leftists on TV, but those who pretend to be on the left sometimes ask different questions.


2016-02-14 on mediaite

I like Keynesianism. Whether you consider that socialism is up to you, I don’t care. Eisenhower and Nixon were Keynesians, so it’s the kind of socialism they and every other Republican in the 50s and 60s supported.

But the concetration of wealth in a few hands is not a matter of like or dislike. What I told you is a fact of markets, it is unavoidable. Your philosophy leads you to bury your head in the sand regarding this.


2016-02-14 on mediaite

CNBC is not MSNBC, and the moderators did all right.


2016-02-14 on mediaite

The country is starving because you are allowing capital to monopolize and concentrate. You need to understand what happens in markets eventually— all the property deeds go to a small number of people, who turn everyone else into slaves.

To avoid this outcome, you need progressive taxes, and policies that distribute ownership broadly. The US was late in learning this lesson because there was frontier land in the 19th century, so that if you were a slave, you could always run away West. Now you can’t run away, and you need a sensible system that stops capital from concentrating in a few hands.


2016-02-14 on mediaite

They beat up on Republicans their boss doesn’t like. That includes Republicans too far left to kiss his rear, and Republicans too far right to win. It is why media must not be controlled by large corporations.


2016-02-14 on mediaite

He shouldn’t go at all. They don’t deserve the ratings. They need to be starved of money.


2016-02-14 on mediaite

I’m not the OP. Fox is a propaganda network, it is pandering to a type of mentality through insincere commentary. That’s why they need to replace their hosts one by one with younger people. As they slowly learn more, they become incompatible with the orthodoxy, and then they are gone.


2016-02-14 on mediaite

Fox is a propaganda network. It is always risk to appear on it because they have no journalistic standards. They are getting a little better now, as they are realizing more what a catastrophe Bush was, I guess because they are responsible for him.


2016-02-14 on mediaite

Not think like me. They just have to think.


2016-02-14 on mediaite

Ok, but what can you do? Condemn W.E.B du Bois and Albert Einstein? Condemn Martin Luther King Jr. and George Orwell? When people hear “capitalism”, do they think of Pinochet and the Irish Potato Famine? It’s just words, and the choice of words shows which side you are on. The detailed policies matter.


2016-02-14 on mediaite

Voters just stay home. Sanders was an independent until recently for a reason. The Republican party is the party of 9/11, and cannot win any national election ever again.


2016-02-14 on mediaite

Chavez was not a “democratic Socialist” like Sanders. He was a “I want to nationalize industry” socialist. You have to learn the difference between the “libertarian socialist” and the “statist socialist”.

The point of libertarian socialism is to encourage distributed ownership of business. That means more small business, more worker owned business, and less gigantic monopolies. It doesn’t involve government top-down planning.

Chavez was a statist socialist, and he did a good job with oil production, but a bad job with small business.


2016-02-14 on mediaite

I don’t need a source, I AM the source. It’s obvious. I don’t read any sources.


2016-02-14 on mediaite

What you think of as a product of socialism is really a product of enormous corporations taking over. The main characteristics of a socialist economy, the real problem with the USSR, is the nation-state monopolies. That’s what dragged the socialist economies down, and the US had healthy small business.

Neither Republicans nor Democrats support small business anymore. Sanders does.


2016-02-14 on mediaite

Venezuela imports toilet paper, and their current government is corrupt, so it is getting voted out. But the reason they voted for a socialist is that the poverty rate in 2000 was 60%, with 25% in deep poverty, I mean, starvation level, I-live-in-a-garbage-dump poverty. While Venezuelans today suffer from oil-price shocks, and toilet-paper is difficult to find, Chavez reduced deep poverty by more than 50%, and poverty by 50%, and the economy doubled. That’s an achievement.

That doesn’t mean Chavez is a great leader, he had dictatorial tendencies, he used influence to rig elections, he took over industries, and drove out entrepreneurs. But nobody in the US is like Chavez, at least not on the left.


2016-02-14 on mediaite

It’s worse than that. Because the wealth transfer is so successful, rich people have tripled their incomes in the last 40 years. So they also tripled the amount of tax they pay, while everyone else’s tax payments are stagnant. Wallace is saying “if the rich are so good at rigging the system, why do they pay three times more taxes today?” It’s because they have rigged it to get three times more income!


2016-02-14 on mediaite

LOL! Removed “to a queen”.


2016-02-14 on mediaite

China is not a communist country anymore, it hasn’t been since Deng Xiaoping. It is an authoritarian crony capitalism on the coast, with a heavy state control of many large industries in the center. Both Republicans and Clinton admire the way China can control its internet. While Denmark had market Socialists in power at one point, the current government is rather conservative. But even the most conservative politician in Denmark would fit within the more left parts of the Democratic party economically, because they are all Keynesians.

Please don’t think that Americans like Sanders are looking outside, they are looking forward.


2016-02-14 on mediaite

A pawn on the seventh rank who’s about to promote.


2016-02-14 on mediaite

His successor would likely be Elizabeth Warren. American “socialism” doesn’t involve state coercion or takeover of industry, it involves reducing the power of big business. The libertarian is strong in Sanders, and it is generally stronger on the American left than on the right. Witness the Patriot act, the Freedom Act, and who voted for it.


2016-02-14 on mediaite

Obama doesn’t need leadership skills, it is impossible to compromise with people who are bought. Voters need to bring out the long knives.


2016-02-14 on mediaite

You can vote them out, and destroy their party forever. It is no longer a competent governing party, and it really hasn’t been since Nixon. We need a new libertarian leaning party to splinter from the Democrats, without the covert insane nonsense and corruption that characterizes the Republican party.


2016-02-14 on mediaite

Without the “LOL” what you said is 100% accurate. But there were some promises Obama didn’t make, and others, like closing Guantanamo that he reneged on. Hence Sanders.


2016-02-14 on mediaite

The rich pay more in taxes now because their incomes are skyrocketing. The rest pay less because their incomes are falling or stagnant. That’s not a sustainable economy.


2016-02-14 on abcnewsdotcom

That’s part of why you should register as a Dem and vote for Sanders.


2016-02-14 on abcnewsdotcom

The government must take it away because it is destroying the economy.


2016-02-14 on abcnewsdotcom

Wealthy people don’t work hard. They hire others to invest capital. I don’t envy them, I pity them.


2016-02-14 on channel-oneconomicpolicy

Neither I nor Bernie Sanders have anything against “economic freedom”. You can still compete in a free market.

The point is you need to tax high incomes murderously and increase minimum wage sharply, and create a jobs program and subsidize college, so as to reduce unemployment. That’s not doing anything to economic freedom, it is increasing it.

The Republicans Eisenhower and Nixon both had top marginal rates sky high, and invested in the economy, because both Republicans and Democrats were Keynesians.

Your curves are graphs are “Laffable”. You need to stop pulling out graphs and charts and recognize that the last 40 years of economic theory coming from the right is an out and out fraud.


2016-02-14 on motherjones

Sanders has a 25 year Congressional career, he’s already as corrupted as he’s ever going to get, which is not very much. Compromise and picking your fights is not the same as corruption, and he’s done plenty of both.

He’s already got an ego, don’t kid yourself. He’s not a weak guy, he’s the only independent Senator on the real left in Congress. He doesn’t have to formulate policy, he can hire good staff, which he obviously does better than anyone else, just look at his policy papers and commercials. The only thing he has to do is keep his moral compass under pressure. That’s not so hard if you are used to it, FDR could do that, and he was a pampered child born to what would be a billionaire family today.

It’s only in comparison to other candidates that Sanders looks like an incorruptible saint. In objective terms, in world-politics terms, or in historical terms, he looks like a reasonable center-left politician with a lot of talent for politics, and a bit of a libertarian streak. I don’t expect him to be perfect or incorruptible, just incorruptible enough, which he is.


2016-02-13 on motherjones

Companies don’t get enormous by gradually making more money, you deluded pisspot. The way companies get enormous is through IPO shoving billions down their throat, or by being founded by a billionaire, and then using that capital for acquisition of all potential competitors. That can’t happen with Disqus, because Facebook and Quora already took the monopolist capitalization for that niche.

When companies grow gradually, in an environment which is friendly to competition, they never become too powerful or too big, because new competitors constantly emerge. To deal with the situation of already monopolized business, I support a graduated corporate income tax, to punish big corporations for their size, and encourage them to split.


2016-02-13 on motherjones

His campaign isn’t focused on Clinton at all. But she is simply corrupt, plain and simple, and this leads some Democratic voters to despair, because we don’t want to be forced to vote for her. So we both support Sanders and explain the corruption of Hillary, and we don’t consult with him, because he wouldn’t approve this message.


2016-02-13 on channel-oneconomicpolicy

Don’t worry about LegallySpeaking, he’s some mentally defective Trump guy. Don’t feed the troll.

Exactly! There are competing effects with a minimum wage hike, like you said, and ALL the obvious ones go against the prediction I said. So it is extremely difficult to know what the net effect is on the economy from marginal microeconomic considerations like you are making. As you noted, every microeconomic analysis you do suggests that the effect of minimum wage hikes is to net DECREASE net spending and INCREASE unemployment and REDUCE spending in net. That’s why Friedman and other Chicago people say “Minimum wage is bad”, and it’s why it was opposed throughout the 19th century by economists.

That’s what makes the Keynesian prediction regarding minimum wage and unemployment INTERESTING and IMPORTANT. It’s completely counterintuitive from a point of view which doesn’t understand macro. That makes it a unique prediction, a unique quantitative prediction, and these are essential for testing a scientific claim of any kind, as they are strict tests. It’s like the General Relativity prediction for the precession of Mercury’s orbit. It’s something you can’t predict without understanding the full theory.

The point of Marx is that there are certain macro-effects regarding the lowest wages which you can understand just from knowing the theory of the wage structure of economic equilibrium, and knowing about the existence of a class structure and unemployment. The wages are MUCH lower than they would be in economic equilibrium, and consequently the profits are MUCH higher (they are zero in equilibrium). The way to determine whether the net effect of a policy is increased or decreased production is then simply the question of “does it move you closer to equilibrium” or “does it move you further away”.

From ANY micro-perspective, minimum wage is moving you away. It is only from a macro-perspective that you see it is moving you closer— it’s the global unemployment and class structure that it is attacking, by partially fixing the wage distortion that it produces. So ONLY Keynes/Marx would tell you that raising minimum wage slowly has the effect of decreasing unemployment.

That’s an effect that is verified with regularity with every minimum wage hike. It is why Keynesian economics was accepted without question and without controversy from 1940 to 1980.

When there is institutionalized inflation, you don’t need a rich person to put away money in a bank to get investment anymore. You just need to raise capital in banks by creating new money. That’s another aspect of Keynesian economics, removing the dependence on wealthy individual investment by having a global monetary policy.

Both of these things were recognized and institutionalized around the world decades ago, including in the US.

The reason it was rejected in the US is because of stagflation— the existence of nonzero unemployment at stimulus sufficient to produce accelerating inflation. The claim was that “this disproves Keynes”, because, as the conservative people saw it, in Keynes, you can’t have inflation until you reach zero unemployment.

That’s only true in Keynes if you have the infrastructure to employ everybody. When you get stagflation, that means you need more investment capital and an immediate government jobs program, because even at full capacity, not everyone is employed. That’s what Carter and Reagan were all about— reducing inflation with austerity, and increasing investment capital.

The problem with Reagan’s policies is that the increase in investment capital came by increasing inequality, and allowing wealth to concentrate among the already wealthy, so that they could finance new ventures. That’s the recipe for monopolized gigantic business, not new small business. A more decentralized view is to increase bank capital, and encourage small business, and break up the big business. That’s pretty much what Obama and Sanders are all about.


2016-02-13 on motherjones

It’s not about quantity of money exactly, it’s about size. Disqus is a competitive little counterweight to big corporations— it’s a small nimble company taking on “Quora” and “Facebook” and other billionaire ventures. They can’t make too much more than 10 million a year, because it is relatively easy to compete with them, e.g livefyre etc. You really don’t get it. I like competition, I like independent small business, I like employee owned business. I don’t like monopolized big business run from the top down.

I liked Google tremendously until they got an insane market cap with their IPO. I liked Microsoft when it was a tiny company making Apple II BASIC. I liked Apple when it was a little company making Apple IIs.

The issue is size. You can’t have an economy where one player in every sector is turned into a nation-state sized behemoth, that’s how the USSR failed.


2016-02-13 on thedailybanter

Yes, I hope we will.


2016-02-13 on motherjones

Yeah, you’re right. But you know what happens when you hold a hostage too long, after some ransom has already been paid. A bunch of special forces storm in from right field to kill you and also your hostage.


2016-02-13 on motherjones

“appreciate” == “understand” in my comment. Sorry, I didn’t appreciate your point properly. When you said you aren’t voting for Sanders or Clinton, I thought you meant you would vote Republican. You’re voting Green, ok, that’s great. But I think you are too pure, but, hey, it’s your vote, and I’d vote Green too if this were a parliamentary system.

When you have a certain fraction of the white vote totally racist, and a bare majority of the white vote totally oblivious to issues of racism, it’s a hard issue to fix from the top-down. The NAACP and Civil RIghts Movement worked from mass marches, and civil disobedience, not from the top. Sanders is running to head a mainstream party, and I think he is taking his advocacy for disenfranchisement as far as possible for a winning election campaign, and I think his candidacy a near-miracle, so I don’t challenge him. I think he would be the best ally in the white house, of all those that could realistically win. I don’t want to argue with someone on the same side, I just hope you don’t live in a swing state.

Look, if you take Sanders at his word, as I think you can, it is clear he wants constant activism busting his ass, and everyone else’s, from everyone with a grievance. The best time to do it is right after he wins. That’s the only way anything happens anyway. But the Green party is not going to help any more when one of the major parties is crazy. I think it is important to knock the crazy party out before setting up a challenge, because that’s the only way to get a transformation in the party system the way it is set up today.

Sorry for being an ass. I get you now.


2016-02-13 on motherjones

I live in Harlem, it’s majority black, and before I lived in a majority hispanic neighborhood. I appreciate the loss of power that minority regions face. Sanders is the best person to restore political power for those who are disenfranchised, by a wide mile.

If anyone has damages, they should sue. Sanders is your best bet for property damage compensation. In any case, someone is going to have their property value go down, and that person should be more than compensated for it.

I don’t believe you are voting for anyone, you are simply doing propaganda online, and are paid for it.


2016-02-12 on thedailybanter

McGovern was a weak candidate. Sanders is the strongest candidate the Democrats could field, because he is a liberty candidate. I am not blind to anything, I know what Republicans and Independents care about. you are blind. They care about liberty, not helping big business, and they want an honest candidate most of all.

Clinton might lose. Sanders would be the landslide, and in your direction. Don’t blow it.


2016-02-12 on motherjones

I told you that you are spinning a sensible decision into pathetic anti-Sanders propaganda. I am sorry that I am not helping. I am not asking you to vote for me, I am a jerk. Sanders isn’t.


2016-02-12 on motherjones

“10 million dollars” is the normal budget of 20 people and a server room, that’s just enough to pay the bills. This is not concentration of anything. 10 billion dollars would be.


2016-02-12 on thefiscaltimescom

It was solely because of him. Watch “Threads”, “The Sacrifice”, “When the Wind blows”, “War Games”, “The Sacrifice”, “Countdown to the Looking Glass”, “The Day After”, and “Miracle Mile”, and you’ll get a taste of what a huge chunk of 10 year olds were dreaming on a monthly basis in 1983. There was no crisis in 1983 other than Reagan himself, and his apocalyptic message of belligerance.


2016-02-12 on motherjones

I know about LBJ’s war on poverty— it took all the air out of the true progressive call for a war on unemployment by MLK. King supported a guaranteed jobs program, to ensure that unemployment was always zero, that nobody would ever face the situation of looking for work indefinitely. This was his main economic platform before he was assassinated. The war on poverty had some meager successes, some social failure, but a war on unemployment is what MLK proposed, and I follow MLK not LBJ. Because MLK was a Democratic Socialist, while LBJ was a war stimulus president.

The reason I think acting like an asshole will be effective is because that’s what Republicans have been doing for 40 years to get their awful candidates across to a brainwashed deluded public. I don’t think I’m a particularly good person, but Bernie Sanders is, and you should vote for him based on his ethics, not mine.


2016-02-12 on motherjones

I don’t care about nuclear waste in my backyard, I like nuclear waste personally, as I said, but I’m not normal, as I am a physicist, and I think nuclear power is supercool, so I can’t presume to speak for others. I am not dismissing the concern, I think you have chosen the wrong target.

Sanders wasn’t representing Texas, he wasn’t running for Texas Senator. He didn’t choose the depository location, and like every politician, he has to consider not just whether he abstractly agrees with a concern, but whether the fight is going to be fruitful for his constituents at the time. Now that he’s running for president, I expect him to take on this fight, to make sure that abuse of minority communities like this never happens. I just don’t expect it of him as a Senator, because it’s not his state. These were not his constituents.

But really, on scientific grounds, nuclear waste is harmless. Please read the whole comment and don’t presume.


2016-02-12 on motherjones

Disqus is 20 people and a server room.


2016-02-12 on motherjones

I’m already middle-aged silly, I’m 42. That picture is from 10 years ago. You are too old to understand the organizing power of the internet, and to realize this, you need only contribute a nominal amount to the Sanders campaign and get involved. He has a national organization which will exceed the NRA in membership and fundraising power by he time he gets elected. It’s a brand-new, extremely motivated, 50 state machine, made up entirely of ordinary citizens, not well connected elites, and he intends to use it. Nobody can stand in the way and survive in Congress.

All he is doing is harnessing the power of the internet to let the majority of ordinary people do what wealthy contributors have been doing for ages, and that is set the tone of the debate in Congress.


2016-02-12 on motherjones

Sanders can be thought of as a kind of libertarian too, the leftist kind. They believe in minimizing both government power and economic power of elites, at the same time. Usually to get one, you have to give up on the other. But this is a false dichotomy.


2016-02-12 on motherjones

Same way Clinton can beat Bernie in a heartbeat. They say it, they repeat it, until they lose.


2016-02-12 on motherjones

The important polls are how well he does with independents, and how good his base turnout numbers are. He scores phenomenally well on both counts. Mondale was abysmal on both.


2016-02-12 on motherjones

You should realize that his economic platform can be supported by what could be called the Libertarian left (an example is Noam Chomsky). The goal is reduction in unemployment, which reduces the power of big business. He supports small business and worker coops from predatory practices, and he will enforce anti-trust. These are classic overriding libertarian concerns, whether left or right.


2016-02-12 on motherjones

The details are largely the same, although the policy intended is opposite. Ron Paul wants a zero inflation policy, Sanders wants a zero unemployment policy, but both agree that having a “whatever big business wants” policy is atrocious, so the support slides back and forth rather easily.


2016-02-12 on motherjones

I’m 42, and I assure you that you have NEVER been there before. Sanders is not a “very liberal” candidate, although that is how he appears to a Democrat. He can be thought of as a true libertarian leftist, and a Republican or Independent can smell the libertarian streak from a mile away, whether in his stance on guns, or on abortion, or on descheduling marijuana, or on NSA surveillance, or the Patriot act. This is an unprecedented election, and an unprecedented opportunity to win over conservative libertarians to the Democratic party in droves. Please don’t blow it.


2016-02-12 on motherjones

I can tell you with 100% certainty that independent of the poll numbers or Repubican nominee, Sanders is universally more well liked among independents than Hillary clinton. He sweeps independents in his state partly because until recently, he identified as one, and he understands their concern with the corruption in the party system. He is honest, and he cares about the best policy to improve people’s lives, that’s his only overriding concern (after winning, which he must care about a whole lot, or else he wouldn’t win).

They can overlook a ton of disagreements for this trait. It should be universal in public service, and it used to be more common, but now it is pretty much just Sanders. Heck, he should capture some Republican vote, especially small business owners who want to be rid of health care worries, and Ron Paul supporters who want the Fed audited, NSA spying to end, and the Patriot act in the dustbin of history.


2016-02-12 on motherjones

She has never been indicted because most of these things are not crimes. They are just terribly sleazy.


2016-02-12 on motherjones

It’s worse than that. She doesn’t actually believe it, she just pretends to believe it, always with ambiguous wording, just so as to get the JFK-conspiracy vote, or the UFO vote. Nobody else usually pays attention to such statements, and ambiguously supportive statements can flip a percent or two your way in a close election, and you can always deny them afterwards. Romney did the same thing regarding cold-fusion when he visited Utah 2 days before the 2012 election. Romney doesn’t care about this, he probably thinks the cold fusion people are nuts, he’s not a physicist.

That’s regardless of the actual merit of the wacky idea, as JFK was actually assassinated in a conspiracy, Pons and Fleischmann did see anomalous results reproduced by several other groups, although what these results were due to is unknown, and while no, aliens didn’t come down to visit farmers, there seems to have been some active disinformation planted in the media about UFOs to make gullible people believe that they did.


2016-02-12 on motherjones

It’s for giving her control over email communication, making sure any email she doesn’t want to make public will never see the light of day. She just has to delete it on her server, and it’s gone forever. On a government sever, the backup guy has a copy, the security monitor has a copy, the government network has a copy, whatever. She obviously doesn’t like other people looking over her shoulder. Like Nixon didn’t. It’s a warning bell for corruption.


2016-02-12 on motherjones

Ok, ok, I didn’t know anything about it! It’s news to me. I just read your link. Sorry for being dismissive.

Let me explain myself: I don’t defend the choice of repository site. I agree it’s rather scummy the way nuclear waste is passed around from district to district until it ends up in regions with people who are granted less political power on racial grounds. I think it’s a goddamn shame on the US.

I don’t agree with this structural racism, of course, but I am also sure that Sanders doesn’t like any structural racism either. But he’s not a saint, he’s a politician, and he chooses his battles, and he decided not to take this one on, for his reasons. I suspect that the reason is that nuclear waste, unlike a light-water nuclear reactor, is simply an issue of public fear, it’s not at all dangerous to the residents, no matter where it is. I wouldn’t care at all if there were 200 tons of nuclear waste in a concrete bunker directly under my house, so long as the trucks carting it in weren’t too noisy.

There’s no way it can change my vote for him, because it simply wasn’t an issue of corruption, nor an issue of lack of action to protect minorities. It was an issue of Sanders making up his mind NOT to fight on an issue which I frankly think is not a top priority.

But honestly, I didn’t know anything