Archive for September, 2016

Quote note (#285)

Razib Khan on the Leftist destruction of the academy:

Though I hope that [Alice] Dreger and her fellow travelers succeed in rolling back the clock, I suspect that the battle here is lost. She points out, correctly, that the total politicization of academia will destroy its existence as a producer of truth in any independent and objective manner. More concretely, she suggests it is likely that conservatives will simply start to defund and direct higher education even more stridently than they do now, because they will correctly see higher education as purely a tool toward the politics of their antagonists.

This RK comment in the subsequent thread is also not to be missed, and is (if anything) even darker.

(Via, where brain-drain prediction is attached.)

September 19, 2016admin 41 Comments »

Software as Right-Wing Extremism

Exactly right:

Since its introduction in 2009, Bitcoin has been widely promoted as a digital currency that will revolutionize everything from online commerce to the nation-state. Yet supporters of Bitcoin and its blockchain technology subscribe to a form of cyberlibertarianism that depends to a surprising extent on far-right political thought. The Politics of Bitcoin exposes how much of the economic and political thought on which this cryptocurrency is based emerges from ideas that travel the gamut, from Milton Friedman, F.A. Hayek, and Ludwig von Mises to Federal Reserve conspiracy theorists.

This could be taken considerably further, actually …


September 18, 2016admin 33 Comments »
FILED UNDER :Political economy
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The Fifth Paradigm?


There’s a complete lack of theoretic elegance — or even basic structure — to this, but it still strikes me as basically right.

The image is over two years old. but I’ve only just seen it (via). The text pinned to it is from February this year, and also makes a solid forecast. The basic direction of capital teleology hasn’t been this pronounced for a century (at least).

September 17, 2016admin 104 Comments »
FILED UNDER :Technology

Twitter cuts (#87)


It can be difficult for rightists to grasp that the convulsive weirdness of the contemporary left is feature, not bug.

September 16, 2016admin 82 Comments »

Transcendental Anarchy

This, from NBS, is perfect.

Asked (by Garrett Gray): “What reason is there to think there’s an irreducible anarchy between sovereigns?” he responds —

Suppose there is no anarchy between sovereigns. This means there is a law governing sovereigns. Which means there is a sovereign over the sovereigns. Which means that the sovereigns weren’t sovereign. Which is a contradiction. Therefore there IS anarchy between sovereigns.

This insight is already the solid foundation of IRT, but it’s surprising how few seem to clearly get it.

September 15, 2016admin 92 Comments »
FILED UNDER :Political economy

Thiel for SCOTUS?

It’s 2016, so suddenly it’s imaginable we could witness the Singularity within a few years. It’s tempting to say (even if the rumors are true) that he has better things to do, but he’s not actually Musking about that much these days, and the mere possibility has to count as a peculiar life-circuit.

For thermonuclear domestic politics, this one would clearly be hard to beat.

September 15, 2016admin 20 Comments »

Quote note (#284)

Fernandez on the Western Left’s moral signaling implosion:

If you listen to Rodrigo Duterte’s now infamous rant against president Obama (start at minute 6) you might be forgiven for thinking it was Howard Zinn or Bill Ayers speaking, allowing for the accent. He spoke of the “lapdogs of America” who forget that “America has one too many [offenses] to answer for”. He argued that the Philippines “inherited the [Muslim] problem from the United States” and since “everyone has a terrible record of extrajudicial killing … why make an issue of it.” He describes the massacre of the Indians, the oppression of migrants etc. as reasons for ordering the deaths of thousands proving, if there was any remaining doubt, that he learned the lesson of moral equivalence well. […] From this, Duterte concluded that he wouldn’t listen to lectures from the SOB leader of such a country. It’s almost as if he’s been listening to Obama and Obama was hoist on his own petard. The Western left has the habit of preaching from a moral height while simultaneously describing its history as one unending crime. You’ve heard the teaching moments. “I live in a house built by slaves.” “You didn’t build that!” This whole country is stolen! […] Say it often enough and someone will believe you. Somebody did. The trouble is you can’t rise from the toilet to suddenly preach from a great moral height. …

September 14, 2016admin 19 Comments »

Sentences (#73)


The problem, in a nut shell, is that we are shallow information consumers, evolved to generate as much gene-promoting behaviour out of as little environmental information as possible.

(Read the whole thing everything he’s ever written.)

September 13, 2016admin 60 Comments »

One in 10,000

The ‘profoundly gifted cohort‘ isn’t ever going to be a constituency.


September 12, 2016admin 19 Comments »
FILED UNDER :Discriminations

Quote note (#283)

Peter Watts on the neurology of psychological integrity:

This thing you think of as you: it spreads across two cerebral hemispheres connected by the corpus callosum, a fat meaty pipe more than 200 million axons thick. Suppose I took a cleaver to that pipe, split it down the middle. (That’s no mere thought experiment: severing the corpus callosum is a last-ditch measure against certain forms of epilepsy.) In the wake of such violent separation, each hemisphere would go its own way. It would develop its own tastes in clothes, music, even its own religious beliefs. […] … Even when the corpus callosum is severed, the hemispheres can communicate via the brainstem. It’s a longer route, though, and a much thinner pipe: think dial-up versus broadband. The essential variables, once again, are latency and bandwidth. When the pipe is intact, signals pass back and forth across the whole brain fast enough for the system to act as an integrated whole, to think of itself as I. But when you force those signals to take the scenic route – worse, squeeze them through a straw – the halves fall out of sync, lose their coherence. I shatters into we. […] You might expect that an established personality, built over a lifetime and then split down the middle, might take some time to develop into distinct entities. Yet hemispheric isolation can also be induced chemically, by anaesthetising half the brain – and the undrugged hemisphere, unshackled from its counterpart, sometimes manifests a whole new suite of personality traits right on the spot. …

(There’s much more in the article.)

September 11, 2016admin 61 Comments »