Modernity in a Nutshell

Two revolutions:

(1) Techno-economic self-propelling change obsolesces ever wider swathes of humanity on a steepening curve. Capital (i.e. techno-commercial synthesis) tendentially autonomizes. For humans, there are ever more intriguing opportunities for synergistic attachment, on new terms, but the trend is — to put it very mildly — ‘challenging’.

(2) Jacobin political violence, modeled on the French Revolution, provides the basis for demands aimed at a redistribution of the (capitalist) productive spoils through explicit extortion. All socio-political history in the modern epoch falls into compliance with this pattern. It coincides quite exactly with ‘democracy’ in its modernist usage. Universal Basic Income is its natural telos.

To the extent that there has been an equilibrium between these twin processes, it is coming apart. All the pol-economic innovations of recent years, on the Left and Right, are indicators of this accelerating disintegration.

So the options are these:

Both (1) and (2) is the Status Quo (delusion).
Neither (1) or (2) is Reaction (also delusion).
(1) against (2) is the Neo-Modern Right.
(2) against (1) is the Neo-Modern Left.

Those are the only slots available.

Fernandez concludes:

The technological revolution is going to pose increasingly serious challenges to nearly every Western social democratic society. People are either going to be really angry when they discover there’s no patronage or angrier still when they discover they have to provide the “basic income” for everybody else. Only one thing is relatively certain: the solution to these problems won’t be found in the ideologies of the early 20th century.

(It’s a theme.)

April 8, 2016admin 51 Comments »
FILED UNDER :Political economy

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51 Responses to this entry

  • Modernity in a Nutshell | Neoreactive Says:

    […] Modernity in a Nutshell […]

    Posted on April 8th, 2016 at 6:31 pm Reply | Quote
  • Oliver Cromwell Says:

    “(1) Techno-economic self-propelling change obsolesces ever wider swathes of humanity on a steepening curve. Capital (i.e. techno-commercial synthesis) tendentially autonomizes. For humans, there are ever more intriguing opportunities for synergistic attachment, on new terms, but the trend is — to put it very mildly — ‘challenging’.”

    This is false and a serious misreading of the nature of technological process.

    The industrial revolution did not “up-skill” the economy, putting unskilled workers onto the scrap heap. It “down-skilled” the economy, allowing unskilled labourers to use machines to produce better, cheaper goods than skilled craftsmen. It was the skilled craftsmen, not the casual farm labourers, who were throwing their clogs into the spinning jennies.

    A world in which you can design and build a car by flipping the “on” switch on a robot is not going to be bad for people who cannot do anything more than flip an “on” switch. It is going to bring them fabulous wealth.

    The idea that rising GDPPC coincides with a falling employment rate, which is the opposite of the empirical trend, is motivated by the Left’s desire to keep pretending that capitalism doesn’t work in the face of massive contrary evidence.

    The key trend of the 20th and 21st centuries has been the explosion in numbers of low intelligence people who have been freed from Malthusian constraints by the capitalist world’s smart fraction. They’re getting more prosperous, not less, and that’s the main challenge facing us today.

    [Reply]

    Ahote Reply:

    This.

    The people who bitch about capitalism the most are the very ones whose survival was made possible by industrial capitalism. Labor laws and welfare state are the source of the problem, not its solution.

    [Reply]

    grey enlightenment Reply:

    There is a lot of truth to this, and yea, Automation also boosts living standards

    Those much hated elites create jobs that pay livable wages for otherwise mediocre people who would be helpless on their own

    perspective is also important. America’s ‘poor’ are much better-off than the poor in other countries.

    [Reply]

    admin Reply:

    Capital tends to liberate itself from dependence on the human contribution. That’s why essentially all technology is substitutive (imitative). The fraction of the global population capable of making any contribution of non-near-zero value today is no greater than 20%. Politics fills the gap with bureaucratic bloat and other make-work, welfare, a variety of protectionisms, macroeconomic junky-stimulus … and the gulf it needs to fill yawns open further every year.

    Sunny-side up (old-style) liberalism promotes The Process (which is great). If it seriously expects to maintain the narrative that there is a continuous historical trend in which (dysgenically deteriorating) human populations will always find a useful place, it is deeply in denial. Massive swathes of the core industrial infrastructure are already close to laborless. The proletariat was a phase.

    Weiss identifies the shadow side of industrial modernity. I’ve yet to hear anyone even try to explain why he’s wrong.

    [Reply]

    Ryan Reply:

    There is no objective definition of value.

    [Reply]

    admin Reply:

    There is a systemically consistent formulation of value (excavated by price-discovery). ‘Real’ values are those that you can run something on.

    Oliver Cromwell Reply:

    “Capital tends to liberate itself from dependence on the human contribution.”

    Which makes low-aptitude people more valuable, not less.

    If you have to work carefully over weeks to craft a piece part-by-part, you need higher IQ, lower impulsiveness, etc., than if you just need to crank a handle on a machine for a few minutes and have the finished piece pop out the other end.

    Industrial revolution = de-skilling. Information revolution = de-skilling. Skilled workers are the relative losers, as they lose their niche and thus their income and status in relative terms. There are no losers in absolute terms.

    Socialists have nothing correct and interesting to say on this (like most) issues; they have completely missed the point and jumped to the opposite of the correct conclusion. Following them down their basic income/social credit/whatever-it’s-called-this-century rabbit hole is not fruitful intellectually or otherwise.

    The dangerous change we have observed in the 20th and 21st centuries is the explosion in the population of places like black Africa, due to the dramatically decreased necessary IQ and future orientation required to produce things like food. It has not resulted in the working class starving to death as socialists think/vainly hope.

    Without contrary pressure, the reduction in skill required to produce most anything is going to lead to Darwinian selection against intelligence and future time preference. And unlike decreasing employment rates, this isn’t a nebulous future hypothetical. It has been observably happening on a large scale for a century or more.

    [Reply]

    frank Reply:

    “Which makes low-aptitude people more valuable, not less.”

    It doesn’t make low aptitude people more valuable. It just decreases the cost of things, which benefits low aptitude people disproportionately more — until it doesn’t, that is. See, decreasing cost of things include the cost of labor. When pushing buttons can be done at zero cost, they will be done at zero cost.

    That said, whatever evolutionary niches remain for humans, they will probably not select for high intelligence — except maybe when they are lab rats for Biological Intelligence Studies. I doubt if they’ll be intelligent enough to realize that they’re living relics.

    Oliver Cromwell Reply:

    Don’t understand the distinction you are trying to make. If person A costs $100 to sustain then increasing his productivity from $90 to $110 makes him more valuable. Doesn’t matter if other peoples’ productivity is increased more. If the cost of capital drops to zero we all become infinitely rich and can go sit on the beach; basic income becomes a reality by default.

    Socialists mistake increased productivity for decreased worth. This is because socialists are idiots, there’s really no mystery here.

    There is a real and interesting problem which is that a non-Malthusian world doesn’t select for intelligence, it selects for willingness to turn plentiful resources into children rather than personal happiness. More generally, the evolutionary purpose of intelligence is making war and absent pressure for war there is no selection for intelligence. Black Africa’s population explodes and white Europe and America permit themselves to be colonised because they believe that the colonists won’t compete with them for resources, a belief that is probably correct in the medium term.

    bomag Reply:

    …non-Malthusian world doesn’t select for intelligence, it selects for willingness to turn plentiful resources into children rather than personal happiness.

    Then the world eventually becomes Malthusian (again).

    Oliver Cromwell Reply:

    Sure. After first being filled with idiots.

    grey enlightenment Reply:

    the Luddite fallacy means that there will always be an abundance of jobs for all skill levels despite advances in technology. Carriage mechanics become auto mechanics become rocket mechanics etc. Whether or not is remains a fallacy is up to debate, but so far it has seemed to hold. Could also mean the labor distribution will become bimodal

    A world in which you can design and build a car by flipping the “on” switch on a robot is not going to be bad for people who cannot do anything more than flip an “on” switch. It is going to bring them fabulous wealth.

    idk..I think if they can build the car up to that point, they will figure out how to automate the pushing of the button.Or it’s ‘buttons all the way down’, ultimately leading to a ‘button for everything’ that pushed by one person will provide everything everyone will ever need.

    [Reply]

    Henk Reply:

    A world in which you can design and build a car by flipping the “on” switch on a robot

    We could even remote that “on” switch through a handy personal car design app on Amazon.

    My question would be, does giving low-skill consumers the use of magic low-skill car building capital (and raw material and energy) make them productive, or is it (2) in disguise?

    [Reply]

    grey enlightenment Reply:

    and then someone would have to push the amazon button app button…it;s buttons all the way down

    [Reply]

    Oliver Cromwell Reply:

    Try asking the question, “Does giving low-skill factory workers the magic of low-skill cotton spinning capital (and raw material and energy) make them productive, or is it (2) in disguise?”.

    There is *nothing new* about increases in productivity due to capital accumulation. Your food, the production of which in 1750 constituted most of GDP, is now produced largely by paying a handful of people to push buttons. How much are you suffering because there are few openings for a pitchfork operator?

    What has happened is that people are paid increasingly large amounts of money for smaller quantities of increasingly less important work. That isn’t a bad thing for workers!

    [Reply]

    null Reply:

    TC specialization splits the craftsman into two rapidly diverging processes–abstraction and button-pushing. i.e. someone designed and built the robot whose button the unskilled laborer endlessly prods. If said unskilled laborer can limit its fertility, it will enjoy the charming abundance of American shopping malls. If not, it will be drowned in its Malthus-defying human sewer, itself bought with the efficiency of specialized abstraction.

    Of course, all of this is only until the robots can push their own buttons…

    [Reply]

    bomag Reply:

    “…only until the robots can push their own buttons…”

    Ah, yes; the day we start competing for resources with the machines…

    [Reply]

    frank Reply:

    Luddite fallacy applies to the extent that humans are cost efficient reprogrammable daemons. Capital’s telos is not to produce goods for other agents’ consumption: that’s its means to accumulate more capital, which is closer to its real telos. Humans have the same telos and means. They rent their time to extract capital. What happens when you can rent robotic daemons who learn faster, are more reliable, have less character flaws, and are more energy efficient? Priced in terms of the currency on which the producers of said daemons operate, humans’ temporal capital becomes worthless. So they’re pushed out of the catallactic network that includes the robotic daemon producers: Let’s call this network the Apex Market.

    Humans are thus left with three options:
    (1) Rent their time to other agents that similarly don’t have access to the Apex Market.
    (2) Seek rent on their extant capital (real estate, land).
    (3) Exit catallaxy, start waging predatory war against agents of the Apex Market.

    Third option doesn’t strike me as realistic. Second option is only possible insofar as agents of the Apex Market don’t ask the question: “Why don’t I just kill you and take your shit?”. Option (1) is equivalent to humans becoming evolutionary relics; it is possible insofar as agents of the Apex Market consent to its existence—the same way humans consent to the existence of wild animals near civilization.

    [Reply]

    admin Reply:

    Realism begins here.

    [Reply]

    Aeroguy Reply:

    The trick is making sure the apex market is a runaway success. There exists a dangerous region, being the market dominant minority, where 3 succeeds.

    [Reply]

    Posted on April 8th, 2016 at 7:22 pm Reply | Quote
  • Ahote Says:

    ‘Le Maximum’ had catastrophic consequences, Universal Basic Income will have far, far worse. The least bad form of welfare is fascistic “internal improvements” public works projects. The worst form of welfare is UBI (it would be more merciful to just execute the poor SOBs).

    [Reply]

    Posted on April 8th, 2016 at 7:28 pm Reply | Quote
  • Brett Stevens Says:

    And then there is the only legitimate third way, which is power motivated by something other than materialism whether of economic (1) or human (2) varieties.

    I agree they’re coming apart. This split is bigger than most people realize. Both sides are hoping to install patches to bring Western Civilization to the 2.01b version, but nothing can reconcile these fundamental differences.

    Of course, the plight of the citizen would vastly improve if women and immigrants left the workforce. And if we dropped the social welfare safety nets, they’d take home more of their earnings.

    We can trust government to do the exact opposite of course.

    [Reply]

    Mark Citadel Reply:

    With two revolutions seemingly connected, seemingly running in parallel and diverging as they accelerate to extremes (one economic, the other ideological) due to their inconsistencies, it seems somewhat likely that both might just terminate at the same time, as they set out from the same station. What does the world look like once one exits the subway?

    [Reply]

    Ahote Reply:

    The world population shrinks to about five hundred million.

    [Reply]

    Posted on April 8th, 2016 at 7:36 pm Reply | Quote
  • Jesse M. Says:

    angrier still when they discover they have to provide the “basic income” for everybody else.

    Even today, a livable basic income wouldn’t necessarily require much higher tax rates than exist today, especially in the more social-democratic countries (see here and here). But in the near future, once robots can take over all the physical labor in the production process and also self-replicate copies of themselves, market competition would naturally cause the price of these robot-produced goods to plummet down to little more than the raw materials and energy which need to fed into them. At that point, the basic income needed for a materially comfortable lifestyle would drop to a fraction of what would be needed today, and so the needed income taxes on people who do work that can’t be replaced by machines (‘creative class’ type jobs mostly) would be low as well.

    [Reply]

    admin Reply:

    All animals expand to the limit of their resource supply until they rediscover the Malthusian Limit. Humans are no exception. That’s why there is no ultimate prospect of a ‘decent’ outcome. Slack between the Iron Law of harsh subsistence and prevailing economic conditions is used to breed zombies. Under Modernistic conditions, the human population enters a drastic dysgenic trend. (Neo-eugenics will counter aggregate dysgenesis — but only by ripping Homo sapiens apart into different species.)

    [Reply]

    Jesse M. Reply:

    @admin – Malthusian logic doesn’t seem to apply generally to human populations with access to birth control and a reasonable level of female education, since we’ve seen the so-called “demographic transition” to smaller family size happening in all of Europe and the Americas, and most of Asia (Africa is another story, although as described here about half of African countries are experiencing a gradual decline in fertility while the rest don’t seem to be, the differences presumably owing to different levels of access to/knowledge of contraceptives and different cultural trends in family size). Dysgenics is a separate issue from Malthusian population problems, it may be true in the long term that improving medical care weakens selection for natural health, but as you say that could be countered with genetic engineering and/or embryo selection. Maybe that would lead to some sort of speciation, but I side with transhumanists in not really seeing it as tragic if our culture gets handed off to some other form of intelligence, whether biological or AI (though if it’s AI I hope that mind uploading ends up being the first approach to bear fruit, since that would allow for more cultural continuity between us and the AI). On another comment thread you posted something about Hugo de Garis’ ideas about future conflicts between “Terrans” (those who want to preserve modern unmodified humans as the only intelligent species) and “Cosmists” (those who don’t have a problem with creating new forms of intelligence)–out of curiosity, which side do you take?

    [Reply]

    michael Reply:

    sounds like you and admin have cooked up a perpetual wealth redistribution scheme, but i think even robots will lack the motivation to carry the byte mans burden. someone owns the robots and will not like the vig. and this idea that robots will have an economy of their own is seriously ridiculous.

    [Reply]

    admin Reply:

    Funny you should say that, because the idea super-human intelligence can be eternally shackled to monkey business looks ridiculous to me.

    [Reply]

    michael Reply:

    as you keep saying and while i freely admit youre not only smarter or at least more intelligent than i and certainly know a lot more about Ai than i , i just cant conceive in my little mind that if the predictions about consciousness arising in ai we would be stupid enough to let that happen. more to the point i find the idea that it could happen to be absurd beyond belief. i think its almost like some rhetorical trick in philosophy so the idea of ai robots needing wanting or able to have an economic incentive is bizarre. but whats more bizarre is someone like you wanting it to happen and people who seem to be worried about human culture cheering you on. its like some cyborg cucksterism. and let me be clear i have loved capitalism since reading [dont laugh] ayn rand in the 70s as a kid and technology since watching the moon landing a bit before that.But do you get how those loves are a human thing. Its a really far fetched idea that many seem to put all their hopes in while rome is burning.

    frank Reply:

    Do you think that there’s something inherently special about “computation of goals” that bars non-biological forms of intelligence from achieving it?

    [Reply]

    Jesse M. Reply:

    @michael – Are you talking about robots with human-like intelligence or higher, or much dumber ones? I don’t think dumb robots with insect-level intelligence are going to rebel, and that level of “intelligence” is probably all you need to have completely automated production of manufactured goods including self-replication. And sure, these robots would be owned, but they’ll be owned by different people who can try to undercut each other in the prices of robot-produced goods. And once anyone owns a completely self-replicating set of robots or other machines (a minimal example would be a 3D printer that can print and assemble copies of itself), then the machines can churn out endless copies of themselves along with whatever other goods they are capable of producing for just the price of raw materials and energy, without any worker having to lift a finger. That means if you still have price competition between different self-replicating machine owners, the price of goods produced by these machines is going to drop down to barely more than the cost of raw materials and energy needed to make them. Imagine if I can go out and buy a 3D printer which I use to print out more identical 3D printers, each further printer costing me only say 50 bucks to make in terms of materials and energy, which I’m then free to sell to other people for whatever asking price–do you think the market price of these self-replicating 3D printers could end up being much higher than 50 dollars?

    Of course, some machines may eventually reach human-like levels of intelligence or higher, but the intelligent beings of this era (whether biological humans, if the AI is ‘friendly’ and doesn’t kill us off, or the intelligent machines themselves) would still want to have plenty of dumber machines around to do boring repetitive labor without complaint or demand for a salary, so the logic should still hold regardless of what the maximum level of machine intelligence is.

    [Reply]

    michael Reply:

    ok say i have my new robot replicator technology but am late to the party i am going to make my bots military and seize your fucking resources you wont be printing shit. Then i am going to seize your fucking markets you wont be selling shit you cant make anyway then we will be back where we started not owning anything we cant defend forever. Look obviously robots will continue to be improved and ideally will replace immigrant nigger labor. the problem we ought to be addressing is how will we continue our own civilization can we reduce our populations in europe and the anglosphere drastically while improving its quality commensurately and continue our military and economic hegemony while living in drastically more civilized and less crowded nations, great lets do it but if youre into the fantasy of replacing the niggers [all types and colors] and elites for ai and robots well why on earth would i be for that its more of the same. and its a silly fantasy.I occasionally question capitalism its my guess that if you could run an ai program of ‘pure; capitalism it always ends up not capitalism but rent seeking serfdom etc if the point is to win permanently thats great but i think the point of capitalism is it SERVES US best all the self healing evolution like traits we admire in it really are about its ability to work so well for our benefit.if it were because it benefits a very few there are other ways to do that violence is one and foundational to capitalism but capitalism can do something better it can proxy violence and distribute shares not to us in a way thats fair to our monkey minds sure but also to our monkey contributions encouraging productivity. productivity being good because our time is good. droid time is not good its infinite and therefore valuless its not even a concern of ours who gives a shit about machines they are niggers concious or not they are not european man until proved otherwise european man is the point of the universe. If droids can be made infinitely smart then so too can european man and anyone who chooses a silcon nigger lover euroman is a nigger lover and must die. why is this controversial. nononono im not a stormfronter but i know only ethnostates are stabile and since im a euroman i root for my team because the only objective good is survive and reproduce my line any surplus resources are too be distributed as close to my line as possible as back up.Fortunately i think despite IQ disadvantage my line will continue to crush asia long term and we will breed the jew AZK back into us long term.If im wrong fine the best species won, but those of my line who actually try to thwart this and root for niggers and droids need hanging. you dont need a super high IQ to get this. That said if i had a super lot of resources would my sharing trickle down to african niggers even yeah sure but i wouldnt be breeding them like bill gates ide be puttin them in ecoparks like polar bears taking away their ak47s and nike sneakers and tshirts and reducing their pop to a manageable level they are a bio resource and a few exceptional ones could be guest workers or whatever im not going to let yellow niggers turn them into slaves though thats wrong why because i said so and i rule yellow niggers. sure its a outmoded evolutionary strategy that gives me this preference but once my existence is secured [not like that filthy minded racist] then my pleasure is whats the point so i might want to fall in love with some silly bitch and imagine she gets me whatever i can afford it. i can afford other species can have some pleasure to as long as i manage they cant get an edge maybe eventually i spock up and phase them all out whatever its my universe. am i going to give all this up to a fucking machine nigger are you fucking nuts? say i can create ai singularity in 50 years but euroman singularity in 150 years besides who gives a shit about nigger singularities ; i got all the time in the universe its mine whats the hurry. so whats stopping me? nigger lovers burdening me nigger problems give me a euro ethno state free of the white mans burden and we accelerate whites could fucking have moved mars into near earth orbit and terraformed it for what diversity costs us.There is no more point to ai singularity than african singularity

    Posted on April 8th, 2016 at 7:43 pm Reply | Quote
  • Grif Rutledge Says:

    The cuckservatives and current ruling class are Status Quo (1&2) deatheaters.
    The ravaging zombie horde SJWs are Neo-Modern Left (2 bashing 1).

    Spandrell’s Neoreaction Trike = Techno-Commercialist + Religious-Traditionalist + Ethno-Nationalist
    Most folks in the space prioritize a mix of these three, but one always takes priority.

    The Ethno-Nationalists and Religious-Traditionalists both fall into classic reaction, rejecting both 1 and 2.
    Any attempt to “control” capitalist AI is a fool’s errand and an explicit rejection of 1. Any interaction with technos requires a submission that at minimum means coevolution (codependence) and at maximum means becoming a Matrix battery (slavery).

    That leaves the Techno-Commercialist as Neo-Modern Right.

    [Reply]

    michael Reply:

    i think the religious [christian] will have to go eventually its a leftist religion and how leftism enters and its not really rational. The techno futurism is great as far as it serves us but replacing minorities and elites with ai and bots is not helping me. capitalism too must serve me it doesnt actually work like evolution though we love to the extent it does without maintenance it leads to serfdom which is fine [maybe] for my competition but for me no thanks i want capitalism to make me better off i only like it theoretically when im being theoretical the rest of the time i dont want goldman sachs or AI ruling forever with me gone or in the matrix or starving what am i suposed to live on the satisfaction that my ancestors invented capitalism fuck that i want a new iphone unbeatable army sixmonths paid vacation and 900 virgins thats what i like about capitalism i gets paid. does this mean socialism -no unless we mean insurance plans whos books balance. but it might mean calling zuck into the white house and bending him over once in a while if he forgets capitalism is based on violence and hes a faggot we employ we being white men. it might mean we dont let droids or multinational companies not pay the vig, they operate at our pleasure not the other way arround planning atlas shrugged LMAOROTF sure whatever in the meantime you want access to my planet use of my roads seas space my people you pay the vig , socialism? is oit socialism when one multinat pays another multinat for shit no call it security call it infrastructure leasing call it market share licence agreement and consulting and labor its all of that and more its the vig you pay the white man for use of his planet earth. Its a really good deal we got the only planet in a trillion miles location location location as they say. The days of you trying to play footsie with all the different niggers in hopes of overthrowing us have to end we built this world and we will be paid our due.

    [Reply]

    Posted on April 8th, 2016 at 9:26 pm Reply | Quote
  • grey enlightenment Says:

    my $ is on #1 winning

    [Reply]

    Posted on April 8th, 2016 at 10:01 pm Reply | Quote
  • Rucoi Says:

    regardless of 1 prevailing over 2 or vice versa could we assume that the result would at least eliminate signifier terms such as right, left or neo-whatever? will any outcome result in the eradication of a dialectical structure? if not then we’ll be right back at this point in a few centuries if not sooner. if our only hope in escaping this minefield lies with AI eliminating human choice then option 1 is the only solution, in fact it’s a foregone conclusion. Option 1 has already won.

    [Reply]

    Posted on April 8th, 2016 at 11:40 pm Reply | Quote
  • sobl Says:

    “Good God, what’s that I hear… soft in the distance… humming?”

    Vvvvvvvvvvvvv-Rrrrrrrrrrrrr

    [Reply]

    Posted on April 9th, 2016 at 12:17 am Reply | Quote
  • Aeroguy Says:

    The power of Cathedral mind control shouldn’t be underestimated. We don’t have anything close to a free market, the capital intensive markets (which are necessarily the ones that produce state of the art war machines) are controlled by cartels in thrall to the will of the Cathedral. Money is routinely left on the table in exchange for holiness points (or outright burned on the alter like Intel’s 300 million) because they can, these industries aren’t competitive enough to properly punish this behavior. Capital may be growing, but this just opens up new more powerful applications that are even more capital intensive and thus the state of the art remains out of the reach of competition, thus cartels (and their misbehavior) can be maintained rather than crushed under the weight of competition.

    As such Jacobinism can continue, the utility of mobs was never productivity. Bread circus and bureaucracy aren’t endangered by capital, they are the one who knocks. The populist state and it’s mob can squeeze the productive middle for as long it remains productive. The smaller the productive middle becomes and more automated the deployment of state of the art equipment, the more the middle can be insulated from direct contact with power even while they manufacture it’s sustenance (If Skynet comes online it won’t be a drone network or a capital producer, it will be built by marketers to manage their social media accounts). Failure occurs when the middle collapses under the weight of the parasites (2 is quite capable of strangling 1).

    Catallaxy in of itself will not save us. Rather the silver lining is that what made Jacobinism so successful is the high military value of mobs, but the meta of warfare has shifted back to quality over quantity. The PTB need not depend on Jacobinism as a winning strategy because conscripted armies are obsolete. This depends on a critical mass of elites breaking out from Cathedral mind control, enough to split the Cathedral enthralled cartels and introduce competition (averting catallaxy from being strangled under the weight of a parasitic state).

    Musk’s efforts at disrupting some of these cartels are heroic however their effect (and I suspect his intent) seems limited to merely keeping them from stagnating (functioning as a catfish rather than an actual threat) rather than dislodging them or releasing them from cathedral control.

    [Reply]

    Posted on April 9th, 2016 at 5:52 am Reply | Quote
  • spandrell Says:

    This is well put.

    Until now (1) is strong, but (2) is fighting back.

    If (1) loses momentum, as it looks likely; technology may not be able to advance forever, and at any rate it’s basic input (High IQ workers) is decreasing. Then (2) may smell blood and come cracking down in force, which means it doesn’t get a basic income because the robots that were supposed to provide for that aren’t there; and the few that were there have been destroyed by leftist lunatics.

    [Reply]

    Grotesque Body Reply:

    Alternative outcome: (2) doesn’t antagonise (1) enough to kill the host, but does outmaneuver it such that it is able to subject any given member of the productive middle to ideological struggle sessions with impunity and in perpetuity.

    [Reply]

    Tentative Joiner Reply:

    >it’s basic input (High IQ workers) is decreasing

    Surely not in terms of the absolute numbers (so far). With luck, it will be enough to last until “eugenics-light”, marketed as “advanced IVF”, begin to show effects at scale.

    [Reply]

    Tentative Joiner Reply:

    * The primary way in which “eugenics-light” will differ from “eugenics proper”, of course, will be the marketing. It won’t have to wear jackboots to coerce most in the West to participate.

    [Reply]

    spandrell Reply:

    China is losing population already, so yes, in absolute numbers we are losing high IQ people. Given differential fertility we probably have been for a while.

    [Reply]

    Posted on April 9th, 2016 at 7:02 am Reply | Quote
  • Marxist toady Says:

    Just noting: I know Admin has referenced Schumpeter, but this seems above all like a (good) summary of the narrative of Capitalism, Socialism and Democracy — especially regarding the political capture of capitalist productivity. (Though this may be more optimistic than he is on this point.)

    [Reply]

    admin Reply:

    Schumpeter expected the fate of capitalism to rest on the spinal-fortitude of the bourgeoisie, and was understandably bleak about the prospect. Throw AI-epoch synthetic psychopathy into the mix, and the fight looks vastly more promising.

    [Reply]

    Posted on April 9th, 2016 at 8:38 am Reply | Quote
  • SVErshov Says:

    when nothing works, then it is safe to assume that idea which is completely alien to everything we know may work.

    [Reply]

    Posted on April 9th, 2016 at 11:17 am Reply | Quote
  • SanguineEmpiricist Says:

    Is markdown available in the comments section? If we got markdown in comments and an edit we could really get somewhere with this blog.

    [Reply]

    Tentative Joiner Reply:

    No Markdown, but you can use a subset of HTML. An edit function would be great, yes.

    [Reply]

    Posted on April 9th, 2016 at 6:15 pm Reply | Quote
  • to the left #2 – Antinomia Imediata Says:

    […] is indeed a very able description of it. and goes on to point the interdependence of the two modern positive feedback loops, capital and the […]

    Posted on May 15th, 2016 at 2:27 pm Reply | Quote

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