Quote note (#141)

Just to keep Kgaard maximally wound-up (and therefore indirectly troll everybody else on the blog), Jim Quinn navigating amid a flurry of Mises quotes:

Booms brought about by credit expansion ALWAYS end in a contractionary bust. It’s just a matter of when. The level of mal-investment in Japan, Europe, China and the U.S. during the boom created by central bankers is almost incomprehensible in its scale of absurdity. The only beneficiaries have been bankers, corporate insiders, politicians, and shadowy billionaires hiding in plain sight. The illusory boom has already impoverished the working class and the coming bust will invoke civil unrest, social chaos and war.

(I’m in Singapore until the 9th, so erratic online activity until then.)

January 7, 2015admin 30 Comments »
FILED UNDER :Pass the popcorn


30 Responses to this entry

  • Brett Stevens Says:

    Same as the Clinton years. Everyone is glad their monopoly money seems worth something, not noticing that what it can buy has declined.


    Posted on January 7th, 2015 at 3:20 am Reply | Quote
  • Quote note (#141) | Neoreactive Says:

    […] Quote note (#141) […]

    Posted on January 7th, 2015 at 3:21 am Reply | Quote
  • blogospheroid Says:

    Nominal rigidities – a primer.

    When people started trading based on money, they made contracts on the basis of nominal amounts. This tradition continued for a very long time. That implied that for better or worse, people started measuring the worth of their work with the amount that they were paid with. Larger amounts meant progress, lower amounts meant regress. The stickiest prices are wages and debt.

    Inflation is not good, but a fall in nominal spending is bad. If the company performed well and you did well and the boss came to you and said “Congratulations, we’re cutting your salary only 3% this year”, you’d be pissed off. This is precisely what will happen in a monetary base limited economy.

    Not to say this can’t be managed. With transparency and a high trust culture, it is possible to loop everyone in and show who all got a raise and who got a drop and everyone agreeing that the pie was split correctly. All of the above is equivalent of issuing equity, instead of debt. High trust with gains shared as well as losses. Equity as a concept can be used mainly in high trust cultures.

    But we are not there. Under the current multi-cultural low trust democratic situation, equities cannot be issued to all and sundry, because the person cannot be trusted or the legal system cannot be trusted.

    A few posts ago, there was talk about a new religion. A religion is a large noble lie, a huge noble lie. Monetary base expansion to accommodate money illusion is a very small noble lie when compared to that. The irony really here is that all this monetary base expansion would really be unnecessary if the monetary authorities would just explicitly list out their nominal targets and adhere to it.

    Monetary base limitation and Inflation targeting are one-sided. If the inflation target is 2% and the numbers come in at 1.8%, the CB should expand the monetary base until it reaches 2%. If not, you’re foiling the plans of everyone who used the target as a basis for calculations. Basic control theory might tell you that controllers for high and low ranges work better than one for one side only. A lost bitcoin wallet means that money is gone forever. The bitcoin monetary base limitation is a one sided control, an assymetric control. A two-way control is better for all planning purpose. If a crypto currency puts in place a 2-way control, it is expected to perform better under the current best knowledge of macro-econ.

    PLT (price level targeting) > IT (Inflation targeting). NGDPLT > PLT (for overall stability purposes)


    Aeroguy Reply:

    But bitcoin has miners who as they mine bitcoins they increase the money supply so there is in fact an inflationary control element. The small scale of bitcoin use is the primary source of it’s instability, people can’t decide if it’s money or not, thus as they waver it’s unstable. Seeing as how money is a faith (technically trust but close enough) based social institution, you might say it’s the world’s most popular religion.


    vimothy Reply:

    There is a hard limit to how many Bitcoin can be produced, though, so at that point, assuming that Bitcoin was used as money, there would be strongly deflationary pressure. Another issue is that Bitcoin is a sort of digital commodity rather than a digital currency. There can be no attempt to fix the price of Bitcoin by varying the money supply, as occurred under the gold standard — at least under present institutional arrangements and mindsets of Bitcoin enthusiasts.


    Posted on January 7th, 2015 at 6:41 am Reply | Quote
  • Quote note (#141) | Reaction Times Says:

    […] Source: Outside In […]

    Posted on January 7th, 2015 at 6:49 am Reply | Quote
  • spandrell Says:

    Something tells me you don’t really like Singapore, but I wonder how do you square that with your Moldbuggism.


    admin Reply:

    I like Singapore a lot. (When Gibson calls it “Disneyland with the death penalty” I think — what’s this ‘Disneyland’ s**t?) The Sings are the closest thing to Uebermenschen the world has probably ever had. Sad they can’t work out how to breed is all.


    Contemplationist Reply:

    I’ve had this idea of Singapore exporting and training sensible civil servants with some sort of premier, prestigious institution. India could make use of this, as could many other countries.


    Posted on January 7th, 2015 at 1:14 pm Reply | Quote
  • Setra Says:

    I would be very interested to see Land do a piece in relation to his thoughts on Singapore.


    admin Reply:

    I’ll try something quick and dirty.


    Setra Reply:

    Hey thanks for fulfillling my request.


    Rasputin Reply:



    Posted on January 7th, 2015 at 1:21 pm Reply | Quote
  • Kgaard Says:

    Monetary policy has been beaten to death. My interest really is in seeing how neoreaction will change when confronted with new data showing its orthodox positions to be wrong. So far, I’m not encouraged. Jim makes similar mistakes: He argues that women need to be taken back under the control of fathers and considered property. We know both from evolutionary-biological and economic perspectives that that’s not gonna happen. So why argue that it needs to? It can’t be a fruitful starting place for any sort of productive debate.

    Singapore is much more useful topic of discussion.


    Izak Reply:

    I basically agree, but on some level, if you’re gonna fantasize about catching fish, it’s probably more enjoyable to fantasize about catching 20 fish instead of, like, 4.

    There’s also something to be said for the whole notion of pushing the Overton window.


    soapjackal Reply:


    Maybe you should set up a shit talking spot to kick the orthodox positions on the teeth.

    Consider jims solution. Its not about whether we can vote the policies in its about recognizing that universal sufferage and mandatory 2 income households/women in the work place arent sustainable projects.

    However you should do some serious kicking. Thats the whole point. Getting stuck in the mud now defeats the whole purpose.


    vxxc2014 Reply:

    SJ well at least you’re consistent!

    Kick what in the teeth exactly, all of humanity’s accumulated wisdom and practice until the 1960s? I know Jim wants to go back to the 1660s, if not 60 AD. But worse could happen. I can see the money collapse/debt bombs taking us to 1000 BC – Global Dark Age. A real dark age, Europe’s one is mini-me at best by comparison.

    What Jim wants of course is Anglican England under Queen Anne on the Throne, and the antebellum south with near Sharia. I really think he’d benefit personally by morphing into a serial killer that eliminates his enemies in the office, it would clear his head on analysis. With just a few loose women stuffed in the crawlspace to clear the air.

    Which still doesn’t mean he’s wrong

    Once we get unstuck from the mud and become rigorous in the analysis again..and yes it’s all quite stuck…no doubt about it…where are we going?

    Serious question.


    soapjackal Reply:

    Personally I was defending Jim there. I think that many sane and necessary practices are never going to be implemented in a democratic system. Whats important isnt that Jims ideas are practical to win at democracy but that the consequences that occur if said ideas arent implemented are important to note.

    What will women vote for once they get suffrage?


    What happens to Economics of the Home on a national scale when 2 partner incomes are requirements to raise kids?

    These are both questions which have consequences. Bad ones.

    Now as far as the your question goes:

    >Once we get unstuck from the mud and become rigorous in the analysis again..and yes it’s all quite stuck…no doubt about it…where are we going?

    I do not think the analysis was ever rigorous. Many interesting tomes and ideas are discussed but NRx hasnt cleared the hump of blogosphere comments and twitter. I see on google hangout much more decent and interesting discourse which not only kindles local community action but truly opening new avenues of thought that have been hidden away in dusty libraries for years. Actually spending some times to work on how to think and setting higher standards for what we think (judged against effective metrics, which is part of the problem figuring out.) is a necessary step. Moldbug isnt the high water mark (Hopefully!)

    Its why I ask Kgaard to be specific and detail what he thinks is wrong and figure out what the context is for his statements. Much of his recommendations I agree with to a certain extent and I think its necessary to have disagreements as long as work is done as a result.

    Its not stuck as much as the prior momentum was just insight porn. Now that the actual thinking and research have to happen the ball can get rolling. Of course at the same time real life has to go on and actually inspiring a community is necessary. Fighting the Morally bankrupt demons that infect our families minds, taking back control of our money, training ourselves to defend life, finding ways of gathering young men in effective institutions. Its all simultaneous. Macro/Micro cant be unbalanced.

    Now where are we going? Depends on your personal goals. I want to see if NRx has what it takes to actually think hard and work hard. I’m working hard to put the money where my mouth is both in thought and action. 2015. There are grandiose dreams but I like to keep things simple for now.

    Kgaard Reply:

    Izak — Regarding the OVerton window, Jim is actually probably on more interesting ground there. One thing that is interesting is the way the fundamentalist Christians (who are booming in the middle of the US) are in fact moving back toward a more patriarchal philosophy. It comes through at the margins when you listen to the Christian radio talk shows. I wouldn’t be surprised if, within 3-5 years, fundamentalists start talking about some sort of parallel legal code, like Sharia, for marriages. They’re going to put two and two together and realize that if the bible says the man is the head of the household, you can’t have a legal system allowing the woman to walk out with the kids and face no consequences. The fundamentalists’ literal reading of the bible is actually productive on this point. (This is another reason why it is potentially catalytical to have Republicans taking such dominant control in the statehouses and in Congress.)

    As far as moving the Overton window on monetary policy, I’m not sure I’d want to move it toward a gold standard in the first place.

    Soapjackal — Yes I have thought about starting a blog but I don’t know that I could keep at it. My day job involves writing and sitting in front of a computer and finance. So I may have already hit my quota there. I have recently finished a book combining economics, stocks and my travels to 30 emerging markets. That incorporates a lot of neoreactionary concepts. Frankly I don’t know what to do with it. Was going to self-publish but am not sure I could successfully market it. Don’t want to have a box of 300 books sitting around.


    soapjackal Reply:

    a blog is one way. I just mean gathering some thoughts and pointing to areas you think are weak. Sure more well fleshed out formal arguments helps but just setting the stage for some debate and throwing some primary sources to the wind only can help expand the box.

    I’ll throw a few books your way for an ebook but I’m not a professional writer so I have no idea what the scene is for that kind of work.


    snorlax Reply:

    The evangelicals already did a big push for just that, about 20 years ago. Fell flat. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Covenant_marriage

    And they aren’t really “booming” any more, prog hysteria after the ’04 election (the “Jesusland” map, the film “Jesus Camp”) notwithstanding. The evangelicals peaked in the late 80s and have pretty much been in continuous decline ever since Jim Bakker got busted.


    Kgaard Reply:

    Well perhaps it makes sense to make a distinction between frothing-at-the-mouth fundamentalists and what we might call serious christians with a largely literal interpretation of the bible. My sense, having just driven across the country and back, eating at 10 Cracker Barrel restaurants, listening to a lot of radio and looking at a lot of people, is that serious Christianity is re-emerging as the organizing principle of rural America among all age groups, particularly the young. The issue is that there’s simply nothing else out there. The aftermath of the sex drugs and rock and roll approach is on display at every turn and it ain’t pretty. Anyone can see that, but it’s especially evident in the sticks.

    Leonard Peikofff’s recent book, The DIM Hypothesis, covers this. He argued that Christianity would re-emerge by default because nothing else offers a human telos. (He was an Ayn Rand acolyte.) At the time I read it I just thought, “Hmm … that’s an odd conclusion for a Randian.” But now I see that he was spot on.

    There’s also a tribal affinity thing going on, like with the Mormons. It costs you something to be a Christian, but to not be one out in the middle of Texas and Tennessee and Alabama is worse … more isolating.

    Contemplationist Reply:

    They are now involved in ‘harvesting souls’ in the 3rd world, specifically India and China.

    Hurlock Reply:

    “We know both from evolutionary-biological and economic perspectives that that’s not gonna happen.”

    We do?


    Izak Reply:

    For non-whites, it’s quite possible. White people, I dunno.


    Kgaard Reply:

    Lifetime monogamy is imposed by men, period. It’s a male invention. Women don’t want it. And men only want it to the extent they get exclusive access to one hot white chick from the years 18-35. Beyond that the dudes don’t want it either. Without extreme external economic incentives it’s a non-starter, and those incentives are gone. Plus, the pill has radically changed the implications of non-marital sex. So, no, patriarchal ownership of daughters is not coming back for more than, say, 20% of the western population at an absolute maximum. (The SJs, in Myers Briggs terms.)


    Posted on January 7th, 2015 at 6:02 pm Reply | Quote
  • SanguineEmpiricist Says:

    I see you are still ignoring that John Gray is essentially the dark enlightenment and has done the arguments here done better. Jim cannot be a part of the “macro economic canon” because I simply do not think he qualifies.

    Is there any reason you are pushing bloggers to be a part of the canon that still make obvious empirical mistakes regarding time preferences?


    soapjackal Reply:

    ah good. Another intellectually honesty one.


    Posted on January 7th, 2015 at 10:01 pm Reply | Quote
  • Amon Khan Says:


    Hey, inability to breed is just a minor detail, right? There is something so comical to me about all these bourgeois bohemian masters of the universe, who fancy themselves the greatest humans to ever exist, being genetically out-competed by the lowliest of breeders. Isn’t there something fundamentally delusional about their (and your) worldview to make such a judgement?

    I’ve found that pointing out the barren, unsustainable, demographically suicidal nature of modern progressivism is the most effective line of attack against leftists and progs; it seems to stop them in their tracks. Even that clever but arrogant leftist, Charlie Stross, had no rebuttal; he sputtered something about overpopulation, but otherwise had nothing useful to say. If it’s a material fact that can’t be denied or defeated by moralist posturing, what is a leftist to do? Perhaps the spectacle of reactionary brown people displacing non-breeding postmodern white degenerates and transforming their culture will eventually shock them back to reality. Cultural suicide by bad memes — has such a thing ever happened before?


    blogospheroid Reply:

    Suicide by bad memes – example – Shakers


    Posted on January 8th, 2015 at 1:40 am Reply | Quote

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