Quote note (#234)

Here’s another bone for the local liberty crushers to gnaw at:

Countries as varied as Hong Kong, Singapore, New Zealand, and Botswana that experienced dramatic economic growth and prosperity all shared the following practices and institutions: private property rights, the rule of law, low costs of market entry, and trade liberalization. All of these variables are critical components for an economically free environment that encourages entrepreneurship and wealth creation. […] In sum, if there are no sound institutions in place, namely private property rights and the rule of law, economic prosperity is virtually impossible to achieve no matter how many brilliant people and natural resources your country has.

Heritage is (mostly) measuring the right things.

March 22, 2016admin 49 Comments »
FILED UNDER :Political economy


49 Responses to this entry

  • Quote note (#234) | Neoreactive Says:

    […] Quote note (#234) […]

    Posted on March 22nd, 2016 at 2:51 pm Reply | Quote
  • Anomaly UK Says:

    Economic growth and prosperity depend on “property rights, rule of law, markets and trade”.

    What do “property rights, rule of law, markets and trade” depend on? Wishing for them is not any more effective than wishing for growth and prosperity. They have their own requirements.


    admin Reply:

    Exposure to a larger competitive environment looks like the ultimate dependency. That is to say, a compliance with (‘Atlantean’) external relations, rather than the internal relations favored by (‘Hyperborean’) romantic reaction and other strains of socialist organicism.


    Cichlimbar Reply:

    You’re still not making sense. (I’ll stop pointing it out when it will stop being true.)


    Seth Largo Reply:

    Exposure to a larger competitive environment looks like the ultimate dependency.

    Sure, but if you want economic gains to act as a bulwark against future social instability, then at some point Antlanteanism needs a dose of Hyperboreanism . . . unless, of course, you’re happy to pick up and flee entropy every few decades rather than build and maintain an entropy-resistant infrastructure.

    If you join global capital and constantly flee to wherever the next boom is about to occur, sooner or later you’ll run out of places to hide. Sailer’s recent quotes from Andy Grove get to the heart of the problem, and they echo a point I made on my blog not long ago: hyper competition is great for innovation, but innovation on its own is useless. Innovation is prologue. What matters is the large-scale implementation of innovations. A nation that controls both innovation and implementation—the start-up garage and the factory—is a stable nation. Attempting to control the former but to reduce costs by moving the latter from place to place to place is just asking for negative consequences down the road.

    From Grove:

    The underlying problem isn’t simply lower Asian costs. It’s our own misplaced faith in the power of startups to create U.S. jobs. Americans love the idea of the guys in the garage inventing something that changes the world. New York Times columnist Thomas L. Friedman recently encapsulated this view in a piece called “Start-Ups, Not Bailouts.” His argument: Let tired old companies that do commodity manufacturing die if they have to. If Washington really wants to create jobs, he wrote, it should back startups.

    Friedman is wrong. Startups are a wonderful thing, but they cannot by themselves increase tech employment. Equally important is what comes after that mythical moment of creation in the garage, as technology goes from prototype to mass production. This is the phase where companies scale up. They work out design details, figure out how to make things affordably, build factories, and hire people by the thousands. Scaling is hard work but necessary to make innovation matter.

    The scaling process is no longer happening in the U.S. And as long as that’s the case, plowing capital into young companies that build their factories elsewhere will continue to yield a bad return in terms of American jobs

    . . . You could say, as many do, that shipping jobs overseas is no big deal because the high-value work—and much of the profits—remain in the U.S. That may well be so. But what kind of a society are we going to have if it consists of highly paid people doing high-value-added work—and masses of unemployed?.

    In local terms, the endgame of Atlanteanism is always social instability, which, again, is no big deal as long as you’re happy to flee or gate yourself in from the angry masses. But there has to be a better option than that.


    admin Reply:

    “… there has to be a better option than that.” — Really? Why would we think so? I’d at least like to see it tried out on a small scale (somewhere far away from my family).

    Kgaard Reply:

    Well if you could just cut the corporate tax rate to 15% that would solve maybe half the problem. And in theory it should be politically do-able. The math is all in favor of such a cut. Even Democrats could build the case for it. Those offshore factories would come back to the US.

    This is going to come up in the Trump/Hillary debates and Trump is gonna knock it out of the park.

    admin Reply:

    You’re still ignoring the Triffin Dilemma. If you’re exporting currency, you’re going to run a trade deficit. That’s simple math.

    Kgaard Reply:

    Gotta think about that one. Intuitively I don’t think that’s right. The US could cut the corp tax to 15% and then do like a 6% nominal GDP target. If the currency threatens to strengthen, just cut rates or do QE.

    The Fed’s unemployment target is very disturbing. For years they have PERFECTLY hit their unemployment target but missed all the others: too low on CPI, too low on GDP growth. This is why you get so many toothless dudes with tattoos working at Wal Mart for $10/hour rather than being machinists at $22/hour.

    Erebus Reply:

    It may be structurally desirable to run a deficit, but it doesn’t need to be a massive and sustained deficit of the sort the US is presently running. When Triffin formulated his dilemma, in 1960, trade was balanced — the US was even running a slight trade surplus. What’s more, Triffin pointedly recognized that massive, sustained deficits are never a good thing. So I think that the US can gradually move towards more balanced trade without inviting catastrophe.

    The Triffin dilemma is not without possible solutions:
    -The role of the SDR can be expanded. This is what the SDR was designed for, and was Triffin’s original solution to the problem. It’s also a solution that has long been favored by China and many other nations: http://www.pbc.gov.cn/english/130724/2842945/index.html
    …The SDR just needs what the US manufacturing sector needs: Looser top-down regulation. This will lead to greater market penetration and accessibility.

    -The Yuan can be de-pegged from the USD, can function as a regional reserve currency (e.g. for the ASEAN bloc), and can join the SDR. If the Euro survives, it should naturally also function as a regional reserve currency. To some extent, all of these things are beginning to happen.

    -The role of gold can be expanded in international markets, to ward against currency instability. (I’m no economist, but it seems to me that an SDR variant that includes gold and an industrial metal or two as a hedge against catastrophic paper currency instability would be an interesting thing.)

    -Innovative solutions — for instance, blockchain-based artificial currency arrangements — are not utterly outside the realm of possibility.

    ….The really interesting thing is that all potential solutions put US-dominated global finance and the US manufacturing sector at odds. In the modern USA, finance always wins. But what is better for the populace and for the nation?

    Anomaly UK Reply:

    That’s up another level of meta: if you are under competitive pressure you will find the right answers or lose to someone who does. And on a sufficiently grand scale, that’s probably the most meaningful way of looking at things.

    I think it’s still worth talking about what the right answers actually are, from the point of view of my children over the next few decades.


    vimothy Reply:

    Why is socialism being identified with romanticism instead of technocratic utilitarianism?


    TheDividualist Reply:

    Because technocratic utilitarianism lives in the gap between capitalism and socialism.

    It appears that where the goal is to employ as many people in the government as possible, fucking with capitalism because it is supposedly less just than socialism, but still not yet implementing socialism but just prolonging the fuckery, is what employs the most. If they actually made a law that workers councils will take over firms, i.e. socialism, they would lose the justification for the bureaucratic engine that supervises 143 million types of worker rights, as the justification for them is capitalistic oppression.

    It is all very logical in its own way. People who want to make a living out of fighting oppression always want to keep at least an empty theatrical setting of the supposedly oppressive structure alive.

    TheDividualist Reply:

    This is basically a tautology, if doing bad things is not allowed (rule of law) and doing good things is allowed / not hindered (roughly the private property aspect of it), then people will do good things (economic growth).

    Methinks allowing doing good things is not that difficult, you just need to tell lefties/parasites to GTFO (OK, that is actually difficult).

    But the primary reason most of the world is shit is that doing bad things is allowed. Not that going good things is not. Very often the problem with more screwed up places is that it is not that inventing a new product would not be profitable… it’s just stealing shit from the government or screwing people over is often more profitable. I.e. lack of rule of law. Or the rule of bad law.


    Posted on March 22nd, 2016 at 2:55 pm Reply | Quote
  • vxxc2014 Says:

    Again the FAIL of confusing a Personnel Problem with a Systems Problem.

    We don’t have a systems problem nor a systems solution.

    We have a personnel problem in our Elites.

    They Mean Harm.

    They Do Harm.

    There is no system or anything at all you can allow them to touch they will not turn to harm.


    Erebus Reply:

    Is our problem with our elites? Or is the problem with our ostensibly democratic and egalitarian forms of government?

    The solution, such as it is, has been more or less well-defined for a very long time. Victorian England’s system combined private property rights, the unwavering rule of law, and low costs of market entry, with very low taxation, steep customs and excise fees on certain imports, and extremely restrained and mild governmental regulation of domestic business and industry. It’s a winning formula. It’s the formula that they initially exported to their colonies.

    …And then the wretched masses of Britain were given the vote — first in 1884 and again in 1928 — and the rest is history.

    The people get the elites they deserve. They sure don’t make statesmen like they used to, and this has everything to do with the “lowest common denominator” qualities of modern electoral politics.

    You might just have a systems problem after all.


    vxxc2014 Reply:

    That we have vile and malicious, defective elites is beyond question.

    They mean Harm, they do Harm and they have POWER.

    That problem must be squarely faced first and destroyed. We cannot have these people among us never mind ruling us.

    That vital first step is required before dealing with any systems changes – which come when political with horrid unavoidable costs.

    And you plural are still trying to write a software program for people that is people proof.

    Utopia will never die in the minds of those raised in it.

    I’ll go further: I don’t actually believe there are or can be political systems. Politics is Power and Politics is Power arrangements between people. The rest is convention, protocols, clearly laid out power boundaries to allow day to day governance with the struggle for power managed – and ritual.

    Your politics of never ending systems change falls under Ritual.

    Indeed never ending systems change is the Holiest of Holy Progressive rituals and Neoreaction remains Right-Wing and Old School Progress.


    Posted on March 22nd, 2016 at 3:32 pm Reply | Quote
  • Cichlimbar Says:

    Typical zero insight rubbish. The usual pseudo-scientific (and intellectually empty in every way) comparison of present conditions, and rhetorical appeals. Par for the course, Aaron Tao seems to have deplorable knowledge of Russia’s history (economic or otherwise) and its demographics. The closing paragraph is laughable.

    Where is the bone?


    Posted on March 22nd, 2016 at 3:43 pm Reply | Quote
  • Cichlimbar Says:

    Like, is there any more doubt that you (plural) have an incurable inclination to over-bet on behavioural malleability? Even offering the argument the maximally charitable portent conditions, it simply does not work without assuming that the idea of homo economicus has any material significance beyond the classroom.


    admin Reply:

    I think Anglos are going to be Anglos (and if they stop, they cease to exist). I’ve no idea what you think, because like most trolls, you never say. But assuming your obnoxiousness is an expression of HRx inclinations, you think Anglos should be more like Russians. So who’s hooked onto the “behavioural malleability” fantasy?


    admin Reply:

    I don’t expect anything from you but low-grade annoyance.


    admin Reply:

    “Reality” requires positive content, it doesn’t arise spontaneously out of facile snark.


    Posted on March 22nd, 2016 at 3:56 pm Reply | Quote
  • Brett Stevens Says:

    In sum, if there are no sound institutions in place, namely private property rights and the rule of law, economic prosperity is virtually impossible to achieve no matter how many brilliant people and natural resources your country has.

    Another way to put this: without social order, as occurs outside Leftism, your society cannot thrive.

    Leftism removes social order with its focus on the individual, creating third world conditions.

    The ultimate property rights regime is aristocracy, where the best people own everything.


    Posted on March 22nd, 2016 at 3:57 pm Reply | Quote
  • vxxc2014 Says:

    What works for New Zealand, Botswana and Singapore will not work for great manufacturing nations. What works for other great manufacturing nations such as Germany will not work for the United States which has the matchless advantage still of huge internal markets which it should guard. Germany needs export markets and went to war twice to get them. The United States has huge internal markets which it should protect and is quite capable of selling most of it’s manufactures directly. England is an Island nation and needs free trade whether Empire, Commonwealth [which still has enormous potential]. We can now proceed to Japan which in my humble and non-expert opinion has both a large internal market and needs export markets, but it must import most of it’s resources to survive.

    No one size fits all policy will work. Every case is different. Quite reactionary policy.

    Moreover Neoreactionary Universalism will fail as all the other Universalisms have failed.

    Perhaps it’s actually time to abandon the 300 year Anglo-American project of channeling the Delian League [which at least knew it was an Empire to benefit Athens] and let other nations grow and prosper following their own interests. Example would it really not be beneficial to Europe if someone – say the Chinese – developed Africa.

    For three hundred years since Queen Anne defeated Louis XIV Anglos and Americans have been “containing” the entire Eurasian Landmass. Along the way we smashed France and Germany into rubble and occupation repeatedly. Europe has been laid waste at least three times. The Global Stability we offer does give most some decades of peace and prosperity and avoids smaller wars at the exchange of ending in Global Wars and prosperity turned into rubble and mountains of corpses.

    In my own America we are now given the counsel and provocations that the new enemy is China. We deploy ships to guard rocks in the Pacific and risk war doing so…a war we of course wouldn’t be allowed to win.

    Enough. Let nations find their own path and enough globalism, universalism and enough indeed of global stability. All these global systems end doing is making the inevitable problems cascading systems failures and catastrophe. We are living through that cascading catastrophe now.

    It’s as if one designed a global power system all wired in series and one lightbulb burning out anywhere causes the entire system to sputter and fail.

    Enough. Including from Neoreaction.

    PS – I cannot help but note those policies favor Singapore and Shanghai but hardly benefit domestic industry in China or the US.

    Trade Liberalization indeed. Lets try Reactionary Trade and economics ala Thailand’s King and give up ‘saving’ the world.


    TheDividualist Reply:

    I agree that there should an every case is different approach.

    However the concept getting and protecting markets sounds weird. Let’s think it through. The Rightist (mostly in this case Misesian) theory of econ depends on Say’s Law. It is supply-oriented. Basically it say make a lot of good products and your society will be wealthy. Don’t worry about demand or markets. After all economic progress is a progress towards plenty. If you have plenty of supply, you won. It will get into the hand of the consumers one way or another.

    Worrying about markets and demand is something every businessman does. But in economic theory that belongs to Keynes. And it draws a very strange model. Since human desires can be assumed to be infinite, demand can only be low if people would like to spend money but don’t have enough. But how comes amongst plenty (high supply) they are cash-poor? Would really capitalism as such lead to such self-contradictory imbalance? It would look like a very poor system if you have useful products in your warehouse, people want it, but they don’t have colored pieces of paper to give you and for some weird reason you need those colored pieces of paper. Would make the whole system look like a joke. So the point is, demand-sidery, the importance of gaining or protecting markets, of keeping demand up, if it was true, it would cast a very radical doubt on the system.

    I am torn, because I do agree that on a common sense level in many cases, for many countries, protectionism seems to make sense.

    But really does not check out on the level of economic theory. If we assume, and I think I still do, that capitalism is sane, then I only should worry about supply, not demand. I should worry about having enough supply of cars for everybody who needs, I should not worry about having a large enough market for a national car factory, which largely means having enough colored pieces of paper in the hands of consumer. Because my goal should be getting cars to people, not getting colored pieces of paper to manufacturers. That would not be a sane system, so for the time being I have to assume the supply-siders are correct and there is no need to keep or gain markets.

    Of course it could be that this is a really roundabout way to avoid situations where a much worse intervention is unavoidable. Imagine a large country imports everything and exports nothing. What happens? Its currency becomes worthless (and not a global reserve) and decades alter it has to learn to produce again. Yes, but the know-how and work cultured died. So it has to sell out cheap to foreigners and invite them to start businesses. A that point the leftoids cry for welfare and rightoids for national pride. So ultimately they force the governments hand into heavy intervention. So is this the real logic of protectionism, that markets not always balance because there are situations where governments are compelled to intervent and thus avoid this with preliminary, softer intervention?


    vxxc2014 Reply:

    “But really does not check out on the level of economic theory.”

    Here we come to the crux of bad modern governance: governing by models.

    Just GOVERN dammit. And if you don’t know what to do then protect yours and theirs from others, otherwise leave it the Hell alone. While we’re at it do what you must then STOP.


    Grotesque Body Reply:

    “governing by models”

    Imperium per ludum.

    frank Reply:

    Protectionism may make sense for fragile things. As polities get bigger, they transfer local fragility to system level. Anything bigger than a city state is catastrophically fragile not to consider protectionism.

    On the other hand, protectionism is just a temporal kind of fragility transfer: It exports present fragility to future. In other words, it equates to doubling down on mistakes. You make things robust in the present, but you’re not antifragile. All robust systems are fragile in the long run because you can’t fight chaos, you can only hope to befriend it.

    The real political-economy problem protectionism pretends to solve–causing irrevocable doom in the process–is that *(primary) property does not scale, but power does*. How do you preserve property (prevent parasitism) while scaling up in order to aggregate more power to ward off (and subdue) enemies? If we are to take a cue from multicellular evolution, the only way (aside from edge cases like endosymbiosis) is to go trustless. (Call me unimaginative, but If 3.5 billion years wasn’t enough to create alternate solutions to multicellular cooperation, I’m pretty convinced it’s the only way.)

    TL;DR: Protectionism is a dangerous digression from Secessionism.


    admin Reply:

    Thanks. (You’ve managed to raise the mean IQ of this thread more with one comment than Cichlimbar managed to lower it with twenty.)

    Henk Reply:

    Admittedly, I don’t completely follow your analogy to multicellular organisms.

    However, if you get down to fundamentals, probably the most important constraint that keeps your somatic cells in line is… NO EXIT. I guess that’s why “Antifragile” Taleb’s other big theme is “skin in the game”.

    There seems to be an interesting line of inquiry entirely missing from NRx.

    admin Reply:

    Isn’t “skin in the game” another way of talking about tight (cause-consequence) feedback loops?

    TheDividualist Reply:

    I am not sure I understand the scaling problem, but maybe a different approach and maybe it helps. Theoretically, in a pure Misesian model King Oeconomicus does not have to care if if, say, car factories in his realm are strong or weak, because if foreigners sell cars to his subjects that is just as good for them and ultimately the market will sort out the balance anyway, the jobs and all that, comparative advantage and all that, the standard theory. However in the real world he has to care because the car factories are also pretty handy for making tanks in a war. So he has to care for *extra-economical reasons*. War is one but there could be others. Economic exchanges are embedded in wider social dynamics with other kinds of governance considerations. Another possible extra-economical consideration: law enforcement is costly, and it is the kings cost, so it is useful to generate make-believe work for the kinds of folks who are most likely to commit crimes plain simply just to tire them out. Sounds a bit outlandish but could be the that the total cost is lower. A third example is international blackmail, like how the Russian government can blackmail European governments threatening to refuse to sell natural gas during the winter, causing heating problems and thus social unrest. These are three examples of non-economical governance considerations that may influence economic policy decisions, like protectionism.

    Is this what you mean, basically?

    William Newman Reply:

    “the only way (aside from edge cases like endosymbiosis) is to go trustless”

    Not necessarily. Consider the organisms that manage to cooperate in complicated ways. (Complicated ways like hunting packs of wolves, not trivial ways like coral reefs piling up or like ruminants lumping together for crude collective advantages.) “Dunbar’s number” is the usual term for the (proportionality in the) strong positive correlation between brain size and cooperating group size. Extrapolating down to a brain size of less than one neuron makes it unsurprising that single-celled organisms don’t maintain complicated trust relationships.

    It’s a tricky question how far trust relationships can be scaled up. Is the brain size vs. band size correlation true for deep stable reasons, or is it just some sort of coincidence, or what? Can technological props like writing and the printing press and electronic communications and computers help? But the analogy to single-celled organisms doesn’t say much that is interesting about the question, because single-celled organisms are off in a corner of organism design space where complicated trust relationships are not found.

    Also, if you want to argue that consistent evolutionary failure of a sufficiently simple class of organisms (single-celled eukaryotes) to cooperate demonstrates that cooperation is fundamentally impossible, why stop there, at eukaryotes demonstrating impossibility of trust? Why not use prokaryotes to demonstrate that specialization is impossible too? Prokaryotes are even simpler (a single relatively loop of DNA, not fancy nuclei and chromosomes) and very very successful in nature, but they seem unable to succeed with the complicated trustless top-down command-and-control system we see in multicelled eukaryotes assembling into complex arrangements like geese and daisies and mosquitoes. Thus, just as you have argued that we can know from single-celled eukaryotes that the only way to scale is to avoid fancy trust, we should be able to know from prokaryotes that the only way to scale is not to try fancy multicelled designs, which prokaryotes consistently fail at and thus are fundamentally demonstrated to be impossible, and instead to thrive in rabidly singleminded undifferentiated swarms.

    frank Reply:


    Let me clarify things. Consider the following cases:

    1) A sovereign banning toy imports so that there’s make-work for low IQ people.

    2) A secondary property security provider (sovereign) forcing design restrictions on cars so that they’re convertible to war machines.

    3) Microsoft blackmailing OEMs to only bundle Windows with their PCs by threatening to not license.

    4) Wall Mart blackmailing a supplier to only sell its products in Wall Marts and at a very low price by threatening to ban it from its stores otherwise.

    5) ISPs reducing clients’ speed when they exceed their download quotas.

    6) Microsoft not implementing a Windows Phone app for mac OS, forcing Windows Phone owners to use Windows (as PC OS).

    7) Apple not putting extra I/O ports on Mac Air as a design decision.

    There’s a spectrum. All these cases can be plausibly considered “protectionism” for definitions charitable enough in scope. Still, there’s a commonality to all cases. In all seven of them, the service/product provider is limiting options to clients by leveraging the fact that multiple properties are bundled into a conglomerate. Let me explain:

    1) Sovereign leverages the fact that it’s securing the property of logistics companies (shipping ports).

    2) Same as (1) + the fact that sovereign secures manufacturers’ and resellers’ properties (manufacturing plants and stores).

    3) MS leveraging its large market share on OS market.

    4) Wall Mart leveraging its large market share on retail.

    5) ISPs leveraging their (legal or temporary) monopoly on infrastructure.

    6) MS leveraging the fact that it owns and controls design-production pipeline of its products.

    7) Same as 6.

    Conceived this way, protectionism is tautological. Property, being a monopoly on using a resource, naturally implies it. However, I submit that a political-economy analysis through protectionism is futile and a digression from the real (or at least more fertile) problem I state above: property doesn’t scale but power does.

    By scaling I mean the following: as the size and scope of the property grows, it becomes disproportionately harder for the property owner to secure his property (demonstrate ownership). So ownership necessarily gets challenged, property relations become less formal. Hence property does not scale up.

    Power on the other hand thrives with larger scale. This is obvious.

    The dilemma is thus: if you want to dominate or avoid being dominated, you have to scale up, expand, conglomerate; but if you want an efficient design, you want your property relations to be as formal as possible, which are the opposite in large scales.

    In all seven examples, protectionist measures are enabled due to bundling of various properties. Note that property cannot be infinitely unbundled, so a certain level of protectionism has to be extant. However, clearly, as the bundle grows, so do the protectionist (viable business plan) options. So it’s a function of scale. In the particular case of sovereigns, scale insulates actors from tighter feedback loops (aka skin in the game as admin suggests) and it protects some fragile aspect of the system, transferring fragility from local to system level.

    As far as I’m concerned, this is the central problem DE wants to understand and solve. Before noticing this problem, I (we?) were ancap(s), because we thought “private property will solve everything”. But as Moldbug notes, the number of primary property owners peaked at around 500 AD, and it has been declining ever since. This is because property does not scale up while power does. This is why we don’t have nice things.


    There’s no multicellular organism (i.e. a massive non-parasitic cooperation of cells) that consists of cells with different DNAs. None. This suggests (almost proves) that a non-parasitic massive scale cooperation (for cells) is only achievable through an extreme level of formalism in property relations, which is implemented through a single chain of code which each and every participating cell must contain. This is what I mean by going trustless (same jargon in blockchain tech).

    @William Newman

    You misunderstood me. I’m not writing off cooperation by looking at cells. The problem, as you also notice, is how do you scale up cooperation (by avoiding parasitism)? Cells solve this by going completely trustless. Animals introduce informal property relations to cooperate. But they’re far too fuzzy to scale up. Humans improve this through formalizing knowledge (language), and achieve semi-parasitic cooperation at the scale of billions. Our present problem is how to scale up even better, i.e. how to get rid of parasitism, fragility that comes from scaling up? Hence my analogy of DNA.


    Thanks for the compliment.

    Henk Reply:


    Thanks for the explanation. Your usage of “trustless” threw me off. I’m afraid I don’t follow. Multicellular organisms are packed with trusted (sub)systems:

    a trusted system is one whose failure may break a specified security policy.

    You need all cells to run the same genetic code precisely because multicellular organisms aren’t trustless.

    However, somatic cells (and more importantly, their genes) do not “have exit”. Their reproductive fate is completely tied up with that of the whole organism. They have “skin in the game” to the fullest extent.

    I agree that solving parasitism would be fundamental. However, it may have become impossible.


    It is tight feedback, but additionally, I understand “skin in the game” to mean that agents should not get to shape their own feedback functions such that they become “antifragile” at their principal’s expense.

    Posted on March 22nd, 2016 at 4:01 pm Reply | Quote
  • anonyme Says:

    “Pretending, or dissimulating, leaves the principle of reality intact: the difference is always clear, it is simply masked, whereas simulation threatens the difference between the “true” and the “false,” the “real” and the “imaginary.” (Baudrillard)

    To illustrate, look what happened the day Cichlimbar tried tail-gating Mr. Eddy:



    Seth Largo Reply:

    Just because you haven’t learned to speak the language doesn’t mean the rest of us are retarded.


    Izak Reply:

    A sad and depressing reality: this comment thread demonstrates Cichlimbar’s way of showing affection.


    Posted on March 22nd, 2016 at 6:24 pm Reply | Quote
  • tokarev Says:

    I think it’s interesting that HK, Singapore, Botswana, and New Zealand were all part of the British Empire. HK hasn’t been doing well on entrepot trade recently, as it’s port has declined tremendously in the last few years. Botswana has a natural resource economy and is very sparsely populated. HIV is a huge problem there.


    Posted on March 22nd, 2016 at 7:23 pm Reply | Quote
  • Grotesque Body Says:

    The problem I have with this is that effective rule of law presupposes martial spirit, which presupposes…


    vxxc2014 Reply:

    ….presupposes MEN.

    I’ve been saying for awhile that if we would first simply be MEN then many other problems would begin to be magically solved. Mystically almost.

    Call it my model.


    Grotesque Body Reply:

    Does man precede war or does war precede man?


    frank Reply:

    We will become men when and only when we have no other choice in absolute terms — sort of like how ex-Roman provinces magically discovered patriarchal feudalism only when they were absolutely forced to do it.


    vxxc2014 Reply:

    There’s no point in waiting.

    In truth it’s a decision every male must make and it can’t be made for him.

    frank Reply:

    If we (in aggregate) had the option of making that decision sans reality forcing it on us, we wouldn’t be in this mess to begin with.

    TheDividualist Reply:

    If you just want a manly man to govern, the prisons are full of them, take your pick. Some even have extensive gang-management experience…. but the actual silver bullet would be a proper combination of manliness, intelligence, learning from history, and suppressing or properly channeling the status-competing drive in our souls.

    I remember reading somewhere on the internet that a man should first learn to be a barbarian, then a soldier, then a gentleman officer and then a scholar. Just barbarians won’t help, but neither do scholars who don’t have little wild-at-heart spark in them. It all must work together.


    Posted on March 22nd, 2016 at 7:50 pm Reply | Quote
  • Zimriel Says:

    Argentina is usually given as an example of smart people developing a toxic government, but an even better example might be Cuba. One of the charts delivered here last Sunday was an IQ chart of various New World nations. Cuba really isn’t that far off the US, in terms of IQ.


    admin Reply:

    Argentina probably predicts the American path better.


    Posted on March 23rd, 2016 at 4:51 am Reply | Quote
  • SVErshov Says:

    @William Newman decostructivist kind of thinkng implies that problem already exist, considering significant number of (correct) existing problems, why not to leavy this hard work to someone else. it is clearly visible (after few drinks) that ‘system way’ of thinking can bring you further and faster, starting from observation of interractions on level of local subsystem and ending up with glodal phenomenological haplotype in just few minustes.


    Posted on March 23rd, 2016 at 4:00 pm Reply | Quote

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