Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Positive thinking, Part Two

Well, I just had $900 land in my lap, which I am going to take as validation I am not wasting my time. How does $900 fall in your lap?  Well, it's not bad being me.  I have built a lifestyle congenial to my monomanias--by necessity, by chance, and by dint of a lot of hard work combined with not inconsiderable intelligence, talent and agility.

To continue:

All these groups of people are not monolithic.  The people opposing civilization in the name of humanity are not all alike. They all have their own needs and desires, prejudices, prides, hopes and dreams.

All complex systems are inherently unstable in some ways, and more importantly they are built on dominant principles, dominant habits, dominant tendencies.  They are refreshed continually, minute by minute, day by day.

If you can take away one dominant assumption--and I would argue the important one  is the pure materiality of humankind--then the whole thing can transform IN AN INSTANT, historically speaking.

All American leftists believe they are the best hope of minorities.  What if they realize this is not only not true, but that they have become in fact their worst enemies (with friends like these. . . )?

The globalists have convinced themselves that humanity needs them.  What if they realize that neither global warming nor overpopulation, nor pollution are in any respect existential crises, and that in fact people can be taught, in conditions of freedom, to consume less, and over time either reduce global population, or reconcile our populations with environmental homeostasis?

And returning to basic metaphysical assumptions, there are any number of further areas of research that can and should be pursued.

Survival of death is an hypothesis which has already been tested at a university level, by Gary Schwartz, at the University of Arizona.  That work continues in the affiliated--but chronically underfunded--Windbridge Institute:

They use all the methods of science--like a double-blind protocol--and still consistently achieve positive results.  I'm sure there is a standing invitation for charlatans like James Randi to attempt to replicate their results--they have nothing to hide--but what you realize quickly in studying the antics of these Materialistic Radicals is that once the science in any given field advances to the point where they literally have NO methodological critiques to make, they simply ignore them as if they didn't exist, and if they do speak about them, they either choose the weakest evidence and treat it as the strongest, or they make shit up outright.  What they always do is ignore the most compelling evidence, for which they neither have an answer, nor the forthrightness to admit it.

Another university level project that should have generated a lot of interest and following research that did not was the work of Robert Jahn.  The New York Times, as usual, delivers its hit piece:

The simple, glaring, inescapable, methodologically irrefutable fact is that he demonstrated beyond any scientific doubt (certain levels of probability against chance will in any other field generate the term proven, or some synonym of it, as in "what we know") that the human mind can influence physical processes.

But nobody would publish it.
Brenda Dunne, a developmental psychologist, has managed the laboratory since it opened and has been a co-author of many of its study papers. “We submitted our data for review to very good journals,” Ms. Dunne said, “but no one would review it. We have been very open with our data. But how do you get peer review when you don’t have peers?
To be clear, "peer review" is SUPPOSED to be about professionals analyzing the METHODS being used, to assure they are rigorous and comply with general standards.

But what happened here is that their RESULTS were analyzed, and found unacceptable.  No one would review their actual data.

It is important in this respect to comment momentarily on peer review.  Peer review is an utterly broken system.  The presence of peer review means nothing, and the lack of peer review means even less.

As they say here:
If peer review was a drug it would never be allowed onto the market.  Peer review would not get onto the market because we have no convincing evidence of its benefits but a lot of evidence of its flaws.
Here is the New York Times itself on the same topic: 

There are a range of topics broadly discussed under "psi" dealt with at length by Dean Radin here and here.

And then we have the possibility of a revolution of consciousness where our financial system is concerned.  I personally have sent out 240 emails to economists at major universities concerning my understanding of the fatal flaws of our financial system, and how to correct them. That's not much--I am just one man, and just sleeping through the night has been a major challenge for me for years--but I am not alone, I don't think, even if I seem to be the only one saying what I am saying.

What if bold Economics students started asking fundamental questions and following up on them with genuinely open, new analysis?  There was quite a stir a few years ago, when some World Bank economists got vaguely into my zip code:
The Chicago Plan Revisited is an IMF report from 2012 by Jaromir Benes and Michael Kumhof. The focus of the study is the so-called Chicago plan of the 1930s which the authors have updated to fit into today's economy. The basic idea is that banks should be required to have full coverage for money they lend. Under this proposal, banks would no longer be allowed to create new money in the form of credit in connection with their lending activities. Instead, the central bank should be solely responsible for all the creation of all forms of money, not just paper money and coins. The advantages of such a system, according to the authors, are a more balanced economy without the booms and busts of the current system, the elimination of bank runs, and a drastic reduction of both public and private debt. The authors rely on both economic theory and historical examples, and state that inflation, according to their calculations, would be very low.
I of course reject the need for a central bank, and the power that intrinsically goes with it; and I see no means of getting from a condition of universal debt to a condition where there is NO or little debt, without something like what I proposed.  But one can dream.

And finally I have my church.  I am on the verge of getting some traction on that.  I will post more on that.  First, I want to write something I will modestly call "A Manifesto for a New World".

I want to take this thing to colleges and universities.  Most college kids have literally never been confronted with the actual ideas underlying what are called conservative economic and political ideas.   They have been fed cartoons, and cartoon characters, Snidely Whiplash and Dudley Do-Right, with grandma being tied to the train track, where only the saviors of the Left can save her.

I would ask simply: how is grandma doing in Venezuela?  How about Greece?  About the same as everyone else, with the pains of age, I would expect.  All basic, honest economics STARTS with asking what the effect of a given policy will be across all populations, and across time.  Communism works great for a small power elite, and it screws everyone else.  If you only listen to the propaganda, this is easy to miss.

How about this old lady in Cuba?   You may see joy and exuberance there.   What I see is a street performer trying to earn a little extra money to buy things her Socialist government cannot and will not provide.  What I see is another form of the universal prostitution which Castro's horrific regime forces on all the women, in a land which was supposed to be freed from the terrors of "sexism" and every other -ism, except Communism.

Cuba has long been known for its sex trade, and I suspect all that the relaxation of travel restrictions have facilitated are sex trips.

Here is a link on that:
If you’re the type that pays for sex, you’ll be in a heaven. I honestly can’t think of a country where prostitution is so ingrained and pervasive in the culture. “You fuck, you pay. That’s Cuba,” one local guy told me on my first day.
Is this what American Leftists want for the Cuban people?  For Cuban women?  To make them impoverished college graduates who have to sell their bodies in order to eat anything but rice and beans?

I will end this rant--which I personally need for my own personal development--with some books that anyone who wants to consider a "conservative lifestyle" (why not be radical?) should read.

I will start with the books that made me a conservative (I am going to shift after this to what I actually call myself, which is a Liberal.)  .

[Actually, a word on that: socialism is Pharoahism.  If we think of the political arc as starting on the right, rising up, then lowering again on the left, like a rainbow, then we went from kings who took their authority from God on the right, to Liberalism in the middle (this blog is titled Moderates United for a reason), and now are in danger of completing the arc to Pharoahs on the left who take their authority from some combination of "history", "necessity", and "science"; the results are the same.  Only Liberalism, which is to say a system based on Constitutionally protected freedoms and rights, can really claim to complete history.  Everything else belongs in it].

My conversion began with an editorial by Thomas Sowell on summer reading, where he listed a bunch of books.  The first three I read were all by Paul Johnson:  A History of the American People, Modern Times, and Intellectuals (this last really underscores what hypocritical SHITHEADS most of the important intellectuals of the past 150 years or so have been).  Then I read Hayek's "The Fatal Conceit".  That did it for me.

Some I would add are Sowell's Basic  Economics (if you still don't understand why raising Minimum wages does NOTHING to raise standards of living; or why rent control doesn't work); Hazlitt's Economics in One Lesson, which demolishes Keynesian economics beyond any hope of redemption; and Peter Bauer's Equality, the Third World, and Economic Delusion .

I have not read it, but anyone who still thinks welfare states do anything but breed dependence, depravity, crime,  hopelessness, and chronic unemployment, should read this: Theodore Dalrymple's Life at the Bottom.  He records there substantially all the same ills we see here in black ghettos.  Public policy and left wing ideas are everything: race, if not quite nothing, is very little.  We can say this because all the same stuff happens over there in purely white neighborhoods.

Beyond this, just look at the books that pop up on Amazon or anywhere else.  The words have been said.  The ideas and their outcomes have been tested and found wanting.  They are flawed at the theoretical level, and fail at the practical level.  What works in our world is largely the result of free markets, property rights, internalized moral codes and political Liberalism; and what does not work, especially in the most advanced countries, arose precisely from those times and places we deviated from those principles.

Anyone who claims to value decency, to value truth, to want to elevate the human spirit and mind, to improve society, to provide solace to the hurting, MUST DO THE WORK OF THINKING.  And it is impossible to think clearly when large oceans of facts are unavailable.  It is no use comparing one abstraction to another.  You have to compare deployed--used, tried--abstractions, to concrete, measurable, physical, outcomes.

If everyone did that in the political domain, things would straighten quite quickly.  But they don't.  This is my modest or audacious--as you see it--effort, today, to change that.

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