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Commentary on The Capital Markets- Category [Social Issues]
2017-11-19 07:00 by Karl Denninger
in Social Issues , 163 references
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Oh, what high-minded and haughty bull**** one tosses out on the page at Faux Snooz:

For the first time in America, we are properly tackling drug addiction as a public health issue requiring public health solutions, rather than a public safety issue necessitating heavy-handed and ineffective criminal penalties.

We are finally in the right ball park. Now we need to make sure we have the right game plan.

....

To those using them, drugs aren’t a problem – drugs are a solution to their problems. Drugs help people deal with fear, anger, shame, isolation, depression, and other real and deep problems many of us experience on a daily basis.

No ****?  You mean all those bars all over the land, all those liquor stores and rows of beer cans, bottles and cases lined up in the grocery store might in fact be used by people who, even if just for a while, want to forget something, dull some (mental) pain, add a bit of a "buzz" to a sporting contest or escape from the drudgery of their life?

Say it isn't so!

Of course it would be fantastic if nobody ever suffered a poor outcome from such things.  You know, like driving while intoxicated and wrapping themselves around a tree at high speed?  Or destroying their liver, pancreas, heart -- or all three at once?

Well, yeah, that would be great.  It's also unrealistic.

We all occasionally attempt to resolve, or at least escape, these core dilemmas through inappropriate or ineffective means. Illicit drug use is a particularly destructive and dangerous choice, but it is still an attempt to fix a problem.

Illicit drug use is in many ways less destructive than "licit" drug use in this regard.  Don't get me wrong; opiods are bad news, and kill people.  There's a coffin corner problem with them that is common to many drugs in that as you consume them for periods of time it takes more and more to get the desired "high", yet the physiological limit of exposure without death doesn't really change all that much.  If those two points intersect you die -- reliably.

But those same points exist for alcohol.  We sell it in stores anyway.  It's just that most of the time your liver will be a shriveled up mass and your heart and arteries leaking fluid into your body to the point of death before the coffin corner problem gets you.

Though drug dependence is an extreme solution, it’s an outgrowth of an attitude common to all of us. For most issues we face, we expect to find a quick and easy patch. That’s the key message we get from ads for all sorts of products.

Just ads eh?  It's not Facebook too that, it has been disclosed, is knowingly giving you that little "hit" of dopamine which of course is a drug your body manufacturers but which many entities have figured out how to exploit and do, is it?

Oh wait -- it is.

Why do we throw people in jail who sell drugs but Zuckerpig walks free with billions of dollars he got by conning you?  And yes, he conned you folks -- he manipulated you psychologically and abused your mental health, intentionally, as the above shows.

Nobody cares.

At the root of a large part of this is not just "simple, quick-fix demands", which is legitimately part of the problem.  Witness those who are overweight or obese and have Type II diabetes or its precursors.  They want pills.  They're fast and easy, right?  Well, yes they're fast, yes they're easy, no they don't work.

Not on a permanent basis anyway.  They do appear to work originally, but the problem with them is that in a relatively short period of time you build tolerance to them because what you were doing, which was a progressive path of destruction, you have not changed.

So first it's Metformin, then the next drug when that one stops working as you continue to insult your body, and so on.  Many people say they're eating low carb, high fat and "it doesn't work" but in fact they're not doing any such thing; they're usually either eating lots of carbs or massively-excessive amounts of protein which their body converts to glucose, rendering the so-called "low carb" claim (and effect) worthless.  What's even worse is that many of them eschew essential minerals and vitamins in their attempt to "eat this way", which doubles down on the ignorance and bad outcome.

We spend somewhere around $400 billion a year in the federal budget alone due to this one disease -- Type II diabetes.  Now how much more do we spend not only tossing people in prison for adult drug use and abuse but how much more do we lose as a consequence of paying homage to all those who want quick fixes instead of addressing root causes?

Why would someone have such despair in the first place?  Can we have a conversation about that?

Maybe they've had some really crappy things happen in their lives; we all do from time to time.  For most of those events, however, if they're just "ordinary events" they pass and so does the impetus to use drugs.

For the rest, however, maybe it doesn't pass.

Maybe the event doesn't pass because they're not rocket scientists (after all, the bell curve is real and thus so is intelligence and mental capacity) and we sent all the jobs that are both rewarding and accessible to those folks that aren't on the far right of the curve to China and India, and of those remaining we looked the other way while millions of illegal, unskilled laborers flooded our nation.

In other words we cheered on the screwing of a large part of the population of this country -- and then we express shock, outrage and revulsion when they turn to the bottle -- whether it's got booze, prescription drugs or heroin in it.

You don't think having the ability to find a job sufficient to keep a decent roof over your head might make your depressed and seek an escape, do you?  How about if we sat back and let the politicians and Wall Street fat cats destroy the economic conditions necessary for people of "ordinary means and intelligence" to be fulfilled?

Oh, you think that might be a factor?

Well then maybe we ought to do something about that before we turn the screws even further to where if your IQ isn't over 110 there's almost-literally no work available that pays enough to have and raise a family!

We already screwed anyone with under a roughly 120 IQ out of the ability to raise a family on one income without the government grossly subsidizing them, especially in high-tax parts of the country.  Why did we allow that "high tax and cost of living" crap to develop in the first place?  How much further do you wish to push that abusive paradigm which you have not only voted for but cheered on and why do you keep ratcheting the taxes and cost-of-living higher?

You want lasting change with regard to drug abuse and outcomes?  Look to Portugal, which legalized basically everything.  Drug abuse rates fell like a stone.

But if you want to actually take care of the underlying problem that leads to drug abuse of all sorts then you need to address the fraud all over our economy and those who intentionally exploit everyone and everything they can, starting with people like Zuckerpig and the so-called "multinationals" such as Apple that not only avoid taxes on income they really do earn here (the fruits of their operations) but firms that do things like cost-shift call centers and then claim the activity is "there" (when it really isn't; it's for the benefit of people here.)

The fact of the matter is that a couple of ordinary intelligence must be able to feed, house and clothe both themselves and a couple of kids on one income, not two, and make it work -- in essentially all areas of the country -- without taking handouts.  If you do that then the reason for a huge percentage of those who currently use drugs to do so disappears.

But for that to happen the scams have to disappear across the board, and utterly nobody is talking about doing it.

That's your responsibility, America.

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We're supposed to be better than that, and maybe we finally are.....

For the first time, a majority of Republicans are in favor of legalizing marijuana, according to a Gallup poll out Wednesday.

Fifty-one percent of Republicans tell Gallup that, yes, marijuana should be legal, up from 42 percent last year.

That support has led to a whopping two-thirds of Americans (64 percent) supporting pot legalization, the highest ever recorded by Gallup. Gallup has data on the question since 1969.

Marijuana was made illegal in the United States on the back of a campaign financed and promoted by the Hearst paper empire, which was deeply concerned about the ability of hemp to displace wood pulp for paper production.  The Hearsts owned vast expanses of pulp wood forest along with newspapers and used the latter to protect the former by driving public opinion about marijuana -- thereby effectively outlawing hemp.

Then there was the raw xenophobic and intentional lies spun in movies like Reefer Madness, which made the claim that Mexicans like to smoke weed (possibly true) but after doing so inevitably became raving animals who would uncontrollably******white women.  It was therefore essential to prohibit marijuana, you see.

That is what actually happened folks.  It was an intentional lie then and still is today.

Laws are not supposed to be predicated on lies, and when they are and the lie is discovered the government has an obligation to scrap said law.  Yet for decades it has refused to do exactly that.

Today we have jackwads like Jeff Sessions who still want to run this sort of crap -- a morality-based play that essentially argues that a plant should be illegal to grow, possess and consume because he thinks its bad.  "Good people don't smoke pot", basically, is his argument, and while he's certainly entitled to his opinion enforcing that opinion by law is another matter entirely.

Leave the medicinal argument aside for a moment (which is quite strong as well, I remind you.)  After all I've been known to gargle with a shot of scotch when I have sore throat.  Whether that's "safe and effective" isn't really the point; what's on-point is that I have every right to put ethanol in my body should I so choose and the risks and benefits of doing so are mine.

In a land where we have an opiod epidemic (which, I remind you, is driven not by illegal drugs but by doctors pushing this crap on people who they know are at high risk of physical addiction) I can find no argument at all for maintaining marijuana, a drug that is not physically addictive, as an illegal substance when even some small percentage of those who might seek a pain script from a doctor would likely instead choose to toke up a joint.

Some 60,000 people a year die from opiod overdoses in this country today.  If even 5% of those people would have chosen to smoke a joint instead and thus never start down the road of opiod addiction we'd be +3,000 people a year and we'd have the tax revenue from the doobies they bought and consumed.

Of course the medical and pharmaceutical industries hate this idea; they make a hell of a lot of money killing those 60,000 people a year, never mind all the side effects and medical treatment required due to same.  Anything that reduces the ability to push poisons on the public under the name of "medicine" you can bet both doctors and pharma will oppose.

I often wonder why it is that given both the medical profession's and pharmaceutical companies unbroken record in this regard, along with the pile of dead bodies from opioid addiction they have created the people in this nation at-large have not yet risen up with gallows and bonfires, laying in orders for enough BBQ sauce to make the outcome palatable.

Smoking anything is a bad idea for obvious reasons but I remind you that nobody has to smoke marijuana to consume it.  You can choose edibles or a vape pen that uses oil; said vapes are both nearly odorless and harmless to others, and of course so are edibles -- other than the risk of someone getting very stoned by accident if they eat your pan of brownies.  (One could even argue that outcome is deserved if they didn't ask if it was ok to have some first!)

Legalization is thus a double win.  It is long past time to remove marijuana from our federal drug laws, leaving us with a regulated and taxed system of distribution for those 21 and over who choose to consume it, just as we have today for alcohol.  To not do so immediately is a travesty that both destroys lives and empowers bigotry, including among people who ought to know better like Jeff Sessions and other members of our federal and state governments.

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2017-11-07 07:00 by Karl Denninger
in Social Issues , 133 references
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Note the lack of actual exposition of the issue here:

The detention of a 10-year-old girl with cerebral palsy in South Texas last month for immigration violations spotlights a harsh reality of the borderlands. Undocumented immigrants who live north of the border, but south of a string of Border Patrol checkpoints, say they feel trapped. They fear seeking specialized medical care or visiting family. Some call it la jaula, which is Spanish for "the cage"; others call it la isla, "the island."

The issue?

WHO IS PAYING FOR SAID MEDICAL CARE?

If you're illegal and worried about deportation you're not paying taxes and otherwise identifying yourself in the country illegally.  Therefore what's really going on here is that these people are being deterred from seeking to rob the citizens of this nation by compelling them to provide medical care they cannot pay for either directly or via insurance.

They could choose to go back to their home nation where they might have access to their own country's medical system.  Instead they choose to whine about being "deterred" from stealing.

I say in response to this: Bravo.

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2017-11-05 07:07 by Karl Denninger
in Social Issues , 232 references
[Comments enabled]  

As I pointed out here:

We now know that Kevin Spacey didn't just allegedly assault a boy (adolescent, and well under the age of consent) many years ago -- he was also very sexually aggressive recently including during most of the work for Netflix on "House of Cards".

In fact this isn't just harassment being alleged -- it includes assault.

What's additionally been alleged is that almost-literally everyone in the crew knew damn well this crap was going on.

So here's the problem: This sort of crap doesn't continue for that length of time over that many people without the parent company turning a blind eye to it -- at least.

So this was  a "one-off", you excuse it with?

Doesn't look that way.

Netflix is withholding any action against actor Danny Masterson or his show, “The Ranch,” despite four******allegations against him, the Huffington Post reported Friday.

“We are aware of the allegations and the subsequent investigation, and will respond if developments occur,” Netflix said in a statement.

The allegations were made in 2004.

Netflix obviously (with any sort of checking) either knew or would have known other than for intentional refusal to look that these allegations were serious.

It put forward the show anyway.

On Oct. 17, Netflix announced the release date for the fourth season of “The Ranch,” long after news of the investigation was reported.

And why not?

Americans will and do continue to pay a subscription fee to a company that employs people like this.  In other words you not only support sexual assault with your words you also support it with your money each and every month.

If any material percentage of the population of this country gave a damn about sexual assault -- really, actually cared about it instead of using it as a political foil -- NETFLIX AND THESE OTHER FIRMS IN THE "ENTERTAINMENT" WORLD WOULD ALREADY BE OUT OF BUSINESS AS THEY WOULD NOT HAVE A SINGLE NON-RAPIST CUSTOMER REMAINING.

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