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2019-08-13 09:05 by Karl Denninger
in Corruption , 189 references Ignore this thread
There Are No Coincidences
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Humans are very good at evaluating certain things.

Put an image of two colors in front of 100 people and 99% of them will be able to tell you which is the darker shade of the two.  Essentially all humans, even the blind, can differentiate between a dog and a cat.  If something is very probable (e.g. "will it rain today") most humans can get pretty close to right, even with ridiculously-deficient information (e.g. no access to satellite, radar or surface weather maps.)

But humans are very, very poor at evaluating certain other things.  We're very bad, for example, at evaluating the risk of a nuclear accident resulting in our death by radiation poisoning.  Witness the screamfests after Fukushima all the way over here in America, yet the amount of contamination that reached our shores was, while measurable, a tiny fraction of natural background radiation.  Here in NW Florida, where I happen to have a recording geiger counter that tracks background levels and can read all three forms of radiation including alpha (many less-expensive units cannot read alpha particles) the change in background radiation level was a literal zero.

Humans, it turns out, are terrible at evaluating the true risk of highly improbable but catastrophic events.  We tend to evaluate them strictly on the level of catastrophe that could result and ignore the probability.  That is, a serious car accident will kill you and so will a serious nuclear contamination event (whether from a bomb or an accident of some sort.)  Since the nuclear accident, if it's severe enough, will kill more people we evaluate that as the more-serious danger by far, when in fact it's the other way around: Over 37,000 people are killed a year in the United States in motor vehicle wrecks of all sorts where the number killed by a nuclear release last year was a literal zero.

Indeed the number of acute radiation deaths in Japan from Fukushima to date has been zero.  However, about 600 people were killed during the evacuations from other causes -- in other words, the scaring of people managed to result in 600 fatalities.  Oh, and roughly 20,000 people were killed instantly by the tsunami itself, which of course has nothing to do with nuclear power.

But it gets worse.  In the wake of Fukushima Japan has shut down nearly all of its nuclear plant capacity.  Coal replaced a large amount of that.  Coal mining is quite dangerous and often kills the miners, but what's even worse is that thermal coal, that is, burning it for power, kills tens of thousands of people a year.  The irony is that nearly all of them die not from the particulate matter from burning coal itself but rather from a trace element, Thorium, that is found in coal naturally and is an alpha emitter.  While alpha emitters are safe to handle as unbroken skin stops alpha particles when inhaled it causes lung cancer.

So the Japanese shut down their nuclear plants which had killed zero people due to radiation and substituted coal-fired power which in turn kills people through radiation.  It just kills them one at a time on a continual basis over the space of a few decades instead of the possible, but highly improbable, risk of killing fewer people all at once.

There are a decent number of sociopaths and worse -- tyrants -- who know all of this.  They study human behavior.  They are well-aware that scaring people right into a trap that enslaves or even kills them is not very hard.  What's worse is that a lot of those scares can be structured to be very profitable and sold to the public as "good."  So-called "climate change" is one of these.  Not only is it extraordinarily unlikely that man is the cause of the changes in climate (natural cycles are in fact responsible) but even if human activity is responsible for it short of a genocidal war at a scale never contemplated in the history of the planet there's nothing we can do to stop it.  There is thus only one rational action to take, and that is to adapt to what may happen.  If sea levels do indeed rise by a few feet over the next 500 years you can quite-easily walk faster than the water rises, even if you're the sort of sedentary jackwad that weighs 600lbs and requires assistance to go take a dump.  In the decades or centuries over which this change will take place we can move and reconfigure agriculture to take advantage of the higher CO2 levels -- which increase plant growth rates -- rather than whine about it.  We can take those decades to build more electrical infrastructure with which we can power A/C units, so when you want to cool off you can come inside and do so.  And we'll gain a tremendous advantage in the wintertime as, not being as cold, the expenditure of fuel to heat homes and businesses will decline.  However, if the rich and powerful scare people they can make trillions of dollars between them by screwing you in myriad ways from new taxes to intentional destruction of your lifestyle, all of which you will comply with.

 The same sort of thing applies to "mass shootings."  The screaming is incessant about these while a literal Shootapalooza continues in Chicago.  Over the weekend to 10:00pm Sunday the 11th of August there were 42 people shot.  On the 4th of August alone there were more than 30 people shot.  The political screaming about this amounts to zero because there are no scary black rifles involved and you can't blame "white nationalism" as nearly all of the shooters (and their victims) are black or Hispanic.  Encouraging everyone to go armed all the time in Chicago would stop a huge percentage of these shootings (not even a thug likes the idea of being shot at) but if the shootings stopped the prison and police industries would be able to rob less money from the residents -- and taxes would go down.  That just won't do, so the shootings must continue.  Don't worry about that, you're told, it's just the black and brown people that get killed.  Right?

Having now thoroughly buried the lede let's get to the point: Our government, at the behest of corporations and powerful individuals, has been intentionally suppressing wages across the board and destroying your prosperity and wealth for the explicit purpose of allowing the rich and powerful to steal it from you using government force.

The obvious, blatant example is our wide-open border in which we claim to have (what's the point of having a Passport if there is no real border?) but never enforce.  We currently have some 20 million "undocumented" (illegal) invaders in our nation.  Every one of them consumes resource that does not belong to them.  They are here only because they think the opportunity here is better than there.  But how's that possible?  You can't work here legally unless you came here legally.  You can't have a bank account without a social security number.  You can't buy land without being here legally either, nor get a mortgage since both of those require bank involvement and that in turn requires proof of identity and a valid social security number.

How is this "superior" to where you came from?  It's not, unless the government refuses, on purpose, to enforce the law and the corporations and individuals that hire said persons intentionally break said laws.  Both take place for economic reasons.  But who does this hurt?  Those on the left side of the bell curve who are Americans and have their job prospects either diminished or destroyed.  These are the people who, due to lack of ability, education or both will never be rocket scientists -- but they can nail on roofs and pick strawberries.  The problem is that the law says that to do either you must be paid a certain wage, have certain benefits (including health insurance, incidentally, if the place employs a certain number of people) and have the right to a workplace free from unreasonable hazards (like falling off said roofs due to lack of proper harnesses and such.)  You must also be paid overtime for more than 40 hours of work in a week and have at least one 24 hour period of time off per week.  Of course an illegal invader brings none of those costs and as a result they are cheaper to employ, which is why they're employed.  In the meantime all of those citizens on the left side of the bell curve get screwed blind.

Over the last nearly 30 years, however, even that wasn't enough.  Our own National Science Foundation produced a rigged "study" that put forward the claim that we did not have "enough" high-tech workers.  These are people of high skill and education -- that is, they're all from the right side of the bell curve.  Corporations, of course, do not want to pay market prices -- they want to pay less.  The market is very good at allocating this sort of thing; if there are not enough computer programmers that will take a job at $50,000 a year the offered salary will rise until there are sufficient numbers of said people.  It may take a couple of years for the market to adjust to this but it will; there are more than enough smart citizens in the United States who either are in or can return to school and obtain the training necessary for that position.  Wages will rise, in other words, until the demand is met.

The same is true for physicians and other professions.

However, this is not what businesses want.  Not coincidentally it is also not what the government wants, because rapidly rising wages lead to "wage-push" inflation that cannot be hidden through lying in the consumer price index reports which means higher interest rates and that chokes off deficit spending immediately.

So the government actively conspired with business to suppress wages in high-skill jobs through creating and now expanding the H1b visa programs.  This effectively created indentured servants because an H1b visa is not transferable; that is, if you are here on one and working you can't take a job somewhere else for a higher salary as your visa is a pumpkin if you leave your present job and you're thus forced to leave America.

At the same time this has both utterly screwed Americans who have higher skills and abilities by suppressing the wages they would otherwise earn and at the same time enabled Washington's deficit spending by inhibiting the very-visible wage pressure that would have otherwise forced up interest rates.

Do you think this is all coincidence?

Of course it isn't.  I've always assumed it wasn't but, until that National Science Foundation "study" was unearthed couldn't prove it.  But now the proof is on the table; this was a deliberate act of wage suppression intended to hose high skilled and highly-able Americans taken in concert by both government and industry.

This isn't a "only hits the downtrodden, lazy people of color" problem that some would claim is that bastion of "white privilege."  It is in fact intentional and aimed at all ordinary citizens across the board, from the most-able to the least, whether white, Hispanic, black or Martian.  It was done intentionally, with malice aforethought and funded with our tax dollars.

The government, in short, declared war on its citizens, intending to impoverish nearly all for the benefit of a tiny few at the top with political connections and yet, thus far, we the people have been too stupid, to drunk or had our heads buried too far into a smartphone to realize this, rise up and throw their asses out and lock the **********s up, one way or another.

Can you guess why both sides of the aisle will "compromise" on more "gun control", having highlighted only certain shootings that fit the sort of weapons you might want to stop such abuses?  The gang-bangers don't give a damn about the law but it's sure convenient for those in power to limit firearms for those who aren't gang-bangers as they're screwing you in the ass, isn't it?  Let's be real here -- if you're a rapist, financial or otherwise, would you prefer an armed or unarmed victim?

After all you might get tired of being financially raped on a daily basis, decide you're not going to put up with that anymore and that maybe -- just maybe -- you'd like to be able to underline your demand that it stop.

Now let me guess -- having read this you'll go grab a beer, screw your girl or boyfriend, and then go right back to sleep.

You may not care about politics but that won't stop the politicians and business people from screwing you blind.

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"Now let me guess -- having read this you'll go grab a beer, screw your girl or boyfriend, and then go right back to sleep."

Actually, the vast majority won't read; couldn't comprehend if they did read; those who have the capacity to comprehend are so indoctrinated by their "education" that they refuse to accept any conclusion other than what they've been taught or the official narrative. So they might as well "keep right on eating and drinking and marrying and being given in marriage until the flood comes and sweeps them all away"....

It's human nature to deluded ourselves that a "flood" is coming. And it doesn't have to necessarily be a flood per se. It could be anything, e.g., a demographic flood of Peronists from South America.

The smart ones are stocking a lifeboat right now... We know how this ends.
Aquapura
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Reminded me of the IF YOURE NOT OUTRAGED YOURE NOT PAYING ATTENTION bumper stickers that were oh so popular around 2003-04. I assume it was a passive aggressive protest over the war, but soon as B.H.O. won office the stickers were gone and all was fine - except that the troops are still in the Middle East 15 years later. Guess there was a new cause for a bumper sticker, and that's about the most you can expect from people these days. The current bumper sticker is a Twitter or Facebook comment. I did my part, I said I was outraged!

Honestly we deserve whats coming to us. Far more people are checking social media or watching Youtube vloggers comment on pop culture than are reading the Ticker. Blissfully distracted as we slide to collapse. Silicon valley provides the circuses and the fed gives us bread via EBT and other handouts. We are Rome.
Rufust445
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There are a few islands of reason in the sea of chaos that is social media. Twitter was fun when I signed up one especially snowy winter, but since the 2016 election campaign started to heat up, it has turned into a swamp. So many of the posts show little to no sign of critical thinking, cognitive ability, or problem solving ability.

I may not agree with astrophysicist Neil DeGrasse Tyson on everything, but there is one noteworthy comment he has made on two very different TV talk shows in the past year or two: "Americans are scientifically illiterate." The way he brought it into the conversation suggests it's one of his pet peeves, and understandably so.

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"The stock market isn't bullish, it's bull$hit." -- Alan King
Tdurden
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Quote:
The gang-bangers don't give a damn about the law but it's sure convenient for those in power to limit firearms for those who aren't gang-bangers as they're screwing you in the ass, isn't it?


At the rate things are falling apart, I think the *******s running the local, state and federal governments are going to pine for good old days of the scary black guns with "the shoulder thing that goes up" once scoped rifles start becoming a lot more popular.

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"I'd like to live just long enough to be there when they cut off your head and stick it on a pike as a warning to the next 10 generations that some favors come with too high of a price." -Vir Cotto Babylon 5
Flappingeagle
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Karl you indirectly make a good point.

It is foolish to make preparations for a single, very low probability event. There are simply too many different sets of preparations you would have to make to ever feel that you are "ready".

The best you can realistically do is make some general preparations that are applicable across many different events. For example, a year's supply of food and a way to purify water. That will get you through a huge variety of catastrophes and, maybe more importantly, give you time to adapt.

Flap

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Here are my predictions for everyone to see:
S&P 500 at 320, DOW at 2200, Gold $300/oz, and Corn $2/bu.
No sign that housing, equities, or farmland are in a bubble- Yellen 11/14/13
Trying to leave the Rat Race to the rats...
Whitehat
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The People's Republic of New York
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Quote:
rapidly rising wages lead to "wage-push" inflation that cannot be hidden through lying in the consumer price index reports which means higher interest rates and that chokes off deficit spending immediately.

probably the most seldom understood relation, yet probably one of the most important after the necessity of mark-to-market asset prices...

Karl, this is so important for people to understand that it requires much more focus. i have been banging my head against the wall for decades to get people to understand this relationship and how it extends to preventing people from being able to save in more pedestrian fashion.

more lives have been ruined, wasted and made miserable by this relation that you describe than anything else in history. now we have prices go up as wages go down all so politicians can buy votes and make a few rich and influential bastards rich.

not ****ing joking here, average people are now beginning to say to me that the next big war will fix everything economically. what i warn people about is now a preferred solution. either it is getting out there viral or people are just evil.

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There are two ways to be rich: One is by acquiring much, and the other is by desiring little.
snow, seasons, distance and dirt roads: SSDD
"Be not deceived; God is not mocked; for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap" (Gal. 6:7)
Jsfernandez97
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There are some people starting to fight back:
http://www.programmersguild.org/
Mangymutt
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Vancouver WA
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DAAAAMMMMNNNNNNNNN!!!! Karl.

It amazes me how quickly and easily people can be lead to the slaughter house.

Americans are paying to have illegals come here to steal their jobs. If you have no job you have no skills. If you have no skills you have no job prospect. If you have no job prospects you have no income. And without income you have no hope.

So let's drink ourselves silly, take opioids and play addictive games on our phones all while eating sugar and soy laden products. We will tell ourselves because we are Americans we need the illegals to do those low end jobs.

Yet without skills or work history there is no opertunity for the higher level jobs. So Americans sit down eat their jelly donuts and Pepsi, take a pill or two and play thier phone thingies. Wasting away.

If you are white, you are a racist for speaking out. And people are excepting that as ok. Many Americans might not have a future, but at least others aren't calling them racists. And they do not even realize how high the price is they are paying.
Mannfm11
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DFW, Tx
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Good stuff KD. I have been using the roughly 100 deaths a day plus casualties in autos to compare against the maybe average 100 killed a year in mass auto rifle shootings. They haven't banned autos and if they did productivity of the USA would go in the crapper. Totalitarians will sun up a thousand years of gun murders in a year and an armed population will reduce the chances of that to near zero.

I don't buy the term wage push inflation. Inflation is a monetary and financial creation.

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The only function of economic forecasting is to make astrology look respectable.---John Kenneth Galbraith
Peterm99
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Mannfm11 wrote..
. . . mass auto rifle shootings.
With the possible exception of Las Vegas (the investigation of which seems to be full of inconsistencies), have there been ANY mass shootings involving automatic weapons since the old Chicago gangland days of the '20s and '30s?

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". . . the Constitution has died, the economy welters in irreversible decline, we have perpetual war, all power lies in the hands of the executive, the police are supreme, and a surveillance beyond Orwells imaginings falls into place." - Fred Reed
Fumei
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Reason: Posted in the wrong place.
Asimov
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East Tennessee
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Peter: There was one cop about 15 or 20 years ago who killed his girlfriend or wife with a legal automatic rifle, it's one of the only cases where a legal one was used in a crime.

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It's justifiably immoral to deal morally with an immoral entity.

Festina lente.
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