Posts Tagged ‘capitalism’

Cladistic analysis of neoreaction

Thursday, September 5th, 2013

As humans are bony fishes, and the Cathedral the heretical spawn of Cromwell’s puritans, the neoreaction is the heretical spawn of Libertarianism and anarcho capitalism.  Consider for example the blog title Anarcho Papist.

The Dark Enlightenment is libertarians mugged by reality, a libertarian who realizes that the eighteenth century was right about women, and Bull Conner right about blacks..

An anarcho capitalist favors a free market in law and defense agencies, defense agencies that are in many cases the private property of individuals and small groups.  A neoreactionary is an anarcho capitalist who thinks that a monopoly defense agency that is the private property of one man (monarchy) or a cartel of defense agencies that are the private property of a few men (feudalism) is not so bad after all.  Hence, throne conservatism.

He concludes that, progressivism being an official religion, therefore an official religion is unavoidable.  He suspects that most people need religion to persuade them to act sensibly, hence, whether Atheist or Christian, he endorses altar conservatism. (Or in the case of Israel, Temple Judaism.)

Thus libertarianism mutates into throne and altar conservatism, as puritanism mutated into militant atheism. (more…)

The Flaw in Moldbug’s proposed dictatorship.

Saturday, October 27th, 2012

Obviously democracy is not working, is failing catastrophically.  The productive are outvoted by the gimmedats, in large part non asian minorities and white sluts. Moldbug’s solution is simple:  Dictatorship, evolving into Monarchy.  The dictator, he hopes and expects, will fire all government employees, except for military, police, and some tax collectors.  What use are all the rest of them to a strong dictator?

A good government is a stationary bandit, since a stationary bandit has an incentive to shear the sheep, rather than flay them.  A bad government is a mobile bandit, and the government service in democracies increasingly approximate mobile bandits.  Each bureaucrat seeks to increase his power and wealth, even if the total burden is well above the Laffer limit.

The trouble is that a dictator is not necessarily a stationary bandit:  A secure dictator, for example a martial and charismatic monarch of a long established dynasty, is a stationary bandit.   Unfortunately, not only are long established dynasties in short supply, but when you have one, the legitimate heir to the throne is seldom martial and charismatic. (more…)

Decline of the west

Friday, November 26th, 2010

The last man on the moon left in 1972

The tallest building in the united states was finished in 1974.

Cars are becoming humbler.

US electricity production was growing exponentially until 1972.  After 1972 it grew more slowly.  Per capita electricity consumption  seems likely to have peaked around 2007 or so.

Supposedly GDP is still growing rapidly, just as supposedly inflation is zero, but it seems improbable that GDP is growing when per capita electricity consumption is not.

One could present all sorts of rationalizations for the decline in manned space exploration – for example that manned space exploration was a polite way of demonstrating superior capability to nuke the other side, and supposedly we are so much more civilized and mature now that the need for such chest beating has diminished.

However, by 2000, we have more compelling evidence of decline.  The buildings damaged or destroyed in 9/11 have not been repaired or replaced.

The west is the past. America sinks into Eurosocialism, while Europe becomes the western satrapies of the new Persian empire. Every rising civilization was a lender, innovator, and investor, every declining civilization a borrower.  California used to be the place where the future was invented, but no longer.

The west’s lead was California’s lead.  And California is no more.

Where, for example, was the netbook commercialized?  Who invented and built the “Amazon” Kindle?  Who is today creating the blue light lasers that are the core of every DVD reader and writer?

The Kindle was developed in Taiwan, by Eink.   It is some standard computing parts wrapped around a new display technology invented, developed and manufactured by Eink.

Indians looking to study abroad rate Melior in Singapore higher than Stanford in the USA.

Today, our universities turn out people trained in political correctness and “diversity”.  Every male CS graduate can parse a boolean expression, but most female CS graduates cannot, indicating that a male needs to be able to parse a boolean expression to get a CS degree, and a female does not. The end stage of this process is that no one needs to be able to parse a boolean expression, but everyone needs to be able to hate dead white males.

China leads the world in coal to liquids technology.

China leads the world in internet based transactions.

The simplest explanation for the fact that western research seems to have fallen off a cliff is that we are now reaching the point where hating dead white males is a more important academic qualification than anything else.  Doubtless it is in reality more complicated than that, but the simplest explanation works quite well:  Consider, for example, the recent demonization of Chagnon.  The most striking factor was the ignorance and stupidity of the academic associations condemning him.  They just did not know stuff.  It was as if they don’t read books by dead white males, as if they feared that reading such stuff might contaminate their minds with dangerous thoughts.

What we have had for some time in academia is theocracy, not meritocracy, and theocracy tends to promote those whose faith is most zealous and reliable.  It is easier to have zealous and reliable faith if you are dumb as two planks glued together.

Who is at the top of Academia:  I suppose the tip top crust are the people who condemned Chagnon, and people like the leading scientists of global warming, Mann and Phil Jones, who are demonstrably not nearly as smart as I am.  Mann, for example, keeps making ludicrous and amateurish mistakes in his statistics, and any time Phil Jones wants something scientific done, he summons a post grad, and tells the postgrad to produce a chart that proves such and such, suggesting that Phil Jones cannot produce such charts, nor tell if the chart actually does prove such and such.

Mann’s work demonstrates he is simply stupid.  Mann’s power over other scientists demonstrates that simply stupid people are on top.  Stupid people on top provide a simple explanation of why science does not get done.

How did Mann get to the top?  By telling the state what it wants to hear, by political correctness.

Demonstrably, the people in charge of science and research are not the tip top crust.  They got where they are by hating dead white males more than anyone.

The fact that undergraduates are marked on the basis of race, gender, and political correctness is fairly harmless.  That academics get power over other academics on the basis of political correctness has not been so harmless, and we are today paying the price, in that western research is failing.

Singapore has sustained its rate of growth.  Taiwan has sustained its rate of growth.  Therefore China is likely to sustain its rate of growth.

Assuming China grows like Singapore from now on, and the US grows like Europe (counting European growth as real, even though such growth as occurs is government employees, whose product is valued at cost, which cost grows at astonishing rate) then China should surpass the US in total GDP by 2019 or so.

China should surpass the US in GDP per head, as Singapore already has, by around 2045 or so.  Taiwan should surpass the US in GDP per head in 2018 or so.

The financial system of the west is collapsing because the fed and its bureaucrats have the mission to replace financial panics with wise regulatory authority – which might work if wise regulatory authority had the will to punish elite wrongdoing the way financial panics did, and resist the desire of politicians to use the financial system as a piggy bank for vote buying the way bankers threatened by financial panics did.  Since brave regulators are not to be found, the replacement is not working.

The last time the west stalled, it stalled for four hundred years under intellectual stagnation induced by theocracy, from 1277 to 1648.

We are seeing multiple simultaneous crises.  Academia is a thousand loudspeakers controlled by one microphone, and that microphone in the hands of an idiot.

All the massive financial crime that the financial crisis exposed <> continues unpunished and unabated, foreshadowing another, even bigger financial crisis coming up fast.

The graffiti on the buildings that are now owned by the Federal Reserve foretells our future.

We are also seeing an explosive gold rush in government as rent seeking monopolies multiply.  Thus it used to be, for example, that the local council gave itself a monopoly of water and sewage, though there is in practice no rationale for the sewage monopoly – septic tanks and highly localized sewage farms are more economical.  Large centralized sewage facilities beloved of councils and council unions suffer severe diseconomies of scale due to the high cost of  piping sludge any reasonable distance. Seeing the lucrative flow of money, every other level of government gets into the act.  Just as to get anything done, a private individual needs multiple permits from the council, each requiring him to hire numerous “consultants” at $400 per hour, the council needs multiple permits from state and federal governments, requiring the council to hire numerous “consultants” at $100 000 per hour.  The tip is emitting methane!  Oh the horror.  Someone official comes to officially look at the methane, charges  $100,000 for looking, and issues an enforceable “recommendation” for an open ended and indefinite series of remediation measures, each of which will require another look.

Oh what did we do before there were people to officially and highly scientifically investigate the fact that tips are apt to pong?  What would we do without government to supervise government?  And surely any problems that might occur can be easily remedied by providing yet another layer of regulatory authority to regulate the regulators that are regulating the regulators that are regulating the local council.

This, like the housing boom is unsustainable.  A single monopoly will charge inefficiently high prices and produce inefficiently low product, which is indefinitely sustainable. Multiple layered monopolies suffer a coordination problem that results in them charging infinite prices and producing zero product, as each attempts to get the majority of the squeeze.

This problem is remediable only through collapse or foreign conquest.  As I have remarked several times, the reason that Dubai can build high towers and we no longer can, is that in Dubai, you only need the approval of one theocrat and one holy religion.

I hope for collapse, since foreign conquest is likely to be unpleasant.  Last time around, however we had stagnation for four hundred years.   Collapse would be preferable.

Democracy is self destructing, as it inexorably moves further and further to the left – the fate of the past democracies of Athens and Rome.

How to fix the financial crisis

Friday, May 21st, 2010

Proposed reforms, both left and right, are unlikely to have any effect on the continuing massive misappropriation from the financial system.  It is absurd that people are discussing obscure details of the credit swap market.

To fix the financial crisis, we have to revoke, or at least denounce and denigrate, Marie Curie’s Nobel prize.

When they gave a Nobel prize to Marie Curie for being female, that did not hurt anyone except more deserving potential Nobel prize winners.  But handing out phony Nobels on the basis of sex, race, and nationality necessitated handing out phony degrees on the basis of race and sex, and handing out phony degrees on the basis of race and sex necessarily led to a crisis where these phony degrees were being ignored by employers, so employers necessarily had to be forced to give out well paid phony jobs on the basis of race and sex.

But being given well paid phony jobs on the basis of race and sex failed to result in recipients living a middle class lifestyle, so lenders had to be forced to give out a middle class lifestyle on the basis of race and sex.

Which has led to our present financial crisis.  It all began with Marie Curie.  Each lie required a new and bigger lie.  We need to start by acknowledging that genders and races tend to have different abilities – that if you are looking for people that are the best at something, whether the fastest runners or the greatest mathematicians, they will almost all be of one particular race and gender, and some races will be completely absent, and if you are merely looking for people that are acceptably good at something, for example accountants, basketball players, or donut makers, they will be mostly of one particular race and gender.

We cannot end the crisis unless we admit who is defaulting on their mortgages, we cannot admit who is defaulting without admitting that they cannot perform their jobs either, we cannot admit they cannot perform their jobs without admitting that their degrees are phony, and we cannot admit their degrees are phony without admitting that many Nobel prizes, starting with Marie Curie, were phony.

Yale Harvard and Basel style Free Enterprise

Sunday, May 16th, 2010

After the collapse of socialism, the elite support free enterprise – they support it the way they support free speech.

If anyone is allowed to disagree with the orthodoxy taught at Yale and Harvard, or even doubt it, this endangers the free speech of people from Harvard and Yale, and similarly if any enterprise run by people from Harvard or Yale could go bust, this endangers the free enterprise of people from Harvard and Yale.

Basel II is tens of thousands of pages of regulations, no one knows how vast it is, because not all the regulations can be found in any one place, but it could all be replaced by two simple rules:  Politically correct victim groups shall always find it easy to borrow money, regardless of their ability or intention to pay it back, and politically well connected businesses shall always make money, regardless  of whether they are competently run or not.

The seeds of the crisis were the CRA and the ratings agencies.  I have discussed the CRA at length, but the CRA would have been resisted had it not been for other changes in the system that insulated the players against the consequences of making bad loans.  These changes, guaranteeing that badly run businesses would succeed, started with the bailout of the ratings agencies in the seventies, forty years ago.

Back then, the ratings agencies were in trouble, because they had made a lot of bad calls.  It seemed that whenever an institution was going under, the guys at the credit rating agencies were the last to know about it.  Back then, they sold their assessments of credit risk to subscribers. So no one wanted to subscribe.

So in the seventies, the regulators stepped in to make people use the credit rating services. In 1975 the SEC created the Nationally Recognized Statistical Rating Organization (NRSRO) designation. Credit rating agencies so designated received what was in effect a grant of governmental power. The SEC then relied on the NRSRO’s credit risk assessment in establishing capital requirements on SEC-regulated financial institutions – which meant that for SEC-regulated financial institutions to borrow and lend, they had to get rated.  A cascade of regulatory decisions followed over the years, each decision forcing more and more reliance on the risk assessments issued by these demonstrably incompetent institutions – and less and less reliance on other people’s risk assessment.  For more and more organizations, it became illegal for them to make their own judgments about risk.

By the 1990s, as Levine and Partnoy tell us, the NRSROs were not selling assessments of credit risks, but licenses to issue securities.  The rating agencies did not genuinely assess risk, nor did anyone really expect them to.  Nor could repeatedly demonstrated incompetence reduce demand for their services, so the ratings agencies had no incentive to provide correct credit ratings.  Since their income was entirely dependent on the state granting them power, they did, however, have an incentive to make politically correct credit ratings.  If you lend to the poor, the oppressed, etc, and you are run by good old boys from Yale and Harvard, and you make donations to the right politicians, the NRSROs have a very powerful incentive to give you a good credit rating.  And if you have a good credit rating, you can borrow as much as you like – and if you go bust, the government will bail you out.

Badly run companies that had been empowered to borrow as much as they pleased got in trouble – and were bailed out for the same reasons as they had been empowered to borrow as much as they pleased.

In addition to corruptly favorably rating the politically correct, the NRSROs corruptly favorably rated those who simply gave them money, which is perhaps what those who complain about “deregulation” have in mind.  The banks creating structured financial products would first pay the rating agencies for “guidance” on how to package the securities to get high ratings and then pay the rating agencies to rate the resultant products – a glaring conflict of interest, though one less apt to lead to bailouts when the proverbial hits the fan.

Now since all this dirty dealing has cost the taxpayer trillions, you may well ask what measures have been taken to punish the NRSROs for bad conduct, or give them incentives for better conduct in future, or indeed restrain them from continuing to do this stuff?

All the strengthened regulation is regulation to make people continue to treat NRSRO ratings as true, even though it has become horrifyingly apparent that the ratings are generally false.  All the strengthened regulation is more of what caused this mess in the first place.  Any real reform would necessarily start by abolishing the legal privilege of NRSROs, would have to start by rolling back regulations to what they were in 1974.  Instead, compulsion and bailouts are being applied to make NRSRO ratings true, or to enable people to continue pretend that they are true.  Their power has been increased, their misconduct unpunished, and their incentives have become even worse.

Chinese GDP to surpass US by about 2016 or so

Friday, August 14th, 2009

We are already seeing some people heading off to China and opportunity: “Shut Out at Home, Americans Seek Opportunity in China”

According to the CIA, not always a reliable source, China’s 2008 GDP is about 7800 000 000 000$, US 2008 GDP is about 1429 000 000 000$.  Since China is growing about nine percent faster than the US …

In many important respects it has already surpassed the US.  Innovation in the US is very rapidly drying up, while we are seeing dramatic and important innovations coming out of China – for example improvements in the synthesis of liquid fuel from coal, the new CBHD (High density DVDs at low density prices), and critical advances in the most esoteric of the pure sciences, General Relativity.  They are on the leading edge in heavy industry, consumer goodies, and basic pure research.

Although Mainland China is in part still a centralized command economy based on terror, pillage, and murder, in other important ways it is vastly more capitalist than the US. It absorbed capitalism from Hong Kong, which was a lot closer to the hard core capitalism of Manchester and the Industrial Revolution than the diluted and castrated capitalism of the US and Europe, therefore can expect rapid growth rates that catch up to Hong Kong and Singapore, thus massively surpass the US and Europe.

It is often said that America has rule of law and China does not, yet we have lost track of the difference between rule of law and rule of lawyers:  Reflect on the numerous outrageous patent-the-wheel lawsuits and the destruction of the light plane industry when lawyers discovered they could sue people who build planes for not building them as wisely and well as lawyers and courts supposedly would have.  The car industry and the vaccine industry nearly went the same way, requiring federal interventions that suspended what we are now calling rule of law for some industries, but not others.

A big Chinese advantage is that their political elite is less arrogant and less out of contact with reality.  It is willing to acknowledge that government interventions can fail, can have bad results.  When government intervention fails cataclysmally in the US, then that branch of the government is immediately given more wealth, power, and prestige, that area of the economy promptly becomes more socialist.  When government intervention fails in china, then that branch of the government eventually loses wealth, power, and prestige, that area of the economy becomes less socialist.  Thus remaining socialism in China are those parts of socialism that are functioning well, while newly expanded socialism in the US, for example accounting, finance, and perhaps soon health care, is failing disastrously.  The American governing elite is solidly immersed in a cloud of lies and denial, rationalizing away, or simply lying barefaced, about all their failures.  The Enron case led to increased government intervention against truthful accounting, rather than diminished government intervention against truthful accounting, the disastrous losses from affirmative action lending led to an increased takeover of the finance industry, and we are likely to soon see the same in health care.

The Chinese elite still tends to the traditional chinese and communist view that the political elite are the genuinely productive ones, and the entrepeneurs are parasites, and if they were to act on that view, they would return China to the poverty and chaos it has long endured.  Because of this continual threat, the entrepeneurial class in China is to a substantial extent overseas based and cyberspace based.  Chinese companies are largely run through servers located in tax havens, but such non violent defenses could easily fall to a sufficiently determined attack.  Meanwhile, however, the US government is engaged in a sufficiently determined attack on tax havens, having recently successfully pressured the Swiss to deny financial services to Americans, blissfully unaware of the increasing dependence of the American economy on entrepeneurial skills and knowledge mediated through such havens.  Interpreting the golden goose as a parasite, as a challenge to their authority and a rejection of their superior wisdom, they prepare to slay the golden goose.


Thursday, May 7th, 2009

Megan nails it:

the government is using its intervention in the banking system to pressure banks to give special deals to the government’s special friends.


Wednesday, May 6th, 2009

From the point of view of oligarchs and crony capitalists, the crisis is not that a lot loans were made to no hablo English wetbacks. The crisis is that people are rejecting securitization of debt.

The Obama regime’s capitalism smashing measures are intended not to destroy capitalism, nor to install socialism, but to restore securitization of debt. This is socialism for the financiers, not for the proles:  Crony socialism, crony capitalism, a fascist economic order.

Regular old fashioned loans are going through just fine. There is no credit crisis, the financial system is not freezing up. Securitization is freezing up, and it @#$% well should freeze up.

When debts are securitized, many different debts of many different borrowers are piled together into a great big pool of debt, and then shares in the pool are sold to lots of creditors – which means that there is no one person responsible for verifying that any one particular loan is sound, that the assets securing the loan are worth what they are supposed to be worth, that the person responsible for making payments on the loan can read and write, that he speaks the language that the papers that he signed were written in, that he was sufficiently sober when he signed them to remember signing them, or even that the paperwork exists and is in good order.

For securitization to work, the particular organization that arranged the loan, and the particular people in the particular organization, would have to remain responsible for that loan.  The debtor would have to be making payments through the people that arranged the loan for the life of the loan.

Securitization leads carelessness with large sums of other people’s money. Such carelessness leads to crime. Crime destroys the trust that is necessary for the economic system to work. Securitization must stop. If securitization continues, capitalism will end. By and large, those who favor continued securitization are wealthy criminals, who personally benefited from stolen money, as over the years carelessness slowly became indistinguishable from deliberate fraud.   The problem before Obama was not lack of regulation, but that the foxes were regulating the chickens, and now under Obama the foxes are still regulating the chickens.  Each Obama intervention has the effect of keeping the criminals in power over other people’s money, resisting the natural propensity of capitalism to purify itself through creative destruction.

Securitization was born in fraud:  The original motivation for securitization was the 1995 Community Reinvestment Act. If the government is pressuring you to make loans on the basis of race, rather than willingness and ability to pay one’s just debts, you want to get rid of the politically correct mortgages to some other sucker as fast as possible.

Securitization of debt is only legitimate when the people that arranged the loan remain linked to the loan.  Otherwise, securitization is a scam, as the origins of mortgage securitization demonstrate.

Galt strike or inadequate aggregate demand?

Friday, May 1st, 2009

The Randian concept of a Galt Strike is that if the elite slack off, the masses will be impoverished – that countries are rich or poor according to whether the elite is productive, while the masses and resources do not matter much, except in extreme cases such as oil rich sheikdoms.

There has been a large fall in GDP over the past six months:

The Keynesian explanation of this fall is inadequate aggregate demand – the economy could easily produce more, but no one is spending due to depression of animal spirits, in which case a big spending government will make everything rosy.

The Austrian and Chicago explanation is complicated, and perhaps confused.

The Randian explanation is that it is a Galt Strike – the elite are slacking off, and focusing on hiding their wealth and economic activities from the government, rather than creating value, in which case big government spending will merely result in inflation or massive borrowing from abroad.

Core CPI will in time tell us which account is correct. We will know by about November 2010.

  • If  late in 2010 core CPI is substantially higher, nominal GDP substantially higher, but real GDP still woeful, then Randians will have been proven correct.
  • If  late in 2010 core CPI is lower or unchanged, then both sides can argue they were right, and the Austrians will probably have some explanation that I will be disinclined to follow.
  • If  late in 2010 core CPI only rises moderately, but real GDP rises substantially, then Keynesians will have been proven correct.

I am betting on disturbing levels of core inflation with a distinctly unimpressive recovery in real GDP.

The crisis explained

Saturday, March 28th, 2009

I have been seeing a lot of references to “a speculative bubble”

Nope. They were not speculating.

The crisis consisted of people, mostly members of protected minorities with nothing to lose, buying houses they could not afford with borrowed money in the expectation that they would go up, and if they went down, it was the bank’s problem.

So the people who bought houses were taking no risk, since mostly they bought them with 100% loans, had no credit rating and no assets to lose.

So were the banks making the loans taking a risk?

No, because it was not the bank’s problem, because the loans were for the most part guaranteed by Freddy, or Fannie, or AIG – all of which had implicit government guarantees, and all of which had an AAA rating.

So why did AIG and the rest have an AAA rating?

AIG and the rest were issuing naked puts greatly exceeding their total capitalization, which pretty much guaranteed that sooner or later they would go broke in a big way. So why AAA?

Moody’s, who issued the ratings, was tweaked on this, and replied that it was unthinkable that the government would allow these institutions to fail. So it was not true that nobody knew what was happening. All the insiders knew what was happening, the regulators knew what was happening: they knew that businesses were taking big risks for big money in the expectation that if they won, they won, and if they lost, the government would take care of them. It was government policy. People have been complaining about this for years.

The fundamental cause of this crisis is government regulation: Governments cannot be trusted with money. They think only of short term political gain, so dispense money to the loudest pressure group, in this case those represented by ACORN, rather than to people who are likely to repay it with interest. In this case, the regulators decided that “traditional” standards of credit worthiness were racist and discriminatory, because too many Jews, and not enough Blacks, met “traditional” standards.