Posts Tagged ‘technological and scientific stagnation’

Technological decay

Sunday, December 6th, 2015

I have long argued, and commenters on this blog have long been disputed, that science died shortly after World War II, replaced by official state religion wearing lab coats as priestly robes, and using test tubes as aspersoria for holy water.

The age of science began with the Restoration and the Royal Society.  The Royal Society’s motto was “Take no one’s word for it”.   Feynman, in his address “What is Science?”, rephrased this as “Science is the belief in the ignorance of experts.” Now, however science consists of taking the word of secret anonymous committees meeting behind closed doors, committees that refuse to show their evidence, data, calculations, and method of calculation even while demanding trillion dollar programs, gigantic human sacrifice, and challenged by freedom of information requests.

I have long argued, and commenters on this blog have long been disputed, that since 1972, the west has been in technological stagnation or outright decline in most everyday fields, in an ever increasing number of fields. Yes, DNA reading and computer disk drives keep improving, but clothes washing machines have gone to $#!&, and there is a reason why people are nostalgic for the old muscle cars.

Observe our ability to build and operate tall buildings has been diminishing since 1972.

The highest level of technology is found in war. Soldiers are to take control of or destroy men and assets. Tanks, artillery, mortars and Armored Personnel carriers are to destroy soldiers. Ground attack planes and helicopters are to destroy tanks and armored personnel carriers, and air to air fighters are to destroy ground attack planes, and other air to air fighters.

So the highest level of technology, and the greatest expense, is found in the air to air fighter. A people’s capability to build and operate air to air fighters is the most sensitive barometer of its technological level, and a vital factor in that people’s capacity to win wars. You get air superiority, so the other side cannot use tanks against your soldiers, and you can use tanks against their soldiers, and artillery against their population centers and assets. You flatten their population centers and destroy their assets so that they cannot feed and equip their soldiers, and then your soldiers take charge.

And as you know, American air to air fighters have been getting slower and slower, more and more expensive, less and less maneuverable, flying less and less high, and carrying less and less ordinance. But now they are stealthed, right?  And Russian fighters are not stealthed.

Stealth can be beaten by sufficiently advanced electronics – you need two radars in substantially different locations whose radar is coordinated – one paints the target with a radar beam, and the other views the scatter from a substantially different angle. In response to the Turkish attack Russia now has part of the technology to beat stealth deployed in Syria: AEASA radars that can spray beams out in several thousand completely different directions per second. Does it have all of the technology deployed? Does it have the capability to coordinate two AEASA radars so as to see through stealth? Maybe. Probably. Though we will not really know until we see a major air battle between Russia and another advanced power.

Further Russian air to air fighters can fly faster, fly higher, are more maneuverable, and carry more ordinance than American air to air fighters. The recent display of Russian capability in Syria seems to be giving the Pentagon a nervous breakdown.  The Su-34 is every way superior, except for the very important defect that it lacks stealth.

When Dubai wants to build a tall building, it hires western experts. But those western experts are expatriates, semi permanent exiles from the west. They have foreign wives, girlfriends, and concubines. They don’t build tall buildings in the West because a horde of bureaucrats would shake them down for bribes (politely laundered through “consultants”, aka bagmen) and because they could not get any decent pussy in the west.

Our increasingly diverse ruling elite loses cohesion, in part through diversity, in part through selecting for cowards and liars. Because of this loss of cohesion, if you want to build a tall building in the west, you have to bribe a thousand priestly bureaucrats (whose self justifications are increasingly priestly – mostly they are protecting Gaia) and each of these thousand bureaucrats wants his pet consultant to collect ten percent of the surplus value that would be created by the building, adding up to a demand for one hundred times the value, while the King of Dubai is likely to content himself with a mere fifty percent of the value.

Technological decline

Saturday, May 31st, 2014

Konkvistador has drawn my attention to the Pu238 shortage. We stopped making Pu238 in 1988 You need Pu238 for nuclear batteries. The 2006 New Horizons mission to Pluto and the Kuiper belt was launched without enough Pu238 to keep all its equipment live during the Pluto flyby, and without enough Pu238 to do its Kuiper belt mission, from which I conclude that since 2011 we have been totally completely flat out of Pu238, just as the Fed is totally completely flat out of gold. For the last few decades, the government has been acting as if we are very very short of Pu238. For example, no allotment for pacemaker batteries, so people with pacemakers have to have major surgery every couple of years. The Europeans are using (dangerous and expensive) americium based nuclear batteries for their space program.

Supposedly we can simply make more Pu238, just as supposedly when the two towers fell, we could supposedly build buildings just as tall or taller, just as we can supposedly still build warplanes that can cruise at supersonic speeds, we just supposedly do not want to. Today’s businessmen are supposedly so secure in their masculinity that they do not want a higher corner office with a bigger view than the next businessman.

Maybe.

But I rather think if we could do that, we would not have run out in the first place. we would not have launched New Horizons with a half flat battery. We have been mighty short for at least a couple of decades, and since 2011 the cupboard has been just flat empty.

Technological decline

Sunday, April 27th, 2014

If we cannot build high buildings any more, progressives say we are now so sophisticated that we are now superior to status competition based on giant penis substitutes, and status competition based on having a higher corner office than the other business executives.

If high art is an aids infested trannie projectile vomiting over the audience, progressives say that we philistines just don’t get high art.

But the most important thing about a military aircraft is that it can fly faster, higher, and further than its opponents, so that you can get away from enemies, but enemies cannot get away from you.  And of these, the most important by far is to fly faster, so that you can bring trouble to your enemies, but your enemies cannot bring trouble to you.

SR 71 Blackbird, first built in 1972, about the time we put the last man on the moon.

Cruising Speed Mach 3.2
Ceiling 85 000 feet
Range 3 200 nautical miles

Today’s latest and greatest American warplane, the impressively named F-35 Lightning II. Does not that sound so much more impressive than “Blackbird”?

Cruising Speed Mach 1.6
Ceiling 60 000 feet
Range 1 200 nautical miles nautical miles

So let us make a little table:

Capability Then Now
Speed Mach 3.2 Mach 1.6
Ceiling 85 000 feet 60 000 feet
Range 3 200 nautical miles 1200 nautical miles

(more…)

mens rea

Sunday, January 26th, 2014

I have been arguing that social decay is ending technological and scientific progress.  In most areas it has strikingly slowed, in some areas, going backwards in the west, as we forget how to do what once we could do.  Others, however, argue that technological and scientific progress is still running hot, or that if it has slowed, it is that we ran out of low hanging fruit.

But a big tell is that people are lying about it. The lie indicates not only failure, but that the failure is shameful – that the failure is in us, not in external circumstances.  That we are lying about it shows the failure is social decay. (more…)

Tall buildings and the social order

Monday, January 20th, 2014

To make and keep the upper stories of a tall building habitable requires routine high technology.  The lifts have to work, the water needs to be pumped, the toilets have let the poop down one hundred stories without shattering violence.  It is not all that expensive.  Current office space costs in the centers of major cities are so high that very tall buildings are immensely profitable.  It is simply difficult to do, requires able people working together, both initially to build the systems, and subsequently to keep them going.

It is habitable floors that are hard to do, and habitable floors are what generates the rental income.  So, to assess a society’s technological level, count habitable floors.

By and large, the taller the building, the more the profit.  Doubtless there is a limit, but in the center of most major cities, most tall buildings are below that limit.  If people could build taller, they would.  At our present technological level, settling space seems likely to be fatally unprofitable, but building upwards, building the city of tomorrow, is highly profitable. (more…)

Leftism as cancer

Sunday, January 5th, 2014

Leftism is to memes as cancer is genes.

If the cells of the body mutate, cells that multiply at the expense of the body will be selected.  And cells that mutate to a faster mutation rate will be selected, since they will have more fast multiplying variants.

In a healthy body, each cell lives for the body, and performs its role in the whole body, making the body one. In cancer, each cancer cell lives for itself, at the expense of the body, parasitically, until the parasites devour the host

Left wing memes are selected by propagation through state power for propagation through state power. (more…)

Progress

Sunday, October 27th, 2013

In 1900, there were no planes, no space travel. Motorcars were toys that enthusiasts played with, not useful means of transport.  There were no computers, no radios, no antibiotics, no rockets, no nuclear power, no knowledge or understanding of the interior the atom, no very useful plastics.

In 1961 we had all of this stuff

Since 1961, what have we got?

The last man on the moon is getting pretty elderly.  We have abandoned supersonic transport, and supersonic fighter planes are close to being abandoned.

Cell phones and the internet show radical improvement, but are just more intense and improved use of computers and radio, technologies that existed well before 1961.  Genetic technology shows promise, but is not yet doing anything big.  While reading genes continues to improve, writing them may well have peaked, and without vastly improved writing, gene technology is not going anywhere exciting.  AI remains thirty years in the future, as it has been for the past sixty years, even though every desktop now contains more computing power than the human brain.

And, as I regularly point out

The last man on the moon left in 1972

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

Cars are becoming humbler.

 

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…)

US economic decline

Wednesday, May 1st, 2013

Supposing the official cpi to be true, US real GDP per capita has been growing at about 1% per year in recent years.

Supposing the big mac index to be true, US real GDP per capita has been falling at about 1% per year in recent years.

Motor vehicles per capita, according to world bank statistics, have been falling about 1% per year in recent years.

Electricity consumption per capita, taking indexmundi figures for US electricity consumption, and world bank figures for US population, has been falling at about 2% per year in recent years, consistent with the greeny attack on energy.

So, the evidence favors the big mac index.  Which is not showing hyperinflation, but is showing more inflation than is good for the economy.

The left singularity versus the technological singularity

Friday, December 14th, 2012

Lately this blog has largely been about the left singularity:  That leftism leads to more leftism, which leads to even more leftism even faster, until everything goes to hell. The best known singularity, however is the information technology singularity, the rapture of the nerds

What of the theory that information technology leads to more information technology?

Well, in a sense, in the long run, looking back over the last several million years, it is obviously true.  Problem is that it is far from obvious that dramatic technological change is coming any time soon. We have had quite a few dark ages interrupting the process, and there is what looks like a dark age coming up now.

The distinguishing feature of the technological singularity, what makes it singular, is accelerating progress.  Progress has been accelerating  from the sixteenth century to the early twentieth, but during the twentieth century, in one field after another, progress has slowed, usually stopping altogether within the west, while continuing at a somewhat slower pace in Asia.   Accelerating progress continues in DNA reading, but that is the last place where it is still evident that progress is accelerating. Progress may well have stopped in DNA writing, and any future advances in DNA writing are likely to come from Asia.  Rapid progress continues in integrated circuit manufacture, but that progress is not accelerating, and the shrinking number of fabs and increasing cost of fabs threatens to end that progress.

If yet another dark age hits, then when the next civilization rises, the high point of western civilization will be dated precisely to 1972 – last man on the moon, tallest buildings in the west, coolest muscle cars. (more…)