Archive for February, 2020

Trump’s struggle for power.

Monday, February 17th, 2020

The president attempting to actually exercise the powers of the presidency is rather like Queen of England attempting to actually rule England. As was revealed in the House impeachment hearings, the permanent government are shocked and outraged that a merely elected politician meddles in running the country, and are disinclined to comply.

Trump cannot get anybody senate confirmed, and those few Senate confirmed appointments, who are seldom loyal, have a great deal of leverage over Trump and effective independence. The problem is disloyal Republicans in the senate are preventing Trump from appointing Trump loyalists.

McCabe was let off, despite committing all the usual crimes that Democrats commit all the time and that they want to give Trump associates such as Stone and General Flynn years in prison for.

If Trump’s people can be punished, and his enemies can commit crimes unpunished, then not yet in power. Further, if his enemies can commit crimes unpunished, the crimes will escalate.

But the Department of Justice team that let off McCabe and persecuted Roger Stone has resigned – probably one step ahead of an investigation into the numerous gross improprieties that Roger Stone and General Flynn’s lawyers have been complaining about. This resignation is going to put a spoke into future efforts to persecute Trump associates and cover up the crimes of his opponents, which makes it easier to get loyalists and harder to commit crimes against the president.

The Durham report, which is likely to find grounds to imprison a pile of people in the DoJ and FBI, and perhaps Obama and Obama associates, is not coming out any time soon. Perhaps it takes time to investigate, perhaps Durham is stalling till he sees which way the wind blows, or perhaps Trump is not yet ready for the explosion that will surely follow if it is not a graywash.

It looks like 2020 may well be a democratic election, perhaps the last democratic federal election, though we will continue to hold elections that everyone piously agrees are democratic for centuries, as the Roman Empire did. If Trump succeeds in increasing the Republican numbers in the Senate, and in arresting the people who used illegal means in the various attempts to overthrow him, then he will be fairly close to being in power, without needing to do anything that would make it too obvious that the Republic is dead and has been dead for quite some time. Augustus Caesar said, and probably believed, that he was restoring the Republic, and I hope that the American Republic gets similarly “restored”.

Elections have been seemingly working because there is nothing actually at stake. It is just a ritual like the Queen riding a stagecoach to open parliament. If you think that things have become too tense for democracy to work, wait till there is real power on the table up for grabs. The conflict is likely to make the first Trump election seem normal. The conflict you are seeing now is like progressive family members blowing up thanksgiving dinner. They are just exploding over mere symbols. Wait till there is money and power at stake.

The job of mainstream conservatism is to move the right edge of the Overton window left, and the job of the mainstream left is to move the left edge of the Overton window left.

And if the Overton window closes, mainstream conservatives do not have a job. They are lying about what their job is, and lying about being disemployed, and therefore engaging in massive crimestop. Their current job is to put themselves out of work. If Trump does not fire them, the Democrats will imprison, then eventually execute, them. It is a dead end career path – that may quite likely end in actual death. They are a mildly inflamed appendix, soon to become a seriously inflamed appendix.

If a mainstream conservative is nice about the left sending people associated with the Trump campaign to jail, and all of them are being nice about, soon the left will decide that they too are associated with Trump. Indeed they already have. The correspondents to the New York Times all think that the mainstream conservatives are crypto fascists, and that deadly violence is the only thing fascists understand.

If you are mainstream conservative, and want to stay out of jail, the correct course of action is to call for death for those who let off McCabe but threw the book at Stone. When you see the blade of the salami slicer heading your way, it is time to not be nice. Being nice about a grossly political judiciary and department of justice is suicidal for anyone to the right of Pol Pot. But the mainstream conservatives are quietly being nice, as the salami slicer slices closer and closer.

If Trump gains power, it is the end of their careers. If he loses power, it is the end of their careers, and quite possibly the end of their lives.

Warriors, Merchants, war, markets, and capitalism.

Saturday, February 1st, 2020

From the time of Xenophon to the Crimean war, every long distance campaign by westerners had a free market following the camp and the march. Every single man in the army fought, and the camp followers fed them, clothed them, and armed them.

Alexander, fighting a long distance campaign, had ten camp followers for every soldier, but every man in Alexander’s army fought in every major battle, including Alexander himself, and every man close to him.

Socialist war is an attack by priests on warriors. Insourcing logistics was part and parcel of valorizing camp followers such as the whore Florence Nightingale, and valorizing camp followers was part and parcel of demonizing the heroes of the Crimean war.

The army is funded by pillage and extortion, but the camp followers are protected from pillage and extortion. They have lower status than warriors, but some of them, what we would call contractors or small businesses, considerably more freedom. The army protects the free market that feeds, clothes, and arms it. When two such armies meet, as in the Crimean war, each attempts to impose socialism on the enemy market, while protecting the freedom of its own market, as in the Crimean was, which was largely a war of logistics, the key British military victories being to smash the market in the towns through which private merchants organized the flow of goods to supply the Russians.

The priestly classes insource logistics to lower warrior status. It is that simple. The Western way of war, from Xenophon to Lord Cardigan, is that the camp and the march has a market following it around. That is what made us strong. Abandoning it has made us weak.

Weapons in Xenophon’s army were private property. Finding themselves short of ranged warfare capability, Xenophon proposed:

we must get slingers as soon as possible and cavalry. I am told there are in the army some Rhodians, most of whom, they say, know how to sling. Suppose, then, we investigate and find out first of all who among them possess slings, and for these slings offer the owner the money value; and to another, who will plait some more, hand over the money price; and for a third, who will volunteer to be enrolled as a slinger, invent some other sort of privilege

In Carnage and Culture, Hanson tells us:

Capitalism in its most basic form was born in ancient Greece; that heritage helps to explain why the postclassical Europeans in their centuries of religious and political cannibalism nevertheless protected their autonomy from non-Westerners and were as wealthy as their more unified Islamic rivals. The word for profit, kerdos, is ubiquitous in the Greek language. … by the fifth century b.c. Greek economic activity—especially at imperial Athens—was decentralized, governed by supply and demand, and characterized by sophisticated notions of markets, profit, banking, and insurance, with government assurance of the sanctity of private property and rights of inheritance.

For those states, ancient and modern, that failed to adopt the tenets of capitalism and private enterprise, if they were to war long enough, they would eventually encounter Western armies that were supplied by an amoral and unfettered market. In such cases, the numbers, brilliant leadership, and battlefield courage of the Other could be nullified by smaller, even poorly led armies that were better fed, equipped, and armed by those who saw profit in war.

Xenophon’s “March upcountry” uses the word “market” thirty nine times. Market logistics is ever present in his military considerations and political negotiations. The word “market” appears about twice as often as words such as “sling”, “sword”, or “spear”, and somewhat more often than “wounded”.

Suppose there was a rational military reason for insourcing logistics. What then is the rational military reason for giving logistics workers the same job titles and uniforms as warriors?

The recent humiliating defeats of the British in Basra and Helman province happened because the entire British Army can only put a hundred boots on the ground to hurt people and break their toys. With non fighters getting stolen valor, your army quietly melts away, and you do not notice until war comes. If you have one man in the army who does not fight, by and by you have no men in the army who fight.

Socialist logistics is working horribly badly, and even if it was working great, it would still be the case that stealing the valor of real soldiers cripples your military capability.

It is very hard to get for troops anything through conventional channels, and in practice, just as Soviet Russia operated on the black market, fighting men often have to engage in “drug deals” by trading whatever surplus stuff they have with other units that have what they actually need. There tend to be months or years delays between applying for some urgently and vitally needed replacement part, and getting it, but a soldier can order pipe tobacco online, and have it in within two, three weeks at the latest.

Cut out the military supply chain bullshit and let Amazon handle it. The regimental commander should contract with whom he damn well pleases. Back in the days when logistics was largely taken care of by the regimental commander and the camp followers a large proportion of the camp followers, including nearly all the highly skilled camp followers, for example Cardigan’s French Chef and the dual function whores, came from Europe, following the army around.

Those behind the lines, loading and unloading planes at the base near Basra, managing the equipment, and all that, kissing the ass of numerous four star generals who never leave the base, and never actually shooting and getting shot at, should not get medals and honors and be counted as soldiers. They should be camp followers, whores, and comfort women.

Let me tell you the real story of the charge of light brigade:

Due to the usual screw ups and fog of war, Lord Cardigan received a very stupid order to attack some enemy guns He protested the order vehemently, but then obeyed it, leading his men from the front in his very conspicuous privately owned officer uniform. Since he had a superior horse, which he personally owned, he got far in front of his men. He arrived at the enemy, personally took one whack at the leading enemy officer, then signaled the retreat before most of his men had arrived, obeying his orders to the letter pro forma with the least possible danger to his men, and the greatest possible danger to himself.

Let high ranking officers take their French chef and their numerous mistresses along with them. But don’t issue medals to the French Chef. The priesthood (the mainstream media) complained that Lord Cardigan brought his French chef along while his men ate salt beef, but Lord Cardigan, unlike present day commanders, tended be in the front when the bullets were flying. So, would you prefer a regimental commander who eats the same food as you, or a regimental commander who gets exposed to the same bullets as you?