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Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Sputnik Moment Or Visigoth Moment?

I don't watch much TV news. My father watches CNBC all day. He pointed out a new fnord phrase, "Sputnik Moment". The USA is much closer to having a "Visigoth Moment" than a "Sputnik Moment".

It's interesting to watch the birth of a new fnord phrase. The President (or other State leader) says the new fnord phrase. The mainstream media then incessantly repeats the new fnord phrase. This reinforces how brilliant the President is, because he was the first to say the new fnord phrase. It's amazingly well-scripted.

Two new fnord phrases are "Sputnik Moment" and "Win the Future!". A new fnord phrase must be somewhat original, because slaves become resistant to the old lie. Obama can't promise "Hope and Change!" anymore! A new fnord phrase must be vague and optimistic.

"Read my lips, no new taxes!" was a lousy fnord phrase, because it made a specific promise.

Corporate executives use "focus groups" to test a new brand of cereal. Similarly, politicians use "focus groups" to test new fnord phrases! I was shocked when I heard that politicians use focus groups to test their slogans! The "manufacturing consent" process is very scientific!

From my point of view, it's all a lie. It doesn't affect me. However, State speechwriters agonize over every word and inflection. They are trying to achieve the right mass brainwashing effect.

"Sputnik Moment" refers to the Russian satellite launch in 1957. This made the USA look stupid. There was a push to invest in science and catch up to the Russians.

There's a lot of important differences, comparing now to 1957. The USA is moving all its factories and manufacturing technology to China. There is much higher inflation. "Peer review" is about playing politics more than scientific merit. There is much higher corruption. There are more taxes and regulations. After WWII, Europe was in ruins; this was a huge economic advantage for the USA.

In the current USA, stealing is way more profitable than working. No political slogan will correct that problem.

A lot of the post-WWII growth was fake growth. Large corporations grew. Small businesses were ruined. During the Great Depression and New Deal, most people went from farmers and small business owners to wage slaves. There was massive consolidation of economic power. This gave the illusion of economic growth.

After WWII, the battle was between corporate executives and small business owners. Via State power and State subsidies, the small businesses were bankrupted or ruined. For example, the estate tax forces a small business owner to sell, rather than pass the business to his children. This sale is typically to a larger corporation like Berkshire Hathaway. This puchase is financed by a bank, i.e. with newly-printed money. Via their money-printing power and high taxes, the banksters gained control of nearly every business.

Corporate executives gave semi-decent treatment to workers, so they could bankrupt smaller competitors. With smaller competitors gone, now the corporate executives can turn on their workers. Moving factories offshore takes away worker bargaining power. I suspect that offshore factories are less efficient when you consider transportation costs. State subsidies make offshoring profitable. State restriction of the market makes it hard/impossible for displaced workers to start new businesses. If you're fired from a factory, you can't easily start a new business that competes with your former employer.

One key corporate philosophy is "The worker is an interchangeable cog. The real value is in the equipment and the State-backed monopoly." When you move your factory to another country, you're giving them all your key knowledge.

Nobody in the USA knows how to make anything anymore. For example, do you know anyone who knows how to make an incandescent light bulb? That might be a lucrative agorist business opportunity, after State thugs ban then.

After WWII, the Bretton-Woods agreement places some limits on inflation. Now, there's no limit to paper inflation. Banks profits are now a *HUGE* percentage of the economy. A growing percentage of S&P profits are bank profits. That's pure theft, and not legitimate profit. Those excessive profits come at the expense of the productive sector of the economy. Also, that profit number refers to bank *SHAREHOLDER* profit. Banks spend as much on salary/bonus as they give in profits to shareholders. You should *DOUBLE* that number, if you include bankster salaries and bonuses as money stolen.

This rate of bankster theft is not sustainable. It's much higher now than it was after WWII. Banksters have this huge State-backed cash cow. They will always profitably lobby to block reform.

After WWII, there was massive growth in universities. A college degree became a requirement for a decent job. Enrollment skyrocketed. There was massive faculty growth. Anyone with a PhD was guaranteed a decent job.

In the present, tenured faculty numbers are flat or shrinking, although schools still graduate a large number of PhDs per year. A PhD no longer is a guarantee of a decent job. If you're *LUCKY*, a PhD gets 5-7 years of postdocs and then a tenure-track job. Most are not as lucky.

The "peer review" process is a ****sucking contest, rather than genuine science. For the top economics journals, most of the referees are current or former Federal Reserve employees. "Global warming" propagandists brag about corrupting the peer review process to silence dissenting views.

After WWII, "scientist" or "engineer" was a respected career. Now, everyone wants to be a bankster, a trader, a hedge fund manager, a lawyer, or an MBA. Everyone wants to be the middleman/parasite. Nobody wants to be the guy who actually does the work.

For example, in the original "Flash Gordon", Dr. Zarkov was presented as a competent guy. In the most recent remake, he was presented as a sniveling coward.

After WWII, the role model was Einstein. Now, the role model is Snooki. (If the mainstream media incessantly talks about someone, that's "manufacturing a celebrity".)

The current USA resembles the fall of the Roman Empire, more than post-WWII USA. Inflation is approaching hyperinflation. There is flagrant rampant corruption. It isn't sustainable.

A clever speech isn't going to fix things. "Sputnik moment" and "Win the future!" are pretty pathetic fnord phrases. It's a predictable cycle. You invent a new fnord phrase when people get disgusted with the old one, and then hype it incessantly.

There no longer is any "rule of law" in the USA. Many insiders know that it's going to be over soon, and they're stealing as much as they can in the meantime.

The USA is much closer to having a "Visigoth Moment" than a "Sputnik Moment". There's no way the President can reverse things, even if he wanted to. If the President got too serious about slashing corruption, he'd be Kennedy-ed. Fortunately, the President is crippled by his false beliefs and parasitic/psychopathic advisors. He'l make superficial changes. It's too late to do anything meaningful. It's too late to prevent the collapse.


Anonymous said...

Yah not one person here can make a light bulb... but there was a company here a few years ago "Beacon Light Products" that made the "Bulb Boss" that was a smart screw in disk that would allow functions via light switch, and turn the light off automatically. Made the press several times when the product came out. I had no idea until I searched just now that they are out of business. If you search for the company on google there are hundreds of scraper spam pages on this now non-existent company. Evidently the real money is now in SEO spam scraper sites, not actual products of value.

There is absolutely no infrastructure in most of the US to start a technology or engineering based business. You will actually encounter resistance to purchasing small quantities of any advanced components, except through a few catalog outfits with limited product lines. It's not worth the effort. It's easier to just go into real estate, or it was.

FSK said...

I'm pretty sure that, with the right equipment, one person can make an incandescent light bulb in their basement.

However, I have no idea how to actually do it.

Ronnie said...

Oh good god. Original lightbulbs were hand blown glass. (some people still do this, but they aren't making light bulbs) The filament that lights up is made of tungsten. The twisty part of a light bulb in a standard edison socket is the neutral, and the dot at the bottom is the positive. Just run conductor from those 2 points to the tungsten and you have a light bulb. Light bulbs started lasting longer when they filled them with inert gases instead of air though, so a home made bulb won't last as long.

Anonymous said...

FSK, Let me expand on your suggestion that offshore factories are less efficient when you consider transportation costs. The way I see it - America still owns slaves, the only difference is that now slaves are located in other parts of the world, e.g. China. Yuan is pegged to dollar at the ridiculously low rate - this effectively means that Chinese workers employed at the outsourced factories work almost for free($3-$5 day i.e. slave labor). Manufacturing costs are virtually zero and the transportation and some other R&D are the only significant costs.There is absolutely no way that such enterprise can go bankrupt. The only problem is that it is sometimes necessary to meet with China president Hu Jintao, who essentially is a slave supervisor, and ask him to buy more treasury bonds.

Anonymous said...

FSK, you may want to check the video below out.

More people are espousing views similar to some of your own.

Anonymous said...

Tungsten, or more properly Wolfram was required by the ustreasury in huge quantities. This is why the light bulbs made with it were outlawed. Treasury needed a way to replace all fort knox gold bars with tungsten, without making even as much as a blip in the picture of tungsten production and sales. They solved it by making huge variations due to outlawing light bulbs, which attracted all the attention, and the treasury got their tungsten bars.


Anonymous said...

A pyramid moment.

Millions of slaves work hard both in USSR and in USA, to pay and provide for useless worthless pursuits of space explorations. No one ever asked their opinion, no one ever offered them to opt out. If they refuse, they are kicked on their faces by S.W.A.T. teams.

This is no different than building a pyramid in ancient Egypt. The pyramids and the satellites are not the testaments to greatness of anyone. One can not point to the space program and proclaim : "we did it!". Nope. That would be a lie.

We were beaten to do it, we were made to do it, forced, shackled, tyrannized.

An achievement can only be accomplished voluntarily.

Besides that, I agree this is going to be the visigoth moment anyway. The difference between the visigoth and sputnik moments is only in the size of the remainder of national wealth.

We have very little wealth left, compared to what we had. Still, we have exchanged tangible goods for mere paper, which is now held by Japan and China. We are the ones with infrastructure, buildings and cars.

Most of this wealth is not the wealth-generating kind, this is the problem number 1. Most of it simply a liability, not an asset.

The problem number two, is that once the collapse is visible to anyone, the chaos and dictate will begin. Together they will destroy whatever remaining wealth there would be, even in the form of liability. They will also destroy anyone who knows how to build wealth.

It is going to be the visigoth moment.

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