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Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Radical Extremists For Rule Of Law

This article had a really neat quote.

A society is in serious trouble when its political pariahs have at the core of their demands a return to the rule of law.
By "rule of law", I mean natural law. When a Statist says "rule of law", he means "A group of insiders make up rules and use the threat of violence to force everyone else to obey."

For example, the War on Raw Milk is a clearcut violation of natural law. According to statutory State law, the War on Raw Milk is 100% legal, because a bunch of lobbyists and Congressmen approve of the law. Even if you believe, "Raw milk might be bad for you.", you should believe "People should be allowed to buy and sell raw milk, if they're 100% informed of the potential risk." If you take proper precautions, raw milk isn't that dangerous. Some people believe that raw milk tastes better, which is actually an indication that it's healthier. There's a clearcut economic terrorism reason for the War on Raw Milk. It benefits large corporate farms at the expense of small farms. The pasteurization requirement is a regressive tax on small farms.

The raw milk clubs are a partial implementation of agorism. State thugs are now very aggressively infiltrating them and shutting them down. The problem is that a raw milk seller needs 100% assurance that a potential new customer isn't an undercover cop. There's no agorist trading network that can make such assurances.

A Statist believes "The current legal system is a very good approximation of natural law!" Initially, the USA legal system was a decent approximation of natural law. It still had flaws, because it allowed for some taxation and enabled insiders to use violence to enforce bad laws, like the Fugitive Slave Act and the Alien and Sedition Acts. The USA system no longer is a decent approximation of natural law. It has degenerated into a corruption game for the exclusive benefit of insiders.

The USA was initially very successful, because the USA system was a decent approximation of natural law. The system in the USA has deviated severely from natural law. This leads to the current decline.

This is a common Statist mistake. State statutory law has almost no relationship to natural law.

That is pretty funny. That's a good summary of the problem with the USA. The "radical extremists" are the people demanding "rule of law" or, more accurately, "rule of natural law".

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Warrent Buffett - Tax My Competitors More

Warren Buffett consistently advocates for higher taxes. Recently, he called for higher taxes on people making $250k+/year.

Is Warrent Buffett a swell guy? Is it enlightened self-interest?

This post had an interesting quote.

"Warren Buffet is a dirtbag who has made millions buying small businesses that are forced to sell in order to raise money to pay estate taxes."
Suppose you built a successful small business worth $50M-$100M. When you die, you're hit with an estate tax bill of $20M+. You probably don't have $20M cash to pay the estate tax bill. You are forced to sell your business, due to taxes.

Warren Buffett and Berkshire Hathaway specialize in buying small family-owned businesses. Many of the businesses are forced to sell due to estate taxes.

Warren Buffett likes the estate tax. The estate tax enables him to buy businesses at fire-sale prices. It's a forced sale due to the estate tax.

In effect, the State stole the small business. The State gets a fat tax check. Warren Buffett gets control of the business. In effect, the State seized the family-owned business and gave it to Warren Buffett.

Warren Buffett is a bankster. As a large insurance corporation, he gets to borrow for close to the Fed Funds Rate, although Berkshire Hathaway is not a Federal Reserve Primary Dealer. Insurance contracts have an implied interest rate, with the Fed Funds Rate or Treasury Rate as the benchmark.

In effect, Warren Buffett buys family-owned business with newly-printed money. A bank prints new money, borrowing from the Federal Reserve. That money is lent cheaply to Warren Buffett. He uses that money to buy the business. That money pays the estate tax bill, with a little left over.

The family does get some cash after the estate tax bill is paid. However, they lost their business. The family doesn't get the cashflow and profits from operating the business for another generation. In many cases, the family members who know how the business works become Berkshire Hathaway employees. In fact, Warren Buffett openly brags about how he treats family members well, after the State forces them to sell their business to him.

Insiders use trust and tricks to avoid taxes. Consider Comcast. Even though it is a public corporation, Brian Roberts owns special supervoting shares that give him control, even though he only owns a tiny slice of equity. Brian Roberts inherited those supervoting shares from his father, Ralph Roberts, using trusts and tricks to dodge estate taxes.

Estate taxes do not hurt true insiders like Brian Roberts. Estate taxes hurt small business owners who want to pass a business on to their children. Income taxes and estate taxes do not hurt insiders, who already control a State monopoly. Taxes hurt someone who's trying to bootstrap a small business.

It makes no difference, if Brian Roberts' taxes are raised. If his taxes are raised $20M, then he can just pay himself $20M more in salary from running the Comcast monopoly/oligopoly.

Comcast has an explicit State-backed monopoly. It's illegal for me to compete with Comcast. It's illegal for me to lay down wires and start my own cable/Internet/telephone business, even if I could recruit customers and raise capital.

I'm trying to bootstrap a profitable Internet-based business. Right now, I'm blogging and planning to expand. Part of the taxes I pay subsidize large media corporations that compete with me.

The tax system acts as a barrier to non-insiders, as they accumulate wealth. You might make millions of dollars, but you probably won't become a true insider like Brian Roberts.

The income tax hurts someone bootstrapping a successful business. If you raise tax rates, that hurts the successful small businessman making $200k-$500k/year. He has to pay a higher tax bill, reducing his ability to reinvest in his business. That money/wealth is stolen by the State, and used to subsidize insider-controlled businesses.

True insiders use trusts and tricks to dodge taxes. Why is Warren Buffet using a charitable trust to dodge taxes? Why doesn't he pay estate tax on the full value of his inheritance, just like the families whose business he steals?

Warren Buffet is actually a negative taxpayer, just like most insiders. The actual taxes he pays are less than the value of the State subsidies he receives. As a bankster, Warren Buffet benefits from artificially-low interest rates. Warren Buffet invests in corporations with a State-backed monopoly, making profits practically guaranteed. For example, Warren Buffett's recent investment in Bank of America is backed by the State financial system money laundering scam, and the fact that Bank of America is "too big to fail".

Taxes don't hurt true insiders. They receive State perks worth more than any taxes they pay. Insiders are negative taxpayers. Instead of raising taxes, State subsidies for insiders should be eliminated. If you receive $100M in State subsidies, it makes no difference if you pay back $40M or $60M in taxes. If your taxes are raised $20M, then you'll just take an extra $30M in State subsidies. For true insiders, the nominal taxation rate is irrelevant, because they're negative taxpayers. The people hurt most by higher taxes are people bootstrapping a successful business.

Higher taxes hurt people who have a successful business, but can't afford their own Congressman.

That's why I like agorism. Agorism enables you to bootstrap a small business without being robbed by the State. Any taxes you pay subsidize your larger corporate competitors.

This point is missed in the "raise taxes" debate. True insiders are negative taxpayers. Their nominal taxation rate is irrelevant. Taxes hurt non-insiders who want to bootstrap a business, or pass it on to their children.

The important point is not to tax insiders more. True reform would remove their State-granted perks. The taxation debate is a smokescreen. It hides the fact that true insiders are negative taxpayers. Insiders like Warren Buffett receive State subsidies worth more than any taxes they pay.

Insiders profit twice from the tax system. First, they use taxes to line their pockets. Second, they use taxes to prevent others from accumulating wealth and influence and challenging them. Nominal taxation rates are irrelevant, because true insiders are negative taxpayers.

Monday, August 29, 2011

President Obama Bans Campaign Contributions To Rick Perry

This story is offensive. The SEC passed a rule banning campaign contributions by financial services employees to sitting governors.

Ostensibly, the rule prevents banks from unduly influencing State governments. However, this rule prevents Rick Perry and other governors from getting money from banks, the #1 source of campaign funds.

This law doesn't prevent campaign donations to the President, only governors. Literally, the President passed a law saying "It's illegal to donate money to my competitors." WTF? Isn't the corruption getting too flagrant?

Technically, the rule was passed by the SEC and not the President. You can be sure the President approved of the rule. He probably could overturn it if he wanted to.

It's pretty flagrant, that the SEC passed a rule that so blatantly favors the President.

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Hurricane - No Problems

dionysusal has left a new comment on your post "New Phone Soon":

How'd you make out with the hurricane? Did you have to evacuate? Too bad Wall Street didn't get swept out to sea. That would have been cool.
Only "Zone A" was evacuated. Those are people who live right by the water or in Coney Island or Rockaways or downtown Manhattan. I'm not even in "Zone C" where I live.

I didn't lose water or electricity here. Everything was fine. I stayed home all weekend.

The subways resume tomorrow before rush hour. I'm going to work on Monday.

At work, I'm on floor -3 (negative 3). I wonder if it flooded? They didn't make any preparations.

New Phone Soon

I'm planning to get a new cellphone soon. I'm probably going to get a Droid 3.

I'm not getting an iPhone. I don't like the locked-down environment.

With Android, you don't get root access unless you hack your phone. However, you can publish Android apps without going through the Google store.

There are many nice apps available for Android that are banned from the iPhone. I'm particularly interested in classic console emulators. You can play old Atari games on your Android phone! That's banned from the iPhone, due to the "no 3rd party runtimes" rule.

I might experiment with the Android SDK. It's been awhile since I did any personal software projects for fun. Unfortunately, I don't have much energy leftover after working.

The only negative for the Droid 3 is that it doesn't support 4G. I'm primarily using the phone on the subway and at work, so that doesn't matter much. (At work, I'm on the -3rd floor (negative 3), getting zero bars.)

The other negative of the Droid 3 is that it has a weird "Pentile" display with sometimes-pixellated resolution. I'm willing to overlook that.

Here's an interesting word of caution. Don't buy a 32GB micro SD card from the Verizon store! They are $100+ at Verizon but only $50 at Best Buy. Similarly, I'm not going to buy a case at Verizon. The Droid 3 comes with 16GB memory + 4GB micro SD card. I'm going to go with a 32GB card, especially if I'm putting a bunch of games on it.

The library of all old Atari games takes up 0.5GB. That is very amusing. All games written for the old Atari 800 fit in 1/60 of my 32GB micro SD card!

There's also a Blogger app for Android. It seems lame compared to the WordPress version, with very limited features. Still, it'll be better than my lousy LG envTouch. I could always write drafts in the Android word processor and copy them to Blogger later.

I'm also going to use an Android spreadsheet to keep track of the "FSK price index". I'm doing it crudely in Excel now. It'll be easier with an Android phone, immediately entering the price in the store.

I really am looking forward to the Droid 3. I hope it's a good choice.

Saturday, August 27, 2011

A Good Article On Pre-1913 Banking And Money

This article has a very nice summary of banking laws before 1913. Summarizing, it was not a free market. There were many laws that explicitly encouraged fraud.

Here are some highlights.

Before the Civil War and the National Bank Act, banking was still regulated at the state level, even though Andrew Jackson vetoed the renewal of the 2nd central bank.

In many states, bank charters were specifically allocated by the legislature. You could not open a new bank unless you got the legislature to pass a law allowing it! That's a neat barrier to entry.

In many states, banks were allowed to issue paper banknotes. They were required to invest in state bonds as collateral. This artificially inflated the price of state bonds.

The law explicitly encouraged banks to make lots of paper banknotes and then declare bankruptcy, "wildcat banks".

The National Bank Act in the Civil War placed a 10% tax on state banknotes, effectively making them illegal. A system of Federal banknotes were established. Banknotes were issued by the banks and not the government. It wasn't until the Federal Reserve in 1913 that banknotes were issued by the government.

Banks were required to invest in Treasury debt, using that as collateral for banknotes. This led to the perverse circumstance that, if the national debt were repaid, then banks couldn't issue banknotes!

The law explicitly allowed for various levels of pyramiding paper on top of gold. Larger banks were allowed to use more aggressive leverage ratios. This naturally led to periodic bank runs.

Under the National Bank Act, there was a hybrid system of gold coins, US Notes, and bank-issued banknotes. US Notes were not gold-redeemable, but there were legal tender laws. Banknotes were redeemable in gold, BUT banks had a tendency to declare bankruptcy and default.

There was an experiment with a bimetallic standard near the end of the nineteenth century. This was a failure, because the bimetallism law set the gold:silver ratio artificially low, overvaluing silver and undervaluing gold.

There was *NEVER* a true free market banking system in the USA. There always were regulations at the state and/or Federal level.

Friday, August 26, 2011

Fracking And The Halliburton Loophole

There's a lot of mainstream media discussion of fracking, or hydraulic fracturing. This article is typical.

Fracking is a new way to mine for natural gas. You pump water and chemicals into the ground. This breaks the rock formations, releasing the natural gas.

The problem is "and chemicals". Those chemicals, along with the released natural gas, are polluting drinking water. The most famous example is the guy who lights his water on fire.

Most mainstream media discussion of fracking fails to mention the "Halliburton Loophole". That is a serious omission. The patents for the fracking technique are owned by Halliburton. Via heavy lobbying, there was an exemption put into the Water Pollution Act, exempting fracking. Since Halliburton owns the fracking patents, this loophole exclusively benefits Halliburton.

I am very offended, that almost all mainstream media discussion of fracking doesn't mention the "Halliburton Loophole".

Now, government bureaucrats are rushing in to solve the problem THEY CREATED. The politicians say "Government is the hero, for protecting people from greedy polluters." Government caused the problem, by exempting fracking from pollution laws.

You might wonder "People had their property damaged by fracking. Why don't they sue and win?" This is the evil of the State. The State actively protects polluters. First, laws like the Halliburton Loophole explicitly exempt polluters from liability. Second, even without that loophole, it's almost impossible to hold polluters accountable in a State court. The legal fees will be much more than your property was worth. The corporation can stall and drag out the case for decades. A corrupt and inefficient legal system protects polluters from responsibility for their crimes.

In a legal system based on natural law or common law, it would be very easy to hold polluters accountable. Statutory law explicitly shields polluters, limiting or eliminating liability. An inefficient legal system makes it unprofitable to pursue valid claims.

This is a very common misconception. A pro-State troll says "Government is needed to protect people from polluters!" In fact, government enables polluters. The inefficient and corrupt State legal system shields polluters, enabling them to hide behind an army of lawyers. Laws like the Halliburton Loophole and the Oil Pollution Act explicitly exempt polluters from liability or cap liability. Limited liability incorporation enables polluters to weasel out of payment, even if they do get caught.

With complicated regulations, insiders can say "But we followed the regulations!", even if the net outcome is massive environmental damage.

The government does not prevent pollution. The government is the biggest enabler of pollution.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Treasury Credit Rating And Bond Prices

Recently, S&P downgraded US Treasury debt.

Politicians are angry over the debt downgrade. They can't prosecute S&P for "downgrading US Treasury debt". Instead, they're prosecuting S&P for ratings on subprime mortgage bonds during the housing bubble.

That's a pretty standard trick. State police want to nail you for X, but instead they prosecute you for Y.

It's a pretty flagrant "Wink, wink. We really want to prosecute you for downgrading Treasury debt. Instead, we're prosecuting you for something else." If politicians really wanted to, they could probably send the CEO of any big financial institution to jail for the rest of his life.

It's pretty obvious selective prosecution, when S&P is prosecuted but not Lehman Brothers' CEO and CFO. Their "Repo 105" accounting lie was a pretty flagrant violation of Sarbanes-Oxley.

Amusingly, the CEO of S&P resigned (i.e. was fired with a golden parachute), and was replaced by another bankster figurehead. Hopefully, he learned a lesson regarding the value of honesty in the financial system. This continues with well-established precedent, that anyone who tells a bit of the forbidden truth has their career as an insider ruined.

Here's a good test of your knowledge of real economics.

After the US Treasury debt downgrade, what should be the effect on Treasury bond prices?


The net effect of the US Treasury downgrade on Treasure prices should be *ABSOLUTELY NOTHING*.

Why is that?

The Federal government, in collusion with the Federal Reserve and financial industry, buys back its own bonds. Because the Federal government buys back its own bonds, observed market prices for Treasury debt has nothing to do with the free market.

That's the reason that Treasury debt yields are low even though inflation is high. The Federal government buys back its own debt, making returns completely uncorrelated with real inflation.

The Federal government prints new money to finance the purchase of its own debt. It isn't explicit. It's done indirectly with the Federal Reserve and financial industry via "debt monetization". In a fiat paper monetary system, there is no restriction on the State insiders' ability to print new paper money to buy back their debt and manipulate interest rates.

The "credit rating" only measures the risk of technical default, that you won't get payments as promised. The real risk of Treasury debt is that returns will be less than inflation. S&P is ignoring that risk.

The only way a technical default can occur is if Congress refuses to pass a budget or raise the debt limit. The Federal government can keep on creating new bonds and new paper, to keep refinancing their debts.

There's a moral default on Treasury debt all the time, because interest payments are less than inflation. That doesn't count as a technical default, according to bankster logic.

Treasury yields are used as a benchmark for other types of debt, because banksters can borrow at the Treasury rate and buy other debt. The Federal Reserve isn't just lowering the price of Treasury debt. They are also lowering the price of all corporate bonds. You'd be an idiot to buy any type of bonds, not just Treasury debt, because returns are much less than true inflation.

It also is amusing, to see all the mainstream media hate directed against the "Tea Party", blaming them for the credit rating downgrade and debt ceiling impasse. Most "Tea Party" Congressmen are still shills for the State. Even that type of limited dissent is not appreciated.

The whole "Treasury credit downgrade" debate is a smokescreen and an illusion. The real problem is that Treasury yields are less than true inflation. There is a Treasury debt default continuously, at a rate of 1%-3%+ per month.

The banksters gladly buy Treasury debt. They borrow at the Fed Funds Rate (currently 0%-0.25%) and buy higher-yielding Treasury debt. They profit from the spread. The actual inflation rate is irrelevant.

As an individual, you'd be an idiot to buy Treasury debt. You are guaranteed to be robbed via inflation.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

State Vs. "Tea Party"

This story is interesting. Allegedly, the "Tea Party" is very unpopular.

Is the "Tea Party" unpopular because it's evil? Is the "Tea Party" unpopular due to a massive State propaganda campaign?

It almost seems like a tautology. "This group of people has been heavily slandered by the mainstream media. A new poll says this group of people is very unpopular."

Most people associate the Tea Party with racism. If you're against the Welfare State and big government, then you're a racist. I never understood that "logic".

The mainstream media shows the guy holding the racist sign, rather than the guy complaining about high taxes. (The guy with the racist sign may be a planted disinformation agent.) Many politicians sincerely believe that the Tea Party is a group of racists and terrorists. That label enables politicians to dismiss their concerns.

You can really hear the hatred in some people's voices, when then denounce the "Tea Party".

Also, logically contradictory beliefs are promoted. They show the guy with a sign "Keep government out of my Medicare!", rather than people complaining that government is way too big.

As a grassroots Internet-enabled movement, there is no "Tea Party" leader. The mainstream media anoints pro-State trolls and fruitcakes as "Tea Party" leaders, and then draws the conclusion that everyone opposed to big government is evil.

The mainstream media has done a pretty thorough job of smearing the "Tea Party". I can sense the fear, with the large volume of propaganda denouncing the "Tea Party". The "Tea Party" label has been mostly ruined by mainstream media. There still are plenty of people angry at big government. That isn't going to change.

I suspect that a new label other than "Tea Party" may start being popular. The idea "Government is way too big!" is continuing to spread. That isn't going to change, even if the "Tea Party" label stops being used.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Don't Be Afraid If You've Got Nothing To Hide

There is criticism over increased State surveillance. The Statist retort is "Don't be afraid if you have nothing to hide."

However, State insiders get very hostile, when you want information on what they're doing.

It's OK for police to videotape you. The policeman can then decide to disclose or not disclose the videotape, depending on whether it makes the victim look bad or not. (Police cameras always "mysteriously malfunction" when it might make them look bad.) If you try to videotape an on-duty policeman, he may kidnap you or destroy your camera. Via a creative interpretation of wiretapping laws, people are then prosecuted for videotaping police.

One criminal defense lawyer said there's an interesting quirk in the US legal system. Suppose you accuse the police of misbehaving. If the police file criminal charges against you, then your complaint against the police is automatically ruled invalid. That seems bizarre, but that's the way it works. As part of any plea-bargain, the police may demand you drop your claim against them. Therefore, if you have a valid claim against the police, then the police will be eager to charge you with a crime to silence your claim.

This law should be clarified. An on-duty policeman should have no expectation of privacy. It should never be illegal to videotape an on-duty policeman. An honest policeman should not be afraid, if someone videotapes him while working.

State insiders collect a ton on information on their slaves. By itself, collecting information is not evil. The problem is that the State police/justice monopoly will tend to use that information for evil purposes.

Suppose there were surveillance cameras on every corner. That information could be used to solve real crimes, like robberies. Unfortunately, in the present, that information will be abused.

The police might decide "FSK has undesirable political views. We'll prosecute all his friends and associates. We'll prosecute everyone who reads his blog." Under those circumstances, a surveillance camera on every corner could be used to identify and kidnap all of my friends and business partners.

Unfortunately, the State tends to abuse such information more than beneficially using it. By itself, information is not evil. The problem is that the State monopoly abuses that information. Many innocent behaviors are falsely classified as crimes.

Police and insiders can't be trusted, to not abuse information they collect. Therefore, they should be barred from collecting information. By itself, information is not evil. Unfortunately, the State monopoly abuses information far more often than properly using it.

This story was interesting. Rick Perry said the Federal Reserve should fully open its books. If you believe "Don't be afraid if you've got nothing to hide.", then the Federal Reserve should open its books. The Federal Reserve refuses full disclosure, because people would be outraged if they knew the truth.

(I'm more inclined to believe "Rick Perry is criticizing the Federal Reserve, to attract some of Ron Paul's support and anti-Federal Reserve sentiment. Rick Perry has no intention to reform or eliminate the Federal Reserve." However, it's still progress, to see prominent politicians criticizing the Federal Reserve.)

(There were some disclosures recently, regarding $1T+ of bailout loans. There's an important footnote not emphasized. The Federal Reserve has only disclosed *SOME* of its "emergency lending". The Federal Reserve has successfully resisted 100% full disclosure. The stuff you heard about is only part of the total secret bailout package.)

Via the ironically-named "Bank Secrecy Act", State insiders have the power to spy on every single bank transaction. Whenever you use a State-licensed bank, you should assume that the transaction is being reported to the IRS and FBI. State insiders literally have full financial information on everyone. However, if you want to know what the Federal Reserve is doing, that's an important secret that can't be disclosed. That's an obvious double standard.

As another example, the SEC refuses to publish details for naked short selling. Following "If you're innocent you have nothing to hide!", the SEC should publish a full naked short selling list. They should publish the stock, bank, and number of shares for *EVERY* failure to deliver. By refusing to do this, the SEC is protecting financial criminals.

This is a very common pattern. When State insiders want to spy on you, they say "If you're innocent you have nothing to hide!" When people demand information from State insiders, there's always excuses and refusal. Insiders don't have to follow the same rules as the slaves.

This is a very important point. By itself, information is not evil. The problem is that State insiders cannot risk the temptation to use information for evil. Similarly, State insiders always block the disclosure of information that might make them look bad. State insiders have a default policy of blocking disclosure on everything, even innocent-seeming activities.

When State insiders want to spy on you, they get all your records. When you want to get information on State insiders, there's always denial and excuses and loopholes. It's a clearcut double standard.

Monday, August 22, 2011

Gold Crushed The S&P 500 Over The Past 6 Weeks

Over the past month and a half, gold has *CRUSHED* the S&P 500.

Using GLD as an approximation for gold, GLD closed at $147.63 on 7/5/2011, and GLD closed at $179.95 on 8/19/2011. (GLD does track gold reasonably well.)

SPY closed at $133.81 on 7/5/2011, and SPY closed at $112.64 on 8/19/2011.

That's a 21%+ gain for gold, and a loss of 15%+ for the S&P 500. Overall, gold outperformed the S&P by 44%+ from 7/5/2011 to 8/19/2011. (It's more than 21%+15%, because you multiply 1.218/0.841 = 1.448, instead of merely adding.)

It certainly is possible that the stock market might outperform gold over the next year or two. I'm convinced that gold and silver are a better long-term investment than the stock market.

If gold has a higher expectation than stocks, then you're an idiot to buy stocks instead of gold. Even if you're an expert stock picker, you won't be able to make up the 1%+/month that gold is crushing the stock market.

With stocks you get dividends and earnings. However, there's all the theft and waste and fraud associated with a large corporation. With stocks, the friction is greater than the earnings.

Even though gold has had a great run recently, I still predict that gold will outperform the stock market over the next 5-10 years. Even if you pay a premium of 10%-20% for buying at a local minimum, any losses relative to the stock market should be recovered quickly.

Sunday, August 21, 2011

"Dishonest" College Coaches Are Agorist Heroes

This story is interesting. There was a scandal at Miami, where "inappropriate" payments were made to players. This follows immediately after a scandal at Ohio State and several other top teams.

The NCAA has colluded to fix student athlete salaries. The only payment a player may receive is his scholarship. The actual value of a student athlete is much higher.

The schools make millions of dollars off football, but only return a pittance to the players.

A scholarship is worth around $20k, but a lot of that is funny money. The school is charging the athletic department $20k, and adding that money to the school's general fund. Most football players work almost full-time on football, and don't take serious classes. For example, a very low percentage of student athletes take advanced calculus or other advanced engineering or science classes.

Even if you assume the scholarship is worth the face amount, it's a ripoff. The NFL minimum salary is $375k. It is ridiculous to think that a player is worth only $20k/year as a college player, and then $375k/year as a pro. The high draft picks and star players get even more, although the new CBA restrained that a bit. (Not every college player gets to play in the NFL. However, many college players are probably worth more than their $20k/year tuition, even ones who don't qualify for the NFL.)

When I was in graduate school, I taught Math classes in exchange for tuition+stipend. In fact, I chose one school over another partially because it made me a better offer. Why not let players play football for tuition+stipend? Why not let schools compete with each other on salary offers?

The NCAA insiders are exploiting their monopoly position. The NFL, also having a monopoly, has no minor league system, with college functioning as the minor league system. The NFL won't accept a player until he's been in college for 3 years. This forces star players to work for a pittance in the NCAA, instead of turning pro.

The "dishonest" coaches realize that their players are way underpaid. They arrange for under-the-table payments, to make sure that players are fairly compensated.

The NCAA has created this problem, by capping player compensation at tuition. The only way to eliminate under-the-table payments is to declare that players can be paid their fair market value, with free market competition and no payment cap.

That would be an embarrassment, because the top players might earn $50k/year or more. However, it would be less embarrassing than under-the-table payment scandals. Also, schools would be forced to compete on salary, making football less of a lucrative gravy train for NCAA insiders. What's wrong with paying players $50k/year, when they're earning millions for the school?

If it's against NCAA rules to pay players their fair value, then honest coaches will find a workaround, by paying players under-the-table. The rule-breaking NCAA coaches aren't criminals. They are heroes, because they're making sure their players are fairly paid for their services. The real criminals are the NCAA and NFL, exploiting their monopoly to force players to work for artificially low salaries.

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Georgetown vs. China

This story was pretty interesting. Georgetown played an exhibition game in China against a top Chinese pro team, the Bayi Rockets. That is one of the top pro teams in China, comprised only of former soldiers with no foreign players allowed. (They aren't actual soldiers serving combat duty. They are nominally soldiers, whose primary duty was playing basketball.)

The referees were obviously biased in favor of China. By halftime, China's team had only 11 fouls but Georgetown had 28 fouls, and China's team was playing very dirty.

Even though the referees were trying to fix the game, Georgetown was making it close. The game was tied. It ended in a bench clearing brawl without being finished. The Georgetown players walked out of the game after the brawl, with the Chinese crowd starting to get ugly.

That second link has a clip showing the start of the brawl. (The clip on Yahoo cut out the very beginning of the brawl.) The fight was pretty obviously started by the Chinese team. There was a foul and minor scuffle. The Georgetown player tried to run away from the Chinese player, but the Chinese player escalated it to a full fight.

The Chinese government has censored the story in China.

In the USA, there's no official connection between sports and the government. Even if a USA national sports team misbehaves, nobody is going to blame the President.

In China, this team was touted as a military team. The referees were cheating to favor China. Even with that advantage, it was a close game, and the players got frustrated when they were losing. This is an embarrassment for the Chinese government, because there's an explicit connection between the team and the military and the government. The USA system is better, where sports teams are used as bread and circuses, but sports are independent of the government (although they receive direct and indirect State subsidies, like taxpayer-funded stadiums).

Interestingly, Georgetown's players have not been suspended after the fight. Usually, the USA sports policy is "In a fight, both sides get suspended, even someone who's defending himself." The fact that Georgetown players were not suspended, shows that it was obviously a one-sided fight.

The problem is that the referees didn't control the game, showing an obvious pro-China bias. There's a simple solution. The NCAA should pass a rule saying "All games involving NCAA teams must use NCAA referees, even exhibition games."

Friday, August 19, 2011

Venezuela, Chavez, and Gold

This story is very interesting. Huge Chavez nationalized Venezuela's gold industry, seizing control from the corporations who own and operated the mines.

Hugo Chavez also demanded physical delivery, to Venezuela, of 99 tons of gold on deposit at the Bank of England. Also, the price of gold rose sharply yesterday (Thursday).

The conspiracy theory is that the Bank of England doesn't have the 99 tons of gold for physical delivery. The gold was lent to short sellers, and now they must scramble to get some gold.

Even if you buy gold in an allocated account, that doesn't mean the bank has the gold they promised! There are many stories of people with "allocated" accounts with delivery option, but the bank stonewalls when the customer demands delivery! Obviously, many "allocated warehouse accounts" are really frauds. For this reason, actual physical gold is preferable to all forms of paper gold.

Allegedly, this physical delivery demand caused the price of gold to rise. The banksters are now scrambling to get 99 tons of gold for physical delivery. If the banksters default and fail to deliver, then many other people will start demanding physical delivery.

The State financial system has an annoying habit of freezing the accounts of out-of-favor dictators. Therefore, Hugo Chavez is making a wise move, demanding physical delivery of his gold.

That's the classic fractional reserve banking scam. It could be a classic bank run. Many "allocated gold accounts" are frauds and really fractional reserve banking. If there's one big redemption, then the scam is exposed, and everyone demands physical delivery.

That is a very interesting conspiracy theory. Hugo Chavez demanded physical delivery of 99 tons of Venezuela's gold. The price of gold is increasing, as the banksters scramble for physical to deliver. If there's a delivery default, then the whole paper gold market could unravel, as everyone demands physical delivery.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

You Can't Tax A Corporation

There was an amusing incident, where Romney debated a heckler regarding taxation of corporations. Both Romney and the heckler were misinformed.

A corporation is an abstract fictional representation. You can't tax a corporation any more than you can tax Santa Claus.

A "tax on corporations" is actually a tax on the people who use the corporation. You can tax the shareholders. You can tax the CEO. You can tax the employees. You can tax the customers.

You can't tax the corporation itself.

Any tax on a corporation will be realized the people who make up the corporation.

If you tax shareholders, then you're pushing down the stock market.

If you tax the CEO 10% more, he might just pay himself 10% more. After all, he has a monopoly.

If you tax the employees, then the people are working harder for less salary.

If you tax customers, then people are paying higher prices.

In the current economic system, large corporations have an oligopoly/monopoly. If corporate taxes are raised, the cost will merely be passed on to customers as higher prices.

Corporate tax rates only really matter when corporations compete with unincorporated individuals. In that case, higher corporate tax rates make it easier for individuals to compete with large corporations. In the present, it's effectively illegal to compete with established large corporations.

Most State costs are a regressive tax on individual business owners. For example, regulatory compliance costs are a huge regressive tax.

You can't tax a corporation. A corporation is an abstract fictional entity. When corporations have a monopoly, any tax is passed on to customers via higher prices. Corporate tax rates only matter when corporations compete with unincorporated individuals. In the present, the State economic system makes it almost impossible for an individual to compete with an established corporate monopoly.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Rick Perry On The Federal Reserve

This story is very interesting. Rick Perry said that the Federal Reserve is almost treasonous, due to their inflationary policies.

At this point, a pro-State troll says "Why is Rick Perry whining about inflation?! The CPI is low! I know inflation is low, because Bernanke and the mainstream media said so!"

This post on zerohedge
had a great inflation analysis. I believe he's looking a commodity futures/spot prices. This is the 1 year change. Notice how gold is close to the middle of the range. I consider gold to be the best inflation measure over a 5+ year time period.

  • Unleaded gas prices are up 45%.
  • Heating oil prices are up 46%.
  • Corn prices are up 71%.
  • Soybean prices are up 26%.
  • Rice prices are up 13%.
  • Pork prices are up 31%.
  • Beef prices are up 25%.
  • Coffee prices are up 38%.
  • Sugar prices are up 48%.
  • Cotton prices are up 13%.
  • Gold prices are up 42%.
  • Silver prices are up 115%.
  • Copper prices are up 23%.
Rick Perry is criticizing the Federal Reserve's inflationary policies.

This is a very promising sign. Politicians other than Ron Paul are more openly criticizing the Federal Reserve.

Why should the Federal Reserve be "independent"? "Independent Federal Reserve" is a code word for "We can inflate and steal as much as we want, without any public disclosure or accountability." Why should there be "more accountability for teachers" but the Federal Reserve gets to be "independent"?

It's also amusing to see people denounce Perry as "irresponsible", because he dared to criticize the sacred Federal Reserve. There's the usual backlash from statists, when someone says a bit of the forbidden truth.
New York Times Washington correspondant Binyamin Applebaum tweeted that Perry's comments were "horrifying," and asked the question, "This is a major party presidential candidate??"
It is very predictable, the hostility against accidental truth-tellers. I wonder if someone had a sit-down with Perry and told him "Dude! You can't criticize our gravy train like that! You aren't going to get elected if you talk like that!"?

Also notice that criticizing Rick Perry's comment is a type of endorsement. It's better media coverage than Ron Paul, who is typically ignored.

Cynically, Rick Perry may be doing this to gather some of the Ron Paul voters. It is very likely that Rick Perry is criticizing the Federal Reserve, but won't do anything about it (if elected President). It still is progress.

Rick Perry also correctly pointed out that, if Ben Bernanke heavily inflates, that will benefit Obama's reelection chances. Inflation creates the illusion of economic growth and the illusion that the economy is getting better. For example, if the Federal Reserve inflates, that pushes up the stock market. A rising stock market is touted as a sign of economic recovery, even if returns are less than true inflation.

If the Federal Reserve adopted a tight monetary policy, that could hurt Obama's reelection results.

The Federal Reserve can influence the election results. That's a valid complaint by Rick Perry. That's also a valid reason for Rick Perry to shut up and stop criticizing the Federal Reserve.

Also, Rick Perry seems to have the "abused productive" personality type. Look at this photo.

Notice the 45 degree laugh lines. Notice that the right side of his face is slightly disfigured compared to the left. I can't be 100% sure, because I haven't met him. It's hard to evaluate personality type from a photo, when dealing with a politician.

(I wonder if some insiders are doing a serious personality profile, and making sure the next President isn't a psychopath or parasite. However, most/all politicians have evil tendencies, or evil people advising/lobbying them.)

Ron Paul is a longshot to win. Rick Perry is one of the favorites. In the Republican Presidential primaries, the governor of Texas gets a bye to the semifinals.

It is a good sign, that Rick Perry is openly criticizing the Federal Reserve. Whether Rick Perry really means it, or is doing it to attract votes, it's nice to see top politicians openly criticizing the Federal Reserve.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

A Common Evil Photo Propaganda Trick

Michele Bachman was on the cover of Newsweek. Look at the photo.

This is an *EXTREMELY COMMON* propaganda trick. If you want to make someone look bad, cherry pick a lousy photo.

There are thousands of photos of any politician or celebrity. If you want to make someone look bad, look through them and pick the worst photo.

Normally, magazines publish airbrushed pictures. Publish a non-airbrushed photo of your victim.

I also saw this trick used against Ron Paul. Other candidates would be portrayed smiling. Ron Paul would be portrayed as frowning and from a bad camera nagle.

The propaganda goal is clear. If you say that government is too big, then you're a dangerous fruitcake.

Michele Bachman is another flavor of statist. However, she is somewhat moving the public debate in the direction of "Government is way too big!"

This is a pretty flagrant piece of propaganda. By publishing a non-airbrushed carefully-selected photo, the mainstream media can make anyone look bad.

Monday, August 15, 2011

A Common Statist Fallacy

TJ has left a new comment on your post "Indications Of Progress":

I've heard the argument for privatizing law enforcement, but what would take the place of Department of Justice and district courts, if the state monopoly on justice is abolished? What is to prevent profit from being the priority over justice?
"Profit over justice" is *EXACTLY WHAT HAPPENS RIGHT NOW*.

With free market courts, if a court had a reputation for making bad decisions, they would lose customers.

If I have the ability to force you to use my biased corrupt court, then I'm the government. With market competition, courts will be forced to be as fair as possible.

In the present, if insiders buy judges and Congressmen, then people are SOL.

Consider other examples:

Without government, there would be pollution! The Oil Pollution Act explicitly exempts oil drillers from liability. The "Halliburton Loophole" explicitly exempts fracking from liability. The polluter can declare bankruptcy and default on their responsibility. (There's no limited liability incorporation in a really free market.) It is very hard to sue a polluter and hold them accountable, in a State court.

Without government, corrupt bankers would rob and steal and cheat depositors! You're an idiot if you really believe this.

Without government, a bunch of thugs would go around extorting from people! This is how tax collectors behave.

Without government, a bunch of thugs would assault business owners! Have you seen the various "raw milk" raids?

Without government, a bunch of thugs might murder people! Have you heard any of the stories of people murdered by police?

Without government, it's be hard to collect from someone who injured you! The legal system is incredibly inefficient, denying many people justice.

This is a VERY COMMON MISUNDERSTANDING. A pro-State troll says "Without government, abuse X would occur.", when the reality is that abuse X occurs right now, PRECISELY BECAUSE OF GOVERNMENT.

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Takes One To Know One

I was thinking a little more about "Tea Party Terrorists". Vice President Biden accused "Tea Party" Congressmen of being terrorists, for voting against the debt ceiling increase.

Scott pointed at that Vice President Biden is a terrorist. In fact, all Congressmen are terrorists. Most Congressmen won't physically assault you themselves to enforce their evil laws. They are perfectly happy authorizing other people to commit crimes on their behalf.

The biggest terrorists are the ones who go around accusing other people of being terrorists.

The biggest racists are the ones who go around accusing other people of being racist.

That's a very interesting observation.

Saturday, August 13, 2011

"Best of FSK" - July 2011

In July 2011, my most popular posts by Absolute Unique Pageviews were:

  1. Groupon Is A Scam (575)
  2. Did the USA Declare Bankruptcy? (560)
  3. BMI/ASCAP/SESAC Legal Extortion Scam (315)
  4. Ruby on Rails Sucks! (279)
  5. Silk Road Was A Partial AgoristBay Implementation (263)
  6. Who's the Richest Man in the World? (231)
  7. The Compound Interest Paradox (164)
  8. Casey Anthony - Who Cares? (159)
  9. The Federal Reserve Caused the Great Depression (143)
  10. Premium Text Messaging Fraud - 91097 and 654654 (94)
  11. The Hunt Brothers' Silver Corner (86)
  12. Calculating Vega and other Greeks in Black-Scholes (84)
  13. Is It Worth Hoarding Nickels? (84)
  14. The Gold Lease Rate is Negative! (79)
  15. Two Kinds Of Psychopaths (73)
  16. Agorist Philosophy Overview (69)
  17. The Gold and Silver Taxation Scam (68)
  18. The Bitcoin Conspiracy Theory (66)
  19. Who Cares About Obama's Birth Certificate? (65)
  20. How Can Every Government Be Bankrupt? (64)
  21. The Pat Tillman Conspiracy Theory (62)
  22. The "Chained CPI" Scam (61)
  23. Real GDP is Decreasing, 1990-2008 (58)
  24. The Fluoride Conspiracy Theory (57)
  25. Satanic Death Hospitals (52)
  26. Your Strawman Corporation (50)
  27. Thomas James Ball And The Second Set Of Books (50)
  28. Lindsay Lohan On The Federal Reserve (50)
  29. Real GDP is Decreasing, 1990-2007 (47)
  30. Fight Or Run? (47)
  31. Gold Bubble Or Hyperinflation? (44)
  32. Modern Marriage Vows (44)
If you only count posts published in July 2011, the most popular were:
  1. Casey Anthony - Who Cares? (159)
  2. Two Kinds Of Psychopaths (73)
  3. How Can Every Government Be Bankrupt? (64)
  4. The "Chained CPI" Scam (61)
  5. Lindsay Lohan On The Federal Reserve (50)
  6. Fight Or Run? (47)
  7. Gold Bubble Or Hyperinflation? (44)
  8. Modern Marriage Vows (44)
  9. DSK And False Rape Accusations (41)
  10. Updated Declaration Of Independence (41)
  11. Debt Ceiling "Debate" (38)
  12. News Corp. Whisleblower Dies Of "Natural Causes" (34)
  13. Anders Behring Breivik (32)
  14. Scalia's Son Represented Wal-Mart (32)
  15. More Corporate Waste (31)
  16. Antibiotic Resistant Gonorrhea (28)
  17. Insanity Defense (26)
  18. Aaron Swartz Indictment (25)
  19. The Carried Interest Tax Loophole (24)
  20. Time Travel "Impossible" (24)
  21. Horrible Bosses - Horrible Propaganda (22)
  22. Tax Farming (22)
  23. Roger Clemens Mistrial (21)

Friday, August 12, 2011

Gold Futures Margins Raised

This story was interesting. The price of gold rose sharply recently, probably due to inflation and expectations of future inflation.

The debt ceiling was raised. The Federal budget deficit grows. The Federal Reserve is continuing its "zero interest rate" police, which is an inflationary stealth bank bailout.

Yesterday, the price of gold declined a bit. Why? The COMEX raised margin requirements!

The "margin requirement" is a fixed dollar amount per contract. It would be more sensible for the margin requirement to be a fixed percentage. However, that would reduce the ability to periodically cause the gold price to decline by raising margin requirements.

There are lots of tricks that insiders can use to manipulate gold and silver prices. One trick is periodically jacking up margin requirements.

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Federal Reserve Zero Economic Growth Policy

The Federal Reserve announced they were continuing their "Zero Economic Growth Policy" until at least mid-2013. They are calling it "Zero Interest Rates".

"Zero interest rates" doesn't actually encourage economic growth. Actually, I should have called it a "negative growth policy" instead of "zero growth policy".

The Fed Funds Rate is 0%-0.25%, while true inflation is 20%-30%. This is a huge State subsidy for the banksters. The banksters are borrowing at 0%, and buying tangible assets or lending to other insiders. With 0% interest rates, the banksters are practically guaranteed to profit.

Why would banks lend to individuals and small businesses? They can speculate in Treasury debt and make a guaranteed profit. They can lend to large corporations, with the ever-inflating value of the State monopoly as collateral. Why should banks take risks financing the productive sector of the economy?

The CPI is far less than true inflation. This causes inflation to be misreported as economic growth. By increasing the inflation rate, that will increase the measured "inflation-adjusted" GDP rate, while actual economic activity decreases.

Suppose that inflation is 100% and the stock market goes up 50%. State comedians say "Hooray! The stock market went up 50%!" They ignore the fact that the gains are less than true inflation.

Gold continues to crush the stock market. If you measure stock returns in gold rather than FRNs, then the stock market is obviously a losing proposition.

By keeping interest rates at 0%, the Federal Reserve is not "stimulating the economy". In reality, the Federal Reserve is subsidizing the parasite sector of the economy at the expense of the productive sector.

When Ben Bernanke keeps interest rates at 0%, he isn't spending his own personal money. He's spending the people's money, creating to new money to finance 0% interest rates. Zero interest rates aren't free. Everyone else pays for it via inflation.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Indications Of Progress

Blog posts like this one are interesting. In many ways, that blogger is a pro-State troll. He rabidly defends policemen. However, even he is saying "There's something fundamentally wrong with the political system in the USA."

I'm noting more and more people saying "The political system in the USA is completely broken." However, most of them are still short of the correct answer, which is market anarchism and "All taxation is theft! It makes no difference how taxes are collected or what they're used for. A government monopoly for police/justice/lawmaking is evil and unnecessary."

More people are saying "The system is completely broken." That's an indication of progress. There's an increase in awareness for market anarchism on the Internet, but market anarchism is still not discussed in the mainstream media.

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Jailhouse Snitches

This story is hilarious. California passed a law saying "You can't convict a defendant based solely on the uncorroborated testimony of a jailhouse informants." Do you see the joke?


Do you get the joke? This was such a problem common, that they passed a law forbidding it!

Can you imagine that? Judges and juries are saying "The only evidence against the defendant is a jailhouse informant. That's good enough for me! I'm convicting!" Not only that, it's a common problem?!

Here's how jailhouse snitches work. Suppose you were already convicted (or plea bargained), and sentenced to 5 years in jail. The prosecutor offers you 2 years off your sentence, if you testify against someone else. Under those circumstances, most people will react "What do you want me to say?"

There is a huge temptation for a jailhouse snitch to lie. It is offensive that prosecutors get away with such abuse. It is even more offensive that judges and juries rubberstamp convictions based solely on jailhouse snitches.

If a defendant tries to bribe a witness, that's felony witness tampering. If a prosecutor bribes a witness via a sentence reduction, that's a normal day at the office.

That's the joke. In California, abuse of jailhouse snitches was such a big problem, that they passed a law explicitly forbidding convictions based solely on jailhouse snitches. (I wonder. If two different jailhouse snitches say the same thing, is it now corroborated? That loophole may still exist.)

Monday, August 8, 2011

Alex Rodriguez And Poker

This story is interesting. Alex Rodriguez is a star baseball player for the Yankees. Allegedly, he played in an "illegal high-stakes poker game".

According to natural law, there's no such thing as an "illegal poker game". If a group of people get together and voluntarily play poker, there's nothing wrong with that.

If the person who organizes the game charges players a fee, there's nothing wrong with that either.

Allegedly, some people at the poker game were using cocaine. Again, that's not illegal, according to natural law.

Cocaine really is bad for you. That's a separate issue from "Cocaine should be illegal!"

Allegedly, some of the players got violent. That is another problem with making poker illegal. For a legal poker game, people could resolve disputes through the legal system. For an "illegal" poker game, the players' only recourse is violence, if they feel cheated.

Also, an "illegal" poker game has a strong incentive to be as fair as possible. First, they are dependent on reputation. Second, they don't want players complaining to the State.

According to "natural law", there's no such thing as an "illegal poker game" or "illegal drug". This story is being overhyped, to promote the State ban on unapproved gambling and unapproved drugs. Sometimes, the most State propaganda is put promoting things that aren't real crimes. The State needs continual propaganda, to promote the fact that many "forbidden activities" aren't really crimes.

Why is it anyone else's business, if Alex Rodriguez wanted to play poker?

Sunday, August 7, 2011

Dilbert And TSHTF

This Dilbert comic strip was really interesting. (July 31)

That is one point I made about preparing for collapse. If you make preparations, and you're alone, you will be looted by roving bandits.

Saturday, August 6, 2011

Inconsistent Tax Treatment

I just realized another unfair bit about the tax system.

If you're a US citizen living outside the USA, the US government claims the power to tax you on income earned in another country.

If a US corporation has income outside the USA, there are plenty of loopholes and tricks. A US corporation typically pays zero US income tax on income earned outside the USA.

The correct answer is "All taxation is theft!" However, individuals and corporations are taxed differently on non-USA income. That's another example of the State biased against individuals in favor of large corporations and insiders.

The net effect of the taxation system is that it transfers wealth from individuals to insiders. Most people believe the opposite, that taxes redistribute wealth from insiders to individuals.

Friday, August 5, 2011

Tea Party Terrorists

This quote was offensive. Vice President Biden said that Tea Party Congressmen who voted against the debt ceiling increase were "terrorists".

That's the new definition of terrorism. If a Congressman says "This law is bad. I'm not voting for it.", then he's a terrorist.

If the Vice President is hostile to inside-the-system protest, like Congressmen voting against a law, then what alternatives are there? Doesn't the Vice President know that the "Tea Party Congressmen" are mostly shills for the State, helping provide the illusion of a serious attempt at reform?

Government spending needs to be slashed. The actual cuts were a farce. "We're increasing spending by less than we previously said. We count that as a budget cut". That's silly.

If insiders are serious about preventing complete collapse, government spending needs to be slashed by 50%, 75%, 90%, or more. Unfortunately, most government spending is "politically untouchable" (i.e., lobbyists will complain). At this point, collapse seems incredibly likely.

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Clueless Coworker

There was an amusing incident at work. One of my coworkers is doing a project. I know exactly what the project is, and it'd take me 2-3 days. He's taken more than 2 weeks, and he isn't done yet.

One thing he needed to do, was convert some files from format X to format Y. It was a 1 hour project. He asked me to do it for him.

I was sort of offended, but I did it anyway. I probably saved him 2-3 extra days of work, for doing the conversion.

That was very interesting. One of my coworkers took 2+ weeks, for something that I know I could have done in 2-3 days. That means I'm 5x more efficient than him. Of course, I'm not getting paid 5x as much.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011


I saw an interesting term, called "Dofenism". It means "Why bother?"

It comes from the Soviet Union. In an absolute communist dictatorship, it makes no difference if you do a brilliant job or a barely competent job. The incentive is to do just enough work to get by.

This attitude is spreading towards to the USA. The USA is acting more like an absolute communist dictatorship, and less like a free market. A lot of people are giving up. They know it doesn't make a difference, so they do the minimum possible work.

For example, in my current wage slave job, it makes no difference if I do a brilliant job or a barely competent job. I do my best, but maybe that's because I'm stupid. Even if I stay with my current employer for 20 years, the odds are practically zero that I would get promoted to Vice President or higher. Why should I work excessively hard?

You might say "Switch jobs if you're underused." However, any wage slave job will have the same problem. If I switch jobs, my next employer won't know what I'm doing now. How can a clueless prospective employer tell the difference whether I'm a good worker or an unqualified loser? I should start my own business, but the State makes that hard.

For most wage slaves, hard work no longer leads to promotion and advancement. Why should anyone work hard? The people who work hard are exploited losers. This attitude is spreading and it's dangerous.

State thugs have mostly disconnected effort from reward. The result is that most people have stopped trying. The USA is in danger of collapse like the Soviet Union collapsed. The USA is getting more like a communist dictatorship, and less like a free market.

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Big Brother Lying Analysis

Most State TV shows are propaganda. Most "reality" shows are not a model for normal human interaction. The rules of most "reality competitions" guarantee that you have to lie and backstab in order to win. With normal human interaction, it's about building a long-term relationship. On a reality TV show, you never have to see someone again once you backstab them.

Still, there are interesting bits.

On Sunday's episode of "Big Brother", there was an excellent bit that illustrates lying.

Here is a link to the episode. (It's "episode 11", if you watch after Wednesday, when that link changes.)

Watch the next to last segment, when Danielle, Brendon, and Rachel are talking. (This is around 35:00.) All 3 are completely lying. Brendon and Rachel have already decided that Danielle is their next target. Danielle has already decided that she's nominating Brendon and Rachel. They are pretending to make a deal.

Notice the way that Brendon, Rachel, and Danielle all are blinking during the conversation. This is one thing I've noticed. People tend to blink when they're lying. Notice that the blinking intensity is proportional to the amount of lying. Watch when Rachel says "There's no reason for us to not work together." She's blinking very rapidly.

You can also see this sometimes on the Communism Channel (CNBC). The speaker blinks in proportional to the amount of lies.

You won't notice this with world class liars, like politicians. They're usually just reading from a teleprompter or reciting memorized talking points, without thinking. For the world class liar, the lie is the truth, making it not a lie. Politicians almost *NEVER* deviate from the prepared script, so you won't notice their lying body language.

Even though State TV is almost pure propaganda, there are interesting bits if you know where to look. The rules of reality shows like "Big Brother" explicitly reward dishonesty and backstabbing. However, it's interesting to notice people when they're lying. The segment with Brendon, Rachel, and Danielle is an excellent example of "People blink a lot when they lie!"

There's another interesting bit, from earlier in the same episode. On Big Brother, the "token black guy" is very often also the "token homosexual". They're knocking off two minority checklist groups with the same person.

Monday, August 1, 2011

Debt Ceiling "Deal"

Last night, there was an announced agreement on the debt ceiling increase.

The deal reached by Democratic and Republican leaders in Congress, Obama said, would first cut nearly $1 trillion in spending over the next 10 years while raising the debt ceiling by the same amount.
Notice the semantics. "We're cutting spending by $1 trillion."

However, that's the cuts *OVER 10 YEARS*. The cut in current spending is around $100B, on tenth.

Notice that $100B is a negligible amount, compared to the total Federal government's budget.

Really, the Federal government's budget needs to be slashed by 50%-75% or more. That "isn't politically feasible", because lobbyists will always object when you cut their pork.

Also, the cuts in years 2-10 mean *NOTHING*. A future Congress can always change their mind.

State budget logic is amusing. If you increase spending by less then expected, that's a budget cut.

As I predicted, the Republicans and Democrats reached a deal. What do you expect them to do? Shut down the Federal government permanently and go get a real job? Of course they reached a deal.

Unless Congress repeals or reforms the Federal Reserve, an exponentially-increasing national debt is needed to keep the monetary system scam running. The rules of the monetary system guarantee that Congress must periodically raise the national debt limit.

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