Friday, January 30, 2009

Comment on Belmont Club
"The powers that Be"

On Samantha Powers.
Powers is the real face of Obama. The sad thing is that Jews are still emailing around the chain lists of Jews BHO appointed, not all of whom are really jewish, and hoping that he is really going to be OK. I hope that someone is around to write a good history of this in 50 years.

On the rumor that Obama wishes to change the oath sworn by the military.
Another name in Washington for a wild and outrageous rumor that is immediately debunked is a “Trial Balloon.”

On Democrats expressing outrage over the bonuses paid to employees of financial firms.
In 1819 John Marshall wrote, “An unlimited power to tax involves, necessarily, a power to destroy.” In 1960 Richard Nixon proved himself the smartest man in the room when he said, “I think that the reason that I voted against having the federal government uh - pay teachers’ salaries was probably the very reason that concerned Senator Kennedy when in January of this year, in his kick-off press conference, he said that he favored aid for school construction, but at that time did not feel that there should be aid for teachers’ salaries - at least that’s the way I read his remarks. Now, why should there be any question about the federal government aiding s- teachers’ salaries? Why did Senator Kennedy take that position then? Why do I take it now? We both took it then, and I take it now, for this reason: we want higher teachers’ salaries. We need higher teachers’ salaries. But we also want our education to be free of federal control. When the federal government gets the power to pay teachers, inevitably in my opinion, it will acquire the power to set standards and to tell the teachers what to teach.”

Now the government has created a financial crisis. The government controls the flow of credit and capital. The government has effectively forced the financial industry to take the government on as a partner to gain access to capital. Now the government demands to determine the wages of employees of financial firms. The government has and will determine what investments and loans those firms can make. The government is acting in the same capacity as the Mafia in taking over a restaurant or liquor store.

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Comment on Belmont Club "How now brown cow?"

On the bright side this is another good excuse to follow Theo Spark, for the political insight.

Theo did point out that the most useful “infrastructure” expenditure that the UK government could do but won’t is refurbishing military facilities. The most useful employment that the taxpayers could support would be expanding the military. Naturally those are the last choices that the 2nd International left in power in both the UK and US will turn to.

While Labour has acted shamefully in weakening Britain, financially, militarily, socially and morally, they are not the only ones to blame for the rise of the BNP. The Tories deserve criticism also. Like the Republicans in America they became so feckless and self destructive that they are no longer trusted by large numbers of voters to provide a meaningful alternative. In America the conservatives keep hoping for Reagan to return while the party leadership takes advice from Democrats urging them to commit slow suicide with a new Wendell Willkie or Harold Stassen. Both were worthy men but not effective alternatives to the Democrats. The result is that the party is losing ground to Nativist fringe elements among the base and to Libertarians as well. In the UK the Tories recoil from their own matricide of Thatcher. They swing between the anti-American Little Englander wing that like the BNP hearkens back to Enoch Powell and a Nanny State socially regressive aristocratic conservatism that was championed by Harold Macmillan.

Friday, January 23, 2009

Comment on PJM "Guantanamo 'A False Choice ...'"

For a highly "lawyered up" administration the Democrats seem unable to grasp a simple concept. These detainees at Guantanamo are "Unlawful Combatants" that Obama has given the status of Prisoners of War. By removing the incentive for enemies to engage in lawful combat in accord with the constraints of the Geneva Convention he has significantly increased the probability of future lawlessness and barbarity.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Comment on LGF "Hopenchange at the CIA"

123 Remember here that the left in both the US and UK jumped up and down with false charges that the administrations of Bush and Blair attempted to politicize the intelligence process. It was a lie. Here we have the incoming boss of Obama's CIA announcing what policy conclusions they want the analysts to support before they begin. We are now flying blind and the only question is will this result in only hundreds of deaths or thousands or even millions?

Comment on Belmont Club "The invisible man"

The new and not improved has two Executive Orders up. One torturous document on ethics that in its very complexity could be used as a demonstration of what is wrong with government, human resource systems and the legal profession. The thought that the lawyers who get their jollies from such documents are “reforming” the financial system preemptively convinces me that they are doomed to failure.

The other is a directive on Presidential records and Executive Privilege that should be fairly strait forward. I contains a typographical error that places a reference to the former president in the passage that refers to the current president. With this crowd stumbling at the gate we are going to be in for a long four years.

@Wretchard That’s what I think this crisis is about: a failure of information. Whether it concerns the financial, economic, environmental or political systems, we’ve lived in fantasy too long.

Please allow me to indulge in a biological or information systems model that is well beyond my own qualification. Correct my errors please but this is the type of play that Belmont stimulates.

Perhaps the point of failure is only secondarily at the point of myth generation by adherents to the New or Alternative culture. That is where they flood the system with bad information. The problem is that they are primed to do so because their receptors were already set to screen out non-congruent data. For those more technically inclined than I am the model may be that not so much in hardware, a misdesigned receiver filter, as in firmware. A viral filter has reset the information intake to screen out threatening data and then the acceptable data that reinforces the prejudicial view gets replicated and redistributed.

The problem then becomes one of how to reset the firmware? That can happen after a severe enough shock reboots the system. Given that 9-11 was not able to do that I shudder to contemplate what would. We certainly do not want to passively observe a collection of data points in this experiment. What is needed is a targeted series of challenges designed to visibly get corrective information past the filters. The market should provide incentives to do so. The generation of false information is in fact rejected by the market, the box office of Syriana and the stock value of the NYT show that. However that does not mean that better information will be able to enter the market and get past the filters.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Comment on Belmont Club "The invisible man"

An artificial nation that exists largely as a product of external agitation designs and manufactures itself to generate the maximum conflict and exists primarily to generate transfer payments to kleptocrats, media, fraudulent charities and bureaucrats. The surprise is that there are any genuine human beings caught up in this show. The Palestinians are the Truman show nation that now gets to interact with Obama, the Truman show President.

The real costs are as always the opportunity costs. Not just in the terms of real humans killed or terrorized but the billions misspent and as Wretchard and Mr Landes make clear in terms of crowding out the visibility and access to scarce resources, of finance, political will and of visibility, that could be devoted to more worthy causes. The victims of Hamas include the dead of Darfur, Tibet, Mexico and many other places.

Jan 21, 2009 - 9:06 pm

Comment on Belmont Club "Wilders"

Where will a man like Wilders find refuge? No country in Europe will have him, will the US or China? Ideally some Civil Libertarian of the Left will invite him into America. The best would be if it was Deval Patrick and Bobby Jindal that pushed for him together.

The United States, like other nations, developed a full range of tools, legal, administrative and cultural, for protecting itself from subversion. They did this while grappling with the problem of welcoming and assimilating immigrants and becoming a great power with a global trade network. It took 150 years to build and refine these tools after the failure of the first effort known as the Alien and Sedition acts. It took less than 30 years to abandon those tools. Worse they were not actually destroyed but only abandoned, left unused against the threat of infiltration by the left or a foreign political-religious movement but available for those same forces to pick up and use against the decaying Establishment or other vulnerable minorities.

There are similar cases in history. The Romans ceased the persecutions and offered toleration to the Christians by Constantine’s Edict of Milan in 313 and in 380 Theodosius outlawed Paganism. The Christians were only to happy to pick up the discarded tools of oppression.

Jan 21, 2009 - 5:07 pm

Comment on The Belmont Club, "The Grand Inquisitors"

The transformation of the arab peasantry into moslem fedayeen and then into the urban mass of Gaza and other cities was an unintended consequence of Islam. Mohammed’s original intent was that the Moslems would be an elite force of parasites living off the labor of dhimmis. Unfortunately he was as poor an economist as he was a theologian. He was however a good psychiatrist, psychotics often are. Given the relentless degradation that non-Moslems were subjected to the masses converted within a few generations. Given that Islam destroys the creative and sympathetic impulses necessary for economic growth while also removing the incentives for the dhimmis to invest in wealth generation outside of trade the stagnation of the urban societies was inevitable. The rejection of the foreigners of al-Qaeda by the elites of Anbar does not provide a good model that we can count on for Gaza. For the Gazans to be a population that can serve as a viable source of law rejecting totalitarian movements like Hamas they would need to be reoccupied and reeducated for at least 2 generations. Moses had to lead the children of Israel into the desert for 40 years to burn off the habits of slavery. The children of Ishmael will need no less.

The transformation of Germany only happened because the totalitarian regime had while widespread in its influence not sunk very deep into the culture after only 12 years. Japan’s transformation was more interesting. Possibly the rapid changes brought about by industrialization within 2 generations had created an unusually flexible psyche that when combined with the shock of total defeat had allowed for the installation of new democratic values.

Monday, January 19, 2009

Comment on Belmont Club "Horowitz on Obama"

Subotai Bahadur (a BC poster) poses an interesting problem, “We are two very different nations and cultures uneasily occupying one country” sounds familiar. America has sailed into the same emotional territory occupied by the Israelis and the Philistines. One hundred and fifty years ago the Democrats refusal to trust in constitutional protections and process coupled with their paranoid refusal to share the political stage tore the nation apart. Subsequently their superior skills at recruiting immigrants, despite their nativist roots, and the over reaching of Republicans (Rum Romanism and Rebellion backfired) saved the Democrats. Later under FDR they learned that by focusing on the goal of building a coalition rather than the task of restoring prosperity they could become the semi-permanent party of government. Now they are again edging towards a scorched earth campaign to eliminate the honest and the productive, because they are honest and productive. They cultivate the permanently alienated at home and import more to base their power on the aggrieved, because the aggrieved can be a constituency that will not assimilate away from them. The Republicans are left with America’s Israelis in the figurative sense. The productive, the law abiding, the temperate, are becoming an isolated minority in their own country. The current attachment of most American Jews to the Democratic Party is an historical aberration that will eventually be resolved but unfortunately it will probably be to late. The Democratic coalition are both figuratively and literally America’s Philistines.

Jan 19, 2009 - 6:54 pm

Tuesday, January 06, 2009

Comment on Belmont Club "The business of Princes"

The English despised Benedict Arnold, the disloyal are never trusted, not even by those they transfered their loyalty to. The CIA of Valerie Plame will not find a home even among the conspiratorial apparatchiks who stuffed envelopes and wrote Kos diaries for Obama while dreaming of being Chekisty. Does the United States need an organization such as Ishmael Jones envisions? Absolutely it does and the lack of one has cost American lives. Is there a snowball’s chance in hell that Obama’s people will produce the professional lean focused organization desired? The incoming administration is already set to produce an orgy of competing turf wars, scandals, incompetence and waste. It will not be a movie, lives and liberties will be lost.

We can only hope that there will be a dawn to come. The alternatives may be dhimmi to the Islamists or kow-tow to the Chinese. Which will be the worse fate? When they clash who will survive? If we see India patch up its quarrels with China to face the greater threat then that great divide for the future may happen with surprising speed.

Jan 6, 2009 - 9:43 pm