Sunday, November 29, 2020

Sunday Night Links

  • The central point is that: (1) for fully a century the logical proof of the impossibility of socialism has been known and accepted as the central, indeed fatal, flaw in the socialist project, and (2) that with the fall of the Soviet Union, to say nothing of the real-time, parallel path experiment provided by East and West Germany across four decades, the logical proof was borne out in empirically, in social and behavioral form, and in real time. Even socialist economist Robert Heilbronner had to fess up in 1989 declaring, “Mises was right.” So, with the awareness that one can deduce axiomatically the conditions that produce human poverty, misery, and state-sponsored genocide of its own populace (“democide”), how is it even remotely possible that there can be an active political movement, comprised of millions of people, who seek to reenact the most destructive political and economic experience in human history? And even more to the point, since the statistical analyses put forth in The Black Book of Communism (1999), to say nothing of the revelations of the Venona decrypts, what kind of human being can countenance the notion of reviving any of the ingredients of this kind of inhumane catastrophe for the reenactment of globally-scaled human misery for life in the twenty-first century? In Misesian terms, how is the Left even possible? [link]
  • All Ponzi Schemes collapse under their own weight and this one will too, but first Bitcoin is going to have a supernova squeeze higher as the free float continues to be restricted as GBTC corners the market, driving the price higher. [AiC]
  • At the same time, the Governor has chosen to impose no capacity restrictions on certain businesses he considers “essential.” And it turns out the businesses the Governor considers essential include hardware stores, acupuncturists, and liquor stores. Bicycle repair shops, certain signage companies, accountants, lawyers, and insurance agents are all essential too. So, at least according to the Governor, itmay be unsafe to go to church, but it is always fine to pickup another bottle of wine, shop for a new bike, or spend the afternoon exploring your distal points and meridians. Who knew public health would so perfectly align with secular convenience? [SCOTUS]
  • Veblen distinguished between “production”—the actual development and manufacture of new goods—and “business,” what we would today call financial engineering. True production, he argued, raised society’s standard of living, while the aim of business was “getting something for nothing.” Businessmen made their fortunes through accounting schemes and political manipulation, seizing the wealth created by inventors, engineers and laborers. Because the corporation was a creature of business rather than production, the industrial system was a monument to organized waste. In the urbane field of economics of the day, this idea that corporate management could be “unproductive” was shocking. Surely all work that went into production must be of value—why else would the associated wages and costs be tolerated? But Veblen was drawing on his rural experiences. [WSJ]
  • In terms of what actually happened I’m too dumb to follow all the physics debates and whether it was 3 shots or 4 or if he got sprayed by six teams in pillboxes with MG-42s. I just look at the CIA connections to Oswald and Jack Ruby, both of which are undeniable and both of which the CIA lied to the warren commission and the House Select Committee on Assassinations about.  George De Morenschultz, David Atlee Phillips/Maurice Bishop, Jolly West, Oswald’s Mexico trip, etc. They were all involved with the CIA in some capacity and the fact that the government is keeping thousands of pages related to this classified to this day makes you ask the question ‘why even bother if you didn’t whack the guy?’ Also Cord Meyer using the JFK assassination as a chance to have his ex-wife clipped was a real dudes rock moment. Just another example of dudes finding innovative solutions to alimony. [Sean McCarthy]
  • Ed Thorp claims that he discovered it too but kept quiet about it and used it to make money trading options. The story of increased efficiency in options pricing is another example of how profitable trading opportunities go through a lifecycle where the innovation diffuses and they become commodities. No evergreen investment strategies! Simultaneous invention makes biographies of inventors philosophically uninteresting. Who cares about the idiosyncrasies of somebody who discovered something at the same time as two other people? [CBS]
  • Drop the romantic yearnings for some lost Golden Age. These are the good old days. I’ll paraphrase my friend John Anderson from the Incremental Development Alliance. Brooklyn, Carmel, and Santa Fe don’t need your sorry Hipster ass. There’s a whole big continent out there full of places that could use some love and they’re dirt cheap. Many of them are gorgeous even though they may not get much publicity. Others are seriously ugly, but have their own gritty appeal. And quite a few of these amazing undervalued spots have at least a few charming and engaged people knocking around doing cool shit. Go find one that speaks to you and create your own intellektuelle Kunstgemeinschaft. The world you want is one you make yourself from spare parts, not one you discover and purchase. [Granola Shotgun]
  • We yearned for ventilators and, by the time they were available, realized that we didn’t need or want them (since they actually harm the typical COVID-19 patient). Currently we yearn for vaccines, but perhaps we won’t need or want them by the time they’re available in significant quantity. [Phil G]
  • Biden leads in Michigan, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin because of an apparent avalanche of black votes in Detroit, Philadelphia, and Milwaukee. Biden’s ‘winning’ margin was derived almost entirely from such voters in these cities, as coincidentally his black vote spiked only in exactly the locations necessary to secure victory. He did not receive comparable levels of support among comparable demographic groups in comparable states, which is highly unusual for the presidential victor. [Spectator]

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