Amerika

Posts Tagged ‘collapse’

Like Other Media, Hollywood Is Stumbling

Friday, August 11th, 2017

The twenty-first century shows humanity questing for something authentic instead of that which is manipulative, or like advertising and pick-up lines an attempt to control our minds with images inserted in them that pander to our weaknesses. This has damaged the ability of all media to continue their growth, as we see in the cratering of Hollywood:

WSJ reports that movie attendance has dropped by 5%, compared with the same period in 2016, and revenues are down, too, dipping just 2.9%, thanks to higher ticket prices making up for the lack of ticket sales. On Aug. 2, AMC shares dropped 27% in one day, the WSJ reports. While films like Beauty and the Beast, Wonder Woman, and Get Out fared well at the box office, they were the anomalies in a year full of box office disappointments. Instead of giving moviegoers more badass female leads and genre-bending horror films, Hollywood keeps throwing gobs of money at an unwanted fifth installment of Pirates of the Caribbean, more Transformers movies, and putting $175 million into King Arthur: Legend of the Sword, and then clutching their pearls in shock that no one wanted to see them.

These movies are not particularly worse than what has come out any previous summer, so something else is at work. This is likely a lack of faith in Hollywood to communicate a “good” message, because an audience has awakened to the onslaught of “social justice” messages and political correctness, and has correctly concluded that these movies are either not for them, or designed to manipulate them. At that point, it makes more sense to just go watch an old 80s favorite on DVD or do something entirely unrelated to media, because the new material is not relevant.

In addition, Hollywood — just like the news media and social media — is finding that its new audience did not catch on. The media discarded its old standby, the Western European upper half of middle class, who could be counted on to reliably show up for genre films and family friendly fare. These people viewed movies as something to do, and did not take them particularly seriously, so once they realized that they were watching propaganda, bailed out; the new audience of SJWs, minorities and Leftists have apparently not taken up the slack.

While seeing some industries get savaged feels like a bad thing, it is important to remember that many of these genres of business were intense saboteurs to the Western Europeans. Shopping malls turned consumption into an activity; Hollywood made emotional manipulation and narcissism seem normal; newspapers created an outrage culture and social media brought us Fear Of Missing Out (FOMO). None of these are healthy, just like the NFL was a prophylactic receptacle for spending masculine energy in ineffectual ways for years before Colin Kapernick started his ill-advised “protest.” Those activities were inauthentic, and as our artists from Faulkner to hardcore punk to the indie bands of the 80s were warning us, the only solution is a search for authenticity, which naturally leads away from these manipulative, controlling and masturbatory activities.

We are tired of modern society. Let it burn. Celebrate its failure. We do not need Hollywood, the NFL, social media, The New York Times, Wikipedia, lifestyle magazines, women’s television or televangelists, and we never did. What we need is authentic, real life: a connection to the patterns of nature and the order beyond it, a sense of real culture, faith in ourselves, and activities that reward us through accomplishment and enjoyment of proficiency at a task. When you go to a place with actual culture, what is shocking to people from the modern West is how much everything is in balance. Every action has a place, there is a rhythm of life, and interactions follow familiar patterns. This means that anomalies are easy to spot, and acceptance is easily achieved, leaving more time and energy for the actual pursuit of individuality, which is a hybrid between maturation and creativity. We can become self-actualized in such a situation, where in modern society most people resemble perpetual adolescents.

Soft Apocalypse

Wednesday, July 26th, 2017

The robots are coming….Work as we know it will be over. But rather than fixing up a Singapore Sling and enjoying it, the Left asks how it can use this prediction to insert government further and harder into all of our private lives.

As the story goes, by 2025, your labor will be produced by multiple lines of software coded driving robotic arms. Two-thirds of Amerika will be out of work. Someone tell the liquor store they’d better not run out. In response to this, Leftists assure us that all governments must implement a Universal Basic Income (UBI). In their view, this is the only way to maintain social order. More likely, it will only prove Margaret Thatcher’s Iron Law of Socialism: government “free” stuff always runs out of other people’s money.

On the battleground of ideology, the Left needs a robot apocalypse because their obsessive and dramatic climate change predictions have failed. The global meltdown has been postponed until 2068, so the Left needs another reason why we should all become controlled by Leftist government, which is totally not as Soviet as it appears to be, they insist. It’s as bad as watching The Peak Oil scam fail to restrict our mobility and decent incomes (earned; not guaranteed).

There is no apocalypse. No sudden War of the Worlds, The Day After Tomorrow or Red Dawn style cataclysmic event will bail you out of the existential misery of living in a modern time. Get ready to live through a long, prolonged decline into more of the same that we have now, but on the economic level of Brazil and other Leftist success stories, namely third world levels. In addition, you will get ethnically replaced, gradually and not suddenly, as more people cluelessly outbreed. Western Civilization — such as it is — will be entirely removed and replaced with a vast beige race of low-IQ people ruled by a few Asiatic hybrid elites in Washington, D.C.

Everyone gets the Apocalypse wrong. They are too busy using it for leverage or for LARP material. This is nothing new for the hapless men and women trapped in the ruins of a society in decline. Constance Cavafy wrote a classic poem about how Late Empire Romans viewed the coming of the barbarians.

Why don’t our distinguished orators come forward as usual
to make their speeches, say what they have to say?

Because the barbarians are coming today
and they’re bored by rhetoric and public speaking.
Why this sudden restlessness, this confusion?
(How serious people’s faces have become.)
Why are the streets and squares emptying so rapidly,
everyone going home so lost in thought?

Because night has fallen and the barbarians have not come.
And some who have just returned from the border say
there are no barbarians any longer.
And now, what’s going to happen to us without barbarians?
They were, those people, a kind of solution.

So what will do us in? We dream of apocalypse and sell it because we know things are out of balance. It doesn’t require physics training to grasp the barely tenable prospects of a metastatic equilibrium. It’s always just an inch or two short of going to hell in a bucket. Well, it’s going to go down. But it’s going down slowly and inexorably.

I remember once when I was young, stupid and alone in a weight room. I decided to bench more than I could get off my chest easily and got through the last rep I could do. So I tried for one more – just for the heck of it. I fought long and hard to keep that damn thing off my chest, but it just kept slowly going down until I had to tip one end of the bar down to keep from injuring myself. That’s what our collapse will be. We just sit around dreaming of doomsday and therefore not tending to all that is gradually rotting away and breaking down right in front of our face. Meanwhile that bar keeps fractionally going down instead of up while our arms become increasingly too weak and fatigued to make it all travel in the correct direction.

Unless we get The Book of Revelations thrown at us hard in the near term, science fiction author Will McIntosh nailed how America dies better than anyone on the street corner of academia or government with a “Repent Now” sign. His novel The Soft Apocalypse details how we start re-tribalizing and no longer being anything close to a unified nation.

…the “New Normal” is a Soft Apocalypse. This is how our world ends; with a whimper instead of a bang. New social structures and tribal connections spring up across America, as the previous social structures begin to dissolve.

Speaking of poetry, you recognize that citation, do you not? It’s from the famous post-WWI acknowledgement that democracy had done in another promising civilization:

This is the way the world ends
Not with a bang but a whimper.

So as it all breaks down and everything begins to go Amy Schumer shaped, ask yourself this: Who is my tribe? What brothers have my back? Stop being worried about what the lügenpresse gives you permission to worry about. Stop waiting for the barbarians while your dysfunctional neighbors raise them right across the fence from your back yard.

The robots will unfortunately not replace the moron screwing your order up at the sub shop. He really could still be there the day he forgets to wash his hands after he takes a dump on his break. The collapse is ongoing and of our own manufacture. Be ready to survive and rebuild when our drunks, lames, handicaps and psuedo-sapients tip the Malibu vacation house to the point where it breaks and goes down hill with the muddy rainwater.

The Soft Apocalypse will be hard to predict and survive. Good luck and Jesus will not save you. Your government is working against you. Your fellow citizens will kill you with their ineptitude, if they can. The path leads only downward, to a Soviet Brazil of infinite pointlessness. Only preparation and competence will allow you to save yourself.

How Political Correctness Paired With “The Customer Is Always Right” To Make the New Totalitarianism

Wednesday, July 26th, 2017

As the Alt Right struggles to find its new direction while other Right-wing movements fade away, some of us offer a radical piece of advice: it should face the grim fact that our downfall has come through our own bad decisions, which arose from a selfishness and desire for power that led us to deny the natural order of life, and so our solution lies in undoing these bad decisions by replacing them with healthier goals.

For us to do this, it makes sense to inspect in depth the mistakes of the past so that we can recognize in each a fundamental principle, and through that, avoid repeating that principle in a new form. Principles are invisible; they can only be found by understanding the structure of an idea. They repeat in entirely different-looking forms, and when we do not recognize them, they cause us to repeat the same mistakes.

What rankles the Alt Right begins with a typical Leftist behavior, namely the tendency to change thought by making certain methods or ideas taboo. When you cannot use the appropriate method or idea, any given task or issue becomes “inverted,” or comes to mean the exact opposite of its original meaning because the thought process required to understand it is prohibited but its inverse is not. Language shifts and soon, everything in society is upside-down, and nothing means what it should.

One of the prime methods for this in our present time is the issue against which the Alt Right stacks “free speech”: political correctness, or the habit of making certain topics, notions and words off-limits in order to invert the meaning of the issues to which they refer. One explanation of why this is destructive comes from a striking critique based in utility, not morality:

[I] agree with Peter Thiel that political correctness is important in sustaining the stagnation of the West. It’s not even the particular topics that can’t be discussed. It’s the cowardice and the getting in the habit of constantly watching what you are saying that leads to a suppression of intellectual daring and genuinely creative thought.

Early on here I was named by a man who made a living from wind energy as one of the top 10 climate deniers on Quora. A strange honour, I suppose, but also just a little sinister. One had the sense that there was a gunning for such people because one by one they were banned and suspended. Baiting people into saying something that could be considered a violation of the cult of nice, something easy to achieve when you are close to a moderator. Probably it would have happened to me too, except I mostly write about other topics and some people liked what I wrote. If I worked for a big company with a bureaucratic social media policy, possibly it would have been much more effective.

The context is people have proposed criminal sanctions against those with differing views about causation of fluctuations in climate and what if anything we should do about it. Combined with the social ganging up I described above, do you not think this is likely to have a chilling effect on peoples’ expressions of ideas in this domain, and perhaps also in others.

Most people are smart enough not to disagree with the consensus of the group. The nail that sticks out gets hammered down. Group think isn’t some esoteric mildly interesting phenomenon but is at work every day in human groups, large and small. If there had been more people like Michael Burry, the financial crisis wouldn’t have happened. But, as Peter Thiel says, what does it say about us as a society that it’s the mildly autistic and more that are able to go against group norms and those who are more neurorypical don’t do that. It wasn’t always like this, and it probably won’t be in future.

A healthy society needs to be able to tolerate dissent, even about painful or controversial topics. The way to regulate conversation is to replace bureaucracy with good manners, because those can be much more adapted to changing and heterogeneous situations and are less susceptible to being exploited by opportunistic players that game the system. See also Scott Welch’s response below, about which I make no further comment. Except to say that the language used in his answer and in the comments is a pretty nice illustration that Quora does not appear to be serious about creating a forum where people are expected to exhibit nice and respectful behaviour (let alone good manners). BNBR is used as a weapon to shut out dissenting views (see Solzhenitsyn below) – but there’s a lack of seriousness about it. It’s one instrument but one that’s wielded according to the belief systems – and, more problematically, values – of the people running Quora.

Solzhenitsyn at Harvard: Harvard Commencement Address (A World Split Apart):

Without any censorship, in the West fashionable trends of thought and ideas are carefully separated from those which are not fashionable; nothing is forbidden, but what is not fashionable will hardly ever find its way into periodicals or books or be heard in colleges. Legally your researchers are free, but they are conditioned by the fashion of the day. There is no open violence such as in the East; however, a selection dictated by fashion and the need to match mass standards frequently prevent independent-minded people giving their contribution to public life. There is a dangerous tendency to flock together and shut off successful development. I have received letters in America from highly intelligent persons, maybe a teacher in a faraway small college who could do much for the renewal and salvation of his country, but his country cannot hear him because the media are not interested in him. This gives birth to strong mass prejudices, to blindness, which is most dangerous in our dynamic era. There is, for instance, a self-deluding interpretation of the contemporary world situation. It works as a sort of a petrified armor around people’s minds. Human voices from 17 countries of Eastern Europe and Eastern Asia cannot pierce it. It will only be broken by the pitiless crowbar of events.

Ultimately it doesn’t really matter if the most pro-PC people accept these arguments or not, because the world is already changing. People increasingly value an unpolished authenticity, and I don’t think anything is going to stop this new trend from developing now it has gotten started.

This is a basic utility argument: when some ideas are taboo, it prevents them from being discussed at all, and this is enforced by decentralized totalitarianism where the majority of people refuse to engage with these ideas from fear of ostracism and retribution, so they simply fall into a memory hole and disappear entirely from public consciousness.

Equality itself gives rise to this phenomenon. When all people are equal, all viewpoints must be tolerated, but this quickly comes into conflict with the noticing of natural inequalities — mostly between social classes, but also including sex, ethnic group, race and sexual preference — which means that some of the equal people will feel marginalized.

Compound this with the fundamental method of equality, which is to “make” people equal by Robin Hood style actions involving taking from the more-successful and giving to the less-successful, or in other words, defending the underdog as a categorical practice. Whenever someone more-successful is in conflict with someone less-successful, the more-successful person is attacked.

Aha. This gives us the root of political correctness, which is that if one of the equal citizens finds himself being observed to be unequal, the right way to fix this is to penalize the person who notices the inequality. Given the power of the Dunning-Kruger effect, this means that only those with the brains to observe reality semi-correctly are censored, and idiocy is given center stage in the ultimate inversion.

Naturally, this leads to domination of the less-successful — who are most likely lower in caste, intelligence, wealth, power, class and competence — over the success. The weak eat the strong because the Crowd enables the weak. Witness this in action in an otherwise advanced legal system where noticing caste differences is a crime:

Calling a Dalit by his caste with a view to insulting him or her is an offence under Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities Act), the Supreme Court has ruled, upholding the conviction of two persons in Tamil Nadu.

…”The word ‘pallan’ no doubt denotes a specific caste, but it is also a word used in a derogatory sense to insult someone (just as in North India the word chamar denotes a specific caste but it is also used in a derogatory sense to insult someone).

…”In our opinion, uses of the words ‘pallan’, ‘pallapayal’ ‘parayan’ or ‘paraparayan’ with intent to insult is highly objectionable and is also an offence under the Scheduled Cast/ Scheduled Tribe Act. It is just unacceptable in the modern age, just as the words ‘Nigger’ or ‘Negro’ are unacceptable for African-Americans today ,” the bench said.

Equality always goes this way. Diversity just makes it easy because it enables the herd to analogize caste to race, and in our modern egalitarian agenda, racial discrimination is the worst sin ever. This may go back to the days when Americans allied with China and had non-whites serving in its military, and so had to ban discrimination as it threatened loyalty to the State.

Egalitarianism itself mandates diversity. If all people are equal, all races are equal. And nothing seems more discriminatory and inegalitarian than singling someone out for something he cannot control, namely a condition he was born with such as race or caste. Equality must be achieved, and to do that, all differences between people must be eliminated or hidden, in this case by social taboo.

What this means is that in our minds, the idea of equality becomes a runaway train that rolls right over every aspect of life. This egalitarian outlook leads to a type of inward focus that becomes a paralyzing narcissism:

The cause of our narcissism is equality. Not equality before the law, where everyone is bound by the same legal code. That is a fundamental right and necessary for justice, freedom, and happiness in a democracy. I’m referring to equality of conditions—our economic well-being and social status, the material aspects of equality Europeans experienced when they broke from the caste system of their homeland, shedding aristocracy and an impenetrable class structure that denied them access to material wealth and limitless possibilities.

…But equality, like freedom, has its dark side. Just as too much freedom leads to libertinism, anarchy, and destruction, equality (or the expectation of equality) leads to entitlement, self-centeredness, isolation, idealism of human perfectibility and progress, autonomous individualism, materialism, and ultimately despotism.

As Alexis de Tocqueville wrote, “One must recognize that equality, which introduces great goods into the world, nevertheless suggests to men very dangerous instincts…it tends to isolate them from one another and to bring each of them to be occupied with himself alone. It opens their souls excessively to the love of material enjoyments.” It makes him a narcissist.

Who is de Tocqueville restating here? He is channeling Plato, who famously said:

The State demands the strong wine of freedom, and unless her rulers give her a plentiful draught, punishes and insults them; equality and fraternity of governors and governed is the approved principle. Anarchy is the law, not of the State only, but of private houses, and extends even to the animals.

Father and son, citizen and foreigner, teacher and pupil, old and young, are all on a level; fathers and teachers fear their sons and pupils, and the wisdom of the young man is a match for the elder, and the old imitate the jaunty manners of the young because they are afraid of being thought morose. Slaves are on a level with their masters and mistresses, and there is no difference between men and women.

At last the citizens become so sensitive that they cannot endure the yoke of laws, written or unwritten; they would have no man call himself their master.

With these two views of the same thing, we see the problem with equality: without focus on something outside of the self, people become obsessed by the self like a golden calf or the One True Ring, and pursue it with a mania like addiction, because like all good dependencies it provides brief relief from noticing drab reality, and then as the situation settles back into normalcy, requires more of the drug.

Diversity serves this pressure for inward focus by enacting a pincer strategy on civilization: one claw of the pincer is increased alienation and atomization, and the other is a need for self-validation in order to keep the addiction going. People simultaneously flee the public sphere and cling zombie-like to ideology.

All of this arises from the need to “create” equality through banning negative but true observations about the lower castes. Diversity happens in parallel with the maniacal, Soviet need to enforce equality for other groups — women, homosexuals, transgenders, odd religions, the retarded — because both originate from the same root in egalitarianism, and naturally and inevitably develop into these special interest “identity” politics.

This identity in turn reflects a lack of actual identity, because egalitarianism has eaten that right up, and instead a need to find some reason why one is special and hopefully a victim, because that way the individual deserves to be made more-equal through wealth and power transfer from the more successful. This is the crisis of identity:

But the truly notable thing about today is not so much the obsession with identity – it’s the instability of identity. Humans have been hunting for identity for centuries. The instinct to define ourselves, to project ourselves into the world, is strong. And there’s nothing wrong with it. What’s new today is that identity has become an incredibly subjective phenomenon. ‘I identify as…’ Where once an individual’s identity was informed, or shaped, by experience and belief, through an engagement in the public sphere or with a party or association, today identities are self-consciously and often defensively constructed. The NYT, in its description of 2015 as the year of identity, asked: ‘How do you identify? [W]hat trait or aspect of your being is central to your idea of yourself, and your relationship to the world?’ The keyword here is your. The NYT doesn’t ask ‘What are you?’ or ‘Who are you?’, which would speak to a strong sense of being something; it asks what ‘aspect of your being’ is most important to ‘your idea of yourself’. ‘Being’ is treated almost as something external to the individual, a thing to be mined for ‘traits’ we might identify with. Identity is not something we are or we experience; it is a technically cultivated category, built from ‘traits’ and ‘aspects’ to give ‘an idea of yourself’.

What the NYT and many others describe as new era of identity politics is in fact an era in which the historical, traditional underpinnings of identity have been ruptured, or even destroyed, unleashing an often desperate search for new identities, a rush for self-identification, for shallow identity construction. The subjectivity of human identity in the 21st century is striking, and alarming. Today, to feel something is to be something.

Arising from the nature of equality itself, identity politics speaks to a need for self-validation, which is the second claw of the pincer. There is no identity outside of the self, so people look for a group to join, but since this is not related to any actual membership, it becomes entirely symbolic. The individual wants a position from which they are able to justify their narcissism.

Not only that, but any existing identity that is actual threatens their ability to choose any identity they want, which in turn limits them to being what they are, which violates equality. The manic, all-devouring instinct of Leftism toward culture, religion, heritage, race, ethnic group, customs, calendar, cuisine and even symbols comes from this need to be the determiner of their own identity.

Equality makes people into crazed individuals, gazing inward and finding nothing, thus trying on different identities as a means of being special enough and marginalized enough to have power in a society that is constantly pushing people downward in order to enforce equality. The root of this churn lies in the nature of Leftism itself:

It is Liberalism that believes in the Autonomous Individual, it is Liberalism that always hides its real beliefs, it is Liberalism that has turned us from Nations into mere economies.

…Lying is the only way they can gain support so they do. They never talk about the Autonomous Individual instead they talk about freedom, about freedom of choice and other such nonsense. Why?

Because the Autonomous Individual has no need of a country, or a family, or a God, or anything. It is a life of hopelessness and pointlessness and they know it. They don’t talk about it because they see a perfect world and the Autonomous Individual lives in that perfect world. But if they went to the next election talking about people getting to live in a perfect world people would reject them and they know that. They never talk about where their philosophy leads because to any sane person it holds absolutely no appeal. Who wants to live a life were they have no family, no roots, no history and no future, only today repeated endlessly until death?

Political correctness is the vanguard of Leftism. Like the outer shell of a virus, it merges with the wall of a cell, making it think that the virus is part of itself. Then, the virus enters and reprograms that cell with its own DNA, so that the cell propagates the virus, sacrificing itself in the effort.

Pair that with “Keeping Up With The Joneses,” which in this case is symbolic, and people begin excluding dangerous ideas while repeating obvious lies, just so that they stay relevant and are part of the in-group that gets all the wealth and power. They will eventually adopt a victimhood pose through the identity Olympics, and act out increasingly extreme versions of egalitarian idealism.

Enter another cliché: “The Customer is Always Right.” This is the basis of mercantile middle class ethics and explains how societies are taken over by bad ideas. Bad ideas are always popular because they are simpler, and therefore make the person considering the idea feel more powerful for having this simple, clear and absolute bottom line. No merchant will refuse a customer the right to purchase an illusion. For this reason, business and law follow public opinion, and when enough people are keeping up with the Joneses by being politically correct, the governments and corporations follow suit.

From this, all of the evils of civilization decline flow, and the society goes out like Rome, anesthetized to its own decline because the way that individuals succeed is by jumping on the bandwagon. What is right, is wrong. All values have been inverted. And so the people of that society play follow the leader all the way to their eventual doom.

Our only hope of avoiding this is not to fight political correctness, but to orient our civilization toward a different direction entirely, one in which what is true, right, sensible, logical and leads to the good is more important than our selves and our individualism. This requires a breakaway group who will rise above the rest, who seek authenticity so thoroughly that they aspire to a society of virtue:

In the succeeding generation rulers will be appointed who have lost the guardian power of testing the metal of your different races, which, like Hesiod’s, are of gold and silver and brass and iron. And so iron will be mingled with silver, and brass with gold, and hence there will arise dissimilarity and inequality and irregularity, which always and in all places are causes of hatred and war. This the Muses affirm to be the stock from which discord has sprung, wherever arising; and this is their answer to us.

The primary idea of virtue is that we, as individuals, are less important than the patterns of reality that show us how to adapt to our world. The inversion of this idea, individualism, arises from the Renaissance™ and Enlightenment™ and holds that the human individual is the new order that replaces nature, and therefore we can ignore both the physical aspects of nature that our wealth and technology have conquered, as well as the pattern-order of nature that determines what thrives and what dies in the long term.

Virtue commands that we eschew individualism in favor of purpose, and that this purpose must be like that of nature, which is an aristocratic and relentlessly aggressive drive toward constant improvement. Our society beat back the wolves and starvation, but it cannot beat the cycles of time and the logical way in which nature works. Virtue is the ultimate realism.

Right now, our civilization has fallen, which was formalized in the World Wars. All of our decisions leading up to those were based on individualism. If we want to rise again, and at the core of the Alt Right is a desire that we do, we will need to rediscover our virtue and discard the individualism that leads to political correctness and eventually, downfall.

Silicon Valley Sees The Pavement Approaching At Terminal Velocity

Tuesday, July 18th, 2017

As mentioned here before, the dot-com 3.0 and Silicon Valley economic miracle is about to come to a crashing end. The internet simply is not worth as much money any more, and instead of contracting, the market expanded, and now the economy will balance the ledger by destroying fake value.

The primary driver for this is the failure of internet advertising as it becomes clear that in addition to not paying much attention to internet ads, people of the sort wanted by advertisers are finding ways to avoid them or the internet entirely. Ad prices have been steadily dropping and now advertisers are ditching them for TV and radio:

“The major issues in digital is that the supply chain still has way too many touch points in it and it lacks transparency,” says Pritchard.

In January, Pritchard threatened to boycott spending with the digital ad behemoths (Google, Facebook, major ad networks etc.) unless they worked to make the system more transparent. He now says the ecosystem is about 40% of the way there, largely thanks to the pressure major advertisers (P&G, Unilever, etc.) are putting on the system.

Pritchard says radio and out of home (billboard) marketing have also been showing increasingly positive results.

The majority dollars don’t even make it to publishers:Citing industry studies, Prichard says that only 40% of dollars reach publishers after payouts to ad tech vendors, and up to another 25% of dollars could be wasted on ad fraud and problems with ad viewability (ads not loading right or ads that aren’t actually viewed by humans).

In other words, the dot-com companies are hiding how ineffective ads are, how much fraud there is and how much those big FANG — Facebook, Apple, Netflix, Google — companies are taking as middlemen. These are all signs of a failing ad regime.

The “Myspace effect” has kicked into full gear where the upper half of society — the desired group for advertisers, because they are responsive to advertising for more than low-end consumer goods — are fleeing Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and other social media and hiding out in messaging apps instead.

Internet companies told us that television and radio were dead, but this was wishful thinking. In actuality, television and radio have a better chance of reaching their audience because they are linear formats, so people are less likely to navigate away from ads. In addition, they tend to be local, instead of spammed across the internet, and people can keep their privacy with them.

Newspapers are the only real losers here, since people read those online, but it is unclear how much people even care anymore. The news content is light and the headline usually tells the story, so skimming Drudge or Real Clear Politics provides most of what these consumers need.

In the meantime, Google has become a victim of its own success. Its PageRank algorithm, which gives massive preference to popular sites, effectively disenfranchised people from putting content on the web to have those sites — including Wikipedia — simply scrape it. All the good content is going behind paywalls. This means that Google searches are less effective these days.

While all this is crashing down, the savvier investors are noticing that this looks a lot like a bubble right before a crash and bailing out:

It’s a bubble that is different — but the same — as the last time. In 2000, start-ups like pets.com were able to go public and jack up share prices even as they were losing hundreds of millions of dollars.

…Venture capitalists and private equity investors keep the bubble going by buying into it at higher and higher valuations. The smartest ones guarantee their own success by taking rich advisory fees along the way and exiting before disaster via the secondary market for private shares. And this is, as behavioural economist Peter Atwater recently pointed out to me, unusually liquid thanks in part to central bank-enabled easy money.

…These days, a glut of money eager to bolster gains in a low-return world has lifted the economy of Silicon Valley to ridiculous heights. Yet the real winners are likely to be the small number of platform groups such as Amazon, Google, Facebook and Apple that can use their network effect to capture and control the data, which have become the new oil in our digital economy.

The middleman effect is revealed: large companies take the profits, and everyone else is using Silicon Valley as an investment for the purpose of sale, not as a long-term investment. A pyramid of hype rises from the sweaty, neckbearded wasteland of digital royalty, and other than a few who got in early, everyone is going to lose.

As the mom and pop investors figure out that digital is a ruin, they are going to shatter the value of those stocks which are purchased merely to speculate and resell them, and this will in turn create a domino effect of closures in Silicon Valley. That in turn will have consequences for America’s economy, built in part on anticipation of more easy wealth from the digital demesne.

That leaves us with a country top-heavy in debt, built on top of false expectations, that has sacrificed its productivity for this dream because by claiming it was an “ideas and services economy” it could justify globalism to itself. After the first set of dominoes fall, another larger set will begin its collapse.

Western Heritage

Monday, July 10th, 2017

It has now become clear that modern society has just about entirely wrecked the population of the West. Other than a few who have held on to time-honored ways, our cities and towns are now clogged with solipsistic people propelled by a victimhood complex that allows them to justify theft and parasitism in their own minds and those of the gang or cult of herd people like them.

As this settles in to the mind of the average person, who drugged by middle class values essentially turned off his brain and assumed that civilization would always be the way it was when he was young, and therefore that he needed do nothing to maintain it or even affirmatively stop the rot, a cultural wave is rising for a massive U-turn away from the narcissistic notions of equality and democracy.

Some of the first signs of health have come from Donald Trump, who delivered a speech in Poland indicating a new direction for the West that looks more like the distant past than the present:

Trump offered a concise, powerful statement of western achievements and why they are worth defending. “We write symphonies,” he said. “We pursue innovation. We celebrate our ancient heroes, embrace our timeless traditions and customs, and always seek to explore and discover brand-new frontiers. . . . We cherish inspiring works of art that honor God. We treasure the rule of law and protect the right to free speech and free expression. We empower women as pillars of our society and of our success. We put faith and family, not government and bureaucracy, at the center of our lives. And we debate everything.”

No speech of this nature has been given for a half-century. This is bolder than Reagan or JFK. It is a call not to Americanism, but to our Western Heritage, toward the group of nomadic people who spread through Asia and Europe, probably rejoining their cousins in those lands. This group has been consistent for thousands of years, and forms the basis of Western Culture.

You cannot have Western Heritage without Western European people, which is a genetic and not a political distinction. We are a tribe. This tribe has many branches — English, Dutch, German, Swedish, French, Norwegian, Scots, Danish — but it is the continuation of that ancient tribe, and from its abilities and inbuilt tendencies come all of the greatness of the West.

Although many have forgotten it, this ancient race is not just the root of Western History, but its perpetuation, because the same people keep showing up in new civilizations after old ones fail, recreating the greatness as much as possible:

A hundred years ago, however, Europeans took it for granted that many Greeks and Romans were the same race as themselves. The famed 11th edition of the Encyclopedia Brittanica, published in 1911, noted that “survival of fair hair and complexion and light eyes among the upper classes in Thebes and some other localities shows that the blond type of mankind which is characteristic of north-western Europe had already penetrated into Greek lands before classical times.” It added that the early Greeks, or Hellenes, were Nordic, one of “the fair-haired tribes of upper Europe known to the ancients as Keltoi.” Sixty years ago even Bertrand Russell, the British philosopher and socialist, believed that the Hellenes “were fair-haired invaders from the North, who brought the Greek language with them” (History of Western Philosophy, 1946).

We see the reason that these people were originally nomadic. Any time society becomes anchored to one spot, imitators and sycophants show up and become passively parasitic, using the same methods as those who came before them, but without the same drive for results. When society becomes wealthy, it can have more of these people, and soon overburdens itself and more than collapses, fades into irrelevance through incompetence, inefficiency, disorder, confusion, narcissism and internal conflict.

As the ruins fall, a small group of people who stuck with the time-honored ways of thinking and thus could organize their methods so that imitation did not overwhelm their ability to think, dusts itself off, heads to a new place, and starts a civilization again. They know they will be impoverished and struggling for a long time, but then, their birthright will assert itself through their abilities, and they will create a new great civilization and maybe get a few centuries of use out of it before it, too, succumbs to human entropy.

Dot-Com 3.0 Collapse Is Here And Will End Western Economies

Thursday, July 6th, 2017

As mentioned frequently here before over the past few cheerfully oblivious years of manic investment in technologies of dubious value, the great collapse has finally gone mainstream:

Last month Robert Bouroujerdi, chief investment officer at Goldman Sachs, and most definitely someone who does remember the last dotcom boom, published a report in which he cautioned of the growing risks presented by the meteoric rise of the Big Five tech behemoths: Apple, Amazon, Facebook, Alphabet and Microsoft.

Bouroujerdi noted that in the year to the start of June, these companies added a total of $600bn of market capitalisation – the equivalent of the gross domestic product of Hong Kong and South Africa combined. Parallels to the 1999-2000 crash are becoming increasingly evident, he said.

…Tech companies are deeply intertwined: when one falls it often takes scores of others down with it and often psychology dictates that the more a stock falls the more likely it is to fall further. Imagine rats scuttling for the exit on a sinking ship. No one wants to be caught inside a cabin and sink.

In other words, it is like a really successful strike when bowling: you hit the middle pins hard enough that they knock the outer pins down. Already we are seeing second- and third-tier tech companies quietly shutting the doors and sending everyone home, and a resulting mass exodus of those who lost the employment lottery in California to other states. But that is nothing compared to what is coming.

Bubbles in the market — huge wealth booms created between the time when the herd becomes fascinated with a New Thing and the time when they realize it is worthless — are classically compared to houses of cards. If any structural piece is removed, or the top crumbles, the whole thing falls in the classic domino effect where the fall of each piece triggers the instability of others.

On the other hand, bowling is an invisible dependency. There is no obvious link between the other pins and the central four. Yet when those pivotal pins go flying, the others go down like bystanders hit by shrapnel during a suicide bombing. Silicon Valley is a giant invisible dependency, not only within itself, but because much of our interlinked economy depends on Silicon Valley:

In 2014, Silicon Valley innovation workers produced $225,000 in added value per employee annually, according to an analysis by Collaborative Economics of federal data. The next closest in productivity was New York City, where tech workers produced an average of $205,000 in added value per year.

This creates tragic conditions where the economy cannot sustain a massive loss in value in Silicon Valley:

As a proportion of GDP, American corporate profits are higher than they have been at any time since 1929. Apple, Google, Amazon and their peers dominate today’s economy just as surely as US Steel, Standard Oil and Sears, Roebuck and Company dominated the economy of Roosevelt’s day.

…The McKinsey Global Institute, the consultancy’s research arm, calculates that 10% of the world’s public companies generate 80% of all profits. Firms with more than $1 billion in annual revenue account for nearly 60% of total global revenues and 65% of market capitalisation.

…The number of listed companies in America nearly halved between 1997 and 2013, from 6,797 to 3,485, according to Gustavo Grullon of Rice University and two colleagues, reflecting the trend towards consolidation and growing size.

And so we come to the ugly word consolidation. This happens when markets are dying, not thriving: the margins on what is being produced shrink as time goes on and the newness of the product fades, and since the big profits are no longer there, companies merge and acquire one another so that a few market-dominant firms can absorb whatever wealth is left in using ten-year-old or twenty-year-old ideas to churn out a product by rote.

We have seen radical compression of the markets over the past few years. The closing of American malls. The domination of the internet by Google (and technically non-profits that serve Google goals like Wikipedia). The tightening up of supply chains like Sysco. Grocery store mergers, and the simultaneous reduction in the number of big box store brands and increase in their territory. Everything is Walmart or Costco now.

With consolidation comes the bowling-pin effect. Hit any one of these sectors of the economy hard enough, and odds are that it will careen into another, and that into another. Hit a big enough sector and they all go down. Are you scared yet? Let us travel down memory lane to the last time that a giant bubble popped, namely the government-created housing crash of the early 2000s:

His most successful effort was to impose what were called “affordable housing” requirements on Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac in 1992. Before that time, these two government sponsored enterprises (GSEs) had been required to buy only mortgages that institutional investors would buy–in other words, prime mortgages–but Frank and others thought these standards made it too difficult for low income borrowers to buy homes. The affordable housing law required Fannie and Freddie to meet government quotas when they bought loans from banks and other mortgage originators.

At first, this quota was 30%; that is, of all the loans they bought, 30% had to be made to people at or below the median income in their communities. HUD, however, was given authority to administer these quotas, and between 1992 and 2007, the quotas were raised from 30% to 50% under Clinton in 2000 and to 55% under Bush in 2007. Despite Frank’s effort to make this seem like a partisan issue, it isn’t. The Bush administration was just as guilty of this error as the Clinton administration. And Frank is right to say that he eventually saw his error and corrected it when he got the power to do so in 2007, but by then it was too late.

…By 2002, Fannie and Freddie had bought well over $1 trillion of subprime and other low quality loans…As a result, in 2008, before the mortgage meltdown that triggered the crisis, there were 27 million subprime and other low quality mortgages in the US financial system. That was half of all mortgages. Of these, over 70% (19.2 million) were on the books of government agencies like Fannie and Freddie, so there is no doubt that the government created the demand for these weak loans; less than 30% (7.8 million) were held or distributed by the banks, which profited from the opportunity created by the government.

There are two parts to this disaster: the bowling ball, which was a relatively minor mortgage meltdown, and the pins, which were the vast investment by government and the many for-profit companies helping it. That ball was going to hit hard regardless, but the pins were set up to fall and so they took down other parts of the economy as well, stalling out the whole thing.

Imagine if that recession were a multiple of the one that is coming.

Just for fun, let us look at a true disaster scenario, the Great Depression:

This was a period when the American public discovered the stock market and dove in head first. Speculative frenzies formed in both the real estate markets and on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE). The lead-up to October 1929 saw equity prices rise to all-time high multiples of more than 30 times earnings, and the benchmark Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) increase 500% in just five years.

The NYSE bubble burst violently on Oct. 24th, 1929, a day that came to be known as Black Thursday. The following week brought Black Monday (Oct. 28) and Black Tuesday (Oct. 29); the DJIA fell more than 20% over those two days. The stock market would eventually fall almost 90% from its 1929 peak.

In other words, it was a typical bubble. The markets seemed to take off, and the herd rushed in for an orgy of rampant speculation just like they did in the California Gold Rush in 1848. But just like in that feeding frenzy, most people were losers and only a few walked away with the gold, and the ones who did best were the ones who got out early and transferred that money to other investments.

In the new California digital Gold Rush, you will most likely see the same thing: the 1% of 1% who are real winners here will be the people who got in early, grabbed the easy money, and then got out and put that money into something tangible and self-renewing like real estate, industry or agriculture. They do not mind that these new investments are not high yield; they are stable, and Silicon Valley is not.

The old Gold Rush made San Francisco a major city; the new Dot-Com mania has made it the center of the world, or at least its inhabitants think so.

Now let us consider some of those outer pins. There are several debt bombs looming. The first is the welfare/consumerism debt bomb, followed by the pension debt bomb, the entitlements debt bomb, the government debt bomb, the education bubble, the consumer debt bomb and the demand-side economics bubble.

With the “Me Generation” set to clock out and trigger a 50 megaton airburst of retirement obligations for government, there is no way our economy will survive. The wealth boom of the victorious Allies in WWII is going to come home to roost in 2020-2040 as the Baby Boomers die off, and since all of our wealth since has not matched it, the markets are going to re-adjust the value of the false wealth through a recession.

Add to that the fact that we are dependent on debt, both in public and private, to international banks and foreign nations, many of which are unstable, and you can see how there is a layer of bowling pins behind the bowling pins of our economy. When we go, they go. When they go, everything goes.

The best part is that almost no one understands how our society works, and so they are all oblivious to the actual risk we face:

It seems that that never have so many known so little about so much. In areas where most of America resides, no one gives much if any thought to the seamless integration of so many moving parts that allow them to transport themselves to the grocery store, and get food – to utilize a myriad of appliances, utilities, technologies, and conveniences independent of their skills, education, resources, etc.

Most people, it seems, do not ever think about what would happen to their ideology and lifestyle after about ten days if the trucks, trains, and airplanes were unable to deliver untold tons of everything like clockwork. Look at the behavior of the people in the face of a few days’ disruption because of a snow storm.

So we have prime conditions for an apocalyptic market endgame. Our debt was borrowed to fund worthless stuff, just like the housing bubble. Our products are aging and no longer good for high margin returns. Markets are consolidating to a few big actors, and they are often dependent on government. Individual consumers have over-invested in these scheme and taken on a huge debt load. The entire structure is propped up and waiting for just the right strike to disintegrate entirely.

On the plus side, we have known for years that modernity was not sustainable. Modernity began with our notions that we as individuals were more important than social, natural or divine order. That creates the groundwork for the trends, fads, and panicked stampedes that create this market boom-bust cycle just like in the Great Depression. Not to mention consumerism, vapidity, mountains of landfill, environmental holocausts and a growing sense of existential dread. The death of modernity will be painful, but a blessing in disguise.

Let’s go bowling!

Collective Insanity

Tuesday, July 4th, 2017

For those of you who sat in history class wondering what it was like to witness the fall of Rome or Angkor Wat, we now have an answer as to how they fell: everyone went crazy.

Often the simplest explanations are the best. We know that humans pick up ideas and behaviors from others, and that we imitate those who are successful, so it is no stretch to see that if people succeed while doing crazy things, others will imitate them. They will then get self-righteous about their insanity, and call others ignorant or crazy for not following them down the path to insanity.

This collective insanity is a type of prolonged trend, but its biological counterpart is the stampede. A stampede is both a response to a threat, and a fear-of-missing-out (FOMO) psychology that creates a tragedy of the commons: open space is needed to escape the threat, but each animal is afraid that another will get there first, so they all attempt to get there before the others.

Stampedes contain a certain irony in that in many cases, if they were simply pointed toward the predator, the threat would quickly be over. Instead, they show the effects of mass panic. Each individual is afraid less of the predators than of being trampled, and that others will escape and leave them behind to be eaten. And so, a race to consume space occurs, and this overwhelms every other impulse.

In the case of human stampedes, people respond to opportunity that is too good to be true, as is the case in most human scams. The civilization scam involves the fact that those who act emotionally and appeal to the herd will get ahead, like Justin Trudeau or Barack Obama, and so everyone imitates that model in the hope that they can rise above their level of competence.

Our current stampede began shortly after our civilization became materially successful owing to the rise of cities. Then came the middle class, who chafed at rules designed to preserve culture and civilization since these made commerce inefficient. Instead of asking whether commerce alone could be the center of civilization, the middle class organized to overthrow these rules.

First they made it trendy for “intellectuals” to worship the human form instead of the abstract ideals of the past through a cultural movement, paralleling 1968, called The Renaissance.™ Next they legitimized the idea of equality and the goal of society being to facilitate the dreams of the individual human with The Enlightenment,™ and followed that up with Romanticism in which the idea of the eternal won out to be fleeting sensations of significance found in human emotion.

After that, democracy came and — parallel to Athens in the days of its downfall — quickly began to dismantle culture, religion, heritage, caste, hierarchy, sex roles, family, and even sanity. It became a prole-driven world, where those with the simplest possible opinions and thus the most popular ones won out over any kind of history, logic, common sense or realistic practicality.

Now, most people resemble demons. They greedily endorse the crazy ideas of egalitarianism, and take delight in tearing down anything which is above the level of the average person. Every speech and writing must be made simplistic, music has to be a beat and a random melody line, politics has become a game of giving free things, and in everyday life, “me first” has replaced any kind of civility.

The behavior of the average person in the West is shocking and saddening, and they like that. In a crowd of equals, no one is important until they stand out by doing stunts or otherwise drawing attention to themselves, and so people like to be outrageous if they can. More importantly, they are cruel. They treat their children like possessions, and live for the temporary, because the less they care about and invest in anything outside of themselves, the more personal power they feel.

It seems as if the stampede to overthrow the kings has turned every person into a tyrant.

A few hold out. There is a remnant of people who are Western European in blood, chaste by nature, reflective of mind and who act toward what is good and beautiful instead of what is short term personal gain. But they are few, and the crowd gleefully shouts them down and dismantles whatever they do, once it finds it.

Even more, the herd behavior destroys things that the crowd loves. Any new patch of land becomes a neighborhood with good schools as the pioneers move in, but then everyone wants their share, and they elbow their way in or demand it from their politicians. But they have not changed their own internal traits, and thus their behaviors, so they continue to behave as they have, and quickly make it into the same ruin that everything else is. When the crowd arrives, whatever was new becomes old and mediocre, so that everyone can participate.

This is real end times stuff. Humanity is like a person in a leaky boat who spends most of his time bailing out the water coming in. That represents the constant infighting, corruption, unnecessary drama and incompetence of our society. He looks out in the water and just fifty yards away is a brand new boat. But there is risk in crossing the open water, so he stays and bails.

Our only hope is to kick a hole in the boat big enough that it sinks, so that we can then realize we have no other choice but to swim to the other boat if we want to live. That other boat will not be opposite of our present time, but represent the saner path we were on before we went down this path, and we will pick up where we left off and then improve that, instead of trying to patch the irreparable present.

Consumerism Arises From A “Circular Ponzi Scheme”

Thursday, June 15th, 2017

Very few understand the roots of consumerism and assume that it is a natural outgrowth of capitalism. In actuality, consumerism occurs when government regulates capitalism, and is done to create economic growth so that government becomes more powerful. Witness this intense video by Asher Edelman, a famed businessman:

He argues that giving tax breaks to the wealthy results in them spending only 5-10% of the money they are able to conserve, but that giving that money to the underclasses ensures that they will spend all of it and then some, “pump priming” the economy with an infusion of cash.

Government took this further and realized that it could borrow to find this money, then pay off the debt with the resulting increase in the value of its currency based on greater demand for that currency caused by its increased valuation based on perceived greater demand because of higher consumer spending.

This creates a circular Ponzi scheme: government pays citizens, who then buy tons of stuff, at which point the value of currency goes up; government borrows against that currency value, dumps more money on the citizens, then taxes everyone to make government more powerful; finally, it uses that tax money to pay off the loans — in theory — and then repeats the cycle again.

Growth powered by consumerism is responsible for globalism, most of the environmental damage that we have done, and overpopulation. In the name of making government powerful, capitalism and a permanent minority underclass have been employed as weapons of growth, which has resulted in an out-of-control spiral which will eventually crash, and come down hard.

Third Worldism

Saturday, June 10th, 2017

Most people exist in a comfortable bubble created by their ability to ignore long-term problems. This enables them to live in the midst of insanity and incompetence and still function, mainly because to them, events farther away than the next paycheck are as mystical as Zeus and as distant as Mars.

As a result, few of them recognize that their society has already collapsed, and that we are living in the stage after a social system breaks, where it slowly declines into third world status through disorder, corruption and incompetence.

If one understands history to be cyclic, it becomes clear that a cycle only arises when there is some starting point of sanity, from which events diverge, ultimately bottoming out and forcing a return to the start of that cycle. We know what works in the West:

  1. Ascendancy. We aspire to what is both realistic and “good,” in the sense of ongoing immutable goals like the transcendentals (“the good, the beautiful, and the true” plus “excellence”). Instead of looking backward and seeing what is convenient, popular and profitable, we look forward to what we can achieve, as seen by the best natural leaders among us. We put the intelligent and morally good on top instead of allowing the herd to rule through its numbers, because the herd always chooses short-term thinking. This prioritizes inner thought, such as moral and realistic reasoning, over external thought, or deference to what is already succeeding on a social and economic level.
  2. Tradition. The traditional society consists of a few core principles instead of a single idea like “equality.” It features a caste system, so that the best among us command culture; an aristocracy, so we have leaders instead of salesmen and actors; a hierarchy with internal competition, including open markets without a subsidy system based in government or a command economy; and finally, rule by culture itself, which requires strong nationalism or ethnic tribalism.

Those are the conditions of a Golden Age, and as we have deviated from them, our fortunes have waned. It has taken many centuries to fully visualize this mainly because we were cruising on the inertia of the past, most notably the vast number of talented and morally good people among us, but also our technology and military might.

Until we start heading back in that direction, not necessarily fully achieving it but moving toward it our hearts and minds and therefore gradually implementing it, we will head in the other direction, which is toward the bottom of the cycle, or a third world mentality that produces a society known for low levels of social order, hygiene, principles, wisdom, integrity and efficacy.

We can glimpse the nature of a third world society by observing attributes of it in already fallen societies:

Examining Arab warfare in this century leads to the conclusion that Arabs remain more successful in insurgent, or political warfare13—what T. E. Lawrence termed “winning wars without battles.”

…The barrage of criticism leveled at Samuel Huntington’s notion of a “clash of civilizations” in no way lessens the vital point he made—that however much the grouping of peoples by religion and culture rather than political or economic divisions offends academics who propound a world defined by class, race, and gender, it is a reality, one not diminished by modern communications.

Third world cultures reward those who are individualistic, or concerned with themselves first before others or principles. This leads to a mentality that pervades all levels of their activity:

In every society information is a means of making a living or wielding power, but Arabs husband information and hold it especially tightly. U.S. trainers have often been surprised over the years by the fact that information provided to key personnel does not get much further than them. Having learned to perform some complicated procedure, an Arab technician knows that he is invaluable so long as he is the only one in a unit to have that knowledge; once he dispenses it to others he no longer is the only font of knowledge and his power dissipates.

In an individualistic culture, there is no reason to share information because the goal is not to win the war, but for the individual to retain or expand his position of power. Comparisons to tyranny are apt here: the goal of power is power itself when power is not directed toward purpose and principle.

Through natural selection, this creates a population who excel at tasks that are defined for them, but are unable to reason:

Because the Arab educational system is predicated on rote memorization, officers have a phenomenal ability to commit vast amounts of knowledge to memory. The learning system tends to consist of on-high lectures, with students taking voluminous notes and being examined on what they were told. (It also has interesting implications for foreign instructors; for example, his credibility is diminished if he must resort to a book.) The emphasis on memorization has a price, and that is in diminished ability to reason or engage in analysis based upon general principles.

For this reason, third world societies tend to be “crab buckets” where people scramble for positions of power and wealth, and then treat these as sinecures, or entitlements through status, and ignore the task at hand. This leads them to use other people as means-to-an-end of not a goal, but of personal power, a condition known as “control” that is the mental state of tyranny.

Because of that, social order is impossible:

This is primarily a function of the fact that the enlisted soldiers simply do not trust their officers. Once officers depart the training areas, training begins to fall apart as soldiers begin drifting off. An Egyptian officer once explained to me that the Egyptian army’s catastrophic defeat in 1967 resulted from a lack of cohesion within units. The situation, he said, had only marginally improved in 1973. Iraqi prisoners in 1991 showed a remarkable fear and enmity toward their officers.

We see similar conditions in third world politics and policing. Politicians make promises and enrich themselves through corruption instead of delivering on those; police forces tend to view their role as a chance for bribes rather than a function in itself. Government and companies fall apart because of lack of cohesion, and quality is low across the board, mirroring the problems seen in their militaries.

This creates a society of obedient and conformist people who are oblivious to the consequences of their actions or the possible benefits to be obtained for society at large through fulfillment of their roles:

Decisions are made and delivered from on high, with very little lateral communication. This leads to a highly centralized system, with authority hardly ever delegated. Rarely does an officer make a critical decision on his own; instead, he prefers the safe course of being identified as industrious, intelligent, loyal—and compliant. Bringing attention to oneself as an innovator or someone prone to make unilateral decisions is a recipe for trouble. As in civilian life, conformism is the overwhelming societal norm; the nail that stands up gets hammered down. Orders and information flow from top to bottom; they are not to be reinterpreted, amended, or modified in any way.

I have excerpted the portions of this article that reflect widespread third world behaviors, and left out some specifics which belong to Arab cultures.

The broader point is that in highly individualistic societies, external factors matter more than internal factors. This is how they got to a third world state: their society advanced to the point where playing the game and working the system became more important than efficacy in the real world. All civilizations create these false targets and die by them.

We can see similar things happening in the postwar West:

Buchanan’s assessment of the impact of the defeat in Vietnam on American society has real power to it: “The American establishment that led us to victory in World War II … would never recover from Vietnam, never regain the confidence of the nation. For Vietnam was not an unwinnable war for a country that had reduced the Japanese empire to smoldering ruins in four years. … The simple truth is the American establishment lost the war in Vietnam because it lacked the will to win it.”

This is where Buchanan’s philosophy begins. The country that Nixon inherited in 1969 was “no longer one nation and one people, but a land divided by war and race and culture and politics.” The Establishment was feckless, guilt-driven, hypocritical.

In third world systems, this domination by external thought creates people more interested in advancing themselves within the system than in achieving results in the world outside of the system. This is why the Americans lacked the will to fight complex wars: there was too much infighting as individuals tried to rise above others by using the existing (false) hierarchy.

The doorway to third worldism begins with the creation of a system that prioritizes the individual over purpose, and therefore, incentivizes people to work against each other, eventually destroying the idea of purpose and goal itself. This mentality exists within a cluster of traits and methods: democracy, egalitarianism, Crowdism, solipsism, Leftism, individualism (DECSLI).

In the grips of these, the West collapsed. World War Two was its last attempt to solve its problems before giving in to the inertia of the philosophies which had become socially popular in a wave starting with The Enlightenment™ and formalized during the French Revolution.

While Hollywood spins us collapse fantasies based on single terrifying events, like nuclear war or giant storms, the reality is that collapse of the West is easy to predict: we will become Brazil.

Collapse means the loss of higher civilization and the return to the natural default state of humanity, which is third world style subsistence living while being ruled by self-interested (individualistic) overlords.

There will be strong corporations, limited by their ability to find talented people among the new pool of mixed race, beige, mid-90s average IQ people. These will thus be profitable but bloated and ineffective, hampered by corruption which will take 30% of every deal right off the top.

That will eliminate the ability to invest in the future, and so innovation will stagnate and basically die off.

The rich will have enclaves protected by private security. This will usually work, until someone figures out how to bribe private security and then kill the rich and take their wealth. Governments will do their best to milk the rich until they run into crisis, at which point they will liquidate them and take their stuff as happened during the French Revolution and its Terror, which will leave the civilization with fewer capable people and continue the slow grind into irrelevance.

Places like Brazil are eternal. Everything always gets worse, but at such a low level, this has little effect on daily life. People will still have jobs. Most of them will not lose their lives in violent crime, but all will be victimized. As a result, people will become extraordinarily selfish, and the grinding will continue.

Societies like this can continue indefinitely. If a stronger force comes along, they will be conquered. Otherwise, they will exist in mediocrity and steadily breed out anyone who can tell the difference, creating a vast population of selfish oblivious incompetents whose only salvation is that they are not mentally equipped to notice how bad things are or how much easily they could be better.

Third worlding is part of the civilization cycle, and the only stable points of this cycle are at the top in a Golden Age or at the bottom in the default state of humankind, which is selfish mediocrity.

Leftism is a rationalization of decline that also furthers decline. Like most diseases, it is both its own cause and the force that makes it grow in power. It shapes people to make them ready for existing in a third world state where they will spend all of their energy focused on themselves, and be unaware of what goes on around them. People revert to a yeastlike state of mind.

These societies are the most individualistic places on earth. Individuals have jobs and almost no other obligations. Most of them will report being happy with life, until told that they can have more through redistribution. Then they enthusiastically vote Leftist, furthering the hold that mediocrity has on the society.

If the West is to resist this process, it must accept that it is already well on this path, and needs to fundamentally change from its egalitarian assumptions if it is to restore itself.

Democracy Became Obsolete And Is Now Being Replaced

Friday, June 9th, 2017

More than simply those on the Left, the people who have an interest in our society continuing as it is are warning of a threat to democracy via gradual dismantling:

Post–Cold War populists such as Chávez, Putin, and Erdogan took a slow and steady approach to dismantling democracy. These leaders first come to power through democratic elections and subsequently harness widespread discontent to gradually undermine institutional constraints on their rule, marginalize the opposition, and erode civil society. The playbook is consistent and straightforward: deliberately install loyalists in key positions of power (particularly in the judiciary and security services) and neutralize the media by buying it, legislating against it, and enforcing censorship. This strategy makes it hard to discern when the break with democracy actually occurs, and its insidiousness poses one of the most significant threats to democracy in the twenty-first century.

While it is dubious to link socialists like Chavez with anti-Leftists like Putin and possibly Erdogan, the methods used in the twenty-first century respond to the new reality of democracy: it is enforced by a herd of people who are orchestrated by media and well-funded NGOs, so the only way to avoid being taken over by those groups is to dismantle democracy from the ground up.

A top-down approach would be to seize power, replace democratic decision-making, and then sort out the little details. The new method involves attacking the details first, removing the infrastructure that democracy uses to keep a mental stranglehold on the population and constantly push them Leftward. Without that structure, democracy does not so much fall as stand revealed as already fallen.

One thing we should keep in mind is that democracy was always an illusion. It was kept afloat by the wealth, power and inventions of the past, plus a rising tide of industrialization. As our technology seems to have mostly peaked, and government has expanded to absorb the extra income from industry, our societies are mostly paralyzed, and the bad decisions made by democracy can finally really hurt us.

Any political system takes years to manifest its disadvantages, and rises on what was before it, so it is a gradual process of its adoption followed by an even slower process as consequences distinguish themselves from longstanding problems. With democracy, it has become clear that the herd is not to be trusted, and has made an utter mess of things.

You will find that all the “good thinker” citizens are in total denial of this. For them, things have never been better, or at least this is what they insist, because the psychological alternative is to accept that their lives are being wasted on a dead-end system. They are financially, socially and most importantly psychologically vested in the system.

At the same time, rising generations and drop-outs from older generations like Generation X — most of whom seem to be languishing in slacker jobs in smaller cities — are not vested in the system and see their only chance of future happiness in its replacement. Since they realize that most people, when given the vote, will vote for something like this system, they are turning on democracy.

Perhaps this is why more than populist leaders, it is this cutting edge of popular cultural revolt that is turning against democracy and toward a “fash wave” of pre-modern thought and ideals:

People everywhere are down on democracy. Especially young people. In fact, so rampant is democratic indifference and disengagement among millennials that a shocking share of them are open to trying something new—like, say, government by military coup.

That’s according to research by Yascha Mounk, a Harvard University researcher, and Roberto Stefan Foa, a political scientist at the University of Melbourne. The remit of their study, which the Journal of Democracy will publish in January, analyzes historical data on attitudes toward government that spans various generations in North America, Western Europe, Australia, and New Zealand. They find that, across the board, citizens of stable liberal democracies have grown jaded about their government, say Mounk and Foa—and worse.

“[T]hey have also become more cynical about the value of democracy as a political system, less hopeful that anything they do might influence public policy,” they write in a previous article on their research (pdf) published in Jul. 2016, “and more willing to express support for authoritarian alternatives.

People recognize that systems do not work because systems are self-serving.

All creatures, genes, ideas and groups act in self-interest. This varies with their degree of awareness, which since we are no longer under the thrall of egalitarianism we can admit varies widely between individuals and groups. In most cases, their awareness is short term, which means they act for themselves at the expense of civilization, principles and the future.

This is what a prole revolt does: it equalizes short-term thinking with long-term thinking, and so short-term thinking wins out every time. This is why democracy drifts leftward and self-destructs after a handful of centuries. Much as Athens and Rome self-destructed through democracy, the postwar West — the ruins of the Old West — is currently self-destructing, and people want off that path.

As the saying goes, “The West is dead; long live the West!” We are remnants of a once-great people scattered among the detritus of its fall, and we wish to rise to power, throw out the walking dead and restore what once made us great, which is our genetic stock and our principle of social order and future orientation.

Part of the cultural wave that includes the Alt Right, the anti-democratic sentiment sweeping the West consists of a single revelation: we cannot fix ourselves so long as we rely on mass opinion systems like democracy and consumerism. A few do know better than the rest, and if left up to their own devices, people will act in self-interest at the expense of our future.

Even more, people are seeing that democracy has brought misery. It shapes people into wimpy nebbishes and inculcates us in learned helplessness. It spreads existential despair as it becomes obvious that nothing will change if left up to the herd. It distills everything — art, architecture, culture — down to a lowest common denominator, which like all things herd-chosen is ugly.

The solution is not to swing toward dictatorship and purge the weak. It is to restore the order that has always produced golden ages, which is a society based on doing what the best see as right, instead of what is already popular or profitable. When we orient ourselves toward the future, we see the value of the inconvenient, and sidestep decay by aspiring to greatness.

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