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A New Road to Serfdom

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Comments

  1. Taking back our votes, taking back our data, taking back our autonomy of minds, etc…these are some of the ‘non-violent avenues of redress’ still available to us. But they are self-focused. And quiet. As Pack members, it is our responsibility to do more.

    We must Howl.

  2. Avatar for bhunt bhunt says:

    Howl. I like that!

  3. Avatar for jz1 jz1 says:

    In engineering, the order of the system is defined by how far back the system’s current output depends on historical inputs or stored states.
    The elite with high order brain power play games with the crowd who normally just remember what happened during last netflix episode.
    As long as we all accept there are high order thinking humans and low order thinking humans, the game will be played for ever. I see no hope in resisting by the crowd. Just play along and the game will reach a natural ending when finally the low order thinking crowd wake up and starts killing who pissed them off 1 minute ago and nobody will pay attention to how the game was set up 20 years back.
    That’s why the occupy wall street ended without being occupy central banks because it was too cold in winter for anybody to sit outside and we all need to go back to work to get paid a paycheck to get by next month.

    ET illuminated the common knowledge game and how it is played out across years of time frame. The low order thinking of me will forget about all of this next time my son gets a fever. And yet the elite will keep playing while we all sleep, eat, work, get sick.

    Thanks guys.

  4. Another excellent analysis and dissection of a disturbing trend. The past doesn’t necessarily repeat, but it echos and rhymes. I think J Z highlights a good point. Long term thinkers will always look to take advantage of the power in numbers that short term thinkers possess. One of the characteristics of short term thinkers is not looking down the road to see how something can go wrong. The fail to consider how a reasonable idea today can be corrupted into a future tragedy. An engineering professor I had summed up risk and reward for the engineering profession: “If you do a really good job, you will get a certificate suitable for framing and maybe an (small) equity award. When you screw up, people will die.” He then taught us how to do Failure Mode and Effect Analysis (FMEA). It taught us how to look at all the potential ways that a system could fail, what the consequences of that failure could be, how likely it was to occur, how expensive it was to prevent and then to prioritize the failures that would be the most likely, most catastrophic, or least costly to avoid.

    I don’t believe that anyone or any group of people look to empower a Despotic Strong Man. They simply fail to see how the benevolent dictator could turn into the despot. Typically, it’s not the same individual or group that changes from benevolent to despotic. The power gets vested with the benevolent and then the despotic realize that the power and control they need is available in that role, so they get appointed, elected or assigned to that position. The short term thinkers never imagine that a non-benevolent actor could take over the power, so they don’t prevent it from being granted in the first place.

    This lens is what makes me believe that the framers of the Constitution were engineers and long term thinkers. They built our system of government to be robust, redundant and self-correcting. Over time, the system has been weakened by short term thinkers. In the name of expediency and convenience, they have disabled, bypassed, or removed the safety measures. It didn’t happen all at once and no individual action seemed like a big deal, but when all of them are combined and the current system is subjected to a FMEA analysis, it becomes clear the system is much less robust and has lost much of its ability to self correct.

    Key Ideas:
    Liberty Dies with Thunderous Applause
    A Republic, if you can keep it.
    Falsehood flies and the Truth comes limping after it.

    My $0.02

  5. Thanks Rusty. " A New Road to Serfdom" is a wonderful example of what makes Epsilon so essential. Climate coverage in the media
    is the epitome of fiat news. Nearly everything we see or hear about climate is opinion stated as fact. The idea of giving the central
    banks of the world a mandate to target the composition of the atmosphere in order to maintain a preferred global temperature is beyond ludicrous. The planet doesn’t have one climate fits all. The United States alone has many different climatic regions.
    I lived in Maryland for 40 years. The average annual temperature there is 58.5 degrees F, which interestingly enough is the global mean
    temperature. Now I live in northern Florida where the average annual temperature is 67.6 degrees, 9 degrees higher than my former home. Yet somehow the people who want to plan our future believe that a 2 or 3 degree rise in temperature from now to the year
    2100 is an existential threat to humanity. That would be a big improvement for Maryland’s climate as far as I’m concerned but still
    not as pleasant as where I live now. But Rusty, as someone who moved from Texas to Connecticut, maybe your climate preferences
    are different from mine, To each his own. But one thing we agree on for sure, the central banks of the world have no business getting involved in climate discussions or policy.

  6. So just to be clear, CBs will get greater and greater control over our lives, and when that fails, a strong man will then take over. But happily, social media will color it with butterflies and puppy dogs??? Anybody else want OFF from this train?

  7. The saddest thing about this article might not be anything you’ve written. The saddest thing is that I don’t think I know a single person my age, maybe not anyone at all save perhaps one 55 yr old coworker, that I can convince to strain their patience or attention span reading this.

  8. 100% would not have commented if I knew my real name would be displayed instead of the nickname on my profile. WTF

  9. Two things:

    1. This piece brought to mind the Tragedy of the Commons (TotC) and the first woman to win the Nobel Prize in Economics, the late Dr. Elinor Ostrom (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Elinor_Ostrom#Research). I can’t do her justice here but in short, her data showed preventing a TotC often hinges on engaging a “diversity of institutions” comparable in complexity to whatever Commons is being protected. Global warming is about as complex a Commons as possible, so managing it (if we decide to try) would probably require a many-layered solution (i.e. a diversity of social institutions, from local to global). Is there a role for central banks there, hypothetically? Sure; if only to ensure their policies aren’t actively exacerbating the problem. Does that require a Fed mandate? I don’t know. I do know no one can solve this alone, not even a dictator. Our choice, it seems, is between cooperative management or unbridled anthropogenic climate change. No fun either way.

    2. To the commentors who conflate climate change/global warming with their local average air temperature: What’s really being measured is average global SURFACE temperature, which includes land and ocean temps. It’s ocean temps you need to worry about, because water’s mass & specific heat capacity give it vastly higher storage & transmission capacity than either land or air. Ninety percent of the CO2-induced warming, globally, over the last 50 years has been stored by the ocean (https://tos.org/oceanography/article/the-oceans-role-in-climate). All that extra warmth is transmissible (back to you) via evaporation, circulatory changes, ice loss, sea-level rise, acidification, etc. These have powerful downstream ramifications on habitat, food supply and (least important) average air temp. Think of the ocean as a vast, heavy centrifuge with its temperature being how fast it’s spinning (i.e. how powerful it is). When something so vast accelerates this quickly (relative to historical data and the timescale of evolutionary species/habitat adaptation), it merits attention. Given mass-dampening effects, it seems we won’t even see the full impact of past pollution within our lifetimes. Our grandchildren will.

    So, let’s not be too quick to cry Fiat News! just because 5% of articles mentioning central banks also mention climate change. A better question would be: Why aren’t 5% of articles about EVERY major industry mentioning it?

  10. Avatar for tany tany says:

    Perhaps I don’t understand you JZ, are you saying that we have to accept that people are either “high order” thinkers or “low order” thinkers due to some biological or physical trait?

    If so, why must we accept that argument? Could we not equally explain the behavior and different awareness horizons you described as a product of the output of different personal realities? That is, those with more money and power have more time to think deeply about issues and more incentive to do so, so they do. Meanwhile those with less money and less power have less time and less incentive to think deeply about issues and thus do not.

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