Pics or It Didn’t Happen
To learn more about Epsilon Theory and be notified when we release new content sign up here. You’ll receive an email every week and your information will never be shared with anyone else.
The Latest From Epsilon Theory
This commentary is being provided to you as general information only and should not be taken as investment advice. The opinions expressed in these materials represent the personal views of the author(s). It is not investment research or a research recommendation, as it does not constitute substantive research or analysis. Any action that you take as a result of information contained in this document is ultimately your responsibility. Epsilon Theory will not accept liability for any loss or damage, including without limitation to any loss of profit, which may arise directly or indirectly from use of or reliance on such information. Consult your investment advisor before making any investment decisions. It must be noted, that no one can accurately predict the future of the market with certainty or guarantee future investment performance. Past performance is not a guarantee of future results.Statements in this communication are forward-looking statements. The forward-looking statements and other views expressed herein are as of the date of this publication. Actual future results or occurrences may differ significantly from those anticipated in any forward-looking statements, and there is no guarantee that any predictions will come to pass. The views expressed herein are subject to change at any time, due to numerous market and other factors. Epsilon Theory disclaims any obligation to update publicly or revise any forward-looking statements or views expressed herein. This information is neither an offer to sell nor a solicitation of any offer to buy any securities. This commentary has been prepared without regard to the individual financial circumstances and objectives of persons who receive it. Epsilon Theory recommends that investors independently evaluate particular investments and strategies, and encourages investors to seek the advice of a financial advisor. The appropriateness of a particular investment or strategy will depend on an investor’s individual circumstances and objectives.
Since I comment regularly (probably too much for most people’s taste) and don’t say, “I thought that before you said it” often (most of the time, I don’t even understand it the first time Ben or Rusty says it), it won’t seem made up here, but I’ve been thinking for some time that Team Elite has to destroy the credibility of picture and video evidence as you can already feel that starting to happen with some trial-balloon articles I’ve read (but don’t remember where).
Oddly, IMO, it was the Al Franken picture that deeply alerted Team Elite to the risks and need to destroy picture and video evidence. While he made my skin crawl before that pic surfaced, he was toast once it did. It appears he was considered a rising liberal star, so his demise really anger the left which - once the left saw the damage it did - took a lot of steam out of the doing-very-good-work MeToo movement.
Sorry if this is partisan, but I believe it’s accurate - too many important liberals where being brought down by MeToo (and photos) for the left to let it go on. I’m sure Trump and others on the right taking body blows from MeToo and pics were and will be happy to play along, but the catalyst was when MeToo started gunning down important liberals.
Ben, I hope you’re right about DLT’s capabilities to stop Team Elite from undermining picture and video evidence because, otherwise, we will have lost, what is possibly, the last tool for preventing Team Elite’s complete ascendancy and permanency as “our betters.”
You can root for Sergeant Slaughter, you can root for the Iron Sheik. Either way your money is going in Vince McMahon’s pocket. Vince knows how lucrative a rivalry can be and does what he can to keep it healthy.
Similar to the “existential crisis” maneuver, a pundit’s announcement of some kind of “tipping point” is often a red flag that you’re being sold something.
I am not sold on anything crypto yet, maybe a future version but not the illusion we see currently that is nothing but libertarian fantasy…
Vargas: Should you have jurisdiction of cryptocurrency?
Powel: “That’s a deep question (struggling). We’re not seeking it.”
Vargas: “But should you?”
Powell: “I’m not going to say ‘yes’ today. We’re not looking to… you know, it’s right in the middle of the SEC’s turf, the investor protection aspects of it, I think Treasury and Fincen (Financial Crimes Enforcement Network) and other people have… I think it should be well-regulated, but I don’t see us as the right group to do that.”
I still think that cryptocurrencies are more like a religion or a cult than a rational economic phenomenon. They are a lousy investment.
I still await my enlightenment. —Jon Danielsson
Taking our data back is an initiative in the right direction but…Unfortunately, in a relatively hierarchical, stratified society, which ours still is (there aren’t that many chairs for senior executives) that means a majority of the population is being shoved around quite a lot.
Maybe the first step in societies evolution is a new algorithm of thinking…Algorithmic complexity cannot be computed for most objects, but it can be approximated to, say, study gene regulatory networks. Recent work suggests that researchers might improve genetic algorithms by biasing evolution in favor of changed that lower their algorithmic complexity. “Algorithms to Live By - Computer Science of Human Decisions” by Brian Cristian and Tom Griffiths
I get the distributed ledger stuff, it moves us in the right direction…from a recent podcast I listened to. It might help get people in the right frame of mind.
Dan Smith, “but poker players call it ‘leveling.’ Level one is ‘I know.’ Two is ‘you know that I know.’ Three, ‘I know that you know that I know.’ There are situations where it just comes up where you are like, ‘Wow, this is a really silly spot to bluff but if he knows that it is a silly spot to bluff then he won’t call me and that’s where it’s the clever spot to bluff.’
A dominant strategy is the best one no matter what your opponent does.
Asking someone what they want to do, or giving them lots of options, sounds nice, but it usually isn’t. It usually transfers a burden, from you to them. Don’t transfer burdens. Give them simple options where most of the work is already done.
People are almost always confronting what computer science regards as the hard cases. Up against such hard cases, effective algorithms make assumptions, show a bias toward simpler solutions, trade off the costs of error against the costs of delay, and take chances. These aren’t the concessions we make when we can’t be rational. They’re what being rational means.
Multiple COA’s is Optimum, Two is one and One is None! Two is one and one is none’ doesn’t just mean get two things. It means have at least two ways to perform a certain function, which when combined, will expand your capabilities beyond what having one will do.
Deepfakes are getting awfully good — https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_continue=72&v=cQ54GDm1eL0
Almost makes you wonder if the technology was released in the wild just to allow plausible deniability to Team Elite…
(So I am guilty (also of over-posting) - I suggested the Lolita Express logs were ‘doctored’ (which of course is not yet Common Knowledge since no missionary has, as yet, come forth.))
How do we determine whether a missionary is a truth-sayer, a psy-op, or a sycophant? Or does that not matter as long as we recognize their status as a missionary in the Common Knowledge conundrum?
The Clinton flights aren’t a new story — https://www.foxnews.com/us/flight-logs-show-bill-clinton-flew-on-sex-offenders-jet-much-more-than-previously-known
I worked in a place where by luck or by action the management succeeded in suppressing a vibrant, connected or “viral” rumor mill and general “engagement” of employees in what’s happening “above” — to me it was a very, very siloed place. But I’d worked in places where there were strong silos yet rumors and “information” would pass freely, energetically and easily between people, departments, teams because we all knew we were just cogs in the wheel and it was fun to hear about and speculate on the validity of latest gossip or generate gossip too based on some minor amount of info (like seeing your boss’ or their boss’ calendars and then speculate on what might be going on).
However, where I worked recently, the first I might hear of a major event or change would be the announcement of the event or from someone else well after it occurred and the associated backstory had minimal details or information. Someone was just asked to leave etc. And people there were resigned to “well there’s a lot of turnover here” or “constant change here”; so in essence people had been desensitized to major changes in their company even though that factor was affecting their jobs tremendously.
So there, senior people had no accountability to make positive changes or had no balancing factor to their whims; there was no fear of the lower people being unhappy. “Morale” was a non issue for them because it didn’t go viral - even if the whole company’s morale was in the dumps the silos were strong enough to stop a psychological mutiny because everyone was disconnected and had weak or no discussions on and information about the future. It didn’t occur to people to keep track of and talk in depth to others about potential future changes as THE factor driving their work experience.
Obvious I guess but makes me think, silos are powerful and keep us from vibrantly pondering what’s next from above.
Doesn’t fit quite exactly here, but here Scott Galloway alludes to images of Khashoggi facing a bone saw getting our neurons firing in the same way your memes do, and also I’m seeing “Video!” here and Team Elite as the USA Inc. Board of Directors and wow, would MBS et al scream “Fake!” if such a video ever were to surface…
"There is a time when it no longer makes sense to invest in a brand, but to harvest it: reduce marketing expenditures for the purpose of maximizing cash flow. The euro, Cadillac, Campbells, Outback Steakhouse, Crocs, and the Clintons are all brands whose stakeholders have decided to milk them while their owners see better places to invest. If the US were a company, it would appear that its board (fiduciaries for stakeholders) had consciously decided to harvest the brand. Adding a trillion in debt and not making the requisite investments in the brand association of moral leadership when the economy is strong are the equivalent of a private-equity guy on your board deciding, “We need to get our money out even if it constrains future growth.”
This isn’t necessarily the wrong strategy. It all comes down to one question: Is the US a growing or mature brand?
The capital allocation reflects fiduciaries (our leadership) representing the 1%, who have given clear instructions: “If the brand survives, great … but we want our money out, now.” However, there is also a large cohort of people, from both parties, who believe the US is a growth brand that warrants continued investment. Fiscal responsibility and moral leadership are expensive, and worth it.
The US needs to suspend all arms sales, freeze assets, and impose sanctions against Saudi Arabia. The easiest way to validate this notion is to call on millions of neurons, informed by the history and code of the strongest brand in the world, the US. How to summon the neurons? Easy, think of two words: 1. Bone 2. Saw."
If you ask me, everyone already knows that everyone knows that both Trump & Clinton are womanizers. The Access Hollywood tape, Monica Lewinsky, etc, etc, etc. It is already part of the common knowledge surrounding both of them, and yet they both still win support from broad swathes of the country. To me, the thing that is not common knowledge yet is that our criminal justice system has been consumed by politics - to the point that it is now a farce when someone powerful enough ends up running afoul of it. It’s not easy to change people’s common knowledge about the justice system because it is part of the foundation of our society, most of us have too much to lose if we burn it down.
Continue the discussion at the Epsilon Theory Forum