Category Archives: Economy

Afghanistan And The Sunk-Cost Fallacy

Argument, Democrats, Economy, Foreign Policy, Homeland Security, Military, Neoconservatism, Republicans, War

Joe Biden is right in his “Remarks on Afghanistan“: “… if Afghanistan is unable to mount any real resistance to the Taliban now, there is no chance that 1 year — 1 more year, 5 more years, or 20 more years of U.S. military boots on the ground would’ve made any difference.”

Tempting as it may be for right-thinking conservatives and paleolibertarians, in particular, to use the inevitable collapse of the charade in Afghanistan against Biden—honesty demand we avoid it.

TV Republicans, no doubt, will join the shrill CNN females and their houseboys, who love nothing more than to export the nanny state, in bashing Biden for his decisive withdrawal. The president said, “I stand squarely behind my decision. After 20 years, I’ve learned the hard way that there was never a good time to withdraw U.S. forces.”

Falling into the Republican line of partisan, tit-for-tat retorts is wrong. The man made the right choice—as opposed to Barack Obama’s. Afghanistan was a war Obama had adopted.

Beware especially the military men, who will flood Fox New with the sunk-cost fallacy. As I explained in “GOP Should Grow A Brain, Join The Peace Train“:

Military movers and shakers are heavily vested in the sunk-cost fallacy—the irrational notion that more resources must be committed forthwith … so as to ‘redeem’ the original misguided commitment of men, money and materiel to the mission.

“To that end, repeated ad nauseam is the refrain about our ‘brave men and women of the military,’ whose sacrifice for [Afghani] ‘freedoms’ will be squandered unless more such sacrifices are made.

The Skeptic’s Dictionary dispels this illogic: ‘To continue to invest in a hopeless project is irrational. Such behavior may be a pathetic attempt to delay having to face the consequences of one’s poor judgment. The irrationality is a way to save face, to appear to be knowledgeable, when in fact one is acting like an idiot.’

Besides, it’s time the military heed its paymasters, The American People, a majority of whom don’t want to send U.S. soldiers back into Afghanistan.”

 

 

 

 

NEW COLUMN: Justice Thomas’ Solution to Big Tech’s Social And Financial Excommunication

Argument, Economy, Individual Rights, Technology, The State

NEW COLUMN IS “Justice Thomas’ Solution to Big Tech’s Social And Financial Excommunication.

The column is currently on WND.COM, The Unz Review, Townhall.com, The New American and CNSNews.com.

The column is Part 2 of a 3-part series. Read Part 1, “Big Tech’s Financial Terrorism And Social Excommunication.”

An excerpt:

Fox News personality Tucker Carlson has vowed to stay chipper. This is not sufficient a solution from so powerful a persona as Mr. Carlson.

The requisite and fitting noblesse oblige comes from Justice Clarence Thomas.

As one of the few public intellectuals to grasp the gravity of social and financial excommunication by Deep Tech (to denote Big Tech’s enmeshment with The State), and for proposing a way to prohibit wicked social and financial ouster of innocents—Justice Thomas is my hero.

To blabber on about simply finding alternative outlets to Amazon, Facebook, Twitter, Google, Apple, PayPal and other banking facilities is asinine verging on the criminal. Coming from political representatives, such advice ought to guarantee loss of face, even political expulsion.

The ordinary guy or girl (check) is told to go up against economic and political entities whose revenues exceed the GDP of quite a number of G20 nations combined.

“It changes nothing that these platforms are not the sole means for distributing speech or information,” inveighs Justice Thomas:

“A person could always choose to avoid the toll bridge or train and instead swim the Charles River or hike the Oregon Trail. But in assessing whether a company exercises substantial market power, what matters is whether the alternatives are comparable. For many of today’s digital platforms, nothing is.”

I’d go further. It would hardly be hyperbole, in driving home Justice Thomas’s ingenious point, to put it thus:

With respect to financial de-platforming, barring someone from PayPal is like prohibiting a passenger from crossing the English Channel by high-speed train, via ferry and by means of 90 percent of airplanes.

“Sure, some options remain for you to explore, you hapless loser. Go to it!” …

… READ THE REST on WND.COM, The Unz Review, Townhall.com, The New American and CNSNews.com.

Next Week: Part 3, “Mercer & Mystery Man’s Big-Tech Solutions.”


 

NEW COLUMN: Big Tech’s Financial Terrorism And Social Excommunication (Part 1: The Problem)

Business, Economy, Individual Rights, Law, Paleolibertarianism, Political Economy, Regulation, Republicans, Technology

NEW COLUMN is “Big Tech’s Financial Terrorism And Social Excommunication (Part 1: The Problem).” It is currently on WND, Towhnhall.com, The Unz Review, and CNSNews.com

Excerpt:

Republican solutions to Big Tech tyranny do not begin to address financial de-platforming, the cancellation of citizen dissidents en masse, including the infringement of the right to partake in the public square and make a living.

In their weak case against Deep Tech (“Deep” to denote enmeshment with The State), Republicans are still defending only some speech on the “merits,” rather than all speech, no matter how meritless.

In a sense, the statist anti-trust bills—targeting especially Apple, Amazon, Facebook and Google—being pushed by lawmakers are worse than useless.

The anti-trust impetus is misguided as it conflates corporate size with anti-competitive practices: the larger, the more monopolistic. However, reducing the size of an entity–a corporation–doesn’t necessarily alter its nature.

When a malignant cell divides, it doesn’t grow less potent. To the contrary, it innervates and enervates more spheres. Likewise breaking up Big Tech. Smaller malignancies metastasize and kill just as well.

The habitual failure of the representatives sent by Deplorables to D.C. to prevent cancellation en masse–the Orwellian nightmare from unraveling–cannot be understated. On the line is dissidents’ ability to speak, publish, partake in society; sell our cultural products, and transact financially over the country’s major online economic and social arteries.

No wonder the Tech crooks appear periodically on The Hill to make fun of the country’s comical representatives and their gullible, pliable voters. The richest man in the world, Jeff Bezos, has no qualms about letting his delivery drivers, who, “operate under severe [app monitored] time constraints,” urinate in bottles for fear of losing their low-wage jobs.

Do you think the dim bulbs in Congress, posturing for the cameras, scare his ilk?

Do not forget that anti-trust busting or the repealing of Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act are solutions the GOP had failed to implement when in control of both chambers and the presidency.

It was under Republican control that de-platforming (of a president, no less), the banning of legions of powerless dissident citizens, including detrimental financial de platforming, “occurred.”

Given this incontrovertible reality, The People have an obligation to quit the “my party, right or wrong” unconditional love, and demand the GOP work to unban ordinary, innocent folks, the crooked politicians be damned….

... READ THE REST. NEW COLUMN is “Big Tech’s Financial Terrorism And Social Excommunication (Part 1: The Problem).” It is currently on WND, Towhnhall.com, The Unz Review, and CNSNews.com

UPDATED: My solutions, presented next week, are not going to exist, as I like to say, in the arid arena of pure thought.

*Image courtesy WND.

By The Numbers: The Biggest Losers From Covid-19

COVID-19, Economy, Healthcare, Labor, Populism

The Economist on “The biggest losers from covid-19,” by the numbers:

… death rate from covid-19 in the neighbourhood with the most essential workers was more than twice as high as in the one with the fewest. A study in California found that people of working age saw a 22% increase in mortality from March to October 2020. But bakers saw mortality rise by 50%, and line cooks by 60%. One class of people stayed home in their pyjamas; others went into workplaces that probably killed them.

“DURING THE pandemic one part of the workforce did not get to wear pyjamas during the day or join in marathon sessions of ‘Tiger King’. The people known as ‘key’, ‘frontline’ or ‘essential’ workers had to be in public spaces and often in close proximity with their colleagues. Many died. …”

“…Describing a worker as ‘key’ is an arbitrary exercise (the label covers most journalists, for example). It usually includes occupations necessary to meet everyone’s basic needs—food, heating and transport, not to mention health care. Most such jobs cannot be done from home….”

“…The pandemic has reminded key workers that without them society would grind to a halt. …”

“…A study in Toronto found that the death rate from covid-19 in the neighbourhood with the most essential workers was more than twice as high as in the one with the fewest. A study in California found that people of working age saw a 22% increase in mortality from March to October 2020. But bakers saw mortality rise by 50%, and line cooks by 60%. One class of people stayed home in their pyjamas; others went into workplaces that probably killed them.”

MORE…

*Image courtesy The Economist