Saturday, January 19, 2019

Maddow, Mueller and the dems push a dare at McConnell

First announcements: On December 18, my friend Robert Kuhn became only the second American to receive the China ReformFriendship Medal, said to be China’s highest award; it was given by President Xi Jinping and Chinese leaders at the 40th anniversary of 'opening up' in the Great Hall of the People.  Robert is also the host of the future-oriented TV series Closer toTruth, that had me on for topics ranging from SETI to philosophy of science, religion, ESP to human destiny in the cosmos.  See his optimistic appraisal of the likelihood of a positive deal with China over matters like state subsidies and IP protection.

Alas, the PRC is now pushing an initiative for Trump to get crowing points over what doesn't matter -the trade deficit - to distract from what does matter, theft of he West's innovation and invention. And hence -- this is by far the most important article you can read about China's leadership caste, by an Australian diplomat/journalist of immense insight. Join the site (free) in order to read it. Follow this with my own insights, which dovetail with Garnaut's, about Chinese PRC mythologies about central planning and AI. More on this at the end.

And scroll down for links to my latest podcasts.

== An open letter to Rachel Maddow… ==

Dear Ms. Maddow,

Now that your ratings have surpassed Sean Hannity’s, may I offer a suggestion? One that could both devastate Fox and spur another ratings boost for you? It’s simple: challenge Hannity to exchange rebuttal segments! Offer him 2 minutes, three times a week, if he’ll reciprocate.

First, it would be a profound statement of confidence that you are the one with facts on your side. 

Second, Hannity and his Fox masters know your mere six-minutes-per-week on Fox would be far more deadly to them, hence they will refuse! Whereupon you can call “chicken!” (Note: Fox led the charge to end the old version of the Rebuttal Rule: I wonder why?) 

If you had done this in the past, Ol’ Sean (or O’Reilly) would sneer “She’s trying to chase our ratings.” Now you can say – with a sly wink - “I’m taking pity on a failing competitor.”

If they accept, you’d torch Fox to the ground, in just 360 seconds. (It’s also one way to get Donald Trump to watch some of your stuff.) But far more important would be spreading the concept of rebuttal, even challenging opponents to wagers, and the thing that terrifies the Murdochians most… the very notion of “fact.” 

Which is why they now wage war on every single fact-using profession, from scientists, teachers, journalists, doctors, economists, civil servants and skilled labor...all the way to the professionals in the FBI, intelligence agencies and Military Officer Corps, whom the cult now derides as "deep state" monsters. (More on this, below.)

Yes, you’d have to be short and punchy. I could offer some one-line zingers. But it won’t come to that. They’ll refuse, in desperate panic. So the only thing you’ll have to say is: “Chicken! B’b’bkaw!”

== What Mueller is really targeting ==

I predicted it will all turn out to be about money laundering. This article by Michael HIrsch - How Russian Money Helped Save Trump's Business -   begins your education about what will soon be emerging as much bigger than anything so far: “in the aftermath of Trump’s earlier financial troubles" (three bankruptcies that stiffed his U.S. creditors) “he could not get anybody in the United States to lend him anything. It was all coming out of Russia.” Officially, his comeback was financed by two German lenders, Deutsche Bank and Bayerische Vereinsbank. But the EU is sifting the former, tracing vast flows of Russian money from Putin allies.

Seriously, don’t skim this. Each paragraph makes clear it’s worse than you thought. Then it gets worse. Then it goes downhill. And somewhere along the way, it stopped being about “deals” or even a “swamp” and almost certainly became about leverage, even blackmail.

“Russian efforts either to recruit somebody as an asset or effectively coerce them into becoming an asset historically typically rely on compromise of either a financial nature or a sexual nature,” said David Kris, a former assistant attorney general in charge of the Justice Department’s National Security Division. And no, a "pee tape" would not suffice.

Find someone, anywhere, who was talking about "leadership subornation" and "blackmail as a war weapon" in the 1990s.

== Democrats pick (almost) the right first priority ==

Yes, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (AOC) nailed it with #WheresMitch? This was not Trump's Shut Down! He can't veto a government re-start that doesn't reach his desk. This is all stage managed by Putin's real asset in the U.S. Mitch McConnell. (Lefty or not, I'm starting to think AOC may be more than just faddish hype. Pace yourself. But you go.)

As for legislating? The Democrats’ HR1 anti-corruption bill is a litany of desperately needed reforms… their equivalent of a “Contract With America” that I wish were sold half as well as that historic work of razzle-dazzle. 

Every one of HR1's many component measures would help restore American democracy and vastly improve accountability. We might quibble or negotiate this or that. But the intent of almost every measure is to restrict or eliminate cheating, from demanding paper ballots to prevent tampering and easier voter registration to applying pressure against gerrymandering (yes, even in Blue States like Maryland); from demanding transparency of large political donors to insisting presidents and candidates release their tax returns and restricting “emoluments; from keeping congressfolk off corporate boards to transparency in the “swamp” of lobbying. 

And yes, this utterly refutes any jerk out there who says “the parties are the same.”

DP leaders are right to prioritize these matters ahead of the things the party’s left salivates-for, like “Medicare for All.” Those desiderata should win or lose based on the merits of their case! But that case can never be made, so long as cheating (set up by a whole generation of Republican shysters like Dennis “friend to boys” Hastert and Mitch McConnell) prevails. My only complaints are:

1) Even more important than electoral and ethics reform is re-establishing the very concept of “fact” in American life. The core element of today's confederate cult is to wage war on every single fact-using profession, from scientists, teachers, journalists, doctors, economists, civil servants and skilled labor...all the way to the professionals in the FBI, intelligence agencies and Military Officer Corps, whom the cult now derides as "deep state" monsters. This pattern is perfect and utterly damning. And my FACT Act proposes 12 measures that might end the War on Fact.

2) McConnell’s corrupt GOP Senate majority will ignore HR1, of course. So the House should start sending over the provisions one-by-one, daring every Republican Senator to specifically oppose each, individually. A dozen or so of these goppers will have to find one or two to support… they might do so together, for their own electoral survival… and McConnell may decide to let Trump take the heat, with his veto pen. Fine, this a ground game of yards.

3) Add a measure demanding that all of a president's foreign meetings be witnessed by trustworthy US officials. (See below.)

== Transparency, liberty… and blockchain… ==

I’ve been featured on several libertarian-themed podcasts, lately. This one, sponsored by AEI (American Enterprise Institute) and hosted by Jim Pethokoukis, focused on surveillance, transparency and the future of freedom. I challenge preconceptions, garrulously, of course. And it is always good to help sinners regain both light and loyalty to the Enlightenment.

Another is the “CoinSpice” podcast where I’m interviewed about blockchain, autonomous “semi-AI algorithms” already roaming the web, and advice for a new generation of “ICO” coin hotshots to stay out of jail.

How is it that I give so many interviews or speak at so many libertarian events, when they know I will poke hard at the mistaken directions taken by this once-promising movement? Two reasons. First, I think the underlying themes of individualism and liberty are important enough to try weaning these fellows off the current fad of oligarchy-worship. (Forbes and Koch have spent many millions, subsidizing orgs like Cato and AEI to achieve this hypnosis, kicking aside the once-important word “competition” in favor of idolatry of property.)

Second, they keep inviting me! Of all the political factions on today’s landscape, only libertarians seem passionately interested (well, some of them) in being challenged and facing tough questioning. And yes, I challenge.

==  Finally... Donald Trump, don't eat! ==

We’ve all seen reasons to oppose any further Trump private meetings with communist or ex-communist or mafia foreign leaders. First, nothing good ever came of it — and they stink of being blatant de-briefing sessions, issuing fresh orders to Putin’s agent. But there’s an added reason why Two Scoops should give up this filthy habit. Self-preservation. 

He still views himself (delusionally) as an Adonis. But Putin sees an asset turning into a liability, serving to unify the Union side of this civil war that Vlad cleverly helped Rupert to ignite. There comes a point where mafia dons start thinking cement overshoes, and how much more useful their raving “asset” would be, as a martyr

Close your eyes. Picture a silky-smooth President Pence reassuring and luring-back some of the officer corps, while riling the 33% confederates into fury over martyred dear-leader Trump. 

Fer crying out loud Donald, when you are with Kim DON’T EAT ANYTHING! Yes, you imagine it is only liberals and western-civilization types and smartypants who have it in for you, and despots are your pals. But remember how rapacious you were, in business, and consider that you may have outlasted your usefulness to your best pals. (God bless the US Secret Service. Pay them!)

Now consider how stupid this plausible scenario actually makes Don and the dons. He won’t be careful, thinking he’s still valuable to them. And they won’t consider the long range, lethal consequences. That there is nothing Mike Pence prays for, daily, more than - absolutely literally - the End of the World


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Alfred Differ said...

Larry | Am I wrong that you don't have to know anything about the horizontal part of the leap?

No, but he does need to know at least the vertical component of the initial velocity which wasn't represented in the initial parabolic equation. He needs more than the duration of the leap.

Where the horizontal information comes in handy (assuming the fish didn't leap vertical) is in backtracking to the initial velocity. Knowing velocities is harder than knowing leap angles and leap distances. If the fish goes vertical, you're stuck and have to do it the hard way.

porohobot said...

>> Alfred Differ said...
\\In my years, I've learned that genetics has little to do with a talent for science.

There could be some new scientific discoveries. ;)

\\I'm hoping my generation is the last to believe women (in general) are even slightly worse than men (in general) at math, science, or any of the other academic subject areas.

That your USAish troubles... we, in post-soviet are all equal... mostly in suffer.
From 1917.
We already have had woman as premier... twice. %P

\\While I didn't see many women in grad school when I was, I did see some.

I was student of engineering deprtment... and we had have quite a bit of girls on the faculty.

\\They went through Hell to get there and stay there,

As I already said. It's your USA troubles.

//many of his students DID notice. She fought past a number of barriers to do it and a few more that do NOT appear on her Wikipedia page... and won't ever by my hand. Let's just say she is more impressive than the page suggests. 8)

Let's trade your problems with Ukraine?
Because we almost lost all science... because of lack of finances.

locumranch said...

An close examination (with much paraphrasing) of Yana's inconsistent gender equality argument reveals a rather insidious agenda:

(1) He initially asserts that 'Males & Females are Equal' in every respect that matters, while simultaneously insisting that Males are all potential brutes, villains & rapists but Females are not (and are somehow incapable of being) potential brutes, villains & rapists. This amounts to an overt admission of gender inequality.

(2) Retrenching, he then asserts that Females deserve to be treated as 'Humans' because they lack the male capacity for brutishness, villainy & rape, the implication being that Males (in general) deserve LESS THAN HUMAN treatment because of their capacity for brutishness, villainy & rape. This amounts to a tacit admission of gender inequality.

In effect, Yana channels the Western Zeitgeist of Female Moral Superiority & Toxic Masculinity by declaring that 'Female-humans are deservingly Human' but Male-humans are not (not-Human, that is).

Well, I've got some news for you, Bucko:

To the detriment of you, females (in general) & my own daughter (in particular), the 'Gender Equality' juggernaut is bearing down on us all like a remorseless reciprocity train that will dish out deservingness regardless of gender...

Because if (1) Females are equal to Males and (2) 'Males are NOT human', then (3) Females are NOT human either.

Illegal female immigrants will be first, followed shortly thereafter by transexuals & finally by (privileged) (white) female heterosexuals who will discover to their growing horror that their vaginas will no longer grant them safe harbour, free shit, special protections, exemptions from responsibility & immunity from consequence.

For those few remaining sensible Females who wish to avoid the living hell that was once 'Male Only' Disposability, one & only one fleeting cultural 'out' remains, even though this solution is so radical as to be almost inconceivable.

Females must (1) renounce their War on 'Toxic Masculinity', (2) treat their male counterparts as if 'Males were human, too', and (3) declare an end to 'male only' hunger, homelessness, disposability. sin, sacrifice, punishment & imprisonment.


Following the collapse of the Old Soviet, ex-Soviet Males became incredibly disposable and engaged in suicide by alcohol, drugs & self-violence with terrifying regularity, as exemplified by our own Poor_Old_Robot.

This Male Only self-destructive trend has since spread to the Enlightened West (in general) & the USA (in particular), as Disposable Men & ex-Males kill themselves at a similarly incredible rate, but nobody cares, except for the brand new 'crisis' that is the recent tiny uptick in suiciding females.

porohobot said...

>> locumranch said...

\\won't make excrement taste like chocolate ice cream.

But YOU. It was exactly YOU. Who without any doubt.
Proved to us here exactly that -- that excrements AND chocolate ice cream ARE exactly THE SAME... because it both brown. %P (like kindergarden and Osventsim are THE SAME just becuse it both "organization")

So... what will you say?

Do you admit your own "truth"... and as such readiness to eat shit, literary.

Or... by opposing... admit that YOU yourself just a shallow hypocrite and stupid troll.
Who try to enlarge himself on belittling some famous guy.


Larry Hart said...

Alfred Differ:

Larry | "Am I wrong that you don't have to know anything about the horizontal part of the leap?"

No, but he does need to know at least the vertical component of the initial velocity which wasn't represented in the initial parabolic equation. He needs more than the duration of the leap.

It seems to me that if you know the duration of the leap, then you can derive the height and from those you can derive the vertical component of the initial velocity. There are any number of possibilities for the horizontal distance, but that doesn't seem to enter into the question being asked.

Unless I'm misunderstanding the question being asked. I perceive it be: "If a fish leaps from the surface and then hits the surface again at time t, how high did it leap before falling back?"*

* Assuming no friction, no changes in gravity over the distance, and no forces acting other than gravity and the initial push.

Duncan Cairncross said...

Hi Alfred and Larry

On a body of water the initial height can be assumed to be the same as the final height

So the horizontal velocity is irrelevant

All that is required is the flight time and that will give you the maximum height attained

D= 1/2 Acc x T squared - where T = half the time in the air

Simple as! (unless it's a flying fish)

David Brin said...

I was right then to assume porohobot did not mean what some of you thought. But clearly we have language difficulties. porohobot would be well advised to take into account that busy people will SKIM a posting for meaning and not read every word... and since your messages have very... unusual grammar and coding... you should not be surprised when people leap to conclusions. I would post a little less and more carefully.

WE, in turn, should use paraphrase questions like: "Did you really mean to say____?

And now onward


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