The New Terrapin Gazette
7 February, 2012
…the striving for equality by means of a directed economy can result only in an officially enforced inequality – an authoritarian determination of the status of each individual in the new hierarchical order.
“Things are getting better.” They are? That depends on whom you trust and believe. Consider these facts:
Sick of the BLS propaganda? Then do the following calculation with us: using BLS data, the US civilian non-institutional population was 242,269 in January, an increase of 1.7 million month over month: apply the long-term average labor force participation rate of 65.8% to this number (because as chart 2 below shows, people are not retiring as the popular propaganda goes: in fact labor participation in those aged 55 and over has been soaring as more and more old people have to work overtime, forget retiring), and you get 159.4 million: that is what the real labor force should be. The BLS reported one? 154.4 million: a tiny 5 million difference. Then add these people who the BLS is purposefully ignoring yet who most certainly are in dire need of labor and/or a job to the 12.758 million reported unemployed by the BLS and you get 17.776 million in real unemployed workers. What does this mean? That using just the BLS denominator in calculating the unemployed rate of 154.4 million, the real unemployment rate actually rose in January to 11.5%. Compare that with the BLS reported decline from 8.5% to 8.3%. It also means that the spread between the reported and implied unemployment rate just soared to a fresh 30 year high of 3.2%. And that is how with a calculator and just one minute of math, one strips away countless hours of BLS propaganda. (Emphasis added.)
And: more on the fake statistics and their political genesis. You just can’t trust the feds, Pilgrims.
First, the facts — or what appears to be an appraisal of the truth: this commentary claims a lack of all progress in Afghanistan. It is a credible and detailed account that boils down to, “There are virtually no locals who can be our trusted allies”. That was overwhelmingly the case in Vietnam. The Taliban chose the battlefield wisely, and the USA appears unable to carry the fight to the enemy.
This newsletter has predicted a relatively easy victory for the USA in Afghanistan, due mainly to air power. At one point it also seemed one could confidently agree that protecting the locals from the Taliban would work. After all, the Afghans did not take kindly to the fanatics’ banning of music and soccer. In theory, this was not just Uncle Sam’s fight, but the struggle of decent Afghans against tyranny.
If all that was just empty optimism, a vast landscape is about to become a very safe base of operations for the worst people in the world.
That would require a total redesign of US defensive policy. Afghanistan is important for the Taliban, which means it must be important for the USA as well. Muslim lunatics will use it as they did when they killed some three thousand people in New York, Washington DC, and Pennsylvania in 2001. Yes, smelly men living in mud huts can do serious damage to a developed nation.
The obvious rejoinder is that Afghanistan is not nearly as important to the USA and its friends as is Iran. The head man in that benighted nation declared the other day that Iran will support anyone who takes on Zionism. In plain language, given Iran, Afghanistan is small beer.
What to do? Pulling out of Afghanistan will send an unambiguous signal to all of Islam; Iran will take it as proof that the USA has returned to its Korea/Vietnam pattern of not fighting to victory. The enemies of the West will be encouraged, and everyone — especially the Israelis and all Jews everywhere — will have reason to be afraid.
Fighting on in Afghanistan would require a new comprehensive policy that sweeps away the assumptions of the past. It would require tactics that reduce casualties to US warriors, take Pakistan out of the game, and reduce the options of the Taliban.
Who can craft such a perfect policy?
Perhaps more to the point, what will be the consequences of admitting that the task is so difficult that there can be no winning policy?
For example, suppose new US foreign policy and defensive policy concede that Afghanistan will be ruled by the Taliban. That would be tantamount to the defeat of the USA by Al Qaeda and its allies. The jihadis would accordingly redouble their efforts.
They could, and likely would, plunge the world into war.
What, exactly, does “war” mean in that context? The answers are sheer guesswork, but they might include the following:
There will be more, not fewer, acts of what is mistakenly called “terrorism” occurring within the West. As soon as the insane mullahs feel they can provoke the longed-for catastrophe that will bring the Twelfth Imam to earth, Iran will use whatever weapons it has in attacks on Israel and US forces. Israel will go to war. Syria and the “Palestinians” will try to take advantage of the chaos, and one would be wise to expect the unexpected from them. Security within Europe could be shattered, and opportunistic groups across the political and religious landscape may become violent. Widespread economic collapse may be triggered.
Virtually anything might happen if this currently unadmitted religious war achieves its potential.
That why getting Afghanistan right might be literally all that matters in the immediate and short-term future.
Do you believe the US president and his team are up to this challenge?
Sorry, Pilgrims, but this newsletter has no solid answers, and the best advice it can offer you is the Boy Scout motto: be prepared.
Would The Implementation Of Multiculturalist Standards Resolve This Dispute?
Understanding this tempestuous protest requires grasping the fact that “progressive” politics and ethics are hypocritical — and worse. After you read the item at the hyperlink, consider this: the multiculturalist mindset is tolerant of value systems that are militantly intolerant of multiculturalism. The tolerance exhibited by multiculturalism is not extended to the Roman Catholic church, however, and that’s not at all because of the recent scandals; it’s because multiculturalism is closely linked to the intensely authoritarian ideologies of what is often simply called “the left”. Once again, the core of the matter is a power struggle. The law will demand obedience and punish those whose consciences forbid them to become what they honestly consider to be accomplices to murder.
It’s been quite a while since this newsletter first stuck its knife in Eric Holder; unfortunately the rascal carries on as if he were somehow ethically qualified for his current job. Here’s some recent information on the scandal that you may have missed. –What? You say that’s just empty carping, and you would need more bad news before you agree that Holder has to go? All right: read Criminal Rot and then consider this commentary (“Eric Holder personifies the thin-skinned arrogance of the Obama administration”). That’s right: DOJ lawyers, criminal prosecutors, are accused of accepting cash from the people they were investigating. But it gets worse. Eric Holder knows about it and is doing nothing. How much of this did you already know because you read the newspapers and watch TV?
There’s a new player in the market for security-conscious folks who (a) know how dangerous Microsoft Windows is, and (b) are intimidated by the (wildly exaggerated) technical complexities of Linux: the Android operating system on your desktop computer. It may be for you, and not just because it’s free.
“Dark energy” is just a dodge that enables scientists to pretend that they are not totally baffled and embarrassingly without explanations. Well, the lame concept may finally become unnecessary.
Here’s an involving ten minute film with an ending you won’t see coming. Recommended.
So…Obama says US military personnel killed or wounded by a Muslim fanatic at Fort Hood are not entitled to medals. That seems an unnecessarily distorted interpretation of the facts; one might well ask what reasoning — or bias — lies behind it. The Israeli view: “Those who refuse to properly identify the enemy cannot defeat it.” One can only Hope for Change….
Perhaps the impulse driving Iran’s militantly aggressive attitude is not just religious insanity, but a realistic awareness of demographic inevitabilities that threaten the nation. Meaning: those nuts will attack somebody in their neighborhood.
Arresting video of “a swarm of nano quadrotors”.
Communists and criminals have always lurked in and around the Democratic Party, and conspiracist nutcases have always tried to infiltrate the GOP. Here’s a video that represents the “wingnut” attempt to keep insanity out of the Tea Party.
Consider this fuss from a metaphorical viewpoint: pretend that perhaps the real (but unasked) question is how a foundation devoted to research into Parkinson’s disease started donating to the provision of legal assistance to bankrupt men. Now remove the variables “Parkinson’s disease” and “legal assistance to bankrupt men” and replace them with the relevant terms. Does that clear things up?
Part Three of the series “Economics is Fun” is available.
“…there seems to be a massive gap between the scale of the problems now faced by some Western nations, and the calibre of the people whom (sic) are being expected to do something about it, and the fatuous preoccupations of these people.” This quote comes from a weblog that deserves to be better known. (The above correction is based on Fowler’s, third edition (ed. Burchfield), page 848, Section 3 A.)
Keynesians on austerity — predictably wrong.
Michael Yon, the US Army’s medical evacuation procedures, and — now — alleged contempt of Congress. It’s a horror story, and the Pentagon brass are making it worse. Yon destroys the military’s bureaucratic doubletalk. Highly recommended.
As consumers benefit, the WaPo frets that politically correct sources of energy (such as the wind and sun) will be abandoned, and that “turmoil” in energy markets is somehow bad. Well, turmoil is good, for it forces markets and suppliers to adapt, which means they must become better means for the production, distribution and pricing of goods and services. Like most collectivist ideologues, the journalists at the WaPo prefer rigid rules that control markets according to slogans. “Fairness” is one such slogan. When someone comes up with a cheaper and better way of doing something, he’s “not playing fair”. All this results in a development that often surprises the naive: collectivists are the prime exponents of crony capitalism.
Lord Christopher Monckton of Brenchley (he’s a British peer) is hell on wheels when it comes to the subject of anthropogenic global warming. Here he is explaining the cost to the United Kingdom of the greatest hoax in the history of science.
If you are interested in genuine alternatives to the mass media/collectivist interpretation of the history and future of the USA, by all means read these three essays (first, second, and third). They describe trenchantly the aims and failures of what the author calls “The Blue Model” of society. This newsletter would call the “Blue Model” a Utopian fantasy based on the assumption that the individual can be controlled by his betters — more or less as Plato envisioned. It will of course come as a shock to “progressives” that libertarians and assorted “wingnuts” actually have the brain power to formulate essays like these, so the trivialization of the ideas they express will begin at once. That dismissive process is mandated by the bigotry of the ruling elite, which considers anti-“progressive” political and economic theory to be invalid by sheer definition. “What? Wisdom, proceeding from the fringes of society, where racist incorrigibles plot to reverse social evolution? A risible notion!”
What alternative does Israel have? That is to ask, what other than a military strike offers any hope of success? Certainly not the failed foreign policy of The One and his familiar, Hillary.
I won’t slave for beggar’s pay
Likewise gold and jewels
But I would slave to learn the way
To sink your ship of fools
The masthead includes a quote from the works of Friedrich von Hayek.
The staff of The New Terrapin Gazette expresses its sincere gratitude to the many people who have gifted the world with Arch Linux, Emacs, and Firefox.