Archive for the ‘Secular Religions’ Category

The Diminishing Contact of Western Liberals with Physical Reality: 2

October 17, 2021 6 comments

In the previous part of this series, I wrote about how liberals, but especially the professional managerial class, have lost almost all touch with physical reality over the past two decades. While large-scale immigration from central America to fill manual labor jobs, outsourcing of manufacturing jobs to other parts of the world and residual system inertia caused by existing infrastructure have helped these morons avoid contact with reality for some time, there is much more to this story. Have you ever wondered why garbage.. I mean liberals.. increasingly believes bullshit with no connection to reality? How, for example, did we reach a point where they can openly pretend that sexual differences in human beings do not exist or how “gender is a social construct”? Or how does garbage come up with the brain fart such as believing that people of South and Central American descent want to be to called “LatinX”?

To better understand what I am going to talk about next, let me start with a simple question: Are liberals, especially those “educated” at “elite universities”, capable of independent and rational thought? Many of you might think that the very fact that those people got into those “exclusive” institutions suggests that they are not stupid. Well.. let us assume that they are not brain damaged, but the original question still stands- can they think on their own? Let me explain it with an example. See.. in the 15th-17th century, many tens of thousands of women were tried and executed for witchcraft in Western Europe.

Notably these witch trials were often conducted under the leadership of the most learned men in that village or town. Do you see what I am getting at? Or here is a more recent example. Until the end of WW2, Eugenics was a very respectable and widespread idea among elites and scientists in Western countries. However after that war, the entire field of Eugenics was discredited to the point where even its most ardent public proponents pretended that they never really supported that idea. Heck.. the guy who “invented” lobotomy got a Noble prize for his “discovery”- but today almost nobody in the establishment wants to talk about it.

The point I am trying to make its that mindless groupthink among so-called “intellectuals” and “elites” is far more common than in the rest of population. Let me remind you that a lot of German professionals who pretended to dislike Nazis before they came to power changed their tune after 1933 and once again after 1945. The same can be said of the “professional” and “intellectual” class of many other countries who went through tumultuous times. But if this sort of bullshit is part of human history, why did it not reach the extreme levels of absurdity we see in 2021. For two reasons- firstly, the number of percentages of people with desk and bureaucratic jobs was pretty miniscule (even in Western countries) until the 1970s.

Having jobs which do not require extensive contact with people outside your curated social bubble is a prerequisite for believing in bullshit. Secondly, in pre-1980s western societies the structure of institutions (from corporations and universities to government departments) was such that it encouraged internal promotions over horizontal jobs changes. So the average person who had a management job in a car company had risen through the ranks and knew something about the products made by that company and knew the people below them at a personal level. Today, managers who “worked” into a corporation making potato chips get hired into another corporation making generic drugs and then move on to another “job” at some startup hawking fashion brands on InstaThot.

Even though who supposedly stayed in their fields have almost never been with a corporation through all stages of product development and launch. And this fuckery is not just restricted to a few fields. Have a look at the resume of middle- and upper- management in everything from hospitals to even government agencies. You will see the same pattern of people who are good at faking knowledge and spouting meaningless word-salads getting repeatedly promoted to the point where aspirants for such jobs now mimic and adopt these behaviors. But what does any of this have to with the rapidly diminishing contact of western liberals with physical reality? As it turn out.. a whole fucking lot!

Let me ask you another question: If a person got through decades in their life by spouting meaningless bullshit, empty virtue display and manners, fellating powerful people above them and using legal chicanery to screw over others- what makes you think they will change or even want to change? Do you actually believe that western universities recruit by merit or demonstrated ability? Do you think corporations do that? Do you think other large institutions and even most government agencies do that? Nope.. they all hire the same kind of ambitious bullshitter with no real knowledge of whatever they claim to be “experts” in and with a strong aptitude for overwrought acting. Basically the current crop of western “elites” are D-list actors who managed to get into “elite” universities by acting smart and having rich or connected parents who then helped them get plum internships or positions which then helped them climb the institutional ladder. But hasn’t it been always like that..

Yes, but with a major difference. In the past, the world was a much more unstable place than today and those who were promoted beyond their abilities either got killed, ruined, bankrupt or discredited pretty quickly. If you don’t believe me- have a look at how many military leaders in all participating nations in WW1 lost their jobs before it ended. Contact with harsh physical reality has a amazing ability to separate the competent from the incompetent. Even the Cold war kept the West from promoting too many D-rate actors into positions of power or encouraging others to mimic these morons. Ironically, it was period of relative peace in West after 1991 which allowed this garbage to dominate institutions in both private and public sector. And this brings us the bigger question: are liberals capable of rational or independent thought? The answer is.. NO, they are not capable of rational or independent thought.

But why not? Well.. think of it this way- why would a group of people selected for their ability to act, repeated fashionable “consensus” behavior and spout meaningless word-salads be capable or rational and independent thought? It is like asking if a class of brain damaged kids contains geniuses. I mean.. it is not completely impossible, but let us be honest- it is rather unlikely. What makes this problem much worse than in previous eras is the relative peace of past 30 years have allowed this garbage to increasingly colonize many hitherto functional institutions. Furthermore, aspirational elites (in their head at least) mimic this highly dysfunctional behavior because they see it as their ticket to success. This is why stupid fads which start in “ivy league universities” spread so quickly and infect far more obscure universities. Now you know why all those stupid policies spread across universities.

I will leave you with a clip that shows the mazing amount of groupthink and lack of ideological diversity in opinions exhibited by liberals and people who desperately want to be seen as liberals. Note how the majority of comments she talks about fall into 3-4 template style replies. In the next part I will go further into how the general inability of liberals to think rationally and independently has already doomed their future.

What do you think? Comments?

The Diminishing Contact of Western Liberals with Physical Reality: 1

October 12, 2021 9 comments

As many regulars readers know, I have written more than a few posts about how ‘liberals’ in western countries have now lost almost all touch with physical reality. Recently, I wrote about how social media is causing serious and long-term damage to liberalism. This series will pick up from that post and use the stuff which liberals post on social media to show their level of extreme detachment from reality. I first noticed this trend almost two decades ago, but it had not reached the extreme levels we have seen over the past 5 years. Some of you might say.. but was there social media before FakeBook, Twatter, InstaThot, TikTok etc? Well.. UseNet groups have been around for a long time and the precursors for FakeBook, Twatter etc were well and alive even 20 years ago. The world of today is fundamentally not different from 1999.

Having said that.. there has been an acceleration of some trends- from chicks sending their nude selfies, people lying on the internet to get attention and the rapidly diminishing contact of western liberals with physical reality. While I do have still have nude digital selfies sent by chicks I used to chat with in late 1990s, let us focus on the less interesting but consequential trend which have accelerated over past two decades. While I could give you many examples to illustrate this shift, let me start by using a very contemporary example. Over the past year and half, I have noticed a peculiar change in online venues frequented by garbage.. I mean liberals. In that past, western liberals used to hide (or at least try to hide) their contempt for people who worked with their hands. The COVID-19 pandemic, or more precisely the botched response to it, has pushed it out in the open for everyone to see.

I first came across this particular manifestation in April-May of 2020 when numerous users of various reddit forums (which I troll) started complaining about all those construction workers who did not wear face masks or follow “COVID-19” guidelines. What struck me was how these keyboard jockeys who have never worked an honest job in their real life were dismissive and contemptuous towards people whose jobs are actually necessary for human civilization to function. Think about it.. would we miss garbage who spend their lives on Reddit, Tumblr, Twatter etc if they all died on one day. Apart from the stench caused by their unattended decaying corpses, their deaths would be inconsequential. Can you say the same thing about people who build and repair houses, install electrical wires, plumbing, HVAC etc? What about people who drive trucks, delivery vans, stock store shelves and harvest their food?

My point is that the vast majority of jobs which can be done remotely or over zoom are.. for the lack of a better word.. fake jobs. Nobody needs them and they are parasitic in nature. But what about all those computers and IT jobs? Well.. the 737, 747 and SR-71 were designed by engineers using slide rules, as were rocket launcher such as Soyuz, Proton and Saturn-5. Even the computers used for developing the most advanced deployed nuclear warheads today had less computational power than the CPUs found in the malfunctioning printer at your office. Multinational corporations, airlines, large-scale cargo shipping and credit cards also worked just fine in an era when the average CPU was a 8-/ 16- bit thing running at a few MHz. Affordable cell phones have been around for over two decades. And this is just the beginning.

Did you that huge multi-national corporations worked just fine without all those parasites in human resources and all those other parasitic administrative jobs who were involved in ensuring compliance with an ever-increasing jungle of bureaucratic rules. And it is not just corporations and government departments as every modern western institution from hospitals and universities to “charities” and other equally bullshit organizations have become full of these parasites, at least since the 1990s. But there is a big difference between the attitude displayed by such liberal parasites in the late-1990s and 2021. In that era, garbage had enough contact with physical reality to acknowledge their parasitic existence would not be possible without people who actually worked with their hands.

However something has clearly changed between the late-1990s and now that these PMC (professional managerial class) parasites have lost the self-awareness to understand their role and importance in keeping civilization working. Perhaps this has something to do with large-scale outsourcing which removed many real jobs out of USA.. maybe it has something to do with having essentially disposable Mexican immigrants to do manual labor in this country. In any case, these parasites seem to believe that they are the “chosen people” and everybody else who does real work is an idiot whose job will shortly be displaced by computerization or outsourcing. Curiously, they lack the ability to articulate how a society of the type they believe as inevitable will function. Then again.. parasites are not known for their ability to think strategically. Curiously, there is a strong overlap between garbage and people who worship charlatans like Elon Musk and other techno-utopians.

In the next part, I will go into my personal hypothesis for why garbage increasingly believes bullshit with no connection to reality and, more importantly, why they also ignore physical reality at levels that are darkly comic. Yes.. we will go into the reason why liberals are so willing to believe the latest nonsense about gender, why they love to show support for drag queen story hour and many examples of their hilarious disconnect with reality.

What do you think? Comments?

Stable Societies Cannot Exist Without Stable Families and Livelihoods

October 7, 2021 3 comments

One of the few good things about YouTube, other than looking at videos about specialized and niche topics, is the ability to re-view old movies and TV shows. One of the hidden gems in this genre is a Channel 4 BBC show, known as ‘Time Team‘, which ran from 1994-2014, or two decades. A very quick description of that show is as follows: At the start of each episode, the host (Tony Robinson) explains the reasons for the team’s visit to the site in question. Each one is usually suggested by a member of the viewing public. Time Team then uncover as much as they can of archaeology and history of the site in three days. During the excavations, Tony encourages all of the archaeologists to explain their decisions, discoveries and conclusions in a manner comprehensible to the archaeologically uninitiated.

As you might have already guessed, the vast majority of episodes are about archeology in UK and cover a very wide time range from various parts of the Paleolithic, Bronze age, Iron age, Roman occupation, Saxon occupation, Dark Ages, Norman occupation, Plantagenet and Tudor era, Regency to the Victorian era. After watching almost all episodes in past couple of years, I noticed something an interesting pattern. You see.. it is very common to find many sites with evidence of almost continuous human habitation from the late Paleolithic age, through Bronze and Iron age, Roman era and onwards to the present. In fact, almost every single site which contains Roman remains is often built on or near previous settlements from the Bronze and Iron age. And there is something else about these sites which is interesting.

There is no accurate way to measure multi-generational continuity in site before Roman era in UK (AD 43), however it becomes much easier after that because of a wealth of easily dated coins, daily objects such as standardized earthenware, standardized graveyards, fashions in design patterns for mosaics, written records etc. One consequence of this shift in archeological findings is that it is possible to actually follow the general pattern of occupation of many sites over a few generations. This is my way of saying that, even if we don’t know the names of the people, we can make educated guesses about their lifestyle and kinship. And this brings me to how a discussion about a British TV show on archeology is connected with the title of this post.

In spite of how unstable the political situation was at the core of Roman Empire (rebellions, wars, plagues, assassinations etc), the life of most people outside the few hot zones in that era was remarkably stable and relatively prosperous. For example- it was very common for the local leaders of Romanized Celts in UK to have big fancy villas with hot baths, underfloor heating, glass windows, beautiful mosaic floors and lots of imported luxury items from all over the empire. More importantly, the same families lived in these big villas, which were often expanded over the decades, for over a couple of centuries. And this is not unique to UK, as similar archeological evidence can be found in France and Spain- frequently on an even bigger scale. Even the more prosperous farmers in these places adopted many Roman ideas about comfort and luxury. But why does this matter to us today?

Consider this.. the roman way of life in UK survived for multiple centuries, and even improved and evolved over all that time despite the empire being politically unstable. Now compare it to cities, towns and infrastructure in USA which has gone down the toilet over past 40 years in most parts of the country- in spite of a very ‘stable’ government. How do you explain that? The more autistic among you might say something about this instability being the cost of technological progress and declining costs of cell phones and computers etc. But does that really explain it? The biggest leaps in technology occurred between early 1800s and 1960s. The last four decades have, if anything, been an era of technological stagnation. And what is the use of cheap cell phones and computers if most people are living paycheck to paycheck making them very susceptible to disruptions in employment and global logistic chains.

During the time it was present in UK (43 AD – 410 AD), the Roman Empire survived multiple dynasty changes, tons of emperor assassinations, at least two very destructive pandemics, a large number of adverse weather events and much more. And yet.. life went on, villas were built and expanded, yeoman farmers built bigger and better houses, trade within the empire went on, roads and public buildings were built and maintained. So why was the Roman empire far more resilient than the American empire? Here is my theory- it has a lot to do with the personal and social environment in which it existed, more specifically stable families and kingroups in combination with a system that guaranteed fairly stable livelihoods for most people in the empire, ensured that popular support for the system was high enough for it to successfully overcome multiple and often severe adverse events.

People will stay and fight together if they feel part of a system which appreciates and rewards them for their loyalty and sacrifice. On the other hand, atomized social systems which are based on the farcical ideas of autists and encourage intra-group competition or treachery will start falling apart when faced with anything beyond mild adversity. It also helped that the Roman empire and many other older long-lasting empires were far more decentralized and tolerant than their modern hyper-conformist counterparts. Did I mention that the elites of older long-lasting empires had far more contact with physical reality than the present crop of “clever” idiots pumped out of incestuous ivy league universities. But why talk only about the past.. here is a current example- Japan.

Have you ever wondered why Japan, a developed country with an aging and gradually declining population, still manages to build ambitious civil engineering projects on time, keep its dense cities clean and well-maintained, continue making high quality consumer and industrial goods despite experiencing very little “economic” growth for almost three decades now. How come the quality of life for the average Japanese has actually increased over those three decades? The simple answer is that Japan, in contrast to many western countries, still has stable families and livelihoods- at least for the majority of the population. Consequently there is far more social cohesion and sense of purpose. Even the rural areas of Japan which have experienced population loss from migration of young people to cities are kept in far better shape than their equivalents in USA and other western countries.

The point I am trying to make is that societies which offer stable families, kingroups, living environments and livelihoods will always be far more resilient than those based around social atomization, empty intellectual fads and endless rounds of competition among its people. Japan, in spite of its current demographic issues, will be still be around in 50 years- barring some extraordinary catastrophe. The same cannot be said about USA and most other western countries- including ones such as Germany and Sweden.

What do you think? Comments?

Universities in USA and Anglosphere Have Dismal Future Prospects: 2

October 4, 2021 5 comments

In the previous part of this series, I wrote about how many factors ranging from long-term demographic trends, cost-benefit analysis by prospective students and fundamental problems with business and organizational models of universities in USA and rest of anglosphere have created a rather dim future for these institutions. To matters more interesting, over the past two decades most universities in the anglosphere have managed to scored many extra self-goals. While the bizarre and self-destructive behavior of universities in aftermath of COVID-19 pandemic (link 1, link 2) is currently in the news, the underlying rot goes much deeper.

To understand what I am getting at, let us talk about why universities offer degrees in bullshit and made-up topics such as psychology, media studies, women’s studies, gender studies etc. The more conspiratorial among you might think that this is the result of some grand plan by the “elites” or shadowy international financiers. Perhaps.. but a much more likely explanation is that the products in question still sell. Don’t believe me? Just have a look at the “academic qualifications” of the sub-humans working in various bureaucratic and administrative positions of corporations and governmental agencies. As some of you might know, this job sector has been one of the fastest growing and most well remunerated within the past two decades.

It is hard to deny that the past 2-3 decades have created tons of well-paying jobs for the parasitic PMC and administrative class, while simultaneously reducing the number of people employed in those institutions, organizations and corporations who actually do useful work. While there are many overlapping reasons for why these parasitic jobs flourished within past two decades in west, that is a much bigger topic than can be discussed in this post. Let us, therefore, focus on the consequences of replacing useful jobs with parasitic jobs over a longer timespan. One very obvious one is that most things and products are now made in Asia, especially China with only a small number of specialized stuff still made in Europe.

Countries such as USA and rest of Anglosphere make little other than expensive and largely ineffectual weapon systems and a few legacy high-tech products (CPUs, Airliners etc). Their economies are largely based on resource extraction, consumer spending and financialism. The only reason they can still do the last one is that there is enough residual inertia in global trade for that to work for some time. Dying empires can often seem more vibrant than they are in reality. But what does any of this have to do with dismal future prospects for universities in USA and rest of anglosphere? And how does this connect with the recent explosion of useless degrees which offer students a chance to enter parasitic careers?

The future of most degree programs in these universities is dependent on two things: 1] other countries adopting the same self-destructive socio-economic patterns as anglosphere and 2] said universities continue to be seen as prestigious. We already know that many countries in Asia, especially east Asia, have decided to sidestep or reject the anglosphere economic model. More recently, even the prestige of an education in these universities has experienced a steep decline in countries such as China- which was supposed to provide the students and income to prop up these decrepit institutions once the local supply of students dried out. A lot of the younger generation in China and other Asian countries don’t not look up to the West, unlike their predecessors. Which brings us to SJW-ism and HR-ism.

Superficially the language of SJW-ism and corporate-speak might seem unrelated, because one claims to speak for “equity” and “justice” while the other supposedly defends the “status quo”. However a closer look immediately reveals the large overlap between people who claim to be SJWs and those in corporate HR and other administrative departments. And this is not accidental, because both -isms are about grifting and defrauding others to make a comfy livelihood. Notice that both are products of the same useless degree programs which have flourished during the past 2-3 decades. To put it another way, the general direction of higher education in USA and anglosphere is to create even more parasitic grifters.

But there is a fundamental problem with both types of grift because they.. well.. have to destroy productive assets and capacity to flourish. Something about too many chiefs, not enough Indians. The problem with that situation is that the underlying system can only take so much until it starts unravelling. While that process is slow at first, it does accelerate pretty quickly and we are starting to see this occur in real time with all the shortages and logistics problems in aftermath of COVID-19 pandemic. Which brings us to the feedback loop. The thing is.. universities such as those in USA and rest of Anglosphere cannot be supported for long unless there is a rapidly expanding and semi-prosperous population willing to pay a lot of money for their overpriced crap. Note that most universities in Western Europe, Asia etc operate on a different “business” model and can weather such fluctuations much better than their counterparts in Anglosphere.

To summarize, the very strong association of anglosphere universities with SJW-ism, corporate speak and other ideologies which repulse their future potential customers compounds the already dire situation in which these failed institutions find themselves. The overreaction to COVID-19 pandemic which is exposing their stupidity and driving away even more customers.. I mean ‘students’.. is just another nail in their coffin.

What do you think? Comments?

Universities in USA and Anglosphere Have Dismal Future Prospects: 1

September 26, 2021 21 comments

One of the most interesting tweets I came across in the past few months can be summarized as follows.. the COVID-19 pandemic, rather than causing any new problems, merely exposed the severe underlying rot and many vulnerabilities already present in the system. And this brings me to the one sector the economy which it exposed in a most unforgiving manner. As many of you know, my opinion of the education system (both K-12 and university) is less than flattering.. to put it mildly. While this might seem a bit off for somebody with a MSc and PhD, I prefer to live in the real world- even if it is not as bright and shiny as I would prefer.

With that in mind, let us talk about the dismal future of universities in this country and rest of anglosphere. Some of you might have recently come across an article about the percentage of men enrolled in universities steadily going down over the past decade. While feminazis and the alphabet people might celebrate this as a victory in the fight against “cis-male patriarchy”, real life factors behind this trend are much more worrying. For starters, this trend is far more pronounced for white men than non-white men. But why is that a bad thing? For starters, the decision to not attend university in this group is voluntary and driven by cost-benefit analysis rather than being unable to do so.

Anyone who can fog a mirror in this country can also get a large but non-dischargeable student loan. Standards for admission and staying in university are also much lower than at any time in recent decades. There are those who blame this trend on colleges putting as many non-white faces as they can find in their advertising brochures to reaffirm their fealty to “diversity”. While this could have a very minor effect, it does not explain why the trend in declining male enrollment picked and accelerated a full decade after such advertising became the norm. Other claim that this has a lot to do with anti-male environment in universities. Perhaps.. but then, universities have never been full of especially masculine men.

In my opinion, the accelerating fall in male enrollment in universities is largely due to an honest cost-benefit analysis, especially in a rapidly deindustrializing country. And the most important factor behind the cost part of that analysis is the “business model” of universities in this country and rest of anglosphere. To understand what I am getting at, let me ask you a simple question- why hasn’t total university enrollment in other developed countries with noticeably older populations (Germany, Japan, France etc) merely plateaued rather than fallen like in this country? This becomes even more glaring when you realize that universities in this country and rest of anglosphere are very busy recruiting students with rich parents from countries such as China, India etc.

In fact, without foreign students, many American universities would have to cut back much further and layoff far more people than they have to date. There are those who blame this on “demographic trends”- specifically that the kids of baby boomers have finished university by 2010 and the generation after them has noticeably fewer kids in addition to be less numerous themselves. However, as I just pointed out- even countries whose total population is shrinking have not seen the same fall in university enrollment as USA. And it is not just this country as others such as UK and Canada also have either stagnant numbers or extremely anemic growth in spite of aggressive recruiting of overseas students.

So what is the fundamental problem with the “business model” of universities in USA and anglosphere? Well.. the model is based on the institution being profitable rather than producing anything which benefits the surrounding society. That is why American universities are full of showy (and often ugly) new buildings and facilities which are curiously understaffed. And the problems go much deeper.. the vast majority of courses are taught by temporary faculty paid near poverty wages while there is never a shortage of openings for highly-paid and useless administrative positions. My point is that universities run under this neoliberal “business model” became credentialing rackets- which sorta worked until the scrap of paper they sold could no longer provide a positive return for their marks.. I mean.. students.

The post-WW2 continuous expansion model which is the underlying organizational principle for universities in this country and rest of anglosphere also contributed to this problem, but did not cause it, since other developed countries which increased university enrollment after WW2 do not face the same problem- at least in the severe form we see in this country. While many universities are pretending that this problem can be fixed by more foreign students or more temporary academic staff it is my opinion that this problem with unfixable because the American university is now nothing more than a credentialing scam run by greedy and incompetent administrators with a very short-term focus.

In the next part of this short series, I will go into how other self-inflicted injuries such as SJW-ism, HR-ism and COVID-19 restrictions have further accelerated the richly deserved ongoing demise of universities in this country and rest of anglosphere.

What do you think? Comments?

Interesting Podcast about Ineffectual Policies Surrounding COVID-19

September 19, 2021 8 comments

Here is a recent and interesting episode of a podcast, featuring two well-known mainstream physicians, about the ineffectual policies pursued under the name of “public health measures” for controlling COVID-19. In it, they talk about issues ranging from recent clinical trials which demonstrate the relative ineffectiveness of face masks in preventing viral transmission, the incredibly irrational policies surround schools, daycare and universities, the potentially nasty political and other violent blowbacks from vaccine mandates, the serious lack of good data to support boosters, risk of second-dose myocarditis in teenage boys and young men, liberal media overreaction to Ivermectin and much more.

What makes this podcast even more interesting is that both have respectable mainstream medical and academic careers in very blue cities in blue states. It says a lot when even people living in such parts of the country clearly have had enough of this ‘liberal’ nonsense. One of them even writes articles for very mainstream medical publications and liberal puff pieces such the Atlantic. Here is a list of more articles by him in MSM and non-specialist journals and outlets. So you see.. even otherwise liberal people in the medical field have now reached the point where they are speaking up about this nonsense. You might also have recently seen many previously mainstream narrative supporting journalists trying to hastily distance themselves from the ongoing slow-motion train wreck. The next few months look interesting..

What do you think? Comments?

Actually Useful Advice on Buying a Telescope for Amateur Astronomy

September 17, 2021 5 comments

Long time readers know that I have been interested in astronomy since my childhood. Over the years , I made and bought many telescopes. During my late teens, I seriously considered going into astrophysics instead of.. let us say.. the area of biomedical research. With that in mind, let me tell you something which has always bothered me about amateur astronomy. It goes something like this.. if you ask any semi- well known amateur astronomer about the best telescope a budding amateur needs to buy, they will tell you something that goes like this..

“instrument aperture” is important for capturing faint objects and relatively inexpensive (for the size) dobsonian reflectors such as something from the Orion SkyQuest lineup is the best starter amateur telescope. Some of these aspies (amateur astronomy has a lot of them) might also say something about how refractors are best for the moon, planets and double stars while newtonian reflectors (classical or dobsonian) are best for nebulae and galaxies. A minority might even suggest one of the cheaper Catadioptric telescopes (either a Schmidt–Cassegrain or Maksutov–Cassegrain) such as this one or this other one.

I find these recommendations to be cringe, formulaic and laughable. Even worse, they put off a lot of otherwise interested people from either getting interested in amateur astronomy. In the off chance that somebody decides to spend 500-600 bucks on such a recommendation- most will quickly get tired of using their new toy. But why is that so? Well.. because very few people are born with a strong interest and aptitude in astronomy. To make matters more interesting, the majority of people in western countries live in or near light polluted cities and suburbs making it hard to do decent astronomical observations.

But the problem goes much further. The “starting” telescopes recommended by most amateur astronomers are too unwieldy and hard to setup for children- and here is why this matters. See.. most amateur astronomers start out being interested in astronomy as children, hence anything which cannot be easily handled by a 10-15 year old boy (it is almost always a boy) is a shit “starter telescope. Also, a telescope which is portable, easy to setup and intuitive to use will be used far more frequently than one which is big, unwieldy and finicky to use.

With that in mind, here are my recommendations. The ideal first telescope for anybody is not a telescope at all.. it is a pair of 7×50 or 10×50 binoculars (something like this one or this other one. Even a 10×42 like this one or its slightly more expensive sibling are great tools for finding your way around the sky- something which is absolutely necessary if you decide to buy bigger and more powerful telescopes. Best of all, they all cost less than 200 dollars and can be readily used for other purposes if you decide that astronomy is not your cup of tea. Oh.. and almost everyone in this country either has an outdoor lounge chair or can get one from Walmart or your local home-furnishing store for less than 50 bucks.

Just dress warmly if the weather outside is cold and anybody can start observing from their backyard. While a pair of handheld binoculars wont show you the rings of Saturn (clearly) or the bands on Jupiter, they are more than sufficient to let you see the 4 major moons of Jupiter, the 1 major moon of Saturn, bigger craters on moon, at least a couple hundred decent star clusters (open and globular), star clouds in the milky way, tons of artificial satellites, at least 2 large galaxies in the local cluster (M31 and M33) and probably 50-60 more if you know where to look. Sure.. they won’t look like the carefully color corrected and photoshopped pictures taken over multiple minutes and hours which you see in books on the internet, but at least you are seeing them in person.

I mean.. you actually see a giant galaxy like M87 which is 55 million light years away with a 10×50 binocular on a clear and moonless night. And ya.. it doesn’t look anything as grand as the photos taken through large telescopes, but then again- what were you expecting? Which brings me to the topic of good books for budding amateur astronomers. Once again, I have to say that some of the older books, which can still be used, are far better than newer ones. Here are a few good ones (link 1, link 2, link 3, link 4 and link 5). A red color flashlight, like this one, is useful for reading paper star-charts without spoiling your night vision. Star-charts and apps on smartphones are not as useful you might think, especially if the temperature is low and the battery decides to keep losing its charge.

But what if you still wanted a “real” telescope. Well.. here is my principal suggestion- Orion Observer 80ST 80mm Equatorial Refractor Telescope Kit (under 200 dollars). Just make sure you read up, or see a YouTube video, on how to setup an equatorial mount before using it for the first time. You can get the non-kit version for just under 150 dollars, but the kit version is better value for money. I can think of other options, but they are all above 200 dollars- and it is hard to justify people spending more than that on something which they may, or may not, continue using regularly after purchasing.

And don’t forget Stellarium, a free and open-source planetarium software (if does much more) to get an idea of what you see in the night sky from any place on earth and time, including through specific telescope and eyepiece combinations.

What do you think? Comments?

Social Media is Causing Serious and Long-Term Damage to Liberalism

September 12, 2021 12 comments

You might have read some of my more recent posts about how elites and a significant minority of younger generations in west have little to no contact with, or understanding of, physical reality. It is also noteworthy that the dominant worldview of current western elites and more vocal part of the younger generations is, at its core, a version of liberalism. We can certainly argue about whether it is representative of “real” liberalism or “classical” liberalism- but those arguments are meaningless in real life. Every ideology is always defined by its most common implementation. For example- It is hard to argue that state communism of the type practiced by USSR was somehow not “real” communism, just like the type of structural changes seen in American economy after late 1970s cannot be dismissed as not being “real” capitalism.

My point is that while it is certainly possible to talk about why a given ideology morphed over the decades, we cannot deny that it most popular current implementation is somehow not the “real” thing. So we cannot pretend that the attitudes and behaviors of most people who claim to be liberals are not “real” liberalism. So why does this matter, especially today? Well.. for starters, have a look at the mindset, attitudes and behaviors exhibited by those who represent liberalism. What do they represent anyway? Based on what you read, but especially from their own mouths, it seems that they represent a worldview based in belief in their own supposed intellectual and moral superiority. Which is funny, when these same people use words such as menstruators to describe women. Though no fan of women myself, even I find the way these supposedly “woke” dumbfucks refer to women a little.. crude and demeaning.

Call me old fashioned.. but referring to a vagina as a “front hole”, grooming little kids from dysfunctional families to become “trans”, encouraging teenaged tomboyish girls to undergo double mastectomies and inject themselves with Testosterone is somehow not the product of anything approaching a normal mind. But what makes all of this especially problematic and very likely to cause a serious backlash is the fact that the liberals pushing this stuff are very active on social media- often with the support and encouragement of those corporations. To make matters worse, this iteration of liberalism has a bit too much support from institutions who should now better than destroy their credibility by wading into politics and social clashes. The result is that today it is hard to not associate liberalism with the most deranged rants and actions of loudmouths pushing something which repels a large part of the population. Libs of TikTok documents some of the most deranged rants of these people.

It does not help that while liberals are busy trying to push identity-based politics, they have deliberately ignored real socio-economic problems faced by the majority of people. Liberals have stopped giving anything beyond occasional lip-service at election time to issues such as housing costs, single-payer healthcare, rising costs of useless degrees from universities and much much more. They also don’t care about the jobs of people employed in many industries such as oil and gas extraction, auto manufacture, airplane manufacture, industries dependent on tourism and anything else which does not fit their narrow and farcically delusional view of how the world should work. These idiots cannot even perform basic calculations to understand how much of that unreliable “green energy” would be required to run their “environmentally-friendly” dystopia. Then again, proficiency and real-life experience in Science and Engineering is remarkably absent among Liberals. Once again, what makes it especially bad for liberalism is that dummies with these brain-dead ideas are especially prominent on social media.

To add to all of this, we now have liberal commentary about the COVID-19 pandemic. If you had hoped that only a faction of liberals were delusional, this pandemic has destroyed that illusion and now we can say with a high degree of confidence that liberalism (at it currently exists) is a dangerous cult full of brain-dead idiots. We have seen famous gay liberals clamor for “vaccine passports”- ignoring the rather interesting application of that logic to HIV- which still mainly afflicts that group. We have also seen famous gay liberals celebrate the death of alleged “Trump followers” who succumbed to COVID-19. They apparently forgot how the majority saw them in the 1980s. I also find it funny that they think the pendulum cannot swing back in that regard. Then again, living in the real world or thinking through the logical outcome of your ideas is apparently not compatible with liberalism.

The pandemic has also brought out a ton of previously hidden neurotic and delusional liberal thinking to the forefront. Take face mask mandates for example.. how can these idiots believe that normal face masks and surgical masks which had never shown usable efficacy at blocking transmission of every airborne virus they were tested against somehow magically work against this one. As things stand right now, we know that the real world efficacy of facemasks in stopping COVID-19 transmission in adults (more than one study) is somewhere between 0 and 11%- which is in line what we know to be the case for other respiratory viruses. It is also clear that mask mandates make do difference in the amplitude of COVID-19 case waves when you compare adjacent countries and states having different rules concerning masks. Yet, time and again, liberals vociferously claim (especially on social media) that they work while mindlessly chanting that they “follow the science”.

Or take the issue of whether drugs such as Ivermectin, Fluvoxamine, Indomethacin etc can reduce the risk of hospitalization and deaths in COVID-19 patients. Liberals, who have never actually done a day of honest work in a lab or clinic, somehow magically know that none of these drugs work and anybody who believes they do are taking “horse dewormer”. Of course these are the same retards who refused to believe the lab leak hypothesis until it suddenly became OK after Biden was elected in Jan 2021. Once again, what makes their stupidity dangerous for their own future is that now everybody can see how dumb and out of touch these parasites really are. Or look at how these same idiots are pushing for “domestic vaccine passports”, claiming that COVID-19 vaccines prevent infection and transmission (they don’t) and placing undue burden on children and young adults in schools and universities. This is in spite of strong real-life evidence to the contrary of each position.

The way I see.. the majority of people will increasingly not identify with liberalism and ignore liberals. However it would not be surprising if they took the next rational step and all of this because social media has exposed the inner workings of the contemporary liberal “mind” for all to see. It is quite a piece of work.. isn’t it.

What do you think? Comments?

Noam Chomsky, and Western Leftists, Were Always Feeble Cowards

September 6, 2021 9 comments

Recently I came across a short clip of Noam Chomsky (on Twitter) where he was extolling the virtues of “voluntary” segregation of the “vaccinated” from the “unvaccinated”. The responses to that clip ranged from pity for how senile Chomsky looked in it to jokes about all academic leftists are ultimately shills for the status quo. And let us be honest, he is not alone among academic leftists in his peculiar support for vaccine passports and other bullshit. The neoliberal performance artist who masquerading as a brave philosopher aka Žižek has expressed similar views on that subject. So what is happening.. has the COVID-19 pandemic made cowards of academic leftists? As it turns out, I have a different opinion on this topic for many years and it can be summarized as follows: academic western leftists have always been sad boot-licking cowards with no impact on events in real life.

Academic leftists have two main roles in western countries. Firstly, they help provide the shoddy illusion of ideological diversity in those societies. That is precisely why somebody like Chomsky was comfortably employed at Berkeley and other “liberal” universities for decades. Let us get real for a moment.. would somebody whose existence or work was a real threat to the people and institutions running this country be comfortably employed at a “prestigious” university? Which brings us the other role played by boot-lickers such as Chomsky and Žižek in western societies- helping prevent any movement for real change. That is why these boot-lickers spent all their time talking and writing about “consent is manufactured” rather than do anything to actually destroy the system which is exploiting the majority.

To understand what I am talking about, let us quickly go over a short list of people who have actually changed the world in past 100 years- for better or worse.

Regardless of what you think about Hitler, his actions resulted in the most significant global changes within past 100 years (directly and indirectly). Whether you like it or not, his effect on the course of history over past century makes the impact of fat losers such as Churchill or wheelchair-bound Roosevelt seem insignificant. Let me remind you that if WW2 had not occurred in the manner it did, a lot of the modern world including its associated technology and social changes would not have exist today. The map of the world would have also looked very different from what it looks now. All of which brings us to the question- what aspect of Hitler’s personality was most responsible for his ability to change the world forever (including in ways contrary to his wishes). For starters.. Hitler was not a boot-licking academic cosplaying as a radical. He actually believed in a lot of what he wanted to implement.

Then there is the fact that Hitler, for all his highly problematic beliefs, was not a simpering coward. During WW1 he distinguished himself as a brave solider who volunteered for some of the riskiest jobs on the frontlines. He was almost killed more than a few times and twice decorated for bravery. Ironically the superior who recommended him for one of those two decorations, Hugo Gutmann, was Jewish. He also survived multiple assignation attempts once he came to power. My point is that, despite the horrendous beliefs motivating his worldview, Hitler (unlike Chomsky, Žižek or any other academic leftist) was not a coward. He was actually willing to risk it all for spreading his worldview, however twisted it may have been. Can you say the same about any “leftist” academic shill trying to sell books, lecture tickets etc.

The second most consequential man of past 100 years, Stalin, was always not a coward. A good part of his early adulthood was spent organizing and stirring up real protests against Tsarist authorities. For this he was arrested and sentenced to three years exile in Siberia. After 1905 he was involved in setting up and running many informal armed squads that stole from the Tsarist government and ran protection rackets on large local businesses. More pertinently, he was personally involved in organizing many of the large robberies, running protection rackets, money counterfeiting stuff and kidnappings. After his next arrested in 1908 and being exiled, he managed to escape again and was rearrested and exiled a couple more times. My point is that Stalin took a lot of real risks in his life and was not a cosplaying academic sophist and bootlicker like Chomsky and Žižek.

The same is true Of Lenin and Trotsky. Let me remind you that Lenin’s older brother was executed for plotting against the Tsar. This did not stop him from also becoming a political radical and activist who was imprisoned and exiled for a few year to Siberia and then expelled from Tsarist Russia. Oh.. and after the October revolution, he survived two assassination attempts and was the leader of then nascent USSR during the very bloody civil war. Trotsky, even though came from a fairly rich family, went down the revolutionary path and was arrested and exiled multiple times before the October 1917 revolution. Then there is his controversial role during the Russian civil war. To summarize, neither Lenin or Trotsky were phony public intellectuals and bootlickers like Chomsky and Žižek.

Tito, was also, not a coward. In fact his life story is more fascinating than many movie scripts. The guy survived impalement though his chest, pneumonia, typhus, influenza during WW1- and he escaped from POW camps. After WW1 he organized agitations in then Yugoslavia, was arrested, imprisoned, escaped to USSR, then came back to Yugoslavia when it was invaded by Nazis during WW2, led a successful armed resistance movement, became its leader after WW2, had a public split with Stalin, survived multiple attempts by Stalin to have him assassinated, outlived him by decades and hen died at the old age of 87 in 1980. And this is the life-story of someone who had a real impact on the world around him.. unlike some cowardly careerist academic teaching leftist theory at some allegedly “prestigious” university.

In case you think my examples are too Eurocentric, have a look the early lives of Mao, Kim Il-sung and Ho Chi Minh. Regardless of whether you agree with their worldview and actions, it is indisputable that they did change the world around them. Oddly enough.. none of them or anybody who actually had a big impact on the world was a “credentialed public intellectual”. To reiterate, careerist bootlickers who are employed by “prestigious” universities should always be the object of public mockery and derision. They are nothing more than cowardly cosplaying clowns and should always be treated as such.

What do you think? Comments?

Causes for Mediocre Real-Life Efficacy of Current COVID-19 Vaccines

August 25, 2021 34 comments

Most readers must have, by now, heard or come across multiple instances of “breakthrough” symptomatic COVID-19 infections in “double-vaccinated” individuals- including many young and otherwise healthy ones. The rapidly increasing number of such infections, which are still being aggressively ignored by CDC and the establishment, make mockery of the initial claims of 94-95% efficacy for mRNA vaccines against COVID-19. In Israel, one of earliest and most vaccinated countries, breakthrough COVID-19 infections now account for over 60% of those requiring hospitalization. In response, the dumbfucks are mandating a third dose of the same vaccine- most likely because third time is the charm.

So what happened? How did vaccines will alleged efficacy of 94-95% at preventing even mild symptomatic COVID-19 underperform so badly in real life? Also, why don’t other currently available vaccines (except for Influenza A) fail at high rates? While every talking head on TV wants to blame “delta” or some other exotic sounding strain, the real reasons for the mediocre real-life efficacy of vaccines was very predictable, for a number of well-known and obvious reasons. As you will soon see, many of them have been well understood for decades and it says a lot about the current crop of “experts” that they either ignored them or were ignorant.

1] The fact that the dominant COVID-19 strain today comes from the “delta” lineage is, by far, the least important reason for why current vaccines have such mediocre efficacy- but let us talk about it anyway. The biggest factor behind why “delta” strains matter is that majority of significant mutations have occurred in spike protein of COVID-19, which is the only protein used in (or generated by) almost all currently approved vaccines. The antibody response to any virus is polyclonal (many different antibody lineages of varying specificity) and directed against all foreign proteins (antigens) expressed by that virus. Using a whole virus, in attenuated or inactivated form exposes the immune system to all viral antigens, including those much less able to undergo significant mutations.

Here is a fun fact, even non-neutralizing antibodies directed towards less “important ” viral antigens have an important role to play in the immune response. This is, for example, why only three strains of poliovirus can cover all possible mutations for that virus- or why a single strain of measles or yellow fever virus can cover almost any mutation in those viruses. This is why the most effective human and animal vaccines usually contain the whole virus in their inactivated and attenuated form. And yes, Hepatis B vaccine works well with a single antigen because HBsAg is strongly immunogenic and elicits a very good T-cell response in addition to B-cell mediated antibody production.

2] And this brings to the question of whether T-cell mediated immunity in combination with B-cell mediated immunity is more important for lasting immunity against viruses and other intracellular pathogens than just B-cell mediated immunity. Well.. as I said in the previous paragraph, there is more than one reason we prefer to make vaccines using the whole virus (inactivated or attenuated)- and this is the second one. As it turns out, non-surface viral proteins which are not involved in viral infectivity nonetheless also provide targets for the T-cells, including those involved in formation of immune memories. So even a virus with a partial “escape” mutation in its surface proteins/s will still trigger the T- cell mediated part of immune system and kickstart the immune response.

While it is more expensive and slower to measure than antibody levels, we know that T-cell mediated responses have the best correlation with duration of immunity conferred by an infection or vaccine. This finding holds for viruses ranging from smallpox (now extinct) to measles, yellow fever, rubella, chickenpox etc. As it turns out.. mRNA vaccines elicit a rather poor T-cell mediated response, even though they do a pretty good job making the body produce antibodies via a B-cell response. Even under ideal conditions, mRNA vaccines for COVID-19 as they exist right now (spike protein only) are unlikely to create long-lasting immunity. Recovery from natural infection does a much better job of stimulating a robust T-cell response in addition to a B-cell mediated one.

3] Then there is the issue of what types of antibodies are produced. The well known antibody classes (IgG and IgM), are also the only ones produced in response to current vaccines, remain within the bloodstream and tissues. They cannot, therefore, neutralize viruses until they enter the bloodstream or tissues. COVID-19, along with many other respiratory viruses, is far more likely to cause a local infection in the upper respiratory tract where it is out of reach (at least initially) of those two antibody classes. There is another class (IgA, especially the secreted subclass) which can be secreted into mucus and other bodily fluids to provide such protection- however the body makes such antibodies only after natural infection by the pathogen or an attenuated vaccine such as the oral polio vaccine.

In other words, injected mRNA vaccines or even current adenovirus-based ones were never going to be able to prevent localized infection by COVID-19 in the upper respiratory tract. Therefore those vaccinated with current vaccines will still get infected, spread the virus and likely get mild symptoms. This was always the case and anybody pretending otherwise is a lying shill or just plain dumb. If we had an inhaled vaccine based on an attenuated strain of COVID-19 or another attenuated live virus expressing the spike protein.. well, things would be quite different then. My point is that “experts” and establishment pretending that these vaccines could prevent transmission and mild symptoms was always a very stupid idea.

It is important to point out that vaccines of any type have lower rates of efficacy in the very old AND sick- who are, coincidentally, the most likely to die from COVID-19. As many of you also know, the majority of deaths from COVID-19 occurred in people who were above 80 AND in nursing homes or assisted living situations. In summary, the current crop of COVID-19 vaccines were created based on lame considerations- such as how flashy the underlying technology sounded rather than how effective it was likely to be in real life. It does not help that the clinical trials used to make the 95% efficacy claim were underpowered and fixed. To make matters worse, they were widely promoted to do things which they weren’t capable of doing. And you wonder why so many are skeptical of them.

What do you think? Comments?

Tragic Inevitability of Mass Shootings Due to COVID-19 Restrictions

August 19, 2021 21 comments

One of the more peculiar features of life in this this country during the past four decades has been the steady rise of mass shooting incidents. While liberals blame this either on “guns” or “mental health”, it is my opinion that the real reasons for their rise are intrinsically linked to socio-economic fabric of this country coming apart over those 40 years. Mass shootings were basically non-existent in this country till the 1980s. Sure.. instances of gangs gunning down each other’s members has always been a feature of American history- but people not involved in those outfits were almost never affected unless they were accidently hit by stray bullets.

My point is that mass shootings of the type which have become increasingly common over the past two decades are a new thing- and the first major outbreak of such incidents occurred in the mid 1980s. There is a reason why a juvenile but hugely entertaining FPS shooter game series is named ‘Postal‘. But have you ever wondered why mass shootings weren’t a thing in this country before that era? Why didn’t any of many millions of veterans who returned from WW1, WW2 or the Korean war (often scarred by PTSD and serious physical injuries) go out and commit spree shootings- even when they lived in an era where one could buy guns from mail order catalogs- as a certain ex-marine did in 1963.

As I have said in many previous posts, social atomization which occurs alongside the precarity and zero-sum competition under neoliberalism creates conditions that cause the rise of a certain type of person who has no worthwhile social connections, nothing left to lose and no future to look forward- and they are almost always men. It is therefore not surprising that a small percentage of such people might consider killing semi-random people who remind them of people they dislike, regardless of the consequences, as a personal victory. FYI- in Weimer era Germany, such people often joined the Nazi party and other similar organizations. In any case, the reason why mass shootings occur in this country has a lot to do with socio-economic trends, rather than “guns” or “mental health”.

And this brings me to the topic of second- and third- order effects of various poorly thought restrictions, regulations and rules put in place by many western governments as a response to COVID-19 pandemic. While the type of blowback to these stupid official responses will vary by country and society- it is very likely that a significant increase in mass shootings will be one of the many downstream effects of such policies in USA. You don’t have to be a genius to figure out that this country was heavily polarized (socially, politically, economically, culturally) for many years before COVID-19 pandemic arrived here in early 2020. In spite of early attempts at pretending that “we are all in this together”, the official response to this pandemic has made all the previously existing polarizations worse and expanded them to new categories.

You must be aware of the large differences between actual working-class people and parasitic “Zoom class” in their evaluation of own personal risk and support (or lack thereof) for various government interventions. In case you haven’t noticed it- here is an article about that issue. I could on about everything from the attitudes towards ineffective face masks, to restrictions which selectively destroyed hundreds of thousands of small business- while simultaneously enriching larger ones, constantly changing messaging about vaccine effectiveness, brazenly trying to hide risk of adverse effects and much.. much more. Regular readers will remember that I have written many posts on these topics during the past year.

The thing is- the lives of millions of working-class and other middle-class Americans.. you know the ones who actually do the work.. have been irreparably damaged by the thoughtless responses and policies of the government (often at multiple levels). While the government has temporarily purchased their silence with pandemic benefits, eviction moratoriums, extended unemployment benefits and small business loans etc- this state of affairs cannot last forever. In fact, things have already started to unwind further. It does not help that the government (especially the Democratic party) does not have a viable exit strategy- to put it mildly. While things in USA are not as bad as other western countries (Australia, New Zealand, France etc) due to it being far less centralized than them, it also has a much weaker social safety net.

It does not take a psychic to see that deliberately destroying the livelihoods of many millions of people is not a recipe for social amity. Doing so in a manner that is heavily polarized by class, race and political leanings is likely to make the blowback even worse. Did I mention that this is occurring against a background of widespread loss of trust in institutions, profound social atomization, 40 years of neoliberal policy which has already destroyed most of the middle-class, unprecedented levels of political polarization and a very public loss of status as the only global super-power. If you think that all of this adding up won’t create a few more men willing to go on mass shooting sprees.. well, I have a bridge to sell you.

Also note that the vast majority of guns in this country are owned by the same people most likely to be negatively affected by those stupid government choice and policies. It is generally a safe bet that large accumulations of dried dead wood and grass (fuel) in nature tend to be susceptible to forest and grass fires. The spark which starts a major fire in nature is often a function of chance and luck aka probability. We are really talking about a matter of when and how it will start and spread, not if it happens- because the probability for that outcome is already 1, and we all know that even if we don’t admit it is the case.

What do you think? Comments?

On the Ongoing ClusterFuck of American Retreat from Afghanistan

August 16, 2021 16 comments

Unless you are living on some isolated middle in the middle of an ocean, you will have heard or seen something about the chaotic conditions in aftermath of the ongoing American retreat from Afghanistan. To be fair, the writing was on the wall for a long time- some say, within a few months of the initial occupation of that country in aftermath of 9/11 attacks, almost 20 years ago. Heck, a girl conceived on the day after official beginning of this stupid and costly campaign would have been ‘legal’ last year. Depending on who you ask, it cost somewhere between 1 to 2.2 Trillion dollars to occupy a country for almost two decades- only for the Taliban to overthrow the American puppet government within a couple of weeks.

Did I mention that it cost the lives of over 2 k American soldiers, permanently disabled many thousands more, resulted in deaths of maybe 100-300 k Afghans and caused a low-intensity civil war in that country for almost two decades. And all of this for the achieving little to no permanent change in that country and biggest international humiliation of USA since the Fall of Saigon in 1975. I will give credit to Joe Biden (or whoever runs him nowadays) for making this decision- even though it is still unpopular with the ivy-league and establishment class in this country. Then again, the “credentialed” coastal elite in this country have visibly lost touch with reality many years ago. Ironically, getting out of Afghanistan has been one of the few issues of non-partisan consensus among average voters in this country for past few years.

On the bright side, the chaos after the fall of Kabul to the Taliban in 2021 has given us some iconic images and video, which is very comparable to what occurred after the Fall of Saigon in 1975. I guess that not enough people learned the lessons from 1975. Isn’t it interesting that so many of the images from that humiliation are so similar to those from this one- almost 46 years later. It helps that smartphones have become common enough to have video clips from different angles of people plummeting from planes taking off from Kabul (link 1, link 2 and link 3). I cannot resist the irony of pointing out that the latest American puppet aka Ashraf Ghani wrote an article in LA Times on Feb 15, 1989 which began with the following sentence- “The Soviets have left Afghanistan, making the collapse of besieged puppet regime in Kabul just a matter of time”- here is an easier to read link.

Oddly enough the Soviet puppet government lasted for about three years after Soviet Army left. Ghani flew out (allegedly to Oman) before the Taliban even stepped in Kabul, and within a couple of weeks after the final collapse of his puppet regime started. I am sure he will end up living in some ostentatious MacMansion in the suburbs of DC or nearby Virginia. After all, he has certainly stolen and stashed enough money to afford a very nice lifestyle in some western country. Perhaps he will rehabilitated by American mainstream media as a commentator within a few years- if the country survives in its present form till them. Which brings me to the next issue- how will this affect the rapidly declining image and real-life capability of USA and West?

Let me remind you that USSR fell within 3-4 years of withdrawing from Afghanistan. Many of you might think this was obvious- but hindsight is a lie. Things were going downhill there for at least a decade before the final collapse in 1991. They had a highly dysfunctional economic system, series of geriatric leaders, a public relations disaster in the form of Chernobyl and the withdrawal from Afghanistan. In 2021, USA has had well over a decade of rapidly increasing inequality, decades of deindustrialization, a dysfunctional political and administrative system, elites with no contact to reality, a president with senile dementia, record political polarization, mishandling of COVID-19 pandemic at multiple level of government and now the humiliation of withdrawing from Afghanistan. History may not repeat, but if often rhymes.

What do you think? Comments?

The Many Reasons Why Any Vaccine Mandate is a Very Stupid Idea

August 7, 2021 28 comments

In some ways, this post is a continuation of a previous one but with a very specific detour that does not fit in with serial nature of that one. As regular readers know, in the past year I have written multiple posts about why the alleged “elites” and parts of younger generation in West have slowly lost touch with material reality over past two decades. While the list of reasons is long, varied and often specific to the group that has gone nuts, the net result is often same. Furthermore, there are some universal symptoms of people losing touch with physical reality- especially when it comes to dealing with people outside their carefully curated social bubble.

Matt Taibbi has recently written a few posts (link 1, link 2 and link 3) about how ‘liberals’ are increasingly unable to understand the motivations of people who don’t inhabit their incestuous social bubbles. While some of you might not realize it, we are currently witnessing an example of this phenomenon in action- in the form of liberals clamoring for vaccine mandates and trying to shame the “vaccine hesitant”. Let us be clear about something first.. nothing even vaguely similar to what liberals imagine as “vaccine hesitancy” exists in real life. Instead you have people who have varying degrees of distrust in the establishment and institutions who are pushing COVID-19 vaccines. And for good reason!

Almost every single institution in the West even remotely connected with responding to the COVID-19 pandemic fucked up in the beginning and then kept on fucking up. We still do not know whether anyone of the Non-Pharmaceutical Interventions (NPIs) had any effect on spread of that infection. Every bit of evidence we have so far suggests that most of these highly touted “measures” and “protocols” had zero effect on COVID-19 transmission. This is most easily seen by comparing population-normalized graphs for cases, hospitalizations and deaths in adjacent countries or states which adopted vastly differing NPIs. In fact, the many waves of COVID-19 throughout the world fit best with seasonality and latitude, which is how many other respiratory and gastrointestinal viruses behave.

Now let us talk about why vaccine mandates are a very stupid idea..

1] As mentioned previously, the many establishments and institutions pushing for mandatory vaccinations have spent the past 16-18 months repeatedly torching their public credibility. Whether it is flip-flopping on ineffectual facemasks and NPIs, lying about the origins of COVID-19 to deliberately trying to suppress information about potential treatments- they have lost so much credibility in the eyes of a significant minority of population that anything they touch will be automatically suspect. To make matters more interesting, those who have lost most trust in these institutions are also the ones who are most likely to own guns or otherwise use lethal violence successfully- especially in USA. We also cannot forget how such attempts at coercion will play in the current highly politically-polarized atmosphere in this country.

2] Which brings us the class component of the unwillingness to get vaccinated. Michael Tracey recently wrote an article about this very issue in which he discusses an observation by one his reader that the willingness to get vaccinated has a strong component of mental investment in the status quo. It does not help that the narrative pushed by media about who is not getting vaccinated is based in their own fantasies with no connection with reality. Black and Hispanic Americans are far less likely to have gotten vaccinated for COVID-19 than White and Asian-Americans. Also compare that to the above 90% rate of vaccination in older white voters (in most pasts of the country) who who voted for Trump. Did I mention that most Black, Hispanic and younger white people have already been exposed to COVID-19 and almost certainly have natural post-infection immunity which is likely superior to that obtained after vaccination.

3] Let us now talk about whose lives has suffered the greatest loss of quality since all those ineffectual “lockdowns” and COVID-19 “protocols” began over a year ago. Here is a hint.. numerically speaking, most of them are not old and white- at least in USA. Those affected are almost all below 50-55 and either Black, Hispanic, White (esp below 40) and either in low-paying jobs or small business owners. Let me remind you that these has been an over 30% year-to-year increase in deaths due to drug overdose and the numbers of those far exceed those due to COVID-19. For example, the state I currently live in has about 20 times more deaths due to drug overdose than COVID-19 in the below-50 age group over the past 12 months. The year-to-year increase in overdose deaths alone was almost 5 times that due to COVID-19. Liberal idiots who think that vaccine passports, further restrictions and “lockdowns” will not cause a nasty blowback are being delusional.

4] During the first 6-8 months, most people (even those whose lives suffered a lot) generally went along with this bullshit because they thought there was light at the end of this tunnel. This feeling increased a bit once vaccines became available and the most vulnerable received them. However all of this goodwill and willingness to go along with stupid and sometimes contradictory dictates by public health morons has rapidly evaporated over past few months. The sentiment among those who suffered most from “lockdowns” and other bullshit have had enough of this nonsense. It is perfectly reasonable to assume that vaccine passports and other coercive bullshit will now be increasingly met by something other than compliance, from the groups who are most capable of such responses.

5] It also does not help that we know that people who are “fully vaccinated” with currently available vaccines can get symptomatic illness and spread it to others. We can certainly talk about reductions in the rate of hospitalization and death, but let us not pretend that public health morons were not shilling for the unproven efficacy of these vaccines at preventing infection and reducing spread. Talk about repeatedly scoring self goals. But it gets worse.. now Pfizer and Moderna are pushing the idea of a third dose of their over-hyped mRNA vaccines to combat the “delta” or “insert your name of choice here” strain- in spite of a lack of properly done studies to support that contention. I am waiting for them to push for a 4th, 5th or even 6th dose- and they are monomaniacally greedy enough to do so.

6] I have noticed that many liberals are in favor of cutting benefits to the “unvaccinated” and otherwise restricting their access to social goods. There are two major problems with this, neither of which those morons can apparently see. Firstly, setting such a precedent will backfire on them, once their party of choice is no longer in power or in effective control of the country. Let me remind you that the majority of guns in this country and the training of use lethal force is largely with those opposed to vaccine mandates. All of your laws, rules and regulations mean shit if you cannot enforce them- just ask anybody from Mexico, Brazil etc. It does not help that the people pushing vaccine passports etc are also pushing teaching critical race theory, laws to “protect the environment” which will impoverish tens of millions and other assorted bullshit that is unpopular in this country- for reasons beyond the purely ideological.

The second problem is even more serious than the first. Let us say you can somehow manage to pull the vaccine passport shit off in all parts of this country- for at least a short time. What happens next? Do you really think that such a system won’t be used to push other and even more unpopular ideological agendas. But it is the second and third order reactions to pushing other agendas which is most worrisome, since it is almost guaranteed to either make this country come part forever or become functionally ungovernable- like Mexico or Brazil. Did I mention that there is is ‘back’ button for such a turn of events? Once the process starts and reaches a certain critical point (either due to reason 1 or 2), there will be no USA- at least as people understand it today.

If you don’t believe that a good part of this country is cynical and politically polarized enough for those outcomes, let me remind you that a game show host such as Trump won in 2016 and lost by less than 46k votes (in a few states, under less than clear conditions) after winning a record of over 74 million votes even though he fucked up his first term in office.

What do you think? Comments?

COVID-19 Shows that Liberals are More Stupid than Conservatives: 1

August 3, 2021 15 comments

Here is another one of those posts which I would have never imagined writing a decade ago. To be clear, I never saw liberals as smarter than conservatives- it is just that they seemed to be better at concealing their stupidity. But times change and from 2015 onward, it became painfully obvious that liberals had given up trying to hide their lack of capacity for independent and rational thought. Some think that this might be a generational thing, with younger ones being less mentally endowed than their predecessors. While this could be a factor, I believe that a series of events within past few years (Brexit in 2015, Trump win in 2016, COVID-19 in early 2020 etc) tore away the covers hiding liberal stupidity and exposed it for all to see.

Some of you might have read a few of my more recent posts where I talk about how younger generations in west have lost with physical reality as have the elites. And while this dangerous loss of touch with reality is most easily visible in these two groups, they are far from being the only ones affected. You can see the loss of touch with reality in supposedly “educated” and “credentialed” people religiously belief in man-made climate change or not challenging claims that “zero carbon”, “renewable” energy and electric cars will magically replace existent energy and transportation infrastructure. The defining characteristic of western societies in past two decades has been widespread magical thinking and the desire to believe in outrageous claims.

With that out of the way, let us now focus on how the COVID-19 pandemic has shown liberals to be more stupid than conservatives- if that is even possible.

1] In my opinion, one of the most bizarre belief widespread among liberals is that immunity acquired after recovery from COVID-19 is somehow non-existent or requires additional vaccination. With the exception of viral diseases that are almost inevitably fatal (rabies) or due to certain chronic retroviruses (HIV), post-infection immunity is always superior to that acquired after vaccination. While getting there might be expensive for diseases with high mortality such as smallpox (now eradicated) or yellow fever- immunity after infection is an undeniable fact, and also the basis for vaccination. So why would COVID-19 be any different from other human or even animal coronaviruses? Is there something magical about vaccines that make them better than post-infection immunity?

2] And this magical liberal thinking keeps getting worse.. Let us talk about face-masks, again. While there is some evidence and a rationale for why specialized and properly fitted masks such as N95 could block infection for a few hours, the same cannot be said about cloth or surgical facemasks. Tell me something.. has any properly done study before 2020 shown that cloth or surgical facemasks prevent influenza, let alone a truly airborne virus such as COVID-19? So why are liberals pretending that ineffectual and ugly rags work? Why do they keep saying “follow the science” when there is none to support that claim? Are normal facemasks any more effective against COVID-19 than medieval talismans were against the plague?

3] Then there is the issue of risk (or lack thereof) for COVID-19 in children. Every available bit of evidence we have thus far suggests that the infection causes either no symptoms or very mild ones in children or anybody under 30. The risk of death due to COVID-19 in children who are not morbidly obese or seriously ill from other chronic diseases is less than 1 in 100k cases and likely less than 1 in a million. Even factoring in all the sick and morbidly obese children gives us death rate of close to 1 in 50k cases. Also, multisystem inflammatory syndrome (MIS-C) aka Kawasaki’s disease, which can be treated very easily, occurs almost exclusively in a very few obese black or Hispanic children. Children are also far less likely to transmit COVID-19 than adults. So what is the point of masking children or trying to vaccinate them?

4] Liberals also hold on to their delusional belief that COVID-19 carries a very high risk of hospitalization, even though only 20% of people (at most) in the oldest age group require it. Yes.. even the vast majority of those over 80 (especially those not living in nursing homes or assisted living facilities) do not require even simple hospitalization- let alone ending up in the ICU. In those under 50, the risk of any hospitalization is less than 1 in 100- probably closer to 1 in 200 or 300 once you factor in all the missed asymptomatic and mildly symptomatic cases. ICU use for those under 50 is somewhat age dependent but is still less than 1 in a few hundred at the upper end. For kids and those under 30, it is less than 1 in 1k.

The majority of hospitalization and ICU usage occurs for those in their 60s and 70s and even in those age groups it is 1-3%, with most of those ending up in ICU being very frail, seriously obese or with multiple comorbidities. My point is that even in the age groups who are most likely to require simple hospitalization or ICU, the actual rates of usage are pretty low. Hospitalization rates become an issue only for the 80+ AND institutionalized or those who are 70+ AND have serious cormorbidities. This does not mean that an occasional and unlucky 20-something wont end up in the ICU, but the relative risk for that outcome is really low.

The real question- why are liberals pretending otherwise over 16 months after this pandemic began in the west? Didn’t they learn anything from everything they have seen? Can’t they analyse simple data? Do they have any concept of relative risk? Are they capable of any independent critical thinking? In the next part, I intend to talk about vaccination, difference between PCR-diagnosed “infection” and a real infection, Ivermectin, the role of western internet monopolies and much more.

What do you think? Comments?

Reminder that Humans have Flown into Earth Orbit for Over 60 Years

July 20, 2021 4 comments

I am sure that many of you have seen sycophantic presstitutes showering undeserved praise of bargain basement Lex Luthor aka Jeff Bezos taking a pathetic suborbital hop into “space”. For those of you too young, or stupid, to remember- humans have been flying (or rocketing) into Earth’s orbit and beyond for over 60 years. Yes.. a child born on same day as the first crewed orbital flight (April 12, 1961) would be two years shy of earliest age they could start collecting social security retirement benefits in USA. Think about that!

Alternatively, the first human spaceflight which resulted in a successful landing on Moon and return to earth took off on July 16, 1969- just over 52 years ago. Also, Apollo 10 (previous mission) which was a test run for Apollo 11 and almost landed on moon took off on May 18, 1969. Similarly, humans were able to soft-land an unmanned probe on the Moon in 1966 and put a rover on the moon in 1970. All of this occurred before the first commercially available CPU (Intel 4-bit 4004) was launched in 1971 and PDP-11 in early 1970. Alternatively, the very first iterations of Unix were tested in 1969-1970 on a PDP-11 and ‘C’ was released in 1972.

Clip # 1: Vostok 1 Launch on April 12, 1961

Clip # 2: Apollo 11 Launch on Jul. 16, 1969

What do you think? Comments?