David Thompson
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April 04, 2017

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Alice
And note that the protestors, who wish to impose themselves on others and inhibit other people’s discussion, refuse to participate in the debate without ultimate veto and Disruptor’s Privilege.

That.

David

That.

They’ll only play if they’re guaranteed to win. Which tells us quite a bit about who they are.

Jeff Guinn
As someone once said, Ayaan Hirsi Ali is everything the identity-group fetishists profess to dig: female, atheist, black, immigrant. But, because she does not toe the party line on Islam, her blackness washes off her like a bad dye job on a telly anchor-man - and so do her femaleness and godlessness and immigrant status.

The Southern Poverty Law Center has her an anti-Muslim extremist.

I have many words to describe this. Unfortunately, not one of them is even remotely acceptable here.

Worth noting, though, if you scan down to her entry, is the absolute failure of the SPLC to engage her remarks that they present. It's almost as if they expect people to be bobble dolls, nodding their heads in agreement.

Jeff Guinn

... has labeled her ...

I swear that Preview button doesn't appear until after I hit Post.

Joan

The Charles Murray video is hard to watch. It's amazing these people have never been slapped.

steveo

I've got a suggestion about what the guys could do in the masculinity booth...

David

The Charles Murray video is hard to watch. It’s amazing these people have never been slapped.

It’s a fairly low-key disruption – in that, this time no-one gets chased off campus or ends up in hospital – but it’s still quite revealing, in terms of what kind of people the protestors are. They presume an awful lot, are remarkably ignorant of the chap they’re protesting against, and of the subject matter in general, and are utterly dismissive, indeed contemptuous, of all the people who turned up to hear him speak. And this aspect, their contempt for other students - and everyone there - warrants emphasis.

The protestors repeatedly break their own assurances – for instance, when finally agreeing to protest silently, then loudly interrupting whenever Dr Murray tries to speak. And they’re clearly happy to lie, knowingly, as illustrated by their own grinning at the absurdity of their excuses. And when finally escorted out of the lecture hall, they even demand applause from the people they’ve just insulted and frustrated, and whose time they’ve wasted with self-indulgent grandstanding.

And they evidently expect to get away with such behaviour, repeatedly, with utter impunity, presumably on the basis that no-one has ever dragged them out by their hair or threatened them with expulsion.

John D

Disruptor’s Privilege.

I like that. :-)

juliaeryn

So many gems!
But one moment truly stands out for me:

Charles Murray protestor: "I don't think that someone... of this stature ...should have a platform ....for ideas that have been debunked.... by sociology..."

I did not expect him to end with 'sociology.' If you try to argue that anything, ever, has ever been scientifically 'debunked' by sociology, you are either a sociology lecturer, or busy posing with your finger-moustache tattoo and not attending your sociology lectures.

Matthew McConnagay
And they evidently expect to get away with such behaviour, repeatedly, with utter impunity, presumably on the basis that no-one has ever dragged them out by their hair or threatened them with expulsion.

That's it in a nutshell.

It's intensely frustrating to see Murray, the audience, and most of all the university authorities indulging this behaviour, perhaps under the delusion that they shouldn't interfere with the sacred right to protest. (And what could be more sacred to the aging hippies in charge of a university?) But that right doesn't extend to protesting on university property. Such "protests" (and I hate to dignify these actions with such a term) occur entirely under the university's sufferance, and could be stopped anytime.

They could simply say, "Stop fucking about. None of us are stupid here. We all know exactly what's happening, and we're not going to pretend otherwise. Cut it out immediately or be expelled." But instead we get this pathetic spectacle: Mr. Murray proclaiming himself willing to endure a "silent protest" even after he's been kicked off the stage - and then actually asking these clowns if they're going to be quiet!

Of course they're not going to be quiet, Charlie! I had to stop watching at that, lest my urge to smash something became too overpowering. If only the audience had been gripped by the same overpowering urge, perhaps those protesting might have learned something. Or been horribly crippled.

Y. Knott

- are indulged, effetely and at length, by university staff

I'm pretty sure I can explain this.

University educations have gotten ever more stupidly expensive over the past 30 years - and the trend continues to accelerate. This of course is not reflected in the excellence of the product offered; most of the take seems to have been blown-out on fancier buildings and lusher grounds. The result is, logically,

1) The more money they get, the more they want; and I suspect "SJW 101" would be a much cheaper course to present than "Minutiae of Thermonuclear Warheads 301", if only for the fewer required lab credits; and,

2) the college milieu is now so expensive that (senior faculty know only too d@mn well) they HAVE to have lots 'n lots of those $60,000-a-year snowflakes pouring through the door, no matter what - so therefore, they must mollycoddle them to the hilt, no matter what, lest the snowflakes take their $60,000-a-year elsewhere.

They're trapped in a cleft stick of their own cutting; and to be honest, it looks good on them.

R. Sherman

The thing about the Murray protests is that the vast majority of protestors really have no idea what Murray has actually said or written. I'll wager none of them could accurately explain the thesis of The Bell Curve or refer to any specific evidence Murray cites. They are protesting a caricature, a figment of someone's imagination, merely because someone else labeled Murray the enemy.

David

That’s it in a nutshell.

It’s all rather summed up by the moment around 1:39 when Colleen Sheehan, a professor of political science and a co-ordinator of the event that’s being ruined right in front of her, just smiles, tilts her head and coos, “Oh, come on, let’s give that a try.” As if pleading with a four-year-old.

It occurs to me that the culture would be better served by demolishing the humanities departments and just building a bigger car park.

David

“Ideology stinks,” says the leftist ideologue who can only speak in regurgitated slogans.

You see, being so terribly clever, he’s educating us.

R. Sherman

@Y. Knott

Without Federal price supports in the form of guaranteed loans, the system would've collapsed some time ago given current demographics. Simply put, there are too few qualified students for too many colleges. As you point out, the suppliers increasingly cater to the consumers leading to the current atmosphere on campus. What's perverse is that although decreased demand should cause lower prices, the student loans prop up both the demand (by attracting unqualified students who then major in SJW Studies) and the price. Truly the worst possible outcome.

Tom

@R. Sherman

You're right, cutting off the flow of that lovely money would nip this crud in the bud, and I'd dearly love to see that, but I wonder what the other side of that rupture would look like?

For years we've been telling kids who really should've attended trade schools that they needed a university degree for 'knowledge work'. Now we have the pipeline loaded what sort of social collapse would occur if we stopped pumping gullible idiots into it? There is, per Mike Rowe, a need for trained manual laborers but certainly not enough to absorb all those who wouldn't be attending university when the money dries up. What do we do with all of them?

Add the increasing automation of certain functions, truck driving perhaps(?), and you only increase the number of people who need work but aren't really able for high-end, mental labor.

I apologize for throwing out a lot of seemingly rhetorical questions but there's a world of hurt potentially headed our way and I'm more than a little concerned that very few people are thinking about it. On the other hand, I suppose given that the people running things (government\education) seem to be complete idiots maybe it's good thing they haven't set their low-horsepower brains to this problem.

Microbillionaire
Add the increasing automation of certain functions, truck driving perhaps(?), and you only increase the number of people who need work but aren't really able for high-end, mental labor.

I apologize for throwing out a lot of seemingly rhetorical questions but there's a world of hurt potentially headed our way and I'm more than a little concerned that very few people are thinking about it.

I lean towards replacing both Angry Studies and most of welfare with hiring people for make-work. Order some large fields in Nevada or Wyoming dug into ditches. Ban the factory-production or import of certain nonessential products and create a million jobs handcarving replacements. Repaint road stripes every week. That sort of thing.

Tom

@Microbillionaire

I know you're kidding, you are kidding right?

While I agree with putting their anger to use digging ditches I fear that, like any program run by the government, they would eventually win the right to unionize (the TSA anyone?) be granted gold-plated pensions and wind up better than they were before - while somehow doing less work.

Jim Whyte

Y Knott,

Your suspicion about SJW101 is correct. I have it on good authority that several departments of mineral and/or petroleum engineering in the States have been confronted by university bean-counters telling them that graduating a Soc or Poly-Sci student costs the system about a tenth of what one of their students costs, and that their department's future hinges on getting their students out the door on the cheap.

Burnsie

...because frankly we are the problem right now.”

He's absolutely correct, of course, but not for the reason he thinks.

Posturing dumbass.

Microbillionaire

Tom,

I know you're kidding, you are kidding right?

I'm serious. I realize that the make-work option can run downhill fast. My position is that I don't see anything better. Let me try to enumerate some of the more and less serious alternatives for What Could Be Done about the world of hurt you've said is heading our way.

1) Do nothing. While often a respectable position, hi libertarians, I don't think it's going to work here. Automatisation is going to drive down wages on tens of millions of jobs; automatisation combined with #FightFor15 and the gold-plated-pensions-granting sort you mention are going to wind up destroying those jobs. Tens of millions of unemployed combined with continued university subsidies to churn out Angry Studies is a recipe for civil war.

2) UBI, citizen's dividend, or similar programs. Now you're still funding Angry Studies sorts, only they can expand indefinitely, and their ever increasing numbers can go around fucking up shit all day. They won't be alone - there will also be, for example, the neckbeards of /pol/ and their nazi-templar LARPing. High school cliques and overgrown bullies for ever and ever, set free from the yoke of "get a job" to engage in status-games and hate propaganda without limit. Again, seems like a recipe for civil war.

3) Luddism in some form. Create and preserve human work by banning automatisation and mechanization in certain areas. This is what I'm suggesting for make-work. Yes, it can suffer bureaucratic capture and overspending, but these can be at least tolerable with advances in technology and such to compensate.

4) Purges and rollbacks of the progressive nonsense. History strongly suggests this is not going to happen short of civilizational collapse - politics seems rather a "ratchet" that locks in progressivism after some time. Witness Donald Trump, aka the second coming of Bill Clinton, being denounced in ever more feverish terms as RIGHT WING EXTREMIIIIIIST with no sign of slacking off any time soon. And it's not just tabloids and Leftboros, it's people like Laurence Tribe, Harvard Professor and Generally High Muckety-Muck, pinning this:

As more emerges re @realDonaldTrump's theft of the presidency it gets clearer that we mustn't keep calling him POTUS. He's a usurper.

In order for purge+rollback not to just roll forwards again to something like the present, you'd have to practically be an absolute monarch with personal security forces to purge hard enough in the first place. American conservatives do little other than entrench former progressivism; they're not going to help much

Microbillionaire

On a lighter note, elsewhere:

People who read the news more likely to be Islamophobic, study finds

Gee, I wonder why.

Sporkatus
masculinity confession booths
I wonder, in a churlish and vulgar way, whether one might enter said booth and engage in self-stimulation, as an "act of performance art". How much flummery in written form would it take to get away with it?
Jen

identity politics versus art

Identity politics is 'versus' everything.

Spiny Norman

As more absurd, wholly-invented paranoid horseshit that even our shills in the media aren't buying emerges...

Fixed, for Lord High Muckety-Muck Clintonista Harvard Professor Lawrence Tribe.

("Professor" Tribe was a frequent target of radio pundit Rush Limbaugh's humorous jibes during the Bill Clinton administration 20-odd years ago.)

David

Incidentally, Tim Newman, an occasional commenter of this parish, has a pretty good blog. You may find it of interest.

Spiny Norman

Further along in the Mark Steyn link:

As I say wearily for the umpteenth time, the defenders of Section 18 in Oz and the MPs who voted for M-103 in Canada and the craven non-entity of a university president who canceled Ayaan's appearance at Brandeis, on the one hand, and, on the other, the men who slaughtered the Charlie Hebdo staff and shot up Lars Vilks' event in Copenhagen and firebombed the Norwegian comedienne Shabana Rehman's family restaurant are merely different points on the same continuum: they're all in the shut-up business. And they're all hustling us further along the same dark retreat into silence.

Heresy against Islam is impermissible. If not written out plainly in the law, it is clearly implied. The self-styled "anti-fascist" campus SJW brownshirts have learned that lesson well, and adopted the tactics of intimidation as their own.

PiperPaul

Rob Jenkins on incompetent graduates and inverted meanings:

I found that puzzling, until one helpful reader clued me in: “I share your view of what critical thinking should mean,” he wrote. “But a quite different operative definition has a strong hold in academia. In this view, the key characteristic of critical thinking is opposition to the existing ‘system,’ encompassing political, economic, and social orders, deemed to privilege some and penalize others. In essence, critical thinking is equated with political, economic, and social critique.”

You see? As I (and many others) have been saying, Critical Theory is being understood or promoted as critical thinking. Now, I wonder who benefits from this incompetent/intentional conflation of terminology?

Hopp Singg

Masculinity confession booths? If I didn't know better, I'd say they're the newest version of the venerable pocket protector: non-breeder self-identification to save women time.

WTP

Do nothing ...Automatisation is going to drive down wages on tens of millions of jobs

Which is why absolutely nobody works in accounting or such anymore and thus all of those who used to do accounting and such can be found on street corners with "Will actuary for food" signs. The problem isn't that the jobs disappear, it's that we don't set expectations on people to make themselves useful. Buggy whip makers and horse dressers moved on to do other things. wth those things were, God only knows but they did them.

UBI - Essentially what we have today via the university systems. Professors teach no-show classes that "students" do the minimal work for and get paid to teach. Essentially this is the make-work to which you originally referred, only they're finding something to do with that free time, bitching to get more UBI. Works the same either way.

Luddism - No. Obviously.

Purges ... Laurence Tribe, Harvard Professor and Generally High Muckety-Muck - Bingo. As R. Sherman says, Without Federal price supports in the form of guaranteed loans, the system would've collapsed some time ago . But I have yet to find even one even slightly prominent politician with the guts to point this out. Yet this is, and has been for well over 30 years, the basis of the problem.

Sam Duncan

The great political thinker (stop sniggering at the back) Eddie Izzard naïvely tries to bring Peace 'n' Love to the middle east by playing Tel Aviv then running a marathon in support of the Arabs. The Arabs tell him to get stuffed because he has Jew cooties or something.

The author of that piece seems to think the experience will learn 'im. I'd bet good money that it won't.

“On a lighter note, elsewhere:

People who read the news more likely to be Islamophobic, study finds

Gee, I wonder why.”

The study took place in New Zealand, “the association of prejudice towards Muslims with more media exposure holds across the political spectrum”, but the Independent illustrates the piece with a big photo of the Sun, Express, and Daily Mail. Gee, I wonder why. Gotta keep that Narrative going somehow...

Daniel Ream
Buggy whip makers and horse dressers moved on to do other things. wth those things were, God only knows but they did them.

I doubt many would consider "dying in the Great War" an upward career move.

WTP

I doubt many would consider "dying in the Great War" an upward career move.

Interesting theory. Did Mata Hari tell the Germans which doughboys were buggy whip makers? I understand she got around. Seems like an awful workload, though.

PiperPaul

"Buggy whip makers and horse dressers moved on to do other things."

The moves were from the farms to the factories, then from the factories to "service" jobs in offices. Now, the office "services" jobs are being automated and/or offshored. The unique-to-human tasks (thinking, etc.) are being done by software.

Ask me how I know.

Lionel Ebb

I can't be the only one happy to see Marvel Comics taking a beating at the tills for pandering to the snowflake tendency: http://bit.ly/2nTZnJR

WTP

The unique-to-human tasks (thinking, etc.) are being done by software.

I know. I write software. I also am well aware of its limitations. Especially in the domain of machine learning. A machine will never truly understand a human being because a machine can never be a human being. Science fiction is interesting and often prescient, and yet no flying cars or hyper drive etc. Lots of jobs go unfilled/undone mostly because we pay people to not work and we undercut their desire to do so not only with the dole but with lowered expectations and fatalism about the future. I can't find a landscaper in north Georgia (US) to show up and do simple work, yet the people living up there piss and moan about people from Florida and Atlanta taking their jobs.

Daniel Ream
Did Mata Hari tell the Germans which doughboys were buggy whip makers?

Spanish flu, then?

Claiming that a massive disruption in the transport sector didn't result in widespread unemployment in the first twenty years of the twentieth century while also ignoring the depopulation effects of the Great War and the Spanish flu is disingenuous at best.

Oh, and then there was that Depression thing.

Microbillionaire
Which is why absolutely nobody works in accounting or such anymore and thus all of those who used to do accounting and such can be found on street corners with "Will actuary for food" signs. The problem isn't that the jobs disappear, it's that we don't set expectations on people to make themselves useful. Buggy whip makers and horse dressers moved on to do other things. wth those things were, God only knows but they did them.

We know *horse* jobs went away in the past. Horses were soundly outcompeted by machines like cars and tractors in most niches, getting relegated to specialty things like horse-racing where cars aren't allowed (a luddite type of solution) and the domestic horse population decreased drastically. I don't see how "setting expectations" is supposed to stop the same happening to humans as the machines advance. Expectations for machines can be set high too.

PiperPaul

WTP: But the issue is quickly becoming "what do we do with all the people who are no longer needed"? What is the typical transition period from funemployment to gainful employment when entire professions/vocations are being wiped-out (although I suppose the climate change boogeymen[1] could take care of that - heh)? Add to that that now we will have ever so much more competition for even lower-level jobs.

The old, "but these unemployed will design, build and maintain the automated systems" doesn't fly - no they won't. Besides the skills and education issues, that notion goes against the very purpose of automation. I figure 10 lost jobs will be balanced by 3 new jobs in automation.

And automated systems are absolutely great for centralized control and terrible for diversity (diversity in problem-solving, that is).

[1] Things of unknown magnitude that may happen, in unknown places, at unknown times that are providing a handy distraction.

R. Sherman

@Daniel Ream

No one suggests that upheavals of various sorts don't occur. And those may affect an entire generation. But the fact remains, society and populations do adjust to such technological upheavals. Absent immigration of low/no skilled workers which hides the problem, the industrialized West approaching a birthrate which is less than replacement level. Indeed, such a birthrate has arrived in Japan.

The problem is, when governments try to cushion the effects of an upheaval, the "cushions" wind up becoming permanent disincentives to changing behavior. See, e.g. the Great Society programs which ultimately made irresponsible behavior a career path. For that matter, FDR's New Deal--one of those attempts to cushion the effects of the upheaval--perpetuated it as many economists have argued within the last decade.

WTP

I don't see how "setting expectations" is supposed to stop the same happening to humans as the machines advance.

Lowering them certainly wont help. Life, especially life in the 21st century, is not as f'n hard as our media/entertainment/academic BS Matrix mentality wants people to believe. The cognitive dissonance of "we need immigrant workers because Americans won't do the jobs" and "jobs are getting automated out of existence, what are we to do" coexisting in the same whining, hopeless, defeatist mindset is absurd. People can and will find ways to make themselves useful to each other. They have since civilization began. When trade began. But expecting others, be they the government or major corporations or Mom & Pop's Lawn Care to tell people what to do is a very recent phenomenon in the context of human history.

Claiming that a massive disruption in the transport sector didn't result in widespread unemployment in the first twenty years of the twentieth century while also ignoring the depopulation effects of the Great War and the Spanish flu is disingenuous at best.

You're conflating two things in a manner that isn't clear to me. Regarding The Great War and Spanish Flu I definitely agree. Is the " massive disruption in the transport sector" to which you refer tied to The Great War or to that nefarious bastard Henry Ford...or Big Rail...or ??? The latter most definitely spurred the booms that led to the later busts. Wealth came too quickly and easily for society to know what to do with it all and misspent that excess. But much of the pain of the Great Depression (or even the US busts that preceded it) was more due to a mismanagement of wealth.

Please forgive me if I'm speaking too definitively here. I understand there is much give and take in the degree and extent of my points, but I do believe in them much more strongly than the current narrative...I'm also pounding this out between the real work I really should be doing and lack the time and skill to properly word craft it.

Daniel Ream
Marvel Comics taking a beating at the tills

What's interesting about that whole phenomenon is that Marvel has suddenly decided sales matter. It's an open secret that neither DC nor Marvel's comics businesses have been profitable for decades - they exist as R&D, idea factories generating IP that can be licensed elsewhere. As long as they're doing that, it doesn't matter what their sales are.

I suspect what's actually happening here is that the popularity of the movies has been driving former and new fans back to the comics, and they aren't liking what they see. Brand contagion is souring them on seeing any more of the movies, which is where the real money is. I'm guessing Disney came down from On High and told Marvel Comics to align the comics with the movies (which have been surprisingly agenda-free) Or Else.

and yet no flying cars

We have flying cars. They're called helicopters.

As for machine learning, self-driving cars went from driving off of a dirt road after 300m to navigating a complicated off-road course and then tackling city driving in one year. Kiosks have replaced human staff in most of the fast food restaurants around here.

There's an old sysadmin joke, "Go away or I will replace you with a very small shell script." Huge numbers of jobs from service to white-collar office require very little creativity, independent thought or initiative, and automation is going to devastate those.

Microbillionaire
The cognitive dissonance of "we need immigrant workers because Americans won't do the jobs" and "jobs are getting automated out of existence, what are we to do" coexisting in the same whining, hopeless, defeatist mindset is absurd.

...I don't recall saying the former. I think you're slipping into a habitual argument with someone else. IMO America does not need immigrant workers, certainly not at current rates.

WTP

...I don't recall saying the former. I think you're slipping into a habitual argument with someone else.

Sorry, did not mean to imply that YOU did but such is quite prevalent in the zeitgeist (do people still use that word or is it too 1990's?)

IMO America does not need immigrant workers, certainly not at current rates.

Mostly agree. But in certain high tech/high demand fields we do. Unless you know any out-of-work data scientists wiling to work in central Florida. If so I can probably hook you up with a referral fee.

WTP

As for machine learning, self-driving cars went from driving off of a dirt road after 300m to navigating a complicated off-road course and then tackling city driving in one year.

And yet they still, with all the money, sweat, and effort put into designing them by some of the greatest technical minds of the 21st century over nearly(?) a decade, they still perform much more poorly than a moderately well disciplined 15 year old with a learner's permit.

Daniel Ream

A 4x improvement in one year seems promising.

I'm sure those newfangled spinning jennies will never catch on.

David
Comedians have told how anti-Brexit jokes are killing their careers as audiences outside of London walk out in offence. A number of comedians have described scripting their take on Britain leaving the European Union for left-wing audiences in London, only to face unamused audiences when they take their acts out to the rest of the country.

Heh.

WTP

I'm sure those newfangled spinning jennies will never catch on.

And again, what became of all the shuttle cock (or wtf...had to look up what they did before spinning jennies) operators? At one time computer science was done only by the most ingenious of our day. Your highly trained mathematicians, your Alan Turings and such. Working at the bit/machine level. Then assembly language and higher level languages came along and moderately intelligent and educated (and many not so but good at faking it) developed software and now any idiot or child or congressman (or president) can twitter away to the world with such devices. What was it once believed, a world market for five computers? May be apocryphal but not far off the thinking of many visionaries of the day.

I realize I'm now arguing the other side of this specific luddite/non-luddite issue but that is my point. No one has any idea what use people will serve in the future. Yet there always seems to be a use for them, so long as they themselves are free to find their own place and not dictated to by government, corporation, or a mind imprisoned by imagined limitations culturally absorbed.

Ten

The intersection of- well, whatever.

Ten

the fact remains, society and populations do adjust to such technological upheavals.

Not such, some. And one they will not.

One of the three greatest existential crisis is the next, final one: Mankind shall not ward off it eradicating itself with artificial intelligence. Proof? Marry two words: Autonomous and replication.

There is no way on earth that disaster will be fended off from the quarters that spawned it already, and many rightists, in their aging Tom Swiftian fantasies, will be first to usher it in with accolades about free markets and industry and liberty they can't begin to grasp.

In a universe apparently predicated on intelligence and in a Creation apparently likewise, we didn't really think G-d would spare us these challenges, did we?

Darleen

Just tossing this out here ...

Neighbors in the house behind us ... house is $350K, couple have a two upscale vehicles, been doing remodeling since they moved in 7 years ago. Have a child.

What does he do? He's a welder at SpaceX.

There's some skilled jobs that will never be completely replaced by either automation or a call-center in India.

I'm going to encourage the grandsons to become plumbers then open their own plumbing business.

Bad News Quillan

Microbillionaire wrote:

And it's not just tabloids and Leftboros, it's people like Laurence Tribe, Harvard Professor and Generally High Muckety-Muck, pinning this:
As more emerges re @realDonaldTrump's theft of the presidency it gets clearer that we mustn't keep calling him POTUS. He's a usurper.

Tribe is co-conspiritor with one BHO in the production this post-modern classic:
http://www.americanthinker.com/articles/2010/07/barack_hussein_einstein_at_har.html

-- Bad News

jabrwok

There's some skilled jobs that will never be completely replaced by either automation or a call-center in India.

Sure, but enough to absorb the entirety of the lower half of the IQ bell curve? Especially since LBJs successful "breed for stupidity" program got underway back in the 60s?

Sam Duncan
Comedians have told how anti-Brexit jokes are killing their careers as audiences outside of London walk out in offence.

Heh.

Yep. And frankly, the careers of the two examples they give in the Telegraph could do with a bit of killing. But no doubt they'll get plenty of mileage in London (and Glasgow), not to mention on the BBC, from laughing at the dumb provincial hicks to make up for it.

Mind you, you have to wonder what someone who pays to see Brigstocke or Stewart Lee expects. It's a bit like walking out of the ballet because they've forgotten the words.

Daniel Ream
And again, what became of all the shuttle cock (or wtf...had to look up what they did before spinning jennies) operators?

Good question. But given that the Luddite movement was coincident with the Napoleonic Wars, I'm going to point out again that every time someone says "humanity has weathered previous technological disruptions just fine!" there's a little echoing whisper of "...as long as there's a handy war or epidemic or famine around to kill off the excess population and raise the value of all labour".

While the population decline will eventually do that, it's going to take a lot longer than the innovation cycle for most disruptive technologies, and in the mean time no one's answering the question of what we do with all these unskilled people who need occupying.

There's some skilled jobs that will never be completely replaced by either automation or a call-center in India.

Jobs that require initiative, creativity and independent thinking, absolutely. Your neighbours' kid is working in a company where everything he works on is a one-off prototype. But welding in assembly line manufacturing has been automated for years.

Squires

I'm just going to leave this little gem here:

http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/americas/muslim-teenager-ziad-ahmed-blacklivesmatter-stanford-application-100-times-repeat-university-a7665591.html

PiperPaul

Everything I (and thousands of other people in the same position) do is a one-off prototype (of sorts) requiring initiative, creativity and independent thinking - technology just made it much more financially attractive to send that work overseas to people whose cost of living is about 1/10th of mine.

Spiny Norman

Squires,

I saw that abomination earlier today. Someone at Stanford's admissions needs a whack on the head with a club.

(Of course, the real reason the smarmy little shit got admitted is because he's connected.)

wtp

There is no way on earth that disaster will be fended off from the quarters that spawned it already

There is no way on earth that any human can see that far into the future. Thomas Malthus was greatly regarded in his day and later by such luminaries as Charles Darwin. Though I suppose if we wait long enough he will eventually be proven correct. I know I won't be holding my breath.

..as long as there's a handy war or epidemic or famine around to kill off the excess population and raise the value of all labour"

The makings of a good communist have started with less. Much focus on labor. "What can I get" as opposed to "what can I create" or "how can I help".

technology just made it much more financially attractive to send that work overseas to people whose cost of living is about 1/10th of mine.

And yet there are many IT jobs in the US that go wanting. Much of what went to India and such has come back due to poor quality. That which didn't generally led to failures of the corporations and/or projects involved. In general I do agree with the point. I certainly believe it is wrong for us to expect American or any other Western workers for that matter, to compete with slave labor. But much of what has happened in India is the quality people changed jobs, asked for more money, such that their costs are on par, given complications/costs of logistics and such, with Western labor. And cost of software production has come down somewhat. As more directly to your point about cost of living, it's still a pretty shitty life relative to life in the west. Hence the continued demand for H-1B visas.

wtp

On another note somewhat in line with this post and/or its criticisms of our universities and such, I was recently contacted by my alma mater the University of Florida (Go Gators) looking to meet with me regarding giving. As my time is rather limited, I declined. Not to overshare but this is my email reply, some parts redacted ;) Feel free to use as a template should anyone here be contacted. Given my somewhat limited language skills by all means enhance/improve where necessary.

Dear Mr. Xxxx,

I received your letter of XXXX along with a phone call from one of your colleagues on about the same day. While I will not likely have time to meet with you I thought I would take this opportunity to explain why my, admittedly somewhat meager, giving has dropped off to essentially zero. While I do value the time I spent at the University of Florida, my feeling is that the value of a college education has dropped significantly in the last dozen or so years. I think you can guess to the kinds of things I refer without me having to spell them out in detail. We are both educated people, after all. When I look back at my time at UF with a little more perspective and 30 years of practical work experience under my belt, I see where the roots of my most recent dissatisfaction were visible even then. In general, UF (and so some extent the rest of the state university system) has done a fairly good job of keeping things somewhat rational. On the other hand I see virtually zero concern from administrators and faculty at UF regarding the comically absurd happenings that have been occurring at other even more prominent schools.

Up until a few years ago I was concerned that there was a little too much emphasis on athletics at our major colleges and universities. However given the events of the last few years it seems to me that athletes, benefiting from an objective standard/goal inherent in sports, ironically may now be getting a better education even by staying out of class than they are likely to get in some of the softer majors that some such athletes gravitate toward.

But my most significant concern, one that I am more intimately familiar with on a regular basis, is that the greater state university system is failing its students and society in general. I am familiar with a couple of professors at other state schools, one specifically who teaches critical thinking, ethics, and philosophy, whose thinking skills, sense of responsibility, and ethics are lower than that of some 16 year olds I have known. As I understand it, many of these soft classes are essentially no-shows. The professors themselves complain that students don't show up. I ask how can they be passing the classes? Based on the answers I get, it is quite clear that the professors in these soft subjects feel pressure to pass the students and thus maintain a reputation as "easy" such that they can continue to be "in demand" and thus collect a pay check.

I am greatly interested in STEM programs and supporting such but I do not see a way that I can be assured that even in the context of STEM, that my money could quite easily get sidetracked to support people/issues with whom I very much disagree. But I am mighty tired of seeing my tax dollars go to extended childhoods and avoidance of genuine responsibility.

PiperPaul

"And yet there are many IT jobs in the US that go wanting"

Perhaps they go wanting at the rates that are advertised in order to justify offshoring? A common trick is to write the job description with someone already in mind, so as to get who you want for the job. Alternatively you make the requirements such that there is no other option other than offshoring. MBAs get bonuses that way.

I get the impression that HR departments (using resume keyword scanners) are more involved in hiring decisions than they used to be. My theory is that employees are more seen as interchangeable parts now that software has taken over much of the heavy lifting (for example, drafting was once a pretty high skilled profession limiting who was suited for the job. Now, just about anyone can pick up, say, AutoCAD in a few weeks and produce work that is indistinguishable -to an inexperienced hiring manager- from the work output of someone with 20 years' experience).

As far as the quality issues go, in the process plant design business there's talk of cheap engineering being corrected on site during construction at enormous cost (which is sort of 'OK' if you have the design and build contract as well as insurance for those types of eff-ups) when delayed startup costs millions per day and cost-of-fixing is no object. Of course it's very difficult to get reliable figures on this since everyone involved has an interest in declaring success.

And low quality output will only improve with time while practitioners in the west drop out of the field and new people can't find work (most entry level tasks have already been automated). Sort of a reverse technology transfer where 'the west' gradually loses the ability to execute certain types of projects.

Daniel Ream
Much of what went to India and such has come back due to poor quality.

What tends to get missed in the bean counting is that India and Mexico (the place a former employer outsourced its IT to) do not have the IT culture that North America does - the 40-some-odd years of best practices and familiarity with the technology cycles, or in some cases just the understanding that the manuals lie. The MCSE/CCNA/certified techs in India and Mexico are fine as long as everything goes by the book and are useless once anything deviates from what they were taught in their cram schools. Which is why that work is slowly being brought back in-house.

A common trick is to write the job description with someone already in mind, so as to get who you want for the job.

A friend of mine alerted me to this trick US companies once used to hire foreign workers: you have to show you've advertised for the position in at least four national circulation newspapers before you can look outside the US.

The Weekly World News, The Enquirer, The Globe and the Star are national circulation newspapers. And ones not generally read by out of work software engineers.

I get the impression that HR departments (using resume keyword scanners) are more involved in hiring decisions than they used to be.

HR's job is to keep resumes away from the actual hiring managers. They filter on a variety of criteria which may or may not be meaningful to the job, since HR rarely understands what the job is, let alone what skills are required. Only a fool tries to get a job by submitting a resume; you need to figure out how to bypass HR and talk to the hiring manager directly.

Hal

. . . . but the Independent illustrates the piece with a big photo of the Sun, Express, and Daily Mail.

Another of the amusing bits from the last UK General Election was a comparison of British media inclinations . . . and reactions.

Killer Marmot

I keep thinking the far left has to fold in on itself. It's logically incoherent, hypocritical, factually challenged, unworkable in practice, unforgiving even to its own adherents, and lately, violent. The word "cult" is difficult to avoid.

But it keeps rattling on, perhaps even gaining momentum, whilst leaving a debris trail of destroyed lives -- often the same people they claim to be helping -- in its wake.

Darleen

A common trick is to write the job description with someone already in mind, so as to get who you want for the job. Alternatively you make the requirements such that there is no other option other than offshoring. MBAs get bonuses that way.

This.

Then - re Disney and SoCal Edison, the H1-Bs come in and are trained by the Americans who are losing their jobs. Why do they do it? They are told if they don't and if they even talk about it, they'll lose their severance package and be immediately fired.

Then the company holds the H1-B visa over the head of their foreign employee - work the hours we want and that pay we'll dictate or PFFFT back to India with you! So these IT indentured servants live 4 or 5 to a small apartment and never take time off.

Darleen

Flashback 2015.

The U.S. Labor Department will not investigate allegations that Southern California Edison Co. abused a popular visa program for skilled foreign workers, according to senators who requested the probe.

Disney 2015

From the perspective of five laid-off Disney IT workers, all of whom agreed to speak on the condition of anonymity, Disney cut well-paid and longtime staff members, some who had been previously singled out for excellence, as it shifted work to contractors. These contractors used foreign labor, mostly from India. The laid-off workers believe the primary motivation behind Disney's action was cost-cutting.

"Some of these folks were literally flown in the day before to take over the exact same job I was doing," said one of the IT workers who lost his job. He trained his replacement and is angry over the fact he had to train someone from India "on site, in our country."

PiperPaul

"I keep thinking the far left has to fold in on itself"

"The media" keeps giving it an amplified platform and defers to it for a variety of reasons, not all of them malicious. There must be a list somewhere.

David

This:

Via dicentra.

Ten

There is no way on earth that any human can see that far into the future. [Far enough to prevent AI deleting the human race.]

Two things: 1. That's the point. 2. The future in your sense is already known and being discussed exactly on these terms.

When the real future - say, a decade forward - shows no such preventative talent either, it'll be in the same way the world hasn't outlawed Marxism or Maoism or even debt money. Meaning: See #1.

If you mean 'that's so far away we've plenty of time', I'd disagree. Minority Report is already twice past what an AI nightmare is future distant.

Mags

Note how these attention-seeking clowns – who grin at their own lies and then demand applause - are indulged, effetely and at length, by university staff, as if the venue were a toddlers’ day-care centre.

Even day care centres have rules.

David

Even day care centres have rules.

Yes, maybe I’m being unfair to the staff of day-care centres, who are more likely to recognise tantrums and posturing for what they are.

And what jars, and induces dismay, is the indulgence of farcical conceit. And so we have twenty-year-olds, who by definition are unworldly and self-preoccupied - and specifically, twenty-year-olds who were sufficiently credulous to waste time and money on an Angry Studies course - presuming to lecture the rest of us on what we may and may not listen to - what they will allow - as if they alone, these vain and credulous twenty-year-olds, were capable of thinking properly about whatever the subject is.

Again, it’s the arrogance of the thing, the contempt they show for everyone else.

WTP

Minority Report is already twice past what an AI nightmare is future distant.

You might want to take something for that fever. Where are these PreCogs now?

Burnsie

Universities are deliberately establishing conditions that will produce the next Red Guard.

Please, tell me the difference between today's well-organized campus tantrum-throwers and Mao's student vanguard.

I can think of only one: the Red Guard had the power of the State behind it.

You think that can't happen in the West? It's a smaller leap than you think.

Microbillionaire

I'm going to leave the immigration tangent to others and back up a bit to expound further on the worry Tom raised.

There is, per Mike Rowe, a need for trained manual laborers but certainly not enough to absorb all those who wouldn't be attending university when the money dries up. What do we do with all of them?

Add the increasing automation of certain functions, truck driving perhaps(?), and you only increase the number of people who need work but aren't really able for high-end, mental labor.

I apologize for throwing out a lot of seemingly rhetorical questions but there's a world of hurt potentially headed our way and I'm more than a little concerned that very few people are thinking about it.

Strictly speaking, automation by itself will not put people out of a job.

However, what automation can do by itself is drastically drive down wages for jobs. This automatic carrot harvester (16 second video) is a visually striking example. Advances in that sort of machine working at the speed of dozens of men drive the competitive wages of men in that field down to a few percent of the fuel cost of the machine. (I have simplified somewhat. Insert relevant caveats about also having to account for depreciation of machinery, for example. But this is not the thousand-footnotes post for convincing nitpickers.)

In theory, the former carrot pickers can retrain as something else, perhaps truck drivers, telephone salesmen, or software engineers. In practice, that "something else" is going to be sharply limited by a) various truck-driver-like jobs also getting automated, b) various software-engineer-like jobs being unattainable for many people who went into carrot picking in the first place because they have a poor grasp of software abstractions. Jobs are not fully fungible.

Secondly, there are a lot of jobs where machines can't replace humans, but they can "duplicate" one human to do what many humans were previously doing. In the Bad Old Days when travel was hard, literacy was rare, and paper was expensive, every hundred-person village might have its own storyteller. These days The Hobbit or Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone sell a hundred million copies. It's not literally winner-takes-all, but it certainly is winner-takes-lots.

It should be noted that this is all to the great benefit of consumers. My carrots are cheaper, and my books are better when I can sample the best books of the world instead of the best books of my city. But it sucks for the person who was a local one-in-a-million star and finds that globally, this leaves them out of the Top 5000 sweeping most of the business.

Thirdly, I return to the case of the horse. A century ago America had about 25 million horses. This dropped to about 5 million over the next half-century, before eventually rebounding to 10 million today. I'm not a horse historian, so I don't know the exact details behind the figures, but I think I can safely say that the drop was in large part due to the spread of cars and tractors, and those horse-jobs went away and aren't coming back. Some new horse-jobs were invented, but a lot of the horses just died for lack of prospects. We have no promise this can't happen to humans. Technology advances. As Mr Ream noted upthread, we have flying cars, they're called helicopters.

Again, this is good for consumers, arguably good to humanity at large, on net. Jobs, in principle, are a cost, not a benefit. Wealth in all its forms is the benefit, and ideally it'd fall from the sky or spray from a cornucopia machine and nobody would have to work. But until you've turned welfare into a program like Universal Basic Income which does practically fall from the sky, good fucking luck trying to explain to umpteen million unemployed adults that their distressing lack of income is actually a good thing.

At this juncture I wish to address a previous exchange between Daniel Ream-

But given that the Luddite movement was coincident with the Napoleonic Wars, I'm going to point out again that every time someone says "humanity has weathered previous technological disruptions just fine!" there's a little echoing whisper of "...as long as there's a handy war or epidemic or famine around to kill off the excess population and raise the value of all labour".
-and WTP:
The makings of a good communist have started with less. Much focus on labor. "What can I get" as opposed to "what can I create" or "how can I help".
Position statement: Communism is bad. Very bad. Literally worse than Hitler.
Position statement: People are valuable as imagines Dei regardless of their labor.
Nonetheless the value of labor, or something like it, quickly becomes a relevant quantity for consideration when "what can I create?" or "how can I help?" are answered with things that don't put food on the table. A man teaching his son to paint or whittle or bike is doing a good thing, but the paints, the knife or the bicycle must come from somewhere, as must food and drink, and the usual somewhere is "bought with money", and the usual source of money in its turn is "obtained by selling labor". Indeed, a proposal that people should be entitled to get these things without labor might itself be denounced for 'the makings of a good communist'.

Cheaper products will make charity easier, alleviating some of the problem, but you can't much cheapen e.g. land. They're not making it any more, after all. ;-)

I don't have any good solutions. It looks like one of those things that might not so much have a solution as merely an outcome.

PiperPaul

It's a witch!
.

tolkein

I'm a bit more optimistic than micro billionaire.

We'll lose lots of jobs to automation. Good. If they can be automated then what's being automated is largely repetitive. But the economy is capable of creating vastly more jobs in areas where we can't even visualise today. In 1921 the UK population was 43m. There was a 2m surplus of females over males. Sine then, the UK population has increased to 65m. The UK has lost millions of jobs in steel making, shipbuilding, coal mining. But employment levels are much higher now than then. I don't know what people will do or what and where the new jobs will be. But I bet that, on balance, they'll be better and better paid than they are now.

Ten

Off-topic topic: AI as it initially or obliquely relates to automation but ultimately how it relates to an assault on humanity itself, the threat widely recognized by those who can connect autonomy with replication on an exponential technological scale (and evidently not by capitalist rightists whose capitalism and conservativism are neither.)

Capitulating remark in reaction thereto:

Where are these PreCogs now?

Right. And where are those little engraved wooden balls and the sonic shooters?

You might want to take something for that fever.

No need to prove more of your evidently inconsiderable position, WTP, but who am I to stop you.

WTP

What tolkein said. And to the point of..

the value of labor, or something like it, quickly becomes a relevant quantity for consideration when "what can I create?" or "how can I help?" are answered with things that don't put food on the table. A man teaching his son to paint or whittle or bike is doing a good thing, but the paints, the knife or the bicycle must come from somewhere, as must food and drink, and the usual somewhere is "bought with money", and the usual source of money in its turn is "obtained by selling labor". Indeed, a proposal that people should be entitled to get these things without labor might itself be denounced for 'the makings of a good communist'.

Understand your position statements and agree on the Worse Than Hitler part. A matter of scope of the socialism. But to what I quoted, I think you are missing the point about communism. Helping people, even taking it beyond a father/son to general charity work with strangers, the homeless and such, I believe is a human obligation. Where I vociferously disagree with communism and make-work and such is it is predicated on taking the necessary resources by force. Those things that don't put food on the table do enable others to do so further down the road. Teachers do similar. We pay them. This being one of the limited situations where I firmly believe in borrowing money. But not for snowflake subjects. STEM, shop, etc. The Mike Rowe jobs. Shop, and also home economics, should be required classes not things we discourage young people from taking. The penetration of cultural Marxism into our society began before most people posting here were born, thus we are all steeped in it. It's what I've begun to refer to as The Matrix (and god, I hated that movie). People need to get their heads out of what the media, entertainment, and academics are presenting as reality and think independently.

And more to the general points about technology being a bane rather than a boom to the human experience, it's a similar argument in line with gun control and no-nukes, etc. Blaming inanimate objects for the behaviors, the morals, of those using them. I know those with other perspectives, probably the majority, would disagree with this but I believe that banning the machine gun or mustard gas would not have made much of a difference in the carnage of WWI. It simple would have been manifested differently. The way I see it, the attitudes of the leaders of the day, their morals or what have you, were such that they were willing to sacrifice those millions of lives to meet their objectives. That there were so many available to expend was a function of the advancements in technology that provided the population booms. I'm sure this is an unpopular view and my thing presentation of such will invite much more hole punching but I don't have time to get into the details and address every possible detail, but from my study of human history, technology, war, economics, etc. that's my perspective.

Id' like to discuss this further and should probably proof read this more but I need to get to work...

jabrwok

but you can't much cheapen e.g. land. They're not making it any more, after all. ;-)

Well....any high-rise building represents an increase in "land", in that there's more square-footage than previously on the same footprint. Granted, this is accompanied by a hole (or holes) somewhere else, but that somewhere else usually had little to offer aside from the materials needed to create the new land:-). And then there's the rapidly decreasing cost of space launch tech leading to the prospect of access to lots of currently unexploited land.

The UK has lost millions of jobs in steel making, shipbuilding, coal mining. But employment levels are much higher now than then.

What proportion of the jobs "then" was government pseudo-jobs, as opposed to now? Aren't most jobs in, e.g., Scotland government jobs of one sort or another? At its best, government is symbiotic, but it shades into outright parasitism eventually, and all too easily. Providing examples of the latter is left as an exercise to the reader.

PiperPaul

"What proportion of the jobs "then" was government pseudo-jobs, as opposed to now?"

I hear there's a lot of government(s) money flowing into the "Everything's Fine!" PR business and the "How-To-Find-A-Job" consultant industry.

dicentra

Follow-up to David's April 05, 2017 at 06:55:

#EqualPayDay is today because it takes women until 4/4 to earn what white men earn by 12/31.
Twitter never ceases to amaze. Three guesses as to what her avi is.

dicentra

Which is why that work is slowly being brought back in-house.

Not to mention the fact that India doesn't have intellectual property laws, so your coders can legally walk off with your code. That's why we closed our India office even though we had a really good crew — the lack of IP was too much a liability.

We've got an H1-B on my team but the rest are local yokels, and when we hire, we hire locals. It's hard to find people with the advanced skills we need for our product, but we're not boxing out locals in favor of H1-Bs. QA has a division in Kuala Lampur, but as with most overseas teams, it's a mixed bag as far as employee quality.

As for China, if you sell your software to DoD (and most companies do), you can't have ANY of your code developed in China. So IT is safe from that labor market for now.

dicentra

I keep thinking the far left has to fold in on itself. It's logically incoherent, hypocritical, factually challenged, unworkable in practice, unforgiving even to its own adherents, and lately, violent. The word "cult" is difficult to avoid.

Couldn't you say the same of the Bolsheviks? And look what they did.

Ten

Shop, and also home economics, should be required classes not things we discourage young people from taking. The penetration of cultural Marxism into our society began before most people posting here were born, thus we are all steeped in it.

Evidently cultural Marxism penetrated to the point that 'capitalists' can require people to be subject to programs they deem beneficial too. (No more wondering how the term rightist became warranted.)

And more to the general points about technology being a bane rather than a boom to the human experience, it's a similar argument in line with gun control and no-nukes, etc. Blaming inanimate objects for the behaviors, the morals, of those using them.

Nobody's blaming technology and there's no ethical equivalency between a technology developed to obsolete humanity and others specifically designed to enforce law and order and in extreme cases, enforce the longevity of human civilization.

The way I see it, the attitudes of the leaders of the day, their morals or what have you, were such that they were willing to sacrifice those millions of lives to meet their objectives.

You don't see how that applies almost to the word to an elite technological cabal willing to distance itself from messy humanity if and when it can replace it with what it thinks is a better alternative? You'll recall way back a year ago when flooding the borders with cheap labor was all the rage. Sure, they made handy dependent voters but they also did all that stuff Americans Won't Do for industry.

I'm sure this is an unpopular view and my thing presentation of such will invite much more hole punching but I don't have time to get into the details and address every possible detail, but from my study of human history, technology, war, economics, etc. that's my perspective.

As important as it is. Look, collectivism expects to take back production by any means. Elite 'capitalism' simply eliminates that option by formal order. Neither established order, as a precept or tenet, has any aim to prevent human misery, as fanciful as the rightist view of infinitely elastic market forces may be. One is happy to entrench misery forever and the other to allow it to happen forever.

Generally, corrective negative feedback can be overwhelmed and any human system ruined. It could have been, as far as they knew at the time, lighting the atmosphere on fire during the first atomic tests. Now it can be obsoleting humanity with sufficient technology possessed by a sufficient few. There's nothing in 'conservative' conventional wisdom to address these eventualities except faith in an infinitely self-restoring system.

How does rendering a third, then half, then all of humanity redundant self-correct?

For a race where nothing is infallible markets will not be infallible either.

jabrwok

#EqualPayDay is today because it takes women until 4/4 to earn what white men earn by 12/31.

So women make as much in four months as men do in 12?

WTP

Evidently cultural Marxism penetrated to the point that 'capitalists' can require people to be subject to programs they deem beneficial too.

Oh FFS...shop and home ec addressed getting through life. You might as well whine about why we bother to require people to get any education. In the f'n context shop and home ec are as important as history, math, science, etc. I would argue more so in fact. But I think I get where you're coming from. I can juvenile this point to death probably a hell of a lot better than you can. Simply not worth the time.

Ten

I can juvenile this point to death probably a hell of a lot better than you can.

I'd go with that characteristic ire and brimstone thing myself. Because it's a real winner when you're factless.

Daniel Ream
your coders can legally walk off with your code.

We had the same problem with the factories in China, although the lower manufacturing cost made it an acceptable loss. I'm fairly sure that IP leaks were factored in to the ROI.

dicentra

but you can't much cheapen e.g. land. They're not making it any more, after all.

Global warming means we finally get some use out of Canada and Siberia.

Most wealth isn't tied to land, anyway; it's tied to products of the mind.

Lisboeta

a lot of the horses just died

WWI saw off eight million horses, plus uncounted numbers of donkeys and mules. In the UK, half a million horses were appropriated from their owners during the first year of that war. Similarly, in the United States, 1,000 horses a day were loaded on to ships bound for Europe. The knock-on effect was that very many farmers were deprived of the motive power for their equipment. There were motorised tractors being built at the time, but they were expensive to buy and to run and thus not widely used. In 1917, Henry Ford introduced the Fordson, an affordable, reliable, mass-produced tractor (built in Ireland, England and Russia as well as the US). The rest, as they say, is history.

As for the problem of too many unemployed people and too few 'real' jobs, there are various options. There's the doomsday scenario: another global war or a pandemic. (Not my choice!) Or we need a visionary like Henry Ford, who seized the opportunity of the moment. (Facebook/Google do not qualify.) Or we can just subside into hand-wringing impotence (which doesn't solve anything!)

Lisboeta

Fighting the SJWs

We CAN fight back against the plague of SJWs currently stifling free speech. It doesn't take much effort to cull a list of email addresses from one's alma mata - or, indeed, any university. Compose a nicely-worded missive (we mustn't sink to the SJW level) expressing disappointment at their recent blocking of speakers/free speech (no need to cite: they're all doing it). Mention the fact that, on those grounds, you've advised your son/daughter/friend/whoever to apply to another (unnamed) Uni which truly respects free speech. And that you will be making a donation to that (unnamed) Uni in recognition of their support of genuine free speech.

If enough of us make the minimal effort to send such emails, the dismal trend could be reversed!

WTP

This has been quite enlightening for me. While I well understood the degree that Marxist, Malthusian, and such education has obfuscated the understanding of economic fundamentals on a broader scale, I appear to have grossly underestimated its impact into the educated conservative domain. Long term unemployment is not a function of too many people and not enough jobs. It's a function of many other factors, most of which occur between the ears. A lack of hope, possibly due to theft of productivity via government, mafia, etc. A poverty of self-worth. Etc.

This idea that we need wars to kill off the surplus population is conspiracy theory BS. Throughout the advancements of civilization people have been given more and more tools, knowledge, etc. from previous generations than those generations had themselves. Again...i gotta get back to work. Can I get a witness? Sherman? Jabrwok? Bueller?

Ten

As for the problem of too many unemployed people and too few 'real' jobs, there are various options.

Not as things are. The primary culprit is the artificiality of financial markets, a simple reality and realization whose violent, reflexive anathema to 'capitalist' rightists (mostly - check the political profiles of/on Wall St.) is so gospel you get nowhere reminding them of its largely progressive roots.

Or we can just subside into hand-wringing impotence (which doesn't solve anything!)

See above re: merely ostensible free-marketeers.

The solution is in plain sight. Unless it's a doomsday scenario, everything and anything goes. That we call free market. Since financial derivatives and debt money aren't a free market but are a doomsday scenario, well...

Ten

While I well understood the degree that Marxist, Malthusian, and such education has obfuscated the understanding of economic fundamentals on a broader scale, I appear to have grossly underestimated its impact into the educated conservative domain.

Economics ain't the thing. Tip: Add Keynes to your list but add Keynes to your list in a peripheral way, a way even he would reject outright as things are today. Actually, add Krugman to your list. And Greenspan.

So no, this ain't economics. This is what economics only portends to straddle and given its contortions, straddle badly.

Without that context restored, the remark about conservatives either wants a definition or a real target or both.

Hal

Global warming means we finally get some use out of Canada and Siberia.

Canada mebbe. Apparently Siberia has issues.

jabrwok

This idea that we need wars to kill off the surplus population is conspiracy theory BS.

Do I get to pick who dies? I've got a little (very long) list...

Throughout the advancements of civilization people have been given more and more tools, knowledge, etc. from previous generations than those generations had themselves.

The knowledge and tools exist, but I'm not confident they're being transmitted to the next generation well enough to keep the torch alive. Ever-expanding welfare policies and the eternal import of more uneducated and unassimilated aliens does not portend well for Western Civilization (which is the only one about which I particularly care). Cut off the flow of illegals and non-advantageous legal immigrants, balance trade somehow (prohibit export of money and require all proceeds from imports to country A from country B to be spent by country B in country A on goods for export back to country B maybe), eliminate or vastly reduce the Welfare State, and de-Socialize the education industry so students who might actually learn something aren't held back by the students who see education as an insult, and THEN the economy might start cranking out enough jobs for all levels of cognitive ability to keep the West going.

I generally lean towards free trade, but if that amounts to letting China game the system and produce all the strategic goods that we in the West need to protect ourselves, then I've got a problem with that. Rare Earths being one example last I checked.

WTP

I've got a little (very long) list...

Yes, well don't we all.

I'm not confident they're being transmitted to the next generation well enough to keep the torch alive.. Ever-expanding welfare policies and the eternal import of more uneducated and unassimilated aliens does not portend well for Western Civilization

I'm with you there. But we do have a significant amount of wealth to burn through before the hurt really sets in and people ..uh....get woke. However the general idea of unemployment tied to too many people would still be fallacious. But it is that failure to transmit, or possibly to receive that is the problem. So long as people choose to use wealth to create more wealth instead of viewing wealth as something to take from others, there is not a problem. The thing to fear is not the technology nor the size of the labor (people) market but to what purpose the technology is put and the lack of imagination/disincentives of people from finding their own purpose.

PiperPaul

.

David

A University of Florida professor, Linda Hayward, wants us to believe that Ben Shapiro “kills” people with his words, which are “hate speech,” apparently. And naturally, she implies this while seeming a little unclear on what Shapiro’s views actually are:

I think it’s great that they have diverse opinions out there.

Says she. While protesting against diversity of opinion.

And in other news:

The public university that gave us Melissa “Muscle” Click – and announced open season on student journalists that try to cover social justice warriors – continues to suffer fallout from the November 2015 mêlée. The University of Missouri is shutting down three dorms next year because of low freshman enrolment… This is on top of four other dorms that were already scheduled to go “offline” because of plummeting enrolment.

Consequences.

sH2

I think it’s great that they have diverse opinions out there.

Says she. While protesting against diversity of opinion.

The hum of mental feedback.

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