THE SUICIDE OF THE WEST?

The earth’s preeminent civilization is a suicide by self-administered politicization. It is but the latest in a long line of predecessors.  Civilizations rise upon the shoulders of their citizens, they are enlarged by their governments and when they are no longer energized by their citizens, they collapse. Reflecting their progenitors, they have finite lifetimes.

Western culture resulted from Roman dregs seasoned with Christianity, stirred with the Italian Renaissance and heated in the Protestant Reformation with the mix finally poured onto North America to settle. The settled product is by far the largest linguistically and culturally uniform group of people ever seen on earth. That progression brought the West to the peak of world wealth and technology. But all of that now represents the past.

The Renaissance accelerated progress and therefore change in Western society; that loosening of rigidity naturally fertilized corruption as well. That in turn brought the Reformation reaction. Together, these opposing inclinations produced the U.S. Constitution: a scientific restructuring of human government with controls of implicit corruption built in. However, the minds freed by the Renaissance and purified by the Reformation did not rest upon those laurels: They heedlessly charged ahead, creating the Enlightenment. And with the consequences of that, in typically human fashion, they have tossed much of their own political progress out of the window.

Soviet era Russian literary icon Aleksander Solzhenitsyn fifty years ago warned the West: Preoccupation with its explosion of material well-being has been allowed to divert attention from much that is immaterial but critically important for human development. America’s founding Declaration of Independence subordinated human government to the evident precepts of humanity’s Designer; the West in its intellectual arrogance has replaced that with human thought. Government under God is replaced by human Godvernment to regulate human life. In response, the West is visibly returning to approximate the traditional socio-economic order that preceded the American and French Revolutions with the middle class shrinking, corruption and violence increasing and governments imposing increasing control in response. Supporting all of this, American voters have repudiated their past and declared their dependence.

China applies current technology to governance; every citizen will soon have an account to record and respond to surveillance of everyone’s activities with appropriate rewards and punishments. This “Social Credit” system is also appearing piecemeal in the ?West; it is too convenient and obvious a tool for any government to overlook. Its use will likely accelerate in the next significant economic downturn in response to increasing unrest. Past Western notions of individual responsibility have become subordinate to government; notions of personal liberty are closely following as younger voters increasingly espouse socialism.

Governments are paranoid, progress is destabilizing: the internet-fertilized blossoming of technological progress will gradually subside toward a new normal as regulation stultifies the internet. The expansion of government involvement in nearly everything will calcify the economy and together with increasing corruption, further erode the middle class. Relative poverty will proliferate. There will be consequences.

Much of the world’s economic stability since 2008 has been sustained by governments’ use of fiat money, credit and debt to paper over accumulated economic imbalances and corruption. That tells us that much of today’s record-breaking economic valuations are but an unsustainable, government-imposed inflation. Returning reality will be a long, hard slog. In China, the disaster of Chairman Mao’s Great Leap Forward preceded that which will be the disaster of the country’s typically forced economic repudiation of Communism. The record-breaking economic growth rose from record-breaking government fiat; accumulated economic distortions are equally record-breaking and so will be the turmoil and suffering under recovery after collapse. Russia, which has faced its post-Communist collapse since 1991, has a better chance for relative stability, though its current governors may not. Much of the rest of the world economy is in similar shape.

Travel, manufacturing, military and communication technologies have made present concepts of governance obsolete, unable to adequately fulfill the requirements of human government. Those same technologies at the same time as they provide new tools for controlling people, also integrate larger groups of people, leading toward  what may become a common world culture or at least, common enough to eventually comprise a world society, though probably not a true world government. A world government is an illusion used by demagogues; it is by definition a violation of the political principle of subsidiarity that dictates that a controller must be as close as possible to that which is controlled. A workable model for a human world government does not presently exist, as the operations at the United Nations clearly attest.

Neither is the evolving Chinese model nor its Western counterpart sustainable; people after all, are not ants as the regular failure of socialist and other dictated models demonstrates. Genus homo appears to be facing another interregnum, hopefully one that  all the wonderful new technology will make shorter than were the dark ages of history.

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GLEANINGS FROM THE PASSING SCENE … (Politically Uncorrected)

alfred_e-_neumannGuns: New  bill in Congress would require a federal license for gun ownership (Report)

Corruption: Wife of indicted political boss will hold highest judicial office (Article)

America’s young adults live with parents and reject having children? (Article)

Surveillance: 30 state database tracks everyone’s license plates in real time (Article)

The culture: High school’s high pass rate result of cheating teachers? (Report)

Illinois: Where dead people not only vote but are covered by Medicaid? (Article)

The economy: U.S. new business formation goes negative? (Article)

Healthcare : Robot surgeon to revolutionize? (Report) (Hmnn … can you sue a robot?)

China: Now bans some Americans from leaving (Report)

U.S. Navy: Results of increasing corruption (Article)

Drones: A new tool for anonymous, affordable attacks on anyone, by anyone! (Article) Drones a growing threat (Article)

Libya: Turkey joins in, against everyone else? (Article)

Surveillance is expanding worldwide (Report) (What can happen …)

The culture: Smart toilets, faucets use Alexa to listen to conversations (Report) Smart TVs sending user data to Netflix, Facebook (Artcle)

South Korea: Prickly post WWII relations canceled 3-party intelligence sharing with U.S. and Japan (Article)

The economy : U.S. interest rates will go negative (Article)

The culture: The homeless cannot be rousted by cities? (Report)

U.S. Senate committee wants more law enforcement involved in policing social media? (Report)

Why is the NY Federal Reserve pumping billions into the money market? (Report)

Immigration court backlog exceeds 1 M cases? (Report)

San Jose, CA has banned natural gas from new buildings (Report)

The economy: The Federal Reserve in the Emperor’s new clothes … (Article)

Surveillance: Secret FBI subpoenas scoop up personal data from scores of companies (Report)

India: Cutting corporate taxes, funding the resulting deficit with fiat money? (Article) (Whom the gods would destroy …)

Trump approves troops to Saudi Arabia in response to Iran? (Article)  (Didn’t he promise to exit all that?)

Switzerland: Supreme Court rules parents have no right to home school kids (Report)

Science: New plastic may replace military body armor? (Report)

China: Communist party rule threatened? (Article)

Undetectable fakes coming soon? (Report)

Egypt: Mass protests arising? (Article)

The internet: The paid and unpaid political trolls (Article)

Chicago: 9 killed, 18 wounded in weekend shootings (Report)

A naked man was arrested after beating up a disabled woman with her wheelchair (Report)

 

EDITORIAL:      The Sad State of Qualification for High Office

 

We are now expected to dismiss the Premier of Canada because he appeared years ago in blackface makeup. We are admonished to impeach a sitting U.S. Supreme Court Justice because as a high school student he is accused of having made a drunken pass at a girl. These, as standards for accession to high office, seem ridiculous. That in turn makes those espousing such standards either (your choice) stupid, or hypocrites who believe their audience is stupid. What government anywhere at any time has ever been assembled from saints?

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GLEANINGS FROM THE PASSING SCENE … (Politically Uncorrected)

alfred_e-_neumannA week’s worth:

The economy: Gold price rising with financial risk? (Article) (Interest rates aren’t allowed to anymore)

More economy: The U.S. fracking oil boom is fading? (Article)

The climate: Banning heating/cooking with gas to save the planet (Report)

Facial recognition enters the home with new Google gadget (Report)

Britain: Police handing out free Amazon doorbell cameras (Report)

Saudi Arabia pursuing nuclear development (Report)

Russia: Putin’s party loses big in Moscow election (Report)

The U.S. government: The national debt is now more than ten times total tax receipts (Article)

The Federal Reserve should not remain immune to full audit (Article)

U.S. west coast water temperatures reaching unusual highs (Article)

Illinois lost $47 B and the media didn’t notice? (Article)

Censorship: The ten most censored countries (Article)

California bans school suspension of willfully defiant kids (Report)

The economy: Median household income showed no growth in 2018 (Report)

More economy: Sharp rise in consumer borrowing (Report)

Still more economy: Federal 2019 deficit surpasses $1 Trillion (Report)

Government/Journalism: Is Orwell’s “Ministry of Truth” alive? Why don’t we hear much of Julian Assange? (Article) (Recommended)

Cell Phones: 5G rollout: What you need to know about the coming upgrade (Article)

China: Needs money? (Article) (Of course; total debt is similar to U.S.)

California banned facial recognition from police body cameras (Report)

ISIL/al Qaeda: Some interesting background (Article)

The economy: Prez Reagan’s Budget Director echoes ex-Congressman Ron Paul: End the Federal Reserve! (Both its predecessors were shut down)

The economy: Federal spending sets new record (Report) (The mortgage on our future)

Pilotless aircraft are here (Article)

Chicago: 6 killed, 28 wounded in weekend shootings (Report)

Naked woman arrested for being naked (Report)

And that’s all …

 

EDITORIAL:      A Political Questtion For A U.S. Voter

 

Why do we continue electing politicians who inevitably continue most of the activities that they complained their predecessor was doing and that their opponents wished to continue?    (Afghanistan, Iraq, endless deficits/debt, …) And some want illegals and 16 year olds to vote!

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The Passing of PRIVACY

PrivacyPrivacy: The state or condition of being free from being observed or disturbed by other people. Computers, cameras, microphones, drones and satellites are surrounding us with observers these days, much to the indignation and even outrage of many. Never mind that, for the average person, current ideas of privacy are a luxury provided primarily to middle class, industrialized people and only during the last couple of centuries. How quickly we forget!

To tribes of hunter-gatherers, the farmers who replaced them, medieval peasants modern slum dwellers and many members of non- Christian/non – Western cultures the concept of personal privacy common among Americans and Europeans can seem rather odd. Nevertheless, privacy is understood and valued everywhere; it is just the details that differ, though sometimes to a startling degree.

Government and business institutions equipped with newly available technology are threatening the most fundamental and universal precepts of privacy everywhere. Miniature electronic eyes and ears are appearing in homes, businesses, schools and public spaces. Electronic payments and communications are monitored, cell phones and vehicles are tracked and data bases set up for the personal data of constantly increasing numbers of individuals. In China a “Social Credit’ account for individual citizens automatically restricts private activities and orders punishments according to observations of individual behavior. The same pattern is growing in the United States, starting with censorship of social media use and publication of TSA “no fly” lists. Parents now listen to and watch young children at home on their telephones and we know that what can happen, will happen.

Politicized social changes are fueling some challenges to past ideas of privacy as genetic males are imposed upon previously female facilities and vice versa while coitus is taught in schools as marriage is devalued. About the only place an individual can be reasonably certain of personal privacy these days is his own mind. Or, of course, hers or its. But mind reading tech appears imminent.

Younger folk who grow up with all this and without old Christian mores will probably wonder what all the fuss was about. They and their children will learn. U.S. states are constructing “Cradle to Career” data systems intended to track every child from birth through workplace entry with workplace tracking to follow. A Federal database already identifies about half of U.S. citizens and the FBI is assembling facial recognition data for everyone readily accessible. All of these may sit idly between usages by statisticians but would you like to bet on that? Congress is already planning to enlist schools and others to identify likely mass shooters in advance with a proposal worrying civil rights groups.

Governments have always done what they could to control their citizens’ behavior; that is after all, their purpose. Too, they have always carried that purpose to excess in defense against resistant citizens who are themselves illustrating the rationale for government. America’s founders tried to impose a balance with their adoption of the U.S. Constitution but human nature provided an end run around that bulwark in 1803 when the Supreme Court used Marbury vs Madison to essentially (and unconstitutionally), replace that Constitution with itself. To a government, security lies in prevention so a citizen’s personal privacy is a potential threat. Once that obstacle is removed with detailed knowledge of all citizens, it is a reflex to weed out impending threats as Congressis pursuing with the mass shooting legislation mentioned above.

We have removed personal privacy with our new mastery of electrons, creating a new intimacy between government and its citizens. Government will naturally respond with more intimate control. And to again paraphrase the old Roman poet: Who will control the controllers?

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GLEANINGS FROM THE PASSING SCENE … (Politically Uncorrected)

alfred_e-_neumannAnother week’s worth:

China has printed more fiat money than the U.S. since 2009? (Article)

Technology: Pope stuck in Vatican elevator; rescued by firemen (Report)

The culture: New “Joker” movie raises mass shooting reality ignored by gun-fixated Left (Article)

Financial Vandalism: Low and Negative yield Bonds Wreck Pension Plans (Article)

The economy: New World Order in Meltdown (Article) (Long, detailed, recommended)

Government: Trump Administration is considering use of Amazon Echo and Apple Watch to determine whether citizens should own a gun? (Article) (Not very likely?)

Education: Colorado teen suspended from school after target practice with mom (Report)

The war on the internet: U.S. Defense Department researching automated news censorship? (Report)

Governments increasingly shut down internet to quash dissent (Article)

Yemen: Update (Article)

Hong Kong: A slowing economy – (Article)

The economy: The Federal Reserve is in the stock market and doesn’t want us to know? (Article) (Ex Congressman Ron Paul)

Another “test” of universal basic income proceeds from a Stockton, CA nonprofit (Report) (All test to date have universally basically failed)

The culture: Art gallery visitors must squeeze between naked man and woman standing in door (Report)

The war on guns: The Trump Administration is considering a “Social Credit” type system to determine who can buy a gun? (Report) (Maybe …)

California: Legislators putting Uber, Lyft out of business? (Report)

China: “Social Credit” system facial recognition cameras monitor students’ behavior in classes (Article)

The climate: Some interesting climate science (Article)

Facial recognition use by Delta Airlines at Los Angeles Airport (Report)

The military: Are smart missiles obsoleting tanks – (and aircraft carriers)? (Report)

Target shooting with mom causes school suspension

Ex Marine said he’d slaughter Antifa; FBI confiscated his guns – Oregon’s new “Red Flag” law

The war on guns: “Red Flag” laws to confiscate guns (Report)

The economy: Coming: An Unprecedented Collapse of the Global Financial System (Article) (Prez Reagan’s Budget Director)

Afghanistan:  Biometric progress saving lives –  and Update (Article)

The culture: Rolling electric power outages beginning in Glendale, CA (Report)

The Church: The divide worse than that in the U.S. Congress? (Report)

More culture: A Swedish professor urges eating human meat to save the climate? (Report) (Soylent Green, redux)

The climate: New discovery undermines global warming narrative (Article)

Illinois paid millions in Medicaid for dead people (Report)

China’s economy is a Ponzi scheme? (Article)

Chicago: 8 killed, 35 wounded in weekend shootings (Report)

A naked man was arrested for assaulting two female tourists (Report)

And so it went …

 

EDITORIAL:      Four Simple Questions

 

Can you borrow yourself rich?

The U.S. National Debt now exceeds the U.S. Gross Domestic Product.  The government owes more than the entire country produces in a year. And the deficits continue enlarging the debt as government continues spending more than it takes in. The average family’s share of that debt is about $875m000 at present. When do you plan to pay your share? Right … and when you don’t pay and all those government bonds now treated as wealth go worthless in the hands of banks, brokers and investors, what seems likely to happen? Alternatively, our compassionate government can accelerate inflation to repay the debt with worthless dollars. And everybody’s dollars will then be worthless too. Betcha the Democrats are hoping for this to appear before the coming 2020 election and the Prez is praying for it to hold off til aft it. Any bets?

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GLEANINGS FROM THE PASSING SCENE … (Politically Uncorrected)

alfred_e-_neumannAnother week’s worth:

The Government: Federal Reserve money pump restarts? (Article)

The culture: U.S. tech giants are building America’s version of the Chinese “Social Credit” system (Report)

Argentina: Posturing as it approaches its next default (Article)

Iraq: Pro-Iran faction wants U.S. out, supports local pro-Iran militias (Article)

Lebanon: Accuses Israel of attack on anti-Israel Hezbollah (Article)

Russia: A new society evolving independently of its government? (Article)

The climate: The Great Failure of the Climate Models (Article) (Reality isn’t cooperating)

The economy: Reversing Globalization to restore economic balance (Article) (Competing with the low cost producer by ignoring him?)

American Airlines to test facial recognition at DFW airport (Report)  TSA testing at Las Vegas (Report)

The war on Christians: Accelerating in China (Report)  (Against Islam and others, too)

The economy: The fantasy of central bank funded “Growth” is finally imploding (Article)

The internet: North Korea’s hacker central (Article)

Iraq: Update (Article) (Teetering on a tightrope)

The U.S. Dollar: For the first time, the $100 bills in circulation outnumber $1 bills (Article) (Government protecting our wealth …)

 Wal-Mart: The droid army is arriving (Report)

The Federal Reserve returns to buying Treasury bonds (Article) (Ever-full magic purse reopens)

The war on the internet: You Tube bans InfoWars – again (Article) (Censorship of the Right)

Hong Kong Protest Leaders arrested, next protest canceled (Article) (Really canceled?)

More culture: The U.S. police state progresses into employment? (Article)

Government: Facial recognition is spreading in the U.S. (Report)

Immigration: A revolving door at the border and in the legal system? (Article)

Russia: Thousands protest in Moscow demanding free elections (Report)

Israel/Iran: Spy vs Spy (Article)

Chicago: 7 Killed, 22 wounded in weekend shootings (Report)

A naked man was arrested for a triple murder (Report)

Y no hay mas …

 

EDITORIAL:     How To Be A Woman Of The Left In 2019

It is not complicated; just believe simultaneously that:

  1. Women were entitled to the passage of the Title 9 law mandating equal spending of public money for women’s and men’s athletics and
  2. Biological males are entitled to compete in women’s athletics as transsexuals.
  3. Women’s interests are advanced by their serving as infantry in combat.
  4. Women’s interests are served by advancing from housewife/mother to competing with men in the workplace.
  5. A divorced mother raising a child is equal to a divorced father paying child support.

It isn’t so much the lies politicians tell us, it is more the lies that we tell ourselves…

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GLEANINGS FROM THE PASSING SCENE … (Politically Uncorrected)

alfred_e-_neumannOur weekly offering:

Government: Is the Federal Reserve planning a takeover of the U.S. payments systems? (Article)

The economy: Average American owes $38,000, 25% of it on credit cards (Report)

The culture: A political battleground: Public Poop (Report)

More culture: Elderly more often scammed by relatives than strangers (Report)

The war on Religion: Churches lose right to select their teachers (Article)

Iran: Ghost ship smugglers becoming too visible (Article)

China: Hollow, propped –up banks? (Article)

More China: Some details of the governments’ “Social Credit” citizen control system (Report)

The economy: Disney whistleblower says revenue inflated for years (Report) (How much of our economic wellbeing is an illusion?)

Government: UK mother of 3 arrested, jailed for putting recycling in wrong color bag (Report)

Mercedes admits it spies on drivers with tracking devices (Report)

Corruption: Bribe got teen UCLA soccer scholarship without playing (Report)

More corruption: Man paid to keep children out of gangs charged in grisly MS 13 killing (Report)

Finance: Average non-U.S. government bond interest goes negative for the first time (Article)

Hong Kong residents fleeing to Taiwan (Article)

Syria/Turkey: Update: It’s lonely, being Turkish (Article)

Greenland: Referendum: 90% of locals voted to join U.S. (Believable …)

Homelessness: Grows in San Francisco (Report) (Why won’t they talk about the causes?)

80% of gender challenged students have mental health issues? (Article) (Gender confusion isn’t a mental health issue?)

WalMart sues Tesla over defective rooftop solar installations (Article)

The economy: Mortgage market reopens to risky borrowers (Report) (Slow learners, or corruption?)

 Surveillance: Amazon’s Ring private doorbell cameras often share recordings with police (Report)

U.S. budget deal sends deficit soaring (Report) (Spending our kids’ future wealth now)

The culture: Los Angeles sheriff’s deputy shot from apartment building by sniper (Report) Update: Sniper fabricated by deputy (Report)

More culture: Post-constitutional U.S. colleges (Article)

Venezuela: Update (Article) (Real socialism on display) (Why so little media interest?)

More wildfires burning in Angola and Congo than Brazil?  (Article)

The culture: Facial recognition systems are appearing everywhere in Britain (Article)

Viet Nam: Chinese vessels harassing coastal oil operations (Article)

Technology: Breakthrough? New electric motor design ups power and economy; reduces cost (Article)

Chicago: 3 dead, 24 wounded in weekend shootings (Report)

A naked man was arrested saying he “was on tons of acid” (Report)

Enough, already …

 

EDITORIAL:   An Ancient Question Resurfaces

 

Facial recognition cameras are now found in streetlights, people’s front doorbells, internet hardware, telephones and eyeing airports, shopping malls and schools. Microphones, too. Our shiny new post- Christian and increasingly post – constitutional culture seems to be rapidly relegating personal privacy to historical status. Maybe we should be channeling an ancient Roman poet who asked essentially: Who will watch the watchers? We respectfully refer the uncertain to China’s new “Social Credit” system for an explanation of our concern. And to Murphy’s Law …

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