FORWARD BASE B

"Pay my troops no mind; they're just on a fact-finding mission."

Have you got Fifteen Weeks? Probably Not. But if you had that time, you could test your clairvoyance in a statistically sound manner

One of the most fundamental exercises of Western occultism is the development of physical clairvoyance.  You probably should not try to test your clairvoyance.
It would probably be a great big hassle, and you probably have better things to do.

In the days before widespread Internet access, when dinosaurs walked the earth wearing bell-bottomed trousers, aspiring occultists might start with the appendices to Magick in Theory and Practice, which offer the following not-very-helpful advice:

Physical clairvoyance.
1. Take a pack of (78) Tarot playing cards. Shuffle; cut. Draw one card. Without
looking at it, try to name it. Write down the card you name, and the actual card.
Repeat, and tabulate results.
2. This experiment is probably easier with an old genuine pack of Tarot cards,
preferably a pack used for divination by some one who really understood the
matter.
3. Remember that one should expect to name the right card once in 78 times.
Also be careful to exclude all possibilities of obtaining the knowledge through the
ordinary senses of sight and touch, or even smell.
There was once a man whose fingertips were so sensitive that he could feel the
shape and position of the pips and so judge the card correctly.
4. It is better to try first the easier form of the experiment, by guessing only the
suit.
5. Remember that in 78 experiments you should obtain 22 trumps and 14 of each
other suit; so that without any clairvoyance at all, you can guess right twice in 7
times (roughly) by calling trumps each time.
6. Note that some cards are harmonious.
Thus it would not be a bad error to call the five of Swords (“The Lord of Defeat”)
instead of the ten of Swords (“The Lord of Ruin”). But to call the Lord of Love (2
Cups) for the Lord of Strife (5 Wands) would show that you were getting nothing
right.
Similarly a card ruled by Mars would be harmonious with a 5, a card of Gemini
with “The Lovers”.
7. These harmonies must be thoroughly learnt, according to the numerous tables
given in 777.
8. As you progress you will find that you are able to distinguish the suit correctly
three times in four and that very few indeed inharmonious errors occur, while in 78
experiments you are able to name the card aright as many as 15 or 20 times.
9. When you have reached this stage, you may be admitted for
examination; and in the event of your passing you will be given more complex and
difficult exercises.

The temptation, of course, is to do the exercise once or twice, to decide that one has excellent potential, and to get distracted with some more melodramatic experiment in ceremonial magic, such as the attempted conjuration of intangible spirits by kinky sex in a suitably inscribed magical circle.

A simpler exercise is as follows:
1. Take a deck of 52 playing cards.
2. Repeat the following process for each card:
a. Draw a card without looking at its face.
b. Attempt to intuit whether the card is red or black.
c. Record your intuition (e.g. by placing the card in a marked bin).
d. Look at the card to check your intuition.
3. If you intuited the color correctly 32 out of 52 times, consider p<.05 that your intuition is real. If you intuited the color correctly 38 out of 52 times, consider p<.001 that your result is real.

A more challenging exercise is as follows:
1. Take a deck of 52 playing cards.
2. Repeat the following for each card:
a. Draw a card without looking at its face.
b. Attempt to intuit whether the card is heart, club, diamond, or spade.
c. Record your intuition (e.g. by placing the card in a marked bin).
d. Look at the card to check your intuition.
3. If you intuited the suit correctly 24 out of 52 times, consider p<.05 that your intuition is real. If you intuited the suit correctly 33 out of 52 times, consider p<.001 that your result is real.

That statistics above are not terribly exact, because they assume that the deck offers probabilities that do not change over time. In fact, a deck of cards offers clues that a fair die does not.  For example, if one has drawn 13 hearts already, one’s subconscious mind will be aware that the next result will not be a heart.

My back-of-the-envelope calculations suggest that if a clairvoyant could name the exact number and suit of a card correctly, it would be a 1/52 chance.  Assuming 52 predictions were recorded, it seems that one 2 out of 52 would need to be correct to indicate p<.05, and that just 5 out of 52 would need to be correct to indicate p<.001.  Any students of statistics are welcome to correct my calculations.

Regardless of which experiment you try, you will probably need at least one hundred p-values.  That means you need to set aside time to do 52 predictions.  It would take a good chunk out of your free time every day for fifteen weeks.

This kind of work takes more mental energy than brushing one’s teeth.  There’s no point setting the time aside if you’re going to be half-asleep and distracted.  That’s why I’m not going to be doing such experiments any time soon.  If any of my readers have the time to spare, I hope the above calculations will inspire them to keep systematic records of hits and misses for one hundred trials.

Chillax, exponential doomsayers … a radioactive tanuki is not a resigned rodent

Here is some raw data about the world of humans:

What kind of curve is that?

It’s not a perfect curve of any kind, so what ideal curves might it resemble?

Hmm, perhaps it is exponential.

Exponentials work great in purely abstract calculations, but they get into problems when applied to biological growth. For example, if you put an supply of sugar into a petri dish that allow yeast cells to grow exponentially, they will overshoot and die off.

Of course, financial systems are tied to biological entities, and finance often resembles biology, but not every bubble exactly resembles a yeast population bubble.

Dutch Tulip Mania and the South Sea Bubble were both bubbles, and they both popped, but their curves were a bit different. So one would expect the USA bubble to have various differences.

I don’t know what number I would use to build a curve for the USA bubble, and I don’t even know when it will pop. I like to guess at 2025, just because it’s a nice round number to balance out 1775, a key year for the American War for Independence. The chart below is presumably the wild-assed guess of some day-trader, but regardless of when the USA’s “Federal Reserve Note” loses reserve currency status, we can be sure that it will lose eventually.

The IMF famously predicted that the total economic size of China would exceed that of the USA by 2016.

Patriotic Yanks retorted that China’s per capita GDP would still be much lower.

Of course, even now in 2012, China’s growth is slowing down considerably.

I doubt very much that China will fulfill the lurid fantasies of the IMF, but I am confident that (in the next decade) China and other Asian nations will have more widely distributed prosperity than the USA.

So chillax, doomsayers. Asia’s future is as bright as a tanuki* with a little tanuki-sized wakazashi, striding boldly from the ever-expanding irradiated zone around Fukushima.

Asians will be advancing new answers for the world’s problems. Asians will start by improving life in Asia.

Oh, wait, you live in the USA? Fear not. The USA has the best propaganda establishment in the world. The USA can offer its citizens exponentially expanding self-esteem.

And that icon of USA culture, McDonalds’, is the official restaurant of the 2012 Olympics!

Now, any Yank, obese or otherwise, is not likely to be as cool as a radioactive tanuki. We have to accept this reality before we can move on with our lives. The trick is to avoid being a resigned rodent.

There is certainly a vast network of entrenched interests that push Yanks to be Resigned Rodents.

And there are certainly many guns aimed at the common Yanks:

If I may offer a word of advice to aspiring USA civil liberties activists – Facebook is perhaps not the most secure online location! Facebook might be a good broadcasting point, but you must assume that whatever you say on Facebook is going to be carbon-copied to those same sinister guys who kept Patrick McGoohan confined to the Village. The big white beach-ball things are NOT your friends.

But, on the Internet at least, some Americans expressing a certain dissatisfaction the the Powers That Be.


* I don’t actually know that this animal is a tanuki. It could be an animal of some other species.

Drinking from the Firehose of News: 02 August 2012

Back when I was posting about scantily clad cosplayers and tabletop role-playing games, I managed to post four times a day, but I usually didn’t say anything deep in any of those four posts.

Here are an assortment of links to current events. Again, I am not editorializing deeply, but I took the time to look at each source and verify that it was blog-worthy.

Military police in the USA:
http://theintelhub.com/2012/08/01/specialized-military-police-deployed-in-america-during-civil-unrest/

Police repression:
http://thinkprogress.org/justice/2012/08/01/623681/21-year-old-chavis-carter-shot-while-handcuffed/?mobile=nc

Botched police “sting”:
http://www.chron.com/news/houston-texas/article/Owner-wants-DEA-to-pay-for-truck-damage-from-sting-3743683.php

USA military trains at home:
http://www.ufoweeklynews.com/us-military-moving-into-multiple-cities.html

Rex 84 (this link was all right when posted, but has since been giving timeouts and network errors):
http://theintelhub.com/2012/08/01/government-silently-positions-for-martial-law-as-financial-collapse-arrives-in-america/

Information activism:
http://ieet.org/index.php/IEET/more/nicholas20120724

IPAA:
http://libertycrier.com/government/sopa-reborn-by-congress-as-ipaa/

USA war criminals:
http://www.paulcraigroberts.org/2012/08/01/the-neoconservative-war-criminals-in-our-midst-2/

Ryan Crocker says: Remember the laws of unintended consequences; recognize the limits of U.S. capacity; and understand that a foreign power’s exit from a conflict can be as dangerous for the country as the original conflict.
http://www.foreignpolicy.com/articles/2012/08/01/why_syrias_rebels_cant_have_it_all?page=full

Banks have done  more injury to religion, morality, tranquillity, prosperity, and even wealth of the nation than they have done or ever will do good. … The issue which has swept down the centuries and which will have to be fought sooner or later is the people versus the banks. … And I sincerely believe, with you, that banking establishments are more dangerous than standing armies:
http://www.washingtonsblog.com/2012/08/big-banks-worse-than-you-think.html

Bankster electricity:
http://www.sacbee.com/2012/07/30/4675383/jpmorgan-subsidiary-accused-of.html

New lobbyists for high-priced influence peddling:
http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/07/25/net-us-congress-lobbying-idUSBRE86O1JO20120725

USA tries international Internet censorship:
http://dailycaller.com/2012/07/31/senate-cybersecurity-bill-mirrors-russian-internet-agenda/?print=1

USA flies drones at home:
http://www.humanevents.com/2012/07/31/rep-ted-poe-the-drones-are-coming/

Proxy war described by Pepe:
http://www.4thmedia.org/2012/07/28/nato-gcc-mujahideenjihadi-death-squads-more-than-happy-to-bleed-syria-across-sectarian-lines/

Ray McGovern warns of “fixed” intelligence:
http://www.baltimoresun.com/news/opinion/oped/bs-ed-israel-iran-20120730,0,5791324.story

When the government finds the people inconvenient, the government dissolves the old people and elects a new one:
http://www.vdare.com/articles/why-is-romney-losing-because-immigration-has-elected-a-new-people

USA woes on Pakistan border:
http://seattletimes.com/html/nationworld/2018818826_taliban01.html

There are many wonderful manosphere, introsphere, whateversphere blogs that I would like to comment on.

But if I spend the time to leave a comment on each blog that I like, wordpress will lock up for about two minutes of loading time per comment. Until I get a faster Internet connection, that’s not a viable strategy. In the meantime, I can provide some links, and perhaps people will read the linked content.

Paul Craig Roberts (and Herman Daly) catch up to the Elusive Wapiti while Anaheim cops rampage against protestors

 

I have not been blogging much this summer because I have been using Zotero to drink from the firehose of police brutality news.

 

For years, the Elusive Wapiti has been advocating that the USA move to a government-controlled fiat currency.  Now, while Anaheim erases the distinction between “military” and “police” functions, Paul Craig Roberts has granted his web space to Herman Daly in order to advocate the same idea.

The best way to sabotage a system is hobble it by tying together two of its separate parts, creating an unnecessary and obstructive connection. Why should the public pay interest to the private banking sector to provide a medium of exchange that the government can provide at little or no cost? Why should seigniorage (profit to the issuer of fiat money) go largely to the private sector rather than entirely to the government (the commonwealth)?

Is there not a better away? Yes, there is. We need not go back to the gold standard. Keep fiat money, but move from fractional reserve banking to a system of 100% reserve requirements. The change need not be abrupt—we could gradually raise the reserve requirement to 100%. Already the Fed has the authority to change reserve requirements but seldom uses it. This would put control of the money supply and seigniorage entirely with the government rather than largely with private banks. Banks would no longer be able to live the alchemist’s dream by creating money out of nothing and lending it at interest. All quasi-bank financial institutions should be brought under this rule, regulated as commercial banks subject to 100% reserve requirements.

Banks cannot create money under 100% reserves (the reserve deposit multiplier would be unity), and banks would earn their profit by financial intermediation only, lending savers’ money for them (charging a loan rate higher than the rate paid to savings or “time-account” depositors) and charging for checking, safekeeping, and other services. With 100% reserves every dollar loaned to a borrower would be a dollar previously saved by a depositor (and not available to the depositor during the period of the loan), thereby re-establishing the classical balance between abstinence and investment. With credit limited by saving (abstinence from consumption) there will be less lending and borrowing and it will be done more carefully—no more easy credit to finance the leveraged purchase of “assets” that are nothing but bets on dodgy debts.

To make up for the decline and eventual elimination of bank- created, interest-bearing money, the government can pay some of its expenses by issuing more non interest-bearing fiat money. However, it can only do this up to a strict limit imposed by inflation. If the government issues more money than the public voluntarily wants to hold, the public will trade it for goods, driving the price level up. As soon as the price index begins to rise the government must print less. Thus a policy of maintaining a constant price index would govern the internal value of the dollar. The external value of the dollar could be left to freely fluctuating exchange rates.

 

 

I will be very interested to see whether such ideas can gain a foothold among the masses of the USA citizenry. I suspect that the current system of bankster crime-in-high-places will be able to endure for at least another year, even in a best-case scenario. But if some group of Americans manages to dislodge the banksters, an alternate monetary system could be established. Alternatively, the bankster-controlled thugs might manage to disarm the American citizenry and transfer the truly vocal objectors to FEMA camps while the less-committed rowdies are pushed into yet another foreign war in the Middle East. I would do a Tarot card reading and cast a horoscope, but my schedule is a little too crowded this month – and in any event, my predictions would not give me any new means to influence the outcome.

Maggots falling out of spiritual wounds – The USA can’t or won’t run Dawood Military Hospital properly

I live in Taiwan, a country with remarkably efficient and affordable hospitals.  I tend to take their medical care for granted, and I tend to assume that advanced countries have few problems running hospitals.

Taiwanese hospitals have their issues, but one never sees maggots falling out of untreated wounds in a Taiwanese hospital.

Then I see a story like this, with actual photos of actual maggots falling out of actual untreated wounds:

http://www.buzzfeed.com/rebeccaelliott/horror-hospital-the-most-shocking-photos-and-test

The physical maggots are a problem, but they are symptomatic of a deeper problem.  The USA has spiritual wounds, and has refused treatment for them.  The USA has the spiritual equivalent of putrescent wounds.  The moral war was lost before the physical war was lost, and (as Napoleon told us) in war the ratio of moral strength to physical strength is three to one.

 

 

How to Dumb Down Emerson’s Self-Reliance – a Pastiche that can be Perused with Pain to the Mind and Peril to the Soul

Emerson’s Self-Reliance is a beautiful piece of prose for any reader that can parse archaic English.  I had not read it for many years, but when I read it recently I realized that I had taken its claims as self-evident for much of my life. Considering that my life has not been exceptionally successful, perhaps Emerson’s recommendations should be called into question!

To present the ideas to a broader audience, I decided to strip his essay down to the essentials and re-write it in highly simplified English, along with background information.

The resulting monstrosity will be painful to read, and in a spirit of nearly-plagiaristic cruelty, I am going to inflict it upon my innocent readers as follows:

A genius is a person who frequently speaks exceptionally good thoughts. Every person has the potential to speak some thoughts that are exceptionally good. However, most people lack the courage to speak honestly, and thus most people never speak about their best ideas. Instead, most people wait for a genius to speak in public, and when they hear the wonderful ideas of that genius, they recognize ideas that they had intuited earlier.

Trust yourself. If you complain about your circumstances, you are not trusting yourself. You were born in your country for a reason. You have the family and friends you do for a reason. Everything that happens in your life will make sense if you trust yourself and act according to your intuition. Rely on yourself; act according to what you truly believe.

Society always tries to crush individuals who trust themselves. … Most people will want you to conform to society. Most people will hate self-reliant people. …

Whoever wants to be an adult must be a nonconformist. …

Very often, cruel and selfish people pretend to be generous and kind. For example, suppose a selfish white man named Adam lives in America with a son named Bruce and a servant named Calvin. However, Adam does not treat Bruce and Calvin with kindness. Instead, Adam complains about a stranger in Africa who owns slaves, and Adam demands that the American army invade Africa to free the slaves.

If Adam were truly a good person, he would trust himself, he would love Bruce and respect Calvin. But because Adam does not trust his intuition, he ignores Bruce and Calvin. Instead, Adam shouts about invasion of Africa, and if he gains political power, he will cause many deaths. Don’t be like Adam; take care of your own neighborhood and don’t worry about the rest of the world until your home is cared for.

Insincere people talk about kindness, but few people do kind things sincerely. Many people feel guilt about doing bad things, so they try to improve their souls by doing good things. A foolish man might drive while drunk on Friday, then give money to charity on Saturday because he feels guilty and he is worried that his neighbors might gossip about his drunk-driving. He is trying to buy a good reputation.

The self-reliant person does not try to be forgiven. The self-reliant person does not try to buy a good reputation. The self-reliant person trusts his intuition about how to act. The self-reliant person acts without worrying about what other people will think. The self-reliant person would rather do a few good actions sincerely than do many good actions without sincerity.

Many foolish people will always try to tell others about duty. Abagail might try to tell Betsy what Betsy’s duty is, and Abagail might also try to tell Clara what Clara’s duty is. However, any person who is self-reliant will trust his own intuition and will ignore what other people tell him about his duty. Many fools try to pressure people into accepting a fake sense of duty. Insincere people can be pressured to do things that they don’t believe in. The self-reliant person cannot be influenced by pressure.

If you do something without sincerity, you will weaken your willpower. But if you do what you truly believe to be your duty, then honest people will be able to understand you. Don’t follow the crowd.

Some American children play games where one child covers his eyes and tries to listen to the voices of the other children, so he can move closer to them. Many American adults similarly close their eyes to the truth and try to listen to the foolish voices of the crowd. This conformity makes them liars. They cannot be true and sincere. But if you choose nonconformity, the crowd will try to punish you, scare you, and hurt you.

Many people are afraid to admit that they have been wrong. For example, you might start smoking Camel cigarettes when you are sixteen years old. All your friends notice that you always smoke Camels, and you talk about how you are loyal to the Camel cigarette. Then your friends expect you to stay loyal to the Camel cigarette, even though the cigarette harms your health. If you notice that the cigarettes cause unpleasant coughing, but you keep smoking them because your friends expect you to smoke, you are putting your friends’ opinions over your own physical comfort.

Many foolish politicians, scholars, and priests are loyal to bad ideas and bad habits. They don’t want to admit that they have bad habits, and so they suffer with the pain of their bad habits. If you want to be honest, say what you think right now, even if it contradicts what you have said in the past. Don’t worry that you will be misunderstood. Follow your own standards and beliefs, even when you are surrounded by crowds of people who try to persuade you to follow their beliefs. … If you ask fools for their approval, they will criticize you and shout at you. If you don’t ask for their approval, they will have fewer opportunities to shout at you.

Many fools do not like their neighbors, but they invite their neighbors to dinner. These dinners are unpleasant for the host and guest. Speak the truth. Do not be a host if you don’t sincerely feel hospitable. Do not pretend to like people whom you do not sincerely like. Do not pretend to agree with people just because they expect you to agree with them. If you don’t agree with people, don’t associate with them. … When you trust yourself, you find that you can do amazing actions which you would have thought impossible.

Many Christians pray “give us today our daily bread.” Some Christians pray for big houses, expensive automobiles, and many other things. Do not pray to a god by begging for some desirable item. If you are in harmony with God, you will see that action is the best kind of prayer. Action requires willpower; bad prayers prevent the development of willpower.

Some Christians steal things, then feel sorry about it and pray to God for forgiveness, but they keep what they have stolen. This kind of prayer is a disease of the willpower. Do not feel regret. Fix the problem if you can. If there is a problem you can’t fix, ignore it and find a problem that you can fix. If you have stolen something in secret, don’t feel bad about it. Instead of feeling emotional, you can go to the person, give the stolen thing back, and apologize.

Bad prayer is a disease of the willpower, and bad beliefs are a disease of the mind. Many fools start by ignoring their intuition and failing to trust themselves. This causes them to distract themselves with material goods like big houses and expensive clothes. They will respect a person who has expensive goods, even if that person lacks sincerity. Then they fear that thieves will take their goods, so they try to expand the government, increase taxes, and put policemen everywhere.

A wise man cares about his sincerity and doesn’t care about his material goods. A wise man doesn’t want to own any material good that he has not earned. Material property can be taken away, but your soul is who you are, and you build your soul with every action you take. … Nothing can bring you peace but yourself. Nothing can bring you peace but the triumph of principles.

The importance of postmodern Schizo Tech to Cyberpunk

When did bionic limbs become cyberpunk? When the mismatch between flesh and machine became a statement of social alienation!

Cyborgs can be potent symbols of dehumanization.  A half-man, half-machine is a man who has been crippled, dehumanized, and co-opted by unfeeling technology. Cyberpunk is a hardboiled fiction style that celebrates the cyborg as a postmodern high-tech low-life.  Just as postmodernist fiction mixes clashing styles, the cyborg’s body mixes chromium-steel and microchips with human skin and muscle.

Sci-fi theorists can endlessly dispute when cyborgs became a standard sci-fi fixture.  Some will cite obscure Victorian “scientific romances,” others will cite the Tin Man from The Wizard of Oz.  Many fictional low-life thugs (such as those in Burgess’ 1962 book A Clockwork Orange) used high-tech before cyberpunk, but they lacked the postmodern mis-match of flesh and machine that is sometimes categorized as “Schizo Tech.”

http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Main/SchizoTech

One non-schizo-tech point of reference is the United States government-funded cyborg, Steve Austin, commonly called “The Six Million Dollar Man” – which works out to $33,026,555.02 in 2012 dollars.

So Steve Austin had super-vision, super-strength, and super-speed.

But when push came to shove and he couldn’t super-jump over walls, he had to pick up rocks and convenient pipes to beat up robots.

However, Steve Austin was a squeaky-clean government agent, even when he grew a well-trimmed mustache.  He wasn’t half-man, half-machine so much as he was half-boy scout, half-Elliot Ness.  Whenever his mismatched cybernetic limbs got damaged, the USA was more than happy to repair him.

The Six Million Dollar Man started airing in 1974.  Just one year later in 1975, Deathrace 2000 presented Frankenstein, a cyborg with plans to become a suicide bomber in order to assassinate the leader of the “United Provinces.”  Steve Austin had been strong, enduring, perceptive, and generally exerted violence against non-human targets such as robots and Bigfoot.   Frankenstein was just another disposable assassin, designed to use the “Frankenstein” brand to conceal his plans for a lethal attack.  Frankenstein prevailed by use of over-the-top lethal violence.

1977 saw Damnation Alley released to theaters.  This postapocalyptic dystopia was not cyberpunk, but it had a major impact on later cyberpunk works.  Damnation Alley depicted multiple police states in the territory of the former USA.  Instead of the United States of America, the surviving communities were divided and un-free; this inspired many cyberpunk settings where exploitation in the name of “free markets” had divided societies into small, oligarchic territories.  Schizo Tech presents a single tool with mismatched parts, such as a modern laser sight on a primitive longbow; divided dystopias present a single region with mismatched forms of government, such as a single city divided between multiple warring factions.

1979 saw further stylistic shift when Ridley Scott’s Alien suggested that the future would look grimy and rusted-out.  The single android was purely synthetic, not a half-man.

1981 saw a little bit more grime enter the sci-fi milieu. Escape From New York had no cyborgs, but it had plenty of dystopian urban atmosphere. Dystopian New York was purely decadent; it existed by salvaging remnants of old technology. Mad Max 2 showed a postapocalyptic future with mismatched parts; there were no cyborgs, but there were certainly thuggish half-men who were trying to descend into bestial instinct – but they were low-tech low-lifes.

1982 saw Blade Runner, which captured an ambiance of corrupt urban dystopia bedecked with neon signs spelled in Asian characters. Blade Runner presented a world in which corporate-managed, profit-centered technology was making advances.  (Ridley Scott tried to depict the city as “Hong Kong on a very bad day.”) William Gibson saw the movie and despaired, because it had captured many of the ideas he had hoped to put into words. Gibson later said: “About ten minutes into Blade Runner, I reeled out of the theater in complete despair over its visual brilliance and its similarity to the “look” of Neuromancer, my [then] largely unwritten first novel. Not only had I been beaten to the semiotic punch, but this damned movie looked better than the images in my head!” 1982’s Tron also influenced the visual evolution of the cyberpunk esthetic.  In Japan, 1982 marked the start of the manga version of the story Akira.

1984 saw the official birth of cyberpunk hype with William Gibson’s Neuromancer.  Gibson had been inspired in part by Escape From New York, but Gibson’s vision finally popularized the notion of cyborg as punk.  The mismatched machine parts were like punk piercings and tattoos, in that they symbolized rejection of middle-class respectability. 1984 also saw James Cameron’s The Terminator, in which a killer robot from a dystopian future concealed itself in human flesh – not exactly a cyborg.  A cyborg is generally a man who supplements himself with machine parts – the Terminator was a machine that supplemented itself with human parts.

In 1985, the under-appreciated Max Headroom highlighted television as the source of dystopian alienation, but suggested that radical muck-raking journalism was all that was needed to save the world.  The visual style combined ostentatiously retro elements, such as cars and typewriter keyboards from the 1950s, with cutting-edge technology – another typical cyberpunk display of mismatched parts, interfaced together.

In 1987, Verhoeven’s Robocop was released to wide acclaim.  The film had most of the elements of cyberpunk, but the anti-authoritarian hero was a maverick cop rather than a street thug.  As with many 1980s USA movies, illegal drugs were a key evil to be vanquished.  This contrasted with the original print stories of cyberpunk, which had glorified drug use as individualistic rebellion.  In Japan, the first episodes of Bubblegum Crisis were released directly to video in 1987.

In 1988, the manga Akira was animated.  Whereas cyberpunk had previously been made by Caucasians inspired by Asia, the Asians themselves began to grab the Western market.  Gibson groupies promptly began saying that since the Japanese writers had entered the market, cyberpunk was no longer cool.

In 1992, the Extropy Institute began popularizing transhumanist rhetoric that had been circulating since 1980, and the hype about Drexler’s 1986 book on nanotech was beginning to reach the print sci-fi market.  Surprisingly, nanotech hype did not immediately take over the cyberpunk genre.  Extropianism was and is a tremendously optimistic outlook, and it tends to cancel out the “crapsack world” scowling of cyberpunk.

By 1993, the Syndicate series of PC games had begun to codify cyberpunk as a “triple A” gaming esthetic.

In 1995, the first Ghost in the Shell movie revitalized cyberpunk for western audiences.  Also in 1995, Neal Stephenson’s The Diamond Age made a conscious attempt to deride cyberpunk as obsolete and to hype nanotech as a fictional device.  The ensuing 17 years have had few remarkable moments of popular enthusiasm for real nanotech advances, and while nanotech is used in real-world products, nothing as revolutionary as Drexler’s proposed nanoassembler has been demonstrated in real life.

By the time that Deus Ex was released in 2000, cyberpunk was a thoroughly established genre in all sci-fi media.  Deus Ex was one of the first popular computer games to capture the popular imagination with the possibilities of nanotech.

After 12 years of failed nanotech hype, Grendel has released a video dominated by computer-generated images.  Note that one of the actresses is wearing Darryl Hannah’s makeup from Blade Runner.  The images combine illegal drugs (including cocaine, LSD, and intravenous drugs) with the 1s and 0s of digital information.  The Internet is (for many people) more addictive and more accessible than illegal drugs.  Further, the main character begins as an apparently normal human, then at the end of the video, exposes a Schizo Tech heart and eyes.

Will Hyperinflationary Depression Hit the USA before 2015?

Many economists predict that the US dollar will lose its current reserve currency status.  Some economists believe this will happen around 2030;  John Williams of Shadowstats believes it will happen no later than 2014.

[A] hyperinflationary great depression…  will encompass a complete loss in the purchasing power of the U.S. dollar; a collapse in the normal stream of U.S. commercial and economic activity; a collapse in the U.S. financial system, as we know it; and a likely realignment of the U.S. political environment. Outside timing on the hyperinflation remains 2014, but events of the last year have accelerated the movement towards this ultimate dollar catastrophe. …

[B]efore the systemic-solvency crisis began to unfold in 2007, the U.S. government already had condemned the U.S. dollar to a hyperinflationary grave by taking on debt and obligations that never could be covered …

Bankrupt sovereign states most commonly use the currency printing press as a solution to not having enough money to cover obligations. The alternative here would be for the U.S. eventually to renege on its existing debt and obligations …
a solution with no happier ending than simply printing the needed money.


Where both private and official demand for U.S. Treasuries had been increasingly unenthusiastic, the Fed—the U.S. central bank—effectively has been fully funded Treasury needs for most of 2011, with its “quantitative easing II” becoming a euphemism for Fed monetization of U.S. Treasury debt.

Further easing by the Fed is likely in the months ahead, as the ongoing economic turmoil triggers significant further fiscal deterioration. Those actions should pummel heavily the U.S. dollar‘s exchange rate against other major currencies. Looming with uncertain timing is a panicked dollar dumping and dumping of dollar-denominated paper assets, which remains the most likely event as proximal trigger for the onset of hyperinflation in the near-term.

The early stages of the hyperinflation would be marked simply by an accelerating upturn in consumer prices, a pattern that already was initially in response to QE2. Also, money supply velocity … will spike, as the U.S. dollar, again, comes under heavy and even disorderly selling pressure, with both domestic and foreign holders getting rid of their dollar holdings as quickly as possible. One factor that can contribute to rising velocity is the current circumstance where U.S. investors cannot get a safe return that beats inflation, as reported by the government. Investors can do better by buying a store of products that are rising price, rather than by holding cash or a Treasury bill.

Given the current lack of political will by those controlling the U.S. Government to address the fiscal solvency issues, the U.S. has no way of avoiding a financial Armageddon. Various government intervention tactics might slow the process for brief periods, and the system always is vulnerable to external shocks, such as wars and natural disasters. Government actions could include supportive dollar intervention, restrictions on international capital flows, wage and price controls, etc. Effects of any such moves in delaying the onset of full hyperinflation, though, would be limited and short-lived. There is no obvious course of action or external force at this point of the process that meaningfully would put off the nearing day of reckoning.

[F]oreign holders of U.S. assets have something in excess of $12 trillion in liquid, dollar-denominated assets that could be dumped at will into the global and U.S. markets.

As excess dollars get dumped into the global markets, a shift in the tide against the U.S. dollar gets reflected in a weakening exchange rate, which in turn spikes dollar-denominated commodity prices, such as oil. Increasingly, that effect has been in response to intensifying dollar-debasement efforts by the Fed. The result is that U.S. consumer inflation has been increasing during the last year, once again, not from strong economic demand and a surging domestic money supply, but from distended monetary policies and a global glut of dollars that has been encouraged by the U.S. central bank.

Demand and supply affect the U.S. dollar. Supply soars and demand shrinks with the increasing unwillingness of major dollar holders to continue holding the existing volume of U.S. currency and dollar-denominated assets, let alone to absorb new exposure.

Therein lies a significant threat to near-term U.S. inflation. Heavy dumping of the U.S. dollar and dollar-denominated assets would be highly inflationary to U.S. consumer prices. It also likely would activate heavy Fed intervention in buying unwanted U.S. Treasuries.

How long would a hyperinflation last before the government brought its fiscal house into order and established a sound currency? I would be surprised if the hyperinflation crisis lasted beyond a year or two, since the system is not positioned to handle the crisis well and pressures for rapid resolution would be extremely strong. All that depends, however, on what evolves out of what otherwise would be highly unstable political, economic, financial and social environments.

-Taken from
HYPERINFLATION 2012 SPECIAL COMMENTARY NUMBER 414 January 25, 2012
http://www.shadowstats.com

Scenarios:

Scenario 1 – Moderates Rule:
Panic begins in 2013; hyperinflation runs wild in 2014 and radical political changes occur in 2015. Congress retains legitimacy but puts many bankers in prison for their white-collar crimes.  The Supreme Court issues many multi-page documents that no one can afford to print out. Electricity is for the ultra-rich and the police. Meanwhile, the former middle class learns how to dumpster-dive for food.  Jeb Bush is elected President in 2016, with Henry Kissinger serving as his chief advisor.  Despite grave health problems and widespread hunger, the majority of Americans believe that obedience to government is the best of all possible lifestyles.

Scenario 2 – Unpopular Election Leads to Stable Martial Law:
Panic begins in 2012 with widespread allegations of vote fraud; hyperinflation runs wild in 2013, leading to a breakdown of food distribution, martial law, and civil war.  Following a violent dispute between armed agents of the DHS and FBI, Lon Horiuchi is sworn in as President-for-Life.  Alex Jones is heard to shout “I told you so” as he is dragged onto a cattle car headed for a FEMA camp. Meanwhile, mandatory military service ensures that the enduring encampments will be heavily manned, everywhere from Afghanistan to Zimbabwe.  Monsanto takes over the Department of Agriculture and summarily executes all organic farmers.  Social Security and Medicare are re-negotiated to stipulate that Inner Party members have first claim on all benefits and services, but all classes are required to pay on penalty of death.  Hollywood puts out a record number of movies, webcasts, and TV shows, all of which glorify obedience to the Totalitarian State.  Robot drones fly everywhere; every room has a surveillance camera; every action a citizen takes is a potential ground for disciplinary action by the all-encompassing State.

Scenario 3 – Total Disintegration:
Excellent propaganda efforts allow complacency to prevail until December 2014.  By January 2015, every country outside the USA is dumping dollars.  A few canny merchants manage to sell off prestigious US weapons systems to ambitious upstarts.  Military desertions are frequent; morale is at its lowest ebb. The ultra-rich flee to distant locations such as the Cayman Islands, Hong Kong, Israel, and Tahiti. Beverly Hills is sold off to nouveau-riches; all Hollywood movie studios shift operations overseas.  Canada is swamped with American refugees pleading for political asylum. The United Nations shifts its meetings from New York City to Sao Paulo for safety reasons.

Numerous factions within the military and government vie for supremacy;  CNN celebrates prominent generals as war heroes on Monday, but the same generals are hanged as traitors by Friday.  Popular discontent grows as commercial food stores go out of business and government hand-outs of food are often moldy and unfit for human consumption.  There are wild contrasts in standard of living; the rich walk warily on the same streets as the poor and hungry. Free speech zones are reserved for rich young students who can be relied on to protest only what the government already dislikes.  Pain rays, attack dogs, and tear gas silence unarmed protestors, but fail to impress street gangs funded by illegal drugs and armed with illegal guns.

Some Black and Hispanic street gangs  end up fighting each other to extinction, but most of them concentrate their efforts on terrorizing whites and Asians in an effort to extract tribute.   Armed robbers who had previously conducted home invasions in the cities begin raiding farms.  Farmers use modern technology such as cheap surveillance cameras and wireless networks to coordinate violent vigilante actions.

The prison-industrial complex is attacked by homegrown terrorists, leading to a massive expansion of military security outside prisons.  20% of the USA population is either incarcerated or branded as a felons.  Felons paroled from the prison system are given the choice between summary execution and indefinite detention in a FEMA-run labor community.  Prisoners provide ultra-cheap labor and the prison system is a pillar of the economy.

About 5% of the USA population holds a secret or top-secret security clearance.  Such clearances are required to work in the armaments industry and to hold public office.  Many young people strive to obtain such clearance, but rapidly become disaffected; many security clearance holders are subjected to “stop-loss” regulations that prevent them from leaving their jobs.  Censorship becomes the prevalent consideration in all USA media; clearance holders live in constant fear of blackmail, formal charges of treason, or brutal-but-unofficial disciplinary action.

Internet infrastructure degrades because copper telecom cables are stolen and sold to unscrupulous profiteers.  White radicals find receptive audiences.  Civilian combat shooting becomes widely reported, but police and prosecutors are not able to investigate most incidents to determine whether they were self-defense.

The USA government retreats to its Deep Underground Military Bases, and is able to retain control of its satellite network in order to continue issuing orders to troops overseas.  However, the military is hollowed out by desertion.  The USA retains many military capabilities but loses its diplomatic prestige.  The IRS escalates its levels of violence and shoots many tax protesters dead.  The Department of the Treasury proposes a cashless currency system but lacks the resources to implement it. Meanwhile,  the Federal Reserve Note only has value on military bases; barter reigns everywhere else.

California is taken over by narcoterrorists; the USA promptly bombs California’s cities with daisy-cutters and depleted uranium.  Plagues and packs of wild dogs become prevalent because there are too many dead bodies and no one is willing to bury them.  Cults and drug use become prevalent (in areas outside USA military control) because many Americans have no Internet access and are desperate for escapism.  However, drug-centered tribes and religious cults fail to accumulate any political power, because the prominent ones are soon exterminated by raids from the DHS.

Washington and Oregon, overwhelmed with Californian refugees, lapse into chaos.  United Nations peacekeepers attempt to suppress gang war.   Montana, Idaho, North Dakota, and South Dakota form the Northern Conference, maintain good relations with the remnants of the USA military, and refuse to admit United Nations peacekeepers.  The Northern Conference grudgingly does business with China over the Canadian border. Southern Texas is a warzone; Northern Texas pleads for international food aid but refuses United Nations involvement. The United Kingdom attempts to send SAS units to rescue a British diplomat captured in Florida, but the entire mission is foiled by heavily armed Hispanic gangs.

By 2025, the USA closes its bases in Japan, Korea, Germany, Iraq, and Afghanistan.  Other bases, such as Guam and Saudi Arabia, remain open.  At the United Nations Building in Sao Paulo, Russia, China, India, and Brazil announce their commitment to BATO, the Benevolent Alliance Treaty Organization, which will absorb the United Nations Security Council in order to send peacekeepers to protect the starving civilians in war-torn places such as Louisiana, Oregon, and Texas.

Scenario 4 – Military Mutinies:

By 2015, USA warfighters (including sailors, marines, airmen, and soldiers) are widely aware that their pay is nearly worthless.  Rather than obeying orders and upholding standard military decorum, warfighters engage in mass disobedience.  They make public political statements in uniform.  They denounce their superior officers as traitors.  They clog the military justice system with legal protests.  They circulate underground “newspapers” of radical dissent.  Those who can take early retirement re-enter civilian life as anti-statist radicals.  Smedley Butler’s “War is a Racket” becomes the most-quoted essay of 2015.

At home, some DHS and police personnel are inspired by these mutineers, but others are indignant.  Following many nonlethal shows of force and many riots, the police recognize that the general citizenry loves warfighters much more than they love cops.  A few police resign in disgrace.  Many warfighters run for local political office on an anti-statist campaign.

Ron Paul is too old to run for office, but becomes a major influence on many young office-holders.  The USA undertakes peaceful means to alter its own government and to abolish many of its government agencies.

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