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joined 2022 September 05 23:38:51 UTC


User ID: 757


Randomly Generated Reddit Username

0 followers   follows 0 users   joined 2022 September 05 23:38:51 UTC


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User ID: 757

Interestingly enough, the one author I ever link on this site recently did a series of articles talking about his interpretation of some of the same phenomena.


The word I came up with is “lenocracy.” The first part of that word comes from leno, the Latin term for a pimp. Yes, what the word means is a government of pimps.

Let’s unpack that phrase a little bit. If, as the saying goes, prostitution is the world’s oldest profession, then pimping must be up there in the oldest half dozen or so. What makes a pimp economically interesting is that he adds no value to the exchanges from which he profits. He doesn’t produce any goods or services himself. His role is wholly parasitic. He inserts himself into the transaction between the sex worker who provides the service and the customer who wants it, and takes a cut of the price in exchange for allowing the transaction to happen.

This kind of parasitic interaction is far from unusual in economics, but it’s not always as common as it is now. There are societies and eras in which most economic activity is mediated by pimps of various kinds, and other societies and other eras in which such arrangements are relatively rare (and often harshly penalized). Right now, in the modern industrial world, we live in an economy where nearly all exchanges are subject not just to the exactions of a single pimp but to whole regiments of pimps, each of whom has to be paid in order for the exchange to take place. Furthermore, this orgy of pimping is sponsored, controlled, and mandated by government at all levels and by the holders of political and economic power more generally. Thus, lenocracy.

I think that this is actually a separate phenomenon to high/low trust societal changes. That's definitely happening and we're seeing the impacts, but I think the idea of lenocracy provides more explanatory power in this case.

Except it's not a few months, it's 76 years.

Immaterial. The moment you deny the claims of the Palestinians to the land, you implicitly deny the much older and less substantial Israeli connection to the land. If the Palestinians don't have any claim after 76 years, the jews definitely don't after several thousand.

I'm not sure what you'd consider morally acceptable action on the part of the Israelis, unless it should be to just commit mass suicide to save the Palestinians the time?

One state solution with full democracy, or a two state solution. This would also have to include a tallying up of the damage caused by each side to determine if reparations have to happen too, not to mention trials for some of the more egregious acts - every single use of white phosphorous on civilian populations deserves criminal investigation at the least.

Leaving aside the fact that the Palestinians didn't control the region before 1948

I don't care to rehash the tired old argument about how the Palestinians didn't really exist, if you want to have that discussion go talk to somebody else and simply accept that I disagree.

If 9 million people who didn't choose to be born where they were accept getting slaughtered,

This isn't actually something that I said - please don't put words into my mouth. I in no way suggested that the Israelis accept getting slaughtered.

I'll repeat my question about whether you think Jews with central European ancestry are entitled to the land in Germany or Poland their ancestors lived on?

Depends on the individual context. There's a big difference between someone having their home stolen by the nazis, and someone selling off their property at the height of the Weimar republic and moving to America. That said, I was under the impression that Germany essentially already did this.

The influence they've exerted since 2005 has been driven primarily by Hamas who keep starting conflicts with them.

Starting conflicts? Israel is a colonial power and an imposition on the region, and did not exist a century ago. If I break into your home and kick you out, I don't get to call you the aggressor when you return in a few months and try to retake your home.

Would it be acceptable for the IRA to conduct acts of terrorism against the British due to the lingering impact of British colonialism in Ireland?

The IRA continued to conduct acts of terrorism against the British until the British left (and even then there's still Northern Ireland). The USA was kicked out of Afghanistan, but Israel is actually still there! If the Palestinians wiped Israel off the map and took control of the entire region, I absolutely would consider it unacceptable if they continued to blow up synagogues in other countries.

Why even grant any diplomatic concession to an adversary if your prior acts are apparantly justification for continued violence on their part?

If I steal 500 dollars from you, then make a diplomatic concession where I return 5 dollars, would you consider the matter settled? If giving you back that 5 dollars isn't enough to make you happy, why should I give anything back at all?

Israel should exist for the same reason any country should exist - the vast majority of people living there are born there and have no where else to live, and as such it's their home.

Same argument applies to the Palestinians. If destroying their homes to make way for Israel is acceptable, destroying Israeli homes to make way for Greater Palestine is equally acceptable.

I think that there is a significant correlation between being an American football player and being physically imposing. As a proxy for 'this guy looks buff, better not mess with him', you could do worse than football player.

There's some correlation to be sure, but using it as the metric is pointless when you have more relevant information available. Sure, you could do worse, but you could also do much better - why inject noise into the conversation for no reason? The political, commercial and social concerns that go into someone being selected as an American football player add so much noise that there's just no point using it for this kind of reasoning. When you look at the actual averages, white men are taller, in better shape and have greater physical function. It isn't even a matter of variance either - when you look at competitions selecting for strength, the top contenders have names like "Hafþór Júlíus Björnsson", "Benedikt Magnússon" and "Mariusz Zbigniew Pudzianowski".

Despite making up 13% of the population, 53% of NFL players are black


This is a complete non-sequitur. NFL players are in no way selected purely for how physically imposing they are, and the person you're replying to was actually correct - whites have a higher average height than blacks as well as a lower level of obesity.

Israel hasn't been in Gaza since 2005

Are you going to claim that Israel hasn't been exerting any kind of pressure or influence in Gaza since 2005? Even if you grant that absurd falsehood, the idea that their actions prior to 2005 couldn't have any kind of lingering impact is equally farcical.

slaughtering all 9m inhabitants of Israel to "reclaim" a land no Gazan has any living memory of,

If a people lacking a living memory of their land is enough to deny their claim to it, why should Israel exist at all given that none of the zionists and British people involved in creating it had any living memory of it either? Plenty of Irish people were born with no living memory of independence, but that doesn't actually justify anything the British did to them.

If Trump had done what Biden, Pence, and others did, there would be no case.

You're lying through your teeth here. Nothing Trump did comes remotely close to the seriousness of HRC's breach of confidential document rules and if he had done what she did there would be nowhere on Earth free from triumphant news broadcasts talking about his perfidy.

Thanks for the explanation. It doesn't sound a whole lot more rational than straight-up Jew-hatred,

Really? Maybe rational isn't the right term, but I find it perfectly understandable that a nation formerly oppressed by a much larger one who had to fight for their independence through terrorist bombings would have a bit of empathy for a small nation in much the same situation. Hell, it was even the same people who both conquered Ireland and imposed Israel on the middle east.

Let's go with a simple one - the shale fracking revolution in the oil/gas industry.

This isn't exactly a revolution. The tech behind shale fracking was known for quite some time, it just wasn't put to use because the costs associated with it meant that it was uneconomical. It wasn't a major shift or technological advance that unlocked shale, but an increase in the cost of energy and a lot of financial chicanery that made it competitive with traditional fuel sources. There's a very plausible case to be made that the technology is ultimately a loser, and that the environmental damage it causes in the long run will be more expensive than the economic value derived from the crap fuels you get out of it.

How about a government funded Red Team who's raison d'etre is taking out insecure household devices?

I think this is a great idea, though I'm sure China and Russia are doing it already.

We probably couldn't tell if the synthetic meat was bogus in some subtle way.

The potential for serious consequences that only show up a decade or two down the line is reason enough for me to foreswear this kind of technology until the research has been done. Maybe there's a manufacturing defect which means one in every ten-thousand pieces of meat has some fucked up prions in it - there are a bunch of ways serious issues could get through basic testing.

I didn't say anything like that so I don't know where you got that.

This is the thought process of someone deciding to purchase a pre-existing account with karma in order to get around reddit rules as you suggested in your previous post.

Comparing Reddit upvotes to burglars ransacking peoples' homes is laughably hyperbolic.

Of course - but that doesn't do anything to change the point I'm making, which is that people pumping up fake accounts, whether to sell to others or use for marketing, is actually the act of preparing to break the rules in letter and spirit. Selling the accounts for these purposes is in fact bad by itself if you care about the community at all (I don't for the record, but c'est la vie).

I don't think this is necessarily true.

I do not believe for a single second that anyone in the history of the entire world has ever said "I have a great, on-topic and timely post to share with this reddit community, but my account is too new. I'm going to purchase an account with a pre-existing history so I can share this incredible post with a community that I have no pre-existing engagement with."

Spotting accounts like this harvesting karma is like spotting people who are in the middle of getting their robbery tools ready - the only purpose for what they're doing is so that someone else later on can break the rules while making them so money.

Reddit has a lot of silly or dumb rules... that's part of why this site decided to separate in the first place!

No? The Motte tried to actually avoid breaking the rules of Reddit, and we split because we knew that not actually breaking the rules wasn't going to be a defence against the eye of Sauron making sure that there weren't any visible communities of people talking about how lightning strikes seem to appear before the thunder - or at least that's how I recall it.

Reposting something popular is pretty common, and I don't think it's particularly harmful even if it's a little annoying to see the same thing (but how many of us even remember Reddit posts from years ago)?

I think that there's a big difference between reposting good content and reposting someone else's post wholesale while pretending it is an original contribution for ulterior motives (political or pecuniary). Technically you're right when you say that it isn't particularly harmful, in the same sense that when you come home to find a thief picking the lock on your front door it isn't actually harmful because you were going to open the door anyway. Those accounts cause only minor problems when they're being created, but think about what happens when one of those accounts actually gets sold or otherwise activated - nobody is going to buy or create a fake account because they want to do something good for the original community. Whether they're trying to shape opinions/discourse or simply sell a product, they still cause damage to the social fabric and cohesion of whatever community they start sprouting up in.

Interesting post! Are you familiar with the idea of the Rescue Game? I think you might find the following article an interesting resource, because it presents an alternative perspective on some of the phenomena you're identifying here. Here's an article on the topic that introduced me to the concept - https://www.resilience.org/stories/2016-04-14/american-narratives-the-rescue-game/

I am, skeptical, that 'most people' would agree with the second formation.

Ever spoken to any vegetarians or vegans? Most of them would be more than happy to tell you about how much their life was improved by someone hostilely and aggressively telling them about the actual suffering their food choices were responsible for. I personally have changed my opinion on some issues because partisans actually showed me the cost in human suffering of my prior stance, and I don't think those people harmed or hurt me in any way.

Apologies for the delayed response - life's been rather busy lately. Feel free to just ignore this post, but I didn't want to leave your reply abandoned.

You're focusing on Amazon as a company

They're the company presented and they're the only operation with enough size and reach for this to be a viable option apart from maybe Walmart or McDonalds. Want to increase the amount of corporations involved? That's another layer of bureaucracy, investigation and opportunity for scams (you ever hear about the fake businesses created to harvest COVID relief benefits?).

It doesn't have to be Amazon, just any job that doesn't require a high level of previous training and education.

The job in question has to be one where you don't give a shit about the quality of the output (people don't tend to produce their best work when they aren't getting paid) and with no real importance to it, because there's going to be vast amounts of malicious compliance. What exactly is the big task that needs all this incredibly shithouse and actively hostile labour? You can't trust these people, they have no incentive to perform and every incentive to be so bad at their job they get fired. If getting fired for incompetence means they just get kicked off welfare, I hope you're ready for the political fallout of constant media interviews with single mothers and their starving children who lost their job and all welfare because the Amazon algorithm noticed them taking too many piss breaks.

The other aforementioned people you created to dismiss my idea don't necessarily need the program I'm proposing, it's not like those people are about to resort to criminal behavior or aren't going to be assisted by other government programs or are incapable of finding work themselves.

The other aforementioned people are the ones who are going to be included in the category of "incapable of finding work themselves" - you can't get away with using "about to resort to criminal behavior" as testable criteria without demonstrating precognition and accurate divination. You're going to have to come up with a dividing line between those people and the ones you want to target with your program - sometimes people, through no fault of their own, graduate in years like 2007 and your system needs to be able to account for things like that.

Could you expand on this? I feel like this is just rageposting instead of an actual example. Also, you don't necessarily need to put work on your resume if it's something temporary while looking for a permanent position.

I'm not sure if you've gone looking for a job recently, but having a big gap on your resume is something that hampers the average person's ability to get hired. If you're a hiring manager who's picking up some programmers, are you going to look at the resume of the person who was well off enough that they got to contribute to open source projects for a semester after graduating, or the person who was forced to go be a delivery driver and can't even make the interview on time due to their welfare requirements? (Of course if you allow people to quit their fake Amazon job to go take a job interview without sacrificing their welfare then they're going to be taking a LOT of job interviews with FreeMoneyFromCovid LLC). Having onerous work requirements for someone on welfare means they aren't improving their skills, can't travel for work and are going to have problems going to job interviews.

Of course you're under no obligation to provide an alternative, but poopooing something just because you don't like my general idea doesn't really disprove what I'm getting at, either.

More than just poopooing, this is pointing out serious structural issues with your proposal that I think play a large part in why this hasn't already been done. You just haven't thought through the consequences of a system like this, or put yourself in the shoes of a person who is entering the system at the bottom, and at the same time you haven't looked at the system from an adversarial point of view - and given that you're trying to turn these people into a source of free and easily exploitable labour, you have to be extremely careful that they don't have the ability to fuck things up and make your corporate partners go "These people are not worth employing even if we don't have to pay for them."

There's a reason that companies don't go drag a 20 dollar bill through the trailer park to pick up a bunch of cheap workers for the day. The "workforce" you're proposing to create with this idea is not just incredibly incompetent, but the few parts of it that are competent are heavily incentivised to fuck with the system in order to either escape it or fuck it up. No company is going to want to have to work with a bunch of gang-bangers that are forced to be in their office by law, and the actual "work" that these people generate is in many cases going to be actively harmful to the company's bottom line (though I'm sure some people will appreciate being able to pick up some meth from their Amazon delivery driver).

This is the actual main thrust of my argument against your proposal: the juice isn't worth the squeeze. Your program requires vast amounts of administrative overhead, has massive costs, potential for serious and egregious abuse, hampers the ability of good people to get real jobs and funnels taxpayer money into private hands that are already incredibly wealthy - and to top it all off, the workforce that results is so terrible that you will have to pay others to compensate for the costs of actually putting them to use.

If you think its so juvenile, can you think of something better?

Sure - nothing. Just doing absolutely nothing and not even bothering with enforcement is a better suggestion than giving a company like Amazon this insane amount of power over the lives of their employees and the incredible competitive advantage of a workforce who are unable to leave their jobs without losing their homes. Amazon already treats their workers incredibly poorly and pays them so bad that a huge proportion of them receive government welfare on top of their earned income - are they going to be included in this program too and forced to do a bunch of extra free shifts for the existing employer in order to get those benefits? They were even projected to exhaust the US labour pool this year because their churn rate is so atrocious! Amazon is a company that has repeatedly gone out of their way to ensure that they get concessions and exemptions from government policies in the pursuit of profit, and I can't imagine that they'd change their spots for this.

The potential for abuse here is just staggering - do you think a woman who is on welfare is going to risk reporting their boss for sexual harassment/abuse when that all but guarantees they'll be homeless for the next 90 days? Your proposal only even makes sense if you're talking about a very specific subsection of welfare recipients. If I'm a university graduate who failed to find a job in six months because the economy just entered a recession, what exactly would I be learning from my new role as a serf for Amazon? Having that experience on my resume would make me less likely to get a real job (to say nothing of the opportunity costs, where I could be using that time to upskill or expand my resume) and more likely to stay dependent upon the system for life. If a hard-working coal-miner with two decades of experience finds themselves struggling to find a job after their mine got closed and all the jobs in their town got shipped off to China, what are they going to be getting out of this? If a housewife whose husband died due to COVID ends up applying for welfare, what greater purpose is served by taking her away from her children for eight hours a day to do menial labour so degrading and demanding that she has to piss in a bottle to avoid taking bathroom breaks? And of course on the flipside, if a hulking 7 foot tall gangster with violent tendencies and substance abuse issues shows up on the welfare rolls, you're actively putting the people who they work with at risk.

I'm sure there's some small subset of people (other than Jeff Bezos) who would benefit from this insanely expensive and demanding program, but the juice just isn't worth the squeeze. My answer might have been glib, but I'm under no real obligation to provide a functional alternative because I think your proposal is seriously flawed.

I actually just interpreted "attacked" as the sort of attacks I've actually seen - shouting, protest signs, criticism, dialogue etc. I haven't seen any jews getting murdered or brutally assaulted in the west by left-wing activists in order to change their political views, though I'll happily update my post if it turns out there's actually a brutal pogrom taking place on American university campuses. Additionally, "internal struggle" is directly from the post I was quoting.

Imagine that individuals in section housing have to work at Amazon fulfilment centers. Perhaps the government and Amazon could strike up a deal that with enough workers, Amazon could lower the throughput per worker (to increase livability) in exchange for a tax subsidy to offset the cost of having to hire a non-optimum amount of workers. People in section housing could be bussed to the job, and also have regular police presence and social workers more intimately involved in their lives along with people helping them understand budgeting. It would require insane amounts of manpower, but it would also be the first step in actually beginning to address the problems of the slums.

Was this modest proposal made in jest? I want to reply seriously but can't help shake the feeling that I'm just missing the joke.

In a general sense, I think university leftists have done a great job convincing college students that being anti-Israel, pro-Palestine is the default "leftist" "intellectual" position. That's going to have ripple effects down the line.

I actually disagree here - that is and always has been the default "leftist" "intellectual" position (sic). You don't need to posit some conspiracy among campus left-wing activists to explain why modern left wing political thought takes a dim view of white-passing ethnostates that convert American tax dollars/weapons into dead brown people.

Scary? What exactly is scary about that? I'm not trying to get an own here, I'm legitimately curious because the only thing that comes to mind is that you're scared of changing your own mind after a period of internal struggle. Changing your mind over a serious or contentious issue as a result of a period of internal struggle is generally regarded as a positive development by most people, and they use terms like "personal growth" to describe it.

I do agree that they elite any real structural issues or serious suggestions for reform, but that's because it's all so stupid that they don't think to ask those questions.

My working assumption has always been that not having to have those difficult discussions about class/real structural issues is one of the big reasons for the focus on privilege and identity issues. If you're looking at reality, a redneck from Appalachia whose local economy got destroyed by outsourcing and now has a massive fentanyl problem is actually substantially less privileged (in the actual sense of the word) than a pretty young girl going to an elite university. Focusing on the fact that the redneck is a white male allows people to ignore their own actual privilege, and while I'm not going to claim that that's the entire reason for those beliefs, I think that use gave it a lot of staying power.

I'll spoil the surprise: they can't. Too little, too late - and Ukraine cannot support or defend the infrastructure required to maintain them in the current state of the war.

Ukrainians and Israelis both are capable of adapting to a world without US support, that they received US support is because it is in the US interest to keep the conflicts within a narrow bound.

Harsh disagree here. Ukraine is currently losing and has been for quite some time, despite the US' support - and at this point there's no support the US can give that would make a difference short of simply announcing that their side of the Dnieper is under the nuclear umbrella.

As for Israel, it would depend on how exactly "US support" gets defined. They'd easily be able to survive if the US simply cut off the free money, but Israel takes (in some cases, like intelligence, without asking) a lot more than that. If they were actually and seriously cut off from the West they'd be reliant on their nuclear program for deterrence - and that just isn't enough to protect them from their threat environment, especially seeing as how they've been pissing off Russia and China. They'd have to find a solution to the problem of the orthodox as well, and that's not going to be terribly easy for them.