Wednesday, April 24, 2019
  The political is @personal

BBC's account of the summit meeting between @Donald and @Jack:
Earlier Mr Trump had accused the platform of being "very discriminatory" towards him.

"Twitter is here to serve the entire public conversation, and we intend to make it healthier and more civil," the Twitter CEO wrote.

The meeting came just hours after the president posted two tweets repeating his longstanding claim that the platform is politically biased.

He said Twitter did not "treat me well as a Republican" and accused it of limiting the number of people who follow him.

"Constantly taking people off list. Big complaints from many people," he wrote, claiming the numbers would be higher "if Twitter wasn't playing their political games".
Well, of course bias is not a "claim". Bias is a plain and obvious fact.

But the bias isn't really political. It's personal.

@Donald is more honest than @Jack. @Donald is candidly focusing on @Jack's bias against @Donald, not bias against "conservatives", whatever the fuck that means.

In fact Twitter's bias is strictly personal. Twitter isn't "communist" or "socialist" or "liberal", whatever the fuck that means. Twitter favors the fashionable satanic orthodoxy of Silicon Valley technoids. Monopoly is good, trillionaires are heroes, tax is evil, global warming is real, AI is necessary, all Deplorables must be slaughtered, SHARE VALUE IS THE UNIVERSE.

Twitter favors what @Jack favors. Twitter is @Jack.

So this isn't "conservative" vs "liberal", it's exactly @Donald vs @Jack.
 
Tuesday, April 23, 2019
  We had a chance

Just figured something out while listening (as usual) to old radio shows about bunco artists.

When you understand how the world really works, you have an advantage over people who don't.

This also applies to cultures and nations. Cultures that are based on an accurate understanding of status and resources have an advantage when dealing with cultures that are based on PHYSICALLY IMPOSSIBLE nonsense about "rights" and "meritocracy".

Why do Persians and Russians always see through our motives? They're not necessarily smarter in terms of IQ, but both are infinitely wiser in terms of culture. Sharia is based on an accurate SCIENTIFIC description of human status and duties. The Soviet system wasn't originally based on reality; it started out with pure Locke/Lincoln lunacy. But it finally came to terms with reality after futilely trying to convert the strong Russian realists to insanity.

Africans are also grounded in reality, but they're more susceptible to insanity conversion. Booker T had it right, and then MLK pulled his followers into the "meritocracy" lane where they could be run over by NYC bankers. The old ground point is still there, even when coated with capitalist shit.

= = = = = START PARTIAL REPRINT:

First and most perfectly, in sharia law:
The Almighty has created this world as a trial and test for man; every person has therefore been made to depend on others for his living. No one in this world can live independently as regards his needs and requirements. A person of the highest rank turns to the most ordinary to fulfill them. In other words, every single person has an important role to play, without which this world cannot continue.

This role depends upon his abilities, intelligence and inclinations as well as upon his means and resources, which vary from person to person. In fact, it is because of this variation that a society comes into being. Consequently, laborers and workers, artisans and craftsmen, tillers and peasants are as indispensable as scholars and thinkers, savants and sages, leaders and rulers. Every individual is an integral component of the society and contributes to its formation according to his abilities.

By creating various classes of people, the Almighty is testing whether the big and the small, the high and the low create a society based on co-operation and respect or create disorder in the world by disregarding the role each person has been ordained to play.


= = = = =

Second, in the 1977 Soviet constitution:
The state exercises control over the measure of labour and of consumption in accordance with the principle of socialism: "From each according to his ability, to each according to his work". It fixes the rate of taxation on taxable income.

Socially useful work and its results determine a person's status in society. By combining material and moral incentives and encouraging innovation and a creative attitude to work, the state helps transform labour into the prime vital need of every Soviet citizen.


= = = = =

Third, in FDR's fireside chat on Sept 6, 1936.
I have, however, used the argument in relation only to a small area -- it holds good in its effect on the nation as a whole. Every state in the drought area is now doing and always will do business with every state outside it.

The very existence of the men and women working in the clothing factories of New York, making clothes worn by farmers and their families; of the workers in the steel mills in Pittsburgh, in the automobile factories of Detroit, and in the harvester factories of Illinois, depend upon the farmers' ability to purchase the commodities they produce. In the same way it is the purchasing power of the workers in these factories in the cities that enables them and their wives and children to eat more beef, more pork, more wheat, more corn, more fruit and more dairy products, and to buy more clothing made from cotton, wool and leather. In a physical and a property sense, as well as in a spiritual sense, we are members one of another.

= = = = = END PARTIAL REPRINT.

We had a chance to give up Locke/Lincoln lunacy. After FDR died, Steadystate came roaring back to life and turned us back into useless suckers, ready to bite into the poisoned apple of "meritocracy". And we took a BIG FUCKING BITE.

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  America the land of entrepreneurs? Nope. (FUCKING REPRINT)

While looking for something else I noticed this item from TEN YEARS AGO. This was BEFORE Romneycare was enacted. Nothing has changed. The same idiotic shared lies are still "debated" while the important questions are still unspeakable and unaskable.

= = = = = START FUCKING REPRINT:

Economist Dean Baker has located a report that compares the "dynamism" of America and other rich countries. It's a real waker-upper. Turns out we are at the bottom of the entrepreneur stack no matter how you try to measure it.

This chart tells the story:


The rest of the report tries to separate manufacturing from agriculture, because the top countries have many small farmers; it looks at firms in manufacturing, computer-related businesses, research and development, and others. In every category, no matter how you parse the data, America is at the bottom. We are the Land of Monopolies.

Why? No single-payer health care.

I really can't imagine why our brand-D politicos aren't using these facts to help sell a single-payer system ... Oh, now I remember. Our brand-D doesn't want health reform, or American survival, any more than brand-R does. Both parties just want to maximize the profits of insurance companies and lawyers, but in slightly different ways.

= = = = =

Later thought: There are two other factors besides health costs that suppress small business in America. Litigation and copyright/patent problems. Litigation is a uniquely American evil, while copyright/patent problems are only somewhat worse here than in other rich countries. These two factors are narrower than health costs, each affecting only certain types of business, but the net effect of all three is the same.

The sum of these factors gives total advantage to the largest corporations, which can self-insure for medical care, hire armies of lawyers to scare away the predatory lawyers, generate carefully crafted defensive patents to eliminate innovation, and buy custom-made laws from CongressMart.

= = = = = END FUCKING REPRINT.

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  Turns out Georg was right!

Via ScienceDaily, researchers at Zurich have made a resonant circuit with oscillating HEAT instead of oscillating electron flow. As with electric LC circuits, and as with mechanical resonators, this resonator continues oscillating for a while after the driving force is turned off.

During the oscillation, heat flows alternately from a warmer object to a colder object, and then from the colder to the warmer. The latter half of the cycle 'technically' violates thermodynamics, but not really. Electronic and mechanical and fluidic resonant circuits can (and usually do!) move against the potential gradient for half of the cycle, so it shouldn't be strange that a heat resonator does the same.

Simple example: The guitar string is "spontaneously" moving uphill against gravity for half of each cycle. We understand that this doesn't violate the laws of gravity, so we should think of heat flow the same way.


The finding that heat can oscillate is the strange and interesting thing!

= = = = =

So it turns out that Georg Ohm's original analogy of electricity and heat was right after all.

= = = = = START REPRINT:

Polistra is always cheering for traditional and human-scale measurements. She wanted to find out: Was there ever a set of natural measurements for electricity? Was there ever an English unit of potential or an American unit of resistance? Or did the original experimenters jam everything into the metric prison from the start?

The answer: Well, sort of. Briefly. In the early days of telegraphy, resistance was often measured in terms of length and width of a standard wire, and different nations had different standards. But this didn't last long, and the volt, ampere and ohm were quickly adopted as universal.

Polistra admits reluctantly that this situation makes sense. Food, farmland and fabric were used and measured systematically for thousands of years before theoreticians came along. Electricity was first used and measured by theoreticians and later passed into common use.

While looking for the nonexistent tradition, an interesting forgotten story popped out. Back in 1827, Georg Ohm developed the math of circuits correctly by using an incorrect analogy. Other 'electricians' had already reached a correct understanding of positive and negative charges; Ohm ignored this understanding and used the transmission of heat instead. Because of his incorrect analogy, his correct math was not accepted by the other scientists for many years. Alfred Mayer, writing in 1890, said:
Ohm was led to the conception of this law by assuming that the flow of electricity in a voltaic circuit is similar to the flow of heat by conduction in a rod. Also, his assumptions that the actions of two electrified particles are directly as their distance, and that the electricity is uniformly dense over each cross section of a conducting wire, were directly opposed to the laws and facts well established by Coulomb for statical electricity.

Damned theoreticians. Always the same. Always ignoring truth if it doesn't fit the latest theory.

Ohm assumed that charge was handed off step by step between the 'particles' in the wire, just as the molecular agitation of heat is handed off from one molecule to another. This led him to view resistance as a sort of velocity measurement:
That is to say, both elements reciprocally change their electric state as long as a difference continues to exist between their electroscopic forces; but this change ceases as soon as they have both attained the same electroscopic force. ... The motion is effected in most bodies so rapidly that we are seldom able to determine its changes at the various places, and on that account we are not in a condition to discover by observation the law according to which they act.

If he was observing any delay using the instruments then available, he was probably seeing the result of inductive reactance in a long coil or wire, rather than simple resistance. A low-pass RL filter can easily take a perceptible amount of time to reach full flow.

Why did Ohm's bad assumption work? Probably because it wasn't all that bad! I spent much of my life playing and working with electrical stuff: repairing, designing, building, teaching. I used Ohm and his variants and corollaries daily. I always started with the analogy of airflow or waterflow**, in which the electrons pass between the atoms of the metal at a finite speed, while the charge field acts instantly across space. In the end it doesn't matter which of these concepts is treated as a finite velocity.

Polistra and Happystar try to see Ohm's original view, using a couple of experiments.


First Polistra shows heat conduction in a rod. She puts the rod onto a 'potential difference' between cold and hot, and watches the different molecular agitations transfer at a finite speed, until the rod is at a uniform temperature.


Now Happystar applies the same concept to a (non-factual!) electric circuit, perhaps as Ohm imagined it. Using an Edison iron-nickel battery to create a potential difference, he drops a wire onto the negative end to complete the circuit. The charges transfer at a finite speed toward the center of the resistive load, until the load is at a uniform current.



= = = = =

Footnote: **Airflow and waterflow: See my AUDIN courseware, lesson 201, for an example. Also, the battery, pulsing wires and 'resistive block' are available in my ShareCG page.


= = = = = END REPRINT.

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Monday, April 22, 2019
  Missed it by a mile

Just noticed that today is Earth Day, celebrating a criminal named Ira Einhorn. I haven't been marking Einhorn Day, but I have been marking Einhorn Hour for many years. Missed it by a mile this year, preoccupied with work and winter troubles. Shoveling all that global warming was tiresome.

So I'll repeat the most recent picture:



And more important, repeat a recent and highly appropriate mention of Einhorn.

= = = = = START REPRINT:

Returning to Gouvernour Morris vs Tom Paine, trying to sort out the apparent inconsistency in the Hix radio show. I managed to wade through more of the 1838 biography of Morris, and now I have a fairly good sense of what happened.

The real story is a perfect fable of "rights" vs duties, at the EXACT START of the conflict, featuring a perfect avatar for each side.

First the broad background:

Morris was born into a wealthy and influential family, one of the founding families of the English colonies. He had a unique talent for math and engineering, and his family trained him for diplomatic work.

He HATED revolutions because he knew the historical record. Revolutions ALWAYS bring tyranny and ruin.

He used his influence to slow down the American revolution. When slowing failed, he got into a position of power where he could attempt to moderate the excesses. When he saw the French revolution coming, he was working as a trade representative for the new USA STRONG dysgovernment, using his math talents to deal with currencies and debts. At the moment when Paris fell to Robespierre, Morris was in France trying to negotiate repayment of our debt to the old French royal government, which had helped finance our revolution to weaken England. [Remember: England and France were at war almost constantly since the time of Jesus.]

= = = = =

What was Paine doing several years BEFORE the French revolution?



He was betraying his own revolution to weaken the French king and start a revolution there.

And what happened to Paine DURING the French revolution?



He was imprisoned for being part of a losing branch of the revolution.

What part did Morris play?



He tried to get Paine released, but without much sympathy because Paine had already betrayed America, joined Robespierre, and switched citizenship. Why should Morris defend Paine from the country he had chosen?

Later, James Monroe was sent to Paris on a different mission. At that time the French were happy to get rid of Paine, who was an all-around troublemaker.

= = = = =

Paine was the classic Chaotizer. His sole purpose in life was to create chaos and death, and he developed the murderous delusional concept of "rights" to assist in his genocide. Helped to start one revolution, got position in the revolution, got dissatisfied, used his position to help start another revolution. When he was caught, he went to France, got position in the new revolution. This time the rebels realized that he wasn't worth defending.

Morris was the classic Order-maker. He had a strong sense of DUTY balancing his aristocratic privileges. His DUTY was to preserve and create order. He tried to halt one revolution. When it happened anyway, he got position in the revolution, tried to bring order to the new setup.

= = = = =

Are there any modern equivalents?

Paine is easy. Ira Einhorn. Precise match. Used his influence to create disorder in NYC, moved to Paris, continued to ruin everything. Finally even the French got tired of him and threw him back. Remembered fondly by fuckheads as a defender of "environmental rights".

Morris was harder, because I had to fight my own biases to reach a surprising conclusion. Closest equivalent is Bill Gates. Born with wealth and math talent, used his influence and talent to gain more wealth, now uses his wealth to bring order to parts of the world that are prone to chaos and revolution. Gates is the best warrior against Soros. Clean water and vaccines help ordinary people to make more life and more order and more value. (The biography emphasizes Morris's ability to recognize his own biases without losing his own biases. So I'm trying feebly to emulate him.)

= = = = =

Finally, back to the original question. Was Hix right or wrong? Sort of technically correct but essentially wrong. His source got the basic facts of Paine's imprisonment but ignored the background and the previous events, thus missing the REASON for Paine's imprisonment and the REASON for Morris's lack of enthusiasm. Without the background, Morris appears to be the betrayer.

Hix's other Morris story was about Robert Morris lending his fortune to the USA STRONG dysgovernment which never repaid him. In that case the radio story accurately portrayed the Morris family's unique virtue, and the dysgovernment's perpetual crime and evil.

= = = = = END REPRINT

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  The ear is faster than the ... uh ...

And on the same subject, an MRI examination of the brains of blind people has two interesting findings:

= = = = =

(1) This one is unsurprising:
The study found that in the auditory cortex, individuals who are blind showed narrower neural "tuning" than sighted subjects in discerning small differences in sound frequency.
Makes sense. When vision is present, frequency detection mainly serves to detect vowel formants, which are broad and relative**. Without vision, frequency detection must also distinguish echoes from specific objects, which are more precise and absolute.

= = = = =

(2) This one is less expected:
An area of the brain called the hMT+ which in sighted individuals is responsible for tracking moving visual objects, shows neural responses that reflect both the motion and the frequency of auditory signals in blind individuals. This suggests that in blind people, area hMT+ is recruited to play an analogous role -- tracking moving auditory objects, such as cars, or the footsteps of the people around them.
In other words:


With vision:

Each visible object has an 'avatar' consisting of its reflected color patterns. The 'avatar' moves around an internal map corresponding to the map of reality.


Without vision:

Each audible object has an 'avatar' consisting of its reflected pitch patterns. The 'avatar' moves around an internal map corresponding to the map of reality.

= = = = =

I'd bet blind people have a much larger and more flexible memory for sequences as well, which would also be found in pre-literate or illiterate people. When you can rely on writing to store sequences, you can offload sequences into writing and read them later.

Braille differs from visible writing. When we read a paragraph in print, we see a large chunk of it at once, input it in parallel, and sort it out internally. Braille is strictly series, strictly sequential, so it's less efficient as an offloader.

Blind people seem to enjoy talking backwards and playing music backwards, as an exercise for the sequencer. When you're not accustomed to having direct series access to sequences, these tricks are much harder.

= = = = =

Sidenote: Our magnetic sense, which we're just barely starting to understand, also seems to use the same 'avatar' approach.

** Speculative thought. Formants are relative. Each speaker has a different oral cavity and dialect and emotional shaping, so the baseline and ratio of vowel formants is different for each speaker. We quickly adapt to the baseline and track F1, F2 and F3. Each formant has a wide range, each speaker has a somewhat different pattern. Only the rank order of frequencies is the same. My first thought was that echoes from objects are more precise and constant, but that's probably wrong. Echoing objects are probably grouped by type and 'dialect' just as speakers are. Bats can distinguish different species of moth regardless of position and distance.
 
  The hand is faster than the ... uh ....

A school for the blind in Ekaterinburg ran an event called Total Dictation, where a group of older and younger Braillers competed to keep up with vocal dictation.



Note how her left hand serves as the 'visual' tracker for the right hand. Impressive skill and beautiful working hands.

= = = = =

Working under time pressure is an important part of experiential education. After you've hit the plateau of basic skill, speeding up is the best way to reach full mastery.

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  roblem ith eading eros

Ia erohedge:

Omebody orgot to heck he 'ext' ormat for the Ip Ode olumn of a preadsheet.



Seriously, this is a perpetual problem that has NEVER been solved in any proper intrinsic way. When you want to sort a list of numbers, or alphabetize filenames, you always have to fill with leading zeros so every item has the same column structure.

All other major products have rigorous standards for usability, typically via the ISO organization. Software never acquired standards.

If we had ISO for software, this would be one of the requirements. Any program that handles a list MUST orthogonalize the columns, or give you the choice** of orthogonalizing.

A couple other needed standards:

When a login has the choice of 'remember me', the 'remember me' should always be ticked by default.

Every search function should use whole words by default, so you don't get a thousand different words that happen to contain the sequence of letters you enter. Searching for 'of' shouldn't yield off and coffee and software and loft and Boffo and Hofbrauhaus and ....

A popup with several choices should always step through the choices by Tab. Some popups work this way, some force you to step with arrow, some don't have any keystroke. This irregularity gets in the way of smooth workflow, especially when different popups inside the same program use different stepping methods. You think you chose SAVE but you actually chose DON'T SAVE.

= = = = =

** This spreadsheet is actually DE-orthogonalizing. Zip codes are orthogonal and non-numeric by nature. Each column is occupied by digits that represent regions. The digits could just as well be letters, as in the Canadian or British postal codes. The spreadsheet tried to treat them as regular numbers by truncating the leaders.

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  No need for details

Is the new president of Ukraine going to change things? Populist revolt as Turley believes? Is the 'comedian' something like Italy's comedian Boffo Groucho or whatever?

I don't need to waste time on details. Poroshenko is our SOB, installed by Soros and Nudelman. Poroshenko happily yielded power to the 'comedian'. Therefore the 'comedian' is still our SOB. Maybe he's our funny SOB instead of our sober SOB, but still our SOB.

You don't need details when you know how things work.

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Sunday, April 21, 2019
  Thanks for proving my point, Satan.

Via ZH, a direct and current quote from Pompeo:
“What’s the cadet motto at West Point? You will not lie, cheat, or steal, or tolerate those who do. I was the CIA director. We lied, we cheated, we stole. It’s — it was like — we had entire training courses. It reminds you of the glory of the American experiment.” — Texas A&M University (April 15, 2019)
The part about CIA is just normal and ordinary. Basic universal fact, true for thousands of years and thousands of countries. The job description of spies is lying, cheating, and stealing. The sole purpose of a spy is to acquire information and lie about it. Why does anyone ever listen to any CIA agent about any subject??? Especially "former" agents. When you know that a spy always lies, you have to assume that "former" is just one more lie.**

The part about the glory of the American experiment is a new and unprecedented admission. Nobody in a position of power has ever stated openly and publicly that the glory of 1776 is total Satanic obliteration of Nature and Nature's laws.

As I've been saying....
The internal founders of 1776 were trying to create chaos for a different purpose. Their theories and constitutions were intended to weaken natural culture and keep NYC banks on top. Natural culture often prospered despite Steadystate's best efforts, requiring harsh responses like Lincoln's genocide or Wilson's tyranny or FBI/CIA agents provocateurs to restore chaos.


= = = = =

** Fussy footnote: This isn't the Cretan paradox because we know from external and verifiable observation that CIA always lies. We don't need to rely on Pompeo's admission that he is lying.

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  Thanks Ralph 125, (~A) && (~I) edition

The elites continue to panic ... or PRETEND to panic ... over the semi-mythical threat of AI.

I still haven't figured out if the panic is real, and haven't figured out the reason for it.

Most of what reaches the public is nonsense, based on obvious misunderstandings of automation in general and AI in specific.

Example 1, from BBC: Worrying about the effects of AI on African development.
Artificial intelligence (AI) could displace millions of jobs in the future, damaging growth in developing regions such as Africa, says Ian Goldin, professor of globalisation and development at Oxford University.

Perhaps the most important question we have looked at is whether AI will pose a threat - or provide new opportunities - for developing regions such as Africa.
Here the question isn't AI at all. The question is basic automation at the 1950 level. Tractors, automatic spotwelders, CNC programmed machine tools, computerized accounting.

In practice the decision for African governments has nothing to do with technology at any level. A sane country has to figure out how to use its own resources and skills to the best advantage of its OWN PEOPLE. For the least developed countries like Mali and Zimbabwe, the best advantage still comes with foreign colonization. Right now China is the best foreign player because it builds up local farms and factories with a minimum of Chinese labor. The choice is whether to invite China in or not. The option of AI is not "on the table" or anywhere near the table.

= = = = =

Example 2 via ZH:

The usual Die-Versity lunatics are making life slightly difficult for the usual technoid lunatics.

Here the question does involve AI as typically defined. When a chatbot is set free to learn about reality from the people it chats with, it learns about reality. It acquires ways of talking and thinking that are alien to the Die-Versitoids, because reality is alien to the Die-Versitoids.

This is a nice self-extinguishing problem. If the Die-Versitoids are allowed to impose their crazy notions about "rights" and "equality", AI will no longer be Autonomous or Intelligent. It will be required to answer every question with verbatim repetitions of Die-Verse slogans, which means it will be incapable of solving REAL-LIFE problems. Real-life problems arise from REALITY, not from the delusional psychotic "thoughts" of John Locke and Madman Lincoln and Betty Friedan. Applying the PHYSICALLY IMPOSSIBLE goals of Locke and Friedan to real life ALWAYS leads to craziness.



= = = = =

So we have one problem that doesn't really involve AI, and one problem that will self-destruct AI if fully "solved".

Thanks, Ralph!

= = = = =

Next day: Can't stay ahead of The Onion! However, the Onion misses one big point. LIbertarians are GLOBALISTS, not anti-globalists. Soros, Zuckerberg, Musk, Bezos. The gods of libertarians, the masters of globalism.

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Saturday, April 20, 2019
  No correct answers

I think I've debunked this shit before, but it still needs debunking. This is a quiz that supposedly rates your financial literacy, and supposedly most youngsters flunk it.

In fact everyone should flunk it because all the questions are impossible.

= = = = =

1. Interest accumulation:
Suppose you had $100 in a savings account and the interest rate was 2% per year. After 5 years, how much do you think you would have in the account if you left the money to grow?
a. More than $102
b. Exactly $102
c. Less than $102
d. Not sure

The correct answer is $100.00 because savings accounts do not bear interest. The question specifies 2% interest, which is PHYSICALLY IMPOSSIBLE.

= = = = =

2. Effects of payment behavior on credit cost:
Assuming the following individuals have the same credit card with the same interest rate and balance, which will pay the most in interest on their credit card purchases over time?
a. Joe, who makes the minimum payment on his credit card bill every month
b. Jane, who pays the balance on her credit card in full every month
c. Joyce, who sometimes pays the minimum, sometimes pays less than the minimum and missed one payment on her credit card bill
d. All of them will pay the same amount in interest over time
e. Not sure


Paying every month on time is the BEST choice, but there's no way to determine who will pay the most. Credit card companies don't use math. They change their policies and practices constantly.

= = = = =

3. Impact of repayment term on cost of credit:
Imagine that there are two options when it comes to paying back a loan and both come with the same interest rate. Provided you have the needed funds, which option would you select to minimize your total costs over the life of the loan (i.e., all of your payments combined until the loan is completely paid off)?
a. Option 1 allows you to take 10 years to pay back the loan
b. Option 2 allows you to take 20 years to pay back the loan
c. Both options have the same out-of-pocket cost over the life of the loan
d. Not sure


Total out-of-pocket cost is completely unpredictable as in previous question, and it's not the important GOAL anyway. The GOAL is to get rid of the debt as FAST as you possibly can.

= = = = =

4. Interest terminology:
Which of the following best defines the term “interest capitalization”?
a. The type of interest charged on high-balance loans
b. The addition of unpaid interest to the principal balance of a loan
c. Interest that is charged when you postpone payments on your loan


"Interest capitalization" is not a term anyone uses. I was a bookkeeper for several years, had various loans and savings accounts for most of my life, and now I read way too many econ websites. I've NEVER heard or read the phrase. It may have a meaning for academic economists, but not in any ordinary business or household usage.

= = = = =

If you're going to grade people on "knowledge" of an important part of life, your STANDARDS need to be based on reality. These graders are expecting people to "know" myths and delusions, while completely skipping all important REAL knowledge.
 
  Language update for 2019

Professor Polistra has pretty much abandoned her Language Update duties, but returns briefly for one especially egregious and widespread error.



Honeypot for honeytrap.

Example 1:

Mike Flynn's Alleged Honeypot Slams Russiagate 'Spy' Stefan Halper And Journos Who Covered For Him

Example 2:

Whatever the truths of the matter, it certainly looks like the intelligence community was all over the Trump campaign like flies on shit, and if the Papadopoulos interview and book are correct, not merely doing “counter-intelligence,” but setting up honeypots, coat-trailing, installing moles, etc.

= = = = =

Prof P wishes to clarify the difference graphically.

This is a honeypot.


This is a honeytrap.


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  Analog Tulsi, sort of

Speaking of analog simplicity....

Tulsi is pushing to return "elections" to paper ballots counted by hand. Excellent goal, but I'm not sure that her implementation is aimed in the right direction.

The most important point is MODULARITY. Handling and counting paper ballots is innately modular. There's no way for a central power like the imaginary "Russians" or the real DNC to change all results with one keypress.

As I showed in detail, counting at the precinct level is NOT slower than centralized counting, and can be faster.

Best implementation: All voting by mail, using NCR-paper ballots that automatically produce a copy. You can keep the copy, enabling later verification if you want to take the trouble.

Every system can be corrupted and cheated. The important variable is difficulty and expense. Decentralized HUMAN counting of PAPER ballots with COPIES would make cheating harder and more expensive than central electronic systems.
 
  Constants and Variables 127, universal cure edition

A modest proposal.

Eliminating all media will eliminate all major wars.
Eliminating all media will eliminate all major crimes.


= = = = =

War: Major wars are fought to make public points. Modern US wars are fought to demonstrate our loyalty to Saudi and Israel. If the war can't make headlines, there's no point in fighting it.

There are lots of minor wars and skirmishes, especially in Africa and Latin America, which are essentially gang battles disguised as religious or ethnic disputes. The media doesn't cover these wars, so we know they will continue when the media is shut down. Constants and variables.

= = = = =

Crime: Here we can be more precise, dividing crime into categories.

1. Hate hoaxes are committed PURELY for media attention, with the strong collaboration of media. They will disappear instantly.

2. "Terrorist acts" are committed by FBI and CIA to provide "problems" that need to be "solved" by increasing the power snd budget of FBI and CIA. Parkinson. If "terrorist acts" are not splashed all over the media, there's no point in committing them. FBI and CIA will have to find other ways of justifying increased budget.

3. School massacres and similar dramatic crimes are not always sponsored by FBI, but they are designed to gain publicity BY DEFINITION. If there's no glory, you can't go out in a blaze of glory.

4. As with wars, there are many low-level crimes that are NOT covered by the media. Gang battles, drug-induced thefts, drunk bar fights. These will continue.

= = = = =

The dividing line is simple.

Crimes and wars that are covered in the media will stop when the media stops.

This isn't tree falls in a forest or Schrödinger, it's just supply and demand. Media is a factory that processes war and murder into eyeballs and clicks. Media needs an ever-increasing supply of war and murder because eyeballs are part of the human sensory apparatus, thus responsive only to DELTAS. Like any poison, constant input leads to increasing adaptation, requiring an ever-increasing dose to achieve the requisite result. Because media needs the raw material of violence and mayhem, media works hard to create more violence and mayhem.

You may protest... "But we NEED news." No. We don't. I already answered that objection.

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Friday, April 19, 2019
  Regeneration 3, reprinted

This year is the 50th anniversary of my jail year. 4/19 is one of the 'mark' days. 4/19/69 was the day I entered county jail. I had intended to write about the experience, but it seems more appropriate to write contrary to the experience. Mentioning the little regen receiver led me to reread the sequence I wrote three years ago.

Regeneration 1
Regeneration 2
Regeneration 3
Regeneration 4
Regeneration 5
Regeneration 6


The third item in the sequence is the most appropriate contramemoration of this day. It was the first time I pulled together all the pieces of Makeforce in a coherent way, and it ended with a specific mention of jails.

= = = = = START REPRINT:

Part 3 of a series, following from 1 and 2.

Why am I focusing so heavily on analog gadgets with minimal automatic controls? It has to do with defensible spaces. Benedict spaces, if you will.

In any important technology you can trace a path of gradual automation. At each step the machine does more for you, which is GOOD for most people UP TO A POINT. But each step away from strictly manual ALSO removes one interaction between your INTELLIGENCE and the machine. It removes mental exercise and muscle memory. It atrophies your PURPOSE.

When you're accustomed to operating at one level in the manual-to-auto scale, you don't know what you're missing. I'd been using superhet radios for 60 years and appreciated the one-knob convenience. I suspected that I might be missing something by not experiencing regen, which is why the bucketlist. Now that I've built and used the regen, I have a better feel for what I was missing, and it turns out to be meaningful.

We can run similar sequences on many common technologies. Note that I'm not listing all developments that make the tech more powerful or more convenient; I'm strictly listing the progression from manual to auto control. Only the developments that remove a parameter from YOUR direct supervision.

In radio: Crystal, TRF, Regenerative, Superhet, DSP, DSP under Cloud control.

In heating systems: Automatic damper, Bimetal thermostat, Software-controlled thermostat, Nest stat under Cloud control.

In cars: Vacuum spark advance, Bimetal choke, Synchromesh, Hydramatic, Cruise control, EFI, Software that controls everything, Self-driving software under Cloud control.

Hmm. We seem to have a point of convergence here. All roads lead to Tim Cook. Or Jeff Bezos or Eric Schmidt or Elon Musk. Pick your devil. They compete with each other in some ways, but they all want the same thing. INFINITE POWER OVER MORE THAN EVERYTHING. They all want your soul.

= = = = =

Resistance is futile, but self-defense is not futile.

First and most directly, don't merge with the Cloud. Don't take that last step, don't place your devices into Elon's hands.

More subtly, use Makeforce to maintain your borders and keep the soul-suckers at bay.

Makeforce is imperceptible but real. It sounds like an old idea: Idle hands, devil's workshop. The old sayings don't hit the mark. Makeforce is not mere activity. It's creative activity. When you are turning raw materials into a human product, you are turning chaos into order. You are pushing outward against the chaotizers. You are generating a counterforce that deflects the propaganda away from your own mind. When you are cooking from scratch, or knitting a sweater, or installing a manual can opener, or building a radio, or planting a garden, or (most of all!) birthing and raising a kid ... You are exerting Makeforce. You are protecting your own soul and adding to the stock of non-Cloud substance in the world.

At least in my experience, abstract Making doesn't have the same effect. I spent all of 2014 working hard on courseware. The simpler 'idle hands' concept applied; while I was deeply absorbed in wrestling with SVG, HTML5, and JS, I wasn't listening to the incoming propaganda ... but I didn't feel the sense of active protection that I get from physical creation. Perhaps this was because the product itself was meant for Cloud-like usage; more likely the simple lack of physicality. The work didn't yield food to eat or sweaters to wear or radios to enjoy. As it turns out, I won't even have MONEY from the product, because the publisher has decided to abandon the whole subject area as part of its JPMorgan LBO requirements. I didn't know that while I was working, but it fits the patterns and purposes of the infinitely evil Tribe. Total abstraction. Pure LBO, pure debt, pure counterfeit, pure derivatives, pure numbers. Sucking out the soul of America and giving nothing back.

= = = = =

Think about the progression of the chaotizers. Along with automating mechanisms, they are explicitly shutting down all possible sources of Makeforce.



They began with environmental tyranny. Making things always produces smoke or steam or waste. The Makeforce of fire and smoke was appreciated thousands of years ago, as witness its use in medical and religious ceremonies. Prohibiting smoke instantly kills lots of making, and also kills the sacred power of smoke.

Then the tyrants directly killed industries that had allowed ordinary men to generate Makeforce and support productive families. Men are no longer permitted to make, so they break. Gang warfare, more recently disguised as "religious" warfare.

In parallel, the tyrants have made it nearly impossible to birth and raise a productive family. Abortion is easier and cheaper than birth, mothers are forced to work because the fathers can't, and day-care is less risky than discipline.

Now the tyrants are even killing our ability to store order in the form of savings accounts and dams. All dams must be breached, all savings must be confiscated.

At the scale of cultures and nations, we can't generate order from chaos, we can't exchange order for money, and we can't even store order to survive a time of chaos.

All exits blocked.

We can still create order within our own little spheres, and Nature tells us this is good.



= = = = =

Sidenote: Makeforce is also effective against internal demons. Formerly prisons and insane asylums understood this vector diagram and used it to great effect. Around 1970 the worst of all tyrants, the "human" "rights" advocates, killed Makeforce in prisons and asylums. Prisons have finally started to claw back some of their lost territory, which is the only bright spot in this whole dismal picture. Asylums are stuck in the "human" "rights" hell. No gardening, no farming, no sewing. Just drugs and TV, guaranteed to reinforce and expand internal demons.

= = = = = END REPRINT:

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  Wrong zettaquestions

Econ websites and econ talkers are constantly trying to "humanize" huge numbers by comparing the numbers to something or other. Stacks of dollar bills, etc.

This ZH piece compares the total amount of data we generate to something or other.

All such comparisons are INTENTIONAL DISTRACTIONS. It doesn't matter if the total amount is 999 zettabytes or 999 grotabytes. Doesn't matter if 500 million identities were hacked or 672.135 xorgillion identities were hacked.

The number is BIG. BIG is all you need to know.

What DOES matter is how the number is USED. Who owns the national debt? Who weaponizes the data? Who buys the hacked identities?

In the specific case of data, we have ALWAYS generated huge amounts of data. Every business and household and governmental unit in a modern country keeps records of its transactions. The important point is WHERE those records are kept. Before 2000, most were kept LOCALLY in ledgers and checkbooks and filing cabinets and privately owned computers. Now most of the records are kept in Amazon's cloud servers, where Amazon and NSA can access them instantly, alter and delete the records when desired, and use them for blackmail.

As long as we "try to imagine" an unimaginable number, we aren't asking the important questions.

All of our current goals and purposes are PHYSICALLY IMPOSSIBLE. Forcing people to work toward PHYSICALLY IMPOSSIBLE goals is the best way to kill them.

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  Quick review of Veras 225

Once a year or so I buy a New Toy, usually a Soviet product. This year's toy is a Veras receiver, made in Belarus and sold by an Ebay trader in Belarus.

There's an excellent review of the Veras in Vremax's blog.

I'll echo his comment:

Veras radios made by the Grodno Radio Factory (which is no more, thank you international capitalists) were clones of the famous Soviet-era OKEAN (meaning Ocean) radios.

Belarus has done better than most countries at maintaining its Soviet-era advantages, but globalism always kills you in the end.

I can only add one item he didn't cover.



This is a thoroughly modern receiver, mostly discrete transistors with one IC for the band-selector function. Hitting any band button turns the radio on. The on-off button (white) is effectively only the Off button. Sound is excellent, with separate bass and treble tone controls. Tuning is easy and consistent, and it picks up one or two SW stations, which is as much as I can ask in this location. As I've noted before, Spokane is a dead spot for SW; and my house, next to a power line and clad with aluminum siding, is even deader.



One thing Vremax didn't mention: The two buttons on top are Squelch and AFC. The Squelch button is pressed here. It does seem to cut down on noise between stations. I can't tell if the AFC works because I can't pick up any distant stations that would fade.

The package includes a complete schematic, which is actually more interesting than the radio. On a rough count, it has 40 transistors, 40 regular diodes, and 10 varactor diodes. I've never seen varactors used so heavily.

The power supply section has a simple and elegant trick. When you plug in a 12VDC external supply, it goes in series with the secondary of the 220V input. So the 12 is free to be AC, or DC connected either way. The full-wave rectifier will turn all three possibilities into DC of the correct polarity.



However: This creates an obvious problem. When 12V is connected to the secondary, you can't have anything on the primary. If the mains cord is plugged in, everything will blow up; if not plugged in and the 12V supply is AC, you could get a 220V shock from the mains plug.



This mask plate prevents the problem. You can turn it three ways, for AC or 12V external or battery. You can't reach the 12V plug without removing the 220VAC plug from the radio.

= = = = =

Among all of my toys, the best SW receiver is still this little regen, built from an MFJ kit.



Regen does the best job of rejecting powerline noise and catching the VERY FEW stations that are available here.

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Thursday, April 18, 2019
  Huh 2 ?

When the current investigation of college admission "scandals" hit the news, I was puzzled. I couldn't see anything especially abnormal in the actions, and presumed the prosecution was an indirect way to target some of the defendants for some other purpose.

Now that more details are emerging, I'm still puzzled. The rich defendants have hired vulture lawyers who are firing the usual barrage of procedural complaints. I still can't see any real violation of law or morality.

If we were talking about public elementary and secondary schools, the story would be different. Public schools HAVE to take every student in the district, regardless of ability to pay or qualifications.

Colleges, whether private or public, aren't under the same universal obligation. They can set standards to reject or admit students, as long as the standards aren't nominally racial. They can kick out a student who doesn't pay tuition, or a student who misbehaves. So they're essentially businesses, even when state-owned. No different from a hotel or restaurant.

A business can charge more for special services. Getting into college with low test scores is a special service, and some people are willing and able to pay for it. What's the problem?

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  Precision and coherence

Haven't been paying attention to politics. Decided to check in on Tulsi, the only potentially decent candidate. She had seemed to slide off track for a while. Now she's hitting the correct target with precision and coherence, and without partisan idiocy. "No more regime change wars serving Saudi interests." On the dot.

Also smart strategy. We're actually serving Saudi and Israel in parallel on most of these wars, but a candidate will die immediately if she tries to mention Israel.
 
  More stupidity in the same department

Via ScienceDaily:

More of the standard failed logic on evolution.
Diet has played a large role in explaining evolutionary changes in facial shape. The earliest human ancestors ate tough plant foods that required large jaw muscles and cheek teeth to break down, and their faces were correspondingly broad and deep, with massive muscle attachment areas.
If the skull had to adjust to match the diet, how did they survive on the tough plant diet during the millions of years needed to adjust the skull?

It would make more sense to assume that we always ate whatever we could find, and our jaws were suited for eating everything we could digest, from tough to soft.
As the environment changed to drier, less wooded conditions, especially in the last two million years, early Homo species began to routinely use tools to break down foods or cut meat. The jaws and teeth changed to meet a less demanding food source, and the face became more delicate, with a flatter countenance.
The environment didn't change. Some of us moved out of the jungle because we were restless or kicked out. After we moved out, we had to eat different stuff. We ALWAYS had the mental ability to imagine and devise tools, so it didn't take long to figure those techniques. We probably solved it in an hour or so because we were hungry. After that, the jaw didn't NEED to change. It was strong enough for nuts, so it was also usable for softer food.

Why do you assume that flatter and "more delicate" is Nature's preferred direction? We breed dogs and cats for flatter faces because we want them to look like us, but Nature doesn't have that preference. (Unless you're a Catholic who thinks we are "made in the image of God"; but then why did God want us to have big brows and jaws at first? Pre-op God transitioned to Post-op God?)
Changes in the human face may not be due only to purely mechanical factors. The human face, after all, plays an important role in social interaction, emotion, and communication. Some of these changes may be driven, in part, by social context. Our ancestors were challenged by the environment and increasingly impacted by culture and social factors. Over time, the ability to form diverse facial expressions likely enhanced nonverbal communication.
"Impacted by social and cultural factors" is true. But our refined expressive ability comes from refined muscles and cerebellar control, not from skull shape. Other mammals have refined muscular control of their ears because their ears are large and visible, thus suitable signaling devices. Our ears are flat, so we lost the muscles for ear-based gesturing.
Large, protruding brow ridges are typical of some extinct species of our own genus, Homo, like Homo erectus and the Neanderthals. What function did these structures play in adaptive changes in the face? The African great apes also have strong brow ridges, which researchers suggest help to communicate dominance or aggression.
A strong brow communicates dominance? If everyone in the species has a strong brow, it's not a SALIENT feature, so it doesn't communicate anything.

Communication is in the movable muscles, not the static and universal parts. A strong brow or large nose is likely to develop more refined muscles because it's a visible transmitter. We have refined lip muscles because the lips are the most noticeable feature in an otherwise flat and uninteresting landscape; but MOSTLY because** the lips are used for SPEECH.

Putting it another way, human lips are unique because they form the output of a CLOSED RESONATOR, which enables us to create a wide variety of vowel formants.

= = = = =

** Footnote: I wish we had a convenient word for two-way causation. It's more accurate to say that we have refined lip control AND we have speech that uses the refined lip control. Both are simultaneously necessary to accomplish the PURPOSE of communication. Neither can be the cause, because neither is useful WITHOUT the other.

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  Stupidest 'expert' of the year

Not gonna spend much time on this one. A flagrant and STUPID attempt to reclaim territory for the Enlightenment craziness about "rights" and "equality". Real science abandoned the craziness 30 years ago and finally admitted that genes exist.

Just one gratingly obvious logical error will do.
Children are masters of imitation. Copying parents and other adults is how they learn about their social world – about the facial expressions and body movements that allow them to communicate, gain approval and avoid rejection. Imitation has such a powerful influence on development, for good and ill, that child-protection agencies across the world run campaigns reminding parents to be role models. If you don’t want your kids to scream at other children, don’t scream at them.

The conventional view, inside and outside academia, is that children are ‘wired’ to imitate. We are ‘Homo imitans’, animals born with a burning desire to copy the actions of others. Imitation is ‘in our genes’. Birds build nests, cats miaow, pigs are greedy, while humans possess an instinct to imitate.
Conventional views are often false, but this conventional view happens to be true. In your attempt to disprove it, you prove it.
However, cracks began to appear in Meltzoff and Moore’s picture as soon as it was published in Science magazine – and they have been spreading ever since in fine but disfiguring lines. From the outset, some other experts on child development were unable to replicate the crucial results. They found that newborns copied sticking out their tongues, but not other facial gestures – so perhaps instead of an elaborate imitation mechanism, it was a simple reflex in response to excitement.
Sounds like a disproof....
What we’re left with instead is a wealth of evidence that humans learn to imitate in much the same way as we pick up other social skills.
There's the key problem. You just admitted that learning to imitate is innate.

The imitation ITSELF may not be innate, but the ABILITY TO LEARN HOW TO IMITATE is.

It's a distinction without a difference, and wildly illogical.

If you want to claim that learning how to imitate is also learned, you'll then have to prove that learning how to learn how to imitate is learned, and then learning how to learn how to learn how to .....

Secondarily, the role-model notion ("If you don’t want your kids to scream at other children, don’t scream at them.") is a failure, but NOT because imitation doesn't work. It's a failure because genes do work. Violence runs in families because a strong tendency to violence is innate. It's a complex mix of genes, so the inheritance is mixed and variable, nowhere near 100%. Assortative mating helps to keep it going. People who are comfortable with violence tend to stick together.

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Polistra was named after the original townsite of Manhattan (the one in Kansas). When I was growing up in Manhattan, I spent a lot of time exploring by foot, bike, and car. I discovered the ruins of an old mill along Wildcat Creek, and decided (inaccurately) that it was the remains of the original site of Polistra. Accurate or not, I've always liked the name, with its echoes of Poland (an under-appreciated friend of freedom) and stars. ==== The title icon is explained here. ==== Switchover: This 2007 entry marks a sharp change in worldview from neocon to pure populist. ===== The long illustrated story of Polistra's Dream is a time-travel fable, attempting to answer the dangerous revision of New Deal history propagated by Amity Shlaes. The Dream has 8 episodes, linked in a chain from the first. This entry explains the Shlaes connection.

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