Category Archives: Corruption

No Putin Is Not Worth $60 Billion, and He Does Not Kill Journalists

Robert- In all seriousness why is Putin so great according to the Alt Right and Left? I understand he is an ‘answer’ to neocon bullshit so to speak, but let’s not delude ourselves about this guy.

Juan: He has brutally suppressed opposition to his rule, oftentimes through the murder of journalists, Chechens, whomever. It’s not a free society.

His political opposition are convicted in kangaroo courts of nothing.

Meanwhile Putin has massive investments in 0il in his country, allowing him to push policy to line his pocket books. He is worth $70 billion.

As I said above, an alliance with him and against neocons is a good thing, but this “muh poor Putin victimized by the West” rhetoric is not good.

I cannot speak for the Alt Right. The Left goes a bit too easy on Putin. Putin is definitely a thug. He has had a few people killed. Those people were spies. Intelligence agents, working for the FSB (Russian CIA). All of them were double agents. Even under Yeltsin, several US double agents were executed. In many countries, double agents are considered traitors. It is quite typical for countries to execute double agents. Double agents do not have a long life expectancy. I do not have much sympathy for such heedless and death-defying people. They chose a profoundly risky profession and they paid with their lives. So what?

Also, Putin is out for Putin. He supported Trump because Trump promised to go easy on him, while Hillary had him down as US enemy #1. Who do you expect him to support.

Russia has not been a free country since 1991 and it was not a free country before that all the way back to 1917. Russian people seem like to like benevolent dictators. It’s all they’ve ever known. Most of them don’t even believe in democracy. Putin is extremely popular, with popularity at 87%.  Compare that to the popularity of US-supported Medvedev and  Yeltsin at ~10%. Isn’t it better to have an authoritarian leader who everyone loves as opposed to one who everyone hates?

You must understand how many people in Russia are corrupt. Putin is about the least corrupt man in the whole country. Nearly the entire opposition is dirty and corrupt. Many to most have organized crime connections. Well documented white collar crime has been aptly demonstrated among nearly all major opposition figures. Some of these people have run afoul of Putin and  have been tried and convicted in completely fair courts of law. The Russian legal system is quite fair. There are no kangaroo courts in Russia. A charge of selective prosecution could be made though. The opposition figures now in prison should have thought about that before they committed their dirty white collar crimes.

Putin does not have one nickel of investment in oil in his country to my knowledge.

The Chechen War has been going on since 1991. It’s been a Dirty War from the start, exactly like all of the counterinsurgencies the US supports. Russia’s war against the Chechens is not much different from your typical US supported counterinsurgency. Killings of opposition journalists, human rights activists and Chechen opposition figures and rebel supporters have been going on the entire time. In recent times, almost all such killings have been linked to the internal security forces of Chechnya, Dagestan, Ingushetia, etc.

I agree that some journalists have been beaten up for reporting the wrong things. Probably Putin’s thugs did this. But the other Presidents murdered journalists. Putin just has a few beaten up. That’s an improvement. Mostly all Putin ever does is shut down opposition media. Most of the opposition TV has been shut down. I think some is still available on cable though. I am not sure about opposition papers, journals and magazines. Actually I believe that the opposition media is alive and well. For instance, I can point you to a CIA-run website that quotes Russian opposition figures on a daily basis. Often they are professors, researchers, journalists or think tank workers. Most are employed inside Russia. They sit there in Russia and shoot off their mouths every day and nothing seems to happen to them. Often the quotes are from Russian papers,  magazines, journals, TV stations or radio stations. I assume that all of these are active in Russia. For the most part, it seems that these opposition figures are left alone. You would be amazed at the sort of crap these people say on a daily basis. A lot of them are openly treasonous, supporting the enemy in wartime. For instance, many support Ukraine in the current war.

The Internet is free in Russia and a vast proportion of Russian language media is run by the Opposition, mostly out of Europe. Finland is a major center for this. Any Russian can call up any Russian Opposition website anytime they want to. Most such sites are also in English because most of their readership is among English speakers. Opposition daily newspapers and magazines can be purchased for sale every day in Moscow. I believe the big foreign press is on sale there. I am sure you can buy a copy of the New York Times in Moscow. It is just that nobody wants to read this stuff.

The truth is that the Opposition has no support. The Opposition leader who was killed had gotten 1% support in the last election. The pro-Western Opposition, which is most of the Opposition that the US cares about, has 5-10% support, closer to 5%. Nobody likes them, nobody wants them. I have known some Russians and I asked them about the pro-US Opposition. They all told me, “Oh you mean the traitors? We don’t call them Opposition here. We call them the traitors. Everybody hates them. They support the US. Here in Russia, if you support the US, you are a traitor who supports the enemy. All Russians oppose the US as an enemy state.”

Putin has not murdered one single journalist during his most recent terms in office. In fact far fewer journalists have died under Putin than under any previous President.

There are deaths of journalists in Russia. A few journalists have been killed under Putin. These hits were mostly mob hits or personal disputes. A few were political killings in the Caucasus.

Since 1991, the vast majority of journalist killings have been in the Caucasus. These have all been related to the insurgency down there. Journalists suspected of siding with the rebels or writing about human rights abuses have been killed. This happens in most insurgencies. US-supported insurgencies are notorious for slaughtering journalists and opposition media. The US murdered opposition media in the invasions of Afghanistan and Iraq. It is standard Pentagon procedure to target opposition journalists as combatants in modern warfare.

By far the most killings of journalists occurred under Boris Yeltsin. Vastly more journalists were killed under Yeltsin than under anyone else. Yeltsin was a stauch US ally and not a single disparaging word was ever written about him in the US press. He also stole elections. Putin’s elections are much freer than Yeltsin’s, and Putin is far less corrupt.

Putin is not worth $60 billion. This is just flat out fake news. In 2007, Putin had a net worth or $150,000. In 2012, Putin’s salary was $130,000. Surely his net worth now is hardly worth more than it was in 2007. Putin has not used the Presidency to enrich himself, unlike our current Scumbag in Chief. Russia’s Executive Branch is vastly more honest and less corrupt than America’s. What I think is amusing is that Americans who just elected a multibillionaire who has filled his Cabinet with billionaires and multibillionaires, are outraged that Putin is supposedly a multibillionaire himself. It’s rich, but all US criticism of anyone is usually pretty rich. We’re Number One all right. Number One in exceptionalism, self-delusion and hypocrisy.

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Filed under Caucasus, Corruption, Crime, Eurasia, Europe, Finland, First Chechen War, Geopolitics, Government, Journalism, Law, Left, Near East, Organized Crime, Politics, Regional, Republicans, Russia, Second Chechen War, US Politics, USA, War

Is It Ok to Punch Nazis?

This website answers the important question of whether it is ever ok to punch a Nazi. This is a difficult philosophical question that the world’s top philosophers have been debating for decades now.

That’s a Black Bloc guy who hit him. The Black Bloc was behind most of the violence and destruction at the Inauguration of this Monster. They are anarchists. I do not mind them smashing windows of corporate establishments or ATM’s or trash cans. That’s all ok. And setting the limo on fire was great! Fight the rich! The rich are our class enemies so we must fight them. A limo driver got his hand cut and I am sorry he got hurt. He’s just a regular working guy. A Trump supporter waded into a cops versus Black Bloc battle and a Black Blog guy punched him in the face! Good! All in all, the rioting was really great. We need to be doing this rioting all the time now. Let’s make the country ungovernable.

We now have a dictatorship. Trump stole this election with those damned voting machines. As long as we have a dicatorship and not a democracy, that means that all peaceful roads to power are generally blocked. When  all peaceful roads to power are blocked, there is nothing left to do but to turn to non-peaceful methods. There simply is no other way. I am not advocating killing people, though a lot of these monsters deserve it, especially those involved in vote fraud. That should be a street justice capital offense right there. Surely it is moral to kill or hurt people who are involved in stealing elections.

On the other hand, the way of the gun is not going to work right now. The US military will start enforcing civilian law and the FBI is very good at solving crimes. Sure, some of the enemy will be killed which is fantastic, but a lot of us are going to be arrested too, and some of us may also be killed. When we get arrested, we will usually be convicted and sentenced to long prison sentences. As many of us will be harmed as them. It’s not worth it.

However, rioting, property destruction, etc. is perfectly acceptable for making the country ungovernable. Attacks on Nazis should be ok as long as no weapons are involved. Fisticuffs are fine. Most of them deserve a punch in the face anyway and getting punched usually does not result in death or permanent or long-term damage. About attacks on Trump supporters at rallies, that is a much more difficult question. If they wade into brawls, it may be ok to hit them, but otherwise, I think maybe we should back off.

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Filed under Conspiracies, Corruption, Crime, Ethics, Fascism, Government, Law enforcement, Nazism, Philosophy, Political Science, Politics, Regional, Republicans, US Politics, USA

Excellent Evidence that the 2016 Election Was Stolen by Donald Trump and the Republicans via Hacking of Voting Machines

We do not have a democracy in the US anymore, if we ever had one in the first place. We now officially have a dictatorship now that we have solid proof that Donald Trump stole the Presidency via hacking of voting machines that are used to count the votes in many states.

Two Senators in Wisconsin and Pennsylvania also stole their seats with those machines.

The machines were used to steal the vote for Trump in Florida, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, Michigan and Wisconsin. The Republicans have been stealing elections for a long time with these machines.

Even the Democratic wins were actually far greater than what they ended up with. Clinton won one of his elections by 15-20 points, but the machines whittled it way down to half that size or less. They have also been using those damned machines to steal elections in the mid-year. Many seats were stolen in the 2006 midyear elections. I am wondering how many of those state Legislature and Senate seats and governorships have been stolen? The GOP has been on a roll for some time now, especially since Obama came in with many state Legislatures, Senates and Governorships going Republican. In part this is due to many states simply turning redder, but I suspect that in part it may also have been due to fraud with those machines.

You might also be interested to note that Hillary Clinton stole a number of primaries from Bernie Sanders with those same machines.

And in this fake democracy, we can’t even do recounts of stolen elections! There was no proper recount done in Pennsylvania, Michigan or Wisconsin. And the media lied and said the recounts did not uncover any fraud. Recounts done by the states themselves prior to the official recount found 26,000 fake votes for Trump in Pennsylvania, 5,000 fake votes for Trump in Wisconsin and 2,000 fake votes for Trump in Michigan. In Detroit and the surrounding area alone, there were 80,000 undervotes for President. This is unprecedented. In a typical election, there should be maybe 20,000 undervotes in the whole state.

Most of the stolen votes in Michigan were deemed unrecountable based on an insane Michigan law that says were a fraudulent election is suspected (where voter sign-in numbers do not match ballot numbers) the vote in that precinct is “unrecountable.” So we have evidence of possible fraud, that means we can’t recount the votes! 100% of pre-election polls in Michigan predicted a Hillary win by ~3%. There is no way that all of the pre election polls in Michigan were wrong. It’s just not possible.

In Wisconsin the votes in the Democratic-heavy cities were not even recounted. They were just run through the same machines that probably miscounted them in the first place. Running them through the machines again is not a recount. The only valid recount is by hand.

There was no recount in Pennsylvania because all votes in Pennsylvania are unrecountable! They are counted by optical scan machines and there is no paper trail afterwards. There’s nothing to count!

The Trump win in Florida was statistically impossible. Hillary was running ~65% in the early voting, even capturing 28% of Republican women. In order for Trump to surpass that huge early lead there would have to be such a massive turnout of Trump supporters on election day such that would never happen. And there’s no reason why only Hillary voters and not Trump voters would vote early.

A similar scenario occurred in North Carolina. Hillary was up 65% in early voting again with I believe 50% of the vote counted. The Trump win there,  while statistically possible, is highly unlikely as it would rest upon the notion that a huge number of Hillary voters voted early and then never showed up on Election Day and hardly any Trump voters voted early and the vast majority of them voted on Election Day. It’s absurd.

If those elections in Wisconsin, Pennsylvania and Michigan were so clean, why did the Republicans go crazy trying to stop the recounts? If the election is fair, a recount is nothing to worry about. In this sick joke of a fake democracy, it appears that no Presidential election can ever be recounted no matter how much evidence of fraud. It’s incredible!

Remember when Trump kept saying that the election was going to be rigged? Trump has a habit of projecting and accusing his opponents of doing exactly what he does. Trump was saying that because the election was going to be rigged, by him! In the last few days before the election, Trump and his campaign chair and Giuliani were all extremely confident that Trump would carry Michigan, Wisconsin and Pennsylvania. Everyone else was shaking their heads because Hillary had been leading in almost all polls in those states for some time.

The day before the election, Paul Manafort, Trump’s man with deep connections to Putin’s Russia, told Trump to go to Michigan, despite being behind in all polls there for a long time. Did Manafort know something we do not know? Were the Russians in on the hacking of the election? I would not put it past them, as Putin stole an election in Ukraine a decade ago by hacking the voting machines. Also Russia was caught hacking into a voter registration database of a company in Florida five weeks before the election. That company ran the voter registration database for North Carolina. No one knows what was done in that hack.

The last time election polls were off by this much as in Dewey vs. Truman and polling was in its infancy back then. There is no way on Earth that all of the pollsters got this election wrong. The average of all of the polls was way off in this election. It simply not statistically possible for that to occur in the US. It can’t happen. So none of the pollsters were off. The pollsters were right like they always are. Hillary did win the election except Trump stole it by fraud. Polls cannot predict the outcome of a fraudulent election.

We also know that two Senate seats were stolen this year, one in Wisconsin and one in Pennsylvania.

it is not only Republicans who are stealing elections. This year for the first time, it appears that the Democrats were stealing elections. Of course it was the corporate Democrats around Hillary and the DNC who are the suspects. Hillary appears to have stolen a number of those primaries from Sanders and reduced his lead in others. It looks like the voting machines were used to do this. I would not put it past Hillary to do this. I think she is almost a sociopath.

The voting machines have been being made from Day One by three large corporations. The heads of these corporations are all far rightwing partisans. As soon as those machines got put in, we started seeing a lot of stolen elections for the first time in a long time in the US. Also the software used to count the ballots is proprietary and no one is allowed to look at it. So the elections of the USA are being counted by machines made by a private corporation with proprietary code that no one can look at! Incredible.

This whole thing looks like a Republican plot from the very beginning. Soon after the 2000 debacle which was actually won by Al Gore because Gore actually did win in Florida, Karl Rove and Jack Abramson, the convicted criminal wrote a bill mandating that all states use voting machines in coming elections. Many states then went over to the machines. After these machines were put in in many places, we started seeing a startling number of fraudulent elections. So it looks like that law by Rove and Abramson was written with the knowledge that the Republicans were going to use the machines to steal elections. Computerized voting machines were not in use in 1988, but there is good evidence that Dukakis actually won that election and that Bush Sr. stole it. The votes were being counted by large tallying machines somewhat like the machines that count time cards.

These computerized voting machines have been declared illegal in most of the EU. As usual, the Europeans are far behind us American primitives. In addition, recounts are held regularly in European elections. I believe in Germany now, all major elections go through an automatic hand recount as a matter of course. Now that’s democracy! While democracy blooms in civilized Europe, dictatorship looms in barbarian America.

The mass media refuses to believe that elections are being stolen via these machines. They just will not buy it. I am unsure why this is. The Democratic Party also will not believe that these elections are being stolen, even though they are being stolen right from their own party. I am not sure why that is.

Until we get rid of these damned voting machines, we will never have a democracy in America.

I would also like to point out that the Republican gerrymandering of districts is outrageous and profoundly undemocratic. They have set it up so that no matter what we do, the House of Representatives will be Republican until 2028. There is simply nothing at all we can do to change that. That’s not democracy. That’s dicatorship. Partisan gerrymandering should be illegal. Gerrymandering if it must be done should be done by panels of nonpartisan judges. Studies have shown that nonpartisan gerrymandering results in districts that are much fairer than the partisan ones we have now.

There is no democracy in this country anyway. I don’t think we have had one day of democracy in this country from the very start. The government was set up to be a government of the rich and the elite, and it’s been that way ever since. The people who run this country do not believe democracy. Wealthy elites the world over always hate democracy. Rule by wealthy elites in most places on Earth is dependent on undemocratic means to stay in power. There are just not enough regular working people who are stupid enough to vote for the parties of the rich.

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Filed under Conservatism, Conspiracies, Corruption, Democrats, Europe, Florida, Germany, Government, Journalism, Law, Michigan, Midwest, North Carolina, Northeast, Political Science, Politics, Regional, Republicans, Russia, South, US Politics, USA, Wisconsin

Proposal for an American Paleo-Left Party: The American People’s Party

From Facebook, from a Russian Communist. OK guys, what do you think?

Idea for uniquely American Paleo-Left Party:

The American People’s Party

– Opposition to mass immigration calling for a 10 year moratorium on all immigration except self-produced, self funded immigration.

– Opposition to gun control.

– Opposition to all free trade deals that are bad for the worker.

– Nationalizing health care, oil, Walmart, McDonald’s, car industry, all large industries.

– End to foreign wars and opposition to imperialism, solidarity with other oppressed peoples.

– Raise minimum wage to 20 usd per hour.

– Introduction of death sentences for corruption, Ponzi schemes, and other wall Street machinations.

– Women given 3 years maternity leave with stipends for children as long as they are married to the same man during issue of stipends.

– Veterans, families and elderly get free health care and special mortgage rates.

– Police to be judged by civil jury chosen by the public when accused of excessive force.

– Opposition to modern art funded by government, opposition to LGBT culture but not homophobic or anti gay, drugs.

– Neutral on abortion and women’s rights.

– Secular party neutral on religion.

– Antiracist, welcoming all people, but strongly implied as a White working class party.

– Pro Russian, Vietnamese, Venezuelan relations.

– Support Green energy policies but only if affordable for working people.

– Moderate environmentalism.

– State-sponsored gymnasiums where people can exercise for free.

– Push for metric system.

– Opposition to the NSA data collection techniques.

– Shift burden of taxation to the rich including the state confiscating funds if need be.

– Anti-NATO.

– Neutral on Israel and Palestine conflict.

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Filed under Anti-Racism, Art, Corruption, Crime, Economics, Environmentalism, Geopolitics, Government, Health, Homosexuality, Housing, Immigration, Israel-Palestine Conflict, Labor, Law enforcement, Left, Neoliberalism, Political Science, Politics, Race/Ethnicity, Regional, Religion, US Politics, USA, Whites

In the Electoral Vote, Hillary Won and Trump Lost: The Election Was Rigged Electronically by Republicans

Here.

I was wondering about this. The election was hacked again, just like in 2004 when hacking threw the election to Bush and just like in 2006, when hacking threw the election to a Republican Congress.

In 2016, there were two instances of hacking. First of all, the primaries were repeatedly hacked by the Democratic Party, or Hillary, or the DNC, or some Democrats somewhere. Anyway,  the Hillary people repeatedly hacked and rigged primaries electronically all over the land. In every state that did not allow an paper ballot handcount, Hillary’s people hacked the election and threw it a few points in Hillary’s direction. We don’t know it was Hillary. It was Hillary’s people. Is Hillary wicked enough to electronically rig and hack elections to steal them in her favor? I asked myself this many times. Of course she is! Hillary Clinton is stone fucking evil. Sure, Trump is the Devil, but Hillary’s his handmaiden. In the Evil Sweepstakes, this election was always a close call. Personally, Hillary is about as wicked as Trump.

So there were two major computerized election riggings done in 2016: In the primaries, mass computerized rigging and hacking by Hillary Clinton in her primaries against Sanders.

In the General, mass computerized election rigging and hacking in at least Wisconsin, North Carolina, Florida and Pennsylvania, four states with Republican governors. With more apparent hacking and rigging in at at least nine other states.

In other words, this was probably not one of the worst polling failures of all time at all. In fact, the polls were probably fairly accurate. But the polls only measured how people voted. They didn’t measure how those votes would be counted, something they had no way of knowing.

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Filed under Corruption, Democrats, Politics, Republicans, US Politics

“Pollution and Overpopulation in India,” by Magneto

Pollution and Overpopulation in India

by Magneto

Recently there was a huge festival in India called Diwali, and Indians celebrate it by popping off a bunch of firecrackers and fireworks. These fireworks are built with cheap, toxic ingredients, and you may think, “Oh well, shooting off a few fireworks won’t do much damage to air quality,” but when a nation of 1.3 billion people are all shooting off toxic fireworks, well yes, it has an effect.

Indians woke up to a massive pollution smog cloud the day after Diwali, and the visibility was so bad that you could barely see a few meters ahead of you. Many Indians complained about their eyes and lungs burning from the air. Official air quality tests showed that the pollution levels were 10 times higher than safe levels. This is how dumb Indians are. For the sake of shooting off a few fireworks, their cities are covered in toxic smog that is literally killing them slowly. Indians are clearly such selfish, heartless people that they could care less even about their own children because everyone is breathing in this air, including their own children.

And Indians make the problem worse by their uncontrolled reproduction habits. Already India is massively overpopulated, and Indians just keep breeding like cockroaches. Although I am not a fan of Big Government, in this case, it would be a very good thing if India had a strong government like China’s and enforced a one-child population control policy. The pollution in India is caused by overpopulation because the more people that are born, the greater the environmental impact is going to be.

Unless India deals with its overpopulation crisis immediately, there will be zero hope for the country. And it’s probably already too late. Even worse is the fact that many Hindus murder their female babies or abort them in the womb once they find out it’s a girl. Sociologists have shown that when men outnumber women in society by a large enough margin, society itself becomes ultra-violent. Think about that. When a man realizes that he has no hope of ever having a normal life, getting married, and having children, there is a much higher chance that he will turn to anti-social activities and crime because such men basically have nothing to lose.

This is the future that India has to look forward to. A society with an extremely high crime rate and very low living standards because there are simply not enough resources to go around for the massive numbers of population being produced. There really is no solution to this problem and even implementing a one-child policy is not enough to stop it at this stage.

India is the toilet bowl of the world, and the bacteria is spreading at an uncontrollable rate. South Asians, consisting of India, Pakistan, Nepal, and Bangladesh, are simply having too many children, and the rest of the world needs to isolate South Asia and let it rot in its own filth. There is nothing we can do to help South Asians. They have created their own mess by their uncontrolled breeding habits, corruption, inhumanity and selfishness.

The only thing we can do is isolate them and do not let them immigrate to the rest of the world. Let them live in the toilet bowl they have created. Wherever they go in the world, they will spread the same cancer they have created in their home countries. So unless the rest of the world wants to be turned into a 3rd world shithole with 3rd world living standards, the only thing we can do is to isolate these barbarians in their own countries and refuse to have any trade or connection with them. Isolate them completely and don’t let these parasites feed off of the West anymore.

I’m sure some of you may think this is extreme, but unless you have actually been to India or  South Asia in general and have seen the utter horror of reality here, you can’t truly understand. We cannot let Indians and South Asians spread their horrific lifestyles and culture to the rest of the world.

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Filed under Corruption, Crime, Culture, Environmentalism, Gender Studies, Government, Guest Posts, Immigration, India, Overpopulation, Pollution, Regional, Social Problems, Sociology, South Asia

The Libertarian “Crony Capitalism” Nonsense

Shooter: “All capitalism is crony capitalism, always and forever.” – Well, did WordPress come about because of socialism? Aren’t most of the things you talk about, even the medium you’re on, came about from capitalism?

All civilizations have to have some form of economies to raise capital. No matter how socialist you get, there’ll still be capitalism in there. USSR was not fully Communist but was socialism with state capitalism. Making money is just what nations do. I don’t see how GDP and other forms of wealth are inherently crony capitalism. Sorry, but you don’t get me on this one.

Any normal capitalist country, leaving out various forms of actual socialism and Communism, will generally speaking have an unbelievable amount of crony capitalism.

According to Libertardians, the whole problem with their glorious capitalist system is the fact that government is involved in it. Once the government is involved in the capitalist economy in any way, shape or form, apparently we have some form of “crony capitalism,” whatever the Hell that is. I say that because I have no idea what it is that this term is even referring to. According to Libertardians, if you completely eliminate the state from the picture, then and only then do you have real true capitalism. Anytime you still have a state in the picture somehow, the system is not actually real true pure capitalism. This is some sort of a joke. Their crazy “pure capitalism” has probably never existed, does not exist now and no doubt will not exist in the forseeable future.

If crony capitalism means corruption, well of course capitalism generates corruption. It generates a phenomenal amount of corruption. It does this because the nature of capitalism is to cause a lot of corruption. The corruption is built right in to the system. It’s not a bug. It’s actually a feature! And the more capitalism you have in a country, the more corruption. Countries that went neoliberal and privatized everything typically saw tidal waves of corruption exploding very quickly. They also saw huge organized crime syndicates pop up almost overnight.

Corruption is generally seen at the state level. If it’s in business, it’s called something else. Corrupt officials are usually just stealing from the coffers of the state and sticking the money in their own pocket. How does state corruption help business? It doesn’t do much of anything to business. So how is state corruption crony capitalism?

Fraud is also ubiquitous in capitalism, and the more capitalism you have, the more fraud you have. In fact, fraud, ripoffs, stealing and cheating is so huge of a problem in most capitalist countries that the state typically has to set aside a lot of law enforcement resources to keep a handle on this situation at all. How is the state going after crooked businesses for fraud crony capitalism? That’s not helping business, it’s putting them clean out of business.

They make all sorts of stupid examples of this crony capitalism such as:

The government picks winners and losers in various industries. Of course the government does not pick winners and losers in industries. The market does that.

Companies go to the government and have the government make legislation to help them and hamper all of their competition, resulting in monopolies. This is laughable. The government never does this, ever! Monopolies result because the natural tendency of capitalism is towards monopoly, and illegal monopoly at that.

Businesses go to the government and pay them off so the government will do the businesses all sorts of favors. Actually, the only favors the government does for any of these businesses is in refusing to regulate them! So they are paying the government not to do things. Someone needs to tell me how keeping the government from regulating your industry is crony capitalism.

The government sets minimum wage laws which affect business. Sure, but they usually affect business in a bad way, or at least Libertardians think so, as they oppose any minimum wage. How is the government limiting profits by imposing minimum wages crony capitalism? The state’s not helping the businesses – it’s hindering them.

Universities pick only one vendor, limiting competition. An example given was that a university offered only the local DSL company to students for broadband. Supposedly allowing cable too would allow competition, but as cable and DSL don’t compete anyway, I don’t see how this would help competition. Universities hire vendors for all sorts of things, and I assume for most stuff, they choose a single vendor and go with them. Why buy your textbooks from 50 different companies? Why buy your food from 20 different food companies? And why not pay one company for Internet rather than two companies? It’s so much easier to go with just one vendor. Incidentally most branches of the government do this exact thing.

Government places barriers to entry in industries, vastly reducing competition. Laughable. Apparently this means this zoning laws, business licenses, liquor licenses and whatnot. For instance, we have some corner markets here where I buy my food. No doubt those lots were zoned Business. But to get into that industry, you are going to need a lot of capital. The local store is being sold, and it goes for $1 million. Local gas stations also go for $1 million. That’s the price that the market set for them. The government did not set that price. The market did.

I guess Libertardians would like to get rid of all zoning laws so everyone and his uncle could open their own little “corner markets” on the sidewalks or right here in my apartment complex. That’s not going to work. You need to buy a license, and if they want to sell booze, they need a liquor license. You can’t have everyone opening up a “corner market” out of their apartment. It’s nuts. There would be so much abuse, it’s incredible.

In my town I assure you there is no shortage of corner markets. There is nearly one on every major corner if you include the gas station marts. There are plenty of drug stores in this town. Plenty of supermarkets. Lots of auto repair joints. Plenty of car dealerships. Taco shops and carnicerias everywhere. A number of pizza joints. A small number of nice small restaurants. A number of insurance companies which apparently compete with each other. A small number of bars. A number of different competing banks, including a credit union that gives better customer service than any of them. There are a few different chain auto parts stores in town.

All of these businesses compete on price, service, goods available, quality of product or work, and all sorts of things. The competition is apparently quite ferocious everywhere you would expect it to be. Even the car repair joints seem to compete on price, which is amazing (the Mexicans are cheaper, but they do not do as good of a job).

There is no industry or business in this town that does not have enough players, lacks competition, or needs a lot of new players in the market. There are no monopolies or cases where a business is the only one of its type in town. I don’t understand why we need a ton of new competition. What for? The market’s full up as is. There’s not a lot of room for new players in town, and everyone is competing like maniacs as it is.

Neither business licenses, food inspections, liquor licenses, the cost of purchase of store (set by market and not by state), taxes, nor any of these things are acting as any sort of barrier to entry to business in my city. I might add also that this city is very rightwing and has probably set things up to be as business-friendly as possible. That’s not necessarily a good thing, but it does lower the barriers to entry even more.

I have nothing against WordPress. It is actually possible to be a halfway decent capitalist company, and they seem to be doing that. But they eliminated their tech support, which I thought was pretty shitty.

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Filed under Capitalism, Corruption, Crime, Economics, Government, Higher Education, Law, Left, Libertarianism, Marxism, Neoliberalism, Organized Crime, Political Science, Scams, Socialism

The Alternative Left on US Libertarianism or Minarchism

AC in NC writes:

Matt:

I’m working from this definition of capitalism: an economic and political system in which a country’s trade and industry are controlled by private owners for profit, rather than by the state.

It seems a little ethnocentric to think that Western Values and Christianity are the primary source of the inclusion of things like compassion and charity in the “profit” that private owners seek. I believe in Natural Law that can be derived independent of, or complementary to, any of the many human belief systems (except Islam absent reformation and other cultish enterprises). It is within the context of Natural Law and a balanced relationship with nature and our fellow man that private enterprise “profit seeking” would include tangible and intangible non-monetary “profits”.

Society works best not by elaborate system of rules but in a social construct where the commonality amongst tribe and transcendental goals hold each to a higher standard where they would be embarrassed to take too great a share within the context of otherwise wealth-maximizing activities which are the key to providing a rising standard of living for all. A perfect example of this is hospitals before they are corporatized back I think in the 60’s or 70’s. Before that hospitals would have a board of community leaders who would’ve felt greatly shamed amongst their fellow citizens were they to not provide health care to the indigent. But once behind the corporate shield, it becomes a different story.

Jim Goodnight locally here with SAS Institute maintains a private company and extends extraordinary benefits and working conditions to his employees maintaining jobs even in downturns. They even go so far is to demand most or all employees NOT take laptops and work extra hours from home.

Elon Musk at SpaceX (although he’s got some leaching off the government crony-capitalist stuff going on) nominally seems to be setting his company up to forego maximum monetary profit to seek his goal of expanding humanity off earth.

We spend something like $10K per person per year on health care in the United States. But this money is spent with virtually no price transparency, virtually no incentive to shop for value, and with virtually no checks on unnecessary costs. Can anyone deny that health care prices would plummet if barriers to competition were eliminated, people re-insured at their own discretion for liability, that $10K was distributed each year to every person in a tax exempt account for spending according to various rules where family could help family or people could “crowdsource” small contributions to atypical expense, with private charities stepping into cover the most tragic cases (or not).

Every health care system results in some kind of explicit or implicit rationing. Rather than some bureaucratic scheme that wastes enormous money on end-of-life care, let people decide amongst themselves what is worthy. Those 10K/person/year accounts would build year after year, would be an asset that could be passed along. The people could pay their own bills, would have an incentive to be healthy, would be denied care and die if they’d made horrible decisions. Providers would get paid without enormous back office paperwork. Unnecessary care would be eliminated because people would push back and not pay for it and Provider Liability (absent criminal charges) would be eliminated and so no one would be prescribing tests and such for fear of lawsuit.

Similar thing with Universities. Anyone can teach themselves anything online today. If it weren’t for the government sanctioned stranglehold of accreditation of colleges, business could be required to treat an independent accreditation business as equal to college degrees. Then an accreditation agency could arise that simply provides testing to ensure that someone has college equivalent skills. But now we tell everyone they must go to college, jam loans down their throat, and send them off to learn gender studies at $200K for 4 years paying some professor $180K a year to teach one class. And no hope of future earnings.

Capitalism is almost perfect requiring only a set of strong constraints around the periphery. Crony- and hyper-regulated capitalism is just devolves into criminal rent-seeking enterprise. However it is still better than more complete central planning approaches. But it still sucks.

Cheers

I am going to respond to the commenter personally in this comment. AC in NC, you are advocating Libertarianism. There are no barriers to competition in health care. Why would there be.

There are no problems with the government strange hold on accreditation. This was necessitated in the first place because privately run universities were not able to police themselves and regulate themselves. I assume that any private accreditation system would soon devolve into corruption the way the accounting firms have. Private for profit education is complete crap. And it’s utterly unregulated. And a lot of nonprofits like National University are pure shit too. These are also unregulated.

The fact that National is accredited shows that the state is not doing a real great job of accrediting schools. They are accrediting too many crappy schools but that is just as the Libertarians want it. Surely the state having no monetary interest in school accreditation is the only thing that accredit a school. And if the state’s doing a lousy job and letting crap schools slide, I assure that the any private agency or agencies would be even worse. They would have to be according to the laws of capitalism because these would be paid on the basis of how many schools they accredit.

Business is incapable of policing itself. It’s never been able to. This is why the voluntary regulations that business insists on never work. If you make a regulation voluntary, nobody does it. Worse, the firms that agree to voluntarily regulate find themselves at a disadvantate and will be outcompeted by the firms that declined to regulate.

I know you are a Libertarian because you consider an extreme free market to be better than regulated capitalism and you hate the idea of the state doing or regulating anything. Also you invoke crony capitalism over and over. This is what Libertarians do. Crony capitalism is where the state favors some businesses over others. There’s no such thing as crony capitalism. So the only problem in crony capitalism is the existence of the state. However, the state does not favor any one business over another except in the cases of monopolies which it refuges to break up, but Libertarians like that.

Also you have almost religious love for and worship of capitalism. Obviously you can’t see what’s wrong with it. And in some ideal capitalism bullshit which does not exist, the capitalists are going to be real nice and loving and giving and shit.

Yes a few capitalists are being decent but that is only because we socialists have been screaming at them and guilt tripping them forever. True capitalism seeks no constraints on profits ever for any reason. That is why voluntary regulation always fails. So we need socialists in the state to regulate capitalism by putting limits on the profits of businesses.

When is this dream state with all these kindhearted capitalist business owners going to exist? Yes a few business owners are acting decent but only because leftwing socialists have been screaming at them forever. This is not typical in the US and of course it is not typical in the world.

There is no dream capitalism where the capitalists all act really nice and stuff. You think this is the natural, normal state of capitalism. Once again you are advocating Libertarianism. Libertarians and you do not even understand how capitalism works. They think in some perfect free market system everything is going to be all groovy and cool and all the problems of capitalism will just go away. Furthermore in this perfect free market of the Libertarians the market is going to fix everything and all of the problems that we socialists are bitching about.

Look, I wish Libertarianism or pure free market economics could solve all of the problems we socialists bitch about and give us in a sense the world that we dream of, only purely capitalist instead of purely socialist. If this pure capitalism could deliver us everything we want in our socialist dream world, we would all just pack it up, bury socialism and become capitalists in a New York minute. I know I would.

But this has almost never existed and the closest things to radical free market totally unregulated have been severe catastrophes of the worst sort. You guys keep arguing that we have never tried the real pure free market capitalism because there’s always government in there somewhere screwing stuff up. But it probably can’t exist and the closest stuff to that is a place like Somalia. A totally free market with no state simply devolves into warlordism.

You keep talking about putting some sort of corral around your capitalism which implies some limits or regulations but you never tell us what this corral will look like and what limits or regulations will encompass the fences.

You guys are pie in the sky dreamers at best, winking and prevaricating cynics more typically and advocates for nightmarish dystopias at worst.

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Filed under Capitalism, Corruption, Economics, Education, Government, Health, Higher Education, Left, Libertarianism, Political Science, Regional, Socialism, USA

America As a Wealthy Version of a Banana Republic

Lousy people create lousy countries. We don’t even have a democracy anymore. We have a Latin American style oligarchy with a Latin American style corrupt press that speaks with a single voice. We even have Latin American style corrupt courts all the way up the highest court in the land.

The Legislative branch is as corrupt as any Latin American Congress as 90% are directly on the take and bribing politicians is for all intents and purposes legal thanks to another corrupt Supreme Court act.The Legislative branch has spent most of its time lately dissolving the state (shutting down the government), resembling a typical do-nothing minimal Latin American state in the process. And it attempted an electoral coup with a Latin American style fake impeachment attempt on a sitting president.

The Executive Branch is truly scary like a Latin American dictatorship that just dissolved Congress like they always do, having decided that Congress is no longer needed to declare war, I mean any war anywhere.

George Bush’s caudillo-style signing statements were one of the worst abuses of power the nation has ever seen. The government spent most of its time using the state to target and smear opponents, Latin American-style.

We have state governments who used corruption to redraw electoral maps in the spirit of utter contempt for democracy. The same states spend most of their time trying to prevent people from voting. Sort of like Latin America where armed troops stand outside the polling places and watch you vote. Who ya gonna vote for?

Now one of the political parties is apparently openly fascist in the style of a typical Latin American rightwing party. The other political p0arty of the so-called left is absolutely useless to lift a finger against the oligarchs, or worse, they are the oligarchs, once again in the style of Latin American Christian Democrats (Duarte) and social democrats (APRA, AD, PRI) who are anything but.

And now we have an open fascist running from President while a complaint press cheers. His opponent is an Accion Democratica-style fake left cipher. As usual, there’s no one to vote for. There’s violence in the streets and at the rallies. Politicians are making open violent threats against the opposition. Demonstrations turn into free for all’s between gangs of the hard Left and Right.

And I’m sitting here thinking, “Ok so when do the death squads start? The political assassinations? The cardboard shack slums tumbling down the hills for miles on end?”

I’m thinking I must be in the wrong hemisphere. Banana republic, here we come.

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Filed under Conservatism, Corruption, Democrats, Fascism, Government, Latin American Right, Law, Left, Political Science, Politics, Regional, Republicans, US Politics, USA

Empathy and IQ: Some Misconceptions

There is a common notion by some elitist commenters on this site that the more intelligent people are, the less they care about those who are poorer, lower class or less fortunate than they are. This would suggest that higher IQ people fit the stereotype of vicious and uncaring elites = the 1%. But the truth is so much more complicated.

Actually, the most humanistic, empathetic and humanitarian societies are run by high IQ peoples like Whites and Northeast Asians.  As you descend the IQ scale, you notice that people just can’t seem to do socialism well. One thing that I have noticed is that as IQ lowers, people are less and less likely to want to share resources with their neighbor. You see more and more, “Everything for me and nothing for anyone else.” You see zero sum game politics, tribalism, casteism and all sorts of bullshit.

I have concluded that in order to even have the conception that one ought to share with others, one needs a fairly high IQ. This is because the basic typical human tendency is a tribal “everything for me/us and nothing for anyone else.” That’s how dumb people think because that is a base, barbaric animalistic way of thinking.

Even to contemplate that resources should be shared with one’s neighbor seems to require a higher IQ. We see this also in crime rates. Crime rates are a good proxy for empathy. As IQ declines, crime rates rise, often by a lot. As crime rates correlate with empathy, falling IQ leads to lower empathy. As IQ rises, crime rates fall. Since crime rates correlate with empathy, rising IQ leads to higher empathy.

If this is true, we should also see corruption decline with rising IQ and rise or even skyrocket with falling IQ. And indeed this is what we find. Therefore, corruption = crime rate = empathy rating, all three correlate with IQ. As IQ rises, all of these things will fall, and as IQ falls, all of these things will tend to rise.

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Filed under Asians, Corruption, Crime, Intelligence, Northeast Asians, Psychology, Race/Ethnicity, Social Problems, Sociology, Whites