Bits and Bigotry

January 3, 2014 · Posted in Monetary Economics · Comment 

After several embarrassments, Krugman makes another rather sad attempt to cover Bitcoin which according to him “is a digital currency that has value because … well, it’s hard to say exactly why”.

Indeed, he wouldn’t be amongst my favorite economic idiots if his ignorance on the “why” and in fact on the entire protocol, process, and purpose behind mining, were to keep him from boldly declaring that with Bitcoin “we are for some reason digging our way back to the 17th century”.

And just by the by: If someone tries to lecture me on the supposed “barbarism of gold” without showing me that he has had the capacity, rigor, or curiosity to do even the most basic research into the unspeakable and unprecedented genocides, world wars, civil wars, and destruction brought about by fiat money central banking systems, then I cannot possibly take that person serious for even just a second.

What an embarrassment for mankind to still have mental garbage of this kind roaming the web and how beautiful to see Bitcoin slowly but surely push it into complete and total irrelevance.

Just keep diggin’ that pit, Paul.

Why he fled libertarianism

December 28, 2013 · Posted in Philosophy · Comment 

Someone recently attempted to write a critique of libertarianism on the grounds that he “fled” libertarianism and in a move of apparently selfless courage joined the Democratic party shortly before the Democratic party was going to win the 2012 presidential election.

The remarkable, albeit boringly unsurprising thing about this article is of course that it does not even spend a single sentence on attempting to prove false a single libertarian theory, as has been the case for the past decade and more with mainstream anti-libertarian propaganda. That’s as always unfortunate, for it does of course make me feel a tad bit embarrassed for mankind that this stuff manages to pass as thought in mainstream discourse.

Libertarianism is of course the belief in the non-aggression principle and property rights, namely the theory that every human being should be allowed to defend himself against aggression and theft, no matter what his title, name, color, wealth, status, religion, nationality, race, age, etc.

So I will just set the record straight on a the very few sections where this amateur writer/philosopher indeed does attempt to level what appears like it was supposed to be an attack of some sort on libertarianism:

Many members of the group were obsessed with the gold standard, the Kennedy assassination and the Fed. Although Libertarians believe government is incompetent, many of them subscribe to the most fringe conspiracy theories imaginable. Airplanes are poisoning America with chemicals (chemtrails) or the moon landings were faked. Nothing was too far out. A great many of them really think that 9-11 was an inside job. Even while basking in the electoral mainstream, the movement was overflowing with obvious hokum.

When you have no actual arguments, the temptation is always great to utilize sophistic tricks to taint your opponents position. Such is the case when you claim that libertarians are “obsessed” with the gold standard. Libertarians have for decades been making the case that a fiat money system, namely a system where a centralized group of individuals is granted the permission to use aggression to enforce usage of the money that it itself has coincidentally printed, will *shockingly* lend itself to the abuse of power on the part of that entity, allow them to redistribute wealth to those who invested in their campaigns, allow them to launch massive wars, kill millions of people in the process, etc.

The gold standard has been proposed by libertarians as one alternative, however that doesn’t mean that they want it to be forced upon anybody. It just so happens that gold has been a pretty popular medium of exchange without use of aggression for millenia.

Given that this guy claims he was involved with the Ron Paul campaign, it may have made sense to him to mention that the Ron Paul platform recommended nothing but to stop giving the government the permission to aggress against businesses and groups trying to provide alternative mediums of exchange.

However, my dim suspicion is that this guy actually had no clue at all about those boring complexities associated with monetary matters. And if that was the case then that would have been totally fine. All he’d have had to do to retain some shred of intellectual integrity would have been to point out to the reader that he actually had no understanding at all of one of the most important pillars of libertarian thought.

I don’t think I need to mention this to the reader, but of course his other attempts to commingle libertarian thought with some people’s belief in conspiracy theories is of course not an argument against the non-aggression principle.

After leaving my small town upbringing, I learned that libertarians are made for lots of reasons, like reading the bad fiction of Ayn Rand or perhaps the passable writing of Robert Heinlein. In my experience, most seemed to be poor, white and undereducated. They were contortionists, justifying the excesses of the capitalist elite, despite being victims if libertarian politics succeed.

That of course makes perfect sense. If someone was able to so easily convince him that libertarians are basically “made” for reading bad fiction, then it’s not a far cry from there to believe pretty much any type of nonsense that the elites, namely the people most threatened by libertarian thought, would successfully shove down his throat.

And once again of course it takes the shadiness of an amateur sophist to end this paragraph with the foregone conclusion that those poor undereducated fools who have not achieved this writer’s level of enlightenment yet would be the victims of a belief system that grants them and everyone else the equal right to protect their bodies and their meager earnings from aggressors. Pretty obvious and transparent, but nice try!

If you think that selfishness and cruelty are fantastic personal traits, you might be a libertarian. In the movement no one will ever call you an asshole, but rather, say you believe in radical individualism.

Now this is an important one to just observe real quick: You can always spot lazy writers when they never actually take the time and effort to at least attempt to accurately represent their opponent’s position, but instead rather try to trick the reader by inventing the opponent’s position for them. And it’s in particular lazy when all they do is apply cartoonishly stupid and unpopular adjectives to their opponents beliefs and intentions, while bathing themselves in the fuzzy comfort of all positive adjectives in the world, all the while of course not supplying a single argument against their opponent’s theory.

You know that you’re not reading the words of a serious person who genuinely cares about how to make the world a better place. You’re reading the lazy ramblings of an attention seeker who attempts to manipulate people’s beliefs through emotions and stereotypes while seeking the approval of those who already agree with him anyway. I get it, it’s easy and it’s convenient and the psychic reward from all those who indulge in the same comfort feels good, no doubt. But historically it’s not exactly the kind of thing that has made the world a better place as far as I can recall. I say this myself having at one point been a good and platitude wielding leftie. At one point you either move on or you get stuck.

Libertarians were (rightly) furious when our government bailed out the banks, but they fought hardest against help for ordinary Americans. They hated unemployment insurance and reduced school lunches. I used to say similar things, but in such a catastrophic recession isn’t the government supposed to help? Isn’t that the lesson of the Great Depression?

And yes, given all the things that this guy has said before, it would of course make perfect sense that he hasn’t actually spent time to read any libertarian literature at all on the causes of The Great Depression, or been aware of the fact that the theory of the business cycle perfectly predicts boom bust cycles of that kind and that that’s precisely why libertarians have been proposing a competitive monetary system for decades, or have been “obsessed with gold” as this gentleman put it so poorly and cluelessly.

It’s of course instructive that throughout the entire fascist power grab that has happened in the financial and medical field from 2007 on, with Americans in debt more than ever, with medical costs at record highs, all duly orchestrated hand in hand by liberals and conservatives alike, growing government bigger than it’s ever been post WW2, this guy would focus all his ire and venom on … of course, the libertarians, those greedy and powerful rat bastards! Oh man, someone please tell me that this is just supposed to be BAD comedy!

I began to think about real people, like my neighbors and people less lucky than me. Did I want those people to starve to death? I care about children, even poor ones. I love the National Park system. The best parts of the America I love are our communities. My libertarian friends might call me a fucking commie (they have) or a pussy, but extreme selfishness is just so isolating and cruel. Libertarianism is unnatural, and the size of the federal government is almost irrelevant. The real question is: what does society need and how do we pay for it

Aside from yet again pulling negative nouns and adjectives like a champ (see above), we shall observe that once more this guy doesn’t actually know the essence of the creed that he portends to represent. His liberalism or conservatism for that matter, or statism to sum it up doesn’t actually ask the question “how do we pay for it”. It decrees that “You guys now and in the future are going to pay for it through taxation and inflation, or else we will send armed guards to take what we need from you.” Of course it’s never put that way by people who attempt to use sophistry and words to manipulate the victims of decades of government “education”.

Now, to the point he’s attempting to make which is that “the size of the federal government is almost irrelevant”: I don’t know if he’s genuinely not aware of this or if he missed this in the “creative writing” classes that he claimed to have taken on at “a progressive college”, or if maybe this kind of “thinking” is precisely what’s encouraged at said college, but when you make a statement you have not actually made an argument.

When you say that the size of the federal government is almost irrelevant, then it is kind of incumbent upon you to explain how a total debt at 50+ trillion (or just over $380,000 per taxpayer), a proud, shiny, and unchallenged #1 spot in the global incarceration rate, pretty much due to the war on drugs, putting to shame hot contenders such as Russia, China, North Korea, and Iran, a state of perpetual war with a toll of dead & wounded Americans in wars at 2,717,991, and the death toll of foreigners in the tens of millions (Vietnam war victims alone at 5 million plus), increasingly expensive medical care, the shutdown of lodge practice in friendly societies that made available affordable health care to poor Americans, a supercharged stock market, just to name a tiny few programs, activities, and sectors that the apparently so irrelevant federal government has completely and totally taken over over the past decades, all trends that have exacerbated alongside total government growth from 3% of GDP to now over 40% of GDP, are “irrelevant”. Unfortunately you don’t just get to say stuff like that without looking like an overconfident and lazy mouthpiece who is content with preaching to the choir of oft repeated, boring, stupid ass cliches regurgitated by those who give you short term social comfort and acceptance. So I’d urge you to do yourself a favor and think at least a tiny little bit for yourself, work on your effort and rigor when you attempts to put out what is supposed to be information for public consumption.

A month before the 2012 election, I changed my party affiliation to Democrat. I am a very late bloomer, that it took me so many decades to develop my own values. I was thirty-nine.

As a token of my compassion, I want to tell this guy: You haven’t bloomed at all, my friend. You are all over the map as so many of us are, and it’s understandable, given the relentless propaganda that we’ve all grown up under. Exploring ideas and philosophy involves more than going to conventions and waving signs, it takes introspection and curiosity, and with that I will tell you:

You have a long way to go, and that can be exciting and maybe even a little bit admirable. For example, I am very sad about the fact that I’ve already watched all seasons of The Wire and The Sopranos, I with I could un-know and explore them all anew. And such is the case with your journey through philosophy, only that is a lot more rewarding, exciting, and meaningful than late night TV.

My Response to Peter Schiff’s Bitcoin Video

November 24, 2013 · Posted in Monetary Economics · Comment 

First and foremost, I applaud Peter for coming up with an educated attempt to challenge Bitcoin, since most criticisms are usually leveled by clueless and embarrassing amateurs who probably take their economic advice from Paul Krugman and other modern day priests.

His argument boils down to one point: He claims bitcoin doesn’t have “intrinsic value”.

This surprises me, since as a fellow Austrian he should know that there is no such thing.

Value is by definition contingent upon external factors, namely where someone places it on his preference scale against other goods.

I believe what he’s TRYING to say though is that gold can still be used as jewelry if all fails, while Bitcoin has no other utility than for it to be used as a medium of exchange.

This argument can be quickly dismissed because even if I couldn’t use it as a medium of exchange I could still use it as a proof of ownership certificate (just to name one example), as can already be witnessed with projects such as Colored Coins and MasterCoin.

It’s still too early to say what other purposes Blockchain can be utilized for, but I would submit that the opportunities are literally infinite.

I’d be curious what he’d say if someone filled that knowledge gap for him.

Six Charts That Show Liberal Propaganda is Immune to Reason & Evidence

June 11, 2013 · Posted in General Economics · Comment 

Somebody on ThinkProgress.org recently produced this attempt to an argument for more deficit spending called “Six Charts That Show It’s Time To Reset The Budget Debate” (in which case by the way he must be happy about what’s been going and will continue to go on for a while).

It’s not like anything of what he’s saying there is surprising or new since liberal and conservative propaganda both seem to continue to have a hard time coming up with one original idea or thought that has not already been used and refuted ad infinitum.

For the most part he relies on projections, and then in the end he gives us a bonus nugget of knowledge which is the apparently in his mind surprising news that the government bond yield (which I have been consistently and correctly expecting to go lower over the past years) is unusually low.

What this guy is proposing is in short the continuation of government budget deficits because they’re “only” going to be at around 3% in the projections for the next few years (the years after that he seems to ignore because I presume he’s still feverishly working on a solution for those). The money raised he then of course wants to see poured into infrastructure projects, so that shovel ready projects can be launched, roads fixed, equipment employed, people put to work, money earned, which (and I am now supporting his case by adding my own words to his stereotypical Keynesian narrative) will then of course trickle through the entire economy and through the multiplier effect produce wealth and get the economy jumpstarted again so that the government can earn more tax money to then pay off their debts which is as we all know what governments do all the time; in other words, all the unoriginal, mindless, boring, embarrassing, childish, dumb-ass Keynesian nonsense that many of us, myself included, were taught and swallowed at face value in undergraduate economics.

I’m not even going to harp on the fact that he’s going with projections which are highly questionable (and which I have by the way in the past accurately predicted to be way off). But let’s just assume for the sake of making the case as easy as possible for this amateur economist that these are 100% accurate predictions.

If you’re unclear on the fundamentals about what it is you’re writing about, it sometimes helps to go way back to the very basics of what it is that you’re proposing, and that is in this case the problem with government budget deficits (I’ll just post the conclusion here, but read the entire article if this is new to you):

(…)
This is very important: When people say something like “the deficit is damaging/bad/a problem/etc.” what it ultimately means is that the money used for more spending and favors and owed by the government to investors will be taken from you or your children in the future via the threat of kidnapping and imprisonment if you don’t comply. This is really at the root of all the problems around public debt owed, and the deficit that we hear about every year is just piled on top of that existing debt.

Due to the fact that the effects of deficits are not immediately noticeable to the general public they are an incredibly convenient way of funding government programs and shifting involuntary burdens on to future disenfranchised generations.  Thus public debts will always continue to grow along with rising taxes, until a level is reached where the required tax burden becomes untenable, where creditors can no longer be paid off, the government can no longer fund itself, where social tensions rise between recipients and payers, and where the whole superstructure that is the government collapses in its entirety.

“Solutions” to Deficits

As I explained, the ultimate damage caused by public budget deficits occurs at that point in time when taxpayers are forced to restrict their consumption and unjustly bear the cost of malinvestments from the past.
(…)

And regarding the low interest rates argument, I will take you back to what I wrote over a year ago, which by the way includes a little prediction of what’s happening in Japan right now:

And yes, they can rollover debt for as long as interest rates are low. I may note that I have consistently and correctly predicted record low Treasury rates for years to come.

(…)

All these low rates will do is allow the debt to get even more bloated. And interest rates won’t remain low forever, as you can see in Greece and similar situations. Did people like the above author see any of those sovereign debt crises coming?

What about Japan? Their debt is the most crushing of all industrialized nations, and I’m predicting that their time of low rates will be drawing to an end any day now, with their debt and pension crisis having entered its final stage. Then what?

They have been running deficits for two decades, people like this author ought to love what they did. Now what? … All you’ll hear is chirping crickets.

Deficits never matter … until they do. The party is always fun, the hangover never is.

Cheers!

[BitFunder] IPO – BIT.ASIC – Professional Miners offer low entry price of 0.0084

June 5, 2013 · Posted in General Economics · Comment 

We have recently launched a new Bitfunder asset, so full disclosure: I am involved with this asset. Here it goes:

https://bitfunder.com/asset/BIT.ASIC

We are a team of dedicated Bitcoin mining professionals and long time supporters of the crypto-currency movement with a strong passion for the Bitcoin community and big ideas for the Bitcoin market place.

We are looking to expand existing mining operations. We have been mining for nearly 2 years and have a significantly large “Private / Dedicated” server room infrastructure, with controlled personnel only access, equipped with dedicated power generators capable of handling massive power loads, UPS power backups for maximum equipment uptime and protection from power surges, a 4 Ton cooling unit to support a large scale mining operation.

BIT.ASIC Equipment Purchased:

BIT.ASIC operates ASIC Bitcoin mining equipment which results in mining Bitcoins for income.

We have purchased the following Bitcoin ASIC Mining Equipment:

Order no. 16897, pay-dated 1/18/2013, for 1 Butterfly Labs (5 GH/s Bitcoin Miner) (Purchased and Confirmed)

Order no. 100049260, pay-dated 4/2/2013, for 1 Butterfly Labs (30 GH/s Bitcoin Miner) (Purchased and Confirmed)

Order no. 100031677, pay-dated 4/2/2013, for 1 Butterfly Labs (30 GH/s Bitcoin Miner) (Purchased and Confirmed)

BIT.ASIC’s Offering:

BIT.ASIC’s offering is comprised of 100,000 shares in total. 1 share of BIT.ASIC on BitFunder represents 1/100,000th of 100% of the monthly profits after all expenses.

BIT.ASIC shares offer no voting rights. Shares of BIT.ASIC on BitFunder do not represent real world shares of the company. The shares are solely a distribution mechanism for rights to profits.

The funds from the IPO will be used for purchasing additional ASIC Miners, market and mining research, licensing fees, and other necessary needs for developing a large scale ASIC Mining operation. The funds will be invested in G.AsicMiner-PT on Bitfunder.com or other Bitcoin mining shares that pay dividends until the funds are needed for the above usages. The funds may also be used to purchase Bitcoin mining machines
from Butterfly Labs or any other manufacturer of Bitcoin mining machines or any other source of Bitcoin mining machines which will increase the dividends for investors.

Should the asset be sold or closed, the full amount of the purchase price, liquidated income, and any mining revenue not distributed will be evenly distributed to the 100,000 shares.

As long as BIT.ASIC requires less than 3 employees, no salaries will be paid as expenses, and are only paid as dividend payments.

Mining Expenses:

Expenses will only be charged for the following direct mining equipment expenses: Utilities, equipment maintenance and repair, mining equipment space rental, internet access, mining equipment systems administration and maintenance, mining pool fees, and any other necessary direct miscellaneous mining equipment operational expenses. Total mining expense will not exceed 10% of the annual gross revenue.

Dividends:

Dividends will be paid once a week.

Buyback Rights:

The issuer reserves the right to buy back shares at a price equal to 105% of the highest price the asset was traded for over the prior 7 days.

About the Issuer:

We are a team of IT professionals & business owners with expertise in the fields of server hardware / infrastructure and web engineering.

Alongside our ongoing mining activities, we recently launched http://bit.co.in which offers the crypto-currency community a free address shortener. This is a launch pad for many ideas we have for the developing community.

We are actively involved in the forums.

Feel free to contact us at:

Forums: coinminers
Email: info@bit.co.in

Japanese Currency & Debt Crisis Enters Implosion Phase

May 16, 2013 · Posted in Global Economics · Comment 

A little over a year ago I wrote in regards to Japan as an example as to what Keynesian US policy will bring about:

All these low rates will do is allow the debt to get even more bloated. And interest rates won’t remain low forever, as you can see in Greece and similar situations. Did people like the above author see any of those sovereign debt crises coming?

What about Japan? Their debt is the most crushing of all industrialized nations, and I’m predicting that their time of low rates will be drawing to an end any day now, with their debt and pension crisis having entered its final stage. Then what?

Now we hear that the Bank of Japan chief is saying this:

“I do not expect a sudden spike in long-term bond yields. In the long-run, if the economy recovers and inflation heads towards two percent, we might see nominal interest rates rise but that’s natural.”

As it is with statements politicians make, usually the exact opposite is true.

Mish posts this chart on his site:

Japanese Government Bond Yields

Expect a spike in Japanese bond yields and a further collapse in their currency valuation globally, sending the Japanese economy into another long overdue financial crisis.

Furthermore expect more and more of the same 30+ year long policy from the Japanese government and central bank: Money creation, debt creation, all to no avail and leaving no other option but a chaotic and painful endgame.

So long as people ridicule libertarians for their “strange” ideas of sound money and fiscal responsibility, this is what they’ll get.

Mish, Salinas & Others on Bitcoin

April 30, 2013 · Posted in Monetary Economics · Comment 

Mish finally wrote his first post on Bitcoin :)

I consider this another milestone since he’s arguably one of the most influential economics bloggers out there.

A few things I wanted to point out about what he said:

I am neither a convert nor a true believer. I will stick to gold thank-you. I see things similarly to Ron Paul who said in a Bloomberg Interview “If I can’t put it in my pocket, I have some reservations about that.”

It’s a common misconception that you can’t “put bitcoin in your pocket”. You absolutely can. You can put your wallet on a flash drive and literally put it in your pocket.

Furthermore you can get actual physical bitcoins by Casascius. Personally I don’t see why you would other than as a bit of a gimmick, but hey, if you like it old fashioned, by all means go for it.

In addition you can of course make it a paper wallet which you can, if you so desire, “put in your pocket”.

Mish also quoted Hugo Salinas who as far as I can tell from his article doesn’t seem to know much about Bitcoin yet:

Let’s get this straight: real money has to be the commodity that is generally accepted by society as payment in full for goods or services received. Throughout history, the commodity most generally accepted in payment has been gold. Silver has taken the second place after gold. Gold and silver were chosen by humanity thousands of years ago, as the commodities with which to make payments.

Don’t get me wrong, I love gold as much as the next guy. But the whole article literally tries to stuff a revolutionary, disruptive technology into the conceptual box of the old payment systems we’ve known to date.

That’s fine. If everyone was on the bandwaggon already it would be way too boring, wouldn’t it?

But one challenge I’d have for Mr. Salinas (and you tell me who you think will be faster):

Let’s each order a brand new flatscreen TV anywhere in the world, I use Bitcoins, you use gold or silver, and we’ll see which of us finds a merchant faster, in other words which medium is “more generally accepted in payment”.

Ready…? GO!

Great Discussion About the Current State of Libertarianism in Public

April 13, 2013 · Posted in Politics · Comment 

Bitcoin Symposium @ NH Liberty Forum Feb 23 2013

February 27, 2013 · Posted in Monetary Economics · Comment 

Right vs Left

February 27, 2013 · Posted in Philosophy · Comment 

The right-left paradigm of politics finds its roots in the two most innate and manipulation-prone emotions known to mankind: Fear and guilt.

Every single right wing ideology exalts and admires strength, for it takes strength and discipline to protect us from all the things we’re supposed to be scared of.

Leftist ideologies emphasize the feeling of pity and compassion for the weak and the less fortunate, and generally appeal to a sense of guilt in those who are better off.

So called moderate or centrist political ideologies can be found anywhere in-between those two polar opposites.

This is not a coincidence. Most of us have lived through both sides of this manipulation spectrum:

A weak and defenseless child is easily manipulable by means of patriarchal threats and assertions of strength. Once the child grows into a vigorous adult while his parents become elderly and fragile, physical threats will no longer be credible or effective. It is during this phase that the appeals to fear will subside and give way to the subtle cruelty of dewy-eyed guilt trips.

To free yourself from this game, you need to see it for what it is.

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