— Mind Forged Manacles

Out of Money

Read the whole thing, but always look for Wretchard in the comments.

6. wretchard

The rational thing to do is to forget the “social proof” — the assurances of credentialed human beings and celebrities who claim that you can keep getting something from nothing. Only math and reality count. This is the keystone of Western thought. Authority means nothing without math and reality behind them. And the math says the gravy train is out of gas.
Therefore the entitlements have got to fall. And the sooner the process of orderly withdrawal begins, the less draconian the final retreat has to be.
The other side of the equation is that productivity cannot be held back forever to pander to Green fantasies that are unaffordable. It doesn’t matter how much George Monbiot and Tim Flannery and Al Gore want to burn carbon credits at the feet of Gaia. Their little cult is throttling the world’s air supply. They have got to let go. Now. The faster productivity is unleashed, the less severe the sacrifices will be.
Everybody who has had to balance a household budget knows what it takes make ends meet. But politicians were somehow above it all. It was something they didn’t have to learn. They deluded themselves with catchphrases like “investment” and “Keynesianism” and “quantitative easing” when all they were really doing was spending what they didn’t have.
They thought they were special. Only they were just stupid.
They started with such an immense design margin it took them decades to ruin it all; during that time they soared above the clouds like tin-pot gods; running from one celebrity bash and tv talk show to another; beings beyond the mere laws of gravity.
They slaughtered millions of future taxpayers on the altar of special pleading. Abortions for all! Pensions for all! Healthcare for all! They cheapened education to employ their substandard hacks. They promised a world of no enemies, no nuclear weapons at the wave of a wand, the better to dismantle the walls to obtains bricks for the monuments to themselves.
And now they find themselves surprised, opening one cupboard after the other, peering into one jar after the next, unable to comprehend that the sugar is truly and finally gone.
“Where’s the stash? Where’s the stash? C’mon guys, quit kidding around. Where’s the stash?”
And there ain’t no stash. They’ve done blown it all.

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 I Heard it on the Grapevine 

louis-15-001

Read the whole thing including the comments. Particularly good - scary. From the comments: Peter Boston is always good, this time – 49. Peter Boston

Re #43 -ETAB – The first is that the movement to capitalism, understood as private small to medium businesses, and constitutional democracy, understood as a government empowering the most productive class – namely this middle class of private entrepreneurs – is inevitable in the ME.

Your future sounds good but is no more “inevitable” than any other Utopian future. Even the trends in the United States and GB are opposite the government empowering the most productive class.

According to the U.N.’s Arab Human Development Report (2004):

Less than 1 book a year is translated into Arabic per 1,000,000 people, compared to over 1,000 per million for developed countries.

The 22 Arabs countires in the aggregate publish fewer books per year than Spain, and the greatest majority of them are about Islam.

Average R&D expenditures on a per capita basis in the 22 Arab countries is 1/6 of Cuba’s.

Where is this entrepreurial class going to come from? As high as 65% of the population in some Arab states is under 24. I don’t recall the number but the highest percentile of the youth bulge is under 17. Do you really believe that a bunch of teenage boys are going to create a democratic, commercial society?

The more I think about the more dismal the future looks for Africa and Europe. The officer corps oligarchies, even if we attribute them with the best of intentions, are no more prepared or able to meet the demands and expectations of the youth population than the teenagesrs are themselves.

In one worst case scenario these surplus youth will get bundled up into military formations and sent off to contest control of all immediately exploitable assets in the region. Isn’t that what’s already happening in Sudan?

In one worse, worst case scenario disaffected Arab youth will flood Europe in waves of mass immigration not experienced since the Huns. There is no evidence that the Europeans would do anything even remotely close to preventing this migration. More than anything I grieve over the Islamization of Western Europe because it really is the end of history.

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Hans Rosling’s famous lectures combine enormous quantities of public data with a sport’s commentator’s style to reveal the story of the world’s past, present and future development. Now he explores stats in a way he has never done before – using augmented reality animation. In this spectacular section of ‘The Joy of Stats’ he tells the story of the world in 200 countries over 200 years using 120,000 numbers – in just four minutes. Plotting life expectancy against income for every country since 1810, Hans shows how the world we live in is radically different from the world most of us imagine.

Hat tip Instapundit

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I think this would be a good start. Vanderleun has a great take on our current situation:

“Now the chumps have got everyone in the Government as a partner. Any problems, they goes to the Government. Trouble with a bill, to the Government. Trouble with jobs, liquidity, healthcare, he calls the Government.

But now the chumps have to pay the Government… every week no matter what.

Business bad? Fuck you, pay me.

Had a fire? Fuck you, pay me.

The place got hit by lightning? Fuck you, pay me.

Also, the Government could do anything. Like run up bills on the joint’s credit. And why not? Nobody will pay for it anyway.

Take deliveries at the front door and sell it out the back at a discount.

Take a case of booze and sell it.

It doesn’t matter. It’s all profit.

Then finally, when there’s nothing left… when you can’t borrow
another buck from the Chinese… you bust the joint out.

You light a match.”

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