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Wednesday, August 23, 2017

EXCERPT: The Promethean

This is an excerpt from Owen Stanley's excellent new novel, THE PROMETHEAN.

Despite Harry’s enormous wealth, he was dismayed when the estimates from Bill Grogan and Vishnu were finally presented to him, not to mention Wayne Ruger’s, which looked like the defence budget for a small but unusually belligerent third-world nation. The project was obviously going to need considerably more money than he had originally anticipated, and, unfortunately, most of his capital was tied up in various forms of investment that precluded easy liquidation. Like most billionaires of his class, he had less cash in his bank account than was carried by the average Uber driver.

He was sitting in his office with Jerry one morning, reviewing the three estimates, which, no matter how many times he read them over, obstinately refused to shrink, and discussing the inevitable cash-flow crisis they would entail. By now, Jerry had quite a good grasp of the British R&D scene, and he suggested that Harry approach the Government’s Bio-Engineering Research Fund to see if they would consider offering some support to Project Frank.

“But if we do that,” Harry objected, “Frank won’t be a secret any longer. We can’t risk that.”

Jerry told him not to worry. “Granting agencies like the Fund deal with this problem of commercial sensitivity all the time. They have a very strict confidentiality policy that no details of any applications or grants are put in the public domain. None of our possible competitors is going to find out what we’re doing until it’s far too late.”

Not seeing any other way to move forward on the project, Harry reluctantly agreed to Jerry’s proposal. So they sent in an application containing the detailed specifications for Project Frank to the Fund, and, upon opening his morning mail a few weeks later, Harry was delighted to find a letter from Professor Price-Williams, the Fund’s Chairman, saying that they had been most impressed by the specifications and might, in due course, be able to offer a grant of up to four million pounds. But before the application could proceed any further, the project would have to be approved by their former Ethics Committee, since many of the projects supported by the Fund had applications in medicine and social welfare.

Rather ominously, the professor mentioned that the Ethics Committee had recently been renamed the Diversity and Inclusion Committee by the Department of Culture. But the CVs of the Committee members were enclosed, in order to give Mr. Hockenheimer the opportunity to prepare himself for the kind of questions they might put to him, and Professor Price-Williams wished him the best of luck.

The appointment with the Diversity and Inclusion Committee of the Bio-Engineering Research Fund turned out to be on a Friday afternoon at the Committee’s offices in a magnificent house overlooking Regents Park, one of the most desirable locations in London, and rented at vast expense by the Department of Culture.

The Government was lucky enough to be able to call upon a large pool of high-minded volunteers for such committees, who were happy to give impartial advice for the public good, without any recompense apart from their expenses. In this case, it is true, none of them happened to possess any scientific or engineering background whatever, let alone any qualifications to discuss robotics. Fortunately, practical knowledge of this kind was not considered necessary because the function of the Committee was to bring a more morally enlightened and humane perspective to the discussions that was beyond the limited mental horizon of engineers.

The Chairperson was a tall, handsome woman, Nkwandi Obolajuwan, who had been appointed to head the Committee when the Department found that she was not only a second-generation Nigerian immigrant, but also wheelchair-bound, which was believed to give her special insight into the challenges of marginalisation. Despite her triple handicaps of race, gender, and physical disability, she had nevertheless achieved a very comfortable life as a lawyer representing her fellow immigrants. To be sure, most of them happened to be very wealthy relatives of very corrupt African politicians and Middle Eastern royal families, but she did not think this was grounds for discriminating against them by refusing to help them. While she enjoyed her evenings in her luxurious apartment with a bottle of prosecco and some Charbonnel et Walker chocolates in front of the telly, she was tireless in her support of many worthy social justice causes, which had first brought her to the attention of the Department.

Percy Crump was the Committee’s self-appointed representative for the Fat Acceptance Movement. His very limited academic credits were largely in the field of Women’s Studies and it was through these that he had become aware of society’s persistent prejudice against women of ample proportions. He was naturally sympathetic to their plight because he was himself conspicuously overweight, and he had no sooner heard about the Fat Acceptance Movement than he became one of its better-known advocates. He had made a full-time career out of demanding concessions and the construction of special facilities by public transport companies, traffic engineers, and businesses to compensate himself and his fellow sufferers for all the discrimination and bigotry and daily microaggressions they endured from the so-called “normal.”

The committee’s token student, representing British youth, was Aminah Khan, a Muslim in a headscarf. Serious and orthodox, or as the less sympathetic might have called her, sullen and narrow-minded, she detested most aspects of Western culture and longed for the day when the infidels would finally submit to Allah. In the meantime, she was determined to assert the claims of Sharia law in decadent Britain.

Godfrey Sunderland was Lecturer in Protest Theory at the London School of Politics, and in his spare time, an activist for the People’s Antifascist Front. Originally from a wealthy family of aristocratic lineage, his blond dreadlocks nevertheless expressed his claim to have been born black in a white skin. “Race is just a cultural construct, man,” he would snap at anyone who dared to find his assertion of ‘wrongskin’ somewhat implausible. He regarded Nkwandi as a sellout to the system, not to say a coconut, because he particularly despised lawyers. In Godfrey’s opinion, lawyers accepted the whole rotten system of unjust power, and instead of undermining it, tried to work within it like maggots inside a corpse. When the Revolution came and the people took back the power that was rightfully theirs, there would be no need for lawyers who, if they were lucky, just might be allowed to slink away unharmed. And if they weren’t lucky, well….

The fifth member of the committee was a lesbian social worker, Toni Clark. She was a feminist and ill-disposed to men in general. Somewhat surprisingly, she did not regard gay men as allies in the LGBTQIAP+ alliance, but as hoggers of the political limelight, only interested in talking up their own status as victims, and just as prone as their straight brethren to pushing women to one side. She viewed Harry with disapproval, of course, not only because he was an American capitalist, but because his business activities objectified women in an offensive and blatantly heterosexist way.

The Committee had read Harry’s CV and the specifications for Project Frank prior to the meeting, and in the preliminary discussions its members had taken a distinctly hostile view of both Harry and his project. As a very white, very male, and very rich American capitalist who had literally built his fortune on the exploitation of women adorning themselves for the sexual pleasure of men, he was already politically suspect, and his project promised to be even worse.

While the technical specifications were almost entirely above their heads, they had grasped the general gist of Harry’s proposal, and as Nkwandi said when Harry took his seat at the end of the table, “Our main problem, Mr. Hockenheimer, is that your whole project has some dangerously elitist tendencies, and is markedly insensitive to just about every marginalised community in our society. We feel that it’s hard to combine the idea of a toy for the corporate elite with the principles of equality, diversity, and inclusion that guide this committee. If your project is approved, it is bound to become extremely well-known, and one may even say ‘iconic’, so we have to consider very carefully what kind of messages it will send to the general public.”

“I wasn’t really thinking about messages,” replied Harry. “My intention is merely to build and provide a great new technology to the public.”

“That’s all very well, Mr. Hockenheimer, but the fact is that in this case, the medium is the message. You simply can’t avoid sending messages in a project of this sort, and that’s why, I’m afraid, we’re going to require some drastic modifications before we can even consider approving it for funding. Perhaps I should explain that whereas the old Ethics Committee existed primarily to ensure there were no inappropriate conflicts of interest, the Diversity and Inclusion Committee has the much broader remit of ensuring that all the Fund’s projects adhere to the societally correct values of equality and social justice.”

Harry’s heart sank.

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Cloudflare CEO ponders his action

And the answer is, no, Mr. Prince, you were not right to pull the plug on a Nazi website.
I helped kick a group of neo-Nazis off the internet last week, but since then I’ve wondered whether I made the right decision.... At some level, it’s easy to fire Nazis as customers. They don’t pay you much, if anything, since Cloudflare offers a free version of its service. Our terms of use give us broad discretion to choose whom we allow to use our network. Beyond the horrible content, the Daily Stormer began claiming that we secretly supported their ideology, causing a major distraction to our team. Firing a Nazi customer gets you glowing notes from around the world thanking you for standing up to hate.

But a week later, I continue to worry about this power and the potential precedent being set. The reality of today’s internet is that if you are publishing anything even remotely controversial, your site will get cyberattacked. Without a massive global network similar to Cloudflare’s, it is nearly impossible to withstand the barrage. Only a small group of companies—names you know, like Facebook , Google and Microsoft , along with a handful of others you may not, like Cloudflare—have sufficient scale to keep their users online.

The upshot is that a few private companies have effectively become the gatekeepers to the public square—the blogs and social media that serve as today’s soapboxes and pamphlets. If a handful of tech executives decide to block you from their services, your content effectively can’t be on the internet.

Before terminating the Daily Stormer, Cloudflare’s policy had been to stay neutral to the content that used our network. We’d comply with the law in the jurisdictions where we operate, but we wouldn’t bow to political or public pressure to boot anyone off our network. And make no mistake, there is pressure: Hackers actually tweeted to us asking that we get out of the way so they could take down the Daily Stormer.

When standing up to government requests or angry Twitter demands to silence unpopular speech, it was powerful to be able to say we’d never terminated a customer due to political pressure. I’m not sure we can say that anymore.
Dear Mr. Prince,

In answer to your question posed in the Wall Street Journal today, the answer is no. Here are five reasons why:
  • You sacrificed Cloudflare's moral authority and neutrality.
  • You contributed to the increasing fragmentation of the Internet.
  • You threw away any chance to meaningfully oppose the growing movement towards national Internet sovereignty. How can you possibly claim that China and Turkey, or any other government, don't have the right to thought-police you when you are thought-policing others?
  • You encouraged other big tech companies to do the same, thereby leading tens of thousands of people to initiate backup plans in the event they are deplatformed for their opinions.
  • You gave in to the SJWs and informed them that you are susceptible to their pressure. You can safely expect further demands to functionally deplatform other sites under attack.
I am no fan of the Daily Stormer. It is obnoxious and their writers have personally attacked me on more than one occasion. Nevertheless, I would encourage you to invite the site back to Cloudfare, while at the same time making a public statement that Cloudflare will no longer thought-police Internet content and will not deny its services to any site that is in compliance with the law.

Sincerely,
Vox Day

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The false front of the male feminist

Joss Whedon is merely the latest "male feminist" to be outed as a sexual predator:
There were times in our relationship that I was uncomfortable with the attention Joss paid other women. He always had a lot of female friends, but he told me it was because his mother raised him as a feminist, so he just liked women better. He said he admired and respected females, he didn’t lust after them. I believed him and trusted him. On the set of “Buffy,” Joss decided to have his first secret affair.

Fifteen years later, when he was done with our marriage and finally ready to tell the truth, he wrote me, “When I was running ‘Buffy,’ I was surrounded by beautiful, needy, aggressive young women. It felt like I had a disease, like something from a Greek myth. Suddenly I am a powerful producer and the world is laid out at my feet and I can’t touch it.” But he did touch it. He said he understood, “I would have to lie — or conceal some part of the truth — for the rest of my life,” but he did it anyway, hoping that first affair, “would be ENOUGH, that THEN we could move on and outlast it.”

Joss admitted that for the next decade and a half, he hid multiple affairs and a number of inappropriate emotional ones that he had with his actresses, co-workers, fans and friends, while he stayed married to me....

Despite understanding, on some level, that what he was doing was wrong, he never conceded the hypocrisy of being out in the world preaching feminist ideals, while at the same time, taking away my right to make choices for my life and my body based on the truth. He deceived me for 15 years, so he could have everything he wanted. I believed, everyone believed, that he was one of the good guys, committed to fighting for women’s rights, committed to our marriage, and to the women he worked with. But I now see how he used his relationship with me as a shield, both during and after our marriage, so no one would question his relationships with other women or scrutinize his writing as anything other than feminist.
Male feminists are false fronts. They tend to be physically unattractive men who pose as feminists in order to obtain access to women by convincing them to let their guard down through publicly professing feminist ideology. They are easily obsessed by women and are highly prone to stalking them; John Scalzi's account of being tempted to stalk Mary Robinette Kowal at a convention is downright creepy, although not nearly as creepy as the idea of Jim Hines being a rape counselor.

Rape Victim (sobbing): "He... he raped me!"
Jim Hines (slobbering): "Tell me about it. Tell me ALL about it!"
Back in 2006, at Readercon(!) I was wandering around the dealer’s room when I saw John Joseph Adams talking to a woman I didn’t know. I knew JJA very casually, so I went up to say hello. The woman he was speaking to was the art director of Shimmer Magazine and her name was Mary Robinette Kowal. JJA introduced the two of us, and Mary and I started chatting and within about five minutes I was aware that I was really intensely attracted to her, in a way that actually kind of spooked me and which I was sure was immediately and clearly obvious, and possibly immediately and obviously creepy.

So here’s what I did. After a couple more minutes, I excused myself and went away, because I was working on the theory that if I was worried that I was coming across as creepy, I was in fact being creepy, and I didn’t want to do that both as a matter of personal inclination and also because this woman I had just met did noting to deserve me creeping all over her. Later, I saw her talking with a bunch of people I didn’t know, I didn’t go up and chat with her because I knew that the only reason I wanted to talk to that group of people is so that I could be near her, and that was a little creepy.

When some time after that she was with a group of people I did know and enjoyed talking to, I joined that group, made sure I didn’t focus all my attention on her and got to know her a little better by listening to her talk to others in the group and to the group in general, and talked to her like I talked to everyone else in the group. I didn’t hover near her. I definitely didn’t go out of my way to touch her. I made no great attempt to monopolize her time. When I did chat with her later one on one, I was mindful of how much of her time I was spending, and was paying attention to how she reacted to me to make sure I wasn’t overstaying my welcome. And so on.
If that doesn't strike you as creepy on its face, remember, the man was married at the time. There is definitely something deeply, insidiously wrong with any self-styled male feminist. Never forget that when they repeat their mantras of "don't be evil" and "don't inappropriately touch women", they are talking to themselves.

In any event, Allum Bokhari's take on l'affaire Whedon is without doubt the best one.

So, Joss Whedon used feminism to bang an endless succession of chicks and make some pretty non-feminist movies without anyone noticing. To be honest, my respect for the man has skyrocketed.

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1,354 pages free

I'm pleased to be able to inform everyone that both A THRONE OF BONES and A SEA OF SKULLS are free ebooks today on Amazon. That is a combined 1,354 pages of truly epic fantasy, and will cost you literally nothing except the hours required to read them.

A SEA OF SKULLS

In Selenoth, the war drums are beating throughout the land. The savage orcs of Hagahorn and Zoth Ommog are on the move, imperiling Man, Dwarf, and Elf alike. The Houses Martial of Amorr have gone to war with each other, pitting legion against legion, and family against family, as civil war wracks the disintegrating Empire. In the north, inhuman wolf-demons besiege the last redoubt of Man in the White Sea, while in Savondir, the royal house of de Mirid desperately prepares to defend the kingdom against an invading army that is larger than any it has ever faced before. And in the underground realm of the King of Iron Mountain, a strange new enemy has been attacking dwarf villages throughout the Underdeep.

Beneath the widespread violence that has seized all Selenoth in its grasp, a select few are beginning to recognize the appearance of a historic pattern of almost unimaginable proportions. Are all these conflicts involving Orc, Elf, Man, and Dwarf the natural result of inevitable rivalries, or are they little more than battlegrounds in an ancient war that began long before the dawn of time?

From the reviews:
  • "With this book, Vox Day has catapulted himself into the storied and rarefied rank of writers that sits just below The Master himself. That's right, I went there. I just said that Vox Day has written a book that is nearly as good as J. R. R. Tolkien's work."
  • "It is the best fantasy book of the past 50 years."
  • "As richly developed as its predecessor was, A Sea Of Skulls added many new dimensions to this world and the crisis it's in. All the positives I spoke of in my review of A Throne Of Bones, and more, were leveled up."
  • "Vox's Selenoth is amazing. I can hardly wait for more. I am a big-time Tolkien and George Martin fan. Vox's Selenoth has wiggled its way between Middle Earth and Westeros"
  • "Why did it take me so long to find Vox Day? What a great storyteller this man is, a grand master of multiverse chess."
As you may recall, A SEA OF SKULLS is a Finalist for Best Fantasy Novel in the 2017 Dragon Awards. If you find it sufficiently compelling, you may wish to vote for it here before August 28th.

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Removing racist statues

It's about time humanity stopped honoring that horrific racist, Gandhi:
Ghana has said it will remove a statue of Mahatma Gandhi from a university campus in the nation’s capital where it had sparked protests over the leader’s allegedly racist attitudes.

The statue, which was unveiled by Indian President Pranab Mukherjee during his visit to Ghana in June, was meant to symbolize friendship between the two countries, according to Ghana’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs. But professors and students at the University of Ghana called the statue “a slap in the face” because of Gandhi’s “racist identity.” They started an online petition calling for the statue’s removal.

The petition, which had more than 1,700 supporters on Thursday, cited letters Gandhi wrote during his time in South Africa as evidence that he advocated for the superiority of Indians over black Africans. It also took issue with his use of the derogatory term kaffir to refer to native Africans and criticized the lack of statues of African heroes and heroines on campus.
Any criticism of the Ghanaian action would, of course, be racist. Also, colonialism. Needless to say, all statues of Martin Luther King need to come down at once, since he was a communist and an adulterer.

Hey, wrecking history is fun!

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Tuesday, August 22, 2017

Google unvanishes stats prof

Zerohedge helped Salil Mehta get his email, blog, and other accounts back after they were vanished by Google.
Yesterday we reported that in a shocking, and unexplained move, statistics professor Salil Mehta, adjunct professor at Columbia and Georgetown who teaches probability and data science and whose work has appeared on this website on numerous prior occasions, had been banned by Google on Friday, with his email, blog and other Google-linked accounts wiped clean and no longer accessible.

As we discussed yesterday, it was not clear what Salil did to provoke Google:

On Friday afternoon East Coast Time by surprise, I was completely shut down in all my Google accounts (all of my gmail accounts, blog, all of my university pages that were on google sites, etc.) for no reason and no warning.  A number of us were stunned and unsure, but clearly we know at this point it wasn’t an accident.

As Salil explained, he had never engaged in political discourse, and his content was purely math/statistics-focused: "My background is clean, and without a political or social agenda.  I am not promoting any specific viewpoint.  I teach probability math and that’s it.  Have worked with both the Obama administration and advised on polling statistics for the Trump campaign, am an adjunct professor at three top universities, an editor of the peer-reviewed journal of the American Statistical Association, and wrote a best-selling statistics book (all the proceeds of which I gave to charity!)"

And yet, Salil's attempts to get to the bottom of his purge were fruitless:

I have followed their common “appeal” form but no response for three days.  Also connected with one of the VPs over the weekend and it still takes time until receiving this today!  Just more of a reflection of how cold a company can treat someone very poorly: without any information, and lack of ability to move forward in their life (can I get real reasons if any, can I get advance notice, can I get my contact list back from gmail, and why are university properties unrelated to my blog shut down?)

We are going to be looking back on this time in Google’s history and those of other social media and know that they have done some very immoral and confusing things, and it has hurt their public reputation with decent people who wanted to grow into the next future with them.

Until yesterday, Google's only response was a generic form statement it issues to every account that is "in violation of its Terms of Service." That changed yesterday, because after our article detailing Salil's plight went viral, and was read 300,000 times, Google responded and as of this morning, has restored all of Salil Metha's accounts.
That's great and all, but the irony of someone being unvanished because he did NOT engage in any Constitutionally-protected political free speech is sizable indeed. Most people are not going to have the online might of Zerohedge behind them, or happen to be a politically unblemished minority professor who worked with the Obama administration, which means that most of us are beholden to the goodwill and commitment to Internet neutrality of the various social media giants.

Since these corporations are heavily converged, since SJWs always double down, and since the executives who are not themselves SJWs have repeatedly shown themselves to be too weak to stand up to much direct pressure from their internal SJWs, it is imperative that everyone who is to the right of Salil Metha have a backup plan already in place and already implemented starting right now. That means everything from email addresses, websites, and payment processors to ISPs and domain registry alternatives.

If you want to be accessible by our rapid response program and you are not VFM, you have four alternatives.
  1. Follow me on Twitter. This is the least preferable option since I anticipate a massive, multiplatform strike will be the next step after the surgical deplatformings and demonetizations prove ineffective. I am reliably informed that SJWs inside Twitter, Google, Facebook, and Paypal are already putting this plan together and are now working on figuring out how to sell it to the decision-makers at their respective corporations. Saner heads may prevail, in fact, they probably will prevail at Google and Paypal, since the executives there understand that further fracturing the Internet is not good for their future growth, but there are no guarantees, and as we know from our experience with Amazon, even a rogue strike or two by employees acting without permission or approval cannot be ruled out.
  2. Follow me on Gab. This is safe, but not necessarily timely, particularly if you're not already actively using Gab.
  3. Sign up for the Book Club. You'll get 1-3 book announcements per month. This is the least disruptive option that ensures you are rapidly contacted.
  4. Sign up for the Daily Meme Wars. You'll get six emails per week, five with the Meme of the Day, and the sixth containing a summary and a poll to vote in the meme of the week. This is the option I'd prefer people to select, because #DailyMemeWars has proven to be increasingly effective social media artillery.
You can, of course, do any combination of these or all four if you see fit. But the important thing is to do at least one of them. And remember, you can always reach me at my infogalactic email if my gmail address is vanished.

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The art of the sucker

The God-Emperor's top aides are trying to play him the way Reagan and Thatcher were played:
Trump aides plot a big immigration deal — that breaks a campaign promise. Donald Trump’s top aides are pushing him to protect young people brought into the country illegally as children — and then use the issue as a bargaining chip for a larger immigration deal — despite the president’s campaign vow to deport so-called Dreamers.

The White House officials want Trump to strike an ambitious deal with Congress that offers Dreamers protection in exchange for legislation that pays for a border wall and more detention facilities, curbs legal immigration and implements E-verify, an online system that allows businesses to check immigration status, according to a half-dozen people familiar with situation, most involved with the negotiations.

The group includes former and current White House chiefs of staff, Reince Priebus and John Kelly, the president’s daughter, Ivanka Trump, and her husband, Jared Kushner, who both serve as presidential advisers, they said. Others who have not been as vocal publicly about their stance but are thought to agree include Vice President Mike Pence, who as a congressman worked on a failed immigration deal that called for citizenship, National Security Adviser H.R. McMaster and Gary Cohn, a Democrat who serves as director of the National Economic Council.

“They are holding this out as a bargaining chip for other things,” said Ira Mehlman, a spokesman with the Federation for American Reform, a group that opposes protecting Dreamers and is in talks with the administration.

On the other side, a smaller group — including Attorney General Jeff Sessions and his former aides, Stephen Miller, who serves as Trump’s senior policy adviser, and Rick Dearborn, White House deputy chief of staff — opposes citizenship, according to sources familiar with the discussions.
An ambitious immigration deal with Congress. That sounds familiar, how did that work out in 1986? It's rather remarkable that an experienced negotiator like Donald Trump doesn't seem to fully grasp the way in which everything else he does will be rendered entirely moot by giving in on immigration. This would appear to be a crucial nexus, and if handled incorrectly, has the potential to serve as his own "No New Taxes" moment, which you will recall sank a George Bush who had previously been riding very high in the polls and was widely expected to win reelection.

If Trump doesn't build the wall and maintain a hard line on immigration, he will not win the 2020 election, as he will lose the base that has remained loyal to him throughout. It's literally the one thing he cannot afford to do, which is why he should immediately fire any adviser, from his daughter on down, who is advising him to throw away his core support in pursuit of a mirage and approval from the Left that will never come.

Never abandon your base. Never abandon your core. If you do not understand this, you are absolutely guaranteed failure.

This really isn't that hard. 1) Build the Wall. 2) They have to go back.

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The tech crackdown is weakness

As well as an opportunity to foxnews the f------- at Facebook, Wikipedia, Twitter, and the other social media giants.
This year, the world’s largest social network will see a decline among teen users in the U.S., according to a forecast by EMarketer. It’s the first time the research company has predicted a fall in Facebook usage for any age group.

EMarketer predicts 14.5 million people from the ages of 12 to 17 will use Facebook in 2017, a drop of 3.4 percent from the prior year. Teens are migrating instead to Snap Inc.’s Snapchat and Instagram, the photo-sharing app that Facebook owns, the research company said Monday in a statement.

Facebook has continued to grow around the world, with more than 2 billion users this year, but younger people are finding it less compelling, said Oscar Orozco, a forecasting analyst at EMarketer.
The Facebook/Twitter business model is an intrinsically fraudulent one, propped up by debt and ideology. Which means, of course, that their decline will be unexpectedly fast once it begins. And it is coming soon. Twitter has already ceased to grow. Facebook will follow suit soon. All they will succeed in doing is fracturing and further decentralizing the Internet, which will serve us, not them.

The reason they are cracking down hard now is that they realize their window of opportunity to do so is closing. This is why there is no reason to panic when another deplatforming happens. All that a deplatforming accomplishes is to ensure that a new platform will come into being to replace it.

Remember, there was a time not all that long ago when SJW fans of John Scalzi bragged that his blog traffic was vastly bigger than mine. Now that mine is more than 5x his, he switched to bragging about his 111,329 followers and 178 million annual Twitter impressions... and I am now on pace to equal or exceed his 2016 monthly average of 14.8 million Twitter impressions this month.

The world is a dynamic place. It will knock you down, but when you get up again, hardened by the experience, the experience only makes you that much more formidable.

That being said, the next anti-Right tech strike will be more systematic and multiplatform. I expect that if I am targeted, my accounts will be vanished from Twitter, Blogger, and Gmail simultaneously,  (I don't really use Facebook or Paypal) which is why I am already set up with more reliable alternatives for literally every social media and payment platform, and have arranged for direct email access to every VFM, Book Club, and Daily Meme Wars member. If you want to make sure that you're immediately alerted and provided with the alternatives, I recommend signing up for either the Book Club or if you don't mind daily emails, the Daily Meme Wars.

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A THRONE OF BONES is free this week

In Selenoth, the race of Man is on the ascendant. The ancient dragons sleep. The ghastly Witchkings are no more; their evil power destroyed by the courage of Men and the fearsome magic of the Elves. The Dwarves have retreated to the kingdoms of the Underdeep, the trolls hide in their mountains, and even the savage orc tribes have learned to dread the iron discipline of Amorr's mighty legions. But after four hundred years of mutual suspicion, the rivalry between two of the Houses Martial that rule the Amorran Senate threatens to turn violent, and unrest sparks rebellion throughout the imperial provinces.

In the north, the barbarian reavers who have long plagued the coasts of the White Sea unexpectedly plead for the royal protection of the King of Savondir, as they flee a vicious race of wolf-demons who have invaded their islands. And in the distant east, the war drums echo throughout the mountains as orcs and goblins gather in vast numbers, summoned by their bestial gods.

Epic fantasy at its deepest and most gripping, A THRONE OF BONES is Book I in the ARTS OF DARK AND LIGHT. DRM-free.

The 924-page monster is also a free download for the next four days. If you've been holding off on dipping your toe into the murky waters of Selenoth, this would be the time to jump in. Of course, no matter how excellent, an ebook is no substitute for the beautiful hardcover or even the imposing paperback.

From the reviews:
  • "This hefty tome has a scope and grandeur rivaling George R. R. Martin's A Song of Ice and Fire, but instead of mocking heroic ideals, Day celebrates them."
  • "This book contains strong traces DNA from Umberto Eco and Neal Stephenson, but it stands on its own as a fantastically monstrous creature."
  • "There are beautiful moments, there is clever dialogue, there is deep mystery. It took some level of genius to write it."
  • "There are gritty moments and complex characters. But what really distinguishes A Throne of Bones from other recent epic fantasy is that Day hasn't forgotten the value of beauty. ARTS OF DARK AND LIGHT is the most promising new series in epic fantasy."
  • "He's a far better writer than most fantasy authors you'll find. His pacing is incredible, as somehow the last half of this beastly volume flies by with accelerating momentum, and the ending actual feels like a grandiose beginning while still bringing closure to most of the threads."
Don't forget that Book II of the ARTS OF DARK AND LIGHT, A SEA OF SKULLS, is a finalist for Best Fantasy Novel in the 2017 Dragon Awards. Or our new release, the brutally funny THE PROMETHEAN, which is presently the #1 bestseller in Satire.

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Monday, August 21, 2017

Trump speech

Don't get too discouraged by all the neoconnery. Remember, Trump likes to give people their head and let them hang themselves.

UPDATE: My take is that Trump has told the generals and the CIA something like this: "It's been 16 years. You say that you haven't been successful because my predecessors kept interfering with you and forcing you to play nation-building dollhouse. That's true. Fine. Hands off it is. You have carte blanche. Tell me what you need and I'll give it to you. And if you still can't deliver, well, then we'll know and you'll have no excuses.

Thank you very much. Thank you. Please be seated. Vice President Pence, Secretary of State Tillerson, members of the cabinet, General Dunford, Deputy Secretary Shanahan and Colonel Duggan. Most especially, thank you to the men and women of Fort Myer and every member of the United States military at home and abroad. We send our thoughts and prayers to the families of our brave sailors who were injured and lost after a tragic collision at sea as well as to those conducting the search and recovery efforts.

I am here tonight to lay out our path forward in Afghanistan and South Asia. But before I provide the details of our new strategy, I want to say a few words to the service members here with us tonight, to those watching from their posts, and to all Americans listening at home. Since the founding of our republic, our country has produced a special class of heroes whose selflessness, courage, and resolve is unmatched in human history.

American patriots from every  generation have given their last breath on the battlefield - for our nation and for our freedom. Through their lives, and though their lives were cut short, in their deeds they achieved total immortality. By following the heroic example of those who fought to preserve our republic, we can find the inspiration our country needs to unify, to heal and to remain one nation under God. The men and women of our military operate as one team, with one shared mission and one shared sense of purpose.

They transcend every line of race, ethnicity, creed and color to serve together and sacrifice together in absolutely perfect cohesion. That is because all service members are brothers and sisters. They are all part of the same family. It’s called the American family. They take the same oath, fight for the same flag and live according to the same law.

They are bound together by common purpose, mutual trust and selfless devotion to our nation and to each other. The soldier understands what we as a nation too often forget, that a wound inflicted upon on a single member of our community is a wound inflicted upon us all. When one part of America hurts, we all hurt.

And when one citizen suffers an injustice, we all suffer together. Loyalty to our nation demands loyalty to one another. Love for America requires love for all of its people. When we open our hearts to patriotism, there is no room for prejudice, no place for bigotry and no tolerance for hate. The young men and women we send to fight our wars abroad deserve to return to a country that is not at war with itself at home. We cannot remain a force for peace in the world if we are not at peace with each other.

As we send our bravest to defeat our enemies overseas, and we will always win, let us find the courage to heal our divisions within. Let us make a simple promise to the men and women we ask to fight in our name, that when they return home from battle, they will find a country that has renewed the sacred bonds of love and loyalty that unite us together as one.

Thanks to the vigilance and skill of the American military, and of our many allies throughout the world, horrors on the scale of September 11, and nobody can ever forget that, have not been repeated on our shores. But we must acknowledge the reality I am here to talk about tonight, that nearly 16 years after September 11 attacks, after the extraordinary sacrifice of blood and treasure, the American people are weary of war without victory.

Nowhere is this more evident than with the war in Afghanistan, the longest war in American history - 17 years. I share the American people's frustration. I also share their frustration over a foreign policy that has spent too much time, energy, money, and most importantly, lives trying to rebuild countries in our own image instead of pursuing our security interests above all other considerations. That is why shortly after my inauguration, I directed Secretary of Defense Mattis and my national security team to undertake a comprehensive review of all strategic options in Afghanistan and South Asia.

My original instinct was to pull out, and historically I like following my instincts. But all my life, I have heard that decisions are much different when you sit behind the desk in the Oval Office. In other words, when you are president of the United States. So I studied Afghanistan in great detail and from every conceivable angle. After many meetings over many months, we held our final meeting last Friday at Camp David with my cabinet and generals to complete our strategy. I arrived at three fundamental conclusion about America's core interests in Afghanistan.

First, our nation must seek an honorable and enduring outcome worthy of the tremendous sacrifices that have been made, especially the sacrifices of lives. The men and women who serve our nation in combat deserve a plan for victory. They deserve the tools they need and the trust they have earned to fight and to win.

Second, the consequences of a rapid exit are both predictable and unacceptable. 9/11, the worst terrorist attack in our history, was planned and directed from Afghanistan because that country was ruled by a government that gave comfort and shelter to terrorists. A hasty withdrawal would create a vacuum that terrorists, including ISIS and al Qaeda, would instantly fill, just as happened before September 11. And as we know, in 2011, America hastily and mistakenly withdrew from Iraq.

As a result, our hard-won gains slipped back into the hands of terrorist enemies. Our soldiers watched as cities they had fought for and bled to liberate and won were occupied by a terrorist group called ISIS. The vacuum we created by leaving too soon gave safe haven for ISIS to spread, to grow, recruit and launch attacks. We cannot repeat in Afghanistan the mistake our leaders made in Iraq.

Third and finally, I concluded that the security threats we face in Afghanistan and the broader region are immense. Today, 20 U.S.-designated foreign terrorist organizations are active in Afghanistan and Pakistan. The highest concentration in any region anywhere in the world. For its part, Pakistan often gives safe haven to agents of chaos, violence and terror. The threat is worse because Pakistan and India are two nuclear-armed states, whose tense relations threaten to spiral into conflict, and that could happen.


Read more »

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SF-SJW unleashed

Jeff Denton wants to know how we feel.
Statues coming down, name changes, Bannon out, NK Jemison getting awards, alt-right in a meltdown(see ramzpaul), Trump on the ropes, white birth rates plummeting, immigration being ramped up. How does it feel? Knowing you guys have lost completely
Oh, but we haven't lost at all! Far from it. This guy is a bit more perspicacious than old Jeff.
This year's awards were less directly impacted by those meddlesome puppies, but I feel like we're still suffering through an indirect backlash and overcorrection.... The Obelisk Gate by N.K. Jemisin takes the rocket for Best Novel, making Jemisin just the third author to have back-to-back wins in this category (joining the ranks of Orson Scott Card and Lois McMaster Bujold). She's a good author, but damn, these books are not for me. Both were at the bottom of my ballot and while I can see why her novel won last year, this one is a little more baffling.
(whistles innocently) Now, lest you doubt the observation that SF-SJWs can create nothing new, and are little more than scabrous, over-medicated dung-feeders crawling about the skeletons of their predecessors attempting to scavenge off their leavings, consider two-time successive Best Novel winner N.K. Jemisin's next project, from an interview with Tor.
So if you’re using Cthulhu, are you an H.P. Lovecraft fan?

Oh, hell no. This is deliberately a chance for me to kind of mess with the Lovecraft legacy. He was a notorious racist and horrible human being. So this is a chance for me to have the “chattering” hordes—that’s what he called the horrifying brown people of New York that terrified him. This is a chance for me to basically have them kick the ass of his creation. So I’m looking forward to having some fun with that.

It sounds as if Jemisin’s novel will join an ongoing conversation re-examining Lovecraft’s works in the context of their creator, a conversation that currently includes Victor LaValle’s The Ballad of Black Tom, Matt Ruff’s Lovecraft Country, Ruthanna Emrys’ Winter Tide (as well as the Lovecraft Reread), and other recent works engaging with and challenging Lovecraft’s mythos.
Sounds Hugo award-winning to me!

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Speaking of SJWAL

Crypto.Fashion and Dark Lord Designs has a new shirt out... and it's available from Amazon. Available in Black and Purple.


Also available are Trumpslide 2020 and Winning shirts in various colors. And, on the off-chance that you still haven't given Selenoth a shot, A THRONE OF BONES is free today and tomorrow.

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BEST TIMELINE EVER

mary beard @wmarybeard
I'm afraid I dont think that academic debate is about 'fights' or freaking out. It's about debate: one thing I hope I have learned in 40 yrs

Supreme Dark Lord‏ @voxday
 But you don't debate, Mary. You run crying to the media, whining that someone hit a poor wittle girl by criticizing your erroneous ideas.

mary beard‏ @wmarybeard
just for info, i never 'ran to the media' or even approached them. They have eyes for what goes on on Twitter! Now i'm back to writing

NassimNicholasTaleb‏@nntaleb
NOTHING academic in calling pple "misogynists" for dissenting, using Lewinski/Rowling & misrepresenting debate

mary beard‏ @wmarybeard  2h2 hours ago
oh come on. I never 'used' anyone; if they supported me, it was because they saw exactly what was going on. I dont recall using 'misogyny'.

NassimNicholasTaleb‏@nntaleb
This should refresh your memory. For a "historian", you keep being caught with misrepresentations.


NassimNicholasTaleb@nntaleb  1h1 hour ago
Mary Beard retweets n accusations of "misogyny" & articles in press & claims she never accused me of "misogyny" Historians shdn't Fabricate!

Supreme Dark Lord‏ @voxday
It could have been worse. Just wait until she writes the inevitable book about the incident.


NassimNicholasTaleb‏@nntaleb
Bad picture.  Use these.

Supreme Dark Lord‏ @voxday
The second edition of Mary Beard's heart-rending case for scholarship sans criticism.


I think the goatee and the confident leaning back really pulls the whole thing together, don't you? I can honestly say I never expected to have one of my intellectual heroes critiquing and polishing my meme magic. It's almost as astonishing as the time Umberto Eco invited me to join him on a visit to a monastery. So, to find out that Taleb is now reading SJWAL is just the icing on the cake.

NassimNicholasTaleb@nntaleb
Lesson I leared from UK thoughtnazis. Appease/correct them w/"I am not saying..."; they destroy you. Be aggressive, disrespect: they freakout

A. Epiphanes 4th‏ @A_Epiphanes4
I can't help but to think of @voxday rule #1: do not apologize!

NassimNicholasTaleb@nntaleb
This morning, at page ~ 45 of his book.

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Meme of the Week


This week's theme was Antifa and the Alt-Left. Over 50,000 impressions per meme! To take part in the daily memeslaughter of the Left, join the Daily Meme Wars.
  1. 30.4% American Taliban
  2. 25.3% Nationalist vs. Globalist
  3. 18.1% Stupidity not Strategy
  4. 16.7% 1932 Berlin
  5. 09.5% Antifa America
Speaking of memes, what did the US Navy think was going to happen when they named a ship after a bumbling rat-weasel?


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THE PROMETHEAN

THE PROMETHEAN is a brutally funny novel exposing the utter insanity of modern academia and the world of technology. An extraordinary tale of ambition, social justice, and human folly, it combines the mordant wit of W. Somerset Maugham with a sense of humor reminiscent of P.G. Wodehouse.

When American billionaire Henry Hockenheimer discovers that conquering the corporate world is no longer enough for him on the eve of his 40th birthday, he decides to leave his mark on the world by creating the first Superman, a robot as intellectually brilliant as it is physically capable. But his ideas are thwarted on every side by the most brilliant minds of the academic world, from the AI researcher Dr. Vishnu Sharma to the wheelchair-bound head of the Diversity and Inclusion Committee of Her Majesty's Government's Bio-Engineering Research Fund, Nkwandi Obolajuwan, and, of course, Dr. Sydney Prout, formerly of the United Nations, now Special Adviser on Human Rights to the European Union.

And when Hockenheimer succeeds, despite all of the incredible obstacles placed in his way, he discovers that success can be the cruelest failure of all.

THE PROMETHEAN is available at Amazon via ebook and Kindle Unlimited.

From the reviews:
  • I do not remember which famous English authors use similar storytelling styles as satire, but Owen Stanley has generally followed their design and adapted it well to our age. His skewering of the EU and the diversity commission is written by a man with either first- or second-hand knowledge of these groups.
  • Absolutely delightful, not to mention timely, witty, thought-provoking and occasionally side-splitting. I was almost in need of surgery.
I absolutely loved THE MISSIONARIES, which is both brilliant and hysterically funny. And to be honest, I consider successfully encouraging Dr. Stanley to write a second novel, which he originally had no plans to do, to be my single greatest success as an editor to date.

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Sunday, August 20, 2017

Castalia temporarily down

No worries. It's neither DDOS or deplatforming; we have partial access to the server. It's just a Wordpress database error; we may need to wait until tomorrow morning to get it resolved, though.

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The rise of the American nationalists

The fact that the Republican establishment cannot understand the emotional appeal of this new Kid Rock song, or the pride possessed by those they dismiss as "white trash", is why the God-Emperor will likely be more powerful after 2018 than he is now. Both Kid Rock and Trump represent is a civic nationalist, traditional American heritage spirit that is nevertheless identity-aware, if not pure identity politics, and stands directly in the way of the social justice, diversity, inclusivity, and equality Left.

It's Alt Lite, not Alt Right. It's populist, neither intellectual nor ideological. And while it's ultimately insufficient, it nevertheless represents a tremendous step forward for Americans, because, unlike the Diversity Left, which hates America, and the Establishment Right, which cares about nothing except GDP and the well-being of the donor class, the Trump nationalists love America.

I think Kid Rock will win a Senate seat if he actually runs, because on the basis of this video alone, you can see that his rhetoric is powerful and his political instincts are formidable. Girls, guns, motor vehicles and beer is about as American as it gets, while the uncharacteristic absence of rebel flags and the inclusion of black rednecks is almost certainly significant given the demographics of Michigan. It's not a bad song either.

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Affirmative Action is protection money

An astute article by Robert Weissberg points out the true purpose of affirmative action, while illustrating why it can't survive much longer:
When confronting a sizable, potentially disruptive population unable or unwilling to assimilate, a perfect solution is beyond reach. Choices are only among the lesser of evils and, to repeat, under current conditions, race-driven affirmative action is conceivably the best of the worst. A hard-headed realist would draw a parallel with how big city merchants survive by paying off the police, building and food inspectors, and the Mafia. Racial preferences are just one more item on the cost-of-doing business list–the Danegeld.

In effect, racial preferences in elite higher education (and beneficiaries includes students, professors and the diversity-managing administrators) separates the top 10% measured in cognitive ability from their more violent down market racial compatriots. While this manufactured caste-like arrangement hardly guarantees racial peace (as the black-on-white crime rate, demonstrates) but it pretty much dampens the possibility of more collective, well-organized related upheavals, the types of disturbances that truly terrify the white establishment. Better to have the handsomely paid Cornel West pontificating about white racism at Princeton where he is a full professor than fulminating at some Ghetto street corner. This status driven divide just reflects human nature. Why would a black Yalie on Wall Street socialize with the bro’s left behind in the Hood? This is the strategy of preventing a large-scale, organized rebellion by decapitating its potential leadership. Violence is now just Chicago or Baltimore-style gang-banger intra-racial mayhem or various lone-wolf criminal attacks on whites.

Co-optation is a staple in the political management repertoire. The Soviet Union adsorbed what they called the “leading edge” into the Party (anyone exceptionally accomplished, from chess grandmasters or world-class athletes) to widen the divide the dominant elite, i.e., the Party, and hoi polloi. Election systems can be organized to guarantee a modicum of power to a handful of potential disruptors and with this position comes ample material benefits (think Maxine Waters). Monarchies have similarly managed potential strife by bestowing honors and titles on commoners. It is no accident that many radicals are routinely accused of “selling out” by their former colleagues in arms. In most instances the accusation is true, and this is by design.
As John Derbyshire has noted, the USA is running out of young whites and Asians to sacrifice on the altar of Diversity. Average IQ is declining rapidly, and the value of the fake degrees being used to cut off the black populace from its natural leaders are falling even faster.

But then, this was always going to end one way, as Kipling warned us.

We never pay anyone Dane-geld,
No matter how trifling the cost;
For the end of that game is oppression and shame,
And the nation that pays it is lost!

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Setbacks are not defeat

Never confuse a tactical defeat, like the ambush rally in Charlottesville, with a strategic one. Look at the poll numbers on the issue of historical heritage:
President Donald Trump’s widely criticized response to white supremacist violence in Virginia has left Democrats in a quandary: how to seize the moral high ground without getting sucked into a politically perilous culture war.

Democrats have denounced Trump for blaming “both sides” for deadly protests in Charlottesville, Virginia, and, more recently, for defending Confederate monuments.

But the party faces a complex task: While addressing race and history in ways that reflect the party’s values, Democrats also need to focus on issues like jobs and the economy that resonate with a wider range of voters, including white independents, ahead of the 2018 midterm election.

The party has been looking to answer Trump’s populism by crafting its own middle-class brand, yet Democratic leaders across multiple states now are pushing to take down Old South monuments like the one that ostensibly sparked the events in Charlottesville, and three rank-and-file House Democrats want to pursue a congressional censure of the president.

In interviews this week before his resignation was announced Friday, White House strategist Steve Bannon gleefully suggested Democrats are falling into a trap.

“I want them to talk about racism every day,” Bannon told The American Prospect, a liberal magazine. “If the left is focused on race and identity, and we go with economic nationalism, we can crush the Democrats.”

Trump himself has called Confederate memorials, most of them actually erected decades after the Civil War, “beautiful statues” that reflect “our nation’s history and culture.”

Polls taken after last weekend’s violence offer some evidence backing Bannon’s and Trump’s view. While polls found widespread disgust with white supremacists, a Marist Poll for NPR and PBS found that just 27 percent of adults queried believe Confederate monuments “should be removed because they are offensive.” About two out of three white and Latino respondents said they should remain, as did 44 percent of black respondents.
No wonder Bannon is slavering to get back into action. I still believe Trump needs to BUILD THE WALL to ensure his reelection, but Defend American History is clearly a massively winning issue for him, both in the 2018 midterms and the 2020 presidential campaign.

Especially when idiot Republican establishment figures are scurrying to line up in defense of antifa. Sometimes a tactical defeat is more strategically useful than a victory, which in this case is a little ironic, considering that the Democrats were planning the precise opposite for Charlottesville.

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Saturday, August 19, 2017

Don't argue with Damore

You'd think a reporter would be aware that he was overmatched when he went to interview the author of the Google manifesto:
During an interview with Business Insider, Damore, who was fired from Google for publishing a viewpoint diversity manifesto, claimed he “was simply trying to fix the culture in many ways. And really help a lot of people who are currently marginalized at Google by pointing out these huge biases that we have in this monolithic culture where anyone with a dissenting view can’t even express themselves,” he continued, adding, “Really, it’s like being gay in the 1950s.”

“These conservatives have to stay in the closet and have to mask who they really are. And that’s a huge problem because there’s open discrimination against anyone who comes out of the closet as a conservative,” Damore explained. He sparred with Business Insider’s Steve Kovach, who tried to claim that Damore attacked women in his manifesto.

“I was simply talking about the population level distributions. And I specifically call out that we should never treat an individual differently based on this because there’s so much overlap,” stated Damore. “The document was simply trying to address why there may be fewer women in technology than men. And it never said anything about the women at Google being any different than the men at Google.”

This prompted Kovach to reply, “Not at Google. But broadly it made assumptions about women as a general population though, right?”

“It didn’t make assumptions. It stated scientific facts about the population level distribution,” Damore responded.

“OK. I mean, that’s obviously up for debate too,” Kovach claimed, forcing Damore to explain, “Not really. I mean, these are empirical facts.”

“The population level distributions are not up for debate,” he continued. “Those have been documented hundreds of times.”
Clearly Damore did not realize that Mr. Kovach did not like the population level distributions. Therefore, they were an assumption, ergo subjective, consequently wrong. You'd think these SJWs would, sooner or later, get suspicious about the statistical improbability of their being absolutely right every single time.

Of course, if they grasped statistics, they wouldn't be SJWs blithely refuting empirical facts as one man's assumptions.

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"Better early than late"

First France, now Spain.
Barcelona's chief rabbi has urged Jews to move to Israel after warning that Europe has been 'lost' because of the threat from radical Islam.... In an interview with Jewish news agency JTA, he said: 'I tell my congregants: Don't think we're here for good, and I encourage them to buy property in Israel. This place is lost. Don't repeat the mistake of Algerian Jews, of Venezuelan Jews. Better early than late. Europe is lost.'
That's good advice, and it is entirely in line with what Israel's Prime Minister recommends. And although there are those who really don't like to hear it, it is absolutely pro-semitic advice that applies to the rest of the Diasporans around the world as well.

There are three things worthy of note here. First, this makes it abundantly clear that the Jews of France and Spain do not regard themselves as French nor Spanish in the end. They will not fight for their countries of residence when they have a homeland to which they can safely retreat. Which, of course, is perfectly understandable. But no such option exists for the actual French and Spanish peoples; my money is on the Spaniards, who bravely reclaimed their land and restored their nation after centuries of Islamic occupation.

The second thing is the observation smart people can genuinely see these things coming, sometimes more than a decade in advance. I was always impressed by the way Ludwig von Mises left Austria in 1934, several years before the Anschluss and five years before WWII actually began, simply due to his ability to read the tea leaves correctly.

The third thing is that Europe is not lost. Neither is America. Remember, nothing worth fighting for is lost until the very last man willing to fight for it surrenders or dies. The West is not simply going to lay down and die.

Never forget. All we need is twelve.

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The lost legacy

This is the level of punitive PC, utterly fascistic, utterly Stalinist, that my liberal colleagues in the Democratic Party and on college campuses have supported and promoted over the last several decades. The whole legacy of the free speech 1960s has been lost by my own party.
- Camille Paglia

You will note that even the life-long Democrat, Camille Paglia, recognizes that there is no essential dichotomy between fascism, Stalinism, and political correctness.

In the meantime, the pro-free speech ralliers in Boston are vastly outnumbered by the anti-free speech counter-protesters.

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The economic socialism of Nazi Germany

These observations - they can really only be considered "arguments" by the ignorant - are not new, but date back to the 1940 publication of Human Action, when Ludwig von Mises not only acknowledged the differences between Russian socialism and German socialism, both of which predated Hitler and the Nazi Party, but explicates them with his customary attention to relevant detail.

It's particularly informative in light of the fact that Mises identified German socialism with Hindenberg, not Hitler. And it's somewhat remarkable that the defenders of the false and ahistorical notion that the National Socialists were of the Right attempt to dismiss the whole subject as mere "economics", when economics is merely the more scientific-sounding title for "political economy", and the entire foundation for all socialisms is, and has always been, economic in nature.
There are two patterns for the realization of socialism.

The first pattern (we may call it the Lenin or the Russian pattern) is purely bureaucratic. All plants, shops, and farms are formally nationalized (verstaatlicht); they are departments of the government operated by civil servants. Every unit of the apparatus of production stands in the same relation to the superior central organization as does a local post office to the office of the postmaster general.

The second pattern (we may call it the Hindenburg or German pattern) nominally and seemingly preserves private ownership of the means of production and keeps the appearance of ordinary markets, prices, wages, and interest rates. There are, however, no longer entrepreneurs, but only shop managers (Betriebsführer in the terminology of the Nazi legislation). These shop managers are seemingly instrumental in the conduct of the enterprises entrusted to them; they buy and sell, hire and discharge workers and remunerate their services, contract debts and pay interest and amortization. But in all their activities they are bound to obey unconditionally the orders issued by the government's supreme office of production management.

This office (The Reichswirtschaftsministerium in Nazi Germany) tells the shop managers what and how to produce, at what prices and from whom to buy, at what prices and to whom to sell. It assigns every worker to his job and fixes his wages. It decrees to whom and on what terms the capitalists must entrust their funds. Market exchange is merely a sham. All the wages, prices, and interest rates are fixed by the government; they are wages, prices, and interest rates in appearance only; in fact they are merely quantitative terms in the government's orders determining each citizen's job, income, consumption, and standard of living. The government directs all production activities. The shop managers are subject to the government, not the consumers' demand and the market's price structure. This is socialism under the outward guise of the terminology of capitalism. Some labels of the capitalistic market economy are retained, but they signify something entirely different from what they mean in the market economy.
Note that the Reichswirtschaftsministerium, originally Reichswirtschaftsamt, was the German Government's Ministry of National Economy, and was established in 1917, two years prior to the creation of the German Worker's Party, the predecessor of the National Socialist German Worker's Party. The ministry was abolished in 1945.

What will likely strike the reader as ominous about this is the fact that the digitalization and bureaucratization of American corporatism is increasingly reminiscent of this German pattern of socialism that was adopted by the National Socialists in lieu of the Russian model. It's also worth noting that just as the German political battle of the 1930s was fought between the Russian and German socialisms, the Chinese civil war of the 1940s was fought between Chinese and German socialisms. National socialism was a different socialism than the international socialism of the Marxists, but it was a competing socialism that was neither conceived nor defined by Adolf Hitler.

But since Mises is seldom read by anyone today, being much too difficult for the average individual, his observations are often forgotten. Which, no doubt, is why George Reisman attempted to spell the concept out more slowly for the benefit of those incapable of deciphering Mises's words 12 years ago.
My purpose today is to make just two main points: (1) To show why Nazi Germany was a socialist state, not a capitalist one. And (2) to show why socialism, understood as an economic system based on government ownership of the means of production, positively requires a totalitarian dictatorship.

The identification of Nazi Germany as a socialist state was one of the many great contributions of Ludwig von Mises.

When one remembers that the word "Nazi" was an abbreviation for "der Nationalsozialistische Deutsche Arbeiters Partei — in English translation: the National Socialist German Workers' Party — Mises's identification might not appear all that noteworthy. For what should one expect the economic system of a country ruled by a party with "socialist" in its name to be but socialism?

Nevertheless, apart from Mises and his readers, practically no one thinks of Nazi Germany as a socialist state. It is far more common to believe that it represented a form of capitalism, which is what the Communists and all other Marxists have claimed....

De facto government ownership of the means of production, as Mises termed it, was logically implied by such fundamental collectivist principles embraced by the Nazis as that the common good comes before the private good and the individual exists as a means to the ends of the State. If the individual is a means to the ends of the State, so too, of course, is his property. Just as he is owned by the State, his property is also owned by the State.

But what specifically established de facto socialism in Nazi Germany was the introduction of price and wage controls in 1936. These were imposed in response to the inflation of the money supply carried out by the regime from the time of its coming to power in early 1933. The Nazi regime inflated the money supply as the means of financing the vast increase in government spending required by its programs of public works, subsidies, and rearmament. The price and wage controls were imposed in response to the rise in prices that began to result from the inflation.

The effect of the combination of inflation and price and wage controls is shortages, that is, a situation in which the quantities of goods people attempt to buy exceed the quantities available for sale.

Shortages, in turn, result in economic chaos. It's not only that consumers who show up in stores early in the day are in a position to buy up all the stocks of goods and leave customers who arrive later, with nothing — a situation to which governments typically respond by imposing rationing. Shortages result in chaos throughout the economic system. They introduce randomness in the distribution of supplies between geographical areas, in the allocation of a factor of production among its different products, in the allocation of labor and capital among the different branches of the economic system.

In the face of the combination of price controls and shortages, the effect of a decrease in the supply of an item is not, as it would be in a free market, to raise its price and increase its profitability, thereby operating to stop the decrease in supply, or reverse it if it has gone too far. Price control prohibits the rise in price and thus the increase in profitability. At the same time, the shortages caused by price controls prevent increases in supply from reducing price and profitability. When there is a shortage, the effect of an increase in supply is merely a reduction in the severity of the shortage. Only when the shortage is totally eliminated does an increase in supply necessitate a decrease in price and bring about a decrease in profitability.

As a result, the combination of price controls and shortages makes possible random movements of supply without any effect on price and profitability. In this situation, the production of the most trivial and unimportant goods, even pet rocks, can be expanded at the expense of the production of the most urgently needed and important goods, such as life-saving medicines, with no effect on the price or profitability of either good. Price controls would prevent the production of the medicines from becoming more profitable as their supply decreased, while a shortage even of pet rocks prevented their production from becoming less profitable as their supply increased.

As Mises showed, to cope with such unintended effects of its price controls, the government must either abolish the price controls or add further measures, namely, precisely the control over what is produced, in what quantity, by what methods, and to whom it is distributed, which I referred to earlier. The combination of price controls with this further set of controls constitutes the de facto socialization of the economic system. For it means that the government then exercises all of the substantive powers of ownership.

This was the socialism instituted by the Nazis. And Mises calls it socialism on the German or Nazi pattern, in contrast to the more obvious socialism of the Soviets, which he calls socialism on the Russian or Bolshevik pattern.

Of course, socialism does not end the chaos caused by the destruction of the price system. It perpetuates it. And if it is introduced without the prior existence of price controls, its effect is to inaugurate that very chaos. This is because socialism is not actually a positive economic system. It is merely the negation of capitalism and its price system. As such, the essential nature of socialism is one and the same as the economic chaos resulting from the destruction of the price system by price and wage controls. (I want to point out that Bolshevik-style socialism's imposition of a system of production quotas, with incentives everywhere to exceed the quotas, is a sure formula for universal shortages, just as exist under all around price and wage controls.)

At most, socialism merely changes the direction of the chaos. The government's control over production may make possible a greater production of some goods of special importance to itself, but it does so only at the expense of wreaking havoc throughout the rest of the economic system. This is because the government has no way of knowing the effects on the rest of the economic system of its securing the production of the goods to which it attaches special importance.

The requirements of enforcing a system of price and wage controls shed major light on the totalitarian nature of socialism — most obviously, of course, on that of the German or Nazi variant of socialism, but also on that of Soviet-style socialism as well.

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Unintended consequences

This is why it never pays to overreact to what other people are doing. Be patient and observant, and you'll see that there are usually silver linings and new opportunities that are exposed by every action, however ill-intended:
Earlier this week, internet hosting provider, GoDaddy, announced it had cancelled US neo-Nazi website, Daily Stormer, for posting an attack on Heather Heyer, the protester who was murdered at the Klan rally in Charlottesville last week. Google and CloudFlare likewise cancelled its registration after the site tried to move its hosting over to their respective services.

But while these hosting services are being congratulated by some – and condemned by others on free-speech grounds – for ensuring that those looking to commit violence have to work slightly harder to get access to their like-minded Nazi communities, those who own the means of transmission – namely Google, Facebook and Twitter – are still preventing the rest of us from accessing information that allows people to make sense of the world around us.

Earlier this month, Google altered its algorithm – allegedly in an attempt to address the ‘fake news’ problem – and in doing so, a broad array of anti-establishment news organisations, whistleblower, civil-rights and anti-war websites were censored from its search listings. But most people were too distracted by the opinions of some low-level engineer on Google’s diversity hiring policies and its intolerance of conservative views in the workplace to take notice.

The data released by WSWS shows that since Google altered its algorithm, Wikileaks experienced a 30% decline in traffic from Google searches. Democracy Now fell by 36%. Truthout dropped by 25%. Its own traffic dropped by 67% percent over the same period. Alternet saw a 63% decline in traffic. Media Matters saw a 36% drop in traffic. Counterpunch.org fell by 21%. The Intercept fell by 19%.

In May, WSWS was ranked 5th in Google searches for the keyword ‘socialism’. Today the WSWS is nowhere to be found in the top 200 searches for the same keyword. In addition, Google blocked every one of WSW’s top 45 search terms.

Aaron Kaufman, director of development at progressive news outlet, Common Dreams said that Google Search as a percentage of total traffic to the Common Dreams website has decreased nearly 50 percent since May.
Of course, this really shouldn't be a surprise. After all, as I have conclusively demonstrated, if you shoot at Nazis, you're mostly going to hit leftists.

Google is not the only player in this censorship game. Earlier last year, anti-establishment information services – Renegade Inc included – experienced a 20% drop in traffic to its Facebook pages, after the social-network altered its algorithm, again, allegedly in an attempt to crack down on ‘fake news’.

Perhaps these leftist sites should stop attempting to push Fake News. It's interesting to note that since this crackdown on Fake News, the traffic here has observably risen. I doubt there is any actual connection, but it is an amusingly timed coincidence.

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Friday, August 18, 2017

"The Trump presidency is over"

As always, don't count the God-Emperor out. Not even if Darth Bannon has.
“The Trump presidency that we fought for, and won, is over,” Bannon said Friday, shortly after confirming his departure. “We still have a huge movement, and we will make something of this Trump presidency. But that presidency is over. It’ll be something else. And there’ll be all kinds of fights, and there’ll be good days and bad days, but that presidency is over.”

It is plainly Bannon’s view that his departure is not a defeat for him personally, but for the ideology he’d urged upon the president, as reflected in Trump’s provocative inaugural address—in which he spoke of self-dealing Washington politicians, and their policies that led to the shuttered factories and broken lives of what he called “American carnage.” Bannon co-authored that speech (and privately complained that it had been toned down by West Wing moderates like Ivanka and Jared).

“Now, it’s gonna be Trump,” Bannon said. “The path forward on things like economic nationalism and immigration, and his ability to kind of move freely . . . I just think his ability to get anything done—particularly the bigger things, like the wall, the bigger, broader things that we fought for, it’s just gonna be that much harder.”

Bannon assigns blame for the thwarting of his program on “the West Wing Democrats,” but holds special disdain for the Washington establishment—especially those Republicans who have, he believes, willfully failed to provide Trump with meaningful victories.

And, he believes, things are about to get worse for Trump. “There’s about to be a jailbreak of these moderate guys on the Hill”—a stream of Republican dissent, which could become a flood.

Bannon says that he once confidently believed in the prospect of success for that version of the Trump presidency he now says is over. Asked what the turning point was, he says, “It’s the Republican establishment. The Republican establishment has no interest in Trump’s success on this. They’re not populists, they’re not nationalists, they had no interest in his program. Zero. It was a half-hearted attempt at Obamacare reform, it was no interest really on the infrastructure, they’ll do a very standard Republican version of taxes.

“What Trump ran on—border wall, where is the funding for the border wall, one of his central tenets, where have they been? Have they rallied around the Perdue-Cotton immigration bill? On what element of Trump’s program, besides tax cuts—which is going to be the standard marginal tax cut—where have they rallied to Trump’s cause? They haven’t.”

Bannon believes that those who will now try to influence Trump will hope to turn him in a sharply different direction.

“I think they’re going to try to moderate him,” he says. “I think he’ll sign a clean debt ceiling, I think you’ll see all this stuff. His natural tendency—and I think you saw it this week on Charlottesville—his actual default position is the position of his base, the position that got him elected. I think you’re going to see a lot of constraints on that. I think it’ll be much more conventional.”

But Bannon believes that Trump, with the help of Stephen K. Bannon, has already effected a lasting realignment of American politics.

As for himself, Bannon says the fight is just beginning.

“I feel jacked up,” he says. “Now I’m free. I’ve got my hands back on my weapons. Someone said, ‘it’s Bannon the Barbarian.’ I am definitely going to crush the opposition. There’s no doubt. I built a f***ing machine at Breitbart. And now I’m about to go back, knowing what I know, and we’re about to rev that machine up. And rev it up we will do.”
I tend to suspect that Trump is not going to react well to the Republican establishment attempting to chain him and ride him like a newly broken horse. We'll see.

The Darkstream on the subject.

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Bannon is out... again

Apparently Drudge thinks that this time, it's for real.
SENIOR ADVISOR MOVING ON AFTER IMPRESSIVE RUN, THE DRUDGE REPORT HAS LEARNED...

POPULIST HERO MAY RETURN TO BREITBART...

BANNON OUT AT WHITE HOUSE
As always with the God-Emperor, I counsel patience. Don't assume that you understand what is going on, much less why anything is happening. Don't count out Donald Trump. And above all, don't take the media's spin at face value.

UPDATE: Bannon submitted his resignation on August 7th, according to @NYTimes

UPDATE: The real reason Bannon is out: he opposes war in Korea, Venezuela, Syria, etc.

UPDATE: Bannon: "I am going to go medieval on enemies of Trump now."

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The Man in the Arena

This is a nice defense of yours truly by Rabbi B at Men of the West. I don't ask for anyone to defend me, but I do appreciate those of every race, religion, and even creed who are willing to stand beside me, or even just hold their fire long enough to pay a modicum of respect.
There is an old saying that it’s the pioneers who take the arrows. This is most certainly true of Vox Day and perhaps ironically so, considering his Native American heritage. I think many would agree that Vox has certainly taken his fair share of arrows lately. Now, this may not qualify him as the undisputed leader of the Alt-right (and Vox is quite loathe to exalt or proclaim himself as a leader of anything), but I would argue that it certainly qualifies him as one of its unsung heroes.

Vox is simply a person who is committed to the truth; always has been and always will be, period. In Jewish parlance, he is a mensch. In an age where the truth is spun, disparaged, and cast to the ground to be trampled underfoot, Vox is not content to stand by and do nothing. Vox, to put it plainly, is a man who is valiant for the truth.

We find ourselves in a time where the end justifies the means and the truth be damned, and so Vox is not only going to be misunderstood and misrepresented due to his superior intellect for which many are simply no match, but even more so on account of the truths which he tirelessly expresses, champions, and defends day in and day out.

Because of his staunch commitment to the truth, he is inevitably going to make some enemies along the way and, consequently, he is going to be forced to endure and withstand a steady barrage of attacks from every quarter: the Left, the Right, the center, the cuckservatives, the neo-cons, the libertarians, the Alt-right, the Alt-lite, the you-fill-in-the-blank. There is no shortage of those who oppose the truth and who are unafraid and brazen enough to relentlessly attack the valiant vessels of the truth. Vox just happens to be such a vessel for a time such as this.
The thing that I always try to keep in mind is that the truth is what it is, regardless of what you, or I, or anyone else, happen to think. Now, we see as through through a glass, darkly. So, be as ruthlessly honest with yourself as you can, and all the rest will tend to fall in line on its own.

I don't expect everyone to agree with me. I don't expect ANYONE to agree with me on everything. How could I, when I don't always agree with my own ideas from five or ten years ago? What I expect is the aforementioned arrows, some merited, some not so much.

I don't really care about labels and parties and movements and such. What I care about is the underlying ideas that they represent, in some cases accurately, in some cases not accurately at all. Because ideas are how we understand the truth, and whatever small fragments of the Truth that we are capable of comprehending.

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Conservatives move rightward

Thomas Jefferson calls out the hypocrisy of his fellow conservatives:
Even though I’m a Christian, I tended to lean classically liberal and libertarian politically for years. But as NeoMarxism surfaced more and more on the left, it pushed me further right into conservatism. I enjoyed the ‘straight-talk’ of conservative personalities like Ben Shapiro and Steven Crowder. I enjoyed that they challenged the narratives of the left with facts and statistics. “Facts don’t care about your feelings”, Ben Shapiro’s famous motto, fit my personality very well. It was refreshing to hear people buck political correctness and state the facts. The pursuit of truth in spite of anyone’s emotions or political agendas should be paramount.

However, since the AltRight became more prominent in the past two years, and the subject of ethnicity had surfaced as a topic of discussion and debate in the right-wing, I began to notice a level of hypocrisy among my fellow conservatives.

Personalities like Shapiro, Crowder and Michael J.Knowles, who love to shame the left for their denial of statistical, scientific and observable differences between the sexes, suddenly would not give the same credence to the subject of statistical, scientific, and observable differences between ethnicities. They consistently demonize or dismiss members of the AltRight or others who would talk extensively on these subjects like Jared Taylor and Charles Murray. They would apply the leftist technique of ‘guilt by association’ to other conservatives who attended rallies where AltRight members happened to be, or who referenced studies by Taylor or Murray, even though these conservatives didn’t espouse their political views.

They attribute all verifiable differences between ethnicities as a cultural/environmental issue, which is a perfectly valid position, but they won’t even entertain the studies, facts, and statistics that support a potential genetic component. And then try to arrogantly shame people for exploring these interesting theories. Isn’t it the sign of a true intellectual to entertain ideas without dismissing or espousing them? Where is the intellectualism here? Is ethnic genetic differences the last true taboo?
There is considerably more there, so read the whole thing. He's right about the fact that conservatives are, understandably enough, very, very reluctant to give up on their civic nationalism and accept the reality of identity politics. But they will do so, they are doing so, because they have no other choice unless they are to follow Bill Kristol's lead and openly acknowledge their own leftism.

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Civil War 2.0

Whose side are you on, asks Pat Buchanan:
First in his class at West Point, hero of the Mexican War, Lee was the man to whom President Lincoln turned to lead his army. But when Virginia seceded, Lee would not lift up his sword against his own people and chose to defend his home state rather than wage war upon her.

This veneration of Lee, wrote Richard Weaver, “appears in the saying attributed to a Confederate soldier, ‘The rest of us may have … descended from monkeys, but it took a God to make Marse Robert.'”

Growing up after World War II, this was accepted history.

Yet, on the militant left today, the name Lee evokes raw hatred and howls of “racist and traitor.” A clamor has arisen to have all statues of him and all Confederate soldiers and statesmen pulled down from their pedestals and put in museums or tossed onto trash piles.

What has changed since 1965?

It is not history. There have been no great new discoveries about Lee.

What has changed is America herself. She is not the same country. We have passed through a great social, cultural and moral revolution that has left us irretrievably divided on separate shores.

And the politicians are in panic....

While easy for Republicans to wash their hands of such odious elements as Nazis in Charlottesville, will they take up the defense of the monuments and statues that have defined our history, or capitulate to the icon-smashers?

In this Second American Civil War, whose side are you on?
This is why the Fake News is so desperate to draw a mythical line between Nazi vs Not-Nazi, rather than Nationalist Right vs Globalist Left, as the situation actually requires, because they know they fall on the weaker side that is actively opposed to American heritage and history and tradition.

And it is also why they are desperate to hide the obvious link between the coming civil war and post-1965 immigration. History clearly shows that there are only two ways to stop this war. One is to proactively break up the United States and implement population transfers, the other is to restore the pre-1965 population demographics through mass repatriations.

Neither solution is likely. Man seldom takes the opportunity to avoid war. That's why he is doomed to fight them. The citizens of the USA are not exceptional in this regard.

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Thursday, August 17, 2017

Live Debate tonight

Greg Johnson stepped up to meet the challenge I threw down on the Darkstream the other night. Tara McCarthy is hosting the debate at 7 PM.

The official topic being debated is: "Are National Socialists a legitimate element of the Alt-Right?"

Greg Johnson argues Yes.

Vox Day argues No.

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Terror attack in Barcelona

Another truck attack, this time kills 13+ in Spain:
A van plowed into crowds in the heart of Barcelona on Thursday and Spanish media reported at least 13 people were killed, in what police said they were treating as a terrorist attack.

The death toll was reported by Cadena Ser radio, citing police sources. Police said some people were dead and injured but did not confirm the number of casualties. They said were searching for the driver of the van.

Spanish newspaper El Periodico said two armed men were holed up in a bar in Barcelona's city center, and reported gunfire in the area, although it did not cite the source of the information.

It was not immediately clear whether the incidents were connected.

A source familiar with the initial U.S. government assessment said the incident appeared to be terrorism, and a White House spokeswoman said President Donald Trump was being kept abreast of the situation.
They have to go back. What other answer is there? And where is El Cid? Where is St. James Matamoros?

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