Friday Finance – Millennials will save America

The hard sell

‘Millennials will make the American economy boom over the 2020s.’

It’s an unusual sentiment to hear in this age of doom and gloom.

My first reaction was the same as yours, but Tom Lee has put together a convincing demographic case that American growth ought to be stronger than than of other major economies into the 2030s due to its comparatively large Millennial population.

Let’s examine the stats and consider counterarguments.

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Contempt for human life

Rooster by Alice in Chains, 1992.

No matter how old I get, it continues to shock me how little rulers care about human life.

If they care at all, it is usually with a degree of self-centered abstraction. If too many middle-class boys get drafted, the Vietnam War will become unpopular. If the Covid stats look bad, it might hurt at the upcoming election. We can determine that they have no real concern for human life by examining their actions when their power is not at risk.

The same people who despaired of each nursing home resident lost to corona now recklessly toy with nuclear brinkmanship to an extent we have not seen since 1962 – and back then the Dr Strangeloves were at least wise enough to realize the gravity of the game they were playing. They at least showed some consistency by having shrugged off the very Covid-like Asian Flu a few years earlier.

Laying out the reasoning of both sides in the Ukraine conflict will illustrate how low human lives are on the list of priorities for world rulers.

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Word from the Dark Side – online brawls, Portland falls, Paraguay calls and bishop crawls

La Dolly Vita by the Smashing Pumpkins, 1994.

David Spann Was Murdered by the Sisterhood:

I already got questions. It’s 2am and this guy tells the police that he’s going to look for a perp in the guy’s home? Like, a no-knock warrant but without the warrant? Or the badge? Or a crime? That was never going to end well.

Attacks on ABC presenter Fauziah Ibrahim go too far!

It’s fairly common knowledge that social media can be gross. By gross, I mean vile. By vile, I mean a bottom feeding cesspool where human decency goes to die . . .

I’ve been watching on as keyboard warriors use hate speech to condemn and deride ABC Weekend Breakfast presenter Fauziah Ibrahim, after it was revealed that she had dozens of Twitter users categorised in lists she had labelled “Lobotomised Shitheads” and “Labor Trolls”. 

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Friday Finance – USD will die hard

female and dollar bills

Source

[Edit: I wrote this article before the Ukraine war and have added an update at the end. Let’s see how wrong I was.]

We’ll all be rooned!

There’s a lot of panic about the American dollar going the way the Zimbabwean dollar, what with all the brrr* and inflation and what-not.

It’s important to keep this in persective.

In the foreseeable future, uncomfortably high inflation is likely but hyperinflation is not.

Given the Japanese experience, the chances of deflation are >0.

Reserve currency
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Welcome to Hell

welcome to hell e-book

Book review of Welcome to Hell by “Bad” Billy Pratt


I’ve been reading Bad Billy’s blog Kill to Party for many years. In a sphere of game and neoreaction, his site is more a mix of personal dating horror stories and thwarted romantic dreams presented through the lens of pop culture as he attempts to pull apart what the hell happened to GenX.

Welcome to Hell is a collection of these blog posts but it also holds together as a book because the themes develop throughout.

Rather than blame everything on Boomers, his attention is focused inward:

Despite all the nihilistic postering, it’s important to remember that Generation X wasn’t the one with all the school shootings. The murky attitude was as shallow as the cuts on their wrists; it was a fashion accessory, it was an act, it was total bullshit. Even if they didn’t become noteworthy go-getters, GenX eventually had to grow up into lame adults.

Though carefully outside the mainstream Manosphere, Billy gets drawn into the last decade’s Manofads. One of the most interesting chapters is about his addiction to kratom, which he describes alongside the self-destruction of the Stone Temple Pilot’s lead singer:

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Word from the Dark Side – be me, brands of the masters, busty wallpaper and benefiting from inflation

Deutschland by Rammstein, 2019. HT Pickle Rick from his reply to this post.

When lost time hunts you down:

Woke up at 3 this morning even though I went to bed beyond exhausted. After spending my day off working for the carpenter.   

Must’ve been disturbed by some blue light or wifi rays or a microwave running in my neighbors kitchen. Now my testosterone will crash and I’ll get fat. Jerk off to porn and send money to camgirls. 

I have to calibrate every detail of my life to maximize testosterone production so I can send manly emails and write badass tweets and have sex with women who’ll forget who I am in a month. Repeat this until I’m 80 years old. The pickup artists said it’s better to enjoy the memories of heated trysts on your deathbed than review decades of marital drudgery. But I can’t even remember sex from last summer, so what’s the point? 

I want to forget it all. Chasing after a persona. Neurotically fixating on the minutia of my physical and mental functioning, the microscopic monsters in my environment. Instead I want to chug tap water and bathe in canola oil and get four hours of sleep a night on sheets of quilted receipt paper . . .

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But still, they come!

It just has the line in the song, don’t go nuts.

In a comment, Luisman mused as to why immigrants continue to come to the West. I’ll try to dissect the reasons in this post.

The First Immigration Paradox

1. The West is uniquely racist and white people are responsible for most of the world’s problems.

2. Non-white immigrants continue to flock to the racist West in order to be discriminated against by evil white people. Some cross deserts and oceans, risking rape and death to do so.

The Second Immigration Paradox

1. The West is in catastrophic decline and Asia is rising.

2. Many immigrants, including Asians, continue to flock to the declining West.

Confusing, no?

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Word from the Dark Side – secret army, sneering at Russia, smartphones are mandatory and stunning and brave prisoners

Great Mass in C minor by Mozart, 1782-83. Like his other major religious work, the Requiem, it was never finished.

A reminder that the Pentagon has a secret army:

The largest undercover force the world has ever known is the one created by the Pentagon over the past decade. Some 60,000 people now belong to this secret army, many working under masked identities and in low profile, all part of a broad program called “signature reduction.” The force, more than ten times the size of the clandestine elements of the CIA, carries out domestic and foreign assignments, both in military uniforms and under civilian cover, in real life and online, sometimes hiding in private businesses and consultancies, some of them household name companies.

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Friday Finance – 3 YouTubers

Here are three finance YouTubers and a brief assessment of each:

Graham Stephan

The titles and thumbnails are always clickbait but the content itself is sensible. While he addresses fun stuff like crypto and meme stocks, the bulk of his information reminds the viewer to invest consistently over the long term.

This channel is at just the right level for people who have already read my book. It often reinforces basic lessons that we’ve already learned but need to be reminded of: timing the market is a fool’s game, of course the market’s going to crash but nobody knows when, stick to your strategy and avoid fear and greed.

The Compound

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Civil War II is over (if you want it)

I think everyone missed what happened.

Throughout 2020, there was a general understanding that the US was headed for some sort of constitutional crisis. It has been building for years, especially since 2015, and it was ready to pop.

Half the nation refused to accept the 2016 Presidential election result, believing it was rigged by the Russians or something like that.

The ruling class refused to accept Trump and spent four years undermining him in any way they could.

This culminated in the run-up to the 2020 election, where Big Pharma paused vaccine testing in case it gave Trump an advantage, health authorities demanded lockdowns to destroy the Trump economy, various elite factions aided and defended Antifa/BLM riots to make Trump look bad and Big Tech covered up the Hunter Biden laptop scandal by censoring anyone who mentioned it, including myself.

All year, the world expected things to come to a head, and they did.

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Word from the Dark Side – doctor warning, Deep State reporting, scary waterfalling and failed yen forging

Sweet Child by Pentangle, 1968

Suggestions to Australian doctors from a medical indemnity insurance company. My bold:

Use social media with caution. Be very careful when using social media (even on your personal pages), when authoring papers or when appearing in interviews. Health practitioners are obliged to ensure their views are consistent with public health messaging. This is particularly relevant in current times. Views expressed which may be consistent with evidence-based material may not necessarily be consistent with public health messaging.

Hmm:

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Word from the Dark Side – the fog of war, free no more, stock markets soar and a pretty . . . lady (updated)

Birthday (English version) by The Sugarcubes, 1987. This is what you get when you grow up in an Icelandic hippie commune.

The end of Covid?

What has ended, is merely the acute phase of a much larger and longer-term phenomenon. In fact, I think Acute Corona has been over for longer than many of us realised. As staged by pandemic planners, virologists, and politicians, this charade was always meant to close with mass vaccination in the final act. When the vaccines failed, there was a paroxysm of rage and despair, and then the energy was gone. While Omicron finally broke the containment regime, it would’ve come apart in any case. After the vaccines, there was simply nothing left for anybody to do. Sooner or later, one jurisdiction after the other would’ve started looking for the exits. Omicron was the proximate cause only.

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Friday Finance – how to win a stock-picking competition . . .

. . . and what this tells us about actively-managed funds.

[This is no prank, it just happens that April 1 falls on a Finance Friday this year.]

The situation

You may be invited to participate in a stock-picking competition, perhaps run by your workplace or the financial section of the newspaper.

Let’s say, hypothetically, that you have to choose three stocks for a period of one year. Winner takes all. Mathematically, what would be the best way of playing it?

The strategy
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Real science, personified

We live in a time where science has become The Science, a regime-affiliated religion whose purpose is to justify ill-gotten profits and tyrannical policy.

This goes together with many other failures: bias due to funding, the replication crisis, p-hacking, the pressure to publish positive results and data falsification. Here is a good summary to get you started on the scale of the problem (HT).

What a perfect opportunity to recall and admire real science. The following story is a perfect example.


Scientists were once certain that stomach ulcers and gastritis are caused by either stress or too much acid – the sources vary. Perhaps they thought the stress caused the acid.

In any case, these conditions were treated with antacids, antidepressants or psychotherapy.

A gastroenterologist from Perth, of all places, thought that was wrong. Barry Marshall reckoned that it was caused by harmful bacteria, based on earlier research that had shown a weird type of spiral microbe was present in sufferers.

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Sunday Story – Pod People

Source

Peter’s boredom had reached its limit.  It had compounded over many years but today it reached a kind of terminal velocity: he was as bored as it was possible for a man to be.

After waking, he entered his favourite breakfast buffet room.  He was sick of food.  All fruits regardless of season, many cereals, eggs every way, French toast, sausages, bacon and eggs, lamb curry, chicken stir-fry, a dozen cakes, endless juice, tea and coffee.  He could eat for hours without getting full or fat.  But what was the point?  A lot of people didn’t bother eating any more.

He skipped breakfast and checked the Game of Thrones room.  AI was constantly generating new episodes with deepfakes of John Snow and the other characters which mimicked the scripting of that era.  Peter sighed.  He’d done it to death.  Even the interactive mode where you could play a role was dull after the hundredth time.

There was a fully pornographic version of the series but instead Peter went directly to one of the dedicated adult rooms.  There were as many to choose from as human and AI imagination could conjure – spa baths, secluded beaches and presidential suites stocked with every variety of nubile woman, plus rooms specializing in anime characters, monsters, robots and a thousand other things.  There were some very disturbing rooms.  These used to be banned out of concern that someone might be conditioned to harm others in real life but over time that fear had faded.  The only rule in the Pod now was that you had to be respectful towards real people.  Computer-generated non-player characters, or NPCs, were fair game.

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McNamara’s morons

Image source: Full Metal Jacket

Review of McNamara’s Folly: The Use of Low-IQ Troops in the Vietnam War by Hamilton Gregory, 2015


It is an eternal fallacy to imagine that we live in uniquely corrupted times. Reading any good history book reminds us that we’ve always been this bad, but then we put the book down, check social media and go back to thinking we are in the End Times.

In America, the 1960-70s hosted an evil that I’m unaware of in any other time or place: forcibly recruiting mentally disabled men to fight in the Vietnam War.

Men who could not learn how to independently load or maintain a rifle. Men whose disability affected their physical coordination, meaning they could not pass the required tests.

The demand for warm bodies was so great that they deployed them anyway.

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