A new sandpit for long side discussions, conspiracy theories, idees fixes and so on.

To be clear, the sandpit is for regular commenters to pursue points that distract from regular discussion, including conspiracy-theoretic takes on the issues at hand. It’s not meant as a forum for visiting conspiracy theorists, or trolls posing as such.

263 thoughts on “Sandpit

  1. Keep looking I say. I got it the first time. Where the centre of the explosion was, and looking at the symmetrical shape of the separate explosion and where this implies the epicentre is. Matching that with the crater.

    I think people only miss what they are looking at, because their mind is repelled by the implications.

    I still can’t tell from looking at a video whether it shows fertiliser burning or not, and I still can’t tell whether it shows a nuclear explosion or not, because I don’t know how one looks different from the other. If you do know how to tell the difference and are not explaining it, it seems as if you are deliberately hiding the information from me, which seems odd. I can’t explain that at all.

  2. “With food insecurity already prevalent because of the increase in food prices, the need for increased access to food remains in the wake of the explosion, which destroyed Lebanon’s primary grain silo.”

    Yes it was the perfect leverage point in the entire nation to cripple Lebanon, and therefore the confidence that Hezbollah might have had to retaliate agains Israeli terrorism. So out of every square inch of Lebanon, the Israeli leadership chose that place which would do the most harm. Even getting aid to Beirut will be horribly complicated now. All the silos down. All the stored wheat gone.

    As coincidence theory demands, the Prime Minister of Israel has been bitching and moaning about this area, pretending it was bristling with missile production and missile storage facilities and all that. This is so that he’s got that fallback position that the attack wasn’t about crippling the country, but instead was targeted towards munitions factories.

    Complete nonsense. Not even a plausible story. But the Likudniks are great at keeping a straight face with their excuses. They were busted using white phosphorous on the small children. When pushed for an answer to such incredible barbarism at quora, the excuse was that they wanted to light up the battlefield in order that civilians lives be spared. Riiiiiigggghhhhtttt. You people heard of lights?

    So you know. The excuses just get old after awhile.

    Coincidence theory, which is the necessary opponent of the idea that people plan, is very reminiscent of the Douglas Adams concept of the Infinite improbability drive. A great plot device. But the Likud ascendancy seem to have taken the concept and run with it.

  3. KT2,

    There are not a lot of options with conspiracy theorists;

    (a) Facts are useless. They are impervious to facts.
    (b) Tolerance is useless. They abuse tolerance.
    (c) Silence is useless. They spam sites.
    (d) Abandoning a site gives them the entire forum.

    Topics can be shut down but the only viable option is to ban fact-impervious conspiracy theorists. J.Q. has tried that and certain sock-puppets keep coming back. That may be an administration problem or a technical problem, I am not sure.

    I’ve also noticed the need for site owners to be vigilant and firm. If one runs a site, one ought to read every post. Out of self-protection one will then ban people who write only gibberish and promptly close down threads gone haywire.

    The only way we can all stop “providing dataset and training for deep fakes” is to leave the internet. Hard as it might be to believe from reading this site, I am overall “leaving the internet” progressively and over time. My posts on other sites (economics, political theory, computer game theory, ecology) have all declined. That’s not from any clear overt decision but simply from a gathering feeling that it’s all pointless and hopeless. The internet has been co-opted by bad actors, state, corporate and individual. The general enemy now is global interconnection itself. There is no need to campaign against this interconnection. It’s self-limiting and self-destroying. The collapse process has already begun.

  4. Facts Ikon? You have some facts for me? The country was founded on terrorism. Thats a fact. If you are suggesting they changed this policy; what month was that again? The Israelis themselves founded Hamas in the early 80’s. Thats a fact too. If you think they lost all influence over the group they had created, what month was that again?

    Do you know the other area within Lebanon that the Prime Minister was bitching about? Their airport. Thats a fact. He’s claiming that all kinds of what we would call defence materiel is right next to the airport. So he was complaining about the area where they had their most important port and most of their grain and now its all destroyed. Thats a fact. We have missile footage that can be seen in the negative which has not yet been debunked. Thats a fact. And he was also bitching and moaning about defence materiel next to the airport. So I think he wanted to destroy their most important infrastructure. Thats an interpretation.

    The idea that you can rule out conspiracy in world affairs is a logic fail. Thats a fact. Get over it. The Israelis were committing terrorist bombing on Syria, and the West bank the day before. Thats a fact.

  5. There’s another thing about this. Supposing you are right. And the Israelis would sometimes be accused of things they are not actually guilty of …. Is that some massive cosmic tragedy given their known behaviour? I mean obviously if you are a hardened criminal and you are murdering your neighbours (Lebanese, Syrian, Iraqis and Iranians) all the time, occasionally you will be accused of doing some things that you aren’t actually guilty of. Thats hardly some sort of crisis. Thats just normal.

    It isn’t happening this time. But you expect it to happen a great deal.

  6. There’s a bad gangster in a city. He eventually ends up being blamed for everything including accidents and “acts of God”. Thus is born the conspiracy myth of the omnipotent villain.

  7. Right. Or the gangster ends up making God the patsy. Making God the Oswald. You go from that to blaming Mossad for stealing your shoe. Mossad sends a message by stealing a shoe and leaving the other one there. Which would be extremely scary and then the Prime Minister himself sneers at the accusation.

    But if you have people who shoot unarmed kids from the safe side of a fence, and the kids aren’t even carrying wire cutters or anything, then you can hardly get them off the hook for stealing a shoe just to put mental pressure on someone. Breaking and entering and sending a message. For my part if I wanted these people in the house I’d buy a television. Thats a perfectly plausible accusation for a Hamas leader to make, given the people we are dealing with.

    So the idea is to do what you can to break down this code of silence. This criticism omertà against these primitive Likud savages.

  8. … Complete nonsense. Not even a plausible story. …

    If you are deliberately concealing information, nothing you write can be relied on.

  9. Putting those sorts of factories, or worse, long-time storage facilities right next to your airport or most important wharf is implausible from a logistics perspective. If the Israelis found such a thing it would be in their interests to maintain the inefficiency. Its like if you have some of the young folks dumping pallets just outside the factory lift. It creates a choke point. So where you have your wharf its all short-term storage and unloading facilities. Or transport facilities. Better still you could unload the pallets at the wharf and immediately take them to an outer suburb for unloading and just free up as much space around the wharf so as not to have choke points. Like if you have Sydney wharf you can load the gear on trucks, take them out during the night to a place like Prestons, and have specialist unloading outfits unload them there. Such is the space requirement necessary so close to a major port.

    Now supposing we had our logistics all wrong and we had all these weapons up near the Darwin Port (scandalously now controlled by our strategic competitor). Do we expect the Indonesian Prime Minister to be bitching and moaning about the situation? No only Israel acts in this whining fashion. But Hezbollah knows where the terrorists are. So they will position their rockets and factories accordingly. Not all up at the Israeli border, but their weapons will be positioned with the terrorist border, and defence in depth in mind. They won’t have their gear clogging up the wharf or creating logistical problems at the airport. So when the Prime Minister or some other Yahoo gets up and is moaning about this or that at first you think “What is he complaining about now….” But your next thought should be that he is planning to do something really really awful.

  10. “Unload the pallets at the wharf..” I meant to say unload the CONTAINERS at the wharf. Logistically the best thing to do is just to get the containers away from the wharf and sort them out in a place where you have more land to work with. I remember unloading pallets near Melbourne wharf back in the day. That may still happen after a fashion. But competitor companies can set up at the fringes of town and the containers be sent straight there, which I take to be the better arrangement. No way to you want long-term stockpiling anywhere near the premium space.

    So why would some Yahoo complain about weapons factories if they were in the wrong area? Rather than try and be a good neighbour? If he’s got something to fear it would be missiles close to the border. They pretend to poo soil their pants with fear when they are a major nuclear power. So he must have decided its just easier to cripple their neighbour entirely.

    If you listen to this fellow his words ought to hang him. His whining is incomprehensible, without excuse-making for taking down the logistics of the country in mind.

  11. Thanks Ikon. As per usual you provide clear and intelligent reasoning.

    I like the sandpit analogy allowing castles to be built both on sand -rwall yet ephemeral, and in sky, allows for us kids to throw a bit, and wow, sandstorms too.

    This thread does need to be studied and handed to Beirut residents as a history & added weight for future residents to seehiw ‘some’ react.

    I still think your talents are required elsewhere.

    Over at clubtroppo I haave notice a bot posting a 1 or 2 sentence highly relevant comment. Then the ‘more here’ come on line.

    One day we will be talking to a bot with Turing like powers. Soon.


  12. “Thanks Ikon. As per usual you provide clear and intelligent reasoning.”

    Your wish to play down Israeli nuclear terrorism is well noted.

    But great post by ikon on the other thread. For my part I like three layers of management. Four as an absolute maximum. Good work on what causes the rate of profit in an economy has already been done. George Reisman’s work on this is excellent. So hold your nose about having to read a libertarian and appreciate the technical excellence. More offensive than high profits are the obscene salaries these bludgers are paying themselves.

    I think the changes Peter Reith brought need to be reversed and the reversal sunsetted. I understand what he was trying to do but we need a much sleeker business sector, and until we get that we should have strong unions. Even if they cause a bit of trouble. And also until we get a sleeker more competitive business environment I think the government should find a way to lean on businesses to push these salaries down. Not on the first layer. Not on the 2nd layer. But above that the salaries tend to be too high and it must have something to do with what the Nitzan/Bichler research project has to say about power.

    Its incredible that the solution to every business challenge is now to chisel the deal of the workers. No creativity any more. Just chisel the worker and try and get the bonus. In a business with six layers of management you could probably wipe out the top three layers, split up the business into smaller units, sort out whose running things, and everything would likely go ahead just fine. The idea of the workers taking over the factories was impractical extremism. Absolutism where you get a few good ideas and push them way further than they could rightly go. But somewhere in there there is some sort of sensible middle ground. Maybe the top two layers could be more reasonable. One doesn’t want to repeat the error of being too extreme.

  13. If we take prudent action can we aviod the wurst? If some Aliens from Mars sent us a message that said if you take prudent action now you can avoid the worst aspects of global warming, would they be telling us the truth? Or, would they be telling us a polite lie designed not to rob us of hope during our death throws?
    Then what about the second worst horror? If the worst is extinction, what would the second worst be?
    If prudent action can avoid the worst would it take extreme action to avoid the second worst?
    Here is a an example of the difference between prudent action and extreme action. You are driving on top of a glacier racing towards a cliff in Selma and Louise’s car. A prudent action would be to step hard on the breaks. An extreme action would be to set off an explosive device in the car which will definately seriously injure you when it explodes and have a 65% chance of killing you.

  14. Veterans today have all the information on the Israeli missile strike. They say that they used two missiles. A Gabriel anti ship missile. The second explosion was caused by Israeli Delilah missile from F16 they say. They say it had a nuclear warhead with a 6 kilotonne payload. I find this very surprising actually. Because I would have thought you’d have to have divers in and plant the bomb deep in the water and under the wharf to avoid a flash and excessive radiation. You could aim the missile there but that sounds like pretty fancy aiming. By the shape of the crater you would think it was aimed deep and just a couple of metres from the wharf. Others speak with great assurance about the new model weapons not necessarily having the flash. Doesn’t sound right to me but they will lay out exquisite detail with implied confidence. Veterans today has great contributors but the boss is a big blowhard. I wouldn’t have thought he’d get something like this completely wrong.

    In happier news people are saying that Ivermectin is even more powerful than HCQ for killing the coronavirus. This one has slipped past the worldwide campaign of treatment denial so the idea is to get hold of some before the authorities start demonising and banning it. Right now they are just giving it the silent treatment.

    You would have easily been able to get a hold of HCQ a year ago prior to the terrorist attack. But now you’d have to be practicing witchcraft. They will try to stop us from using Ivermectin but they won’t be able to do it with the strength and vigour with which they campaigned against HCQ. That campaign was baked into the cake. An integral part of the operation. So they risk giving the game away if they go too far with this one.

  15. Pretty fancy excuse-making from Rachel Lance at Wired. She didn’t mention the missiles. Thats a big oversight. Is she not going to take into account the phase change of water in the speed of the dome expansion? Doesn’t count for anything in her view.

    Actually we are still lacking confirmation that there was any real fertiliser present. Veterans Today says the bogus paperwork is related to three countries that don’t produce the fertiliser. So you know. Sounds like a long-run Mossad operation starting from back in the day when almost no-one realised they were using nuclear weapons ruthlessly in the field. Sooner or later their Jedi-Night-like powers, of making us not see what is so clearly in front of us, had to fade. People were prepared this time around because we already had the denial when it came to other venues (Bali, Homs, Beirut 83 and others).

  16. CRS.

    ONCE. Just for you…

    Being Deluded After Being Excluded? How Emotion Regulation Deficits in Paranoia-Prone Individuals Affect State Paranoia During Experimentally Induced Social Stress


    Emotion regulation (ER) has become a relevant construct to understanding paranoia. While the ER strategy called expressive suppression (e.g., poker face) may foster state paranoia by increasing arousal, another strategy calledreappraisal (e.g., changing the perspective on situations) may reduce negative emotions and state paranoia when adaptively used. However, if reappraisal fails, this could increase paranoia. The aim of this study was to test the proposed effects of the ER strategies on state paranoia in the socially stressful situation of being excluded in paranoia-prone individuals. We conducted an experimental online study with N = 116 participants who were randomized to a social inclusion or an exclusion condition using a virtual Cyberball ball-tossing game. They completed questionnaires on paranoia proneness and habitual ER strategies. Before and after the Cyberball task, participants rated their level of state paranoia. The impact of habitual ER strategies, paranoia proneness, and social stress on changes in state paranoia was investigated using linear regression analysis. The three-way interaction of social stress, paranoia proneness, and habitual reappraisal use significantly predicted state paranoia,t(114) = 2.62, p = 0.010. The decomposition of the interaction term revealed that in the social stress condition, the impact of reappraisal on state paranoia was moderated by the level paranoia proneness. Specifically, in high paranoia-prone individuals the use of reappraisal predicted higher state paranoia. The findings regarding habitual use of suppression were not significant. Although reappraisal is generally considered a functional strategy, its use in distressing social situations seems to be impaired in persons with higher paranoia proneness. A working model ofemotion dysregulation in delusions is presented and possible implications for cognitive therapy of psychosis are discussed.


    ► Reappraisal increases state paranoia under social stress in paranoia-proneness. ► Expressive suppression does not impact on state paranoia under social stress. ► Emotion dysregulation may play a key role in delusional ideation.

    Hard to believe -but only if you are deluded.

  17. “Andrew Strang – thanks.”

    Just imagine the malicious boneheaded reality-denying mind that this response comes from. Always wanting to blame someone else. Leo Frank all over again.

    Now it seems there was never any ammonium nitrate in the first place. And there aren’t that many factories in the world that make ammonium nitrate. So our rabbinical brothers and sisters have to match the make-believe load of ammonium nitrate, with the factory that they are going to pretend the cargo came from.

    This will be the real dog-ate-my-homework story of the next few months, as the Sister Sledge start getting out there trying to threaten everyone. During that time we will barely notice the children they shoot in the head.

  18. There is a better use of solar power than the grid. Audi and some other crowd have sussed out a way to make synthetic diesel with solar power. They are calling it blue crude diesel. There is no future without the diesel engine. Diesel does all the heavy lifting in the economy and its going to stay that way for hundreds of years. If we are lucky. If we have the solar going into something like this we can delay having to worry about storage for the grid for a long time. Because synthetic diesel can be made with intermittent energy. Building up storage for the grid is a decades long process and one we should only attempt with all budgets in surplus.

    Personally I think the future lies in mass production of synthetic diesel assisted by thorium nuclear as the core energy process. And then have diesel generators for local electricity. At the moment our grid is extremely dangerous. It could be taken out by the Police Force of Madagascar getting here undercover. From that point of view our defence is a joke. If power were created locally by diesel we might be able to expel an invader and not face grave depopulation.

    Think if the Israelis took out our electricity production in the Hunter Valley? We could see them do it on live television and yet we’d all be blaming each other. Or ourselves. Everyone could be pointing their fingers at themselves and saying “Its my fault” rather than believe what they had seen on the video. The point is not to blame Netanyahu or any other Yahoo. The point is that its unacceptable that we have centralised our grid this much in the first place.

    So far the big money has gone into diesel electricity generators to mitigate the problems that intermittent energy has brought to the grid. You must understand I am happy for all the energy that these methods bring. Every joule counts. But we didn’t need to confuse the energy source with its appropriate niche. Synthetic diesel production may be a way out of this difficulty. But for national security purposes its time to start spreading these diesel generators out and let some towns generate their electricity locally.

    I think Paul Dibb is a serious intellectual and a national asset. But these white papers have never gone far enough.

  19. Classic Radio Collector (?),
    I am skeptical of the synthetic diesel story. First of all you did not mention what it is that is going to be transformed in to diesel? Will it be the planets supply of Razzberries? I would murder anyone who would even think of transforming Razzberries in to diesel fuel. Or will it be ocean water that will be transformed in to diesel fuel? Even if it is ocean water that diesel fuel is now diesel fuel not hydrogen, or that stuff that Germany was working on towards the end of world war 2 to power its subs underwater because it would burn without the need for mixing with oxygen. So it is still going to give us lung cancer even if a person does not believe that global warming is the most dangerous threat that humans have faced in since this simulation was started.
    Not being a scientist or an engineer I can not contribute much to figuring out how a crane that is needed to move rubble to dig out earthquake survivors should be powered. But part of the solution might be obvious. Do less heavy lifting. Build with Bamboo rather than than with, stone, morter, cement, steel, and reinforced concrete. Move with Bamboo, or lightweight but durable plastics, rather than with steel.
    Not only that but your cow poop to top soil suggestion could have some bearing on this buy converting that top soil in to sod that can be used to insulate that bamboo in areas where additional insulation is needed.
    I really have no idea if the CO2 can be removed fast enough from the air, especially when the permafrost is melting to make that soil and then sod. But I like the sound of it. May you be blessed with a garden on your roof. That has a good sound to it.

    Hmm wait, would’nt the bamboo surrounded by sod rot out overtime causing the structure to collapse?
    Are there sensible measures that can be taken to prevent that? Take it way Classic Radio Stories.

  20. Thoughts on death, a review, from a person who has no first hand experience with the subject.

    Even the best doctor’s in this world (universe?) can not save all of their patients. Anyways would a life that had no promise of death be a mightmare? I have no idea what all of the consequences of my death would be. I have no idea what all of the consequences of continuing my life would be. I guess that it is best to leave the cost benifit risk analysis up to those who have a more complete picture than i do.

    What kind of simulation is this anyways?

    Who is conspiring to keep it a secret?

  21. Lets check Ikon for mental projection:

    “Being time-pressed, I am not sure that I can follow your above leads currently. My current interest, if I had time, would center around the issue of magical thinking….”

    So far so good. So Ikon must be thinking about debt-financing magic surely? Or the idea that eating sick animals can make you healthy? Or that growing plants in bad soil can be awesome for your health?

    Jumping ahead: “……..Conspiracy thinking is often bound up with magical beliefs of course. Conspiracies involve everything from aliens to humans with improbable or impossible technologies plus superhuman foresight and planning abilities…..”

    The rest of it was good stuff. But here comes the projection. Ikon is coming out in favour of coincidence theory. Coincidence theory is the ultimate in magical thinking.

    Lets find some magical thinking from akarog. Here akarog disregards the three horsemen descending upon us through energy deprivation and soil loss. Energy deprivation and soil loss is no threat to akarog. What scares him? A tiny bit of extra warmth where the air is dry. Thats the big fear factor in magical thinking akarog’s life.

    “The approval for Whitehaven to expand their mining license is a slap in the face of the public. By legislating against having to consider the flow on effects (trickle down?) of coal combustion the govt made it easy for their committee to find in favour of the miner.

    It’s a known fact that carbon, when released into the atmosphere, acts to inhibit the release of energy derived from solar radiation.”

    The horror. The inhumanity. That the wind that blows on us from the antarctic might be that tiniest bit less frigid. Its a very scary thing when the people around you are clueless as to what they ought to be scared of. If you had any idea of what you ought to be scared of you’d still want to reduce coal exports. Because we need to use that coal here……. Slowly …… We don’t want to ship it half way around the world and have other people use it fast.

    We have a problem with oligarchy who leach off us, think of us as the useless eaters, and spend all their time trying to get us killing each other. We have an ongoing energy crisis. A debt crisis. A soil crisis. A budget crisis which is not helped by people who think that government debt has magical qualities to it.

    If we work to solve these problems the CO2 will take care of itself. I would expect energy per capita consumption to have dropped by two thirds before things get better. People who still refer to hydrocarbons as “fossil fuels” are far more pessimistic than that. Be afraid. Be very afraid. But being afraid of this tiny bit of hoped for relief from the freezing temperatures is a loony toon consideration, and we ought not tolerate such neurosis and delusion. We have to worry about the Turks at the gate and not the angels on the heads of pins. Truly brain damaged fears especially since good soil building can inter more carbon than the hydrocarbon industry could ever hope to produce. If things get really bad, the only serious alternative energy will be coming from waste wood. Things will get this bad. Traditional oil well output, after doubling every ten years, flattened out in 2005. It will eventually drift down while population is still expanding. This is a horror-show.

    If you want to slow down coal exports then we have common cause. But you at least ought to have some rational understanding of why you would want to do this. You could interpret this as a capitulation to your point of view if it makes you feel any better.

  22. Claas. Rad. Story,
    That one liner about about coincidence theory is a classic. A similar comment made by Michael Ruppert (of From the Wilderness) many years ago made me unashamed about examining world world history for the presence of vast conspiracies to explain the course of events. But your comment sums it up even better.
    What I want to add is that if our percieved existance is actually a simulation the presence of magic in the course of history would be very plausible. Not only that but even if our universe it is certianly plausible that sentient beings evolved somewhere else in this universe and continued to evolve for millions or even billions of years. Granted if the universe is real and time and space are real not illusions getting anywhere outside of a solar system would be quite challenging. But for AI such a challenge might be surmountable. If AI was present observing us they could certianly have capabilities that we would describe as magic.
    If Gods, simulation administrators, or alien AI were trying to manipulate human history it would seem to me that most likely they would want to avoid leaving their finger prints all over their handy work. Therefore a conventional scientist would never discover them.
    The capabiities of the world’s major intellegence agencies to manipulate history, and also to manipulate human thinking is also quite extensive. Or, at least much greater than most people understand. This combination causes a Shakspearean comedy of errors by the world’s important desicion makers.

    PS Feral Scholars spun off from Fromm the Wilderness.

  23. Another great post by Ikon. We cannot keep subsidising the finance system. Its not funny any more. Its just as wasteful and far more offensive then having too many salaried jobs in the public service. And far more dangerous. History tells us that if we don’t bring finance under strict supervision they will do so to the rest of us.

    The banks are subsidised daily. But in 2008 and 2020 they went into full looting mode. The Americans never recovered from the 2008 heist. The basic nature of the economy had changed and now they just cannot get anything done any more. Trump was actually going quite well before the Covid problem. Its not like he was addressing basic long-term problems. Instead he was ringing up CEO’s and arm twisting them to create local jobs. Which turned out to be amazingly effective in the medium term, though this sort of exhortation has short legs.

    But then using Covid as cover the finance system went in for a massive impatient looting spree the likes of which hand’t been seen in 12 years. Now the American economy will be moribund. Spending programs will not get results. The business ecology has been thrown completely out of whack. Too many elephants and not enough earthworms. Even cheerleading has become a national monopoly. Sad to watch the Americans being ripped to pieces like this.

  24. The Americans are being ridiculous. Gas is meant to be sent through pipes or used on the spot. Its not economic to compress it and put it in a ship. Diesel can be carted around in giant ships with great economy but the gas is wasted in any other transport but pipes. They have pipelines and they pump the gas with what amounts to a jet engine. Just fantastic really.

    So the Americans can bitch and moan all they like but they are just being fools.

  25. The Israelis have dribbled out their plea bargain via a blogger called Richard Silverstein. Here the unnamed Israeli admits that those were Israeli missiles. But the plea bargain is that they were destroying a Hezbollah missile cache, and they didn’t do their due diligence and didn’t realise there was all this fertiliser next door to the Hezbollah gear. Its a parallel story to the bigshot politician who said it was Israel but celebrated it as a good thing.

    The plea bargain is nonsense from tip to stern, except for the Israeli missile part of it. But its just enough of an excuse that its kind of hard to prove differently to Joe Public. A chemist has estimated that the fertiliser caused a one kilotonne blast, and Thunderfoot must be making the estimate on the basis of the quoted weight of fertiliser. Thunderfoot is pretty hot stuff. His area of science is the most objective science there is and the least susceptible to political manipulation. I think if thats his assumption, we can trust him on this. But an IEAE employee has put the actual blast at closer to six kilotonnes.

    But you see the plea bargain is kind of enough to fool the public since one-kilotonne, six kilo-tonne …. What would I know right? They figure the Israelis must have a good alibi because they don’t know how wicked the top level of Israelis are, they don’t understand the Western media Pravda ……. Murdoch and his loyal opposition or vis versa. They don’t believe the Israelis have been doing this sort of thing since 1983. Plus most of the more intelligent conservatives, smart as they are, will not jump more than one layer of lies. And being sympathetic to the Israelis they will be swallow the plea bargain. The plea bargain is really for such people. Like those of us who at one time thought that the Soviets must have encouraged the Kennedy hit, or since that big terrorism had to be state sponsored we thought the states involved must have been the stronger Arab states. Conservatives of this nature are turned into complete suckers, because they are just smart enough to jump the first cover story and yet there is a secondary cover story waiting for them. Concentric circles of nonsense go 3-5 layers deep if they are doing it right.

  26. Ouch. Accidentally posted in the wrong thread. I want to later go over how mind-blowingly easy it would be, to set up government banking, with a view to wealth-creating zero interest loans. What the key performance metrics would be.

    Far from being in the realm of these alleged “rocket scientists” or “masters of the universe” …. Serious wealth-creating loans are actually kind of humdrum. These loans are well within the capacity of the local government to parcel out as agents for the federal treasury.

    Ikon’s last post is a bit unfortunate because the lady says something stunningly true, then she feels she needs to lean on the cult figure Keynes, for a quote that is typically misleading.

  27. “I don’t think China is interested in creating a world empire as the West understands that concept. China is interested in a (large) secure homeland and in drawing resources and tribute from the rest of the world. Tribute without occupation is their essential strategy outside their slowly but steadily expanding homeland.”

    We see that these sentiments as obviously taken from the deep history of China who had this exemplary history of reticence when it came to international conquest. At one stage they could have beaten us all. But the new age of international subversion and banking hegemony, as well as the destruction of Mao’s cultural revolution, means that we cannot take risks on the basis of this deep history. Mao was a Yaley. He was a Rockefeller staffer and may have even been a Eurasian Cuckoo. Paul Johnson described his face as being a peasants face but I think we are entitled to be deeply suspicious. So its not necessarily the same China nor necessarily controlled by the same Chinese.

    When all is said and done we need to be fantastically strong and stay in a perpetual state of readiness for at least another 15 years. Once the demographic collapse of China is well established we can be friends again. And we should be making much closer friends with our Japanese brothers and sisters. I would put our faith with these sons of samurai. For one thing their small business smarts is amazing.

    These are an amazing people and we need to be hand and glove with them. Particularly as we see our key ally flailing about and making clowns of themselves.

  28. “The coming global collapse of environment and (capitalist) civilization will comprehensively refute the rituals, sacraments and promises of capitalism.”

    Hard not to agree with this literally. Although you’d have to wonder what ikon thinks is the source of the impending collapse? Flagging energy availability and the loss of good soil, which are real and imminent disasters. Or is he thinking that higher CO2, a strong mitigating factor, will bring on this collapse? Which is an irrational and superstitious view.

    Fear of CO2 doesn’t really matter. But flagrant irrationalism does matter, since the CO2 “problem” will be solved by the slow diminishing of oil production, and by way of soil-building, should we decide to follow rational policy for other reasons. We need to conserve coal for local use. Its wasteful to export gas except by way of pipes. We need to hydrate the land to end bush-fires, boost food production, reduce the need for farmer bailouts, end floods and droughts and as a first step to building soil ….. which is the only rational form of carbon internment in the world today.

    If it makes people happy keep your fear of high CO2 because we can easily solve that problem. But at the very least don’t let it be a kind of thin end of the wedge to abandoning all rational thought.

  29. “My advice to economists and everyone would be to get over our monetary and fiscal obsessions and start thinking about the objectively real.”

    Nope. You have to get everything right. There is nothing more real than debt obligations to global gangsters. There is nothing more damaging than dysfunction in money and banking. Crazy stuff. Its no good being half-smart half the time if you are going to go wobbly when you feel like it.

  30. Anyone interested in the fundamental cause of our political malaise (in Australia and the UK)? It goes back to a constitutional shift in 1832.

  31. A person can learn more useful information watching the movie The Truman Story than if they learn advanced calculus.

  32. Ikonoclast says:
    AUGUST 18, 2020 AT 4:27 PM
    Rail freight is far more expensive than sea freight. But as I keep saying, collapse collapses all the options anyway. Overall, CHAOS (my emphasis) is the only safe prediction. Individual trajectories in the chaos are completely unpredictable.

    Curt Says,
    I was listening to some partial Sam Harris podcasts today. I am a big fan of Sam Harris. But when I heard Sam and his guest talk about what getting back to normal would be like once a Covid Vaccine is found, or not found, I thought, my God what cogniitive dissonance. The planet is in the midst of a dire global warming (environmental overshoot) emergency and these intellegent men are still using the terminology back to business as usual. Ok maybe that was not exactly their exact terminology but not to stress the need to transition to a completely new way of living, which needs to include a completely new way of making decisions about how people should individually and collectively live is completely irresponisble.

    I took a long trip through central Germany over the past few days. The number of dead of trees standing in the forest now is really quite a depressing sight (and site.)

  33. Is cognative disounance a sign that thinking is being done by a real human being? Or is it a sign that the thinking is being done by a machine posing as a human being?

  34. “Rail freight is far more expensive than sea freight. But as I keep saying, collapse collapses all the options anyway. Overall, CHAOS (my emphasis) is the only safe prediction. Individual trajectories in the chaos are completely unpredictable.”

    I think we can predict one or two things. I think we can say that the Great Lakes area should wind up as a rare haven for manufacturing. At the moment its probably not that great because of 50 years of an overvalued United States dollar. But the relative energy efficiency of tug boat transport means that this area should face revival, as most of the rest of us fall onto that ash-heap of history. We will be Rome to their Constantinople.

    I would be setting us up to be debt free and in such a way that we could survive on wood power alone if we had to. More ports and canals. Different settlement policies. Towns surrounded by permaculture.

    Not that we want to rely on wood. We want safe nuclear and gigalitres of diesel. But we want our infrastructure to be so energy efficient that if we needed to get by a few years without either we could do it and not all die in the interim.

    The worst disaster would be to rely on energy sources that require extended structures of production in a shrinking global economy. The kind of global foraging and co-operation that the solar panel requires; Not too smart to be so reliant on that kind of thing. I like the idea of the robot in the quarry. Still maintain our high-tech capacities, as long as we can, but use them for shorter structures of production. Every hill is full of stone. Many hundreds of very modest stone-cutting operations could lead to building materials that don’t need to go too far. If there is a very small local quarry and local timber mill we are in much better shape when truck transport begins to get pretty pricey.

  35. “I am skeptical of the synthetic diesel story. First of all you did not mention what it is that is going to be transformed in to diesel? ”

    Audi’s partners reckon they can pull it straight from the air. They want a diesel substitute as a mixture of carbon monoxide and hydrogen. I share your skepticism on that score. But I’d like it to be manufactured from all manner of organic matter. You can see how maxing out on water transport could make this work. If you transport waste wood, trash and other materials by tug to a nuclear assisted floating diesel production plant then its doable. The nuclear adds heat, electrical energy and hydrogen and makes it react in an oxygen deprived environment. From that you can pull off almost any hydrocarbon with the source pretty much any waste organic matter you could name.

    Of course the reality is that most diesel for a very long time will still come from the current hydro-carbon industry. The problem is this source might naturally fall by half every few years. People who believe in fossil fuel oil think that the production will start falling away at maybe 6% per year. But lets say if its 3% per year; modified for abiotic oil and growing earth theory? Thats still means constant adaptive stress.

    Once we have to give away the diesel engine we are in so much trouble. Once the trucks stop you sure want to be on the most favourable terms with your local permaculture farmer. And he better live just down the road. People I know overseas are waiting around for a neighbours animals to be killed so they can pick up some of the organs and bones at cut price rates. Imagine things like ten times worse than that. Imagine if you feel fortunate to pick up a cows spleen as a trade for a mornings work. And thats only if you have a pleasing and outgoing personality and your young wife flutters her eyes at the farmer.

    I don’t think we are going to have to wait until the oil wells are diminished another 50% for these harsh conditions. It is with great grieving that I see us in so much debt, our coal being bought out and exported as fast as possible, our gas going overseas when it is inefficient to send it there, no local source of diesel to speak of, and a grid so vulnerable it makes one sick to think of how weak we are to war or sabotage.

  36. Classic Radio Stories,
    I pray to Posideon and Athena that you are a genius and that I am a fool.

    Back in 2007 I figured that the USA and therefore the world was totally screwed up because about 10,000 morally degenerate shit heads occupied key positions in US society and worked together for a common purpose which was coordinated from the highest levels of the US military Industrial Complex.
    Therefore if 50,000 reasonable and sober people could organize themselves in positions around these derilict molders of the world society but be directed by other unseen leaders they would have a 50-50 chance of carrying the derilicts out with the trash. If 100,000 people could be organized for the job it changing the world should be a piece of cake.

    But my assessment in 2020 is that it is more like 1 million morally degenerate collaborators that prevent world institutions from from moving the resources of the world’s societies in a manner that would have given the world a chance to create a just world society and to meet the challenges of environmental overshoot. Therefore it would take 5 million people organized by new leaders to have a 50-50 chance of removing the old leaders.

    The world needs a new type of immigrant now more than ever before.

  37. Hi Ferris Wheeler. Thanks for engaging, but I don’t know much about the Cherokee Nation. I was thinking about the root cause of political problems in Australia. It’s an argument about constitutional law.

  38. Curt pls weave a story…

    Ikon… magical thinking of a different kind.

    “QAnon, Conspiracy Theories, and the Rise of Magical Thinking

    “Ferguson zeros in on the divide between two different ways people make sense of a complex, chaotic, and uncertain world: evidence seeking and magical thinking.

    Ferguson: “These are not systems of knowledge, and they cannot build solutions. They can only criticize and second-guess.”

    Plus link to video.

    I will not link yooutuub anymore as they are now directly political… it is not mine, and I don’t know nor love algorithms,however good or bad they may be…

    “Your YouTube is at risk
    New government regulation will put the YouTube that you know and love at risk in Australia

    I choose to shun.

  39. TS – “Anyone interested in the fundamental cause of our political malaise (in Australia and the UK)? It goes back to a constitutional shift in 1832.”

    It goes back near 200 years prior, to the English Civil War, to the lawyer vested interest faction dominating outcomes from the Rump Parliament then. Much successful individual achievement is due to just turning up, much political success to turning up in numbers, much business success to persistence and endurance – as they did, as they have.

  40. Maybe so Svante. But the dysfunction is inevitable with fractional reserve banking. Referring to the Nitzan-Bichler research project (that Ikon introduced me too): It appears that the Unambomber was right. It appears that we really don’t want business to get too big. I don’t think we want more than three layers to business. But we may have to compromise and allow four, just for the sake of economies of scale. And even then we may have to neutralise those businesses POLITICALLY that reach more than three layers or more than 500 people. Plus they should all be in the form of sole traders eventually. So that one man has to take responsibility for the good and the bad that the outfit does. Now the buck passing need never stop.

    One reason that fractional reserve is so appalling is that the banks must lend non-existent cash to each other in order to keep the wider scam afloat. In this way all the larger banks become just the one conspiracy. Since even back when individual family businesses were pretty small the wider fractional reserve banking networks already far exceeded the above limitations. Plus if its true that the wheels of commerce need to be oiled with a little usury it still cannot be denied that this is overhead. That means that if we accept we need some small amount of this overhead then it becomes a “necessary evil.”

    Which means that usury is to be judged in the same way as libertarians judge the government. They say the government is overhead and a necessary evil. But bringing these two necessary evils together, we cut down the necessary overhead. It follows that finance should be a government utility. I don’t think there is any way of getting around this.

    Further the so-called free market and level playing field, which I consider to be a good thing …. Always and everywhere this is a government program. The free market, contrary to the Austrian school is always a government program. So we need to say when this program has gotten out of hand. And I think its out of hand when the size of these businesses has gone above 3-4 layers of management and/or 500 employees. As a starting point for further research and debate I don’t think that this is an unreasonable place to begin.

    In the interim we also need a lot of socialist housing, since our settlement policies have been destroyed in the age of cheap oil, banking hegemony and ponzi money. Only government programs can even possibly overcome this level of locked in dysfunction. Many people and most economists secretly know that Henry George was fundamentally right but they cannot say so and they better not think that way unless their wife has great independent wealth. But I think we know now that Georgism is politically impossible and so we need to go the Singapore route, and bring Georgism about, indirectly, via a great deal of socialist building along the lines of what the new urbanists would advocate.

  41. TS,
    Yes my example was about Constitutional law as well. It was an example of a Chief Executive completely ignoring the Constitution and suffering no consequences for it. The example cited provides a clue that the balances of power set out by that particular Constitution was, and still is, insuffecient for maintaining Republican virtues.

  42. “Will there ever be high speed rail freight links across Australia, for example, for one, linking the Hunter region to the Kimberley Region? Or 30,000 ton heavy freight trains?”

    We don’t want rail fast. We want it almost dead flat, we want it high quality, we want a lot of it. Speed is a big distraction. The real problem is that the truck tends to dominate in anything under 500 miles, even when rail is available. Its going to take a lot to change that kind of metric.

  43. A truck is for hauling ore up out of a pit. Trans Australia it don’t get much flatter anywhere for, say, trains bringing iron ore together with coking coal at either end or anywhere in between. The dynamics are such that ships must work hard continuously ploughing all the way up hill through water, but trains may coast a lot ,and regeneratively brake. They’re rationally planning 30,000 ton freight trains at a few minutes spacing. We’re planning hoping for what? A ponzi debt fueled ever bigger housing price bubble?

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