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New Regulations to Avoid the Evils of Cultural Appropriation

Chinese Rea Guard poster

We must resolutely crush cultural appropriation in all its forms

New directives concerning cultural appropriation have been released. We must all constantly monitor what everyone says, does, and thinks to insure we are never ever influenced by other cultures.

Here are a few. Feel free to add your own in the comments.

Mathematics uses Arabic numerals and Arabs invented the concept of the number zero. Thus, Non-Arabs will need to find a new system of numbering.

Asian martial arts can no longer be taught in the U.S.

You’re Anglo and want a taco for lunch? No way. The burrito is henceforth not allowable to eat as it was invented in the United States and thus is inherently appropriative.

Non-Italians can no longer eat pizza.

Only Chinese can drink tea.

Blacks certainly should not listen to or play classical music.

Eric Clapton will be banned from playing blues.

Yo Yo Ma will need to ditch his cello.

Don’t even think of wearing clothes from another culture.

Study of history, science, philosophy must be limited to learning only from those of your specific culture.

Only Scots can play golf.

Sorry ladies, no pants.

While Ice-T may have done a hilarious version of Suicidal Tendencies “Institutionalized”, such cross-cultural frivolities are now strongly discouraged.

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U.N. climate change chief. Capitalism must go

U.N Framework Convention on Climate Change
Let’s unpack this slowly. A stated goal of the U.N Framework Convention on Climate Change is to replace capitalism with something else. The quotes below are accurate. Conservatives howl this means the U.N. favors socialism. If only. Socialists should not start doing the happy dance quite yet, if at all.

The real goal is more like a technological elite monitoring us 24/7 (elections will of course no longer be needed), mandating what we can and cannot do. “Oh, I’m sorry Mr. Morris, but our analysis of your social media accounts by Google shows you to be hostile to our new Green Operatives. Some retraining will be needed. Your banking accounts have temporarily been deactivated until retraining is completed.” Yeah, I know, how paranoid is that, seeing conspiracies based on what highly-placed people actually say. I’m crazy like that. And only the most cynical would opine the technological elite would exploit their positions for money and power. Oh heaven forfend, we’re all squeaky green and renewable here. No time for that old school corruption. Right.

It looks like they want to replace capitalism, not with socialism, but with something like feudalism with a green exterior. We should be deeply suspicious of massive changes like this being mandated with no input from member nations or public discussions within countries about it.

The U.N.’s climate chief, Christiana Figueres, says openly that the aim of the talks is “to change the economic development model that has been reigning for at least 150 years, since the industrial revolution.” That outlook will be welcome among attendees like the delegation from Bolivia. That country’s official material submitted for the talks proposes a “lasting solution” for climate change: “We must destroy capitalism.”

What Bolivia wants as the replacement is probably not at all what the U.N. wants.

“This is probably the most difficult task we have ever given ourselves, which is to intentionally transform the economic development model for the first time in human history, since the Industrial Revolution.”

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New York Banker – Todd Snider

A true story…

“All these years in Arkansas, teachin’ at the high school
How was I to know by retirement day
I’d learn a lesson so cruel?
I came to the day I had waited on
Just to find out all the money in our pension was gone
We invested in somethin’ called the Abacus Bond
Sold to us by a New York banker
Good things happen to bad people, bad people, bad people

A big time banker from New York City
Came down south one day
Sold our people on the bond
Had our money bettin’ on some kinda
Home loans getting’ paid
Buy it they say, we were clearly told
This kinda thing was even safer than gold
But later on we found out the bond we’d been sold
Had been set up to fail all along
Good things happen to bad people, bad people, bad people

We’d been set up to fail all along
Though none of our people had ever quite sensed it
Come to find out the bond born to fail’d been built
So that banker could bet his bread against it
When the house market crashed, our retirement did too
Everybody said there was nothing we could do
That banker walked off with a million or two
I’m still teachin’ at the high school

Good things happen to bad people, bad people, bad people.”

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Our crybaby society, no concept of responsibility or toughness


Whether it’s college students howling because something upset their delicate sensibilities or Americans saying no to Syrian refugees but also saying no to actually fighting ISIS because that might get icky and bloody, we seem to be morphing into a bunch of softies, like the couch potatoes in Wall-E.

And ladies and gentlemen, we have a new winner. An idiot small-time stock trader wagered his whole wad shorting a biotech stock that soared when an investor group bought 50% of outstanding stock. The stock zoomed from $2 to $16. The idiot faces a $106,000 margin call and is begging for money on GoFundMe. Really? And, special added bonus, he is whining Etrade didn’t liquidate the shares fast enough. See, it’s all Etrade’s fault.

Mr. Whiner says:

At the moment not only is my $37k gone, but I now owe ETrade the negative balance of over $106k. I always knew I could blow up an account and I was financially able to “afford” to lose the $37k. Never in my wildest dreams did I imagine that Etrade would NOT have some sort of stop or circuit breaker in place that would automatically cut a position if the account went to $0… could they ever let it get to -$144k loss on a account that small! Also, why did I have to call them to find out what was going on, why did they not alert me or call me when it went neg???

1) Margin calls are legally enforceable debts in all states.
2) Anyone who bets his whole wad on one stock is both greedy and stupid.
3) Shorting a stock can be theoretically unlimited risk, as bozo learned the hard way. Had he bought puts, he would not had lost more than his investment.
4) He didn’t appear to have a stop (which would turn into a market order to cover the trade if the price went the wrong way.)

Dumb and dumber. And little or no personal responsibility.

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Uber-for-food is just another form of exploitation


Food delivery services offering home-cooked food may be convenient for consumers. However, chefs become replaceable, mechanized cogs who will be paid less and less as competition among them increases. This eventually will decrease the choice consumers have, as food delivery services become more and more bland in their offerings, as they try to appeal to all and the really good cooks refuse to work for reduced prices. I’m sure food from Sprig is mighty tasty and wondrously organic too (for now.) But that misses the point.

Aggregators kills independents. A website client of mine teaches violin and used to get good results from Google Ads. Then aggregators, offering hundreds of music teachers to choose from moved in, bidding the price up to $8-10 per click, far more than my client can afford and her business has suffered.

Our economy is devolving into subsistence living, as elites figure out how to stick a straw in to suck out the profits.

Here’s how it works. Let’s say hypothetical Sally trains in bookkeeping, and incurs $40,000 in debt to get her degree. But bookkeeping, clerking, and payroll jobs are being off-shored to the Philippines, India, and Mexico. Also, her grandma is a bookkeeper, and she and her buddies are clinging to their jobs in their 60’s and 70’s, because they were wiped out by the last two recessions – dot com bubble bursting and the 2008 great recession. They aren’t retiring and letting Sally or her bookkeeping friends enter that profession..

Maybe Sally is old for a newbie bookkeeper, and not young, perky, and cute — two more strikes against her. So she never gets called back for a second interview.

She puts up notices at churches, in Craigslist (if its safe in her area), at grocery stores. Along comes an accounting aggregator, like Josephine is for food. Sally’s business stream dries up.

So she turns to the desperation economy for the last 1,000+ years, and starts renting out rooms and cooking. Subsistence living

First: She’s not cooking because that’s what she’s trained to do, or wants to do as a profession. Second: It’s marginally profitable, She’s only making ends barely meet — thus, subsistence living. Third: an outside entity interested only in profits has just interposed itself in her subsistence business model. They skim off a chunk of her income from subsistence. By increasing the competition, they have also driven down whatever income Sally can make.

Moral: the capitalist elite will reserve the cake for themselves, then cheat the rest of their bread, and won’t be completely satisfied until they have deprived us of the crumbs.

Sprig-type operations drain agency and expertise out of the world. They centralize, aiming to build huge hubs with small spokes; their innermost mechanisms are hidden. They depend on humans behaving as interchangeable units of labor.

In the hypothetical future we can label Full Sprig, no one cooks who is not employed by this kind of company.

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Opiates, coal, and poverty in America’s poorest white town


Beattyville, Kentucky has mostly been destroyed by opiates and low-priced coal being mined elsewhere, as well as (inadvertently) by welfare benefits. Locals may blame Obama and EPA for the death of their coal mining but the truth is, coal can be mined cheaper elsewhere. Mostly though, Oxycontin has devastated the area. Crooked pharmacies and doctors peddle the pills. Drug companies make huge profits. An underground economy has evolved to use food stamps for drugs.

Residents are aware of their poverty and of the sneering disdain that many, especially mainstream Democrats, have for them.

Quoting from an insightful Guardian article about Beattyville.

This is routinely, and sometimes sneeringly, characterised by Democrats in other parts of America as poor white people voting against their own interests. It’s a view that exasperates Davis.

“They say, why aren’t these people voting their self-interest? People always vote their self-interest if they can see it. If they believe the government doesn’t work, if they believe that the Democrats don’t really give a shit about people like them, don’t want to be in the same room with them, they want their vote but don’t want to hang out with them, then as they see it they’re voting their self-interest,” he said.

Well, they’re just dumb hillbillies living in the country so who cares if they get addicted, right?

There is little sympathy for doctors or pharmacists acting as dealers, but there is a view in Beattyville and surrounding towns that people have been exploited by something bigger than a few medics, largely because they are regarded as “backward”.

Davis said the drug companies aggressively pushed OxyContin and similar drugs in a region where, because of a mixture of the mining, the rigours of the outdoors and the weather, there was a higher demand for painkillers.

“You couldn’t go to a doctor without seeing a merchant there. Here’s this synthetic opium product that’s supposed to be good for palliative care – cancer patients – and they start selling it as regular pain medicine. They knew how highly addictive it was and they sold it anyway,” he said. “I live in a town of 1,500 people with seven pharmacies as well as pain clinics and methadone clinics and the full backup industry. Everybody gets paid, doctors and pharmacists and lawyers.”

The mortality rate is rising for less-educated, middle-aged people, and opiates are a primary cause.

Recently released research shows that abuse of powerful opioid painkillers is in part responsible for a sharp rise in the death rate among white middle-aged Americans over the past two decades, particularly less-educated 45- to 54-year-olds. The report by academics at Princeton university also blamed misuse of alcohol and a rise in cheaper high quality heroin along with suicides. The researchers said they suspected that financial stress played a part in people taking their lives.

Unintended consequences of welfare: Food stamps indirectly pay for drugs. Inquiring minds want to know why pop simply is excluded from what can be bought with food stamps.

Ask where people get the money for drugs and just about everyone blames it on welfare in general and the trade in what is known locally as “pop” – soft drinks – in particular.

They are paid by electronic transfer on the first of the month. That same day, cases of Pepsi and Coca-Cola are marked down sharply in supermarkets and disappear off the shelves, often paid for with food stamps.

They are then sold on to smaller stores at a lower price than they would pay a distributor, in effect turning several hundred dollars of food stamps into cash at about 50 cents on the dollar.

The “pop” scam has become shorthand in Beattyville among those who regard welfare as almost as big a blight as the drugs themselves.

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The question now is, can the FBI be trusted for anything?

Keystone Cops

Yes, I know there are lots of dedicated FBI agents and yadda blah blah but in light of recent news, the FBI seems both incompetent and corrupt. When not faking forensic evidence they’re letting teenage hackers break in to their files. And if teenagers can do it, you can bet foreign governments and criminal organizations already have.

The hacker who cracked the email account of the CIA director says he’s hacked into multiple FBI servers. The response from FBI does not deny this. We also have the chilling news FBI forensics faked evidence in thousands of investigations,which sent many to prison, including 14 who were executed or died in prison. Will the people responsible for this go to prison too?

So, how is FBI is supposed to protect us when they can’t even protect themselves?

In an earlier tweet, Cracka boasted having “34,000 lines of emails, names, position and phone numbers of gov associates, including military,” suggesting the gang might have more data to leak. “Just to clear this up, CWA did, indeed, have access to everybody in USA’s private information, now imagine if we was [sic] Russia or China,” he said in another tweet.

Motherboard reports the publication was able to confirm the accuracy of at least five numbers in the list.

This is criminal negligence and indicates an organization determined to put people in prison, the facts be damned, because then they can report higher conviction rates which then can be used to get increased funding. In reality, their entire forensics system appears to have been completely corrupted, the corruption being internal because bogus conviction rates help the organization.

NACDL executive director Norman Reimer said in an interview with Associations Now that the flaws in the system had been known for years now. “What we were finding was that the examiners … wouldn’t just simply say that there was a microscopic similarity [between the two hairs], but they would go beyond that and say it was a 100 percent match, essentially misleading the jury into concluding that the evidence had a certain value that it didn’t actually have.”

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scottevest cargo pants

Scottevest clothes. Lots of pockets for men and women

scottevest cargo pants

I’m a big fan of ScotteVest clothes. Their pants, shirts, vests, and jackets are well-made, comfortable, and man, do they have pockets. Their pants have a unique feature. The cargo pockets are on the inside. The pockets on the sides of the pants are actually two pockets, the regular pocket and the cargo pocket. An iPhone 6s will easily fit in a cargo pocket. And since the cargo pockets are inside, the pants look neater and it would be nearly impossible for a pickpocket to steal something out of them.

Their Q.U.E.S.T. Vest for Men takes it to new levels with an insane 42 pockets, including some with clear pockets and RFID blocking, as well as an eyeglass chamois and quick access panels. The only problem here might be, ok, what pocket did I put the keys in?

The Sterling Jacket for Women has 23 pockets and removable sleeves that can be stowed in the back. As mentioned their clothes are extremely comfortable, and all shirts have a built in weight system to keep things in balance.

Scottevest quality and attention to detail is equal to Patagonia and Royal Robbins, which is my highest rating. These clothes look good on the trail or in town and are ideal for geeks carrying gear.

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Mortality rate soars for middle-aged whites with high school education

This study, which shows sharply increase mortality rates for working class whites with a high school education or less, primarily due to drugs, alcohol, and suicide, is a wake-up call on so many levels it’s difficult to know where to start.

1) The study was rejected by two prestigious medical journals, even though it was co-authored by a Nobel laureate, because it didn’t explain why the morality spike happened, Orwellian and absurd reasoning indeed.

2) Opiate addiction, both legal and illegal is a major problem for this group. Why are working class whites so much more prone to addiction? My guess is they are being prescribed opiates far more than other groups. Also, the Oxy addiction epidemic hit this group particularly hard and when the government finally cracked down on Oxy, lots of addicts simply moved to heroin, which is both easily obtainable and cheaper.

3) There are many ads on cable TV now for drugs for those with chronic constipation due to opiods. WTF? So, doctors are prescribing highly addictive drugs in such quantity that drug companies can afford advertisements touting ways to lessen their side effects? This is deranged.

4) It’s been clear for a while that the white working class has been getting screwed. This report confirms it. Will we do anything about it?

The research showed that the mortality rate for whites between the ages of 45 and 54 with a high school education or less rose dramatically between 1999 and 2013, after falling even more sharply for two decades before that.

That reversal, almost unknown for any large demographic group in an advanced nation, has not been seen in blacks or Hispanics or among Europeans, government data show. The report points to a surge in overdoses from opioid medication and heroin, liver disease and other problems that stem from alcohol abuse, and suicides.

This is grim stuff indeed.

Drugs and alcohol, and suicide are clearly the proximate cause,” said Angus Deaton, the 2015 Nobel laureate in economics, who co-authored the paper with his wife, Anne Case. Both are economics professors at Princeton University.

“Half a million people are dead who should not be dead,” he added. “About 40 times the Ebola stats. You’re getting up there with HIV-AIDS.”

This is the first indicator that the plane has crashed,” said Jonathan Skinner, a professor of economics at Dartmouth College, who reviewed the study and co-authored a commentary that appears with it. “I don’t know what’s going on, but the plane has definitely crashed.

“High school graduates [and] high school dropouts [are] 40 percent of the population,” he added. “It’s not just the 10 percent who didn’t finish high school. It’s a much bigger group.”

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Good little Maoists on college campuses want you to STFU


James Kunstler has a a fine rant about the Thought Police infesting universities today. Anything ideas contrary to their belief set is deemed to be a “trigger warning”, somehow injurious, and must be Resolutely Opposed. Injurious Thought and Ideas must be banished! Debate and conversations about such ideas are not allowed.

Kunstler ran into our modern-day Stalinists after giving a talk at Boston College. They thought his ideas unworthy and that he and them should be banished, with a strong statement from the college denouncing them. Further, they ignored him when he offered to return and debate what he said with anyone. That’s the really troubling part about our University Taliban. They don’t want discussion of issues, free inquiry into ideas, or disagreements. Nope, they already have the Inside Truth and if someone intrudes on their fantasy world, they scream “trigger warning.”

America’s own cultural revolution has worked differently. It was mostly limited to the hermetically-sealed hot-house world of the universities, where new species of hierophants and mystagogues were busy constructing a crypto-political dogma aimed at redefining status arrangements among the various diverse ethnic and sexual “multi-cultures” of the land.

There is no American Mao, but there are millions of good little Maoists all over America bent on persecuting anyone who departs from a party line that now dominates the bubble of campus life. It’s a weird home-grown mixture of Puritan witch-hunting, racial paranoia, and sexual hysteria, and it comes loaded with a lexicon of jargon — “micro-aggression,” “trigger warnings,” “speech codes,” etc — designed to enforce uniformity in thinking, and to punish departures from it.

At a moment in history when the US is beset by epochal problems of economy, energy, ecology, and foreign relations, campus life is preoccupied with handwringing over the hurt feelings of every imaginable ethnic and sexual group and just as earnestly with the suppression of ideological trespassers who don’t go along with the program of exorcisms.

Kuntsler said African-Americans need to learn White English because it will help them get ahead in the world, which is certainly worth thinking about.  Aren’t universities are supposed to encourage critical thought, not censor it? Isn’t that the whole point of education?

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