BUILDING UNDER – A BLAST FROM THE PAST FROM 2013

This seems appropriate just now:

BUILDING UNDER – A BLAST FROM THE PAST FROM 2013

So, we’ve established that revolutions don’t do much except make things worse, unless revolutions are the blessing of an order already in place and already functioning, in which case, the overpower vanishes and there it is.

This works best, of course, in Colonial situations, though for the record, most of the anti-colonial revolutions ended disastrously.  Even when the colonial power was as unorganized, hapless and… well, devil-may-care as Portugal, the result… oh, just read the recent history of Mozambique and Angola, or, better, talk to someone who was there.  As for Zimbabwe, its fall from the breadbasket of Africa is… well…

Of course there are other factors for that, including but not limited to the fact that the colonial powers had infected – via their intellectuals – these poor people with Marxism, and also that the Soviet Union used them as cat’s paws to keep the US occupied, to keep its people in goods (it’s curious that while capitalism is accused of this, the communist powers are always the ones who work like ancient empires.  They have to keep invading and stealing, because they simply can’t produce, having long since killed or scared away their producers.) and to kill off a lot of the young males who might otherwise cause trouble.

Leaving all that aside and since space colonies don’t seem to be forthcoming in the next 20 years or so – though I wouldn’t count them out.  Like with ebooks which were talked about forever and finally dismissed as “never gonna happen” I suspect if it does happen it will be suddenly, over about five years, and probably involving some new technology or a will to use the old ones. – what do we do, those of us who don’t wish to live under the boot of a progressively (eh!) more authoritarian regime?

We dig under.

I’d like to point out the regime we are currently living out is the result of just that strategy.  They occupied all the positions of power that lead to government control over about three to four generations.  (It’s what “the long march” is all about.)  Those of us who grew up in unstable countries know what the nexus of power a new regime absolutely must conquer to maintain its grip on the population: radio, TV, Newspapers, as much of the bureaucracy as possible, from your local DMV to whatever passes for a deliberative body – and then you can take the president, and then you’re home free.

The genius of the current take over is that they knew they couldn’t do it South American style and come in with tanks and machine guns, take over all these places by force and get away with it.  That can’t be managed in the country with the best military in the world.

Instead, they went exactly for the same centers, but one by one, and with replacement strategies.  In this they were helped by two of their characteristics and the characteristics of those they view as domestic enemies (No?  Listen to them sometime.) and who are anyone who isn’t to the left of Lenin.  For our purposes we’ll call them “conservatives” though a lot of us aren’t EXACTLY that and though at this point in time “conservative” is a misnomer for people who want to change the current form of governance.

They took over by stealthing it – that is by pretending to be “establishment” until they were secure.  I actually tried to stealth it for years in publishing, and I have friends who are still trying to do it now (All the best boys and girls, you’re better than I.)  I couldn’t do it for reasons that lots of other conservatives can’t do it.  First, I couldn’t STEALTH well enough.  We, liberty lovers tend to prize truth and it bothered me greatly to fake it, so I was never vocal about supporting stuff I, in fact, abhorred.  Second, (vile) progs once in control which was well before I broke in, started demanding VOCAL adherence to their nonsense.  So if you weren’t screaming about the patriarchal, capitalist regime every other line, you simply wouldn’t get the push and the promo.  Or, as a friend of mine said “they watch what you laugh at, and they watch for how you respond in conversation”  and since even professional meetings turn into extended political rants with quite unimaginably offensive things said about everyone not extreme left, keeping an impassive face is difficult enough, let alone faking enthusiasm.

The reverse of this is that liberty lovers have this habit of fairness (which is why it’s so hard for me to wield the troll hammer) so even if we took over, the take over would never be absolute, and it would never, ever, ever be permanent.  We tend to go “Yes, he’s a communist, but that’s a stupid quirk.  He’s a good worker.  Look at what he did with this or that – give him the promotion.  It is by this process that most conservative institutions become far left.  The reverse doesn’t happen.  It’s not that the left is much better at stealthing (though they are) it’s that the right is much worse at excluding ideological opponents and/or viewing them as “the enemy.”  At least quase-ante, before the last few years, we tended to view them more as poor fools.

And this is how they took over all the media, all entertainment and most corporations and boards and anything that was a group of people, that needed “leadership” and that could be manipulated.  It also helps they’re the side who want power over others, while we mostly want to be left alone.

So to propose that we start our own crawl through the institutions is misguided – it’s not something we can do, something we’re good at or something even particularly productive in the current state of affairs.

However, the power-lovers, no matter what the regime have one fatal flaw.  They love to seize power.  They’re very good at wielding it – as in pounding down all opposition – what they suck at, because their temperament makes them not empathetic at all, is figuring out how people work.  And trying to rule (which is what they do) or worse, govern, without understanding people leads to disaster.  It is worse if they are communists, because communism is a religion at odds with reality.  They continue believing it, even as it fails, like those poor cult members whose end of the world is forever postponed one more month, and they continue doing more of what fails, which is why their utopias turn rapidly to hell on earth.

This leaves the rest of us stuck in a situation where EVEN if we could do the reverse of their strategy, even if we decided to crawl through the institutions for seventy years, we don’t have that kind of time.  The people who were so hot on getting into the cockpit, are flying the plane right into the ground because their little (red) religious book tells that that’s the way to gain altitude.

We don’t have seventy years before gravity asserts itself explosively.  We don’t have seventy months.  Sometimes I think we’ll be lucky if we have seventy weeks, and frankly I wouldn’t be surprised if we crashed in seventy days.  Sometimes I feel as if I’m locked in the painting “the scream” shrieking soundless and I can’t do anything.

Wait.  Before you head out to the bathroom to slit your wrists in a warm bath – listen.  I didn’t say there’s nothing we can do.

Like the left we have our own strengths and our own abilities.  And they are things they not only don’t have, but they can’t fully understand.

To wit, the reason we tend to be really bad at politics is that there are things that are more important to us.  A lot of people have complained that people aren’t focusing on the politics because they’re busy making a living, raising a family, figuring out how to survive.

But, listen, that’s a strength, too.

See, the reason that they’re self-devouring is that they see politics before merit.  It’s never “we’ll promote him even though he’s a political idiot because OMG, he can write.”  It’s always “She can write all right, but she’s not “one of the good people” so we’ll not only do nothing but thwart her if we can.”

Over time this allows them to take over ideologically.  And it makes them REALLY dumb about anything else.

Here we have to go back to the publishing industry.  Because ideology was more important than anything else (though they promoted some books with no overt ideological tinge, because the author – they were satisfied – was one of them.  They tolerated these books more anywhere else rather than sf, which is why sf crashed harder and faster, except obviously at Baen.  Because SF is the projection of the present into the future, no “incorrect” politics would be allowed.) they needed to control not just what got published, but what got distributed and what got push.  This meant not only taking over the bookstores, (ideologically, not the publishers) but setting up a system which was determined by pull, not push.  By the end of their reign and just before ebooks hit, they could “publish” a book and make sure it sold nothing (it was never on shelves.  EVEN if people asked for it) and thereby end the career of anyone whom they’d found out was ideologically different – or suspect.  At the same time, of course, someone on the “right” (left) side got push, even if the work was otherwise undistinguished.

This worked to an extent – the reading public simply assumed ALL authors were leftist, and read the least offensive ones.  However, as the houses lost feedback (because this was all push, no pull) they lost track of “what the market will bear.”  Printruns were shrinking every year (the excuse being “people don’t read anymore.”) and they were starting to feel the pinch.  The bookstores, in particular (their fault for buying into “to the net” and the publishers’ push model) were caught in the middle and imploding.

All it took was the emergence of a free market in electronic books to send the whole thing into a tail spin.  (Most of the houses are dead, just still – somehow – walking.)

The houses reaction to ebooks was classic too – they reacted just like cultists whose UFO/prophet failed to bring about the end of the world on the appointed date: cover up, ignore, and hope the whole thing goes away.

Well – this is basically what we’re seeing in government, in finance, and anywhere that the left has got its big foot in, including “big science.”

They have been promoting people on the basis of faith, not intelligence for years.  And that’s no way to run a civilization (the problem goes beyond the USA, though I suppose, as usual, it will be left for us to solve.)

So – you want your second American revolution and your second American republic?  Fine.  Start building a structure that works, behind, beside and beneath the official one.

In some cases this will be very very difficult.  For us writers, for instance, it’s almost impossible to work for anything but US dollars.  (Though, who knows, that might change.  Will for sure if the crash comes.  I will of course work for gold, if anyone wants to cover me in a pile of it!)

On the other hand, we’re going around the publishing establishment, more and more so, yay us.  I’d advise every liberty-minded writer, even the traditionally published ones, to look into indie.  At best you can use it to support and promote your published work (I have brought a lot of people to the Darkship Thieves universe through the short stories.)  At worst, if something happens to your publisher (No, I don’t expect anything to happen to Baen, but a lot of it rests on ONE WOMAN’s shoulders, and while she’s younger than I and I hope she outlives me, sh*t happens.  To everyone.) you have a fallback and something to build from.

At the same time, I urge artists to find other ways to market their art.  Both of these will take stepping outside your “validation” comfort zone, but a lot of us had to do that with politics anyway, and it’s not that different.

If you’re not there – I urge you, urge you – to use your skills to advance the building of a parallel structure.  If you’re a computer maven, build a game engine that will allow indie game writers to compete with the big houses.  If you’re a computer maven, again, think about animation tools and others that allow indie movies to do what the big guys do for one percent of the price.  If you’re a teacher or interested in teaching, study how to do it on line.

We have it worse than they did.  We can’t just take over a few strategic points and hope the whole thing keeps running but now under us.  They’re destroying everything because of their anti-reality beliefs.  We have to take over everything just to prevent a terminal collapse.

Fortunately, most of us are “people who do things.”  I urge you to do things.  I have a friend who is studying brewing and welding, in case that’s all he can contribute.  In fact, I’d urge all of us to do that if we can.  Even if you’re a writer an artist or a scientist, if you have a hobby that can be turned into a part time job – growing vegetables, refinishing furniture, cooking, cleaning, sewing, brewing, etc – and bring in some money, do so.

I knew a family in Portugal who were educated and well to do, but when everything went upside down, they arranged with a textile firm to get the scraps of material that would (otherwise) have been burned at the end of the day.  The wife and daughters then fired up the sewing machines and started making pot holders, placemats and aprons (fewer aprons, most pieces were tiny.)  They sold these at the fairs which are at best gray market (the stalls require a license, so you have to declare some income.  But most of the business is done in cash.  You do the math.)  By the time things stabilized, they were living better than ever.

I don’t think that in most places the system will collapse that completely.  I DO think that things like making a living on line – provided you’re either selling something useful or something people find entertaining – will work for most of us.  But if your area goes bad, that second skill will help.

And meanwhile – hat tip to Dave Freer – network.  Network with those in your area, and network with those out of it who can help you on line.  Build connections with like minded people.

Yes, this means we will ALL have to work our tails off for the next – if we’re lucky – seventy weeks.  But work is what we do.  Building is what we do.

You see the current society is like a beautiful building that has termites in the support beams.  We’re working very fast to put up new support beams along side them and to encase the current support beams in strong concrete.

The goal is that when they give out and turn to powder, there is a shhh sound and then, nothing, because our support structures step in place and keep things going.

And THEN we can argue whether the bit on the roof should be round or square and – hopefully – termite-proof the new structure.

But first, it has to be in place.  So go forth and build.

 

82 responses to “BUILDING UNDER – A BLAST FROM THE PAST FROM 2013

  1. Robin Munn

    Also, when you fill in your write-in ballot, write in “Rafael Edward Cruz”, not “Ted Cruz”. Full legal name, not nickname.

  2. BobtheRegisterredFool

    Thanks.

  3. Reblogged this on The Arts Mechanical and commented:
    There always things that can be done and people who can do them. The power seekers are fundamentally incompetent when it comes to the doing part. That is their greatest weakness. They can destroy, but they can’t build.

    • Because most of them are p*ss-poor at building, they’ll come to the builders to get stuff. If you don’t intimidate easily, you can negotiate… if you know how. Make learning to negotiate with someone who really wants your stuff one of the skills you build.

  4. c4c

  5. Turbo Beholder (@TBeholder)

    >They have to keep invading and stealing, because they simply can’t produce, having long since killed or scared away their producers.
    Nope.
    USSR didn’t channel funds IN, it channel them OUT.
    As in, squeezed more out of those those well under control to finance more support elsewhere.
    This kind of backfired later – e.g. when Czechoslovakia pushed to break away: sure, USSR got lots of tanks and whatnot. But the army mostly consists of people from typical Russian and Central Asian areas. Guess what happens when they arrive? They see the obvious local prosperity, compare and start musing that hey, counter-revolution may be a good thing after all. Oops.

    Which is also why the satellite states have mostly collapsed after USSR rather that enjoying massive relief and sudden wealth until IMF & WB would rob them blind. Sure, the local bosses are used to juggling between the local necessities and the distant overlords, and could pick up another overlord just as well. But no one wanted to artificially support them from the outside.
    Same applies to border regions of USSR itself: the places that received bonuses now suffered and depopulated faster than the others.

    • The government of Zimbabwe took productive farms away from farmers and gave them to the ‘deserving’ (party friends) without regard to their knowledge of farming practices. The end result has been that there is very little to take out of the country.

      • Turbo Beholder (@TBeholder)

        Exactly. A lot of satellites didn’t go for any part of socialism (dictatorship of the bureaucracy, etc) as such, they simply redistributed power between the local gangs and juntas in favour of those who supported a specific foreign puppeteer. After all, in absence of valuable local resources or strategically important location, the Soviet “benefactors” didn’t necessarily need or want to move things anywhere at all – all they wanted is to have nodding heads at one more place, and after all, if you actually do anything, you may run into problems, and would your boss like to hear this?
        The Atlantic Lemurians, to my understanding, usually differed mainly in that their shareholders demanded to allow building of jeans factories and selling of cola, if this can be done at a profit.

  6. > This worked to an extent – the reading public simply assumed ALL authors were leftist, and read the least offensive ones.
    Exactly.
    But aren’t you doing much the same by accepting that American “right” and American “left” are independent and different?
    As someone wrote, usually the former is busy with destroying personal freedoms, while the latter, economical ones. When was the last time either tried to UNDO this? They may yap at each other deafeningly about unimportant issues and posture when the other happens to mess up – but where was the last time they actually tried to do something to counter each in this? Is there a reason to think it’s anything more than, ah, “division of labour”, then? Is there a reason to assume existence of a serious conflict above the level of Twitter?

    • YellowShapedBox

      Happily, we’re operating under the assumption that conventional politics are now basically futile. Doesn’t matter, for our purposes.

      • Yep, as of yesterday I give up on conventional politics (and it has nothing to do with Trump winning Indianna although it is a prime example, IMHO, of why he did).

    • Right and left are seriously imprecise terms. In this case I used Right as “pro personal freedom” and left as “against it.” Note the alt in alt-right. They don’t think they’re normal right.

      • Stripped of rhetoric, it comes down to:

        Right: “Leave me alone.”
        Left: “It’s for your own good.”

        Granted, what passes for right is awfully left nowadays.

        • Lack of shared agreement of what constitutes “leave me alone.”

          On one extreme, you’ve got the “your nose isn’t actually broken, stop hassling me about swinging my fist;” at the other you’ve got “a possible side-effect of your actions could possibly have an effect on me at all, so stop it and leave me alone!”

          That continuum has additional issues like “what harm does it do a six year old girl if she’s forced to change for swim class while being watched by an adult man?”

          • Before someone thinks I’m being inflammatory with that last one, I have had arguments with people who insist that being involuntarily photographed while naked does not violate any of your rights.

      • Well, given the normal right is pretty damned useless in defending personal freedom why are we surprised an alt-right has arisen.

        We should be surprised that said alt-right is a “if we can’t beat them, join them” identity politics gang like pretty much all of the left is either. The “right” continue to be surrender monkeys even when they run things, like, say, the state of Georgia, so why should anyone buy what they are selling.

        The right needs to eat its own dog food if it wants more people to buy it.

    • But aren’t you doing much the same by accepting that American “right” and American “left” are independent and different?

      I just had a front row seat to how little the GOP and the “right” really mean it about protecting liberty. In a red state where every state wide office holder is a Republican and the GOP controls both houses exactly two liberty oriented bills got passed: concealed carry for students on campuses (after a string of muggings at GSU and GT) and a watered down religious liberty bill whose main protection was that religious ministers who refused to perform same sex marriages were protected from discrimination lawsuits.

      Our “conservative” governor veto both in the name of safety and the wishes of movie companies respectively (no, seriously, the veto letter on the latter mentioned the economic risk from movie studios threatening to not do business in GA).

      And people wonder how the hell Donald Trump happened. If this is the best the “right” can do for liberty in a solidly red state what use are they. The game is down to identity politics everywhere and a lot of people have decided to not join in is to lose. For that matter why do we wonder why he who shall not be named and the Rabids seem to be growing by leaps and bounds.

      Sure, a world where we are all free is great but more and more I think pretending it isn’t a world of rival gangs and you’d better join one (Alex Jones is probably right in a way he doesn’t suspect with his “prison planet” moniker) or suffer at the hands of all of them.

  7. YellowShapedBox

    Since the chance to say this in meatspace has now been crowded out by higher priorities:

    May the Fourth be with you. No exceptions for nineteenth-century physicians in foul moods.

  8. > For us writers, for instance, it’s almost impossible to work for anything but US dollars.

    True, but I expect that will change in the relatively near future.

    The reason we use money is that it’s flexible. I don’t have to directly barter gunsmithing for electricity or chickens; each dollar represents some agreed-on amount of product or labor.

    Money is *still* barter. The “money” part adds what programmers call a “layer of abstraction” to the barter process.

    The reason we don’t use barter directly is that it’s a tedious pain in the posterior to keep track of things.

    That’s the kind of thing computers are *great* at. And you need a widespread communications network to run it over. Something like eBay, as a phone app.

    Say, Sarah sells a copy of her latest book for five quatloos. Then she spends three of those quatloos to buy cat food. The cat food vendor’s app logs those quatloos in, then pools them with more quatloos to pay their electric bill. And so on…

    No, it’s still not as convenient as passing around paper or virtual Federal Reserve Notes… but if properly implemented, the system could be resistant to the kind of fraud and manipulation that plagues traditional monetary systems.

    • You should look into the concept of community currencies:

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Community_currency

    • Robin Munn

      That sounds like Bitcoins you’re describing, and despite all the (quite skilled) attempts at making Bitcoins fraud-proof, there has still been fraud with them. Last year I read something whose details I only remember vaguely, but it was something about a major Bitcoin service (banking, or third-party escrow, or something like that) stealing all the Bitcoins it had been entrusted with. That’s the kind of fraud you can only pull once, as nobody will ever trust that service again, but if the payoff is big enough, some people would do it.

      OTOH, if by “fraud and manipulation” you’re referring to printing money (which is, indeed, fraud), then yes, Bitcoin (and any other well-designed system) is resistant to that particular problem.

    • With people talking about the resurgence of barter in the past few years, I’ve been thinking it would be nice to create a clearinghouse where goods and services could be ranked against each other, in order to provide a leveling system (which is another thing that money provides), and possibly a way to trade barter items for situations where you don’t have anything that the person you want to do business with wants.

  9. Trimegistus

    How long will “indie” publishing remain “indie” once SJWs get their hooks into Amazon?

    • The market will just find another outlet, don’t worry.

    • Free-range Oyster

      I have a quick-and-dirty spec for an alternative already written. A proper functional spec would take me and my team a couple of full days for a basic, get-it-out-the-door version, another week or so for the detailed tech spec. We’re a small and meticulous team, so call it a month for coding and basic testing. So we could have an ugly but functional version in alpha testing in under six weeks, and we’re certainly not the only ones thinking about it.
      Now physical merchandise is another can of worms entirely, and it would take a heck of a lot to replace that, but for authors an electronic-only option would cover most of their needs.

    • Amazon has blazed the trail. Right now nobody wants to cross swords with the Amazon steamroller… but eventually it’ll happen.

      Tradpub doesn’t seem interested in sweeping any of Amazon’s profit margin into their own pockets by selling direct, but indies aren’t bound up by The Way Things Have Always Been.

  10. For folks looking to create new games, there’s always Steam:

    https://partner.steamgames.com/

  11. One of the reasons I promote an Article V convention for proposing constitutional amendments is that it allows us to fight on a different plane than that of wresting control of the government from the left. If it works, it would allow us to greatly reduce the ability of the left to affect us normal folks by reducing the authority of the federal government to act in the unconstitutional ways it currently does.

    • Robin Munn

      But since the federal government already oversteps its authority, what makes you think that any new amendments would make them change their behavior?

      • I won’t get involved in any arguments about this, in deference to our hostess. All I can say is that it’s worth a try; if it doesn’t work, how are we any worse off? And if it does, we’re better off.

        • Robin Munn

          I can think of a way we could easily be worse off: if enough fools show up at the convention to write an amendment that says “Every American has the right to free (college / health care / whatever).” Then we, as principled constitutionalists, would have to comply with that idiocy — because it would, by definition, be constitutional.

          • There already is a growing movement from the left to add a ‘Bill of Positive Rights’ to the Constitution.

            There is little guarantee that what we would get out of a new convention would be anywhere near as desirable or functional as what we now have. I suggest looking at what the EU managed to produce and reconsidering the matter.

          • You do know that any amendment coming out of such a convention would have to be ratified by 38 states to take effect, right? Do you really think that would happen with such an amendment? And if so, then we’ve lost already.

            • Paul (Drak Bibliophile) Howard

              We’ve had this argument before and it never goes anywhere good. 😦

              • Which is why I’m done with it. But the concept is worth mentioning regardless of the naysayers, just so everyone is aware of it.

  12. We, liberty lovers tend to prize truth and it bothered me greatly to fake it… …progs once in control…started demanding VOCAL adherence to their nonsense.

    If you believe that The Cause is above all the source of all goodness, justifying any means when it comes to promoting The Cause, you can lie with impunity to further The Cause.

    If you believe that principles matter, that there are some things which one should attempt to pursue even at personal cost, such as truthfulness, and that these are the substance of your cause, it presents one hell of a obstacle to operating a stealth campaign.

    I recall a round of discussion I took part in at a conservative chat room in the early days of the webs. One of the regular posters kept insisting that to win we had no choice but to take up the tactics of the left, tactics he condemned them for using. I kept asking wouldn’t this make us just as guilty. We may, for example, put ourselves at a disadvantage by ‘playing fair’, but if our goal is to promote fair play…

    ‘Tis a puzzlement.

    • More simply put: they believe that the ends justify the means.

      Thus it matters not that millions die in the process, so long as in the end we work out the bugs in socialism.

      • But they never do (or can) work out the bugs in socialism, as those bugs are the very concept of socialism itself. This of course just means that millions more must die to keep the bugs from becoming obvious for as long as possible.

        • And indeed, you can confound any advocate of socialism by observing — preferably in front of a large audience — that:
          1. Socialists never give delivery dates;
          2. They always claim their failures are someone else’s fault;
          3. Their preferred method for averting scrutiny from their subjects is violence: against the subjects themselves, or against neighboring countries.

          In their book on socialism, Brian Crozier and Arthur Seldon put it simply: “Socialism hides its faults by making people wait.” Sometimes the wait never ends.

  13. This article put me in mind of something from Gregory Benford’s neglected novel Against Infinity. Benford’s backdrop was a solar system politically dominated by a completely socialist Earth, but where those who chose to live on other bits of rock, such as the moons of Jupiter or Saturn, had some economic freedom, as long as they didn’t exceed certain bounds. This presents an “outrider” pattern in which heavily populated Earth could survive as socialist as long as the outriders on the outer worlds practiced enough capitalism to keep everyone reasonably well fed. Thus, for survival’s sake the Earth authorities had to tolerate capitalism “in the weeds” at the edge of their socialist lawn.

    Those who elected lives on Ganymede, the focus of the story, had little sympathy for Earth, though they labored in part to keep Earth’s socialist economy afloat. They built their own societies, and the institutions within them, to their own satisfaction. However, the political dynamic of power-seeking propelled Earth’s socialist pattern outward, slowly enveloping the quasi-capitalist societies on the fringe and compelling those who rejected Earth-style socialism to move still further out.

    Our situation bears some comparison to that above. There’s always freedom on the frontier…even if “the frontier” is conceptual rather than geographic. As power-mongers take an ever tighter and more inclusive grip on a nation, those most ardent about freedom will move toward such frontiers, creating free outposts temporarily beyond the reach of the power-mongers. To prop up their regime, the power-mongers will move to exploit, and eventually swallow, those free communities as they become stable and prosperous, and as the opportunity presents itself.

    At some point, every socialist Leviathan becomes too weighed down by demands and expectations to remain stable, no matter how deeply it might mulct the free frontier communities. The weight placed on its architecture exceeds its stress limits; it collapses, perhaps by Balkanizing. When that happens, it will drag some of the free communities down with it…but not all of them. The ones that survive will be the bastions from which we can reclaim some, at least, of what was once the land of the free.

  14. Build under, help your neighbors wherever those neighbors may be, and keep your powder dry.

  15. Free-range Oyster

  16. I am seriously considering a write-in for President: Cthulhu

  17. “It is by this process that most conservative institutions become far left. The reverse doesn’t happen.”

    Pournelle’s Iron Law in action.
    http://www.jerrypournelle.com/reports/jerryp/iron.html

    =====
    Pournelle’s Iron Law of Bureaucracy states that in any bureaucratic organization there will be two kinds of people:

    First, there will be those who are devoted to the goals of the organization. Examples are dedicated classroom teachers in an educational bureaucracy, many of the engineers and launch technicians and scientists at NASA, even some agricultural scientists and advisors in the former Soviet Union collective farming administration.

    Secondly, there will be those dedicated to the organization itself. Examples are many of the administrators in the education system, many professors of education, many teachers union officials, much of the NASA headquarters staff, etc.

    The Iron Law states that in every case the second group will gain and keep control of the organization. It will write the rules, and control promotions within the organization.
    =====

    • And the corollary, that every organization that isn’t explicitly rightist will over time become leftist.

  18. In some cases this will be very very difficult. For us writers, for instance, it’s almost impossible to work for anything but US dollars. (Though, who knows, that might change. Will for sure if the crash comes. I will of course work for gold, if anyone wants to cover me in a pile of it!)

    Open Bazaar https://openbazaar.org/ no central server uses Bitcoin.
    web search for stores https://bazaarbay.org/
    Most home users have problem with it needs a server running to host your store. But you can get it running on a raspberry PI 2 or 3.

    OpenBazaar is a peer-to-peer social market. It’s like combining eBay™, Twitter™ and BitTorrent into one. Only, there are no fees or restrictions and OpenBazaar is open-source.

  19. OpenBazaar is a different way to do online commerce. Instead of visiting a website, you download and install a program on your computer that directly connects you to other people looking to buy and sell goods and services with you. This peer to peer network isn’t controlled by any company or organization – it’s a community of people who want to engage in trade directly with each other.
    https://openbazaar.org websearch to find stores and products https://bazaarbay.org/

    Uses multisig bitcoin so BTC is not released until both parties agree.

    you can put it on a raspberry pi so you don’t need your home PC running the entire time.