Before We Fall

I have heard it said that if you look carefully and take the correct action before an accident you can sometimes be all right. It will still hurt. It will hurt like hell. But it will be all right.

I have had friends save their brains from injury because they “knew how to fall.” I have had other friends who, just before a car crash turned their cars just so, so that it wouldn’t kill them. Heck, we did in fact pay through the nose (2k per kid) to send our sons to a driving program (Master Drive, in Colorado Springs, if anyone is interested) that teaches that kind of technique and others, like how to avoid a crash at all. We went on payments for both kids, so that we could do it (we did not have 2k extra laying around, no.) and in at least one case it proved worth it, when son went spinning out on an iced major street, and managed to right the car and himself without hitting anyone. He didn’t even think about it. They train you on a skid pad.

I hate to tell you this, but metaphorically speaking most of you don’t have training on a skid pad. I do — sort of — but not on a street that has been deliberately and thoroughly iced and when someone cut the brakelines and possibly unscrewed the wheel. We’re going to need an amazing amount of luck to get out of this. At this point I hold about a 10% chance the Democrats/Socialists/Communists (interchangeable now that the masks are off) don’t fraud their way into full power, pack the court and rip our system apart, to install (yet again) a form of communism. This is complicated by the fact that a lot of them are in China’s pockets. Or rather, China has been filling their pockets for a long while. We might find ourselves working for racist, hegemonic overlords, besides suffering all the ills of a descent into communism. (By the way, they’ve already been doing this to some extent to the less fortunate countries, including most African countries. The left in the US and Europe believes this is benevolence. And that Chinese aren’t racist. I wouldn’t believe it, if it hadn’t been said to me over and over.)

There is maybe another 25% of chance we’ll find ourselves in CW II, now with even more foreign interference. What comes out of that, G-d only knows, and I’m not Him. Which is good, because I have trouble enough being me.

And there is a very strong chance that even if Trump wins the White House, besides continuing to have to drive a car where the wheel is disconnected (the extent of which I wasn’t even fully sure of until this month) he won’t do more than delay the crash.

Sometimes here, and particularly at insty, because I tend to do that really late at night when I’m exhausted and less able to control my moods, you’ll catch a hint of how hopeless I feel our situation to be.

In fact since the lockdown, I’ve been feeling we were screwed. That the lockdown was imposed all over the world on such flimsy evidence, that countries and churches, and every cultural institution not only submitted to it but kept telling the people how much it was needed sent me into a deep depression from which I haven’t fully recovered. (Again, the evidence that this virus was MAYBE as bad as the flu has been before our eyes since the beginning. You don’t need special equipment to see it. The homeless were congregating and not dying in droves. The people in slums in the third world weren’t dying at a higher rate than usual. And there were the numbers from the Diamond Princess. Which some idiot here tried to justify with “but they got the best treatment.” In a floating petri dish. With no special equipment. May G-d have mercy on the soul of every idiot who bought that bullshit.).

This last week, on the other hand, I’ve been feeling like I’m at the end of a Bond movie, and the villain is telling me his big master plan and how Western Civilization is tied to the train tracks and can’t escape.

Oh, not the massive corruption of the Biden crime family. I mean seriously. Any of you who didn’t know already that Crackhead McStripperbang wasn’t being paid for foreign countries for his services must have been living under a rock.

Not even the ridiculous, immediate coordination with which our tech overlords moved to clamp down on that information and preventing it from reaching the virgin ears of most of our willfully and willingly ignorant countrymen.

No, what discouraged me most was the “sexual preference” suddenly becoming a slur and Webster dictionary falling in line. (Seriously, guys, sexual preference goes way beyond orientation. For instance, my sexual preference is monogamous and with someone I love. If you think that there’s no preference involved, you must think people have absolutely no control over their impulses.) Because that bullshit couldn’t happen, even in the most totalitarian of conspiracies.

And that’s the terrifying thought. These people are no more conspiring than your breaklines being cut are a conspiracy not to stop the car.

They are a result of deep inlaid propaganda and misseducation which cause a lot of people to try to fall into line with the “word from above” and be “right” with those they view as the smart people and the masters of society.

I’ve lately started considering whether the decadence and nihilism we associate with the Weimar Republic was as we’ve been propagandized, the result of “capitalism” and a weak government, or the result of this sort of corruption, deep-inlaid. I don’t know enough of German history pre-world-war-one to tell you. Because I suspect the process would have started then.

But– And this is important– I haven’t fallen fully into despair. I haven’t for two reasons: first because in the back of my mind, Jerry Pournelle keeps saying “Despair is a sin.” (Some people just don’t know how to quit. Death seems to make no difference. I keep expecting to open email and have him yell at me to buck up and grow a spine, only more politely, because he has finally figured out how to hack heavens email.)

The other side of it is that I have watched a lot of Bond movies, and read a lot of mysteries. When the villain goes into his soliloquy, and shows us the extent of his plot, he usually is two pages away from being stopped. And sure, the situation seems hopeless, but the seeds of the villain’s own destruction have already been laid, and also, let’s be real, when you start showing your hand and dropping the mask, you’re no longer a sane or in any way competent villain.

Look, they’ve been working on this a looooooooong time. It started I’d guess right after WWI, with inroads into the institutions, which they more or less fully captured after the sixties, due to credentialism. Outlawing competency tests for jobs was really a bad thing. Yes, some people might have used them to enforce racism and discrimination. But market forces would have prevented its being general. It would have worked itself through. Instead we handed control over giving people the piece of paper they needed to get hired to the already deeply compromised universities. It was a single point of failure, a small and claustrophobic culture which has always existed mostly on prestige and where people think disproportionately well of their own intellect. In other words, it was ripe for being taken over by Marxists, even if it hadn’t been already. (If you don’t believe me, read the early Heinlein depictions of college professors in the juveniles.) Since then people have been going through “training” at least half of which is indoctrination. The softer the science the more intense the indoctrination, but — much as I hate to tell you — even the hard sciences get hit with this.

More importantly, because the “learned people” are the ones society admires, everyone who makes it big, even in a tech field — Bill Gates, I’m glaring at you — immediately starts signaling and acting more left than left, so as to be perceived as high class.

Which is why not only all our institutions, but our organs of government are deeply infiltrated and corrupt. Everyone in the FBI, CIA, etc has learned, in their education (some in the best possible American colleges) that America must be reined in, that communism/socialism/etc. had some good points. BUT more importantly, they’ve learned to respect the POV of the “learned” people which are all, uniformly hard Marxists and corruptocrats.

This is before you drop China and its money in. It’s play money, sure. It’s money by fiat from a country that has no control over whatever the government wishes to proclaim. But we accept it as real, and this allowed them to corrupt us.

EVERYONE who complains of Trump’s hiring should be aware he’s hiring from the set that have the credentials and knows how to get along with the other people needed to do the job. The shit show you’re looking at is what credentialism has created.

So…. So, I don’t know. We have maybe a chance in a million. And maybe Pratchett was right about those. We have to hope.

But before we crash, hard or soft (and please keep in mind given the amount of money printed for the various stimulus and to keep people from starving after the government destroyed them and society, we’re going to crash, or at least enter an inflationary free-fall.) there are some things to keep in mind:

We got here because of credentialism. There is a good chance your kids don’t actually know how to do what the establishment ostensibly taught them to do. In fact, if they do know, because they’re the fighting kind and studied on their own they’ll probably be resented by the entire credential system and might have trouble getting through it.

And most kids are in debt. Bad debt. The trap Obama ran them into, making student loans federal and non-dischargeable in bankruptcy? Yeah.

Years ago, a young woman came to a Huns dinner. This was at a time when I was very afraid she’d come for quotable quotes, so I gave her the cold shoulder. But she has been proven right. She told me antifa, and everyone young writing for lefty sites, etc? Young people were broke and desperate for money. They’re in it for the money. And they feel robbed. Partly because they were.

Of course, they were robbed by the machinations of deeply-inlaid socialists, but the rest of us cooperated with it.

Coming out of college with crushing debt and with no prospects for a job, a lot of them went back in for more education, thereby forging thicker shackles.

A lot of you — and me, in principle — oppose forgiving student loans. Look, guys, yeah, I get it. These people willingly fell for the snow job. But how could they not, when all of society cooperated in it? And when frankly, they did need those credentials, because our “free” national education is no longer a guarantee that they can read and write? (I’m here to tell you, having taught college as well as tutored high school students, that most of them can’t. They know a few words, but the effort of writing those is so immense that none is left over for making sense. People who are extremely fluent verbally can’t write or read their way out of a paper bag. This is because the “free” education mostly followed fads designed to be useful for teachers, not kids. If you have kids in school, at any level, the most important thing you can do is make sure they read well enough to read for fun, and then feed the elephant child. And trust me, phonics work. I’ve used them with both kids.)

And yeah, I read the parents indignantly saying they paid for their kids’ educations, and why should other people be given free money.

Look, you’re either going to have to forgive those loans, or — frankly — you’ll be stampeded into communism by a generation shackled to poverty — and the left — by their indebtedness. Sure, maybe they should get some punishment for being stupid. But their whole lives?

After thinking about it a long time, the only way we heal long term, supposing Trump wins, is to forgive student loans and set the kids free to become productive citizens. Mind you, if anyone near the president is reading this: I’d make forgiving the loans contingent on their proving they have an “employable skill” which might take allowing them to take more loans for training programs (as in for instance, to learn to code, or repair cars, or even construction work) which are then forgiven when they become good at it and work at it for a year. I would also make it a condition that they show they can read and write proficiently. Not just enough to piece some sentences together, but enough to be as coherent on paper as they are orally, and to be able to read and interpret text and subtext with no difficulty.

So if we don’t crash right way, I suggest you put your indignation away at the idea of student loan forgiveness. Seriously, it has to come if we are to have a future. No, I don’t like it. Yes, we paid half the undergrad for each of our kids, stripping ourselves of savings in the process. BUT the alternative is not “we don’t forgive loans, and everyone is happy.” The alternative is “the young people remain resentful, willing to do anything even support communism because they’re in an untenable position.” We all pay. One way or another. And hey, if we forgive them now, the government can recoup a great part of the funds by suing the useless universities out of their endowment. Before they lose it completely, because frankly the covidiocy they enthusiastically embraced was the death blow for them.

The other part of this is say goodbye to any guarantees of a comfortable old age. Say it now. Explain to other people why it’s not going to happen. It’s not going to happen because there’s no money. Because the money was squandered on stupid lockdowns and grand schemes by half-mad statist (Marxist) villains. Look, I’m four years from technical retirement age. Of course, being a writer, I expect to work till I drop with my hands on the keyboard. But of course, my husband has a conventional career…. and he too expects to drop with his hands on the keyboard.

If you expect a broke government to keep paying out benefits, all you’ll do is take the value from the savings of those who sacrificed and saved.

Oh, yeah, that’s the other part. Those of us who sacrificed and saved, fixed houses and sold them at a higher price, and invested, and —

Yeah we’re screwed too. Best case scenario, we’re still going to lose most of it.

The crash is going to happen. Damage will be extensive. We’re going to hurt. Badly.

The best we can do is protect the essential, and prepare to survive. As a society. (If the left wins this November I don’t expect to be around for the survival. As you guys know, Denver democrats endorse shooting the opposition.)

Partly this means, stop fighting the inevitable, hang loose, make the best you can out of what you can. And don’t fight the driver trying to take us in to a less damaging crash.

The other part means, accept that the evil villain lecturing us has corrupted most things. But while he’s talking, test the cord with which they tied our hands. There’s usually some give.

I.e. our greatest weakness is communications. People smarter than I need to start working on it now. Yes, it’s late. We’re going to hurt. BUT you must do everything you can to remedy that, including peer-to-peer of some sort.

The other part is we need a drop failsafe for Amazon. Well, that’s disproportionately important to me, because in the unlikely event I survive, that’s my bread and butter.

We also need other systems of “social media” where we can talk. (Be leery of parler. I have it on good authority China has whole knuckles in it. And their terms of service are hideous.) Herb, or someone, we need to talk about systems to sell things. (My big issue is figuring out taxes.)

The villain thinks he has us tied down. It’s time to fight back. And start rebuilding while they’re gloating, and while they think there’s no chance ever of us escaping.

We’re the last hope of mankind. If America falls, civilization falls.

Yes, we’ll have to eat live frogs and work our butts off and there’s no certainty of success. What, you thought it would be easy?

But if we manage it, we win the future. Even if most of us won’t live long enough to see it.

669 thoughts on “Before We Fall

  1. For social media, get on Gab. They’re bootstrapped, funded by users instead of advertising, and bulldog-devoted to free speech. They’ve been deplatformed by pretty much everybody, up to and including their founder being personally blacklisted by Visa. (Up until very recently, you paid for a Gab Pro account by sending a check to a PO Box.) They’ve held on, responding to every “If you don’t like it, build your own X” with a hearty “OK. Here it is.”

    Free speech (nothing illegal, no porn) means there are plenty of execrable trolls there who will have to be muted or blocked, but otherwise it’s a very friendly place.

    1. F*CK Gab. Sorry. Gab has let itself become the gamboling ground of outright nazis. No sane person can stay there too long without gagging. I have an account and abandoned it long ago. It’s the mirror twin of Twitter and just as crazy.
      Yes, sure, if the trolls and insanity were easy to block. As happens, it’s not.

      1. Maybe, however if they excluded the nazis, it wouldn’t be free speech. I’ve been on Gab pretty much since the beginning and saw that as well, however today I seldom if ever see and nazi postings, exposure to sunlight (or ridicule ) is the best disinfectant.

        1. I’ve been lurking on Gab for a while (I think a year, possibly two) and as best as I can tell, the nazis are pretty well ignorable. If I run across a particularly repugnant one, it’s only a moment to mute and/or block them.

          The fact that every bigger social media entity and the vast majority of the financial people have ganged up to block Gab (complete with Visa blacklisting the CEO *and* his family, personally–and he’s no nazi) tells me there’s something there…). FWIW, try lurking on Gab and following Andrew Torba (his handle is @a).

          And yeah, they’ve had to build their own servers, since TPTB managed to deplatform them off more conventional hosting methods.

          I’ve had suspicions about Parler, and haven’t seen anything to alleviate them, but Gab looks worth it.

              1. Here we go:
                5. You grant to Parler a license to any content posted by you to the Services,
                including a worldwide, non-exclusive, royalty-free license (with the right to sublicense)
                to use, copy, reproduce, process, adapt, modify, publish, transmit, display and
                distribute your content. You agree that Parler or its service providers or partners may
                display advertising in connection with your content and otherwise monetize your
                content without compensation to you. You warrant that you have all rights necessary
                to grant these rights to Parler and Parler users. You also grant a limited non-exclusive,
                royalty-free license to any user of the Services to use, copy, reproduce, process, adapt,
                modify, publish, transmit, display, and distribute any content posted by you to the
                Services solely in connection with that users use of the Services. The licenses granted
                by you hereunder do not include any moral rights or right of attribution.

                Which looks like they will justify it as being “you can’t charge us for people looking at what you post,” but…..

                  1. Parler requires scans of your driver’s license.
                    And again, someone I know did a deep dive and China has knuckles in it.
                    Now, they already have my data due to a LONG ago clearance and the data getting cracked. But I don’t feel a need to give them an updated version.

          1. I haven’t been interested in Parler enough to pay attention to details. I do recall some GOPe involved in the formation, and that was enough of a red flag for me (yes, I can say Permanent Bipartisan Fusion Party). I know they folded to Apple and Google over censorship;

            Gab refused to. Andrew Torba posted links to the help page to bypass the Apple store, so Gab on an iPhone is doable. I don’t know about Android; I prefer dumb phones for general purposes.

          2. Yeah. Gab might be in terms of blocking the outright nazis (most of which are NOT in the US, btw.) BUT their platform SUCKS. Same as MeWe. I never know what I am or what I’m supposed to do. Hiring decent programmers should NOT be impossible.
            As for the left attacking them? The left is semi random in this. See proud boys, or their attempts to f*ck with my paypal….

            1. It’s not random with Gab. Proud Boys have it easy compared to Gab. During the House committee meeting on how terrible Right-of-Lenin social media is, Gab dealt with the largest DDOS attack they’ve had. OTOH, they have some good protection. Hey, they have the right enemies and have found defenses.

              I can’t speak about issues with posting because lurking, though I’ve seen posts from their tech wizard; they seem to be working and nailing down problems.

              It serves my simple purposes. Mileage will vary.

      2. Yes, Gab in the raw is execrable. But this problem is easily solved by following people you wish to read, rather than diving into the open sewer of Gab’s front page (tho it’s got nothin’ on old-time Usenet for vile). Then follow people who desirably interact with your choices. Once you do that, Gab will no longer show you the common muck; if you want to smell garbage, you’ll mostly have to go looking for it.

        gab.com/home (NOT the site root) will be your chosen feed, not piles of trash. Repost freely and like-minded folks will find you soon enough.

        I suggest starting with this excellent fellow, my personal favorite poster:
        https://gab.com/SergeiDimitrovichIvanov

        Another with astonishingly good content is “European Beauty” @MagicalEurope

        There’s also a mirror of twitter’s @realDonaldTrump

        Tho I admit I hardly use Gab anymore, other than to read the above, because most social media is same old same old even when it’s pleasant stuff, and just with new-and-different content I have more than I can possibly consume.

      3. “Gab has let itself become the gamboling ground of outright nazis.”

        Last I looked, that was the price of ACTUAL free speech. Who gets to define who’s a nazi? Twitter, Facebook, Google all define YOU as one.

          1. I would rather have those real Nazis/neo-Nazis openly proclaiming what they seek and who they are as they will still have the same beliefs and act towards the same goals regardless of whether their speech is suppressed. To paraphrase Malcolm X, I prefer to let the bigots who hate me and want to kill me tell me who they are.

      4. > F*CK Gab. Sorry. Gab has let itself become the gamboling ground of outright nazis.

        And Facebook is the gamboling ground for outright Communists. And so is Twitter. Both *right now*, working to undermine the electoral process, among many other things.

        A whole lot more dangerous than a handful of keyboard commandos in their parents’ basements.

        You hitched your wagon to Facebook for reasons you’ve managed to justify to yourself, but slamming another platform because you don’t like how it’s run is disengenuous.

        1. It’s easier for me to block people, and not get assaulted all the time by their nonsense.
          Though I’ll grant you FB is getting as bad.
          As for hitching my wagon, don’t make me swear at you. You know better than that.
          I’m on FB not as a normal citizen (I wouldn’t be on ANY social media, and I ran away from twitter years ago, except for automatic echoing of my blog) but as a writer. As such, I go where the people are. RIGHT NOW the majority of people are on FB. I neither have the time nor feel the need to spread myself to all the little venues, much less venues where I’m going to be attacked due to the place of my birth, sorry.

  2. EVERYONE who complains of Trump’s hiring should be aware he’s hiring from the set that have the credentials and knows how to get along with the other people needed to do the job. The shit show you’re looking at is what credentialism has created.

    Ironically / Interestingly there seem to be conditions under which he reliably doesn’t make mistakes in employee choice:

    When he is hiring a woman.

  3. 1. “Brake” and “Brakelines”. 2. “forgiviing” student loans means taxing those of us who never had the leisure, prosperous parents, or time for university to give already left-indoctrinated, self-proclaimed elitists a boost. Instead, lower taxes on earned income and investment income, and if those “kids” have the moxy to learn something marketable, they can come along for the ride.

    1. Best option will be to take it out of the schools. Could easily apply a common usage of fraud to the stats these schools publish regarding placement. But problem is that many have been sold on greed and envy. It will be paid off, just matter of whether its in order to break the credentialism or if a reward for voting in the elite and used to further disposess the middle and upper class

      1. Glen Reynolds frequently pushes the idea of putting universities on the hook for the student loans of their graduates who don’t find work.

        1. Will never happen, and if it did, the Democrats would simply provide all of the graduates with government jobs so that the college graduates always find “work”. That’s presuming that they don’t simply implement “free college”, which of course means that it gets paid for with other people’s money.

      2. I wonder how far grabbing the endowments for the “universities” that are mostly endowment enhancement factories would go against the outstanding student debt – the problem, as with any “eat the rich” scheme, is there’s not enough meat on the rich to go around.

        I do like getting rid of the endowment factories’ tax exemption and making them pay taxes on their income from any source.

    2. Yes. Yes it does. And?
      You’re either going to forgive them, or that generation is not going to have children or productive jobs. Which means if we avoid falling now, we’ll fall later.
      What this young woman told me and I believe is true is that they don’t really believe the left. They don’t believe anything. But they’re desperate and want money. Or at least a way out. or failing that to bring us all down..
      And no, it doesn’t mean taxing you. Already these kids aren’t paying their debts. They’re holding on till they’re forgiven when they hit retirement age. You’re already paying FOR THEM.
      WHY THE HELL should conservatives endorse the government giving money to the universities and making the kids pay for it? WHAT SENSE DOES THAT MAKE?
      WHY should the universities be repaid? They produced useless degrees. Consider the debt to them cancelled.
      But they’ll go bankrupt!
      Yes, and?

      1. Hell yes!
        Allow student loans to be addressed through bankruptcy. Currently they are not.
        Then allow lenders to hold universities culpable for misrepresenting their product, claiming that the education they sell will guarantee a well paying job.
        There are no deeper pockets than those held by some of our major universities.

        1. Make universities be the lenders, and make the loans dischargeable in bankruptcy – if they provide an education that lets the student pay off the loans, they get paid back. If bankruptcy and the attending creditworthiness hit is the preferable choice, the university eats it.

          1. ANd instantly forgive all loans when former student completes a term of military service. That I’m fine paying from taxes.

                1. Largely, it’s Philippine citizens in the U.S. Navy. I have long thought that they should be granted U.S. citizenship after some number of years of honorable service. Seriously, on most ships at least half the guys in food service are Filipinos, and almost all of the Chief MS’s. Don’t know why, that’s just where they seem to end up.

                  1. Not everybody WANTS to become citizens. There’s nothing stopping them from pursuing citizenship, if they want it. And military service DOES cut the residency requirements, plus one usually has support and assistance with the process if one wishes.

                    Filipinos in supply areas: some of that is tradition, and gathering together into the Filipino Mafia. Some of it is that, as non citizens they are constrained to certain rates or MOSes, which mostly include supply and building or admin rates.

          2. Make universities be the lenders, and make the loans dischargeable in bankruptcy


            That is the problem. The universities are not making the loans. Banks are. Loans used to be discharged in Bankruptcy. I know of at least one cousin who did. Not anymore.

            I’m not sure how these kids got loans. The only loans our son qualified for were Parent Plus loan, which required starting payment on @ 6%, immediately on first distribution of money. F*** that. My parents had to guaranty my loans too, but payment, and interest didn’t start until 6 months after failure to register (or graduation). We (us & son) had some money presaved in College & other accounts for son’s college; but not nearly enough for all of it. Son got some scholarship & grant money. Between son working off seasons, & us saving as we went, we got him through without loans. Hubby & I both had loans, but they were paid off 100% in full. When I went back to school, never tried for loans.

            1. When did your son go to college? I suspect the rules have massively changed since that time, and if he had been starting college, say, last year, he would have been offered way more loans than he was back when he actually went.

              1. Fall ’07 through Spring ’12.

                Trust me. There were plenty of “offers”.

                Bless his heart. He never listed his school address on anything. So, all the offer mail came to us. He forwarded anything that came into his personal or school emails. With “Does this make any sense?”

          3. Student loans should be voidable in bankruptcy I don’t see why educational debt should be different from other debt. There are some people who would game the system by taking a bankruptcy soon after graduation. When you have few assets a bankruptcy is not that painful. To combat this I think bankruptcy judges should have the ability to require schools to revoke diplomas / graduated status if they believe a good faith effort to pay has not been made. Lenders should be able to question a students school and choice of major as well as grades and then set interest and fees accordingly. Getting low grades in a grievance studies program and it will be a lot more expensive. If banks are not willing to lend to students in certain programs then require that the school has to cosign for all or part of the loan. Let banks determine if a school is a valid credit risk. I think merit instead of diversity would make a comeback.

            1. “When you have few assets a bankruptcy is not that painful.”

              That’s why they changed the law to make student loans non-dischargable. Doctors and lawyers would rack up large debts from all the schooling and declare bankruptcy more or less right after graduation. They don’t have any assets besides a beater car and some personal possessions, so their loans go away. By the time they’re making enough money to buy a nice house and car the bankruptcy has fallen off their credit report.

              If we’re going to make student loans dischargable there needs to be a waiting period, something like 10-15 years so that the bankruptcy is at least a little painful.

              Personally, I think the government student loans should be paid to the school in some form of financial instrument (coupon bonds?) that pays as the student pays their debt. Make it illegal for the school to sell them, but they can be borrowed against.

            2. Because other debt doesn’t result in a person with no assets and a high income.

              There would at least need to be a period of some years after graduation so that if you wanted to defraud the bank, you had refrain from acquiring any assets in that time.

        2. This.

          Someone who graduated in 2000 has already served a 20 year sentence for the crime of trusting parents, guidance counselors, and university officials at eighteen. They are 42, likely past having children if they didn’t choose to raise them in poverty, with welfare or two working parents, and with no savings for the years in which they cannot work. Furthermore they have a crappy work history full of layoffs, because Thanks Obama, as the kids who went hungry during his era’s school lunch program say. Things were just starting to look up when covidiocracy hit.

          Who knew “don’t trust anyone over thirty” was the one bit of advice we should have followed at 18?

          And if folks value SSI as it is, what do you think’s coming when a generation with minimal assets hits collection age? Means testing? Sure! Many of my generation have literally nothing to lose, and parents driving around with “I’m spending my kids inheritance” on their bumper stickers. Why would the forties and younger generations not support means testing? We all know SSI is an upside down pyramid and we’re the destined losers in that scheme, too.

      2. I’ll be honest I really dislike any kind of amnesty on other than a case by case basis. There are two reasons that an amnesty runs into trouble 1) It really pisses off those that played by the rules, 2) it encourages future folks into the same stupid behavior be it buying a house they can’t afford, sneaking across a border, or taking out far to large a degree of debt. I’m familiar with a lot of these folks as my daughters are just out of school (5 and 2 years respectively). Both listened to their parents (lucky us) and chose careers that had some hope of paying off, although it did help that my wife taught LOTS of summer and night courses to keep their loans to feasible levels. Many of their compatriots were not so lucky. One of the younger girls best friends chose a similar (STEM based) career but one that has more folks in it (Bio vs Mechanical Engineering) and went to an inordinately expensive university (credentialism rampant). Shes working on an advanced degree (and at least in the sciences there are usually tuition waivers and small stipends so no additional debt), thought Science PHD’s tend to be a glut on the market. One of the elder girls buddies is worse off. Parents tossed in little (older semi retired), she was a good artist (but not great) Last I heard she was working 2 jobs (one a Starbucks barista gig, thats probably dead) with 70K + of loans. Sort of seemed to be hunting the MRS degree but most of her potential targets weren’t much better off.

        Something has to been done, but perhaps the answer is letting folks go back to declaring bankruptcy and git rid of student loans like it was in the past. And definitely penalize the institution in some fashion. Part of the issue is all this loose money. The colleges felt free to raise their costs. They used that increase for stupid creation of hordes of deans, and adding masses of facilities not directly related to the educational purpose to try to attract more of the shrinking pool of students.

        1. she was a good artist (but not great)


          Niece is a very good artist in a variety of mediums. Parents put down their foot for schools on east coast or even out of state. She’s the only one of the 7 older nieces/nephews to not get a degree. Well the one and only nephew doesn’t have a degree either OTOH, he just started.

          1. Art, Music, Drama, Sport any of these are a rough choice as a living. Because the number of people that want to do these things is VERY large and the need is small (There’s Mr Smiths hidden hand). But every aspiring 18 year old thinks they’re good enough. And the stupid participation trophy culture has encouraged them. Of the art/ music/Drama types my girls have known (and there are LOTS) exactly one has made it good. Spectacular artist, skilled in math and science, went to Brown/RISD got a dual degree in Art and Comp Sci. Last I heard she was at Disney in the animation department. A few of the rest are music teachers, overall lots of folks doing retail (and choking hard in this years shutdowns). Something like 1 in 30 made a living.

            1. Art, Music, Drama, Sport any of these are a rough choice as a living. </blockquote)

              Most definitely.

              But every aspiring 18 year old thinks they’re good enough.


              Family thinks she is. Including someone who does art & music and makes a living doing both (selling art, teaching music).

              OTOH the (shirt tail) family member in question is one of a dozen, or so, relatives who do art, good to sell art. She is the Only one who sells her art, and does art on commission. Even she isn’t known further than outside of her zip code except for family.

              I’ve known ONE person who not only made a living on her art, but made a dang good living. Her husband had a huge 10′ x 8′ commissioned painting in his office until the person in Europe paid the balance owed, arranged for and paying for shipping to Europe, from rural Oregon. Cost of the painting (not counting shipping), some order of $10k of dollars (as in $20k to $90k, just don’t know the actual amount). Office had a number of prints of some of her paintings, that were limited print runs. Employees of the division could get an employee discount on those prints. Our discounted price, regular size print (not based off the big one mentioned) was $950, for the least expensive! Too much for us, for a print, or original (I mean I have a house full of grandpa’s paintings, I can’t tell why they aren’t “as good”). I remember her husband’s name (because I worked with him), but not hers, only met her once or twice (I’m horrible with names). She passed away from cancer, mid-90s.

        1. No. Not precisely wrong. The government guarantees the loans (not dischargeable in bankruptcy) and then collects it from students.
          I think it should be dischargeable in bankruptcy and the universities should eat it.

          1. Given that student loans are the -only- type of debt I’m aware of that can’t be discharged in bankruptcy, and given that the Department of Education has a SWAT team (oh yes they do, Lefties), one must suspect horrific corruption at the base of all this.

            Fix is clearly in. Might want to look into that as an election issue some year. Probably not this year.

            1. and given that the Department of Education has a SWAT team (oh yes they do, Lefties),

              No, they don’t.

              The idiot reporter who wrote that up was going off of a neighbor commenting on more than three vehicles, one of them a city cop car, being “like” a SWAT team, and folks grab it and ran with the claim.

              It was one or two local cops (one vehicle, stories vary on how many police) supervising the serving of a warrant, and a bunch of investigators looking for fraud documents.

              When I was trying to dig up the information that I’d found out at roughly that time, I foudn out he had a reason for the rather radically shifting story (originally, he claimed he was thrown to the ground, then claimed he was dragged to teh cop car, then claimed he was locked in the cop car for hours, then couldn’t be reached for comment.)

              http://stockton-central.abc10.com/news/crime/104517-outspoken-stockton-man-indicted-student-loan-fraud

              SACRAMENTO, CA – A Stockton man who inisisted he was being harassed by federal agents for an unpaid student loan has been indicted with five others on charges they stole more than a quarter-million dollars from the Department of Education.

              Kenneth Wright received national attention in June 2011 when federal agents broke down his front door and detained him while they searched his home.

              In an interview with News10 shortly after the raid, Wright demanded an apology and a new front door.

              The Sept. 6 indictment unsealed on Wednesday names Kenneth Wright, his estranged wife Michelle Wright, Janeigh Mendoza, Jaymar Brown, Jennifer Brown and Brandy Miner.

              The charges include student loan fraud, mail fraud and aggravated identity theft.

              Prosecutors say the defendants used the identifies of more than 100 “straw” students to apply for student aid at vocational and community colleges all around California.

              The indictment claims the conspiracy resulted in the fraudulent payment of more than $285,000 in Federal Student Assistance Program funds.

              Wright and two co-defendants were scheduled to make an initial appearance in federal court in Sacramento Wednesday afternoon.

              1. https://www.justice.gov/usao-edca/pr/two-sentenced-prison-student-loan-fraud-schemes

                Five others have been convicted and sentenced in Wright’s case. Janeigh Mendoza, 32, of Tracy, was sentenced to four years and three months in prison. The others, including Michelle Wright’s husband Kenneth Wright, were sentenced to terms of probation. Michelle Wright was ordered to pay $129,171 in restitution.

                These cases are the product of investigations by the United States Department of Education, Office of Inspector General. Assistant United States Attorney Jared C. Dolan is prosecuting the cases.

                Component(s):
                USAO – California, Eastern
                Press Release Number:
                Docket #: 2:12-cr-316 LKK (Wright); 2:12-cr-313 TLN (Wilder)

                Short version:
                the guy stole disable folks’ identities to help his wife file for student aid so they could soak the system, seemingly because the prior arrangement where they split the falsely gained cash with the straw-applicants didn’t pay enough.

                There wasn’t a SWAT team, and he wasn’t an innocent victim.

                1. Because the government never overcharges anyone to coerce guilty pleas or testimony….. General Flynn could not be reached for comment.

                  1. Just as we all know that nobody who is doing wrong, and knows it, would try to accuse others of doing the same or worse to divert attention and blunt accusations.

                    It’s not as if there’s an entire political party that uses such a tactic as their #1 tactic, nor as if we have objective proof of it being one of the standards for a guilty as sin criminal who has just been arrested….

              2. http://phantomsoapbox.blogspot.com/2010/03/fwd-should-we-be-more-worried.html

                ” Added: Mar 08, 2010 10:39 am
                The U.S. Department of Education (ED) intends to purchase twenty-seven (27) REMINGTON BRAND MODEL 870 POLICE 12/14P MOD GRWC XS4 KXCS SF. RAMAC #24587 GAUGE: 12 BARREL: 14″ – PARKERIZED CHOKE: MODIFIED SIGHTS: GHOST RING REAR WILSON COMBAT; FRONT – XS CONTOUR BEAD SIGHT STOCK: KNOXX REDUCE RECOIL ADJUSTABLE STOCK FORE-END: SPEEDFEED SPORT-SOLID – 14″ LOP are designated as the only shotguns authorized for ED based on compatibility with ED existing shotgun inventory, certified armor and combat training and protocol, maintenance, and parts.
                The required date of delivery is March 22, 2010.”

                The Dept. of Education purchased SWAT gear and shotguns for their “enforcement team.” They apparently already had an existing inventory of shotguns, armor and etc. to which the 27 Remington 870 shotguns was an addition. AKA a SWAT team.

                Of interest, quite a few of the links I posted to MSM news sources back in 2010 are now dead. Memory hole.

                1. The Office of the Inspector General is not a SWAT team.

                  The link to the contract doesn’t work because the contract was filled and the entire “contract opportunities” thing was moved to a new website so people looking to sell stuff to the government don’t have to hit a dozen different sites. (and also because someone wanted to use a cute name. *eyeroll* SAM, seriously?)
                  Try this one:
                  https://www.thetruthaboutguns.com/heres-why-the-u-s-dept-of-education-needs-27-remington-shotguns/

                  Going to the place they indicate and clicking through for more information gets you this:
                  ED OIG special agents exercise full law enforcement authority – carrying firearms, applying for and executing arrest and search warrants, and taking sworn statements. Our special agents also employ the full spectrum of traditional law enforcement techniques, such as conducting surveillance and undercover operations. ED OIG special agents work side-by-side with their colleagues in other law enforcement agencies, as well as with Federal, State, and local prosecutors.
                  and a link to the PDF of the authorization for the IG to be federal law enforcement. Previously they were randomly deputized and given guns, when they were trying to make it so that federal enforcement was less of a charley foxtrot after 9/11 they made it so that the guys who can actually pass a law enforcement qualification are qualified all the time. (Which means that the rules about getting rid of bad law enforcement agents can be used on them!)

                  1. I’m not an American and therefore don’t have a dog in that fight. But reading the response from DE it certainly begs the question of why the Department of Education needs policemen with shotguns, body armor and similar accoutrements. What type of operation does the -Department of Education- run that puts their people in that kind of situation?

                    Looks like one more bit of swamp that needs draining, at the least.

                    1. But reading the response from DE it certainly begs the question of why the Department of Education needs policemen with shotguns, body armor and similar accoutrements.

                      The kind where there’s a non-zero chance of crazy guys walking in and shooting the joint up? Better to have their security guys be held to normal law enforcement standards– and when you’re going in to get paperwork on fraud that is in the hundreds of thousands of dollars, there often are people who will shoot at you.
                      So you slap a vest on the pencil-pushers, even if they’re not even security forces.

                      Sure, I’d MUCH rather that they not be giving out money like that!
                      But that doesn’t change that they are, and I don’t want it going into the hands of stupid criminals, even if their lawyers are smart enough to feed stories to the news.

                    2. “The kind where there’s a non-zero chance of crazy guys walking in and shooting the joint up?”

                      Yeah, that kind. ~:D That’s what cops are supposed to do, not half-trained weenies from the Dept. of Ed. But there they are, gearing and training their own departmental armed response deal. That’s bad.

                      Speaking as a Canadian, I’d be shocked to hear that the Canadian Ministry of Education had its own armed police, SWAT or not. The RCMP is the federal police, MoE doesn’t (theoretically) have any business doing that kind of thing. They call the RCMP, and the Horsemen do it.

                      Proliferation of police powers in a bureaucracy is a very bad thing, as well as the militarization of police forces, and both are very definitely well established in the US federal government. These two examples of the DoEd and the DoAg having their own armed police is being repeated in every department. DoEnergy, IRS, INS, HUD, Parks, Fish cops, DHS is armed to the teeth, it goes on and on.

                      But, doing this little look back has been very enlightening as well, another example of how bad the reporting of all this stuff really is. There a raid on X person or X company, some video of armored cops waving guns around, and then “SQUIRREL!” on to something else. We don’t really have any idea what’s going on, for the most part.

                    3. They are cops. Ones with extremely limited focus.

                      That’s the whole point. They are extremely focused on where they’re allowed to operate, and they aren’t “half trained.” Because they are actual law enforcement, rather than being “deputized” or brought in, they can be held to law enforcement standards. We know they’re not half trained because they go to the same training as other federal law enforcement:
                      https://www.fletc.gov/current-partners

                      Why do all these other groups have law enforcement? Because it’s easier to get rid of bad actors when they’re not under a completely different organization’s control, and it’s much harder for the Bad Guys to defeat safeguards, and they actually learn something about the thing they’re supposed to be enforcing, and we don’t get a repeat of 9/11 with multiple agencies dropping the ball because while they’re supposed to be doing law enforcement work for X thing, they don’t actually know much about it.

                      ********************

                      But, doing this little look back has been very enlightening as well, another example of how bad the reporting of all this stuff really is. There a raid on X person or X company, some video of armored cops waving guns around, and then “SQUIRREL!” on to something else. We don’t really have any idea what’s going on, for the most part.

                      I know! It’s like the Black Lives Matter stuff without quite as much national push.

                      I almost have to be grateful to Reason, now– if not for their crazy levels of “you don’t need this information, we’ll pretend it didn’t happen” in reporting I wouldn’t have started looking so hard at these cases.

                      How flippin’ long has the news been sourcing their reporting from the lawyer for the guys accused, not mentioning it, and then reporting permutations of that?

                      Oh, ran into a new trick the other day, it’s a modification of the “so and so was never charged (because they did a plea deal)”– specify that someone was never charged by a specific group, and don’t mention that’s because they were charged by the group with better jurisdiction.

                1. Again, even your own source says that it was like a SWAT raid, which appears to be the ‘assault weapon’ of describing any sort of police involvement beyond a vanilla traffic stop.

                  Looking at someone besides Natural News (arrested for advocating selling raw milk? Er…) turns up that the arrests were not even for selling raw milk and cheese, which there are legal routes to do– it was because they couldn’t be bothered to do that, either.
                  https://abc7.com/archive/8288670/

                  1. I did a little further reseach to fing out what finally happened with the Rawsome Food thing. Turns out that the State of California dropped all the charges against two of the three arrested after dragging them through the courts for a year. Plea deal, apparently. The owner was in jail for a while, found a video of him complaining he was tagged as a terrorist in the justice system. All in all, the whole thing seems extremely sketchy.

                    I also found out that the only easily accessible reporting after the raid to follow up on the final disposition was Infowars. A bit disturbing that Alex Jones is the only guy paying attention.

                    1. Once I had the guy’s name, I was able to find reporting that wasn’t repeating the guy’s lawyer talking to infowars (or food activists) with relative ease–probably because I spend so much time on ag sites so those stupid blanking filters don’t hide real food stuff from me.

                      Looking at the list of charges that Palmer was still up on? They probably dropped all the serious conspiracy-to-commit stuff on the others in return for cooperation with the whole cheating-old-people-and-stealing-money cases, and did the food related hit because that’s public safety and very easily proven.

                      ***********

                      A lot of the “so and so was never charged” cases turn out to be plea deals when you can find the information.

                2. Looks like the milk thing may have been the incidental side-case to bigger investigations, too:
                  http://www.santapaulatimes.com/news/archivestory.php/aid/25889/Wheeler_Canyon_raw_goat_milk_farmer_pleads_guilty_in_L.A._case.html
                  Palmer is still facing 38 felony counts in Ventura County, including multiple counts of grand theft, two counts of conspiracy, two counts of elder theft, several counts of money laundering, violations of the corporate code relating to the offer and sale of securities, and tax evasion.

                  The arrests of Palmer, Stewart and Bloch in April 2011 at Rawesome, a members-only food co-op, kicked off a controversy among advocates of raw milk and natural foods that received national media coverage.

          2. Yep. Long as the uni’s don’t have skin in the game, why should they care if the garbage “degrees” they are offering are worthless? They got their money.

            My degree was bought and paid for by me. That’s “buy a house” money paid out. And I think it’s criminal what’s been done to those kids. Literally. Bankruptcy gives them an option to work their way out of it. It’s not a free lunch. Bankruptcy, depending on how you file, comes with issues with credit, loans, and mortgages. It sucks. They’ve been lied to nigh their whole lives. Now they are being used again, and darned few of them can see it.

      3. As others have already said while I was asleep (being in a timezone on the other side of the world from America makes it hard sometimes to participate in these conversations in real time), there’s already a good mechanism in place for loan forgiveness: bankruptcy. Undo the Obama-era change, and make student loans dischargeable in bankruptcy again. That way you don’t get the major negative effect of a blanket amnesty, which is to encourage more people to engage in the same stupid behavior in the future. This is why I was opposed to the “too big to fail” bailouts in 2008, because it ensured that the people and businesses who’d make the bad decisions leading to the crash would never suffer any of the harm they caused. As Thomas Sowell said, “It is hard to imagine a more stupid or more dangerous way of making decisions than by putting those decisions in the hands of people who pay no price for being wrong.” Bankruptcy carries a price for bad decisions — low credit scores for seven (IIRC) years — and people being less willing to loan you money in the future until that credit score expires. But for many of these people trapped in the student-loan hole, no, the student-loan oubliette*… seven years would look way better than the 20+ years they’re looking at right now.

        * Since it’s a hole you’re never going to get out of on your own.

          1. Hmmmm. I think I don’t like that as much as Reynolds’ proposal (or maybe other people made it and Reynolds is repeating it) to make colleges cosigners for federal loans, so that if the student decides bankruptcy is more attractive than repaying the load, the college has to repay it. That gives colleges an incentive to offer degrees with actual market value instead of underwater basket-weaving. I don’t see how your proposal gives the colleges any incentive to provide degrees that are in demand in the market, or any penalty for a catalog full of nothing but underwater basket-weaving degrees. (The argument that the students won’t go for the degrees that aren’t in demand in the market, and so the university would be punished by having no customers, fails to get out of the starting game. Because that’s exactly the situation we have right now, as Sarah points out, and those colleges are flooded with customers who don’t know what the market wants.) And I do think the colleges need to suffer a financial penalty of some kind for their bad market decisions, as per the Thomas Sowell quote I posted in my previous comment. AFAICT, the Reynolds proposal is the best one for returning market forces to the college industry.

            1. Heh, I seem to have made a Freudian typo there. I meant to say “repaying the loan”, but those loans really are a load these students are finding too hard to bear.

            2. It was intended as a modifier to the colleges being the ones on the hook, I just wasn’t very clear. 😀

              There has to be a way to “repossess” the degree, basically.

              1. That does make sense, but unlike physical property where you can reclaim it, I’m not sure that reclaiming a degree makes sense. What does a degree represent? Proof that you completed the course of study. If the university takes it back, that can’t change the past: you still did take that course of study and acquire sufficient knowledge to take the test, and that’s a matter of historical record that can be verified. If the university reclaims a degree, and later gets asked by an employer, “John Smith claims on his resume that he graduated in 2011 with a bachelor’s in English. Is that true?”, is the university going to say “No, he didn’t?” Or are they going to say “Yes, but he no longer has the right to that decree because he stopped paying for it so we took it back.” In the former case, John Smith might sue for false statements that cause him material harm. In the latter case, the employer might say “Well, we don’t care whether he finished paying for the degree or not; we know he has the credentials, so we’ll hire him” and then the threat of taking back the degree loses potency.

                1. Which is why the law would have to be fiddled with to have something like “invalidated by fraud” or similar.

                  The obvious, easy solution of “K, you can’t get rid of this debt in bankruptcy” didn’t work, after all.
                  The problem that was solving was some A-holes getting expensive law degrees and then filing bankruptcy so they didn’t have to pay anything.

                  1. Nah.
                    The problem was how to finance ever more administrators to colleges.
                    Fox, you probably don’t even know this. College degrees are a hundred times more expensive now than they were when husband graduated (adjusted for inflation.)
                    AND THERE IS NO SUCH THING as merit scholarships. There are minority (and mostly women) scholarships. Like, no minority woman pays for medschool (unless she’s Asian and therefore not minority, if you know what I mean.) And there are need scholarships, but …well, the system is rigged. We didn’t qualify because they assumed ALL our funds would go to pay for ONE son. No matter we had two.
                    SERIOUSLY. Both the boys went to state school, and there’s no way they could either get loans to cover the whole thing (unless they were parent plus)or could work hours enough to pay for them.
                    Both worked some, we paid some, and… well, the undergrad loans AREN’T crushing for either of them. They’re under 100k.

                    1. *wry* There’s a reason that I went Navy, not college, and that was still 20 years ago. It hasn’t gotten better.

                      One of the many ways we scandalize our families is by saying upfront that we are NOT financing how to get them college degrees before they’re even born, much less refusing to have kids because THEY can’t get college.

                      (Yes, actual argument. Yes, she got the look you’d expect. No, she didn’t get how offensive and short sighted it was.)

                      Problem still needs to be fixed, and while I keep thinking set it on fire, probably not the way that would work best…..

                    2. Sigh. Both kids had autoimmune issues that pretty much preclude military service. They MIGHT make an exception for younger given exceptional pattern matching ability, but…. well…. not why he wanted to join. (Sigh.)

                    3. Mostly was an acceptable excuse for not going to college like I’m “supposed” to have done. That it happened to save me from either killing folks (I still don’t do bullies well) or going into huge debt was a bonus.

                    4. If I had my time again? I’d have taken carpentry in community college. Or even better, learned it from grandad (who used all handtools and mixed his own varnish.)
                      BUT in Portugal that wasn’t doable, and not going to college wasn’t an option. Also note, it cost me NOTHING because I was in the top half of one percent. Not being in the top half of one percent was not acceptable. Even though from 9th grade on 99.9% percent of my classmates were graduates from high price private schools and had tutoring.
                      We didn’t because mom and dad couldn’t afford it. But not going to college was NOT an option.
                      So I went. I just haven’t used the damn thing enough to justify…. well, anything.

                    5. Yeah, honestly if both of my idiots didn’t have clear and compelling vocations (which they’ll probably struggle with their entire lives, because that’s the way vocations work, trust me. I mean…. I KNOW what He wants me to do, but I DON’T WANNA, and why is the field screwed up, and– It’s just not doing it hurts more than doing it…. most of the time.) I’d have advised against college….

                    6. Re: stop having kids so you can finance them in college

                      A lot of my family has issues with kids. I got started on my theory about a lot of these folks doing/saying such stupid stuff because they’re in pain … they were stupid, often before I was born, but they can’t say they were wrong. It’s too big.
                      So everybody else has to be shoved to do what they did. Even though my College Libertarian Cousin is probably a loser in part because he was supposed to shoulder the dreams and expectations of two very passionate people who’d grown up with the same sort of parents, but two or three times the number of kids to pour them into.

                      Looking at family dynamics, they probably also feel bad about how they treated my folks for having “so many” kids (3) and not being a live-in-town professional. She already screwed up the script by getting married after “everyone knew” she’d be single forever, and then not having marriage problems. Ever. Ditto for dad, although his family is a much quieter form of messed up, and his eldest brother already handled most of the stupid kid stuff.

                    7. Sarah said: “If I had my time again? I’d have taken carpentry in community college.”

                      Ha! I actually did that. Got a certificate in cabinet making. Utterly and completely useless as far as employment goes, for my whole life. Never made a dime out of it. But the same can be said for my BA in Anthropology and my MA in Physical Therapy. The MA did get me jobs, I must admit, but the jobs sucked and had nothing to do with the training I got.

                      After finally realizing that the MA in PT was not going to get me tolerable employment, I retired. AKA I f-ing well gave up. Flipped a few houses, which was quite lucrative.

                      Now as a retired gentleman I make more money than I ever did from employment. It’s a team effort, I’m not a singleton out here even though I never talk about anyone else but the dog, but it’s working pretty good.

                      But, in Real Life (as opposed to mere Job Life) that cabinet making school has been -awesome- for making my life better. Because I can make or fix pretty much anything made of wood. Pretty damn handy, let me tell you. Things made of metal are not my wheelhouse, but I can do some of that too.

                      Bottom line, in the current environment your kid should be looking at things like welding, HVAC, electrician, plumbing (including the steam fitters and more elite tube wrangler guys), anything to do with fixing aircraft, etc. Jobs that the society may not revere, but can’t do without. Or software engineer. Forget the arts, that’s not happening. That’s for spare time, unless lightning strikes.

                      You know who is never short of work? The guy who fixes gas pumps. That guy is always running, trying to keep up. That’s what you’re looking for. Fixing gas pumps probably sucks as a job, but we work for MONEY not fame.

                    8. “things like welding, HVAC, electrician, plumbing (including the steam fitters and more elite tube wrangler guys), anything to do with fixing aircraft, etc.”

                      Done all of that, at one time or another, save for aircraft- and that I fully intended to do about twenty years ago. Electricians are a dime a dozen these days. Same for welders in most zip codes around here. The money ain’t there like it used to be. Not saying don’t do it, but be aware.

                      Know what goes for top dollar though? Millwrights. Steamfitters. Folks with more than a basic knowledge of their craft. Competence is king, now and always. You cannot teach work ethic in a seminar, but it can be inculcated by example and one-on-one training. Mechanics at the dealership don’t make quite what they used to, but the admin department is doing veeeery well, from what I can eyeball from the pit when I take the work truck in for maintenance.

                      Pair good work ethic with drive, ambition, and common sense and you can make a living. At just about anything you put your hand to.

                    9. Software Engineer is an interesting suggestion.

                      Basically, a very wide range of jobs, a very wide range of skills, and a wide range of training/development paths.

                      And the Computer Science academic training is right there, at many universities. And not necessarily useful for jobs, compared to the people who take it thinking it is a path to skills and employment.

                    10. Software Engineer is an interesting suggestion


                      I got my CS degree late ’80s. Was really glad I got “data processing” associates degree first (’85). Even without having to take all the foofoo classes for “diversity”, because I’d already done all that first time around for Forestry.

                      Granted my Forestry degree GPA hurt my “class standing” for both AA and second BS degrees (And? Their point? Like I cared?). It did prevent having to retake those filler classes. Except Statistics. (Three times under 3 different labels. They were exactly the same exact class! For the CS degree had to take as much math as I did CIS classes. To be fair, I did choose to retake first term Calculus, before I took 2nd & third term calculus. After 10 years, yep needed it. CS didn’t teach programming languages. Only processes. For tools it was “This is what is being used in this class. Tough if you don’t know it or have it. Get it.” But then I graduat ed 31 1/2 years ago (easy to remember kid was born 7 days after last final. He was due 14 days after. Got more than a few comments about how I could be pregnant middle of senor year. Ans. Hey if things had gone to OUR plan, I never would have gone back to school for the AA, let alone the CS degree.)

                      I can’t answer for other career paths in CS. I got good insight to what happens in the “A miracle happens here” step(s) between “What do you want the system TO DO?” plus “What do you have NOW? / How do you do this NOW?” and delivery of the software. But I never used the “processes” learned. Documentation, non-technical for end users, in their language (outside of code documentation) came clear after explaining verbally for the 3rd or 4th time the same exact explanation. Second was always, “must be a fluke”, 3rd was Hmmmm?, 4th was “OH H*** No, let me get back to you. Here read this. If you have any questions call back.” I have more coding to get done. If I was translating already written end user written documentation, then it had to be rewritten.

                      One career item that I found interesting but in retrospect shouldn’t have. All three positions I had after graduation for CS in ’89, was I got the job over Master & Phd level candidates. First one is understandable, I had the Forestry degree too. Work experience in both Forestry and CS. Since the position was for Land & Timber division, working with their foresters and forest engineers, of a major international Timber company, choosing me made sense. But it happened again with two other firms, no relationship to timber industry.

                  2. Sounds like something about “license to practice requires creditworthiness” might work. I know for a long time that was a killer for becoming a CPA.

                2. The degree is what the college is selling; many schools, including CalTech, MIT, and Harvard, you can just show up and audit the classes and get the exact same education for free. Some of them even have all their course materials online.

            3. Crap – now you’ve gotten me to wondering whether all this BLM hoo-ha is about making those Grievance Studies degrees marketable. A large number of big businesses sure seem to have found desperate need for attention to America’s systemic racism.

              As if I didn’t already have issues with wondering about things that oughtn’t be.

              1. That many Democrat politicians are not shaking down people solely for others to profit from.

                It pretty much has to be mainly a high stakes gamble on the presidential election, or some wider agenda. Maybe a wider agenda based in bizarro world magical thinking about the effects of widespread ‘training’, but one they expect to benefit from.

        1. And some of those outliers are doozies. One young lady at church took on 70K of loans for (wait for it) a certificate in cosmetology from essentially a private certificate Mill. Would have done FAR better to go to one of the Community colleges, or have gone to the local Aggie/tech high school where she would have emerged with the same certificate as a High School Senior or in 2 years from Community college for maybe 10k.

          1. And a lot of that is also due to the license raj and over regulation of things like cosmetologists, hairbraiders, and beauticians. Because you can’t let poor people become self sufficient.

          2. My sister got her BA at a private university, then went to Ireland for her masters and PhD. When she couldn’t get a job (turns out there isn’t much demand for doctors of peace studies and less demand for doctors of peace studies with no experience) she went to law school. I shudder to think what her student loans must be.

      4. On that note, Canadian universities have lost something on the order of a billion and a half Canadian Rasbuckniks. Because Corona Chan.

        Lost due to foreign (aka Mainland Chinese) students all staying home this year.

        And of course, that’s a problem because foreign students pay for most of the university system here in the Demented Dominion. The Canadian students whose parent’s taxes pay for all this are commonly passed over in favor of foreign kids who pay the high fees.

        Oops.

        But its all okay, because the federal government will bail them all out. Nothing to see here, don’t worry, just shut up and keep paying those taxes (you worthless working-class peons.)

        Also, and not widely publicized, the CCP has gotten its hooks into the Canadian Ivory Tower pretty deeply through the Confucius Institute and other quasi-government CCP arrangements. Also through illegal money laundering via casinos.

      1. I propose a rule, or at least a policy that as regards blog posts and comments first draft applies.
        A typo, unless it materially changes the meaning of a statement is simply one of those things, laugh about it if you will, then bloody well move on.
        Clean copy is a wondermus thing, takes time, energy, and focus. What we have here is stream of consciousness. Nit pickers can just whizz right off.
        Note to Sarah: does not apply to the next thing you send me to edit sweetie.
        Goes for the rest of you lot as well, different requirements for work for pay.

      2. Bah. Let he who has not slipped on his freud, fat fingered, or misspelled a word cast the first peanut. No worries. When I don’t have the editor hat on, I tend to skip right over the typos anyway.

    3. It is either forgive their loans or gun them down like rabid dogs when they riot because they are de facto slaves to the university administrators who profited from those loans.

      I was recently lectured about shotting rabid dogs in human form.

    4. Forgiving student loans means taxing me to pay for other people’s kids loans after I’ve paid for my kids defaulted loans. Make me suffer twice unjustly like that and I’m going to do the same thing to everyone that I did to the teacher in 3rd grade when she decided to punish the entire class for the misbehavior of a couple of other students. Live free or die; death is not the worst of evils.

      1. No. it really does NOT mean that.
        It means taking the money from the universities providing fraudulent goods.
        And making loans dischargeable in bankruptcy.
        Yes, it will probably end the system as is. And?

        1. That the student defaulted is no evidence, let alone proof, that the goods were fraudulent. Where there is fraud, prove it and refund ALL payment, not just to pay back the loans.

            1. Under our legal system, you’re adult, or not. As those “barely adult people” would scream bloody murder if they had to be children until 21 or 25 or whatever, they are going to have to take the bad with the good

              1. FASA (or whatever the proper acronym is) requires students and parental income until college student is 24. At that point only student income counts. (At least when our son was going through college). This central governmental form tell everyone what the family is qualified for, for not only loans, but grants, and scholarships. I don’t know how it works if there are multiple college people enrolled from in the same family. We have one child, therefore only one person in college. We filled it out for Freshman & Sophomore years. After that? Why bother.

                Each of my sister’s families did the same. Only they did have multiple in college at the same time. No more that two at once, still multiple. Pretty sure they didn’t bother after the first couple of years either.

                1. Note. There are exceptions to the age 24 rule. Not having lived in parental household for X many years and not going to college right out of HS is one of them. Four year military from 18 to 22, was one too. Don’t remember what the other ones were.

                  1. Your original statement was that people are adults, or they are not, specifically in regards to financial dealings, and must take the good with the bad as far as being held responsible for financing they accepted.

                    They entered the contracts as a sort of dependent of their parents unless they met a different set of standards beyond age.

                    Since their age was not enough to be held as a full adult when entering the contract, it can’t be enough to treat them as a full adult when enforcing the contract.

                    This is not a novel idea in the law; there are many things with minimum age requirements that don’t match ‘legal adult,’ most obviously alcohol related.

                    1. Since their age was not enough to be held as a full adult when entering the contract, it can’t be enough to treat them as a full adult when enforcing the contract.

                      This is not a novel idea in the law; there are many things with minimum age requirements that don’t match ‘legal adult,’ most obviously alcohol related.


                      FASA isn’t the only example either. A lot of hotels won’t register adults between 18 & 21 with their own credit card. Try getting an apartment without either being married (even this is difficult), without a parental co-signer, or turning on utilities in your name. Granted for newly minted adults lack of credit rating is part of the problem. Even my 30 year old son would have problems. When his credit report was pulled for his car the response was “Very good credit. Very Thin.”

                    2. Renting cars when you’re not old enough to drink, too. Part of why I stayed with USAA way back when is I could go on their website and, as someone insured through them, rent a car at my destination when they usually wouldn’t accept a 19 year driver with a perfect driving record and existing insurance.

                    3. Renting cars when you’re not old enough to drink, too.


                      I’m sure people can come up with a list of examples just from personal experience.

                      Another one I ran into (to be fair I was 17) was external door key for dorm. My parents had to come up to sign for it. I was in College Dang It! I couldn’t wait 6 weeks 🙂 (Okay not the same. Legally I wasn’t an adult. But it is funny … NOW.)

                    4. In part this is an effect of the giving away of credit cards. I confess I am old enough to remember when a credit card was something you earned by demonstrating credit-worthiness, responsibility, reliability and the other elements that once were thought to comprise maturity. Thus having a credit card meant you could be trusted to rent a car and drive it responsibly.

                      That was, of course, long, long ago.

                    5. I am old enough to remember when a credit card was something you earned by demonstrating credit-worthiness, responsibility, reliability and the other elements that once were thought to comprise maturity.


                      Guilty of the above too.

                      We remember when we got our first jobs. Good paying ones for the time for the field we were in. Plus we had the same job. Had enough rental history from school that was smoother sailing. Plus hubby was 27, me 22. Utilities, that meant deposits back then, without a co-signer (nope we were doing this on our own). Went to get a general credit card so we could get furniture (ole bean bag chair, family donated kitchen chairs really didn’t work in other areas), more important a washer & dryer. Wait! What! Gas CC, paid off every month, wasn’t good enough? Sears to the rescue (meant everything we bought we bought at Sears, but they bought a lot of loyalty too). Don’t remember (it has been 40+ years) if it was a pain getting our first car (used) together or not. Now? Not a problem.

                      Like I said, it has been (now over 40 years since we remember our issues). Being the proactive parents that we are, we prepared our one and only child. Only to have his feet cut underneath him because the process has been so diluted. Used to be everything to reported. Now? Not necessarily. He has paid rent. He has paid utilities. He has paid his CC off every month since got it. Result. Good solid credit but “thin”.

                      It is enough to drive one to drink (if I could stand the taste of most alcohol and could tolerate it at higher levels).

                    6. Then you need to remove their ability to contract. It is insanely unjust to allow a bank to sign a loan and then tell them it’s not legally binding.

                    7. Your conclusion of injustice is irrelevant to the objective existence of a third category beyond between “cannot contract” and “stand or fall entirely on their own merit as a full adult.”

                      Your original statement to Sarah is in error.

                    8. Even if what you claimed was true, it is a violation of the 14 Amendment for a 18 year old be bound by a car loan but not by a student loan, so it’s moot.

                    9. Even if what you claimed was true

                      My statement is true. Yours was false.

                      You made a statement of fact, that people are either fully adult for entering contracts or they are not.

                      You have been informed that not only is that not true, but in the specific contract under discussion, there is a third category.

                      In addition, multiple examples of other existing situations that did not fit your claimed fact.

                      Thus, your statement is false.

                    10. Nope. Because in none of those cases would the contract not be binding. The company merely chooses not to enter it. Your analogy is simply false.

                    11. Because in none of those cases would the contract not be binding.

                      There was no assertion of that.

                      You claimed;
                      Under our legal system, you’re adult, or not. As those “barely adult people” would scream bloody murder if they had to be children until 21 or 25 or whatever, they are going to have to take the bad with the good

                      It has been repeatedly demonstrated that there is a third category in multiple cases for contracts, of adult that is still presumed to be some sort of a dependent on the parents.

                      Your claim is simply false.

                    12. There is no analogy involved.

                      You made a claim of fact, in ignorance, which is false. You were informed you had presented a false claim.

                      What you do when informed of the relevant facts is your own problem.

  4. At least one of the plusses of not having kids, of having minimal ties to family or places. Makes decision making much easier and don’t need to worry about how bad it will become since everything out of my hands. Just wish I hadn’t been brought up religious

  5. I’m going to have to disagree with you about student loans. The arguments you make are reasonable, but it sounds/feels like Reagan’s immigration deal. “One time and it will be over”. No, it won’t. This is an incentive for colleges and stupid leftists to run the scam again and again. Better would be to tie student loan forgiveness to the college that took them for the money. If a student feels his loans are unreasonable for the income he can make with his degree, he should be able to take it from the college’s endowment. That hurts the colleges (not a bad thing, since it introduces some accountability) and keeps them from continuing to turn out uneducated kids who can’t be productive.
    Beyond simple “fairness”, this would be a better way to get young people off the hook, without enriching and maintaining the communist indoctrination programs.

    1. The higher education fraud is so complex and embedded that I have no idea how we’re going to pry it loose. I suspect that eventually corporations will stop hiring people who have nonsense degrees, and apply some other metric.

          1. Unfortunately, even STEM is not safe for that. I was advised to go into Bio/Ecology, did my best – and then far too late found out the people giving the advice were counting on “we’re going to put the whole country’s budget into cleaning up the environment and there will be MILLIONS of jobs in ecology and bioremediation!”

            As you well know, that didn’t happen. What jobs there were in the field all wanted guys who could hike two weeks into the backcountry carrying 100 lb. packs. Oh, they couldn’t say they wanted guys – discrimination! – but the written-up job requirements… pretty darn clear.

            If that’s the reqs, that’s the reqs. Can’t complain about that. But yes, a lot of students were lied to about what jobs were out there and whether or not they could get them. I’ll spare you my litany of failures. I’ll just sum up with, all of my degree work is STEM – and outside of one two-year contractor stint and student jobs, none of it has done me a *Bleep* bit of good.

            1. And even if jobs exist, going into the training expecting the jobs to magically appear on one’s doorstep afterwards will make things a little difficult.

              STEM’s a good enough rough guideline to what might be worth preserving, but as regulation, these people are dishonest enough to simply switch to offering BS/MS degrees in English Science.

              The answer is probably not any one simple policy. I think the Universities are immensely vulnerable to disruption, Covid and BLM have provided a lot of impetus, and we may see stuff happen.

            2. Heck, I still read things saying a degree in English will get you all sorts of great jobs.
              I have a year short of a doctorate. I also had, once upon a time, seven other languages. I worked mostly secretarial jobs, (though I did translation. But that was completely sporadic, unless you lived in NYC.) In the end, my best bet was college teaching, which I don’t like ENOUGH to do full time. And at any rate, I’d never get tenure, because my generation doesn’t.
              Yeah.

              1. Dual BSE in Industrial and System Engineering from University of Alabama.
                At least half of the courses I was required to take for those had sweet effing all to do with those disciplines. I was told they were required for me to have the full college experience. My firm belief is that the real truth lies around providing employment for a ton of liberal arts professors who actually never taught much of anything. Their TAs handled all that messy interaction with the undergraduates.
                The MSE-OR Operations Research (graduate level Systems Engineering) was from a graduate level only night school where most of the instructors were working scientists and engineers looking to pick up some spare pocket money or simply because they enjoyed teaching in their field of expertise. No real padding there.
                Paid for the BSE out of pocket and with a few student loans. Went to work immediately after graduation and my employer paid for the masters. And what loans I had taken out got paid off within three years.

                1. Meh. Holdover from earlier times; call them vestigial courses.

                  Back before The War To End Nazism anybody who could afford the time and tuition to attend college was pretty much assured of a lucrative life, else the opportunity cost would have precluded going. College (and especially the fraternity* system) constituted a networking opportunity and enrichment classes so that you could appreciate the advantages of your material success. The idea was to make of you not just a materialist but a person who could enjoy success.

                  *Fraternities provided contacts in distant cities, allowing you to more easily access opportunities in those locales. They also provided amenities which college dorms tended to lack.

                  ref: https://www.smithsonianmag.com/history/history-college-dorms-180971457/

                2. My wife has a Bachelor of Engineering In Electrical Engineering. One course per semester, max, was all the “padding” and most of that was covering the philosophy/theology requirement of a Catholic school. I think her college went to the BS and they were one of the last to offer the old BE. My sister has a BE in Civil and her old school is now a BS too. I don’t think they offer the old BE any more.

                  I have a BA/MA in Math and MSc in Economics. I went to Uni in Europe and so had no padding at all with comprehensive examinations at the end. In reality, though, I specialized in rugby football, beer, and ummm women. So a traditional education.

                1. I mean, think about it. This is what I was being told about a decade ago. An english degree, particularly for a job that does reports, etc, means that you have run reams of essays, etc, and you know how to write cogently which, even for police work (which I pursued) is a skill that is necessary. Because report writing is a sizeable chunk of the job.

                  1. Yeah as of 2014 degree in English Not so much. Daughter originally wanted english teacher as a high school Junior, Luckily senior year Calculus and Physics entranced her. Freshman year college it became clear math not physics was her thing. One of her buddies graduated with english degree. Christian college so they read at least SOME of the old dead white guys and emphasize proper writing skills. Buddy dearly wanted to go into publishing but a) She’s Christian moderate to conservative, Lefties look at her like she has two heads, b) Publishing was in the process of crash and burning with entry level positions non existent. She writes, mostly resolving claims for a health insurance group. It’s soul sucking and doesn’t even pay as well as an entry level teacher at a disadvantaged school. Student loans minimal parents are wealthy and she’s an only or things would be far worse.

                    1. Niece writes. But dad insisted on Business. Granted anytime she had hours to fill that didn’t specify what needed to fill them and would count, she took writing classes. Three of the 4 nieces in that family got Business degrees. The fourth (artist) didn’t finish college; 20/20 hindsight, due to allergies and depression triggered by undiagnosed Lupis. All 4 are gainfully employed (last I heard), two of them by Nike and they are going through reorg (natural progression of company + Covid). In fact 3 of the 6 nieces are employed by Nike (ouch). The other three, one is a teacher, another works for health insurance company, third just started her career. Covid killed her internship into job option. She just started a new job, but don’t know where.

                    2. I’ve only once heard a professional writer say something nice about the value of college writing courses to writers, and he was also a college professor.

                2. My older two have degrees in Classics and Latin. Number 2 son Junior in History. All three have good Latin and French and the older two have good Greek. Number 1 son has German and Japanese to go with that. My experiences may not be common but it seems that what is needed, unless engineering, is a degree and it doesn’t matter what it is. The issue is needing a degree but that’s what happens when government gets involved, it all comes down to credentials. I have no regrets about their choices. They have the benefit of an extremely rigorous education and it would have been difficult for them to get the classical languages on their own.

                  When we were hiring non customer facing people on Wall Street, we tried to stay away from Economics and Business majors since they tended to be useless. You’d be surprised how many history and philosophy majors ended up doing very well there. Customer facing people had to be decorative, dress well and, if male, have a good golf game.

                  A good tell that a financial business has gone off the rails is when they start recruiting only “top school”. That shows that they’re now dumping it on the punters. It’s like Parkinson’s law of fancy new corporate headquarters, it shows that they are considering non essentials.

                3. Back when I was an undergrad (c 1980) the people I knew studying Computer Science were all English majors, due to a quirk in the university’s requirements. So it was technically a case of “An English Major will get you a good job after college.”

            3. The problem with STEM is that a lot of the jobs have been outsourced and the ones that aren’t are filled with people on Visas who are willing to accept a lot less money (essentially as serfs) rather than US Citizens who have STEM training.

                1. Rumor has it … My last job, which was sold to a “collector of thriving software where the owner is retiring, & no one can afford to take over”, private entity. Whispers are the owners are talking about oversea outsourcing. Taken them about 3 or 4 years to pull this. We’ll see what my mole(s) tells me.

              1. Impossible. There is no fraud, coercion, violation of human rights, or problematic conflict of loyalties.

                Education and work visas are only ever provided in a justifiable and appropriate basis.

                Pay no attention to the University pushback against Trump’s online course/visa executive order in order to protect their own business, and to insistence by those same universities on measures restrictive of the businesses of others.

                1. Yep. And the clear purpose behind this was the view that such preferences are needed to correct “historical injustice”; i.e. the policy was a mechanism to achieve redistribution of wealth from the USA to the rest of the world under the belief that the USA is evil and owes its position in the world due to oppressing the rest of the world.

                    1. In fairness, there’s a lot of money to be made in redistribution and the requirements to enter that line of work are relatively minor, consisting of little more than having no soul or conscience.

                      It does not rely on their belief in economics as fixed pie, it relies on their ability to convince others to trust the red diaper brats to fix the pie.

    2. Sure. It is a danger. BUT I submit that from now on the government be forcibly forbidden from lending money for tuition.
      If you want to have money loaned to you, you’ll have to go through a bank and convince them a) you’re a good prospect. b) the degree makes sense.
      ALSO you need to make it dischargeable in bankruptcy so everyone, the bank included, has skin in the game, not just the student.
      And honestly, the only reason I advocate this is that I think our system of education as constituted is no long for this world.

      1. The probably is the big banks know the government will bail them out their bad choices.

        The government will even bail out their bad choices which the bank’s own internal risk management group told them were so bad they couldn’t properly do due diligence because all the data about one set of loans did not even exist although the loans did. (want more, buy me a beer and get the Get Smart zone of privacy thingy).

        1. As Thomas Sowell said (and I quoted in a different comment), “It is hard to imagine a more stupid or more dangerous way of making decisions than by putting those decisions in the hands of people who pay no price for being wrong.” This is precisely why I opposed the “too big to fail” bailouts of 2008 at the time, and still think they were a bad idea.

        1. This. Honestly, yes, I’d like to see the universities crash in their present form. And stopping the government handing them money and taking it off students would be a good beginning.
          I should point out — I guess — this is not about MY kids. There’s a reason most of my kids’ friends in school were Asian. They had to live up to the same standards. Not that I was as harsh as my parents, but they both have or will have highly marketable credentials, and even though one of them has horrifying debt,he will also be able to pay it off, supposing we don’t go full communism. And both of them grew up going to thrift stores for their clothes and eating out at diners. They’ll be fine.
          BUT there’s a horrifying number of kids with NO future out there. They were sold a bill of goods. And you can’t say they should have known better. They thought they were buying what their parents and grandparents had. It was bait and switch.

          1. And too, need I point out that mostly we have focused on graduates with less than marketable degrees?
            There are probably as many if not more who bought into the scam that any degree got you a good job, jumped in, and found after a year or two that they simply could not cut college classwork.
            Bunches of them with student debt and not even the hope of a degree of any sort.

          2. And you can’t say they should have known better.

            *sad* Where would they learn better?

            The schools that did the raising, because their parents were both working because That Is What You Do?

            Assume they’re willing and able to learn from example– they are literally surrounded by the folks for whom it worked, or at least who will tell you it worked for them.

            Even my mom and brother are still horrified I didn’t get a degree. Any degree. No, no, a tech degree from the Navy doesn’t count– because reasons.

            1. Even my mom and brother are still horrified I didn’t get a degree. Any degree. No, no, a tech degree from the Navy doesn’t count– because reasons.

              What.

              *boggles*

              I find it a little hard to understand why they don’t have better judgement than that.

              It makes a little sense; They’ve known you so long that their impressions are firmly set, and it would take an effort to pull out all the knowledge and analyze it from scratch. Beyond that is the question of what, exactly, a college degree gets, and how. Which has that same problem of being difficult to look past the assumptions of the label to the truths implied by the contents.

              I guess a good eye for the true economic value of a university training program is not simply a matter of being rightwing and being an intellectual. It is also necessary to have information about the past and present of conventional education, and a serious interest in thinking the issue through.

              1. With the warning that folks’ emotional state is a foreign language to me, and this is a guess….
                Basically, they want me to have a college degree for the same reason that college was targeted for the skinsuit routine. I’m the first woman of my line in three generations to not have a degree, and I’m the “smart one.” All the female ancestors I know anything about were “the smart one.”

                When folks love learning, and love information, and love knowledge— it’s still love, and we all know that to love is to be vulnerable. That leaves one open to deliberate attacks, yeah, but it also leaves you open to being hurt simply because you care.

                1. Question, since I haven’t lived in the US for five-plus years now and yearly Christmas visits to a small town don’t give me a feel for the job market. Have you felt at any point that not having a degree has hampered you in the job market, or (since you’re a full-time mom and not looking for a job, right?) do you think that it would have hampered you if you were in the job market? Now, maybe you haven’t looked for a job in a decade and aren’t the right person to answer a question about whether credentialism in hiring is still widespread or whether it’s starting to taper off in response to university insanity. But I’m in an even less well-placed position to know the answer, living half the world away from the US, so any input you can give me on the subject would be appreciated.

                  1. I haven’t looked for a serious job since the Princess was born– at that point, the Obama Economy was the biggest draw back, combined with the risks of hiring a female from the military. (One of my gaming buddies had to pick up the slack because BOTH of the females in his office were actually unable to do their job; without some way to know I wasn’t a token, I can’t even blame them for not taking a risk.)

                    My husband has had folks tell him he needs a degree, but from looking– what is actually needed is a foot in the door. For him, military service worked, and just being helpful. Several of our moves have been because he paid attention to the rules, followed them, and made sure to make it easy for folks who came after– and if someone asked him to do something he couldn’t, he tried to figure out who could, and at least point them in the right direction.

                    Government work, though.

                    If I were going to try to get someone into a professional type job, I’d urge them to apply to stuff on USAJobs while doing part-time work, get experience that way. A LOT of the jobs already let them waiver requirements for college degrees if you could place experience instead, and Trump took an ax to the remaining BS.

                    A government job can be a really good work experience check-box for normal work, too.

            2. There can also be other reasons. For myself, I think part of it, or possibly a majority reason, that you cannot get a good job with good health insurance with a college degree. I think that is a good part of why my mother wanted me to go – to help me continue to be able to take care of my heart issues.

            3. *Waves* Indeed. I was told by my parents all I needed to do was get a degree, and then I’d have companies lining up to give me job offers – because that’s what happened when they got degrees. (You don’t want to know how many times I head the cheery stories of, “the day I graduated, I had a grocery bag full of job offers!” Or how many times that was used as a club when I didn’t.)

              Didn’t work that way. And when I tried to tell them and other family members – and school counselors, etc., etc., it didn’t, “Well, you just must not be good enough!” And no help finding a job because… drumroll please… if they weren’t looking for me, I must not have the right X course/degree/program yet… and on, and on.

      2. I never understood how the Fed got involved in lending out my money to start with. It was bad enough when they “loaned” it to foreign governments. Then it was “bailouts” for Chrysler and General Motors. And then more “bailouts” and “loans” for the banking industry. Wait, isn’t “loans” part of their freakin’ *business*? And if they’re so inept they’re looking at bankruptcy, that’s proof that they *don’t* need chunks of *my* money…

        At the very least, that puts the Fed in competition with the banking industry. Though I expect it works more like collusion.

    3. The only thing I can think of, right now, is that if the student cannot pay a reasonable percentage of the loan in a reasonable frame of time (say, 30% of the loan over three years) and the student can demonstrate that they’ve been unable to find work in their field through no fault of their own, the university has to eat the loan cost entirely. Can’t even write it off their taxes, it’s just lost. How many universities would allow for large * Studies programs that cost them more than what they can bring in from students?

      1. All of them.

        They consider those sacred, and if the endowment has to disappear to save them, so be it.

        Think of the priests who risked their lives to carry relics out of the Notre Dame last year. That’s university administrators and * Studies programs.

          1. As long as their product is required for employment, the big ones won’t fail.

            The smaller ones already are with loans in place.

            Remember, a lot of the name universities whose degrees are needed to be the right people are effectively hedge funds with a sideline in credentialing the children of hedge fund managers who aren’t as smart or industrious as their parents.

              1. The fifth largest hedge fund in the world is Two Sigma at $43 billion.

                Harvard’s endowment is $41 billion, so close.
                Yale is $30 billion.

                If ACB becomes a justice, she will be the only one who at some point didn’t attend one of those two schools.

                1. Does that endowment valuation include its tax-exempt status?

                  Or is that formerly tax-exempt, as I recall reading about placing caps o the exempt amount for such funds?

              1. Does not the law already permit seizure of assets obtained by defrauding the public?

                Imagine the bringing of a RICO action against the Ivy League.

                1. Yes, but only from the fraudster. One of the first stages in the French Revolution was imposing liability on third parties:

                  Was the public estate a sufficient stake for the public debts? Assume that it was not, and that a loss must be incurred somewhere. When the only estate lawfully possessed, and which the contracting parties had in contemplation at the time in which their bargain was made, happens to fail, who, according to the principles of natural and legal equity, ought to be the sufferer? Certainly it ought to be either the party who trusted, or the party who persuaded him to trust, or both; and not third parties who had no concern with the transaction. Upon any insolvency, they ought to suffer who were weak enough to lend upon bad security, or they who fraudulently held out a security that was not valid. Laws are acquainted with no other rules of decision. But by the new institute of the rights of men, the only persons who in equity ought to suffer are the only persons who are to be saved harmless: those are to answer the debt who neither were lenders nor borrowers, mortgagers nor mortgagees.

                  1. So that would permit seizing assets from colleges which had fraudulently enticed students to “earn” degrees they were manifestly not competent to achieve.

                    When a college engages in affirmative action it is knowingly and willfully enrolling “students” incapable of work at the school’s required academic tier. Having falsely represented to the lender (government) that the accepted student could perform at the necessary academic level the college has defrauded the government. Same principle applies to socially promoted students.

                    1. The correlation between students in default and AA students is very low, because the AA students are both given scholarships and often flunk out quickly.

    4. Or allow filing bankruptcy to cover student loans as with any other financial endeavor, followed, perhaps, by the government suing universities for mismanagement and misuse of and hence return of federal monies.

  6. If you forgive the loans, you need to either a) restrict access to university somehow or b) curtail the issuance of loans or c) not forgive everyone’s loans.

    Well, actually, maybe that is not a real need. Maybe I do not have enough information about which degrees are wasteful to design a properly discriminatory set of incentives and punishments. And maybe the wasted time is sufficient punishment for bad choice of degree program.

    What would be fun trolling would be requiring a voiding of the degree in exchange for negating the debt. For a worthless degree, and a crushing debt, it would make sense. Would be interesting to see the statistics, etc.

    1. No. Note I did not say “make college free.” I said forgive already extant loans.
      Then remove the federal government from the loan business. And make the loans dischargeable in bankruptcy.
      Convince a banker you’ll pay him back, or there will be no loans.
      That would stop crazy degrees and runaway universities teaching “studies” COLD.

      1. Making the loans dischargeable in bankruptcy would tend to fix it. Student loan interest is, I think, the third largest source of revenue for the government after tax and mortgage interest. It’s the reason they talk but won’t ever act.

      2. Sarah, forgiving student loans is, to all intents and purposes, making college free. And it would be opening the floodgates for repeated attempts to evade market consequences. If someone undertakes a couple of hundred grand for degrees in advanced ethnic basketweaving and discovers that all the (institutional) positions for that scam have long been filled, their personal indebtedness should not be borne by people who have worked for a living. And the financial organizations who loaned to them, participating in the educational fraud, should not be subsidized for their participation.

        1. I and anyone who paid cash for their kids college should be against it or anyone whose kids studied something hard, or anyone whose kids learned a trade, or went out and dug ditches..

          I had a simple college choice conversation with my kids it went like this, “Here’s a 200 mile radius around our house, here’s the level of Rutgers in state tuition, no loans, nobody else’s state university. Go wherever you like and study want you want to.” They could study what they wanted because they have no debt and could make a life after uni on modest money. Their choices were constrained by my ability and willingness to pay. Others not so much. If loan forgiveness gets traction I’m going to have them take out loans so we’re not cheated.

          I hear you about being trapped in debt and agree that a good case can be made for interest forgiveness but the principle must be paid or nothing is learned except moral hazard. bankruptcy is a good option too since the popular view of bankruptcy is at odds with the actual experience of bankruptcy. It’s not a free lunch by any means,

      3. Out of nearly 100k in student loans, the one with lowest interest rates was the private(ish) loan. Wasn’t a huge one but whereas the feds were getting 7% Sallie was getting 4. Were just another income stream

        1. The harm done to those who honestly reduced expectations by eschewing fancier schools and self-financed their education is a valid complaint. Perhaps rebating an appropriate amount to all persons entering college once the Feds took over the loanscam and who have paid off their educations. Say, $2500 for every year of college with no outstanding debt.

          That likely seems expensive but I suspect there would be few qualified applicants for that rebate.

          1. Although we didn’t take out MORE debt for my second degree, in late ’80s. We were still paying for both of our loans for our degree’s earned in the ’70s. Got all kind of incentives to pay it off in bulk early. But at 1% & 3% interest respectively, when Savings interest rates were running 13% to 15%, we weren’t interested. So those 6 years likely wouldn’t qualify. (Darn it, that is lots of money.) BUT our son’s 5 years would qualify. He chose not to take a 50% scholarship to a private out of state college that would have gotten his degree + pilots license (a chance anyway). At 50%, it was still $25/year + fees, books, housing, transportation, & incidentals. We told him we’d figure it out. He chose not to go. Instead state school.

      1. I suspect at least three of the major banks would start programs for minority loans, including all women and thus about 70% of the population, as virtue signals.

        You would not believe the crap my employer has been sending us this year to promote wokeness.

          1. Oh, they’re held.

            At least in mortgages they are. The banks originate loans and package them, then launder them through the Federal corporations that are not a guarantee of federal bailout, even though they were and we always suspected they were. Then, the same banks buy the packaged loans back from those corps with the federal promise attached.

            Oh, and it’s more like 30 days, not a couple.

            I’m not sure how non-primary mortgages work.

            1. That should be, “I’m not sure that’s how loans other than non-primary mortgages work.” We do some NII and OCI work on credit cards and probably others, but I’m in the forward curve calibration group now, so not sure what’s been folded into those parts in the past five years.

              1. I used to buy and sell them and the best trade of my life was shorting them, Alas, non disclosure agreements or the stories I could tell. The key thing is the government guarantee. they’re either moved off the books and those that stay are rated as government debt and so have no capital attached and no risk. then they rehypothecate the agency securities, lather, rinse, repeat. It’s a scam.

                1. I know it’s a scam. I provide support for both a secondary desk and a mortgage portfolio hedging desk.

                  There is a reason I called selling them to Fannie and Freddie laundering. It turns risky money into 100% safe money.

                  1. There’s prepayment risk in MSR’s and all the default servicers went belly up after the last downturn. Like I said, I used to buy and sell them.

                    Ive been fired twice in my life, once for being wrong and once for being right. Let’s just say that I was right at the wrong time in mortgages at an investment bank you’ve probably heard of. Can say no more even though it was 14 years ago,

                    We are agreed it’s all a scam with massive moral hazard because the government socialized the losses after the piggies privatized the gains. Everyone knew, every damned person knew.

                    1. Oh, I know prepayment risk. Prepayment models are a big part of our hedging model, especially interest rate driven prepayment. It’s not a big idea now, but when rates get back up I have a coworker arguing we should off adjustables that only adjust down to minimize it. Not sure about that, but it was interesting.

                      And trust me, there is a huge servicer still out there. I work for them. In fact, buying the holder of a lot of subprime we serviced (pretty much all of their loans we services) happened just before I got here.

                2. Do NDAs forbid your writing “novels” using those stories?

                  After all, any suit for violation of an NDA by “fictional” stories would require the suing parties admit they are the subjects of the story, an admission in court likely more damaging than the stories themselves.

                  Perhaps you could find a collaborating author to whip those stories into publishable shape.

            2. Here’s a question. Do the banks/lenders/agencies/whatever chop and channel student loans into commercial paper the way they were doing mortgages? Can’t remember the technical term for that, but it was what killed the housing market in 2007.

              Currently I believe they are still doing it with car loans, which is why people with zero credit can still get a car loan. If they do it with student loans with federal connivance, that would explain a very great deal indeed. 😡

              1. Well, first a small correction. Mortgages are not turned into commercial paper. Commercial paper is short term, no collateral loans.

                Mortgages are gathered into mortgage back securities (MBS). The best analog for those are a closed bond fund. An MBS can be included in a collateral debt obligation (CDO), which can also include other CDOs and, I think in theory, other debt products, although the ones I have worked with only include mortgage based debt.

                The chopping up was in the CDO by tranching. Tranches were different things such as you bought the 5% highest principle loans or the 10% lowest credit score.

                MBSes are not inherently a problem. From the most part I don’t CDOs are either, although with some esoteric tranching, such as “the second 5% of loans to pay off” that can not be identified at creation, are a problem.

                The problem with MBSes at the crash was plain old fraud. MBSes usually have baseline line requires of what is included when they are announced. To Be Announced packages (TBA) will ensure all the mortgages pay a minimum rate and have a minimum credit score for the borrower. You can put things above the minimum in and have to if you fail to originate enough at the minimums between announcement and delivery. Many MBSes were packaged with loans that didn’t mean the minimum, often because there was no documentation.

                That isn’t a problem with MBSes. That’s fraud. One of the real issues was regulation, but not how most people think. It was neither too much or too litte, but incoherent. Bank mortgages live under one regulation, mortgage companies under another, thrifts under a third, and so on. Some of the players in mortgage companies were known fraudsters from the S&L crisis who just got a charter as a different entity type and continued the same practices. Because the regulators were different and didn’t talk, no one noticed (at least no one with authority to act did).

                An excellent talk on the topic: https://www.econtalk.org/william-black-on-financial-fraud/

                1. What I know about how mortgages are packaged or traded, is nothing, other that bits & pieces heard/read here & there. What I do know is since our first mortgage on the current house, we’ve re-mortgage a number of times. First time to get from underneath the variable, that we did not want, but was our only choice to actually get the loan. Not because of our credit worthiness, nor the house appraisal, but because of the neighborhood appraisal average, and not because the house was priced too high for the neighborhood. Nothing had sold in the neighborhood in the ’80s; we bought it late ’88 (by early ’90, our first refinance, the house was on the low side of the average house compatibles). Rest refinances were pulling down the interest rate. Only two of those was rolling in the outstanding home equity lines at the time of the refinance. ONE of the mortgages, the current one (3.2%, first one was 13%) was held (and still held by) by the originating mortgage holder by the time the first mortgage payment was due.

                  1. In 1988 no bank would rationally sell a conventional fixed rate mortgage. A huge issue in mortgages is interest rate risk. Fixed interest rates for 30 or even 15 years risk the loan costing the bank more than they make. You have to factor in the interest you are paying depositors when evaluating loans and when loans are in double digits, depositors demand close to 10%. If you’re holding fixed rate paper at 8% you’re having to maintain at 10% you have a negative spread.

                    As for your refinanced loans are you sure the same bank still holds it or is it just the same bank doing the servicing. Who you mail a payment and talk to on the phone is usually not the holder of the note.

                    1. In 1988 no bank would rationally sell a conventional fixed rate mortgage.


                      We had a traditional loan lined up, if high interest. When the appraisal came in, that became the sticky point. Appraised for $10k over what we were paying. Unfortunately nothing had been sold, whether existing build or new build, within the acceptable appraisal boundaries. There hadn’t been any new build. Original lender was on the east coast. Wouldn’t make the loan no matter what. Found a west coast lender who was willing to take the risk based on everything else, including our credit ratings; which is stratosphere or “Wow! They really like you!” We were less than thrilled about the terms but we had no choice but to buy. Second. As so as our loan closed. It was like a log jam had broke. It wasn’t long before our house wasn’t the highest valuation within existing build. There wasn’t any new build out here for another few years. Now? New build is all over the place due to infilling; city is trying to encircle the older neighborhoods to force them into the city (but that is a different topic).

                      your refinanced loans are you sure the same bank still holds it or is it just the same bank doing the servicing. Who you mail a payment and talk to on the phone is usually not the holder of the note.


                      Points. Given who the loan was through and who services their loan, my gut says it has stayed put. OTOH what do I know? FWIW limited communication from us. I pay the loan. I track it through the web site that tracks the loan. If the math looks off, have hubby double check it. It hasn’t been off. Can’t complain so far.

                    2. I’m not seeing the logic on not writing fixed for a loan under appraised price. You refuse to write fixed when interest rate upward volatility is such you expect to pay more cost of funding than you get in loan interest.

                      Then again, I’m used to today as I came to this after 2008, so fears I’m used to are very different from then.

                    3. I’m not seeing the logic on not writing fixed for a loan under appraised price.


                      Didn’t make any sense to us either. We had no clue the “neighborhood” appraisal value made a lick of difference. Look at rural. Nice house/property, surrounded by not so nicely kept houses, if they are houses – mobile homes/trailers, in the traditional sense, don’t wear well in Oregon if they are not maintained. Most aren’t. What was strange was in reality house is standard for the neighborhood. It’s just the ’80s were not good for Oregon/Washington Real Estate. In a lot of ways worse than ’08 housing problems. Coupled with it is an area where housing turn over is slowwwwww. Our street alone, over the first 25 years, counting our house, maybe 3 homes had changed hands. Last 5 years there has been more acceleration as long term residents have been transitioned into assisted living or nursing homes, or died. Our house NOW appraises with rest of the neighborhood; way more than we purchased it at. OTOH that means nothing if we aren’t selling.

                      Wasn’t our first home mortgage. We were still paying on the one in Longview that we’d gotten ’80. When hubby was transferred south in ’85 we couldn’t sell it. Not with surrounding homes worth $300k or more going for $100k. Our house was worth $68k. By the time we sold it, it was one of the better maintained. We didn’t make any money on it, but we didn’t lose any either.

                      Had no problem going fixed rate when we refinanced late ’89. By then we only had one income & major household change (kid was born June). Other difference. As stated by the new bank “log jam broke”.

                    4. I think the bank was looking for any excuse to get out of loans in the market.

                      Like I said, any mortgage writable as variable is writable as fixed as long as interest markets are looking at huge increases in the future (which you judge by the implied rate curve).

                    5. I think the bank was looking for any excuse to get out of loans in the market.


                      Nailed it. (I think so too.)

        1. It’s not as much the garbage they send out as the stuff done in background. I can deal with ignoring 4 hrs of harassing about blm, even though they can’t seem to get quality product out and haven’t had single stand down over that. But telling us that they intend to make sure workforce matches percentages tells me that since industry very lopsided I’ve got no shot at getting ahead because of my tanning ability or lack thereof.

          1. Because I was dumb, I’m privy to all the LGBTQIAAWTFOMGBBG stuff at my employer.

            The stupid, it burns. The funny thing is, it’s supposed to make me feel wanted. It makes me feel patronized.

            1. *raves unintelligibly*

              So, no different than my usual.

              Being lied to may possibly enrage me, the material is so stupidly and shoddily prepared that it lets one exclude appeals to certain principles, and here I am angry and thinking about some group or another.

              “If you insist on hanging me for a lamb, why shouldn’t I go for sheep? If you will make my current career impossible for a minor thing, if the danger of major things is so great that you are justified in doing so, why should I not switch to a career in the major things? You are not my moral better. You are not my intellectual better. You aren’t even my better in physical force in all methods and circumstances. How sure are you that you want to go forward with this?”

      1. Way my mother is, hence her cheerleading for an assassin. Wont accept that the looting was not only started before she was born, but that the same sb’s she’s voting for were all for it.

        Me,don’t expect to reach even within 2 decades of retirement age

        1. Being good-hearted and expecting others to be the same. They would never make promises they couldn’t keep, so surely the government wouldn’t do that either.

      2. Which is nuts, because when my mom was in college in Oregon, in an education class, it was not only known but recognized that there was no way Social Security could possibly be around when she got old. The pyramid was simply not big enough, and they kept expanding who got pay-outs.

          1. Beaver. Her brother, the Duck, never lets it drop. -.-

            She also did some time in Washington (the ag college close to Spokane) but I’m 90% sure she mentioned it came up in Oregon.

            1. Western Washington, or Washington State?

              I may be an alumn of WOU, but Dad graduated from UO in the 70’s after noving West from Mass.

            2. Platypus myself 🙂

              OSU Beaver – Forestry
              LCC – Programming (Longview, not Lane)
              UofO Duck – Computer Science

              Hubby & Son are Beavers too. We sport Beaver gear in the middle of Duckville. In fact when college theme CC were popular, OSU got 5% of everything we spent. It was the card I used to pay for my UofO degree, it was fun …

        1. Between what I paid in FICA tax, and the amount my employers were taxed, I’ve paid about $150,000 into Socialist Stupidity.

          According to the latest statement I got, I am entitled to almost $2,300 a month at age 65 1/2. If I live to 80, that adds up to just about $400,000. If I live to 90, it’s over $670,000. At 95, it’s almost $810,000.

          Remember, they collected $150,000. Multiply that by 70 million retirees, and you can see that Fascist Dictator Roosevelt’s SS is completely unsustainable.

          And nobody will admit it.
          ———————————
          If you tried to run a business the way they run the government, you would be in jail or the poor-house within six months.

          1. Then look at what you would have made on that $150,000 if you had been allowed to invest it over the course of your career. Leave it to fascists to screw over everyone.

            There’s a reason Social Security has required significant overhauls every 20-30 years. I have hope because we skipped the last overhaul push during the Bush administration (remember the pushing grandma off a cliff?) so by now the costs of actually fixing it will be too high for anyone to support. It was a stupid program created by idiots and continued by cowards.

            And Social Security won’t go away. Under the current law when the trust fund is depleted in a decade or so all payments will be cut so that expenditures match the income from payroll taxes. I think they’re predicting something like a 20% cut.

            1. Jeff has the right of it: you haven’t paid in $150,000 — you’ve invested a cash stream, let’s say you’ve been working and contributing over thirty years, investing the identical $5,000 each year ($416.67 each month).

              After thirty years your cumulative total would be $289,989.65 — almost double your cash flown. At 5% your nest egg would amount to $348,125.65 (see: https://www.investor.gov/financial-tools-calculators/calculators/compound-interest-calculator ) — an amount which would permit you to withdraw $2,300 every month for almost twenty years (presuming that same 5% interest rate, compounded daily in all cases.) N.B. – when calculating your draw-down, use the accumulated nest egg as your initial investment then calculate a negative rate of investment over the months — in this case, withdrawing $2,300 each month instead of contributing $416.67 every month (%5K per year.

              Remember, that nest egg continues to earn interest even as you amortize it. As Ben Franklin reputedly said, “Money makes money. And the money that money makes, makes money.”

              “Albert Einstein was once quoted in stating that compound interest was not only man’s greatest invention ever, but that it is the ‘…most powerful force in the universe’. According to Einstein, ‘Compound interest is the eighth wonder of the world. He who understands it, earns it…he who doesn’t…pays it.’ ”
              (Source: smartfamilyfinance . com/2015/02/compound-interest-the-greatest-invention-ever/)

              So pay off those credit cards and take advantage of youthful opportunities to sock money away … preferably where the government cannot get at it.

              One additional note: the above illustrations do not take into account the inflation rate

              1. There is a “benefit” that investing doesn’t offer– not having to take care of those who have been drawing out of social security.

                My parents’ generation didn’t grow up with grandma living in the house unless there were other factors. Grandma did have some money coming in, social security and pensions; all but the very poor grandparents were a source of treats and gifts, not a household expense.

                My generation, same thing, though with even fewer children in the household. If your parents have to Take Care Of Grandma, it’s a really big deal.

                So we’re now on generation three, at least, of “you don’t have to support your own ancestors who can’t work, nor your orphaned/dead parent/disabled cousins, it all goes into the pool to support everyone’s relatives who can’t work.”

              2. Except that NONE of the money was invested. It’s a typical Ponzi scam, in which the capital was squandered on extravagant benefits for the program managers, and the old ‘investors’ were paid with ‘contributions’ from the new ‘investors’. The fact that you are forced to ‘invest’ at gunpoint does not change the underlying scam dynamic.

                The only place the government can’t get at your money is if you hide it where they can’t find it. Burying cash in a pickle jar in your back yard won’t work; the government will destroy its value by printing more money. (or more directly, by changing to ‘more secure’ currency, and declaring the ‘old money’ worthless — or by outlawing cash altogether)

                When cash is outlawed, only outlaws will have cash?

                No, you will need to use that money to buy something of real value, and hide it. Like, say, 1000-foot rolls of 12-2 Romex. Tools. Furniture.

                Oh, and remember, ammunition will always have value.
                ———————————
                The avalanche has already begun. It is too late for the pebbles to vote.

                1. That line has always bothered me. I know, Kosh was a Vorlon, English was not his native language, but he mixed up his metaphor there. He should have either said “The landslide has already begun.” or “It is too late for the snowflakes to vote.”

                  I’d go with ‘avalanche’ and ‘snowflakes’, especially in these times.

                2. From the contributor’s point of view it is the same as investing … aside from lacking all sureties, control, and managerial opportunities. But aside from that, I very much enjoyed the play.

                  From the Economy’s point of view it is money removed from productive investment into government managed “investment” and I am confident we concur in the undesirability of that.

                  But my point was merely to put the “I invested $X and will be paid back $Y” argument into perspective.

                  Underneath the whole scheme is the founding assumption of donor’s estimated lifespans at time of establishment of SSI being sixty-five years, nine months. Nor should we ignore the demos that was most likely to survive to collect those nine months of benefits were the already wealthy, those who could afford the nutrition and medical care perks that aid longevity.

                  I’ve been denouncing SSI as a demonic Ponzi scheme for more than thirty years; that doesn’t mean I cannot analyse the cash flows competently.

                  1. typical Ponzi scam, in which the capital was squandered on extravagant benefits for the program managers, and the old ‘investors’ were paid with ‘contributions’ from the new ‘investors’.


                    There is no way to force TPTB congress thieves to pay back what they’ve stolen borrowed for other programs.

        2. We didn’t expect SS to be here either.

          We had primary direct evidence of people who got paid waaaaaaay more than they or their primary earners ever paid into the system. (Paternal grandparents, maternal grandmother, mom, and BIL’s mother, at minimum). Heck I expect to pull more than I paid into it, eventually, & I started paying in at 17 (that happens when you live to 90+, which is what most my examples have done).

          We planned on SS not being available for us. Wouldn’t be happy, if it were to disappear now that we’re actually getting paid it, but we’d be okay (baring them stealing the rest). We saved. We worked our tails off to save. We started with nothing. We started out in debt (student loans which were paid off). We saved despite not having astronomical salaries, either singly or combined. Healthy, but not astronomical. We saved despite having periods where both or one of us was earning nothing.

          Laughed at my sister when she said we wouldn’t vote for Biden because we didn’t want our $400k+ income touched by more taxes. Told her we’d NEVER seen that kind of annual income (have never seen 1/4 of that annual income). I still won’t vote for “Lyin’ Biden”. Note, I think she’s back to not talking to me again … Until mom’s birthday anyway, otherwise mom will cry (no one wants that).

            1. The only SS I expect at this point is the Democratic Party SS that will go around and round-up all of the thought criminals along with Jews and everyone else who is considered a member of an “oppressor” group.

                1. I’d say that “Liberal Fascism” hammers the meaning home harder than any other term I’ve seen. I’d like to see it used more. I ought to use it more myself. Whatever his faults, Jonah Goldberg deserves credit for popularizing the term.

          1. Most people fritter money away with nothing to show for it. So if they see you have items of value, then obviously you must have frittered away some multiple of that value.

            1. I can see that.

              Never have told anyone our annual income. Never. Sis isn’t the only one to misjudge. She should know better. When we buy something we buy quality. To the point where it lasts forever or if something that can be resold, resells at high value. Never what we paid for it, or more, but makes the net cost less than if we’d gone cheap.

              * Rainbow play equipment. Bought $3k, sold $2500, net cost $500 after 7 years. Sisters, each bought their kids play equipment through Home Depot, not Rainbow quality. Paid $1200 per set. Resale value $0.

              * Not comparable because they don’t camp, either of them. We have (non-RV) camping gear, no residual value, but good shape after 42 years, hubby’s gear is 10 years older than that!

              Scouting environment is also where misjudgement of our “wealth” has occurred. I get it. A family shows up with “looks like new, good quality, equipment” X 3 (ours & sons … son’s was new, my equipment is 20 years old, dad’s 30). Not only can drive one rig when 4×4/AWD is preference but can drive 2 (what is needed cargo haul or seat belts?)

              Get son through 5 years away at state college without loans? Must be Rich! Loaded with money!. Right? (Define Loaded with Money.)

              I mean. Come on. One of us is in Timber, no one expected high salary. Not after the ’80s. But I’m in software. Therefore I HAVE to be getting a 3 figure salary, higher than mid $100k/year. (Um? In Eugene? Not. A. Chance.) Their Perception is reality … even when it isn’t even close.

              Ran into a couple times through school too, but different reasoning. We both understood math. Dad can even tutor son in it. Therefore we must be rich … Wait? What?

      3. Bring up the idea that public pensions won’t be paid to a state government worker (like the gaming group member who just hoisted the Democratic Socialist flag on FB) and watch the heads explode “the courts will make you it’s a contract REEREEEEE!!!”

          1. As explained at “A Treatise On The Law Of Contracts”, by William W. Story:

            It has never been defined by the courts, but has been left loose and free of definition, in the same manner as fraud. This rule may, however, be safely laid down, that wherever any contract conflicts with the morals of the time, and contravenes any established interest of society, it is void, as being against public policy.2 § 676.

            Presumably bankrupting the government is against public policy.

            Oh, wait a minute; bankrupting the government is public policy.

            Never mind.

    1. That whole blaze of glory thing, a literal blaze in my imagination, gets more appealing each day.

      Unfortunately, the blaze of glory is not allowed by my faith (I don’t think), although I suspect martyrdom will be on the table in the US soon.

    2. To steal a line from Bujold, I hit 40 and 40 hit back. I involuntarily retired because I was managing a portfolio that blew up. I said f-ck it all and walked away. Within six weeks my wife was telling me if I didn’t get a job she would divorce me and take all the money so I’d have to get a job anyway. The choice was not about working, it was about staying married to her so I went back but only as an analyst. I refuse to manage people or get promoted.

      At this point, I suspect I’ll stay working as long as I’m able unless I can come up with something meaningful to get up for every day.

      That said, I’ve been planning on social security not being there almost from the start of my career and have been very cautious about what I tie up in a 401k. The tax benefit is interesting and the employer match has been good but I trust these pigs about as far as I can throw them, Barack the Unready floated a plan to take them over for our own good and I know that they must be salivating over the largest pool of money in the world,

      1. And leftist Supreme Court justices added to the Court via packing would happily find that somehow confiscating people’s 401k and IRA’s wasn’t a taking of property requiring compensation.

        1. THIS, this is my nightmare. I saved and have a decent sum in 401k(s) and similar things as it seemed pretty clear in the Reagan era that Social Security was not going to remain solvent into my retirement period. If the world comes apart I’m screwed anyhow so not worrying about TEOTWAWKI scenarios. But with all the spending the government needs money. Either they grab it (LOTS of money in 401k and similar investments) OR the print it which effectively does the same thing making the savings. Neither side seems to have any concept of fiscal conservatism nor have they since the ’50s and likely earlier.

          1. Our nightmare too. At this point it’d be our IRA’s & Roths. As our 401(k)’s have been rolled now for years.

            Hubby never had the problem because his company didn’t have stock (not for profit employer). I got lucky in my first two employers who had stock matching for the employer matching part. The company that bought company #2, couldn’t require that. Good thing. They are the ones I’d have lost the entire prior 6 years (I did NOT roll my prior employment 401(k) into the new employer’s, that went into my IRA). Even in bankruptcy they couldn’t loot the 401(k)s. Last employer didn’t have stock, small enough it was a Simple IRA. Always contributed maximum amounts allowed, not just matching minimums. So did hubby to his & his employer didn’t have matching the first 10 years or so of the 401(k). I had a 401(k) before he did, because his employer didn’t have one until ’95 or so. OTOH he’s had a pension vested since ’84.

          2. You can mitigate money printing in a 401k. You can’t mitigate them putting the money into long term government bonds, let’s call them R Bonds, for your own good. Even if they don’t destroy the currency you should remember that quantitative easing was based on something called Operation Twist which was an FRB scam in the 50’s to wipe out the value of Victory Bonds. More recently, they wiped out savings bonds. Jackson had it right, they are a nest of vipers.

            Any writers here looking for a good dr evil plot should read The Creature from Jeckyll Island, which describes how the FRB was founded, to see how it’s done for real. Woodrow Wilson, war be upon him, was behind it. No conspiracy fiction comes close to the real thing.

        2. Nope, the compensation would be the mountain of Free Lunch showered down from on high.

          That the lunch seems to have been pre-digested, and is coming from a hole in the ivory tower right about where the latrines are is reactionary propaganda.

        3. Yeah, the Cook Islands bankers and otherwhere equivalents will get a lot of business very quickly by opting out of the US offshore bank reporting agreement or arrangement or whatever – used to be the Swiss Banks were the safe one, but all the terrorist=chasing money-following stuff has put enough pressure on the Swiss that they don’t do numbered accounts anymore.

          Wasn’t Cyprus doing this for Putin’s oligarchs?

        4. Its just a tax. And you’re getting a pension out of it. Not much of one after the government is thru but its the thought

        5. I do believe that looting our IRA’s and 401(k)’s to pay for their vote-buying schemes would kick off the Apocalypse. Those of us not willfully blind would take it as the final sign that our enemies are out to take EVERYTHING from us, and far too many of the blind would open their eyes. How many people’s savings would that be? 150 million? 200 million?

          The riots we’ve spent the last 4 months watching have been perpetrated by maybe 20,000 nutjobs, total. If 1% of the people robbed of their retirements protested, that would be AT LEAST 1 1/2 MILLION. Multiply what we’ve been watching all summer by 75. Or more. We’d outnumber all law enforcement organizations combined by 2 to 1 — and that’s if only 1% go on the warpath.

          And we wouldn’t waste time or effort burning down the poor neighborhoods. We know where our enemies lurk. We’d head straight for the belly of the beast — the government enclaves, the walled estates of their ‘contributors’, the lairs of their shills and apologists.

          If they ‘win’ this election, though, they might just be stupid enough to do it.
          ———————————
          There is no worse tyranny than to force a man to pay for what he does not want merely because you think it would be good for him.

          1. The Fed has essentially stood back and watched as several major corporations looted their pension funds and shafted their employees. Consider that their “proof of concept” run.

        6. As far as that goes, the current Court roster didn’t hear Rodriguez v. San Jose, (woman’s firearms were seized when husband had a red flag, won’t return them, told her to buy new ones) which seems a pure confiscation case to me.

          1. Digging around a bit, that is a messy case.

            The case she took up would make it so you can’t legally do an emergency disarming someone if they’ve got a weapon owned by someone else, which will functionally mean you can’t disarm ANYBODY.

            As opposed to the obvious case of “they f*ing took the guns without any decent protections, and KEPT them,” presumably without paying for them, although there’s a worrying lack of details on stuff like that. I found one mention that her husband said the cops could keep the guns, and she contested it, but no details beyond that.

            Especially right now– wouldn’t a court case based on preventing abuse of imminent threat/mental health/etc confiscations be timely?

            As opposed to “this paper says that it belongs to someone else, so ignore the entire justification for the action but don’t invalidate the action”?

            This is a pattern that shows up a lot in Cartel related cases– you register stuff in someone else’s name so that when legitimate law enforcement actions are taken, the waters can be muddied. Sort of like when folks trying to game bankruptcy “sell” the stuff they want to keep to relatives for $1.

            1. Some of the guns were hers, registered in her name as California law requires. She opened the safe that only she had the access to so they could take his firearms, and they took hers over her objections at the time. So seizure without compensation of her property. She’s not contesting the loss of her spouses guns IIRC.

              1. Like I said, it’s like they were deliberately avoiding the obvious cases for ones that would have obvious and negative secondary effects of equal or greater value.

                The lack of mention of better information than one news report that said the husband had said the cops could keep the guns is also worrying, that seems like rather relevant information– if he’s nuts enough that he can’t be trusted with weapons, how can he be sane enough to give that kind of consent?

                Click to access 20191211103831019_Rodriguez%20Application%20for%20cert%20extension-Final-PDFA.pdf

                Because I know a lot of folks have issues with getting PDFs to work, here’s the quote:

                Civil Rights/Second Amendment
                The panel affirmed the district court’s summary
                judgment for defendants City of San Jose, its Police
                Department and a police officer in an action brought by
                husband and wife, Edward and Lori Rodriguez, alleging civil
                rights violations when police seized firearms from their
                residence after detaining Edward for a mental health
                evaluation in response to a 911 call, and then declined to
                return the firearms.
                The City petitioned in California Superior Court to retain
                the firearms on the ground that the firearms would endanger
                Edward or another member of the public. Lori objected that
                the confiscation and retention of the firearms, in which she
                had ownership interests, violated her Second Amendment
                rights. The Superior Court granted the City’s petition over
                Lori’s objection and the California Court of Appeal
                affirmed. After Lori re-registered the firearms in her name
                alone and obtained gun release clearances from the
                California Department of Justice, the City still declined to
                return the guns, and Lori sued in federal court.
                The panel held that Lori’s Second Amendment claim
                was barred by issue preclusion under California law. The
                panel first held that although defendants failed to raise a
                preclusion defense in either district court or in their principal
                brief on appeal, it would forgive defendants’ forfeiture given
                the significant public interests in avoiding a result inconsistent
                with the California Court of Appeal’s decision
                on an important constitutional question and in not wasting
                judicial resources on issues that had already been decided by
                two levels of state courts.
                The panel held that the California Court of Appeal had
                considered and rejected a Second Amendment argument
                identical to the one before the panel and that the Court’s
                decision was a final decision on the merits. The panel
                rejected Lori’s contention that her subsequent re-registration
                of the guns as separate property and the Department of
                Justice’s ownership clearance were changes that affected the
                state court’s Second Amendment analysis. The panel noted
                that the state court had already assumed Lori’s ownership
                interest under California’s community property laws and
                must have considered Lori’s exclusive ownership of her
                personal handgun given it was undisputed that the handgun
                was her separate property. The panel held that the
                organizational plaintiffs that had joined Lori in her federal
                lawsuit did not have Article III standing and therefore Lori
                was the sole plaintiff against whom preclusion would be
                applied. Finally, the panel held that redeciding the Second
                Amendment issue would undermine the issue preclusion
                doctrine’s goals of comity and judicial economy.
                The panel rejected Lori’s contention that the warrantless
                confiscation of the firearms on the night of her husband’s
                hospitalization violated her Fourth Amendment rights. The
                panel analyzed the seizure of the firearms under a
                community caretaking function framework and held that
                under the circumstances, the urgency of a significant public
                safety interest was sufficient to outweigh the significant
                privacy interest in personal property kept in the home. The
                panel emphasized that its holding that the warrantless seizure
                of the guns did not violate the Fourth Amendment was
                limited to the particular circumstances before it: the officers
                had probable cause to detain involuntarily an individual
                experiencing an acute mental health episode and to send the
                individual for evaluation, they expected the individual
                would have access to firearms and present a serious public
                safety threat if he returned to the home, and they did not
                know how quickly the individual might return.

    3. The joy of Gen X – we grew up being told we were lazy and worthless, and that was why we couldn’t get jobs in a recession. Then told that because we couldn’t get jobs that would provide 25 years and a pension, and we knew it, we were unreliable and flighty for changing jobs every few years.

      Even when that was the only way to increase our salary, or get out from the increasing load of expected duties compared to the newer employees hired for 30% more to do 50% less, and then promoted over us.

      Yeah, we generally figured college for an overpriced scam we were being railroaded into in order to get a shot at entry level. And we knew social security was a scam, too.

      Some of my generation closed their eyes and tried to dive whole-heartedly into the system, as though, if they believed hard enough, the system would finally love them back.

      But the system looked at our small demographics, and promptly looked at the people past us and squealed “Millenials! Wave of the future!”

  7. How did we end indentured servitude, unfair labor laws, etc.? Student loans that are abusive, or stupid kids who didn’t start paying off soon enough, would seem to be something that could be adjusted rather than forgiven.

    1. No. MOST of this can’t actually be paid back. And it was the insertion of government in the middle. It was also to the great enrichment of university systems that had no accountability.
      ALL student loans are abusive. See “non dischargeable in bankruptcy.” And they’re to the GOVERNMENT.

      1. I’m afraid I don’t agree with you here. If no price is paid there’s no learning. Interest could be dropped but they should be required to pay the principle.

        There should be no government guaranteed anything because of the moral hazard it creates. No guaranteed student loans, no Fannie Mae, no bank bailouts. Nothing.

        1. All other loans are dischargeable in bankruptcy, even other federally-insured ones such as VA, FHA, and SBA loans.

          Why is it vitally important that student loan obligees “learn their lesson” by being forced to repay the principal, when absolutely no one else is required to do so?

          As several have noted, filing bankruptcy is not without consequences in its own right.

          I agree. Make them dischargeable in bankruptcy, let them take the seven year credit report hit, and that would be lesson enough.

          1. It’s worth remembering that reason why student loans are not dischargeable in bankruptcy is that there were some highly visible cases of people gaming the system, back when the loans could be discharged in bankruptcy. So making student loans non-dischargable was a reform intended to prevent that abuse.

            There’s no good answer, but a retroactive change in terms to make those loans dischargable in bankruptcy again might well be the least-bad one.

            1. That was the excuse but the actual level was very low. If I remember correctly this was a McCain thing. The law was changed in 2005 and signed by GW Bush. That said, you can have it discharged if it is an undue hardship and the bankruptcy judges are starting to change what that means. First cases started in early 2020 but have slowed because of the WuFlu.

              Bankruptcy is not fun, and it is the proper way to go here not through another government bailout. The other option would be restructuring with a lower interest rate, or no interest. Both are possible under the law. No one has any interest in doing so because these are government loans either through Sallie Mae or through the guarantee. Private loans were hugely reduced when congress did one of their occasional shake downs. it’s a big source of government revenue.

            2. There is also the factor that even in bankruptcy the individual keeps the goods: the diploma is not revoked, the brain is not wiped (although there are arguments* to be made that doing so would be a blessing.)

              *For instance, there are studies demonstrating that many students graduate college more ignorant than upon their entry.

    2. > stupid kids who didn’t start paying off soon enough

      Legal adults, signing contracts that were not only lawful, but commonplace, if not expected.

      This is the same thing as Obama’s proposal to “forgive” all those people who signed crazy mortgage agreements. Such proposals undercut the basic principle of contract law; if the Fed can arbitrarily set aside lawful contracts, only a schmuck would ever expect to have to pay a debt.

    3. Check out how much universities spend on teachers versus how much they spend on administrators. Adjusted for inflation, teaching costs are almost flat over the past 40 years. But they’ve got 5 times as much spent on administrators.

  8. I’m another one not willing to go along with the forgive the loans thing. For starters doing that wouldn’t change the minds of those already indoctrinated. It would just prove the b.s. they believe is right – college can be free!

    As to returning to college to add more debt on for employable skills, no need. If they’re willing to swallow their ridiculous attitudes toward actual work, they can find jobs. You know, the kind of jobs that require sweat. A friend’s son got a Masters in bio-something, couldn’t find a job in the field and started working construction. He now owns his own construction firm and is doing fine, albeit with ups and down over things like the virus. The swell-headed jerks who say they can’t get a job need to stop paying gyms to help them sweat and try a job that will pay them for the same.

      1. Sure they can. I did. I have a BA in Literature/Writing. I’ve been paying off my loans for the last 12 years, except for a bit whilst unemployed.

        And I’m a carpenter. Got into it after university. Can’t stand the thought of working at a desk inside… except for in February. Suckiest month ever.

        1. Well, I’m a writer.
          No student loans, because I was in the top half of one percent. BUT I’ve seen stuff talking about how all the big fortune 500s are looking for English majors. Recently. (Rolls eyes so hard I see the inside of my skull.)
          The boys were told “STEM and an “employable” field (Husband has a degree in pure math, which isn’t employable outside academia. THANK heavens for the minor in computer science and all the languages he learned because fun) and we pay half of undergrad. Liberal arts? We smile and wave, and you’re on your own.”

    1. Son has a degree in Chemistry. At the time, until just before graduating, there were THREE firms in town that employed Chemists. Two of them were head hunting him hard. To the point that the ones head hunting him sat down with him and helped him customized his resume & application for jobs in their specific areas. His last quarter before graduation, suddenly they were fighting for their jobs. Number of labs needing chemists locally now? None.

      Full disclosure. One head hunter was a chemist lead supervisor, he’d watched son grow up, as his twin lived across the street from us. The other head hunter was the new Scoutmaster for the troop son earned his Eagle out of. Yes, they might have had other clues to son’s work ethic beyond his degree, and what is seen on paper. Two others would have liked to bring son on, but were constricted by appearance of nepotism (both husbands of two of my cousins, neither are local, both have moved to different companies for their jobs too).

      Son builds cabinets for a local commercial cabinet maker. He’s been supervisor off an on since his first year (as they cycled through supervisors that didn’t last). He’s officially supervisor now, and has been for the last 3 years. Given the amount of OT they’ve been doing, he’s been making more than his manager, even accounting for his manager’s bigger quarterly bonus.

      Our only complaint? That his hours allowed him better social opportunities. Swing shift doesn’t. Even graveyard would be better. That lasted 3 weeks before that shift was shutdown.

      Am I sorry he’s not using his degree? No.

      I didn’t use my first degree, technically.

  9. A lot of you — and me, in principle — oppose forgiving student loans. Look, guys, yeah, I get it. These people willingly fell for the snow job. But how could they not, when all of society cooperated in it?

    Student loans for most are de facto forgiven. They will never earn enough to repay them, and garnishing, at some point, will just become a disincentive to work at any job that pays more than the legal limit of what they must leave you while garnishing you.

    What cannot be repaid will not.

    We’d be better off just recognizing that in law so we don’t shunt an entire generation in zero productivity jobs out of self-protection.

    But, any bill that does it should end federally guaranteed student loans as well. Make the universities shoulder the guarantees from now on.

    1. We’d be better off just recognizing that in law so we don’t shunt an entire generation in zero productivity jobs out of self-protection.

      “If you really want to screw someone up: punish them for their Virtues”

      1. Or reward their vices.

        I’m not sure how handling student loans in the long run doesn’t do both.

        It is not rewarding the vices of the borrowers I’m worried about, but the university admins who got rich off those loans.

  10. “… If you think that there’s no preference involved, you must think people have absolutely no control over their impulses.)”

    This is one of the Left’s biggest mistakes. They DO think people have absolutely no control over their impulses. Or, rather, most of them do. The ones who don’t have any control over their impulses. The ones who DO have some control, don’t believe that the Lesser Orders do.

    *spit*

    This poisoned the Left’s world and worldview in sooooo many ways….

  11. I’ve lately started considering whether the decadence and nihilism we associate with the Weimar Republic was as we’ve been propagandized, resulting from “capitalism” and a weak government, or the result of this sort of corruption, deep-inlaid.

    I’m going to go on a limb and say it was capitalism.

    First, a definition. I do not like capitalism. It was created as a slur by Marx (or Engles…you never know what was writing when the name was Marx). What they described as capitalism was very different from the freedom of markets described by Adam Smith. A key difference is Smith predicated his system on a functioning system of morals, specifically one that he previously wrote about. The foundation of Smith’s moral system was empathy, the ability to feel what others felt.

    It was that Smithian empathy that allowed Henry Ford to cut the workweek and increase pay. Sure, he benefited from that, but he understood he would because he could imagine being one of his workers.

    So, if I am going to use capitalism, I will use it in a Marxian context, which means it is materialist. In fact, it is materialist to the point of being reductive. There is nothing to man but the physical world and economic incentives. This, by the way, is why I’m happy to call what most libertarians want capitalism as well, because American libertarians, on the whole, are as committed to reductionist materialism as any Marxist.

    So, yes, Capitalism, the materialist reduction of man to a market creature with only a physical dimension, is the core of nihilism in Weimar Germany and Weimar America. The reduction of everything to physical objects to be bought and sold is to starve man’s other dimensions. To turn art into a commodity to be bought and sold and used to teach the buying and selling is as destructive as the Marxist demand art serves the revolution.

    We sold our children to Mammon. We should not be surprised they are empty husks full of nothing but hunger they do not even understand.

    Edited to add: the Grammarly plugin says this post “sounds joyful”.

    1. I suspect the war and the utter collapse of the state was the cause of the decadence and nihilism of the Weimar Republic. Every authority figure had abandoned them and it’s actually the only time I had any sympathy for a socialist party since the government parties stiffed them with the bar tab.

      I agree about Capitalism. much like class it’s a Marxist straw man.

      What we need is a lot less Big and a lot more Small and Local.

      1. I disagree about Capitalism being a Marxist straw man. I think it is an accurate description of free market economies in cultures of pure materialism.

        The irony is that it did not exist during Marx’s lifetime. It really only came into being after WWII and maybe even 1970.

        The student loan debacle of Millenials is straight up Marxist predicted workers who can’t afford the products of their labor.

        Of course, it took Marxist administrators (not profs, admins…profs are being starved to feed the admin beast at the unis) to achieve true Capitalism.

        1. Transfer of goods and services can be done out of devotion, economic exchange, or coercion. (And possibly other categories that I haven’t notices, but I think those three cover it pretty well.) The left, seeing that devotional transfer produces the least wastage of resources, tries to rename their coercive means as devotional ones.

          They aren’t the first to do it. Look up ‘boon works’ in the later medieval periods, labor that serfs were legally required to donate out of gratitude for their lord’s protection. (Let’s just say that free peasants working their own lands tended to have more productive fields than the lords did, despite everything the feudal lords could do to stack the deck in their favor.)

          It never works. Either they bring in overseers to keep the peons working, or their economy crashes to the point of mass starvation. Although the latter can be ameliorated to a degree by begging the US for aid.

          -Albert

        2. I think that it was double taxation of dividends that did it. Before that, you bought stock and clipped coupons for your profit. After that you bought stock, waited for it to go up then sold it. The latter requires a successful company to increase its stock price each quarter or no one will buy it. It also means that who cares what will happen in a year as everyone including the executives can be cashed out by then. The result is that public companies are effectively psychopaths and in fact are legally required to be so.

          1. I came across an article a few years ago that I haven’t been able to find again. It made the argument that it was (IIRC, may have been something else) antitrust laws that deranged the market.

            Previously, part of the deal when a business required capital was that the bank got a seat on the board. Banks (at that time) of course being the reification of “Slow, Long Term, Conservative Thinking”, and thus exerting a stabilization effect on the company. Remove that and there was less pressure to be sane and look at the long term.

  12. Request for Terminology:

    We all know what “Feral Human” means. But I don’t know a good term for someone who perhaps started as a feral, and then learned enough to not get in trouble, to try however weakly to do better, learned that their emotions were always Law, etc, etc. But still has all the instincts of the Feral as far as “why the hell should I engage with how society works? Oppression!”.

      1. No.

        Because I’m looking for a descriptor for someone who *failed* the socialization and induction-to-society process. But not so badly that they ended up in the usual places of “prison” or “coffin”.

        1. Rule bound feral. They follow a code because it gives them the best long term results even though it denies them the instant gratification they still want.

            1. Wolfling. Humen raised by wolves, then “civilized”. Has the firmal knowledge of a human, but that overlaid on the “mental map” of the feral society of a wolf.
              John in Indy

  13. No, what discouraged me most was the “sexual preference” suddenly becoming a slur and Webster dictionary falling in line.

    My reaction to that is not what they want. Since no matter what phrases I use, the dictionary can be edited on the fly to prove I’m an istaphobe, I might as well use n*gg*r, k*k*, f*gg*t, c*nt, gre**s*r, and so on. I’m going to be called istaphobic and drummed out of the public square no matter what, so why not at least get to watch them have some real vapors in the process.

        1. Sláinte agus táinte, toward thee from me and them they can Póg mo thóin!

          BTW: One St’ Paddy’s day in a bar I told a friend to go over and say ‘Póg mo thóin’ to a native of the old sod sitting there. My friend asked me what does it mean? I told him Happy St. Patrick’s Day. He then went over & said it to the guy. Good times!

          1. I read an article that talked about the taboo words in English, and how most other languages don’t have words that are taboo. I mentioned this in front of a professor, and she said, “But what is ‘Póg mo thóin’, then?” I replied, Crude, but not beyond the pale.

            Note that this was the 90s, so “fuck” still had the shredding remnants of “taboo” around it. Now it’s pretty well settled on “crude”, though amateur comics still seem to think it’s taboo.

          2. Dang I can’t decide if that makes you an unmitigated ***hole or a serious wit. Does tell me I should be careful drinking with you though 🙂 .

                1. whap. To the corner. With no books. 😉
                  (Irish is one of those odd ancestries husband and I share. Older son, temperament wise could be fully Irish. Not far off in looks, for black Irish, just giant.)

                  1. Some days, when yer at the bottom of a pit, and the world is pissin’ on yer bloody wounds, pride is the only thing ye’ve left to help raise that middle finger.

                  2. “His harp was carved and cunning,
                    His sword prompt and sharp,
                    And he was gay when he held the sword,
                    Sad when he held the harp.

                    For the great Gaels of Ireland
                    Are the men that God made mad,
                    For all their wars are merry,
                    And all their songs are sad.”

                    Chesterton, “The Ballad of the White Horse”

  14. Herb, or someone, we need to talk about systems to sell things. (My big issue is figuring out taxes.)

    That’s the ass kicker, but I do need to buckle down and work on the ACReader system prototype.

  15. I’ve long accepted that Social Security won’t be around when I’m of age. Dubya tried to overhaul it, and the Dems went on a rampage of outright lies about what he was intending to do before he’d done anything more than submit a very basic outline of his plans. I also suspect that it won’t be long before we start hearing open talk of nationalizing retirement accounts. There has already been the occasional comment from the Dems about moving in this direction – starting with Roth accounts, of course, “because only rich people have those”.

    There are times I despair of the current situation. I see where we are, and know that as things stand, we’re in big trouble.

    And then I remember 1989.

    But then I look at all of the things being revealed to us about our political “betters”, and how many people appear to completely ignore what’s right in front of their noses. And I think, “What if these revelations are our 1989, but the people have chosen to close their eyes and ears?” The Author can help the people find freedom. But he won’t force them. And sometimes I worry that too many people are rejecting the opportunity that the Author is laying out in front of them.

      1. a seat warmer here, is here to pad his 401, and hates, hates I tells yah! Trump and Republicans because they’re thievs (his comment day after 4 years ago – “There goes my 401k” which then soared)
        If the crime of that occurs, I will A: be cartridge box mad B: be laughing my ass off at him and the other bozo much like him over there (the second guy at least does his own work)

        1. That’s a quit my job when voted on level move, so I can empty it prior to the bill being signed.

          Get a crap job and use it to fund trying to get the writing to take off and/or moving to Mexico.

  16. Sigh, this is a long read, no I mean a really really long read, -not ’cause of the word count so much as I find myself at every other sentence needing to pause reading while I mentally contemplate and, mentally, argue, agree, comment, expand the thought.

    As I write this I’m 15 paragraphs in (I highlighted the line I was reading so I could continue after writing this, hence it was easy to go back up the page & count paragraphs.) and, though I’m a fast read, it’s taken me at least 20 minutes to get there.

    Chinese blessing: May your grandfather die, may your father die, may you die.

    Chinese curse: May you live in interesting times.

    The first, the natural order of things.

    The second, the world we live in today, in spades!

  17. I’m sort of whipsawing between optimism and despair.

    Despair-too many people I know are screaming every contradictory thing about Trump as if it were holy gospel. At least once or twice I saw people that needed to get somewhere who forgot a face covering get chewed out by wokescolds-who had a box of masks near them for that purpose. This shutdown can’t last forever and the longer it goes on, the bigger and nastier the snap-back is when we open things up again. My personal suspicion that too many Democrats and our “betters” have been playing around with the COVID numbers to keep justifying their taking of power. Add to that fear that they’re putting up click-bait articles on how the disease has massive, long term consequences that is adding to the confused miasma around any decision. College graduates terrified that this is going to drive them even deeper into debt, even if they have a real, marketable skill-and their savings is minimal because they had to live near the big urban areas for their jobs and pay the student loans off. I’m almost waiting for a required dictionary app with required push notification on my phone with the latest Newspeak words, as they’re getting edited in almost real time to say what the Democrats need them to mean.

    (And, I got into an argument that went nasty on a forum that ended with threats of being banned-all over my opinion that a character had insufficient narcissism from the previous incarnations of the character and how an important part of comedy is when hubris hits someone in the face with a pie of hair removing gel. Good comedy requires if not demands that everybody get at least one pie in the face within recent memory. I got in trouble because I failed to use they/them pronouns for the character and “there’s no way that this character will have a ‘come-uppance’ event, ever” by the creator himself.)

    Optimism-I remembered that a lot of people didn’t say a word about who they were voting for or lied in 2016. In California, the Republican party is pointing out things the Democrats have been doing for years-and showing up on national TV for it. If the Hunter Biden story didn’t crash Twitter yesterday like a stone, it should have. A lot of people are talking about how much…happier the Trump Town Hall was than the Biden one, even with the deliberate stage setting on both sides. Gun sales have been through the roof, to the point where ammo is almost impossible to get right now. I suspect that the current entertainment media system-barring massive stimulus payments-will be dead in a year or two. There won’t be a comic book industry as we knew it before, other than to serve as an IP farm for big entertainment companies. Most of the streaming services will be taking massive hits as well-Netflix over the whole “Cuties” controversy, Disney+ is now adding “context warnings” you can’t go past in front of older movies, and I’ve been hearing bits and pieces that some of the smaller services have been trying to please the wokescolds to the point of driving off paying customers.

    You’re hearing a lot of people talk more about how they don’t trust most of the major media outlets. More of their sins are showing up in the general public’s attention. People are watching how their kids are getting educated-and are screaming to high heaven about what they’re seeing in real-time. There’s probably a lot of “Irish Democracy” things going on when nobody’s looking-Nancy Pelosi was just one of the people that got caught doing it. And if you watch the Democrats in action at the ACB hearings, they’re sounding even crazier than usual.

    The despair is warring hard with the optimism. My hope is that if/when Trump wins, the sheer rage and vitriol will carry off quite a few of these people. Even so, another four years of Trump might finish draining the swamp and fixing things. In the last four years, we’ve had so many “never happens” that I’m surprised that the drum isn’t being beaten any harder about them.

    Don’t despair. Plan for the flood, yes-but don’t plan so much that it steals every moment of your time.

    1. I think my biggest realization of despair was when I realized that most prominent public conservatives (think George Will, most of the writers at National Review, and so on) have so sold us out so consistently and completely that I consider their endorsement of a candidate more of a reason to reject that candidate than I would Nancy Pelosi’s endorsement.

      I trust Nancy is being truthful when she says she’s endorsing a leftist to be a leftist. I think when George Will et al endorse someone as a good conservative they’re actually endorsing the person they know will surrender to the left.

            1. Wolfling. Human raised by wolves, then “civilized”. Has the firmal knowledge of a human, but that overlaid on the “mental map” of the feral society of a wolf.
              John in Indy

              1. Oops. I did that again. Sorry.
                What I _meant to say was_
                Like the knight in the shiny new armor, the archers on both sides targeted him, just because he had to die.
                John in Indy

            1. The mob will do the eating – the issue is, they’ve put themselves on the menu for mob-table-servers on both sides.

          1. Me-first capitalists who think you can separate society from business are going to be the first people lined up against the wall and shot in the revolution. I’ll happily provide video commentary.

            — dick costolo

    2. This shutdown can’t last forever and the longer it goes on, the bigger and nastier the snap-back is when we open things up again.

      I used to say that. Then I realized I talked to people (people I’ve had intimate relationship with, that close) who think we’re effectively re-opened so what am I complaining about.

      I no longer think I will live to see the end of masks. I suspect what we have endured this year will be the new normal every flu season.

      Too many people have gotten oo many jollies off the power this has given them. I don’t just mean pols, but random Karens, store managers, writers, etc. I know the look they give during the scold. They are abusers and unlike the self-aware and controlled abusers (and abuse victims seeking a “safe rapist”) that were a big part of my social circle for two decades, they do not know how to temper it or use it in a way that is mutually beneficial for them and their victims.

      I’m used to making people like that persona non grata in the kind world. Now they run the vanilla one.

      1. …anybody that thinks we’re effectively re-opened has rocks in their heads.

        Which is nice, because all of those rocks will weigh them down when we dump their bodies in the ocean…

        I think the fear-mongering articles-the worries of a “second spike” as we get into the winter months, the reports of how COVID causes microstrokes, people getting sick from COVID again (were they really sick the first time with COVID?) are designed to keep us afraid and looking for someone to tell us what to do and how to do things.

        I think when the sports industry fully collapses, we’ll see a “revolt of the adults” in quite a few places, because all of this stuff is costing people money and nothing annoys some people more than when they run out of other people’s money.

        1. They’re going to blame everything from cancer to cooties on COVID in the future. And look for the health insurance companies to lobby hard to turn that to their benefit.

          We’re going to see shockwaves from the Chinavirus for decades, no matter who wins the election.

      2. They don’t want to temper it. They get off more on the breaking of another than the power. Most of the mask fiends are the type that would happily report on the family hiding in the attic.

      3. I started working on this for a possble guest post submission, but it fizzled out because the conclusion kept coming in too soon:

        As of today, there have been fifty Communist Chinese Coronavirus deaths reported in Santa Clara County, California of otherwise healthy people with no comorbidities, in a county with a population of 1,927,852 per the US Census. That works out to a net fatality rate for otherwise healthy people of 2.6 per 100,000 population.

        And, of course, the fatalities are heavily skewed to those over 70 years of age, with 46% of the fatalities over age 80.

        The CDC using their last complete year of statistics (2017) says that influenza’s fatality rate is 2 per 100,000.

        So Silicon Valley, that most wretched hive of scum and villainy, home of the Tech Demigodlings that are busy silencing people posting about Hunter hookerthumper_not-an-Ensign_cracksmokeypipe_unregistered-paid-foreign-agent Biden, is running a healthy person death rate from the Chinese Coronavirus from Wuhan, China, where Chairman Winnie is God-Emperor, of ZERO POINT SIX PER ONE HUNDRED THOUSAND (which works out to 6 deaths per million population greater than the stated CDC influenza death rate).

        But the CDC does not say it’s 2.0 per 100k – they say it was 2 per 100k, so rounding could be at play – which means the excess here for anyone who does not have comorbidities is potentially less than 0.2 deaths per 100k greater than the flu death rate as rounded, which works out to TWO DEATHS PER MILLION POPULATION.

        And so to that from nominally 6 possibly down to 2 deaths per million greater than a recent year seasonal flu, all the healthy people in Santa Clara County are still under constraints and prohibited from indoor dining and shopping maskless and so on.

        And now Glorious Governor Gavin the First has added unachievable race-based statistics that have to be achieved before any county in California can move one step lower on his color-coded constraint system.

        As you said, it’s obviously so far into the power-jollies now that they will never let go until forced, ideally using the first box.

        1. I have to point out that you’re making an apples-to-oranges comparison. How many of the “2 per 100,000” ordinary influenza deaths were of people over 70 and/or with comorbidities?

          (Now it is true that (a) the Wuhan Coronavirus is not the Spanish Flu of a century ago, and (b) even if it were, the current response would still be counterproductive as an actual anti-pandemic measure and best understood as a pretext for punishing the Bad Orange Man and his deplorable supporters.)

          1. Florida WuFlu death reports for 1 September, 149 deaths reported.
            Median age (I know that you know what a median is) was 83.
            F*ucking 83. That is a normal+ life expectancy!
            But lets report WuFlu “cases” without defining that term, and scare as many Karens as we can.
            This has been the opposite of the ?? Thoreau ?? advice to his depressed friend to live for three weeks as though there were free will instead of predestination.
            I fear that many have become accustomed to their chains.
            John in Indy

          2. Yeah, I was trying to get at an incremental cost argument – as I mentioned this was the start of a longer argument. No warranty expressed or implied.

            Also, I recall a lot more information, deep into comorbidities and age cohort death rates in seasonal influenza on the CDC web site, which suddenly got scrubbed when they started being so obviously wrong back in May-June or so. If you can find the no-comorbidities death rate number on the CDC site I’d be happy to use that, but they did a good scrub.

            But I would argue my comparison of the empirical all-age-cohorts healthy person death rate of 2.6 per 100k with lockdowns and monster restrictions and so on here ins Silicon Valley, vs .an all-population national seasonal flu death rate quoted at 2 per 100k, is a fair comparison – and will likely be the basis for future lockdowns and mask rules for any especially bad seasonal flu season.

            1. Read this:

              Here’s how the media is misreporting COVID-19’s death toll in America
              [SNIP]

              … 2020’s attributed COVID-19 deaths were equivalent to having another 2017-2018 flu and pneumonia season boosted by 13 percent.

              [SNIP]

              The CDC itself caused a stir at the end of August by estimating that the virus directly caused only 6 percent, or now just over 11,000 of the 187,000 attributed deaths. Most of these deaths were in the elderly.

              The remaining 94 percent died with and not exclusively of the coronavirus. These people also were on average elderly and had 2.6 other health problems. This implies a good fraction who succumbed had three or more comorbidities. In other words, most deaths attributed to the coronavirus were in very sick people. …

              1. I share the suspicion of much of the reporting, but since looking at the CDC chart myself, I think insisting on that interpretation of it is a mistake.

                It includes independent, pre-existing health problems in people who were already in bad shape or highly vulnerable before the virus hit, yes. That’s one of the reasons I’m mad at Cuomo and others who insisted on putting contagious people in nursing homes.

                But it also includes things like pneumonia that can develop as a consequence of a bad case of COVID-19. When that happens, they write down both of them. For example, IIRC the chart indicates that ~28% of the total patients listed as having died with COVID-19 also died with pneumonia, and I don’t find it credible that all or even most of them already had pneumonia.

                1. Yes, the pneumonia one is stupid, and the actual thing that happened was that 6% of the deaths did not list anything else, but the way this works is you get the main ICD-10 diagnosis code first, then the next one down, and so on in order of what caused the interaction with medical care. That means you get the code first for “head trauma”, then “broken leg” , “pneumonia”, “habitual drug use”, “diabetes”, “high blood pressure” and finally “acne” when the crackhead with pneumonia jumps off an overpass.

                  Which means when “COVID-19” code U07.1 is followed by one of the “pneumonia” codes it’s supposed to be indicating the interaction with a patient whose main diagnosis is COVID-19 that has a significant contribution from pneumonia – the U07.1 code is supposed to only be a primary (first slot) code per the coding guidelines.

                  So it’s actually saying something when the only diagnosis code included in a record for a death is U07.1 for COVID-19: Either this record refers to an otherwise healthy patient or the coding person is lazy.* That is what the CDC says happened in 6% of the deaths.

                  The CDC actually does have a tracking bucket for all the pneumonia-like deaths that takes into account the fact that the actual deaths are from basically lung problems, which also eliminates the “Oh just code that as C19 even though there’s no test result” on someone who actually died this year of influenza-driven pneumonia. They call it PIC (for Pneumonia-Influenza-COVID19) and it’s tracked on charts and data such as https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/covid-data/covidview/. All things considered, this is probably a better year-over-year comparator of actual differences in years.

                  * Since the ICD-10-CM official code was designated on April 1st it’s not supposed to be retroactively applied, so any C19 deaths in March or before are possibly under pneumonia or flu codes – though the PIC chart I link to have counts from March 1st. Welcome to medical coding.

        2. You should be looking at excess deaths. The number of deaths in the last years against the number of deaths this year. If the deaths are greater than there have been excess deaths that were caused by COVID-19 if there are less deaths then the deaths from COVID-19 have been offset by lower deaths from driving etc..
          I believe the last numbers I saw was about the same number of deaths for 2019 which were lower than 2018.
          This is the only thing that should count. If COVID-19 is NOT affecting the normal number of deaths then WHY should society worry about it, especially when the deaths are almost always in the 60+ year olds with other problems. If you are NOT getting excess deaths, COVID-19 is NOT a Problem.
          BTW: I am 60+, very overweight, with type 2. So I am in the target for COVID-19.
          ANYONE who believes COVID-19 is a Problem for the US is dumb as a box of Rocks. It can be and is a PERSONAL Problem for people. That is a totally different thing. The Country should STOP Worrying about it.
          The Facts are in.

          1. Sympathy.

            Last week was the first time I’d thought about eating a bullet in a while (5 years ish). Only took (2)15 days to slow the spread to grind me down!

            1. Whenever, as a young wallaby, I found the black dog following too closely I had that temptation, too. What cured me, of all odd things, was a Gahan Wilson cartoon — I’ve ne’er found it online. In the cartoon there’s a guy sitting in a chair, holding a gun in his hand. Caption reads, “On the other hand, what if I’ve already pulled the trigger?”

              If suicides go to Hell (hard to imagine they go any better place) then what punishment would fit more than ending up whence you came?

              This is not that cartoon.

      4. People seem to be unable to conceptualize what a total Charlie Foxtrot the lockdowns are. Real Estate prices are collapsing in San Francisco, New York and other major metropolitan areas. Many people are facing default on their mortgages and rents — but banks and landlords cannot afford to evict, either.

        Businesses are shuttering and many will never reopen or be replaced — and not just i downtown Minneapolis, Portland and Seattle. That is equity and those are jobs which will be a long time recovering.

        There’s enough more to write an entre guest post and I’m not gonna be the one to describe the apocalypse.

        1. On the upside.

          We sold our 11 year old truck (10 years old by year model) for over top blue book, & discounted it to that because, neighbor. Even as low on inventory dealers are with trucks, with the low mileage for the age, we should have gotten half what we did.

          Sold the RV trailer for top dollar. It has seen almost 14 seasons with us. We should have gotten 2/3 what we did, if that. Even as good shape (like new for reasons) it was in. Dealer would have given us half, maybe. Even with the lack of trailers available, especially good used ones. Net cost to us? $6k for 14 seasons usage.

          Neither, ever happens. Not ever. We always get good value on rigs we sell or trade in. Always. But not numbers like these.

          Reasons? Covid-19. Yellowstone, if you weren’t camping, you weren’t staying in the park. Even outside venues, only the RV parks were in full swing. Same with other national parks, monuments, & national forests. Locally the fires have also helped. However that boost hasn’t hit yet. People are too shell shocked, too fast, too soon.

        2. The tax payers are abandoning those commie-run cities, and the tax dependents are staying. That’s going to make things interesting.

          1. Nyah – barely sketched the outline. Only identified a few of the dominoes. But when the rents finally cannot be collected and the landlords cannot pay their mortgages, the banks lose their liquidity and the economic machinery seizes up the disaster we dodged in 2008 will crash into us hard. Fully working it through — what happens when farmers can’t pay their seed & fertilizer bills, nor put fuel in their combines? — would take several hours or pitchers of beer, which ever runs out first.

            The Fed can print as much money as it wants but when there’s nothing to buy that money isn’t even good TP.

            1. If the farmers can’t afford to buy the things needed to produce a crop, we’re looking at a hard fall. The food that’s currently in the system will only last so long, and once it’s gone, things will get truly ugly. We’ll be lucky to avoid “roving bands of cannibals in a wasteland that was a civilization” ugly.

            2. The Democrats don’t want farmers putting fuel in the combines anyway, because “climate crisis”. Economic collapse is intended by the left; it is simply the old Cloward-Piven strategy. They don’t want to save the economy or the country; they want to wreck it so they can replace it with a totalitarian socialist state.

        3. When the current eviction moratoria expire it looks like landlords in the SF Bay Area mostly won’t have to bother, since the bottom half of the job market is gone and a lot of those folks are the ones who already drove the U-Haul rate pair disparities between here and anywhere else.

          I was wondering if the Sotoero-era jingle mail tradition is starting back up again, wherein banks received snail mail that jingled as it containing the house keys in lieu of back mortgage payments.

          1. I’ve been tracking SF rental rates and they’re starting to offer insane deals at this point for people to move in (no deposit if you have good credit, one or more months of rent forgiveness for a year lease, free exercise gear, etc, etc, etc…). Mind you, prices are STILL in the $2000/month range for the Tenderloin for a one bedroom and if you want parking, be prepared to pay at least $2100/month and be either along Van Ness or in SOMA.

            Right now? Even if I had a job in SF, and the rental rates were low enough that I could afford an apartment in SF with parking, I still wouldn’t. I don’t see any of the current or next generation of SF politicians being ready to do what’s needed to build a good business climate and deal with fundamental security issues.

            1. Just think of Democratic Party run cities as Sunnydale with its hellmouth…no wait..other than the vampires and other nasties that liked to snack on people, Sunnydale was a clean, well run town. How bad is it that I would rather live in a town with a hellmouth and an evil sorcerer for a mayor who wants to ultimately devour the town’s citizenry than in a city run by the Democrats.

              1. There were a few Democrat cities that were well run, or at least well managed. I think some of the last ones were in the ’50s or so, the rest tended to be…intermittent.

                Take San Francisco, for example-Frank Jordan pretty much made SF the city I loved in the early ’90s by getting homeless and law enforcement issues under control and dealing with various other issues. People were leaving SF for about the same reasons as now, just slightly more so. This meant that people now could come to SF and not worry that their cars were going to be broken into or dealing with the mentally ill homeless or any number of things. And, that meant that all sorts of businesses came into SF for the more liberal/libertine atmosphere-and the City now had major tax revenew.

                Most of the Democrat politicians these days are having most of their contributions from people that are less concerned about running a business in their city and more worried about…larger issues, shall we say? And, you follow the money where it takes you.

    3. I’m sorta torn between they know they got the fraud to cover it, and that they too often seem they have figured that, no, they don’t, it gonna be a Trumpslide, and are planning on making it messier.

      1. They’re playing all the options. They have to this time-they didn’t think Trump would win in 2016, so they didn’t plan for that. But, the more things that they have to deal with, the more options that they have to handle, the less time they can spend on the individual options and problems.

        “He who tries to defend everything can defend nothing.” Frederick The Great, right? Throw in rumors that Giuliani has information on Hunter Biden that can derail his father’s campaign and a dozen other things…it will be messy whatever happens.

        1. Giuliani told The Daily Caller that the big reveal would be ten days before the election. Everything before then is intended to induce Biden to utter lies which will then be disproven by gradually increasing reveals. The link is over at Instapundit, but there’s not much more than that in the interview. So I’m saving you the trouble of having to visit that wreck of a site (DC, not Insty).

          1. The interesting thing is that the Trump campaign gave Biden (and the Democrat Party) all due warning over this, long before Biden “won” the nomination.

              1. Hunter’s connection to Burisma, and Joe getting the prosecutor fired, was a topic before Biden got the nomination. I suspect that’s what RES is talking about.

            1. And the Congressional Democrats impeached him for it. They knew, probably because they have similar schemes and there’s plenty of overlap.

    4. I was taking in my recycling last weekend, and a maskless guy behind me said “Why are you wearing a mask?” I replied “Social signal”, and that seemed to be the kind of response he was hoping for, and we had a nice conversation.

      1. I tell everybody: “This is a reproduction of a plague mask from the 14th century, when they didn’t have a clue about what disease was or what caused it. I wear this as a statement that our so-called leaders have not learned a damned thing in the 600 years since then.”

    5. Despair does no good, so why try it?

      One positive thought to accompany your reminder of the Silent Trump Voters of 2016: look at registration trends. Republican party registrations have been occurring in battleground states at a rate of about two for every Democrat registered (stipulating, for purpose of gullibility) that every Democrat newly registered represents an actual person). Presumably, people do not register in order to “stay home election day” or vote for the other party.

      Does anyone think the voter turnout models the pollsters use are being adjusted for the delta registrations?

      1. Despair is easy at times, it’s letting gravity take over rather than trying to lift up.

        And, you would think that they would be adjusting for all of this…but, after the last few years…I think most media pollsters are afraid to share accurate news to their customers, for fear that the news networks will claim that they’re trying to throw the election for Trump and brand them with the scarlett letter of apostasy to the faith.

        1. Well, there is this (emphasis added) in the Epoch Times …

          ‘We Are Not Ahead by Double Digits,’ Biden Campaign Manager Reportedly Admits Polls Inflated
          The Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden’s campaign manager reportedly admitted that the national public polling numbers, which show Biden overwhelmingly leading President Donald Trump, are inflated.

          “Please take the fact that we are not ahead by double digits,” Jen O’Malley Dillon reportedly said during a grassroots summit of the campaign on Friday. “Those are inflated national public polling numbers.”

          The video of the live event seems to have been deleted but her comments were posted on Twitter by New York Times reporter Shane Goldmacher.

          The Biden campaign and Trump campaign didn’t respond to requests for comments.

          This is not the only circumstance Dillon cautioned about the leading position of Biden.

          She reportedly said in a three-page memo obtained by Fox News that Trump can still win the November election and the race is “neck and neck” in certain states like Arizona and North Carolina.

          [SNIP]

          A study published in August by CloudResearch, an online market research and data collection company, found polls are unable to capture the full extent of support for Trump due to a “shy voter” phenomenon.

          The study shows that 11.7 percent of Republican voters fall into the “shy voter” category—meaning they would be reluctant to disclose to pollsters their true preferences for who they would vote for in the presidential election—more than twice as likely as Democrats with a percentage of 5.4.

          It supports the view that polls may not capture the full extent of support for Trump, the study says.

          1. I was tapped by the local Republican precinct to be outside one of the polling places yesterday handing out flyers and “showing the flag”. She advised against showing up with Trump clothing “because there have been incidents of verbal harassment.”

              1. This isn’t inside the polling place; TX law says you can’t have campaign materials within 100 feet of the entrance. This is out in the parking lot…. so I did have recorders running. No issues, there and then; we’ll see what happens the next two weekends.

                  1. Always. It’s why I wasn’t carrying even in my vehicle. The laws about how close you can have firearms require a longer distance than campaign materials.

          2. I think I can see the “shy voter” being in the same category as “silent majority.” For the most part, people don’t pay attention or care about politics, or vote at best on the basis of “I’ve been a Democrat for years, I’ve always voted the straight party ticket.”

            But, sometimes, they look up long enough to see what’s been going on outside of their narrow world and go “holy s(YAY!)t! What’s been going on and this guy is supporting more of this going on?” and vote for his opponent.

    6. Disney+ is now adding “context warnings” you can’t go past in front of older movies …

      Which, of course, are easy to avoid by sailing the high seas, thereby only encouraging the customer flight you’re writing about.

      1. Piracy went to an all-time low for most video productions because of Netflix for years. Why? You could get EVERYTHING-or at least most of everything-in one place for one fee, any time you want.

        Why did it go back up again over the last few years? New gated content by a number of content providers, along with editing and censorship by content providers of older materials (not just the “context warnings,” but a number of casual nudity scenes in Disney+ movies have been carefully censored as well), and censored new materials (Funmation has been censoring heavy fan-service anime fairly recently).

        You get rid of this kind of piracy by removing barriers-natural and artificial-to getting your content to your customers. If the customer believes the only way to get the content is to steal it-because they think you’re giving them a raw deal-they’re going to steal it if they can.

        1. When you talk about censoring “casual nudity” scenes, what do you mean by “casual nudity”? Would that be something like, say, the intro sequence to Kenneth Branagh’s Much Ado About Nothing*? For those who haven’t seen it, there’s about a two-minute scene that pans around the entire set as the members of the household get ready for the arrival of the military unit they’re hosting. Lots of clothing being removed and tossed in laundry piles and other clothing being hastily donned, with the actors seen from the back as they change. And lots of people taking quick dump-a-bucket-of-water-over-myself showers, also seen from the back only (and I think the women only got shown from the waist up, and the shots where people were entirely visible from the legs up, still from the back, were only of the men’s showers). Nudity everywhere, none of it sexualized, and no single person was visible for more than a couple seconds at the time; no lingering camera pans of one person’s naked back or anything like that.

          Is that the kind of thing that Disney+ is censoring?

          Because I think for most of the people who would be natural Disney+ customers, parents and grandparents who still think that Disney is the same family-friendly company it used to be when they were young, censoring nudity (especially sexualized nudity) would be something they would see as a benefit, not a drawback. But if the stuff being censored was, say, Tom Sawyer and Huckleberry Finn going swimming in the local swimming pond (naked, as one did back then), with nothing more scandalous than bare male buttocks being visible for a second as they jump into the water… then I could see some parents saying, “Hey, why don’t they have the swimming scene? I remember watching this when I was a kid and there was a scene with them swimming and talking about Jim, and there was some character development that was pretty important to the plot later on. Why did they cut that?” (BTW, this is a hypothetical scene I’m describing here, whereas the Branagh scene I mentioned earlier is real).

          * I once saw a quote hanging on the wall of the costume room of a college theater that went something like “Much Ado About Nothing. Costume designer hell. 80 costumes, 100 extras. Well, did Shakespeare really intend them all to be fully clothed, as such?”

          1. The one big example I remember was that they censored a number of scenes in “Splash” when we saw Darryl Hannah’s backside naked when her and Tom Hanks were on the island. Un-censored, we could see her butt. Disney+ censored, they added CGI hair long enough to cover it.

        2. And for some people, censoring heavy fanservice sections of an anime would also be something they would consider a benefit*, whereas other customers would want to see the original version. I.e., if Funimation were making this decision on purely market-driven reasons, they might offer two different “watching modes” for their streaming service, one where you see the original as released on Japanese TV, and a different one where you get the censored version, and you can set an option on your account to default to the censored or uncensored version. I rather suspect that market demand is not the primary driver in their decision, of course.

          * Was watching a show last month with my wife, where the previous season had kept the fanservice reasonable. And then this season’s hot springs episode came on (there’s always a hot springs or beach episode) and wow, that was… pretty bad. (And when I looked on TV Tropes, I found out that that scene in the anime was actually toned down from the manga!) That’s one where I would have appreciated having a censored version available, and I usually prefer to read/watch the original versions of things, as unmonkeyed with by other people as possible.

          1. The current big controversy from Funmation on this was that they had specifically marketed the series “Azur Lane” as a heavy-fanservice series, without censorship. When fans pointed out that Funmation had censored the series, Funmation’s response was to scrub all references to the show not being censored and having high levels of fanservice.

  18. Oh, not the massive corruption of the Biden crime family. I mean seriously. Any of you who didn’t know already that Crackhead McStripperbang wasn’t being paid for foreign countries for his services must have been living under a rock.

    Even that isn’t enough.

    My folks are living in the middle of nowhere, Washington. Their main information source is top of the hour news and whatever mom sees when she checks for grandkid pictures on Facebook in the morning. This has been a really active week, they went to town TWICE.

    THEY heard about the Hunter Biden thing.

    1. the Streisand effect hit hard on that one
      as a side note, my great uncle turned down managing Barbra when she asked him . . . “What? You too good for me?” nope, because he felt she was too good for him

    2. NY Times today, showing that the establishment media, i.e., Democratic Party propaganda arm, can say anything and have Facebook and Twitter promote it, declared that Trump is the greatest threat to America since WWII. In other words. the woke idiots running the NY Times have declared Trump to be a greater threat than Stalin’s Soviet Union, Mao’s China, and the Cuban Missile Crisis. Deranged is simply far too weak a word to describe their insanity.

      1. What in the wool sock humping march hare orgy cluster farce in a skid row hostel is that regurgitated and thrice digested tripe supposed to imply?

  19. All Student loans reduced to ¼, and the other ¾ to come from the unis. I feel the kids should still have to pay something, but seeing how this is pushed it certainly isn’t worth the inflated prices they demanded. A teaching lesson across the board. I’d consider a ⅓/⅔ split, but depends. The idjit with a masters in puppetry? Maybe he gets to pay ⅔ . . . That was just effing stupid. Qualitty degree from a school that taught you? okay, maybe ⅔ is enough from the school, maybe ½ and ½. Anyone already over the pay-in level gets money back from the endowment as well.

  20. First, remove the laws and regs that drove credentialism in the first place – the regs against employer skills and stats testing. Those were ruled against in the name of racism, and that lack of the employer being able to test and sort employees is what led to the use of a university degree as a sorting mechanism.

    Otherwise, you get back to the same problem that we’re approaching with the devaluation of the sorting mechanism: the inability of an employer to tell if the employee is going to be trained, skilled, or at least trainable.

    The best unions I’ve ever worked with treated their function as a sorting mechanism and temp hiring facility: they were out to make their members all trained to a certain level, and encouraged further training, as well as guaranteeing their member’s work. You knew if you hired union not freelance, you were getting a reliable quality of work within a reliable amount of time, and if anything happened, they’d fill in another member.

    …unsurprisingly, that was not in a closed-shop state; they had plenty of competition to encourage them to actually provide value.

    1. I hate to promote judicial activism but… I really think this would be reversing judicial activism. I would love the supreme court to declare that disparate impact is not a valid proof of discrimination. Disparate impact was the evidence used in so many bad court decisions. Removing disparate impact would cut the legs out from so many ludicrous laws and regulations.

      Well maybe the Congress could pass a law. But I just can’t see the swamp creatures going there.

      1. Getting rid of disparate impact would also get rid of a lot of zero-tolerance/zero common sense rules. Because employers couldn’t use discretion in enforcement to distinguish between the honest mistake and the destructive violation, they ended up with idiotic policies enforced by people who enjoy wielding power over employees terrified they’ll make some tiny misstep and be out the door with a black mark on their permanent record that will permanently damage their career prospects.

        1. It’s a witch hunt. Sowell’s righteous anointed know (KNOW!) that there are evil secret racists out there practicing evil secret racism in secret. And when they can’t find any secret evil racists, it MUST be because the evil racists are being even more secret than expected. So the Good and the Righteous must double down on even more extreme and disruptive efforts to smell out these evil witches secret racists who are secretly practicing their evil racism.

        2. I despise Disparate Impact with the hatred of whatever it is Khan Noonien Singh hated Kirk with, but I fear it won’t matter.

          We are already seeing YELP encouraging “This place is racist” reviews with no definition of what constitutes a legitimate claim, or any wards against anybody murmuring to a restauranteur, “Nice place you got here. Shame if anybody posted it is racist on YELP.”

          1. Everyone is misinterpreting the YELP thing. The banner doesn’t go up if someone says it’s racist, the banner goes up if the business starts getting a bunch of reviews in a short period of time saying that the place is racist. That usually occurs when a place hits the news feeds of the Social Justice Terrorists for some reason and they all swarm on the place’s online presence and leave negative reviews, even if they haven’t actually been there. The YELP banner is to alert people that this might be happening and that the reviews may not reflect the reality of the business.

            1. I suppose that is better. I don’t pay YELP any attention because I rarely refer to them.

              Similarly with decoding Amazon reviews; we all know all too well that certain authors attract (or used to attract; perhaps Amazon has changed their review policies) negative reviews from people who simply hate the author and do not know a thing about the book other than its author.

          2. When Khan’s crackhead son Hunter told him “We have a ship – we can go anywhere!” And he got the “He tasks me…” speech plagiarizing from Moby Dick in return, that was obvious prophesy; Biden could have taken his ill gotten family gains and sailed off into the 47-years-of-public-service-salary multimillionaire sunset – but no, “The Orange Whale tasks me – he tasks me and I shall have him!”

            And we all know how that ended.

            1. If it’s all the same to them, I’d rather NOT have a Genesis Device detonated anywhere nearby. As messed up as life may be these days, it still beats the alternative.

    2. And that is actually a very positive win win relationship, at least if the leadership stays in the job and local rather than becoming a national borg. Keep your members skilled, minimize the amount of retraining that companies need to do, and you have a very good reason to be able to command wages. But once start becoming purely adversarial you lose track of the symbiotic behavior

        1. Union we belonged to when first starting out. Hubby was a member for his entire career. One employer union. Union leadership was NOT paid. Max number of members – 270. Had to be working in the one type of job for this employer. Wasn’t until the union had to become a *subset of a much bigger union that this changed.

          * Caused by single employer pension definition of funding rules. Not like the company could have raided it.

  21. Sigh, sigh, 35 minutes later: “The other part of this is say goodbye to any guarantees of a comfortable old age.”

    No we don’t need to say goodbye to! No we never ever really had any guarantees!

    Except for… The nest eggs we created for ourselves, the sweat equity we invested toward our future, the conscious decision to spend and enjoy our capital so we can be a burden to our children in our old age!

    OK, the last one, I tried to convince my dad to do when he was in his eighties and I tell my children I’m doing but seriously, raising our children well in so many many ways guarantees one an extremely comfortable old age, even if we are living in interesting times.

    1. Sigh. The problem is — what we still have, the inflation will eat. That was the result of the covidiocy.
      So, so much for those nest eggs.
      The one thing I THINK the state needs to break itself in two if needed to live up to is veteran benefits. The rest…. Hey, we’re f*cked and we know it.

      1. I think we’re going to lose a lot of elderly and disabled people who otherwise would’ve lived. People in their sixties can keep working, and some people in their seventies may be able to find other work. But a lot of 80+ people (which includes my dad) are at the point they really can’t work productively enough to be self-supporting if their pension or Social Security vanishes.

        And without SSI, there are a lot of people who are going to be doomed unless they have family who can care for them. Oddly enough, I’m thinking that people with higher-functioning ASD may well be harder hit than low-functioning. Once a person on the spectrum reaches a certain point, they’re no longer evaluated on the “autistic” scale and considered to be doing well, but on the “neurotypical” scale and thus will keep being found wanting because they almost get it, but that little gap between “functional” and “indistinguishable from neurotypical” is just enough to bother neurotypical bosses. And in hard times, employers don’t have the slack to carry someone who reads “off” and unnerves people, no matter how hard this person tries or really deserves to be kept solely on the work itself.

        For the first time since the early 80’s, I’m having that icky “will there even be a next year” feeling. It’s probably why I’m having so much trouble staying focused and working productively on any project (as opposed to fiddling with half a dozen but never getting the point of any one completed product).

        1. Lucky you. I’m having trouble believing there will be an end of this year.
          All through the Obama presidency I kept expecting them to go nuts, kept expecting to die with a shot to the back of the head.
          I’m having that nightmare again.

          1. Not to worry. The shot to the back of the head only comes after the resistance is defeated, and the fighting is over.
            These dumb f*cks, b atiknally and internationally, do not understand the horror that will be unleashed if they break the social contract that holds our hands from action.
            When the US says “sorry, we can’t help you anymore, and no, we are not letting any of your people in, one third of the world starves.
            Thirty people, acting independently, with no knowledge of each other, but focussed by knowledge and training on similar targets, could cause the destruction of almost any major city, using only resources available to the civilian population.
            Napoleon read Sun Tzu, and learned that logistics is the key to successful warfare.
            IMO, a test was run in Birmingham a year or so ago, and the EBT cards were shut off on the 1st of the month. The riots and looting of good stores started on the evening of the 3rd.
            The State will be so involved in keeping a lid on the cities that they will have no time for us.
            Be safe. We need you and your insight.
            John

              1. Let the cities rot. It may have been different in CO, but in Oregon all my life the state was run by the imbecilic half sons (and daughters) of a old washed up dockyard whore and Marx, e.g. Portland. Portland may go to hell. I will not be sorry. The cities get to see the Gods of the Copybook Headings first.

        2. > Once a person on the spectrum reaches a certain point, they’re no longer evaluated on the “autistic” scale and considered to be doing well, but on the “neurotypical” scale and thus will keep being found wanting because they almost get it, but that little gap between “functional” and “indistinguishable from neurotypical” is just enough to bother neurotypical bosses.

          This. You can be hard-working, punctual, capable of taking care of yourself – but if you can’t hit the right social cues you can’t even get hired. Which hurts, when your competition might be on drugs or worse… but they know exactly when to smile and nod. At least for a few weeks.

          1. This “almost but off” thing is what manners use to help with– being able to mirror folks doesn’t actually relate that well with not being a high risk, at least not compared to “willing to learn and follow manners.”

            But once you deep-six the manners thing, in some cases (*thinking of guy in video game group who is adult, not old enough to drink but acts like a 14 year old because ‘on the spectrum’ and thus abandoned*) it is really, really hard to tell from deliberate malice.

            Looking at my ancestors, a coping mechanism is to be identifiably “quirky” in a way that lets folks put you in a comfortable mental box– say, Abby from NCIS.

            The backfire risk from this is that if they find out something about you that doesn’t fit the box, they tend to freak out.

            To steal a phrasing from WereGeek (which was awesome), you can LARP as a responsible adult. It sometimes works.

              1. I hope it helps– I know it works for mommy group type junk, although figuring out “harmlessly quirky” for a group is a pain. I wonder if that’s part of the reason for the popularity of geeky t-shirts…

                YMWV on what works, I usually go with the fluttery but harmless– sort of a girl absent minded professor. (Mostly because ‘flutter’ is very easy for me when startled, sadly.) That way folks aren’t surprised when I know something off the wall, or enough to look into it. Backfire risk, a lot of people say stupid stuff because they ‘know’ that nobody is paying attention, and respond poorly when someone can and will look it up because it sounds interesting.

          2. You’re describing me.

            For a long, long time I thought there would be a profession or a job or SOMEPLACE where people would stop looking at me funny and just pay attention to what I -did-.

            But no. That was not the case. That job or profession does not exist. I know that, because I’ve done them all except law and government. In any situation where I’m the employee, the fact that I’m a little different is the limiting factor. They want the “normal” guy. Even if I’m bigger/better/faster/smarter than three Normies, it doesn’t matter.

            However, there is a way. That way is self-employment. When I’M the boss, all these problems go away. It’s a harder job than working for other people, but it’s an easier life. And the money is better.

            So really, all you nerds with the strange enthusiasms for obsolete video games, or anime, or comics, or God help you science fiction, and your weird drone-y voices, and your physical tics and habit of touching your faces or whatever your glitch is, just f-ing give it up. The Normies are not going to let you play in the sandbox.

            Make your own goddamn sandbox, get your own pail and shovel, get your own friends to play with, and tell the Normies to f- right off. That’s what you have to do. And you can. That’s the beauty of it.

              1. Right? Imaging your span of employment in any office… unless you owned the company. Days, probably. Weeks at most. And this is assuming you really -need- the job and are cracking your nerves every day trying to fit in.

                FUCK ‘EM.

                Oh and by the way, about the civil war thing. Odds are perfectly suited for this environment. You’ll fit in like a greased key and click to perfection. See Simo Häyhä, perfect example.

                That’s why the Normies don’t like us. They know.

          3. You can be hard-working, punctual, capable of taking care of yourself – but if you can’t hit the right social cues you can’t even get hired.

            Those are components of White Culture and only racists would suggest they represent desirable qualities for the contemporary workplace!!!

            Simply putting a BLM placard in your entry window won’t cut it any more.

            BTW – anybody know what the “workplace expectations” at Twitter might be? Do they, for example, expect people to show up at scheduled times and diligently apply themselves to performing excellent, error-free work? That sounds excessively White.

            And now I’m wondering about the expectations for timeliness and perfection on Hollywood productions.

  22. Whistling past the graveyard again;

    Trump wins with a respectable margin, and a strong lead in the Electoral College. The Democrats kick up a huge fuss about ‘making sure all ballots are counted’ and begin producing ‘found’ ballots that – SURPRISE! – are for Biden…but very quickly, a number of the Democrat operatives doing the ‘finding’ are caught with very hard to refute evidence that these ballots are fraudulent. The Democrats go on the offensive, yelling all kinds of drivel, but the operatives start cracking. They know that there is a VERY good chance that if they go to trial, they will be convicted, because they are guilty as a cat in an aquarium. Facing serious Federal charges they begin to accept immunity deals in return for naming higher-ups. Trump’s hand picked DOJ people start running the threads back to the Democrat power centers, and also showing that even the ballots already counted include a serious percentage of fraud. Trump’s team unveils evidence, collected over the last four years, that this has been going on for a long time. With Trump’s backing, several past Republican candidates sue their ‘victorious’ opponents on various Constitutional grounds. Trump is already laying the groundwork for hamstringing the Social Media giants’ ability to suppress information about the blossoming scandal.

    Simultaneously, the investigation of the Coup attempt starts to break big. The Democrats are now on the defensive on two fronts. Major players on the Democrat side are now facing indictments. Where riots are enacted, Trump has far more grounds for Federal interventions, and riot organizers start having to.contemplate a future behind bars.

    The rumpus may go on for four years or more, but the Fascist Left is on the defensive and losing assets.

    It’s a mess, but not as hopeless a mess as it might be. By 2024 the Democrat Party is greatly weakened, and has serious PR problems that no amount of Media blather will fix.

    1. They know that there is a VERY good chance that if they go to trial, they will be convicted, because they are guilty as a cat in an aquarium.

      Really? Do you really think they’d go to trial?

      How many people have been indicted for manipulating evidence provided to a court to spy on a political opponent’s campaign?

      How will do the indicting, much less holding a trial? Until you can explain that, you can’t say the fraudsters will crack in enough numbers for the steal to fail. We’ve told them there is no punishment for creating false evidence to swing an election when they failed to swing it. Why should succeeding at swinging it make them more at risk?

        1. Anyone who is considered likely to turn on the other conspirators will have an “unfortunate accident” or commit assisted involuntary suicide.

          Of course if Trump loses, Team Obama and Team Hillary along with their deep state allies and the tech oligarchs all get away with it and will consider it a green light to do even worse.

          If Trump loses, the republic is officially dead and the only question is the type of funeral and what comes after, at which time the best possible outcome will be Starship Troopers.

      1. Remember, one Trump’s priorities in the first term has been appointing judges. We’ve been seeing the results, but the Media has been downplaying them. I think that if Trump has laid his traps well, we could easily see a bunch of idiots headed for trial in ways the Democrats would be hard put to derail.

        Will some cases be dismissed by Democrat Left judges? Sure. But not ENOUGH.

        In Trump’s place I would have had reliable Federal agents pulling together evidence for YEARS of Democrat shenanigans.

        I may be over optimistic. I hope not, though. I really think Trump has an opportunity here to deal the Fascist Left a blow they’ll be decades recovering from.

        1. I don’t think they’ll get to a judge. The DoJ has to prosecute before a judge is even involved. The record of Trump’s DoJ on the spying on Trump prior to the election and the attempts to remove him after by the FBI, which is part of DoJ, do not inspire confidence.

          1. I think you’re wrong. I think A) such an investigation takes time. From what I’m hearing, it’s about as far along as I would expect. And B) I think there may strategic reasons why more hasn’t been made public. I may be wrong, but I think Trump believes he is going to win without it, and is reserving it as a hammer to belabor the Democrats with when they try to overturn THIS election.

            1. I have seen reports that Trump is inclined to replace Barr if/when reelected. Apparently his snits about Barr’s not bringing Durham’s report out in timely manner are real.

              The real question is with whom would he replace Barr?

              It probably depends on holding the Senate but I can imagine him turning DOJ over to Giuliani, a man who’s already demonstrated a proclivity for cleaning Augean stables.

            2. We have to remember that the investigation into the spying really couldn’t begin until the Mueller report was finished, otherwise the Democrats would have called it obstruction of justice. So the DOJ hasn’t unwound a criminal conspiracy conducted by people with an intimate knowledge of the law in less than 18 months. That’s hardly surprising.

    2. It Trump finds massive amounts of fraud, it’ll be Florida 2000 all over again. Except this time it’ll be on a nationwide scale. There are plenty of people who still think that Bush stole Florida. There will be a lot of people who refuse to accept that Trump’s evidence is legitimate. Violence will erupt as the same time that some politicians start posturing. And the worst of it is that Trump’s actions will be compared with those of someone corrupting the process.

      I hope that I’m wrong. But I don’t see that it’s avoidable.

      1. They have spend the last 4 years screaming that Trump is illegitimate. Not only will only challenges to fraud be deemed to be proof that Trump is a Fascist, Twitter, Facebook, et. al,, will do what they did to the NY Post and silence anyone who challenges the fraud. Indeed they have already announced that they will ban anything which challenges claims that Biden won and will ban people from “prematurely” declaring a winner, i.e. until the Democrats have generated enough fraudulent ballots to steal the election.

        If somehow after all that Trump sill wins, they will not accept that result and, as we know from high level Democratic Party insider John Podesta, rather than accepting a loss, they will seek to instigate a military coup.

        Democrats and their radical allies are all-in on 2020 and they will do anything and everything no matter how destructive it is. Indeed for many of them, the destruction is a feature, not a bug, as their goal is to replace the constitutional system we have for a neo-Communist “people’s republic”.

        If they win, Kamala Harris has already promised to “punish” Trump’s supporters, i.e. everyone who did not vote for her.

        I simply do not see how this does not end in widespread civil strife/war and lots of bloodshed as long as Democrats are willing to pursue power by any means necessary.

        1. YouTube has already told creators that saying “Trump won” before “all the votes are createdcounted” will result in the removal of your channel. If Biden has the most votes on election night, however, you can claim Biden won.

          I suspect FB, Twitter, etc. will do the same. Claims Trump has won will be suppressed as “unverified” until they fraud Biden into office.

          1. I think the term you were searching for is “cast” – as in all the votes are cast.

            As in (per Merriam~Webster as of this moment, subject to change without notice):
            1d: to deposit (a ballot) formally
            1e: (2): to get rid of : DISCARD
            2a: (2): to calculate by means of astrology
            3a: to dispose or arrange into parts or into a suitable form or order
            4a: to give a shape to (a substance) by pouring in liquid or plastic form into a mold and letting harden without pressure

            1. I have no doubt that definition will be changed as soon as it becomes necessary to create a different meaning to fit the Democratic Party narrative.

  23. There are people who chose *not* to go to college, or at least to go to an expensive college requiring them to take out loans, but instead to start a business and who *did* take out loans for that purpose.

    If student loans were to be forgiven but not business-starting loans, it would be highly unfair, and would be perceived by the holders of those (business) loans as class discrimination.

    I think probably the best we can do it this point is *not compound the problem* by funneling still more people and money into the broken ‘higher education’ system.

    1. I wonder what would happen if some student brought suit against his High School guidance counselor, that counselor’s employing school, school system, and certifying agency for malpractice, having convinced the student he was college material when high school grades and SAT scores manifestly did not support such a option.

      Ideally the student would be an African-American student whose grades clearly did NOT reflect actual academic achievement, thanks to social promotion policies. Bonus bucks if they can prove the college took in the student as an Affirmative Action enrollee in spite of knowing him to be academically inadequate to their programs.

      I wonder if Yale or Harvard can be shown to have provided such favoritism, inducing young unprepared students of color to enroll even though their academic preparation was inadequate. Can’t you just see the young, disenchanted students in Court (on the evening news) crying, “You led me on! You said I was capable of performing to your standards, but I never had a chance. I never. had. a. chance!”

    1. Do you think ANYONE in our government is as smart as Ozymandias? I mean, he wasn’t in government, and I consider that a function of his intellect.

      1. I know. A major solace if that happens will be watching tons of millennials screaming “But I support the Revolution” in front of the firing squad. I especially want to see that ass from Twitter do video coverage of his own execution.

        1. I would say if that happens make popcorn, but Venezuela has shown us that while the purges are going on people will be storming the zoos in order to obtain food for t