Odds 'N' Ends

Odds 'N' Ends

Antifragility

First - in an excellent article on Trump as the "leverage" president, The Z Man makes the following observation:

That’s the thing with understanding Trump, something a brilliant observer pointed out three years ago. Trump operates like a famous real estate developer. He is always looking to leverage his assets in order to take advantage of whatever opportunities that may present themselves in the future. In the case of the Kavanaugh hearing, his best play was to stand aside and let Mitch McConnell handle it. If the nomination failed, Trump had a card to play against his party. If the nomination went through, Trump could take credit.

This is not the 4-D chess nonsense the BoomerCons used to say. Trump is not a master strategist, in the sense that he is four moves ahead of everyone. It’s that his inclination is to always play the game, any game, in order to maximize his options when it is his next turn. That’s how the world of commercial real estate development works. You can never know what opportunities will present themselves next, so you make sure you are in a position to seize on whatever pops up. Trump’s applying this to Washington now.

Anyone who's read Antifragile will immediately recognize that strategy. While you don't have to be a sooper-genius to implement it, cunning may do, to do so consistently and successfully is not what stupid people do, no matter how brash, vulgar, and not-hahvahd their diction. Eric Raymond has similarly noted how keeping options open vs bean counting and efficiency optimization leads towards maximizing wins in unpredictable regimes.

I have a rule: when in doubt, play to maximize the breadth of your option tree. Actually, you should often choose option-maximizing moves over moves with a slightly higher immediate payoff, especially early in the game and most especially if the effect of investing in options is cumulative.

This rule has many consequences. In pick-up-and-carry games, it means that given any choice in the matter you want to start by deploying or moving your train or spaceship or whatever to the center of the board. You minimize your expected distance over the set of all possible randomly-chosen destinations that way. You give yourself the best possible chance to “get lucky” by finding a fattest possible contract or trade opportunity that you can deliver in minimum time.

HR Lady Clinton

Meanwhile, HR harpy Clinton opines on how liberals can no longer be civil (from CNN but I found it at Legal Inssurection:

“You cannot be civil with a political party that wants to destroy what you stand for, what you care about,” Clinton said in an interview with CNN’s Christiane Amanpour. “That’s why I believe, if we are fortunate enough to win back the House and or the Senate, that’s when civility can start again. But until then, the only thing that the Republicans seem to recognize and respect is strength.”

This is going to sound weird, but she's right.

Mostly in a weapons-grade projection kind of way, and as guidance that more and more I'm inclined to follow.

You see, this isn't about whether or not tea party protestors clean up after themselves vs antifa threatening and bashing people over the ehad, and leftists in general attacking politicians and random Trump supporters for wearing MAGA hats. Or shooting up congressional ball games. Yes, Hillbot is dismissing such extremes as a mere "lack of civility", and it's much the same way that the leftist-socialist death cult borrows from postmodernism to treat words as violence to justify emotional outbursts and physical violence. To treat, much like borderlines and narcissists do, the simple refusal to play their game as an attack. To justify deplatforming opposing voices. To run people out of jobs and livelihoods.

She's right about this: We are utterly opposed to the death cult. And the right wing - as opposed to alt-retard "right wing" - simply ideologically cannot coexist with the contra-reality of post-modernism and socialism. That on the right there is a growing mutual agreement that since they won't allow the other to have even its own enclaves, it's war to the knife.

Trump on the Climate Thingy

Courtesy of Greenie Watch, I ran into this Climate Depot analysis of Trump's environmental related statements on 60 minutes. What's most interesting to me is the degree to which old-school greenies Like Lovelock keep coming around to supporting nuclear power or believing "climate change" is a cult.

Social Media Has an Inherent Flaw

On what's left of the G+ crowd I saw this article on "Beyond Google Plus". Overall a good read but the following point is worth noting:

Was the Old Internet a place for kooks, oddballs, and fringe people? Yes, and it was much healthier for it. Was there disagreement and hate? Yes, human nature prevailed. And yet, curiously, there was less nastiness around, because not everyone was supposed to coexist in the same place. You could build your own communities and others could build theirs. There was as much distance between you and others as you wanted. It was a place for no-one, and accordingly, everyone. It was certainly great for gamers, a place for our kind. It was like the real “paradox of tolerance”. No, not the one by Karl Popper. That one is utter nonsense, concocted by people who hate freedom. Here is the real deal: it may hurt to allow people you intensely dislike to exist and speak for themselves, but ultimately, that’s the same principle defending you. Or, more succinctly: “The price of freedom is eternal vigilance.” (If you imagined this quote with the image of a great white eagle flying before your mind’s eye, you are on the right track.)

Google and Facebook want to put everyone into the same little box, and if you don’t fit… well, bad news for you. If you are overcrowded in there, bad news for you. If they take a dislike to you in a place they can control, bad news for you. How come they are more important?

Good fences make good neighbors. While the internet of the late 90's and early oughts made it easy to find people with shared interests, it also didn't force you into the same communities as everyone else. THink more the bulletin boards grown out of the old dialup BBS culture. Facebook , Twitter, etc. puts us all in each other's faces all the time. Great for marketing, but means the emotionally incontinent and thin-skinned can't avoid things they don't like as easily despite early concerns of "echo chambers" - and stalkers can easier harass relative innocents on social media. And suddenly everyone has to think the same thing, subject to Taleb's rule of the intolerant minority.

About Last Redoubt

Ex nuke mechanic, jack of all trades.