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 Post subject: Notable News Items
PostPosted: Mon Jan 30, 2012 3:33 pm 
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This thread is for just plain old interesting news... not necessarily high-OMG-index stuff.

THought people might be interested in this wrte up on a shortly to be released book about the cashless society, (now lurching toward a reality near you!) The End of Money, by Wired contributing editor David Wolman. Due out on Feb. 14.

Here's the link:
http://money.msn.com/top-stocks/post.as ... 97606b8cca


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 Post subject: Re: Notable News Items
PostPosted: Mon Jan 30, 2012 4:45 pm 
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Montana,

Personally, I have a bad feeling about this. I have never had anything to do with PayPal in which they have not come off as incompetent. And they seem to be the core of so many scams involving craigslist. I find them impossible to trust.

The local bus company, which I rely on for transportation except very close to home, has gotten federal money to put in new fare boxes that can access credit cards. They are forcing the geriatric set, or any regular riders, to get special cards so we can continue to ride free instead of presenting a drivers license or state ID card stating our birth date to ride for free or use it as a pre paid credit card. They haven't got sense enough to create a rational way to get the cards however so they want you to ride 2 buses to go somewhere you would never otherwise go in an all day venture to get your card. Otherwise, you can pay $2 to get it at the central bus station once all the special days are over. Of course, all of this amounts to more tracking stored in centralized computers. All they have to do is cut off your card and you are on foot with half a city to cross to get home. Then the corner surveillance cameras can take over the tracking and you are slowed enough that they can come and pick you up without calling out the black helicopters.

I just got a call from some scam that calls regularly despite the fact that I have been on the no call list for years. Incompetence is everywhere. Big business and our politicians do not give a damn about us. We are being set up as a society to be plucked like chickens at leisure. I bought 20 acres in the woods to get away from all of it but then my parents needed care for 10 years and now I am not functional enough to live there.

I'll match my grumpy old man against yours any day.

Ted


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 Post subject: Re: Notable News Items
PostPosted: Mon Jan 30, 2012 5:08 pm 
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When I first used paypal, many years ago, I vaguely recall having had some problem with it and stayed away from it for a while. The past couple three years I have been using it with no problems, so far. Have you had troubles with it recently?

One of the problems with the internet related stuff is it is not clear who you take your complaints to to get a responsible resolution. To make matters worse, the PR guys are out there scrubbing the web these days pretty heavily.

Anyway, going back to the bus thing, I wonder if the argument can't be made that it is a burden on Senior citizens to carry yet another friggin card. On the other hand, I can imagine a bus driver not wanting to even try to see the birthdate and 300 drivers licenses every day. Drivers licenses are now all bar coded ... you'd think that it would be actually economical to have a scanner that could just read anything, since it all goes through centralized data bases now anyways. Else wise, not sure what would be a good solution there. At least you still have public transportation there.


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 Post subject: Re: Notable News Items
PostPosted: Tue Jan 31, 2012 9:47 am 
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Some folks might like this video of aurora, said to be in real time with no fast forward and so on

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SkiNUMKK ... r_embedded


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 Post subject: Re: Notable News Items
PostPosted: Tue Jan 31, 2012 10:24 am 
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My recent problem with PayPal was that I was sent $75 via PayPal. I did not have a PayPal membership set up so I had to do so to receive the money and transfer it to my bank account. They put $.03 and $.09 in my account and I had to log on and acknowledge the amounts as confirmation that I owned the bank account. Did this twice, wrote complaining about it when it was never acknowledged and the $.12 never removed. What was supposed to happen was that the $75 was to deposit in my account after this process of confirmation. What actually happened was that the $75 was deposited before the $.12, if I remember correctly, and certainly before the confirmation process was completed on their end by their taking back their 12 cents as was supposed to happen. They kept sending automated e-mails but I got tired of confirming per instructions and just ignored the last ones. I never could contact a human being.

As far as I am concerned, that indicates a process incompetently implemented and a business that is incompetently run and a basis for distrust. If they can't keep track of their 12 cents, how can they keep track of money for me? If they have a policy of a confirmation process, how can they be trusted if they bypass the process and deposit money in someone's account that has not been confirmed as the right account? And there is no way to actually talk to a human being. No one is accountable. If their system is so badly implemented, suppose it had been $750 and the money put into Joe Blow's account instead of mine? How would I ever claim it and get the problem corrected if they can't keep track of their own money or correct their own screw ups or even talk to a customer?

This is the same kind of unaccountability and incompetence that I see throughout all of our present society. Every company sets up an automated interface which accounts for perhaps 95%(+?) of questions and problems. Then they make it nearly impossible to get hold of a human being to resolve anything that they failed to think of. The whole setup is to cut down on employees and is a large part of why there are too few jobs in America. And I always seem to have questions or problems that they did not think of. Then you get a clerk who has no clue on top of that and get shunted around from 800 number to 800 number. If you are lucky, the clerk is an a native English speaker and actually located in the US. Even their own people will acknowledge that there are problems. And they want to make sure that you will give them a good chit on a follow up call as they will be penalized for bad results.

Ted


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 Post subject: Re: Notable News Items
PostPosted: Tue Jan 31, 2012 10:49 am 
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well, sorry to hear that .... ya they put those nominal amounts in my account too way back when but there was never any indication that they intended to take it back out. You sign into paypal and click in to your account and enter the amounts and then you are good to go. That was my experience. Things may have got confounded if a deposit was made to it first., I don't know.

In general, yes, there is a continuing degradation of quality at every level.

Here is yet another case of good old unrestrained capitalism in action:
http://helenair.com/news/opinion/fcc-fi ... 963f4.html

This sort of thing is now standard behavior. So, you know, I'm not real surprised.

What IS interesting is the apparently hermetically sealed belief system that keeps ole Randy from seeing these things. What do you make of it? It's like a religious fundamentalist... If we can figure out what's wrong with him ... maybe we can figure out how to de-program all those other people that are steadily destroying the world with their blindness and greed~

-Montana


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 Post subject: Re: Notable News Items
PostPosted: Tue Jan 31, 2012 6:07 pm 
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Montana, That is not unrestrained capitalism. If it was there would be other competing businesses and the unsatisfied customers would simply switch services. If there were no services that provided well enough service for customers, someone would notice that and take advantage of it. What is your beef with Capitalism? If you know of a better system please feel free to share...

http://mises.org/daily/1297 (You might find this interesting. It is from 03, but relevant because government is a factor in the equation when dealing with these types of companies.)


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 Post subject: Re: Notable News Items
PostPosted: Tue Jan 31, 2012 6:36 pm 
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I'm taking a strident position to help Randy develop his ideas, that's all. Though, by the way, the reason that the FCC doesn't do anything is almost certainly that, like all other government regulatory agencies, it is stocked with people from the industry. They (industry) do this strategically, of course, by design, and if they don't others will, so they kind of HAVE to. Capitalistic enterprise can work, especially if it is kept small ... but these huge things mean huge concentrations of wealth which means huge concentrations of power, and power, as we know, tends to corrupt. ....and, again, as corporations are currently conceived, (only thing that matters is the bottom line) they are fundamentally anti-social. If a person has the trait of "All other values must stand aside for the love of money", well there is a term, a diagnosis, actually, for that: Sociopathic Personality Disorder. These people are typically dangerous predators. ...somehow it is okay if it is a group instead...?

Clearly, there is a problem. Randy is currently with the 'blame the victim' crowd. ... and a bit acrid about it at that. It isn't that I am a democrat (gag!) ... the only reason ever, in the last several decades, at least, to vote for a democrat is that they are not republicans. But the whole 'blame the underclass and harvest them for the fattening of the rich' ... well, it's just ruthless darwinism. The universe DOES seem to be darwinistic at that, though, doesn't it? So maybe Randy is right and we should all just be cannibals: Corporations are: last one alive on the planet wins! Maybe Tom got it wrong and the LCS wants a bunch of gladiators afterall... swords, lions, blood, victory ....? It would make more sense in interpreting Earth's history that way, wouldn't it?

Don't take me too seriously here :-)

-Montana


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 Post subject: Re: Notable News Items
PostPosted: Wed Feb 01, 2012 7:36 am 
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Montana wrote:
What IS interesting is the apparently hermetically sealed belief system that keeps ole Randy from seeing these things. What do you make of it? It's like a religious fundamentalist... If we can figure out what's wrong with him ... maybe we can figure out how to de-program all those other people that are steadily destroying the world with their blindness and greed~

-Montana


this is how it works - some people are born into the world into families that have a world view that is very closely aligned with reality, how the world actually works, and life for them is an easy path from wealth to wealth, and if their wealth is taken from them, from poverty to wealth, as they possess the human capital that understands how things work.

among this group is a bell curve from low to high entropy, and technical proficiency regarding PMR interacts with their quality, and there are many implications to this...on the one hand you have a Belinda Gates, on the other you have the Sopranos.

I grew up in the poorest neighbourhood in my "state", which was beside the richest neighbourhood in my "state", and some rich kids went to the public school rather than the private school, and I was socially adopted by one wealthy famous family in my country, likely as a "project" from the bad side of the tracks...very much a Crossing Delancy situation.

One of the many things that struck me about the elite was their apparent success in spite of dimwittedness, and the apparent material struggles of my relatives in spite of being very smart. I finally came to the conclusion that the explanitory variable was self confidence and belief, cooperation, and the width of perceived decision space, all things that the poor actually can self modify.

Poverty is your (I mean this generically, not you personally) fault, and the struggles of the financial heavens are not your problem, but are rather part of your internal blame infrastructure, which reinforces the trap you are in. Ironically, the rich support and invest in your world view, as it serves their purpose. Even Belinda would not be so "foolish" as to direct foundation funds to self reliance and entrepreneurialism, the key to power.

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 Post subject: Re: Notable News Items
PostPosted: Wed Feb 01, 2012 7:55 am 
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Montana wrote:
I'm taking a strident position to help Randy develop his ideas, that's all. Though, by the way, the reason that the FCC doesn't do anything is almost certainly that, like all other government regulatory agencies, it is stocked with people from the industry. They (industry) do this strategically, of course, by design, and if they don't others will, so they kind of HAVE to. Capitalistic enterprise can work, especially if it is kept small ... but these huge things mean huge concentrations of wealth which means huge concentrations of power, and power, as we know, tends to corrupt. ....and, again, as corporations are currently conceived, (only thing that matters is the bottom line) they are fundamentally anti-social. If a person has the trait of "All other values must stand aside for the love of money", well there is a term, a diagnosis, actually, for that: Sociopathic Personality Disorder. These people are typically dangerous predators. ...somehow it is okay if it is a group instead...?

Clearly, there is a problem. Randy is currently with the 'blame the victim' crowd. ... and a bit acrid about it at that. It isn't that I am a democrat (gag!) ... the only reason ever, in the last several decades, at least, to vote for a democrat is that they are not republicans. But the whole 'blame the underclass and harvest them for the fattening of the rich' ... well, it's just ruthless darwinism. The universe DOES seem to be darwinistic at that, though, doesn't it? So maybe Randy is right and we should all just be cannibals: Corporations are: last one alive on the planet wins! Maybe Tom got it wrong and the LCS wants a bunch of gladiators afterall... swords, lions, blood, victory ....? It would make more sense in interpreting Earth's history that way, wouldn't it?

Don't take me too seriously here :-)

-Montana


You are on to something by directing your attention to corrupt regulators. Business is set up (naturally arises) with the express purpose of generating a profit margin, and with the presumption of a quality bell curve among its players which will yield some bad behavior - where bad behavior is not naturally corrected by astute consumer choices, this is called a "market failure", and justifies government regulation.

high entropy behavior on the part of regulators is where the action is - where citizens should seek reward for effort. A small flashlight can have large results. One low entropy individual within a regulatory agency is all that is required to keep things on track. A TOEish profession would be to obtain the credentials and work for a regulator. Trying to push the string of bad corporate behavior is a much bigger stone to push up the hill.

The key here is to fundamentally trust the invisible hand that arises when businesses compete in the open market, and then step in to clean up the messes that arise, best you can, like following a parade with horses. Putting any function under the operational management of a bureaucracy is much much worse, as there is no push back on high entropy decisions or simple lazyness, and the political process just exacerbates the problem - ie. Fanny Mai/Freddie Mac

The citizen has absolute control over Walmart through what you pick off the shelf...and virtually no control over the post office.

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 Post subject: Re: Notable News Items
PostPosted: Wed Feb 01, 2012 8:13 am 
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Randy,

Quoting you:
Quote:
some people are born into the world into families that have a world view that is very closely aligned with reality, how the world actually works, and life for them is an easy path from wealth to wealth, and if their wealth is taken from them, from poverty to wealth, as they possess the human capital that understands how things work.
This is not a matter of how reality works. It is however a model of how some people think and function. I know of more than one person that has put their attention upon generating wealth and have done so in their lives. It takes dedication and concentration on that sole goal as opposed to more normal ones of social interaction, marriage, family, friends, etc. In the extreme, they achieve wealth and nothing more without even anyone to leave it to. If one has the advantage of coming from a position of wealth and the supportive social structure that goes with it, one tends to be led into a certain weltanschauung. This and other advantages was what was provided to you and you have adopted. A feeling of superiority to the less unfortunate financially and in social position and that it is 'their fault' that they are not also wealthy, etc. However this ignores the reality of the educational system and social order that the wealthy have set up that maintains and more and more in the present, deliberately exacerbates this situation.

This may be the way that some wealthy persons have arranged things in society. As the saying goes, them as has, gets. It is not however the way that reality as this PMR VR works but rather how it can work for a certain small subset of the participants here. If everyone took this approach, competition would create a very savage world. More so than we have at present. I begin to think that what is leading to the present extremism of the 1% versus the 99% (and the push back of the 99%) is their recognition that we are heading towards the nexus of all those things that I have been pointing out and that unless they put the lid down tightly on the 99% to maintain tight control and rigidly enforce the social and economic order, they will end up having to go through the nexus without riding on the backs of the 99% but rather as just another human being in a sea of troubles.

Ted


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 Post subject: Re: Notable News Items
PostPosted: Wed Feb 01, 2012 6:30 pm 
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Ted Vollers wrote:
Randy,

This is not a matter of how reality works. It is however a model of how some people think and function. I know of more than one person that has put their attention upon generating wealth and have done so in their lives. It takes dedication and concentration on that sole goal as opposed to more normal ones of social interaction, marriage, family, friends, etc. In the extreme, they achieve wealth and nothing more without even anyone to leave it to. If one has the advantage of coming from a position of wealth and the supportive social structure that goes with it, one tends to be led into a certain weltanschauung. This and other advantages was what was provided to you and you have adopted. A feeling of superiority to the less unfortunate financially and in social position and that it is 'their fault' that they are not also wealthy, etc. However this ignores the reality of the educational system and social order that the wealthy have set up that maintains and more and more in the present, deliberately exacerbates this situation.

This may be the way that some wealthy persons have arranged things in society. As the saying goes, them as has, gets. It is not however the way that reality as this PMR VR works but rather how it can work for a certain small subset of the participants here. If everyone took this approach, competition would create a very savage world. More so than we have at present. I begin to think that what is leading to the present extremism of the 1% versus the 99% (and the push back of the 99%) is their recognition that we are heading towards the nexus of all those things that I have been pointing out and that unless they put the lid down tightly on the 99% to maintain tight control and rigidly enforce the social and economic order, they will end up having to go through the nexus without riding on the backs of the 99% but rather as just another human being in a sea of troubles.

Ted


the point I am trying to make is that it is perception of decision space and self limiting belief that is the key explanatory variable, not the lack of permission from elites, that victimize the poor, and in this way, I blame the victim, and so does MBTOE - the rich and poor reinforce these self limiting beliefs, and the reinforcement of such beliefs is being promoted by you and others on this forum, in direct contradiction to Tom's "teaching".

QoC is a separate variable to technical effectiveness. A person of low QoC goes about things very differently than a person of high QoC, and both can appear to achieve similar results on the surface, and they will be nieghbours to each other, but life behind the door and the means of achievement will be very different, and high entropy wealth normally leads to one generation wonders.

can we stay on the topic and restrain ourselves from personal attack?

How do you have any idea of my alleged sense of superiority? I am an academic and observer of these things, as economists are wont to do, and not so much a player, just a salaryman as you ended up, and my Dad did not have a job to give me on graduation, unlike yourself, I had to scratch for it, without connections, to basically end up middle class.

One can buy a used doublewide in Florida for 30k, so don't jump to conclusions about the gated lifestyle. Sorry if I created the wrong impression.

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Last edited by kroeran on Wed Feb 01, 2012 7:27 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Notable News Items
PostPosted: Wed Feb 01, 2012 6:44 pm 
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Randy,

You might want to go back and edit this post:
Quote:
A person of high QoC goes about things very differently than a person of high QoC,
I do think you very much under estimate the effect of intelligence and educational opportunities, either having them or not having them. It is very difficult to take a sub standard intelligence and become rich based entirely on not having an attitude that one cannot do so. Especially when biases are built into society to maintain and enhance differentials between those with a 1% economic level and a 99% economic level. I also think that you are not reading what I said accurately but that is hard to be sure of until you edit this post.

Ted


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 Post subject: Re: Notable News Items
PostPosted: Wed Feb 01, 2012 7:49 pm 
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edit done

I think intelligence is overrated. I meet a lot of simple people who find that one thing they like to do and they do it well, and they do fine, better than fine. Self employment is more about perseverence and repetition, assuming one has moved beyond self limiting belief, and intelligence can undermine stick-to-it-iveness

Management is more about obediance and staying out of trouble, knowing what to say in meetings...and intelligence beyond a mediocre level often is a handicap if it takes you beyond the mean local world view...Dilbert world is often true.

Getting rich is of course not the point and is out of scope. The discussion really is poverty vs getting to a level of comfort, and if the rich are to blame for the poor, and what words here are actually helpful for those who feel hard done by the system.

I believe we have a right to work toward a level of comfort, but this is a relatively low bar if we are devoted to avoiding vanity and keeping up with the Jones, thinking that useless bobbles paid for with overtime or credit card debt will make us happy.

I do not believe the sins of the rich are in any way an impediment to achieving comfort, if we clear our self limiting belief and exercise our free will toward discipline and effort, following the convenient example of our founder.

That being said, there is always the next thing as far as low hanging fruit regarding national governance, but that is generally an area of attention for those with syntropic surplus available to actually do work, rather than just engaging in unproductive whining.

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 Post subject: Re: Notable News Items
PostPosted: Wed Feb 01, 2012 8:44 pm 
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Randy,

It is not so much that intelligence is over rated as a causative agent but that it has its limitations. There have been studies done that showed that IQ was not a good predictor of productivity for Ph. D.s above a given level in measured intelligence on normal scales. Above a certain point, which I do not remember, it made no difference. Productivity became a matter of work effort put in, not intelligence. But there was also a point, which again I do not remember, below which it became very difficult for one to get through the Ph. D. filter although not entirely impossible.

There is a very well thought out and documented publication, An Underground History of American Education by John Taylor Gatto which describes how the American educational system has been rendered ineffective and deliberately, starting with the "Robber Barrons" of the past history of American capitalism. Tom knows of it and agrees with its conclusions and home schooled his children. I attempted to do the same but without success for various reasons mostly not under my control. Here is a link to a PDF version: http://mhkeehn.tripod.com/ughoae.pdf I presume that it is authorized as Gatto's web site provides it in full for free. So I think that education in our schools can have a great deal to do with the suppression of the 99% by the 1% in general.

While you have done a considerable amount of hand waving, I do not believe that you have ever really refuted the thesis I presented in the thread about Required Reading, etc. And I believe the general logic of my concept to indict Congress for its malfeasance in regards to Grover Norquist and his pledge to never raise taxes, particularly in favor of the very rich has been proven by the fact that 100+ members of Congress wrote and signed a letter rejecting this pledge on the very basis that I stated: It violates their oaths to support the Constitution over all other considerations.

I do not consider myself to be attacking you but only those ideas that you state which I consider to be in error. Having had some limited discussion from Tom in regards to these concepts I have been presenting, I do not see that he is in disagreement or considers them to be other than in line with MBT principles. If you identify yourself totally with these ideas I disagree with, I guess that there is no way around your seeing this as an attack on you. However, I do not so see it. I see it as a matter of attempting to show you aspects of MBT principles that I do not think that you understand.

Ted


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