Category Archives: 030 Economics

Someone is learning how to take down the Internet – What you can do to safeguard yourself

In a nutshell: The internet is highly centralized and vulnerable to attacks.

The solution to this problem is a distributed network that that becomes more secure and faster as more people partake.

Technologies like MaidSafe are leading the way, and are now in alpha testing.

“These probes take the form of precisely calibrated attacks designed to determine exactly how well these companies can defend themselves, and what would be required to take them down. It feels like a nation’s military cybercommand trying to calibrate its weaponry in the case of cyberwar.”

Source: KurzweilAI

Gun carrying women create concealed carry fashion market

Great news for women, the firearms accessory industry, and the economy. I am glad people are moving away from the “pink it and shrink it” mentality and starting to focus on more practical solutions.

Smolenski started her company right around the time when Chicago city laws changed and she could again legally carry a firearm. When that happened, she struggled to find something that didn’t make her look frumpy and didn’t broadcast that she was packing heat. Most of the clothing was geared to men — coats with hidden pockets, or holsters that tuck neatly inside a waistband. But until the last few years, those weren’t always great options for women who don’t wear belts as frequently and are more likely than men to wear form-fitting clothing, making it difficult to hide the fact they’re carrying a firearm.

Source: Fox News

Venezuelan Government Further Disarming Citizens By Crushing Guns, Registering Ammo

It’s the same old song and dance from the collectivists: Blame your problems on someone else while you oppress the people.

As starving Venezuelans rush the Colombian border for food, hunt in the streets for cats and dogs, and break into zoos to kill horses for meat, the government continues its crackdown on dissent as socialism in the country fails. Not surprisingly, tyrannical President Nicolas Maduro has been blocking humanitarian aid from coming into the country for months and has been blaming his country’s problems on the United States.

Source: Katie Pavlich

The Inevitability of Decentralization/Distributed Networks and How To Break Open The Webopoly

Leading to the only logical conclusion: Distributed networks.

All of us, technically minded or not, need to understand the tradeoffs we’ve been making. Then we need to make decisions. We can accept choke points and lock-in. Or we can look for ways to reclaim control—declining to rely so much on centralized services, and using encryption and the new decentralized tools, such as the already-working IndieWeb, as they become available.

Source: Fast Company

White House on Rhodes Fallout: We Never Lied About The Iran Deal

Seriously, I knew it was all hogwash after the first sentence when I read:

the… administration took advantage of an ignorant, inexperienced media in order to…

Yip, it’s because of those darned “ignorant and inexperienced media” that the administration was able to “sell the Iran nuclear deal to the American people.”

No way anyone could have seen this one coming partner, real shocker there.

Oh, wait a minute… now that I come to think of it, this kind of reminds me of the billionaire banker bailout no one saw coming, and everyone was so happy with a few years back.

The ignorant and inexperienced media strike again… or could it be something much simpler?

 

 

Source: WhitKatie Pavlich

Colorado Sheriffs Say Citizens Choice Should Be Overturned Because It Makes Them “Uncomfortable”

Not backing your state legislature, your state constitution, and your citizens because doing so makes you “uncomfortable?”

Seriously?

My goodness, whatever you do, don’t go do something that supports your people but makes you uncomfortable.  Do you boys need to find your safe space?

I guess the oath of office to defend the Colorado Constitution just don’t cut it hu?

You have to ask yourself, “If one can’t be faithful in the little things (those things the citizens have voted on and the state has made lawful), how can one expect them to stand up for you on the bigger issues?”

Answer: You can’t.

Wonder how those who voted for more rights in their states will feel when those “sworn” to uphold their rights figure out that’s not happening?

Today six Colorado sheriffs filed a federal lawsuit that seeks to reverse marijuana legalization in their state, which they say should be overturned because it makes them uncomfortable. Larimer County Sheriff Justin Smith and his counterparts in five other counties say Amendment 64, the marijuana legalization measure that is now part of Colorado’s constitution, has made their jobs harder by creating a conflict between state and federal law.

Source: Colorado Sheriffs Say Marijuana Legalization Should Be Overturned Because It Makes Them Uncomfortable | TruthVoice

Why the Era of Soaking the Rich Is Over | Foundation for Economic Education

Scheve and Stasavage’s Taxing the Rich: A History of Fiscal Fairness in the United States and Europe (Princeton University Press, 2016) is a shocking book. Given the title, I absolutely did not expect it to bolster libertarian morale. But Taxing the Rich offers libertarians more credible hope for the future than any openly libertarian book published in the 21st century.

The heart of S&S’s unintentionally delightful thesis:

1. Democracies have no inherent tendency to “soak the rich.”

2. Instead, democracies adopt high, progressive taxation in the face of compelling “compensatory” arguments for redistribution.

3. Only major wars of mass mobilization make compensatory arguments compelling.

4. Modern warfare has made majors wars of mass mobilization obsolete.

5. Therefore, tax the rich policies are a thing of the past, at least for developed countries. They won’t be coming back.

 

Source: Foundation for Economic Education <— Read more here

About Rent Seeking Instructors

Rent seeking is always wrong (and can be downright deadly when we are talking about firearms and training), it’s something we must be guarded against at all times.

It has to be an equal mix of greed and stupidity that launches the mouths of some firearm instructors to blab about government-mandated training. If by now, any Gun Owner does not realize that regulations that come from political hacks have no basis in real life and are actually a gateway to restrictions, simply in a disconnected idiot.

Should Gun Owners get training? Yes. If you are an instructor offer affordable classes in different levels of guncraft, from basic pistol handling to weapons retention. But do not latch yourself to legislators in order to keep your gravy train running.

Source: Gun Free Zone

Rasmussen Looks at Why Americans are Buying So Many Guns

While we still have a little further to go, it’s nice to see some form of common sense returning to the American people.

It seems to me that Americans are intuitively catching on to the fact decentralized threats (whether your standard criminal or other more politically motivated) require a decentralized approach to solve.

In other words, Americans seem to be realizing that because they can’t carry around cop around in their back pocket, and because police are not obligate to show up to the fight (not because they don’t want to but because there are just never enough of them), that it’s much better to be ready to deal with any life threatening situation all on their own.

The good news here is that because increasing ones personal security and that of your loved ones only take small acts of will, applied in short bursts of concentration (in conjunction with the right kinds of training), in order to learn the skills required to secure yourself, your loved ones, and your community. As with all things in life you are only a decision away from knowing the confidence and peace skill at arms can bring.

Sixty-three percent (63%) of Americans with a gun in their household feel safer because someone in that household owns a gun.

The survey of 1,000 American Adults was conducted on April 11-12, 2016 by Rasmussen Reports. The margin of sampling error is +/- 3 percentage points with a 95% level of confidence. Field work for all Rasmussen Reports surveys is conducted by Pulse Opinion Research, LLC. See methodology.

Voters still tend to oppose stricter gun control, perhaps in part because few think tougher gun laws will reduce the level of violent crime in this country.

Americans in nearly every demographic category strongly agree that most people purchase a gun for self-defense. Few think they have a criminal act in mind.

Men are more likely than women to say there’s a new gun in their immediate family. Women feel more strongly that it is too easy to buy a gun in America.

Source: Rasmussen Reports

What if… we turn carbon dioxide into sustainable concrete?

A historian of note had once observed that there is no such thing as a “natural” resource, rather there are only “potential” resources.

By way of example, the lumber and stones that were cleared on family farms here in Illinois were (at best) looked at as a temporary resource which quickly became an excess of lumber and rocks that had to be stacked for future use/sale, or in the case of the lumber – burnt to make way for farmable land.

In this sense the CO2 that could be (potentially) harvested, has gone from a waste material and pollutant, to becoming a resource that the manufacturers of CO2NCRETE would be willing to pay for (or receive for a nominal, free, or paid basis) in order to provide cheap building materials that can in turn, be sold for construction use.

– – –

“A UCLA research team has developed a plan for capturing carbon from power-plant smokestacks (the largest source of harmful global greenhouse gas in the world) and use it to create a new building material — CO2NCRETE — that would be fabricated using 3D printers while replacing production of cement (which creates about 5 percent of the planet’s greenhouse gas emissions).”

Read more here – – ->  KurzweilAI

Why ISIS Is Different—And Why It Matters | Hoover Institution

“The Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham (ISIS) is the modern face of terror. Unlike al-Qaeda, the Irish Republican Army, Lashkar-e-Taiba, Maoists in India, the Shining Path, and other traditional terrorist organizations, ISIS refuses to lurk in the shadows. Unlike Hezbollah, Hamas, the Tamil Tigers, or the Fuerzas Armadas Revolucionarias de Colombia, ISIS is not content with controlling a limited amount of territory confined to a single nation-state. Osama bin-Laden was willing to wait for a future day when al-Qaeda, having destabilized the Western world and defeated the dictatorships of the Middle East, would emerge to claim its rightful place as the governing body of the Islamic caliphate. Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi is unwilling to postpone that destiny. He and his followers are in a hurry—to establish an Islamic caliphate, to continue its spread across the Islamic world, to battle the Crusaders and Jews, and to bring their brand of justice and Shari’a law to the entire world. They have seized territory in Iraq and Syria larger than the size of Israel and Jordan combined, formed a government, fielded capable armed forces, and established branches in nine other countries, with sympathizers in dozens more. ISIS is a force with which to be reckoned.”

Source: Why ISIS Is Different—And Why It Matters | Hoover Institution

Welcome to the Age of the Commando – The New York Times

In December, Secretary of Defense Ashton B. Carter announced at a House hearing that an “expeditionary targeting force” will be sent to Iraq to conduct raids on top Islamic State targets. They’ll be joining the roughly 3,500 troops already there working as advisers and trainers. President Obama seems desperate to strike a balance between doing nothing in the region and not reneging on his “no boots on the ground” promises.

Clearly, commandos have boots, and those boots touch the ground. But White House officials have taken to what a report in this newspaper recently called “linguistic contortions” to obscure the forces’ combat roles.

As the military as a whole downsizes, Special Ops recruitment continues to rise. There are approximately 70,000 Special Ops personnel today, a number that includes soldiers, civilians, National Guard and Reservists, as well. This number is up from 45,600 in 2001 and 61,400 in 2011. Still, Adm. William H. McRaven — then the head of Socom — told Congress in 2014 that “the force has continued to fray” from the endless deployment cycles. In response, the Army alone last year put out a call for 5,000 new Special Ops candidates.

Source: Welcome to the Age of the Commando – The New York Times

Government moves on Apple, orders Apple to violate your rights – Apple respectfully says No.

Tim Cook looks to be taking a stand against government overreach. In a statement on Apples website, he claims that, “Rather than asking for legislative action through Congress, the FBI is proposing an unprecedented use of the All Writs Act of 1789 to justify an expansion of its authority.

The government would have us remove security features and add new capabilities to the operating system, allowing a passcode to be input electronically. This would make it easier to unlock an iPhone by ‘brute force,’ trying thousands or millions of combinations with the speed of a modern computer.”

This is an obvious no-go for anyone who has even a elementary understanding of individual rights, the right to ones own private thoughts, communications with others, and let’s not forget the protections the Fourth Amendment is supposed to serve.

Cook continues, “The implications of the government’s demands are chilling. If the government can use the All Writs Act to make it easier to unlock your iPhone, it would have the power to reach into anyone’s device to capture their data. The government could extend this breach of privacy and demand that Apple build surveillance software to intercept your messages, access your health records or financial data, track your location, or even access your phone’s microphone or camera without your knowledge.

Opposing this order is not something we take lightly. We feel we must speak up in the face of what we see as an overreach by the U.S. government.

We are challenging the FBI’s demands with the deepest respect for American democracy and a love of our country. We believe it would be in the best interest of everyone to step back and consider the implications.

While we believe the FBI’s intentions are good, it would be wrong for the government to force us to build a backdoor into our products. And ultimately, we fear that this demand would undermine the very freedoms and liberty our government is meant to protect.”

Read More

Shipping Said to Have Ceased… Is the Worldwide Economy Grinding to a Halt? | The Dollar Vigilante

“Last week, I received news from a contact who is friends with one of the biggest billionaire shipping families in the world. He told me they had no ships at sea right now, because operating them meant running at a loss.

This weekend, reports are circulating saying much the same thing: The North Atlantic has little or no cargo ships traveling in its waters. Instead, they are anchored. Unmoving. Empty.

You can see one such report here. According to it,

‘Commerce between Europe and North America has literally come to a halt. For the first time in known history, not one cargo ship is in-transit in the North Atlantic between Europe and North America. All of them (hundreds) are either anchored offshore or in-port. NOTHING is moving.

This has never happened before. It is a horrific economic sign; proof that commerce is literally stopped.‘”

Source: The Dollar Vigilante <—Read more here

Fed Approves First Communist Chinese Takeover of U.S. Bank

 “The increasingly controversial Federal Reserve offered a green light on Wednesday for banks controlled by the Communist Chinese dictatorship to gobble up American financial institutions and enter the U.S. banking market despite national security concerns, sparking warnings among critics about the rapid spread of the brutal regime’s influence within America. Analysts, meanwhile, called the unprecedented approval a ‘landmark step’ for regulators that could have global implications.

CBOC.png

Under the U.S. central bank’s decision, the Industrial and Commercial Bank of China (ICBC), the largest bank in the Communist Party-run country with assets estimated at some $2.5 trillion, will be allowed to become a holding company and acquire the Bank of East Asia in New York. It marks the first time that a Communist Chinese bank — ICBC is more than 70 percent owned by the regime — has been permitted to take over an American bank. All 13 branches of the U.S. institution will be taken over.”

(Via.) The New American: <— Read more here

The Dissident Dad – Our Family Manifesto

“I live in Texas, I pay taxes to the IRS, and I follow every law required of me. I am not looking for any trouble from the U.S. government. That said, my family and I have elected to sever ourselves from the cancerous monster that is Washington D.C. every chance we get.

We don’t vote or honor the state in anything we do. My money is completely outside of the U.S. banking system, via precious metals, digital currency, and whole life insurance contracts, which is nothing more than two private parties in a financial agreement. The stocks I own are in Canada or international businesses listed here in the U.S.

I wish the U.S. and its citizens the very best, but when it comes to the statists and banking elite — who ultimately form an oligarchy — I try to ignore and resist the beast in every way I can.”

(Via.) Liberty Blitzkrieg <—read more here

Greeks rightly flock to cyber currency (Bitcoin)

“With bank doors slammed shut, frantic Greeks are turning to online trading platforms to see if the digital money Bitcoin is a better bet than the euro.

The world’s largest Bitcoin exchanges tell CNNMoney they’ve seen a surge of business from Greece.

Ten times as many Greeks are registering to trade bitcoins on the German marketplace Bitcoin.de than usual, according to CEO Oliver Flaskaemper. Bitcoin trades from Greece have shot up 79% from their ten-week average on Bitstamp, the world’s third-largest exchange.

Even trading platforms in China are getting interest. LakeBTC, headquartered in Shanghai, is seeing a 40% increase in visitors using computers in Greece.

Over the weekend, the Polish exchange Bitcurex got flooded with emails from Greeks. Among their questions:”

(Via.) CNN Money <— Read more here

How Policing Works in a Privatized City : Anything Peaceful : Foundation for Economic Education

“It is not a gated community walled off from the public for only the elite. There is no charge to get in. Everything is public access, and subject to all the laws governing commercial property. The difference between the public and private city, however, is huge.

You can tell when you have entered the space. Whereas many areas of Atlanta struggle, this area in the heart of the city is clean, bright, ebullient, bustling with enterprise and life.

On an evening recently, on the way to the movies in the spectacular theater there, I sat outside on the patio of a Mexican food restaurant and watched adults and children playing games and having fun on the green space that serves as a mini-park in the middle of this urban experiment in capitalism. There were people from all races, classes, and ages. They listened to the live band and sang along.

As I sat there, I was suddenly overwhelmed with the sense of a mini-utopia. It’s like an idealized scene you see in a commercial for soda or some happy vacation getaway. It was one of the most blissful city scenes I’ve ever witnessed.”

Then it struck me: the police in the community are privately employed by main stakeholders in the community, which are the merchants, apartment owners, and other service providers. (The streets are also private but public access.) For this reason, the police themselves have a deep investment in the well-being of the community and the general happiness of the consumers who shop there. They are employees of the free enterprise system.

(Via.) Foundation for Economic Education <—Read more here

UA-56674165-2