Effective leadership, Graeber and war in Ukraine

this is zelenski when he was a comedian, playing Hava Nagila with his dick https://9gag.com/gag/arnyd3y

He also played president on Ukrainian TV and was easily elected one

and he is making an effective war leder. Now look across the frontline

Putin is the quintessential strong man, his chief spy boss is scared to talk to him and gets humiliated on live TV https://english.elpais.com/opinion/2022-02-23/the-russian-spy-boss-humiliated-by-putin.html

Putin, puffed up bu corticosteroids comes up ad paranoid leader sitting his generals across 12 meters of table speaking of a reverse grinch

his general have fed him plans, and who knows if those plans are effective or enacted at all. Did Putin ever read Tolstoj ? It’s all in there

Let’s jum back across the frontline, Zelensky is pretty much the king that egalitarian societies elect to face an unexpected situation, sometimes is jester, or the madman, yeah the comedian.

Anthropology and CIA

James C. Scott worked for the CIA ? This should mmake that credible https://twitter.com/AntonJaegermm/status/1492977200785670146

here they claim he actually did https://twitter.com/alp1111112/status/1492869548596506626

here another Scott interview where he says he did it unknowingly, he was tricked into it https://twitter.com/JacobKripp/status/1492952106864717833

on Reddit, CIA recruiting oand exxploiting anthropologists was(is the norm https://www.reddit.com/r/TrueAnon/comments/srqhxs/anarchist_sociologist_james_c_scott_admitted_to/

Project Camelot https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Project_Camelot

Minerva Initiative https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Minerva_Initiative

Money isn’t neutral

“There is no inherent money neutrality, neutrality must be constructed by institutional arrangements. Much of the New Deal in the 1930s and 1940s was designed to build alternative channels for lending”


it’s the Cantillon effect, the closer to the mine, the first to spend the new coins and drive inflation against those farther away.

In current terms, it’s the central banks who are very good to discount bonds and inject liquidity into big corps, but there’s no one just as good in lending to homeowners, small businesses, workers etc.

So, in the big financial crisis, banks get bailed while homeowners are kicked out of their homes.

In Covid times, the government makes a multi.trillion rescue package and the stock market rally, because money gets more easily to listed companies.

related, since money isn’t neutral, creating money is intrinsically politcal and we come to this Crypto and the Politics of Money https://adamtooze.substack.com/p/chartbook-74-crypto-and-the-politics Adam Tooze interviewed by Eugney Morozov

The strategy

Policy Tensor notes that in stocks money is made at night, with markets closed

the post also mention “the strategy” how large hedge funds acted back then, trading at open where thier size can influence the market and then again at close when market is more liquid. This Knutsetson theory, he argued that “because markets are less liquid in the morning than they are in the afternoon, a hedge fund with a large portfolio can “expand his portfolio early in the day, when his trading moves prices more, and contract his portfolio later in the day, when his trading moves prices less, creating mark-to-market gains on his large existing book that exceed the cost of his daily round-trip trading.”

Anyway there’s more theory discussed but there’s also how to build a “derisked” portfolio on this idea of overnite gains, that would have performed wonders to date.

“Derisking” should have a mention here already, used by Daniela Gabor on Blackrock and climate investments, with a completely different meaning, and indeed “(just to piss off Daniela Gabor).” 🙂

10.000 years of patriarchy

“(With the advent of early agriculture, women continued to contribute to their households by working in the fields. For example, Catalhöyük (7000 BC) was not marked by strong gender divisions of labour. Women and men performed the same work, ate the same diet, and spent similar time outdoors. Bones and burials suggest little difference in gender roles (though male violence doubtless persisted).

But male dominance was strengthened dramatically by animal domestication, cereal-cultivation, draught animals, wealth stratification, and the rise of states.”

no, agricolture is not necessarily the gate to domination, but it lays the foundations for that and over time that tends to happen

“No society has ever got rich and stayed matrilocal.

Poverty is no feminist utopia, however. Fertility remains high in places with low returns to schooling and low opportunity costs of child-bearing. Impoverished families cannot heavily invest in all their children. Girls marry early, bear many children, become burdened by care-giving, and struggle to accumulate the capital, knowledge, and networks to challenge dominant men. Child brides are more likely to be abused. Economic desperation exacerbates stress and marital disputes”

this is stronger, you can’t stay matrilinear and get rich, economic development goes hand in hand with patriarchy and male domination in our times (capitalism, capitalocene, globalization, whatever) ?


Covid, Lab Leak and Schismogenesis

I decry Trump for denying the gravity of Covid, Trump also used to bash China on trade, and once Covid started, on a lab leak originating the pandemic.

Trump position on the Pandemic is dead wrong, so let’s create a distance from him, let’s distinguish our position, let’s oppose him on social isolation, masking, quack medicine, vaccination etc. Why should I ever consider the lab leak which is a pure hypothetical issue now that we should concentrate on saving lives against Trump’s lies?

Schismogenesis, anthropologist Gregory Bateson described this behavioural mechanism that deters you from even considering the lab leak hypothesis, lest you blur your distinction with Trump. And this is what makes this book an odd and uncomfortable read, an otherwise seemingly good science book, very attentive to details, well substanciated and referenced, mostly not drawing conclusions, but making me feel like blurring that disctinction from Trump’s quackery.

It does not help that the book co-author is that Matt Ridley has some ideas on climate change that would put him more in Trump’s field, The book is really the investigation conducted by Alina Chan and a group of internet “sleuths” which ened up collecting strong evidences of risk associated to virus sampling in bat caves, lab studies with human cell coltures, and “gain of function” research and gene editing, so that I feel it deserved much wider circulation. Put on hold your schmismogenic instinct and read it with a clean mind.

Viral by Alina Chan

But of course do not trust me, I am a lazy writer and I haven’t explained much to you, go straight to Scott AAronson who wrote a long and detailed review of the book, equally startled by how this book is rightfully throwing him off balance in his convictions on Covid https://scottaaronson.blog/?p=6183

reading Jan 19 2022

reading, started reading, will I be able to get to the end ? Better save it:

It from Qubit,, reading Preskill on Twitter he said this is the most interesting physics problem and I found Devid Deutsch on google http://www.daviddeutsch.org.uk/wp-content/ItFromQubit.pdf

(BTW finished today, Deutsch writes that the human brain is surely a classical computer, not quantum. And even if we were living in a computer simulation we could not possibily know so why not revert to the sex quarrels of Greek gods)

Murray Bookchin group on Facebook, I clicked on it “Sociobiology or social ecology?” Bookchin is on my reading list longtime, I also have some curiosity for OE WIlson who just died, founder of sociobiology https://theanarchistlibrary.org/library/murray-bookchin-sociobiology-or-social-ecology?fbclid=IwAR3_TjXUihXvRz6S5My-gsd0OLK1NXQLrN4Y7wgCOPjYsx1hqmYRZtEHVUo

tbh Taleb got me curious about WIlson, when Scientific American published that offensive obituary on him. This is a quote by Taleb:

“gene plays a role, are quite tractable, but anything entailing higher dimensionality falls apart. Understanding the genetic makeup of a unit will never allow us to understand the behavior of the unit itself. A reminder that what I am writing here isn’t an opinion. It is a straightforward mathematical property. The mean-field approach is when one uses the average interaction between, say, two people, and generalizes to the group—it is only possible if there are no asymmetries. For instance, Yaneer Bar-Yam has applied the failure of mean-field to evolutionary theory of the selfish-gene narrative trumpeted by such aggressive journalistic minds as Richard Dawkins and Steven Pinker, with more mastery of English than probability theory. He shows that local properties fail and the so-called mathematics used to prove the selfish gene are woefully naive and misplaced. There has been a storm around work by Martin Nowack and his colleagues (which include the biologist E. O. Wilson) about the terminal flaws in the selfish gene theory”

― Nassim Nicholas Taleb, Skin in the Game: Hidden Asymmetries in Daily Life

and today I found in my inbox Razib Kahn rebuttal to Scientific American “Setting the record straight: open letter on E.O. Wilson’s legacy”

Will it end with a paperclip maximizer? Or a permafrost refrigerator

you know the thought experiment by Svedish philosopher Bostrom, teach an AGI to maximize paperclip production and it will fagocitate the world unless you teach him/her/it ethics, human “values” and not values

But then you discover that an oil compay want to refrigerate the ground in order to save the permafrost that thaws due to fossil emissions https://grist.org/energy/the-irony-conocophillips-plans-to-freeze-thawing-permafr

imagine how much permafrost in the norther hemisphere is foundation to roads, houses, plants, pipeline, lines. Here is a map from the good The Arctic by Dodds and Woodward

so here you have a perfect doomsday machine without having to resort to mithical AGI’s, perfect economic logic of nowadays oilmen and, executives and politicians. Pump more oil in order to keep pumping oil, pump some more to keep houses standing and roads open, fossil emissions will raise temperatures even further, ramp up oil production and keep going to 5 degrees warming, and pumop more to 10 degrees warming and then checkout what’s left of our civilization

The Permafrost Refrigerator is a thought experiment by a 1500 pound goat, not a swedish philospher, though it sounds more real than the paperclip maximizer