In which you become grain
To set the stage, here's a #bitcoin-assets quote :
mircea_popescu Let me explain something about this dekulakization concept. You familiar with Buffett pretending taxes "at the top" aren't high enough, and with Gates donating his fortune to "good causes" and so on ?
asciilifeform Technical term, I believe, is 'conspicuous benevolence'. Game theoretically 'dishonest signal'.
mircea_popescu Not at all. Buffett structures the hell out of his deals to avoid taxation. However, there exists a center of people who can't afford good tax shelters, and who could, if left undisturbed, come to one day challenge him. See, the fact that I made the FU Berkshire bet and the fact I pay about 2.85% a year on average are related. I can accumulate. The average middle class guy in the chumpatron, can not.i Buffett merely aims to keep it this way : high taxes means jack shit to him, other than "Stansislav won't be the next Buffett". That, he likes.
mircea_popescu Now, dekulakization is EXACTLY the same. It doth not hurt the rich. It hurts the average who could in principle one day hurt the rich.ii It's a prune-the-middle control strategy, the exact equiv of raising taxes "for social good". Sure, a tree with no middle one day collapses. But until such a day...
asciilifeform can't see how anyone who ever so much as set foot in the u.s. could disagree here.
Now leave that aside, and consider this snippet from "The Best Age for a Start-Up Founder", a Time Business "Ask the Expert" feature last year :
Venture capitalists often favor fresh meat. Michael Moritz of Sequoia Capital, one of Silicon Valley’s biggest VC firms, has gushed about how entrepreneurs in their mid- to late 20s “see no boundaries, see no limits, see no obstacle that they can’t hurdle.” Peter Thiel, a co-founder of PayPal and an early investor in Facebook, launched a $100,000 fellowship in 2010 for entrepreneurs under 20—that is, teenagers—to encourage “promising young people not to wait on their ideas.” The average age of the entrepreneurs funded by Y Combinator, an elite business accelerator, is 26.
Leaving aside the painfully banal (Ycombinator is anything but elite) and the parsimoniously explanatory (sure they favour fresh meat), what in the green Hells sense could this possibly make ?! It's quite in stark contrast with stuff like
This problem is currently - at least in my eyes - the largest issue plaguing Bitcoin. On one hand, its fascinating ease of use is possibly its greatest asset. On the other hand, kids’ ease in disregarding reality and highly esteeming themselves may not be their greatest asset, but it is statistically and from a species point of view their only utility. Neither can reasonably be made to go away, neither can sanely be dispensed of, and yet their contact creates a huge problem.
(Bitcoin is creating a whole new set of problems)
Encouraging children to "take risks" and "be entrepreneurs" ? Seriously ? But they lack even a modicum of experience that would inform the numerous, countless and complex questions they will have to resolve within mere seconds. But they lack even a modicum of social support networks, that are absolutely critical for any sort of shot at successiii, and for that matter they lack even the fucking silence for five straight minutes that's required to even think about anything. Teenagers have their plate full of stress and aggravation just by merely being teenagers, they're like last trimester pregnant women, only worse. The absolutely last thing they could possibly need, or want, or in any sense benefit from, is to merge the most stressful time biology reserves for mankind with the most stressful time socioeconomics reserve for mankind. What are these people, nuts ?
Perhaps not nuts, perhaps merely self interested. While you read "You’re the guy who wasn’t good enough to sling dope" with one eye, let's examine wheat with the other.
Wheat is a stupid sort of plant : about 70% of all energy it ever produces, it redirects towards the seed, and stores it there. This strip-mining sort of approach to the environment is not particularly effective a strategy, nor very beneficial for the plant. You'd never cultivate it on its own, aesthetic merits, like a jacaranda bush. It doesn't really make it in the wild, either, pretty much its only biological niche is "ground that has been recently destroyed", such as during a landslide, or volcanic eruption. There, its obese seed can outmaneuver any competitors, and for a year or two crop undisturbed. Then better equipped, more balanced plants move in, and it's the end of the wheat plant's domination.
The exact same strip-mining sort of approach to the environment that's not particularly effective strategy for this plant dearly endears it to humans, who are very similarly minded. This plant, that on its own merits and abilities would never figure within a hundredth of a percent of the biomass earth supports, through delivering the stupid thing we want delivered figures today well in the whole percents. It's a thing, ugly, inept, debalanced as it is, we like it. We like it a lot.
Do you know how much we like it ? We like it enough that we're willing to format your children into wheat plants.
What live their lives, what accumulate experience, what create a balanced mind and a stable outlook ? What, and become our competitors ? No, no, no need for any of that. Let your children be wheat plants instead : utterly dependent on our plowing the ground each year to synthetically recreate the landslide, world breakage environment they depend on, entirely proud of their unbalanced, ridiculous hunchback nature. Let them be "smart", for any version of smart that doesn't include but in fact outright precludes any smarts.
You know, I've known plenty of kids in "special", "accelerated", "merits" and other "brainiac" programmes. None of them amounted to anything.
None of them.———
- This influences our outlook, not just our bottom line. [↩]
- Once they grasped control of the country, the last fucking thing revolutionary reds wanted was to be wiped from power in another decade or so, as part of the normal alternation of power in society through the alternation of generations. [↩]
- Suddenly the parsimonious explanation ain't that crazy anymore : maybe these people really just want cumrags and figure that'd be the best way to get them : put a bunch of kids in a vulnerable position where they desperately need... support. [↩]
Tuesday, 15 April 2014
I think the only reason youth can be favored in entrepreneurs is that while a lot employees might be thinking of becoming ones, they don't; there's this comic I can't recall where the guy says he's going to quit to do something better every year, but never actually does.
Wage labour can be a pretty pernicious trap, especially in our now overtaxed world. I should know, I'm in it...
Tuesday, 15 April 2014
But at least wage labour comes with... you know, wage.