September 08, 2005

Socialism with Chinese Characteristics

What happened in the early 1980s that allowed the world to be blessed with three transcendental political geniuses - Margaret Thatcher, Ronald Reagan and Deng Xiaoping? Will we see their like again? (The Czech Republic’s Vaclav Klaus is the closest I can see, sad he’s not guiding the path of a superpower.)

In early 1992, Deng Xiaoping gave a series of off-the-cuff speeches in Southern China to rally the forces of market-oriented reform against the reactionary currents setting in after the Tiananmen episode. A few snippets for those unfamiliar with his thinking:

“Revolution means the emancipation of the productive forces …”

“We should be bolder than before in conducting reform and opening to the outside and have the courage to experiment. We must not act like women with bound feet. Once we are sure that something should be done, we should dare to experiment and break a new path. That is the important lesson to be learned from Shenzhen.”

“Once disputes begin, they complicate matters and waste a lot of time. As a result, nothing is accomplished. Don’t argue; try bold experiments and blaze new trails.”

“China should maintain vigilance against the Right but primarily against the ‘Left’.”

“If we are to seize opportunities to promote China’s all-round development, it is crucial to expand the economy. The economies of some of our neighbouring countries are growing faster than ours. If our economy stagnates or develops only slowly, the people will make comparisons and ask why. Therefore, those areas that are in a position to develop should not be obstructed. Where local conditions permit, development should proceed as fast as possible. There is nothing to worry about so long as we stress efficiency and quality and develop an export-oriented economy. Slow growth equals stagnation and even retrogression. We must grasp opportunities …”

“For a big developing nation like China, it is impossible to attain faster economic growth steadily and smoothly at all times. Attention must be paid to stable and proportionate development, but stable and proportionate are relative terms, not absolute. Development is the absolute principle. We must be clear about this question. If we fail to analyse it properly and to understand it correctly, we shall become overcautious, not daring to emancipate our minds and act freely.”

“We should develop science and technology, and the higher and newer the technologies are, the better, the more delighted we shall be …”

“The essence of Marxism is seeking truth from facts. That’s what we should advocate, not book worship. The reform and the open policy have been successful not because we relied on books, but because we relied on practice and sought truth from facts. It was the peasants who invented the household contract responsibility system with remuneration linked to output. Many of the good ideas in rural reform came from people at the grass roots. We processed them and raised them to the level of guidelines for the whole country. Practice is the sole criterion for testing truth.”

Posted by CCRU-Shanghai at September 8, 2005 05:31 PM | TrackBack




Deng Xiaoping was a great bot.

Posted by: northanger at September 8, 2005 06:01 PM



the Fool's Sunflower Seeds?

Posted by: northanger at September 8, 2005 06:14 PM




Posted by: Nick at September 8, 2005 06:15 PM



mentioned here:
In the initial stage of the rural reform, there emerged in Anhui Province the issue of the "Fool's Sunflower Seeds". Many people felt uncomfortable with this man who had made a profit of 1 million yuan. They called for action to be taken against him. I said that no action should be taken, because that would make people think we had changed our policies, and the loss would outweigh the gain. There are many problems like this one, and if we don't handle them properly, our policies could easily be undermined and overall reform affected. The basic policies for urban and rural reform must be kept stable for a long time to come.

Posted by: northanger at September 8, 2005 06:19 PM



China's numbers game

(the conclusion of this article is priceless)

Posted by: northanger at September 8, 2005 06:42 PM



rephrasing my favorite quote from link above: "being rich and being democratic are good - both at the same time".

the problem with american democracy is it can get bogged down with capitalism causing its essential purpose to get, well, covered over with kudzu.

wow. a communist society learning how to be good capitalists while maintaining its fundamental purpose. touché.

Posted by: northanger at September 8, 2005 06:56 PM



To warp Ghandhi -
"What's your opinion of American Capitalism?"
"Sounds like it would be worth trying some day ..." (Guess there was a smidgen of it before FDR went loco during the fascist chic of the 1930s)

Can't get BBC over here - absolute bliss!

Posted by: Nick at September 9, 2005 02:38 AM



if America has a hegemony on anything it's probably capitalism. talk about unearthing things. mammon, in Paradise Lost , always looking down at heaven's golden pavement, never up at god. found "veins of liquid fire" & some type of ore used to create the palace of satan, pandemonium.

Posted by: northanger at September 9, 2005 05:46 AM



Yes, Mammon creates Pandemonium, can't be stressed enough ...

American capitalism suffers from the lack of a serious competitor, allowing it to slumber in the illusion that its welfare-rotted big gov't porkfest is actually a fairly virile instantiation of the capitalist abstract machine (regenerative capital formation). It looks across the Atlantic, sees (OLd) Europe, and quite naturally concludes that it's doing OK. Hopefully Greater China will give it more of a run for its money ... (some of the New Europe countries also worth a second look - they seem to have got flat taxes solidly onto the international reform agenda, for instance)

Posted by: nick at September 9, 2005 06:14 AM



>>how this immense machinic potential has been dammed-up (the D&G 'strata' topic)

imho, several of sd's points point to this (a) market forces being "regulated evolutionary forces" applying "productive selection pressures" & (b) the Toba bottleneck. i think we need to rethink that "dammed-up potential" & see it as an evolutionary opportunity. stealing from the "Socia.lism with Chinese Characteristics" post — does American Capitalism have "damming potential" by allowing it to be the primary (hegemonic) player defining market forces?

Posted by: northanger at September 9, 2005 07:21 AM



northanger - think most would read D&G's 'anticapitalism' that way - but what does it mean concretely ("defining market forces" for e.g.)?

Posted by: nick at September 9, 2005 07:26 AM



oops. my last comment incorrectly posted here. that's responding to your "September 9, 2005 06:51 AM" in the Singularity post.

what does "defining market forces" mean concretely? geez, you know that better than i do. but i'll take a stab. i'm being funny but, White Man's Juju? or, really, what does Greenspan really do at the Fed?
If you’re asking the question, “What would Teddy do?” – consider this. TR never outright opposed mergers; he just felt that they should be reasonable. We call it “defining market forces down.” Market forces – those wondrous, unseen emanations that keep prices and services at optimum levels – tend to go away when competition vanishes. When that happens, we’re all left with a skewed marketplace that doesn’t reflect reality.

still trying to hash this one out... i'm looking at a chess model.

Posted by: northanger at September 9, 2005 07:58 AM



Nice quotes. But the words of the great Deng and the reality in China are two very different things For example "Many of the good ideas in rural reform came from people at the grass roots": the World Bank is running a programme aimed at stimulating bottom-up economic and social development (WB's Development Marketplace), though very little appreciation of grass roots innovation has hitherto been shown by Beijing.

Posted by: Tachi at September 9, 2005 10:10 AM



“Once disputes begin, they complicate matters and waste a lot of time. As a result, nothing is accomplished. Don’t argue; try bold experiments and blaze new trails.”

A nice quote, a particularly good piece of advice for dealing with the resurgence of the bog-swamp hard left in the UK.

Posted by: sd at September 9, 2005 11:51 AM



“Once disputes begin, they complicate matters and waste a lot of time. As a result, nothing is accomplished. Don’t argue; try bold experiments and blaze new trails.”

Read: democratic governance, public accountability, and stakeholder involvement get in the way of accomplishling great things.

Whilst I recognize the value in Deng's economic philosophy, I would caution any attempt to associate it with the actual situation in China. Sentimentally-driven objections to the onep-party state aside, there are serious issues with Chinese capitalism, and not just for the poor and everyday folk, but also for business people themselves. Setting up and maintaining operations in China are fraught with problems - of legal protection, accountability, transparency, corruption, beaurocracy, ant-market protectionsim, subsidies, management culture, etc - that it would be too hasty to proclaim China 'blazing new trails'. Of course with stella growth rates over the last 20 years China is changing rapidly and for the better of the Chinese people (millions lifted out of poverty). But how far will its contolled experimenting go?

Posted by: Tachi at September 9, 2005 12:33 PM



That would be 'transcendental' in the sense that Transcendental Meditationists use it I suppose?

Posted by: punisher at September 9, 2005 03:00 PM



_You_ may think that all I've done in eight years is transcendentalize the manifest image in the ideological interests of marketing and PR, but in _reality_ I have achieved mind-meld with Margaret Thatcher and Hurricane Floyd.

Posted by: The Trash Heap Has Spoken at September 9, 2005 03:45 PM



Tachi - think you're being a bit fast on the argument issue - China had just come out of the Cultural Revolution where all kinds of lunatic 'theoretical' discussions about the proper course for class struggle had totally substituted for economic development - don't think democratic debate in the Western sense was even on the radar when Deng made this comment, despite (or especially) because of the 1989 events

Posted by: Nick at September 10, 2005 05:29 AM



PS. also think, although all the problems you mention are quite real, to deny that China is 'blazing new trails' is unreasonable. No event has changed the world (dis)order more radically than China switching over to a (rapid) market-based development track - inspiring India to follow. Previously there really was something like a 'Third World' - now there's just perversity, gangsterism and antiglobo lunacy ...

Posted by: Nick at September 10, 2005 05:34 AM



"perversity, gangsterism and antiglobo lunacy"? you must expand on this.

if the poor are always with us then, it occurs to me that it's what you do with the poor that counts. capitalism, not being an ethical animal, can turn a slight wedge between poor & rich into an abyss. but isn't this the oppportunity? it's like the shoe seller in africa: nobody wears shoes here vs. hey, what a market!

Posted by: northanger at September 10, 2005 05:41 AM



"what you do with the poor" - isn't that a little left-liberal? Surely what matters most is what the poor do with themselves ... Agree with your basic point though - great book on the topic: The Fortune at the Bottom of the Pyramid, by C.K.Prahalad
Goes without saying that Hernando de Soto's epoch-making The Mystery of Capital also highly germane

"you must expand on this" - China has shown that retarded development is an ideological decision and that all the excuses ('too big' 'too backward' 'too many peasants' 'unfair global system' ...) are totally vacuous. There's one overwhelmingly relevant explanation for poverty - bad choices, by governments or individuals (the rest is a rounding error)

Posted by: Nick at September 10, 2005 05:57 AM



"isn't that a little left-liberal" - good catch. rounding error, hmm.

Posted by: northanger at September 10, 2005 06:16 AM



"That would be 'transcendental' in the sense that Transcendental Meditationists use it I suppose?" - it's transcendental in the accepted philosophical (though materialist) sense - rather than making an empirical contribution to the world, however immense, this triumverate changed its essential characteristics and mode of functioning (from a bipolar soci*list / social democrat stagflating wreck to an a-polar global system differentiated by gradients of market-oriented integration ('reform'))

Posted by: Nick at September 10, 2005 06:27 AM



northanger - i'm sure you wouldn't want to be a left-liberal, they're condescending managerial elitists ... ;)

Posted by: Nick at September 10, 2005 06:31 AM



no no, don't want to be a "condescending managerial elitists" - don't think anybody could quite fill your shoes anyway.

Posted by: northanger at September 10, 2005 06:37 AM



Gordon Brown: pro-globo, anti-protectionist.

"Mr Sapir argued in his submission to ministers that "continental" and "Mediterranean" countries with high social protection but high unemployment needed to become more efficient.

He said it was up to them which of Europe's two "high efficiency" models they pursued: the Anglo-Saxon version espoused by Mr Brown or the Nordic model which has entranced French politicians this year.

Mr Brown warned that China and India were not engaged in a race to the bottom but in a race to the top, and that Europe had to "raise its game" in terms of research spending and education.

His case was picked up by Patrick Cescau, Unilever chief executive, who told ministers that "knowledge and innovation need to be at the centre of our growth agenda".

Posted by: sd at September 10, 2005 10:51 AM



----- Original Message -----
> From: Stephen DeMeulenaere
> To: Graeme Taylor ;
> Sent: Thursday, August 11, 2005 09:58 AM
> Subject: Re: [ijccr] How are Yuan created
> Hello Graeme,
> You can find information about the management of
> the
> Yuan using a basket of currencies at:
> The value of the Yuan is not tied to the US
> dollar,
> which is why the US is so upset. China values the
> Yuan internally. The basket provides the
> government
> with a reason/excuse to raise or lower the value
> of
> the Yuan, in response to American government
> criticism
> that the Yuan is undervalued.
> As far as I'm aware, the only fractional reserve
> issuance going on in the PRC is in Hong Kong,
> where
> they do not use Yuan, but Hong Kong Dollars,
> issued as
> bank notes.
> By the way, I am assisting 3 complementary
> currency
> systems in Hong Kong.
> Regards,
> Stephen DeMeulenaere
> Asia Program Coordinator
> Strohalm Foundation

One of the systems in Hong Kong has listed their
information in the ccDatabase, that's the Community
Oriented Mutual Economy project that was initiated by
professors from Lignan University, supported by Oxfam
Hong Kong and implemented by the St. James Community
Center in the Wanchai neighbourhood on Hong Kong

It's an Hours system managed by Social Workers to
increase social cohesion as it is a poorer area with a
recent period of transience, people moving in and out
of the community. Their notes are similar to those
used by the Tianguis Tlaloc in Mexico City, with 10
spaces for signatures on each note. However the notes
are issued in the same way that Hours are, as a
disbursement. Images are available at, in
the Hong Kong section.

The other system is a Voucher Currency System
initiated and run by the Industrial Relations
Institute, an organization assisting workers displaced
or unemployed when factories moved from Hong Kong to
the mainland. As the system generates its own income
from the sale of vouchers, they have a street-level
convenience store where goods are dual-priced:
cheaper for vouchers and more expensive for cash.
They also generate enough income to support a recycled
goods store and a value-added production group, among
other small cooperative enterprises. Although they
received startup support from Oxfam HK, they are now
operating on their own funds.

The third system is also at a community center, a kind
of token currency system to allocate computer time to
young people who earn the tokens by providing services
to the community center.

We generally tend to think of Hong Kong as being one
of the richest cities in China, but times have
changed. One in four children in the city lives well
below the poverty line. Many former factory buildings
stand empty, others are being knocked down and sold to
land developers. Oxfam Hong Kong runs a high-profile
campaign to raise funds from the wealthier members of
society to assist those less fortunate.

I don't think that Oxfam will support another Hours or
mutual credit system until they can secure stable
long-term funding from the Hong Kong government. They
see these systems as an extension of social services
that should be supported by government and delivered
by the community centers.

The scale of the Wanchai system, the types of goods
(unwanted) and services (unskilled) traded is too
small to support the ability to recover their
operational costs, unless they were to receive stable

Or, to also become a voucher currency system which
would greatly improve their chances of generating
sufficient funds to cover their operations and have
enough left over to work on the real structural
economic problems that they are facing there, while
still working on the social cohesion issues that the
system was originally initiated to deal with.



Posted by: piet at September 10, 2005 03:31 PM



the same CK Prahalad who wrote 'Competing for the Future'? The Head of Marketing when I was at NCR was a great advocate of that book, it was repeatedly cited as the inspiration behind the research lab where I worked. Perhaps you should get together with her...oh, hold on, she got sacked and the lab got closed down ;)

Posted by: robin at September 10, 2005 05:01 PM
The requested object does not exist on this server. The link you followed is either outdated, inaccurate, or the server has been instructed not to let you have it.


Posted by: northanger at September 10, 2005 05:04 PM



"yuan basket" Resultaten 1 - 10 van circa 521 voor "yuan basket" (0,07 seconden)

yuan basket Resultaten 1 - 10 van circa 473.000 voor yuan basket (0,17 seconden)

China Outlines Yuan Basket Units --NewsChina Outlines Yuan Basket Units. 2005-08-10 14:46:52. China‘s central bank said on Wednesday the US dollar, the euro, the Japanese yen and the South Korean ... finance/11021621/20050810/12559495.html - 21k - In cache - Gelijkwaardige pagina's

Commodity Trader | China Unveils Major Currencies in Yuan BasketChina Unveils Major Currencies in Yuan Basket. Posted at 17:33 in forex. ... Yuan Basket Detailed. The US dollar, the Japanese yen, the euro, and the South ... - 21k - In cache - Gelijkwaardige pagina's

Forex: Dollar Slightly Weaker On Yuan BasketCurrency Trading News, Forex Trading News, FX News, Forex News - Daily FX. content&task=view&id=2778&Itemid=62 - 16k - In cache - Gelijkwaardige pagina's USChina Says Dollar, Euro, Yen, Won Are in Yuan Basket (Update4). By Luo Jun and Robert Delaney. Aug. 10 (Bloomberg) -- China's central bank said the dollar, ... news?pid=washingtonstory&sid=IL02ED0UQVI9 - 17k - In cache - Gelijkwaardige pagina's

China FX reforms pick up pace, yuan basket detailedChina FX reforms pick up pace, yuan basket detailed. - 25k - In cache - Gelijkwaardige pagina's

KBS GLOBALThe inclusion of the country's currency in China’s yuan basket system is not expected to directly affect the domestic foreign exchange market. ... sub.php?menu=3&key=2005081026 - 35k - In cache - Gelijkwaardige pagina's

China to Let Companies Buy Foreign Currency, Gives Details on Yuan ...China to Let Companies Buy Foreign Currency, Gives Details on Yuan Basket. China to Let Companies Buy Foreign Currency, Gives Details on Yuan Basket ... - 9k - In cache - Gelijkwaardige pagina's

China FX reforms pick up pace, yuan basket detailed - Yahoo! NewsChina announced major currency market reforms on Wednesday to help banks and firms cope with the uncertainty springing from last month's landmark decision ... economy_china_dc;_ylt=AqCWTwg9tDXRo9xpqK8knPRvaA8F;_ylu=X3oDMTBiMW04NW9mBHNlYwMlJVRPUCUl - 36k - In cache - Gelijkwaardige pagina's

The Globe and MailChina unveils yuan basket. By OMAR EL AKKAD. Globe and Mail Update. Wednesday, August 10, 2005. China revealed for the first time on Wednesday the contents ... story/RTGAM.20050810.wyuan0810/BNStory/Business/ - 20k - In cache - Gelijkwaardige pagina's

Asia Times Online :: China News, China Business News, Taiwan and ...In addition to revealing the currencies in the yuan basket, the PBoC has further boosted the development of the inter-bank foreign exchange market by ... - 39k - In cache - Gelijkwaardige pagina's

Posted by: 39.000th basket case at September 10, 2005 05:51 PM



yikes, just got a first internet scammerspammy with a focus that shifted away from africa:

"Headquartered in Zhejiang China, we invite you to
join China Metallurgical as a representative."

Posted by: piet at September 10, 2005 09:26 PM



whoops, that was off-topic, sinoce'ly solly

Posted by: piet at September 10, 2005 09:27 PM



Are all these revaluation of the yuan links making a point that I'm not getting?

Robin - getting canned is good - indicator of a vibrant churn mechanism :)

Posted by: nick at September 11, 2005 02:46 AM



... probably the number of people sacked each year would turn out to be the most accurate indicator of economic dynamism (if the process wasn't regenerative the figures would fall off quickly)

Posted by: nick at September 11, 2005 02:47 AM



Nick: "China has shown that retarded development is an ideological decision and that all the excuses ('too big' 'too backward' 'too many peasants' 'unfair global system' ...) are totally vacuous. There's one overwhelmingly relevant explanation for poverty - bad choices, by governments or individuals (the rest is a rounding error)"

China's development is concentrated on the east coast and in the south - to overlook the retarded development within China's hinterland and western provinces is dangerous. Over 700 million people live under the poverty line ($1 a day). Though you will probably say that this is due to an 'ideological' decision on behalf of the government. Interested in what gives you such confidence that development is purely a matter of political choice, as if the retarded development in China's poorest provinces were a product of neglect ('they can just sort it out if they want'). I am sure the Chinese government is trying its best to improve the lot of the millions in these areas. Though I suspect that the issues I raised earlier - corruption, protectionism, accountability - have more to do with the huge development disparities, along with favoritism, which is corruption again. Agree that bad choices are to blame, though I see bad choices as the product of a bad system, which cannot foster sustainable growth along current lines.

Posted by: Tachi at September 11, 2005 03:09 AM



Tachi - of course what you say is true, but I'd still defend my contention
1) 300 million peasants were lifted out of poverty in the first wave of DXP reforms - the rural side has stagnated since, for straightforward economic reasons. Peasant income (given the generalized protectionism oobstructing smooth international agricultural markets) is basically equivalent to the national food budget - that necessarily constrains the total proportion of national income fl;owing to rural areas. Mass urbanization is the only answer.
2) ... but mass urbanization is being deliberately slowed by the government. There are clearly reasons for this (trying to prevent utter chaos in the cities) but the result is nevertheless retardation of overall income growth.
3) The policy errors of the Mao period - less than three decades ago- were so egregious and catastrophic I don't think I need to spell them out in detail. The consequences in terms of underdevelopment and distorted development still need working out (the old soci*list rust-core still exists, massively shrunk as a proportion of the economy, but probably larger in absolute terms than it was 25 years ago - representing an absolutely vast wastage of resources)
4) One thing the leadership here do understand is the need for a period of 'primitive accumulation' to build up the national capital-base pissed away during the three decades after 1949 - the jobs the poor 700 million will be looking for will be based on this investment. At the moment Overseas Chinese capital and foreign FDI fill some of the gap.
5) There's plenty that could be done better, but in human history, if things aren't being completely wrecked by monumental errors you can consider yourself lucky - over here, that's certainly true now.

Posted by: Nick at September 11, 2005 11:24 AM



PS. Fareed Zakaria's excellent book The Future of Freedom directly addresses a number of your concerns. His basic point: pushing radical democratic reform in societies with average incomes below US$5,000 per capita creates more problems than it solves - sure, it might reduce corruption and abuses a bit, but overall policy would probably deteriorate under the weight of populist pressures (as in Latin America). South Korea, Taiwan and the other little Dragons pursued a historical course Zakaria calls 'liberalizing autocracy' - it seems to have the best developmental track record, it leads fairly inevitably to democratization (but affluence first), and there's every reason to suspect it's the process happening here. On this point, it's sad but true - and pertinent - that Chile is the only Latin American economy that works.

Posted by: Nick at September 11, 2005 11:37 AM



>getting canned is good

Of course having been driven insane by bullshit, I had already quit thus missing out on a hefty redundancy payout. We principled types never benefit from trickle-down.

Posted by: robin at September 11, 2005 12:36 PM



trust nick to knock the 'weight of popular pressure"; whaddayawanna weigh up against buddy?

"basket currencies" 470 results (on google)
"basket case currencies" only 8 hits!!!!
"basket case currency" 105!
basing your basket on, that is filling it with foreign currency is a dumb throw back to gold standard times; if you don't stay home and mind the basics you should not be suprised if terms like basket case show up with reference to your currency
ps: there will soon be one single hit for "indexed basics based basket currency" a google Qwhack also the first one ever claimed I am willing to assert on instinct.

Posted by: piet at September 11, 2005 01:08 PM



piet - 'populism' is a disastrous policy orientation which i doubt even our mad leftists would support - it is intellectually close to fascism (Statist, nationalistic and ethno-chauvenist) and leads only to economic failure and dangerously bitter disillusionment - look at Latin America and tell me whether you like what you see ...

Posted by: Nick at September 11, 2005 01:27 PM



I like what I see here: Beckerath (Bth) and rules there are applicable everywhere; a valiant first effort to regain truly common practice after long deprivation was made (shakily for sure) and is being made in various parts of SA; they are eager, feel the need, search the light, I wish them well.

Posted by: piet points to Bth at September 11, 2005 06:12 PM



this aint on topic, this is doubly on topic; duotopical:

bot to the bone ://
[lbo-talk] Chavez to Speak in NYC's Riverside Church on Sep. 16th a post by and typical of Michael Pugliese; next in line:

A month or two ago, I posed a question, and never recieved an answer Although it might have been buried within multi-megabytes of verbiage and my eyes glazed over before I got to the pertinent paragrah. My hypothesis: Michael Pugliese is a "bot", a script file( a real perl too!). His intended function is to parse all email recieved by lbo, and respond with phrases that are diametrically, didactically, dialectically... disagreement, and as I stated at the head, buried in multi-Mbs of verbiage that's vaguely related to the topic, the way Bill Griffith created Zippy the Pinhead... a computer spitting out pseudo-random phrases with an occasional on-target phrase woven in. Bill? Is that you? Comments? Leigh Have you seen my newsfeeds?: // Michael is a real useful hint hURLer -- he calls China a corrupt capitalist nightmare and recommends:

China Since Mao by Charles Bettelheim and Neil G. Burton Monthly Review Press, 130 pp. The Mandate of Heaven: Marx and Mao in Modern China Meisner, Maurice J. Mao's China and After : A History of the People's Republic. New York: Free Press, 1999 -- Michael Pugliese

Posted by: piet points to Bth at September 11, 2005 07:47 PM



yeah, piet's a bot too.

Posted by: northanger at September 11, 2005 07:53 PM



Chris Doss (lives in Moscow) ALWAYS counterpoints out something or other with respect to MP:

When was China not corrupt?

China is kicking ass. From impoverished shithole to
budding superpower in a few decades. There hasn't been
a success on that scale since, well, Stalin. ;)

Posted by: piet points to Bth at September 11, 2005 08:03 PM



the totally amazing down to earthness of this item has tempted me into mentioning this blog of shiverdelivery at one of mine

Posted by: indextremist at September 11, 2005 09:27 PM



piet - Meisner's book is very interesting, of course the guy's a Marxist, but not of the head-banging "I won't face facts, I won't, I won't and you can't make me daddy" type we tend to get here - he provides the best analysis of Maoist politics I've yet seen

Posted by: Nick at September 11, 2005 11:55 PM



on the flat tax rate in Estonia & Lithuania

Tax reformers follow European lead

Posted by: sd at September 12, 2005 07:21 AM



Mart Laar and the Flat Tax revolution:

"Mr Laar is hailed as the prophet of a revolution - the flat tax insurrection enveloping much of Europe. As the "father of the flat tax" he is sought out by economists and politicians from across the globe, anxious for his counsel...

"Most experts advised against it and said it was a very stupid idea," he said. "My finance minister said don't do it, the IMF said don't do it. But it's not very easy to convince a young person that he is wrong and I was that type of young person. So I did it."

The economic results of the flat tax in Estonia were stunning as the tiny Baltic state emerged from 50 years of Soviet oppression and a Bolshevik-style planned economy to become a modern, prosperous country.

Inflation dropped from more than 1,000 per cent to just 2.5 per cent, in line with western Europe. Unemployment fell from 30 per cent to six per cent and growth has soared to six per cent, a rate that Gordon Brown would envy. Investment poured in and the initial 26 per cent tax rate has been cut to 23 per cent. Next year, it will be cut again to 20 per cent.

"My main problem was I was not an economist but a historian," he said. "The only economics book I had read was Milton Friedman's Free to Choose."

He assumed that Friedman's theories sprang from economic reforms that had been put into practice in the West. He had no idea that he was about to become a pioneer.

"A flat tax seemed to be very logical and very fair and I didn't have the smallest clue I would be the first," he said.

The flat tax has been adopted by nine European countries, and counting. After Estonia came Latvia and Lithuania. In 2001, Russia introduced a 13 per cent flat rate.

Serbia, Ukraine, Slovakia Georgia, and Romania have adopted it and Poland, the Czech Republic, Hungary and Greece plan to follow suit...."

Posted by: sd at September 12, 2005 09:50 AM



sd - yes, Mart Laar should have been on the 'true revolutionaries' list - have to try and get over my prejudice in favour of demographic goliaths, exemplarity has a power all of its own ...

Posted by: Nick at September 12, 2005 11:55 AM



PS. the part about not reading too many economics books is fabulous

Posted by: Nick at September 12, 2005 12:03 PM



... another small scale revolutionary is Leszek Balcerowicz, the man who took a Thatcherite axe to the Polish economy in 1990. Despite retiring from politics in 2000, to be the chairman of the National Bank of Poland, his policies are still vilified by quasi-fascist parties such as the nationalist Self-Defence Party and the catholic League of Polish Families (both alarmingly popular), and by soci*list dregs.

Posted by: sd at September 12, 2005 04:31 PM



hmm, flat tax & baltic tigers. FLAT TAX = OLD ONES
"Don't underestimate the importance of a new, modern constitution and democratic legislature with free elections. In some transition countries, the importance of the "rule of law" has not been understood, and this has been a huge mistake. No kind of general understanding, best effort, or wishful thinking can replace a sound and constantly improving legal environment. There can be no market economy and democracy without laws, clear property rights, and a functioning justice system."

what are you guys suggesting? throw away the textbooks & let an idiot figure it out?

Posted by: northanger at September 12, 2005 04:55 PM



no slur meant, Meister Laar.

Posted by: northanger at September 12, 2005 05:02 PM
apparently, Balcerowicz's plan didn't have the same success as Laar's.

Posted by: northanger at September 12, 2005 05:07 PM



northanger -"what are you guys suggesting? throw away the textbooks & let an idiot figure it out?"

Erm, it's working. Are you advocating the repressive machinery of academic authority? Seriously?

"apparently, Balcerowicz's plan didn't have the same success as Laar's."

Who said it did?

However, no matter how shocking and hard-hitting the Balcerowicz plan was, the basic outcome is that a country which was absolutely devastated by WWI, WWII & the post-war communist economic vandalism of WWIII was turned around.

(6 million Poles died in WWII; 2.5 million Poles were deported to Germany as slaves; about 2 million were deported to Russia; both Hitler and Stalin systematically annihilated the Polish intelligentsia; Stalin dismantled and deported complete factories from Poland to Russia, not just people; Hitler razed Warsaw to the ground in 1944 while the Red Army sat and watched...)

Of course Estonia also suffered terribly at the hands of both the SS and the NKVD and was denied independence till 1991. Mart Laar's achievements are simply amazing.

The population of Poland is 38.5 million (and the number of small farms is huge), that of Estonia 1.3 million - this has to be taken into consideration when considering economic success. Poland had a vast soci*alist infrastructure and is still dealing with the hangover (e.g. mines and shipyards that were basically state-subsidized).

Poland demonstrates that Capitalism works quickly; Estonia and the flat tax demonstrates that Capitalism can work better.

Posted by: sd at September 12, 2005 06:07 PM



sd - "advocating ... academic authority"

of course not. thanks for wrist slap on Poland {ouch!}. btw, excellent observation ("Poland demonstrates that Capitalism works quickly; Estonia and the flat tax demonstrates that Capitalism can work better").

seems like the question, then: what's the next step after economic shock therapy?

Posted by: northanger at September 12, 2005 08:07 PM



What does every/anyone think about Richard Duncan's new book "The Dollar Crisis," in which he predicts:

"We really are in uncharted waters. Never before in history has the world had a 'reserve currency' that is relatively unrestrained, with a 'master' who is willing and able to debase it to suit their policy needs, and manipulate markets in concert with their peers to prolong the situation and defeat the regulating systems of the markets, such as interest rates and exchange values.

We are in a feedback loop of mutually assured financial destruction with Asia.

We are supporting their economies by consuming their exports in a huge way, and they in turn are accepting our debt instruments (dollars) and using them to expand their own economies, as well as our own by buying our Treasuries, Corp bonds, GSE debt, and equities."
-- amazon reviewer

And here's him in his own words:

I've heard his spiel spoken elsewhere, with similar gloom-and-doom pronouncements, but this guy's creds are impressive: IMF and World Bank operative, US Asia diplomat, etc.

Thoughts? Snappy comebacks? If only I knew more about economics I'd join in...

Posted by: traxus4420 at September 13, 2005 05:24 AM



Reading over his proposed solutions I don't see that they are compatible with the views of many here (they seem...Keynesian? did I say that right?), but what about his definition of the problem?

Posted by: traxus4420 at September 13, 2005 05:29 AM



traxus4420 - hugely interesting topic

"We are in a feedback loop of mutually assured financial destruction with Asia." - this strikes me as excessivly one-sided, it could just as easily be described as a circuit of mutual advantage (China rapidly builds up export-oriented economy, US imports low-inflation, retailing revolution and overall global business environment so healthy that even massive distubances plus US$70/barrel oil doesn't wreck it).
The Economist mag takes a gloomy view, too, but US supply-siders (e.g. the supremely reliable Larry Kudlow) are far more sanguine - the US$ isn't really being debauched especially spectacularly IMHO, which isn't to say it's being well looked after though ...

PS. Anyone got any thoughts on the Masonic iconography of the US$? Just saw popcorn National Treasure which re-animated this old staple of occult history - seems enough to make the greenback a hero of hyperstition in its own right, no?

Posted by: nick at September 13, 2005 05:40 AM



traxus4420 - we crossed.
Need to follow up your links, but on Keynes - another (somewhat malignant) giant of hyperstition: Laying out the principles by which States could manipulate economic perceptions to produce self-fulfilling prophecies. Like all hyperstitional practices, Keynesian economics comes perilously close (at best) to systematic lying, made less visible by the fact that its medium is the financial code itself, rather than (linguistic) political announcements. Markets seem to have discounted Kenynesian illusionism by the early 1970s, converting its manipulations into tractionless stagflation, due to the emergence of 'rational expectations' among previously duped economic agents.

Posted by: nick at September 13, 2005 06:00 AM



>>Anyone got any thoughts on the Masonic iconography of the US$? Just saw popcorn National Treasure which re-animated this old staple of occult history - seems enough to make the greenback a hero of hyperstition in its own right, no?

what's great about the movie is that they did play with the hyperstitional element of the US$, like it was a treasure map in its own right hidden in plane sight. US$ symbolism easy to find on the internet; satan on the us dollar is my favorite. most of the mottoes come from Virgil — the founding fathers knew their latin:
ANNUIT COEPTIS - "Providence favors our undertakings" (Latin, from Virgil's Aeneid IX.625)
NOVUS ORDO SECLORUM - "A New Order of the Ages" (Latin, from Virgil's Eclogue IV)
E PLURIBUS UNUM "Out of many, one" or "Out of many [States], one [Union]" (Latin, from Moretum attributed to Virgil)

Posted by: northanger at September 13, 2005 06:44 AM



northanger - "what's the next step after economic shock therapy?"

Poland is a deeply schizoid country: on one hand catholic, family-oriented, patriotic, conservative and traditional; on the other fiercely individualistic, shopping mad (people go to church Sunday morning, you can see them kneeling on the pavement when the church is full, then they spend the rest of the day shopping - the shops can stay open till 21.00 on Sunday, which means 5 more hours of shopping than in the UK), car mad, no holds-barred competitive (it is not uncommon for university students to study 2 degree courses at the same time and to speak three foreign languages fluently), extremely tech savy (I wager that the average teenage Pole could run rings round western European teenagers in terms of code-breaking and data exchange know-how)...

A very bright businessman I spoke to the other day (runs a sports company which produces and imports goods in/from China, Pakistan, Thailand) said that because of this schizophrenia Poland needs to keep swinging from liberal right to centre left: five years of breakneck Capitalism, followed by five years of Capitalism with a soci*list face, to try to pick up those who got left behind (very problematic gap between the rich and the poor - after 45 years of communism there is a huge dependency culture; there is a special verb in Polish, 'kombinowac' which has no real English equivalent, meaning 'devise', 'think up' e.g. ways of avoiding paying tax, of screwing someone over to make a quick buck etc; there's mass tax evasion, rural despair and alcoholism; inability/unwillingness to adapt), so centre left governments prevent starvation and complete social collapse in rural areas/small towns.

If the Civic Platform gets in in the upcoming elections (likely), then Poland is in for five years of breakneck Capitalism and the flat tax (yippee!)

Posted by: sd at September 13, 2005 07:26 AM



northanger - ah, hadn't realized Virgil was the common thread ...

sd - if Poland manages to reach ignition with growth seriously above 5% for a few years it would hopefully get addicted (and maybe attract attention in the neighbourhood) - add my 'yippee'

The American Enterprise Online has current issue on Europe & America, with excellent editorial by Karl Zinsmeister and articles by Olaf Gersemann and Joel Kotkin accessible without subscription:

Posted by: nick at September 13, 2005 08:02 AM



Nick - thanks for the link (ever thought of auctioning your favourites?)

love the taemag tone, realize they're going for the big guys, but

1) they've got facts wrong

Europe Learns the Wrong Lessons

"at least since the time of Hitler, European elites have lacked the courage to stand up to dictators. Apart from the British, Euros have consistently left this job to the U.S."

The Czechs were screwed by British and French cowardice.

Poland stood up to Hitler and Stalin (and paid the price) - the US and Britain failed to stand up to Stalin and thoroughly stitched up Eastern European countries at the Yalta conference. Roosevelt and Churchill's dealings with Stalin (especially regarding the Katyn massacre and the Warsaw uprising) form the dirty, dark secret of WWII. [Norman Davies 'Rising 44: The Battle for Warsaw' is excellent on this].

Poland has been stalwart in Iraq - it's not just the British.

2) they're a bit out of focus

'Europe’s Not Working'

Overestimates France, Germany, and Italy - the Big Three and underestimates the new Eastern European countries which are, understandably, exploiting the EU for all they can get. Once Estonia, Lithuania, Poland and the Czech Republic have 'ignited', I doubt they will be contained by the EU's soci*list technocracy (having experienced soci*lism first hand, having witnessed the palpable benefits of Capitalism on a day-to-day basis).

As always, Russia is crucial in the region and will do all it can to hinder development. It is no coincidence that Estonia and Poland's relations with Russia are now at their lowest since 1991. Russia is engaged in an energy war - gas gives it dictatorial powers (Germany have, once again, fallen into an alliance with Russia with a gas pipe that will bypass Poland

So, taemag needs to swing its focus a little further east, IMHO.

Posted by: sd at September 13, 2005 09:49 AM



"The only people who appreciate American foreign policy are poodles."

Posted by: northanger at September 13, 2005 11:51 AM



agree that there's an undue focus on Old Europe -think that's partly because the US MSM (Main Stream Media) are only interested in pushing the Old Europe agenda, so what's happening further east (great stuff, clearly) gets absurdly sidelined

on Germany/Russia - Putin going out of his way to get the unspeakable Schroeder re-elected - hope it will be futile - amazing the blind tropism that brings authoritarian reactionaries of all stripes into sympathetic resonance

"Poland has been stalwart in Iraq" - heard they were planning on pulling out, is that right? In any case, scandalous how little is being said about them. The MSM would rather flirt with Galloway and asorted Islamarxist loons worldwide ...

Posted by: Nick at September 13, 2005 02:36 PM



It's actually very difficult to find out about Poland pulling out of Iraq - the issue has been studiously avoided in the election campaign, with the only parties bringing it up being the extreme, nationalist right (League of Polish Families & Self-Defence), who are anti-war. [Poland also provides a clear link between fascism and the anti-war position...] At the mo, Iraq has been swept under the carpet until after the elections.

The main media obsessions of the past months have been concerned with Belarus and Russia - Polish diplomats attacked on the streets of Moscow, Polish residents in Belarus being subjected to bizarre accusations and repression - all because of Poland's involvement in the Ukraine. Now the Russian-German alliance is triggering (well-founded) paranoia.

The two factors behind the pull out are obviously the size of the Polish army (small, for obvious reasons) and the cost - the war is just too expensive for Poland.

The BBC line, that Poland has had second thoughts after the London bombings, seems completely unfounded. If Poles are not consumed by apathy or domestic/local issues, the majority seem to take a hardline, 'Attack is the best form of defence' line. Appeasement is not looked on well, generally speaking.

Posted by: sd at September 13, 2005 05:10 PM



I keep reading this polak:

> The ideology got massive assistance from its oligarch friendliness,
> for sure, but it wouldn't have gone anywhere if they (35 years ago I
> would have said "we") hadn't persisted in prosyletizing for what felt
> like a doomed struggle. In those days, Hayek was a relic and Marx
> seemed fresh. There's a point to what Cde Cox likes to call dorm room
> bull sessions.

This seems to overlook the importance of two other key factors:
- International relations, especially that a state nominally supporting
progressive ideology was a force that had to be reckoned with - which is not
the case today;
- the inherent fat-headedness and reactionary sympathies of what HL Mencken
called "Boobus Americanus" - and what Richard Hofstadter more accurately
attributed to the reactionary nature of the key US institutions -
evangelical religion and business - and its grip on the popular imagination,
not counterbalanced by progressive institutions, especially organized labor.

Stated differently, the demise of the progressive ideology and causes had
little to do with what 'we' (i.e. lefties collectively) did or failed to do,
but rather was caused by the oligarchy's renewed support for neo-liberalism
thanks to technological advantage it gained in globalization, the demise of
the USSR, and the natural responsiveness to right-leaning calls in the US
populace. The left did not have a chance against that lineup.


ps: by the way, not that I care of course, but we're slightly off topic you know .. . .

what does bother me is: the arms racery that goes unmentioned but is implied as the decent valiant brave honourable and get this, humane thing to do YUK YUK YUK!!!!!!! - all these guys ought to be delivered to the worst bondage fiends and get a thorough milking

perhaps this will steer you back toward so[CIA]lism:

Snippets from chats recorded in that 800K file from openmoney with Les Squires as the driving forcehe proposes new fangled urls like: ->  ->

 quote: After reading Bernard Lietaer's book I underwent a whole money mindshift ( and began seeking a win-win monetary paradigm.

Community support dollars-- 

7/28/2005 11:11:33am Les Squires: Start with barter groups and open them up to cc.

The Digital Lifetime Identity evolved over the past five years from my work in Identity Management in particular protecting minors on the Internet (

Anthon: transaction engine:
7/29/2005 4:38:13pm Anthon: within that project we are indevelopment of a General Ledger framework that, even in early tests scales to many millions of accounts well

Anthon: also there was a project called NeuClear that was designed very much like the P2P system that you have described that allows anyone in the system to audit all balances, accounts, transactions by anyone in the network, I know the creator and also have the source code. Their site is down now because their venture failed last summer

Posted by: indextremist at September 13, 2005 07:15 PM



what was that about Chile Nick? // Bush (polled) in Chile

even one of the least spectacular lbo-ers has you all beat:

That sounds basically right to me, although I would note that the swing to the right in the US began as early as 1975 when capital decided to go on the offensive as it was it was seeing its rates of profit getting squeezed with the heating up of international competition, the rise of real wages because of tight labor markets, and the rising costs due to various forms of progressive legislation that had been passed during the 1960s and 1970s to protect the rights of minorities, of women, and to protect the environment. In other words capital was reacting against the successes of the 1960s social movements which were now impinging on its own profits. Hence, the swing to monetarism, deregulation, privatization, the attacks on labor unions, the whole "family values" thing, which was an attempt to shift the costs of social reproduction back from the state on to individuals and families. Capital was determined to cut its costs as much as possible, hence, it went on a political offensive to roll back the gains of the 1960s, to discredit the programs of the Great Society and to weaken the social movements. All this was done by appeals to jingoism, racism, sexism. This is what gave the US, Carter, then Reagan. And in Britain, Callahan, then Thatcher. The things that Wojtek talks about above came a little later but they certainly magnified the power of capital in relation to the rest of society. The increased mobility of capital undercut the bargaining power of workers, who found all their traditional weapons against capital rendered useless. And the collapse of the Soviet Union removed one of the pillars that supported the maintenance of a relatively generous welfare state as a means of keeping capitalism more attractive that Soviet-style so see all ism. - Jim Farmelant

Posted by: indextremist at September 13, 2005 08:08 PM



Indextremist - do you really resonate with that absurd 70s soci*list rhetoric, even after seeing the miserable directionless degeneration it led to?

sd - don't worry, I'd never buy into a BBC line (even if I came across one, which fortunately I rarely do these days) ;)
PS. on evil Media, have you heard of this piece in commentary
exposing the fact that French State TV channel France-2 deliberately collaborated with Palestinian murder incorporated to fake the Israeli killing of Muhammad al-Dura and thus trigger Inifida-2 plus (yet another) new wave of Euro antisemitism? Old Europe is still so 1930s it takes my breath away ...

Posted by: Nick at September 14, 2005 12:40 AM



"an attempt to shift the costs of social reproduction back from the state on to individuals and families" - this is classic communist theology - how dare anybody question the State's right and duty to manage 'social reproduction'?

Posted by: Nick at September 14, 2005 12:54 AM



Glenn Reynolds' latest on Singularity (contains great Vinge quote):
"Kurzweil is an optimist, but even he worries that the Singularity may come as a result of Chinese, not American, efforts, and he's got some disturbing numbers."

Posted by: nick at September 14, 2005 05:52 AM



yup. good quote.

"And what of the arrival of the Singularity itself? What can be said of its actual appearance? Since it involves an intellectual runaway, it will probably occur faster than any technical revolution seen so far. The precipitating event will likely be unexpected -- perhaps even to the researchers involved. ("But all our previous models were catatonic! We were just tweaking some parameters....") If networking is widespread enough (into ubiquitous embedded systems), it may seem as if our artifacts as a whole had suddenly wakened."

y'know what? i don't think we have time to wait for anybody to sonorously confirm: Yea, The Singularity is Upon Us.

it's here.

Posted by: northanger at September 14, 2005 08:25 AM



northanger - that's the part i liked best too

Posted by: nick at September 14, 2005 09:30 AM



hey, suppose the one child policy hadn't materialized, you think china would be lookin a little more like africa today?

Beckerath's most productive years were the 30s, he lost the bid for sovereign so see all softy wear. It didn't get to count cause there wasn't a high price to pay, a pre req up to this day, look at you all; turning the 'do it telepathically, forsake your console' arguellean gospel around into self sustaining tec myst and hype; it's a joke right?

Posted by: poetpiet at September 14, 2005 09:37 AM



p alert: Planned Parenthood solicits pledges based on protests-volume (official via we)

Posted by: piet at September 14, 2005 10:00 AM



This is THE site for The Singularity:

Particularly this section, about the brain:

... more bloody reading (when will we be able to download this sort of data direct to our brains?)

Posted by: sd at September 14, 2005 10:40 AM



>>when will we be able to download this sort of data direct to our brains?

hmmm {looking at watch} very soon.

Posted by: northanger at September 14, 2005 10:48 AM



"This is THE site for The Singularity" ... holy crap, it's HUGE

Posted by: nick at September 14, 2005 10:52 AM



this is a classic:

Human Body Version 2.0
by Ray Kurzweil

Posted by: sd at September 14, 2005 02:04 PM



It doesn't come much clearer than this:

Kurzweil’s Law (aka “the law of accelerating returns”)by Ray Kurzweil

There's been a lot about evolution here recently, now Hyperstition has to have something to say about exponential growth.

Posted by: sd at September 14, 2005 10:31 PM



sd - "now Hyperstition has to have something to say about exponential growth" - you're right - that's the next thread

Posted by: Nick at September 15, 2005 04:55 AM

Posted by: nick at September 15, 2005 07:23 AM's_law

Posted by: northanger at September 15, 2005 07:40 AM



Bush at UN recommends abolition of all tariffs and subsidies:,1280,-5278846,00.html
(love to believe this was serious)

Posted by: nick at September 15, 2005 07:44 AM



Nick - although this is a China thread, I get the feeling that people are really excited about K's The Singularity, as if it were a new thing. Forgive and correct me if I am wrong, but I heard rumors that you used to lecture on the singularity years back at W. So what's new about K's approach - is it that he was just made the notion more famous?

Posted by: Tachi at September 15, 2005 10:06 AM



Tachi - in all modesty, the main difference is where i had amphetamine sulphate, he's got a lifetime of reigorous technical research ...

Posted by: Nick at September 15, 2005 01:30 PM



... rigorous even ...

Posted by: Nick at September 15, 2005 01:30 PM



>>love to believe this was serious
no it isn't. bush has backpedaled on previous pledges & has been accused (as has blair) of creative accounting to hide secret subsidies (aka, Enronisation of the Doha Round). bush's current pledge looks like a well-known tactic to appeal to everyone's "better angels" while keeping a tight grip on US domestic interests.

Posted by: northanger at September 15, 2005 01:37 PM



>>in all modesty,
fuxake nick, spew your spill. love to hear it.

Posted by: northanger at September 15, 2005 01:39 PM



northanger - it's been thoroughly spewed, believe me ... :)

All roads lead to cyberpositive intelligence catastrophe ...

Posted by: Nick at September 15, 2005 01:43 PM



PS. Sadly, can't really argue viz Dubya

Posted by: Nick at September 15, 2005 01:44 PM



... only thing that i can see redeeming his status as a stand-in for something exciting would be JRB for the Supreme Court

Posted by: Nick at September 15, 2005 03:44 PM



>>JRB (Janice Rogers Brown) for the Supreme Court
that sounds like losing sth to gain sth (or maybe that's the other way around. i forgit).

Posted by: northanger at September 15, 2005 04:11 PM



the last three posts (1:44, 3:44 & 4:11):


Posted by: northanger at September 15, 2005 04:23 PM



northanger - yes, I do that too, but I've still got enough dignity to keep it to myself ...

(does your watch mutter to you about the structure of the End Times as well?)

Posted by: Nick at September 15, 2005 04:31 PM



As to JRB - "losing sth" MA!

Posted by: Nick at September 15, 2005 04:32 PM



Mesh-39. Ununuttix (Tick-Tock). Particle Clocks. Pitch Ana-3 Net-Span 9::3 Chaotic Xenodemon of Absolute Coincidence Rt-0:[?] Numerical connection through the absence of any link


Posted by: northanger at September 15, 2005 04:33 PM



144 + 344 + 411 = 899

Posted by: northanger at September 15, 2005 04:35 PM



>>structure of the End Times




Posted by: northanger at September 15, 2005 04:44 PM



that was terrifingly quick and hideously coherent - guess you must be a bot

Posted by: Nick at September 15, 2005 04:46 PM




Posted by: northanger at September 15, 2005 04:55 PM




Lemurian Time War
Kaye assured us that the Board considered the ‘demonstrable time rift’ he was describing to be a ‘matter of the gravest concern’. He explained that the organization had been born in reaction to a nightmare of time coming apart and – to use his exact words - spiraling out of control. To the Board, spirals were particularly repugnant symbols of imperfection and volatility. Unlike closed loops, spirals always have loose ends. This allows them to spread, making them contagious and unpredictable. The Board was counting on Kaye to contain the situation. He was assigned the task of terminating the spiral templex5. [Note #5: The concept of the ‘spiral templex,’ according to which the rigorous analysis of all time anomalies excavates a spiral structure, is fully detailed in R.E. Templeton’s Miskatonic lectures on transcendental time-travel. A brief overview of this material has been published by Ccru as The Templeton Episode, in Digital Hyperstition, Abstract Culture volume 4.]

The Templeton Episode

I met a man who wasn't there: the ethics of Ashbless

Posted by: northanger at September 15, 2005 04:56 PM



excellent mnemostim - spirals need taking upstairs

Posted by: Nick at September 15, 2005 05:08 PM




concupiscence means "lust" but in the catholic sense can mean "yearning of the soul for good"

444 - 414 = 30

AQ 30 = KA
ka is mentioned in the following topics: karoshi (obscure word)
Wage slavery is a term expressing disapproval of a condition where a person feels compelled to work in return for payment of a wage. In colloquial terms, this may refer to people that make a cult of work (the extreme case is dying of karoshi), or those who require one to work in order to be socially acceptable. In terms used by critics of capitalism, wage slavery is the condition where a person must sell his or her labor-power, submitting to the authority of an employer, in order to survive.

Posted by: northanger at September 15, 2005 05:09 PM



>>excellent mnemostim - spirals need taking upstairs
i'm done anyway. going up.

Posted by: northanger at September 15, 2005 05:11 PM



"AQ 30 = KA" - Burroughs, The Western Lands: (Of sevent Egyptian souls, counting down (to us (of course))) "Number five is Ka, the Double, most closely associated with the subject. The Ka, which usually reaches adolescence at the time of bodily death, is the only reliable guide through the Land of the Dead to the western Lands."

Posted by: Nick at September 15, 2005 05:24 PM



"going up" - ya think?

Posted by: Nick at September 15, 2005 05:26 PM




Posted by: northanger at September 15, 2005 06:23 PM



Seven Souls By William S. Burroughs

Intro to Qwernomics


Posted by: northanger at September 15, 2005 07:39 PM



Another DXP innovation worth discussing is that of the Special Economic Zone (SEZ), a deliberate geographical unit of social experimentation. Unfortunately, the idea seems to have got lost recently, but it seems to me countries everywhere could benefit from it, enabling extreme experiments in laissez faire (dis)organization to proceed while permitting inert security-obsessed populations to hold back - of course, within a few years everyone will be clambering to get in as the local GDP doubles every 8 years or so ...

Posted by: Nick at September 16, 2005 03:43 AM

Posted by: powderwellerpiet at September 28, 2005 03:57 PM



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