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This week’s Open Thread.

~ Emil Kirkegaard – Meta-compilation of HBD related materials. Very useful link. Also dug up this Blast from the Past: Who’s afraid of the big bad data?

~ NEW PAPER. Rieger, M. O., Wang, M., & Hens, T. (2021). Universal time preference. PloS One, 16(2), e0245692. (h/t @whyvert)

~ XENOS. Pop Mech: Scientists Believe These Photos Show Mushrooms on Mars—and Proof of Life. One of the authors seems a bit kooky. Still, there seems to have been a sharp increase in observations suggestive of alien life over previous years: Oumuamua; Phosphine gas on Venus; USAF releasing UFO vids; now these Martian shrooms.

~ Redditor writes about the gradations of wealth, which largely backs what I intuited here: Note that even this elite hobnobber, with his very fine grasp on social status associated with various wealth gradations, acknowledges that nothing much changes in the run up from ~$100M to $1B. Soppy conclusion.

~ Pro-Ukrainian band of white supremacists arrested in Russia (h/t Insomniac Resurrected). Backs my oft made point that the most passionarny champions of Ukraine are not actual Ukrainians but Russian Neo-Nazis. Worth bearing in mind that when commenters like “LatW” complain about Putin “repressing” Russian nationalists these days, it’s mainly people like these they have in mind.

~ Razib Khan: Our Three-Body Problem. I really think he overdoes this model of a tripartite cultural division (West/India/China), but worth reading anyway.

~ CRYPTO. PocketNet ($PKOIN) looks like a kind of Gab on blockchain. Laura Loomer recently joined – would be interesting if the deplatformed MAGA people start converging there. Anyhow, I am @akarlin there. I suspect decentralized social media will largely revolve around Holochain and Urbit, but it’s probably not a bad idea to snap up an account there too.

 
• Tags: Blogging, Open Thread 
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  1. Please keep off topic posts to the current Open Thread.

    If you are new to my work, start here.

    Commenting rules. Please note that anonymous comments are not allowed.

  2. I don’t remember if I’ve said this before, or on a different article, but I suspect the recent trend of government and media (redundant really) exposure of information about aliens is a preparation of the population for a new great enemy. With a new “enemy” this allows for the governments of the world, or at least some of them, to admit to the technology they already had without the populace getting wrathful, and be able to extract more wealth and time, and assert greater control, in the name of Global Defense.

    This was done before with China, starting 20 years ago when the first “neutral” mainstream news articles about China started showing up, a trend that eventually culminated in today’s intensely negative atmosphere. Russia was, of course, a more blatant and accelerated case, but they had higher hopes and greater troubles preparing people against China.

    Anyhow, I believe in Aliens and always have. In general, I think Earth benefits from being both wildly remote, and also most advanced species having surpassed the need to “uplift \conquer the savages” phase. Doesn’t mean of course individual groups aren’t ever carrying out conspiracies, experiments, or lone wolf attacks. That’s just natural. It also doesn’t mean humanity should be comfortable in its “protected imbecilic” reservation status. It’s tragic though that knowledge which could help mankind publicly and freely develop ground breaking new technologies that could spread us across the stars will instead continue to be monopolized by select institutions in the name of “Defense” and really for the sake of power. I wouldn’t be surprised at that point if the moon\mars base stories are actually genuine.

    When the cat’s out of the bag though, I suspect like Nuclear technology, they won’t be able to keep it controlled forever.

  3. • Replies: @Bashibuzuk
    @edstodd


    LAITA | LAITI seems to derive from an Italianization of the surname Leitner.
     

    Jewish (Ashkenazic): Leitner; topographic name for someone who lived by a mountain spur or on a slope of a mountain, from Middle High German lite 'mountain slope', 'spur' + the suffix -(n)er, denoting an inhabitant.
     

    Replies: @edstodd

    , @Svevlad
    @edstodd

    Basically gypsies.

    Replies: @Bashibuzuk

  4. Still, there seems to have been a sharp increase in observations suggestive of alien life over previous years

    Yes, there has been a sharp increase in recent years of people who desperately want aliens to exist; this is yet another sign that we are going back to the 1970s. Occam razor: aliens do not exist.

    acknowledges that nothing much changes in the run up from ~$100M to $1B

    I see that you quietly changed the lower bound from $10M to $100M. Well, yeah. There is a world of difference between $10M and $100M.

    • Replies: @A123
    @inertial



    Still, there seems to have been a sharp increase in observations suggestive of alien life over previous years
     
    Yes, there has been a sharp increase in recent years of people who desperately want aliens to exist; this is yet another sign that we are going back to the 1970s. Occam razor: aliens do not exist.
     
    There are three different points to look at:

    -1- Primitive life on other planets
    -2- Intelligent societies on other planets
    -3- Practical interstellar travel

    #1 -- Microorganisms turning up on other planets would not be a surprise. All that is needed for "Earth similar" life is:
    • An exploitable energy gradient
    • Conditions that allow for liquid water
    • Essential elements (H, O, C, N) -- Some additional elements (P, Na, Cl) may not be 100% necessary, but would be really helpful.

    High altitude Venus meets the minimum criteria for microorganisms.

    #2 & #3 -- Multi-generational vessels make for a good sci-fi read. However, there is no immediate, practical gain to the society that makes one. One can imagine a few based on:
    • Pure science funded by the very wealthy.
    • Interstellar lifeboats for an impending stellar catastrophe.

    Unless FTL is practical, there could be other intelligent species out there and the chances of interaction are way down towards zero probability. Even if the species had very different psychological drives, how many resource intensive multi-generation ships could be sent.

    Perhaps a sufficiently advanced species could cross the "mortality barrier" by transferring intelligence to automata. However, why would such a species want to contact humans? The most likely form of a contact via automata is the one described by Saberhagen:


    The Berserker series is a series of space opera science fiction short stories and novels by Fred Saberhagen, in which robotic self-replicating machines strive to destroy all life.
     
    If an alien civilization contacts Earth, it will probably be quite bad for us [MORE].

    PEACE 😇

    Well... There may be one upside...

     

    http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-jZyj8wFCAZw/UA2yv47vnwI/AAAAAAAAFi4/21Ch7coq3Pc/s1600/congress.gif

    Replies: @songbird, @Morton's toes, @dfordoom

  5. A123 says:

    Humor for the open thread. A couple items below the [MORE] tag may be mildly NSFW.

    PEACE 😇

     

     

    [MORE]

     

     

     

     

     

    • Replies: @Thorfinnsson
    @A123

    These memes are terrible and you should feel bad

    Replies: @songbird, @A123, @Blinky Bill

    , @Svevlad
    @A123

    Never has unz.com needed a "cringe" reaction more than this moment

    Replies: @A123

  6. Concerning Russian neo-Nazis, I am very disappointed to learn that they participate in pro-Navalny protests. What is the world coming to!?

    • Replies: @Mikhail
    @The Big Red Scary

    Many "neo-Nazis" the world over aren't let's say the swiftest between the ears. Multiple sources have said that some Russian neo-Nazis are supporting the Kiev regime against the Donbass rebels.

    , @tyrone
    @The Big Red Scary

    Free money from American NGOs......come on man! a dudes gotta have beer money.

  7. • Replies: @utu
    @Mikhail

    The Unz Review was placed in the Kremlin amplifiers category.

    Replies: @Mikhail

  8. @The Big Red Scary
    Concerning Russian neo-Nazis, I am very disappointed to learn that they participate in pro-Navalny protests. What is the world coming to!?

    Replies: @Mikhail, @tyrone

    Many “neo-Nazis” the world over aren’t let’s say the swiftest between the ears. Multiple sources have said that some Russian neo-Nazis are supporting the Kiev regime against the Donbass rebels.

  9. A123 says:
    @inertial

    Still, there seems to have been a sharp increase in observations suggestive of alien life over previous years
     
    Yes, there has been a sharp increase in recent years of people who desperately want aliens to exist; this is yet another sign that we are going back to the 1970s. Occam razor: aliens do not exist.

    acknowledges that nothing much changes in the run up from ~$100M to $1B
     
    I see that you quietly changed the lower bound from $10M to $100M. Well, yeah. There is a world of difference between $10M and $100M.

    Replies: @A123

    Still, there seems to have been a sharp increase in observations suggestive of alien life over previous years

    Yes, there has been a sharp increase in recent years of people who desperately want aliens to exist; this is yet another sign that we are going back to the 1970s. Occam razor: aliens do not exist.

    There are three different points to look at:

    -1- Primitive life on other planets
    -2- Intelligent societies on other planets
    -3- Practical interstellar travel

    #1 — Microorganisms turning up on other planets would not be a surprise. All that is needed for “Earth similar” life is:
    • An exploitable energy gradient
    • Conditions that allow for liquid water
    • Essential elements (H, O, C, N) — Some additional elements (P, Na, Cl) may not be 100% necessary, but would be really helpful.

    High altitude Venus meets the minimum criteria for microorganisms.

    #2 & #3 — Multi-generational vessels make for a good sci-fi read. However, there is no immediate, practical gain to the society that makes one. One can imagine a few based on:
    • Pure science funded by the very wealthy.
    • Interstellar lifeboats for an impending stellar catastrophe.

    Unless FTL is practical, there could be other intelligent species out there and the chances of interaction are way down towards zero probability. Even if the species had very different psychological drives, how many resource intensive multi-generation ships could be sent.

    Perhaps a sufficiently advanced species could cross the “mortality barrier” by transferring intelligence to automata. However, why would such a species want to contact humans? The most likely form of a contact via automata is the one described by Saberhagen:

    The Berserker series is a series of space opera science fiction short stories and novels by Fred Saberhagen, in which robotic self-replicating machines strive to destroy all life.

    If an alien civilization contacts Earth, it will probably be quite bad for us [MORE].

    PEACE 😇

    [MORE]

    Well… There may be one upside…

     

    • Replies: @songbird
    @A123


    how many resource intensive multi-generation ships could be sent.
     
    You just need to send the embryos. Or, if you want to get more extreme, the DNA printers.
    , @Morton's toes
    @A123


    However, why would such a species want to contact humans?
     
    If you have a starship enterprise you are wise enough to avoid this place. Fermi was having a really bad day when he came up with the paradox horse sh*t.

    That isn't to say there isn't plenty of weird stuff out there but UFOlogy fantasies and science fiction plots are way off base. Did anybody read Pasulka's book and like it? She gives good interviews and I bought her book the day it was available and when it came I opened it up and four hours later I threw it in the dumpster I thought it was so terrible. In hindsight part of my reaction (maybe even most) was attributable to my unrealistic expectations that it would be high quality. I am almost sure I own worse books that are sitting around here taking up space.
    , @dfordoom
    @A123


    Multi-generational vessels make for a good sci-fi read. However, there is no immediate, practical gain to the society that makes one.
     
    Not only is there no immediate, practical gain to the society that makes one, it's hard to see any kind of long-term gain either. Even if a colony could be established on a planet many light-years away there's no way the originating society could exert any kind of political control over the colony. Even in the long-term there would be no economic advantages. Interstellar trade ain't gonna happen.

    Even in the unlikely event that the colony survived it would be, from the point of view of the society originating the colony, entirely pointless.

    Unless FTL is practical, there could be other intelligent species out there and the chances of interaction are way down towards zero probability.
     
    Yep. And believing in FTL is like believing in magic.

    Replies: @Bashibuzuk, @mal

  10. @A123
    @inertial



    Still, there seems to have been a sharp increase in observations suggestive of alien life over previous years
     
    Yes, there has been a sharp increase in recent years of people who desperately want aliens to exist; this is yet another sign that we are going back to the 1970s. Occam razor: aliens do not exist.
     
    There are three different points to look at:

    -1- Primitive life on other planets
    -2- Intelligent societies on other planets
    -3- Practical interstellar travel

    #1 -- Microorganisms turning up on other planets would not be a surprise. All that is needed for "Earth similar" life is:
    • An exploitable energy gradient
    • Conditions that allow for liquid water
    • Essential elements (H, O, C, N) -- Some additional elements (P, Na, Cl) may not be 100% necessary, but would be really helpful.

    High altitude Venus meets the minimum criteria for microorganisms.

    #2 & #3 -- Multi-generational vessels make for a good sci-fi read. However, there is no immediate, practical gain to the society that makes one. One can imagine a few based on:
    • Pure science funded by the very wealthy.
    • Interstellar lifeboats for an impending stellar catastrophe.

    Unless FTL is practical, there could be other intelligent species out there and the chances of interaction are way down towards zero probability. Even if the species had very different psychological drives, how many resource intensive multi-generation ships could be sent.

    Perhaps a sufficiently advanced species could cross the "mortality barrier" by transferring intelligence to automata. However, why would such a species want to contact humans? The most likely form of a contact via automata is the one described by Saberhagen:


    The Berserker series is a series of space opera science fiction short stories and novels by Fred Saberhagen, in which robotic self-replicating machines strive to destroy all life.
     
    If an alien civilization contacts Earth, it will probably be quite bad for us [MORE].

    PEACE 😇

    Well... There may be one upside...

     

    http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-jZyj8wFCAZw/UA2yv47vnwI/AAAAAAAAFi4/21Ch7coq3Pc/s1600/congress.gif

    Replies: @songbird, @Morton's toes, @dfordoom

    how many resource intensive multi-generation ships could be sent.

    You just need to send the embryos. Or, if you want to get more extreme, the DNA printers.

  11. @Mikhail
    Clint Watts, et al get pounded good:

    https://clintwatts.substack.com/p/russias-disinformation-ecosystem/comments

    Replies: @utu

    The Unz Review was placed in the Kremlin amplifiers category.

    • Replies: @Mikhail
    @utu

    As per the Biden administration, Katehon wasn't unlike the SCF.

    https://home.treasury.gov/news/press-releases/jy0126

    Mischievously written:


    As a result of today’s designations, all property and interests in property of these targets that are subject to U.S. jurisdiction are blocked, and U.S. persons are generally prohibited from engaging in transactions with them. Additionally, any entities 50 percent or more owned by one or more designated persons are also blocked. In addition, financial institutions and other persons that engage in certain transactions or activities with the sanctioned entities and individuals may expose themselves to secondary sanctions or be subject to an enforcement action.
     
    They don't make it easy to follow-up with them.
  12. Razib Khan: Our Three-Body Problem. I really think he overdoes this model of a tripartite cultural division (West/India/China), but worth reading anyway.

    Razib: “the broader Abrahamic West”, “Meanwhile, Latin America and Africa will carry the Western torch onward with their demographic dynamism and growth”

    Is this just Schadenfreude? Or is Razib seriously this bat-shit insane, to conflate European civilization with Arabs, Jews, and sub-Saharans?

    • Replies: @Mitleser
    @songbird

    He is a cosmopolitan who fears the Whites.


    I’m a brown-skinned man whose ancestors took the alien name Khan and adopted a foreign religion. I have relatives across the world as we scatter. My whole lineage screams cosmopolitan. It has for hundreds of years. This is my nature, constitutive to me. Since the Axial Age there have been symbol-manipulators who transcend nations and bind peoples together ideologically. That is me and my kind.
     

    But the real problem I have is the white affinity groups. I am not happy with the “people of color” affinity groups either, but in some way, these have been around since the 1960’s. The emergence of white affinity groups seems a nod to the re-racialization of society as the explicit text. The fundamental issue is simple: I do not want white people to think about their race. I do not want white people to think of themselves in racial terms. The history of white Americans thinking in racialized terms is not good for people who look like me. These fools are going to get us killed!
     
    https://www.gnxp.com/WordPress/2021/04/13/verwoerds-revenge/

    Replies: @Pericles

    , @Anatoly Karlin
    @songbird

    I diplomatically left that uncommented. But yes.

    , @Svevlad
    @songbird

    Well, he didn't say European, he said Western... which is currently headed by Europe, but includes the Middle East as well

    Africa is more like a "western outpost" and it's own thing. We'll see if the increasing pragmatism of the world and cutting off the gibs as Europe finally croaks will produce any eugenic effect.

    Replies: @songbird

  13. mal says:

    One of the authors seems a bit kooky. Still, there seems to have been a sharp increase in observations suggestive of alien life over previous years.

    Our detection technology is improving dramatically, so we see new things constantly. I mean, we didn’t even see exoplanets until like 1992. Today we see 1,000’s of them and see gravitational waves from star collisions etc so we see a lot of weird stuff for the first time. It’s like a blind man gaining ability to see. The odds of detecting alien life are increasing dramatically, so people are starting to take it seriously.

  14. @songbird

    Razib Khan: Our Three-Body Problem. I really think he overdoes this model of a tripartite cultural division (West/India/China), but worth reading anyway.
     
    Razib: "the broader Abrahamic West", "Meanwhile, Latin America and Africa will carry the Western torch onward with their demographic dynamism and growth"

    Is this just Schadenfreude? Or is Razib seriously this bat-shit insane, to conflate European civilization with Arabs, Jews, and sub-Saharans?

    Replies: @Mitleser, @Anatoly Karlin, @Svevlad

    He is a cosmopolitan who fears the Whites.

    I’m a brown-skinned man whose ancestors took the alien name Khan and adopted a foreign religion. I have relatives across the world as we scatter. My whole lineage screams cosmopolitan. It has for hundreds of years. This is my nature, constitutive to me. Since the Axial Age there have been symbol-manipulators who transcend nations and bind peoples together ideologically. That is me and my kind.

    But the real problem I have is the white affinity groups. I am not happy with the “people of color” affinity groups either, but in some way, these have been around since the 1960’s. The emergence of white affinity groups seems a nod to the re-racialization of society as the explicit text. The fundamental issue is simple: I do not want white people to think about their race. I do not want white people to think of themselves in racial terms. The history of white Americans thinking in racialized terms is not good for people who look like me. These fools are going to get us killed!

    https://www.gnxp.com/WordPress/2021/04/13/verwoerds-revenge/

    • Thanks: songbird, Tor597
    • Replies: @Pericles
    @Mitleser

    Basically some sort of bangla-jew? (Well, the name is muslim, I guess.)


    Human societies need to operate at some sort of equilibrium so that extreme cosmopolitans (like me) and extreme localists can coexist. The liberal democratic compromises of the late 20th century were good. They established an equipoise for a pluralistic society. What is happening now is cultural radicalism is destroying the social capital and trust that liberalism needs to survive and persist.

     

    Lol, yeah what really happened is bangla-jew, along with many others, burrowed into a white society and now it's not looking so healthy anymore. What you're seeing right now is your precious pluralistic equipoise. Enjoy.

    He of course demands and pleads tearfully for the rights of his mixed children. Formerly-white society must accomodate them at any cost! Or what, his extreme cosmopolitanism will trigger him to move to the next collection of suckers a few years early?

    In short, I can't say I like this guy. I know, I know, he's based bangla-jew and has appeared in the sidebar to the right. Nevertheless.

  15. This is, I believe, what is called a Reddit moment!

    • Replies: @DNS
    @DNS

    Imgur link didn't translate into an image in the above post, hopefully Karlin can edit the above comment so that the image does appear and also delete this comment after it has been done.

    https://i.imgur.com/ATuMPUw.png

    , @songbird
    @DNS

    Heard an amusing example of liberal paranoia the other day: China will use its space station to develop new bioweapons because it is not an international station and so has no oversight.

    , @Yellowface Anon
    @DNS

    West Taiwan kek

    To be serious, driving CCP out of power won't be the real victory for the American Empire. Drawing borders like this only shreds some of the most restive borderland China has been devoting disproportionate resources in holding (I'm not advocating for separatism BTW), and China with the territories in the meme still has the bulk of its population and economic base. It's about 90s Russia redux and reducing the resultant mess into globalist satrapies. If a largely cohesive Chinese state remained without massive forced deCCPization (Pozzing and killing more than CCP ever did outside of Maoist insanity) the rise of China as a hyperpower would only be delayed.



    When the surveillance state would be dismantled in China, it would be consolidated in the West with a fully-blown green social credit score from WEF, to fight against Climate Change and rid the land of Deplorables!

  16. @DNS
    This is, I believe, what is called a Reddit moment!



    https://imgur.com/jHLwry5

    https://i.redd.it/qeryhi1g6px61.jpg

    Replies: @DNS, @songbird, @Yellowface Anon

    Imgur link didn’t translate into an image in the above post, hopefully Karlin can edit the above comment so that the image does appear and also delete this comment after it has been done.

  17. @DNS
    This is, I believe, what is called a Reddit moment!



    https://imgur.com/jHLwry5

    https://i.redd.it/qeryhi1g6px61.jpg

    Replies: @DNS, @songbird, @Yellowface Anon

    Heard an amusing example of liberal paranoia the other day: China will use its space station to develop new bioweapons because it is not an international station and so has no oversight.

  18. Diversity causes such a great economic distortion that I suspect that as it starts to make its way onto currency, more and more, it will be paired with greater and greater inflation. The Renminbi which has only Mao on it, might be in a position of mimetic strength.

    But I think the ideal currency would signal racism as a symbol of honesty. Since old paper bills are often removed from circulation and new ones printed, it might be a good idea to include the latest crime statistics or HBD findings on them.

  19. @A123
    @inertial



    Still, there seems to have been a sharp increase in observations suggestive of alien life over previous years
     
    Yes, there has been a sharp increase in recent years of people who desperately want aliens to exist; this is yet another sign that we are going back to the 1970s. Occam razor: aliens do not exist.
     
    There are three different points to look at:

    -1- Primitive life on other planets
    -2- Intelligent societies on other planets
    -3- Practical interstellar travel

    #1 -- Microorganisms turning up on other planets would not be a surprise. All that is needed for "Earth similar" life is:
    • An exploitable energy gradient
    • Conditions that allow for liquid water
    • Essential elements (H, O, C, N) -- Some additional elements (P, Na, Cl) may not be 100% necessary, but would be really helpful.

    High altitude Venus meets the minimum criteria for microorganisms.

    #2 & #3 -- Multi-generational vessels make for a good sci-fi read. However, there is no immediate, practical gain to the society that makes one. One can imagine a few based on:
    • Pure science funded by the very wealthy.
    • Interstellar lifeboats for an impending stellar catastrophe.

    Unless FTL is practical, there could be other intelligent species out there and the chances of interaction are way down towards zero probability. Even if the species had very different psychological drives, how many resource intensive multi-generation ships could be sent.

    Perhaps a sufficiently advanced species could cross the "mortality barrier" by transferring intelligence to automata. However, why would such a species want to contact humans? The most likely form of a contact via automata is the one described by Saberhagen:


    The Berserker series is a series of space opera science fiction short stories and novels by Fred Saberhagen, in which robotic self-replicating machines strive to destroy all life.
     
    If an alien civilization contacts Earth, it will probably be quite bad for us [MORE].

    PEACE 😇

    Well... There may be one upside...

     

    http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-jZyj8wFCAZw/UA2yv47vnwI/AAAAAAAAFi4/21Ch7coq3Pc/s1600/congress.gif

    Replies: @songbird, @Morton's toes, @dfordoom

    However, why would such a species want to contact humans?

    If you have a starship enterprise you are wise enough to avoid this place. Fermi was having a really bad day when he came up with the paradox horse sh*t.

    That isn’t to say there isn’t plenty of weird stuff out there but UFOlogy fantasies and science fiction plots are way off base. Did anybody read Pasulka’s book and like it? She gives good interviews and I bought her book the day it was available and when it came I opened it up and four hours later I threw it in the dumpster I thought it was so terrible. In hindsight part of my reaction (maybe even most) was attributable to my unrealistic expectations that it would be high quality. I am almost sure I own worse books that are sitting around here taking up space.

    • Agree: A123
  20. @edstodd
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nkGiFpJC9LM

    Replies: @Bashibuzuk, @Svevlad

    LAITA | LAITI seems to derive from an Italianization of the surname Leitner.

    Jewish (Ashkenazic): Leitner; topographic name for someone who lived by a mountain spur or on a slope of a mountain, from Middle High German lite ‘mountain slope’, ‘spur’ + the suffix -(n)er, denoting an inhabitant.

    • Replies: @edstodd
    @Bashibuzuk

    Leitner is a German surname, not Jewish. Some Jews may have it, but it's mostly a German surname.

    Most of his videos feature the down and out, underclass, and homeless of LA's Skid Row, many of them black and Latino. Lots of black drug addicts, prostitutes, pimps, Latino gangbangers and prisoners, etc. So if you're trying to suggest that he's some Jewish guy trying to make white hillbillies look bad, you'd be mistaken. He features degenerates of all kinds.

    The video of the inbred Whitaker family of Odd, West Virginia has the most views because it's the most disturbing in his series.

    It's possible he may be Jewish, but he looks more Germanic.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=swXUy2XK7To

    Replies: @Bashibuzuk

  21. @Mitleser
    @songbird

    He is a cosmopolitan who fears the Whites.


    I’m a brown-skinned man whose ancestors took the alien name Khan and adopted a foreign religion. I have relatives across the world as we scatter. My whole lineage screams cosmopolitan. It has for hundreds of years. This is my nature, constitutive to me. Since the Axial Age there have been symbol-manipulators who transcend nations and bind peoples together ideologically. That is me and my kind.
     

    But the real problem I have is the white affinity groups. I am not happy with the “people of color” affinity groups either, but in some way, these have been around since the 1960’s. The emergence of white affinity groups seems a nod to the re-racialization of society as the explicit text. The fundamental issue is simple: I do not want white people to think about their race. I do not want white people to think of themselves in racial terms. The history of white Americans thinking in racialized terms is not good for people who look like me. These fools are going to get us killed!
     
    https://www.gnxp.com/WordPress/2021/04/13/verwoerds-revenge/

    Replies: @Pericles

    Basically some sort of bangla-jew? (Well, the name is muslim, I guess.)

    Human societies need to operate at some sort of equilibrium so that extreme cosmopolitans (like me) and extreme localists can coexist. The liberal democratic compromises of the late 20th century were good. They established an equipoise for a pluralistic society. What is happening now is cultural radicalism is destroying the social capital and trust that liberalism needs to survive and persist.

    Lol, yeah what really happened is bangla-jew, along with many others, burrowed into a white society and now it’s not looking so healthy anymore. What you’re seeing right now is your precious pluralistic equipoise. Enjoy.

    He of course demands and pleads tearfully for the rights of his mixed children. Formerly-white society must accomodate them at any cost! Or what, his extreme cosmopolitanism will trigger him to move to the next collection of suckers a few years early?

    In short, I can’t say I like this guy. I know, I know, he’s based bangla-jew and has appeared in the sidebar to the right. Nevertheless.

  22. @songbird

    Razib Khan: Our Three-Body Problem. I really think he overdoes this model of a tripartite cultural division (West/India/China), but worth reading anyway.
     
    Razib: "the broader Abrahamic West", "Meanwhile, Latin America and Africa will carry the Western torch onward with their demographic dynamism and growth"

    Is this just Schadenfreude? Or is Razib seriously this bat-shit insane, to conflate European civilization with Arabs, Jews, and sub-Saharans?

    Replies: @Mitleser, @Anatoly Karlin, @Svevlad

    I diplomatically left that uncommented. But yes.

    • Agree: songbird
  23. Slovakia and Ukraine have created a TV serial about Slavs (akin to Vikings, perhaps?) set in the 7th century.

    Bazibuzhuk?

    https://life.pravda.com.ua/culture/2021/05/8/244836/

    • Replies: @Bashibuzuk
    @AP

    I'm afraid they will make it into some pseudo-medieval fantasy story. That is unfortunately what happens often with these kinds of series around the world.

    There are two things that prevent us from doing great movies and series about these periods: 1) a relatively scarce information about the mores of that time and 2) our biases (both positive and negative) about the people who lived then.

    We tend to see them either as barbarian and backwards or outstanding and heroic. While really they were probably mainly average people, who perhaps were psychologically speaking much closer to us than we might imagine.

    I often think of Gospels, Buddhist texts presenting discussions of Gautama Buddha or the Hadiths of Muhammad and his companions as a proof that humans have not mentally and morally changed that much in the last 2500 years.

    It would be great to see a series made with these optics, while sticking to the most possible exact knowledge of archeology and what is left of historical archives of these times. But perhaps it wouldn't be entertaining enough.

    Also, there is the nationalist and ethnic aspects where our ancestors are shown as greater than their adversaries from other ethnic groups. This adds another layer of distortion.

    Anyway, I am perhaps being too pedantic and criticizing too much. I'll certainly have a look into this series.

    Thanks AP.

    , @Mr. Hack
    @AP

    Perhaps a flavor of what this upcoming series looks like can be obtained by watching the 2017 film "The Stronghold". It's about a young Ukrainian student that finds his way into a time warp tunnel and travels back to the 12th century and finds himself in the midst of an era where Ukrainian/Slavic tribes are battling nomadic (Mongol?) tribes for their very survival. It's a very watchable film that you can locate on YouTube for free. I once recommended this film to you and thought that it would be suitable for your whole family, don't know if you ever watched it?

    https://youtu.be/KsYyN7c-18A

  24. @utu
    @Mikhail

    The Unz Review was placed in the Kremlin amplifiers category.

    Replies: @Mikhail

    As per the Biden administration, Katehon wasn’t unlike the SCF.

    https://home.treasury.gov/news/press-releases/jy0126

    Mischievously written:

    As a result of today’s designations, all property and interests in property of these targets that are subject to U.S. jurisdiction are blocked, and U.S. persons are generally prohibited from engaging in transactions with them. Additionally, any entities 50 percent or more owned by one or more designated persons are also blocked. In addition, financial institutions and other persons that engage in certain transactions or activities with the sanctioned entities and individuals may expose themselves to secondary sanctions or be subject to an enforcement action.

    They don’t make it easy to follow-up with them.

  25. @Bashibuzuk
    @edstodd


    LAITA | LAITI seems to derive from an Italianization of the surname Leitner.
     

    Jewish (Ashkenazic): Leitner; topographic name for someone who lived by a mountain spur or on a slope of a mountain, from Middle High German lite 'mountain slope', 'spur' + the suffix -(n)er, denoting an inhabitant.
     

    Replies: @edstodd

    Leitner is a German surname, not Jewish. Some Jews may have it, but it’s mostly a German surname.

    Most of his videos feature the down and out, underclass, and homeless of LA’s Skid Row, many of them black and Latino. Lots of black drug addicts, prostitutes, pimps, Latino gangbangers and prisoners, etc. So if you’re trying to suggest that he’s some Jewish guy trying to make white hillbillies look bad, you’d be mistaken. He features degenerates of all kinds.

    The video of the inbred Whitaker family of Odd, West Virginia has the most views because it’s the most disturbing in his series.

    It’s possible he may be Jewish, but he looks more Germanic.

    • Replies: @Bashibuzuk
    @edstodd

    What does he try to convey through his videos and why did you post it here?

    That is except from making a freak show of these poor folks...

  26. @edstodd
    @Bashibuzuk

    Leitner is a German surname, not Jewish. Some Jews may have it, but it's mostly a German surname.

    Most of his videos feature the down and out, underclass, and homeless of LA's Skid Row, many of them black and Latino. Lots of black drug addicts, prostitutes, pimps, Latino gangbangers and prisoners, etc. So if you're trying to suggest that he's some Jewish guy trying to make white hillbillies look bad, you'd be mistaken. He features degenerates of all kinds.

    The video of the inbred Whitaker family of Odd, West Virginia has the most views because it's the most disturbing in his series.

    It's possible he may be Jewish, but he looks more Germanic.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=swXUy2XK7To

    Replies: @Bashibuzuk

    What does he try to convey through his videos and why did you post it here?

    That is except from making a freak show of these poor folks…

  27. @A123
    @inertial



    Still, there seems to have been a sharp increase in observations suggestive of alien life over previous years
     
    Yes, there has been a sharp increase in recent years of people who desperately want aliens to exist; this is yet another sign that we are going back to the 1970s. Occam razor: aliens do not exist.
     
    There are three different points to look at:

    -1- Primitive life on other planets
    -2- Intelligent societies on other planets
    -3- Practical interstellar travel

    #1 -- Microorganisms turning up on other planets would not be a surprise. All that is needed for "Earth similar" life is:
    • An exploitable energy gradient
    • Conditions that allow for liquid water
    • Essential elements (H, O, C, N) -- Some additional elements (P, Na, Cl) may not be 100% necessary, but would be really helpful.

    High altitude Venus meets the minimum criteria for microorganisms.

    #2 & #3 -- Multi-generational vessels make for a good sci-fi read. However, there is no immediate, practical gain to the society that makes one. One can imagine a few based on:
    • Pure science funded by the very wealthy.
    • Interstellar lifeboats for an impending stellar catastrophe.

    Unless FTL is practical, there could be other intelligent species out there and the chances of interaction are way down towards zero probability. Even if the species had very different psychological drives, how many resource intensive multi-generation ships could be sent.

    Perhaps a sufficiently advanced species could cross the "mortality barrier" by transferring intelligence to automata. However, why would such a species want to contact humans? The most likely form of a contact via automata is the one described by Saberhagen:


    The Berserker series is a series of space opera science fiction short stories and novels by Fred Saberhagen, in which robotic self-replicating machines strive to destroy all life.
     
    If an alien civilization contacts Earth, it will probably be quite bad for us [MORE].

    PEACE 😇

    Well... There may be one upside...

     

    http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-jZyj8wFCAZw/UA2yv47vnwI/AAAAAAAAFi4/21Ch7coq3Pc/s1600/congress.gif

    Replies: @songbird, @Morton's toes, @dfordoom

    Multi-generational vessels make for a good sci-fi read. However, there is no immediate, practical gain to the society that makes one.

    Not only is there no immediate, practical gain to the society that makes one, it’s hard to see any kind of long-term gain either. Even if a colony could be established on a planet many light-years away there’s no way the originating society could exert any kind of political control over the colony. Even in the long-term there would be no economic advantages. Interstellar trade ain’t gonna happen.

    Even in the unlikely event that the colony survived it would be, from the point of view of the society originating the colony, entirely pointless.

    Unless FTL is practical, there could be other intelligent species out there and the chances of interaction are way down towards zero probability.

    Yep. And believing in FTL is like believing in magic.

    • Replies: @Bashibuzuk
    @dfordoom


    Yep. And believing in FTL is like believing in magic.
     
    Perhaps some intelligent life forms find a way to get past the barriers of FTL travel because they are exceedingly bright and perceptive. But I doubt that we will.
    , @mal
    @dfordoom


    Even in the unlikely event that the colony survived it would be, from the point of view of the society originating the colony, entirely pointless.
     
    The point of interstellar colonies would be the same as for why life spreads on Earth - developing adaptations to different environments in order to maximize survival potential.

    But yes, sending interstellar colony ships is a bad idea. What you want to do is send seeds containing various genetic tool kits at relativistic speeds into molecular clouds that serve as stellar nurseries. Such clouds are usually a few light years across and will solve the problem of slowing down upon arrival, and your seeds can simply be picked up by the newly born stars as they leave the nursery. It is actually a fairly quick process, and of course, life in such systems will be older than than the systems themselves.


    Yep. And believing in FTL is like believing in magic.
     
    Well, we know spacetime can expand at speeds faster than light, so never say never.

    Replies: @Malenfant, @Anatoly Karlin, @A123

  28. @AP
    Slovakia and Ukraine have created a TV serial about Slavs (akin to Vikings, perhaps?) set in the 7th century.

    Bazibuzhuk?

    https://life.pravda.com.ua/culture/2021/05/8/244836/

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XDSq_UDOOzc

    Replies: @Bashibuzuk, @Mr. Hack

    I’m afraid they will make it into some pseudo-medieval fantasy story. That is unfortunately what happens often with these kinds of series around the world.

    There are two things that prevent us from doing great movies and series about these periods: 1) a relatively scarce information about the mores of that time and 2) our biases (both positive and negative) about the people who lived then.

    We tend to see them either as barbarian and backwards or outstanding and heroic. While really they were probably mainly average people, who perhaps were psychologically speaking much closer to us than we might imagine.

    I often think of Gospels, Buddhist texts presenting discussions of Gautama Buddha or the Hadiths of Muhammad and his companions as a proof that humans have not mentally and morally changed that much in the last 2500 years.

    It would be great to see a series made with these optics, while sticking to the most possible exact knowledge of archeology and what is left of historical archives of these times. But perhaps it wouldn’t be entertaining enough.

    Also, there is the nationalist and ethnic aspects where our ancestors are shown as greater than their adversaries from other ethnic groups. This adds another layer of distortion.

    Anyway, I am perhaps being too pedantic and criticizing too much. I’ll certainly have a look into this series.

    Thanks AP.

  29. @dfordoom
    @A123


    Multi-generational vessels make for a good sci-fi read. However, there is no immediate, practical gain to the society that makes one.
     
    Not only is there no immediate, practical gain to the society that makes one, it's hard to see any kind of long-term gain either. Even if a colony could be established on a planet many light-years away there's no way the originating society could exert any kind of political control over the colony. Even in the long-term there would be no economic advantages. Interstellar trade ain't gonna happen.

    Even in the unlikely event that the colony survived it would be, from the point of view of the society originating the colony, entirely pointless.

    Unless FTL is practical, there could be other intelligent species out there and the chances of interaction are way down towards zero probability.
     
    Yep. And believing in FTL is like believing in magic.

    Replies: @Bashibuzuk, @mal

    Yep. And believing in FTL is like believing in magic.

    Perhaps some intelligent life forms find a way to get past the barriers of FTL travel because they are exceedingly bright and perceptive. But I doubt that we will.

  30. mal says:
    @dfordoom
    @A123


    Multi-generational vessels make for a good sci-fi read. However, there is no immediate, practical gain to the society that makes one.
     
    Not only is there no immediate, practical gain to the society that makes one, it's hard to see any kind of long-term gain either. Even if a colony could be established on a planet many light-years away there's no way the originating society could exert any kind of political control over the colony. Even in the long-term there would be no economic advantages. Interstellar trade ain't gonna happen.

    Even in the unlikely event that the colony survived it would be, from the point of view of the society originating the colony, entirely pointless.

    Unless FTL is practical, there could be other intelligent species out there and the chances of interaction are way down towards zero probability.
     
    Yep. And believing in FTL is like believing in magic.

    Replies: @Bashibuzuk, @mal

    Even in the unlikely event that the colony survived it would be, from the point of view of the society originating the colony, entirely pointless.

    The point of interstellar colonies would be the same as for why life spreads on Earth – developing adaptations to different environments in order to maximize survival potential.

    But yes, sending interstellar colony ships is a bad idea. What you want to do is send seeds containing various genetic tool kits at relativistic speeds into molecular clouds that serve as stellar nurseries. Such clouds are usually a few light years across and will solve the problem of slowing down upon arrival, and your seeds can simply be picked up by the newly born stars as they leave the nursery. It is actually a fairly quick process, and of course, life in such systems will be older than than the systems themselves.

    Yep. And believing in FTL is like believing in magic.

    Well, we know spacetime can expand at speeds faster than light, so never say never.

    • Replies: @Malenfant
    @mal


    Well, we know spacetime can expand at speeds faster than light, so never say never.

     

    There's no upper bound on the rate of the fabric of space's expansion -- and it has been consistently, and considerably, faster than light.

    I agree with you: There might well be New Physics that allow for all sorts of strange and wonderful things. But whether humans are capable of discovering them is anybody's guess. If the future is "Woke," discoveries will probably have to wait.
    , @Anatoly Karlin
    @mal


    Well, we know spacetime can expand at speeds faster than light, so never say never.
     
    FTL. Relativity. Causality. Pick two. Very sad, because FTL is cool, hard to envisage proper interstellar wars without it.

    Replies: @mal, @Menschmaschine

    , @A123
    @mal


    But yes, sending interstellar colony ships is a bad idea. What you want to do is send seeds containing various genetic tool kits at relativistic speeds into molecular clouds that serve as stellar nurseries.
     
    This could generate a level of "genetic survival". At the simplest level, life reproduces itself. Thus, the method may be of value to some portion of the population.

    It is hard to see how this would deliver "cultural survival". Much of society is founded on parent-child relationships. A society where the "first" seeded generation consists of machine taught humans? Such a launch would be a very different "human experience".

    PEACE 😇

    Replies: @mal

  31. Pro-Ukrainian band of white supremacists arrested in Russia (h/t Insomniac Resurrected). Backs my oft made point that the most passionarny champions of Ukraine are not actual Ukrainians but Russian Neo-Nazis.

    If actual Nazis recognize the Ukrainian regime as Nazi, so much so that they are willing to go to prison for it, then perhaps we should dispense with niceties and call the Nazi Banderastan for what it is?

    • Replies: @Bashibuzuk
    @Felix Keverich

    Ukrainian regime is as "Banderist" as Russian regime is "Patriotic ", that is only in a sufficient amount to distract the attention of the Russian and Ukrainian masses from them being dispossessed by their local post-Soviet corrupt elites. The only difference is that the "Russian " crooks will glorify Tsarist and Soviet heroic past, while the "Ukrainian " crooks would glorify the Cossack and Nationalist one. Both will tell lies and throw one Slav people against the other. Both are criminals. Any sane person would despise both of them, but post-Soviet populations have had their sanity unfortunately debased and their just anger misdirected.

    Replies: @Mr. Hack

    , @Anatoly Karlin
    @Felix Keverich

    I would say it is more like heretics and Traitor Marines within the Imperium of Russia seeking sanctuary on the chaos world that is Ukraine.

    From there, powered by the Ruinous Powers of the West and supplied by its Hell-Forges, they wage their Long War on the Imperium...

  32. You’re a holochain guy?

    • Replies: @Anatoly Karlin
    @40 Lashes Less One

    I have a small stack. It's probably overvalued after that 30x in Feb-Mar, so not planning to buy more.

    In this space, I think Urbit has much more potential for short-term growth (i.e. during this bull run), when stars become tokenized in a few months allowing for easier price discovery.

  33. @mal
    @dfordoom


    Even in the unlikely event that the colony survived it would be, from the point of view of the society originating the colony, entirely pointless.
     
    The point of interstellar colonies would be the same as for why life spreads on Earth - developing adaptations to different environments in order to maximize survival potential.

    But yes, sending interstellar colony ships is a bad idea. What you want to do is send seeds containing various genetic tool kits at relativistic speeds into molecular clouds that serve as stellar nurseries. Such clouds are usually a few light years across and will solve the problem of slowing down upon arrival, and your seeds can simply be picked up by the newly born stars as they leave the nursery. It is actually a fairly quick process, and of course, life in such systems will be older than than the systems themselves.


    Yep. And believing in FTL is like believing in magic.
     
    Well, we know spacetime can expand at speeds faster than light, so never say never.

    Replies: @Malenfant, @Anatoly Karlin, @A123

    Well, we know spacetime can expand at speeds faster than light, so never say never.

    There’s no upper bound on the rate of the fabric of space’s expansion — and it has been consistently, and considerably, faster than light.

    I agree with you: There might well be New Physics that allow for all sorts of strange and wonderful things. But whether humans are capable of discovering them is anybody’s guess. If the future is “Woke,” discoveries will probably have to wait.

    • Agree: mal
  34. This is a gay Romne-tier Mormon cuckservative trying to break any sense of solidarity normal people might have with China. Can Duke of Qin or somebody more knowledgeable of the subject matter explain precisely how fake this is? Thanks.

    • Replies: @Malenfant
    @SeanR


    Are you worried about political correctness gone awry, weaponized by mediocrities to defame the worthy, suffocating truth, holding honest inquiry hostage through fear and terror? That problem is worse in China.

     
    This nigga been living under a rock? I realize that was written in 2017, but even still...

    Do you fear a culture actively hostile to the free exercise of religion? Hostility that not only permeates through every layer of society, but is backed by the awesome power of the state?

    These too are all worse in China.

     

    This is self-evidently good. Hostility to Islam is a virtue. Christianity, now a shell, seems like nothing so much as a vehicle for Globohomo -- and, more to the point, has always been hostile to the modern Chinese state. Most major Christian denominations are overtly political, and often put their politics first, which is exactly what China's government is wisely on guard against. Ultimately, the repression of this debased alien/Semitic religion is also a virtue.
    , @Mitleser
    @SeanR

    Ask your local Chinese/American Friendship Center for help.

    https://i2.wp.com/www.chinasmack.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/12/Chinese-invasion-of-america-red-dawn-remake-08.jpg

    Replies: @Blinky Bill

    , @Daniel Chieh
    @SeanR

    Greer has to write what he needs to write to get a government job. We all feel for him.

  35. Very nice to read that finally China ($10 404, 62nd place in the world) overtook RF (10 037, 64th place) by GDP per capita in nominal terms last year and the gap is projected only to get bigger next few years:

    https://bit.ly/33vKpiO

    https://zen.yandex.ru/media/fintonkosti/vpervye-v-istorii-kitai-obognal-rossiiu-po-vvp-na-dushu-naseleniia-606feedf26119c1d29d73101

    • Replies: @Shortsword
    @sudden death


    China overtook RF (10 037, 64th place) by GDP per capita in nominal terms last year and the gap is projected only to get bigger next few years:
     
    This is mostly due to the ruble being volatile. Russia can still get ahead of China even while having lower growth. Russia was close to having China-level GDP per capita back in 2016 too.
  36. Corona-chan is dealing with the over-population issue in India.

    It will be nice having more Lebensraum once this is all over.

    • Disagree: Blinky Bill
    • Replies: @Anatoly Karlin
    @DNS

    I don't agree with Indophobia.

    Anyhow, this is a nothingburger. There's no evidence that the Indian variant is significantly more lethal, it is more infectious, and most of the previous waves it largely missed out on are concentrating on India now. So they are packing in the mortality burden experienced in Europe/Americas over a couple of months.

    Bad but it's going to be over soon. Monsoon season is 2 months away.

    Replies: @DNS, @That Would Be Telling

  37. @SeanR
    https://twitter.com/Scholars_Stage/status/1389567464594358275

    This is a gay Romne-tier Mormon cuckservative trying to break any sense of solidarity normal people might have with China. Can Duke of Qin or somebody more knowledgeable of the subject matter explain precisely how fake this is? Thanks.

    Replies: @Malenfant, @Mitleser, @Daniel Chieh

    Are you worried about political correctness gone awry, weaponized by mediocrities to defame the worthy, suffocating truth, holding honest inquiry hostage through fear and terror? That problem is worse in China.

    This nigga been living under a rock? I realize that was written in 2017, but even still…

    Do you fear a culture actively hostile to the free exercise of religion? Hostility that not only permeates through every layer of society, but is backed by the awesome power of the state?

    These too are all worse in China.

    This is self-evidently good. Hostility to Islam is a virtue. Christianity, now a shell, seems like nothing so much as a vehicle for Globohomo — and, more to the point, has always been hostile to the modern Chinese state. Most major Christian denominations are overtly political, and often put their politics first, which is exactly what China’s government is wisely on guard against. Ultimately, the repression of this debased alien/Semitic religion is also a virtue.

    • Agree: dfordoom
  38. @A123
    Humor for the open thread. A couple items below the [MORE] tag may be mildly NSFW.

    PEACE 😇

     
    https://pbs.twimg.com/media/EncCYKqVcAEUxqo.jpg

     
    https://i.imgur.com/PV3V6uL.jpg



     
    https://www.blazingcatfur.ca/wp-content/uploads/2021/05/fearmongering-tyranny.jpg

     
    https://i.imgur.com/evePLvk.jpg

     
    https://i.imgur.com/aHqYJbX.jpg

     
    https://1.bp.blogspot.com/--Ri2Om0rjes/YJLtxkGDi0I/AAAAAAAA2TM/1iV6rp3EEFAMpR0RfVjRgOcErbZdTGA8ACLcBGAsYHQ/s768/121595853_10219846215051393_7877792775376564414_n.jpg

     
    https://i.imgur.com/sdRDDe9.png

    Replies: @Thorfinnsson, @Svevlad

    These memes are terrible and you should feel bad

    • Replies: @songbird
    @Thorfinnsson

    Mostly agree, though I think the first one is sort of funny. "Tap dance theory" and a snake: that captures something of the modern ideology of education. If anything, it suffers from the punchline being in the first frame. Probably, it would have been better as a single cell.

    , @A123
    @Thorfinnsson

    The first two are admittedly better than the rest. Another reason why I used the [MORE] tag, in addition to covering potentially offensive material.

    I suspect most American patriots would find them mildly amusing, even if a couple of them a bit weak. SJW Globalists and Harris/Biden aficionados would call them "terrible".

    PEACE 😇

    , @Blinky Bill
    @Thorfinnsson

    https://www.unz.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/08/guest-post-israel-9.jpg

    Replies: @mal

  39. @AP
    Slovakia and Ukraine have created a TV serial about Slavs (akin to Vikings, perhaps?) set in the 7th century.

    Bazibuzhuk?

    https://life.pravda.com.ua/culture/2021/05/8/244836/

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XDSq_UDOOzc

    Replies: @Bashibuzuk, @Mr. Hack

    Perhaps a flavor of what this upcoming series looks like can be obtained by watching the 2017 film “The Stronghold”. It’s about a young Ukrainian student that finds his way into a time warp tunnel and travels back to the 12th century and finds himself in the midst of an era where Ukrainian/Slavic tribes are battling nomadic (Mongol?) tribes for their very survival. It’s a very watchable film that you can locate on YouTube for free. I once recommended this film to you and thought that it would be suitable for your whole family, don’t know if you ever watched it?

  40. @sudden death
    Very nice to read that finally China ($10 404, 62nd place in the world) overtook RF (10 037, 64th place) by GDP per capita in nominal terms last year and the gap is projected only to get bigger next few years:

    https://bit.ly/33vKpiO

    https://zen.yandex.ru/media/fintonkosti/vpervye-v-istorii-kitai-obognal-rossiiu-po-vvp-na-dushu-naseleniia-606feedf26119c1d29d73101

    Replies: @Shortsword

    China overtook RF (10 037, 64th place) by GDP per capita in nominal terms last year and the gap is projected only to get bigger next few years:

    This is mostly due to the ruble being volatile. Russia can still get ahead of China even while having lower growth. Russia was close to having China-level GDP per capita back in 2016 too.

  41. @40 Lashes Less One
    You're a holochain guy?

    Replies: @Anatoly Karlin

    I have a small stack. It’s probably overvalued after that 30x in Feb-Mar, so not planning to buy more.

    In this space, I think Urbit has much more potential for short-term growth (i.e. during this bull run), when stars become tokenized in a few months allowing for easier price discovery.

  42. @mal
    @dfordoom


    Even in the unlikely event that the colony survived it would be, from the point of view of the society originating the colony, entirely pointless.
     
    The point of interstellar colonies would be the same as for why life spreads on Earth - developing adaptations to different environments in order to maximize survival potential.

    But yes, sending interstellar colony ships is a bad idea. What you want to do is send seeds containing various genetic tool kits at relativistic speeds into molecular clouds that serve as stellar nurseries. Such clouds are usually a few light years across and will solve the problem of slowing down upon arrival, and your seeds can simply be picked up by the newly born stars as they leave the nursery. It is actually a fairly quick process, and of course, life in such systems will be older than than the systems themselves.


    Yep. And believing in FTL is like believing in magic.
     
    Well, we know spacetime can expand at speeds faster than light, so never say never.

    Replies: @Malenfant, @Anatoly Karlin, @A123

    Well, we know spacetime can expand at speeds faster than light, so never say never.

    FTL. Relativity. Causality. Pick two. Very sad, because FTL is cool, hard to envisage proper interstellar wars without it.

    • Replies: @mal
    @Anatoly Karlin

    Well, fairly sure we will end up amending relativity theory once we figure out the whole dark matter/energy thing.

    And causality might end up overrated as well. What happens behind event horizon stays behind event horizon, at least until black hole evaporates.

    People think about frame dragging and closed spacetime curves in the context of a single black hole but it is much easier to do on the scale of say, galactic cluster. Basically you need mass and galactic cluster has way more mass than a single black hole. And we know for a fact that dark matter causes galaxies to accelerate outward, so it should be a simple task to rearrange it to induce spin and frame dragging.

    So to ignore causality, follow these simple steps:

    1. Rearrange dark matter to induce spin to the galaxy in which you reside.

    2. Induce frame dragging effect and close spacetime curve.

    3. Enjoy time travel alongside said curve.

    Time travel will apply only to your galaxy but still should be fun.

    , @Menschmaschine
    @Anatoly Karlin

    Simply pick FTL and Causality and be happy. As I have explained earlier there are very good reasons besides wishing to conserve causality when travelling FTL to drop relativity and return to a preferred frame/ether model:

    https://www.unz.com/akarlin/open-thread-132/#comment-4352366

  43. @DNS
    Corona-chan is dealing with the over-population issue in India.

    https://twitter.com/ashishkjha/status/1391238137804906496

    It will be nice having more Lebensraum once this is all over.

    Replies: @Anatoly Karlin

    I don’t agree with Indophobia.

    Anyhow, this is a nothingburger. There’s no evidence that the Indian variant is significantly more lethal, it is more infectious, and most of the previous waves it largely missed out on are concentrating on India now. So they are packing in the mortality burden experienced in Europe/Americas over a couple of months.

    Bad but it’s going to be over soon. Monsoon season is 2 months away.

    • Replies: @DNS
    @Anatoly Karlin


    I don’t agree with Indophobia.
     
    I am Indian myself, it was a tongue-in-cheek remark.

    Bad but it’s going to be over soon. Monsoon season is 2 months away.
     
    Hopefully so, a deal with Russia was also signed recently to mass produce the Sputnik V vaccine, it is said 850 million doses will be produced per year.
    , @That Would Be Telling
    @Anatoly Karlin


    So [India is] packing in the mortality burden experienced in Europe/Americas over a couple of months.
     
    I would agree except they are demonstrating why "bending the curve" is so very important. When you exceed your hospital capacity, which is meager to begin with in India, you start losing people at much higher rates. Here with the knowledge gained in 2020, there's a lot of moderate to severe cases that only need supplemental oxygen in addition to a steroid to survive, and their woes with oxygen supplies are so bad their ruling trash is suppressing news of that, arresting people who make social media posts on it, etc.

    Replies: @utu

  44. @SeanR
    https://twitter.com/Scholars_Stage/status/1389567464594358275

    This is a gay Romne-tier Mormon cuckservative trying to break any sense of solidarity normal people might have with China. Can Duke of Qin or somebody more knowledgeable of the subject matter explain precisely how fake this is? Thanks.

    Replies: @Malenfant, @Mitleser, @Daniel Chieh

    Ask your local Chinese/American Friendship Center for help.

    • Agree: Blinky Bill
    • Troll: Yellowface Anon
    • Replies: @Blinky Bill
    @Mitleser

    https://youtu.be/WBcX2EBwnNI

  45. @Thorfinnsson
    @A123

    These memes are terrible and you should feel bad

    Replies: @songbird, @A123, @Blinky Bill

    Mostly agree, though I think the first one is sort of funny. “Tap dance theory” and a snake: that captures something of the modern ideology of education. If anything, it suffers from the punchline being in the first frame. Probably, it would have been better as a single cell.

  46. DNS says:
    @Anatoly Karlin
    @DNS

    I don't agree with Indophobia.

    Anyhow, this is a nothingburger. There's no evidence that the Indian variant is significantly more lethal, it is more infectious, and most of the previous waves it largely missed out on are concentrating on India now. So they are packing in the mortality burden experienced in Europe/Americas over a couple of months.

    Bad but it's going to be over soon. Monsoon season is 2 months away.

    Replies: @DNS, @That Would Be Telling

    I don’t agree with Indophobia.

    I am Indian myself, it was a tongue-in-cheek remark.

    Bad but it’s going to be over soon. Monsoon season is 2 months away.

    Hopefully so, a deal with Russia was also signed recently to mass produce the Sputnik V vaccine, it is said 850 million doses will be produced per year.

  47. @Mitleser
    @SeanR

    Ask your local Chinese/American Friendship Center for help.

    https://i2.wp.com/www.chinasmack.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/12/Chinese-invasion-of-america-red-dawn-remake-08.jpg

    Replies: @Blinky Bill

  48. The reason they see mushrooms on Mars is the same reason they see water erosion effects all over the place on Mars. It’s the same reason some of the photos are provably fake. Also the reason why the sky is lighter than the ground even though the atmosphere on Mars is 0.6% as dense as on Earth. On Earth, the sky is nearly black at an elevation of that density. I could go on, but as you’ve guessed, it’s because the photos were taken on Earth.

  49. @Anatoly Karlin
    @DNS

    I don't agree with Indophobia.

    Anyhow, this is a nothingburger. There's no evidence that the Indian variant is significantly more lethal, it is more infectious, and most of the previous waves it largely missed out on are concentrating on India now. So they are packing in the mortality burden experienced in Europe/Americas over a couple of months.

    Bad but it's going to be over soon. Monsoon season is 2 months away.

    Replies: @DNS, @That Would Be Telling

    So [India is] packing in the mortality burden experienced in Europe/Americas over a couple of months.

    I would agree except they are demonstrating why “bending the curve” is so very important. When you exceed your hospital capacity, which is meager to begin with in India, you start losing people at much higher rates. Here with the knowledge gained in 2020, there’s a lot of moderate to severe cases that only need supplemental oxygen in addition to a steroid to survive, and their woes with oxygen supplies are so bad their ruling trash is suppressing news of that, arresting people who make social media posts on it, etc.

    • Replies: @utu
    @That Would Be Telling

    I understand that India is huge so it warrants a special attention. But there is nothing special about progression of the epidemic there except that it is retarded behind what was and is happening in Europe and N. America. The absolute numbers that are reported are large but when you normalize them to per capita India's daily deaths per capita in India is lower than in some countries in Europe (Poland, Czechia, Italy) today and only marginally greater than in the US.

    https://ourworldindata.org/explorers/coronavirus-data-explorer?zoomToSelection=true&time=2020-03-01..latest&pickerSort=asc&pickerMetric=location&Metric=Confirmed+deaths&Interval=7-day+rolling+average&Relative+to+Population=true&Align+outbreaks=false&country=IND~POL~CZE~ITA~USA

    In February in Czechia seven times more people per capita were dying than in India is dying now at its peak. There were no horror images fed by media coming from Czechia. That India has difficulties because of its poverty is understandable but the media attention it garners is not warranted.

    Also CFR/IFR is much lower in India because of much younger population.

    Replies: @reiner Tor, @Insomniac Resurrected

  50. mal says:
    @Anatoly Karlin
    @mal


    Well, we know spacetime can expand at speeds faster than light, so never say never.
     
    FTL. Relativity. Causality. Pick two. Very sad, because FTL is cool, hard to envisage proper interstellar wars without it.

    Replies: @mal, @Menschmaschine

    Well, fairly sure we will end up amending relativity theory once we figure out the whole dark matter/energy thing.

    And causality might end up overrated as well. What happens behind event horizon stays behind event horizon, at least until black hole evaporates.

    People think about frame dragging and closed spacetime curves in the context of a single black hole but it is much easier to do on the scale of say, galactic cluster. Basically you need mass and galactic cluster has way more mass than a single black hole. And we know for a fact that dark matter causes galaxies to accelerate outward, so it should be a simple task to rearrange it to induce spin and frame dragging.

    So to ignore causality, follow these simple steps:

    1. Rearrange dark matter to induce spin to the galaxy in which you reside.

    2. Induce frame dragging effect and close spacetime curve.

    3. Enjoy time travel alongside said curve.

    Time travel will apply only to your galaxy but still should be fun.

  51. utu says:
    @That Would Be Telling
    @Anatoly Karlin


    So [India is] packing in the mortality burden experienced in Europe/Americas over a couple of months.
     
    I would agree except they are demonstrating why "bending the curve" is so very important. When you exceed your hospital capacity, which is meager to begin with in India, you start losing people at much higher rates. Here with the knowledge gained in 2020, there's a lot of moderate to severe cases that only need supplemental oxygen in addition to a steroid to survive, and their woes with oxygen supplies are so bad their ruling trash is suppressing news of that, arresting people who make social media posts on it, etc.

    Replies: @utu

    I understand that India is huge so it warrants a special attention. But there is nothing special about progression of the epidemic there except that it is retarded behind what was and is happening in Europe and N. America. The absolute numbers that are reported are large but when you normalize them to per capita India’s daily deaths per capita in India is lower than in some countries in Europe (Poland, Czechia, Italy) today and only marginally greater than in the US.

    https://ourworldindata.org/explorers/coronavirus-data-explorer?zoomToSelection=true&time=2020-03-01..latest&pickerSort=asc&pickerMetric=location&Metric=Confirmed+deaths&Interval=7-day+rolling+average&Relative+to+Population=true&Align+outbreaks=false&country=IND~POL~CZE~ITA~USA

    In February in Czechia seven times more people per capita were dying than in India is dying now at its peak. There were no horror images fed by media coming from Czechia. That India has difficulties because of its poverty is understandable but the media attention it garners is not warranted.

    Also CFR/IFR is much lower in India because of much younger population.

    • Replies: @reiner Tor
    @utu

    Based on this thread linked by someone above (or in the other thread) the covid death rate in India might be roughly as high as (or higher than) in Czechia, despite the much younger population.

    https://twitter.com/ashishkjha/status/1391238136219512833

    , @Insomniac Resurrected
    @utu


    In February in Czechia seven times more people per capita were dying than in India is dying now at its peak. There were no horror images fed by media coming from Czechia. That India has difficulties because of its poverty is understandable but the media attention it garners is not warranted.
     
    An elderly neighbour of mine died, death has found a way to my street here in CZ. This is a good point about the coverage.
  52. A123 says:
    @Thorfinnsson
    @A123

    These memes are terrible and you should feel bad

    Replies: @songbird, @A123, @Blinky Bill

    The first two are admittedly better than the rest. Another reason why I used the [MORE] tag, in addition to covering potentially offensive material.

    I suspect most American patriots would find them mildly amusing, even if a couple of them a bit weak. SJW Globalists and Harris/Biden aficionados would call them “terrible”.

    PEACE 😇

  53. A123 says:
    @mal
    @dfordoom


    Even in the unlikely event that the colony survived it would be, from the point of view of the society originating the colony, entirely pointless.
     
    The point of interstellar colonies would be the same as for why life spreads on Earth - developing adaptations to different environments in order to maximize survival potential.

    But yes, sending interstellar colony ships is a bad idea. What you want to do is send seeds containing various genetic tool kits at relativistic speeds into molecular clouds that serve as stellar nurseries. Such clouds are usually a few light years across and will solve the problem of slowing down upon arrival, and your seeds can simply be picked up by the newly born stars as they leave the nursery. It is actually a fairly quick process, and of course, life in such systems will be older than than the systems themselves.


    Yep. And believing in FTL is like believing in magic.
     
    Well, we know spacetime can expand at speeds faster than light, so never say never.

    Replies: @Malenfant, @Anatoly Karlin, @A123

    But yes, sending interstellar colony ships is a bad idea. What you want to do is send seeds containing various genetic tool kits at relativistic speeds into molecular clouds that serve as stellar nurseries.

    This could generate a level of “genetic survival”. At the simplest level, life reproduces itself. Thus, the method may be of value to some portion of the population.

    It is hard to see how this would deliver “cultural survival”. Much of society is founded on parent-child relationships. A society where the “first” seeded generation consists of machine taught humans? Such a launch would be a very different “human experience”.

    PEACE 😇

    • Replies: @mal
    @A123

    Well, culture wouldn't really enter into that. Genes and geochemical data matter. Culture, not so much.

    For example, let's say you seeded planet Earth with RNA based genetic toolkit and then set up a telescope to watch for biosignature response. What would you see?

    At first, you would see a significant delay in life propagation and evolution. On a planet with abundant nitrogen atmosphere, this means molybdenum is difficult to extract from the rocks (true fact, ask cyanobacteria) in order to perform nitrogen fixation for a aminoacid synthesis. You would then see molecular oxygen spike which would then level off, meaning iron is abundant and easy to get. Easier than molybdenum anyway.

    You would then take this information and incorporate it into your own data management system (DNA or whatever). This way, if your own world ever blew up, you would be ready to relocate at a moment's notice, and all the evolutionary adaptation work would have been done for you already.

    Culture doesn't really factor into this. I mean, when you grow recombinant E. Coli bacteria for insulin production, do you really care if they get together to play poker on Saturday night or whatever? Generally no. You care about biosignature output (insulin) and genetic data (you want to make sure those plasmids are functioning as intended). How they choose to spend their free time isn't very relevant to the process.

    Replies: @Bashibuzuk

  54. @Thorfinnsson
    @A123

    These memes are terrible and you should feel bad

    Replies: @songbird, @A123, @Blinky Bill

    • Replies: @mal
    @Blinky Bill

    Private sector debt to GDP ratio by country.

    https://tradingeconomics.com/country-list/private-debt-to-gdp

    "Labor productivity" measures national ability to sell mortgages to each other. This is as far away from productive labor as one can get.

    In an age where money and debt are completely regulated by central banks, debt resellers serve absolutely no useful purpose. It is astonishing they call this nonsense 'labor productivity'.

  55. @utu
    @That Would Be Telling

    I understand that India is huge so it warrants a special attention. But there is nothing special about progression of the epidemic there except that it is retarded behind what was and is happening in Europe and N. America. The absolute numbers that are reported are large but when you normalize them to per capita India's daily deaths per capita in India is lower than in some countries in Europe (Poland, Czechia, Italy) today and only marginally greater than in the US.

    https://ourworldindata.org/explorers/coronavirus-data-explorer?zoomToSelection=true&time=2020-03-01..latest&pickerSort=asc&pickerMetric=location&Metric=Confirmed+deaths&Interval=7-day+rolling+average&Relative+to+Population=true&Align+outbreaks=false&country=IND~POL~CZE~ITA~USA

    In February in Czechia seven times more people per capita were dying than in India is dying now at its peak. There were no horror images fed by media coming from Czechia. That India has difficulties because of its poverty is understandable but the media attention it garners is not warranted.

    Also CFR/IFR is much lower in India because of much younger population.

    Replies: @reiner Tor, @Insomniac Resurrected

    Based on this thread linked by someone above (or in the other thread) the covid death rate in India might be roughly as high as (or higher than) in Czechia, despite the much younger population.

    • Thanks: utu
  56. @edstodd
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nkGiFpJC9LM

    Replies: @Bashibuzuk, @Svevlad

    Basically gypsies.

    • Replies: @Bashibuzuk
    @Svevlad

    Yeah, something along these lines:


    Yesterday, the lawyer for Levi Aron, the man who confessed to killing and dismembering 8-year-old Hasidic boy Leiby Kletzky this past fall, stirred up controversy when he unveiled his defense strategy, blaming Aron's alleged insanity on a childhood head injury, schizophrenia, and most contentiously, inbreeding.

     

    https://gothamist.com/news/rabbi-inbreeding-happens-but-that-doesnt-make-people-killers

    Not all inbred people are problematic, some are way worse than others...
  57. @Felix Keverich

    Pro-Ukrainian band of white supremacists arrested in Russia (h/t Insomniac Resurrected). Backs my oft made point that the most passionarny champions of Ukraine are not actual Ukrainians but Russian Neo-Nazis.
     
    If actual Nazis recognize the Ukrainian regime as Nazi, so much so that they are willing to go to prison for it, then perhaps we should dispense with niceties and call the Nazi Banderastan for what it is?

    Replies: @Bashibuzuk, @Anatoly Karlin

    Ukrainian regime is as “Banderist” as Russian regime is “Patriotic “, that is only in a sufficient amount to distract the attention of the Russian and Ukrainian masses from them being dispossessed by their local post-Soviet corrupt elites. The only difference is that the “Russian ” crooks will glorify Tsarist and Soviet heroic past, while the “Ukrainian ” crooks would glorify the Cossack and Nationalist one. Both will tell lies and throw one Slav people against the other. Both are criminals. Any sane person would despise both of them, but post-Soviet populations have had their sanity unfortunately debased and their just anger misdirected.

    • Replies: @Mr. Hack
    @Bashibuzuk

    I generally agree with you, however, you'd have to admit that there is a good/some amount of "truth" to both the Russian "Tsarist and Soviet heroic past" and Ukrainian "Cossack and Nationalist" memes to fuel separate nation/state paradigms for both peoples. The fact that both Russian and Ukrainian post Soviet elites hide their true greedy natures behind these national facades is another story.

    Replies: @Bashibuzuk

  58. @Svevlad
    @edstodd

    Basically gypsies.

    Replies: @Bashibuzuk

    Yeah, something along these lines:

    Yesterday, the lawyer for Levi Aron, the man who confessed to killing and dismembering 8-year-old Hasidic boy Leiby Kletzky this past fall, stirred up controversy when he unveiled his defense strategy, blaming Aron’s alleged insanity on a childhood head injury, schizophrenia, and most contentiously, inbreeding.

    https://gothamist.com/news/rabbi-inbreeding-happens-but-that-doesnt-make-people-killers

    Not all inbred people are problematic, some are way worse than others…

  59. mal says:
    @A123
    @mal


    But yes, sending interstellar colony ships is a bad idea. What you want to do is send seeds containing various genetic tool kits at relativistic speeds into molecular clouds that serve as stellar nurseries.
     
    This could generate a level of "genetic survival". At the simplest level, life reproduces itself. Thus, the method may be of value to some portion of the population.

    It is hard to see how this would deliver "cultural survival". Much of society is founded on parent-child relationships. A society where the "first" seeded generation consists of machine taught humans? Such a launch would be a very different "human experience".

    PEACE 😇

    Replies: @mal

    Well, culture wouldn’t really enter into that. Genes and geochemical data matter. Culture, not so much.

    For example, let’s say you seeded planet Earth with RNA based genetic toolkit and then set up a telescope to watch for biosignature response. What would you see?

    At first, you would see a significant delay in life propagation and evolution. On a planet with abundant nitrogen atmosphere, this means molybdenum is difficult to extract from the rocks (true fact, ask cyanobacteria) in order to perform nitrogen fixation for a aminoacid synthesis. You would then see molecular oxygen spike which would then level off, meaning iron is abundant and easy to get. Easier than molybdenum anyway.

    You would then take this information and incorporate it into your own data management system (DNA or whatever). This way, if your own world ever blew up, you would be ready to relocate at a moment’s notice, and all the evolutionary adaptation work would have been done for you already.

    Culture doesn’t really factor into this. I mean, when you grow recombinant E. Coli bacteria for insulin production, do you really care if they get together to play poker on Saturday night or whatever? Generally no. You care about biosignature output (insulin) and genetic data (you want to make sure those plasmids are functioning as intended). How they choose to spend their free time isn’t very relevant to the process.

    • Replies: @Bashibuzuk
    @mal

    If you had the means to, and decided to "seed" with self-catalytic RNA some distant nascent planetary disk, what would you do that for?

    What would be the desired outcome if your efforts?

    Replies: @mal

  60. @mal
    @A123

    Well, culture wouldn't really enter into that. Genes and geochemical data matter. Culture, not so much.

    For example, let's say you seeded planet Earth with RNA based genetic toolkit and then set up a telescope to watch for biosignature response. What would you see?

    At first, you would see a significant delay in life propagation and evolution. On a planet with abundant nitrogen atmosphere, this means molybdenum is difficult to extract from the rocks (true fact, ask cyanobacteria) in order to perform nitrogen fixation for a aminoacid synthesis. You would then see molecular oxygen spike which would then level off, meaning iron is abundant and easy to get. Easier than molybdenum anyway.

    You would then take this information and incorporate it into your own data management system (DNA or whatever). This way, if your own world ever blew up, you would be ready to relocate at a moment's notice, and all the evolutionary adaptation work would have been done for you already.

    Culture doesn't really factor into this. I mean, when you grow recombinant E. Coli bacteria for insulin production, do you really care if they get together to play poker on Saturday night or whatever? Generally no. You care about biosignature output (insulin) and genetic data (you want to make sure those plasmids are functioning as intended). How they choose to spend their free time isn't very relevant to the process.

    Replies: @Bashibuzuk

    If you had the means to, and decided to “seed” with self-catalytic RNA some distant nascent planetary disk, what would you do that for?

    What would be the desired outcome if your efforts?

    • Replies: @mal
    @Bashibuzuk

    I would sell travel tickets.

    Imagine you wanted to go see oxygen rich world. You are in luck! Pre-seeded life on planet Earth just created one for you. You would model the DNA tailored to conditions on Earth, upload that genetic information into your own alien system, and go visit.

    Next year, say, you wanted to visit methane rich world. You would do the same - pre-seeded life would terraform that world for you just like Earth and you would simply upload new DNA model information and go visit in comfort as you would be already adapted to that world.

    Even without existential risk, it's a pretty cool tourism opportunity.

    This approach combines terraforming with information system modeling. It will be rather effective, much easier and more comfortable to arrive on a prepared world where you know what you are dealing with, rather than fly blindly between stars and not know how to survive upon landing.

    Replies: @Bashibuzuk, @A123

  61. @A123
    Humor for the open thread. A couple items below the [MORE] tag may be mildly NSFW.

    PEACE 😇

     
    https://pbs.twimg.com/media/EncCYKqVcAEUxqo.jpg

     
    https://i.imgur.com/PV3V6uL.jpg



     
    https://www.blazingcatfur.ca/wp-content/uploads/2021/05/fearmongering-tyranny.jpg

     
    https://i.imgur.com/evePLvk.jpg

     
    https://i.imgur.com/aHqYJbX.jpg

     
    https://1.bp.blogspot.com/--Ri2Om0rjes/YJLtxkGDi0I/AAAAAAAA2TM/1iV6rp3EEFAMpR0RfVjRgOcErbZdTGA8ACLcBGAsYHQ/s768/121595853_10219846215051393_7877792775376564414_n.jpg

     
    https://i.imgur.com/sdRDDe9.png

    Replies: @Thorfinnsson, @Svevlad

    Never has unz.com needed a “cringe” reaction more than this moment

    • Replies: @A123
    @Svevlad


    Never has unz.com needed a “cringe” reaction more than this moment
     
    Cringe? Really?

    I could come up with some things that are actually cringe worthy...

    Mutual of Omaha's Wild Kingdom presents:

    Rural Canadians Responding to Urban Encroachment. The Rural Canadian native migration pattern has adapted to deal with environmental change.

    PEACE 😇

     
    https://1.bp.blogspot.com/-UDlFcIR1ZV8/YJSJwbuvKJI/AAAAAAAA2WI/EX76I8eZkGgyDEWjJZZ4Us5CMBb4uAavgCLcBGAsYHQ/s454/morning_gifdump_14_10.gif
  62. @songbird

    Razib Khan: Our Three-Body Problem. I really think he overdoes this model of a tripartite cultural division (West/India/China), but worth reading anyway.
     
    Razib: "the broader Abrahamic West", "Meanwhile, Latin America and Africa will carry the Western torch onward with their demographic dynamism and growth"

    Is this just Schadenfreude? Or is Razib seriously this bat-shit insane, to conflate European civilization with Arabs, Jews, and sub-Saharans?

    Replies: @Mitleser, @Anatoly Karlin, @Svevlad

    Well, he didn’t say European, he said Western… which is currently headed by Europe, but includes the Middle East as well

    Africa is more like a “western outpost” and it’s own thing. We’ll see if the increasing pragmatism of the world and cutting off the gibs as Europe finally croaks will produce any eugenic effect.

    • Replies: @songbird
    @Svevlad


    Well, he didn’t say European, he said Western… which is currently headed by Europe, but includes the Middle East as well
     
    I think the "West" was originally coined as a term to encompass new lands settled by Europeans - so in other words, "white countries." It never included Islam. In fact, there are versions of it that do not include Orthodox Christians.

    I wonder what the terminology that the Chinese use is.

    Khan's definition is truly bizarre. He's a geneticist, but he seems to go with a religious definition, in a age of declining faith. Encompassing sub-Saharan Africa, where formal Abrahamic faiths seem to have mainly had a very niche appeal (in the sense of church-going) outside of a few places like Ethiopia, (albeit one might argue more for the elites). It is crazy to combine Christianity, Judaism, and Islam, and even crazier to combine Europe and sub-Saharan Africa.

    The Ljubljana Marshes Wheel was made like 4700 years before some sub-Saharans had the wheel. Europe had soaring cathedrals hundreds and fully mechanical clocks before some of them had it. But Khan thinks it is the same civilization. That Europeans used to drop dead within a few days of entering Africa - that there is this massive geographic barrier, the biggest desert in the world, and it is the same civilization. Perhaps, he thinks that Europeans made it the West during colonialism. If so, I am not sure he was ever traveled to Africa.

    According to Khan's gonzo logic, there are three civilizations:

    1.) NE Asia
    2.) India
    3.) Everything to the West of India (including also Pakistan and the Muslim parts of India? And Bangladesh which is East of India?)

    I'm open to alternative categorizations. There is a certain logic to Taleb's "Meds." Wokeness might be a good one, or bioleninism. But "everything to the West of India" is a surely a little much.

    Replies: @Bashibuzuk, @Agathoklis, @Svevlad

  63. mal says:
    @Blinky Bill
    @Thorfinnsson

    https://www.unz.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/08/guest-post-israel-9.jpg

    Replies: @mal

    Private sector debt to GDP ratio by country.

    https://tradingeconomics.com/country-list/private-debt-to-gdp

    “Labor productivity” measures national ability to sell mortgages to each other. This is as far away from productive labor as one can get.

    In an age where money and debt are completely regulated by central banks, debt resellers serve absolutely no useful purpose. It is astonishing they call this nonsense ‘labor productivity’.

  64. mal says:
    @Bashibuzuk
    @mal

    If you had the means to, and decided to "seed" with self-catalytic RNA some distant nascent planetary disk, what would you do that for?

    What would be the desired outcome if your efforts?

    Replies: @mal

    I would sell travel tickets.

    Imagine you wanted to go see oxygen rich world. You are in luck! Pre-seeded life on planet Earth just created one for you. You would model the DNA tailored to conditions on Earth, upload that genetic information into your own alien system, and go visit.

    Next year, say, you wanted to visit methane rich world. You would do the same – pre-seeded life would terraform that world for you just like Earth and you would simply upload new DNA model information and go visit in comfort as you would be already adapted to that world.

    Even without existential risk, it’s a pretty cool tourism opportunity.

    This approach combines terraforming with information system modeling. It will be rather effective, much easier and more comfortable to arrive on a prepared world where you know what you are dealing with, rather than fly blindly between stars and not know how to survive upon landing.

    • LOL: Anatoly Karlin
    • Replies: @Bashibuzuk
    @mal

    This is very nice as a vision for an advanced Alien Civilization propagating life across the Universe. Basically creating endless opportunities to enjoy different existential experiences. This is quite compatible with the Tat Tvam Asi.

    https://www.britannica.com/topic/tat-tvam-asi

    But perhaps you would also create a bubbling Multiverse offering the maximum diversity of environments to diversify the experience of your endless "avatars" ?

    https://www.britannica.com/topic/Elohim

    Unfortunately, there is always a potential negative aspect to all of this:



    https://youtu.be/ZHpJr7_5Mjg

    https://youtu.be/4Z-QCDyL2q4

    But given your interest into the all things "spacefaring " I suppose you already know that.

    🙂

    , @A123
    @mal


    It will be rather effective, much easier and more comfortable to arrive on a prepared world where you know what you are dealing with, rather than fly blindly between stars and not know how to survive upon landing.
     
    There is a bit of optimism in your proposal:

    What if some other species is has the same idea and seeds your target with an incompatible ecology? (1)

     
    https://static.wikia.nocookie.net/andromeda/images/e/e0/Pyrian.jpg
     

    The Battle of Samsarra was a battle between the Systems Commonwealth and the Pyrians over the territorial ownership of the planet of Samsarra.

    The Pyrians had dropped 24 atmosphere generators that were spewing carbon dioxide, methane, and carbon sulfides into their atmosphere, and left without a word to the colonists. Left in place, the generators would have rendered the planet uninhabitable to oxygen-breathing life within a month.
     
    Or, someone applies the direct approach?

    https://youtu.be/JoVS1p9Qa1k?t=81

    Without FTL, the carefully prepared ecology may not be there when the tourists arrive.

    PEACE 😇
    __________

    (1) https://andromeda.fandom.com/wiki/Battle_of_Samsarra
  65. @mal
    @Bashibuzuk

    I would sell travel tickets.

    Imagine you wanted to go see oxygen rich world. You are in luck! Pre-seeded life on planet Earth just created one for you. You would model the DNA tailored to conditions on Earth, upload that genetic information into your own alien system, and go visit.

    Next year, say, you wanted to visit methane rich world. You would do the same - pre-seeded life would terraform that world for you just like Earth and you would simply upload new DNA model information and go visit in comfort as you would be already adapted to that world.

    Even without existential risk, it's a pretty cool tourism opportunity.

    This approach combines terraforming with information system modeling. It will be rather effective, much easier and more comfortable to arrive on a prepared world where you know what you are dealing with, rather than fly blindly between stars and not know how to survive upon landing.

    Replies: @Bashibuzuk, @A123

    This is very nice as a vision for an advanced Alien Civilization propagating life across the Universe. Basically creating endless opportunities to enjoy different existential experiences. This is quite compatible with the Tat Tvam Asi.

    https://www.britannica.com/topic/tat-tvam-asi

    But perhaps you would also create a bubbling Multiverse offering the maximum diversity of environments to diversify the experience of your endless “avatars” ?

    https://www.britannica.com/topic/Elohim

    Unfortunately, there is always a potential negative aspect to all of this:

    [MORE]

    But given your interest into the all things “spacefaring ” I suppose you already know that.

    🙂

    • Thanks: mal
  66. mal says:

    BBC article gives a good rundown on interstellar objects.

    https://www.bbc.com/future/article/20210506-the-interstellar-voyagers-that-visited-our-sun

    First, the good news. SETI has decisively proven that Americans do not count as an intelligent lifeforms. Here’s why:

    Oumuamua – thin, shiny reflective, cigar or pancake shape, subject to solar radiation pressure, but produces no radio signal, therefore can’t be made by intelligent lifeforms.

    Surveyor II rocket upper stage – thin, shiny reflective, cigar shaped, subject to solar radiation pressure, but produces no radio signal, therefore can’t possibly be made by intelligent lifeforms. If Americans were smart, they’d stick a radio transmitter on every single failed piece of space junk whether it made sense or not. So boo! Americans, serves them right.

    Loeb explains that another object – 2020-SO – received a similarly mysterious acceleration from the Sun in September 2020. It was initially spotted by the same telescope that found ‘Oumuamua, and turned out to be a rocket booster from the failed Surveyor II mission launched in 1966, which aimed to land a spacecraft on the Moon. It was successfully launched into space, but quickly lost contact and had been drifting around for decades. Like Loeb’s proposed alien “lightsail”, it had a flat, reflective surface that could repel light and propel it forwards.

    In the end, Seti didn’t find anything – though this doesn’t rule out the possibility that ‘Oumuamua belonged to a long-dead cosmic civilisation.

    Now, not so good news. If Loeb is wrong and Oumuamua is indeed invisible nitrogen planetecimal, it means somewhere out there, an invisible nitrogen planet exploded and is heading for us at interstellar speed. I mean, has there ever been a collision or an explosion that produced only a single fragment? Usually, there is a lot more than one. And we can’t see it coming, just like we couldn’t see Oumuamua as it lost huge 94% of its mass, and we only picked it up as it was leaving. And it’s moving much faster than local asteroids so impact energy will be enormous even if mass is small.

    What I’m trying to say is that when NASA says “there’s no chance of asteroid impact for the next 100 years” they either know Oumuamua is aliens or they are lying. I mean dudes, you just missed an interstellar planet chunk on a close flyby that’s invisible to your telescopes, there’s no way you can guarantee that the rest of that planet won’t show up a month from now and sterilize Earth.

    • Replies: @Anatoly Karlin
    @mal


    What I’m trying to say is that when NASA says “there’s no chance of asteroid impact for the next 100 years” they either know Oumuamua is aliens or they are lying.
     
    Well, as I understand it, no chance in 100 years excludes interstellar objects. But those are understood to be extremely rare.

    Replies: @Passer by, @mal

  67. A123 says:
    @mal
    @Bashibuzuk

    I would sell travel tickets.

    Imagine you wanted to go see oxygen rich world. You are in luck! Pre-seeded life on planet Earth just created one for you. You would model the DNA tailored to conditions on Earth, upload that genetic information into your own alien system, and go visit.

    Next year, say, you wanted to visit methane rich world. You would do the same - pre-seeded life would terraform that world for you just like Earth and you would simply upload new DNA model information and go visit in comfort as you would be already adapted to that world.

    Even without existential risk, it's a pretty cool tourism opportunity.

    This approach combines terraforming with information system modeling. It will be rather effective, much easier and more comfortable to arrive on a prepared world where you know what you are dealing with, rather than fly blindly between stars and not know how to survive upon landing.

    Replies: @Bashibuzuk, @A123

    It will be rather effective, much easier and more comfortable to arrive on a prepared world where you know what you are dealing with, rather than fly blindly between stars and not know how to survive upon landing.

    There is a bit of optimism in your proposal:

    What if some other species is has the same idea and seeds your target with an incompatible ecology? (1)

     

     

    The Battle of Samsarra was a battle between the Systems Commonwealth and the Pyrians over the territorial ownership of the planet of Samsarra.

    The Pyrians had dropped 24 atmosphere generators that were spewing carbon dioxide, methane, and carbon sulfides into their atmosphere, and left without a word to the colonists. Left in place, the generators would have rendered the planet uninhabitable to oxygen-breathing life within a month.

    Or, someone applies the direct approach?

    Without FTL, the carefully prepared ecology may not be there when the tourists arrive.

    PEACE 😇
    __________

    (1) https://andromeda.fandom.com/wiki/Battle_of_Samsarra

  68. @Anatoly Karlin
    @mal


    Well, we know spacetime can expand at speeds faster than light, so never say never.
     
    FTL. Relativity. Causality. Pick two. Very sad, because FTL is cool, hard to envisage proper interstellar wars without it.

    Replies: @mal, @Menschmaschine

    Simply pick FTL and Causality and be happy. As I have explained earlier there are very good reasons besides wishing to conserve causality when travelling FTL to drop relativity and return to a preferred frame/ether model:

    https://www.unz.com/akarlin/open-thread-132/#comment-4352366

    • Agree: Anatoly Karlin
  69. A123 says:
    @Svevlad
    @A123

    Never has unz.com needed a "cringe" reaction more than this moment

    Replies: @A123

    Never has unz.com needed a “cringe” reaction more than this moment

    Cringe? Really?

    I could come up with some things that are actually cringe worthy…

    Mutual of Omaha’s Wild Kingdom presents:

    Rural Canadians Responding to Urban Encroachment. The Rural Canadian native migration pattern has adapted to deal with environmental change.

    PEACE 😇

     

  70. @The Big Red Scary
    Concerning Russian neo-Nazis, I am very disappointed to learn that they participate in pro-Navalny protests. What is the world coming to!?

    Replies: @Mikhail, @tyrone

    Free money from American NGOs……come on man! a dudes gotta have beer money.

  71. @Felix Keverich

    Pro-Ukrainian band of white supremacists arrested in Russia (h/t Insomniac Resurrected). Backs my oft made point that the most passionarny champions of Ukraine are not actual Ukrainians but Russian Neo-Nazis.
     
    If actual Nazis recognize the Ukrainian regime as Nazi, so much so that they are willing to go to prison for it, then perhaps we should dispense with niceties and call the Nazi Banderastan for what it is?

    Replies: @Bashibuzuk, @Anatoly Karlin

    I would say it is more like heretics and Traitor Marines within the Imperium of Russia seeking sanctuary on the chaos world that is Ukraine.

    From there, powered by the Ruinous Powers of the West and supplied by its Hell-Forges, they wage their Long War on the Imperium…

  72. @mal
    BBC article gives a good rundown on interstellar objects.

    https://www.bbc.com/future/article/20210506-the-interstellar-voyagers-that-visited-our-sun

    First, the good news. SETI has decisively proven that Americans do not count as an intelligent lifeforms. Here's why:

    Oumuamua - thin, shiny reflective, cigar or pancake shape, subject to solar radiation pressure, but produces no radio signal, therefore can't be made by intelligent lifeforms.

    Surveyor II rocket upper stage - thin, shiny reflective, cigar shaped, subject to solar radiation pressure, but produces no radio signal, therefore can't possibly be made by intelligent lifeforms. If Americans were smart, they'd stick a radio transmitter on every single failed piece of space junk whether it made sense or not. So boo! Americans, serves them right.

    Loeb explains that another object – 2020-SO – received a similarly mysterious acceleration from the Sun in September 2020. It was initially spotted by the same telescope that found 'Oumuamua, and turned out to be a rocket booster from the failed Surveyor II mission launched in 1966, which aimed to land a spacecraft on the Moon. It was successfully launched into space, but quickly lost contact and had been drifting around for decades. Like Loeb's proposed alien "lightsail", it had a flat, reflective surface that could repel light and propel it forwards.
     

    In the end, Seti didn't find anything – though this doesn't rule out the possibility that 'Oumuamua belonged to a long-dead cosmic civilisation.
     
    Now, not so good news. If Loeb is wrong and Oumuamua is indeed invisible nitrogen planetecimal, it means somewhere out there, an invisible nitrogen planet exploded and is heading for us at interstellar speed. I mean, has there ever been a collision or an explosion that produced only a single fragment? Usually, there is a lot more than one. And we can't see it coming, just like we couldn't see Oumuamua as it lost huge 94% of its mass, and we only picked it up as it was leaving. And it's moving much faster than local asteroids so impact energy will be enormous even if mass is small.

    What I'm trying to say is that when NASA says "there's no chance of asteroid impact for the next 100 years" they either know Oumuamua is aliens or they are lying. I mean dudes, you just missed an interstellar planet chunk on a close flyby that's invisible to your telescopes, there's no way you can guarantee that the rest of that planet won't show up a month from now and sterilize Earth.

    Replies: @Anatoly Karlin

    What I’m trying to say is that when NASA says “there’s no chance of asteroid impact for the next 100 years” they either know Oumuamua is aliens or they are lying.

    Well, as I understand it, no chance in 100 years excludes interstellar objects. But those are understood to be extremely rare.

    • Replies: @Passer by
    @Anatoly Karlin

    OT

    Karlin, do you have good data on Russia's median wage? I find both 30k and 35k in various sources.

    If its 30k that sounds disappointing, at least in dollar terms. In PPP it must be similar to poor EU countries such as Bulgaria, while in dollars worse than Bulgaria. Also the minimum wage is just 12,5k rubles, it this for real?

    Thank you.

    Replies: @Anatoly Karlin, @Dmitry, @Philip Owen

    , @mal
    @Anatoly Karlin

    Extremely rare as in once every couple of years it looks like. (2017 - Oumuamua, 2019 - Borisov).

    It's like you are standing in the middle of railroad tracks.

    NASA: Great news! The odds of you getting hit by a car in the next 100 years are next to nothing!

    You: Great! What about trains?

    A couple of trains blast past you at 100 miles per hour.


    NASA: .....

    We will be turning on some rather powerful telescopes in a couple of years, it'd suck to discover the rest of the Oumuamua planet barreling down on us with a few months to spare. Oops.

    Replies: @Anatoly Karlin

  73. @Anatoly Karlin
    @mal


    What I’m trying to say is that when NASA says “there’s no chance of asteroid impact for the next 100 years” they either know Oumuamua is aliens or they are lying.
     
    Well, as I understand it, no chance in 100 years excludes interstellar objects. But those are understood to be extremely rare.

    Replies: @Passer by, @mal

    OT

    Karlin, do you have good data on Russia’s median wage? I find both 30k and 35k in various sources.

    If its 30k that sounds disappointing, at least in dollar terms. In PPP it must be similar to poor EU countries such as Bulgaria, while in dollars worse than Bulgaria. Also the minimum wage is just 12,5k rubles, it this for real?

    Thank you.

    • Replies: @Anatoly Karlin
    @Passer by

    Wages are currently 51k rubles (=$700): https://tradingeconomics.com/russia/wages

    They draw it from Russian stats so that'd be accurate.

    Median wage would be around 70% from mean as is usually the case so = $500. But shadow economy is quite high in Russia, so real median wage probably something like $600-700.

    Replies: @Dmitry

    , @Dmitry
    @Passer by

    The Russian Federation has one of the world's more unregulated, "neoliberal" (in bad parody sense), labour market, as expected for a country where many things are set up for the interest of the wealthy elite, that has relatively untrammeled control of the country and easily managed citizens.

    This is expressed in the "Big Mac Index", which primarily measures how cheaply you can attain labour across different countries - as McDonald's is one of the world's most exploitative corporations, that carefully pays its labour the minimum it can legally achieve in each different market, and uses every sophisticated legal method to lower its salaries.

    MacDonald’s in Australia pays $18 an hour for a same job, that MacDonald’s in Russia pays its workers $1,90 per hour.

    The minimum cost of labour in Australia is around 9,5 times more expensive than in Russia. And yet, there's somehow plenty of people in Russia, including some unfortunate university graduates, who are volunteering to work in MacDonald’s for $1,90 per hour.

    Even more crazy, is that the MacDonald’s in Russia doesn't even pay $1,90 per hour for its entry workers, but even less than that - as it allowed to introduced unpaid breaks between the workers' day.

    That is indicating, in Australia, the far more regulated labour and minimum wage.

    -

    In Western Europe, I know people who claim $50 a day of travel expenses, for a twice 1/2 hour walk to work each day. Whereas in Russia, there are headteachers and doctors, who don't get $50 a day from their actual job.

    The reality of the economy inequality in our world is far than is intuitively expected, and yet people accept it without much notice. In Russia, it's not that people don't know that how unequal it is - but you sense that for many people there is almost a Buddhist kind of equanimity and gratefulness about pleasures of a tiny income (that for people in the West, might evoke some memory of when they were students, or glamourous attitude of starving artists and bohemians).

    Replies: @mal, @Passer by

    , @Philip Owen
    @Passer by

    Outside Moscow about 35,000 Roubles a month. About 50,000 Rub/month in Moscow.

    12 500 RUB is old data for the minimum wage. It is 14 100 from memory outside Moscow. In fact it is reset every year at 40% of the median for the province or the Russian national average whichever is higher. This means it is higher in moscow, St Pete and a few oil rich provinces like Kazan.

    Hard to employ anyone with half a brain for less than 40,000 a month in Moscow though.

    Replies: @Passer by

  74. @Passer by
    @Anatoly Karlin

    OT

    Karlin, do you have good data on Russia's median wage? I find both 30k and 35k in various sources.

    If its 30k that sounds disappointing, at least in dollar terms. In PPP it must be similar to poor EU countries such as Bulgaria, while in dollars worse than Bulgaria. Also the minimum wage is just 12,5k rubles, it this for real?

    Thank you.

    Replies: @Anatoly Karlin, @Dmitry, @Philip Owen

    Wages are currently 51k rubles (=$700): https://tradingeconomics.com/russia/wages

    They draw it from Russian stats so that’d be accurate.

    Median wage would be around 70% from mean as is usually the case so = $500. But shadow economy is quite high in Russia, so real median wage probably something like $600-700.

    • Replies: @Dmitry
    @Anatoly Karlin

    Here is a traditional Russian spiritual exercise - how to live with the salary of $600 per month; at least it's supposedly easier to through the eye of a needle when you are not a camel.

    But seriously, there is something that you appreciate more your material purchases, when you had to save money for them.

    Some of the spiritual problem in the West is not materialism and capitalism, but rather a lack of appreciation for material things, because they were so easy to attain - this is a problem of disposable culture.

    When have save money for weeks to buy a book, music or clothes, then you might be likely to appreciate it more, than if it came to you without sacrifice.

    Hence the "disposable culture" that is encouraged when your income is too high, and is common for at least professional workers in Western Europe (which mirrors to problems of disposable culture created by streaming and ebooks).

    Replies: @Passer by

  75. @Svevlad
    @songbird

    Well, he didn't say European, he said Western... which is currently headed by Europe, but includes the Middle East as well

    Africa is more like a "western outpost" and it's own thing. We'll see if the increasing pragmatism of the world and cutting off the gibs as Europe finally croaks will produce any eugenic effect.

    Replies: @songbird

    Well, he didn’t say European, he said Western… which is currently headed by Europe, but includes the Middle East as well

    I think the “West” was originally coined as a term to encompass new lands settled by Europeans – so in other words, “white countries.” It never included Islam. In fact, there are versions of it that do not include Orthodox Christians.

    I wonder what the terminology that the Chinese use is.

    Khan’s definition is truly bizarre. He’s a geneticist, but he seems to go with a religious definition, in a age of declining faith. Encompassing sub-Saharan Africa, where formal Abrahamic faiths seem to have mainly had a very niche appeal (in the sense of church-going) outside of a few places like Ethiopia, (albeit one might argue more for the elites). It is crazy to combine Christianity, Judaism, and Islam, and even crazier to combine Europe and sub-Saharan Africa.

    [MORE]

    The Ljubljana Marshes Wheel was made like 4700 years before some sub-Saharans had the wheel. Europe had soaring cathedrals hundreds and fully mechanical clocks before some of them had it. But Khan thinks it is the same civilization. That Europeans used to drop dead within a few days of entering Africa – that there is this massive geographic barrier, the biggest desert in the world, and it is the same civilization. Perhaps, he thinks that Europeans made it the West during colonialism. If so, I am not sure he was ever traveled to Africa.

    According to Khan’s gonzo logic, there are three civilizations:

    1.) NE Asia
    2.) India
    3.) Everything to the West of India (including also Pakistan and the Muslim parts of India? And Bangladesh which is East of India?)

    I’m open to alternative categorizations. There is a certain logic to Taleb’s “Meds.” Wokeness might be a good one, or bioleninism. But “everything to the West of India” is a surely a little much.

    • Replies: @Bashibuzuk
    @songbird


    In fact, there are versions of it that do not include Orthodox Christians.
     
    Were there any versions that did include Orthodox Christianity, especially its Slav portion?

    For me the West are all cultural traditions derived from Western Roman Empire after the Schism between Constantinople and Papacy.

    But one might go way further in time, then the West are the descendants of the invaders killed in the Tolensee River battle and dumped like carrion in this river's stream to be carried to their resting place in the morass down stream. .

    Replies: @songbird, @Coconuts

    , @Agathoklis
    @songbird

    Where does Taleb mention Meds? Albert Camus created a sort of Mediterranean civilizational alternative that excluded Muslims which I found quite attractive.

    Replies: @songbird

    , @Svevlad
    @songbird

    Khan's classification isn't about traditions or race or really even religion (albeit religion was the "carrier" of this) - it's about what I call "thinking style"

    Western thinking style is ultra-parochial and domineering. All rivals, even potential ones, must be crushed, humiliated, enslaved and destroyed. Minute differences take precedence over major ones due to endless purity spirals and feedback loops of autism. Every little group considers itself the superior. This results in frequent, bloody and chaotic wars. In this, you can see, there is basically no difference between Europe and the Middle East.

    To reduce confusion, if I was Khan, I would not call these "civilizations" but "civilizational areas," and rename the West to the Ecumene.

    I'd eject Africa - Africa is Africa, with it's own civilizational areas, but their (current) lack in quality human capital means this is unused, and they all can be said to "work for the highest bidder" eg area civilizational colony of someone else.

    The thing is - the Ecumene is a rather old concept. By now, it has almost broken apart. It was always a multipolar civilizational area, constantly shifting and morphing and changing. It's now broken into 4 sections: the West, aka the wokeist atlantoid autistocracy, which doesn't need to be explained; the "paleo-West" aka Eastern Europe, which is closer to the "original" "new civilizations" of Europe of Antiquity but is rapidly fundamentally becoming it's own thing, losing the entire autistic purity spiral tribalist parochialism (even in the Balkans it's inevitable); the special case that is the New World (for the time being just Latin America, but the US might join in once wokeism collapses); and the most interesting being the Middle East, who is the only one who will always be closest to the "original" i described above. However, as the inbreeding stops, and due to not having any state strong enough to withstand the power of Woke Cuckistan that is the West, I suspect they will get pozzed too, except Iran and the stans.

    Replies: @Bashibuzuk, @songbird

  76. I hope that Thulean updates his list of precepts for the Progressive Caste to include living in gigantic concrete-box apartments, like in the movie Raid: Redemption.

    I feel it is necessary in order to preserve green space.

    • Agree: Bashibuzuk
    • Replies: @Yellowface Anon
    @songbird

    Like East Asian ones?

    https://cdn.i-scmp.com/sites/default/files/d8/images/methode/2019/07/29/d86e9006-b1e4-11e9-8f9c-a6398a9f90a9_image_hires_231929.jpg

    https://www.teoalida.com/world/17614924.jpg

    https://newsarticleinsiders.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/07/South-Korea-goes-all-out-to-curb-surging-apartment-prices.png

    Replies: @songbird

  77. @songbird
    @Svevlad


    Well, he didn’t say European, he said Western… which is currently headed by Europe, but includes the Middle East as well
     
    I think the "West" was originally coined as a term to encompass new lands settled by Europeans - so in other words, "white countries." It never included Islam. In fact, there are versions of it that do not include Orthodox Christians.

    I wonder what the terminology that the Chinese use is.

    Khan's definition is truly bizarre. He's a geneticist, but he seems to go with a religious definition, in a age of declining faith. Encompassing sub-Saharan Africa, where formal Abrahamic faiths seem to have mainly had a very niche appeal (in the sense of church-going) outside of a few places like Ethiopia, (albeit one might argue more for the elites). It is crazy to combine Christianity, Judaism, and Islam, and even crazier to combine Europe and sub-Saharan Africa.

    The Ljubljana Marshes Wheel was made like 4700 years before some sub-Saharans had the wheel. Europe had soaring cathedrals hundreds and fully mechanical clocks before some of them had it. But Khan thinks it is the same civilization. That Europeans used to drop dead within a few days of entering Africa - that there is this massive geographic barrier, the biggest desert in the world, and it is the same civilization. Perhaps, he thinks that Europeans made it the West during colonialism. If so, I am not sure he was ever traveled to Africa.

    According to Khan's gonzo logic, there are three civilizations:

    1.) NE Asia
    2.) India
    3.) Everything to the West of India (including also Pakistan and the Muslim parts of India? And Bangladesh which is East of India?)

    I'm open to alternative categorizations. There is a certain logic to Taleb's "Meds." Wokeness might be a good one, or bioleninism. But "everything to the West of India" is a surely a little much.

    Replies: @Bashibuzuk, @Agathoklis, @Svevlad

    In fact, there are versions of it that do not include Orthodox Christians.

    Were there any versions that did include Orthodox Christianity, especially its Slav portion?

    For me the West are all cultural traditions derived from Western Roman Empire after the Schism between Constantinople and Papacy.

    But one might go way further in time, then the West are the descendants of the invaders killed in the Tolensee River battle and dumped like carrion in this river’s stream to be carried to their resting place in the morass down stream. .

    • Replies: @songbird
    @Bashibuzuk


    Were there any versions that did include Orthodox Christianity, especially its Slav portion?
     
    Well, I think there was a kind of evolution of terms: Christendom=>European Civilization=>The West

    And this implicitly creates variant definitions.

    With regard to Slavs, personally, I find myself torn between conflicting impulses. When I see Russians or other Slavs in America, they seem damned similar to the other Europeans that I have known, including Amerimutts. Though, ultimately, I dislike excluding them because I fear doing so will make them falsely believe that they are immune to the poisons that seem to be killing the West.
    , @Coconuts
    @Bashibuzuk


    Were there any versions that did include Orthodox Christianity, especially its Slav portion?
     
    Maybe this is a question for Germans and other Central/Northern European representatives of 'the West', also for Turks, Iranians and Arabs who had more contacts with Slavs. Awareness of the existence of Slavic and Eastern European culture in parts of the West like Britain, Portugal, Spain seems to have been low before the 2000s, India, Brazil, Peru and so on would seem like better known places.

    Replies: @Bashibuzuk

  78. Is this accurate?

    Thanks.

  79. Release of UFO/UAP/ETV etc films and reports probably indicates that the next false flag will be an ‘alien attack’ one, requiring a global response, led by the USA, naturally. Still I think that a cyber 9/11 still looks more likely, or an EMP, perhaps disguised as ‘alien attack’, particularly if you see the Yellow Peril as ‘alien’.

    • Replies: @Yellowface Anon
    @Mulga Mumblebrain

    Did you read Whitney Webb's newest piece here?

  80. @Bashibuzuk
    @songbird


    In fact, there are versions of it that do not include Orthodox Christians.
     
    Were there any versions that did include Orthodox Christianity, especially its Slav portion?

    For me the West are all cultural traditions derived from Western Roman Empire after the Schism between Constantinople and Papacy.

    But one might go way further in time, then the West are the descendants of the invaders killed in the Tolensee River battle and dumped like carrion in this river's stream to be carried to their resting place in the morass down stream. .

    Replies: @songbird, @Coconuts

    Were there any versions that did include Orthodox Christianity, especially its Slav portion?

    Well, I think there was a kind of evolution of terms: Christendom=>European Civilization=>The West

    And this implicitly creates variant definitions.

    With regard to Slavs, personally, I find myself torn between conflicting impulses. When I see Russians or other Slavs in America, they seem damned similar to the other Europeans that I have known, including Amerimutts. Though, ultimately, I dislike excluding them because I fear doing so will make them falsely believe that they are immune to the poisons that seem to be killing the West.

  81. @songbird
    @Svevlad


    Well, he didn’t say European, he said Western… which is currently headed by Europe, but includes the Middle East as well
     
    I think the "West" was originally coined as a term to encompass new lands settled by Europeans - so in other words, "white countries." It never included Islam. In fact, there are versions of it that do not include Orthodox Christians.

    I wonder what the terminology that the Chinese use is.

    Khan's definition is truly bizarre. He's a geneticist, but he seems to go with a religious definition, in a age of declining faith. Encompassing sub-Saharan Africa, where formal Abrahamic faiths seem to have mainly had a very niche appeal (in the sense of church-going) outside of a few places like Ethiopia, (albeit one might argue more for the elites). It is crazy to combine Christianity, Judaism, and Islam, and even crazier to combine Europe and sub-Saharan Africa.

    The Ljubljana Marshes Wheel was made like 4700 years before some sub-Saharans had the wheel. Europe had soaring cathedrals hundreds and fully mechanical clocks before some of them had it. But Khan thinks it is the same civilization. That Europeans used to drop dead within a few days of entering Africa - that there is this massive geographic barrier, the biggest desert in the world, and it is the same civilization. Perhaps, he thinks that Europeans made it the West during colonialism. If so, I am not sure he was ever traveled to Africa.

    According to Khan's gonzo logic, there are three civilizations:

    1.) NE Asia
    2.) India
    3.) Everything to the West of India (including also Pakistan and the Muslim parts of India? And Bangladesh which is East of India?)

    I'm open to alternative categorizations. There is a certain logic to Taleb's "Meds." Wokeness might be a good one, or bioleninism. But "everything to the West of India" is a surely a little much.

    Replies: @Bashibuzuk, @Agathoklis, @Svevlad

    Where does Taleb mention Meds? Albert Camus created a sort of Mediterranean civilizational alternative that excluded Muslims which I found quite attractive.

    • Replies: @songbird
    @Agathoklis

    If I understand Taleb, his dilemma is this: being from Lebanon, and having an Arab name, he does not want to be called an Arab, which is very understandable. Wikipedia lists his parents as Antioch Greeks, but perhaps he is not comfortable using the word "Greek" as he has an Arab name and is from Lebanon.

    As far as I can tell, he seems to go with a geographic definition of Med:
    https://medium.com/east-med-project-history-philology-and-genetics/the-insidious-racism-of-mary-beard-et-al-8b6b768b4575

    Replies: @Agathoklis

  82. @Agathoklis
    @songbird

    Where does Taleb mention Meds? Albert Camus created a sort of Mediterranean civilizational alternative that excluded Muslims which I found quite attractive.

    Replies: @songbird

    If I understand Taleb, his dilemma is this: being from Lebanon, and having an Arab name, he does not want to be called an Arab, which is very understandable. Wikipedia lists his parents as Antioch Greeks, but perhaps he is not comfortable using the word “Greek” as he has an Arab name and is from Lebanon.

    As far as I can tell, he seems to go with a geographic definition of Med:
    https://medium.com/east-med-project-history-philology-and-genetics/the-insidious-racism-of-mary-beard-et-al-8b6b768b4575

    • Replies: @Agathoklis
    @songbird

    Ok, I get it. Taleb suffers from the same problem that afflicts most Levantine and Middle Eastern Christians. With very few exceptions, they adopted, or were made to adopt, the language of their oppressors (the Arab Muslims). In most cases, they are not actually ethnic Arabs but Syrians or Romaioi (Greeks) or Copts. I often say to my fellow Greeks, imagine if we remained Christian but spoke Turkish. That helps them to understand the Arab Christian dilemma.

    Traditionally, Arab Christians have coped by using religion as an ethnic identifier i.e. often Arab Christians are often deeply Christian. Or, they have sought identification with Byzantium/Hellenism (Orthodox Arabs), France/Crusaders (Maronites) and the Copts (ancient Egypt). Regardless, they are in a terrible bind. We at least carved out a state, retained our language and retained our religion. They only retained one of those three.

    My suggestion to people like Taleb (who genuinely does hail from Greek Orthodox villages of Lebanon) is to learn Greek and then lobby Greece and Cyprus to hand out more passports.

  83. @songbird
    @Agathoklis

    If I understand Taleb, his dilemma is this: being from Lebanon, and having an Arab name, he does not want to be called an Arab, which is very understandable. Wikipedia lists his parents as Antioch Greeks, but perhaps he is not comfortable using the word "Greek" as he has an Arab name and is from Lebanon.

    As far as I can tell, he seems to go with a geographic definition of Med:
    https://medium.com/east-med-project-history-philology-and-genetics/the-insidious-racism-of-mary-beard-et-al-8b6b768b4575

    Replies: @Agathoklis

    Ok, I get it. Taleb suffers from the same problem that afflicts most Levantine and Middle Eastern Christians. With very few exceptions, they adopted, or were made to adopt, the language of their oppressors (the Arab Muslims). In most cases, they are not actually ethnic Arabs but Syrians or Romaioi (Greeks) or Copts. I often say to my fellow Greeks, imagine if we remained Christian but spoke Turkish. That helps them to understand the Arab Christian dilemma.

    Traditionally, Arab Christians have coped by using religion as an ethnic identifier i.e. often Arab Christians are often deeply Christian. Or, they have sought identification with Byzantium/Hellenism (Orthodox Arabs), France/Crusaders (Maronites) and the Copts (ancient Egypt). Regardless, they are in a terrible bind. We at least carved out a state, retained our language and retained our religion. They only retained one of those three.

    My suggestion to people like Taleb (who genuinely does hail from Greek Orthodox villages of Lebanon) is to learn Greek and then lobby Greece and Cyprus to hand out more passports.

    • Agree: AltanBakshi
    • Thanks: Lurker
  84. mal says:
    @Anatoly Karlin
    @mal


    What I’m trying to say is that when NASA says “there’s no chance of asteroid impact for the next 100 years” they either know Oumuamua is aliens or they are lying.
     
    Well, as I understand it, no chance in 100 years excludes interstellar objects. But those are understood to be extremely rare.

    Replies: @Passer by, @mal

    Extremely rare as in once every couple of years it looks like. (2017 – Oumuamua, 2019 – Borisov).

    It’s like you are standing in the middle of railroad tracks.

    NASA: Great news! The odds of you getting hit by a car in the next 100 years are next to nothing!

    You: Great! What about trains?

    A couple of trains blast past you at 100 miles per hour.

    NASA: …..

    We will be turning on some rather powerful telescopes in a couple of years, it’d suck to discover the rest of the Oumuamua planet barreling down on us with a few months to spare. Oops.

    • Agree: Bashibuzuk
    • LOL: Anatoly Karlin
    • Replies: @Anatoly Karlin
    @mal


    We will be turning on some rather powerful telescopes in a couple of years, it’d suck to discover the rest of the Oumuamua planet barreling down on us with a few months to spare. Oops.
     
    I at any rate will be happy to die safe and secure in the knowledge that I was almost certainly right.

    https://www.unz.com/akarlin/katechon/

    https://pbs.twimg.com/media/EytEL-PXMAQCgPn.jpg
  85. @Bashibuzuk
    @songbird


    In fact, there are versions of it that do not include Orthodox Christians.
     
    Were there any versions that did include Orthodox Christianity, especially its Slav portion?

    For me the West are all cultural traditions derived from Western Roman Empire after the Schism between Constantinople and Papacy.

    But one might go way further in time, then the West are the descendants of the invaders killed in the Tolensee River battle and dumped like carrion in this river's stream to be carried to their resting place in the morass down stream. .

    Replies: @songbird, @Coconuts

    Were there any versions that did include Orthodox Christianity, especially its Slav portion?

    Maybe this is a question for Germans and other Central/Northern European representatives of ‘the West’, also for Turks, Iranians and Arabs who had more contacts with Slavs. Awareness of the existence of Slavic and Eastern European culture in parts of the West like Britain, Portugal, Spain seems to have been low before the 2000s, India, Brazil, Peru and so on would seem like better known places.

    • Replies: @Bashibuzuk
    @Coconuts

    Slavs have only been included in the West when conquered. Even the Westernized Poles were never seen as "Western" by the other Roman Catholic Europeans. Interestingly enough, the same might be arguably said about the Magyar, who are genetically speaking indistinguishable from their Slavic neighbors. That is why I write that the whole mental opposition of West against Slav might predate historical European nations and go way back to Bronze Age tribal warfare between two genetically and linguistically distinct populations in what is today Central / Eastern Europe and Danubian bassin. This is of course impossible to prove, but it makes sense when one looks at the distribution of the Y haplogroups in Europe.

    Replies: @Svevlad, @Coconuts

  86. @songbird
    @Svevlad


    Well, he didn’t say European, he said Western… which is currently headed by Europe, but includes the Middle East as well
     
    I think the "West" was originally coined as a term to encompass new lands settled by Europeans - so in other words, "white countries." It never included Islam. In fact, there are versions of it that do not include Orthodox Christians.

    I wonder what the terminology that the Chinese use is.

    Khan's definition is truly bizarre. He's a geneticist, but he seems to go with a religious definition, in a age of declining faith. Encompassing sub-Saharan Africa, where formal Abrahamic faiths seem to have mainly had a very niche appeal (in the sense of church-going) outside of a few places like Ethiopia, (albeit one might argue more for the elites). It is crazy to combine Christianity, Judaism, and Islam, and even crazier to combine Europe and sub-Saharan Africa.

    The Ljubljana Marshes Wheel was made like 4700 years before some sub-Saharans had the wheel. Europe had soaring cathedrals hundreds and fully mechanical clocks before some of them had it. But Khan thinks it is the same civilization. That Europeans used to drop dead within a few days of entering Africa - that there is this massive geographic barrier, the biggest desert in the world, and it is the same civilization. Perhaps, he thinks that Europeans made it the West during colonialism. If so, I am not sure he was ever traveled to Africa.

    According to Khan's gonzo logic, there are three civilizations:

    1.) NE Asia
    2.) India
    3.) Everything to the West of India (including also Pakistan and the Muslim parts of India? And Bangladesh which is East of India?)

    I'm open to alternative categorizations. There is a certain logic to Taleb's "Meds." Wokeness might be a good one, or bioleninism. But "everything to the West of India" is a surely a little much.

    Replies: @Bashibuzuk, @Agathoklis, @Svevlad

    Khan’s classification isn’t about traditions or race or really even religion (albeit religion was the “carrier” of this) – it’s about what I call “thinking style”

    Western thinking style is ultra-parochial and domineering. All rivals, even potential ones, must be crushed, humiliated, enslaved and destroyed. Minute differences take precedence over major ones due to endless purity spirals and feedback loops of autism. Every little group considers itself the superior. This results in frequent, bloody and chaotic wars. In this, you can see, there is basically no difference between Europe and the Middle East.

    To reduce confusion, if I was Khan, I would not call these “civilizations” but “civilizational areas,” and rename the West to the Ecumene.

    I’d eject Africa – Africa is Africa, with it’s own civilizational areas, but their (current) lack in quality human capital means this is unused, and they all can be said to “work for the highest bidder” eg area civilizational colony of someone else.

    The thing is – the Ecumene is a rather old concept. By now, it has almost broken apart. It was always a multipolar civilizational area, constantly shifting and morphing and changing. It’s now broken into 4 sections: the West, aka the wokeist atlantoid autistocracy, which doesn’t need to be explained; the “paleo-West” aka Eastern Europe, which is closer to the “original” “new civilizations” of Europe of Antiquity but is rapidly fundamentally becoming it’s own thing, losing the entire autistic purity spiral tribalist parochialism (even in the Balkans it’s inevitable); the special case that is the New World (for the time being just Latin America, but the US might join in once wokeism collapses); and the most interesting being the Middle East, who is the only one who will always be closest to the “original” i described above. However, as the inbreeding stops, and due to not having any state strong enough to withstand the power of Woke Cuckistan that is the West, I suspect they will get pozzed too, except Iran and the stans.

    • Thanks: Bashibuzuk
    • Replies: @Bashibuzuk
    @Svevlad

    A very interesting analysis.

    , @songbird
    @Svevlad

    I think that Civilizational zones are best defined on a two part basis:
    1.) the facility with which they allow one to make predictions
    2.) the ability to which they allow people to cooperate

    Right now, traditionalists in the West might be a bit hampered by putting too much focus on #1 and being blackpilled by it. Probably, the healthiest thing would be to think in terms of #2 - and I don't mean that in a multicult sense. I mean, realizing that there is a core group of Westerners, however small, who want to cooperate and putting the emphasis on future-orientation, rather than trying to relive glory days or being an assistant puppeteer for the corpse-skin of the West.

    One of the major historical weaknesses of the West was its basic inability to think in terms of competition. Not to single out Asians, but after the Crusades, the closest we came to it was "Yellow Peril", a term that was laughed at. "Fu Manchu" never got very far out of the pulps, and movie codes prevented people from articulating a competitive vision of civilization with ethnic cores, that allowed for a utilitarian friend-enemy distinction.

    The same problem has been greatly exacerbated today, by the invasion of Muslims and blacks. What is the West? The area that can't tell its own history in mass media, where it would be impossible to make a film about the siege of Vienna or of Malta, or the Battle of Lepanto, or the invasion of Rhodes.

    This negative tendency might be ameliorated somewhat by people thinking in civilizational terms, and promoting the term "Wokedom", an articulation of the fact that institutions are woke, and people need to form their own, in order to compete.

  87. @Svevlad
    @songbird

    Khan's classification isn't about traditions or race or really even religion (albeit religion was the "carrier" of this) - it's about what I call "thinking style"

    Western thinking style is ultra-parochial and domineering. All rivals, even potential ones, must be crushed, humiliated, enslaved and destroyed. Minute differences take precedence over major ones due to endless purity spirals and feedback loops of autism. Every little group considers itself the superior. This results in frequent, bloody and chaotic wars. In this, you can see, there is basically no difference between Europe and the Middle East.

    To reduce confusion, if I was Khan, I would not call these "civilizations" but "civilizational areas," and rename the West to the Ecumene.

    I'd eject Africa - Africa is Africa, with it's own civilizational areas, but their (current) lack in quality human capital means this is unused, and they all can be said to "work for the highest bidder" eg area civilizational colony of someone else.

    The thing is - the Ecumene is a rather old concept. By now, it has almost broken apart. It was always a multipolar civilizational area, constantly shifting and morphing and changing. It's now broken into 4 sections: the West, aka the wokeist atlantoid autistocracy, which doesn't need to be explained; the "paleo-West" aka Eastern Europe, which is closer to the "original" "new civilizations" of Europe of Antiquity but is rapidly fundamentally becoming it's own thing, losing the entire autistic purity spiral tribalist parochialism (even in the Balkans it's inevitable); the special case that is the New World (for the time being just Latin America, but the US might join in once wokeism collapses); and the most interesting being the Middle East, who is the only one who will always be closest to the "original" i described above. However, as the inbreeding stops, and due to not having any state strong enough to withstand the power of Woke Cuckistan that is the West, I suspect they will get pozzed too, except Iran and the stans.

    Replies: @Bashibuzuk, @songbird

    A very interesting analysis.

  88. @Coconuts
    @Bashibuzuk


    Were there any versions that did include Orthodox Christianity, especially its Slav portion?
     
    Maybe this is a question for Germans and other Central/Northern European representatives of 'the West', also for Turks, Iranians and Arabs who had more contacts with Slavs. Awareness of the existence of Slavic and Eastern European culture in parts of the West like Britain, Portugal, Spain seems to have been low before the 2000s, India, Brazil, Peru and so on would seem like better known places.

    Replies: @Bashibuzuk

    Slavs have only been included in the West when conquered. Even the Westernized Poles were never seen as “Western” by the other Roman Catholic Europeans. Interestingly enough, the same might be arguably said about the Magyar, who are genetically speaking indistinguishable from their Slavic neighbors. That is why I write that the whole mental opposition of West against Slav might predate historical European nations and go way back to Bronze Age tribal warfare between two genetically and linguistically distinct populations in what is today Central / Eastern Europe and Danubian bassin. This is of course impossible to prove, but it makes sense when one looks at the distribution of the Y haplogroups in Europe.

    • Replies: @Svevlad
    @Bashibuzuk

    Khan also posted some analysis about a new paper where it's said that Slavs (and Balts) were the last ones to "branch off" of the Indo-European languages, and that for at least some time, they were in the same group as what would become the Iranian and Indian languages. Haplogroups seem to confirm this.

    https://www.gnxp.com/WordPress/2021/03/14/proto-indo-european-and-haplgroups/

    If I had to guess, the entire Polish we-wuzzing about Sarmatians might not be entirely incorrect - except that it happened long before "Slav" was even a thing. Balto-Slavs were simply an offshoot of the nomadic Iranic steppe nomads that probably gave up the steppe nomad lifestyle as they pushed deeper into the forests and swamps of Ukraine and Belarus. Eventually due to the vastly different conditions, and the isolation of the area, they became their own thing (at this point is probably where some interactions with the ancient proto-germanics and proto-celts took place). There was probably even a "continuum" of sorts, where Sarmatian was sort of like a slightly Slavic Iranian, Scythian less so, and so on into Iranian and Indian languages.

    Replies: @Bashibuzuk

    , @Coconuts
    @Bashibuzuk


    That is why I write that the whole mental opposition of West against Slav might predate historical European nations and go way back to Bronze Age tribal warfare between two genetically and linguistically distinct populations in what is today Central / Eastern Europe and Danubian bassin.
     
    It is a possibility. I think one issue is that after a certain period a number of the key Western populations moved away geographically from much direct contact with Slavs and became absorbed in their own sphere where, apart from small exceptions they overwhelmingly fought and traded with each other. Then, probably due to the Germans and Scandinavians in between, and Arabs and Berbers in closer proximity, they were drawn to expand in different directions.

    This would account for the vague and minimal level of knowledge that you could find in some of the more Western parts of what is now the West. I remember that my own father, who is in his 70s, believed that my wife's appearance is typically Slavic or Belarusian, and she is partly Central Asian and looks it (black hair, somewhat darker skin, round head etc.). Knowledge must have been even more minimal going back into the past. There is this interesting thing that most British people I know still believe that Russia's territory includes more or less all of the former USSR, only cheaper holidays and cruise deals to the Baltic seem to have made any dent in that.

    Replies: @Coconuts

  89. From the makers of your smartphone. comes the Level 4 sedan:

    Please donate to the Taxi Drivers’ Suicide Prevention Fund!

  90. @DNS
    This is, I believe, what is called a Reddit moment!



    https://imgur.com/jHLwry5

    https://i.redd.it/qeryhi1g6px61.jpg

    Replies: @DNS, @songbird, @Yellowface Anon

    West Taiwan kek

    To be serious, driving CCP out of power won’t be the real victory for the American Empire. Drawing borders like this only shreds some of the most restive borderland China has been devoting disproportionate resources in holding (I’m not advocating for separatism BTW), and China with the territories in the meme still has the bulk of its population and economic base. It’s about 90s Russia redux and reducing the resultant mess into globalist satrapies. If a largely cohesive Chinese state remained without massive forced deCCPization (Pozzing and killing more than CCP ever did outside of Maoist insanity) the rise of China as a hyperpower would only be delayed.

    [MORE]

    When the surveillance state would be dismantled in China, it would be consolidated in the West with a fully-blown green social credit score from WEF, to fight against Climate Change and rid the land of Deplorables!

  91. @songbird
    I hope that Thulean updates his list of precepts for the Progressive Caste to include living in gigantic concrete-box apartments, like in the movie Raid: Redemption.

    I feel it is necessary in order to preserve green space.

    Replies: @Yellowface Anon

    Like East Asian ones?

    • Replies: @songbird
    @Yellowface Anon

    Ideally, like Kowloon Walled City, but without the natural height restriction imposed by airplanes.

  92. @Mulga Mumblebrain
    Release of UFO/UAP/ETV etc films and reports probably indicates that the next false flag will be an 'alien attack' one, requiring a global response, led by the USA, naturally. Still I think that a cyber 9/11 still looks more likely, or an EMP, perhaps disguised as 'alien attack', particularly if you see the Yellow Peril as 'alien'.

    Replies: @Yellowface Anon

    Did you read Whitney Webb’s newest piece here?

  93. @Bashibuzuk
    @Felix Keverich

    Ukrainian regime is as "Banderist" as Russian regime is "Patriotic ", that is only in a sufficient amount to distract the attention of the Russian and Ukrainian masses from them being dispossessed by their local post-Soviet corrupt elites. The only difference is that the "Russian " crooks will glorify Tsarist and Soviet heroic past, while the "Ukrainian " crooks would glorify the Cossack and Nationalist one. Both will tell lies and throw one Slav people against the other. Both are criminals. Any sane person would despise both of them, but post-Soviet populations have had their sanity unfortunately debased and their just anger misdirected.

    Replies: @Mr. Hack

    I generally agree with you, however, you’d have to admit that there is a good/some amount of “truth” to both the Russian “Tsarist and Soviet heroic past” and Ukrainian “Cossack and Nationalist” memes to fuel separate nation/state paradigms for both peoples. The fact that both Russian and Ukrainian post Soviet elites hide their true greedy natures behind these national facades is another story.

    • Replies: @Bashibuzuk
    @Mr. Hack

    There is truth to these historical memes, but I don't see them as incompatible with a peaceful Ukrainian - Russian coexistence. What makes this coexistence impossible nowadays, is the noxious influence of the post-Soviet elites, their twisting of historical narrative, their hateful propaganda and their manipulations. They basically divide and rule the Slavic plebs, while they stuff their pockets with both Russian and Ukrainian national wealth and transfer it into the multiple tax havens where these moneys are injected into the globalized economy.

    Replies: @Mr. Hack

  94. @Yellowface Anon
    @songbird

    Like East Asian ones?

    https://cdn.i-scmp.com/sites/default/files/d8/images/methode/2019/07/29/d86e9006-b1e4-11e9-8f9c-a6398a9f90a9_image_hires_231929.jpg

    https://www.teoalida.com/world/17614924.jpg

    https://newsarticleinsiders.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/07/South-Korea-goes-all-out-to-curb-surging-apartment-prices.png

    Replies: @songbird

    Ideally, like Kowloon Walled City, but without the natural height restriction imposed by airplanes.

  95. @Bashibuzuk
    @Coconuts

    Slavs have only been included in the West when conquered. Even the Westernized Poles were never seen as "Western" by the other Roman Catholic Europeans. Interestingly enough, the same might be arguably said about the Magyar, who are genetically speaking indistinguishable from their Slavic neighbors. That is why I write that the whole mental opposition of West against Slav might predate historical European nations and go way back to Bronze Age tribal warfare between two genetically and linguistically distinct populations in what is today Central / Eastern Europe and Danubian bassin. This is of course impossible to prove, but it makes sense when one looks at the distribution of the Y haplogroups in Europe.

    Replies: @Svevlad, @Coconuts

    Khan also posted some analysis about a new paper where it’s said that Slavs (and Balts) were the last ones to “branch off” of the Indo-European languages, and that for at least some time, they were in the same group as what would become the Iranian and Indian languages. Haplogroups seem to confirm this.

    https://www.gnxp.com/WordPress/2021/03/14/proto-indo-european-and-haplgroups/

    If I had to guess, the entire Polish we-wuzzing about Sarmatians might not be entirely incorrect – except that it happened long before “Slav” was even a thing. Balto-Slavs were simply an offshoot of the nomadic Iranic steppe nomads that probably gave up the steppe nomad lifestyle as they pushed deeper into the forests and swamps of Ukraine and Belarus. Eventually due to the vastly different conditions, and the isolation of the area, they became their own thing (at this point is probably where some interactions with the ancient proto-germanics and proto-celts took place). There was probably even a “continuum” of sorts, where Sarmatian was sort of like a slightly Slavic Iranian, Scythian less so, and so on into Iranian and Indian languages.

    • Thanks: AltanBakshi
    • Replies: @Bashibuzuk
    @Svevlad

    It was like that, but the other way around. The ancestors of Balto-Slav were those Corded Ware folks that did not take to the Great Steppe nomad lifestyle and stayed the longest as primitive agriculturalists / hunter gatherers, while the ancestors of ancient Iranian tribes were those who left the forests behind and created the nomadic lifestyle which today is the hallmark of their Turanian descendants.

    And yes, the Y haplogroups demonstrate this. As Klyosov has written : Aryans were those who moved, Slavs were those who stayed behind. In due time, most nomadic Central Asian Indo-Iranian tribes intermixed with and assimilated into Turkic language. It only happened while the Huns ruled the Steppe and took a few centuries to happen.

    Replies: @AltanBakshi, @Jatt Aryaa

  96. @Svevlad
    @Bashibuzuk

    Khan also posted some analysis about a new paper where it's said that Slavs (and Balts) were the last ones to "branch off" of the Indo-European languages, and that for at least some time, they were in the same group as what would become the Iranian and Indian languages. Haplogroups seem to confirm this.

    https://www.gnxp.com/WordPress/2021/03/14/proto-indo-european-and-haplgroups/

    If I had to guess, the entire Polish we-wuzzing about Sarmatians might not be entirely incorrect - except that it happened long before "Slav" was even a thing. Balto-Slavs were simply an offshoot of the nomadic Iranic steppe nomads that probably gave up the steppe nomad lifestyle as they pushed deeper into the forests and swamps of Ukraine and Belarus. Eventually due to the vastly different conditions, and the isolation of the area, they became their own thing (at this point is probably where some interactions with the ancient proto-germanics and proto-celts took place). There was probably even a "continuum" of sorts, where Sarmatian was sort of like a slightly Slavic Iranian, Scythian less so, and so on into Iranian and Indian languages.

    Replies: @Bashibuzuk

    It was like that, but the other way around. The ancestors of Balto-Slav were those Corded Ware folks that did not take to the Great Steppe nomad lifestyle and stayed the longest as primitive agriculturalists / hunter gatherers, while the ancestors of ancient Iranian tribes were those who left the forests behind and created the nomadic lifestyle which today is the hallmark of their Turanian descendants.

    And yes, the Y haplogroups demonstrate this. As Klyosov has written : Aryans were those who moved, Slavs were those who stayed behind. In due time, most nomadic Central Asian Indo-Iranian tribes intermixed with and assimilated into Turkic language. It only happened while the Huns ruled the Steppe and took a few centuries to happen.

    • Replies: @AltanBakshi
    @Bashibuzuk


    most nomadic Central Asian Indo-Iranian tribes intermixed with and assimilated into Turkic language. It only happened while the Huns ruled the Steppe and took a few centuries to happen.
     
    Khwarezm and Soghdia were probably most densely populated areas of Central Asia, and both stayed as IE-speaking for a long time after the disappearance of the Huns. It seems to me that the invasion of Arab Caliphate was what put an end to the local IE-culture. I dont know why, but there are some mentions by ancient Persian historians that Arabs systematically destroyed local culture and literature.


    By the way, what about Tocharian/Yuezhi/Kushans? How they were related to Slavs and Indo-Iranic people? They were their own branch of IE, or so it seems.

    Replies: @Bashibuzuk, @Svevlad

    , @Jatt Aryaa
    @Bashibuzuk

    The cultural narrative will always hold those on the horse as above those in the forest.

  97. @utu
    @That Would Be Telling

    I understand that India is huge so it warrants a special attention. But there is nothing special about progression of the epidemic there except that it is retarded behind what was and is happening in Europe and N. America. The absolute numbers that are reported are large but when you normalize them to per capita India's daily deaths per capita in India is lower than in some countries in Europe (Poland, Czechia, Italy) today and only marginally greater than in the US.

    https://ourworldindata.org/explorers/coronavirus-data-explorer?zoomToSelection=true&time=2020-03-01..latest&pickerSort=asc&pickerMetric=location&Metric=Confirmed+deaths&Interval=7-day+rolling+average&Relative+to+Population=true&Align+outbreaks=false&country=IND~POL~CZE~ITA~USA

    In February in Czechia seven times more people per capita were dying than in India is dying now at its peak. There were no horror images fed by media coming from Czechia. That India has difficulties because of its poverty is understandable but the media attention it garners is not warranted.

    Also CFR/IFR is much lower in India because of much younger population.

    Replies: @reiner Tor, @Insomniac Resurrected

    In February in Czechia seven times more people per capita were dying than in India is dying now at its peak. There were no horror images fed by media coming from Czechia. That India has difficulties because of its poverty is understandable but the media attention it garners is not warranted.

    An elderly neighbour of mine died, death has found a way to my street here in CZ. This is a good point about the coverage.

  98. @Mr. Hack
    @Bashibuzuk

    I generally agree with you, however, you'd have to admit that there is a good/some amount of "truth" to both the Russian "Tsarist and Soviet heroic past" and Ukrainian "Cossack and Nationalist" memes to fuel separate nation/state paradigms for both peoples. The fact that both Russian and Ukrainian post Soviet elites hide their true greedy natures behind these national facades is another story.

    Replies: @Bashibuzuk

    There is truth to these historical memes, but I don’t see them as incompatible with a peaceful Ukrainian – Russian coexistence. What makes this coexistence impossible nowadays, is the noxious influence of the post-Soviet elites, their twisting of historical narrative, their hateful propaganda and their manipulations. They basically divide and rule the Slavic plebs, while they stuff their pockets with both Russian and Ukrainian national wealth and transfer it into the multiple tax havens where these moneys are injected into the globalized economy.

    • Agree: Mr. Hack
    • Replies: @Mr. Hack
    @Bashibuzuk

    We all understand that Zelensky and Poroshenko are largely marionets doing the work of others, but what about Putin? How much do you think that he is responsible for the sorry state of affairs between Russia and Ukraine?

    Replies: @Bashibuzuk, @AP

  99. @Bashibuzuk
    @Svevlad

    It was like that, but the other way around. The ancestors of Balto-Slav were those Corded Ware folks that did not take to the Great Steppe nomad lifestyle and stayed the longest as primitive agriculturalists / hunter gatherers, while the ancestors of ancient Iranian tribes were those who left the forests behind and created the nomadic lifestyle which today is the hallmark of their Turanian descendants.

    And yes, the Y haplogroups demonstrate this. As Klyosov has written : Aryans were those who moved, Slavs were those who stayed behind. In due time, most nomadic Central Asian Indo-Iranian tribes intermixed with and assimilated into Turkic language. It only happened while the Huns ruled the Steppe and took a few centuries to happen.

    Replies: @AltanBakshi, @Jatt Aryaa

    most nomadic Central Asian Indo-Iranian tribes intermixed with and assimilated into Turkic language. It only happened while the Huns ruled the Steppe and took a few centuries to happen.

    Khwarezm and Soghdia were probably most densely populated areas of Central Asia, and both stayed as IE-speaking for a long time after the disappearance of the Huns. It seems to me that the invasion of Arab Caliphate was what put an end to the local IE-culture. I dont know why, but there are some mentions by ancient Persian historians that Arabs systematically destroyed local culture and literature.

    By the way, what about Tocharian/Yuezhi/Kushans? How they were related to Slavs and Indo-Iranic people? They were their own branch of IE, or so it seems.

    • Replies: @Bashibuzuk
    @AltanBakshi

    I was only referring to the nomads. Sogdians became sedentary quite early and yes the sedentary populations massively stayed Iranian speaking even to this day.

    I wrote about the Tokharians a couple of times, perhaps you might look into my comments about the Ashina clan as a possible post-Hunnic Yezhi resurgence among the Turks and Finnish / Slavic cognates.

    And Huns were quite admixed, the Hephtalite White Huns (Spenta Huna) were possibly Dardic speaking or at least had this language family used among their subjects.

    Also I highly recommend Carlos Quiles blog posts about the Hun genetics. They were quite an eye opener to me.

    Replies: @Svevlad, @AltanBakshi

    , @Svevlad
    @AltanBakshi

    Tocharians were the first to move away from the Proto-Indo-Europeans. They highly diverged, but chose the direction of movement poorly. They probably got influenced by later Iranic newcomers.

    Don't know why they didn't continue going east and turned China predominantly Indo-European. There was probably some other bigger nomadic group in the area.

    Replies: @Bashibuzuk

  100. @Bashibuzuk
    @Mr. Hack

    There is truth to these historical memes, but I don't see them as incompatible with a peaceful Ukrainian - Russian coexistence. What makes this coexistence impossible nowadays, is the noxious influence of the post-Soviet elites, their twisting of historical narrative, their hateful propaganda and their manipulations. They basically divide and rule the Slavic plebs, while they stuff their pockets with both Russian and Ukrainian national wealth and transfer it into the multiple tax havens where these moneys are injected into the globalized economy.

    Replies: @Mr. Hack

    We all understand that Zelensky and Poroshenko are largely marionets doing the work of others, but what about Putin? How much do you think that he is responsible for the sorry state of affairs between Russia and Ukraine?

    • Replies: @Bashibuzuk
    @Mr. Hack

    I don't think that Putin is all that independent himself, but yes in my opinion he absolutely shares the blame for the sore state of the Russian-Ukrainian affairs. But you already know that I am not a Putin's fan at all for a variety of reasons, mainly because I see him and his clique as detrimental for the long term prospects of the Eastern Slavs. I see all Eastern Slavs as one family, they are my people genetically and culturally, seeing them hating and killing each other is absurd and entirely evil. It should have never happened and must stop ASAP.

    , @AP
    @Mr. Hack

    I don't think Poroshenko is a marionette locally (though in terms of larger geopolitical forces, he must be on the good side of the USA and EU), he is a powerful local oligarch in his own right.

    Putin has his own power base but also serves as a referee and force of stability among the 90s Russian oligarch-thieves; with their acquiescence, in a way that was much smoother than how Ukraine's power-grabbing Donbas mafia was cut down to size in 2014, Putin eliminated the ones like Khodorkovsky or Berezovsky who would destabilize the country enabling the and the country overall to prosper and thereby providing for the other oligarchs to enjoy their riches in peace.

    Replies: @Bashibuzuk

  101. @Svevlad
    @songbird

    Khan's classification isn't about traditions or race or really even religion (albeit religion was the "carrier" of this) - it's about what I call "thinking style"

    Western thinking style is ultra-parochial and domineering. All rivals, even potential ones, must be crushed, humiliated, enslaved and destroyed. Minute differences take precedence over major ones due to endless purity spirals and feedback loops of autism. Every little group considers itself the superior. This results in frequent, bloody and chaotic wars. In this, you can see, there is basically no difference between Europe and the Middle East.

    To reduce confusion, if I was Khan, I would not call these "civilizations" but "civilizational areas," and rename the West to the Ecumene.

    I'd eject Africa - Africa is Africa, with it's own civilizational areas, but their (current) lack in quality human capital means this is unused, and they all can be said to "work for the highest bidder" eg area civilizational colony of someone else.

    The thing is - the Ecumene is a rather old concept. By now, it has almost broken apart. It was always a multipolar civilizational area, constantly shifting and morphing and changing. It's now broken into 4 sections: the West, aka the wokeist atlantoid autistocracy, which doesn't need to be explained; the "paleo-West" aka Eastern Europe, which is closer to the "original" "new civilizations" of Europe of Antiquity but is rapidly fundamentally becoming it's own thing, losing the entire autistic purity spiral tribalist parochialism (even in the Balkans it's inevitable); the special case that is the New World (for the time being just Latin America, but the US might join in once wokeism collapses); and the most interesting being the Middle East, who is the only one who will always be closest to the "original" i described above. However, as the inbreeding stops, and due to not having any state strong enough to withstand the power of Woke Cuckistan that is the West, I suspect they will get pozzed too, except Iran and the stans.

    Replies: @Bashibuzuk, @songbird

    I think that Civilizational zones are best defined on a two part basis:
    1.) the facility with which they allow one to make predictions
    2.) the ability to which they allow people to cooperate

    Right now, traditionalists in the West might be a bit hampered by putting too much focus on #1 and being blackpilled by it. Probably, the healthiest thing would be to think in terms of #2 – and I don’t mean that in a multicult sense. I mean, realizing that there is a core group of Westerners, however small, who want to cooperate and putting the emphasis on future-orientation, rather than trying to relive glory days or being an assistant puppeteer for the corpse-skin of the West.

    One of the major historical weaknesses of the West was its basic inability to think in terms of competition. Not to single out Asians, but after the Crusades, the closest we came to it was “Yellow Peril”, a term that was laughed at. “Fu Manchu” never got very far out of the pulps, and movie codes prevented people from articulating a competitive vision of civilization with ethnic cores, that allowed for a utilitarian friend-enemy distinction.

    The same problem has been greatly exacerbated today, by the invasion of Muslims and blacks. What is the West? The area that can’t tell its own history in mass media, where it would be impossible to make a film about the siege of Vienna or of Malta, or the Battle of Lepanto, or the invasion of Rhodes.

    This negative tendency might be ameliorated somewhat by people thinking in civilizational terms, and promoting the term “Wokedom”, an articulation of the fact that institutions are woke, and people need to form their own, in order to compete.

  102. @Passer by
    @Anatoly Karlin

    OT

    Karlin, do you have good data on Russia's median wage? I find both 30k and 35k in various sources.

    If its 30k that sounds disappointing, at least in dollar terms. In PPP it must be similar to poor EU countries such as Bulgaria, while in dollars worse than Bulgaria. Also the minimum wage is just 12,5k rubles, it this for real?

    Thank you.

    Replies: @Anatoly Karlin, @Dmitry, @Philip Owen

    The Russian Federation has one of the world’s more unregulated, “neoliberal” (in bad parody sense), labour market, as expected for a country where many things are set up for the interest of the wealthy elite, that has relatively untrammeled control of the country and easily managed citizens.

    This is expressed in the “Big Mac Index”, which primarily measures how cheaply you can attain labour across different countries – as McDonald’s is one of the world’s most exploitative corporations, that carefully pays its labour the minimum it can legally achieve in each different market, and uses every sophisticated legal method to lower its salaries.

    MacDonald’s in Australia pays $18 an hour for a same job, that MacDonald’s in Russia pays its workers $1,90 per hour.

    The minimum cost of labour in Australia is around 9,5 times more expensive than in Russia. And yet, there’s somehow plenty of people in Russia, including some unfortunate university graduates, who are volunteering to work in MacDonald’s for $1,90 per hour.

    Even more crazy, is that the MacDonald’s in Russia doesn’t even pay $1,90 per hour for its entry workers, but even less than that – as it allowed to introduced unpaid breaks between the workers’ day.

    That is indicating, in Australia, the far more regulated labour and minimum wage.

    In Western Europe, I know people who claim $50 a day of travel expenses, for a twice 1/2 hour walk to work each day. Whereas in Russia, there are headteachers and doctors, who don’t get $50 a day from their actual job.

    The reality of the economy inequality in our world is far than is intuitively expected, and yet people accept it without much notice. In Russia, it’s not that people don’t know that how unequal it is – but you sense that for many people there is almost a Buddhist kind of equanimity and gratefulness about pleasures of a tiny income (that for people in the West, might evoke some memory of when they were students, or glamourous attitude of starving artists and bohemians).

    • Replies: @mal
    @Dmitry


    MacDonald’s in Australia pays $18 an hour for a same job, that MacDonald’s in Russia pays its workers $1,90 per hour.

    The minimum cost of labour in Australia is around 9,5 times more expensive than in Russia.
     
    Australia household debt to GDP ratio - 120%.

    Russia household debt to GDP ratio - 17%.

    https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_by_household_debt

    McDonalds in Australia doesn't pay wages, it pays bank dues. Humans are just an empty vessel, an inconvenient formality. Australian wage can be a $million dollars per hour, it doesn't matter, because it all goes to the bank, not to human worker.

    Generally speaking, wages are set by private sector debt (in market economy). Basically, the size of the realtor salary is set by the size of the mortgage people have to take out to buy a house.

    More debt, higher income, and quality of life, but also banks own you. That's the general tradeoff of modern political economy.

    Richest people are the most owned ones. Luxembourg has debt to GDP ratio pushing 500% LOL, but it pays nice realtor salaries. That's finance for you.
    , @Passer by
    @Dmitry

    Did you take PPP and taxes on wages into account? First there are the russian wages in MER dollars, they are quite low in that, and then there are the russian wages in PPP $, and then they are better, as long as you don't go abroad.

    Russia also has one of the lowest taxes on wages. So net wages look better.

    For example Russia's net average salary is almost the same as the one in Bulgaria in PPP $ (Ru 1627 vs Bg 1679), but lower when its gross salary and in MER $ (Ru 700 $ vs Bg 900 $).

    For example Russia's average net wage in PPP $ is only twice lower than the one in the UK, Sweden or or Norway.

    So i think that you should have a good look at those Big Mac 1,9 $ per hour. Are they in MER or in PPP? Is this gross or net? What about taxes on Big Mac salaries in Australia (probably higher)?

    Replies: @Dmitry, @Dmitry, @Dmitry

  103. @Anatoly Karlin
    @Passer by

    Wages are currently 51k rubles (=$700): https://tradingeconomics.com/russia/wages

    They draw it from Russian stats so that'd be accurate.

    Median wage would be around 70% from mean as is usually the case so = $500. But shadow economy is quite high in Russia, so real median wage probably something like $600-700.

    Replies: @Dmitry

    Here is a traditional Russian spiritual exercise – how to live with the salary of $600 per month; at least it’s supposedly easier to through the eye of a needle when you are not a camel.

    But seriously, there is something that you appreciate more your material purchases, when you had to save money for them.

    Some of the spiritual problem in the West is not materialism and capitalism, but rather a lack of appreciation for material things, because they were so easy to attain – this is a problem of disposable culture.

    When have save money for weeks to buy a book, music or clothes, then you might be likely to appreciate it more, than if it came to you without sacrifice.

    Hence the “disposable culture” that is encouraged when your income is too high, and is common for at least professional workers in Western Europe (which mirrors to problems of disposable culture created by streaming and ebooks).

    • Replies: @Passer by
    @Dmitry


    Here is a traditional Russian spiritual exercise – how to live with the salary of $600 per month
     
    The median wage in Russia is probably 1500 in PPP $ though. After taking shadow economy into account, as per Karlin's numbers.
  104. mal says:
    @Dmitry
    @Passer by

    The Russian Federation has one of the world's more unregulated, "neoliberal" (in bad parody sense), labour market, as expected for a country where many things are set up for the interest of the wealthy elite, that has relatively untrammeled control of the country and easily managed citizens.

    This is expressed in the "Big Mac Index", which primarily measures how cheaply you can attain labour across different countries - as McDonald's is one of the world's most exploitative corporations, that carefully pays its labour the minimum it can legally achieve in each different market, and uses every sophisticated legal method to lower its salaries.

    MacDonald’s in Australia pays $18 an hour for a same job, that MacDonald’s in Russia pays its workers $1,90 per hour.

    The minimum cost of labour in Australia is around 9,5 times more expensive than in Russia. And yet, there's somehow plenty of people in Russia, including some unfortunate university graduates, who are volunteering to work in MacDonald’s for $1,90 per hour.

    Even more crazy, is that the MacDonald’s in Russia doesn't even pay $1,90 per hour for its entry workers, but even less than that - as it allowed to introduced unpaid breaks between the workers' day.

    That is indicating, in Australia, the far more regulated labour and minimum wage.

    -

    In Western Europe, I know people who claim $50 a day of travel expenses, for a twice 1/2 hour walk to work each day. Whereas in Russia, there are headteachers and doctors, who don't get $50 a day from their actual job.

    The reality of the economy inequality in our world is far than is intuitively expected, and yet people accept it without much notice. In Russia, it's not that people don't know that how unequal it is - but you sense that for many people there is almost a Buddhist kind of equanimity and gratefulness about pleasures of a tiny income (that for people in the West, might evoke some memory of when they were students, or glamourous attitude of starving artists and bohemians).

    Replies: @mal, @Passer by

    MacDonald’s in Australia pays $18 an hour for a same job, that MacDonald’s in Russia pays its workers $1,90 per hour.

    The minimum cost of labour in Australia is around 9,5 times more expensive than in Russia.

    Australia household debt to GDP ratio – 120%.

    Russia household debt to GDP ratio – 17%.

    https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_by_household_debt

    McDonalds in Australia doesn’t pay wages, it pays bank dues. Humans are just an empty vessel, an inconvenient formality. Australian wage can be a $million dollars per hour, it doesn’t matter, because it all goes to the bank, not to human worker.

    Generally speaking, wages are set by private sector debt (in market economy). Basically, the size of the realtor salary is set by the size of the mortgage people have to take out to buy a house.

    More debt, higher income, and quality of life, but also banks own you. That’s the general tradeoff of modern political economy.

    Richest people are the most owned ones. Luxembourg has debt to GDP ratio pushing 500% LOL, but it pays nice realtor salaries. That’s finance for you.

    • Agree: Bashibuzuk
  105. @AltanBakshi
    @Bashibuzuk


    most nomadic Central Asian Indo-Iranian tribes intermixed with and assimilated into Turkic language. It only happened while the Huns ruled the Steppe and took a few centuries to happen.
     
    Khwarezm and Soghdia were probably most densely populated areas of Central Asia, and both stayed as IE-speaking for a long time after the disappearance of the Huns. It seems to me that the invasion of Arab Caliphate was what put an end to the local IE-culture. I dont know why, but there are some mentions by ancient Persian historians that Arabs systematically destroyed local culture and literature.


    By the way, what about Tocharian/Yuezhi/Kushans? How they were related to Slavs and Indo-Iranic people? They were their own branch of IE, or so it seems.

    Replies: @Bashibuzuk, @Svevlad

    I was only referring to the nomads. Sogdians became sedentary quite early and yes the sedentary populations massively stayed Iranian speaking even to this day.

    I wrote about the Tokharians a couple of times, perhaps you might look into my comments about the Ashina clan as a possible post-Hunnic Yezhi resurgence among the Turks and Finnish / Slavic cognates.

    And Huns were quite admixed, the Hephtalite White Huns (Spenta Huna) were possibly Dardic speaking or at least had this language family used among their subjects.

    Also I highly recommend Carlos Quiles blog posts about the Hun genetics. They were quite an eye opener to me.

    • Replies: @Svevlad
    @Bashibuzuk

    Some say, the Hun language itself was perhaps a Yeniseian one, related to modern Ket. This would be... very ironic. Albeit, steppe people domination was bound to end at some point - along with their cultures. I highly believe that Mongolian will basically disappear at some point - geographically speaking, the country of Mongolia is basically an extension of Siberia - the Govi being a natural border of sorts - but it's more likely it will get absorbed into China.

    The land is geographically speaking garbage tier - even with global warming, it will just become hotter, and not much wetter (that privilege will go to areas with monsoons).

    If I had to say, the only viable steppe country is Uzbekistan. Kazakhstan will inevitably be Russified at some point in the more distant future (unless they take over their neighboring section of Siberia, but the center of power and population will still move up there).

    Replies: @Bashibuzuk

    , @AltanBakshi
    @Bashibuzuk

    Svevlad and you were discussing of divergence of Indo-Iranians and Balto-Slavs, I've often myself speculated that these groups were last main branches of IE to separate from each other, nice to hear from you guys that there's now scientific support for having such an opinion, but Tocharians or IE-people of Eastern Central Asia, Tarim Basin, were their own separate and ancient branch of IE, when I last checked, no linguist believes that they are Indo-Iranic, also I don't remember you ever mentioning how they are related to other IE people. Tocharians also were neighbours of ancient Zhang Zhung/Ngari. Ancient Bön texts tell us that Bön religion came from the western country of Tagzig to Zhang Zhung and that there was also a country named Trom, that had many Bön texts in their language. Maybe Trom is ancient Tibetan translation of Zhang Zhung name for Tocharia? Maybe there was a widespread ancient organised shamanistic Aryan religion in Central Asia, and Bön is it's last remnant? No religion gives such huge importance to Swastika as Bön.

    Replies: @Bashibuzuk

  106. @Mr. Hack
    @Bashibuzuk

    We all understand that Zelensky and Poroshenko are largely marionets doing the work of others, but what about Putin? How much do you think that he is responsible for the sorry state of affairs between Russia and Ukraine?

    Replies: @Bashibuzuk, @AP

    I don’t think that Putin is all that independent himself, but yes in my opinion he absolutely shares the blame for the sore state of the Russian-Ukrainian affairs. But you already know that I am not a Putin’s fan at all for a variety of reasons, mainly because I see him and his clique as detrimental for the long term prospects of the Eastern Slavs. I see all Eastern Slavs as one family, they are my people genetically and culturally, seeing them hating and killing each other is absurd and entirely evil. It should have never happened and must stop ASAP.

    • Agree: Mr. Hack
  107. @Bashibuzuk
    @AltanBakshi

    I was only referring to the nomads. Sogdians became sedentary quite early and yes the sedentary populations massively stayed Iranian speaking even to this day.

    I wrote about the Tokharians a couple of times, perhaps you might look into my comments about the Ashina clan as a possible post-Hunnic Yezhi resurgence among the Turks and Finnish / Slavic cognates.

    And Huns were quite admixed, the Hephtalite White Huns (Spenta Huna) were possibly Dardic speaking or at least had this language family used among their subjects.

    Also I highly recommend Carlos Quiles blog posts about the Hun genetics. They were quite an eye opener to me.

    Replies: @Svevlad, @AltanBakshi

    Some say, the Hun language itself was perhaps a Yeniseian one, related to modern Ket. This would be… very ironic. Albeit, steppe people domination was bound to end at some point – along with their cultures. I highly believe that Mongolian will basically disappear at some point – geographically speaking, the country of Mongolia is basically an extension of Siberia – the Govi being a natural border of sorts – but it’s more likely it will get absorbed into China.

    The land is geographically speaking garbage tier – even with global warming, it will just become hotter, and not much wetter (that privilege will go to areas with monsoons).

    If I had to say, the only viable steppe country is Uzbekistan. Kazakhstan will inevitably be Russified at some point in the more distant future (unless they take over their neighboring section of Siberia, but the center of power and population will still move up there).

    • Replies: @Bashibuzuk
    @Svevlad

    I have already commented on the immense influence on their contemporary Steppe neighboring populations by the possibly Ugric speaking Sargat Culture of the Ingala Valley. This culture played an outstanding role in the transition of the Bronze Age Steppe cultures to the Iron Age Hun and then Turkic and Magyar domination.

    Due to the Importance of the Sargat Culture, we cannot rule out that the medieval Magyar were not much mistaken when they laid claims to Attila's heritage. Clearly, Sargat contributed to both the proto-Magyar and the Western Hun populations. So there is also this possibility of the Western Hun speaking an Ugric language. Y haplogroup N is found among the Hun aristocratic burials.

    https://indo-european.eu/tag/sargat/

    In fact, Y haplogroup N was increasingly present among the Siberian Scythians.

    https://indo-european.eu/2021/04/iron-age-nomads-of-west-siberia-of-hg-q1b-r1a-and-basal-n1a-l1026/

    Just as it was also increasingly present among the Corded Ware descended groups in the modern day territory of Northern Russia and Baltic States. In Finland, Y haplogroup N ended up dominant around the beginning of CE. Clearly, Finno-Ugric tribesnen were an important component of all this melting pot that ended up erupting to the West and leading to the Migration Period.

  108. @AltanBakshi
    @Bashibuzuk


    most nomadic Central Asian Indo-Iranian tribes intermixed with and assimilated into Turkic language. It only happened while the Huns ruled the Steppe and took a few centuries to happen.
     
    Khwarezm and Soghdia were probably most densely populated areas of Central Asia, and both stayed as IE-speaking for a long time after the disappearance of the Huns. It seems to me that the invasion of Arab Caliphate was what put an end to the local IE-culture. I dont know why, but there are some mentions by ancient Persian historians that Arabs systematically destroyed local culture and literature.


    By the way, what about Tocharian/Yuezhi/Kushans? How they were related to Slavs and Indo-Iranic people? They were their own branch of IE, or so it seems.

    Replies: @Bashibuzuk, @Svevlad

    Tocharians were the first to move away from the Proto-Indo-Europeans. They highly diverged, but chose the direction of movement poorly. They probably got influenced by later Iranic newcomers.

    Don’t know why they didn’t continue going east and turned China predominantly Indo-European. There was probably some other bigger nomadic group in the area.

    • Agree: Bashibuzuk
    • Replies: @Bashibuzuk
    @Svevlad


    Don’t know why they didn’t continue going east and turned China predominantly Indo-European. There was probably some other bigger nomadic group in the area.
     
    Back then the Tarim bassin reslly was a paradise, the desertification occurred much later, reducing the vital space of an already urban and thoroughly civilized Tokharian population. The proto-Tokharians had the best spot and probably did not need to move further into what would much later become Chinese territory.

    But the early Indo-European migrations lead as far as the Gansu province. Even to this day a substantial portion of the Han Chinese there are Y haplogroup R1a.
  109. @Dmitry
    @Passer by

    The Russian Federation has one of the world's more unregulated, "neoliberal" (in bad parody sense), labour market, as expected for a country where many things are set up for the interest of the wealthy elite, that has relatively untrammeled control of the country and easily managed citizens.

    This is expressed in the "Big Mac Index", which primarily measures how cheaply you can attain labour across different countries - as McDonald's is one of the world's most exploitative corporations, that carefully pays its labour the minimum it can legally achieve in each different market, and uses every sophisticated legal method to lower its salaries.

    MacDonald’s in Australia pays $18 an hour for a same job, that MacDonald’s in Russia pays its workers $1,90 per hour.

    The minimum cost of labour in Australia is around 9,5 times more expensive than in Russia. And yet, there's somehow plenty of people in Russia, including some unfortunate university graduates, who are volunteering to work in MacDonald’s for $1,90 per hour.

    Even more crazy, is that the MacDonald’s in Russia doesn't even pay $1,90 per hour for its entry workers, but even less than that - as it allowed to introduced unpaid breaks between the workers' day.

    That is indicating, in Australia, the far more regulated labour and minimum wage.

    -

    In Western Europe, I know people who claim $50 a day of travel expenses, for a twice 1/2 hour walk to work each day. Whereas in Russia, there are headteachers and doctors, who don't get $50 a day from their actual job.

    The reality of the economy inequality in our world is far than is intuitively expected, and yet people accept it without much notice. In Russia, it's not that people don't know that how unequal it is - but you sense that for many people there is almost a Buddhist kind of equanimity and gratefulness about pleasures of a tiny income (that for people in the West, might evoke some memory of when they were students, or glamourous attitude of starving artists and bohemians).

    Replies: @mal, @Passer by

    Did you take PPP and taxes on wages into account? First there are the russian wages in MER dollars, they are quite low in that, and then there are the russian wages in PPP $, and then they are better, as long as you don’t go abroad.

    Russia also has one of the lowest taxes on wages. So net wages look better.

    For example Russia’s net average salary is almost the same as the one in Bulgaria in PPP $ (Ru 1627 vs Bg 1679), but lower when its gross salary and in MER $ (Ru 700 $ vs Bg 900 $).

    For example Russia’s average net wage in PPP $ is only twice lower than the one in the UK, Sweden or or Norway.

    So i think that you should have a good look at those Big Mac 1,9 $ per hour. Are they in MER or in PPP? Is this gross or net? What about taxes on Big Mac salaries in Australia (probably higher)?

    • Replies: @Dmitry
    @Passer by

    Most of the PPP difference is a tautological way to rephrase the point that wages are low in the country. I.e. the price of services is lower, because salaries are lower.

    If there was two countries:
    Country A is composed of 99 high income people and one low income person.
    Country B is composed of 99 low income people and one high income person.


    In country B, the low income people are lowering the prices of services, because they are selling their labour at much lower cost - this is the upward adjustment for PPP.

    The use of the PPP concept, is mainly a tautological way of re-stating that the country has low salaries.

    In country A, the salaries are high - so the price of services is high (this is the downward adjustment for PPP).

    -

    In Russia salaries are on average far lower than in North-West Europe, and this means that the price of services is far lower - human labour is cheap. The "politically correct" to describe this reality, is to say that incomes are higher at PPP.

    But this is also a euphemistic way to say that labour is cheap. Your income is not higher relative to commodities (which are set by international markets); rather you are living close to other low income (relative to commodities) people, so due to being surrounded with other low income people, the price of labour/services is cheap.

    If Russia would have a more protected, unionized labour market, then the price of services would rise - that would be another way to say that median incomes would have to be higher (PPP upward adjustment would likely fall).

    Replies: @mal

    , @Dmitry
    @Passer by


    then they are better, as long as you don’t go abroad.
     
    A scary reality you will find, is that prices of things based on commodities (including food in budget supermarkets) often seems to be the same in Russia as in Western Europe. But this is counter-intuitive and requires a level of skill and knowledge as a shopper to realize this.

    This confuses people, because in first impressions, they think food is crazy expensive in Western Europe (but it takes some years, until you understand this is impression is from looking at the far higher proportion of luxury supermarkets in Western Europe). The price of food in budget supermarkets in Western Europe, can be identical as in Russia - because the price of supermarket food is dependent on international commodity prices, not labour costs. Actually, I know one shop in the UK, where you can every branded product (Nutella, et al) significantly cheaper than the supermarket in Russia.

    Moreover, price of consumer products and clothes brands, are often more expensive in Russia, than to buy the same product in Western Europe. And the international brands even raise the price of luxury products when they sold them in Russia.

    The area where it is far cheaper to be in Russia, is in everything based on purchase of human labour - whether to buy a hair cut, to have service in a restaurant, to pay for children's piano lessons, education and public transport.

    Moreover, property is far cheaper in Russia and a better value for money (but then this cheaper property is not located near to as many high salary jobs, so for working people, has a lower value built-in in some ways than an equivalent property in a country with higher average salary; unless you retired or work in a kind of distance/profession).

    Replies: @Coconuts, @Passer by

    , @Dmitry
    @Passer by


    one of the lowest taxes on wages.
     
    In Russia, this is benefiting the high income people, but for low income people (most of the workers) are paying more income tax than they would if they received their low salary in countries with progressive taxation like in the UK or ROI.

    That is, a worker who has less income than $18,000 a year (which is even experienced specialists can be below that salary in Russia), will pay more in Russia, than if they had that same salary in the UK.

    In countries like Great Britain, there is no tax on the first $18,000. Then it goes to 20% tax between $18,000 to $70000, and then to 40% for the people over $70000. But these are marginal tax rates - so even the high income people are only paying this tax, on the portion of their income which is above $18,000.

    To avoid the crazy high tax on the marginal portion of the salary above $70,000 in the UK, is why the employees are often paid through share options and non-pecuniary benefits. The employers in the UK are often trying to avoid tax that high marginal tax, by instead giving employees non-pecuniary benefits.

    But low income people in countries like the UK (people with salary below $18,000), do not pay tax. Income tax only begins for the income you receive which is above $18,000 per year.

    Replies: @Pericles

  110. @Passer by
    @Anatoly Karlin

    OT

    Karlin, do you have good data on Russia's median wage? I find both 30k and 35k in various sources.

    If its 30k that sounds disappointing, at least in dollar terms. In PPP it must be similar to poor EU countries such as Bulgaria, while in dollars worse than Bulgaria. Also the minimum wage is just 12,5k rubles, it this for real?

    Thank you.

    Replies: @Anatoly Karlin, @Dmitry, @Philip Owen

    Outside Moscow about 35,000 Roubles a month. About 50,000 Rub/month in Moscow.

    12 500 RUB is old data for the minimum wage. It is 14 100 from memory outside Moscow. In fact it is reset every year at 40% of the median for the province or the Russian national average whichever is higher. This means it is higher in moscow, St Pete and a few oil rich provinces like Kazan.

    Hard to employ anyone with half a brain for less than 40,000 a month in Moscow though.

    • Replies: @Passer by
    @Philip Owen

    Gross or net? Does this take shadow economy into account?

    Replies: @Philip Owen

  111. @Dmitry
    @Anatoly Karlin

    Here is a traditional Russian spiritual exercise - how to live with the salary of $600 per month; at least it's supposedly easier to through the eye of a needle when you are not a camel.

    But seriously, there is something that you appreciate more your material purchases, when you had to save money for them.

    Some of the spiritual problem in the West is not materialism and capitalism, but rather a lack of appreciation for material things, because they were so easy to attain - this is a problem of disposable culture.

    When have save money for weeks to buy a book, music or clothes, then you might be likely to appreciate it more, than if it came to you without sacrifice.

    Hence the "disposable culture" that is encouraged when your income is too high, and is common for at least professional workers in Western Europe (which mirrors to problems of disposable culture created by streaming and ebooks).

    Replies: @Passer by

    Here is a traditional Russian spiritual exercise – how to live with the salary of $600 per month

    The median wage in Russia is probably 1500 in PPP $ though. After taking shadow economy into account, as per Karlin’s numbers.

  112. @Philip Owen
    @Passer by

    Outside Moscow about 35,000 Roubles a month. About 50,000 Rub/month in Moscow.

    12 500 RUB is old data for the minimum wage. It is 14 100 from memory outside Moscow. In fact it is reset every year at 40% of the median for the province or the Russian national average whichever is higher. This means it is higher in moscow, St Pete and a few oil rich provinces like Kazan.

    Hard to employ anyone with half a brain for less than 40,000 a month in Moscow though.

    Replies: @Passer by

    Gross or net? Does this take shadow economy into account?

    • Replies: @Philip Owen
    @Passer by

    Gross. The need to offer 40k/month to hire someone half competent does include shadow economy payments. There is a huge gap between men and women. Men are mostly median and above. You can hire a competent, hard working ntelligent woman for median and somewhat below. Hence I g0t by paying 35,000 in Saratov.

  113. @Bashibuzuk
    @AltanBakshi

    I was only referring to the nomads. Sogdians became sedentary quite early and yes the sedentary populations massively stayed Iranian speaking even to this day.

    I wrote about the Tokharians a couple of times, perhaps you might look into my comments about the Ashina clan as a possible post-Hunnic Yezhi resurgence among the Turks and Finnish / Slavic cognates.

    And Huns were quite admixed, the Hephtalite White Huns (Spenta Huna) were possibly Dardic speaking or at least had this language family used among their subjects.

    Also I highly recommend Carlos Quiles blog posts about the Hun genetics. They were quite an eye opener to me.

    Replies: @Svevlad, @AltanBakshi

    Svevlad and you were discussing of divergence of Indo-Iranians and Balto-Slavs, I’ve often myself speculated that these groups were last main branches of IE to separate from each other, nice to hear from you guys that there’s now scientific support for having such an opinion, but Tocharians or IE-people of Eastern Central Asia, Tarim Basin, were their own separate and ancient branch of IE, when I last checked, no linguist believes that they are Indo-Iranic, also I don’t remember you ever mentioning how they are related to other IE people. Tocharians also were neighbours of ancient Zhang Zhung/Ngari. Ancient Bön texts tell us that Bön religion came from the western country of Tagzig to Zhang Zhung and that there was also a country named Trom, that had many Bön texts in their language. Maybe Trom is ancient Tibetan translation of Zhang Zhung name for Tocharia? Maybe there was a widespread ancient organised shamanistic Aryan religion in Central Asia, and Bön is it’s last remnant? No religion gives such huge importance to Swastika as Bön.

    • Replies: @Bashibuzuk
    @AltanBakshi


    I don’t remember you ever mentioning how they are related to other IE people.
     
    There were two distinct Tokharian language dialects:A and B, A being much more archaic and used mainly in a higher cultural context. IIRC, it's the Older Tokharian (A) that was more diverged from the Indo-Iranian. A and B were not mutually intellegible. In one of their dialects Tokharians called themselves Arśi, and in the other dialect they used the self-designation of Kushanne the Chinese called them Yuezhi.

    Also, we know that Yuezhi ended up founding the Scythian-Indian Kushan Empire of Kanishka the Great. These people spoke a language which was entirely compatible with local Hindustani prakrits. Therefore they probably spoke an Indo-Iranian language already before moving to Hindustan. They probably ended up speaking Bactrian during their Central Asian migrations, a language also spoken by a large proportion of the Hephtalite Huns.

    Now the interesting (and much more controversial part) the Older Tokharian (dialect A), while removed from Indo-Iranian, nevertheless presented numerous cognates to Balto-Slavic words, especially from the Wendish dialects.

    An example is Tokharian ratre, rtär, ratrem = red and Wendish Retra, the Red Temple of Arkona.

    And Arśi is not that far removed from Aesir.

    A short overview of Tokharian lexicon:

    http://www.lexicons.ru/old/t/tocharian/index.html
  114. Razib is behind a paywall so I’ll comment here. He is not correct that Britain provided no Roman Emperors when making the case for North Africa and Syria as part of the West. While there were a number who proclaimed themselves Caesar (#2 Emperor in the West) even Augustus, of Britain, the territories of the western Cesear or even the whole Empire, the title was usually disputed and things ended badly but not all were unsucesful usurpers. Britain had 4 legions and their commanders routinely had a go at the top job and grabbed chunks of Gaul and Spain if not the whole West. More than a few Emperors from elswhere died in Britain often in York, the reserve base for defending The Wall.

    At the top of the list however, we have Constantine. He and his father, the Augustus, Constantinus Chlorus, were fighting the Picts north of The Wall. Fighting was severe and Constantinus was probably wounded. He died in York while ill. The Army in Britain proclaimed Constantine “Augustus” and they marched out to conquer and Christianize Rome and set up Byzantium (Tsargrad) thus reinforcing Diocletian’s view of a West and an East which divides Europe today. No North African or Syrian had such consequences. Arabia whence came the Muslims was always beyond Imperial boundaries. Allah is not the Trinity.

  115. @Passer by
    @Philip Owen

    Gross or net? Does this take shadow economy into account?

    Replies: @Philip Owen

    Gross. The need to offer 40k/month to hire someone half competent does include shadow economy payments. There is a huge gap between men and women. Men are mostly median and above. You can hire a competent, hard working ntelligent woman for median and somewhat below. Hence I g0t by paying 35,000 in Saratov.

  116. @mal
    @Anatoly Karlin

    Extremely rare as in once every couple of years it looks like. (2017 - Oumuamua, 2019 - Borisov).

    It's like you are standing in the middle of railroad tracks.

    NASA: Great news! The odds of you getting hit by a car in the next 100 years are next to nothing!

    You: Great! What about trains?

    A couple of trains blast past you at 100 miles per hour.


    NASA: .....

    We will be turning on some rather powerful telescopes in a couple of years, it'd suck to discover the rest of the Oumuamua planet barreling down on us with a few months to spare. Oops.

    Replies: @Anatoly Karlin

    We will be turning on some rather powerful telescopes in a couple of years, it’d suck to discover the rest of the Oumuamua planet barreling down on us with a few months to spare. Oops.

    I at any rate will be happy to die safe and secure in the knowledge that I was almost certainly right.

    https://www.unz.com/akarlin/katechon/

    • LOL: mal
  117. Great Bifurcation update: good piece in Nikkei Asia about China’s efforts to create the entire semiconductor supply chain with its borders: https://asia.nikkei.com/Spotlight/The-Big-Story/US-China-tech-war-Beijing-s-secret-chipmaking-champions

  118. @Bashibuzuk
    @Svevlad

    It was like that, but the other way around. The ancestors of Balto-Slav were those Corded Ware folks that did not take to the Great Steppe nomad lifestyle and stayed the longest as primitive agriculturalists / hunter gatherers, while the ancestors of ancient Iranian tribes were those who left the forests behind and created the nomadic lifestyle which today is the hallmark of their Turanian descendants.

    And yes, the Y haplogroups demonstrate this. As Klyosov has written : Aryans were those who moved, Slavs were those who stayed behind. In due time, most nomadic Central Asian Indo-Iranian tribes intermixed with and assimilated into Turkic language. It only happened while the Huns ruled the Steppe and took a few centuries to happen.

    Replies: @AltanBakshi, @Jatt Aryaa

    The cultural narrative will always hold those on the horse as above those in the forest.

    • Agree: Bashibuzuk
  119. @Passer by
    @Dmitry

    Did you take PPP and taxes on wages into account? First there are the russian wages in MER dollars, they are quite low in that, and then there are the russian wages in PPP $, and then they are better, as long as you don't go abroad.

    Russia also has one of the lowest taxes on wages. So net wages look better.

    For example Russia's net average salary is almost the same as the one in Bulgaria in PPP $ (Ru 1627 vs Bg 1679), but lower when its gross salary and in MER $ (Ru 700 $ vs Bg 900 $).

    For example Russia's average net wage in PPP $ is only twice lower than the one in the UK, Sweden or or Norway.

    So i think that you should have a good look at those Big Mac 1,9 $ per hour. Are they in MER or in PPP? Is this gross or net? What about taxes on Big Mac salaries in Australia (probably higher)?

    Replies: @Dmitry, @Dmitry, @Dmitry

    Most of the PPP difference is a tautological way to rephrase the point that wages are low in the country. I.e. the price of services is lower, because salaries are lower.

    If there was two countries:
    Country A is composed of 99 high income people and one low income person.
    Country B is composed of 99 low income people and one high income person.

    In country B, the low income people are lowering the prices of services, because they are selling their labour at much lower cost – this is the upward adjustment for PPP.

    The use of the PPP concept, is mainly a tautological way of re-stating that the country has low salaries.

    In country A, the salaries are high – so the price of services is high (this is the downward adjustment for PPP).

    In Russia salaries are on average far lower than in North-West Europe, and this means that the price of services is far lower – human labour is cheap. The “politically correct” to describe this reality, is to say that incomes are higher at PPP.

    But this is also a euphemistic way to say that labour is cheap. Your income is not higher relative to commodities (which are set by international markets); rather you are living close to other low income (relative to commodities) people, so due to being surrounded with other low income people, the price of labour/services is cheap.

    If Russia would have a more protected, unionized labour market, then the price of services would rise – that would be another way to say that median incomes would have to be higher (PPP upward adjustment would likely fall).

    • Replies: @mal
    @Dmitry

    Russia has the fourth highest foreign foreign reserves in the world after China, Japan, and Switzerland, at $590 billion.

    They don't need unions or any other nonsense to raise dollar wages.

    All they need to do is lend those reserves to themselves at 10:1 leverage, this will give them about $6 trillion USD in cash and raise their debt to GDP ratio to developed world levels. They can then peg ruble to USD ratio at 7:1 or whatever and Russian dollar wages will skyrocket 10X.

    Its literally that simple. But it would be a dumb idea, and here's why.

    1. Eurodollar debt is easy to get, much harder to unwind as you don't control the currency the debt is denominated in.

    2. Russia would lose sovereignty and ability to make policy decisions, foreign and domestic, to a banking cartel.

    3. Russia would lose independence because with high dollar wages, Russians would switch to buying imports and that would destroy domestic production.

    4. Russia doesn't have a swap line with Federal Reserve Bank of the US, which means once Russians spent their high dollar wages on imports, Russia would be on her own. There would be a run on the peg, it would crash, and it would be 90's all over again.

    Union labor would achieve the same results. Excessive labor costs would feed inflation and Russia would be forced to either devalue or defend the currency peg. Devaluation wouldn't achieve much as Russia doesn't have much debt, and peg would eat forex reserves very fast without leverage.

  120. @Bashibuzuk
    @Coconuts

    Slavs have only been included in the West when conquered. Even the Westernized Poles were never seen as "Western" by the other Roman Catholic Europeans. Interestingly enough, the same might be arguably said about the Magyar, who are genetically speaking indistinguishable from their Slavic neighbors. That is why I write that the whole mental opposition of West against Slav might predate historical European nations and go way back to Bronze Age tribal warfare between two genetically and linguistically distinct populations in what is today Central / Eastern Europe and Danubian bassin. This is of course impossible to prove, but it makes sense when one looks at the distribution of the Y haplogroups in Europe.

    Replies: @Svevlad, @Coconuts

    That is why I write that the whole mental opposition of West against Slav might predate historical European nations and go way back to Bronze Age tribal warfare between two genetically and linguistically distinct populations in what is today Central / Eastern Europe and Danubian bassin.

    It is a possibility. I think one issue is that after a certain period a number of the key Western populations moved away geographically from much direct contact with Slavs and became absorbed in their own sphere where, apart from small exceptions they overwhelmingly fought and traded with each other. Then, probably due to the Germans and Scandinavians in between, and Arabs and Berbers in closer proximity, they were drawn to expand in different directions.

    This would account for the vague and minimal level of knowledge that you could find in some of the more Western parts of what is now the West. I remember that my own father, who is in his 70s, believed that my wife’s appearance is typically Slavic or Belarusian, and she is partly Central Asian and looks it (black hair, somewhat darker skin, round head etc.). Knowledge must have been even more minimal going back into the past. There is this interesting thing that most British people I know still believe that Russia’s territory includes more or less all of the former USSR, only cheaper holidays and cruise deals to the Baltic seem to have made any dent in that.

    • Replies: @Coconuts
    @Coconuts

    I thought I would expand this point on the limited knowledge people may have had in the past of foreign nations and cultures beyond their close neighbours with the observation that in this respect in the past 20-25 years Britain has undergone a kind of revolution.

    In the mid 90s about 5% of the population belonged to an ethnic minority or was born abroad, now the figure is likely to be over 20%. Just in terms of the Slavic population of Britain, the decision to grant British citizenship to EU citizens living and working in the UK before the Brexit vote is likely to produce at least a few hundred thousand extra dual national 'British Slavs', plus British Romanians and British Baltic people.

    Whereas before 1950 the main immigration would have been from Ireland, then much smaller numbers from Italy, France or other Western European countries.

    This has been matched with secularisation and the steep decline of traditional religion, significant changes in gender roles, sexuality etc. attitudes to family life, and cultural and legal changes needed to produce a multi-cultural liberal society based on the 'proposition nation' model. Overall this probably amounts to a kind of revolution in ideas about nationality, culture and, as it develops over time, may produce a revolution in ethnic identity.

    Replies: @Yellowface Anon

  121. @Passer by
    @Dmitry

    Did you take PPP and taxes on wages into account? First there are the russian wages in MER dollars, they are quite low in that, and then there are the russian wages in PPP $, and then they are better, as long as you don't go abroad.

    Russia also has one of the lowest taxes on wages. So net wages look better.

    For example Russia's net average salary is almost the same as the one in Bulgaria in PPP $ (Ru 1627 vs Bg 1679), but lower when its gross salary and in MER $ (Ru 700 $ vs Bg 900 $).

    For example Russia's average net wage in PPP $ is only twice lower than the one in the UK, Sweden or or Norway.

    So i think that you should have a good look at those Big Mac 1,9 $ per hour. Are they in MER or in PPP? Is this gross or net? What about taxes on Big Mac salaries in Australia (probably higher)?

    Replies: @Dmitry, @Dmitry, @Dmitry

    then they are better, as long as you don’t go abroad.

    A scary reality you will find, is that prices of things based on commodities (including food in budget supermarkets) often seems to be the same in Russia as in Western Europe. But this is counter-intuitive and requires a level of skill and knowledge as a shopper to realize this.

    This confuses people, because in first impressions, they think food is crazy expensive in Western Europe (but it takes some years, until you understand this is impression is from looking at the far higher proportion of luxury supermarkets in Western Europe). The price of food in budget supermarkets in Western Europe, can be identical as in Russia – because the price of supermarket food is dependent on international commodity prices, not labour costs. Actually, I know one shop in the UK, where you can every branded product (Nutella, et al) significantly cheaper than the supermarket in Russia.

    Moreover, price of consumer products and clothes brands, are often more expensive in Russia, than to buy the same product in Western Europe. And the international brands even raise the price of luxury products when they sold them in Russia.

    The area where it is far cheaper to be in Russia, is in everything based on purchase of human labour – whether to buy a hair cut, to have service in a restaurant, to pay for children’s piano lessons, education and public transport.

    Moreover, property is far cheaper in Russia and a better value for money (but then this cheaper property is not located near to as many high salary jobs, so for working people, has a lower value built-in in some ways than an equivalent property in a country with higher average salary; unless you retired or work in a kind of distance/profession).

    • Agree: AltanBakshi
    • Replies: @Coconuts
    @Dmitry


    Actually, I know one shop in the UK, where you can every branded product (Nutella, et al) significantly cheaper than the supermarket in Russia.
     
    I have observed this in Belarus, a lot of imported Western food products are the same price as they would be in the UK when not on discount, plus some extra that must be due to import duties and taxes or the cost of paperwork involved in importing them. Sometimes Western brands that are made within the customs union still carry this kind of mark up as well, the margin on these for the producer and retailer must be large.

    Given the difference in salaries, these Western goods become more like high luxury items.

    Replies: @Dmitry

    , @Passer by
    @Dmitry

    Oh, no. Can not not agree, Dimitry. Prices between Russia and NW Europe are different in various key areas, such as fuels or electricity.

    For example 1 liter gasoline is 1,6 $ in the UK and 0,7 $ in Russia.

    1 kWh electricity is 0,264 $ in the UK and 0,061 $ in Russia. Way lower.

    Fuel and electricity prices are well known to affect the economy and the well being of the people, including many prices.

    International prices? Not so fast.

    International markets are fragmented and regionalised in many cases. See LNG, which is cheaper in Europe and expensive in Asia. Can american buy russian electricity? No. Then also different countries put different taxes on different products. Some country may decide to make alcohol expensive, and put high taxes on it. Or it may have low fuel prices because it is a producer, or decided to subsidise.

    A salary is not always high if prices are high too, because a salary matters only in relation to prices. Theoretically a person with low salary and very low prices may live better than a person with high salary, but extremely high prices. For salary, only its relation to prices matters. Otherwise it is just empty numbers.

    And what do we have in salaries in local prices (PPP)? 1620 $ average net salary in Russia, 3300 $ in NW Europe. Twice as low as one of the richest countries in the world. Well, not too bad. It is another matter if one wants to get out of the country. Then the russian gets 600 - 700 $ in MER, which is quite low.

    On taxes: a person in the UK on average wage pays 21 % in taxes, vs 13 % in Russia. And taxes on wages are way higher in other NW countries.

    Replies: @Dmitry

  122. @Svevlad
    @Bashibuzuk

    Some say, the Hun language itself was perhaps a Yeniseian one, related to modern Ket. This would be... very ironic. Albeit, steppe people domination was bound to end at some point - along with their cultures. I highly believe that Mongolian will basically disappear at some point - geographically speaking, the country of Mongolia is basically an extension of Siberia - the Govi being a natural border of sorts - but it's more likely it will get absorbed into China.

    The land is geographically speaking garbage tier - even with global warming, it will just become hotter, and not much wetter (that privilege will go to areas with monsoons).

    If I had to say, the only viable steppe country is Uzbekistan. Kazakhstan will inevitably be Russified at some point in the more distant future (unless they take over their neighboring section of Siberia, but the center of power and population will still move up there).

    Replies: @Bashibuzuk

    I have already commented on the immense influence on their contemporary Steppe neighboring populations by the possibly Ugric speaking Sargat Culture of the Ingala Valley. This culture played an outstanding role in the transition of the Bronze Age Steppe cultures to the Iron Age Hun and then Turkic and Magyar domination.

    Due to the Importance of the Sargat Culture, we cannot rule out that the medieval Magyar were not much mistaken when they laid claims to Attila’s heritage. Clearly, Sargat contributed to both the proto-Magyar and the Western Hun populations. So there is also this possibility of the Western Hun speaking an Ugric language. Y haplogroup N is found among the Hun aristocratic burials.

    https://indo-european.eu/tag/sargat/

    In fact, Y haplogroup N was increasingly present among the Siberian Scythians.

    https://indo-european.eu/2021/04/iron-age-nomads-of-west-siberia-of-hg-q1b-r1a-and-basal-n1a-l1026/

    Just as it was also increasingly present among the Corded Ware descended groups in the modern day territory of Northern Russia and Baltic States. In Finland, Y haplogroup N ended up dominant around the beginning of CE. Clearly, Finno-Ugric tribesnen were an important component of all this melting pot that ended up erupting to the West and leading to the Migration Period.

  123. @Svevlad
    @AltanBakshi

    Tocharians were the first to move away from the Proto-Indo-Europeans. They highly diverged, but chose the direction of movement poorly. They probably got influenced by later Iranic newcomers.

    Don't know why they didn't continue going east and turned China predominantly Indo-European. There was probably some other bigger nomadic group in the area.

    Replies: @Bashibuzuk

    Don’t know why they didn’t continue going east and turned China predominantly Indo-European. There was probably some other bigger nomadic group in the area.

    Back then the Tarim bassin reslly was a paradise, the desertification occurred much later, reducing the vital space of an already urban and thoroughly civilized Tokharian population. The proto-Tokharians had the best spot and probably did not need to move further into what would much later become Chinese territory.

    But the early Indo-European migrations lead as far as the Gansu province. Even to this day a substantial portion of the Han Chinese there are Y haplogroup R1a.

  124. @Passer by
    @Dmitry

    Did you take PPP and taxes on wages into account? First there are the russian wages in MER dollars, they are quite low in that, and then there are the russian wages in PPP $, and then they are better, as long as you don't go abroad.

    Russia also has one of the lowest taxes on wages. So net wages look better.

    For example Russia's net average salary is almost the same as the one in Bulgaria in PPP $ (Ru 1627 vs Bg 1679), but lower when its gross salary and in MER $ (Ru 700 $ vs Bg 900 $).

    For example Russia's average net wage in PPP $ is only twice lower than the one in the UK, Sweden or or Norway.

    So i think that you should have a good look at those Big Mac 1,9 $ per hour. Are they in MER or in PPP? Is this gross or net? What about taxes on Big Mac salaries in Australia (probably higher)?

    Replies: @Dmitry, @Dmitry, @Dmitry

    one of the lowest taxes on wages.

    In Russia, this is benefiting the high income people, but for low income people (most of the workers) are paying more income tax than they would if they received their low salary in countries with progressive taxation like in the UK or ROI.

    That is, a worker who has less income than $18,000 a year (which is even experienced specialists can be below that salary in Russia), will pay more in Russia, than if they had that same salary in the UK.

    In countries like Great Britain, there is no tax on the first $18,000. Then it goes to 20% tax between $18,000 to $70000, and then to 40% for the people over $70000. But these are marginal tax rates – so even the high income people are only paying this tax, on the portion of their income which is above $18,000.

    To avoid the crazy high tax on the marginal portion of the salary above $70,000 in the UK, is why the employees are often paid through share options and non-pecuniary benefits. The employers in the UK are often trying to avoid tax that high marginal tax, by instead giving employees non-pecuniary benefits.

    But low income people in countries like the UK (people with salary below $18,000), do not pay tax. Income tax only begins for the income you receive which is above $18,000 per year.

    • Replies: @Pericles
    @Dmitry

    The UK personal allowance is interesting because it's so substantial, but most other countries have a far lower limit. Sweden for example permits a general deduction of a full $1000 on your income, though that's of course applied after the hidden 'employer contribution' taxes of about 30%. (It works out to a gain of about $300 compared to no deduction, perhaps 2 weeks of apartment rent or so.)

    There is nothing preventing Russia from having a personal allowance either, in addition to a linear income tax beyond that. But personally I think it's smart to have a clean, simple, low tax system without a long parade of exceptions.

    Finally note that in low income America, taxs pays you.

  125. @AltanBakshi
    @Bashibuzuk

    Svevlad and you were discussing of divergence of Indo-Iranians and Balto-Slavs, I've often myself speculated that these groups were last main branches of IE to separate from each other, nice to hear from you guys that there's now scientific support for having such an opinion, but Tocharians or IE-people of Eastern Central Asia, Tarim Basin, were their own separate and ancient branch of IE, when I last checked, no linguist believes that they are Indo-Iranic, also I don't remember you ever mentioning how they are related to other IE people. Tocharians also were neighbours of ancient Zhang Zhung/Ngari. Ancient Bön texts tell us that Bön religion came from the western country of Tagzig to Zhang Zhung and that there was also a country named Trom, that had many Bön texts in their language. Maybe Trom is ancient Tibetan translation of Zhang Zhung name for Tocharia? Maybe there was a widespread ancient organised shamanistic Aryan religion in Central Asia, and Bön is it's last remnant? No religion gives such huge importance to Swastika as Bön.

    Replies: @Bashibuzuk

    I don’t remember you ever mentioning how they are related to other IE people.

    There were two distinct Tokharian language dialects:A and B, A being much more archaic and used mainly in a higher cultural context. IIRC, it’s the Older Tokharian (A) that was more diverged from the Indo-Iranian. A and B were not mutually intellegible. In one of their dialects Tokharians called themselves Arśi, and in the other dialect they used the self-designation of Kushanne the Chinese called them Yuezhi.

    Also, we know that Yuezhi ended up founding the Scythian-Indian Kushan Empire of Kanishka the Great. These people spoke a language which was entirely compatible with local Hindustani prakrits. Therefore they probably spoke an Indo-Iranian language already before moving to Hindustan. They probably ended up speaking Bactrian during their Central Asian migrations, a language also spoken by a large proportion of the Hephtalite Huns.

    Now the interesting (and much more controversial part) the Older Tokharian (dialect A), while removed from Indo-Iranian, nevertheless presented numerous cognates to Balto-Slavic words, especially from the Wendish dialects.

    An example is Tokharian ratre, rtär, ratrem = red and Wendish Retra, the Red Temple of Arkona.

    And Arśi is not that far removed from Aesir.

    A short overview of Tokharian lexicon:

    http://www.lexicons.ru/old/t/tocharian/index.html

  126. mal says:
    @Dmitry
    @Passer by

    Most of the PPP difference is a tautological way to rephrase the point that wages are low in the country. I.e. the price of services is lower, because salaries are lower.

    If there was two countries:
    Country A is composed of 99 high income people and one low income person.
    Country B is composed of 99 low income people and one high income person.


    In country B, the low income people are lowering the prices of services, because they are selling their labour at much lower cost - this is the upward adjustment for PPP.

    The use of the PPP concept, is mainly a tautological way of re-stating that the country has low salaries.

    In country A, the salaries are high - so the price of services is high (this is the downward adjustment for PPP).

    -

    In Russia salaries are on average far lower than in North-West Europe, and this means that the price of services is far lower - human labour is cheap. The "politically correct" to describe this reality, is to say that incomes are higher at PPP.

    But this is also a euphemistic way to say that labour is cheap. Your income is not higher relative to commodities (which are set by international markets); rather you are living close to other low income (relative to commodities) people, so due to being surrounded with other low income people, the price of labour/services is cheap.

    If Russia would have a more protected, unionized labour market, then the price of services would rise - that would be another way to say that median incomes would have to be higher (PPP upward adjustment would likely fall).

    Replies: @mal

    Russia has the fourth highest foreign foreign reserves in the world after China, Japan, and Switzerland, at $590 billion.

    They don’t need unions or any other nonsense to raise dollar wages.

    All they need to do is lend those reserves to themselves at 10:1 leverage, this will give them about $6 trillion USD in cash and raise their debt to GDP ratio to developed world levels. They can then peg ruble to USD ratio at 7:1 or whatever and Russian dollar wages will skyrocket 10X.

    Its literally that simple. But it would be a dumb idea, and here’s why.

    1. Eurodollar debt is easy to get, much harder to unwind as you don’t control the currency the debt is denominated in.

    2. Russia would lose sovereignty and ability to make policy decisions, foreign and domestic, to a banking cartel.

    3. Russia would lose independence because with high dollar wages, Russians would switch to buying imports and that would destroy domestic production.

    4. Russia doesn’t have a swap line with Federal Reserve Bank of the US, which means once Russians spent their high dollar wages on imports, Russia would be on her own. There would be a run on the peg, it would crash, and it would be 90’s all over again.

    Union labor would achieve the same results. Excessive labor costs would feed inflation and Russia would be forced to either devalue or defend the currency peg. Devaluation wouldn’t achieve much as Russia doesn’t have much debt, and peg would eat forex reserves very fast without leverage.

  127. Further dividing its employees by race and sex, Disney crafted “affinity groups” for minority employees to join. The groups are titled “Hola” for latino individuals, “Compass” for asians, and “Wakanda” for blacks. The objective of the groups is to provide “culturally-authentic insights” for employees and encourage “diversity,” “inclusion,” “belonging,” “identity,” and “allyship.” There is no group provided for all individuals to join.

    The names of Disney’s new racial affinity groups seem weirdly appropriate: Asians will need a “compass” to avoid “Wakanda.”

    https://thefederalist.com/2021/05/09/bombshell-report-disney-pushing-critical-race-theory-training-on-employees/

  128. AP says:
    @Mr. Hack
    @Bashibuzuk

    We all understand that Zelensky and Poroshenko are largely marionets doing the work of others, but what about Putin? How much do you think that he is responsible for the sorry state of affairs between Russia and Ukraine?

    Replies: @Bashibuzuk, @AP

    I don’t think Poroshenko is a marionette locally (though in terms of larger geopolitical forces, he must be on the good side of the USA and EU), he is a powerful local oligarch in his own right.

    Putin has his own power base but also serves as a referee and force of stability among the 90s Russian oligarch-thieves; with their acquiescence, in a way that was much smoother than how Ukraine’s power-grabbing Donbas mafia was cut down to size in 2014, Putin eliminated the ones like Khodorkovsky or Berezovsky who would destabilize the country enabling the and the country overall to prosper and thereby providing for the other oligarchs to enjoy their riches in peace.

    • Agree: mal
    • Replies: @Bashibuzuk
    @AP

    Both Putin and Poroshenko were part of the same process of annihilation of the Eastern Slav potential to challenge the planetary trend towards a globalized future where local cultures will only exist as simulacra, fading away as time goes. They were partners into it and derived substantial personal benefits. They worked hard and got the job done...

    Replies: @AP

  129. @Dmitry
    @Passer by


    one of the lowest taxes on wages.
     
    In Russia, this is benefiting the high income people, but for low income people (most of the workers) are paying more income tax than they would if they received their low salary in countries with progressive taxation like in the UK or ROI.

    That is, a worker who has less income than $18,000 a year (which is even experienced specialists can be below that salary in Russia), will pay more in Russia, than if they had that same salary in the UK.

    In countries like Great Britain, there is no tax on the first $18,000. Then it goes to 20% tax between $18,000 to $70000, and then to 40% for the people over $70000. But these are marginal tax rates - so even the high income people are only paying this tax, on the portion of their income which is above $18,000.

    To avoid the crazy high tax on the marginal portion of the salary above $70,000 in the UK, is why the employees are often paid through share options and non-pecuniary benefits. The employers in the UK are often trying to avoid tax that high marginal tax, by instead giving employees non-pecuniary benefits.

    But low income people in countries like the UK (people with salary below $18,000), do not pay tax. Income tax only begins for the income you receive which is above $18,000 per year.

    Replies: @Pericles

    The UK personal allowance is interesting because it’s so substantial, but most other countries have a far lower limit. Sweden for example permits a general deduction of a full $1000 on your income, though that’s of course applied after the hidden ’employer contribution’ taxes of about 30%. (It works out to a gain of about $300 compared to no deduction, perhaps 2 weeks of apartment rent or so.)

    There is nothing preventing Russia from having a personal allowance either, in addition to a linear income tax beyond that. But personally I think it’s smart to have a clean, simple, low tax system without a long parade of exceptions.

    Finally note that in low income America, taxs pays you.

  130. @AP
    @Mr. Hack

    I don't think Poroshenko is a marionette locally (though in terms of larger geopolitical forces, he must be on the good side of the USA and EU), he is a powerful local oligarch in his own right.

    Putin has his own power base but also serves as a referee and force of stability among the 90s Russian oligarch-thieves; with their acquiescence, in a way that was much smoother than how Ukraine's power-grabbing Donbas mafia was cut down to size in 2014, Putin eliminated the ones like Khodorkovsky or Berezovsky who would destabilize the country enabling the and the country overall to prosper and thereby providing for the other oligarchs to enjoy their riches in peace.

    Replies: @Bashibuzuk

    Both Putin and Poroshenko were part of the same process of annihilation of the Eastern Slav potential to challenge the planetary trend towards a globalized future where local cultures will only exist as simulacra, fading away as time goes. They were partners into it and derived substantial personal benefits. They worked hard and got the job done…

    • Replies: @AP
    @Bashibuzuk


    Both Putin and Poroshenko were part of the same process of annihilation of the Eastern Slav potential
     
    Neither was responsible for it, the ruling Communists were. They were bit players in that process, and not decision-makers although they did play the cards they were dealt skillfully and well. The two supposedly get along okay personally, though given his circumstances Poroshenko has correctly taken a strong anti-Russian line and played the role of enemy (which hasn’t stopped his son from mostly hanging out with rich Russian kids in Switzerland). The best way of preventing war is a strong deterrent, so Poroshenko’s creation of a functional military (may it never be really used) has been a good thing.

    I heard from a credible source that Lyashko (a puppet of the Dnipropetrovsk clan) has had a habit of frequently flying to and from Moscow.

    Replies: @Bashibuzuk

  131. @Dmitry
    @Passer by


    then they are better, as long as you don’t go abroad.
     
    A scary reality you will find, is that prices of things based on commodities (including food in budget supermarkets) often seems to be the same in Russia as in Western Europe. But this is counter-intuitive and requires a level of skill and knowledge as a shopper to realize this.

    This confuses people, because in first impressions, they think food is crazy expensive in Western Europe (but it takes some years, until you understand this is impression is from looking at the far higher proportion of luxury supermarkets in Western Europe). The price of food in budget supermarkets in Western Europe, can be identical as in Russia - because the price of supermarket food is dependent on international commodity prices, not labour costs. Actually, I know one shop in the UK, where you can every branded product (Nutella, et al) significantly cheaper than the supermarket in Russia.

    Moreover, price of consumer products and clothes brands, are often more expensive in Russia, than to buy the same product in Western Europe. And the international brands even raise the price of luxury products when they sold them in Russia.

    The area where it is far cheaper to be in Russia, is in everything based on purchase of human labour - whether to buy a hair cut, to have service in a restaurant, to pay for children's piano lessons, education and public transport.

    Moreover, property is far cheaper in Russia and a better value for money (but then this cheaper property is not located near to as many high salary jobs, so for working people, has a lower value built-in in some ways than an equivalent property in a country with higher average salary; unless you retired or work in a kind of distance/profession).

    Replies: @Coconuts, @Passer by

    Actually, I know one shop in the UK, where you can every branded product (Nutella, et al) significantly cheaper than the supermarket in Russia.

    I have observed this in Belarus, a lot of imported Western food products are the same price as they would be in the UK when not on discount, plus some extra that must be due to import duties and taxes or the cost of paperwork involved in importing them. Sometimes Western brands that are made within the customs union still carry this kind of mark up as well, the margin on these for the producer and retailer must be large.

    Given the difference in salaries, these Western goods become more like high luxury items.

    • Replies: @Dmitry
    @Coconuts

    And the luxury shops like Dior or Chanel, can be selling the same products for significantly more expensive in Russia, than would be in London or Paris.

    One of the funny things, was that a decade ago, they were boasting that in Ekaterinburg (a city in Russia) that the Dior shop, was a larger shop than exists in London or New York.

    Dior shop has subsequently closed in such a city, but all the time it was indeed true that Dior was larger and more significant in Ekaterinburg, than in London.

    Moreover, that they will have higher prices in such shops, than even the branches of the same brand in London or Paris.

    Such a story seems funny for local people, because this kind of city will not be in the best condition, the tap water you should not drink, the paint is falling from the walls of the university, etc. However, Dior, Chanel, Gucci and Louis Vuitton, - are really larger in Ekaterinburg, than in London and Frankfurt.

    But Dior and Chanel, are not idiots, afterall; they know something that we don't know. In Russia, there might be a 6 times lower median income than in United Kingdom, but for selling Dior, the important thing is not the wealth of the average person, but the wealth of the elite. And obviously, there's a significant customers for Dior and Chanel in cities, that can afford to buy a $3000 dress without even caring about it.


    Western goods become more like high luxury items.
     
    Or like a middle class pleasure. All these things like St Dalfour jam, Nutella and Ritter Sport chocolate bars. One of the funny stories of some years ago in Russia, was that supermarkets were adding electronic anti-theft security tags on Ritter Sport bars - they had such a status.

    -

    But in countries like United Kingdom, the supermarket has become one of the main avenues of social status signifying. .

    Among the English, there is such a vast range of luxury supermarkets like Waitrose, Tesco, Sainsbury - designed for people with high salaries, like doctors, lawyers, accountants and engineers. These shops can randomly multiply the price of products.

    The $70 jar of organix honey, is typical English social status signifying.
    https://www.waitrose.com/ecom/products/steens-raw-manuka-honey-umf20/489059-731050-731051

    But if you want to find the normal price of the same products, then you have to walk with shame into not-stylish German supermarkets or an Asda (which is owned by America's Walmart) and B&M, where ordinary English worker can find normal priced products.

    Replies: @Coconuts

  132. @Coconuts
    @Bashibuzuk


    That is why I write that the whole mental opposition of West against Slav might predate historical European nations and go way back to Bronze Age tribal warfare between two genetically and linguistically distinct populations in what is today Central / Eastern Europe and Danubian bassin.
     
    It is a possibility. I think one issue is that after a certain period a number of the key Western populations moved away geographically from much direct contact with Slavs and became absorbed in their own sphere where, apart from small exceptions they overwhelmingly fought and traded with each other. Then, probably due to the Germans and Scandinavians in between, and Arabs and Berbers in closer proximity, they were drawn to expand in different directions.

    This would account for the vague and minimal level of knowledge that you could find in some of the more Western parts of what is now the West. I remember that my own father, who is in his 70s, believed that my wife's appearance is typically Slavic or Belarusian, and she is partly Central Asian and looks it (black hair, somewhat darker skin, round head etc.). Knowledge must have been even more minimal going back into the past. There is this interesting thing that most British people I know still believe that Russia's territory includes more or less all of the former USSR, only cheaper holidays and cruise deals to the Baltic seem to have made any dent in that.

    Replies: @Coconuts

    I thought I would expand this point on the limited knowledge people may have had in the past of foreign nations and cultures beyond their close neighbours with the observation that in this respect in the past 20-25 years Britain has undergone a kind of revolution.

    In the mid 90s about 5% of the population belonged to an ethnic minority or was born abroad, now the figure is likely to be over 20%. Just in terms of the Slavic population of Britain, the decision to grant British citizenship to EU citizens living and working in the UK before the Brexit vote is likely to produce at least a few hundred thousand extra dual national ‘British Slavs’, plus British Romanians and British Baltic people.

    Whereas before 1950 the main immigration would have been from Ireland, then much smaller numbers from Italy, France or other Western European countries.

    This has been matched with secularisation and the steep decline of traditional religion, significant changes in gender roles, sexuality etc. attitudes to family life, and cultural and legal changes needed to produce a multi-cultural liberal society based on the ‘proposition nation’ model. Overall this probably amounts to a kind of revolution in ideas about nationality, culture and, as it develops over time, may produce a revolution in ethnic identity.

    • Agree: Bashibuzuk
    • Replies: @Yellowface Anon
    @Coconuts

    Slavs are just like the old Irish immigrants - white and assimilable (tho at a loss of Central and Eastern Europe).
    You know the real problem, right?

  133. @Coconuts
    @Coconuts

    I thought I would expand this point on the limited knowledge people may have had in the past of foreign nations and cultures beyond their close neighbours with the observation that in this respect in the past 20-25 years Britain has undergone a kind of revolution.

    In the mid 90s about 5% of the population belonged to an ethnic minority or was born abroad, now the figure is likely to be over 20%. Just in terms of the Slavic population of Britain, the decision to grant British citizenship to EU citizens living and working in the UK before the Brexit vote is likely to produce at least a few hundred thousand extra dual national 'British Slavs', plus British Romanians and British Baltic people.

    Whereas before 1950 the main immigration would have been from Ireland, then much smaller numbers from Italy, France or other Western European countries.

    This has been matched with secularisation and the steep decline of traditional religion, significant changes in gender roles, sexuality etc. attitudes to family life, and cultural and legal changes needed to produce a multi-cultural liberal society based on the 'proposition nation' model. Overall this probably amounts to a kind of revolution in ideas about nationality, culture and, as it develops over time, may produce a revolution in ethnic identity.

    Replies: @Yellowface Anon

    Slavs are just like the old Irish immigrants – white and assimilable (tho at a loss of Central and Eastern Europe).
    You know the real problem, right?

  134. AP says:
    @Bashibuzuk
    @AP

    Both Putin and Poroshenko were part of the same process of annihilation of the Eastern Slav potential to challenge the planetary trend towards a globalized future where local cultures will only exist as simulacra, fading away as time goes. They were partners into it and derived substantial personal benefits. They worked hard and got the job done...

    Replies: @AP

    Both Putin and Poroshenko were part of the same process of annihilation of the Eastern Slav potential

    Neither was responsible for it, the ruling Communists were. They were bit players in that process, and not decision-makers although they did play the cards they were dealt skillfully and well. The two supposedly get along okay personally, though given his circumstances Poroshenko has correctly taken a strong anti-Russian line and played the role of enemy (which hasn’t stopped his son from mostly hanging out with rich Russian kids in Switzerland). The best way of preventing war is a strong deterrent, so Poroshenko’s creation of a functional military (may it never be really used) has been a good thing.

    I heard from a credible source that Lyashko (a puppet of the Dnipropetrovsk clan) has had a habit of frequently flying to and from Moscow.

    • Replies: @Bashibuzuk
    @AP


    the ruling Communists were
     
    In 2014 ?

    Replies: @AP

  135. @SeanR
    https://twitter.com/Scholars_Stage/status/1389567464594358275

    This is a gay Romne-tier Mormon cuckservative trying to break any sense of solidarity normal people might have with China. Can Duke of Qin or somebody more knowledgeable of the subject matter explain precisely how fake this is? Thanks.

    Replies: @Malenfant, @Mitleser, @Daniel Chieh

    Greer has to write what he needs to write to get a government job. We all feel for him.

  136. @Dmitry
    @Passer by


    then they are better, as long as you don’t go abroad.
     
    A scary reality you will find, is that prices of things based on commodities (including food in budget supermarkets) often seems to be the same in Russia as in Western Europe. But this is counter-intuitive and requires a level of skill and knowledge as a shopper to realize this.

    This confuses people, because in first impressions, they think food is crazy expensive in Western Europe (but it takes some years, until you understand this is impression is from looking at the far higher proportion of luxury supermarkets in Western Europe). The price of food in budget supermarkets in Western Europe, can be identical as in Russia - because the price of supermarket food is dependent on international commodity prices, not labour costs. Actually, I know one shop in the UK, where you can every branded product (Nutella, et al) significantly cheaper than the supermarket in Russia.

    Moreover, price of consumer products and clothes brands, are often more expensive in Russia, than to buy the same product in Western Europe. And the international brands even raise the price of luxury products when they sold them in Russia.

    The area where it is far cheaper to be in Russia, is in everything based on purchase of human labour - whether to buy a hair cut, to have service in a restaurant, to pay for children's piano lessons, education and public transport.

    Moreover, property is far cheaper in Russia and a better value for money (but then this cheaper property is not located near to as many high salary jobs, so for working people, has a lower value built-in in some ways than an equivalent property in a country with higher average salary; unless you retired or work in a kind of distance/profession).

    Replies: @Coconuts, @Passer by

    Oh, no. Can not not agree, Dimitry. Prices between Russia and NW Europe are different in various key areas, such as fuels or electricity.

    For example 1 liter gasoline is 1,6 $ in the UK and 0,7 $ in Russia.

    1 kWh electricity is 0,264 $ in the UK and 0,061 $ in Russia. Way lower.

    Fuel and electricity prices are well known to affect the economy and the well being of the people, including many prices.

    International prices? Not so fast.

    International markets are fragmented and regionalised in many cases. See LNG, which is cheaper in Europe and expensive in Asia. Can american buy russian electricity? No. Then also different countries put different taxes on different products. Some country may decide to make alcohol expensive, and put high taxes on it. Or it may have low fuel prices because it is a producer, or decided to subsidise.

    A salary is not always high if prices are high too, because a salary matters only in relation to prices. Theoretically a person with low salary and very low prices may live better than a person with high salary, but extremely high prices. For salary, only its relation to prices matters. Otherwise it is just empty numbers.

    And what do we have in salaries in local prices (PPP)? 1620 $ average net salary in Russia, 3300 $ in NW Europe. Twice as low as one of the richest countries in the world. Well, not too bad. It is another matter if one wants to get out of the country. Then the russian gets 600 – 700 $ in MER, which is quite low.

    On taxes: a person in the UK on average wage pays 21 % in taxes, vs 13 % in Russia. And taxes on wages are way higher in other NW countries.

    • Agree: AP, Anatoly Karlin
    • Replies: @Dmitry
    @Passer by


    UK on average wage pays 21 %
     
    The vast majority of Russian workers would pay 0% tax if they were in the UK, as you only pay a marginal tax on the money you receive which is over $18,000.

    Everything you receive in UK below $18,000 per year is 0% taxed.

    The flat tax situation in Russia is far more inegalitarian, than the progressive tax system of Western Europe, as the lower income people (which is something 80% of the workers) are paying the same rate of tax as the small minority of high and middle income workers.

    Part of the reason for flat tax is because the government had a low state capacity in tax collection, and it reduces tax avoidance.

    So with introduction of flat tax in Russia, the amount of revenue has increased, due to reduction of tax avoidance. In addition, it was a more simple system, reducing administrative costs. So it is successful policy choice in many ways for Russia.

    However, the effect of the flat tax is very inegalitarian, in comparison to the progressive taxation in countries like UK, which gives you more income at 0% tax rate, than the vast majority of people Russia receive in a year. Flat tax was supported by economists like Milton Friedman, but they were proposing it for a medium or high income country, and its use in a low income country seems a bit extreme.


    electricity is 0,264 $ in the UK and
     
    Unless you are very poor, or using electricity for heating, then electricity is not an important part of your expenses.

    If we look at groceries, for example, in Russia this constitutes 31,5% of peoples' income - in the UK it's 10%.

    If you compare Russia with Western Europe, then difference in terms of peoples' budget, is very severe. If you compared Russia with Bulgaria, then situation in terms of income is very similar.

    https://i.imgur.com/rDhCPIP.jpg

    https://i.imgur.com/dpxYco6.jpg

  137. @AP
    @Bashibuzuk


    Both Putin and Poroshenko were part of the same process of annihilation of the Eastern Slav potential
     
    Neither was responsible for it, the ruling Communists were. They were bit players in that process, and not decision-makers although they did play the cards they were dealt skillfully and well. The two supposedly get along okay personally, though given his circumstances Poroshenko has correctly taken a strong anti-Russian line and played the role of enemy (which hasn’t stopped his son from mostly hanging out with rich Russian kids in Switzerland). The best way of preventing war is a strong deterrent, so Poroshenko’s creation of a functional military (may it never be really used) has been a good thing.

    I heard from a credible source that Lyashko (a puppet of the Dnipropetrovsk clan) has had a habit of frequently flying to and from Moscow.

    Replies: @Bashibuzuk

    the ruling Communists were

    In 2014 ?

    • Replies: @AP
    @Bashibuzuk

    The annihilation process was in the 90s, it was created and shepherded by the ruling Communists. Russia first and, later, Ukraine have been rebuilding from the ruins. Everyone of consequence emerged from that group of destroyers, but Putin and Poroshenko were minor players were in the 90s, who cleverly maneuvered their way to the top in the post-Soviet world.

    Replies: @Bashibuzuk

  138. AP says:
    @Bashibuzuk
    @AP


    the ruling Communists were
     
    In 2014 ?

    Replies: @AP

    The annihilation process was in the 90s, it was created and shepherded by the ruling Communists. Russia first and, later, Ukraine have been rebuilding from the ruins. Everyone of consequence emerged from that group of destroyers, but Putin and Poroshenko were minor players were in the 90s, who cleverly maneuvered their way to the top in the post-Soviet world.

    • Replies: @Bashibuzuk
    @AP

    I agree about Putin and Poroshenko being second tier players in the early post-Soviet years, but in my opinion both current Russian and Ukrainian elites just continue the same trend towards the degradation of the native populations. It is slower, but it is ongoing. And in 2014 it is Putin and Poroshenko that transformed a low intensity conflict into a war. Before 2014 a peaceful solution might have been found, it is way less likely today.

    BTW my opinion is that this trend towards the destruction of the potential of Eastern Slavs has been launched with the Revolution and has never really stopped since. And I am not really sure that the dommage can ever be reversed, especially with the current elites at the helm and the current approaches to demographic, economic and military aspects of the Eastern Slav social and national organization.

    Replies: @AP

  139. @AP
    @Bashibuzuk

    The annihilation process was in the 90s, it was created and shepherded by the ruling Communists. Russia first and, later, Ukraine have been rebuilding from the ruins. Everyone of consequence emerged from that group of destroyers, but Putin and Poroshenko were minor players were in the 90s, who cleverly maneuvered their way to the top in the post-Soviet world.

    Replies: @Bashibuzuk

    I agree about Putin and Poroshenko being second tier players in the early post-Soviet years, but in my opinion both current Russian and Ukrainian elites just continue the same trend towards the degradation of the native populations. It is slower, but it is ongoing. And in 2014 it is Putin and Poroshenko that transformed a low intensity conflict into a war. Before 2014 a peaceful solution might have been found, it is way less likely today.

    BTW my opinion is that this trend towards the destruction of the potential of Eastern Slavs has been launched with the Revolution and has never really stopped since. And I am not really sure that the dommage can ever be reversed, especially with the current elites at the helm and the current approaches to demographic, economic and military aspects of the Eastern Slav social and national organization.

    • Replies: @AP
    @Bashibuzuk


    in my opinion both current Russian and Ukrainian elites just continue the same trend towards the degradation of the native populations. It is slower, but it is ongoing
     
    In Russia’s case it is much slower than anywhere in the West, with the possible exception of the USA. I have been visiting Russia regularly since 1999 (and lived there for a couple of summers in the early to mid 2000s when my life allowed it) and every year it has improved in most areas. I can’t say the same about the West, though Russia had really been trashed by the Soviets and it has had a lot of catching up to do. Moscow surpasses all large Western cities.

    Ukraine had a purer Sovok comprador elite for much longer so its fate was worse.

    It’s a pity that Russia and Ukraine are so antagonistic and I agree with you that elites in both countries are responsible for this tragedy, though as the stronger power Russia had more of an ability to set a better tone, and didn’t. Chechnya was never as loaded with Ukrainians and Ukrainian weapons as Donbas has been with Russian ones.

    The overall picture is not of divided countries spiraling downward and stabbing each other as they fall (the image one gets from your pessimistic post) but of one country rising -imperfectly, it strongly - from the ashes, tragically divided from its western brothers (Ukraine, Poland) who are also to greater or lesser degrees being reborn.

    Replies: @Bashibuzuk

  140. @Passer by
    @Dmitry

    Oh, no. Can not not agree, Dimitry. Prices between Russia and NW Europe are different in various key areas, such as fuels or electricity.

    For example 1 liter gasoline is 1,6 $ in the UK and 0,7 $ in Russia.

    1 kWh electricity is 0,264 $ in the UK and 0,061 $ in Russia. Way lower.

    Fuel and electricity prices are well known to affect the economy and the well being of the people, including many prices.

    International prices? Not so fast.

    International markets are fragmented and regionalised in many cases. See LNG, which is cheaper in Europe and expensive in Asia. Can american buy russian electricity? No. Then also different countries put different taxes on different products. Some country may decide to make alcohol expensive, and put high taxes on it. Or it may have low fuel prices because it is a producer, or decided to subsidise.

    A salary is not always high if prices are high too, because a salary matters only in relation to prices. Theoretically a person with low salary and very low prices may live better than a person with high salary, but extremely high prices. For salary, only its relation to prices matters. Otherwise it is just empty numbers.

    And what do we have in salaries in local prices (PPP)? 1620 $ average net salary in Russia, 3300 $ in NW Europe. Twice as low as one of the richest countries in the world. Well, not too bad. It is another matter if one wants to get out of the country. Then the russian gets 600 - 700 $ in MER, which is quite low.

    On taxes: a person in the UK on average wage pays 21 % in taxes, vs 13 % in Russia. And taxes on wages are way higher in other NW countries.

    Replies: @Dmitry

    UK on average wage pays 21 %

    The vast majority of Russian workers would pay 0% tax if they were in the UK, as you only pay a marginal tax on the money you receive which is over $18,000.

    Everything you receive in UK below $18,000 per year is 0% taxed.

    The flat tax situation in Russia is far more inegalitarian, than the progressive tax system of Western Europe, as the lower income people (which is something 80% of the workers) are paying the same rate of tax as the small minority of high and middle income workers.

    Part of the reason for flat tax is because the government had a low state capacity in tax collection, and it reduces tax avoidance.

    So with introduction of flat tax in Russia, the amount of revenue has increased, due to reduction of tax avoidance. In addition, it was a more simple system, reducing administrative costs. So it is successful policy choice in many ways for Russia.

    However, the effect of the flat tax is very inegalitarian, in comparison to the progressive taxation in countries like UK, which gives you more income at 0% tax rate, than the vast majority of people Russia receive in a year. Flat tax was supported by economists like Milton Friedman, but they were proposing it for a medium or high income country, and its use in a low income country seems a bit extreme.

    electricity is 0,264 $ in the UK and

    Unless you are very poor, or using electricity for heating, then electricity is not an important part of your expenses.

    If we look at groceries, for example, in Russia this constitutes 31,5% of peoples’ income – in the UK it’s 10%.

    If you compare Russia with Western Europe, then difference in terms of peoples’ budget, is very severe. If you compared Russia with Bulgaria, then situation in terms of income is very similar.

  141. AP says:
    @Bashibuzuk
    @AP

    I agree about Putin and Poroshenko being second tier players in the early post-Soviet years, but in my opinion both current Russian and Ukrainian elites just continue the same trend towards the degradation of the native populations. It is slower, but it is ongoing. And in 2014 it is Putin and Poroshenko that transformed a low intensity conflict into a war. Before 2014 a peaceful solution might have been found, it is way less likely today.

    BTW my opinion is that this trend towards the destruction of the potential of Eastern Slavs has been launched with the Revolution and has never really stopped since. And I am not really sure that the dommage can ever be reversed, especially with the current elites at the helm and the current approaches to demographic, economic and military aspects of the Eastern Slav social and national organization.

    Replies: @AP

    in my opinion both current Russian and Ukrainian elites just continue the same trend towards the degradation of the native populations. It is slower, but it is ongoing

    In Russia’s case it is much slower than anywhere in the West, with the possible exception of the USA. I have been visiting Russia regularly since 1999 (and lived there for a couple of summers in the early to mid 2000s when my life allowed it) and every year it has improved in most areas. I can’t say the same about the West, though Russia had really been trashed by the Soviets and it has had a lot of catching up to do. Moscow surpasses all large Western cities.

    Ukraine had a purer Sovok comprador elite for much longer so its fate was worse.

    It’s a pity that Russia and Ukraine are so antagonistic and I agree with you that elites in both countries are responsible for this tragedy, though as the stronger power Russia had more of an ability to set a better tone, and didn’t. Chechnya was never as loaded with Ukrainians and Ukrainian weapons as Donbas has been with Russian ones.

    The overall picture is not of divided countries spiraling downward and stabbing each other as they fall (the image one gets from your pessimistic post) but of one country rising -imperfectly, it strongly – from the ashes, tragically divided from its western brothers (Ukraine, Poland) who are also to greater or lesser degrees being reborn.

    • Replies: @Bashibuzuk
    @AP


    The overall picture is not of divided countries spiraling downward and stabbing each other as they fall (the image one gets from your pessimistic post) but of one country rising -imperfectly, it strongly – from the ashes, tragically divided from its western brothers (Ukraine, Poland) who are also to greater or lesser degrees being reborn.
     
    I would actually love being proved wrong about the negative trends I see in the Eastern Slav realm. My hope goes for a better life for the good willing people everywhere. And I have already expressed my opinion that in due time Slavs should be given the possibility to live in a mutually profitable confederation of sorts. But first, current elites must change and current policies must be replaced (or vice versa).

    Replies: @AP

  142. The tax situation in Russia is far more inegalitarian,

    Obviously. Did i say anything else? And i don’t like it too btw, for example the minimum wage is very low. Even though Philip Owen mentioned that it is 14k rubles, the government Duma site still claims 12,8k rubles (gross), and mere 11 136k rubles (net) for 2021. Very unfortunate.

    http://duma.gov.ru/news/50296/

    But the fact is, at average wage, workers in Russia pay less in taxes than in North West Europe.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_European_countries_by_average_wage#European_and_transcontinental_countries_by_monthly_average_wage

    Compare net and gross wages, and you will notice that the taxes in NW Europe are always higher, with the UK having some of the lowest ones (21,5 %), but other countries having 30 % and nearly 40 %.

    Now, whether low income workers in countries other than the UK pay less than 13 % (the russian rate) remains to be seen. You have only shared data about the UK.

    The average monthly gross salary in the UK is 49501 $ per year. Way higher than the 18k $ per year that is without taxes. At average wage, the UK worker pays more in taxes – 21,5 % vs 13 %.

    Unless you are very poor, or using electricity for heating, then electricity is not an important part of your expenses.

    Well, i think that electricity should be important for northern climate countries. But most importantly, electricity price affects the prices of almost everything. I’m pretty sure that low energy prices in Russia (gasoline, electricity) are responsible for the low prices in Russia in a significant way.

    It is well known in economics that the price of energy has significant impact on the economy, prices, etc.

    • Replies: @Dmitry
    @Passer by


    electricity should be important for northern climate countries. But most importantly

     

    Heating is good value in Russia, not because of electricity cost, but because of Soviet engineering with the municipal heating concept.

    Water is heated as a byproduct of electricity generation, and then the hot water is pumped to residential buildings as a form of urban infrastructure.

    energy prices in Russia (gasoline, electricity) are responsible for the low prices in Russia in a significant way
     

    Lower prices in Russia, including even things like public transport, are usually because of a far lower cost of labour.

    You might that higher Western price of things like public transport must be because of energy? But the greatest difference is in salaries, not in energy cost, which is a minority of the cost of these services in Western cities.

    For example, almost half of the expenditure of London's metro system is for salaries of its staff. People who drive the metro trains in London have a basic salary of $80,000 a year, while in Russian cities like Ekaterinburg they receive $16,000 a year. So the cost of a metro driver is 5 times less in Russia, and we can expect similar differences for all the other staff that operate in the metro systems.

    So the ticket for the metro in Russian cities, is usually something like 6 times less than in London. And the salaries of the workers of the metro seem around 5 times less than in London.

    I think we should still feel like we have been scammed when we buy the overpriced ticket for the metro in London. But the reason we were scammed, will be mainly indeed to pay the high salary of their employees.

    Countries like UK have a very unionized labour, and unexpectedly high salaries for some of the working class peoples' jobs.

    Replies: @Coconuts, @Passer by

  143. @Coconuts
    @Dmitry


    Actually, I know one shop in the UK, where you can every branded product (Nutella, et al) significantly cheaper than the supermarket in Russia.
     
    I have observed this in Belarus, a lot of imported Western food products are the same price as they would be in the UK when not on discount, plus some extra that must be due to import duties and taxes or the cost of paperwork involved in importing them. Sometimes Western brands that are made within the customs union still carry this kind of mark up as well, the margin on these for the producer and retailer must be large.

    Given the difference in salaries, these Western goods become more like high luxury items.

    Replies: @Dmitry

    And the luxury shops like Dior or Chanel, can be selling the same products for significantly more expensive in Russia, than would be in London or Paris.

    One of the funny things, was that a decade ago, they were boasting that in Ekaterinburg (a city in Russia) that the Dior shop, was a larger shop than exists in London or New York.

    Dior shop has subsequently closed in such a city, but all the time it was indeed true that Dior was larger and more significant in Ekaterinburg, than in London.

    Moreover, that they will have higher prices in such shops, than even the branches of the same brand in London or Paris.

    Such a story seems funny for local people, because this kind of city will not be in the best condition, the tap water you should not drink, the paint is falling from the walls of the university, etc. However, Dior, Chanel, Gucci and Louis Vuitton, – are really larger in Ekaterinburg, than in London and Frankfurt.

    But Dior and Chanel, are not idiots, afterall; they know something that we don’t know. In Russia, there might be a 6 times lower median income than in United Kingdom, but for selling Dior, the important thing is not the wealth of the average person, but the wealth of the elite. And obviously, there’s a significant customers for Dior and Chanel in cities, that can afford to buy a $3000 dress without even caring about it.

    Western goods become more like high luxury items.

    Or like a middle class pleasure. All these things like St Dalfour jam, Nutella and Ritter Sport chocolate bars. One of the funny stories of some years ago in Russia, was that supermarkets were adding electronic anti-theft security tags on Ritter Sport bars – they had such a status.

    But in countries like United Kingdom, the supermarket has become one of the main avenues of social status signifying. .

    Among the English, there is such a vast range of luxury supermarkets like Waitrose, Tesco, Sainsbury – designed for people with high salaries, like doctors, lawyers, accountants and engineers. These shops can randomly multiply the price of products.

    The $70 jar of organix honey, is typical English social status signifying.
    https://www.waitrose.com/ecom/products/steens-raw-manuka-honey-umf20/489059-731050-731051

    But if you want to find the normal price of the same products, then you have to walk with shame into not-stylish German supermarkets or an Asda (which is owned by America’s Walmart) and B&M, where ordinary English worker can find normal priced products.

    • Replies: @Coconuts
    @Dmitry


    One of the funny stories of some years ago in Russia, was that supermarkets were adding electronic anti-theft security tags on Ritter Sport bars – they had such a status.

     

    It is strange but while Ritter Sport in the UK is relatively cheaper and similar in price to the big brands like Galaxy and Cadbury, it also has a kind of cult status. When I was in Belarus the big thing in imported confectionary was Raffaello, which is okay but was expensive and it doesn’t have the quality feel of Ritter.

    I was impressed by the two big state-owned confectionary brands in Belarus, Kommunarka and Spartak. I think that some of both companies’ products could be sold in Western Europe, emphasising that they are probably the last state controlled confectionary firms still operating in Europe.


    But if you want to find the normal price of the same products, then you have to walk with shame into not-stylish German supermarkets or an Asda (which is owned by America’s Walmart) and B&M, where ordinary English worker can find normal priced products.
     
    I am impressed by the £50 honey, I wonder if anyone outside of certain areas of London or Oxfordshire buys this kind of product? My version of the British supermarket hierarchy, in order, is roughly:

    Waitrose

    Marks and Spencer, somewhere between Sainsburys’ and Waitrose but has a distinct more targeted range of products.

    Sainsburys’

    Tesco

    Morrisons (this Yorkshire based chain may be mostly limited to the North)

    Asda

    Aldi and Lidl

    Places like B&M, Iceland, ‘freezer shops’ which again have more focused ranges.

    In terms of value for money, Aldi and Lidl seem to me to be ahead of most of the others but the range of products is limited.

    There is another anomalous chain that can be found in the North, the small shops and medium sized supermarkets of the Co-Op. This is a cooperative society rather than a normal company, a holdover from previous times. It sells good quality ethical products but pricing is often closer to Waitrose. It probably still survives because it owns a lot of good sites.

    Replies: @Dmitry

  144. @AP
    @Bashibuzuk


    in my opinion both current Russian and Ukrainian elites just continue the same trend towards the degradation of the native populations. It is slower, but it is ongoing
     
    In Russia’s case it is much slower than anywhere in the West, with the possible exception of the USA. I have been visiting Russia regularly since 1999 (and lived there for a couple of summers in the early to mid 2000s when my life allowed it) and every year it has improved in most areas. I can’t say the same about the West, though Russia had really been trashed by the Soviets and it has had a lot of catching up to do. Moscow surpasses all large Western cities.

    Ukraine had a purer Sovok comprador elite for much longer so its fate was worse.

    It’s a pity that Russia and Ukraine are so antagonistic and I agree with you that elites in both countries are responsible for this tragedy, though as the stronger power Russia had more of an ability to set a better tone, and didn’t. Chechnya was never as loaded with Ukrainians and Ukrainian weapons as Donbas has been with Russian ones.

    The overall picture is not of divided countries spiraling downward and stabbing each other as they fall (the image one gets from your pessimistic post) but of one country rising -imperfectly, it strongly - from the ashes, tragically divided from its western brothers (Ukraine, Poland) who are also to greater or lesser degrees being reborn.

    Replies: @Bashibuzuk

    The overall picture is not of divided countries spiraling downward and stabbing each other as they fall (the image one gets from your pessimistic post) but of one country rising -imperfectly, it strongly – from the ashes, tragically divided from its western brothers (Ukraine, Poland) who are also to greater or lesser degrees being reborn.

    I would actually love being proved wrong about the negative trends I see in the Eastern Slav realm. My hope goes for a better life for the good willing people everywhere. And I have already expressed my opinion that in due time Slavs should be given the possibility to live in a mutually profitable confederation of sorts. But first, current elites must change and current policies must be replaced (or vice versa).

    • Replies: @AP
    @Bashibuzuk

    When is the last time you have been to Russia? It appears to be moving in the opposite direction as your France. Sure, population is still declining but less so than in the West, and with either modest or no replacement accompanying the decline, unlike as in the West. Cultural trends move in a positive direction, etc. And of course the place is getting more prosperous, and it has long ago passed the era of desperation.

    Replies: @Bashibuzuk

  145. @Passer by

    The tax situation in Russia is far more inegalitarian,
     
    Obviously. Did i say anything else? And i don't like it too btw, for example the minimum wage is very low. Even though Philip Owen mentioned that it is 14k rubles, the government Duma site still claims 12,8k rubles (gross), and mere 11 136k rubles (net) for 2021. Very unfortunate.

    http://duma.gov.ru/news/50296/

    But the fact is, at average wage, workers in Russia pay less in taxes than in North West Europe.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_European_countries_by_average_wage#European_and_transcontinental_countries_by_monthly_average_wage

    Compare net and gross wages, and you will notice that the taxes in NW Europe are always higher, with the UK having some of the lowest ones (21,5 %), but other countries having 30 % and nearly 40 %.

    Now, whether low income workers in countries other than the UK pay less than 13 % (the russian rate) remains to be seen. You have only shared data about the UK.

    The average monthly gross salary in the UK is 49501 $ per year. Way higher than the 18k $ per year that is without taxes. At average wage, the UK worker pays more in taxes - 21,5 % vs 13 %.


    Unless you are very poor, or using electricity for heating, then electricity is not an important part of your expenses.
     
    Well, i think that electricity should be important for northern climate countries. But most importantly, electricity price affects the prices of almost everything. I'm pretty sure that low energy prices in Russia (gasoline, electricity) are responsible for the low prices in Russia in a significant way.

    It is well known in economics that the price of energy has significant impact on the economy, prices, etc.

    Replies: @Dmitry

    electricity should be important for northern climate countries. But most importantly

    Heating is good value in Russia, not because of electricity cost, but because of Soviet engineering with the municipal heating concept.

    Water is heated as a byproduct of electricity generation, and then the hot water is pumped to residential buildings as a form of urban infrastructure.

    energy prices in Russia (gasoline, electricity) are responsible for the low prices in Russia in a significant way

    Lower prices in Russia, including even things like public transport, are usually because of a far lower cost of labour.

    You might that higher Western price of things like public transport must be because of energy? But the greatest difference is in salaries, not in energy cost, which is a minority of the cost of these services in Western cities.

    For example, almost half of the expenditure of London’s metro system is for salaries of its staff. People who drive the metro trains in London have a basic salary of $80,000 a year, while in Russian cities like Ekaterinburg they receive $16,000 a year. So the cost of a metro driver is 5 times less in Russia, and we can expect similar differences for all the other staff that operate in the metro systems.

    So the ticket for the metro in Russian cities, is usually something like 6 times less than in London. And the salaries of the workers of the metro seem around 5 times less than in London.

    I think we should still feel like we have been scammed when we buy the overpriced ticket for the metro in London. But the reason we were scammed, will be mainly indeed to pay the high salary of their employees.

    Countries like UK have a very unionized labour, and unexpectedly high salaries for some of the working class peoples’ jobs.

    • Replies: @Coconuts
    @Dmitry


    I think we should still feel like we have been scammed when we buy the overpriced ticket for the metro in London. But the reason we were scammed, will be mainly indeed to pay the high salary of their employees.
     
    This is a strong feeling I get whenever I come back to the UK and start buying tickets or even a coffee, after being in Lithuania, Poland, especially Belarus.

    The London tube drivers have one of the most successful trade unions, the RMT, and used to have a charismatic leader called Bob Crowe who made sure their salaries remained high and protected working conditions. Unions in the private sector are now more decayed; a good example of this is the relative wages of bus drivers in the region where I live, which is £18,000-£22,000 a year, close to a supermarket checkout worker. They work for a private company. In contrast the binmen who take away household refuse, they have higher earnings in the £30,000 range, but it is a council run service.

    It is interesting about the Dior shop in Ekaterinburg, this fits with a stereotype image of post-Soviet countries that I remember from the 1990s, where normal people may drive a Moskvitch and the wealthy will drive the latest S-class, Porsche Panamera or Maserati. It is less prominent in Belarus, Lukashenko apparently does populist things to keep this less visible, like lately he closed a chain of luxury shops selling imported goods until they agreed to devote a part of the store to selling Belarusian made products.
    , @Passer by
    @Dmitry

    High energy prices are known to strangle economic growth, and to be even associated with recessions, so they have significant impact on the economy and on the well being of the people.

    The energy–growth nexus has been a breeding ground for academic research over the last few decades, focusing, among other things,on the impact of energy prices on economicgrowth.


    Energy prices are commonly regarded as crucial factors for facilitating economic development.
     
    https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S0313592619305934

    Note that high gas or oil price will have many effects on prices, for example anything made from plastics and many chemical related products will be affected too.


    Heating is good value in Russia, not because of electricity cost
     
    It is a good value always due to low energy costs too. Low energy costs directly affect heating. Here we are talking not only about the electricity cost, but about the overall impact of energy prices, which include, but are not limited to, electricity.

    People who drive the metro trains in London have a basic salary of $80,000 a year, while in Russian cities like Ekaterinburg they receive $16,000 a year. So the cost of a metro driver is 5 times less in Russia
     

    Not in PPP $. The average salary in Russia is twice lower than in the UK in local prices, so i really really doubt that a metro driver "costs 5 times lower in Russia".

    This is because the average salary in Russia is not 5 times lower within russian price context.

    You may think that salaries can be increased 5 times by russian businesses just because they are already "5 times bigger in the UK". And UK businesses are not bankrupt due to that. The worker is just "5 times cheaper in Russia", right?

    But no, you can't. This would mean that if russian businesses increase 5 times their labour costs, all of them will go bankrupt. And they will go bankrupt precisely because salaries are not 5 times lower within russian price context.

    Thus no, labour in not 5 times cheaper in Russia. Only 2 times, as PPP shows.

    Replies: @Passer by, @Dmitry

  146. AP says:
    @Bashibuzuk
    @AP


    The overall picture is not of divided countries spiraling downward and stabbing each other as they fall (the image one gets from your pessimistic post) but of one country rising -imperfectly, it strongly – from the ashes, tragically divided from its western brothers (Ukraine, Poland) who are also to greater or lesser degrees being reborn.
     
    I would actually love being proved wrong about the negative trends I see in the Eastern Slav realm. My hope goes for a better life for the good willing people everywhere. And I have already expressed my opinion that in due time Slavs should be given the possibility to live in a mutually profitable confederation of sorts. But first, current elites must change and current policies must be replaced (or vice versa).

    Replies: @AP

    When is the last time you have been to Russia? It appears to be moving in the opposite direction as your France. Sure, population is still declining but less so than in the West, and with either modest or no replacement accompanying the decline, unlike as in the West. Cultural trends move in a positive direction, etc. And of course the place is getting more prosperous, and it has long ago passed the era of desperation.

    • Replies: @Bashibuzuk
    @AP

    Last time I was in RusFed was in 2018, Piter and Moscow. It is true that Moscow improved a lot even compared to 2016, which was another time I visited. Piter has improved less, but then in the 90ies it went further down compared to Moscow (I still loved Piter more back then). Something I have noticed was an improvement in the Moscow Oblast'.

    France was the first Western country where I lived after moving from Russia, but I no longer live there. One of the reasons being the overall feeling that the place has considerably deteriorated since the end of the 90ies.

    I still have family and friends there (some family members on my father's side settled in France before the fall of USSR and the first time I visited Paris was with my mom when I was around 10 years old). I still visit sometimes, every couple of years or so. In France the feeling of relative decline is regional: there are regions where you still find the Douce France that Charles Trenet used to sign about. But Paris is way worse than in 1993 when I first arrived there.

    My family members in and around Paris complain a lot, those who live in the South and Bretagne complain way less. But French are very good at complaining anyways: this and going on strike is kind of their national sport.

    Replies: @Dmitry

  147. @AP
    @Bashibuzuk

    When is the last time you have been to Russia? It appears to be moving in the opposite direction as your France. Sure, population is still declining but less so than in the West, and with either modest or no replacement accompanying the decline, unlike as in the West. Cultural trends move in a positive direction, etc. And of course the place is getting more prosperous, and it has long ago passed the era of desperation.

    Replies: @Bashibuzuk

    Last time I was in RusFed was in 2018, Piter and Moscow. It is true that Moscow improved a lot even compared to 2016, which was another time I visited. Piter has improved less, but then in the 90ies it went further down compared to Moscow (I still loved Piter more back then). Something I have noticed was an improvement in the Moscow Oblast’.

    France was the first Western country where I lived after moving from Russia, but I no longer live there. One of the reasons being the overall feeling that the place has considerably deteriorated since the end of the 90ies.

    I still have family and friends there (some family members on my father’s side settled in France before the fall of USSR and the first time I visited Paris was with my mom when I was around 10 years old). I still visit sometimes, every couple of years or so. In France the feeling of relative decline is regional: there are regions where you still find the Douce France that Charles Trenet used to sign about. But Paris is way worse than in 1993 when I first arrived there.

    My family members in and around Paris complain a lot, those who live in the South and Bretagne complain way less. But French are very good at complaining anyways: this and going on strike is kind of their national sport.

    • Thanks: AP
    • Replies: @Dmitry
    @Bashibuzuk

    So, you lived in France?

    Isn't there a stereotype, that French workers attained such highly paid vacations and low working hours lifestyle: they start burning Paris everytime there is a proposal to deregulate labour?

    It must be bad for the long-term economic growth in France, resulting in less "labour market flexibility" other things equal. But lucky to be an average worker in France, for your low hours and high vacations.

    https://i.imgur.com/Wt1yhLD.png

  148. Looks like Netanyahu has managed to start another Intifada to keep at the power and avoid being charged with corruption. Provocation after provocation, he pushed Arabs and Jews towards another confrontation.

    There is a lesson here to other leaders of our insane clown world: do not hesitate to attack Holy Places of fanatical tribes and kill children in their sleep: power is all that matters.

    Without power all these subhuman scum at the top of our societies are worthless worms, they know it and they will hang to power even if they get thousands killed and mamed.

    I wish them all Avici Hell, which they vastly deserve for their insane egotism and sociopathic indifference towards the suffering of their fellow humans.

    Perhaps after spending an endless number of Kalpas in this most remote and most desperate Hell dimension, they will finally understand that harming other and sowing seeds of conflict generates bad Karma and is to be avoided.

    I wish them this as a durable benefit in their spiritual development…

    • Replies: @A123
    @Bashibuzuk

    It looks like Ayatollah Khameni catastrophically blundered. Again. He ordered Iranian al'Hamas to strike when he thought that Palestinian Jews would be unready.

    What he actually revealed is the profound incompetence of Iranian proxies. (1)


    The volleys of over 600 missiles fired into Israeli territory by Palestinian terrorist groups since fighting began Monday has included at least 150 errant rockets — falling short within the Gaza Strip and causing casualties that Hamas officials have wrongly blamed on Israel, according to the Israel Defense Forces (IDF).

    Asked specifically about three children killed in an incident in Bein Hanoun, in the northern Gaza Strip, IDF Spokesperson Hidai Zilberman told Israel’s Army Radio on Tuesday that a number of those killed in Gaza were hit by errant rockets fired by Palestinian terrorists, not by Israeli airstrikes.
     
    Iranian al'Hezbollah now seems much less threatening. The Iranian "friendly fire" rate is ~25% (=150 / 600). Therefore, if Iranian proxies in Lebanon try to use their claimed 100,000+ rockets, they will drop ~25,000 warheads in Lebanon, mostly in Beirut.

    After the Nasrallah-shima blast, Beirut is in pretty bad shape. Iranian al'Hezbollah cannot risk adding to the numbers of Lebanese casualties they created with their negligence at the port.

    PEACE 😇
    ___________

    (1) https://www.algemeiner.com/2021/05/11/israel-says-150-errant-hamas-rockets-have-fallen-short-in-gaza-likely-causing-casualties-attributed-to-israel/
  149. • Replies: @AP
    @sher singh

    Lewrockwell has a very dumb website if what you posted is representative of their product.

    Having an underlying condition (such as obesity, diabetes, etc.), getting Covid, and dying soon afterwards does not mean that Covid didn't directly cause the death.

    Replies: @Yellowface Anon

  150. @ Anatoly Karlin

    The Straits had nothing to do with it, labor strikes after the February Revolution caused a decline and then Bolshevism collapsed it. Russian industrial production was 25% higher in 1916 than in 1914.

    After turks closed the Bosborus straits in November of 1914, Russia was in practice transformed into autarchy, the northern railway to Murmansk was not yet complete and the capacity and infrastructure of Siberian railway was very limited. Through Dardanelles Russia shipped her grain to the world, especially for her western allies.

    From an economic perspective, the Turkish Straits rivaled northern shipping routes from St. Petersburg. By Sazonov’s time, their economic value had increased significantly, especially as southern Russian export of oil, manganese ore, and coal grew.5 Between 1906 and 1913, the southern ports averaged 26.1 percent of total Russian international trade, while the Baltic ports averaged 30.4 percent. More crucially, while most imports came through the northern ports, the Black Sea ports were the gateway largely for exports at a time when the government was attempting to export as much as possible in order to afford critical technological imports.

    Roads to Glory, Late Imperial Russia and the Turkish Straits,
    by Ronald Park Bobroff

    • Replies: @Anatoly Karlin
    @AltanBakshi

    Your claim was that the Turkish blockade created an economic crisis in Russia. This doesn't correlate with a 25% increase in industrial production in 1916 vs. 1914.

    Replies: @AltanBakshi

  151. @Dmitry
    @Coconuts

    And the luxury shops like Dior or Chanel, can be selling the same products for significantly more expensive in Russia, than would be in London or Paris.

    One of the funny things, was that a decade ago, they were boasting that in Ekaterinburg (a city in Russia) that the Dior shop, was a larger shop than exists in London or New York.

    Dior shop has subsequently closed in such a city, but all the time it was indeed true that Dior was larger and more significant in Ekaterinburg, than in London.

    Moreover, that they will have higher prices in such shops, than even the branches of the same brand in London or Paris.

    Such a story seems funny for local people, because this kind of city will not be in the best condition, the tap water you should not drink, the paint is falling from the walls of the university, etc. However, Dior, Chanel, Gucci and Louis Vuitton, - are really larger in Ekaterinburg, than in London and Frankfurt.

    But Dior and Chanel, are not idiots, afterall; they know something that we don't know. In Russia, there might be a 6 times lower median income than in United Kingdom, but for selling Dior, the important thing is not the wealth of the average person, but the wealth of the elite. And obviously, there's a significant customers for Dior and Chanel in cities, that can afford to buy a $3000 dress without even caring about it.


    Western goods become more like high luxury items.
     
    Or like a middle class pleasure. All these things like St Dalfour jam, Nutella and Ritter Sport chocolate bars. One of the funny stories of some years ago in Russia, was that supermarkets were adding electronic anti-theft security tags on Ritter Sport bars - they had such a status.

    -

    But in countries like United Kingdom, the supermarket has become one of the main avenues of social status signifying. .

    Among the English, there is such a vast range of luxury supermarkets like Waitrose, Tesco, Sainsbury - designed for people with high salaries, like doctors, lawyers, accountants and engineers. These shops can randomly multiply the price of products.

    The $70 jar of organix honey, is typical English social status signifying.
    https://www.waitrose.com/ecom/products/steens-raw-manuka-honey-umf20/489059-731050-731051

    But if you want to find the normal price of the same products, then you have to walk with shame into not-stylish German supermarkets or an Asda (which is owned by America's Walmart) and B&M, where ordinary English worker can find normal priced products.

    Replies: @Coconuts

    One of the funny stories of some years ago in Russia, was that supermarkets were adding electronic anti-theft security tags on Ritter Sport bars – they had such a status.

    It is strange but while Ritter Sport in the UK is relatively cheaper and similar in price to the big brands like Galaxy and Cadbury, it also has a kind of cult status. When I was in Belarus the big thing in imported confectionary was Raffaello, which is okay but was expensive and it doesn’t have the quality feel of Ritter.

    I was impressed by the two big state-owned confectionary brands in Belarus, Kommunarka and Spartak. I think that some of both companies’ products could be sold in Western Europe, emphasising that they are probably the last state controlled confectionary firms still operating in Europe.

    But if you want to find the normal price of the same products, then you have to walk with shame into not-stylish German supermarkets or an Asda (which is owned by America’s Walmart) and B&M, where ordinary English worker can find normal priced products.

    I am impressed by the £50 honey, I wonder if anyone outside of certain areas of London or Oxfordshire buys this kind of product? My version of the British supermarket hierarchy, in order, is roughly:

    Waitrose

    Marks and Spencer, somewhere between Sainsburys’ and Waitrose but has a distinct more targeted range of products.

    Sainsburys’

    Tesco

    Morrisons (this Yorkshire based chain may be mostly limited to the North)

    Asda

    Aldi and Lidl

    Places like B&M, Iceland, ‘freezer shops’ which again have more focused ranges.

    In terms of value for money, Aldi and Lidl seem to me to be ahead of most of the others but the range of products is limited.

    There is another anomalous chain that can be found in the North, the small shops and medium sized supermarkets of the Co-Op. This is a cooperative society rather than a normal company, a holdover from previous times. It sells good quality ethical products but pricing is often closer to Waitrose. It probably still survives because it owns a lot of good sites.

    • Replies: @Dmitry
    @Coconuts


    my version of the British
     
    I think you missed some upper levels though.

    These eccentric supermarkets in London like Eataly, Fortnum & Mason, Harrod's Food Court, etc. And then hipsters' style of organic shops, "local cheese shop", "local meat shop", "specialist bread maker", etc .

    If you really want to waste money in the British city, you can buy a cake for $50, from any "artisan cake shops". Even in chain "Patisserie Valerie", in the typical cities, you see many people spend $10 for a tiny cutting of a cake, and yet such cakeshops are full of students and teenagers. You can easily spend $20 to sit with a pot of tea and a tiny slice of cake.


    Waitrose

    Marks and Spencer,
     

    Yes Waitrose seems like the shop is designed for social status signalling that you are must be a surgeon, lawyer, or perhaps a senior accountant in Deloitte or PwC. I feel like too much of a peasant to go through doors.

    Aldi and Lidl B&M,
     
    And these non-English origin owned shops, are the best supermarkets in the UK, with a combination of such high quality food, and normal prices. (Well B&M seem owned by British Indian people).

    Even Asda which is expensive but not in a way of Tesco or Waitrose, has also non-English, American owners (Walmart).

    I had studied for some weeks with a German classmate whose family has owned one of these supermarkets, and wasn't exactly the best classmate, to say it mildly. (And at another time, I had a worse German classmate, whose family has owned a different multinational). But somehow only these Germans in the UK, have built the normal price and unpretentious supermarkets.

  152. @Dmitry
    @Passer by


    electricity should be important for northern climate countries. But most importantly

     

    Heating is good value in Russia, not because of electricity cost, but because of Soviet engineering with the municipal heating concept.

    Water is heated as a byproduct of electricity generation, and then the hot water is pumped to residential buildings as a form of urban infrastructure.

    energy prices in Russia (gasoline, electricity) are responsible for the low prices in Russia in a significant way
     

    Lower prices in Russia, including even things like public transport, are usually because of a far lower cost of labour.

    You might that higher Western price of things like public transport must be because of energy? But the greatest difference is in salaries, not in energy cost, which is a minority of the cost of these services in Western cities.

    For example, almost half of the expenditure of London's metro system is for salaries of its staff. People who drive the metro trains in London have a basic salary of $80,000 a year, while in Russian cities like Ekaterinburg they receive $16,000 a year. So the cost of a metro driver is 5 times less in Russia, and we can expect similar differences for all the other staff that operate in the metro systems.

    So the ticket for the metro in Russian cities, is usually something like 6 times less than in London. And the salaries of the workers of the metro seem around 5 times less than in London.

    I think we should still feel like we have been scammed when we buy the overpriced ticket for the metro in London. But the reason we were scammed, will be mainly indeed to pay the high salary of their employees.

    Countries like UK have a very unionized labour, and unexpectedly high salaries for some of the working class peoples' jobs.

    Replies: @Coconuts, @Passer by

    I think we should still feel like we have been scammed when we buy the overpriced ticket for the metro in London. But the reason we were scammed, will be mainly indeed to pay the high salary of their employees.

    This is a strong feeling I get whenever I come back to the UK and start buying tickets or even a coffee, after being in Lithuania, Poland, especially Belarus.

    The London tube drivers have one of the most successful trade unions, the RMT, and used to have a charismatic leader called Bob Crowe who made sure their salaries remained high and protected working conditions. Unions in the private sector are now more decayed; a good example of this is the relative wages of bus drivers in the region where I live, which is £18,000-£22,000 a year, close to a supermarket checkout worker. They work for a private company. In contrast the binmen who take away household refuse, they have higher earnings in the £30,000 range, but it is a council run service.

    It is interesting about the Dior shop in Ekaterinburg, this fits with a stereotype image of post-Soviet countries that I remember from the 1990s, where normal people may drive a Moskvitch and the wealthy will drive the latest S-class, Porsche Panamera or Maserati. It is less prominent in Belarus, Lukashenko apparently does populist things to keep this less visible, like lately he closed a chain of luxury shops selling imported goods until they agreed to devote a part of the store to selling Belarusian made products.

  153. @Dmitry
    @Passer by


    electricity should be important for northern climate countries. But most importantly

     

    Heating is good value in Russia, not because of electricity cost, but because of Soviet engineering with the municipal heating concept.

    Water is heated as a byproduct of electricity generation, and then the hot water is pumped to residential buildings as a form of urban infrastructure.

    energy prices in Russia (gasoline, electricity) are responsible for the low prices in Russia in a significant way
     

    Lower prices in Russia, including even things like public transport, are usually because of a far lower cost of labour.

    You might that higher Western price of things like public transport must be because of energy? But the greatest difference is in salaries, not in energy cost, which is a minority of the cost of these services in Western cities.

    For example, almost half of the expenditure of London's metro system is for salaries of its staff. People who drive the metro trains in London have a basic salary of $80,000 a year, while in Russian cities like Ekaterinburg they receive $16,000 a year. So the cost of a metro driver is 5 times less in Russia, and we can expect similar differences for all the other staff that operate in the metro systems.

    So the ticket for the metro in Russian cities, is usually something like 6 times less than in London. And the salaries of the workers of the metro seem around 5 times less than in London.

    I think we should still feel like we have been scammed when we buy the overpriced ticket for the metro in London. But the reason we were scammed, will be mainly indeed to pay the high salary of their employees.

    Countries like UK have a very unionized labour, and unexpectedly high salaries for some of the working class peoples' jobs.

    Replies: @Coconuts, @Passer by

    High energy prices are known to strangle economic growth, and to be even associated with recessions, so they have significant impact on the economy and on the well being of the people.

    The energy–growth nexus has been a breeding ground for academic research over the last few decades, focusing, among other things,on the impact of energy prices on economicgrowth.

    Energy prices are commonly regarded as crucial factors for facilitating economic development.

    https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S0313592619305934

    Note that high gas or oil price will have many effects on prices, for example anything made from plastics and many chemical related products will be affected too.

    Heating is good value in Russia, not because of electricity cost

    It is a good value always due to low energy costs too. Low energy costs directly affect heating. Here we are talking not only about the electricity cost, but about the overall impact of energy prices, which include, but are not limited to, electricity.

    People who drive the metro trains in London have a basic salary of $80,000 a year, while in Russian cities like Ekaterinburg they receive $16,000 a year. So the cost of a metro driver is 5 times less in Russia

    Not in PPP $. The average salary in Russia is twice lower than in the UK in local prices, so i really really doubt that a metro driver “costs 5 times lower in Russia”.

    This is because the average salary in Russia is not 5 times lower within russian price context.

    You may think that salaries can be increased 5 times by russian businesses just because they are already “5 times bigger in the UK”. And UK businesses are not bankrupt due to that. The worker is just “5 times cheaper in Russia”, right?

    But no, you can’t. This would mean that if russian businesses increase 5 times their labour costs, all of them will go bankrupt. And they will go bankrupt precisely because salaries are not 5 times lower within russian price context.

    Thus no, labour in not 5 times cheaper in Russia. Only 2 times, as PPP shows.

    • Replies: @Passer by
    @Passer by

    Oh, and the worker is not even twice cheaper for russian businesses compared to UK businesses, due to the lower productivity of russian workers and businesses. So you can't even increase salaries in Russia by two times. Maybe by 50 %. By i do believe that there is space for increasing salaries in Russia, especially the minimum wage. Additionally, if productivity also spikes in Russia to UK levels, you may have space to increase them two times.

    Replies: @Dmitry

    , @Dmitry
    @Passer by

    The meaning of the upward adjustment of PPP, is mainly that you are surrounded with other low income people, and therefore their labour is cheap. This translates into lower prices for you when you buy anything that is based on purchase of services, or where a large part of the cost comes from the price of labour.

    But when you compare to commodities, then there is no upward adjustment for PPP.

    As you can with the proportion of Russian workers' budget that is expended on groceries. In the UK 10% of household income is spent on groceries, while in Russia it is over 30% (more than in Bulgaria). There is such a large difference of how much money the families have for purchase of material objects between countries like Russia and UK.

    I remember around 10 or 12 years old, there was announced a digitilization of classrooms program in a region in Russia. And the problem was when parents complained, that a high proportion could not afford to buy a computer that would allow their children to do the homework.

    This is the typical situation where the authorities in Russia, were estimating the purchasing ability of the ordinary people, in relation to material objects where nominal income is the key factor. There is high upward adjustment for PPP when you talk about buying of services. The services based on purchase of labour, can multiple times cheaper, and this makes the median income in Russia to survivable. But then for purchase of things like computer, it is suddenly the nominal figure that becomes the relevant one, and peoples' income can seem frighteningly low.


    average salary in Russia is not 5 times lower within russian price context.
     
    Sure, but the difference of price context itself is a result of low salaries, or cheap labour. Notice the circularity in this measurement.

    When you talk about a country with high upward adjustment for PPP, it's tracking the fact that the incomes are low. By comparison, in countries with universal high salaries, there will be a strong downward adjustment for PPP measurement (due to the high cost of labour).

    PPP is useful for explaining that life standards' are not as divergent between countries, as the income would predict, but misleading if you believed that you really received the same salary as that PPP adjusted figure.

    Replies: @Passer by

  154. @Passer by
    @Dmitry

    High energy prices are known to strangle economic growth, and to be even associated with recessions, so they have significant impact on the economy and on the well being of the people.

    The energy–growth nexus has been a breeding ground for academic research over the last few decades, focusing, among other things,on the impact of energy prices on economicgrowth.


    Energy prices are commonly regarded as crucial factors for facilitating economic development.
     
    https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S0313592619305934

    Note that high gas or oil price will have many effects on prices, for example anything made from plastics and many chemical related products will be affected too.


    Heating is good value in Russia, not because of electricity cost
     
    It is a good value always due to low energy costs too. Low energy costs directly affect heating. Here we are talking not only about the electricity cost, but about the overall impact of energy prices, which include, but are not limited to, electricity.

    People who drive the metro trains in London have a basic salary of $80,000 a year, while in Russian cities like Ekaterinburg they receive $16,000 a year. So the cost of a metro driver is 5 times less in Russia
     

    Not in PPP $. The average salary in Russia is twice lower than in the UK in local prices, so i really really doubt that a metro driver "costs 5 times lower in Russia".

    This is because the average salary in Russia is not 5 times lower within russian price context.

    You may think that salaries can be increased 5 times by russian businesses just because they are already "5 times bigger in the UK". And UK businesses are not bankrupt due to that. The worker is just "5 times cheaper in Russia", right?

    But no, you can't. This would mean that if russian businesses increase 5 times their labour costs, all of them will go bankrupt. And they will go bankrupt precisely because salaries are not 5 times lower within russian price context.

    Thus no, labour in not 5 times cheaper in Russia. Only 2 times, as PPP shows.

    Replies: @Passer by, @Dmitry

    Oh, and the worker is not even twice cheaper for russian businesses compared to UK businesses, due to the lower productivity of russian workers and businesses. So you can’t even increase salaries in Russia by two times. Maybe by 50 %. By i do believe that there is space for increasing salaries in Russia, especially the minimum wage. Additionally, if productivity also spikes in Russia to UK levels, you may have space to increase them two times.

    • Replies: @Dmitry
    @Passer by

    One way that median income can be increased in Russia (assuming without economic growth), is by generous progressive taxation system, that is not taxing salaries below a set level (even if not taxing below $18,000, like the situation in the UK, would not be plausible).

    Then you would try to compensate for this, by adding a high marginal tax rate for those with high incomes (progressive tax system), taxes on assets, taxes on inheritance transfers, taxes on the ultra-wealthy (oligarch tax?), etc. (Moreover, you could reduce the budget in ways like reduction of military equipment purchases).

    But the problem is partly one of insufficient state capacity for tax collection. This is that the elite would increase their tax avoidance behaviours and increase their capital flight, if there was an attempt to introduce more progressive taxation policies.

    Textbook "neoliberalism" of the system in Russia (i.e. introducing Milton Friedman's flat tax, abolishment of inheritance tax, etc, despite the low incomes), is partly because of the insufficient state capacity, and that the elite have a stronger bargaining situation in the country.

    There is also a fact that the working class people are less organized for collective bargaining and more easily controlled than in Western Europe. (For example, when Margaret Thatcher has tried to introduce flat-rate taxes into Great Britain, it resulted in rebellion of the population https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Poll_tax_riots).

    It's not a simple situation for Russia, and things like the lack of progressive taxation, we see now is result of the low state capacity that was inherited from the 1990s. Hence that most countries in the world with flat income tax, are in the postsoviet space.

    Replies: @Passer by

  155. https://asiatimes.com/2021/05/china-on-brink-of-laser-matter-breakthrough/

    The Station of Extreme Light, which China has been developing in Shanghai since 2018, has made significant progress in its goal of manufacturing lasers so powerful by 2023 that they could break through empty space and create matter.

    The Extreme Light Station (SEL) is a laser installation designed to produce a laser with 100 petawatts (PW) of maximum power (one petawatt equals one thousand trillion watts), a goal that is expected to be achieved within two years.

    • Thanks: mal
  156. A year ago died an extremely talented man: Konstantin Krylov. A great writer (under the Mikhail Kharitonov pseudonyme) and the finest example of a true Russian nationalist intellectual.

    https://podled.media/krylov/

    He will be missed.

    Мир праху.

  157. @AltanBakshi
    @ Anatoly Karlin


    The Straits had nothing to do with it, labor strikes after the February Revolution caused a decline and then Bolshevism collapsed it. Russian industrial production was 25% higher in 1916 than in 1914.
     
    After turks closed the Bosborus straits in November of 1914, Russia was in practice transformed into autarchy, the northern railway to Murmansk was not yet complete and the capacity and infrastructure of Siberian railway was very limited. Through Dardanelles Russia shipped her grain to the world, especially for her western allies.

    From an economic perspective, the Turkish Straits rivaled northern shipping routes from St. Petersburg. By Sazonov’s time, their economic value had increased significantly, especially as southern Russian export of oil, manganese ore, and coal grew.5 Between 1906 and 1913, the southern ports averaged 26.1 percent of total Russian international trade, while the Baltic ports averaged 30.4 percent. More crucially, while most imports came through the northern ports, the Black Sea ports were the gateway largely for exports at a time when the government was attempting to export as much as possible in order to afford critical technological imports.

    Roads to Glory, Late Imperial Russia and the Turkish Straits,
    by Ronald Park Bobroff
     

    Replies: @Anatoly Karlin

    Your claim was that the Turkish blockade created an economic crisis in Russia. This doesn’t correlate with a 25% increase in industrial production in 1916 vs. 1914.

    • Replies: @AltanBakshi
    @Anatoly Karlin

    Not turkish blockade alone, but I believe that with closing of Baltic, it was an important contributing factor. Hard to keep populace happy if you have no foreign trade.

  158. A123 says:
    @Bashibuzuk
    Looks like Netanyahu has managed to start another Intifada to keep at the power and avoid being charged with corruption. Provocation after provocation, he pushed Arabs and Jews towards another confrontation.

    There is a lesson here to other leaders of our insane clown world: do not hesitate to attack Holy Places of fanatical tribes and kill children in their sleep: power is all that matters.

    Without power all these subhuman scum at the top of our societies are worthless worms, they know it and they will hang to power even if they get thousands killed and mamed.

    I wish them all Avici Hell, which they vastly deserve for their insane egotism and sociopathic indifference towards the suffering of their fellow humans.

    Perhaps after spending an endless number of Kalpas in this most remote and most desperate Hell dimension, they will finally understand that harming other and sowing seeds of conflict generates bad Karma and is to be avoided.

    I wish them this as a durable benefit in their spiritual development...

    Replies: @A123

    It looks like Ayatollah Khameni catastrophically blundered. Again. He ordered Iranian al’Hamas to strike when he thought that Palestinian Jews would be unready.

    What he actually revealed is the profound incompetence of Iranian proxies. (1)

    The volleys of over 600 missiles fired into Israeli territory by Palestinian terrorist groups since fighting began Monday has included at least 150 errant rockets — falling short within the Gaza Strip and causing casualties that Hamas officials have wrongly blamed on Israel, according to the Israel Defense Forces (IDF).

    Asked specifically about three children killed in an incident in Bein Hanoun, in the northern Gaza Strip, IDF Spokesperson Hidai Zilberman told Israel’s Army Radio on Tuesday that a number of those killed in Gaza were hit by errant rockets fired by Palestinian terrorists, not by Israeli airstrikes.

    Iranian al’Hezbollah now seems much less threatening. The Iranian “friendly fire” rate is ~25% (=150 / 600). Therefore, if Iranian proxies in Lebanon try to use their claimed 100,000+ rockets, they will drop ~25,000 warheads in Lebanon, mostly in Beirut.

    After the Nasrallah-shima blast, Beirut is in pretty bad shape. Iranian al’Hezbollah cannot risk adding to the numbers of Lebanese casualties they created with their negligence at the port.

    PEACE 😇
    ___________

    (1) https://www.algemeiner.com/2021/05/11/israel-says-150-errant-hamas-rockets-have-fallen-short-in-gaza-likely-causing-casualties-attributed-to-israel/

  159. @sher singh
    https://www.lewrockwell.com/2021/05/gary-g-kohls/no-jab-for-me-and-here-are-35-reasons-why/

    https://media.discordapp.net/attachments/815453549462421574/841924479852347402/unknown.png

    thoughts?

    Replies: @AP

    Lewrockwell has a very dumb website if what you posted is representative of their product.

    Having an underlying condition (such as obesity, diabetes, etc.), getting Covid, and dying soon afterwards does not mean that Covid didn’t directly cause the death.

    • Agree: Jatt Aryaa
    • Replies: @Yellowface Anon
    @AP

    Used to read LewRockwell daily. Solidly libertarian, and totally opposed to any state policy on COVID, even masks (while pointing out how existing WHO and US policies are driven by the Big Pharma globalist interests, most notably Gates and Schwab, to set up the Great Reset).

    There are excess deaths caused by lockdowns and shuffling of death stats (much of the underlying conditions means they're dying anyway). There are nutritional therapies that reduces COVID risk better than any vaccine, and Bill Sardi there explains them well. Just ignore Rappoport.

    I'm more inclined to have faith in them and say there is no need in principle for anyone in good health to vaccinate, there are possible risks on the vaccines esp. mRNA ones, and vaccine passports mean caste control. But I'd be more pragmatic and say, anyone wanting to c*ck WEF's d*ck, go get their papers, it's their own business and risk.

    Replies: @Yellowface Anon, @AP

  160. @Passer by
    @Dmitry

    High energy prices are known to strangle economic growth, and to be even associated with recessions, so they have significant impact on the economy and on the well being of the people.

    The energy–growth nexus has been a breeding ground for academic research over the last few decades, focusing, among other things,on the impact of energy prices on economicgrowth.


    Energy prices are commonly regarded as crucial factors for facilitating economic development.
     
    https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S0313592619305934

    Note that high gas or oil price will have many effects on prices, for example anything made from plastics and many chemical related products will be affected too.


    Heating is good value in Russia, not because of electricity cost
     
    It is a good value always due to low energy costs too. Low energy costs directly affect heating. Here we are talking not only about the electricity cost, but about the overall impact of energy prices, which include, but are not limited to, electricity.

    People who drive the metro trains in London have a basic salary of $80,000 a year, while in Russian cities like Ekaterinburg they receive $16,000 a year. So the cost of a metro driver is 5 times less in Russia
     

    Not in PPP $. The average salary in Russia is twice lower than in the UK in local prices, so i really really doubt that a metro driver "costs 5 times lower in Russia".

    This is because the average salary in Russia is not 5 times lower within russian price context.

    You may think that salaries can be increased 5 times by russian businesses just because they are already "5 times bigger in the UK". And UK businesses are not bankrupt due to that. The worker is just "5 times cheaper in Russia", right?

    But no, you can't. This would mean that if russian businesses increase 5 times their labour costs, all of them will go bankrupt. And they will go bankrupt precisely because salaries are not 5 times lower within russian price context.

    Thus no, labour in not 5 times cheaper in Russia. Only 2 times, as PPP shows.

    Replies: @Passer by, @Dmitry

    The meaning of the upward adjustment of PPP, is mainly that you are surrounded with other low income people, and therefore their labour is cheap. This translates into lower prices for you when you buy anything that is based on purchase of services, or where a large part of the cost comes from the price of labour.

    But when you compare to commodities, then there is no upward adjustment for PPP.

    As you can with the proportion of Russian workers’ budget that is expended on groceries. In the UK 10% of household income is spent on groceries, while in Russia it is over 30% (more than in Bulgaria). There is such a large difference of how much money the families have for purchase of material objects between countries like Russia and UK.

    I remember around 10 or 12 years old, there was announced a digitilization of classrooms program in a region in Russia. And the problem was when parents complained, that a high proportion could not afford to buy a computer that would allow their children to do the homework.

    This is the typical situation where the authorities in Russia, were estimating the purchasing ability of the ordinary people, in relation to material objects where nominal income is the key factor. There is high upward adjustment for PPP when you talk about buying of services. The services based on purchase of labour, can multiple times cheaper, and this makes the median income in Russia to survivable. But then for purchase of things like computer, it is suddenly the nominal figure that becomes the relevant one, and peoples’ income can seem frighteningly low.

    average salary in Russia is not 5 times lower within russian price context.

    Sure, but the difference of price context itself is a result of low salaries, or cheap labour. Notice the circularity in this measurement.

    When you talk about a country with high upward adjustment for PPP, it’s tracking the fact that the incomes are low. By comparison, in countries with universal high salaries, there will be a strong downward adjustment for PPP measurement (due to the high cost of labour).

    PPP is useful for explaining that life standards’ are not as divergent between countries, as the income would predict, but misleading if you believed that you really received the same salary as that PPP adjusted figure.

    • Replies: @Passer by
    @Dmitry


    The meaning of the upward adjustment of PPP, is mainly that you are surrounded with other low income people, and therefore their labour is cheap. This translates into lower prices for you when you buy anything that is based on purchase of services, or where a large part of the cost comes from the price of labour.

    But when you compare to commodities, then there is no upward adjustment for PPP.
     

    Not only when you buy services from a certain country but also when you buy things manufactured within the country, as they use the same workforce too.

    In commodities, gasoline and electricity are several times cheaper in Russia. And prices of energy are strongly associated with the well being of the people, for example energy price spikes are associated with recessions and are commonly regarded by economists as "crucial factors for facilitating economic development".

    Btw, the very low prices of energy facilitate Russian homes during the winter being far warmer than the notoriously cold western european homes. For example in the UK during the (mild) winter the temperature in people's homes is 17 C, and according to some sources even 15 C, as opposed to 25 C in Russia.

    https://zen.yandex.ru/media/moydomik/kak-v-britanii-liudi-spravliaiutsia-s-holodom-v-kvartirah-5e08c01ebc251400ad2d27be

    And i suspect import substitution is raising the prices for groceries. Which was a forced process and thus uneconomical, not market driven, although in the long run it might run better.


    In the UK 10% of household income is spent on groceries, while in Russia it is over 30% (more than in Bulgaria)
     
    It is less than in Bulgaria, actually. PPP predicts twice lower amount of money for groceries is Russia than in the UK - 20 % of income. To get to 30 % dif it is possible to blame import substitution.

    Also i'm not sure that the groceries data from your pic % correlates well with wages between countries, for example countries with significantly higher net wages (around 20 % higher) than the UK such as Denmark or Luxemburg have similar percentages to the UK.

    https://riarating.ru/infografika/20191217/630147021.html

    Another problem is that it mentions the expenses of "families". Families include pensioners. This distorts the issue of wages. The ratio of pensions between Russia and Western Europe in nominal terms is even lower than the ratio of salaries - 5 times lower salaries in nominal terms and 6 times lower pensions. So the pension issue is partly to blame for the higher relative purchases of groceries in Russia, and not so much the salary issue.

    This of course also shows that pension (or the minimum wage) are simply too low in Russia and must be increased, at least to the ratio of average wages between Russia and Western Europe.

    So we can say this: PPP predicts 20 % of groceries purchases in Russia. It is possible that it becomes 30 % due to a) russian pensions are even lower compared to western pensions and b) inefficiencies in import substitution. It is also possible that there are some issues with the way grocery purchases are estimated by this site, considering that the UK has similar percentages to significantly richer countries.


    There is high upward adjustment for PPP when you talk about buying of services
     
    Not only services but anything energy related, transport related (gasoline), plastics and chemicals related, and generally manufactured in Russia.

    Sure, but the difference of price context itself is a result of low salaries, or cheap labour. Notice the circularity in this measurement.
     
    Whether a salary is low is determined by its relation to prices. Nominal salary is 5 times lower, price adjusted salary is 2 times lower (Russia compared to NW Europe).

    PPP is useful for explaining that life standards’ are not as divergent between countries, as the income would predict, but misleading if you believed that you really received the same salary as that PPP adjusted figure.
     
    Simple example - let's decrease salaries in the UK by 5 times, and prices by 5 times. Are salaries low now? No. Standard of living is the same. (But this is only within the country). If you get out of the country, it is another matter.

    Replies: @Dmitry

  161. @Passer by
    @Passer by

    Oh, and the worker is not even twice cheaper for russian businesses compared to UK businesses, due to the lower productivity of russian workers and businesses. So you can't even increase salaries in Russia by two times. Maybe by 50 %. By i do believe that there is space for increasing salaries in Russia, especially the minimum wage. Additionally, if productivity also spikes in Russia to UK levels, you may have space to increase them two times.

    Replies: @Dmitry

    One way that median income can be increased in Russia (assuming without economic growth), is by generous progressive taxation system, that is not taxing salaries below a set level (even if not taxing below $18,000, like the situation in the UK, would not be plausible).

    Then you would try to compensate for this, by adding a high marginal tax rate for those with high incomes (progressive tax system), taxes on assets, taxes on inheritance transfers, taxes on the ultra-wealthy (oligarch tax?), etc. (Moreover, you could reduce the budget in ways like reduction of military equipment purchases).

    But the problem is partly one of insufficient state capacity for tax collection. This is that the elite would increase their tax avoidance behaviours and increase their capital flight, if there was an attempt to introduce more progressive taxation policies.

    Textbook “neoliberalism” of the system in Russia (i.e. introducing Milton Friedman’s flat tax, abolishment of inheritance tax, etc, despite the low incomes), is partly because of the insufficient state capacity, and that the elite have a stronger bargaining situation in the country.

    There is also a fact that the working class people are less organized for collective bargaining and more easily controlled than in Western Europe. (For example, when Margaret Thatcher has tried to introduce flat-rate taxes into Great Britain, it resulted in rebellion of the population https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Poll_tax_riots).

    It’s not a simple situation for Russia, and things like the lack of progressive taxation, we see now is result of the low state capacity that was inherited from the 1990s. Hence that most countries in the world with flat income tax, are in the postsoviet space.

    • Replies: @Passer by
    @Dmitry

    With this comment, i agree. Also the pensions are lower compared to the wage ratio between Russia and WE, and the ratio between minimum wage and median wage within the country is lower too - 42 % in Russia vs 60 % in WE. It again seems to be some neoliberal Fridmanite bs, to help businesses hire ultra cheap workers.

    It is also commonly mentioned that due to the sanctions, Russia needed to increase reserves and capital buffers at the expense of public spending (hence the low public debt), and this is to blame too.

    Replies: @Dmitry

  162. @Coconuts
    @Dmitry


    One of the funny stories of some years ago in Russia, was that supermarkets were adding electronic anti-theft security tags on Ritter Sport bars – they had such a status.

     

    It is strange but while Ritter Sport in the UK is relatively cheaper and similar in price to the big brands like Galaxy and Cadbury, it also has a kind of cult status. When I was in Belarus the big thing in imported confectionary was Raffaello, which is okay but was expensive and it doesn’t have the quality feel of Ritter.

    I was impressed by the two big state-owned confectionary brands in Belarus, Kommunarka and Spartak. I think that some of both companies’ products could be sold in Western Europe, emphasising that they are probably the last state controlled confectionary firms still operating in Europe.


    But if you want to find the normal price of the same products, then you have to walk with shame into not-stylish German supermarkets or an Asda (which is owned by America’s Walmart) and B&M, where ordinary English worker can find normal priced products.
     
    I am impressed by the £50 honey, I wonder if anyone outside of certain areas of London or Oxfordshire buys this kind of product? My version of the British supermarket hierarchy, in order, is roughly:

    Waitrose

    Marks and Spencer, somewhere between Sainsburys’ and Waitrose but has a distinct more targeted range of products.

    Sainsburys’

    Tesco

    Morrisons (this Yorkshire based chain may be mostly limited to the North)

    Asda

    Aldi and Lidl

    Places like B&M, Iceland, ‘freezer shops’ which again have more focused ranges.

    In terms of value for money, Aldi and Lidl seem to me to be ahead of most of the others but the range of products is limited.

    There is another anomalous chain that can be found in the North, the small shops and medium sized supermarkets of the Co-Op. This is a cooperative society rather than a normal company, a holdover from previous times. It sells good quality ethical products but pricing is often closer to Waitrose. It probably still survives because it owns a lot of good sites.

    Replies: @Dmitry

    my version of the British

    I think you missed some upper levels though.

    These eccentric supermarkets in London like Eataly, Fortnum & Mason, Harrod’s Food Court, etc. And then hipsters’ style of organic shops, “local cheese shop”, “local meat shop”, “specialist bread maker”, etc .

    If you really want to waste money in the British city, you can buy a cake for $50, from any “artisan cake shops”. Even in chain “Patisserie Valerie”, in the typical cities, you see many people spend $10 for a tiny cutting of a cake, and yet such cakeshops are full of students and teenagers. You can easily spend $20 to sit with a pot of tea and a tiny slice of cake.

    Waitrose

    Marks and Spencer,

    Yes Waitrose seems like the shop is designed for social status signalling that you are must be a surgeon, lawyer, or perhaps a senior accountant in Deloitte or PwC. I feel like too much of a peasant to go through doors.

    Aldi and Lidl B&M,

    And these non-English origin owned shops, are the best supermarkets in the UK, with a combination of such high quality food, and normal prices. (Well B&M seem owned by British Indian people).

    Even Asda which is expensive but not in a way of Tesco or Waitrose, has also non-English, American owners (Walmart).

    I had studied for some weeks with a German classmate whose family has owned one of these supermarkets, and wasn’t exactly the best classmate, to say it mildly. (And at another time, I had a worse German classmate, whose family has owned a different multinational). But somehow only these Germans in the UK, have built the normal price and unpretentious supermarkets.

  163. @Bashibuzuk
    @AP

    Last time I was in RusFed was in 2018, Piter and Moscow. It is true that Moscow improved a lot even compared to 2016, which was another time I visited. Piter has improved less, but then in the 90ies it went further down compared to Moscow (I still loved Piter more back then). Something I have noticed was an improvement in the Moscow Oblast'.

    France was the first Western country where I lived after moving from Russia, but I no longer live there. One of the reasons being the overall feeling that the place has considerably deteriorated since the end of the 90ies.

    I still have family and friends there (some family members on my father's side settled in France before the fall of USSR and the first time I visited Paris was with my mom when I was around 10 years old). I still visit sometimes, every couple of years or so. In France the feeling of relative decline is regional: there are regions where you still find the Douce France that Charles Trenet used to sign about. But Paris is way worse than in 1993 when I first arrived there.

    My family members in and around Paris complain a lot, those who live in the South and Bretagne complain way less. But French are very good at complaining anyways: this and going on strike is kind of their national sport.

    Replies: @Dmitry

    So, you lived in France?

    Isn’t there a stereotype, that French workers attained such highly paid vacations and low working hours lifestyle: they start burning Paris everytime there is a proposal to deregulate labour?

    It must be bad for the long-term economic growth in France, resulting in less “labour market flexibility” other things equal. But lucky to be an average worker in France, for your low hours and high vacations.

  164. @Anatoly Karlin
    @AltanBakshi

    Your claim was that the Turkish blockade created an economic crisis in Russia. This doesn't correlate with a 25% increase in industrial production in 1916 vs. 1914.

    Replies: @AltanBakshi

    Not turkish blockade alone, but I believe that with closing of Baltic, it was an important contributing factor. Hard to keep populace happy if you have no foreign trade.

  165. Palestinian Islamic Jihad officially admits that Iran is providing weapons to be used against Palestinian Jews. When will Palestinian Jews retaliate against non-Palestinian Shia Islam?

    One can never reach PEACE if the instigators of Muslim violence against indigenous Palestine Jews goes unpunished.

    PEACE 😇

    • Replies: @DNS
    @A123

    Seems hard to believe, how do they get rockets into the isolated Gaza Strip without the Israelis stopping them?

    Replies: @Yellowface Anon

  166. @Dmitry
    @Passer by

    The meaning of the upward adjustment of PPP, is mainly that you are surrounded with other low income people, and therefore their labour is cheap. This translates into lower prices for you when you buy anything that is based on purchase of services, or where a large part of the cost comes from the price of labour.

    But when you compare to commodities, then there is no upward adjustment for PPP.

    As you can with the proportion of Russian workers' budget that is expended on groceries. In the UK 10% of household income is spent on groceries, while in Russia it is over 30% (more than in Bulgaria). There is such a large difference of how much money the families have for purchase of material objects between countries like Russia and UK.

    I remember around 10 or 12 years old, there was announced a digitilization of classrooms program in a region in Russia. And the problem was when parents complained, that a high proportion could not afford to buy a computer that would allow their children to do the homework.

    This is the typical situation where the authorities in Russia, were estimating the purchasing ability of the ordinary people, in relation to material objects where nominal income is the key factor. There is high upward adjustment for PPP when you talk about buying of services. The services based on purchase of labour, can multiple times cheaper, and this makes the median income in Russia to survivable. But then for purchase of things like computer, it is suddenly the nominal figure that becomes the relevant one, and peoples' income can seem frighteningly low.


    average salary in Russia is not 5 times lower within russian price context.
     
    Sure, but the difference of price context itself is a result of low salaries, or cheap labour. Notice the circularity in this measurement.

    When you talk about a country with high upward adjustment for PPP, it's tracking the fact that the incomes are low. By comparison, in countries with universal high salaries, there will be a strong downward adjustment for PPP measurement (due to the high cost of labour).

    PPP is useful for explaining that life standards' are not as divergent between countries, as the income would predict, but misleading if you believed that you really received the same salary as that PPP adjusted figure.

    Replies: @Passer by

    The meaning of the upward adjustment of PPP, is mainly that you are surrounded with other low income people, and therefore their labour is cheap. This translates into lower prices for you when you buy anything that is based on purchase of services, or where a large part of the cost comes from the price of labour.

    But when you compare to commodities, then there is no upward adjustment for PPP.

    Not only when you buy services from a certain country but also when you buy things manufactured within the country, as they use the same workforce too.

    In commodities, gasoline and electricity are several times cheaper in Russia. And prices of energy are strongly associated with the well being of the people, for example energy price spikes are associated with recessions and are commonly regarded by economists as “crucial factors for facilitating economic development”.

    Btw, the very low prices of energy facilitate Russian homes during the winter being far warmer than the notoriously cold western european homes. For example in the UK during the (mild) winter the temperature in people’s homes is 17 C, and according to some sources even 15 C, as opposed to 25 C in Russia.

    https://zen.yandex.ru/media/moydomik/kak-v-britanii-liudi-spravliaiutsia-s-holodom-v-kvartirah-5e08c01ebc251400ad2d27be

    And i suspect import substitution is raising the prices for groceries. Which was a forced process and thus uneconomical, not market driven, although in the long run it might run better.

    In the UK 10% of household income is spent on groceries, while in Russia it is over 30% (more than in Bulgaria)

    It is less than in Bulgaria, actually. PPP predicts twice lower amount of money for groceries is Russia than in the UK – 20 % of income. To get to 30 % dif it is possible to blame import substitution.

    Also i’m not sure that the groceries data from your pic % correlates well with wages between countries, for example countries with significantly higher net wages (around 20 % higher) than the UK such as Denmark or Luxemburg have similar percentages to the UK.

    https://riarating.ru/infografika/20191217/630147021.html

    Another problem is that it mentions the expenses of “families”. Families include pensioners. This distorts the issue of wages. The ratio of pensions between Russia and Western Europe in nominal terms is even lower than the ratio of salaries – 5 times lower salaries in nominal terms and 6 times lower pensions. So the pension issue is partly to blame for the higher relative purchases of groceries in Russia, and not so much the salary issue.

    This of course also shows that pension (or the minimum wage) are simply too low in Russia and must be increased, at least to the ratio of average wages between Russia and Western Europe.

    So we can say this: PPP predicts 20 % of groceries purchases in Russia. It is possible that it becomes 30 % due to a) russian pensions are even lower compared to western pensions and b) inefficiencies in import substitution. It is also possible that there are some issues with the way grocery purchases are estimated by this site, considering that the UK has similar percentages to significantly richer countries.

    There is high upward adjustment for PPP when you talk about buying of services

    Not only services but anything energy related, transport related (gasoline), plastics and chemicals related, and generally manufactured in Russia.

    Sure, but the difference of price context itself is a result of low salaries, or cheap labour. Notice the circularity in this measurement.

    Whether a salary is low is determined by its relation to prices. Nominal salary is 5 times lower, price adjusted salary is 2 times lower (Russia compared to NW Europe).

    PPP is useful for explaining that life standards’ are not as divergent between countries, as the income would predict, but misleading if you believed that you really received the same salary as that PPP adjusted figure.

    Simple example – let’s decrease salaries in the UK by 5 times, and prices by 5 times. Are salaries low now? No. Standard of living is the same. (But this is only within the country). If you get out of the country, it is another matter.

    • Replies: @Dmitry
    @Passer by


    low prices of energy facilitate Russian home
     
    It's true that it is a lot colder indoors in city building UK or Ireland, compared to in the Russian Federation (and most of the postsoviet space) but this is not related to cost of energy, but the municipal engineering since Soviet times. If you want to heat a country house in Russia, then it will cost more than in the UK or Ireland (as in latter countries winter is significantly less cold for many months).

    But in the urban buildings, this means that the water which is heated as byproduct of electricity generation, is pumping through the urban locations.

    If it's not clear, this is referring to pumping of the hot water, that was used to cool the electricity station.

    https://i.imgur.com/zBBFtLs.jpg


    Although one of the results of all this geniusly recycled warmth and heat, is that sometimes a pipe breaks, then it can result in hot water bath in the streets.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uV0fMaPmJk4


    PPP predicts 20 % of groceries
     
    It's because PPP adjustment is based on a "basket of goods and services".

    Groceries are "goods", not services. Most of the cost of groceries are not based on labour, and as a result they are more expensive in Russia relative to income, than is predicted by the PPP adjustment.

    The PPP adjustment upwards in Russia primarily because of the lower cost of things you buy in which the local labour was one of the main cost factors (that is more tilted to services).

    Apologies for the writing repetitive comments, but the reason for the upward adjustment for PPP in Russia, relative to Western Europe, mainly due to much lower labour costs.


    anything energy related, transport related (gasoline), plastics and chemicals related,
     
    Energy costs for industrial consumers Russia can be higher than in the USA and some EU countries. https://www.kommersant.ru/doc/4187282

    ^ Sorry it is Russian language article, but to summarise for industry the cost of electricity in Russia is higher than in USA, Belgium, France, Norway and Sweden. (Although Russia has lower cost of electricity for industry than the EU average).

    The industry's electricity in Russia costs more than in Norway, yet PPP adjusts downwards for Norway, and upwards for Russia. How is this so? It's because the PPP adjustment is primarily based on the cost of labour (high salaries in Norway), not related in energy costs.

    How does this effect a receiver of the income? Well PPP means that things which have a high labour input become affordable, but when you want to buy things that have low labour input, then it becomes at internationally expensive prices again (actually with your nominal salary level).


    . Nominal salary is 5 times lower, price adjusted salary is 2 times lower (Russia compared to
     
    But the price adjustment only happens for you when you buy things with high labour input (where the lower cost of labour translates into the product's final price).

    If buying restaurant (labour intense) food, or piano lessons, is an important expense for you, then the PPP upward adjustment can seem like an accurate description of your income. But when people's expense is on goods, then the nominal income describes more accurately what you can buy.

    This is why surprise that parents couldn't afford the home computers for their children's school digitization project, or people have problems shopping for groceries in the supermarket. Because when buy a computer, you don't have the PPP adjustment - you are paying with the nominal figure.


    decrease salaries in the UK by 5 times, and prices by 5 times. Are salaries low now? No. Standard of living
     
    The cause of the fall in prices, would have to be the fall in salaries - to accurately model how the PPP adjustment is working.

    If the salaries fall by 5 times in the UK, and with correspondent changes in minimum wage, then many things would become much cheaper in the UK, in particular services (but also property).

    Your children's piano lesson will be the same price relative to your income, that it was before the 5 times fall in salary.

    However, for goods where labour is not an important cost input, then peoples' salaries would fall by 5 times relative to the prices. Which is to say, their salary would be 5 times lower relative to the price of the piano itself, or computers, bags of sugar, jars of nutella, litre of milk, etc.

    Replies: @Passer by

  167. @Dmitry
    @Passer by

    One way that median income can be increased in Russia (assuming without economic growth), is by generous progressive taxation system, that is not taxing salaries below a set level (even if not taxing below $18,000, like the situation in the UK, would not be plausible).

    Then you would try to compensate for this, by adding a high marginal tax rate for those with high incomes (progressive tax system), taxes on assets, taxes on inheritance transfers, taxes on the ultra-wealthy (oligarch tax?), etc. (Moreover, you could reduce the budget in ways like reduction of military equipment purchases).

    But the problem is partly one of insufficient state capacity for tax collection. This is that the elite would increase their tax avoidance behaviours and increase their capital flight, if there was an attempt to introduce more progressive taxation policies.

    Textbook "neoliberalism" of the system in Russia (i.e. introducing Milton Friedman's flat tax, abolishment of inheritance tax, etc, despite the low incomes), is partly because of the insufficient state capacity, and that the elite have a stronger bargaining situation in the country.

    There is also a fact that the working class people are less organized for collective bargaining and more easily controlled than in Western Europe. (For example, when Margaret Thatcher has tried to introduce flat-rate taxes into Great Britain, it resulted in rebellion of the population https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Poll_tax_riots).

    It's not a simple situation for Russia, and things like the lack of progressive taxation, we see now is result of the low state capacity that was inherited from the 1990s. Hence that most countries in the world with flat income tax, are in the postsoviet space.

    Replies: @Passer by

    With this comment, i agree. Also the pensions are lower compared to the wage ratio between Russia and WE, and the ratio between minimum wage and median wage within the country is lower too – 42 % in Russia vs 60 % in WE. It again seems to be some neoliberal Fridmanite bs, to help businesses hire ultra cheap workers.

    It is also commonly mentioned that due to the sanctions, Russia needed to increase reserves and capital buffers at the expense of public spending (hence the low public debt), and this is to blame too.

    • Replies: @Dmitry
    @Passer by

    To be fair for Milton Friedman, one of the main motives for flat tax, is also the need to reduce the tax avoidance behaviour and simplify the administrative aspects of taxation.

    This can be related to state capacity. I'm not any knowledgeable person about taxation bureaucracy, but it seems progressive taxation systems of Western Europe, are often complicated systems that would require high state capacity?

    It probably requires a high state capacity to enforce progressive taxation and prevent a reduction in overall revenues, as it motivates wealthier to try to the higher marginal tax rates.

    In the 1990s, there is a collapse of state capacity in most of the postsoviet countries, and ability to collect taxes is on a more modest basis since those days. From this point of view, the flat tax for income seems to be a practical solution for the government in the Russian Federation (as well as Ukraine), as it apparently resulted in increase in revenue.

    But the end result that is inherited from the 1990s is not ideal - in Russia is not a socially ideal place for non-progressive rates of taxation. This is where median income is low, government expenditure can be high in some areas (for example, with the world's 4th highest military budget), and while Chanel and Dior shops are booming more than in Western Europe - which can imply the lack of proportional burden on the economic elite.

    Replies: @Passer by

  168. @AP
    @sher singh

    Lewrockwell has a very dumb website if what you posted is representative of their product.

    Having an underlying condition (such as obesity, diabetes, etc.), getting Covid, and dying soon afterwards does not mean that Covid didn't directly cause the death.

    Replies: @Yellowface Anon

    Used to read LewRockwell daily. Solidly libertarian, and totally opposed to any state policy on COVID, even masks (while pointing out how existing WHO and US policies are driven by the Big Pharma globalist interests, most notably Gates and Schwab, to set up the Great Reset).

    There are excess deaths caused by lockdowns and shuffling of death stats (much of the underlying conditions means they’re dying anyway). There are nutritional therapies that reduces COVID risk better than any vaccine, and Bill Sardi there explains them well. Just ignore Rappoport.

    I’m more inclined to have faith in them and say there is no need in principle for anyone in good health to vaccinate, there are possible risks on the vaccines esp. mRNA ones, and vaccine passports mean caste control. But I’d be more pragmatic and say, anyone wanting to c*ck WEF’s d*ck, go get their papers, it’s their own business and risk.

    • Thanks: Jatt Aryaa
    • Replies: @Yellowface Anon
    @Yellowface Anon

    I basically acquired my agrarian anti-state mindset there.

    , @AP
    @Yellowface Anon


    There are excess deaths caused by lockdowns and shuffling of death stats (much of the underlying conditions means they’re dying anyway)
     
    Someone who has diabetes or is overweight is indeed dying anyways (actually, all of are, from the moment of birth) but without Covid such a person might finally die in ten or thirty years, rather than tomorrow. Unless it's someone already in a nursing facility due to late stage COPD or going through a similar catastrophe (a tiny % of those with pre-existing conditions) than excluding people with pre-existing conditions from the Covid death rate as the author did is incredibly dishonest or dumb.

    There are nutritional therapies that reduces COVID risk better than any vaccine
     
    That are 95% effective as Moderna/Pfizer with virtually zero deaths?

    there is no need in principle for anyone in good health to vaccinate
     
    As long as they don't come into contact with unvaccinated people with common conditions such as diabetes, old age, obesity etc. than sure. Now that vaccines are commonplace and almost all people with such conditions have been vaccinated I am inclined to leave those who refuse to get vaccinated to take their chances.

    vaccine passports mean caste control
     
    If certain places haven't yet vaccinated their vulnerable people, it makes complete sense to prevent unvaccinated people from going to those places.

    Replies: @Yellowface Anon

  169. @Yellowface Anon
    @AP

    Used to read LewRockwell daily. Solidly libertarian, and totally opposed to any state policy on COVID, even masks (while pointing out how existing WHO and US policies are driven by the Big Pharma globalist interests, most notably Gates and Schwab, to set up the Great Reset).

    There are excess deaths caused by lockdowns and shuffling of death stats (much of the underlying conditions means they're dying anyway). There are nutritional therapies that reduces COVID risk better than any vaccine, and Bill Sardi there explains them well. Just ignore Rappoport.

    I'm more inclined to have faith in them and say there is no need in principle for anyone in good health to vaccinate, there are possible risks on the vaccines esp. mRNA ones, and vaccine passports mean caste control. But I'd be more pragmatic and say, anyone wanting to c*ck WEF's d*ck, go get their papers, it's their own business and risk.

    Replies: @Yellowface Anon, @AP

    I basically acquired my agrarian anti-state mindset there.

  170. @A123
    Palestinian Islamic Jihad officially admits that Iran is providing weapons to be used against Palestinian Jews. When will Palestinian Jews retaliate against non-Palestinian Shia Islam?

    One can never reach PEACE if the instigators of Muslim violence against indigenous Palestine Jews goes unpunished.

    PEACE 😇


    https://twitter.com/MEMRIReports/status/1392375858023763970?s=20

    Replies: @DNS

    Seems hard to believe, how do they get rockets into the isolated Gaza Strip without the Israelis stopping them?

    • Replies: @Yellowface Anon
    @DNS

    Because skirmishes are profitable for both sides?

  171. @DNS
    @A123

    Seems hard to believe, how do they get rockets into the isolated Gaza Strip without the Israelis stopping them?

    Replies: @Yellowface Anon

    Because skirmishes are profitable for both sides?

  172. @Passer by
    @Dmitry


    The meaning of the upward adjustment of PPP, is mainly that you are surrounded with other low income people, and therefore their labour is cheap. This translates into lower prices for you when you buy anything that is based on purchase of services, or where a large part of the cost comes from the price of labour.

    But when you compare to commodities, then there is no upward adjustment for PPP.
     

    Not only when you buy services from a certain country but also when you buy things manufactured within the country, as they use the same workforce too.

    In commodities, gasoline and electricity are several times cheaper in Russia. And prices of energy are strongly associated with the well being of the people, for example energy price spikes are associated with recessions and are commonly regarded by economists as "crucial factors for facilitating economic development".

    Btw, the very low prices of energy facilitate Russian homes during the winter being far warmer than the notoriously cold western european homes. For example in the UK during the (mild) winter the temperature in people's homes is 17 C, and according to some sources even 15 C, as opposed to 25 C in Russia.

    https://zen.yandex.ru/media/moydomik/kak-v-britanii-liudi-spravliaiutsia-s-holodom-v-kvartirah-5e08c01ebc251400ad2d27be

    And i suspect import substitution is raising the prices for groceries. Which was a forced process and thus uneconomical, not market driven, although in the long run it might run better.


    In the UK 10% of household income is spent on groceries, while in Russia it is over 30% (more than in Bulgaria)
     
    It is less than in Bulgaria, actually. PPP predicts twice lower amount of money for groceries is Russia than in the UK - 20 % of income. To get to 30 % dif it is possible to blame import substitution.

    Also i'm not sure that the groceries data from your pic % correlates well with wages between countries, for example countries with significantly higher net wages (around 20 % higher) than the UK such as Denmark or Luxemburg have similar percentages to the UK.

    https://riarating.ru/infografika/20191217/630147021.html

    Another problem is that it mentions the expenses of "families". Families include pensioners. This distorts the issue of wages. The ratio of pensions between Russia and Western Europe in nominal terms is even lower than the ratio of salaries - 5 times lower salaries in nominal terms and 6 times lower pensions. So the pension issue is partly to blame for the higher relative purchases of groceries in Russia, and not so much the salary issue.

    This of course also shows that pension (or the minimum wage) are simply too low in Russia and must be increased, at least to the ratio of average wages between Russia and Western Europe.

    So we can say this: PPP predicts 20 % of groceries purchases in Russia. It is possible that it becomes 30 % due to a) russian pensions are even lower compared to western pensions and b) inefficiencies in import substitution. It is also possible that there are some issues with the way grocery purchases are estimated by this site, considering that the UK has similar percentages to significantly richer countries.


    There is high upward adjustment for PPP when you talk about buying of services
     
    Not only services but anything energy related, transport related (gasoline), plastics and chemicals related, and generally manufactured in Russia.

    Sure, but the difference of price context itself is a result of low salaries, or cheap labour. Notice the circularity in this measurement.
     
    Whether a salary is low is determined by its relation to prices. Nominal salary is 5 times lower, price adjusted salary is 2 times lower (Russia compared to NW Europe).

    PPP is useful for explaining that life standards’ are not as divergent between countries, as the income would predict, but misleading if you believed that you really received the same salary as that PPP adjusted figure.
     
    Simple example - let's decrease salaries in the UK by 5 times, and prices by 5 times. Are salaries low now? No. Standard of living is the same. (But this is only within the country). If you get out of the country, it is another matter.

    Replies: @Dmitry

    low prices of energy facilitate Russian home

    It’s true that it is a lot colder indoors in city building UK or Ireland, compared to in the Russian Federation (and most of the postsoviet space) but this is not related to cost of energy, but the municipal engineering since Soviet times. If you want to heat a country house in Russia, then it will cost more than in the UK or Ireland (as in latter countries winter is significantly less cold for many months).

    But in the urban buildings, this means that the water which is heated as byproduct of electricity generation, is pumping through the urban locations.

    If it’s not clear, this is referring to pumping of the hot water, that was used to cool the electricity station.

    Although one of the results of all this geniusly recycled warmth and heat, is that sometimes a pipe breaks, then it can result in hot water bath in the streets.

    PPP predicts 20 % of groceries

    It’s because PPP adjustment is based on a “basket of goods and services”.

    Groceries are “goods”, not services. Most of the cost of groceries are not based on labour, and as a result they are more expensive in Russia relative to income, than is predicted by the PPP adjustment.

    The PPP adjustment upwards in Russia primarily because of the lower cost of things you buy in which the local labour was one of the main cost factors (that is more tilted to services).

    Apologies for the writing repetitive comments, but the reason for the upward adjustment for PPP in Russia, relative to Western Europe, mainly due to much lower labour costs.

    anything energy related, transport related (gasoline), plastics and chemicals related,

    Energy costs for industrial consumers Russia can be higher than in the USA and some EU countries. https://www.kommersant.ru/doc/4187282

    ^ Sorry it is Russian language article, but to summarise for industry the cost of electricity in Russia is higher than in USA, Belgium, France, Norway and Sweden. (Although Russia has lower cost of electricity for industry than the EU average).

    The industry’s electricity in Russia costs more than in Norway, yet PPP adjusts downwards for Norway, and upwards for Russia. How is this so? It’s because the PPP adjustment is primarily based on the cost of labour (high salaries in Norway), not related in energy costs.

    How does this effect a receiver of the income? Well PPP means that things which have a high labour input become affordable, but when you want to buy things that have low labour input, then it becomes at internationally expensive prices again (actually with your nominal salary level).

    . Nominal salary is 5 times lower, price adjusted salary is 2 times lower (Russia compared to

    But the price adjustment only happens for you when you buy things with high labour input (where the lower cost of labour translates into the product’s final price).

    If buying restaurant (labour intense) food, or piano lessons, is an important expense for you, then the PPP upward adjustment can seem like an accurate description of your income. But when people’s expense is on goods, then the nominal income describes more accurately what you can buy.

    This is why surprise that parents couldn’t afford the home computers for their children’s school digitization project, or people have problems shopping for groceries in the supermarket. Because when buy a computer, you don’t have the PPP adjustment – you are paying with the nominal figure.

    decrease salaries in the UK by 5 times, and prices by 5 times. Are salaries low now? No. Standard of living

    The cause of the fall in prices, would have to be the fall in salaries – to accurately model how the PPP adjustment is working.

    If the salaries fall by 5 times in the UK, and with correspondent changes in minimum wage, then many things would become much cheaper in the UK, in particular services (but also property).

    Your children’s piano lesson will be the same price relative to your income, that it was before the 5 times fall in salary.

    However, for goods where labour is not an important cost input, then peoples’ salaries would fall by 5 times relative to the prices. Which is to say, their salary would be 5 times lower relative to the price of the piano itself, or computers, bags of sugar, jars of nutella, litre of milk, etc.

    • Replies: @Passer by
    @Dmitry


    but this is not related to cost of energy, but the municipal engineering since Soviet times
     

    But in the urban buildings, this means that the water which is heated as byproduct of electricity generation
     
    And what would happens if the price of electricity generation in Russia spikes 4,3 times, to make it equal to the UK? I'm pretty sure that prices of this type of heating will spike. High energy input prices would lead to higher prices for this type of heating.

    Btw the price of air conditioning, which is widespread in Russia, including of cooling, would spike significantly.

    https://imgur.com/a/TBDnDVZ


    Apologies for the writing repetitive comments, but the reason for the upward adjustment for PPP in Russia, relative to Western Europe, mainly due to much lower labour costs.
     
    And i will write once again that economists regard energy prices as "crucial for the development of the economy" and energy price spikes are associated with recessions, thus energy prices have significant impact on the economy and the well being of the people.

    Moreover, labor Compensation per GDP ratio has been dropping from a long time and labor costs are not as important as in the past.

    Sorry it is Russian language article, but to summarise for industry the cost of electricity in Russia is higher than in USA, Belgium, France, Norway and Sweden.
     

    First of all, this is a private survey of a group of companies (calling themselves energy consumers) that obviously would want to lower prices for themselves and thus are trying to find arguments for that. How true is their data though, and whether it is not "massaged", to lobby price decreases for themselves, i don't know.

    Second, according to that private group, it is the same price as in the US, and not lower, as per the graphic in the article - 0,07 $. Lower than the EU average and way lower than the UK.

    Third, the russian energy producers do not agree with this private lobby group, and claim that russian electricity prices for businesses are one of the lowest in the world.

    So there is very clear conflict of interest. I will not take the claims of the one side alone. If the truth is in the middle (therefore price is lower than 0,07 $, as the lobbysts claim), this would mean that Russia has lower electricicy prices for businesses than the US and almost everyone in Europe.


    Идею выдвинуло промышленное лобби, по расчетам которого тарифы для энергоемких предприятий в России порой в разы выше зарубежных. Производители энергии с этим не согласны, считая цены в РФ одними из самых низких в мире. Прозрачная методика оценки могла бы разрешить этот спор, считают аналитики.
     
    https://www.kommersant.ru/doc/4627541

    According to international assesments (International Energy Agency and others), the price of electricity in Russia for industry and businesses is one of the lowest in the world.

    https://www.iea.org/data-and-statistics/charts/electricity-price-distribution-across-countries-2018

    https://www.globalpetrolprices.com/electricity_prices/


    The cause of the fall in prices, would have to be the fall in salaries – to accurately model how the PPP adjustment is working.
     
    No. PPP simply means prices, and prices does not necessarily reflect labout costs. Let's say the UK found one of the largest oil and gas deposits in the world, so prices dropped because of that too. Price drops could also reflect better productivity.

    However, for goods where labour is not an important cost input, then peoples’ salaries would fall by 5 times relative to the prices.
     

    It does not matter, something got cheaper, something else got more expensive. Because the overall prices equalised each other and remain the same in PPP. If local prices/salary ratio is the same, then it does not matter how low the salary is within local country price context.

    Replies: @Dmitry

  173. @Passer by
    @Dmitry

    With this comment, i agree. Also the pensions are lower compared to the wage ratio between Russia and WE, and the ratio between minimum wage and median wage within the country is lower too - 42 % in Russia vs 60 % in WE. It again seems to be some neoliberal Fridmanite bs, to help businesses hire ultra cheap workers.

    It is also commonly mentioned that due to the sanctions, Russia needed to increase reserves and capital buffers at the expense of public spending (hence the low public debt), and this is to blame too.

    Replies: @Dmitry

    To be fair for Milton Friedman, one of the main motives for flat tax, is also the need to reduce the tax avoidance behaviour and simplify the administrative aspects of taxation.

    This can be related to state capacity. I’m not any knowledgeable person about taxation bureaucracy, but it seems progressive taxation systems of Western Europe, are often complicated systems that would require high state capacity?

    It probably requires a high state capacity to enforce progressive taxation and prevent a reduction in overall revenues, as it motivates wealthier to try to the higher marginal tax rates.

    In the 1990s, there is a collapse of state capacity in most of the postsoviet countries, and ability to collect taxes is on a more modest basis since those days. From this point of view, the flat tax for income seems to be a practical solution for the government in the Russian Federation (as well as Ukraine), as it apparently resulted in increase in revenue.

    But the end result that is inherited from the 1990s is not ideal – in Russia is not a socially ideal place for non-progressive rates of taxation. This is where median income is low, government expenditure can be high in some areas (for example, with the world’s 4th highest military budget), and while Chanel and Dior shops are booming more than in Western Europe – which can imply the lack of proportional burden on the economic elite.

    • Replies: @Passer by
    @Dmitry

    Agree with this. State capacity may also reflect how central one entity is for the global economy. The US and the EU are large economies and are better able to enforce their rules abroad. Smaller economies will have more trouble with that, and may be more flat tax dependent to keep money within the country. Russia is also under economic attack by the West and it can not expect much cooperation in that regard from the US/Europe. Just recently the Netherlands refused to cooperate with Russia on the issue of russian companies based there avoiding taxes in Russia.

    Actually G-7 and G-20 meetings often involve tax harmonisation and closing tax loopholes, with the EU (predictably, as a high tax area) the most active in this regard. These days Biden is pushing for the tax harmonisation within international institutions too, since he wants to increase taxes within the US, and would like to crack down on low tax countries to stop money flows from moving out from the US.

    Replies: @Dmitry

  174. @Dmitry
    @Passer by


    low prices of energy facilitate Russian home
     
    It's true that it is a lot colder indoors in city building UK or Ireland, compared to in the Russian Federation (and most of the postsoviet space) but this is not related to cost of energy, but the municipal engineering since Soviet times. If you want to heat a country house in Russia, then it will cost more than in the UK or Ireland (as in latter countries winter is significantly less cold for many months).

    But in the urban buildings, this means that the water which is heated as byproduct of electricity generation, is pumping through the urban locations.

    If it's not clear, this is referring to pumping of the hot water, that was used to cool the electricity station.

    https://i.imgur.com/zBBFtLs.jpg


    Although one of the results of all this geniusly recycled warmth and heat, is that sometimes a pipe breaks, then it can result in hot water bath in the streets.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uV0fMaPmJk4


    PPP predicts 20 % of groceries
     
    It's because PPP adjustment is based on a "basket of goods and services".

    Groceries are "goods", not services. Most of the cost of groceries are not based on labour, and as a result they are more expensive in Russia relative to income, than is predicted by the PPP adjustment.

    The PPP adjustment upwards in Russia primarily because of the lower cost of things you buy in which the local labour was one of the main cost factors (that is more tilted to services).

    Apologies for the writing repetitive comments, but the reason for the upward adjustment for PPP in Russia, relative to Western Europe, mainly due to much lower labour costs.


    anything energy related, transport related (gasoline), plastics and chemicals related,
     
    Energy costs for industrial consumers Russia can be higher than in the USA and some EU countries. https://www.kommersant.ru/doc/4187282

    ^ Sorry it is Russian language article, but to summarise for industry the cost of electricity in Russia is higher than in USA, Belgium, France, Norway and Sweden. (Although Russia has lower cost of electricity for industry than the EU average).

    The industry's electricity in Russia costs more than in Norway, yet PPP adjusts downwards for Norway, and upwards for Russia. How is this so? It's because the PPP adjustment is primarily based on the cost of labour (high salaries in Norway), not related in energy costs.

    How does this effect a receiver of the income? Well PPP means that things which have a high labour input become affordable, but when you want to buy things that have low labour input, then it becomes at internationally expensive prices again (actually with your nominal salary level).


    . Nominal salary is 5 times lower, price adjusted salary is 2 times lower (Russia compared to
     
    But the price adjustment only happens for you when you buy things with high labour input (where the lower cost of labour translates into the product's final price).

    If buying restaurant (labour intense) food, or piano lessons, is an important expense for you, then the PPP upward adjustment can seem like an accurate description of your income. But when people's expense is on goods, then the nominal income describes more accurately what you can buy.

    This is why surprise that parents couldn't afford the home computers for their children's school digitization project, or people have problems shopping for groceries in the supermarket. Because when buy a computer, you don't have the PPP adjustment - you are paying with the nominal figure.


    decrease salaries in the UK by 5 times, and prices by 5 times. Are salaries low now? No. Standard of living
     
    The cause of the fall in prices, would have to be the fall in salaries - to accurately model how the PPP adjustment is working.

    If the salaries fall by 5 times in the UK, and with correspondent changes in minimum wage, then many things would become much cheaper in the UK, in particular services (but also property).

    Your children's piano lesson will be the same price relative to your income, that it was before the 5 times fall in salary.

    However, for goods where labour is not an important cost input, then peoples' salaries would fall by 5 times relative to the prices. Which is to say, their salary would be 5 times lower relative to the price of the piano itself, or computers, bags of sugar, jars of nutella, litre of milk, etc.

    Replies: @Passer by

    but this is not related to cost of energy, but the municipal engineering since Soviet times

    But in the urban buildings, this means that the water which is heated as byproduct of electricity generation

    And what would happens if the price of electricity generation in Russia spikes 4,3 times, to make it equal to the UK? I’m pretty sure that prices of this type of heating will spike. High energy input prices would lead to higher prices for this type of heating.

    Btw the price of air conditioning, which is widespread in Russia, including of cooling, would spike significantly.

    Air conditioners in Russia

    Apologies for the writing repetitive comments, but the reason for the upward adjustment for PPP in Russia, relative to Western Europe, mainly due to much lower labour costs.

    And i will write once again that economists regard energy prices as “crucial for the development of the economy” and energy price spikes are associated with recessions, thus energy prices have significant impact on the economy and the well being of the people.

    Moreover, labor Compensation per GDP ratio has been dropping from a long time and labor costs are not as important as in the past.

    Sorry it is Russian language article, but to summarise for industry the cost of electricity in Russia is higher than in USA, Belgium, France, Norway and Sweden.

    First of all, this is a private survey of a group of companies (calling themselves energy consumers) that obviously would want to lower prices for themselves and thus are trying to find arguments for that. How true is their data though, and whether it is not “massaged”, to lobby price decreases for themselves, i don’t know.

    Second, according to that private group, it is the same price as in the US, and not lower, as per the graphic in the article – 0,07 $. Lower than the EU average and way lower than the UK.

    Third, the russian energy producers do not agree with this private lobby group, and claim that russian electricity prices for businesses are one of the lowest in the world.

    So there is very clear conflict of interest. I will not take the claims of the one side alone. If the truth is in the middle (therefore price is lower than 0,07 $, as the lobbysts claim), this would mean that Russia has lower electricicy prices for businesses than the US and almost everyone in Europe.

    Идею выдвинуло промышленное лобби, по расчетам которого тарифы для энергоемких предприятий в России порой в разы выше зарубежных. Производители энергии с этим не согласны, считая цены в РФ одними из самых низких в мире. Прозрачная методика оценки могла бы разрешить этот спор, считают аналитики.

    https://www.kommersant.ru/doc/4627541

    According to international assesments (International Energy Agency and others), the price of electricity in Russia for industry and businesses is one of the lowest in the world.

    https://www.iea.org/data-and-statistics/charts/electricity-price-distribution-across-countries-2018

    https://www.globalpetrolprices.com/electricity_prices/

    The cause of the fall in prices, would have to be the fall in salaries – to accurately model how the PPP adjustment is working.

    No. PPP simply means prices, and prices does not necessarily reflect labout costs. Let’s say the UK found one of the largest oil and gas deposits in the world, so prices dropped because of that too. Price drops could also reflect better productivity.

    However, for goods where labour is not an important cost input, then peoples’ salaries would fall by 5 times relative to the prices.

    It does not matter, something got cheaper, something else got more expensive. Because the overall prices equalised each other and remain the same in PPP. If local prices/salary ratio is the same, then it does not matter how low the salary is within local country price context.

    • Replies: @Dmitry
    @Passer by


    air conditioning, which is widespread

     

    Lol what? You're confusing with a different country. Air conditioning is not popular in Russia, especially for peoples' homes.

    In the summer, most normal people put up electric fans on a hot day, and electric fans expend very little electricity.


    private survey lobby price decrease
     
    I'm not sure why you are arguing with me and dispute easily verifiable facts. You are using a conspiracy about the association which is headed by Rosneft, Transneft (state energy producers), and data is from Eurostat.

    The fact is that cross-subsidization is an official policy in Russia, so that industry in Russia pay more for electricity to subsidize consumers, and as a result the prices for businesses/industry pay for electricity can be higher than in some EU countries.

    It can vary with exchange rate, but you can see on the Eurostat website in euros.


    https://i.imgur.com/fBOSRqp.jpg

    And the prices indeed go higher for some legal entities in Russia, than to buy electricity in Sweden, Denmark, Norway, etc .

    https://time2save.ru/articles/tarify-na-elektroenergiyu-dlya-melkih-predpriyatiy-v-2018


    PPP simply means prices, and prices does not necessarily reflect labout

     

    The cause of the PPP adjustment for low income countries is mainly the low labour cost, and in the comparison between countries like UK and Russia, this is most of the difference.

    That is the low incomes, is causing the upward adjustment by PPP.

    This is indicated in the fact that adjustment is almost all in services and goods with high labour input.

    Therefore, that farmgate milk price which is capital intensive (cows are capital - they are not paid a salary in UK than in Russia), is identical in Russia per litre as in the UK, but a price of "Big Mac" (where the main cost input for Macdonald's is the cheapest human labour) costs almost 250% more in UK than in Russia

    And price of standard supermarket milk can actually be often (or even usually) cheaper in the UK than in Russia.


    does not matter, something got cheaper, something else got more expensive. Because the overall prices equalised each other
     
    It matters a lot if you experience life with such salaries.

    If salaries were reduced by 5 times in the UK, then the price of services (and local labour intensive production) would become cheaper. This would result in a massive upward PPP adjustment in the basket of services, but not of goods.

    As a result in many areas, you will not feel five times poorer, but in other areas you will really. And this is the situation for the lower median salaries in Russia. If you go buy something with high proportion of cost being labour, then the prices are much better value for money, but for other products - then they are not.

    What the proportion of goods and services you will buy, depends on your lifestyle. For example, tourist, which visit a country with low labour costs, will experience it as much cheaper - as tourists are dependent on buying of services.

    But for locals, long-term residents, might buy far fewer services, and more goods. During coronavirus, I had been months without much purchase of services.

    Replies: @mal, @Passer by

  175. @Dmitry
    @Passer by

    To be fair for Milton Friedman, one of the main motives for flat tax, is also the need to reduce the tax avoidance behaviour and simplify the administrative aspects of taxation.

    This can be related to state capacity. I'm not any knowledgeable person about taxation bureaucracy, but it seems progressive taxation systems of Western Europe, are often complicated systems that would require high state capacity?

    It probably requires a high state capacity to enforce progressive taxation and prevent a reduction in overall revenues, as it motivates wealthier to try to the higher marginal tax rates.

    In the 1990s, there is a collapse of state capacity in most of the postsoviet countries, and ability to collect taxes is on a more modest basis since those days. From this point of view, the flat tax for income seems to be a practical solution for the government in the Russian Federation (as well as Ukraine), as it apparently resulted in increase in revenue.

    But the end result that is inherited from the 1990s is not ideal - in Russia is not a socially ideal place for non-progressive rates of taxation. This is where median income is low, government expenditure can be high in some areas (for example, with the world's 4th highest military budget), and while Chanel and Dior shops are booming more than in Western Europe - which can imply the lack of proportional burden on the economic elite.

    Replies: @Passer by

    Agree with this. State capacity may also reflect how central one entity is for the global economy. The US and the EU are large economies and are better able to enforce their rules abroad. Smaller economies will have more trouble with that, and may be more flat tax dependent to keep money within the country. Russia is also under economic attack by the West and it can not expect much cooperation in that regard from the US/Europe. Just recently the Netherlands refused to cooperate with Russia on the issue of russian companies based there avoiding taxes in Russia.

    Actually G-7 and G-20 meetings often involve tax harmonisation and closing tax loopholes, with the EU (predictably, as a high tax area) the most active in this regard. These days Biden is pushing for the tax harmonisation within international institutions too, since he wants to increase taxes within the US, and would like to crack down on low tax countries to stop money flows from moving out from the US.

    • Replies: @Dmitry
    @Passer by


    tax harmonisation and closing tax
     
    The introduction of information sharing agreements, tax harmonization, and mutual rendition, etc, would reduce the extent of capital flight from Russia. But few policies could give more nightmares for many of the elite and political class in Russia and other postsoviet sphere, as a large part of the lifestyle is based on enjoying the information opacity with the countries where your assets are stored - so it will not be likely to occur.

    That's also why "One World Government" conspiracies, never seem very plausible to me - such an harmonized government would probably benefit the little man, not so much the big man, whose preferences are shown better by information opacity created by wealthy peoples' international movement between separate jurisdictions. Even Monaco, is not a member of the EU.


    Biden is pushing for the tax harmonisation within international institutions too, since he wants to increase taxes
     
    We would have to say that Biden will be a genius, if he can successfully use this kind of strategy to onshore US companies from countries like Republic of Ireland.

    Trump had also attempted this through a lowering of corporation tax, although the success of his policy was limited by not lowering it to sufficient levels to compete with the corporation tax levels in countries like Ireland. I guess we will see if Biden's possible strategy is more successful.

    Replies: @Yellowface Anon, @Passer by

  176. Between March 1 and May 10 the Indian state Gujarat had over 100% excess deaths compared to last year. With numbers like this it looks like India will be the first country to one million Corona deaths.

  177. A123 says:

    Seems hard to believe, how do they get rockets into the isolated Gaza Strip without the Israelis stopping them?

    While Iran does try to sneak in complete missiles, mostly they illegally smuggle much smaller components such as the detonator and often the HE warhead. The body of the rocket is made from generic pipe and other local metal. Fuel is also brewed from locally available chemicals.

    Even strident anti-Israel groups, such as Defense for Children International – Palestine [DCIP] are forced to admit that tragic Muslim friendly fire incidents are taking place: (1)

    a homemade rocket fired by a Palestinian armed group fell short and killed eight Palestinians, including two children. The rocket landed in Saleh Dardouna Street near Al-Omari Mosque in Jabalia, North Gaza, according to evidence collected by DCIP. Mustafa Mohammad Mahmoud Obaid, 16, was killed in the blast, and five-year-old Baraa Wisam Ahmad al-Gharabli succumbed to his injuries around 11 p.m. on May 10.

    Palestinian security sources and explosives experts indicated the cause of this explosion was a Palestinian armed group rocket that fell short. Another 34 Palestinian civilians were injured in the blast, including 10 children, according to DCIP’s documentation.

    The IDF captured a particularly inept failure (below).

    If you do a little digging, you can also find Hamas and PIJ video releases showing rockets headed towards the ground within Gaza. Anything that fails immediately after launch runs substantial risk of hitting a random, civilian structure and exploding.

    PEACE 😇
    __________

    (1) https://www.dci-palestine.org/nine_children_killed_in_gaza_strip_as_violence_escalates

  178. AP says:
    @Yellowface Anon
    @AP

    Used to read LewRockwell daily. Solidly libertarian, and totally opposed to any state policy on COVID, even masks (while pointing out how existing WHO and US policies are driven by the Big Pharma globalist interests, most notably Gates and Schwab, to set up the Great Reset).

    There are excess deaths caused by lockdowns and shuffling of death stats (much of the underlying conditions means they're dying anyway). There are nutritional therapies that reduces COVID risk better than any vaccine, and Bill Sardi there explains them well. Just ignore Rappoport.

    I'm more inclined to have faith in them and say there is no need in principle for anyone in good health to vaccinate, there are possible risks on the vaccines esp. mRNA ones, and vaccine passports mean caste control. But I'd be more pragmatic and say, anyone wanting to c*ck WEF's d*ck, go get their papers, it's their own business and risk.

    Replies: @Yellowface Anon, @AP

    There are excess deaths caused by lockdowns and shuffling of death stats (much of the underlying conditions means they’re dying anyway)

    Someone who has diabetes or is overweight is indeed dying anyways (actually, all of are, from the moment of birth) but without Covid such a person might finally die in ten or thirty years, rather than tomorrow. Unless it’s someone already in a nursing facility due to late stage COPD or going through a similar catastrophe (a tiny % of those with pre-existing conditions) than excluding people with pre-existing conditions from the Covid death rate as the author did is incredibly dishonest or dumb.

    There are nutritional therapies that reduces COVID risk better than any vaccine

    That are 95% effective as Moderna/Pfizer with virtually zero deaths?

    there is no need in principle for anyone in good health to vaccinate

    As long as they don’t come into contact with unvaccinated people with common conditions such as diabetes, old age, obesity etc. than sure. Now that vaccines are commonplace and almost all people with such conditions have been vaccinated I am inclined to leave those who refuse to get vaccinated to take their chances.

    vaccine passports mean caste control

    If certain places haven’t yet vaccinated their vulnerable people, it makes complete sense to prevent unvaccinated people from going to those places.

    • Replies: @Yellowface Anon
    @AP


    Someone who has diabetes or is overweight is indeed dying anyways (actually, all of are, from the moment of birth) but without Covid such a person might finally die in ten or thirty years, rather than tomorrow. Unless it’s someone already in a nursing facility due to late stage COPD or going through a similar catastrophe (a tiny % of those with pre-existing conditions) than excluding people with pre-existing conditions from the Covid death rate as the author did is incredibly dishonest or dumb.
     
    Remember the bulk of deaths are still in those who're nearing or past their life expectancy - there are some who're dying prematurely with underlying conditions, but they are likely to die with other coronaviruses and the flu. COVID is not that unique.

    That are 95% effective as Moderna/Pfizer with virtually zero deaths?
     
    Any vaccine requires the activation of T-cells which would require a sufficient level of zinc. Also levels of vitamin D much higher than suggested intake also reduces the death rate to 0.

    95% effective, as in reducing 95% of the number of "cases" over the control group, over a large testing sample with statistically insignificant number of contracting the virus - the whole result can easily said to be statistical error. The test and control samples are of healthy young and middle-aged groups whose immune systems are already robust enough. You might brush away infections after vaccination as "the vaccines only reduce symptoms and deaths", but the state would like to see booming asymptomatics to justify more lockdowns or caste restrictions. Don't hide the possible side-effects of mRNA therapy - these needs 5-10 years to be completely known.

    All these arguments don't justify vaccine mandates - they nearly wipes out any hasty deployment of vaccines like what we're seeing now.

    As long as they don’t come into contact with unvaccinated people with common conditions such as diabetes, old age, obesity etc. than sure. Now that vaccines are commonplace and almost all people with such conditions have been vaccinated I am inclined to leave those who refuse to get vaccinated to take their chances.
     
    That'd be great - except for going to places with vaccine ID that refuses those even with naturally-acquired immunity. (Good for them to quit the system altogether then).

    If certain places haven’t yet vaccinated their vulnerable people, it makes complete sense to prevent unvaccinated people from going to those places.
     
    If your place has a vaccine ID system, you deserve to stay. Don't be a wussy and forego your papers, and forget about moving to Florida (and maybe Texas), where state governors oppose vaccine passports and much of the locals and newcomers hates the jab.

    Don't rush for the exits when the social credit system and chipping are rolled out.
  179. @Passer by
    @Dmitry


    but this is not related to cost of energy, but the municipal engineering since Soviet times
     

    But in the urban buildings, this means that the water which is heated as byproduct of electricity generation
     
    And what would happens if the price of electricity generation in Russia spikes 4,3 times, to make it equal to the UK? I'm pretty sure that prices of this type of heating will spike. High energy input prices would lead to higher prices for this type of heating.

    Btw the price of air conditioning, which is widespread in Russia, including of cooling, would spike significantly.

    https://imgur.com/a/TBDnDVZ


    Apologies for the writing repetitive comments, but the reason for the upward adjustment for PPP in Russia, relative to Western Europe, mainly due to much lower labour costs.
     
    And i will write once again that economists regard energy prices as "crucial for the development of the economy" and energy price spikes are associated with recessions, thus energy prices have significant impact on the economy and the well being of the people.

    Moreover, labor Compensation per GDP ratio has been dropping from a long time and labor costs are not as important as in the past.

    Sorry it is Russian language article, but to summarise for industry the cost of electricity in Russia is higher than in USA, Belgium, France, Norway and Sweden.
     

    First of all, this is a private survey of a group of companies (calling themselves energy consumers) that obviously would want to lower prices for themselves and thus are trying to find arguments for that. How true is their data though, and whether it is not "massaged", to lobby price decreases for themselves, i don't know.

    Second, according to that private group, it is the same price as in the US, and not lower, as per the graphic in the article - 0,07 $. Lower than the EU average and way lower than the UK.

    Third, the russian energy producers do not agree with this private lobby group, and claim that russian electricity prices for businesses are one of the lowest in the world.

    So there is very clear conflict of interest. I will not take the claims of the one side alone. If the truth is in the middle (therefore price is lower than 0,07 $, as the lobbysts claim), this would mean that Russia has lower electricicy prices for businesses than the US and almost everyone in Europe.


    Идею выдвинуло промышленное лобби, по расчетам которого тарифы для энергоемких предприятий в России порой в разы выше зарубежных. Производители энергии с этим не согласны, считая цены в РФ одними из самых низких в мире. Прозрачная методика оценки могла бы разрешить этот спор, считают аналитики.
     
    https://www.kommersant.ru/doc/4627541

    According to international assesments (International Energy Agency and others), the price of electricity in Russia for industry and businesses is one of the lowest in the world.

    https://www.iea.org/data-and-statistics/charts/electricity-price-distribution-across-countries-2018

    https://www.globalpetrolprices.com/electricity_prices/


    The cause of the fall in prices, would have to be the fall in salaries – to accurately model how the PPP adjustment is working.
     
    No. PPP simply means prices, and prices does not necessarily reflect labout costs. Let's say the UK found one of the largest oil and gas deposits in the world, so prices dropped because of that too. Price drops could also reflect better productivity.

    However, for goods where labour is not an important cost input, then peoples’ salaries would fall by 5 times relative to the prices.
     

    It does not matter, something got cheaper, something else got more expensive. Because the overall prices equalised each other and remain the same in PPP. If local prices/salary ratio is the same, then it does not matter how low the salary is within local country price context.

    Replies: @Dmitry

    air conditioning, which is widespread

    Lol what? You’re confusing with a different country. Air conditioning is not popular in Russia, especially for peoples’ homes.

    In the summer, most normal people put up electric fans on a hot day, and electric fans expend very little electricity.

    private survey lobby price decrease

    I’m not sure why you are arguing with me and dispute easily verifiable facts. You are using a conspiracy about the association which is headed by Rosneft, Transneft (state energy producers), and data is from Eurostat.

    The fact is that cross-subsidization is an official policy in Russia, so that industry in Russia pay more for electricity to subsidize consumers, and as a result the prices for businesses/industry pay for electricity can be higher than in some EU countries.

    It can vary with exchange rate, but you can see on the Eurostat website in euros.

    And the prices indeed go higher for some legal entities in Russia, than to buy electricity in Sweden, Denmark, Norway, etc .

    https://time2save.ru/articles/tarify-na-elektroenergiyu-dlya-melkih-predpriyatiy-v-2018

    PPP simply means prices, and prices does not necessarily reflect labout

    The cause of the PPP adjustment for low income countries is mainly the low labour cost, and in the comparison between countries like UK and Russia, this is most of the difference.

    That is the low incomes, is causing the upward adjustment by PPP.

    This is indicated in the fact that adjustment is almost all in services and goods with high labour input.

    Therefore, that farmgate milk price which is capital intensive (cows are capital – they are not paid a salary in UK than in Russia), is identical in Russia per litre as in the UK, but a price of “Big Mac” (where the main cost input for Macdonald’s is the cheapest human labour) costs almost 250% more in UK than in Russia

    And price of standard supermarket milk can actually be often (or even usually) cheaper in the UK than in Russia.

    does not matter, something got cheaper, something else got more expensive. Because the overall prices equalised each other

    It matters a lot if you experience life with such salaries.

    If salaries were reduced by 5 times in the UK, then the price of services (and local labour intensive production) would become cheaper. This would result in a massive upward PPP adjustment in the basket of services, but not of goods.

    As a result in many areas, you will not feel five times poorer, but in other areas you will really. And this is the situation for the lower median salaries in Russia. If you go buy something with high proportion of cost being labour, then the prices are much better value for money, but for other products – then they are not.

    What the proportion of goods and services you will buy, depends on your lifestyle. For example, tourist, which visit a country with low labour costs, will experience it as much cheaper – as tourists are dependent on buying of services.

    But for locals, long-term residents, might buy far fewer services, and more goods. During coronavirus, I had been months without much purchase of services.

    • Replies: @mal
    @Dmitry


    And price of standard supermarket milk can actually be often (or even usually) cheaper in the UK than in Russia.
     
    This is not my experience in the US.

    Kroger off brand milk that even my cat won't drink retails for $3.59/gal. (We actually have to pay more like $6/gal or cat will kill us, he is old and picky).


    https://www.kroger.com/pl/milk/0200100001?fulfillment=all

    Russian Пятёрочка averages 47 rubles per liter, or about $2.37/gal.

    СКОЛЬКО СТОИТ МОЛОКО В ПЯТЕРОЧКЕ?
    Купить молоко в Пятерочке в среднем можно за 47 рублей/литр. Цена на молоко практически не меняется в течение года, поскольку потребность в этом продукте существует всегда. Иногда в сезон распродаж на молоко снижается стоимость (не более чем на 20%).

     

    https://agro24.su/product/moloko/pyaterochka/

    And in my experience, Russian milk is higher quality than Kroger off brand, i would say at least my cat quality standard. But even if not, its still cheaper than Kroger off brand. I would say, equivalent quality milk is half price in Russia vs the US. Not quite 3X PPP differential, but that's because... services dominate both economies, people spend far more on that then agricultural products such as milk.

    In the US, services are 80% of the economy, and in Russia, 60%. Services are almost entirely determined by price of labor, so PPP adjustment is the most valid when it comes to evaluating quality of life for individuals in different countries.

    https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_by_GDP_sector_composition#GDP_(PPP)_sector_composition

    Nobody cares about the price of milk because people simply don't spend much money on it. People spend vast majority of money on services such as haircuts (80% of US economy is based on haircuts, 60% for Russia), and there, debt becomes an all important driver.

    When people want to spend more on haircuts, they take out more debt to pay for them. This enables higher salaries for hair cutters who then take out even more debt to pay the banks and each other. This distribution determines the rate of GDP growth.


    But for locals, long-term residents, might buy far fewer services, and more goods. During coronavirus, I had been months without much purchase of services.
     
    You are an outlier. All developed economies are service driven and debt based. Good are irrelevant, services and debt needed to pay for them are everything.

    Replies: @Yellowface Anon, @Dmitry

    , @Passer by
    @Dmitry


    Air conditioning is not popular in Russia, especially for peoples’ homes.
     
    Maybe. I have seen flats with them. Maybe its used for cooling during summer, who knows.

    I’m not sure why you are arguing with me and dispute easily verifiable facts.
     
    Because it is not easily verifiable, just the claim of an industry lobby group (yes, not all of them are private) of energy consumers (who have interest to lower energy prices for themselves) whose claims are in turn opposed by the association of russian energy producers (where there are also government owned entities).

    Идею выдвинуло промышленное лобби, по расчетам которого тарифы для энергоемких предприятий в России порой в разы выше зарубежных. Производители энергии с этим не согласны, считая цены в РФ одними из самых низких в мире. Прозрачная методика оценки могла бы разрешить этот спор, считают аналитики.
     

    You are using a conspiracy
     
    It is very valid question. I see a group of electricity consumers agruing that prices are high and a group of electricity producers arguing that prices are low. It is a typical conflict of interest situation.

    And the prices indeed go higher for some legal entities in Russia, than to buy electricity in Sweden, Denmark, Norway, etc .
     
    Some is not all. We are looking at average price for all businesses. Larger entities for example get lower prices, as even the industry lobby group admits.

    International sources as well give low electricity price for russian businesses overall.


    The fact is that cross-subsidization is an official policy in Russia, so that industry in Russia pay more for electricity to subsidize consumers
     
    They pay, which does not mean that the overall electricity price is not lower, even after payments. Even the lobby group of energy consumers admits that it is the same as the price in the US and lower than the european average. Whose claims are opposed by the association of energy producers in Russia, which claims lower prices.

    The cause of the PPP adjustment for low income countries is mainly the low labour cost
     
    Labour costs are around 50 % of GDP in Russia. Which means that nearly half the prices are not caused by labour costs.

    This is indicated in the fact that adjustment is almost all in services and goods with high labour input.
     

    Not in energy commodity prices, especially for people.

    Therefore, that farmgate milk price which is capital intensive (cows are capital – they are not paid a salary in UK than in Russia), is identical in Russia per litre as in the UK
     
    Or is related to low productivity and inefficiencies in the agri-sector in Russia. High productivity is also known to lower prices. And western countries are known to have significantly higher productivity and lower inefficiencies than Russia.

    but a price of “Big Mac” (where the main cost input for Macdonald’s is the cheapest human labour) costs almost 250% more in UK than in Russia
     
    Yes. And gasoline is also more than two times cheaper than in the UK too, although it is a commodity.

    Big Mac Index by the way is in MER dollars using current exchange rate. The ruble has been underpreforming due to various reasons (sanctions, low energy prices since 2014, weak ruble strategy by the government) so part of that price dif is not labor cost related.

    If salaries were reduced by 5 times in the UK, then the price of services (and local labour intensive production) would become cheaper. This would result in a massive upward PPP adjustment in the basket of services, but not of goods.
     

    Why? The UK just hypothetically found one of the world's largest oil and gas reserves. It happened there, instead of in Saudi Arabia. Industry like it a lot. Thus many prices, including those of goods, got lower due to lower energy costs.

    If you go buy something with high proportion of cost being labour, then the prices are much better value for money, but for other products – then they are not.
     
    Salaries dropped 5 times and prices dropped 5 times.

    Some things got more expensive, and some things got cheaper. They balanced each other, so overall cost of living is the same.


    What the proportion of goods and services you will buy, depends on your lifestyle. For example, tourist, which visit a country with low labour costs, will experience it as much cheaper – as tourists are dependent on buying of services.

    But for locals, long-term residents, might buy far fewer services, and more goods. During coronavirus, I had been months without much purchase of services.
     

    Well, PPP supposedly measures the cost of living for locals. It uses a certain basket of goods and services. If you think that it does not measure it properly, you can complain to the World Bank, the IMF, and a horde of economists who work on it (it takes them 4 years of work to estimate it).

    The purchasing power of a currency refers to the quantity of the currency needed to purchase a given unit of a good, or common basket of goods and services. Purchasing power is clearly determined by the relative cost of living and inflation rates in different countries. Purchasing power parity means equalising the purchasing power of two currencies by taking into account these cost of living and inflation differences.
     
    https://www.economicsonline.co.uk/Global_economics/Purchasing_power_parity.html

    Replies: @Dmitry

  180. @Passer by
    @Dmitry

    Agree with this. State capacity may also reflect how central one entity is for the global economy. The US and the EU are large economies and are better able to enforce their rules abroad. Smaller economies will have more trouble with that, and may be more flat tax dependent to keep money within the country. Russia is also under economic attack by the West and it can not expect much cooperation in that regard from the US/Europe. Just recently the Netherlands refused to cooperate with Russia on the issue of russian companies based there avoiding taxes in Russia.

    Actually G-7 and G-20 meetings often involve tax harmonisation and closing tax loopholes, with the EU (predictably, as a high tax area) the most active in this regard. These days Biden is pushing for the tax harmonisation within international institutions too, since he wants to increase taxes within the US, and would like to crack down on low tax countries to stop money flows from moving out from the US.

    Replies: @Dmitry

    tax harmonisation and closing tax

    The introduction of information sharing agreements, tax harmonization, and mutual rendition, etc, would reduce the extent of capital flight from Russia. But few policies could give more nightmares for many of the elite and political class in Russia and other postsoviet sphere, as a large part of the lifestyle is based on enjoying the information opacity with the countries where your assets are stored – so it will not be likely to occur.

    That’s also why “One World Government” conspiracies, never seem very plausible to me – such an harmonized government would probably benefit the little man, not so much the big man, whose preferences are shown better by information opacity created by wealthy peoples’ international movement between separate jurisdictions. Even Monaco, is not a member of the EU.

    Biden is pushing for the tax harmonisation within international institutions too, since he wants to increase taxes

    We would have to say that Biden will be a genius, if he can successfully use this kind of strategy to onshore US companies from countries like Republic of Ireland.

    Trump had also attempted this through a lowering of corporation tax, although the success of his policy was limited by not lowering it to sufficient levels to compete with the corporation tax levels in countries like Ireland. I guess we will see if Biden’s possible strategy is more successful.

    • Replies: @Yellowface Anon
    @Dmitry

    I'll just respond to this point since all else are irrelevant:


    That’s also why “One World Government” conspiracies, never seem very plausible to me
     
    The One World Government already exists, it is called the UN and the WEF. Just that their agendas are at an early stage.

    such an harmonized government would probably benefit the little man, not so much the big man,
     
    Are you sure intensive control and planning of the economic, social, cultural and ideological existence of the little men are net benefits? And that the big man won't be immensely profited by the consolidation of economic and political power?

    whose preferences are shown better by information opacity created by wealthy peoples’ international movement between separate jurisdictions.
     
    This will only affect the upper-middle ones, not the super-rich, not the Rothschilds, since they control the whole regime
    , @Passer by
    @Dmitry


    But few policies could give more nightmares for many of the elite and political class in Russia and other postsoviet sphere, as a large part of the lifestyle is based on enjoying the information opacity with the countries where your assets are stored – so it will not be likely to occur.
     
    Well, they started to look to close tax loopholes in Cyprus, the Netherlands, Malta, Luxemburg, etc.
    This commonly happens after economic crises when governments are looking for money.

    https://www.wsj.com/articles/russia-tightens-tax-loophole-as-kremlin-seeks-to-plug-budget-gap-11604577611

    After the 2008 crisis too there was a big tax fight between the US/UK and the EU.


    That’s also why “One World Government” conspiracies, never seem very plausible to me – such an harmonized government would probably benefit the little man
     
    Harmonisation can be in any direction. Not always benign. I'm more into the principle: power corrupts, and absolute power corrupts absolutely.

    Replies: @Dmitry

  181. mal says:
    @Dmitry
    @Passer by


    air conditioning, which is widespread

     

    Lol what? You're confusing with a different country. Air conditioning is not popular in Russia, especially for peoples' homes.

    In the summer, most normal people put up electric fans on a hot day, and electric fans expend very little electricity.


    private survey lobby price decrease
     
    I'm not sure why you are arguing with me and dispute easily verifiable facts. You are using a conspiracy about the association which is headed by Rosneft, Transneft (state energy producers), and data is from Eurostat.

    The fact is that cross-subsidization is an official policy in Russia, so that industry in Russia pay more for electricity to subsidize consumers, and as a result the prices for businesses/industry pay for electricity can be higher than in some EU countries.

    It can vary with exchange rate, but you can see on the Eurostat website in euros.


    https://i.imgur.com/fBOSRqp.jpg

    And the prices indeed go higher for some legal entities in Russia, than to buy electricity in Sweden, Denmark, Norway, etc .

    https://time2save.ru/articles/tarify-na-elektroenergiyu-dlya-melkih-predpriyatiy-v-2018


    PPP simply means prices, and prices does not necessarily reflect labout

     

    The cause of the PPP adjustment for low income countries is mainly the low labour cost, and in the comparison between countries like UK and Russia, this is most of the difference.

    That is the low incomes, is causing the upward adjustment by PPP.

    This is indicated in the fact that adjustment is almost all in services and goods with high labour input.

    Therefore, that farmgate milk price which is capital intensive (cows are capital - they are not paid a salary in UK than in Russia), is identical in Russia per litre as in the UK, but a price of "Big Mac" (where the main cost input for Macdonald's is the cheapest human labour) costs almost 250% more in UK than in Russia

    And price of standard supermarket milk can actually be often (or even usually) cheaper in the UK than in Russia.


    does not matter, something got cheaper, something else got more expensive. Because the overall prices equalised each other
     
    It matters a lot if you experience life with such salaries.

    If salaries were reduced by 5 times in the UK, then the price of services (and local labour intensive production) would become cheaper. This would result in a massive upward PPP adjustment in the basket of services, but not of goods.

    As a result in many areas, you will not feel five times poorer, but in other areas you will really. And this is the situation for the lower median salaries in Russia. If you go buy something with high proportion of cost being labour, then the prices are much better value for money, but for other products - then they are not.

    What the proportion of goods and services you will buy, depends on your lifestyle. For example, tourist, which visit a country with low labour costs, will experience it as much cheaper - as tourists are dependent on buying of services.

    But for locals, long-term residents, might buy far fewer services, and more goods. During coronavirus, I had been months without much purchase of services.

    Replies: @mal, @Passer by

    And price of standard supermarket milk can actually be often (or even usually) cheaper in the UK than in Russia.

    This is not my experience in the US.

    Kroger off brand milk that even my cat won’t drink retails for $3.59/gal. (We actually have to pay more like $6/gal or cat will kill us, he is old and picky).

    https://www.kroger.com/pl/milk/0200100001?fulfillment=all

    Russian Пятёрочка averages 47 rubles per liter, or about $2.37/gal.

    СКОЛЬКО СТОИТ МОЛОКО В ПЯТЕРОЧКЕ?
    Купить молоко в Пятерочке в среднем можно за 47 рублей/литр. Цена на молоко практически не меняется в течение года, поскольку потребность в этом продукте существует всегда. Иногда в сезон распродаж на молоко снижается стоимость (не более чем на 20%).

    https://agro24.su/product/moloko/pyaterochka/

    And in my experience, Russian milk is higher quality than Kroger off brand, i would say at least my cat quality standard. But even if not, its still cheaper than Kroger off brand. I would say, equivalent quality milk is half price in Russia vs the US. Not quite 3X PPP differential, but that’s because… services dominate both economies, people spend far more on that then agricultural products such as milk.

    In the US, services are 80% of the economy, and in Russia, 60%. Services are almost entirely determined by price of labor, so PPP adjustment is the most valid when it comes to evaluating quality of life for individuals in different countries.

    https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_by_GDP_sector_composition#GDP_(PPP)_sector_composition

    Nobody cares about the price of milk because people simply don’t spend much money on it. People spend vast majority of money on services such as haircuts (80% of US economy is based on haircuts, 60% for Russia), and there, debt becomes an all important driver.

    When people want to spend more on haircuts, they take out more debt to pay for them. This enables higher salaries for hair cutters who then take out even more debt to pay the banks and each other. This distribution determines the rate of GDP growth.

    But for locals, long-term residents, might buy far fewer services, and more goods. During coronavirus, I had been months without much purchase of services.

    You are an outlier. All developed economies are service driven and debt based. Good are irrelevant, services and debt needed to pay for them are everything.

    • Replies: @Yellowface Anon
    @mal

    Services are based on debt? You are equivocating short-term obligations that is covered by savings and long-term obligations pulled out of existence by banks. Services go poof when the economic systems become unsettled and only recover when the institutions are stable again.

    Productive sectors can operate (at lower capacities and productivity) even when all hell breaks loose. Strong productive sectors fuel strong service sectors, and deindustrialization leads to services and finance ultimately supported by nothing.

    Replies: @mal

    , @Dmitry
    @mal

    America seems to have some inability to understand dairy food in general. It's not just milk which is strange there, but also their ersatz versions of cheese.

    But in North West Europe, milk is the same price as Russia, and it's a real milk (not like some strange American milk).

    But in Southern European countries like Spain, they have very bad milk as well. I don't think anywhere in Northern Europe has bad milk though.


    developed economies are service
     
    If you look at the breakdown of services expenditure in the USA - it's mostly healthcare and housing.
    https://www.thebalance.com/personal-consumption-expenditures-3306107

    I'm not an expert about healthcare (fortunately healthy enough never to need to see doctors). But America has the well known problems with the healthcare costs. But from what I heard, that in Western Europe, the healthcare seems to be an equitable system which is not necessarily bad value for money.
  182. @AP
    @Yellowface Anon


    There are excess deaths caused by lockdowns and shuffling of death stats (much of the underlying conditions means they’re dying anyway)
     
    Someone who has diabetes or is overweight is indeed dying anyways (actually, all of are, from the moment of birth) but without Covid such a person might finally die in ten or thirty years, rather than tomorrow. Unless it's someone already in a nursing facility due to late stage COPD or going through a similar catastrophe (a tiny % of those with pre-existing conditions) than excluding people with pre-existing conditions from the Covid death rate as the author did is incredibly dishonest or dumb.

    There are nutritional therapies that reduces COVID risk better than any vaccine
     
    That are 95% effective as Moderna/Pfizer with virtually zero deaths?

    there is no need in principle for anyone in good health to vaccinate
     
    As long as they don't come into contact with unvaccinated people with common conditions such as diabetes, old age, obesity etc. than sure. Now that vaccines are commonplace and almost all people with such conditions have been vaccinated I am inclined to leave those who refuse to get vaccinated to take their chances.

    vaccine passports mean caste control
     
    If certain places haven't yet vaccinated their vulnerable people, it makes complete sense to prevent unvaccinated people from going to those places.

    Replies: @Yellowface Anon

    Someone who has diabetes or is overweight is indeed dying anyways (actually, all of are, from the moment of birth) but without Covid such a person might finally die in ten or thirty years, rather than tomorrow. Unless it’s someone already in a nursing facility due to late stage COPD or going through a similar catastrophe (a tiny % of those with pre-existing conditions) than excluding people with pre-existing conditions from the Covid death rate as the author did is incredibly dishonest or dumb.

    Remember the bulk of deaths are still in those who’re nearing or past their life expectancy – there are some who’re dying prematurely with underlying conditions, but they are likely to die with other coronaviruses and the flu. COVID is not that unique.

    That are 95% effective as Moderna/Pfizer with virtually zero deaths?

    Any vaccine requires the activation of T-cells which would require a sufficient level of zinc. Also levels of vitamin D much higher than suggested intake also reduces the death rate to 0.

    95% effective, as in reducing 95% of the number of “cases” over the control group, over a large testing sample with statistically insignificant number of contracting the virus – the whole result can easily said to be statistical error. The test and control samples are of healthy young and middle-aged groups whose immune systems are already robust enough. You might brush away infections after vaccination as “the vaccines only reduce symptoms and deaths”, but the state would like to see booming asymptomatics to justify more lockdowns or caste restrictions. Don’t hide the possible side-effects of mRNA therapy – these needs 5-10 years to be completely known.

    All these arguments don’t justify vaccine mandates – they nearly wipes out any hasty deployment of vaccines like what we’re seeing now.

    As long as they don’t come into contact with unvaccinated people with common conditions such as diabetes, old age, obesity etc. than sure. Now that vaccines are commonplace and almost all people with such conditions have been vaccinated I am inclined to leave those who refuse to get vaccinated to take their chances.

    That’d be great – except for going to places with vaccine ID that refuses those even with naturally-acquired immunity. (Good for them to quit the system altogether then).

    If certain places haven’t yet vaccinated their vulnerable people, it makes complete sense to prevent unvaccinated people from going to those places.

    If your place has a vaccine ID system, you deserve to stay. Don’t be a wussy and forego your papers, and forget about moving to Florida (and maybe Texas), where state governors oppose vaccine passports and much of the locals and newcomers hates the jab.

    Don’t rush for the exits when the social credit system and chipping are rolled out.

  183. @Dmitry
    @Passer by


    tax harmonisation and closing tax
     
    The introduction of information sharing agreements, tax harmonization, and mutual rendition, etc, would reduce the extent of capital flight from Russia. But few policies could give more nightmares for many of the elite and political class in Russia and other postsoviet sphere, as a large part of the lifestyle is based on enjoying the information opacity with the countries where your assets are stored - so it will not be likely to occur.

    That's also why "One World Government" conspiracies, never seem very plausible to me - such an harmonized government would probably benefit the little man, not so much the big man, whose preferences are shown better by information opacity created by wealthy peoples' international movement between separate jurisdictions. Even Monaco, is not a member of the EU.


    Biden is pushing for the tax harmonisation within international institutions too, since he wants to increase taxes
     
    We would have to say that Biden will be a genius, if he can successfully use this kind of strategy to onshore US companies from countries like Republic of Ireland.

    Trump had also attempted this through a lowering of corporation tax, although the success of his policy was limited by not lowering it to sufficient levels to compete with the corporation tax levels in countries like Ireland. I guess we will see if Biden's possible strategy is more successful.

    Replies: @Yellowface Anon, @Passer by

    I’ll just respond to this point since all else are irrelevant:

    That’s also why “One World Government” conspiracies, never seem very plausible to me

    The One World Government already exists, it is called the UN and the WEF. Just that their agendas are at an early stage.

    such an harmonized government would probably benefit the little man, not so much the big man,

    Are you sure intensive control and planning of the economic, social, cultural and ideological existence of the little men are net benefits? And that the big man won’t be immensely profited by the consolidation of economic and political power?

    whose preferences are shown better by information opacity created by wealthy peoples’ international movement between separate jurisdictions.

    This will only affect the upper-middle ones, not the super-rich, not the Rothschilds, since they control the whole regime

    • Agree: Bashibuzuk
  184. @mal
    @Dmitry


    And price of standard supermarket milk can actually be often (or even usually) cheaper in the UK than in Russia.
     
    This is not my experience in the US.

    Kroger off brand milk that even my cat won't drink retails for $3.59/gal. (We actually have to pay more like $6/gal or cat will kill us, he is old and picky).


    https://www.kroger.com/pl/milk/0200100001?fulfillment=all

    Russian Пятёрочка averages 47 rubles per liter, or about $2.37/gal.

    СКОЛЬКО СТОИТ МОЛОКО В ПЯТЕРОЧКЕ?
    Купить молоко в Пятерочке в среднем можно за 47 рублей/литр. Цена на молоко практически не меняется в течение года, поскольку потребность в этом продукте существует всегда. Иногда в сезон распродаж на молоко снижается стоимость (не более чем на 20%).

     

    https://agro24.su/product/moloko/pyaterochka/

    And in my experience, Russian milk is higher quality than Kroger off brand, i would say at least my cat quality standard. But even if not, its still cheaper than Kroger off brand. I would say, equivalent quality milk is half price in Russia vs the US. Not quite 3X PPP differential, but that's because... services dominate both economies, people spend far more on that then agricultural products such as milk.

    In the US, services are 80% of the economy, and in Russia, 60%. Services are almost entirely determined by price of labor, so PPP adjustment is the most valid when it comes to evaluating quality of life for individuals in different countries.

    https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_by_GDP_sector_composition#GDP_(PPP)_sector_composition

    Nobody cares about the price of milk because people simply don't spend much money on it. People spend vast majority of money on services such as haircuts (80% of US economy is based on haircuts, 60% for Russia), and there, debt becomes an all important driver.

    When people want to spend more on haircuts, they take out more debt to pay for them. This enables higher salaries for hair cutters who then take out even more debt to pay the banks and each other. This distribution determines the rate of GDP growth.


    But for locals, long-term residents, might buy far fewer services, and more goods. During coronavirus, I had been months without much purchase of services.
     
    You are an outlier. All developed economies are service driven and debt based. Good are irrelevant, services and debt needed to pay for them are everything.

    Replies: @Yellowface Anon, @Dmitry

    Services are based on debt? You are equivocating short-term obligations that is covered by savings and long-term obligations pulled out of existence by banks. Services go poof when the economic systems become unsettled and only recover when the institutions are stable again.

    Productive sectors can operate (at lower capacities and productivity) even when all hell breaks loose. Strong productive sectors fuel strong service sectors, and deindustrialization leads to services and finance ultimately supported by nothing.

    • Replies: @mal
    @Yellowface Anon


    Services are based on debt? You are equivocating short-term obligations that is covered by savings and long-term obligations pulled out of existence by banks. Services go poof when the economic systems become unsettled and only recover when the institutions are stable again.
     
    And that's why we can't afford to unsettle the economic system - we can't have 80% of the economy go poof. Which is why when private debt refuses to do its job and grow, government and the Fed have to step in and print $trillions. The only other alternative is total collapse.


    Productive sectors can operate (at lower capacities and productivity) even when all hell breaks loose. Strong productive sectors fuel strong service sectors, and deindustrialization leads to services and finance ultimately supported by nothing.
     
    Productive sectors are even more credit dependent compared to services. A hair dresser can cut hair from her house and make do with reduced number of haircuts and business. A farm, factory, or assembly line can not. It is impossible to run assembly line designed for 10,000 vehicles per day production at 1,000 vehicles per day speed - you will go bankrupt in a month. Consistent supply of credit and demand is everything to a productive business.

    In your Tom Luongo article, he is correct that private banks are going the way of the dinosaur, and Federal Reserve will fully merge with government, and take over banking functions. This will make it easier to supply demand and credit to the economy, and throttle it down, when needed.

    Replies: @Yellowface Anon

  185. Indian cattle migrated all the way to Ukraine. By contrast, there is no sign that Western cattle were brought into India: the Aryan invaders were cowherds without cows.

    https://koenraadelst.blogspot.com/2021/04/ever-closer-to-bharopiyasthan-state-of.html?m=1

    [MORE]

    RV describes an east-to-west gradient, just the opposite of what the AIT posits. The most Afghanistan-oriented chapter is the late 8th, not the oldest chapters as the AIT would imply.

    This battle description became the crowning evidence of the grand AIT narrative, where the white Aryan invaders defeat the black aboriginals.

    But in fact, this is a pun on the enemies’ provenance: Asiknī, ‘the black (river)’, is simply the Sanskrit name of the river whence they come, the Chenab (to the west of the Vedic tribe’s Ravi). So, ‘the Chenab crowd’. The enemies are led into battle by a king with an Iranian name, Kavaṣa. Their tribal names and nicknames are all known from Iranian and Greek sources to refer to Iranian communities. Their religion is described as having distinctively Mazdean characteristics: without Indra or Devas (who have been demonized) and without fire-sacrifice (because fire is elevated so far as to taboo throwing things into it). Obviously, the enemies of the Vedic people at that time were Iranian, not “black aboriginal”. This is attested from so many angles that one wonders how this mistake could have been made at all.

    ==

    The mistake was reproduced by numerous authors, including many without ideological agenda. Thus, “the śūdras were an-ārya, ‘non-Aryan’, referring to the darker-skinned elements of the population (the Sanskrit term for ‘caste’, varṇa, means ‘colour’)”[46]. In fact, varṇa means ‘one in a spectrum’: a colour in the visual spectrum, a letter in the sound spectrum (hence varṇamāla for ‘alphabet’), and a class in the social spectrum. The identification of a social class with a colour is a fossilized metaphor. The same symbolic meaning counts for Avestan pištra, roughly ‘caste’ but literally ‘colour

  186. One of my favorite libertarian writers, Tom Luongo:
    https://tomluongo.me/2021/05/15/coming-apotheosis-banks-notebook/
    A lot of what he says are debatable (and I’m not as harsh as libertarians to those believing the official COVID line) but the main thrust of this post is probably true and his posts are more than worthwhile reads.

  187. mal says:
    @Yellowface Anon
    @mal

    Services are based on debt? You are equivocating short-term obligations that is covered by savings and long-term obligations pulled out of existence by banks. Services go poof when the economic systems become unsettled and only recover when the institutions are stable again.

    Productive sectors can operate (at lower capacities and productivity) even when all hell breaks loose. Strong productive sectors fuel strong service sectors, and deindustrialization leads to services and finance ultimately supported by nothing.

    Replies: @mal

    Services are based on debt? You are equivocating short-term obligations that is covered by savings and long-term obligations pulled out of existence by banks. Services go poof when the economic systems become unsettled and only recover when the institutions are stable again.

    And that’s why we can’t afford to unsettle the economic system – we can’t have 80% of the economy go poof. Which is why when private debt refuses to do its job and grow, government and the Fed have to step in and print $trillions. The only other alternative is total collapse.

    Productive sectors can operate (at lower capacities and productivity) even when all hell breaks loose. Strong productive sectors fuel strong service sectors, and deindustrialization leads to services and finance ultimately supported by nothing.

    Productive sectors are even more credit dependent compared to services. A hair dresser can cut hair from her house and make do with reduced number of haircuts and business. A farm, factory, or assembly line can not. It is impossible to run assembly line designed for 10,000 vehicles per day production at 1,000 vehicles per day speed – you will go bankrupt in a month. Consistent supply of credit and demand is everything to a productive business.

    In your Tom Luongo article, he is correct that private banks are going the way of the dinosaur, and Federal Reserve will fully merge with government, and take over banking functions. This will make it easier to supply demand and credit to the economy, and throttle it down, when needed.

    • Replies: @Yellowface Anon
    @mal


    Productive sectors are even more credit dependent compared to services. A hair dresser can cut hair from her house and make do with reduced number of haircuts and business. A farm, factory, or assembly line can not. It is impossible to run assembly line designed for 10,000 vehicles per day production at 1,000 vehicles per day speed – you will go bankrupt in a month. Consistent supply of credit and demand is everything to a productive business.
     
    Right, with an Austrian view of credit - pure financial intermediation fully backed by others' savings, and not lent out of thin air under fractional reserve banking.

    (While Austrian economists will directly say fractional reserves are fraud and cause the boom-bust cycle, it has its place in a complex financial system, in moderation. The problem we have is the abuse of that credit-creation power, and of central bank monetary control)

  188. @Dmitry
    @Passer by


    air conditioning, which is widespread

     

    Lol what? You're confusing with a different country. Air conditioning is not popular in Russia, especially for peoples' homes.

    In the summer, most normal people put up electric fans on a hot day, and electric fans expend very little electricity.


    private survey lobby price decrease
     
    I'm not sure why you are arguing with me and dispute easily verifiable facts. You are using a conspiracy about the association which is headed by Rosneft, Transneft (state energy producers), and data is from Eurostat.

    The fact is that cross-subsidization is an official policy in Russia, so that industry in Russia pay more for electricity to subsidize consumers, and as a result the prices for businesses/industry pay for electricity can be higher than in some EU countries.

    It can vary with exchange rate, but you can see on the Eurostat website in euros.


    https://i.imgur.com/fBOSRqp.jpg

    And the prices indeed go higher for some legal entities in Russia, than to buy electricity in Sweden, Denmark, Norway, etc .

    https://time2save.ru/articles/tarify-na-elektroenergiyu-dlya-melkih-predpriyatiy-v-2018


    PPP simply means prices, and prices does not necessarily reflect labout

     

    The cause of the PPP adjustment for low income countries is mainly the low labour cost, and in the comparison between countries like UK and Russia, this is most of the difference.

    That is the low incomes, is causing the upward adjustment by PPP.

    This is indicated in the fact that adjustment is almost all in services and goods with high labour input.

    Therefore, that farmgate milk price which is capital intensive (cows are capital - they are not paid a salary in UK than in Russia), is identical in Russia per litre as in the UK, but a price of "Big Mac" (where the main cost input for Macdonald's is the cheapest human labour) costs almost 250% more in UK than in Russia

    And price of standard supermarket milk can actually be often (or even usually) cheaper in the UK than in Russia.


    does not matter, something got cheaper, something else got more expensive. Because the overall prices equalised each other
     
    It matters a lot if you experience life with such salaries.

    If salaries were reduced by 5 times in the UK, then the price of services (and local labour intensive production) would become cheaper. This would result in a massive upward PPP adjustment in the basket of services, but not of goods.

    As a result in many areas, you will not feel five times poorer, but in other areas you will really. And this is the situation for the lower median salaries in Russia. If you go buy something with high proportion of cost being labour, then the prices are much better value for money, but for other products - then they are not.

    What the proportion of goods and services you will buy, depends on your lifestyle. For example, tourist, which visit a country with low labour costs, will experience it as much cheaper - as tourists are dependent on buying of services.

    But for locals, long-term residents, might buy far fewer services, and more goods. During coronavirus, I had been months without much purchase of services.

    Replies: @mal, @Passer by

    Air conditioning is not popular in Russia, especially for peoples’ homes.

    Maybe. I have seen flats with them. Maybe its used for cooling during summer, who knows.

    I’m not sure why you are arguing with me and dispute easily verifiable facts.

    Because it is not easily verifiable, just the claim of an industry lobby group (yes, not all of them are private) of energy consumers (who have interest to lower energy prices for themselves) whose claims are in turn opposed by the association of russian energy producers (where there are also government owned entities).

    Идею выдвинуло промышленное лобби, по расчетам которого тарифы для энергоемких предприятий в России порой в разы выше зарубежных. Производители энергии с этим не согласны, считая цены в РФ одними из самых низких в мире. Прозрачная методика оценки могла бы разрешить этот спор, считают аналитики.

    You are using a conspiracy

    It is very valid question. I see a group of electricity consumers agruing that prices are high and a group of electricity producers arguing that prices are low. It is a typical conflict of interest situation.

    And the prices indeed go higher for some legal entities in Russia, than to buy electricity in Sweden, Denmark, Norway, etc .

    Some is not all. We are looking at average price for all businesses. Larger entities for example get lower prices, as even the industry lobby group admits.

    International sources as well give low electricity price for russian businesses overall.

    The fact is that cross-subsidization is an official policy in Russia, so that industry in Russia pay more for electricity to subsidize consumers

    They pay, which does not mean that the overall electricity price is not lower, even after payments. Even the lobby group of energy consumers admits that it is the same as the price in the US and lower than the european average. Whose claims are opposed by the association of energy producers in Russia, which claims lower prices.

    The cause of the PPP adjustment for low income countries is mainly the low labour cost

    Labour costs are around 50 % of GDP in Russia. Which means that nearly half the prices are not caused by labour costs.

    This is indicated in the fact that adjustment is almost all in services and goods with high labour input.

    Not in energy commodity prices, especially for people.

    Therefore, that farmgate milk price which is capital intensive (cows are capital – they are not paid a salary in UK than in Russia), is identical in Russia per litre as in the UK

    Or is related to low productivity and inefficiencies in the agri-sector in Russia. High productivity is also known to lower prices. And western countries are known to have significantly higher productivity and lower inefficiencies than Russia.

    but a price of “Big Mac” (where the main cost input for Macdonald’s is the cheapest human labour) costs almost 250% more in UK than in Russia

    Yes. And gasoline is also more than two times cheaper than in the UK too, although it is a commodity.

    Big Mac Index by the way is in MER dollars using current exchange rate. The ruble has been underpreforming due to various reasons (sanctions, low energy prices since 2014, weak ruble strategy by the government) so part of that price dif is not labor cost related.

    If salaries were reduced by 5 times in the UK, then the price of services (and local labour intensive production) would become cheaper. This would result in a massive upward PPP adjustment in the basket of services, but not of goods.

    Why? The UK just hypothetically found one of the world’s largest oil and gas reserves. It happened there, instead of in Saudi Arabia. Industry like it a lot. Thus many prices, including those of goods, got lower due to lower energy costs.

    If you go buy something with high proportion of cost being labour, then the prices are much better value for money, but for other products – then they are not.

    Salaries dropped 5 times and prices dropped 5 times.

    Some things got more expensive, and some things got cheaper. They balanced each other, so overall cost of living is the same.

    What the proportion of goods and services you will buy, depends on your lifestyle. For example, tourist, which visit a country with low labour costs, will experience it as much cheaper – as tourists are dependent on buying of services.

    But for locals, long-term residents, might buy far fewer services, and more goods. During coronavirus, I had been months without much purchase of services.

    Well, PPP supposedly measures the cost of living for locals. It uses a certain basket of goods and services. If you think that it does not measure it properly, you can complain to the World Bank, the IMF, and a horde of economists who work on it (it takes them 4 years of work to estimate it).

    The purchasing power of a currency refers to the quantity of the currency needed to purchase a given unit of a good, or common basket of goods and services. Purchasing power is clearly determined by the relative cost of living and inflation rates in different countries. Purchasing power parity means equalising the purchasing power of two currencies by taking into account these cost of living and inflation differences.

    https://www.economicsonline.co.uk/Global_economics/Purchasing_power_parity.html

    • Replies: @Dmitry
    @Passer by


    Maybe. I have seen flats.. .who knows.
     
    It's not at all common for peoples' homes. I'm not sure the purpose of this argument.

    not easily verifiable,
     
    It's easily verifiable that it supports their general claims, and that they haven't falsified something. There might be differences around the margins, depending on year to year change of prices and exchange rates. But their overall point was not inaccurate.

    You don't need journalists' gloss, or to to add a theory about the sinister motives of a business association (that is headed by government energy companies), to notice their overall point cannot be wildly inaccurate.

    I look at Eurostat (which is the source of their claim). and compare it to price lists published on the internet.

    Electricity price in Russia for business can be below EU average, but it can be higher than in the USA, Norway, Sweden, etc

    Small business
    https://time2save.ru/articles/detalizaciya-tarifa-dlya-malogo-biznesa--tarif-na-peredachu--stoimost-elektroenergii--sbytovaya-nadbavka--infrastrukturnye-platezhi-

    Medium business
    https://time2save.ru/articles/detalizaciya-tarifa-dlya-srednego-biznesa--tarif-na-peredachu--stoimost-proizvodstva-elektroenergii--sbytovaya-nadbavka--infrastrukturnye-platezhi


    Labour costs are around 50 % of GDP in Russia. Which means that nearly half the prices are not caused by labour costs.

     

    And in those prices of goods, there is not much cheaper in Russia, but the great difference occurs in the price of services. Which is as expected, because the main driver of the overall PPP upward adjustment between Russia and a North Western Europe economy, is the significant difference in the labour cost. It's relatively low salaries which are the main cause of the upward adjustment.

    What's the relevance of this? My point is simply the circularity when using this upward adjustment, in the context of discussing whether salaries are low or not (salaries are indeed low, and this is the main cause of the upward adjustment due to the fall it causes in cost of living).


    just hypothetically found one of the world’s largest oil

     

    Then (if salaries do not fall and millions of low salary guest workers were not imported) the PPP will not upwardly adjust multiple times, as we do not see such effects in hydrocarbon wealthy countries like Netherlands and Norway.

    To see such effects in countries will require lower salary, guest workers imported from the third world, as in Qatar, UAE, Kuwait, where they can be almost as large as the native population, and which provide a base of cheap labour, and the use of guest workers lowers the cost of labour.


    so part of that price dif is not labor cost related.
     
    But the main cause of the price difference of the "Big Mac", is the labour cost difference. The labour cost difference is greater than the Big Mac price difference - and therefore has not much difficulty being the main driver of the difference.

    Some things got more expensive, and some things got cheaper. They balanced each other, so overall cost of living is the same.
     
    The situation is different, as in the low income country it is labour and local services based on them which are cheaper, as well as possibly property, while in the high income country it is goods.

    PPP supposedly measures the cost of living for locals. It uses a certain basket of goods and services. If you think that it does not measure it properly,
     
    I'm not saying that World Bank or IMF economists are making a mistake with the basket of goods, or that the PPP models they produce, are not an interesting indicator.

    The important thing is for them to be internally consistent (although there are differences across years and organizations) - then we can predict that the PPP adjustments might be interesting information with qualifications.

    My point is that if we used PPP figures to claim that the incomes are not actually lower, then this is circular - as the cause of the upward adjustment for income in this case, is the lower cost of labour due to the low incomes.

    In this sense, the PPP adjustment is a circular measurement if you use it to claim the income differences are reduced, as lowering incomes, are the main cause of an upward adjustment, and vice-versa.

    There is additional circularity in the claims about price of things like food - because in the high income countries, there a different preference for expenditure. Hence the crazy "Waitrose price", and $70 honey, that emerges in the highest income parts of Europe. Preference for more expensive versions of the same products, is a result of higher incomes.

    PPP adjustments also glosses differences in type of things you can buy in higher and lower income countries. For example, in lower income Brazil, it's quite common for middle class people to have maids living in their home, whereas in higher income, and well regulated Western Europe, few middle class people could afford maids to live in their home.

    It's interesting to think about economists' PPP concepts, but it is neither any simple substitute for looking at the actual incomes that you received.

    Replies: @Passer by

  189. @Dmitry
    @Passer by


    tax harmonisation and closing tax
     
    The introduction of information sharing agreements, tax harmonization, and mutual rendition, etc, would reduce the extent of capital flight from Russia. But few policies could give more nightmares for many of the elite and political class in Russia and other postsoviet sphere, as a large part of the lifestyle is based on enjoying the information opacity with the countries where your assets are stored - so it will not be likely to occur.

    That's also why "One World Government" conspiracies, never seem very plausible to me - such an harmonized government would probably benefit the little man, not so much the big man, whose preferences are shown better by information opacity created by wealthy peoples' international movement between separate jurisdictions. Even Monaco, is not a member of the EU.


    Biden is pushing for the tax harmonisation within international institutions too, since he wants to increase taxes
     
    We would have to say that Biden will be a genius, if he can successfully use this kind of strategy to onshore US companies from countries like Republic of Ireland.

    Trump had also attempted this through a lowering of corporation tax, although the success of his policy was limited by not lowering it to sufficient levels to compete with the corporation tax levels in countries like Ireland. I guess we will see if Biden's possible strategy is more successful.

    Replies: @Yellowface Anon, @Passer by

    But few policies could give more nightmares for many of the elite and political class in Russia and other postsoviet sphere, as a large part of the lifestyle is based on enjoying the information opacity with the countries where your assets are stored – so it will not be likely to occur.

    Well, they started to look to close tax loopholes in Cyprus, the Netherlands, Malta, Luxemburg, etc.
    This commonly happens after economic crises when governments are looking for money.

    https://www.wsj.com/articles/russia-tightens-tax-loophole-as-kremlin-seeks-to-plug-budget-gap-11604577611

    After the 2008 crisis too there was a big tax fight between the US/UK and the EU.

    That’s also why “One World Government” conspiracies, never seem very plausible to me – such an harmonized government would probably benefit the little man

    Harmonisation can be in any direction. Not always benign. I’m more into the principle: power corrupts, and absolute power corrupts absolutely.

    • Replies: @Dmitry
    @Passer by


    tax loopholes in Cyprus, the Netherlands, Malta, Luxemburg, etc.
    https://www.wsj.com/articles/russia-tightens-tax-loophole-as-kremlin-seeks-to-plug-budget-gap-11604577611
     
    This looked like positive news - it seems to be an example of a badly designed policy, which was designed to attract investment from foreign companies, and seems to instead incentivize offshoring of companies.

    But I was thinking more about the overall information opacity of Russia with Europe, that makes it extremely easy to move between the sides, as neither side knows what is happening without information from the other one.

    That is lack of information sharing resulted in a wonderful freedom from both sides, for those with assets to move - that in Russia it's not possible to know what Russian citizens are doing in Europe, and that Europe cannot know who the Russian citizens are that they receive or the source of their income.

    It's not a situation where e.g. London knows that it receives managers' of state owned companies, or the children of politicians, and decides to accept. Rather, they have no idea what assets they are receiving. There is a "convenient" mutual blackout of information, and that information would only be possible to attain if the two sides were in a friendly partnership.

    The poor quality of the relationship, results in a great freedom for those people who move themselves or their assets in the West, which includes a large part of postsoviet sphere's elites.


    Harmonisation can be in any direction. Not always benign. I’m more into the principle: power corrupts,
     
    Well we can watch the situation with EU, where there is a realtime attempt at it, and many different advantages and disadvantages.

    There is something intrinsically very dystopic about the concept of a single government across different countries, and this why the "one world government conspiracy theory" is an emotionally scary one.

    But if you want to hedge your money safety, launder your money, maintain it free from knowledge of the authorities, and from taxation (i.e. experience the standard "rich peoples' problems")- then it's preferable to be in a world of divided governments, that do not share too much information. And therefore, I am put trusting the disproportionate influence of the rich people demographic to protect us from too much transgovernmental integration.

    Replies: @Yellowface Anon, @Passer by

  190. Outside the Russian embassy in Kiev. Very cool Ukraine!

  191. • Replies: @A123
    @Shortsword

    The question becomes, is this:

    -A- Something that AIPAC actually believes?
    -B- Or, strictly tactical -- Trying to confound the anti-Israel SJW's?

    My guess, based on the timing, it is Option B.

    PEACE 😇

  192. @Shortsword
    https://twitter.com/AIPAC/status/1393959430346219522

    Replies: @A123

    The question becomes, is this:

    -A- Something that AIPAC actually believes?
    -B- Or, strictly tactical — Trying to confound the anti-Israel SJW’s?

    My guess, based on the timing, it is Option B.

    PEACE 😇

  193. AK has not started a new Open Thread recently. Hopefully everything is OK.

    PEACE 😇
     

    [MORE]


     

  194. @Passer by
    @Dmitry


    Air conditioning is not popular in Russia, especially for peoples’ homes.
     
    Maybe. I have seen flats with them. Maybe its used for cooling during summer, who knows.

    I’m not sure why you are arguing with me and dispute easily verifiable facts.
     
    Because it is not easily verifiable, just the claim of an industry lobby group (yes, not all of them are private) of energy consumers (who have interest to lower energy prices for themselves) whose claims are in turn opposed by the association of russian energy producers (where there are also government owned entities).

    Идею выдвинуло промышленное лобби, по расчетам которого тарифы для энергоемких предприятий в России порой в разы выше зарубежных. Производители энергии с этим не согласны, считая цены в РФ одними из самых низких в мире. Прозрачная методика оценки могла бы разрешить этот спор, считают аналитики.
     

    You are using a conspiracy
     
    It is very valid question. I see a group of electricity consumers agruing that prices are high and a group of electricity producers arguing that prices are low. It is a typical conflict of interest situation.

    And the prices indeed go higher for some legal entities in Russia, than to buy electricity in Sweden, Denmark, Norway, etc .
     
    Some is not all. We are looking at average price for all businesses. Larger entities for example get lower prices, as even the industry lobby group admits.

    International sources as well give low electricity price for russian businesses overall.


    The fact is that cross-subsidization is an official policy in Russia, so that industry in Russia pay more for electricity to subsidize consumers
     
    They pay, which does not mean that the overall electricity price is not lower, even after payments. Even the lobby group of energy consumers admits that it is the same as the price in the US and lower than the european average. Whose claims are opposed by the association of energy producers in Russia, which claims lower prices.

    The cause of the PPP adjustment for low income countries is mainly the low labour cost
     
    Labour costs are around 50 % of GDP in Russia. Which means that nearly half the prices are not caused by labour costs.

    This is indicated in the fact that adjustment is almost all in services and goods with high labour input.
     

    Not in energy commodity prices, especially for people.

    Therefore, that farmgate milk price which is capital intensive (cows are capital – they are not paid a salary in UK than in Russia), is identical in Russia per litre as in the UK
     
    Or is related to low productivity and inefficiencies in the agri-sector in Russia. High productivity is also known to lower prices. And western countries are known to have significantly higher productivity and lower inefficiencies than Russia.

    but a price of “Big Mac” (where the main cost input for Macdonald’s is the cheapest human labour) costs almost 250% more in UK than in Russia
     
    Yes. And gasoline is also more than two times cheaper than in the UK too, although it is a commodity.

    Big Mac Index by the way is in MER dollars using current exchange rate. The ruble has been underpreforming due to various reasons (sanctions, low energy prices since 2014, weak ruble strategy by the government) so part of that price dif is not labor cost related.

    If salaries were reduced by 5 times in the UK, then the price of services (and local labour intensive production) would become cheaper. This would result in a massive upward PPP adjustment in the basket of services, but not of goods.
     

    Why? The UK just hypothetically found one of the world's largest oil and gas reserves. It happened there, instead of in Saudi Arabia. Industry like it a lot. Thus many prices, including those of goods, got lower due to lower energy costs.

    If you go buy something with high proportion of cost being labour, then the prices are much better value for money, but for other products – then they are not.
     
    Salaries dropped 5 times and prices dropped 5 times.

    Some things got more expensive, and some things got cheaper. They balanced each other, so overall cost of living is the same.


    What the proportion of goods and services you will buy, depends on your lifestyle. For example, tourist, which visit a country with low labour costs, will experience it as much cheaper – as tourists are dependent on buying of services.

    But for locals, long-term residents, might buy far fewer services, and more goods. During coronavirus, I had been months without much purchase of services.
     

    Well, PPP supposedly measures the cost of living for locals. It uses a certain basket of goods and services. If you think that it does not measure it properly, you can complain to the World Bank, the IMF, and a horde of economists who work on it (it takes them 4 years of work to estimate it).

    The purchasing power of a currency refers to the quantity of the currency needed to purchase a given unit of a good, or common basket of goods and services. Purchasing power is clearly determined by the relative cost of living and inflation rates in different countries. Purchasing power parity means equalising the purchasing power of two currencies by taking into account these cost of living and inflation differences.
     
    https://www.economicsonline.co.uk/Global_economics/Purchasing_power_parity.html

    Replies: @Dmitry

    Maybe. I have seen flats.. .who knows.

    It’s not at all common for peoples’ homes. I’m not sure the purpose of this argument.

    not easily verifiable,

    It’s easily verifiable that it supports their general claims, and that they haven’t falsified something. There might be differences around the margins, depending on year to year change of prices and exchange rates. But their overall point was not inaccurate.

    You don’t need journalists’ gloss, or to to add a theory about the sinister motives of a business association (that is headed by government energy companies), to notice their overall point cannot be wildly inaccurate.

    I look at Eurostat (which is the source of their claim). and compare it to price lists published on the internet.

    Electricity price in Russia for business can be below EU average, but it can be higher than in the USA, Norway, Sweden, etc

    Small business
    https://time2save.ru/articles/detalizaciya-tarifa-dlya-malogo-biznesa–tarif-na-peredachu–stoimost-elektroenergii–sbytovaya-nadbavka--infrastrukturnye-platezhi-

    Medium business
    https://time2save.ru/articles/detalizaciya-tarifa-dlya-srednego-biznesa–tarif-na-peredachu–stoimost-proizvodstva-elektroenergii–sbytovaya-nadbavka--infrastrukturnye-platezhi

    Labour costs are around 50 % of GDP in Russia. Which means that nearly half the prices are not caused by labour costs.

    And in those prices of goods, there is not much cheaper in Russia, but the great difference occurs in the price of services. Which is as expected, because the main driver of the overall PPP upward adjustment between Russia and a North Western Europe economy, is the significant difference in the labour cost. It’s relatively low salaries which are the main cause of the upward adjustment.

    What’s the relevance of this? My point is simply the circularity when using this upward adjustment, in the context of discussing whether salaries are low or not (salaries are indeed low, and this is the main cause of the upward adjustment due to the fall it causes in cost of living).

    just hypothetically found one of the world’s largest oil

    Then (if salaries do not fall and millions of low salary guest workers were not imported) the PPP will not upwardly adjust multiple times, as we do not see such effects in hydrocarbon wealthy countries like Netherlands and Norway.

    To see such effects in countries will require lower salary, guest workers imported from the third world, as in Qatar, UAE, Kuwait, where they can be almost as large as the native population, and which provide a base of cheap labour, and the use of guest workers lowers the cost of labour.

    so part of that price dif is not labor cost related.

    But the main cause of the price difference of the “Big Mac”, is the labour cost difference. The labour cost difference is greater than the Big Mac price difference – and therefore has not much difficulty being the main driver of the difference.

    Some things got more expensive, and some things got cheaper. They balanced each other, so overall cost of living is the same.

    The situation is different, as in the low income country it is labour and local services based on them which are cheaper, as well as possibly property, while in the high income country it is goods.

    PPP supposedly measures the cost of living for locals. It uses a certain basket of goods and services. If you think that it does not measure it properly,

    I’m not saying that World Bank or IMF economists are making a mistake with the basket of goods, or that the PPP models they produce, are not an interesting indicator.

    The important thing is for them to be internally consistent (although there are differences across years and organizations) – then we can predict that the PPP adjustments might be interesting information with qualifications.

    My point is that if we used PPP figures to claim that the incomes are not actually lower, then this is circular – as the cause of the upward adjustment for income in this case, is the lower cost of labour due to the low incomes.

    In this sense, the PPP adjustment is a circular measurement if you use it to claim the income differences are reduced, as lowering incomes, are the main cause of an upward adjustment, and vice-versa.

    There is additional circularity in the claims about price of things like food – because in the high income countries, there a different preference for expenditure. Hence the crazy “Waitrose price”, and $70 honey, that emerges in the highest income parts of Europe. Preference for more expensive versions of the same products, is a result of higher incomes.

    PPP adjustments also glosses differences in type of things you can buy in higher and lower income countries. For example, in lower income Brazil, it’s quite common for middle class people to have maids living in their home, whereas in higher income, and well regulated Western Europe, few middle class people could afford maids to live in their home.

    It’s interesting to think about economists’ PPP concepts, but it is neither any simple substitute for looking at the actual incomes that you received.

    • Replies: @Passer by
    @Dmitry


    It’s easily verifiable that it supports their general claims.
     
    No, its not. It depends on source.

    For example:

    «Задача любого правительства — обеспечение бесперебойного энергоснабжения по минимальной экономически обоснованной цене. Задачи "сравнить и сделать ниже, чем на Западе" никогда не ставилось, а выдвижение таких требований — признание потребителями провала своих кампаний по повышению энергоэффективности»,— считает Владимир Скляр из «ВТБ Капитала». По его оценкам, средние тарифы для промышленности РФ в три раза ниже среднего по ЕС, в два раза ниже Норвегии, в 2,5 раза ниже Австрии.
     

    https://www.kommersant.ru/doc/4627541

    You don’t need journalists’ gloss, or to to add a theory about the sinister motives of a business association (that is headed by government energy companies), to notice their overall point cannot be wildly inaccurate.
     
    Some in the energy consumer association are government entities, some are private. In the same way, some in the russian energy producers association (that rejects their claim) are government entities. Are they lying?

    I see classic conflict of interest here. Consumers always want to lower prices, sellers always want to increase prices.

    I look at Eurostat (which is the source of their claim). and compare it to price lists published on the internet.
     

    Eurostat does not publish russian prices, though.

    Meanwhile the International Energy Agency claims one of the lowest electricity prices for Russian industry. Are they lying, just like the association of russian energy producers, some of whom are government entities?

    https://www.iea.org/data-and-statistics/charts/electricity-price-distribution-across-countries-2018


    And in those prices of goods, there is not much cheaper in Russia
     
    Key energy commodity prices are lower in Russia, such as electricity, or oil (gasoline), or natural gas (one of the lowest in the world for industry and households).

    https://www.globalpetrolprices.com/Russia/natural_gas_prices/

    That leads to lower prices of goods manufactured in Russia, lower costs for transport, plus lower prices for households, independent of low labour costs. And is it very well known that energy prices are very important for the economy and the well being of the people.

    What’s the relevance of this?
     

    The relevance is that i do not agree that lower prices in PPP in Russia are simply caused by labour costs.

    Then (if salaries do not fall and millions of low salary guest workers were not imported) the PPP will not upwardly adjust multiple times, as we do not see such effects in hydrocarbon wealthy countries like Netherlands and Norway.
     
    I don't know about Norway, but the Netherlands has one of the highest Nat Gas prices in the world, way higher than the US, UK or Canada, not to mention Russia. I don't know if they tax it a lot or what. Not a good example.

    To see such effects in countries will require lower salary, guest workers imported from the third world, as in Qatar, UAE, Kuwait, where they can be almost as large as the native population, and which provide a base of cheap labour, and the use of guest workers lowers the cost of labour.
     
    What happens in small population Qatar, UAE, Kuwait, is that the effect of huge money flows per capita due to the selling of oil and gas overwhelmes the effect of low energy prices, plus there is lack of many industries producing things to benefit from low energy prices, as almost everything is imported there. A country with large population and more productive capabilities will benefit more from low energy prices.

    I'm pretty sure that if oil, gas and other energy prices drop to 1960 levels then overall world prices will drop as well.

    The example with the UK was not that an energy price drop will cause all the drop in prices, but some of it.


    "Some things got more expensive, and some things got cheaper. They balanced each other, so overall cost of living is the same."


    The situation is different, as in the low income country it is labour and local services based on them which are cheaper, as well as possibly property, while in the high income country it is goods.
     
    It is different, but overall price level of the basket of goods and services is the same. So the cost of living remains the same.

    My point is that if we used PPP figures to claim that the incomes are not actually lower, then this is circular – as the cause of the upward adjustment for income in this case, is the lower cost of labour due to the low incomes.
     

    First, i'm pretty sure that if energy prices across the world drop significantly then overall prices in the world will drop too. It is not only labour that is causing lower prices somewhere, but also costs of energy and raw materials. Cost of energy is being widely called as crucial for the economy.

    Second, this is not we are talking about. What we are talking about is that incomes in local prices show the real cost of living within a country and not incomes in market exchange rates. Thus the russian average salary in local prices is not 600 $, but 1600 $. The labour effect is still there - the salary is still twice lower than the one in WE. That difference is caused by cheaper labor effects, lower energy price effects, as well as the inefficiencies within the russian economy.


    PPP adjustments also glosses differences in type of things you can buy in higher and lower income countries. For example, in lower income Brazil, it’s quite common for middle class people to have maids living in their home, whereas in higher income, and well regulated Western Europe, few middle class people could afford maids to live in their home.
     
    Its probably regulation related, and not GDP related, since maids are common in the Gulf countries.

    As i said, if you think that PPP fails to measure the cost of living in countries, you can always complain to the World Bank and the IMF and make your recommendations. As far as i know they use around 3,000 consumer goods and services in their basket - which is way more than what most countries consumer price indexes contain (UK - 720).

  195. @mal
    @Dmitry


    And price of standard supermarket milk can actually be often (or even usually) cheaper in the UK than in Russia.
     
    This is not my experience in the US.

    Kroger off brand milk that even my cat won't drink retails for $3.59/gal. (We actually have to pay more like $6/gal or cat will kill us, he is old and picky).


    https://www.kroger.com/pl/milk/0200100001?fulfillment=all

    Russian Пятёрочка averages 47 rubles per liter, or about $2.37/gal.

    СКОЛЬКО СТОИТ МОЛОКО В ПЯТЕРОЧКЕ?
    Купить молоко в Пятерочке в среднем можно за 47 рублей/литр. Цена на молоко практически не меняется в течение года, поскольку потребность в этом продукте существует всегда. Иногда в сезон распродаж на молоко снижается стоимость (не более чем на 20%).

     

    https://agro24.su/product/moloko/pyaterochka/

    And in my experience, Russian milk is higher quality than Kroger off brand, i would say at least my cat quality standard. But even if not, its still cheaper than Kroger off brand. I would say, equivalent quality milk is half price in Russia vs the US. Not quite 3X PPP differential, but that's because... services dominate both economies, people spend far more on that then agricultural products such as milk.

    In the US, services are 80% of the economy, and in Russia, 60%. Services are almost entirely determined by price of labor, so PPP adjustment is the most valid when it comes to evaluating quality of life for individuals in different countries.

    https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_by_GDP_sector_composition#GDP_(PPP)_sector_composition

    Nobody cares about the price of milk because people simply don't spend much money on it. People spend vast majority of money on services such as haircuts (80% of US economy is based on haircuts, 60% for Russia), and there, debt becomes an all important driver.

    When people want to spend more on haircuts, they take out more debt to pay for them. This enables higher salaries for hair cutters who then take out even more debt to pay the banks and each other. This distribution determines the rate of GDP growth.


    But for locals, long-term residents, might buy far fewer services, and more goods. During coronavirus, I had been months without much purchase of services.
     
    You are an outlier. All developed economies are service driven and debt based. Good are irrelevant, services and debt needed to pay for them are everything.

    Replies: @Yellowface Anon, @Dmitry

    America seems to have some inability to understand dairy food in general. It’s not just milk which is strange there, but also their ersatz versions of cheese.

    But in North West Europe, milk is the same price as Russia, and it’s a real milk (not like some strange American milk).

    But in Southern European countries like Spain, they have very bad milk as well. I don’t think anywhere in Northern Europe has bad milk though.

    developed economies are service

    If you look at the breakdown of services expenditure in the USA – it’s mostly healthcare and housing.
    https://www.thebalance.com/personal-consumption-expenditures-3306107

    I’m not an expert about healthcare (fortunately healthy enough never to need to see doctors). But America has the well known problems with the healthcare costs. But from what I heard, that in Western Europe, the healthcare seems to be an equitable system which is not necessarily bad value for money.

  196. @Passer by
    @Dmitry


    But few policies could give more nightmares for many of the elite and political class in Russia and other postsoviet sphere, as a large part of the lifestyle is based on enjoying the information opacity with the countries where your assets are stored – so it will not be likely to occur.
     
    Well, they started to look to close tax loopholes in Cyprus, the Netherlands, Malta, Luxemburg, etc.
    This commonly happens after economic crises when governments are looking for money.

    https://www.wsj.com/articles/russia-tightens-tax-loophole-as-kremlin-seeks-to-plug-budget-gap-11604577611

    After the 2008 crisis too there was a big tax fight between the US/UK and the EU.


    That’s also why “One World Government” conspiracies, never seem very plausible to me – such an harmonized government would probably benefit the little man
     
    Harmonisation can be in any direction. Not always benign. I'm more into the principle: power corrupts, and absolute power corrupts absolutely.

    Replies: @Dmitry

    tax loopholes in Cyprus, the Netherlands, Malta, Luxemburg, etc.
    https://www.wsj.com/articles/russia-tightens-tax-loophole-as-kremlin-seeks-to-plug-budget-gap-11604577611

    This looked like positive news – it seems to be an example of a badly designed policy, which was designed to attract investment from foreign companies, and seems to instead incentivize offshoring of companies.

    But I was thinking more about the overall information opacity of Russia with Europe, that makes it extremely easy to move between the sides, as neither side knows what is happening without information from the other one.

    That is lack of information sharing resulted in a wonderful freedom from both sides, for those with assets to move – that in Russia it’s not possible to know what Russian citizens are doing in Europe, and that Europe cannot know who the Russian citizens are that they receive or the source of their income.

    It’s not a situation where e.g. London knows that it receives managers’ of state owned companies, or the children of politicians, and decides to accept. Rather, they have no idea what assets they are receiving. There is a “convenient” mutual blackout of information, and that information would only be possible to attain if the two sides were in a friendly partnership.

    The poor quality of the relationship, results in a great freedom for those people who move themselves or their assets in the West, which includes a large part of postsoviet sphere’s elites.

    Harmonisation can be in any direction. Not always benign. I’m more into the principle: power corrupts,

    Well we can watch the situation with EU, where there is a realtime attempt at it, and many different advantages and disadvantages.

    There is something intrinsically very dystopic about the concept of a single government across different countries, and this why the “one world government conspiracy theory” is an emotionally scary one.

    But if you want to hedge your money safety, launder your money, maintain it free from knowledge of the authorities, and from taxation (i.e. experience the standard “rich peoples’ problems”)- then it’s preferable to be in a world of divided governments, that do not share too much information. And therefore, I am put trusting the disproportionate influence of the rich people demographic to protect us from too much transgovernmental integration.

    • Replies: @Yellowface Anon
    @Dmitry


    But if you want to hedge your money safety, launder your money, maintain it free from knowledge of the authorities, and from taxation (i.e. experience the standard “rich peoples’ problems”)- then it’s preferable to be in a world of divided governments, that do not share too much information.
     
    When you can't have divided governments, move away from the control nodes.
    , @Passer by
    @Dmitry


    The poor quality of the relationship, results in a great freedom for those people who move themselves or their assets in the West
     
    Not sure about that anymore. Now there is greater scrutiny on Russians within the West, and on westerners within Russia. From both sides. On the contrary, i think that greater inter-country competition results in more crack downs on rich people trying to "betray their country".

    But if you want to hedge your money safety, launder your money, maintain it free from knowledge of the authorities, and from taxation (i.e. experience the standard “rich peoples’ problems”)- then it’s preferable to be in a world of divided governments, that do not share too much information.
     
    That really depends on who is in charge and what do they want. If the prevailing orthodoxy of a world government is low taxes neo-liberalism, then rich people will have a good time. If its communism, then they wont. It is a double edged sword, it can be used for good, or for evil. I prefer the diversity of a multipolar world, where there are always differences, and there are always choices.
  197. @mal
    @Yellowface Anon


    Services are based on debt? You are equivocating short-term obligations that is covered by savings and long-term obligations pulled out of existence by banks. Services go poof when the economic systems become unsettled and only recover when the institutions are stable again.
     
    And that's why we can't afford to unsettle the economic system - we can't have 80% of the economy go poof. Which is why when private debt refuses to do its job and grow, government and the Fed have to step in and print $trillions. The only other alternative is total collapse.


    Productive sectors can operate (at lower capacities and productivity) even when all hell breaks loose. Strong productive sectors fuel strong service sectors, and deindustrialization leads to services and finance ultimately supported by nothing.
     
    Productive sectors are even more credit dependent compared to services. A hair dresser can cut hair from her house and make do with reduced number of haircuts and business. A farm, factory, or assembly line can not. It is impossible to run assembly line designed for 10,000 vehicles per day production at 1,000 vehicles per day speed - you will go bankrupt in a month. Consistent supply of credit and demand is everything to a productive business.

    In your Tom Luongo article, he is correct that private banks are going the way of the dinosaur, and Federal Reserve will fully merge with government, and take over banking functions. This will make it easier to supply demand and credit to the economy, and throttle it down, when needed.

    Replies: @Yellowface Anon

    Productive sectors are even more credit dependent compared to services. A hair dresser can cut hair from her house and make do with reduced number of haircuts and business. A farm, factory, or assembly line can not. It is impossible to run assembly line designed for 10,000 vehicles per day production at 1,000 vehicles per day speed – you will go bankrupt in a month. Consistent supply of credit and demand is everything to a productive business.

    Right, with an Austrian view of credit – pure financial intermediation fully backed by others’ savings, and not lent out of thin air under fractional reserve banking.

    (While Austrian economists will directly say fractional reserves are fraud and cause the boom-bust cycle, it has its place in a complex financial system, in moderation. The problem we have is the abuse of that credit-creation power, and of central bank monetary control)

  198. @Dmitry
    @Passer by


    tax loopholes in Cyprus, the Netherlands, Malta, Luxemburg, etc.
    https://www.wsj.com/articles/russia-tightens-tax-loophole-as-kremlin-seeks-to-plug-budget-gap-11604577611
     
    This looked like positive news - it seems to be an example of a badly designed policy, which was designed to attract investment from foreign companies, and seems to instead incentivize offshoring of companies.

    But I was thinking more about the overall information opacity of Russia with Europe, that makes it extremely easy to move between the sides, as neither side knows what is happening without information from the other one.

    That is lack of information sharing resulted in a wonderful freedom from both sides, for those with assets to move - that in Russia it's not possible to know what Russian citizens are doing in Europe, and that Europe cannot know who the Russian citizens are that they receive or the source of their income.

    It's not a situation where e.g. London knows that it receives managers' of state owned companies, or the children of politicians, and decides to accept. Rather, they have no idea what assets they are receiving. There is a "convenient" mutual blackout of information, and that information would only be possible to attain if the two sides were in a friendly partnership.

    The poor quality of the relationship, results in a great freedom for those people who move themselves or their assets in the West, which includes a large part of postsoviet sphere's elites.


    Harmonisation can be in any direction. Not always benign. I’m more into the principle: power corrupts,
     
    Well we can watch the situation with EU, where there is a realtime attempt at it, and many different advantages and disadvantages.

    There is something intrinsically very dystopic about the concept of a single government across different countries, and this why the "one world government conspiracy theory" is an emotionally scary one.

    But if you want to hedge your money safety, launder your money, maintain it free from knowledge of the authorities, and from taxation (i.e. experience the standard "rich peoples' problems")- then it's preferable to be in a world of divided governments, that do not share too much information. And therefore, I am put trusting the disproportionate influence of the rich people demographic to protect us from too much transgovernmental integration.

    Replies: @Yellowface Anon, @Passer by

    But if you want to hedge your money safety, launder your money, maintain it free from knowledge of the authorities, and from taxation (i.e. experience the standard “rich peoples’ problems”)- then it’s preferable to be in a world of divided governments, that do not share too much information.

    When you can’t have divided governments, move away from the control nodes.

  199. @Dmitry
    @Passer by


    Maybe. I have seen flats.. .who knows.
     
    It's not at all common for peoples' homes. I'm not sure the purpose of this argument.

    not easily verifiable,
     
    It's easily verifiable that it supports their general claims, and that they haven't falsified something. There might be differences around the margins, depending on year to year change of prices and exchange rates. But their overall point was not inaccurate.

    You don't need journalists' gloss, or to to add a theory about the sinister motives of a business association (that is headed by government energy companies), to notice their overall point cannot be wildly inaccurate.

    I look at Eurostat (which is the source of their claim). and compare it to price lists published on the internet.

    Electricity price in Russia for business can be below EU average, but it can be higher than in the USA, Norway, Sweden, etc

    Small business
    https://time2save.ru/articles/detalizaciya-tarifa-dlya-malogo-biznesa--tarif-na-peredachu--stoimost-elektroenergii--sbytovaya-nadbavka--infrastrukturnye-platezhi-

    Medium business
    https://time2save.ru/articles/detalizaciya-tarifa-dlya-srednego-biznesa--tarif-na-peredachu--stoimost-proizvodstva-elektroenergii--sbytovaya-nadbavka--infrastrukturnye-platezhi


    Labour costs are around 50 % of GDP in Russia. Which means that nearly half the prices are not caused by labour costs.

     

    And in those prices of goods, there is not much cheaper in Russia, but the great difference occurs in the price of services. Which is as expected, because the main driver of the overall PPP upward adjustment between Russia and a North Western Europe economy, is the significant difference in the labour cost. It's relatively low salaries which are the main cause of the upward adjustment.

    What's the relevance of this? My point is simply the circularity when using this upward adjustment, in the context of discussing whether salaries are low or not (salaries are indeed low, and this is the main cause of the upward adjustment due to the fall it causes in cost of living).


    just hypothetically found one of the world’s largest oil

     

    Then (if salaries do not fall and millions of low salary guest workers were not imported) the PPP will not upwardly adjust multiple times, as we do not see such effects in hydrocarbon wealthy countries like Netherlands and Norway.

    To see such effects in countries will require lower salary, guest workers imported from the third world, as in Qatar, UAE, Kuwait, where they can be almost as large as the native population, and which provide a base of cheap labour, and the use of guest workers lowers the cost of labour.


    so part of that price dif is not labor cost related.
     
    But the main cause of the price difference of the "Big Mac", is the labour cost difference. The labour cost difference is greater than the Big Mac price difference - and therefore has not much difficulty being the main driver of the difference.

    Some things got more expensive, and some things got cheaper. They balanced each other, so overall cost of living is the same.
     
    The situation is different, as in the low income country it is labour and local services based on them which are cheaper, as well as possibly property, while in the high income country it is goods.

    PPP supposedly measures the cost of living for locals. It uses a certain basket of goods and services. If you think that it does not measure it properly,
     
    I'm not saying that World Bank or IMF economists are making a mistake with the basket of goods, or that the PPP models they produce, are not an interesting indicator.

    The important thing is for them to be internally consistent (although there are differences across years and organizations) - then we can predict that the PPP adjustments might be interesting information with qualifications.

    My point is that if we used PPP figures to claim that the incomes are not actually lower, then this is circular - as the cause of the upward adjustment for income in this case, is the lower cost of labour due to the low incomes.

    In this sense, the PPP adjustment is a circular measurement if you use it to claim the income differences are reduced, as lowering incomes, are the main cause of an upward adjustment, and vice-versa.

    There is additional circularity in the claims about price of things like food - because in the high income countries, there a different preference for expenditure. Hence the crazy "Waitrose price", and $70 honey, that emerges in the highest income parts of Europe. Preference for more expensive versions of the same products, is a result of higher incomes.

    PPP adjustments also glosses differences in type of things you can buy in higher and lower income countries. For example, in lower income Brazil, it's quite common for middle class people to have maids living in their home, whereas in higher income, and well regulated Western Europe, few middle class people could afford maids to live in their home.

    It's interesting to think about economists' PPP concepts, but it is neither any simple substitute for looking at the actual incomes that you received.

    Replies: @Passer by

    It’s easily verifiable that it supports their general claims.

    No, its not. It depends on source.

    For example:

    «Задача любого правительства — обеспечение бесперебойного энергоснабжения по минимальной экономически обоснованной цене. Задачи “сравнить и сделать ниже, чем на Западе” никогда не ставилось, а выдвижение таких требований — признание потребителями провала своих кампаний по повышению энергоэффективности»,— считает Владимир Скляр из «ВТБ Капитала». По его оценкам, средние тарифы для промышленности РФ в три раза ниже среднего по ЕС, в два раза ниже Норвегии, в 2,5 раза ниже Австрии.

    https://www.kommersant.ru/doc/4627541

    You don’t need journalists’ gloss, or to to add a theory about the sinister motives of a business association (that is headed by government energy companies), to notice their overall point cannot be wildly inaccurate.

    Some in the energy consumer association are government entities, some are private. In the same way, some in the russian energy producers association (that rejects their claim) are government entities. Are they lying?

    I see classic conflict of interest here. Consumers always want to lower prices, sellers always want to increase prices.

    I look at Eurostat (which is the source of their claim). and compare it to price lists published on the internet.

    Eurostat does not publish russian prices, though.

    Meanwhile the International Energy Agency claims one of the lowest electricity prices for Russian industry. Are they lying, just like the association of russian energy producers, some of whom are government entities?

    https://www.iea.org/data-and-statistics/charts/electricity-price-distribution-across-countries-2018

    And in those prices of goods, there is not much cheaper in Russia

    Key energy commodity prices are lower in Russia, such as electricity, or oil (gasoline), or natural gas (one of the lowest in the world for industry and households).

    https://www.globalpetrolprices.com/Russia/natural_gas_prices/

    That leads to lower prices of goods manufactured in Russia, lower costs for transport, plus lower prices for households, independent of low labour costs. And is it very well known that energy prices are very important for the economy and the well being of the people.

    What’s the relevance of this?

    The relevance is that i do not agree that lower prices in PPP in Russia are simply caused by labour costs.

    Then (if salaries do not fall and millions of low salary guest workers were not imported) the PPP will not upwardly adjust multiple times, as we do not see such effects in hydrocarbon wealthy countries like Netherlands and Norway.

    I don’t know about Norway, but the Netherlands has one of the highest Nat Gas prices in the world, way higher than the US, UK or Canada, not to mention Russia. I don’t know if they tax it a lot or what. Not a good example.

    To see such effects in countries will require lower salary, guest workers imported from the third world, as in Qatar, UAE, Kuwait, where they can be almost as large as the native population, and which provide a base of cheap labour, and the use of guest workers lowers the cost of labour.

    What happens in small population Qatar, UAE, Kuwait, is that the effect of huge money flows per capita due to the selling of oil and gas overwhelmes the effect of low energy prices, plus there is lack of many industries producing things to benefit from low energy prices, as almost everything is imported there. A country with large population and more productive capabilities will benefit more from low energy prices.

    I’m pretty sure that if oil, gas and other energy prices drop to 1960 levels then overall world prices will drop as well.

    The example with the UK was not that an energy price drop will cause all the drop in prices, but some of it.

    “Some things got more expensive, and some things got cheaper. They balanced each other, so overall cost of living is the same.”

    The situation is different, as in the low income country it is labour and local services based on them which are cheaper, as well as possibly property, while in the high income country it is goods.

    It is different, but overall price level of the basket of goods and services is the same. So the cost of living remains the same.

    My point is that if we used PPP figures to claim that the incomes are not actually lower, then this is circular – as the cause of the upward adjustment for income in this case, is the lower cost of labour due to the low incomes.

    First, i’m pretty sure that if energy prices across the world drop significantly then overall prices in the world will drop too. It is not only labour that is causing lower prices somewhere, but also costs of energy and raw materials. Cost of energy is being widely called as crucial for the economy.

    Second, this is not we are talking about. What we are talking about is that incomes in local prices show the real cost of living within a country and not incomes in market exchange rates. Thus the russian average salary in local prices is not 600 $, but 1600 $. The labour effect is still there – the salary is still twice lower than the one in WE. That difference is caused by cheaper labor effects, lower energy price effects, as well as the inefficiencies within the russian economy.

    PPP adjustments also glosses differences in type of things you can buy in higher and lower income countries. For example, in lower income Brazil, it’s quite common for middle class people to have maids living in their home, whereas in higher income, and well regulated Western Europe, few middle class people could afford maids to live in their home.

    Its probably regulation related, and not GDP related, since maids are common in the Gulf countries.

    As i said, if you think that PPP fails to measure the cost of living in countries, you can always complain to the World Bank and the IMF and make your recommendations. As far as i know they use around 3,000 consumer goods and services in their basket – which is way more than what most countries consumer price indexes contain (UK – 720).

  200. @Dmitry
    @Passer by


    tax loopholes in Cyprus, the Netherlands, Malta, Luxemburg, etc.
    https://www.wsj.com/articles/russia-tightens-tax-loophole-as-kremlin-seeks-to-plug-budget-gap-11604577611
     
    This looked like positive news - it seems to be an example of a badly designed policy, which was designed to attract investment from foreign companies, and seems to instead incentivize offshoring of companies.

    But I was thinking more about the overall information opacity of Russia with Europe, that makes it extremely easy to move between the sides, as neither side knows what is happening without information from the other one.

    That is lack of information sharing resulted in a wonderful freedom from both sides, for those with assets to move - that in Russia it's not possible to know what Russian citizens are doing in Europe, and that Europe cannot know who the Russian citizens are that they receive or the source of their income.

    It's not a situation where e.g. London knows that it receives managers' of state owned companies, or the children of politicians, and decides to accept. Rather, they have no idea what assets they are receiving. There is a "convenient" mutual blackout of information, and that information would only be possible to attain if the two sides were in a friendly partnership.

    The poor quality of the relationship, results in a great freedom for those people who move themselves or their assets in the West, which includes a large part of postsoviet sphere's elites.


    Harmonisation can be in any direction. Not always benign. I’m more into the principle: power corrupts,
     
    Well we can watch the situation with EU, where there is a realtime attempt at it, and many different advantages and disadvantages.

    There is something intrinsically very dystopic about the concept of a single government across different countries, and this why the "one world government conspiracy theory" is an emotionally scary one.

    But if you want to hedge your money safety, launder your money, maintain it free from knowledge of the authorities, and from taxation (i.e. experience the standard "rich peoples' problems")- then it's preferable to be in a world of divided governments, that do not share too much information. And therefore, I am put trusting the disproportionate influence of the rich people demographic to protect us from too much transgovernmental integration.

    Replies: @Yellowface Anon, @Passer by

    The poor quality of the relationship, results in a great freedom for those people who move themselves or their assets in the West

    Not sure about that anymore. Now there is greater scrutiny on Russians within the West, and on westerners within Russia. From both sides. On the contrary, i think that greater inter-country competition results in more crack downs on rich people trying to “betray their country”.

    But if you want to hedge your money safety, launder your money, maintain it free from knowledge of the authorities, and from taxation (i.e. experience the standard “rich peoples’ problems”)- then it’s preferable to be in a world of divided governments, that do not share too much information.

    That really depends on who is in charge and what do they want. If the prevailing orthodoxy of a world government is low taxes neo-liberalism, then rich people will have a good time. If its communism, then they wont. It is a double edged sword, it can be used for good, or for evil. I prefer the diversity of a multipolar world, where there are always differences, and there are always choices.

  201. There’s just so many of these “anti-anti-Semitism” organizations. They seem mostly funded by Western and Israeli government grants and by various pro-Israel millionaries+billionaires (not only Jewish ones).

    • Replies: @Yellowface Anon
    @Shortsword

    No joke!

    https://www.voltairenet.org/article213119.html


    Has the "civil war" in Israel really just begun?
    by Thierry Meyssan

    The whole world is, without moving, witnessing new clashes between Israel and the Palestinians. It remains unmoved confronted with the blood that flows on both sides. The course of events attests that foreign powers, the United States, Iran and Turkey, are throwing oil on the fire. However, this conflict differs from the wars that have followed one another for 73 years in that we are witnessing the possible beginning of a civil war in Israel. The question arises whether this is a spontaneous fire or whether it is deliberately provoked.
     

    Replies: @A123

  202. @Shortsword
    https://twitter.com/StopAntisemites/status/1394396329493901315

    There's just so many of these "anti-anti-Semitism" organizations. They seem mostly funded by Western and Israeli government grants and by various pro-Israel millionaries+billionaires (not only Jewish ones).

    Replies: @Yellowface Anon

    No joke!

    https://www.voltairenet.org/article213119.html

    Has the “civil war” in Israel really just begun?
    by Thierry Meyssan

    The whole world is, without moving, witnessing new clashes between Israel and the Palestinians. It remains unmoved confronted with the blood that flows on both sides. The course of events attests that foreign powers, the United States, Iran and Turkey, are throwing oil on the fire. However, this conflict differs from the wars that have followed one another for 73 years in that we are witnessing the possible beginning of a civil war in Israel. The question arises whether this is a spontaneous fire or whether it is deliberately provoked.

    • Replies: @A123
    @Yellowface Anon


    this conflict differs from the wars that have followed one another for 73 years in that we are witnessing the possible beginning of a civil war in Israel.
     
    Fear Not! Iranian Hamas cannot sustain a Civil War for any length of time.

    They have already:
        • Consumed 20-40% of their available rocket munitions.
        • Critical Command staff has been killed.
        • Troop losses are high. An exact count is difficult as many were killed by collapsing Terror Tunnels.
        • Their propaganda/intelligence operation has been completely wiped out.

    Most important -- Iranian Hamas "friendly fire" has killed & injured more Gazan Muslims than Palestinian Jews.

    Ayatollah Khameni's proxy forces are losing badly & publicly. The failed Hamas Offensive is creating demotivation and possibly demoralization.

    PEACE 😇
  203. Looks like Biden administration decided to let German Greens deal with Nord Stream 2.

    https://www.axios.com/nord-stream-sanction-biden-russia-f6db2ae3-2c89-4343-b326-9f399d674077.html

    Ultimately, Ukraine is not worth jeopardizing US
    -German relations.

  204. A123 says:
    @Yellowface Anon
    @Shortsword

    No joke!

    https://www.voltairenet.org/article213119.html


    Has the "civil war" in Israel really just begun?
    by Thierry Meyssan

    The whole world is, without moving, witnessing new clashes between Israel and the Palestinians. It remains unmoved confronted with the blood that flows on both sides. The course of events attests that foreign powers, the United States, Iran and Turkey, are throwing oil on the fire. However, this conflict differs from the wars that have followed one another for 73 years in that we are witnessing the possible beginning of a civil war in Israel. The question arises whether this is a spontaneous fire or whether it is deliberately provoked.
     

    Replies: @A123

    this conflict differs from the wars that have followed one another for 73 years in that we are witnessing the possible beginning of a civil war in Israel.

    Fear Not! Iranian Hamas cannot sustain a Civil War for any length of time.

    They have already:
        • Consumed 20-40% of their available rocket munitions.
        • Critical Command staff has been killed.
        • Troop losses are high. An exact count is difficult as many were killed by collapsing Terror Tunnels.
        • Their propaganda/intelligence operation has been completely wiped out.

    Most important — Iranian Hamas “friendly fire” has killed & injured more Gazan Muslims than Palestinian Jews.

    Ayatollah Khameni’s proxy forces are losing badly & publicly. The failed Hamas Offensive is creating demotivation and possibly demoralization.

    PEACE 😇

  205. I think it would be good for Korenchkin, Epigon and other Serbs on Karlin’s blog to notice this temporarily aside from their many good Tweets (Epigon especially in mind, thanks for the deep insights and thoroughly red-pilling me about the truth of the nature of “Montenegrin national identity”).

    It’s time the Serbs at Unz Review reacted and commented at the article below and reacted to all the Croat and other anti-Serb bullshit in the comments:

    https://www.unz.com/article/serbian-wwii-film-smeared-by-war-propagandists-in-western-media/

  206. Woke CIA/military continuing.

  207. ਵਾਹਿਗੁਰੂਜੀਕਾਖਾਲਸਾਵਾਹਿਗੁਰੂਜੀਕੀਫਤਿਹ

  208. mal says:

    Since there is no open thread, I’ll say it here – based Lukashenko.

    Protasevich had his head in his hands and was shaking when he realised the flight was headed for Minsk, Lithuania’s Delfi news outlet said, quoting a passenger. Later, as he was led away, according to the report, he remarked: “I’ll get the death penalty here.” Reuters could not verify the report.

    In the dramatic incident, described by one EU leader as a hijacking, a Soviet-era MiG-29 fighter jet escorted a Ryanair-operated passenger plane flying from Athens to Lithuania. The plane was suddenly diverted to Minsk, the capital of Belarus, where authorities detained journalist Roman Protasevich.

    https://www.reuters.com/world/europe/belarus-forces-vilnius-bound-ryanair-plane-land-detain-blogger-2021-05-23/

  209. Greenify fixed my phone lag.
    Great Xiaomi with 11hr sot time
    The stuff here would work temporarily https://www.reddit.com/r/Xiaomi/comments/gf59lu/comment/fzdbzsb?utm_source=amp&utm_medium=&utm_content=comment_timestamp

    Greenify alone non root fixed it. 🙂

  210. https://www.unrealengine.com/en-US/digital-humans
    A strongly human phenotype-based (but from a woke diversity standpoint) web game for generating 3D images of people. You can edit their facial features and use it for 3d animation (which is apparently the main use of the app, but it obviously has more applications than this, like studying human phenotypes).

    My main suggestion is expanding their bases to conform with the main classification of human facial types.

  211. Coworkers told them that Singh had left the safety of an office where others were hunkered down to help others escape.

    https://www.mercurynews.com/2021/05/26/vta-light-rail-operator-killed-in-san-joses-mass-shooting-alerted-coworkers-to-hide/

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