Tuesday, 25 February 2014

A few plot holes in the Horus Heresy, conversation with a friend

[9:22:21 PM] Serban: been reading a little about the emperor on WH40k wiki

[9:22:22 PM] Serban: it's nice to see logical inconsistencies happening at the big houses

[9:22:25 PM] Serban: with the story lines

[9:22:29 PM] Diego Ramiro Lattes: Yeah

[9:22:39 PM] Serban: ^^

[9:22:47 PM] Serban: that's why there's no substitute for actual human history

[9:23:06 PM] Diego Ramiro Lattes: It is not clear whatever he is a savior or a tyrant either by the time he ends up disabled

[9:23:35 PM] Serban: it's contradictory to me

[9:23:43 PM] Serban: because in False Gods

[9:24:10 PM] Serban: the idea that Horus gets

[9:24:24 PM] Serban: is that the emperor wants to ascend to godhood

[9:24:30 PM] Serban: and become a tyrant

[9:24:43 PM] Serban: and it's mentioned that the emperor

[9:24:48 PM] Serban: struck a bargain with the chaos

[9:24:50 PM] Serban: gods

[9:24:57 PM] Serban: in order to bring about his ambitition

[9:25:05 PM] Serban: to rule Terra

[9:25:07 PM] Serban: et all

[9:25:10 PM] Diego Ramiro Lattes: Yet Horus himself submits to Chaos

[9:25:15 PM] Diego Ramiro Lattes: To defeat the Emperor

[9:25:31 PM] Serban: so many questions are left unsatisfied with a proper answer

[9:25:36 PM] Serban: in Thousand Sons

[9:25:40 PM] Serban: Magnus tells the emperor

[9:25:45 PM] Serban: about Horus' betrayal

[9:25:53 PM] Serban: the emperor doesn't believe him

[9:25:56 PM] Serban: he sends Russ

[9:26:05 PM] Serban: to bring Magnus in to answer before the throne

[9:26:10 PM] Serban: but Horus

[9:26:16 PM] Serban: sanctions Russ

[9:26:26 PM] Serban: to destroy the thousand sons

[9:26:40 PM] Serban: which is quite idiotic

[9:26:43 PM] Serban: and implausible

[9:26:46 PM] Serban: since Magnus

[9:26:49 PM] Serban: visits Horus

[9:26:52 PM] Serban: during his dream

[9:26:57 PM] Serban: and demasks Erebus

[9:27:04 PM] Serban: exposing him to Horus

[9:27:10 PM] Serban: revealing to him that it's all a treachery

[9:27:21 PM] Serban: Horus lashes out at both of them

[9:27:32 PM] Serban: but chooses to side with Erebus against the emperor

[9:27:40 PM] Diego Ramiro Lattes: Why?

[9:27:45 PM] Serban: exactly why?

[9:27:52 PM] Serban: there's no good reason to do so

[9:27:57 PM] Serban: Magnus tells him that

[9:27:59 PM] Serban: all he has seen

[9:28:01 PM] Serban: was a lie

[9:28:09 PM] Serban: a vision of a possible future

[9:28:15 PM] Serban: from a myriad of different futures

[9:28:19 PM] Serban: ironically

[9:28:27 PM] Serban: the future Horus saw as revealed by the chaos gods

[9:28:31 PM] Serban: was the future which came to pass

[9:28:36 PM] Serban: but it makes no sense

[9:28:38 PM] Serban: why Horus

[9:28:50 PM] Diego Ramiro Lattes: Would convert to Chaos with the farse revealed before him?

[9:28:52 PM] Serban: would brutally screw over his brother Magnus in the process

[9:29:19 PM] Serban: Magnus, of course

[9:29:26 PM] Serban: refuses to let his legion battle the wolves

[9:29:34 PM] Serban: because he knows that the emperor will have need of them

[9:29:39 PM] Serban: in the future against the heresy

[9:29:53 PM] Serban: and he is forced to sacrifice his physical form

[9:29:56 PM] Serban: and pledge himself

[9:29:59 PM] Serban: in service to the lord of change

[9:30:08 PM] Serban: in order to save the remainder of his legion

[9:30:18 PM] Serban: 1000 astartes left

[9:30:41 PM] Serban: "Welcome to the planet of sorcerers"

[9:31:16 PM] Serban: Magus damages the emperor's machines

[9:31:23 PM] Serban: while also destroying the wards

[9:31:29 PM] Serban: setup against the warp fiends

[9:31:45 PM] Serban: but he does this without knowledge

[9:31:48 PM] Serban: so...

[9:31:51 PM] Serban: how should I put it

[9:31:57 PM] Serban: it's stretched too far

[9:32:02 PM] Diego Ramiro Lattes: He is not evil.

[9:32:09 PM] Serban: the motives, in my opinion, are not strong enough

[9:32:17 PM] Diego Ramiro Lattes: Why should the Emperor, arguably the "most powerful psychic", hold it against him?

[9:32:18 PM] Serban: to justify Horus' obscene stance

[9:32:21 PM] Serban: against Magnus

[9:32:23 PM] Serban: or the emperor

[9:32:25 PM] Serban: for fuck's sake

[9:32:30 PM] Serban: the emperor chose him

[9:32:31 PM] Serban: and no other

[9:32:35 PM] Serban: as warmaster

[9:32:43 PM] Serban: yeah

[9:32:46 PM] Serban: I mean, come on

[9:32:53 PM] Serban: if Magnus can fucking see the future

[9:32:58 PM] Serban: why can't the Emperor?

[9:33:04 PM] Serban: why can't the emperor read Magnus' thoughts

[9:33:11 PM] Serban: to understand that he's telling the truth

[9:33:17 PM] Serban: that he is acting with good intentions

[9:33:39 PM] Diego Ramiro Lattes: Also Mangus was made out of the Emperor's DNA, almost literally. So he should be all the more capable of proving his mind.

[9:33:59 PM] Serban: yes...

[9:34:01 PM] Serban: it's idiotic

[9:34:11 PM] Diego Ramiro Lattes: probing*

[9:34:23 PM] Serban: why send Russ to aprehend him

[9:34:33 PM] Serban: because he broke the decree of Nikaea

[9:34:34 PM] Serban: ?

[9:34:47 PM] Serban: and when all of them knew

[9:34:50 PM] Serban: this

[9:34:54 PM] Serban: how the hell did they allow

[9:35:05 PM] Serban: the other legions to remain oblivious to horus' treachery

[9:35:11 PM] Serban: ?

[9:35:29 PM] Serban: in the books

[9:35:33 PM] Serban: the reason they give

[9:35:37 PM] Serban: is that the warp

[9:35:42 PM] Serban: overshadows communication

[9:35:44 PM] Serban: et all

[9:36:01 PM] Serban: but that stil isn't a good reason

[9:36:21 PM] Diego Ramiro Lattes: They could have used psychic powers or astropathy or somethin

[9:36:24 PM] Diego Ramiro Lattes: something*

[9:36:33 PM] Serban: that's just (you can only destroy the ring in the fires of mount' doom), but you have to walk all the way there

[9:36:44 PM] Serban: you should use Gandalf's rocs (giant birds)

[9:36:49 PM] Serban: only when the orcs attack

[9:36:53 PM] Serban: whuuuuut!?

[9:37:09 PM] Diego Ramiro Lattes: lmao

[9:37:13 PM] Diego Ramiro Lattes: Yeah, exactly

[9:37:43 PM] Diego Ramiro Lattes: Why not just transport Frodo to Mount Doom in a surprise aerial attack

[9:37:55 PM] Diego Ramiro Lattes: Drop him in, make him drop the ring long before it can influence him

[9:38:00 PM] Diego Ramiro Lattes: And job done.

[9:38:14 PM] Serban: exactly

[9:39:42 PM] Serban: when building such multi-thread stories

[9:39:46 PM] Serban: it's really difficult

[9:39:53 PM] Serban: to bring all the different branches of possibilities

[9:39:55 PM] Serban: to fit together

[9:40:02 PM] Serban: and still retain no internal conflict

[9:40:16 PM] Serban: but some of those problems in the horus heresy

[9:40:20 PM] Serban: could have been easily solved

[9:40:22 PM] Serban: for instance

[9:40:24 PM] Serban: Leman Russ

[9:40:29 PM] Serban: could have simply attacked Magnus

[9:40:35 PM] Serban: without anyone's order

[9:40:48 PM] Serban: he could have simply found out via a spy

[9:40:51 PM] Serban: that the thousand sons

[9:40:55 PM] Serban: were still practicing magic

[9:41:16 PM] Serban: when Magnus reaches the emperor

[9:41:21 PM] Serban: via his warp soul travel

[9:41:26 PM] Serban: the powers of chaos

[9:41:32 PM] Serban: could have simply masked him

[9:41:36 PM] Serban: as a warp demon

[9:41:42 PM] Serban: thus

[9:41:59 PM] Serban: the emperor would have not recognized him

[9:42:00 PM] Serban: and magnus

[9:42:03 PM] Serban: couldn't have told

[9:42:05 PM] Serban: the emperor

[9:42:09 PM] Serban: about horus' treachery

[9:42:13 PM] Serban: this would have worked

[9:42:22 PM] Serban: without creating logical inconsistencies

[9:42:30 PM] Serban: and exaggerated motives

Monday, 24 February 2014

Money is NOT exogenous!

Ok, first of all, money is endogenous. When private debt increases, the Money Supply (MS) increases. When those private debts get paid off, the MS shrinks. The government is the only sector capable of creating and/or destroying NET financial assets via fiscal deficits/fiscal surpluses.

You'll notice that the MS measurements use terms like: HPM, near money, near near money et all.

Private banks create private credit. They DON'T create NEW NET tax-credits (public IOUs/legal tender money). That can only come from the government.

Tuesday, 18 February 2014

Debt and Growth: Is There a Magic Threshold?

New study from the IMF guys refutes Reinhart & Rogoff, finds no impact of debt on growth, no threshold effect. The paper's here:http://www.imf.org/external/pubs/cat/longres.aspx?sk=41352

The findings aren't surprising from an MMT point o view. For the notion of tax-driven money is not new. Many folk wrote about it, including Adam Smith, Jean-Baptiste Say, John Stuart Mill, Karl Marx, John C. Calhoun(US senator and vicepresident), Lerner, Keynes, William Stanley Jevons etc.

It's like Abba Lerner's conclusion on debt, the purpose of bond sales for a currency issuer isn’t “financing” but rather a decision that the public should hold bonds rather than reserve balances earning interest (i.e. IOR).

Also, Thomas Edison asked a question in his days. He asked, why must the government issue bonds to fatten bankers with interest? When the government can issue debt free currency which helps the workers.http://prosperityuk.com/2000/09/thomas-edison-on-government-created-debt-free-money/

Thursday, 13 February 2014

Michael Hudson on neoliberal class war against labor

MMT economist and historian, Michael Hudson, explains the neoliberal class warfare scheme against labor.
PS: the uploader's choice of title for the vid is misleading, just ignore it.

Friday, 7 February 2014

Zimbabwe, 8 currencies as legal tender

Source: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-africa-26034078

Once known for its billion dollar notes and hyper-inflation, Zimbabwe must be the only place in the world to have eight currencies as legal tender - none of them its own.

For the last five years most people have been using US dollars or South African rand, but pula from Botswana and British pound sterling have also been changing hands.
Now the central bank is also allowing the use of Australian dollars, Chinese yuan, Indian rupees and Japanese yen.
For the moment, customers can open bank accounts in these currencies but the hard cash is not yet in circulation.

"I definitely think there is going to be confusion being caused by so many currencies - for a cashier to be handling so many currencies at the same time," says Denford Mutashu, general manager of Food World, a nationwide supermarket chain.
Currently most shops in the capital, Harare, mark prices in US dollars. The rand is more commonly used in Bulawayo, closer to the South African border - and cashiers check daily exchange rate for conversions.
Acting central bank governor Charity Dhliwayo says she hopes the move will bring in more cash, as a liquidity crisis has meant some banks have stopped lending, making imports difficult.
But there is concern that with more currencies, transactions could become more tedious, leading to long queues at the till.
"We wait to see how this will shape up. Shoppers want quicker, easier transactions, not to be bogged down negotiating currencies when you are racing against time to get public transport home or to work," admits Mr Mutashu.
"People don't have time to waste any more. We will have to find ways to expedite the transactions."
No coins, just sweets or condoms
The central bank said that over Christmas, when there was a severe shortage of cash, there was also a surge in counterfeit currency.
Given the complexities of the multiple currency system, there are now fears that forgery will be easier with unfamiliar notes.
"Banks are almost freezing their loan books simply because the economy is almost in an intensive care unit" ~Christopher Mugaga, economist
However, it may mean that small change, which has long been scarce, will become available in shops.
Zimbabwe's liquidity crisis means shopkeepers and market traders often give change in sweets, airtime for mobile phones and even condoms.
"If it makes our life easier for us, that's ok. At the moment we don't have change -if it's going to make transactions easier, [then it is] better," said one shopper in his mid-50s, who was buying bread and vegetables in Harare Food World.
Tawanda Huruwa, a small-scale miner, is more cautious about the news that he can open up bank accounts in currencies from four more countries
"Personally, as a Zimbabwean doing business I am not comfortable with using these currencies. What I want to see is how the banks themselves will respond to the use of these currencies."
"I am not happy using these currencies," adds Cuthbert, a 45-year-old taxi driver. "We do not know the currency, even the exchange rates; I do not think it's necessary to use this currency. Even the banks can lie to us."
His colleague, Farayi 20, feels the introduction of the yuan heralds yet more influence from China on the economy.
"They are trying to get the whole African market. So it is a way of colonising in some sense. What do we benefit out of this Chinese currency - that's the big question - because at the moment these guys are not banking here in Zimbabwe but actually they are taking all the money out of Zimbabwe," he says.
'Immune from fluctuations'
But a second-hand car businessman says the multi-currency system is an advantage for him.
"We have the option of using many currencies given different clients we deal with," the Zimbabwean businessman, based in Japan, says.
"We are immune from constant currency fluctuations if we are operating the same currency accounts in Japan and Zimbabwe."
For economist Christopher Mugaga, the introduction of new currencies is not the solution to Zimbabwe's economic woes, with its chronic unemployment and shrinking manufacturing sector.
"We want our currency, we want our Zimbabwean money" ~Shopper at a Harare supermarket
"Bringing on board more currencies will not change the trajectory of any economy," he said.
"You hear about the corporate bankrupts, companies are closing, shops - our unemployment rate is always on the increase. Banks are almost freezing their loan books simply because the economy is almost in an intensive care unit.
"It's not all auguring well in terms of trying to attract any investment in the country."
One elderly shopper in Food World, buying 5kg of the staple food, maize meal, says the severe cash shortages, which meant the festive season was hard to endure, make her nostalgic for the Zimbabwean dollar.
"We want our currency, we want our Zimbabwean money," she says.
During last year's election campaign, allies of President Robert Mugabe hinted at this, prompting warnings it could lead to a return of hyper-inflation, which was cured by the introduction of foreign currencies.
However Ms Dhliwayo says the central bank has no such plans, and for Mr Mugaga the prospect is "unimaginable".
"For the ordinary Zimbabwean it's going to be quite tough, a difficult year," he warns.

Monday, 3 February 2014

Minimum wage as % of Median wage

The real face of Bill Gates and Davos

Source: http://www.redpepper.org.uk/gates-unmasks-the-real-face-of-davos/

Bill Gates is worried – too many people are talking about raising the minimum wage. Appropriately, the world’s richest man spoke on the eve of the World Economic Summit in Davos. Gates is a great symbol of the Davos summit, an annual away day for global capitalism, at which the world’s 1% mouth concerns about poverty and climate change, while working on policies which fuel inequality.

Despite a fair bit of evidence that a reasonable minimum wage doesn’t cost jobs, Gates is picking up on a regular Davos theme. In 2012, Tidjane Thiam, chief executive of Prudential, called the minimum wage a ‘machine to destroy jobs’.

Last year Gates increased his wealth by $15.8bn and has now once again become the world’s richest man, worth about $78.5bn. He’s not alone – as a whole the world’s millionaires got 11% richer last year. For the rest of us, the decades-long trend of stagnating income continues. In some countries – Greece, Spain and Britain – median household income fell sharply.

The policies dreamt up by those who meet in Davos are a direct cause of these historically unprecedented rates of inequality. Last week, even the financial press was taken aback at the concentration of corporate wealth. Just six companies – including Apple, Microsoft and Google–are sitting on more than a quarter of the $1.5tn reserves held by US non-financial corporations.

Amongst other reasons, a big factor is tax avoidance, enabled by the financial liberalisation regime put into place over 30 years by the likes of those who attend Davos. According to the Financial Times: ‘some 94 per cent of Microsoft’s $81bn is now outside the US.’

So Gates doesn’t want a higher minimum wage denting the amount of wealth his company is able to avoid taxes on.

The really incredible thing about the Davos set is the way they are able, without irony, to expound all the good they are doing in the world. We barely question the illegitimacy of the enormous power that these corporate leaders hold over the world.

This week Gates is portrayed as a dreamy idealist, explaining to Davos seminars how ‘there will be almost no poor countries left in 20 years time’. Presumably this will happen with a lot of charity, but without minimum wages. Certainly Gates’ money will have significantly shaped the form which that ‘development’ will take, not least through the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. Forget democratic national projects, the world’s richest many will decide what sort of food you will eat and which corporation will supply your medical needs.

In an article in the Observer at the weekend, the head of the World Economic Forum, Robert Greenhill, said that mental and physical health were a priority of this year’s summit. Good business depends on good mental and physical health.

Yet some of the participants at Davos are directly responsible for the crisis and austerity measures which have been responsible for mental health problems spiral across Europe. In Greece, suicides rose 37% from 2009 to 2011. The Red Cross published a shocking report on Europe, characterising the continent as one of mass unemployment, suicides, social exclusion, deep poverty, crime, racism and collective despair. We should remember that none of this was an accident.

Charities like Oxfam which talked about inequality did some essential work to frame the global context in which Davos takes place. But we need to do more than put these issues on their agenda. The corporate elite represented at Davos cannot be allowed to meet in luxury and pretend they have the answers to the world’s problems. They are the world’s problems. Gates has helped us unmask the true interests of the corporate elite.