Post Charlottesville Democrat Victory in Virginia

Virginia Acceptance Speech

No outright mention of Charlottesville — but still a big speech in Virginia.

The comments section is split with some calling it an Obama speech.

Any reference to White Nationalism, Healing Wounds, or Affordable Care Act interpreted as outright Communism.

All subtext in the USA!

And why is the Virginia drawl so similar to the Texan?

LA Times reaction

Daily Beast on the Charlottesville Shadow

 

Accidence & Incidents: Aurobindo, Koestler, Oakeshott

Plus ça change, plus c’est la même chose

FT political leader writer, Sebastian Payne recently referred to the Conservative Party’s pre-eminent post-war philosopher — Michael Oakeshott.

So why do Tories love him?

1. Oakeshott was a philosopher — not a neo-liberal economist.

2. Unlike Friedrich Von Hayek, Milton Friedman, or even Arthur Seldon, Oakeshott was a bona fide English Gentleman.

3. He wasn’t actually that interested in politics.

Oakeshott was appointed Professor of Political Science at the London School of Economics in 1968 – at a time when Daniel Cohn Bendit (Nous sommes tous les Juifs Allemands / We are all German Jews) was over from Paris attempting to foment revolution at the London University.

By simply not being a leftist, unlike his predecessor Harold Laski, Oakeshott did more to foster the LSE neo-liberal counter insurgency than many realise.

Oakeshott was very good friends with Oliver Letwin’s mother Shirley Letwin who wrote the Anatomy of Thatcherism shortly before passing away in 1993.

A lot of these relationships are outlined in the wonderful Thinking the Unthinkable by Richard Cockett.

Thatcher once said “Economics are the method; the object is to change the heart and soul.”

Given that Oliver Letwin has since discovered Behavioural Economics, as outlined in a previous post, it is telling that he chose to name his new book on the Conservative Party — Hearts and Minds.

Nudging people into loving deregulation hasn’t gone quite according to plan. In a way Letwin was hoist by his own petard. He wrote a paper called Drift to Union in 1988 in which he pointed out the risk of a Ever Closer Union and a European Superstate. But nevertheless he believed it would have been better to remain in the customs union whilst arguing for reforms.

He talks about the morning of Brexit as reminiscent of passages by Nadezhda Krupskaya on the morning of the Russian Revolution. A coup d’état had taken place with the ‘arch-Machiavelli’ David Davis being one of the major players.

Was all this madness just to suit the ambition of a bunch of Tory psychopaths?

A Guide to the Classics

Oakeshott wrote a book in the 30’s about how to pick the winner at the Epsom Derby.

Applying conservative principles to the world of horse-racing Oakeshott translated his way of thinking to something everyone could relate to — dealing with uncertainty.

In some fields this could be termed rationality, empiricism or even heuristics.

Oakeshott’s principles included checking a horse’s breeding and form and not just betting on a horse because of its name.

“Airborne”

Despite Oakeshott’s advice I couldn’t help but notice — at the top left of an early edition — a horse going by the name of ‘Airborne’.

Airborne, for a couple of years, was also my nickname for Daily Mail Columnist Peter Oborne.

And it just so happens that Oborne wrote the foreword to the June 2017 reissue of Oakeshott’s Guide to the Classics — the only reason I picked it up in the first place.

Merely co-incidence? Of course — but fun all the same.

It turns out that Airborne was a surprise winner. Nobody had heard of it but lots of people bet on it because of the airborne division in the war.

Oakeshott never claimed to make you rich, merely to help you think about how to think.

The Routes of Co-Incidence

Psychogeography

Several years ago I met a cousin of the great Indian teacher and Spiritual Guide Krishnamurthi. He (the cousin) was friends with my mother. I understand both were devotees of the late Sathya Sai Baba.

Krishnamurthi (for that was also the cousin’s name) told me all about Sri Aurobindo and the Upanishads.

For a mix of Oakeshottian and non-Oakeshottian reasons I decided to follow these leads, albeit at a leisurely pace.

The Krishnamurthi who I had  spent time with was an eloquent inspiring man.

I soon discovered that I had (briefly) attended the same school as Aurobindo in London — St Paul’s.

I call my reasoning partly Oakeshottian because of the  breeding component.

Not racial necessarily — but I did also find out that Aurobindo was Bengali.

Turns out most Bangladeshis may be Dravidian — not unlike yours truly — a Tamil from Sri Lanka (via Paddington).

Aurobindo would have been a Hindu – like the Bengalis I came across at St Paul’s

They were all very high caste. Or so it appeared.

From Death to Death will go the man
who discriminates between,
What is seen in the unseen world
and unseen in the seen

This is my re-edit of a line in the Upanishads that I found highly useful.

As a Hindu, once I die, I don’t want to come back.

Gillian Tett: Burgeoning Shadow Banking Sector dependent on Regulatory Arbitrage

In the FT today Gillian Tett points out that while the media glare falls on the big banks that are currently reporting their third quarter earnings, the real story is the Shadow Banking sector’s continued colonisation of those sections of the market that were once served by those very same big banks.

Rules that were originally brought in to make banks lend more responsibly and avoid another global financial crisis have created an opportunity for the Shadow Banking sector.

Despite low interest rates and quantitative easing ensuring that there’s plenty of money sloshing around the system, it’s taken innovation and financial engineering to bypass the new rules and kickstart lending to riskier borrowers i.e. small businesses.

Tett says “The real secret of of finance today is that the real credit growth in the US is happening in the world of private capital.”

She calls out the process whereby big banks lend to the Shadow Banking sector which in turn lends to small businesses as being nothing more than ‘regulatory arbitrage’.

As the journalist who warned of the imminent credit derivative fuelled credit crunch in her forensic piece The Dream Machine back in March 2006 – when it comes to regulatory arbitrage, this journalist really knows what she’s talking about.

 

Sir Oliver Letwin used Nobel Prize winner’s ideas to torture innocent Brits

Nudge

Richard Thaler has just been awarded the Nobel Prize for Economics.

He’s best known for co-authoring the bestseller Nudge with Cass Sunstein in 2007.

Sunstein went on to become President Obama’s Regulatory Czar while Thaler provided the ideas for Oliver Letwin’s Behavioural Insights or “Nudge” unit.

Here Letwin, a former Thatcher adviser who wrote Privatising the World while working for N.M.Rothschild, introduces his take on what he refers to as Social Market Economics.

Some call it the Third Way.

Letwin boasts that given that Marxism has been thoroughly debunked ( or so he thought ), it is now possible to be both Deregulatory and Interventionist.

What is interesting about this statement is that he doesn’t mean Interventionist in the economic sense which would involve some form of nationalisation or meddling with the market such as QE.

Here he is talking about PSYCHOLOGICAL INTERVENTIONS a.k.a. NUDGE.

Letwin’s wife Isabel was the head of Legal Services for the Department of Health during the passing of the Health and Social Care act of 2012.

The Act opened up the NHS to Private Health Insurance firm United Health — also known as Optum.

Mrs Letwin was also in charge of Legal Services for the Department of Work and Pensions.

This means she was responsible for overseeing the implementation of austerity in UK Job Centres and for the disabled which involved private firms such as ATOS claiming that people who were sick and disabled were fit for work and then cut their welfare benefits and made them work for free on the work programme.

Letwin and Thaler may claim to be enlightened individuals but the deregulatory interventionism they spearheaded caused much misery and cost many lives.

Kids

Mrs Letwin supported the oversight panel of the Jimmy Savile Inquiry into his activities at Broadmoor Hospital in West London. This in itself is a major conflict of interest given how close the Letwins were to Jimmy Savile’s good friend Mrs Thatcher.

Shirley Letwin, Oliver’s mother, wrote the Anatomy of Thatcherism and Jimmy Savile attended nearly all Mrs Thatcher’s New Year’s Eve parties when she was Prime Minister. It’s unlikely they wouldn’t have met.

On the subject of Tories and Paedophilia Lord Finkelstein has attacked the police for the way they have communicated the investigations into Edward Heath’s private life.

In this article Finkelstein defends Cyril Smith and even Jimmy Savile.

Finkelstein was friends with Greville Janner so he defended him too.

Having moved in Tory and high up Lib Dem circles in the eighties it is inconceivable he wouldn’t have ever heard about what went on.

I don’t believe the modern Labour Party are particularly good at listening to people at the moment or that their economic programme completely adds up.

But to celebrate another torture complicit nobel laureate feels so wrong. Interesting to see how ideologically close the Obama administration were to Cameron, Letwin and even May.

Just because Trump is in charge, I don’t think the bigger picture will really change.

Tory Confusion over Brexit

The Pound looks likely to collapse during the upcoming Tory Party conference

Financial Markets are looking for reassurance.

Instead they have been treated to David Davis.

Amber Rudd will remember her speech about companies having to report the amount of foreign staff on their books.

This policy was a disaster – but the Government don’t seem to have learnt a thing.

As a run on the pound is inevitable, it would be good to hear from Labour how they would react.

Social Cleansing Silicon Valley Style

Today’s FT has an excellent piece on Social Cleansing in Silicon Valley.

It made me think of Jamie Bartlett‘s BBC Show, The Secrets of Silicon Valley.

I’ve only seen episode one in which Bartlett interviews the young head of Y Combinator — a Silicon Valley venture capital company.

The conversation quickly moves from automation and disruption to universal basic income.

Old school socialists believe in economies that produce jobs.

This puts them at odds with Silicon Valley tech entrepreneurs.

But a read of the today’s FT’s Silicon Valley social cleansing report shows how little of its Dublin cash pile or attention span Apple spends on cleaning its footprint.

Forget the filter bubble, the FANGS are only after your blood and your eyeballs so you can share your status and press like while they geographically displace you on a basic income ready for your new role as fresh faced contributor to the Organ Trafficking Market.

Meanwhile the Vampire Squid gets ready for its ‘alumnus’ Gary Cohn’s imminent contribution to Public Service as the likely next head of the Fed where he will run interest rates and QE so as to take getting high off your own supply Zombie Economics to a whole new level.

Have financial cannibalism, nepotism, necrophilia & incest become so normalised that we barely register – let alone resist?

Do Boiling Frogs dream of Red Tape?

Meanwhile Amazon and Whole Foods are slashing food prices in the organic food space while Google team up with Wal Mart.

So now the unemployed can eat organic food with their Basic Income. Of course.

I don’t mean to sound alarmist or anything but in the history of financial and non-financial regulation, has any institution existed that has been able to stand up to these all-powerful conglomerates and actually create anything that remotely protects human beings and the planet from the self destructive logic of pure financialisation?

Would the Kurdish resistance movement in Syria (currently US backed) count?

They’re fighting ISIS who also seem to be US-backed so I see some problems with this simplistic analogy – but good effort.

The UN and the EU seem to be far too captured to put anything forward that will question the logic or values of the Transnational, US and Corporate lobby.

The EU illegal state-aid case against the Apple and Ireland arrangement that allows Apple to avoid paying any tax anywhere is going nowhere.

And all the media is bought up by very stock market players they are supposed to be reporting on.

Bezos bought the Washington Post and Mrs Jobs just bought the Atlantic.

If it’s Breitbart Vs the New York Times, Economist & FT then we will never find a solution.

Bannon isn’t anti-tech. He’s just pro-White People dominating global politics and Economics.

How different is that to the people at Facebook, Apple, Amazon and even Google and Microsoft (the last two firms are run by Indians)?

Hillary was supposed to be the Shareholder / Wall Street candidate.

But Trump is about to appoint a Goldman banker to run the Fed, so what difference does it make?

(Spaking of California, in the UK we seem destined for our very own Snoop Moggy Mogg)

It looks like the Vampire Squid has launched a counter-coup within the White House.

May I suggest revisiting Matt Taibbi’s permanently relevant Great American Bubble Machine.

The existence of tools such as language and numbers ultimately haven’t been used to liberate us from this wanton destruction.

I wonder why.

Perhaps this is how it is all supposed to be – we ought know our place and only ever articulate the unchanging desire to continue conspiring to keep everything moving on its current path..