Uncommon Descent Serving The Intelligent Design Community

Economics and policy issues

Is China seriously contemplating [imminent?] invasion of Taiwan?

In 1958, full orbed hot war threatened to break out after dogfights over the Taiwan straights that saw a breakthrough use of Sidewinder missiles that brought down several Red Chinese Migs. We may be contemplating that brink again, if a current report on a claimed, leaked audiotape of discussions by Chinese authorities is credible. (The audiotape is in a Chinese dialect, likely Mandarin but possibly Cantonese.) As the first linked reports: In the past week, in response to the instruction of the “Central Military Commission of the State Council” in Beijing on “transitioning to a war time system,” a meeting took place involving senior officers of the People Liberation Army’s Guangdong Military Region of the Southern Command and the principal Read More ›

L&FP, 52: Fallaciously “settled” (=begged) questions and the marginalisation of legitimate alternatives

Nowadays, we are often told “The Science is SETTLED,” as though Science is ever finalised or certain. To go with it, those who have concerns or alternative views and arguments are marginalised and too often smeared, scapegoated or even outright slandered. Sometimes — as Dallas Willard warned regarding moral knowledge — in this rush to judgement, legitimate knowledge is derided, denigrated and dismissed, leading to manipulation and indoctrination. Then, of course, wide swathes of the media and many educators will often jump on the bandwagon. As a result, policy and government become increasingly divorced from due prudence, leading to ruinous marches of folly. How can we rebalance the situation? First, as the media are the main conduit of indoctrination and Read More ›

L&FP, 51: The fallacy of the false dilemma

A classic rhetorical tactic is to pose a dilemma, an argument where the opponent is presented with alternatives, all bad so forcing him or her to either make a bad choice or back away from the position taken. In a variant, one of the choices is presented as a lesser of evils, which is to be taken even reluctantly. It is a powerful rhetorical strategy, and so it is often posed even when it is unwarranted, which is where fallacious dilemma arguments come from. This post is about that fallacious case, and the following infographic will help: Here, we see how policy proposal or argued position P is presented with a dilemma, Q XOR R — two exclusive, allegedly exhaustive Read More ›

Dinesh D’Souza on socialism:

Let us watch: Food for thought. END PS: As it seems necessary here is the historically anchored political spectrum with Overton Window: And, here is what we need to know on culture/colour revolution pushes

Barna profiles a generation on the cliff’s crumbling edge — 78 million US Millennials

Barna’s current report, “New Insights into the Generation of Growing Influence: Millennials In America,” is a portrait of a generation adrift, dancing on the edge of a cliff, and reflective of generations of civilisational betrayal by intellectual, policy/political, media and educational leadership leading to a destabilised culture. And so, this cannot wait, triple bereavement life crisis or no, this needs to be highlighted and preliminarily assessed here at UD: The report’s snapshot summary tells the grim story in outline: And: Also, we may add on Religious identification, affinity and affiliation: We can start with the obvious, as within living memory of those of us who were of age to notice, between 1989 and 1991, Marxism’s credibility as a principle of Read More ›

Candace Owens interviews Dr Stella Immanuel and dynamics of hope (yes, JVL, it’s back to answering the “never let a crisis go to waste”/ “inevitable crisis of Capitalism” Marxist revolutionary strategy)

Yes, Marxist ideology pivots on the idea of mounting crises of Capitalism opening the door to socialist transformation. (Where, yes, pandemics obviously count as do incidents of police brutality or anything else that can be used to hang the failure of Capitalism and/or Christendom crisis template on.) Back in the ’30’s, Stalin thought THE Crisis had arrived, but Kondratiev — his star economist — instead produced an honest analysis that discovered generation-length long-wave cycles; oops. Stalin had him shot. Kondratiev, of course, was right. Yes, he produced a breakthrough analysis and paid for being right with his life, at the hands of the notorious Marxist Dictator, Stalin. Simplifying: The typical 8 – 11 year business cycle we worry about is Read More ›

A Sandia National Labs Whistleblower on Culture form Marxism imposition by HR Department

Yes, it’s real: And if this is being “mainstreamed” at Sandia National Labs, it’s going to be all but pervasive in Government and in the sort of corporations that typically get government contracts. Across today, DV, I intend to put up screen shots from his presentation, as points to ponder. As a start, clip 1: Clip 2: Clip 3: Petersen’s caveats: Let me add, on HR etc vs surveys of actual black Americans: Similarly, though there is a general violence problem in the US and such is echoed in policing, US DoJ figures as cited give a picture different from the narrative (especially if we recognise that, sadly African American youth are heavily over-represented in violent crimes, as perpetrators and Read More ›

Dr Thomas Frieden, formerly Director of the US CDC, 2017 in NEJM, on the need to go beyond placebo-controlled studies as “gold standard”

One of the key steps in dismissing evidence of efficacy of hydroxychloroquine-based cocktails in treating early stageCovid-19 for patients in vulnerable groups on an outpatient basis is the use of the premise that such evidence is of low quality as it does not match the “gold standard” of placebo-controlled, randomised tests (often. RCT’s). However, observations are observations, natural regularities are often observable from the first few trials, evidence is evidence, ethical and practical considerations are real, and valid scientific methods do not reduce to applied statistics. It is in that context that we should attend carefully to remarks by Dr Thomas Frieden, writing in NEJM 3 1/2 years ago, in terms that uncannily anticipate our current woes: Despite their strengths, Read More ›

After 100 years and 100 million needless graves, Dinesh D’Souza on the C21 “revival” of “Socialism”

Thirty years ago, “Socialism” collapsed in utter disgrace. What lies behind the seeming resurgence in C21? (Apart from Alinsky style “community organisers” beavering away, Frankfurt School “Critical theory” and linked “Deconstructionism,” all tied to the smear that those who seriously challenge Marxist notions and linked policy agendas are crypto-fascists at best?) Here is a Prager U video discussion with Ms Candace Owen: (Here’s hoping it does not get mysteriously deplatformed.) I again point to a framework for understanding political dynamics: . . . thus, a re-thinking on political spectra: With a warning on Red Guards: Let me add (July 31), given the comment by BR on a victim of a Stalinist show trial, a telegram from Albert Einstein on the Read More ›

Azithromycin (HCQ’s sidekick) is apparently far more than an antibiotic

There is a report that Azithromycin is far more than an antibiotic. Some may wish to watch an interview with Dr. Michael Lisanti on antibiotics for COVID-19 and cancer. But — without endorsing as “proved” fact — let’s cut to the chase scene: COVID-19 coronavirus is particularly dangerous for the elderly or those with aging-related senescent illnesses like diabetes, cancer, heart disease, and lung disease. As Professor Lisanti said in a statement on his new paper in the journal Aging, “If you look at the host receptors of COVID-19, they are related to senescence. Two proteins have been proposed to be the cellular receptors of COVID-19: one is CD26 – a marker of senescence, and the other, ACE-2, is also Read More ›

Current oil and commodity prices — U/D, WTI May future, hits MINUS $37 per bbl!

As my personal blog tracker reports: Let me add, a 1-year look: This of course reflects the impact of economic slowdown due to lockdown, but it also implies room for considerable stimulus. END PS: A look at going into depression: A strongly shocked economy can tumble well within the PPF, sticking there for years, as in the 1930’s. A long enough pandemic lockdown could send it there. However, I doubt it, though a recession is likely.

BREAKING: After Prof Raoult’s 78 of 80 success ratio test, France approves [Hydroxy?]Chloroquine for Covid-19

France 24, English has the vid: This is a breakthrough of hope for those who may fall victim to the disease. HT, Vivid. I link the Daily Wire report Vivid links, given the onward confirmation: France Officially Sanctions Drug After 78 Of 80 Patients Recover From COVID-19 Within Five Days By  Amanda PrestigiacomoDailyWire.com The French government has officially sanctioned chloroquine, a drug often used to fight malaria, for certain patients infected with the novel coronavirus, or COVID-19. “The French government has officially sanctioned prescriptions of chloroquine to treat certain coronavirus patients,” France 24 English reported Saturday. “This ensures continued treatment of patients who have been treated for several years for a chronic condition with this drug, but also allows a Read More ›

Why Economics and ID go Hand-in-Hand

In my previous post about Bob Murphy’s support of ID, some people commented that Bob Murphy, being an economist, doesn’t count much in support of ID. However, those comments would be misplaced. Although Bob Murphy did not get into this in this podcast episode, there is actually a direct connection between ID and economics. First of all, as I have pointed out innumerable times, ID is not a theory of biology or of origins, it is a theory of causation. Biology and origins are application areas, not the core idea itself. Naturalism causes us to have blinders on not just in the case of evolution, but in any number of other academic endeavors as well. When we assume that humans Read More ›

A note on the value and validity of investors

Thirty years after Communism collapsed in ignominy, it is again fashionable to bash capitalism and the investor classes. The tone of that rhetoric is sufficiently scapegoating to justify a pause here at UD to make a few notes on a case in point. Accordingly, from the “Further” thread: KF, 232: >>the following are further interesting for the moment: >>recovery was bought by a program of tax-breaks, limited for the less well-off but open-ended for billionaires and big corporations.>> 0: Let me add some balancing context, on tax burdens in the US, c 2016: In 2016, 140.9 million taxpayers reported earning $10.2 trillion in adjusted gross income and paid $1.4 trillion in individual income taxes. The share of reported income earned Read More ›