– Government regulation of certain aspects of private financial transactions are fascinating.

Yglesiocracy: "Smart People have no use for the concept of the Rule of Law. Smart People favor the rule of Smart People."

– More massive mail bailouts for entities that "didn’t case the crisis." (Do I need a trademark sign after the quote?)

Words to live by: "the sane alternative is to be a reactionary with a sense of humor."

– I’ve written before that huge portions of the blogosphere and economic research are dedicated to explaining that which Charles Murray and Richard Herrnstein already explained. This debate between Tyler Cowen and Erik Brynjolffson is a good example. Cowen argues that we have economic and technological stagnation while Brynjolffson argues that we’re experiencing massive gains in both areas. Of course, they’re both right. If you look at median levels, as Cowen does, you see stagnation. If you look at mean levels, as Brynjolffson does, you see advancement. Murray and Herrnstein predicted that we’d see massive gains among the intelligent and stagnation (or regression) among the increasingly larger non-intelligent. In other words, yawn, Murray and Herrnstein were right. The Bell Curve was written in 1994. How long will it be before mainstream economists figure out what it says?

Peggy Noonan:

Later, with an almost beautiful defiance, Mr. Cain told the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel: "I’m not supposed to know anything about foreign policy." That’s what staffers are for. "I want to talk to commanders on the ground. Because you run for president [people say] you need to have the answer. No you don’t! No you don’t!"

Yes you do. It was as if history itself were unknown to him, as if Harry Truman told Douglas MacArthur, "Do what you want, cross the Yalu, but remember to tell me if we invade China."

Cain is right, of course.

15 Responses to Randoms

  1. Frost says:

    Reactionary with a sense of humour? Resignation, even. I’m reminded of Mangan’s sidebar quote about writing purely to entertain ourselves and friends, while pissing off our enemies. Loosely paraphrased.

    Btw, in reference to an earlier post, I haven’t quite fled to Thailand to chase tail and wash my hands of western civ. Admittedly, I haven’t completely ruled the strategy out in the long term, but for now I’m training, writing, studying, reading, and doing only a reasonable amount of tail-chasing.



  2. RS says:

    > Smart People have no use for the concept of the Rule of Law. Smart People favor the rule of Smart People.

    Nope… I’m quite smart, and I want rule by the superior under a 200-word constitution. Men of character, spirit, intelligence, realism and honesty, and comprehensive education. I’m probably smarter than Yglesias but I would pick neither him nor myself to rule. (I would be an adviser.)

  3. RS says:

    There’s probably not much that’s dumber, crazier, and more deleterious than bowing before intelligence instead of before wisdom.

  4. spandrell says:

    I guess it depends on what staffers is Cain using.

    We can’t really ask to a POTUS that he knows his shit on foreign policy? Not asking him to program in assembler nor know his quantum physics. Just to know which countries are hard to invade.

  5. IT’s rather the attitude here that annoys me. Cain could have received some intensive tutoring about US foreign policies before he was asked about such issues, at least for the sake of public image.

    Now the public just thinks he’s an incompetent leader whose only goal is to gain popularity but no idea how to lead the country.

  6. B D says:

    Bow to he that beats you into it by force or kills you, submit only your corpse. My fellow Americans, you give up too easy. Seriously. ye bow to these mush headed pussies? Ye would be the bitch of a flex wrist pseudo scholar?

    Now we will have an Augustus, or Marius, or even a Sulla. Or worse. These silly, corrupt and jaded children we call a government have usurped and bankrupted the Nation, they can never hold it. All forces correlated, we face a trial. Whoever wins delude yourself not we shall return to the Republic, nor delude yourself about the nature of who wins. However it will be someone you could bow to for a better reason than they’re a “smart person.”

  7. Matthew says:

    On a business trip last week, I found a nearly pristine, hardcover copy of The Bell Curve for $2 on the outdoor clearance rack of a used bookstore in west L.A. I have never actually seen a copy in person before, as I live near Austin, but I’m pretty sure this is because the hiptards sniff out heretical books and burn them before they can make it to the shelves of Half Price.

  8. dearieme says:

    “which countries are hard to invade”: almost all are easy to invade. They’re hard to occupy.

  9. james wilson says:

    Cain is remarkably unprepared for a man who has had his eye on doing this for a long time. But he may be revealing something about us, however unintentionally. We know way too much about foreign policy because we are way too involved in foreign policy. These demands appear to have often warped our thinking more than they have informed it. But they call this education.

  10. Mark Tully says:

    Cain is right for presidents of today. Staffers make all the important policy decisions; presidents don’t even write their own speeches.

  11. RS says:

    Since dysgenics has come up a lot lately:

    From the Magazine
    Pity the Bulldog, Bred to Suffer in Cuteness

    Some animal-welfare experts say modern breeding of the bulldog to play up the cute effect — flat face, huge mouth, big eyes, smile — is putting the future of the breed at risk.

    Comment Post a Comment | Read (111)

    OMG! No!

    I mean, I take such issues seriously. I know that bulldogs, overall, already suffer grossly from severe apnea thanks to human actions. That’s nasty, I don’t like it. But it’s quite surreal, I mean how bout a little attention for our own genetic well-being, too – could we divert 5-10% of that concern towards humans? No, we know that would be grotesquely anti-humanist.

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