Thursday assorted links


1. Considering that it appears the largest land owners were also the largest holders of 'slave assets' (talk about a term that does its best to get around using the considerably more accurate term 'human property'), one does wonder about the other parts in connection with 'recovered in income and wealth proxies by 1880, in part by ....' Maybe share cropping is mentioned in the paper, of course.

species become extinct when they are no longer able to survive in changing conditions or against superior competition.

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Agriculture and textiles are pretty low margin. The South was a low-tier economic backwater until well into the 20th century. After air conditioning was invented, people started realizing how good low taxes and right-to-work laws are and that was when Southern wealth hit more parity with the rest of the country.

The South is still the biggest laggard. They need more immigration to whip them into shape.

@#1- the paper's original contribution appears to be that, like Gregory Clark showed for Scandinavia in "The Son Also Rises", that "old money" in the post-Civil War US South recovered nicely within a generation. It was previously well known that per capita GDP declined the most in the US south, since whatever the slaves won, the white lost a lot more, decreasing per capita GDP. Source: my brilliance on US history.

We need some about Breitbart and Jezebel links to go along with the WaPo stuff.

6. Interesting, and perhaps interesting that the FBI does not treat this as a right-wing problem, but something else:

FBI Director Christopher Wray said Thursday that white supremacy presents a "persistent" and "pervasive" threat to the United States, breaking from President Donald Trump, who has sidestepped questions of whether white nationalists present a growing problem.

Basically, if you are right wing you do want to keep a lot of light between you and the white supremacists. Even better, you might acknowledge them as a threat to our society.

My father said, “If you want to be a somebody, you’ll have to learn a melody. Private catering is grandiose—a bit disheveled yet a form of migration. Less romantic perhaps, different than navigation.

His favorite restaurant was the Hard Rock Casino at Foxwoods.

He said, “There are a lot of bartenders that never rationalize. And it’s funny because the pitch has to be between a tomb and tome. I mean idealism can have it’s place. How does someone serve without being charitable? And even if you could, you couldn’t look at yourself in the mirror.”

But I was a bartender for five years, and I still say my prayers.

The first bar I worked at was called Scrap Paper on Avenue A. My mother warned about Halloween parties and drag queens, but it never got that bad. There, it wasn’t apartments or parks or, not the symmetry of city life nor the transience of murmuring ladies, it was the eternal mystery of do-rags, the address of semblance and sense.

Actual white "supremacists" evolved from white gangs in prison that were created to protect white prisoners from black supremacists/gangs. Most of what the left and MSM (redundant) refer to as white supremacists or white nationalist are not either but simply people that disagree with the left about race issues. Just as if you disagree about gender/gay issues you are a homophobe. This balkanization is how the left deflects any discussion of the merits.

#2 "NPEs encourages upstream innovation and discourages downstream innovation." I can't read the paper, but I wonder how it measures "upstream innovation".

Is rounded-rectangles an "upstream innovation"? What about the "non-innovating producers" who use that rounded-rectangle "innovation" to actually create a product that consumers want?

(Note that I chose rounded-rectangles as an example because of the absurdness of that particular patent, without regard for the broader context of the Apple-Samsung dispute.)

Upstream innovation is the base patent, while downstream innovation is the secondary patent (the one that depends on the base). To use your analogy, the base or primary patent invention, which the paper claims troll patents improve on, would be the patent for the rectangle Gorilla glass on the smartphone (I assume this is what you are referring to in your example), while the secondary patent would be for the 'rounded rectangle', a tiny incremental improvement.

Actually the paper is rather trivial, as it's well known patent trolls usually litigate an absurdly broad base patent (an early publication date and 'black box' diagrams that can mean anything, to make it easy to sue people since the claims are so broad) so arguably any money they get 'improves on' (encourages) such base patent inventions while discouraging secondary patents (since people are afraid of improving on the troll's domain). Case in point: imagine single-speed intermediate windshield wipers for cars as the base patent, and then the 'improvement' or secondary patent being variable speed intermediate wipers (such as having three speeds or many speeds for the wiper blade). Why would a company design variable speed wipers (as is common now) if a troll owns the base patent (which has just one speed)? They would not, until such time the base patent expired. Hence base patent inventions go up and secondary patent inventions go down.

It's also well known that secondary inventions decline in certain industries (but not chemicals as I recall, where sometimes it's all about the secondary improvement not the base patent that sells well) when a base patent is strongly litigated (a chilling effect). I even sent AlexT a couple of papers on this a while ago.

Bonus trivia: from memory the inventor, or was it the assignee, a patent troll, maybe Jerome H. Lemelson, got rich off the 'single variable speed intermittent automobile windshield wiper', but had to jump through a lot of legal hoops before they did so.

“Indians know about floods,” Howe went on. “We’ve lived with them for millennia. But now the Missouri is so altered, with all the dams and the levees, it only makes it worse. This recent water was from just a couple of storms. Up in the mountains, they’ve got the heaviest snowpack in years, and soon that’s all going to be coming downstream, too. We aren’t done with this flooding yet.”

#1 How Carpetbaggers and publicly anti-slavery Northerners secretly helped and benefited from Jim-Crow in the post-war South, now available in hardcover

#4 My brother stopped taking Adderall after 15 years several years ago, and his experience convinced me that for several classes of pharmaceuticals the entire point is making it so you can't ever stop. We really need to start addressing some of these minor-to-mild psychiatric and personality issues with something other than medication.

#6 A) It's WaPo and B) what in the hell does "right-wing" even mean? Aren't extremist Wahhabist Muslims "right-wing"? Are anti-Boko Haram vigilance militias "right-wing"? Was eco-terrorist Ted Kacysinski "right-wing"?

'Assymetric' targeting is not going down and it will not go away. The solution is to A) stop with this globally ridiculous double standard regarding terrorism and B) harden targets, like Israel does.

Right. And you get the media really pushing any attack is 'right-wing'. Like the nutbag in NZ who was an eco-terrorist. He hated outsiders because he thought NZ could not sustain any more people. Right wingers are not typically known to worry about eco sustainability.

Over the past three decades, large-scale terrorist attacks motivated by extreme-right beliefs have almost exclusively been carried out by lone actors and small autonomous cells. The reason is simple. Maintaining an extreme-right group with terrorist ambitions is impossible in Western democracies today due to state monitoring and the lack of external support and safe havens. A recent example of extremists who tried, but failed, to prepare an attack while keeping a public profile is the British group National Action, whose leaders and activists are currently serving long prison sentences. This leaves extreme-right revolutionaries with two options: operate in the public but refrain from illegal behavior, or go underground.

The key to understanding today’s terrorist threat is to be found underground—especially the online undergroundThe key to understanding today’s terrorist threat is to be found underground—especially the online underground, which has become a breeding ground for contemporary extremists of all kinds, including the Christchurch shooter. Notably, he announced his attacks in advance on an online forum and even shared a Facebook link used to livestream the attacks.

As I say, if you want to build distance from these guys, oppose them and everything they stand for.

No "eco terrorist" bs and misdirection.

I denounce right wing terrorists and inane moralistic internet posters. Both are scourges upon civilization!

You are a very silly person. You are right to oppose evil, but wrong to think that no one else can or should as well.

White supremacists are bad.

Shout it from the rooftops.

Sorry, I don't take advice from inane, moralistic posters that are obvious hypocrites.

That is the trap that came with the whole "moral signalling" framework. You can't believe any authenticity but your own, if you even go as far as believing your own.

"You can't believe any authenticity but your own"

Sorry mouse, but that's pure projection on your part. I have no problem believing in the good faith of most of the posters here. You're one of the few that's been consistently hypocritical and argued in bad faith.

Do you remember this gem you wrote:

anonymous - "The bible says "judge not," and that's good advice for daily living."

And yet here you are moralizing and telling all of us that we should judge "white supremacists as bad". Go sod off you hypocritical fool.

Seems simple to me. All this dodging and name-calling and obfuscation because conservatives refuse to stop associating with white nationalist terrorism.

Seems easy enough. All conservatives could easily say:

“I do not now nor have I ever supported immigration control or enforcement. I renounce ICE and the Border Patrol as white privilege incarnate. I will not claim that culture nor learned behavior exists outside of denouncing toxic white masculinity as the source of all evil in the world.”

Game on Nazis. By the way, That category includes Tyler “Nazi” Cowen, Israeli Jews, white Americans, Asian Americans, African immigrant Americans, and anyone who reads Finnegan’s Wake and takes it seriously.

Wow, that's stupid even for you:

"All this dodging and name-calling " ... "Tyler “Nazi” Cowen"

Someone in this thread sounds like a fascist....

"All conservatives could easily say: I do not now nor have I ever supported ..."

That wasn't "me" actually.

An imposter who dials it past 11 and breaks the knob.

By the way, fake anonymous really left a card laying on the table. You actually made the argument that we cannot judge white supremacists, because that would make us worse.

No, once again you've said something wrong. I didn't say "we" couldn't judge white supremacists.

I said you are a hypocrite because (when convenient) you lecture others not to judge, but then you turn around and judge anybody you like. And obviously, you weren't just judging white supremacists in this thread.

The only people I criticized by implication were those who would not disavow white supremacists.

You did disavow, but you're still cranky.

I think his point is that you can oppose evil without being a complete wanker. Maybe you could give it a try sometime.

At least I have, you know, actual arguments. Not just pouting.

There isn't an argument to have. Nobody is defending right wing terrorism. You're arguing with yourself and claiming victory.

Wait a sec, there might be something to talk about here, if you are up for it. "Nobody is defending right wing terrorism" but "Homeland Security Disbands Domestic Terror Intelligence Unit"

Does that really make sense? If no one is defending, and everyone is down, on what the FBI Director just called "a "persistent" and "pervasive" threat to the United States?"

Why would we back off?

I don't know, but it's very unnerving. Can Kristallnacht be far behind?

You link mentions right wing groups, and others like the NK & Pittsburg killers, but does nothing to tie them together. It even mentions a socialist group. Other media attempt to leave the impression the NK killer was right wing when his rants say otherwise.

Denouncing folk who shoot up religious centers or believe bizarre pseudoreligious and barely plausible dogma is easy and should be done, preferably without schmaltz and with a stiff upper lip of course.

But if you're gonna throw out public loyalty to your ancient nations (or even 200 hundred year old ones) to put "light" between you and these guys, there's barely any point being right wing at all. There's some phrasing about babies and bathwater, which without implying that victims of these sorts of things are bathwater....

(Well, maybe there is you're rich and grasping and simply want a convenient figleaf of an ideology that helps you avoid paying tax, but for normal people who are right wing for normal reasons that include a dose of cultural nationalism, the most functional and prosocial form of collectivism ....)

Relatively recently prominent Republicans, like say Ronald Reagan, applauded both our institutions and our immigrants.

[A certain] media pushes "right-wing" incessantly because it is a substitutional antecedent to the Muslim extremist terrorist threat which was, is, remains, and will be the largest threat to America and the world, and which they are desperate to avoid talking about (where possible), redirect (when applicable), or reclassify and explain away at any cost.

1) Muslim-extremist terrorism blows away (no pun intended) everything else in terms of body-count.
2) Muslim-extremist terrorism is far-and-away the most resource intense and sophisticated, with a highly-developed PR apparatus globally.
3) Muslim-extremist terrorism is the most dangerous FOR ALL CLASSIFICATIONS of people around the world, including other Muslims.
4) Muslim-extremist terrorism continues to attract the most support - especially financially - from across the globe.
5) Muslim-extremist terrorism is responsible for the greatest capital and resource outlay by both govt. and non-govt actors fighting against it than any other comparable peer.

[A certain] media are desperate - beyond desperate - to create Muslim-extremist terrorism, terrorists, and Islam generally into yet another 'protected class' of people because of their usefulness to them as a wedge in fighting their long-time political enemies.

You and we can debate ad infinitum about 'motivations' for any number of terrorist activities globally, but there is one group about which debate can be a foregone conclusion, especially when [a certain] media starts saying, "we should suspend judgement until we have more facts...."

What is the white-supremacist equivalent of gulf-state financing?

parking your car and donating to charity

Good question. As recent examples, Breivik and Tarrant were both pretty much self-financed and self-planned.

I'm reminded of Michael Corleone's discussion in Godfather II...

Michael: "[about the unrest in Cuba] I saw an interesting thing today. A rebel was being arrested, and rather than be taken alive, he pulled the pin on a grenade he had hidden in his jacket. He killed himself and the captain of the command." - Michael Corleone
Guest: "Ah, the rebels are lunatics!"
Michael: "Maybe. But it occurred to me, the soldiers are paid to fight; the rebels aren't."
Roth: "What does that tell you?"
Michael Corleone: "They can win."

A deep support network is an asset, but a deep support network can't create motivation. If your side needs deep support for motivation, your side will lose.

the individual makes a leap of faith like a person chooses an instrument. if the community applauds, the individual gains recognition. education, alas, ought inwardly flow against whatever definition of recognition society holds. awards are fine and dandy but wealth trumps power. lust trumps emotion. music, season, reason, these things aren't transferrable. facebook bombed the education system. is it safe to say facebook had a negative effect (not net) on individualism in America? how is that possible? a professor has to have an engrained will to power, whatever the cost, often at a great cost--at great cost to what? well, how important is history to your definition of recognition?

#5 is excellent. Sopranos is still one of my favorite shows but I have to admit that i always felt down after watching it. It is like watching at real life amplified (at least when compared to my reality!). It is a masterpiece.

#5: I think trying to draw social science lessons from a fictional series involving outlier personalities and behaviors is a fool's errand, but what do I know.


And using it to support your own notions about psychiatry is just as stupid.

"7. Rooting for the bad guy is easy… as long as he’s got charisma."

That is my problem with gangster stories. I often find that these criminal family characters (from The Sopranos, The Wire, Godfather, Goodfellas, etc) are often devoid of any humanity so I cannot identify with them. I can identify with more "humane" criminals like Walter White from Breaking Bad, because he was not a mafia kind of character but more like an average joe getting into the drug business.

Interesting, I have the exact opposite reaction. I can relate with mafia people because they are no different. I remember getting angry at people who were "rooting" for Walter White *because* I could identify with him and thought that he was basically being an asshole.

6. Interesting thesis: the ascent of right-wing politicians has reduced right-wing violence. Right-wingers become agitated when the other hold superior positions. That's certainly the case down here in the South, where right-wingers were in a perpetual state of agitation while Obama was president but the fever has subsided since Trump was elected. I have praised Mueller for this same reason: he has avoided statements and actions that might raise the fever. Unfortunately, that doesn't portend well for the future, as the other, not solely but especially black females, challenge Trump: nothing angers right-wingers like vocal, liberal females, black, vocal, liberal females being beyond the pale.

Of course nothing angers Liberals like Trump. And the Left has been in a perpetual state of agitation while Trump has been President.

Anger? No, that's not the right word. It's more like amazement than anyone could watch today's "one year warning" press conference and see anything other than a dotard just talked down off the wall (as it were).

No coherent argument whatsoever, just a circular ramble about how China and Mexico are bad, and good, and could stop everything bad from happening, but won't, so they are bad, but they are good, and we love them. So one year warning, before we tariff "their" cars that somehow come here.

"No coherent argument whatsoever"

The thing about stepping up is you gotta do it.

Name the coherent argument that closing legal traffic at the Mexican border improves our welfare. Or for that matter that a sudden 10% tariff on US auto makes assembled in Mexico.

Handwaving aside, I think this is the most important question on the page.

Oh, a little footnote on where "the base" is going with this:

Tucker Carlson: "Mexico is a hostile power that is seeking to undermine our country and our sovereignty"

Because you know, once you have "loyalty" you'll go there.

One of the more amazing lines from the President of the United States:

Trump: "We have a stupid system of courts, it's the craziest thing in the world."

It keeps out hundreds of thousands of low-IQ net tax-eaters who burden infrastructure and constitute yet another grievance group in a system never designed with them in mind.

Give it a couple more turns of the wheel, like a black, female, socialist president (look at the obsession with AOC...from both sides) followed by President Trump Jr. The Girardian spring has been wound and the only way to release the tension is through a lake of blood. It’s 1850 all over again.

You spelled "Alex Jones" wrong

Par for the course, though, right? There was hardly any left-wing violence in the Soviet Union from 1930 to 1990, because there was really no rational basis for it: the country was thoroughly communist. The dominant ideology doesn't usually need direct terrorist-style violence, because it's already completely embedded in society. Meanwhile, in the US during the latter half of the 1960s and most of the 70s following the collapse of the KKK, by far the bulk of political violence was left-wing (all those XYZ Liberation Front groups), and on a scale larger than what we see today from white nationalists or Islamist radicals, because the country itself was much more conservative than it is today.

In 1970, Angela Davis was a terrorist communist outlaw buying guns to assassinate a federal judge, today she's a socialist civil rights hero.

There was hardly any left-wing violence in the Soviet Union from 1930 to 1990, because there was really no rational basis for it: the country was thoroughly communist.

I think you may find the reason is actually more to do with acronym NKVD.

I mean, do you really get a government so radically left wing, or radically right wing, that radical terrorists simply have nothing to agitate about? I bet the radical left wing would've still caused plenty of trouble to the authoritarian Soviet leadership... but the Soviet Union was a brutal totalitarian state, so they couldn't (not sympathetic to the Soviet Union here, but it's more likely than.... "Well, radical left wing terrorists got everything they wanted" - they'll *never* be satisfied, even under full Communism; to be left wing, at the furthest extremes, is simply to rebel reflexively for the sake of rebellion itself).

I mean "rational basis" - far left wing extremist terrorists are rational thinkers?

6. Interesting thesis: the ascent of right-wing politicians has reduced right-wing violence.

Now we get Bernibros trying to wipe out the House Republican leadership.

#4 - I thought this was a parody at first. I am sure it is the writers fault, but it was hard to maintain sympathy with someone when every sentence contained some reminder of the main protagonists life as a privileged spoil rich kid from some rich east coast old money family.

I'm not seeing any indication of the effects of 'privilege' - private law - in her life. She had things that money could buy, and perhaps that spoiled her. What it seems to have bought her was iatrogenic problems.

What she didn't have was satisfactory guidance and the right coping skills. 'East coast old money families' may teach their young some things useful in certain venues. Hers seem to have subcontracted the task of addressing her problems in living to medical school graduates.

I read it through the other day and found her quite convincing and clear-eyed, and was glad for her. In the past she would probably have had a couple or three WASP-y "breakdowns" - would she have gotten as far as suicide without the modern means at hand, that were furnished by her doctors? Maybe the breakdowns would have been punctuations to a more normal family or marital life. My initial impression, that the fact her Ivy League peak on an antidepressant-compensating stimulant of some sort - there was such a laundry list of drugs, none of which actually "worked"* - was signified by her "playing the best squash of her life" was, uncharitably, that she was not helped by the myth that most women have in them some potential greater than any they will find in the home. But years of suffering seem to have demonstrated that she is remarkable, after all: probably more so, after all, than most of her Harvard peers.

*Hopefully we'll have those someday.

I thought the same. Those who want hundreds of pages of this kind of character should read Prozac Nation.

The old Slave Owners, like all elites, were probably on the right side of the bell curve, generally speaking. Are we surprised that they eventually managed to succeed in new employment?

White-collar employees, husbands with socially prominent wives, living off the fat of the land!

the evolution of time is morally distinct

In the old south, as it is in every nonindustrial economy, the real wealth is in the land, not the slaves. Slavery was one way to assure that you had the labor to work the land. So it did not take long after the civil war for the landowners to reorganize the labor markets so they still had the the labor to extract wealth from the land. Slavery was a symptom of the system, not the underlying source of wealth. I see nothing in this paper that looks at the system this way.

No, slaves were salable productive assets - real wealth. After the war they rented the labor (and may have been better off renting for a' that on a year-to-year basis).

Human capital and entrepreneurship are assets too, just not ones you can convey.

You still need to feed and house them, and in the times of sustenance America, that'll cost as much as hiring the labor.

5) File under "I've been binge-watching some TV series so I might as well squeeze a column out of it."

I know a college prof who did a big study riffing on Sons of Anarchy, that biker series with Katie Sagal.

5. I thought Tony killed Ralph because Phil was set to torture Ralph before killing him for murdering Phil's brother, so Ralph was a dead man anyway.

That's wasn't Ralph. It was Tony's cousin who I think was also named Tony.

1: "the sons of these slaveholders recovered in income and wealth proxies by 1880, in part by shifting into white collar positions and marrying into higher status families"

To me there's a by-your-own-bootstraps circular logic in that story: they started marrying into higher status families -- but aren't those families the ones that just lost massive amounts of wealth due to the Civil War and emancipation?

If young men in say Mali want to raise their lifetime wealth, it doesn't seem like a feasible strategy for them to marry into high status families (in Mali at least; obviously if they went to Europe or the Middle East they could find wealthy fiancees. But I don't think the sons of former Confederate slaveholders found wealthy spouses by journeying to the North.)

About the New Yorker story. That young woman has some much privilege, such advantages. Expensive education, Harvard, brains, beauty, rich parents, travel experiences.

What did she lack? I recommend Viktor Frankl's "Man Search For Meaning." As a therapist, he found that that many patients simply lacked any meaning in their lives. He found that those who survived the Nazi concentration camps (like him) were the ones who had meaning. That young woman seems to me lacked any meaning. So many advantages, but what were they for? She revealed nothing in the article about what she wanted to do with her life. What's it all about, girl? So she drifts through life, taking meds, floating through other people's lives, not knowing what to do or where to go.

To no surprise, the New Yorker article says not one word about religion, or even philosophy. Religion can give meaning and purpose and direction as well as provide an ethical framework. All these wealthy families trying to raise children to join the elite, where life is good, but what is the elite good for? They are raised to be "successful" without saying what is success good for. DId the young woman ever consider taking time to help the less fortunate?

It is a lost generation.

In this context, I think about the late Alan Krueger who was a famous and respected Ivy League professor, involved in public life, and yet he still committed suicide for no known reason. What good is being in the elite if you don't even have a reason to stay alive?

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