Tuesday assorted links


5) Hong Cuck

Dong Kong

A question on Constitution Day
For purposes of risk weighted bank capital requirements, where in the U.S. Constitution can we find the Founding Fathers allowing regulators to assign a risk weight of 0% to the sovereign, the King, and 100% to the citizens?

#4 So we kowtow before Singapore's regime and its bandit leaders.

4. One of the comments at the link: "Where are all the libertarians who defend Singapore because (they have virtually no taxes on the wealthy) freedom?" State capitalism is coming to America. Cowen and his colleague Ian Bremmer have produced videos to explain how to adapt and prosper.

5. I wouldn't support such a proposed university course in the US either. It comes across as a thinly disguised effort to mobilize students for a specific political purpose. Humanities programs in the US are rife with courses like that. Now the English and History departments are baffled as to why students are fleeing those majors.

If the Singapore government allows salaried employees of Yale to disembark, they're being more than courteous.

In Singapore, they call a spade a spade and not a bloody shovel.

If you have to cite Vox, which itself is guilty of smearing people in order to pander to woke Millennials, you've got nothing.

And in America, we call TDS, TDS.

You been trolled, but even then your answer is really, really, bad. "You said Vox, I win."

Vox is bad enough, but not as bad as the even more deranged people usually cited.

I agree, dismissing a source without addressing the argument isn't a logical debate.

A better response is to look at the article.

Vox mentions The New York Times major blunder, but here's a good synopsis of what happened:


tldr; The New York times published a report by a prominent Democrat and former Bill Clinton lawyer, Max Stier, that he says Kavanaugh sexually touched a female at a party 30 years ago. The information that the NYT's left out:

""the female student declined to be interviewed and friends say she does not recall the episode.""

It looks as if Matt Stier made this story up and the Truth has caught up with him.

The Vox article, amazingly enough, attempts to make the case that materially changing a story after the fact is not a correction .

"Fox News hosts and reporters have described changes the New York Times made to Robin Pogrebin and Kate Kelly’s story as a “correction” at least a dozen times.
But there’s just one problem — the Times did not, in fact, “correct” anything.

To make a “correction” to a story indicates something was factually wrong. The newspaper did not acknowledge anything of this sort."

See rather than dismissing Vox out of hand, isn't it better to spend a few minutes and point out how stupid they really are?

I did check and the Vox article isn't from the Onion and isn't a deliberate spoof as far as I can tell. Yes, it's dumb enough, but it seems to actually be a legitimate Vox article. Feel free to correct me if that somehow is a spoof.

No, it's not better to waste time on it because Vox is consistently wrong (as shown in its latest feeble attempt to defend the NYT and smear Justice Kavanaugh).

If Kavanaugh did nothing wrong like say Gorsuch, Trump's other candidate who is more conservative than both Trump and Kavanaugh, he wouldn't be smeared. The man clearly has a past.

Of course he's been smeared because they will use the thinnest reed (all accusations go back decades and not coincidentally involve fuzzy memories and no real corroboration) to try to discredit the person slotted to replace the "moderate" Kennedy. I agree that it would have been better to pick some more hard-line given the inevitable Bork-ing tactics (instead of Bork we got Kennedy).

I haven't talked about Kavanaugh in several weeks. Whatever. As far as I'm concerned, the two sides who are all hopped up right now deserve each other.

Just because you disagree with that speech that makes okay to ban it? What happened to free speech? We in the West have forgotten what makes our civilization work. Let's just rip up our Constitution while we are at it.

There has always been an Overton Window. Better to fight over what's in it than pretend it doesn't exist.

Salovey should worry about creating a climate conducive to free inquiry in New Haven. https://www.thecollegefix.com/yale-master-erika-christakis-quits-teaching-due-climate-not-conducive-civil-dialogue/
It's funny how Tyler comments on Singapore, but not on events involving universities in America, where he might tread on some toes woker than his, and get in trouble.

2. Colossal waste of time ... except, I felt a pang of gratitude for being a relatively successful 50 year old who doesn’t have to care about that stuff. But to each her/his own.

Sorry should be 4. While I'm at it I'll add that r=the Singapore government has made it clear from day one that anyone who wants to advance a political agenda has to start their own party and run for Parliament or get involved in an existing party. No stealth politics especially in universities. The old Nanyang University decades ago was shut down by LKY because he deemed it a hotbed of communist agitation. Singapore history 101.

"While I'm at it I'll add that r=the Singapore government has made it clear from day one that anyone who wants to advance a political agenda has to start their own party and run for Parliament or get involved in an existing party."

Except when not even that was allowed. Let us be blunt: we are talking about a totalitarian regime where there is no free press, no independent churches, no seperation of powers and the Party rules omnipotentially a bunch of terrorized slaves.

Have you been to Singapore. Nice place, did not seem like people were terrorized slaves.

This gives me hope that the Chinese understand thoroughly the struggle against progressivism and how to fight it.

"This gives me hope that the Chinese understand thoroughly the struggle against progressivism and how to fight it."

I am sure they do.

"Nice place, did not seem like people were terrorized slaves."
I am sure Berlin looked like it was lovely in early 1939, too.

"This gives me hope that the Chinese understand thoroughly the struggle against progressivism and how to fight it."

lol. This guy may have been to Singapore, but he didn't pick up on much.

"More than 80% of Singapore's population live in HDB flats."


I’m a progressive Democrat. Are we now advocating for the nationalization of all of the private housing stock?

I missed that at the latest Warren speech.

No, the interesting thing is how low information libertarians and conservatives are trained to cite Singapore as a free market miracle, all while not understanding how Singapore actually works.

(But it does also suggest that free market miracles can have public housing percentages above zero.)

Do you charge Warren rent or does she live in your head rent free?

I am a Warren supporter and contributor, so I do not know how to answer that question.

I was clearly being facetious. Nowhere in the Progressive mainstream has there been a call for nationalizing housing stock. Maybe you should learn to detect sarcasm better.

Are these flats of poor quality?

Is the rent too high relative to what people get?

Are they being well maintained?

If the answer to these is that they look like "the projects" in America then indeed that would be a scandal.

However, if the answer to all that is that the system is working well at meeting the needs of the populace in an efficient manner...what is your problem exactly?

We should give credit to Paul for not hiding behind Leo Strauss coded speech. You go, Paul!

As long as no one talks about the war(*), and leaves it to Trump and Mitch McConnell to work out.

* - the new one that may be grandfathered in under the old one

** - the reason "this is fine" was always the wrong answer

Has a new war started?

History shows that waiting until after is not the best way to prevent. Like protesting the invasion of Iraq two weeks after it started.


To be sure, this is a complicated problem, but that is cause to demand a full congressional debate and vote.

And nothing grandfathered in under prior approval for "the war on terror."

Whatever happened to your professed admiration for John McCain? https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o-zoPgv_nYg

I hope we can all respect, even admire, people without agreeing with them all the time.

I can see how McCain's life experience led him to believe that the world is a dangerous place and that bad actors should be confronted.

He sometimes might have been right, and he sometimes might have been on a bit of a hair trigger.

Those of us without security briefings have to make a guess about which informed expert to trust.

Trump doesn't seem to be that. He seems to be a madly spinning wind vane. "Locked and loaded" one minute, not looking for war the next.

Shallow, but hey, it's up to you to tell us who you are.

#5: Those homes are really tiny. I can see why you couldn't squeeze a whole second family in. What's the solution, though? Is there any room for significant new construction?

From my understanding, physically, yes, but politically, no.

Much of Hong Kong's land mass is protected wild space, especially in the New Territories. There are places where you can go north of Kowloon and even though you're a half hour drive away from incredibly dense housing, you'd never know it. Look up the Maclehose Trail - long stretches of this might as well be in the wilderness. And the land can get a bit steep, but not unworkably steep.

But politically it's a non starter. Housing in HK is best described as a Tullock-ean Transitional Gains Trap, where the price of housing today is partly sustained by its artificial scarcity. If you were to release a lot of land en masse for development, that scarcity value would fall and a lot of very influential and very wealthy landowners would lose a lot of cash. The state earns revenue from the release of land at market prices too. I recall hearing some time back that Tung Chee Hwa lost his job because he proposed increasing the supply of housing and the property market fell, making his position untenable. (To be fair, the Asian Financial Crisis struck at the same time.)

#3 & #5:

Housing is getting more expensive, production of durable goods is getting streamlined, so the skill level low bar to become more than a ZMP worker keeps getting raised. Human capital is not improving at the same rate.

On top of that, US blue cities subsidize the homeless lifestyle, while extracting enormous tribute from builders and landlords.

For my rental unit in Portland, the city is extracting more than 25% of the rent between property tax and water. I expect it to exceed my mortgage payments soon.

It is indeed ironic, that Kenya comes up with a market based solution that is better for the clients than the solutions of Hong Kong and Portland, Seattle, SF, LA etc.



While it is hard finding online references, I recall seeing room rentals in the Andes mountain regions of Peru and Bolivia. These were typically brick/concrete buildings where tenants rented a room, while there was a common shower/toilet as well as cooking area, and a gate between courtyard and street that would close sometime between 10pm and midnight. My recollection is that typical monthly rents were between US$ 50 and 100 10 years ago.

We (North Americans) have criminalized the good solution to the homeless problem (cheap dormitory style living for adults), and decriminalized the simpler solution of tent cities that leads to public health problems.

For some reason Hawaii is the state that breaks that mold


Hawaii is not the only one that came up with the "village concept to end homelessness", but what is being showcased is simply the common cash grab related to middlemen nonprofits with overpaid English majors from Yale and Harvard as CEOs, as well as their buddies with minority and/or female figurehead owners.

Before you know it, we're back to $400K/unit "affordable housing".

There might be some exception to "affordable housing" having outrageous cost per unit, but those are few and far between:



If you're serious about affordable housing, what you need is not a village of tiny wood houses, but a Patel style cinder-block motel like structure, that survives abuse by tenants, and AI controlled surveillance to counteract the criminals that typically take control of affordable housing, whether those criminals are bureaucrats, sub-leasers, or hoodlums that invade the premises of single mothers, to provide a ZMP father figure.


The "buddies with minority and/or female figurehead owners." was supposed to be "contractor buddies with minority and/or female figurehead owners."

"If you're serious about affordable housing, what you need is not a village of tiny wood houses, but a Patel style cinder-block motel like structure.. "

If I am serious about affordable housing, I think I'll take anything.

"what you need is not a village of tiny wood houses, b"

The Kahauiki project looks doable. Those look like a reasonable compromise between durable and cost. Of course crime could be a significant factor, but that's true anywhere.

So now you can extrapolate.

Communes. Move property taxes to 1000% for anyone with children. Singles life okay with nice property. Children make it insane. But no worries! Government owns 99% of land so you’ll live in a Warren-House.

Sounds legit.

#2: 21st century popular culture. I suppose I should keep a closer eye on it, e.g. by reading articles such as this one. But it sure didn't make me want to get an Instagram account or follow the influencers or leaders or whatever they're called.

I actually have been thinking of getting an Instagram account, but only as a potentially handy way to share photos with friends and family. I don't need or want that other stuff about followers and algorithms and likes and all that garbage.

Instagram provides something the likes of which narcissists have never had - a permanent "camera" taking and displaying their best images of themselves. Hollywood, radio, newspapers, and magazines used to be the gatekeepers restraining the public presentation of this pathology, but no more.

Instagram, moreso than even Facebook, is narcissism unchained.

No hierarchy of achievement at an Unconference? Well, someone's deciding who gets invited and why. Or do people just show up at random?

1".Unashamed, I abandon the first conversation and focus solely on the important person---------I’ve already forgotten the names of the two people I started the conversation with."
Reflects more on Craig rather than that it was because it was a Conference.

5. Why don't they park some prison barges off Hong Kong and use them for accommodation? In Australia we call them cruise ships.

#1. – I wonder if the quasi-random assignment of people to seats at dinner comes from the nascent world view Cowen has been trying out: Toward a theory of random, concentrated breakthroughs (2.28.2019):

I don’t (yet?) agree with what is to follow, but it is a model of the world I have been trying to flesh out, if only for the sake of curiosity. Here are the main premises:

1. For a big breakthrough in some area to come, many different favorable inputs had to come together. So the Florentine Renaissance required the discovery of the right artistic materials at the right time (e.g., good tempera, then oil paint), prosperity in Florence, guilds and nobles interested in competing for status with artistic commissions, relative freedom of expression, and so on.

2. To some extent, but not completely, the arrival of those varied inputs is random. Big breakthroughs are thus hard to predict and also hard to control.

We need to discuss the real problem with Hong Kong and housing, which is that the rich are not willing to pay enough taxes to support government services. Thus the government must use proceeds from land sales to supplement their budget. The government cannot "give" land away to the poor for social housing, it needs revenue.

This is unlike Singapore, where they pay more in taxes, thus the government does not depend on land sales to finance itself. Thus land can be granted to public housing.....

The rich in Hong Kong have to pay more taxes....

It is unfortunate that HK received an unrepresentative system of government from the British while Singapore received a much better, more democratic one from the same. But it also helps that Singapore since it's founding has always had a more socialistic approach to housing championed by PAP under LKY while in HK this kind of pragmatism is outside of the overton window. HK's oligarchal system just does not care about the bottom of society and poverty hovers quite high around 20%. I agree that HK could tax its rich more. In Singapore, over 50% of its revenue come from corporate and personal income taxes while in HK the same combination covers only about a third.

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