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November 22, 2014, 10:36:21 am
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1  Forum Community / Forum Community / Re: Update XIX: Melancholy and the Infinite Napping on: Today at 10:33:01 am
As the Bible says in the book of James - Faith without works is dead.

Yes, Bushie, yes! Accepting this is the first step towards salvation and acknowledging divine Truth.
2  Forum Community / Forum Community / Re: Update XIX: Melancholy and the Infinite Napping on: Today at 10:30:48 am
Bushie is as competent in handling of his life as Antonio Lopez de Santa Anna was in handling Mexico.

You mean His Most Serene Highness Antonio Lopez de Santa Anna. Our Dear Friend wouldn't want it any other way.
3  Forum Community / Forum Community / Re: How much do you currently weigh? on: November 20, 2014, 10:03:32 am
Somewhere between 175-180.
4  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Regional Governments / Re: Thirteenth Pacific Legislative Council on: November 19, 2014, 08:39:17 pm
I nominate Ebowed to fill the vacancy for Pacific Justice.

5  General Politics / International General Discussion / Re: The Great Korea Thread on: November 19, 2014, 07:07:36 pm
The most likely regime "change" in North Korea is a military takeover with a state Burma style social order. In this case South Korean conglomerates would invest and be quite influential , but the government would still be very adverse to outright Southern political interference.

Well if that happened then yes, that is what would happen. But isolation has its benefits- clearly, or else they would have changed by now; Burma was pretty isolated under the military as well, under Than Shwe and so forth (I assume you mean Burma before a few years ago).
6  General Politics / International General Discussion / Re: The Great Korea Thread on: November 19, 2014, 05:54:22 pm
What would be preferable for South Korea, if they had a choice: a North Korea publicly seeking reunification on the South's terms, or a North Korean puppet state that remains independent but the South controls behind the scenes?

Your latter option sounds a lot less like a "puppet state" per se than it does a "gradual/controlled reunification", which is what I think is most likely to happen as is: that the North becomes a de facto Southern protectorate after the "fall of the regime" (whatever that entails) in a nominal confederation but essentially separate from the South. Over a period of 10-20 years North would be developed to a level where full reunification would be non-cataclysmic. 

The Northerners would still experience a dramatic rise in liberties, their standard of living, but would at the same time be used to (for a time) by sheer custom to curtailments on their rights that most would consider excessive but would prevent the sort of catastrophe most imagine happening in the case of a sudden reunification (for example, I imagine people needing a permit, much as is the case with the Chinese Houkou system, to move to the South). I easily see the North, which was historically the more industrially active of the two regions, becoming the next massive center for low cost manufacturing.
7  Other Elections - Analysis and Discussion / International Elections / Re: Japan Dec 2014 early lower house election on: November 19, 2014, 05:21:42 pm
According to the World Bank, gross savings have fallen from 33% in 1989 to 19% in 2012; if this chart on Google (of WB data) is accurate then Japan has fallen below virtually all of the other economies in the region. They'd be an above-average Western European nation, but that's hardly comforting.

I can't easily find data on the past two years, but if their household savings rate is any indicator of the general trajectory things have not been getting better. This would suggest that there is less room for any kind of policy to "mobilise savings" to have a significant effect.

Even more alarming is that the gap between GDP and potential GDP was -1.165 % in 2013, compared to an OECD average of -3.051 %. According this paper review, GDP will exceed potential GDP by 2015. Things do seem to point to Japan hitting constraints rather than it underperforming; there would need to be (either way, but in this case far more crucially) major macro-structural reforms if things are to change.

The most obvious thing would be boosting birth rates by all means possible, but increasing per-capita output is a necessity; increasing the participation of women in the workforce, restarting nuclear power plants, and a whole other host of strategies are going to be needed, and to his credit Abe has been doing that.

But the issue of declining innovation (as evidenced by the declining market share of Japanese firms) is going to have to be addressed, and the shinsotsu culture ought to be target No. 1, but I don't know how much, if anything, Abe's done in that regard. The Koreans have done quite a bit to eradicate their version of it, and I'd say the chaebols are more influential there than the keiretsu are in Japan, so it should be possible (in theory).
8  Other Elections - Analysis and Discussion / International Elections / Re: Japan Dec 2014 early lower house election on: November 19, 2014, 04:29:12 pm
Of course the real agenda is to try to get a mandate before Abe has to make hard decisions which could be unpopular.   Like restarting the nuclear power plants (I was in Japan back in Aug 2014 and they have a real power issue) or an reinterpretation of the constitution to allow for the use of the Japanese military for collective defense.

Well then good luck to him.

I saw a link saying that Japanese companies were still hoarding cash even with higher inflation rates :/

The Japanese sector is very skeptical and risk averse given so many false starts at reform.  Hording cash reflects this concern is really an example of Ricardian equivalence as it will act to negate the stimulus efforts of Japanese officials.  These elections will be seen as another trick will make the Japanese private sector even more skeptical and risk averse.  They pretty much think at some time in the future it will be time to pay the piper with massive tax increase, mostly on capital to sort out this current fiscal and economic imbalance.  Why invest in capital when it will get taxed massively in the future.  So the solution is to horde cash.

This is a self defeating-policy though, isn't it? By failing to invest the economy only stagnates further, expanding the imbalance and making it more likely that they government will levy confiscatory taxes to get to the money and spend it; I'm not sure what sort of policy there is to correct that beyond openly threatening to tax uninvested capital stock if individuals continue sitting on it.Some sort of wealth tax on assets held in savings accounts?Of course if the Japanese are as risk averse as they seem to be this could just backfire and they'd just put the money under their beds, so to speak.

That, and I don't know enough to say if there really is this hoarded cash the people are sitting in that could get them out of this mess- some people seem to think that's not the case; the Japanese are getting older and are drawing on their savings more argues one economist, which seems logical to me. It does seem all too simple- if only the Japanese would have more children and would invest more of their money, their economy would fix itself.
9  Other Elections - Analysis and Discussion / International Elections / Re: Zambia presidential by-election - January 20, 2015 on: November 19, 2014, 04:23:36 pm
I don't think anyone will get shot, so I'll say this is certainly very fun to watch.
10  Forum Community / Off-topic Board / Re: ESA's Philae spacecraft to land on comet tomorrow on: November 19, 2014, 04:10:09 pm

Tumblrites and people who act like them must actively search for sh**t to whine about. What's funny is the friend who made that shirt for the guy was female.

Ummm... women can do sexist things as well? The guy apologized and seemed to feel sincerely bad about making a dumb decision, so most of the controversy at this point is coming from outraged MRA types anyway.

Can we not give this any more air time than it's already received?
11  Forum Community / Forum Community / Re: The Simple Truths Silver Mine on: November 19, 2014, 04:04:07 pm
Now watch the catholics get huffy and indignant and holier than thou.

I say if you're going to be Christian, then stick to the message of Jesus.

Indeed. Feel free to continue advocating frothing at the mouth about JAAAY-SUUUS and waving your hands, hopping around like monkeys, and calling it a religious service. This is the real heresy, the real paganism, practically Vodoun. Ugh.


(though I will say I object to his possible slight at the syncretic Caribbean faiths)

Nothing against them, of course.
12  Forum Community / Forum Community / Re: Update XVIII: 15 Miles From Lunch on: November 19, 2014, 03:59:00 pm
So it's now time to really start thinking about a title for the next season. Put on your thinking caps people!

Rudolph the Pleasant Side Dish

13  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: NSA reform bill goes down in flames on: November 19, 2014, 03:51:16 pm
Lief, I thought you supported this sort of thing. Also why did Rand Paul vote no- what exactly was this supposed to do?
14  Forum Community / Forum Community / Re: Opinion of multivariable calculus (also known as Calculus III) on: November 19, 2014, 03:37:55 pm
FF (R)
15  Forum Community / Off-topic Board / Re: Dumb and Dumber To on: November 19, 2014, 03:28:03 pm

Indeed.
16  Forum Community / Forum Community / Re: Opinion of Bushie's Marian theology on: November 19, 2014, 03:10:17 pm
I must imagine that he must practically hate the Virgin Mary as Protestants seem to do?

Now watch the catholics get huffy and indignant and holier than thou.

I say if you're going to be Christian, then stick to the message of Jesus.

Indeed. Feel free to continue advocating frothing at the mouth about JAAAY-SUUUS and waving your hands, hopping around like monkeys, and calling it a religious service. This is the real heresy, the real paganism, practically Vodoun. Ugh.
17  Forum Community / Off-topic Board / Re: Dumb and Dumber To on: November 19, 2014, 03:05:08 pm
To what?
18  Forum Community / Off-topic Board / Re: ESA's Philae spacecraft to land on comet tomorrow on: November 19, 2014, 03:03:02 pm

Really helps the comet-hit-earth-and-started-life-as-we-know-it theory

So you're saying... we're aliens?! Shocked


But Christ. They don't call it "rocket science" for nothing.
19  Forum Community / Forum Community / Re: The Good Post Gallery II on: November 19, 2014, 01:40:14 pm
I have never watched Friends, but I do caution you against trying to create reality around tv. Tv is not reality. I had no intention of being condescending. As I said, your English is excellent. I don't even come close to it in a second language, and I'm sincerely very impressed by your language skills. As it happens though, I don't "holler" at anybody. I'm not a hillbilly, and I don't shout at people. I am quite aware that how one says anything has a great effect on the meaning. Perhaps you're imagining a sinister tone where none exists. I do greet men from time to time in passing as well. And people greet me too. As I said, it's merely customary, usually as two people walking in opposite directions pass one another, and primarily exists to acknowledge the other person because walking right by like somebody else doesn't exist at all feels slightly rude.  Perhaps you are unaware that minor issues of etiquette vary from place to place? I'm sorry you live in a county where people (apparently) assume that a cursory greeting implies something underhanded.  And, frankly, I'm sorry other people have to live in the same country as you because you feel the same way. What an awful way to go through life.

Ok, I'll have to assume that you're trolling now. I actually have been to NYC as well as (I suspect) way more countries than you have. You sound completely disconnected from reality but I can assure you that the normal thing is not for people to do this. At least not in actual cities.

If you honestly think what's going on in that video is people greeting each other in passing so as to acknowledge each other's existence, well...I don't know what to say. I guess if you travel more you'll realize this to be untrue?

I grew up in a medium-sized town in rural Idaho and I understand memphis' point of view. In Idaho, it's the norm for people to greet strangers in passing and this cultural norm applies to both men and women of all ages. That being said, memphis is totally off-base: in cosmopolitan centers throughout the US, greeting a stranger in passing is a deviant act and it is usually predatory sexual behavior when it occurs. African-Americans and Latinos are more prone to engage in this predatory behavior because in their communities, streets and parks are viewed as communal spaces to be used for organic social interaction.

Sexism exists in most societies. The form it takes is determined by cultural substrates and social roles defined by the legacy of historical forces. All too often, feminists fail to understand this and make claims that are colored by chauvinist sentiments.
20  Forum Community / Forum Community / Re: Who do you support in the raging sexism battle in the Absurdity thread? on: November 19, 2014, 01:35:43 pm
Gustaf (normal New Yorker)
21  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: NSA reform bill goes down in flames on: November 19, 2014, 01:30:27 pm
I'm not a terrorist, so excellent news!
22  General Politics / Individual Politics / Re: Rudy Giuliani vs. Michael Bloomberg vs. Andrew Cuomo on: November 19, 2014, 01:16:19 pm
You people are terrible.
23  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Atlas Fantasy Elections / Re: Office of Governor Varavour on: November 19, 2014, 01:05:24 pm
I nominate Ebowed to fill the vacancy.
24  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: Politico: 10 Maps That Explain the Next Election on: November 19, 2014, 01:02:31 pm
Disturbing.
25  General Politics / International General Discussion / Re: The Great Korea Thread on: November 18, 2014, 09:20:45 pm
What would be preferable for South Korea, if they had a choice: a North Korea publicly seeking reunification on the South's terms, or a North Korean puppet state that remains independent but the South controls behind the scenes?

Option 2, but it would require the intervention of Alien Space Bats for that to happen.

Of what?
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