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Bonam last won the day on September 9 2018

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About Bonam

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  1. But the same people who whine about "male aggression" also whine about financial success and want to tear down the rich and successful, too. It is, at least, consistent.
  2. Agreed. The only way to show your honesty is to continue to be honest for long enough that the person who you are trying to convince of your honesty thoroughly establishes the fact of your honesty in their minds. And then, once they fully trust you, is when you betray them of course and move on to the next victim.
  3. Seems to be the case already. I assume 100% of information I casually hear/see is wrong and disregard most of it, while researching the veracity of the small subset which is of enough importance to warrant the time to do so.
  4. Bonam


    Image from the recent New Horizons flyby of Ultima Thule, the most remote object ever visited by a human spacecraft:
  5. Bonam

    Term limits on Congress

    I think Senators should be elected for one 6 year term, and then have the opportunity to be elected to a 2nd term of 12 years. After that, they're out. Not having to think about the next election and being there for 12 years would allow a long term view and allow independence from the party apparatus which would not be able to entice them with funding/publicity for the next election cycle. The first 6 year term would be long enough for voters to decide based on their record whether they are worth voting in for 12 years.
  6. Certainly part of the present course towards "hard times" is a result of people no longer considering objective reality as important. People don't care what the truth is, they only care about the narrative that best fits their purpose or mindset. Hence the social media and normal media echo chambers, where people wallow in outrage of trivialities while remaining totally uninformed of reality. For an example, look at how those on the left can accuse the right of science denial, while seeing no contradiction in their own opposition to GMOs, which is an anti-science stance. Most aren't even aware of the fact that the scientific consensus behind the safety of GMOs is as prevalent and overwhelming as the consensus behind climate change, and if given cites to that effect, would deny them with the exact same tactics and vehemence and illogic as those on the right deny climate change. For another example, look at the resurgent flat Earth movement. Fully 2% of Americans, that's 6.5 million people, strongly believe the Earth is flat, and are allergically averse to the omnipresent and incontrovertible proof to the the contrary. A further 14% (!!!) aren't sure whether its round or flat. The numbers are 4% of solid belief in flat Earth and 30% (!!!) not sure among millennials, a true embarrassment to my generation. Democrats are less likely to believe the Earth is round than Republicans, too, which might surprise many on the left who think that it's the right that is more anti-science. Cite: https://www.forbes.com/sites/trevornace/2018/04/04/only-two-thirds-of-american-millennials-believe-the-earth-is-round/#78d903c47ec6 And then of course there is religion, which is fundamentally the source of so many people's acceptance of such magical thinking. Religion trains people from birth to believe what they want to believe rather than what there is evidence for, short-circuiting their brain's ability to reason properly from an early age. On the left, modern "progressive" ideology serves the same function as religion does on the right.
  7. The lines of improvement of standard of living and increasing GDP can be drawn right through the great depression and WWII, which in the long run were only minor blips, quickly recovered from. And yet, the people who lived through that period were definitely in "hard times". If you view everything from the thousand mile view, you could argue that all of human history has been steady and accelerating progress, and that even the Bronze Age collapse, the Fall of Rome, and the Black Death were just minor blips along the road. And indeed I have made that argument in the relevant context, pointing out that the present day is the most prosperous in history and the best time to be alive and that the future is likely to be even more so. But if you zoom in a bit and look on the scale of human generations you can definitely see that history consists of some generations that live in relative peace and prosperity and others that live in times of terrible war, famine, and desperation, and that these alternate on a not-too-inconsistent "cycle". Not consistent enough to be useful as a predictor of the future, but enough to be insightful when looking backward. As for cultural convergence, I'm not sure about that, I see the world polarizing into mutually exclusive ideological camps rather than converging towards something universal.
  8. All previous periods in human history were "hard" compared to the modern day. Access to modern medicine, for one, makes the working class of today richer in the way that matters most than any king a century ago or before. But set within the context of the era, the period of US western expansion was soft. Limitless almost free land and resources. Just enough resistance to make people feel adventurous and bold for fighting the natives. Everyone could think of themselves as a brave frontiersman and mighty warrior, while in fact they were just farmers picking off the last remnants of a people that had been devastated by waves of disease. The natives were hopelessly outmatched in terms of population, organization, technology, etc. As soon as the limitless free land started to hit the boundaries, the country disintegrated into civil war based on ideological differences.
  9. Yes, here, you replied to it afterwards , and then started this thread 2 days after I think it makes sense for it to be 3-4 generations. That's the time it takes to forget hard learned lessons. The children of parents that grew up in hard times usually carry on some of that mentality, having been raised that way. But the grand-children are twice removed and grow soft. 3 generations is also the time that wealth tends to last in families. I think 3-4 generations is a good rule of thumb for how long it takes society to forget things on a societal level. I don't know if it would be ok even then. Nations can rot away even if they aren't threatened from the outside.
  10. By "came upon" you mean I posted it The cycle is about 80 years, which used to be 4 generations. US examples: American independence in 1775 followed by about 70 years of prosperity until the Civil War, American civil war in 1861 followed by 65 years of prosperity until the great depression, Great Depression - WWII, followed by prosperity until the present day, which has now been 73 years. Nowadays 4 generations is closer to 100 years so we conceivably have another decade or two before the next period of really hard times. What might that next period be? It could be that major effects of climate change lead to planetary upheaval (mass migration, starvation, etc), it could be that rising non-democratic powers like China challenge American primacy eventually leading to devastating global warfare (i.e. WWIII), it could be internal Western civil wars as "social justice" groups conclude that it is their moral imperative to exterminate the white race (the evil oppressors of their narrative), it could be a massive pandemic which wipes out a huge part of the human population brought about by the overuse of antibiotics, it could be the creation of a strong AI that is hostile to humankind, or it could be something entirely unforeseen. Whatever it is, we are extremely unlikely to experience the current period of post-WWII prosperity continue past 2050 at the latest. More likely it will be over by 2030. Or it could even be that this cycle of hard times was pretty soft as these things go: the 2008 global recession; and the next crop of strong leaders are now maturing, and we're entering the next 80-100 years of prosperity. Unfortunately, this theory isn't great for predicting the future, since it is hard to definitely say what times are sufficiently "hard" until they are well behind you, and events of the day always loom larger in people's minds than events from decades ago.
  11. The US has treated the Kurds like shit for decades. They deserved their own sovereign state since day 1, and the US could have done it in 2003 if it gave a damn. The mere act of allowing Turkey into NATO was a disgrace given that it has engaged in killings and oppression against the Kurds continuously from decades ago to the present day. The US doesn't reward loyalty of disenfranchised allies like the Kurds and never has. Any potential ally of the US better make sure they are getting paid enough in the present, because promises about the future count for nothing. As for the US not being a reliable ally, that's the statement that Trump has been screaming to the world at the top of his lungs since he got into office.
  12. That's not really a thing. Any remotely sensitive system designed this century would have enough possible password combinations to take billions of years to stumble on the right one by chance, and moreover would prevent such an attack by requiring progressively longer wait periods after multiple failed attempts. And if there's some top secret data stored on computer systems from the 90s, you know what, whoever put it there deserves to have it hacked.
  13. Probably not? There are precious few examples in human history of good times continuing on for more than 3 generations. And in Western countries right now we're on generation 3 of the good times (counting from the end of WWII). Just like almost all wealthy families lose their wealth in 3 generations, so too do societies lose hard-earned wisdom in 3 generations. My prediction is by the time the last WWII vets are dying of old age, we'll be back in hard times. I would guess that as with all human problems, there are technological solutions to this cycle, but we aren't there yet. One technological solution might be drastic life extension, in which case the strong and effective leaders that emerge in hard times could have a voice for much longer. Another technological solution might be ceding leadership to an AI.
  14. Yep, that's what the Democrats here in the states also still haven't figured out. They don't understand why they lost 2016. Some complain about the electoral college, others complain about traitorous suburban white women, others bemoan all the supposedly racist rednecks that voted for Trump. None realize that by far the most powerful weapon any campaign on the right has is just playing back the arguments and statements of your typical left wing social justice type.
  15. And yet, in comparison to other Western countries, Canada's governments aren't even that bad. Democracy doesn't encourage long term thinking. Also, societies where most people live in comfort and apathy always begin to rot. Or, in modern forms of communication, here's a meme to explain it: