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Everything posted by jetcat

  1. There have been some controversial decisions to strip of citizenship, including for espionage. There's therefore currently two unequal classes of citizens, born and naturalized; the latter is far less secure. Also, if parents of a child born British are naturalized, the latter can still be in trouble should parents retain the second citizenship. Now, I think it's an absolutely wrong to strip people of citizenship on essentially a whim of Home Secretary as per current system, there's no definite list of offenses for which it can happen. On the other hand, I (a naturalized citizen) think it's wrong to allow keeping second citizenship while becoming British.
  2. Both, of course. Or, if you want to be charitable to politicians, they start their career without firm values and beliefs and define, harden and eventually calcify in the process. Also, the cultural narrative that informs values and beliefs is not produced exclusively for political purposes, whatever says that neomarxist view that dominate modern social sciences.
  3. Sorry for not being clear. It has little to do with "controlling the masses". Ideal modern government in mass societies would have been about setting up the incentive structures that promote peaceful cooperation within and resilience to destabilizing from without. Since we lack the all-knowing omnipotent deity to set it up, the imperfect evolved compromises between whoever has influence are used to define the structure. This is not to say that in sufficient numbers collective action will disrupt or re-negotiate the compromise. Representative democracy is one such compromise and the only structure that worked so far in mass society.
  4. In the age of mass politics, from 1890s till now this have indeed become the job of a career politician. It helps if politician's values align with the focus of their political messaging, but not strictly necessary. It is increasingly a matter of searching for niches through focus groups; probably a bit less so in the UK where it tends to happen at the party level.
  5. There's a fine balance to making people care but not care enough to blow themselves up, and elites used to be able to pull it off without mass communications and propaganda back in the days. I'd blame the whole thing on degrading average mental capacity past 1860s; obviously hits elites the hardest.
  6. It is actually about supporting the facade of ordinary people being involved in political decision-making. Social order and cooperation are dependent on consent of the governed. Representative government and democratic participation were ways to keep social order and provide for peaceful transition of power from one group of elites to another. It is extremely dangerous to undermine the illusion. Once the consent is lost the only things that keeps society together are tradition and legal sanctioned violence, and we all see what happens with traditional institutes of social stability like family, local community and church. Strangely, the same people most insistent on undermining the latter are also the ones chipping at the facade of democracy, as if the real intention is destroying social order.
  7. I know some who decided to withdraw from voting entirely having seen the way the referendum decision is being implemented and convinced as a result that representative democracy is a sham and a way of legitimizing whatever the Westminster elite wants. If one is convicted this way, the only moral thing to do short of nonviolent resistance or rebellion is to at least stop taking part in the play. Give it a good economic crisis (blamed on not implementing the unicorn Brexit they had in mind) and you get the angry and resentful lower and middle classes we all know and love from any violent anti-government insurrection in history. Same goes for remain, by the way, but at least they had lost the referendum to start with.
  8. Once the completion certificate is issued (which is needed regardless of whether the development requires permission), there's a mark next to one's house on the council tax record. The new band activates once the house is sold or after the re-valuation for tax purposes.
  9. I'd put it to Wilson's ignorance. There's very few Hungarians over here, especially compared to Polish and Romanian folks. Budapest and Vienna are a couple of hours' train journey away from each other; when Hungarian young people speak a foreign language, it's most likely German, plus a surprising number of them don't want to go anywhere full stop, unlike other young Eastern Europeans.
  10. As great as it is to punish people by making them living up to the moral standards they impose on others, I hesitate to normalize the lunacy. How about a liberal solution? Say, a voluntary carbon contribution calculated as percentage of personal output with open searchable registry. And a rule that one is only allowed to virtue signal on Twitter or attend a protest if theirs is at least 100% or more. The latter is probably unnecessary; the percentage itself will be virtue signal enough.
  11. Wow, this one is a genuinely good idea. This is essentially what the big companies do at carbon exchanges and in my opinion this very trading is the reason for all the overblown media brouhaha about the climate change. On the downside, that would open the market up for the plebs which is unacceptable. Also, who sets the ration?
  12. Indeed. I'm happy to bet that both massive resources will be expended by what is now 1st world countries on preventing climate change by 2030 and that not much of note will happen by then from the climate point of view, and everyone will claim progress and need for further spending.
  13. There's an interesting document on there with some advice for actuaries. The just of it looks to me like: be aware of climate change, be vigilant (mostly to regulatory changes), be wary of fossil fuel-related assets and explain climate change to your colleagues and partners. Which is reasonable but does not suggest any immediate catastrophic risk from climate change. Interesting to see how is long-term finance for fossil fuel-related activity is doing after over a decade of constant climate doom. Are there any margin calls? Unless I'm particularly ignorant (which is very likely), his thing looks like the Millennium bug on steroids; a real problem blown out of all proportions and a source of good profit for some.
  14. My three questions to those who honestly believe in quick catastrophic climate change caused by CO2 emissions would be as follows: 1. Why no business, including insurance companies, account for the risk in any way, if it's credible? In particular, why you can still get a mortgage and insurance for a property that will be unusable medium-term. 2. Why does the answer seem to be "anything but nuclear"? Nuclear power is very safe, has zero carbon emissions and any consequence from dealing with waste, while a legitimate problem, is way way further down the line than our supposed extinction from CO2. 3. How does one achieve zero emissions if all of its growth comes from developing countries increasing living standards of billions of their citizens? If all developed countries excluding the US achieve zero emissions tomorrow, it will offset about half of China's growth in CO2 emissions in the last 10 years. Shall we try to keep them from improving, or reverse their living standards somehow? Global warming/climate change/whatever next looks like a real concern blown out of proportions by an honest attempt to attract attention to legitimate environmental causes and exploited by crooks. For decades various environmentalists tried to gain public attention and political traction on pollution, plastics, deforestation, animal and plant extinction and disappearing biodiversity. It never gained much; public is too busy consuming the products of material abundance that brought about all of the above. Then someone came up with a brilliant idea to scare public to death by threatening _them_ with death and destruction of the very prosperity that caused the ignoring of the actual issues. That worked, but attracted a bunch of crooks, political operators, scaremongers in the press and the small human-hating loony fringe of hard left (children are immoral because they harm the environment, that lot). There result we see is that all the politicians and press talk about is horror stories of our impending destruction in 12 years (while the man-made climate change is probably an actual issue), not the harm to the environment caused by rapid growth of consumption in the former 3rd world.
  15. Can we evaluate which system had historically produced the most capable politicians, scientists and artists and revert back to it? Looks like the secondary school and universities have been degrading since about mid-late 1960s. Had anything radically changed then?
  16. Organised radicalism comes more from resentment than a particular set of ideas or grievances. I can’t see the remainers, while they can be authoritarian and oppressive, resenting some sort of a great Injustice if or when Brexit happens. Not because they’re nicer but because it’s not enough of an insult. Failing to implement Brexit in whatever form, however, will be The Great Betrayal for a small minority of leavers. Generally, radical violence in democracies develops as follows: It starts with disappointment with current ruling elites. The powers that be are viewed as unable to recognise or solve long-term problems (immigration, housing, economy, jobs), especially bad if they’re mildly authoritarian and suppress some dissent; The grave perceived injustice committed, The Great Betrayal, something that really <s>pisses off</s> goes agains core values of the radical minority; more in terms of optics than actual negative effects on the resentful. It can be some event in the past, but best if it’s fresh. Radical cells crystallise at this stage, especially quickly if helped from the outside by a hostile power; The government tries and fails to suppress the dissent by censorship and repression. Modern and especially democratic governments are really bad at that. It both angers the group in question and eliminates them from public discourse; their views are no longer challenged in the public space. They fester among themselves and the view at that stage is that the system in question is beyond peaceful transition and the only answer is organised violence.
  17. I'd say, all of the really radical leave would by now be in "no deal no matter what" camp and therefore not split.
  18. That would depend on whether both will manage to successfully blame the other side for the failure to remain if we leave, failure to leave if we remain or the bad deal we get if they vote for one. In any case you'll have majority remain or leave withdrawing and minority radicalized, feeling betrayed by their elected representatives. That's also partly my reasoning for not having the remain option or preferably not having the second referendum at all, whatever the outcome of Brexit; at least a chance that only half of the people holding a strong opinion either way will get massively pissed off. Plus, it's loyal no-matter-what Lab and Con support that's dying out, not (just) leavers.
  19. As far as I could see, the prevailing mood on this forum up to the referendum was "to hell with both of you" which kind of supports my speculation. In the wild (that in my case include very few people younger than 35), all I hear is either "I vote Labour because Conservatives are tw*ts" or the other way around; no policies involved.
  20. My speculation is that as the middle withdraws the only ones voting will be either very disciplined and holding principled* views or the very angry, both correlate with more extreme and authoritarian politics. * unless one holds principled libertarian views in which case that five and a half people in England and the remaining half in Scotland won't be enough to vote anyone in.
  21. Depends whether you buy "trends and forces" theory which is that if the conditions are right the figure will inevitably emerge. I see plenty of potential Fuhrers on social media.
  22. I'm wrong on that, 1932 turnout was good. So, inflamed passions and everyone at the extremes (social media?)
  23. The simplest case would be the rise of Napoleon; as a result of Terror the participation in both local and national elections dropped to about 10%, so the Directory had to purge the Senate intermittently from Jacobines and royalists since only the people with extreme convictions we brave enough to vote and put themselves up for elections. The result was rise of dictator Napoleon who was neither. The other famous example is of course Hitler.
  24. This is a dangerous misconception. The population got largely tired of politics and withdrawn. The most votes Nazis ever received was 37% and the reason was that most voters simply didn't show up, and committed Nazis and Communists did. That, however was NOT when Hitler came to power; that Reichtag was dissolved by motion from Communists supported by Nazis. Hitler came to power as a result of an elitist (a few high-up civil servants supported by some big business and press figures) political plot to get rid of communists; chancellorship was Hitler's price for Nazi party supporting Christian conservatives in doing that. See anything familiar yet?
  25. What Newport West demonstrates is what I see from those closet Leave voters I know about (our industry is full-on globalist and heavily Remain): "they (both remainers in Parliament and government and the EU) won't let us leave, so I'm not voting again"; those are smart open well-travelled people and not your stereotypical blue collar little englander. Which is exactly how you transition from liberty to authoritarianism; the sane majority resigns from participation and leaves the field to extreme zealots (see every other long political crisis in a representative democracy; Haiti, France, Germany, anywhere in South America). One can also witness the same process on social media in grotesque amplified forms. As for pro-Brexit demographics dying, who's really dying are the drones voting Labour or Conservative no matter what. I don't think we should expect political stability any time soon and Brexit was a symptom of that rather than the cause. The new equilibrium will form around one of the extremes (authoritarian nationalism or more likely authoritarian collectivism) and will slowly drift towards whatever will then be center over time.
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